A class-action lawsuit has emerged against Aspyr Media and its parent company Saber Interactive, accusing them of employing illegal marketing techniques for their game Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II on the Nintendo Switch. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of the plaintiff Malachi Mickelonis and other deceived customers in California, claims that Aspyr and Saber used deceptive advertising to sell their product. This has prompted legal action seeking restitution and damages for the alleged misrepresentation.
Aspyr’s port of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II for the Nintendo Switch was released last year with the promise of “Restored Content DLC” to enhance the gaming experience. The DLC was meant to bring the original Xbox-era RPG, developed by Obsidian Entertainment, up to date. However, according to the lawsuit, fans who asked about the DLC release date on Twitter were informed by Aspyr in the summer of 2022 that it would be available in Q3 2022. Unfortunately, these claims turned out to be false.
Earlier this year, Aspyr unexpectedly canceled the DLC plans for Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II on the Switch. As compensation, the company offered players the option to choose a free Star Wars game from a selection of titles, including Star Wars: Republic Commando, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, or another copy of Knights of the Old Republic II for PC via Steam. The announcement of the canceled DLC was followed by the removal of any references to it from the game’s Nintendo eShop store page and its initial announcement trailer.
The Restored Content DLC played a crucial role in promoting the Switch port of Knights of the Old Republic II. Previously, this content was only accessible through unofficial means on PC, thanks to modders. Fueled by the anticipation of experiencing this additional content, Mickelonis specifically purchased the Switch version of the game. However, the cancellation of the DLC left him and other consumers disappointed and unable to receive a refund for their purchase. Subsequently, Mickelonis took legal action in July 2023.
The lawsuit alleges that Aspyr and Saber engaged in “unlawful, unfair, and fraudulent business practices.” It claims that the companies deliberately deceived customers with misrepresentations about the Restored Content DLC to market Knights of the Old Republic II at a higher price and increase its sales. According to the lawsuit, the plaintiffs, including Mickelonis, would not have purchased the game if they had been aware of the true facts. Consequently, they argue that Aspyr and Saber have profited unfairly from their ill-gotten gains.
Mickelonis and the other participants in the class-action lawsuit are seeking various forms of relief from the court. They aim to have their attorneys’ fees and costs covered. Furthermore, they seek to prevent Aspyr and Saber from continuing to sell and distribute Knights of the Old Republic II with deceptive and false advertising. Lastly, the plaintiffs request additional equitable and just remedies, including disgorgement, to compensate for their grievances. Aspyr and Saber have until October 4 to respond to the allegations made in the lawsuit.
The class-action lawsuit targeting Aspyr Media and Saber Interactive over the alleged illegal marketing and deception with regards to Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II on the Nintendo Switch highlights the importance of transparent and honest practices within the gaming industry. Consumers have the right to be fully informed about the products they purchase, and any false representations made by companies should be met with swift legal action to protect the rights and interests of the players.