After more than two years of litigation, the judge in the AM General v. Activision Blizzard case has ruled on the dueling motions for summary judgment and granted judgment for the video game maker, ruling that it may use imagery of HUMVEE vehicles in its wildly popular game franchise, ‘Call of Duty.’
In 2017, the maker of HUMVEE military vehicles filed a lawsuit accusing Activision Blizzard Inc of reaping billions of dollars of revenue by incorporating its trademarks and copyrights without permission in its flagship “Call of Duty” video game franchise. “Humvee” and “HMMWV” are short for High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles. AM General said it has made more than 278,000 HUMVE vehicles.
The complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan by AM General LLC accused Activision of taking advantage of its goodwill and reputation in the “Humvee” and “HMMWV” marks by featuring them prominently in “Call of Duty,” and licensing related content for use in toys and books. Activision General never obtained permission to use AM General’s intellectual property and has paid no licensing fees for the use.
Activision has said “Call of Duty” last year was the world’s largest video game console franchise, and North America’s largest for the eighth straight year.