IKEA’s threat to sue the developer of “The store is closed” game has unintended consequences: the Kickstarter project has raised 62,000 euros in donations. With the IKEA threat giving the game more notoriety, dozens of donations have been received, with many citing IKEA’s actions as the reason they decided to provide financial support for the project.
In a cease and desist statement issued by IKEA, the company claims that the store used in the co-op horror game is too similar to the facade of the real IKEA store. The developer is given only ten days to redesign the game, removing “all signs associated with the famous IKEA stores.”
While developer Jacob Shaw is well aware of the lawsuit, he didn’t mention it on the Kickstarter page. The last update of the project was made today, in which he simply thanked the backers for their support.
“We’re over 50,000 so I’ve added new targets,” Shaw writes under the username Ziggy. “Environmental hazards will now be added to the store. Survival in radiation areas will require protective suits, and sections with faulty air conditioners will need winter clothing.”
In other words, it doesn’t look like Shaw plans to make any drastic changes anytime soon. And looking at the backers’ comments section, it’s easy to see why. Virtually all recent donors say they are “donating money to piss off IKEA” and are willing to support the project if a lawsuit is filed.
“Please, send [письмо] with harsh words at IKEA, reminding them that blue and yellow are the national colors of Sweden, and they abuse these colors to sell low-quality furniture,” writes one of the backers.
“I also donated money because of IKEA,” says another. “They don’t have any rights to that, because the whole game is inspired by a public domain SCP that they don’t control. This game won’t harm them in any way.”
In its cease and desist announcement, IKEA uses the fact that many people compared the game to IKEA right after it was introduced. Shaw’s store called Styr is a furniture store that advertises “Swedish Meat” in its cafe.
Oddly enough, IKEA’s lawyers don’t mention this in their message to Shaw, but they highlight other issues they’ve found in the design. “Your game uses a blue and yellow sign with a Scandinavian store name, a blue building that looks like a box, yellow shirts with vertical stripes identical to those worn by IKEA employees, a gray track on the floor, furniture that looks like IKEA furniture, and product signs , similar to IKEA signs,” the cease and desist statement said. “All of the above immediately suggests that the game takes place in an IKEA store.”
In response, Shaw complained that the demands to end the ban were too vague. It is not yet clear whether this issue will be resolved out of court.