Last week, Bethesda and id parent company Zenimax made a bold claim, accusing John Carmack of stealing tech when he decided to leave id and work with Oculus VR permanently. "It was only through the concerted efforts of Mr. Carmack, using technology developed over many years at, and owned by, ZeniMax, that [Oculus founder] Mr. Luckey was able to transform his garage-based pipe dream into a working reality," lawyers stated.
This morning, Oculus has responded, denying all of Zenimax's claims, saying they are not "surprised" by their claims, suggesting that the company's recent multi-billion dollar acquisition by Facebook is the primary motivator for making legal threats.
"We are disappointed but not surprised by Zenimax's actions and we will prove that all of its claims are false," the company said in a statement. "There is not a line of Zenimax code or any of its technology in any Oculus products," they added.
In addition, the company says that by making a public claim about Carmack's transition from id to Oculus, "Zenimax has misstated the purposes and language of the Zenimax non-disclosure agreement that Palmer Luckey signed."
"A key reason that John permanently left Zenimax in August of 2013 was that Zenimax prevented John from working on VR, and stopped investing in VR games across the company," adding "Zenimax canceled VR support for Doom 3 BFG when Oculus refused Zenimax’s demands for a non-dilutable equity stake in Oculus." Carmack had made both these claims earlier this year.
And here's the zinger: "Zenimax did not pursue claims against Oculus for IP or technology, Zenimax has never contributed any IP or technology to Oculus, and only after the Facebook deal was announced has Zenimax now made these claims through its lawyers," adding "despite the fact that the full source code for the Oculus SDK is available online, Zenimax has never identified any 'stolen' code or technology."
According to Oculus, this is the only response they will send out for now. Given how much money is at stake, don't be surprised if the lawyers start hammering down some more.