Warcraft 'stole our fonts', developer claims

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Warcraft 'stole our fonts', developer claims

World of Warcraft, one of the world's most popular online games, relies on illegally copied fonts, a Chinese company has alleged.

Local press reported that font developer Founder Electronics yesterday announced that it was suing Blizzard, the US-based creator of the game, in a Beijing court.

Founder Electronics has filed a claim for US$13.2m in damages, although the company claims that its losses already exceed US$130m.

The case appears to relate to five Chinese-language fonts owned by Founder Electronics used in the Chinese version of World of Warcraft.

The company claims that the copyrighted fonts, which it named in its announcement, were all used without permission. Font developers typically license fonts for use in games and other products on a royalty or flat-fee basis.

Founder Electronics is one of China's oldest computer companies, and is a major developer of Chinese fonts.

China's gamers are among World of Warcraft's most devoted fans, accounting for more than 40 percent of the game's 8.5 million players. The game is operated in China by local firm The9.

The9 reported net revenues of US$35m from World of Warcraft in the first quarter. The game generates 99 percent of the firm's revenue, although it is close to releasing new licensed online games.

The Beijing Higher People's Court has accepted Founder Electronics' lawsuit, The China Daily reported yesterday.
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