It’s an unfortunate scenario to see. But not all indie games can be saved from the pitfalls that come along the path to fame. That’s the case of what happened to Spooky’s House of Jump Scares, now known as Spooky’s Jump Scare Mansion. A developer on the game, Sheena, took to Twitter to make the initial announcement.
Spooky's has been renamed to Spooky's Jump Scare Mansion. Why? Because of an unfortunate legal battle. pic.twitter.com/XGMdxsKFCe
— Sheena Perez (@AMGSheena) May 20, 2016
The developer published a Twitlonger a few hours later, explaining what had happened.
Psychobilly2422 here, you might’ve noticed a few updates recently, and we here at Lag Studios owe you an explanation. What happened is around July of last year we received a cease & desist for using the name “Spooky’s House of Jump Scares” because a company called “Spooky House Studios” is trying to get the trademark for “Spooky House”. They are mobile developers based in Germany and already have the trademark in the European Union, and demanded we change our name.
When this happened we started working with the most excellent lawyer Ryan Morrison who was very sympathetic to our plight. He showed us our options and helped understand associated risks, but unfortunately, being a staff of two who released a free game, we didn’t really have the means to deal with an international legal battle. While the terms of our settlement are confidential, and I have been advised by Ryan to not share anything further, our game will now be titled Spooky’s Jump Scare Mansion. We are currently propagating new builds and new branding out everywhere, and thank you for bearing with us through all of this!
To remind people more about this game. Spooky’s Jump Scare Mansion released back in July 2015 to Steam, and it takes the player through 1000 rooms of progressively worse horrors. It’s starts out cute and adorable, luring the players into a false sense of security. But the deeper you go, the more terrifying the horrors become. But by that point, you’re interested in the game itself because it’s so unexpected. Last month, they were able to announce plans on updating the menus and save system for the game, along with teasing an Endless Mode was in the works as well. It’s suggested that the lack of updates in the meantime was due to the legal controversy surrounding it.