Sunday, 6 February 2011

My Tuppance Worth: GW vs Chapterhouse studios

Well we know now that GW are taking Chapterhouse studios to court over Copyright/IP infringement and well I reckon it's pretty clear cut - Chapterhouse are screwed.

Regardless of what you may think of GW or Chapterhouse - be it Fanboi, hater or anything in between, Chapterhouse have no one to blame but themselves. They have and still do use copyrighted GW material.

Yes GW have taken many "Ideas" from elsewhere, but they where smart enough to change it enough to be something 'original' and what they didn't change they paid for the rights, or just using stuff as insipration.

Paying for rights and adapting is very different from blatantly copying.

Many other sites and companies make items and upgrade packs for "28mm" or "Heroic Scale" minitures - we all know they are for GW kits but they never use GW owned names.

Also that massive disclaimer at the bottom of Chapterhouse's website appeared 24 hours after the news of legal action broke.

GW would of never taken action if they knew they could not win, they have done this many times and are experienced in taking out any potential rip off merchants - I have a friend who use to do this kind of ear marking potential violations for GW ("Yeah woo John you know someone who use to work for GW" - yeah well I have even used Jervis Johnson's toilet - true story).

I'm sure they guys at Chapterhouse studios are nice guys who wanted to share their impressive hobby skills with fellow gamers, but sadly they have shot themselves in both feet by not getting legal advice *before* starting their business.

And that's My Tuppance Worth!


  1. They did definitely 'shoot themselves in the feet', as you put it, but I would like to see them win. Not because I have anything against GW or because I disagree with copyright, but I would like this case to set a precedent of sorts which other companies can fall upon in time of need if they get 'bullied' by larger ones.

    But you are definitely right, they should have either tried to buy the rights to use the copyright or adapted - maybe creating stuff for new, invented Space Marine Chapters.

    Personally I don't see anything wrong with a company catering for Space Marine parts, but they should have at least used different names. IMO they were asking for it.

    Anyway, to be honest I don't like the stuff at Chapterhouse. They are nowhere as top-notch as the stuff GW do, so I don't think they were a threat. If anything Chapterhouse is a testament of how hard you have to work to reach the standards set by Citadel. So in a strange, perverted way their existence is a compliment to GW.

  2. You've used the Golden Throne? Amazing!