Riot Sues NetEase Over Alleged Valorant Clone 'Hyper Front' - Prima Games

Riot Sues NetEase Over Alleged Valorant Clone ‘Hyper Front’

Here comes the lawsuit!

by Daphne Fama

A new lawsuit filed in a UK court asserts that NetEase’s Hyper Front is a “copy of substantial parts of Valorant,” a 5 v 5 shooter developed by Riot Games. This copyright suit has been raised simultaneously in Germany, Brazil, and Singapore. This claim is substantiated, Riot argues, by a list of similarities between the two games, including character design, maps, weapons, cosmetics, stats, and even charms.

Riot Sues NetEase Over Alleged Valorant Clone ‘Hyper Front’

When asked for a statement, Riot Games’s attorney Dan Nabel stated on behalf of Valorant, “All of our creative choices are mirrored in NetEase’s game. We don’t think that changing the color of a character’s ability or slightly modifying the visual appearance changes the fact that it’s copyright infringement. It’s like that old saying, ‘You can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig.’”

Valorant, like Hyper Front, is a free to play first-person shooter that throws two teams of five against each other. Both games offer players a chance to play a variety of classes with distinct abilities. These abilities do share similarities. For example, Hyper Front character Elixir’s ultimate ability allows her to revive allies, just like Valorant’s Sage.

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But this isn’t the first time NetEase has found itself at the center of a lawsuit. PUBG Corp. filed a similar case in 2018 over NetEase’s games Knives Out and Rules of Survival, which, allegedly, were too similar to PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. The case was settled out of court.

But it’s likely that Riot Games won’t want this dispute to end with an exchange of money. Riot Games reached out to NetEase previously to make changes to Hyper Front. And while certain changes were implemented, Riot Games claims that these alterations were minor and not substantial enough to differentiate the two shooters.

Riot Games is pushing for the courts to force NetEase to shut down Hyper Front and is claiming substantial damages from Hyper Front’s ongoing existence. But it’s yet to be seen how the courts will come down in this matter.

About The Author

Daphne Fama

A lawyer turned game journalist, Daphne Fama spends an inordinate amount of time playing games across the spectrum but she'll always have a soft spot for horror and JPRGs. Want to see all the best animal pictures the internet has to offer? Follow her on twitter at @DaphneFama.

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