It was the court case that shook the world. Err, well, it was actually a fairly normal court case where the original programmer of John Madden Football sued EA for royalties on derivative work. The case, which began earlier in June, quickly sided with Robin Antonick and awarded $11 million.
Madden football titles released between 1990 and 1996 were found to be "virtually identical," a proud Madden football tradition since day one. Since Antonick won this trial for early Madden games, he's now able to continue suing for games made between 1997 and beyond. Basically, the era where Madden really made some money.
Rob Carey, one of Antonick's attorneys, made the following comments:
"This is a tremendous victory. In many ways, this trial was a test of each party's version of events. The jury uniformly rejected the idea that this game was developed without Robin's work. It is, if nothing, a good omen for the next phase of the litigation."
Naturally, it's almost certain that a jury can't possibly understand whether a game's programming is virtually identical to its predecessors or not. Instead, according to the press release, the jury found that EA's Madden games between 1990-1996, "shared substantial similarity in the plays and formations available to the user." Oh dear, this guy is going to take huge profit considering plays and formations in Madden (or football for that matter) haven't changed.