Bethesda forces name change for indie game Prey for the Gods

Ben Parfitt
Bethesda forces name change for indie game Prey for the Gods

Prey for the Gods will now be called Praey for the Gods after its developer chose to avoid a trademark dispute with Bethesda.

Bethesda, of course, this week publishes its new shooter Prey, which itself is a reprisal of the name used for the original 2006 2K title.

Prey for the Gods has nothing to do with game, and instead sells itself as a kind of Shadow of the Colossus homage for the PC market. It was successfully funded on Kickstarter in August, raising $500k.

“We didn’t want to do this but we had to change our game name from Prey for the Gods to Praey for the Gods,” developer No Matter Studios said. “Thankfully we get to keep the logo but we will spell it 'Praey for the Gods'.

“We could’ve fought this and we did think about it for quite a while. Something like a trademark opposition can be long and depending on how far someone wants to fight it can be very expensive. We didn’t want to spend our precious Kickstarter funds, nor did we want to have to ask for additional funds to fight this in court. Using backer money towards something that doesn’t go towards the development or backer rewards felt horrible to us.

“The truth is we initially thought about naming the game Præy for the Gods prior to our initial trailer. The logo has both the woman praying against the duality of prey, and thankfully we get to continue to use that. We figured people would have a hard time trying to type in the æ symbol in search engines etc.

“Unfortunately, Zenimax chose to oppose our mark, as they felt both were too similar to their mark 'Prey'. While we disagree with their opposition we were able to come to an agreement.

“It was something that kept me up many nights, and no doubt shifted our focus from our game frequently. Worrying about the outcome if we went to trial, if we’d lose our fans or walk away from the mark and still potentially get sued for millions on trademark infringement. This is really something no starting company should have to deal with let alone a tiny team of 3.

“So the fact that we came out the other end intact still developing the game was a win. One that will no doubt shape our company moving forward.”

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Tags: bethesda , trademarks , Kickstarter

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