German development team Black Forest Games (Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams) is currently in a trademark dispute with Italian clothing company Diesel. The dispute stems from the title of Black Forest’s upcoming game: Dieselstörmers.
Diesel is claiming that there will be a “likelihood of confusion” should Black Forest not alter the name of their game. The “diesel” in the title of the game refers to the liquid that powers engines and has no connection (planned or otherwise) to over-priced jeans and sundry clothing items. Still, that’s not enough for Diesel: the company is pushing to make Black Forest change the name of Dieselstörmers.
Because Black Forest is located in Germany, and Diesel is an Italian company, the matter is being overseen by the Office for the Harmonization in the Internal Market – an EU office that handles trademarks and registrations throughout the European Union. We’ve heard of them before during that awfully depressing Half-Life 3 trademark registration.
Black Forest is not going down without a fight, and is refusing to change the name of Dieselstörmers insisting that the odds of confusing the game for a tweed shirt are probably very slim. Can’t say we blame them.
“We’re considering this trademark opposition just another challenge on the road. We’ve managed to overcome all obstacles in the history of Dieselstörmers and this dispute won’t stop us from making a great game. We have no intention of changing the name of the game back to Ravensdale [the game’s previous title during its first ill-fated Kickstarter campaign] because that would cause much more confusion for the players than a name that happens to include a clothing brand.
“Since the name ‘Dieselstörmers’ has nothing to do with fashion, but is referring to the fuel, we’re confident that Diesel’s objection will not hold up. Right now, we’re awaiting the decision of the Office for the Harmonisation in the Internal Market in the matter. If they accept the opposition, we will try to settle things with Diesel out of court.”
As idiotic as this sounds, Diesel’s trademark does actually cover them for items of clothing, cosmetics, toothpaste (?), and even games. With that in mind, Black Forest might be facing some tough opposition.