Cooking Mama license owner Office Create Corp is threatening to take legal action against Cooking Mama: Cookstar publisher Planet Entertainment LLC for releasing the game without authorization.
The title landed on the Switch eShop in the United States, Europe, and Australia in March, but was pulled from sale after a few days. Although the game was removed from digital stores, Planet Entertainment has continued sell physical copies through its official website (as the screenshot below shows).
Explaining why Cookstar was yanked from digital shelves, Office Create explained the title "failed to meet the standards its customers expect and deserve," and that Planet Entertainment proceeded to release the title despite being contractually obliged to resubmit an improved version.
"In August 2018, Office Create licensed Planet to develop the Cooking Mama: Cookstar game for Nintendo Switch. Unfortunately, the quality of the game builds failed to meet the standards that our customers expect and deserve," reads an Office Create statement.
"Office Create rejected a wide range of deficiencies affecting the overall feel, quality and content of the game. Yet, despite being contractually obligated to correct the identified deficiencies and resubmit the corrected game for Office Create’s approval, Planet proceeded to release Cooking Mama: Cookstar without addressing all of the rejections and without Office Create’s approval."
Office Create also asserts that Planet has also been promoting an upcoming European release of Cookstar on the PlayStation 4, despite the fact the publisher hasn't been licensed to create a Cooking Mama title for the platform.
Due to those alleged breached of contract, Office Create notified Planet of its immediate termination of the license on March 30, 2020, to no avail, and is now "evaluating all legal action" against the publisher.
"On March 30, 2020 Office Create notified Planet of its immediate termination of the license due to Planet’s intentional material breach of the license contract. Despite such notice, Planet continues to advertise and sell the unauthorized version of Cooking Mama: Cookstar on its website in willful violation of Office Create’s rights. To date, Planet has not confirmed the status of the unauthorized PS4 version," continues the statement.
"Office Create is evaluating all legal action against Planet to protect our customers, intellectual property rights and the Cooking Mama series. In the meantime, we thank our customers and loyal Cooking Mama fans for their continued support and sincerely regret any confusion and disappointment that has been caused by Planet’s conduct."