We posted an article not long ago which mentioned that the Oculus Rift VR headset might have been built with technology stolen from ZeniMax Media. Oculus VR denied these accusations today and have also given a list of reasons which contradict the claims coming from ZeniMax.
- There is not a line of Zenimax code or any of its technology in any Oculus products.
- John Carmack did not take any intellectual property from Zenimax.
- Zenimax has misstated the purposes and language of the Zenimax non disclosure agreement that Palmer Luckey signed.
- A key reason that John permanently left Zenimax in August of 2013 was that Zenimax prevented John from working on VR, and stopped investing in VR games across the company.
- Zenimax canceled VR support for Doom 3 BFG when Oculus refused Zenimax’s demands for a non-dilutable equity stake in Oculus.
- Zenimax did not pursue claims against Oculus for IP or technology, Zenimax has never contributed any IP or technology to Oculus, and only afterthe Facebook deal was announced has Zenimax now made these claims through its lawyers.
- Despite the fact that the full source code for the Oculus SDK is available online (developer.oculusvr.com), Zenimax has never identified any ‘stolen’ code or technology.
This statement was made via an email sent to freelance videogame writer Dan Griliopoulos. Oculus VR also added that ”We are disappointed but not surprised by Zenimax’s actions and we will prove that all of its claims are false”. It does look like Oculus managed to bring some solid arguments to the table, we’re curious to see how ZeniMax Media responds to all of this. Rumor has it that the company only started throwing accusations after Facebook announced their plans to acquire Oculus VR for $2 billion back in March.
Most of the claims are directed towards John Carmack, Oculus VR CTO and former employee at ZeniMax subsidiary, id Software. Carmack is accused of having provided software that was crucial to the development of the Oculus while he was still working for ZeniMax Media. The company also added that the code turned the Oculus Rift from a ”garage-based pipe dream into a working reality.”
No work I have ever done has been patented. Zenimax owns the code that I wrote, but they don't own VR.
— John Carmack (@ID_AA_Carmack) May 1, 2014
John Carmack already denied these claims earlier via Twitter as we can see above, he also added that “Oculus uses zero lines of code that I wrote while under contract to Zenimax.” The company seems to be in a tight spot at the moment and a response from ZeniMax is certain to arrive sometime in the near future. Stay tuned as we bring you more updates on the situation.