Carmack strikes back in Oculus-Zenimax legal merry-go-round

Id Software co-founder and Oculus Rift co-designer John Carmack is suing ZeniMax for allegedly missing payments.

The legal situation between ZeniMax and Oculus is torrid, to say the last. ZeniMax was awarded $500m in damages last month over a trade-secrets breach, but has since gone on to try and halt sales of the Oculus Rift VR headset.

Kotaku reports that Carmack is now alleging that ZeniMax has held back money relating to the purchase of Id Software in 2009, saying that he hasn’t received $22.5m owed to him purely because of the bad blood between the two companies.

ZeniMax clearly doesn’t want to pay,” court documents read. And while Mr. Carmack awaits ZeniMax’s seemingly inevitable refusal to honour its obligation to pay the remainder of the purchase price, ZeniMax is already in breach of the Asset Purchase Agreement and Convertible Promissory Note.

When ZeniMax bought id Software in 2009, it agreed to pay a total of $150m for that purchase. Now that the final instalment of that bill is coming due, ZeniMax is simply refusing to pay. But sour grapes is not an affirmative defence to breach of contract. This Court should enter judgment against ZeniMax for all the money that it agreed to pay Mr. Carmack for the sale of his former company.”

On March 2, 2017, ZeniMax’s general counsel responded to Mr. Carmack’s conversion notice and sale offer. By that letter, ZeniMax made it clear that the company would not voluntarily comply on a timely basis with the conversion notice. The content and tone of the letter also made it clear that ZeniMax was unlikely to comply with its obligations under the shareholders’ agreement by either buying the offered shares or notifying the other shareholders of their right to purchase them.”

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