Warner Bros. Entertainment and Behaviour Interactive recently launched the mobile Westworld game, a cartoony take on the HBO series that puts you in the role of a new employee at the park. It shares some design similarities to Bethesda’s Fallout Shelter, and this has reportedly become the subject of a lawsuit.
According to TMZ, Bethesda is suing both Warner Bros. and Behaviour Interactive, claiming that the latter company “stole its designs, artwork, and codes” for use in Westworld. Bethesda worked with Behaviour back in 2014 on the development of Fallout Shelter, which the company created in partnership with Bethesda Game Studios.
As alleged proof of theft, Bethesda pointed to bugs appearing in Westworld that also appeared in early versions of Fallout Shelter, though the report doesn’t specify which bugs appear in both games.
The Westworld game allows you to control nearly every major aspect of the park, including maintenance in an underground area that looks quite similar to the different compartments in Fallout Shelter. The hosts you create can be fully customizable and sent out to “satisfy desires” for human guests, which isn’t something we see in Bethesda’s game.
The issue of stolen code is far more serious than mere gameplay or design similarities, however, and Bethesda parent company Zenimax is no stranger to litigation. The company was awarded $500 million in 2017 in a lawsuit against Oculus regarding virtual reality and intellectual property. Former Zenimax employee and Id Software co-founder John Carmack had recently left the company to join Oculus as its chief technology officer.
Warner Bros. is no stranger to accusations, either. Assassin’s Creed II developer Charles Randall had claimed Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor lifted code and assets from Ubisoft’s game, which developer Monolith Productions outright denied.
In any case, we’re hoping the Westworld television show can begin to make a little more sense, as our interest is starting to wane due to its many seemingly unconnected narrative threads and lack of forward movement. The Westworld mobile game is available now on iOS and Android, and Fallout Shelter is available on the aforementioned platforms as well as Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC, and Nintendo Switch. If you have an Amazon Alexa device, you can use it to play Westworld: The Maze, as well.