A gamer who made and sold cheat software for 'Grand Theft Auto V' now owes the game's creators $150,000 for copyright infringement
Rockstar Games/Take-Two Interactive
- Video game publisher Take-Two Interactive has been awarded a $150,000 judgement against a Florida resident who created cheat software for "Grand Theft Auto V."
- A complaint filed in U.S. District Court accuses Jhonny Perez of creating and selling a program called Elusive that let players generate unlimited amounts of money and manipulate other parts of the game.
- Take-Two claims the cheats have damaged the game's reputation and caused a significant loss in revenue.
More and more gamers are starting to find out that cheating isn't just wrong - it can be illegal.
Florida resident Jhonny Perez will have to pay $150,000 to the makers of "Grand Theft Auto V" for creating and selling cheat software for the massively popular game. Publisher Take-Two Interactive claims Perez created a software called Elusive that let players manipulate the game in their favor and sold it online for between $10 and $30.
TorrentFreak obtained a full copy of the judgement, which was filed in the the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
While some cheats are purely for aesthetics, others create an unfair environment for players online, and Take-Two claims this hurt the reputation of "Grand Theft Auto V." Players using Elusive could also generate an infinite amount of in-game money, undermining Take-Two's ability to sell their digital currency for real life cash.
Since 2013 "Grand Theft Auto V" has sold more than 100 million copies worldwide, and was still among last year's best-sellers. The healthy online community and microtransactions help support the game's ongoing development.
"Mr. Perez's Elusive program creates new features and elements in 'Grand Theft Auto' which can be used to harm legitimate players, causing Take-Two to lose control over its carefully balanced plan for how its video game is designed to be played," Take-Two stated in its complaint.
The court awarded Take-Two a default judgement against Perez for copyright infringement, breach of contract, and tortious interference with contract. Perez will need to pay $150,000 in damages, the maximum amount allowed by law, and another $66,868.95 in attorney fees.
Take-Two isn't the only publisher looking to defend its games in court. In October 2018, Epic Games, the creator of "Fortnite," filed a copyright complaint against a pair of YouTubers believed to be responsible for selling a variety of modification software for popular online games including "Fortnite," "Grand Theft Auto V," and "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds."
And Nintendo was awarded a $12.23 million judgement against an Arizona couple that hosted a website offering free downloads of classic games like "Super Mario World." The couple's site, LoveROMS.com, hosted hundreds of games for more than 17 million visitors per month.