After numerous unheeded warnings, Nintendo Company, Ltd. has filed a copyright lawsuit through the district court of Tokyo against game developer Tirnanog Co. and distributor Enterbrain, better known as the publisher of weekly gaming magazine Famitsu. Included in the lawsuit is a request for the prohibition of the production, sale, and distribution of their game Tear Ring Saga, plus a reparation payment to Nintendo of 258.3 million yen, approximately 2 million dollars.
The cause of the suit revolves around Nintendo deciding that the Playstation game Tear Ring Saga, originally titled Emblem Saga, bears too much resemblance to Nintendo's classic strategy simulation Fire Emblem. According to a Nintendo press release, "the original title of the game, Emblem Saga, had a similar name to the Fire Emblem series and was used deliberately for promotional purposes until it was changed a month and a half before the release date. The game's contents were closely similar to the Fire Emblem series as well." Nintendo felt that, with the game, Enterbrain was "bringing false recognition to users."
Although not well known in North America, the Fire Emblem series, created in 1990 by Shouzo Kaga, has a devout following of fans in Japan and is considered by some to be the father of strategy simulation games such as Shining Force and Ogre Battle. Kaga, current president of Tirnanog Co., is also under fire from Nintendo; the former Nintendo ally must now battle the gaming giant in a separate lawsuit aimed directly at him.