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Capcom wins patent infringement lawsuit against Koei Tecmo

A ruling has come back on a 2014 patent infringement case filed against Koei Tecmo by Capcom that alleged the former party infringed on a pair of decade-old patents filed by Capcom.

After a 5 year saga, Japan’s Intellectual Property High Court has ruled in favor of Capcom, finding that Koei Tecmo had indeed infringed the two patents mentioned in the original suit, and as such must pay the former 143.8 million yen (~$1.3 million) to cover both damages and legal fees.

Two patents were involved in the original 2014 suit, a patent on using controller vibration to alert players to the presence of an off-screen enemy and a patent on certain methods for “unlocking bonus content when the DVD-ROM of the latest title of a game series is set in a game console, by placing the DVD-ROM of the previous title of the game series into the console.”

In a previous ruling from 2017, an Osaka District Court found Koei Tecmo infringed on only the vibration patent, but the recent judgment from the Intellectual Property High Court finds that both patents have been infringed on.

The original lawsuit sought damages equal to the license fees Capcom said Koei Tecmo would have paid on the 97 billion yen the developer earned from infringing games, or roughly 980 million yen (~$9.4 million). Excluding lawyers fees, this most recent ruling sees Koei Tecmo ordered to pay 130.7 million yen (~$1.2 million) in damages.

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