Sponsored By

Koei Tecmo sues mobile dev Youzoo for repeated copyright infringement

Koei Tecmo claims, despite numerous cease and desists, that Youzoo kept using material from its games to advertise its own mobile titles.

Justin Carter, Contributing Editor

April 11, 2024

1 Min Read
Key art for 2024's Rise of the Ronin.
Image via Team Ninja/Koei Tecmo.

At a Glance

  • Video game clones are nothing new, and neither is a studio taking legal action against an alleged clone's developer.

Koei Tecmo recently filed a lawsuit against Singaporean developer Youzoo, according to Automaton Media, for consistent and "extremely malicious" copyright infringement.

The Japanese publisher claims Youzoo used music and in-game assets from the former's Nobunaga’s Ambition and Taiko Risshiden series in online ads for its own mobile games. Despite multiple notices sent, this has allegedly gone on for years.

It's further claimed these ads refer to Koei Tecmo by name, even though the two companies aren't involved with each other.

"We have determined that the defendant’s conduct is not only detrimental to users and [our] partner companies," wrote Koei Tecmo, "but also undermines the efforts of all parties who were involved in the development of our games."

Youzoo (or YOOZOO) is best known for phone titles like League of Angels. It's recently started putting out games in Japan, which, per Automaton, share many similarities with Koei Tecmo's historical fantasy games.

Koei Tecmo is another chapter in the clone lawsuit saga

Lawsuits over alleged game clones are fairly common, at least as it concerns international companies. In 2022, for example, Riot sued NetEase over an alleged Valorant clone named Hyper Front, which was subsequently shut down months later.

PUBG developer Krafton also took NetEase to court over two games, Knives Out and Rules of Survival, which it claimed breached a previous agreement and copied the popular shooter. The two companies settled at the end of 2023.

Krafton similarly sued Singaporean studio Garena over its Free Fire game being an alleged PUBG clone. While it's been pulled from India for security concerns, it's still playable in other regions.

About the Author(s)

Justin Carter

Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com

A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don't ask him about how much gum he's had, because the answer will be more than he's willing to admit.

Daily news, dev blogs, and stories from Game Developer straight to your inbox

You May Also Like