The frantic fight between Zenimax and Oculus over who created the Oculus Rift has taken a surprising turn.
According to a report from Game Informer, Zenimax has filed an amended complaint against Oculus that both names its new parent company Facebook, and directly accuses former employee John Carmack of stealing virtual reality technology.
As Zenimax tells it, John Carmack allegedly copied thousands of documents from a Zenimax computer to a USB storage device, then “never returned those files or all copies of them after his employment with ZeniMax was terminated.”
“In addition, after Carmack's employment with ZeniMax was terminated, he returned to ZeniMax's premises to take a customized tool for developing VR Technology belonging to ZeniMax that itself is part of ZeniMax's VR technology,” the lawsuit continues.
Zenimax’s suit also expands its accusations against Luckey, who it had previously described as a "college-aged video game enthusiast" whose work Carmack improved on. Now, the company argues that Oculus CEO Brendan Iribe deliberately played up the tales about Palmer’s oft-expounded origin story about working on the Oculus Rift in his garage.
As the lawsuit states, “in fact, that story was utterly and completely false: Luckey lacked the training, expertise, resources, or know-how to create commercially viable VR technology, his computer programming skills were rudimentary, and he relied on ZeniMax's computer program code and games to demonstrate the prototype Rift.”
“Luckey increasingly and falsely held himself out to the media and the public as the visionary developer of the Rift’s VR Technology, which had actually been developed by ZeniMax without any substantial contribution from Luckey."
Oculus’ response to the new allegations has proven brief and to the point. "This complaint filed by ZeniMax is one-sided and conveys only ZeniMax's interpretation of the story," the company tells Game Informer. "We continue to believe this case has no merit, and we will address all of ZeniMax's allegations in court."
Game Informer has uploaded the amended lawsuit for review here. You can also catch up on the original five key points from Zenimax’s lawsuit against Oculus here.