Chinese MMO Caught Copying Assets from Ragnarok Online, World of Warcraft

The Chinese-developed, browser-based MMO Aurora Blade has been accused of containing numerous examples of blatant plagiarism by fans of Ragnarok Online. The accusers say that Aurora has copied assets from Ragnarok Online, as well as World of Warcraft, Maple Story and LaTale.

As pointed out by Kotaku, IGG--the Western publisher of Aurora Blade--has already posted a statement on the Aurora Blade forums: "We would like to explain that SkyUnion(IGG) is not responsible for the developing of the game, that is any character, artwork and graphic is developed by another company and this game is HOSTED by IGG." nope Curiously, the IGG Team has also cross-posted its message on the Ragnarok Online forum, which includes a threat of an IGG forum ban for posting on the similarities.

We took a look at Aurora Blade's skill icons and compared them to World of Warcraft's, finding many suspicious similarities--a few of which we've illustrated in a simple chart (above, right).

The controversy is similar to last summer's Majestic Studios debacle, where the small developer was found to have stolen numerous assets from several big-budget games for use in its adventure title Limbo of the Lost.