Thursday, February 19, 2015

MicroFleet update: The Tridrans, Cardashians, and a Cease & Desist Order

First, the good news. 

First, after a discussion thread on the Lead Adventure forums, I decided to whip up a starter pack, which I'm calling the "MicroFleet Skirmish Pack".  It includes five ships from each of three different factions and a starbase for them to fight over!  I figure this may help give some folks the opportunity to try playing a few games with these teensy-tiny ships before deciding if they want to invest in more of them.

Second, two new MicroFleet factions are nearly ready to make their debut!  First up, we have the Tridrans, a race of aliens always ready for a good scrap. 

And a group shot, with a US quarter and British 1-Pound coin for comparison:

Our second faction coming soon is the feared Cardashians!  Fresh from their reality show, "Keeping Up With the Bajorans", the Cardashians bring a little different aesthetic to the MicroFleet line.  It was a challenge to add meaningful detail while still staying within the parameters required by Shapeways for these to print successfully, but I think they turned out okay.

And the obligatory group shot:

And now on to the bad news. 

Shapeways recently received a takedown notice from Amarillo Design Bureau, owned and operated by Steven V. Cole, alleging that my MicroFleet designs were infringing on his copyrights.  Shapeways has taken nearly all the MicroFleet stuff off my storefront until we get things sorted out, but I've already sent a counter-notice to them and hopefully those products will be back up in the next couple weeks.  There is still the possibility that Mr. Cole will take me to court over this, but I really hope not.  I actually don't think he could prevail, given that he himself has publicly admitted that his agreement with CBS/Paramount is not an official license.

What annoys me the most about this brouhaha is that Mr. Cole's agreement with CBS/Paramount applies only to those items in the Star Trek universe that were developed prior to 1979 or thereabouts, but Shapeways pulled nearly everything off my site, including those items which are based on The Next Generation or the Starfleet Command series of PC games.

Anyway, I'll keep you, my legions of loyal fans, posted about what comes of this, so I hope neither of you lose any sleep over it!

1 comment:

  1. Andreas,

    I read about the furball with Shapeways and ADB. It sucks. I feel you should use the downtime to create new fleets, perhaps even some of your own devising that fit the aesthetic of the universe you have in mind but that are totally your own.

    You could also venture out into other micro fleets not tapping into any particular inspiration other than your own imagination. This would allow you to grow and to also support the concept of microfleets that you so much believe in.

    keep it up,