News Article

Sega and Gearbox Sued By Irate Gamer Over "Misleading" Aliens: Colonial Marines Footage

Posted by Damien McFerran

In court, no one can hear you scream

When Sega canned the Wii U version of Aliens: Colonial Marines it probably hoped that it would draw a line under what has been an especially torrid project for the publisher.

The highly-anticipated game launched on other formats to scathing reviews and nightmarish stories from people involved with its development.

However, the flood of negative publicity surrounding the title shows no signs of stopping, with Sega and developer Gearbox Software now facing a class action lawsuit in the US over claims that early demo footage bore no resemblance to the final game, and was therefore misleading to consumers and fans of the Aliens series.

Sega Europe recently had to put a disclaimer on trailers for the title stating that the video shown was not fully representative of the final product, but this lawsuit is a more serious affair. It has been filed by law firm Edelson LLC on behalf of plaintiff Damion Perrine, who is seeking compensation for Aliens fans who purchased the game based on the misleading demo footage.

Sega has so far failed to comment on the report.

[via eurogamer.net]

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User Comments (70)

Geonjaha

#1

Geonjaha said:

Good. That kind of false advertising should never be allowed. Also issuing a 'disclaimer' that implies the game looks even better than the trailer is not going to satisfy anyone.

MAB

#2

MAB said:

Gearbox should be more worried because they abused the generosity of Sega by shifting the funds to that lame Saints Row game ;)

Flashman

#4

Flashman said:

What a waste of time and money for the sake of a £40 game. It's pathetic!

Einherjar

#6

Einherjar said:

@Flashman What happend with the game is even more pathetic and should never be repeated. Maybe this lawsuite will help preventing such a disaster in the future. If you behave like cattle on the field, swalloowing everything thats thrown before you the industry will never get off its high horse.

XCWarrior

#7

XCWarrior said:

@Palom The headline is correct for AP style. Not that any gaming website follows AP style to a T, but in this case, that is correct.

And good for this guy. Hope he has the money to go through it. No company should be allowed to do what they did. If both companies go bankrupt, we won't be missing out on much.

Flashman

#8

Flashman said:

But will it? NO!!! Subpar products will be continued to be released and people will continue to compain about them. What exactly does the irate gamer want?? Figure out how much time he wasted playing it and then paying for his time or a refund because that is essentially all its worth!!

Waste of time and money!

Shiryu

#9

Shiryu said:

I wish this goes all the way to a guilty verdict as to create a precedent in the Industry. I am one of many people fooled by Gear Box, I still can't believe how poor the final product is for the amount of time and money it took. I'm glad it was canned on the Wii U. It's not because of the £40 @Flashman, it's the principle of the thing and this industry surely needs some moral standards nowadays.

DarkCoolEdge

#10

DarkCoolEdge said:

Randy Pitchford should pay big time for what his studio did, he is a liar and a thief.

Sega should pay a big fine for the false advertising, a really big one.

WaveyChristmas

#11

WaveyChristmas said:

@Palom
Hahah. So was I! :p
Because it's something he would definitly do and take advantage of.
the Irate gamer remindes me of the kid who starred in 'The Problem Child'
all grown up.

Dinosaurs

#12

Dinosaurs said:

Here's an instance where its too bad a review embargo stopped Metacritic from destroying this title well before release day.

SheldonRandoms

#13

SheldonRandoms said:

The title made me think that the irate gamer himself did this, that would have been something random and something I would have never expected to wake up to. But I wonder how this will all turn out.
Untitled

banacheck

#15

banacheck said:

Sega and developer Gearbox Software now facing a class action lawsuit in the US over claims that early demo footage bore no resemblance to the final game, and was therefore misleading to consumers and fans of the Aliens series.

Sega is the publisher who also got ripped-off by Gearbox, if anything Sega should be suing Gearbox. And i don't think Sega will be doing business with Gearbox again, i think a law suit should be brought against Bethesda for knowing'ly selling a broken PS3 port of Skyrim.

jayblue

#16

jayblue said:

it was a better game than half the crap that is put out nowadays,yeh it was broken but i still liked it,what will happen next as it finished on a cliffhanger we will never know lol.

Geonjaha

#17

Geonjaha said:

You know how problems like this can really be solved indefinitely? Stop pre-ordering video games. Seriously. Stop it.

47drift

#18

47drift said:

The story of Aliens: Colonial Marines is such a depressing tragedy. I hope actions are taken so that such betrayal can never happen again.

banacheck

#20

banacheck said:

#17
Geonjaha said:
You know how problems like this can really be solved indefinitely? Stop pre-ordering video games. Seriously. Stop it.

You mean company's like Sony, Microsoft & Nintendo should refuse the game's that are not up to there standers.

FOURSIDE_BOY

#21

FOURSIDE_BOY said:

@Geonjaha That's the main problem here and why people get duped all the time. I don't buy a game from a third party until I see the scores and the final gameplay, but people will continue to do it anyway, so there goes the common sense.

LDXD

#22

LDXD said:

@banacheck I completely agree with you about skyrim, I felt I should've got my money back on that unplayable mess

cornishlee

#23

cornishlee said:

@Flashman
Agreed. What kind of compensation does he expect? He paid c. £40 for a product he didn't like. I guess we still just don't understand that culture on this side of the Atlantic, even if the plethora of 'accident at work' adverts on TV suggests that it's changing, sadly.

SilentHunter382

#24

SilentHunter382 said:

@cornishlee Its more about false advertising. Hell the cost for this Law case will be Thousands compared to the $/£/€60 he spend on the game. They showed no new trailers for the final product so people were expecting it to be the same as the original demo.

banacheck

#25

banacheck said:

All game's should have to meet a certain quality before thay can be released, just like in any other business.

dumedum

#27

dumedum said:

I am disappointed they didn't patch things up and released a good version for the Wii U. Obviously if it was truly horrible, it's good that it was canceled, but they could have fixed it, it could have been an opportunity for them.

DarkCoolEdge

#31

DarkCoolEdge said:

@dumedum there was no money left to waste. If a good game is released in a console months later than in other/s and sells much less, what would you expect of a mess like this. People would skip it without a second thought, too much bad press.

Plus, do you think that the thieves in Gearbox would give a d*** if they didn't before?

This was all a huge mess and everyone involved should pay its due.

ajcismo

#32

ajcismo said:

Highly doubt this will go anywhere. No matter how crappy a game is, if its considered a creative piece of art, "misleading" is simply a matter of opinion.
Demo footage is used all the time in music and movie footage before the actual recordings and releases take place. It sucks, but that's life sometimes.

Midnight3DS

#33

Midnight3DS said:

I wonder if anyone thought of sueing Sega back in the day over their baloney 'blast processing' adverts for Genesis. Sonic was blast processing and Mario racing was putt putt puttering. As a kid, I sure was impressed though!

Pod

#34

Pod said:

Nintendo should've been sued like this over the dissimilarity between Metroid Prime Hunters: The First Hunt and the final game.

The demo contained both actual metroids and timed morph ball challenges as opposed to the release version which featured neither and quite frankly was a huge disappointment in and of itself.

bezerker99

#36

bezerker99 said:

I thought the Irate Gamer was finally growing a pair. Turns out it's not him after all.

SirQuincealot

#37

SirQuincealot said:

whats the problem every comment hust seems to be they shouldnt be allowed to do this no on mentions any issuses, and since when does a rttrailer hve to be accurate? can i sue microsoft because bioshock didnt live up to its trailer? this is a ridulous lawsuit, in this day and age you can know every tiny detail about a game before you buy it. you shouldnt be allowed to sue a game company because you didnt like the game. if this guy wins it could ruin gaming forever

Whopper744

#38

Whopper744 said:

Someone is really sueing over a crappy because early footage of it looked better then the final product? Come on humanity... is this what people do for money instead of go out and get a job?

siavm

#40

siavm said:

@Flashman ea lost a case with madden and any who was part of the class action lawsuit got money for it. This game used false ads and demos until the game was out. And no review was up until the end of the week because sega did not send out review copies until the game was out. And seeing most sales happen in the first week sega got most of their money before people knew this was a really awful game. I don't normally support lawsuits like this because most of the time it is just some gamer wanting attention but this one is legit. I hope more people who bought the game become a part of this. And show gearbox not to move funds to borderlands 2 or whatever else they did. And for sega not to hide it and act like everything is fine and release this subpar game that was show as being good.

Dpishere

#43

Dpishere said:

Why do people feel the need to sue big companies for every reason under the sun? Why couldn't the person in question simply return the game? It isn't hard to do... Sometimes I feel like people sue big companies just to line their wallets, and don't really care about the reason for which they are suing.

V8_Ninja

#44

V8_Ninja said:

@MadAussieBloke If so, then it wasn't a very good joke. It's pretty well established that Gearbox makes Borderlands and Violition makes Saints Row. And if you're commenting on the similarity of those two game series...well, you need to do some research.

On Topic: While I probably wouldn't do this, I completely understand why someone else would. Sega has been passing off alpha images and videos as the real product and it can be extremely aggravating to be so blatantly lied to.

retro_player_22

#45

retro_player_22 said:

@Pod
Metroid Prime Hunters: First Hunt was a free playable demo that was given to everyone who bought the launch phat DS though the levels and challenges from the demo was not in the final game, the main features it incorporated were included. The Aliens: Colonial Marines demo; however, wasn't like that, most of the unique gameplay features seen in the demo didn't make it to the final game.

Dogpigfish

#46

Dogpigfish said:

Not a good reason to sue. How about games advertised in the release window that didn't. Seems more plausible to me.

Captain_Toad

#49

Captain_Toad said:

Nice job Gearbox.... Both you and SEGA (who helped get your game off the ground,) is getting tapped for money. All because of a lie.

gloom

#50

gloom said:

It's really sad because this game looked like it could have been something great had it actually been properly treated.

DarkKirby

#51

DarkKirby said:

I'm not saying Colonial Marines is a good game, but I am saying this class action lawsuit is just a bunch of idiots looking for a quick buck.

Do you want to sue McDonald's because their burgers are about 1/2 the size as they appear in advertisements?

JebbyDeringer

#52

JebbyDeringer said:

It's the retarted gamers fault and it just makes the industry more troubled and risk averse. This is just stupid. I never buy games before they come out.

Harrison_Peter

#54

Harrison_Peter said:

@theperson I cannot believe what I just read. You watched the video I posted, and thought the original gameplay demo with all the polish, lighting features, extra assets, advanced animations, extra characters, better explosions, better textures etc looked WORSE than the final gameplay missing all of those things? There must be some sort of mistake. I can't accept that you watched that video and actually thought the opposite of what everyone else is thinking.

Harrison_Peter

#55

Harrison_Peter said:

Guys, games can change in development. But they clearly rendered fake assets in their demos! Look at the video! Games can change, but they've actually faked gameplay footage. Either that or they deliberately removed assets, effects, animations etc to deliberately make the game worse. Extra effort to make the game worse? Don't think so. It's not a development change. It's dodgy demo footage that wasn't really gameplay when they said it was. It was touched up, big time. Not cool.

tanookisuit

#58

tanookisuit said:

It may be a waste of time and money over a cheap game, but I can't say I feel bad about it either because off and on for gaming generations now game companies have used flat out lies and misleading images on box to sell something to unwitting suckers. Square did it well with FF7 having the screen caps being FMV and spell attacks that make the game look far nicer than it does. It's a bad practice and perhaps this lawsuit will scare more of them into quitting with the shenanigans.

bunnyking

#59

bunnyking said:

Although I'm all for suing companies, I don't think Gear Box and Sega are worth it. The XBOX should have been sued during the time it released faulty consoles and EA should be sued now.

Squid

#60

Squid said:

They better lose, what Gearbox did was just wrong. They deserve to punished for what they thought they could get away with.

@MadAussieBloke: Aren't you thinking of Borderlands?

WaLzgiStaff

#61

WaLzgi said:

@Harrison_Peter Ads mislead all the time. This lawsuit will not go anywhere. You guys fell for it, and again like others have said, this is why preorders should NEVER be made.

Jaz007

#62

Jaz007 said:

I would hope this case fails completely, and I will tell you why. If this case succeeds then any other game where the early footage differs greatly from the final game could get the makers sued. Take Borderlands for example, it's a great from what I know. It had a realistic art style and everything in the early footage., but in the final prouduct it was cell-shaded and much more light-hearted. The law can't factor in whether the game was good or bad, only if the early footage was misleading. You need to think about the repercussions before you hope a case like this succeeds.

ecco6t9

#65

ecco6t9 said:

Bait and Switch.
It's a damn shame that Sega is the one being strung up over this, but it seems that gamers are starting to have had enough of being tricked into buying bad products.
Things that NEED a patch day 1 to fix things that 10 years ago would of shamed a company.

Harrison_Peter

#66

Harrison_Peter said:

@LzQuacker I never fell for it. I never made a preorder. I never purchased the game. Just clearing that up. You say ads are misleading all the time. Ok, but can you provide examples where a company provided footage of a "gameplay demo" that wasn't the gameplay at all and was deliberately enhanced in order to make a game with terrible graphics, AI, animation etc seem to have great graphics, AI, animation etc?

Also, I haven't once suggested that I'm in favour of this lawsuit. Not once. Yet several comments are acting like I am. What I AM stating is that the original "gameplay" footage is nothing like the final product, which you can clearly see is the case, to the point that the company should be made to apologise for the deception. I don't think they should be made to offer refunds or anything, because you can't prove who bought it because of the "gameplay" footage.

Harrison_Peter

#67

Harrison_Peter said:

@Jaz007 I'm not in favour of a lawsuit, but I just can't understand these comparisons. For Borderlands, they made changes in development. They went with a different style. Games change all the time. But with A:CM, they deliberately and deceptively doctored footage to make the game seem far better than it was. They faked the graphics, lighting, animations, AI, characters... everything. They didn't have a change of heart like in Borderlands. They didn't say, "this is actually looking a bit too good, let's make everything rougher and crap, remove all these assets we used to have, redo the explosions and animations and lighting etc so they aren't as good". That didn't happen. They edited the footage to make it seem better yet called it a "gameplay demo".

Everyone accepts that the final game can change. The issue is that they simply lied about it being representative of "gameplay". No, I don't want to see the lawsuit. But I do think they deserve the ridicule they're getting for this.

Ridley

#68

Ridley said:

@HawkeyeWii The Creative Assembly is apparently making a game based on Me Scott's Alien. Unless you're being pedantic about the s.

I think we all want to see The Irate Gamer representing himself in court.

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