Bethesda pays $2 million for Fallout MMOG rights

Bethesda Softworks has regained the rights to the proposed Fallout MMOG from Interplay in a deal worth $2 million.

In a press release, the publisher's parent company ZeniMax Media reveals that the rights were acquired under the terms of a settlement reached last month that brought down the curtain on a protracted legal battle with Interplay.

The terms of the deal further dictate that both parties bear their own legal costs – which won't be insignificant given that Bethesda began legal action in April 2009 – and means Bethesda now owns all intellectual property rights surrounding the Fallout series.

The case dates back to 2007, when Bethesda acquired the rights to the Fallout series from Interplay for $5.75 million. As part of the deal, Interplay secured the rights to a Fallout MMO, and was given what Bethesda calls "certain merchandising rights" to sell the first two Fallout games and spin-off Fallout Tactics. Interplay will continue to sell those three games until December 2013, at which point the rights will revert to Bethesda.

Zenimax CEO Robert Altman said: "While we strongly believe in the merits of our suits, we are pleased to avoid the distraction and expense of litigation while completely resolving all claims to the Fallout IP.

"Fallout is an important property of Zenimax and we are now able to develop future Fallout titles for our fans without thirdparty involvement or the overhang of others' legal claims."