Sapkowski (author of The Witcher universe) wants ~16 million USD from CD Projekt

No company is going to do that unless it becomes too big of an issue and they are forced to settle. It's really unfortunate to see you originally created become so popular and you not getting anything out of it but a deal is a deal. Also, a huge portion of Witcher's success is CD's efforts and not the story or lore.
Yeah, I think this is a huge part of it. If the game was called Warlock Hunter and had its own characters, places and beasts I think it would be almost as successful. The backdrop isn't especially unique so I really don't think the license itself had much direct bearing on its success when compared to the writing, game design and marketing.

And that's why the law exists. To insure a mistake like that doesn't happen.
The law exists to make sure people don't make short-sighted bad business deals?!
 
If I lucked out and made a really good licensing deal for a franchise I really admired and wanted to adapt it to something else, and if it then became really successful and the original creator later regretted lowballing the original deal, I would have no problems giving him more money to share the success even if he isn't entitled to it. But that's just me.
What makes you think he wouldn't demand more and more after?
 
There would probably never have been any Witcher-games in the beginning if he would have demanded a larger sum from the start. Only if he had asked for a small percentage which would have been a lot today...
But since CDPR got money from EU taxpayers I really hope CDPR pay back more to the author.
 
You clearly don’t know how it works. I guess in your job you are still paid the same salary as 10 years ago ? You NEVER renegotiated your contract that you... “accepted”. Right ? Poor you if it’s the case.
A job is a contract that has a finite amount of time, and variation... And there are many laws governing this contract... Selling a property is a one-time deal.

You should not use these bullshit strawmen.
 
I have to correct you yet again. The Witcher books were known, and sold millions of copies across Europe. It's not "few". First you claimed CD Projekt was a tiny company, now that "few" people heard about The Witcher. What's the next hyperbole?
Yes across Europe. Not world wide.

Matter a fact known is not the same as being known world wide. Also how long did it take for it to reach the million number? also I never mentioned copies. I mentioned the number of people that activity speak about it or spoken about or even referenced it compared to other works. The fact is, it's not in the same league as Dark Materials, The Wheel of Time or many other popular works.

Also I never claimed that CD were small. Another poster did, so maybe lay off.
 
Adored his books, but I think he's out of luck here. He underestimated video games and even downplayed the success that CDPR put in, so better luck next time with the Netflix series.
 
You clearly don’t know how it works. I guess in your job you are still paid the same salary as 10 years ago ? You NEVER renegotiated your contract that you... “accepted”. Right ? Poor you if it’s the case.
TIL an employment contract is the same as a licensing/sales contract....

It's embarrassing how many people in this forum don't understand the idea of how 'agreement' works.

The idea you can retroactively press the reset button to negate your original agreement is walking on filmsy. The author better be glad such law exist in Poland for even a trial to proceed (if a settlement cannot be reached).

Such case will be thrown out immediately anywhere on earth because it literally took a dump on the very concept & idea of an agreement.
 
If I lucked out and made a really good licensing deal for a franchise I really admired and wanted to adapt it to something else, and if it then became really successful and the original creator later regretted lowballing the original deal, I would have no problems giving him more money to share the success even if he isn't entitled to it. But that's just me.
If I am not mistaken, the original creator was offered a great deal that included a percentage of gross sales, but he had no faith in the project and insisted on cash up front instead. It doesn't seem like CDPR are to blame here.
 
To be fair to Sapkowski*.. In my professional experience authors can often come across as bitter assholes when they're just, by nature of their art, eccentric and grumpy (though ofc I've known asshole authors too)


* Don't know the guy at all .. I've read Blood of Elves which was quite good. Gave me Ursula LeGuin vibes.
 
The guy picked the bad option in a business deal because he had no faith it would make him money in the long term.
I don't think you get to change your mind on that.
 
Can you guys tell me more about this law?

I'll be honest with you: I doubt it's true as that would invalidate any form of contract, and it would mean anyone can get paid retroactively, regardless of what he signed.
I'm actually doing a game myself, and since I can't afford paying for professionals, I hired some guy from deviantart to make some things for my game. He refused royalties (and I can't blame him) and we agreed on a flat rate.
You're telling me that under this law, if by some elder god miracle my game becomes successful he can later sue me for millions even though he denied wanting royalties?
That sounds illogical. So basically contracts don't matter anymore?
Article 44. In the event of gross discrepancy between the remuneration of the author and the benefits of the acquirer of the author's economic rights or the licensee, the author may request the court for a due increase of his/her remuneration.

http://www.wipo.int/wipolex/en/text.jsp?file_id=129377#LinkTarget_294

To some degree it would hinge on what a "due increase" constitutes.
 
Heres where he's getting paid - there's a TV show being made that likely would have never been considered by Netflix if it weren't for CDPR's efforts in popularizing the series.

He should be thrilled that he made a business deal years ago that lead to a business deal today instead of being petty and trying to milk more money to cure his own regrets.
 
This is probably why we'll never get another Witcher game too.
I doubt it. Sapkowski has no influence on the IP anymore when video games are concerned. CDPR own that. Though it is possible, not probable, that it could affect the likelihood of another title.
 
CDP took a risk with the Witcher. They could not know that the franchise would send them forward so much as it did. It's not their fault that the author lowballed his own work in such a way.

Hope he gets nothing quite honestly. But i hope even more so that CDP gets even more sucess with Cyberpunk so they may never need to work the Witcher franchise again.
 
To be fair to Sapkowski*.. In my professional experience authors can often come across as bitter assholes when they're just, by nature of their art, eccentric and grumpy (though ofc I've known asshole authors too)


* Don't know the guy at all .. I've read Blood of Elves which was quite good. Gave me Ursula LeGuin vibes.
That's absolutely true. He's also sarcastic, which sometimes flies above peoples' heads.

CDP took a risk with the Witch. They could not know that the franchise would send them forward so much as it did.
They picked it precisely because of how popular it was. Sure, they didn't know it'll become a worldwide phenomenon, but they absolutely knew that there's a large following.
 
Can you guys tell me more about this law?

I'll be honest with you: I doubt it's true as that would invalidate any form of contract, and it would mean anyone can get paid retroactively, regardless of what he signed.
I'm actually doing a game myself, and since I can't afford paying for professionals, I hired some guy from deviantart to make some things for my game. He refused royalties (and I can't blame him) and we agreed on a flat rate.
You're telling me that under this law, if by some elder god miracle my game becomes successful he can later sue me for millions even though he denied wanting royalties?
That sounds illogical. So basically contracts don't matter anymore?
Article 44. In the event of gross discrepancy between the remuneration of the author and the benefits of the acquirer of the author's economic rights or the licensee, the author may request the court for a due increase of his/her remuneration.

http://www.wipo.int/wipolex/en/text.jsp?file_id=129377#LinkTarget_294

To some degree it would hinge on what a "due increase" constitutes.
I'll just add this explanation as well. Gives some insight.
The basic thing that you need to know right now is that Polish courts are absolutely unpredictable.

In case the deal specifically allows making one single game, CDPR's lawyers screwed up royally for not noticing earlier.

In case this will hang on "unfair compensation" clause, I would heavily doubt Sapkowski will get that cash. The ratio thing is a pseudo-precedent, but Polish law doesn't have de jure precedents, and at any rate, CDPR can argue the situation is different. AFAIK Metropolis or whatever the company who originally made a deal was called explicitly considered a percentage based deal and Sapkowski opted out thinking the thing will fail. If CDPR manages to establish this, one would really need to screw with definition of "fair" to consider this unfair.

Of course there is also an alternative option of court not being sideless. Aside from direct connections to either side, don't forget CDPR kept a lawsuit against the treasury office regarding the tariff thing with Optimus, the PC maker they took over in order to get into the stock market. I'd actually think this influencing the court's opinion is more likely than regular connections.
 
You (and other people) have to understand he already got rich thanks to CD Projekt.

How? Well, I can imagine the worldwide sales of the books easily tripled thanks to the games. I think it was even published on more countries. The Netflix deal wouldn't exist without the games.

That's all extra money he got thanks to CD Projekt, in an indirect way.
 
But since CDPR got money from EU taxpayers I really hope CDPR pay back more to the author.
What kind of argument is that? My workplace has tax benefits, should we pay some kind of extra dividents to the manufacturers which computers or software we use?

CDPR pays taxes, and they are definitely a net positive when it comes to the contributions to PL/EU. You take grants to expand the business, and then pay it back based on how successful your business is.
 
He hated games and thought they were silly, he also didn't have any confidence in the success of the IP as a video game. He made a deal and he got exactly what he wanted. He should just suck it up and accept his mistake, he has been crying about it for years now. Plus he got his money indirectly by how famous CD project made the IP.
 
He should be happy that so many more people like myself are buying his books and enjoying the universe he created, all because of the witcher videogames. But instead he chooses to remain bitter. It's sad really.
 
If I lucked out and made a really good licensing deal for a franchise I really admired and wanted to adapt it to something else, and if it then became really successful and the original creator later regretted lowballing the original deal, I would have no problems giving him more money to share the success even if he isn't entitled to it. But that's just me.
I think that would be really the nice thing to do on a personal level. But sadly I doubt that a lot of businesses are being run that way.

Anyways perhaps he could at least renegotiate something for the Franchise going forward. I can imagine that it must now seem bitter to him, but yeah, always ask for a % of profits I guess.
 
He hated games and thought they were silly, he also didn't have any confidence in the success of the IP as a video game. He made a deal and he got exactly what he wanted. He should just suck it up and accept his mistake, he has been crying about it for years now. Plus he got his money indirectly by how famous CD project made the IP.
Maybe that's why he wants to reclaim and retroactively erase that cock up. Because that's what most of his interviews end up being about.

lol
 
CDP took a risk with the Witcher. They could not know that the franchise would send them forward so much as it did. It's not their fault that the author lowballed his own work in such a way.

Hope he gets nothing quite honestly. But i hope even more so that CDP gets even more sucess with Cyberpunk so they may never need to work the Witcher franchise again.
I was with you until that last bit. Wtf?
 
What a shakey law. I wonder how it's done in court.
As mentioned, the Polish courts are absolutely unpredictable. There were a few cases that are pseudo-precedents for usage of this clause, but as far as I remember they tended to involve a situation where the artist's choice was limited to signing the deal or not signing it, not choosing options.

Frankly, now that I've read the note, it looks like this part is more of a pretext to send the rest of it. Most likely the original deal was written in such a way that it is unclear whether it covers one game or more, and Sapkowski's lawyers are counting on pulling something out of this. The ending part involving complete copyrights purchase is pure ransom bait though. I'm not even sure if this is technically possible with pre-existing work under Polish copyright law, given the "unknown exploitation field" clause.
 
Nobody gives a shit about his opinion on video games, how childish can it be to be against the author for that reason ? Are you twelve ?

That said, he made a gamble and lost it. I think CDProjekt will likely give him a decent compensation since they'll want to keep working with him on the future books he's writing. Not 16 millions euros though.
 
In situations like these I always lean towards supporting an author over a corporation, but this is an interestingly even case, at least superficially. May the best lawyers win, I guess.
 
My take from his various interviews is he's a bit salty because when someone says "The Witcher", people go "oh yeah the video games by CDPR" instead of "oh yeah the book series by Andrzej Sapkowski".
That's understandable, I'd be salty, too.

But still, selling a license and then asking for more money years later, not a good look.
 
Yeah, I think this is a huge part of it. If the game was called Warlock Hunter and had its own characters, places and beasts I think it would be almost as successful. The backdrop isn't especially unique so I really don't think the license itself had much direct bearing on its success when compared to the writing, game design and marketing.



The law exists to make sure people don't make short-sighted bad business deals?!
The law exists to make sure that people who turned down lucrative deals, and chose the reward over the risk, are allowed to change their minds when it turns out that they made a bad decision? What world do you live in?
The law exists to make sure that unfair contracts such as this one can be rectified.
 
Yep we’ll i’m here at this point.
lmao so much bad blood in here.


Witcher 3 is my first entry to the series and my current GOTG. From my viewpoint CDPR wouldn’t be as big without the Witcher IP and the Witcher IP wouldn’t be as big without CDPR. Sooo

Seeing this infighting between fans of CDPR and the creator of the Witcher series is..funny and embarrassing.

Witcher Tales: The Gwent World
out Oct. Twenty-Something
PreOrder Today to get the special edition aborted demon baby Card!
 
As mentioned, the Polish courts are absolutely unpredictable. There were a few cases that are pseudo-precedents for usage of this clause, but as far as I remember they tended to involve a situation where the artist's choice was limited to signing the deal or not signing it, not choosing options.

Frankly, now that I've read the note, it looks like this part is more of a pretext to send the rest of it. Most likely the original deal was written in such a way that it is unclear whether it covers one game or more, and Sapkowski's lawyers are counting on pulling something out of this. The ending part involving complete copyrights purchase is pure ransom bait though. I'm not even sure if this is technically possible with pre-existing work under Polish copyright law, given the "unknown exploitation field" clause.
Very interesting, thanks for that stan.
 
But still, selling a license and then asking for more money years later, not a good look.
Well, according to the letter from his lawyers, CD Projekt has since made numerous attempts to "correctly acquire rights to The Witcher". We don't know how their contract is constructed. Sapkowski's lawyers claim that it only covered the Witcher 1.
 
Can't be a Witcher thread without people shitting on a 70 year old dude whose biggest sin was being outspoken at the fact that he neither likes nor cares about videogames, even if said videogames are based in his books.

You can think he made a deal and that he shouldn't ask more money from it. But the animosity towards him in this forum is a sight to behold. Yeah, guys, he made a bad deal. I imagine you all do no wrong. Dude should be grateful of all this great new fans that the Witcher has now, that not only don't care about his books, but like to personally shit on the author that brought said universe to life.

Hope you all keep your perfect business sense and life long, happy and fullfilling life, so you can keep being the bright ray of sunshine you currently are.
 
You clearly don’t know how it works. I guess in your job you are still paid the same salary as 10 years ago ? You NEVER renegotiated your contract that you... “accepted”. Right ? Poor you if it’s the case.
You don't get pay backdated for the work you did prior to the new contract. And your employer doesn't give you a new contract unless they need to.

This is a massively flawed analogy.
 
You clearly don’t know how it works. I guess in your job you are still paid the same salary as 10 years ago ? You NEVER renegotiated your contract that you... “accepted”. Right ? Poor you if it’s the case.
If he'd accepted a royalty-based deal then he'd be earning a lot more today from the license than he was 10 years ago.
 
Can't be a Witcher thread without people shitting on a 70 year old dude whose biggest sin was being outspoken at the fact that he neither likes nor cares about videogames, even if said videogames are based in his books.

You can think he made a deal and that he shouldn't ask more money from it. But the animosity towards him in this forum is a sight to behold. Yeah, guys, he made a bad deal. I imagine you all do no wrong. Dude should be grateful of all this great new fans that the Witcher has now, that not only don't care about his books, but like to personally shit on the author that brought said universe to life.

Hope you all keep your perfect business sense and life long, happy and fullfilling life, so you can keep being the bright ray of sunshine you currently are.
Get over yourself. He's not your grandpa...lol
 
You (and other people) have to understand he already got rich thanks to CD Projekt.

How? Well, I can imagine the worldwide sales of the books easily tripled thanks to the games. I think it was even published on more countries. The Netflix deal wouldn't exist without the games.

That's all extra money he got thanks to CD Projekt, in an indirect way.
I guess CDPR should ask for money from him after all.
 
Top