Publisher Acclaim has incurred the wrath of young biking professional Dave Mirra, who last week filed suit against his videogame licensees for improper use of his name and image to promote BMX XXX.
BMX XXX was originally called Dave Mirra XXX, but Dave demanded to have his name removed from it in May last year after realising the biking "game" was a poorly constructed front end for mediocre porn.
Dave is seeking at least $21 million in damages and injunctions to prevent the publisher from continued promotion and advertising of Mirra's name and likeness in connection with said game. The suit goes on to allege breach of contract, unfair competition, injury to reputation, false advertising and invasion of privacy.
Which is a bit odd, because after Dave demanded his name be taken off the game last year, we can't recall a single instance of Acclaim's generally quite contentious ad output, its PR employees, or anybody connected with the organisation mentioning Mirra in any context other than that of his own game, Dave Mirra Freestyle BMX 3.
But Dave obviously can, and wants $21 million.
Actually, to a large extent, Dave's objection worked. We all turned round at the end of our BMX XXX reviews and commented that he'd been right to yank his name and likeness - surely a bit of free promotion and a benefit to his reputation, rather than an injury? That's about the most XXX association he got from the press, that we can recall, apart from early print previews which are somewhat difficult to "disassociate" after the fact. Can any of our American readers comment on the situation over there?
For its part, Acclaim has responded angrily to the suit, calling it "baseless" and promising to "defend ourselves vigorously against it".
BMX XXX was released late last year to critical disdain. Several US retail chains boldly refused to carry it, (although guns and porn were on aisle five), and it went on to sell poorly.