French publisher Nacon has responded to the open letter posted by The Sinking City developer Frogwares. In the letter, the studio alleges multiple transgressions by Nacon that boil down to two main claims. First, the publisher repeatedly denied the studio payments and still owes around 1 million euros in unpaid royalties to Frogwares. Second, Nacon cultivated the perception that it owns the IP, even though it is only a licensee with the right to commercialize the game on 4 platforms – Xbox One, PS4, Steam and later, Epic Games Store.
In a statement to Gamasutra, Nacon rejected all allegations made by Frogwares, noting that the dispute around The Sinking City is still pending in court. The company also said it funded most of the development. However, the publisher refrained from commenting on individual claims containted in the letter by Frogwares.
Below is the statement from Nacon in its entirety:
A dispute between Nacon and Frogwares over the interpretation of the Sinking City video game publishing agreement is pending before French courts. A decision is not expected for several months. However, Frogwares thought it necessary to anticipate the upcoming ruling by issuing a press release on their website and Twitter feed, which reflects a personal and erroneous interpretation of the content of the agreement and the nature of this dispute. Nacon emphatically rejects this open letter, the terms of which do not square with the facts. Frogwares is seeking to discredit Nacon in the eyes of the public and professionals alike (even going so far as disclosing confidential information!) and to jeopardise the distribution of The Sinking City, the development of which was principally funded by Nacon. This behaviour, unworthy of any professional, is unacceptable and Nacon intends to take legal action so as to get them convicted and obtain redress. Nacon is confident about the outcome of the dispute, irrespective of the tricks used by Frogwares to cause them harm.