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Nintendo Sued by Wizards of the Coast

by Jonathan Metts - October 13, 2003, 4:19 pm EDT
Total comments: 14 Source: Seattle Post-Intell.

The creators of the Pokemon trading card game are suing Nintendo of America and Pokemon USA.

According to a weekend article in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Wizards of the Coast has filed a suit against Nintendo of America, Pokemon USA, The Pokemon Company, and two executives. Wizards created the Pokemon trading card game and oversaw the product for years until Pokemon USA recently absorbed those operations. Wizards of the Coast produces several other card games, including Magic: The Gathering.

The lawsuit alleges that Pokemon USA and Nintendo undermined their relationship with Wizards of the Coast, apparently so that the once-lucrative Pokemon card business could be transferred and rebuilt under Nintendo's umbrella. The suit also makes accusations of patent infringement and mishandling of trade secrets.

At the heart of the matter are two executives who once worked at Wizards but eventually were hired by Pokemon USA. The lawsuit basically says that these people went to Nintendo and gave away various information that they were bound to keep secret by non-disclosure agreements with Wizards.

Nintendo of America has denied any wrongdoing. The various companies involved are currently discussing a settlement. You can read more about the case at the link above.


gwgtrunksOctober 13, 2003

I'm pretty sure it was Nintendo who made the Pokemon TCG, not WotC face-icon-small-wink.gif.

This really doesn't supprise me... there were a lot of hard feelings comming from the guys who ran Pokemon at Wizards when they lost the liscense a few months ago.

Grey NinjaOctober 13, 2003

Sounds like someone is just angry that they aren't making money from someone else's franchise anymore. Poor babies.

joshnickersonOctober 13, 2003

Sounds like sour grapes to me. WotC pretty much ran the TCG into the ground and alienated older players. Now that Nintendo has reclaimed the rights and is attempting to revive the game, WotC still wants a piece of the action. They're just mad that all they have is Magic and that stupid Neopets game.
Nintendo created the game Wizards simply brought it over from Japan.

Flames_of_chaosLukasz Balicki, Staff AlumnusOctober 13, 2003

Even though MTG is my current TCG, Pokemon was my first. Wizards only had publishing and distribution rights from Nintendo. Nintendo of Japan was and still publishes the game in Japan (I own some Jap Pokemon cards). Pokemon and MTG are great card games and its sad seeing WOTC and Nintendo USA/ Pokemon Company fighting like this even though i abbonded buying Pokemon boosters since the Neo set.

SuperLink666October 13, 2003


BlkPaladinOctober 13, 2003

The main gripe is the NDA that the excutives may or may not have breeched. Not them taking the game. (Though it does have something to do with it.)

ThePermOctober 13, 2003

Nintendo then goes...um we started out as card company. Like you know those cards that have mountains and stuff that you call mana cards....we had mountaisn on our cards like 100 years ago...were not stealing anything....yah your jsut being little bitches. Also i do remember Sotashi Tajiri created the card game over in Japan and he devloped it as he developed the game(why isnt he more famous?). It was just translated and redistributed by wotc here.

SilverBack1138October 13, 2003

WotC went down the drain after Hasbro brought them out. I've also heard that there were a couple of crap events that happened that also cost them their downfall. I live here in WA and I used to remember their giant store/gaming place in the U district, but it closed down and it seems that many of the smaller mall outlets are doing the same. Their prime, as the business cycle works, has gone and they're just not doing as well anymore. Maybe, this is an act of desperation, who knows. I just think that this whole litigation deal stinks and I hope Nintendo wins.

TrekGeekMidOctober 14, 2003

Well, unfortunately it seems this case may never get to court. It looks from the article that they are going to settle out of court...probably cheaper for Nintendo that way, since they avoid court costs.

I share the hope that if it ever does get to court, Nintendo will win.

KDR_11kOctober 14, 2003

Meh, Pokemon TGC... I played one round against my sister. After I corrected her on a misconception of the rules she found out the game was pure suckage (she believed you had to discard power cards when using them). I still wonder what people liked in it.

O/T: The Pokemon TGC caused masses of little children to become criminal: They couldn't afford the cards and therefore stole them.

Flames_of_chaosLukasz Balicki, Staff AlumnusOctober 14, 2003

Well cause the kids was envious after they saw a card collection especially with alot of Holo/foils. The main difference I think in Magic is that people are more friendly trading cards unlike Yu-Gi-Oh or Pokemon TCG.

Ocarina BlueOctober 14, 2003


Originally posted by: ThePerm
Nintendo then goes...um we started out as card company. Like you know those cards that have mountains and stuff that you call mana cards....

I don't much about this, but would those be (phonetic spelling) Hanafuda playing cards?

I really can't see how so many people here seem to have decided that Wizards is just trying to make money through manipluaton of laws here. If Nintendo did all those things that were alledged (and I'm not saying they did), they deserve to be punished.

ThePermOctober 15, 2003

yeah they were called hanafunda...i was refering to mana cards in magic thouhg. They have mountains and swamps on them...as a wizard you draw yor power from the land.

I was pretty sure that Richard Garfield, creator of Magic: The Gathering, also created the Pokemon TCG. But I guess not. I should have checked up on that before I put it in there, but oh well.

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