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Plugged In

Game makers flood Apple with ‘candy’ games in protest of Candy Crush trademark

Plugged In

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Delicious.

Revenge is a dish best served with candy.

A week after Candy Crush Saga overlord King made waves by trying to trademark the word ‘candy’, hordes of fellow game developers have protested by blitzing Apple with ‘candy’ games.

It’s all thanks to the Candy Jam, a website encouraging app makers to fight this sort of “trademark trolling” on the basis that it’s totally ridiculous (though perfectly legal). The site also points out that King is in no position to take the high road here, as the company itself has a spotty track record of copying the work of other app makers.

“They have trademarked the word "Candy" in Europe and are waiting for approval in the US,” the site points out. “In other words, this trademark will allow them to prevent rip-offs of THEIR rip-offs!?”

“The Candy Jam is a protest against both the system and those abusing it: King.”

So far, over 100 candy-themed games have been submitted, and the list is positively delicious. Who can’t wait to play the likes of Candy Verb Saga, Candy Copyright Racing, Don’t Let the Candies Crush You!, Candy Crash, Crush Candy Castle, or the obviously trademark-proof ThisGameIsNotAboutCandy?

The Candy jam isn’t just about candy, though. Special points go to games that also include the word “saga” -- another King trademark target -- as well as words “scrolls” and “edge,” both of which have in the past been at the juicy center of video game trademark controversies. Videogame cartoonists and opinion-makers Penny Arcade have weighed in with their own take on the trademarking of "saga."

The submissions formally end on February 3, though the backlash against King is just getting started. My Twitter feed is abuzz with gamers encouraging others to uninstall Candy Crush Saga, and while King has formally apologized for cloning a flash game called Pac-Avoid, they’ve lost a ton of gamer goodwill. That’s tough to get back, especially when Candy Clicker Saga: Scroll of Candy is waiting in the wings.

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