Digerati, publisher of The Outbound Ghost, has filed a lawsuit against developer Conradical.
Last week, lead developer Conrad Grindheim released a YouTube video explaining that his relationship with the publisher had “dissolved” and he asked the publisher to return the publishing rights to him.
The dispute arose due to Grindheim’s disappointment with the quality of the console release of the game, specifically on the Switch. He allegedly vandalized the game’s store page on Steam in response, which has since been removed.
Digerati followed Grindheim’s YouTube video with a separate statement, in which owner Sarah Alfieri said, “we have been blindsided by the sudden negativity from Conrad, the game’s developer.”
Now the publisher has filed a lawsuit against Conradical for false statements and intentional breach of contract.
It is not seeking money at this time, but is asking the developer to fulfill its obligations to ensure the game is a success.
A statement shared with Eurogamer reads: “While certainly not something we wanted to do, we have been forced into a position that requires us to protect our rights under the license agreement with Conradical. We remain hopeful that we will still be able to resolve this issue amicably, and will be able to collaborate on the continued improvement of the performance of The Outbound Ghost.
“But we simply cannot sit and be dragged through the mud in a public forum, nor can we allow our contractual rights to be trampled upon without exercising some form of remedy.
“In the lawsuit, we are asking the court to order Conradical to perform its obligations under the license agreement to ensure the success of The Outbound Ghost. We are not seeking money at this time because we want to return to the path where The Outbound Ghost would have been successful.
“Given the sudden change in our relationship with Conrad, as well as other information we have received, we have a reasonable suspicion that forces outside of both parties have intervened to drive a wedge between us from the developer side. This is an area of We look forward to the potential to regain a positive relationship with Conradical when they can accept and acknowledge that we have not done them wrong.
“As Digerati has repeatedly stated privately; Digerati is ready, willing and able to work with Conradical to ensure the success of The Outbound Ghost and Conradical as a continued partner. We hope that the need for legal intervention is short-lived and this case can be decided immediately.”
The statement also addresses the timing of the Switch patch, which “remains with Nintendo for release time, and should be applied over the next few days”.
“Each and every consumer who purchased the game, whether digitally or physically, should rest assured that performance issues will be fixed when they are found,” the statement said.
– This is not a normal situation for us either, and it has also been just as disturbing from our side as for those sitting across from us.
The Outbound Ghost, inspired by Nintendo’s Paper Mario game, was released on Steam back in September, followed by a console release in early December.