VUG Permits Unofficial King’s Quest Sequel

Recognizing the value of active fan participation in media, Vivendi Universal Games has granted a group of dedicated volunteers the right to complete and distribute a sequel to the much-beloved (but discontinued) King’s Quest game franchise, so long as they do not use the King’s Quest name.

The volunteer group, calling itself Phoenix Online Studios, was initially ordered by Vivendi to cease and desist all activity. A movement to save the sequel was started, and apparently VUG took notice.

First: many congratulations to VUG for making this rare move. The vast majority of entertainment companies would never have relented.

Question: was it necessary to prevent the group from using the “King’s Quest” name, as opposed to simply requiring them to put “Unofficial” in the title? Perhaps, in exchange for use of the name, the developers could have been asked to require players to purchase the “King’s Quest Compilation”, which VUG is releasing in early 2006. Counter-Strike drove sales of Half Life in large part because you needed to buy Half Life to play.

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