Tuesday - December 21, 2010
Sir-Tech - The Roots of CRPGs @ Bitmob
A space-based wargame, Galactic Attack, was the next project, said to have been dreamt up during the drive back home from the show (though a vague Wikipedia entry doubts this story by saying that it was adapted from another early PC game: 1973's Empire). After convincing Fred Sirotek, Sr. to part with the capital to get the project started, Infotree completed Galactic Attack and sold enough to fund the next one -- and the company that would bring it to the world: Sir-tech. It was a game that Woodhead had been playing at Cornell with fellow student Andrew Greenberg: Dungeons of Despair.
Wednesday - June 27, 2007
Sir-Tech - Long running legal battles
This is an unusual newsbit...I'm not sure what you will make of it but I guess it casts some small illumination on the business end of game making, even back in the day. Lucky Day wrote in to point out a lawsuit by Andrew Greenberg against Sir-Tech, stretching back over 13 years to this judgment in 2005. The source is a summary on Cornell Law School's site but it's rather complex, so I'll use Lucky Day's email:
I'm not a lawyer but this appears to be a summary of a second appeal of Andrew Greenberg vs Sir-Tech .
Greenberg is the real life Werdna in the Wizardy series.
According to this summary Greenberg licensed to Sir-Tech in 1981 his 1979 Wizardry game on it and was to receive any and all royalties for related products.
In 1991, Sir-Tech collapsed then transferred its assets to Sir-Tech, Canada. However, they apparently decided that they didn't have to pay Greenberg his royalties.
It was in 1992 that Greenberg discovered they left the country so he filed suit in the state of New York.
Sir-Tech Canada argued that they lacked jurisdiction but Greenberg pointed out that Wizardry products were being sold in the State and that Sir-Tech Canada bought the sirtech.com domain from they former parent company Sir-Tech Sftware, Inc., a New York company.
He won the lawsuit but Sir-Tech appealed and somehow they won. The court stated that Greenberg failed to even raise the the legal violation that he originally sued them over (cplr 302 a, etc.)
Not to be undaunted, Greenberg appealed that decision with quite a bit of evidence. This article shows the results of that decision in Greenberg's favor in 2005..13 years after it began and 3.5 years since the last North American Wizardry release. According to Wikipedia, there has been 15 Wizardry products released in Japan since.