Edge Curiosity Increasiment: Mythora, Investigated.

By Kieron Gillen on September 10th, 2009 at 4:04 pm.

Hmm.

Many people have mailed us this, and I’d already picked it up as it was bouncing around Twitter. The whole Tim Langell Edge Games Situation is heading in fascinating directions. Chaos Edge do proper, determined digging which it’s almost a shame to attempt to paraphrase. In short, they argue that a game available on their shop is a retro-fit, made to appear older than it is, and with some dubious claims surrounding its creation. It’s getting to almost Limbo of the Lost-esque proportions here. Crikey. Go and read it all.

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59 Comments »

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  1. Heliosicle says:

    Thats odd…

  2. Andrew Dunn says:

    It’s more than odd, it’s utterly brilliant.

  3. dotBrain says:

    Looks like Woody Harrelson. D:

    Also yeah that’s some bizarro stuff.

  4. Skye Nathaniel says:

    He recently resigned from the IGDA. Hopefully his reign of self-aggrandizing nonsense will end soon.

    ———

    Tim Langdell Steps Down From IGDA Board
    August 31, 2009

    With the process barely started leading up to the Special Meeting announced last Friday and set to take place on October 3, it is already clear to me that despite my being confident that thinking members of the IGDA will vote for me to remain on the board for the balance of my term, there is a contingent who were involved in sending the defamatory email to all members by exploiting the IGDA email system a few weeks ago who in their fanaticism will cause substantial negative press for the IGDA over the next month and place intolerable demands on the board and IGDA staff. And while I am confident that were the needed quorum of at least 50% of the voting membership to be achieved at the Special Meeting that the vote would go in favor of my remaining on the board, my fear is that a quorum will not be attained and that consequently this vocal minority will not accept the outcome of the October 3rd meeting as bringing closure to this issue.

    My great fear, then, is that this vocal minority — most of whom are not IGDA members — will continue their negative attacks on the IGDA beyond October 3, refusing to accept the outcome of my remaining on the board. It seems nearly certain they will continue to generate even more negative press for the IGDA for weeks or even months to come and persist in causing substantial drain on IGDA board volunteer and staff resources and time, which is not in the interests of either the IGDA or its membership. Especially not at this time when all key IGDA resources should be focused on the Leadership Forum, not on dealing with this issue.

    Thus with the best interests of the IGDA at heart, and mindful of the unfair demand on the time of my fellow board members and our truly excellent IGDA staff, including the remarkable Joda Sapp and our incomparable new ED Joshua Caulfield, I therefore announce my decision to resign as a member of the board of the IGDA, effective immediately. I make this decision not because I have done anything wrong — on the contrary I am confident that all accusations against me were unfounded and purely intended to defame, and am confident that I have at all times acted in the best interest of the IGDA and its membership — but because I must make this decision between concluding a process that will show I did no wrong, and having that process irreparably damage the IGDA, I cannot permit the latter to happen. This has to drive my decision today, taking priority over defending myself against these accusations to a conclusion. There are some who will take my stepping down as an admission of wrongdoing, but they are the same people who if the October 3 Special Meeting had gone ahead resulting in my remaining on the board would have refused to accept that outcome.

    Last, I wish to say that the board is full of some incredible people, and you, the membership of the IGDA, are in excellent hands. For my part, I believe I made a solid contribution to the Association in my time on the board, taking on oversight of the web project which was not as advanced as we would have hoped, as head of web tech these past months, I was able to bring round so that the new website should now be able to go live very shortly. I am sorry that I will not personally be overseeing the launch of the new website, but I know that this process is in the excellent hands of a colleague on the board.

    I will remain an active member of the IGDA, still supporting it in any way I can as a regular member, and still serving on some fifteen SIGs; indeed my departure from the board will give me more time to devote to supporting the SIGs.

    Dr. Tim Langdell
    CEO, EDGE Games, Inc.

  5. Mike says:

    It won’t end just yet, I don’t think. Eventually, he’ll push someone too far and end up in court prosecuting them, the whole thing will explode like it did with Thompson, and that’ll be that.

    But for now, it’s just fascinating. And Chaos Edge are doing a great job.

  6. Heliosicle says:

    Thats crazy to be honest, how the hell are they allowed to get away with it all?

    They edited the screenshot on the back for the boxart!

  7. Dominic White says:

    I think Langdell is panicking – he’s trying to throw stuff together as fast as possible in order to prove that he’s a legitimate businessman and not just a trademark troll.

    Unfortunately, this means amazingly half-assed games publishing, sold direct from his site, printed on cheap CD-Rs and somehow managing to charge almost $90 tax on a $10 product. Thankfully that was refunded, but I can’t help but get the feeling it was semi-deliberate. A ‘stop investigating me already!’ warning.

    The guy is scum. Pure and simple.

  8. Dominic White says:

    Oh, and this is really just the tip of the iceberg. You really should all read the whole ChaosEdge blog. It’s amazing stuff. The guy has stooped as low as stealing images from peoples deviantart pages to use as promo material.

  9. Schadenfreude says:

    Been following this closely through the IGDA forum and ChaosEdge. It’s a hell of a read.

  10. morte says:

    crikey never heard of any of this before. His website is appalling, an obvious ‘front’ for what just appears to be nothing more than cashing in on a trademark.
    Boggles the mind why people are paying him to license the word ‘edge’. (Thinking of the magazine specifically).

  11. Hyudra says:

    Really hope a judge gets a look at this material, or that a lawyer can compile this and present it as evidence of Tim’s shadiness. It’s pretty damning, the degree to which he misrepresents himself.

  12. Skye Nathaniel says:

    Morte, they pay him because the legal system allows him to bully them into doing so. Read about Langdell’s tactics versus Mobigame here.

  13. Gap Gen says:

    What’s the deal with the whole EDGE magazine logo?

  14. Dominic White says:

    The sad thing is that, at least for the moment, he’s legally in the right here. He’s exploiting weaknesses in trademark law to become the figurative troll under the bridge. His entire business plan involves not being known or seen until someone has put out a product with ‘Edge’ somewhere in the name. Then he threatens to sue them into oblivion unless they make out-of-court ‘lisence payments’.

    It’s extortion, and he tends to go after bigger companies (like EA) who can affort to pay out easily, or smaller companies who couldn’t affort the legal fees from a court battle, so have no choice but to pay.

  15. kwyjibo says:

    What a worthless cunt. What’s the situation with Future and Edge?

    Have the ChaosEdge guys managed to fund enough for litigation?

    At least Tim Langdell will be remembered forever on Wikipedia as a fucking wastrel.

  16. Heliocentric says:

    I’m sorry. I read this post but i can’t see the news.

    If i make a fake business do i get an rps post too? Because nothing about this business of his is legitimate.

  17. Duncan says:

    I really do hope he’s panicking and hurriedly putting these things together, as I’ve just ordered a copy myself, just to piss him off :-)

  18. Catastrophe says:

    Oh this is interesting – the RPS story a while back mentioning this guy got me intrigued back then and what ChaosEdge are doing is brilliant work. I will regular that blog as I want to see Tim Langdell punished for his wrongdoings.

    He is practically copying a game and selling it from his website, that alone is illegal and would get jumped on straight away if any normal guy was doing it… how on Earth has he not been arrested yet?

    Quick – Copy Fallout 3, get some screenshots for boxart, use that CD image printing software and start selling Fallout 3 as your own game, it works! (disclaimer- do not do this, its a joke ;))

  19. Owen says:

    >> I think Langdell is panicking just a trademark troll.
    I think you’re correct.

    >> The guy is scum. Pure and simple.
    Oh yes.

  20. Noc says:

    @Heliosicle: Probably because lawsuits are expensive. No one really wants to get involved in a suit, which is why Langdell’s “trademark trolling” is so effective.

    His claims are pretty dubious, and the whole company is clearly a collection of cardboard cutouts positioned in office windows to simulate a functioning corporation. But proving this in court is likely to be a very, very long legal ordeal, and I imagine that most of his targets just want him to leave them alone so they can get on with their lives.

  21. Catastrophe says:

    @Duncan

    Errr, yeah pay him for a game thats not his to sell, that’ll show him o_O

    On another note, wanna buy this Memopad I made myself for £20? Just to piss me off?

    It has about 20 sheets used.

    But its still better than standard memo pads because its made by me.

    (I jest of course)

  22. Noc says:

    Also what Dominic said. He’s spent enough time exploiting the trademark system that there’s every chance that such legal action against him could fail. Especially now that he’s in full-on “covering his ass” mode.

    It’s very much about intimidation. He’s got something that looks like a case at first glance, and is trying to obfuscate his business practices in enough layers that it’ll take some serious digging to work through it. The idea isn’t to present strong, coherent cases, it’s to present victims with as long and torturous (and expensive!) a legal battle as he can.

  23. ZeeKat says:

    Took the time to read article about him on Eurogamer. What an utter and absolute parasite. Off to read rest of the blog, looks like fuckton of fun.

  24. Dominic White says:

    Oh, and as far as I can gather, part of his standard settlement package is that the developers keep quiet about his trolling – let him continue his lurking under the bridge a little longer, and let more unspecting victims walk by.

    The legal equivalent to ‘Don’t make a sound or I make this hurt’. He just picked the wrong victim recently by attacking Mobigame, who did manage to make a sound before getting gagged. Doesn’t hurt that they had a fairly high-profile product that Apple pulled outright, bringing more interest to the case.

  25. bill says:

    it’s amazing the claims he makes on his website. Partnerships with sony movies (the edge), datel, Future Publishing*, various comic book authors** etc…

    wonder if he paid to use EDGE’s font?

    *but then in the small print “no partnership with future publishing implied”. Fake copies of their Mag though.
    ** who deny ever having heard of him.

  26. frymaster says:

    there needs to be a law against people taking the piss.

    That’s all the law needs to say “Don’t take the piss”. I wonder if it would stand up in court…

  27. Hyudra says:

    @Dominic

    I agree. Legally, he’s superficially in the right, and with a lawyer for a best friend he’s well prepared for what he does.

    I think the problem isn’t just that it’s extortion and manipulation, but that he’s misrepresenting himself to such a drastic extent. He’s painting a portrait of an active game company that has comics, a number of games, that has worked with a number of people.

    That’s why I like the blog linked above. They’re tearing through that illusion and showing that it’s all a lie. The games he sells are for nonexistent platforms and/or they just don’t work. The people he claims to have worked with either hate him or simply don’t know who he is.

    That’s why I really hope that someone directs a judge to this sort of fact-finding expedition. If someone starts calling him on every one of these details, you’ll banish the ‘making games’ part of what he does and show that all he does is sue the little guy and tie up the big companies in legal wrangling.

  28. Seth says:

    I’m not sure if I should bring this up here or in the forums, but might we stop with the cute neologisms in the thread titles? They’re beginning to seem a little forced.

  29. kwyjibo says:

    I doubt he’s in the right. He has submitted fabricated evidence to bolster his trademark claims in disputes.

    I really would like to see more press coverage of this shit, props to Eurogamer, but I guess Future are shared witless, or they find Trademark law irrelevant to the games industry.

    What is true though, is that Langdell did like the hoity toity associations he conned through the games industry. His proud IGDA badge, and the self-editing of his Wikipedia article.

    He is a guy who cares about his image, and even if he does get away with it – everyone will remember him as a cancer. Forever.

  30. Premium User Badge

    Fede says:

    I wonder why that game (see recipe) cost them 10$ but over 82$ in tax (!!)

  31. Ragnar says:

    This almost makes one want to create a game called “edge” just to be able to flaunt his business practices in court.

  32. Wooly says:

    What a disgusting person.

    Ragnar says:

    “This almost makes one want to create a game called “edge” just to be able to flaunt his business practices in court.”

    TIGSource did just that. They had a competition to see how many “Edge” based games people could make.

    Linky- http://tigsource.com/articles/2009/06/26/edgy

  33. pepper says:

    Does the logo beneath the video looks exactly like one of those cheapass photoshoped ones? It does to me..

  34. Ragnar says:

    @Wooly

    Nice.

  35. Knight Of Cydonia says:

    Interestingly, in my capacity as a beginner freelance journo, I decided to try and get in contact with Tim Langdell via EDGE’s website. It offers 2 email addresses, virtually identical – corp@edgegames.com and corp@edgegames.co.uk. I sent an email asking if it would be possible to open a dialogue with Dr. Langdell, and almsot instantly got a delivery failure report.

  36. Knight Of Cydonia says:

    Update – it appears the .com address works (at least, it hasn’t sent me a FAIL message yet) but the .co.uk one doesn’t. Which begs the question… why so reticent about talking to UK devs? I know they’ve moved long ago to the other side of the pond, but… hm.

  37. Bhazor says:

    Love this.

  38. Premium User Badge

    Stense says:

    I heard about Langdell a while ago, but only in passing so didn’t really know much about the iffiness here. Its a fascinating read, if scary the extent of his (apparently) bully tactics. Limbo of the Lost was an pretty amusing scandel, but this just seems nasty, putting developers financial security and future at risk.

  39. Muzman says:

    Nice flameout this is.
    What’s really hilarious about the Conga of the Lost comparison is that it’s easer to imagine a gang of crusty old darts players from Kent getting a little behind on how the internet works and thinking they might not get caught.
    But this guy must have been trolling the web since day one, catching people using the exact same methods being used to catch him now.

  40. Hulk Hogan says:

    What’s a grown-ass man doing stealing from people’s DeviantArt accounts?

  41. Premium User Badge

    Fede says:

    Read the comments now, the tax was a mistake.

    That blog is awesome, I suggest you all to read it all, it is worth it.

  42. Max says:

    “Shit! Someone actually ordered Mythora!” “Quick, load photoshop!”

  43. Dominic White says:

    @Hulk – Intellectual property kleptomania is the only half-plausible explanation I can come up with. For a company so desperately trying to prove that they’re a legitimate business and not just a front for trademark trolling, they’re outright stealing an awful lot of stuff.

    I really do get the feeling that Mr Langdell is panicking and trying desperately to build up some defenses now that he’s pissed off the entire games industry after trying to bring down Mobigame.

  44. Senethro says:

    This is a bit of a chuckle, but what a piece of shit tim langdell is.

  45. Paxeh says:

    This is like an amazing soap opera.

  46. Legionary says:

    Reading that entire blog, it strikes me that when he provokes the wrong company (say EA, with his ‘MIRRORS Edge’ thing) he’ll fight it out in court, and so much evidence of doctored stuff being presented to courts in the past is likely to see him in real legal trouble.

  47. JonFitt says:

    This is madness.
    Every business has its rogues, games publishing couldn’t expect to be exempt I guess.

  48. Clovis says:

    As bill pointed out, the “movies/crossovers” pages on edgegames.con is really hilarious. It has boxart from the movie “The Edge”, which obviously has nothing to with gaming. Next to that it states, “The movie “The Edge” staring (sic) Anthony Hopkins and Alec Baldwin, was released by 20th Century Fox under license from EDGE.”

    So, basically he sued 20th Century Fox because they called a movie “The Edge” and they went ahead and paid him so that they could get their movie released on time. They certainly could have beaten him in Court, but will that would have cost more and delayed the film.

    You have to be impressed with the audicity to then advertise that on your website as something you accomplished.

  49. MrFake says:

    What’s terrible is that these things never end. This will likely crescendo in a lot of angry forum postings by all parties and a lawsuit here or there, then sputter and die as Langdell shambles off into the dark corners of the world. In a decade or so, he, or his protege, will return once the vigilant stop watching for these things, and he will start the process again. He’s done it before, anyway.

    Any proper judicial system needs to incorporate a “wasting everyone’s fucking time” penalty, which would have something to do with those new firing ranges in the back of all courthouses. Justice. Full stop.

  50. tapanister says:

    I hope the motherfucker gets cancer of the trademarks or something. What a giant, monstrous douchebag.