Westworld Mobile Game Removed From iOS App Store Following Bethesda Dispute

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jan 16, 2019.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Warner Bros' Westworld mobile game, which bore a notable resemblance to Bethesda Softworks' Fallout Shelter game for smartphones, has been removed from the iOS App Store and Google Play Store. The removal comes seven months after Bethesda sued Warner Bros by calling the Westworld app a "blatant rip-off" of Bethesda's 2015 game Fallout Shelter.

    Westworld on iOS

    The lawsuit centered around Behaviour Interactive, the game developer that worked on both Fallout Shelter and Westworld, and who Bethesda accused of breach of contract, copyright infringement, unfair competition, and misappropriation of trade secrets. The dispute continued into the year, and in early January 2019 the companies released a simple one-line statement that said both parties "have amicably resolved" the lawsuit.

    After all of this, the @WestworldMobile Twitter account this week released its own statement, noting that the game has been removed from the iOS App Store and Google Play Store as of January 15, 2019. This means players can no longer make in-app purchases. On April 16, 2019, the app will officially close and no longer be supported by the developers. The developers warn players to spend any in-game currency before that date.


    In the original lawsuit, Bethesda requested the Westworld mobile game to be removed from distribution, so it appears that part of the amicable resolution to the case was the official discontinuation of Westworld on iOS and Android. Users on Twitter asked about potential refunds for the in-app purchases they've already made in the game, but the company has yet to respond regarding this matter.

    For those unaware, the similarities between Fallout Shelter and Westworld were striking. Both games task the player with building an underground base of some kind, stocked with interactive characters from a well-known property, and micro-managing small tasks to keep their shelter/Delos facility up and running. Most damning for Westworld and Behaviour Interactive was the discovery that the developer appeared to use the same copyrighted computer code from Fallout Shelter inside of Westworld, down to both games having the same unique bug.

    Fallout Shelter on iOS

    Although Westworld has been removed from the iOS App Store, it still remains online for now, so players who already downloaded it have three months to play the game while it remains online through April 16.

    (Thanks, Nate!)

    Article Link: Westworld Mobile Game Removed From iOS App Store Following Bethesda Dispute
  2. sesnir, Jan 16, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019

    sesnir macrumors 6502

    Sep 21, 2008
    That "iPhone" doesn't have a notch.

    Edit: Okay, MacRumors decided to edit their article and remove the un-notched device for some reason. I assume it was an android device or just bad photoshop.

    But trust me, there was a notchless phone there and you all missed it.

    Edit: I found the image in question: [​IMG]
  3. ArtOfWarfare macrumors G3


    Nov 26, 2007
    iPhone screenshots are always full rectangles - the rounded corners and notched part are filled in. Apple's developer guides explicitly tell developers to treat the drawable area as a full rectangle and to not avoid drawing in the corners or notches just because current devices have those features. That allows Apple to change the curvature of the corners or adjust the notch dimensions and not worry about apps not drawing in those spaces appropriately.

    At the same time, obviously developers should be mindful of those features and not put important information or require the user to touch those areas.
  4. makitango macrumors regular

    Apr 15, 2012
    The scourge of online games; they decide when you can play and when you can‘t.
  5. TheFluffyDuck macrumors 6502

    Jul 26, 2012
    Don't worry guys, while it may be sad to see this game go. There is always another IAP scourge around the corner. The sequel to the masterpiece Alien: Isolation is going to be a $5 mobile app with IAP. Because nothing says quality horror like looking on a 5" screen when you are dropping kids off at the pool.

    Video game crash cannot come fast enough.

  6. vertical smile macrumors 68040

    vertical smile

    Sep 23, 2014
    I really think this is one of the biggest problems with mobile gaming, digital media, and gaming on the iOS.

    A game can just be lost forever.

    I play a lot of retro games, but for many iOS titles, that just won’t be possible.

    I can play my old Atari 2600 or 5200 games, my old NES, SNES, N64, GC, and GB games. If there was one I wanted to play , but don’t currently own, chances are I can find it online somewhere.

    But, the user has little control over the fate of digital media, and once games are no longer available on the App Store, they are just gone and eventually forgotten.

    I just find it a little sad.
  7. Mikey44 macrumors member


    Mar 6, 2012
    I miss Rolando, which was one of the first most popular games on iOS when it first came out, and the developer was bought out, and it's just gone. Unless I had a backup of it in iTune... wait, oh, and the developer would have to make it available in 64 bit. I agree, it's quite sad. :(

    I wonder how much money I have wasted on apps that no longer are listed, or are just gone from the App Store. It kinda pisses me off.
  8. sesnir, Jan 16, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019

    sesnir macrumors 6502

    Sep 21, 2008
    No, the article originally showed a phone, captioned "Westworld on iOS", without a notch (see my updated first post for the image). They've updated the article to change the image, but didn't note that they did so as journalists normally do. Thanks for dev-splaining to a developer though.
  9. linkmaster02 macrumors member

    Apr 14, 2009
    I certainly agree that is a downside of internet-based and mobile games, but on a larger scale I don't think it has much of an impact. There are so many games being made nowadays, it decreases the chance someone will run out of things to play and only want to play games that are no longer available. Just like streaming shows. There's almost too much content available for anyone to reasonably exaust. And while losing the ability to consume some content isn't a positive thing, it doesn't seem to be hurting creation or consumption.
    --- Post Merged, Jan 16, 2019 ---
    Was it really wasted? If you played them, your money provided you at least some value. But it is up to you to determine if you got $X worth of value from playing them.
  10. mattyj2001 macrumors member


    Oct 29, 2015
    Thanks for being so pedantic about a screenshot. Not a waste of everyone's time at all.
    --- Post Merged, Jan 16, 2019 ---
    The headline really should be "Shady game developer tries to sell the same game twice." I wonder how Zynga got away with all their game thievery back in the day.
  11. Amacfa macrumors 68000


    May 22, 2009
    It’s easier to take a screenshot which has no notch, then to edit it in there in photoshop to make it more realistic.
  12. nwcs macrumors 68000


    Sep 21, 2009
    I guess all the people who said Bethesda would never win this suit for various reasons were wrong.
  13. Mikey44 macrumors member


    Mar 6, 2012
    In a sense yes, because I can't go back and play those games again, as I did get enjoyment out of them at the time. However, you are correct, I got some value out of them, but I also didn't realize that they were a commodity with an expiration date, shelf life, or something that would be removed from my purchase list. If I had realized that, perhaps I wouldn't have made the purchase.

    Additionally, there are games that I have purchased from the store because they were on sale, with the intent of going back and playing them. When they are removed from my purchase history, and I no longer can go back and play them in the future as I had planned to. :/

    It just makes it hard to justify purchases in the store at times.

    Sure, I could leave it installed on my device forever, but that doesn't seem very good either.
  14. theOmega macrumors newbie

    Oct 26, 2018
    Good for them, glad they follow through with this, hopefully more companies will pay attention to who they trust their IP and start developing proper mobile games rather than relying on poor IAP games.
  15. GubbyMan macrumors 6502


    Apr 3, 2011
    I have my iPhone 3GS with all the games I used to play on it. Two of the games I have are Tap Tap Revenge 2 & 3 installed on it. I play these games every once in a while. Tapulous the company behind the games shut down their servers about 6 or 7 years ago so no one have been able to install them since then even though they are still in the purchased tab and can be downloaded on iOS 11 or prior.

    The games have to contact the server the first time they are launched. So I could not get them to work even on my iPhone 5 with 32-bit support. If anything happens to my iPhone 3GS and I can not reinstall these apps with the same data then I will loose the Tap Tap games forever and I will never be able to relive the memory of playing them again.
  16. alexgowers macrumors 65816

    Jun 3, 2012
    I find the issue troublesome. Surely a game format cannot be something you can claim. Sure if they use the code or assets but this isn't even an original idea. I personally hate the idea of Bethesda winning when they have themselves released the same fall out game rehashed with the exact same bugs with each iteration. Such Lazy developers should not be able to claim others are are copying with hypocritical behaviour.
  17. TheFluffyDuck macrumors 6502

    Jul 26, 2012
    Wheelers Treasure
    Beast boxing
    Fox Vs Duck
    Knights Onrush

    Any developers for those items. Seriously do a recompile and put back on the App store.
  18. Eric5h5 macrumors 68020

    Dec 9, 2004
    It's not. The whole point is that they were using literally the exact same code. It's a contract violation. I said this before when it came up the first time, but some people just don't want to face reality I guess. People who have no clue were trying to tell me it was the game engine's fault and other nonsense.

    If they want to copy their own code, that's fine (and common); there are no legal issues with that. But if someone pays you to program a game, with the agreement that you give up the rights to all code, but instead you keep a copy and re-sell it to another company, that's obviously wrong.

    That's really not the point. Let's say that museums regularly remove older artwork, and only display new works. So you'd never get to revisit any classics. Sure you're never going to run out of art, but again, totally not the point.

  19. BornAgainMac macrumors 603


    Feb 4, 2004
    Florida Resident
    I hate it when iOS games disappear from the App Store that are good. Some have no replacements but because the masses don't play them, the ideas of these great games are lost for all of mankind forever. Some of these games were so good that they didn't follow a micro transaction payment system.
  20. linkmaster02 macrumors member

    Apr 14, 2009
    There's no arguing with the fact that losing access to games is bad. I agree that it's not good for consumers. What I am trying to do is help people put this problem into perspective.
  21. Böhme417 macrumors 6502

    Mar 11, 2009
    That's a bummer. I don't play a lot of games on my phone/iPad, but I did enjoy this one.

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