A year ago, indie dev Black Forest Games tried to register a European trademark for the roguelike coop run’n’gun game DieselStormers. This was opposed by fashion label Diesel, who hold a broad trademark for the word “Diesel” that seemingly also covers videogames. The Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market ultimately accepted Diesel’s reasoning and denied the registration of Black Forest Games’ IP, even though the “Diesel” in DieselStormers refers to the fuel of the same name, not to fashion or clothes.
This decision has quite an impact on Black Forest Games. DieselStormers, which was funded through Kickstarter and released to Steam Early Access in July 2014, saw good progress with multiple updates since its initial release – the latest one on September 11th. The game was well on its way for the final release.
Black Forest’s Managing Director Adrian Goersch comments: “This decision has caught us with our pants down. We are quite surprised that our trademark application has been formally denied. We are no multinational corporation, we cannot fight this decision, even though, frankly, it is a disaster with indie marketing as difficult as it is today. But the history of this game and our company as a whole has been marked with tough challenges and we will manage to overcome this one as well. First of all, we will make sure everyone will be able to keep playing the game, then we’ll come back with a new name.”