Spiral Game Studios, developers of all those Orion games, announced today that their latest endeavor, titled simply Orion or The Orion Project, has been removed from Steam thanks to a DMCA takedown request from Activision.
The statement claims that Orion borrowed a few art assets from Call of Duty. The comparisons provided by publisher Trek Industries don’t really show it, but an image floating around reddit and other sources paint a much clearer picture.
Those weapons seem to be – at the very least – inspired by the ones found in Call of Duty. The best part of this story is that this isn’t the first time Spiral Studios has had these sorts of allegations thrown at them.
There was some controversy a while back that Orion had borrowed their T-Rex model from Primal Carnage, but they quickly tweaked the models to make them less similar. There were also claims that the armory found in the game could also be found in Natural Selection 2, but that was said to simply be an old placeholder.
I had my suspicions while tinkering around with Orion: Dino Beatdown/Horde/Prelude (it was like .50, don’t judge me). I could’ve sworn I heard certain sounds somewhere, and perhaps seen certain models elsewhere. Spiral also has a habit of censoring any negative criticism toward Orion on their Steam forums, which isn’t uncommon, but it’s starting to paint a picture, isn’t it?
It seems as though Spiral Studios likes to cut corners where they can, and a few times that has come back to bite them in the ass, but instead of doing it to small fries, they borrowed from Activision, and if the similarities were enough to flag their lawyers, then I doubt that this is a mere misunderstanding.
It’ll be interesting to see if Spiral Studios can find their way out of this or if Orion: Dino Beatdown has been put down.