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Activision invoked DMCA law to remove Steam game that stole assets from Call of Duty

After receiving proof of the theft, Orion's director fired the artist responsible... but not before uncovering more stolen assets.

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After discovering that Orion contained stolen assets from Call of Duty: Black Ops 3, Activision had the game removed from Steam (via GameSpot). The kicker: Orion director David Prassel seemed unaware of the theft.

Prassel made a post on Orion's Steam forums asking fans to rally behind the company and oppose the DMCA takedown. Activision reached out to him with definitive proof that Orion had purloined Call of Duty assets.

"Last night I received evidence directly from Activision regarding assets not even mentioned in public yet. Upon receiving this it became immediately apparent that blatant rips were made. While the artist offered to remake any assets at no cost, he has now been fired immediately upon learning this. This will slightly affect production and I will get into that later."

NeoGAF user Low-G was the first to point out similarities between certain assets, such as Black Ops 3's M8A7 and Orion's copycat gun. While the body of Orion's weapon held some distinctions, the top section was overtly similar.

In his post, Prassel explained that he overlooked the duplicity because his company hires freelancers, and he isn't able to cross-check and verify every asset they turn in due to their varying schedules.

More troubling for Orion, Prassel's digging turned out several more instances of stolen assets. "We are shutting down social media. I don't find the results from when it's positive large enough, and when it gets bad it's just horrible. We really need to bunker down to catch up on what was removed and we just want to focus on the game."

Further updates on this and other Orion issues will be published on Orion-Project.net.

Long Reads Editor

David L. Craddock writes fiction, nonfiction, and grocery lists. He is the author of the Stay Awhile and Listen series, and the Gairden Chronicles series of fantasy novels for young adults. Outside of writing, he enjoys playing Mario, Zelda, and Dark Souls games, and will be happy to discuss at length the myriad reasons why Dark Souls 2 is the best in the series. Follow him online at davidlcraddock.com and @davidlcraddock.

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