author: Marcin Przala
Police Raided Dark and Darker Devs; Team Reassures
One of the local offices of Dark and Darker devs was raided by police. Korean team is defusing the situation and assuring that everything is under control. However, conflicting information on the subject is appearing online.
According to koreajoongangdaily, one of IRONMACE's local offices was "raided by police" on Tuesday.
During the intervention at the office located in Seongnam, police were said to have secured company materials related to the upcoming Dark and Darker.
Mutually exclusive versions of events
The media and the Internet are full of mutually exclusive information on the subject. Report from koreajoongangdaily is only one of the available versions. For example, IRONMACE claims that although the police raid was a fact, the officers "found nothing," and that the raid itself was supposed to have ended as quickly as it began.
Asset theft and response
The police raid on IRONMACE is not particularly surprising in itself - it follows accusations faced by the Korean studio, or more specifically, one of its employees.
Recall that another Korean company - NEXON - accused IRONMACE of using illegal assets and assets that are owned by NEXON.
According to the accusers, one of their former high-ranking employees allegedly stole NEXON's assets before his dismissal, which were then used to create Dark and Darker.
Interestingly, the allegations of illegal use of assets were dismissed by IRONMACE president Terence Seung-ha, who, via Discord, stressed that most of them were purchased on the Unreal Engine Marketplace, and the rest were "created in-house."
IRONMACE's CEO, however, admitted in passing on Discord, that there is a lawsuit going on between NEXON and one of the studio's employees. He stressed that this is a private matter, and no legal action has been taken against IRONMACE itself.
Mystery leader A
The legal dispute between NEXON and the IRONMACE employee is said to have been ongoing since August 2022 (via koreajoongangdaily). It was then that the police were to refer the case to the Suwon District Prosecutor's Office, which in turn decided in December to continue the investigation.
According to koreajoongangdaily, Nexon's legal team issued a communiqué to employees yesterday, shedding some light on the alleged asset theft.
NEXON representatives do not want to reveal the identity of IRONMACE employee implicated in the case, which is why they refer to him as "Leader A" in their communications.
"Leader A, then head of the P3 project team, caused the leak of thousands of files, including source code and compilations mostly related to project's development, to an external server he owned. We discovered that Leader A also suggested to teammates that they leave the company and work together on a game similar to P3."
At the very end, it is worth noting that IRONMACE has reassured at every turn that the case with the accusations made by NEXON will not have any impact on the eventual release of Dark and Darker.
Nevertheless, the situation appears to be developing. If further details emerge, we will inform you of them without delay.