The company that could not finish a Duke Nukem game in 12 years is being sued by the company that finally did, for threatening to finish another one.
Gearbox, which in 2010 bought Duke Nukem and the rights to it from its creator, 3D Realms, is suing 3D Realms over something called Duke Nukem: Mass Destruction.
Normally Gearbox would not be worried, after all 3D Realms created the world record for trying and failing to get Duke Nukem into the shops.
But it seems that Gearbox actually thinks that 3D might be serious. Earlier this month in a teaser site that quickly disappeared but has since returned. Gearbox's suit says the game was being made, without its knowledge or permission, by 3D Realms and was to be published by Interceptor Entertainment, a Danish firm also named in the filing.
According to Gearbox. after selling its Duke Nukem IP rights to Gearbox in 2010, 3D Realms sought to privately convince others that the sale never happened.
3D Realms and Interceptor "colluded to misappropriate and make infringing use of the Duke Nukem trademarks and copyrights owned by Gearbox.
Gearbox said that its acquisition of Duke Nukem in 2010 entitled it to all future development of anything using its name or characters, bailed 3D Realms out of a sticky situation in which publisher Take-Two Interactive was suing. EA had spent a fortune on Duke Nukem Forever's development.
When it took the 3D Code it found it was "sorely deficient," also describing it as "a technological jigsaw puzzle of a video game.
Kotaku which has seen the paperwork said that Gearbox wants damages, including punitive and a judge's order to stop Mass Destruction from ever releasing. Gearbox's lawsuit says the game was due to launch on February 25 however, that was only the date a countdown timer at AllOutofGum.com was set to expire.
Gearbox's filing includes a declaration, signed by both Miller and co-founder George Broussard, in which they acknowledge Gearbox's exclusive ownership of Duke Nukem and that Mass Destruction violates the rights they sold to Gearbox in 2010. "I apologize to Gearbox for the infringement and breach represented by my efforts," reads the declaration, dated February 16.