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Give me a break: Atari suing Nestle over alleged Breakout-themed Kit Kat ads

Atari has filed a federal lawsuit against Nestle, arguing that the candy maker's short-lived Kit Kat: Breakout commercial made unauthorized use of Atari’s classic brick-breaking arcade game, Breakout.

Atari has filed a federal lawsuit against Nestle, arguing that the candy maker's short-lived Kit Kat: Breakout commercial made unauthorized use of Atari’s classic brick-breaking arcade game, Breakout.

The British ad features a rotating cast of players that come together to chow down on some Kit Kat Bites and play a Kit Kat-themed video game that Atari argues looks suspiciously like its own 1976 title.

"Nestle simply took the classic Breakout screen, replaced its bricks with Kit Kat bars, and invited customers to 'breakout' and buy more candy bars,” reads the complaint filed by Atari to the Northern California district court.

“The infringing conduct in this case is so plain and blatant that Nestle cannot claim to be an 'innocent' infringer. Nestle knew exactly what it was doing.”

According to Reuters, Atari believes Nestle sought to capitalize on the nostalgic charm invoked by Breakout through its social media and video campaign.

In addition to punitive damages, Atari is seeking damages in the amount of three times Nestle’s profits from the campaign.

Nestle, meanwhile, says it has no plans to rerun the 2016 ad campaign, simply stating that “we are aware of the lawsuit in the U.S. and will defend ourselves strongly against these allegations."

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