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Capcom 'Saddened' About  MaXplosion  Controversy

Capcom 'Saddened' About MaXplosion Controversy

January 13, 2011 | By Leigh Alexander

Although Capcom's expressing regret that its new mobile game, MaXplosion, is so similar to Twisted Pixel's Splosion Man, it claims its mobile team didn't get an early peek at the XBLA game before developing its project.

Since MaXplosion hit the app store last week, there's been something of an online outcry from Sploison Man fans -- and from Twisted Pixel itself. The Splosion Man developers took to Twitter recently to complain that MaXplosion's red, cartoony, self-detonating hero and its quirky laboratory setting were a little bit too much like their own work.

Notably, Twisted Pixel claimed it had shown the Xbox Live Arcade title to Capcom for possible publishing and been rejected well before the release of MaXplosion. Capcom admits it saw the title beforehand, but asserts the mobile team had no contact with the group that evaluated it.

"While Twisted Pixel did have discussions with our console game team about publishing Splosion Man on game consoles, Capcom Mobile is a different division of Capcom with separate offices and, as such, had no prior knowledge of any meetings between the console game team and Twisted Pixel," said the publisher in a statement to consumer weblog Joystiq.

"MaXplosion was developed independently by Capcom Mobile," the statement continues. "Nonetheless, we are saddened by this situation and hope to rebuild the trust of our fans and friends in the gaming community."

Brand recognition is an important component for success on Apple's crowded App Store, and recognizable properties tend to sell much better than original or unproven franchises. Many look-alikes that have appeared on the Store include heavy similarities to console properties without crossing the line into actual IP theft.

Gameloft has published Halo-alike N.O.V.A. as well as a title called Hero of Sparta that recalls God of War, for example.

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