Bungie, has been countersued by the popular cheat maker AimJunkies over claims that Bungie violated the DMCA on AimJunkies cheats, hacked one of their contractor’s computers, and violated copyright law by reverse engineering the software to build countermeasures against it.
This suit is only possible because of evidence presented by Bungie in its amended suit against AimJunkies for developing cheats. News of the countersuit was first reported by TorrentFreak.
Essentially, evidence gathered through the discovery process revealed how Bungie tracks and reverse engineers cheats, and the makers of AimJunkies are trying to capitalize on it and go on the counterattack.
“The fruits of those illegal actions should not reap them rewards in the judicial system. They have the balls to go in court and allege we decompiled their software while at the same time they are illegally decompiling ours,” David Schaefer, the corporate president of Phoenix Digital Group, the company that owned AimJunkies until earlier this year and is part of the lawsuit, told Waypoint. “We are still waiting for them to show any proof that the principals of Phoenix Digital Group ever played the game or agreed to any [Limited Software Licensing Agreement] of theirs. All these claims they have made in court documents. We have asked for that proof several times to no avail.”
In the original suit, Bungie alleged that AimJunkies had violated Bungie’s copyrights and trademarks on particular aspects of Destiny 2’s code, however, some aspects of the code were copyrighted after 2019, when the cheats began being sold. This meant that, at the time of their creation, the copyrights hadn’t been violated, a fact which AimJunkies presented to the court in the hopes of dismissing the case outright. The judge dismissed those particular charges citing both the copyright date and an insignificant amount of evidence proving that its work had been copied by the software, but allowed Bungie the opportunity to amend its case against AimJunkies and move forward with a trademark infringement case.
Upon presenting new evidence to the court regarding the role of particular AimJunkies members in producing the cheat software, Bungie revealed that some of the information had been gathered by checking files on James May’s computer.
May was a contractor working for AimJunkies who signed the Limited Software Licensing Agreement (LSLA) of Destiny 2 in 2019, which, as of 2019, did not allow for Bungie to monitor users files for anti-cheat purposes (although such a clause is now part of the game’s LSLA).
Furthermore, AimJunkies accused Bungie of having circumvented the DMCA of AimJunkies cheat software by purchasing, cracking, and reverse engineering the software to develop more advanced anti-cheat technology. AimJunkies then requests that Bungie pay it for damages, drop Bungie’s own charges, and halt the LSLA and DMCA violating practices.
AimJunkies has, throughout this entire process, repeatedly claimed that cheating in video games is not illegal. It is, however, annoying, and somehow manages to make every party involved from the cheaters themselves to the original studio look extremely goofy—much like the trial which it has spawned.
Schaefer also shared a message for all the people who played games made by Bungie between 2017 and 2021. “You should be aware if you were banned there is a possibility your computer was entered illegally also and you would be entitled to restitution if proven so,” he said.
And to current players, Shaefer said: “You have agreed in the current LSLA to allow Bungie/Battleye to look at the game files and kernel level activities on your computer. Knowing what you know now from our experience, do you trust them to only be looking at that on your computer?”
UPDATE, Sept. 26, 12:21 p.m. ET: This story has been corrected. A previous version of this story stated James May was an AimJunkies employee, when he was actually a contractor.