Back in 2014, online multiplayer service ‘GameSpy’ announced that it would be shutting down. This had a knock on effect for hundreds of games, which relied on the service for multiplayer. Most notably, a few of the older Battlefield titles would no longer be available to play online. This prompted a fan group to set up ‘Battlefield Revive’ to bring some older games back online. The project was popular but unfortunately, it will be shutting down following a legal notice from EA.
Project Revive started off in 2016, bringing Battlefield 2142 online. The project expanded to also include Battlefield 2 as well as Battlefield Heroes. Unfortunately, publishers need to protect their trademarks and as a result, EA’s legal team did need to send a cease and desist. On the upside though, the publisher went about it in the nicest way possible. Here is a quote from the notice sent to the Project Revive team:
“We’ve noticed that Revive Network has several projects and websites devoted to being a Medic by ‘reviving’ older Battlefield games, including Battlefield Heroes, Battlefield 2 and Battlefield 2142. It’s great to see your enthusiasm for these titles. Not to brag, but we too get the nostalgia chills when booting up these classic entries in the Battlefield franchise.”
The letter than goes on to say: “We need a favour though: we must ask that you stop throwing down Ammo Crates. In other, more legal-styled terms, please stop distributing copies of our game clients and using our trademarks, logos and artwork on your sites”.
There is a bit more to EA’s legal notice but as you can see, the publisher tried to be as polite about it as possible. Unfortunately, this notice does also mean that the Revive network will be shutting down. In a statement posted to the Revive website, the team wrote:
“We will get right to the point: Electronic Arts Inc.’ legal team has contacted us and nicely asked us to stop distributing and using their intellectual property. As diehard fans of the franchise, we will respect these stipulations. Over the past 3 and a half years, Revive Network has filled a void in nearly 1 million players’ hearts by bringing favourite titles back to life after online services were closed after the GameSpy shutdown. Only a few months ago, we took on the task of bringing multiplayer services online for a fan-favourite, Battlefield Heroes. The public reception for our efforts on this title were massive, and we never expected it to become as big as it was.”
Going forward, downloads on the Revive website will be disabled. The team ended its goodbye post by thanking all of the players, moderators, developers and artists that helped make the project successful in the first place.
KitGuru Says: Unfortunately, when it comes to trademark law, you stand to lose your trademark if you don’t actively protect it. It seems unlikely that EA or DICE wanted to do this, but it was a necessarily evil. Did any of you play some of the older Battlefield games online while Project Revive was up?