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Atlus is suing fans who recreated its defunct MMO Shin Megami Tensei: Imagine.

ReImagine, as the unofficial fan server was known, has since been shut down.

Atlus’s MMO was first released in Japan in 2007 and had players exploring a post-apocalyptic Tokyo. North American (2008) and European (2009) releases followed, but the game was officially shut down in 2016.

The fan server ReImagine first launched in 2020, mimicking the launcher of the original game to allow fans to once again play the MMO, as well as its website.

However, Atlus is now suing the fan creators Rekuiemu and COMP_Hack – the defendants named in the lawsuit.

In court documents, Atlus states these fans “have caused and will continue to cause irreparable damage to Atlus unless restrained by this Court”.

Atlus is seeking up to $25,000 per copyright violation.

As spotted by VGC, the fan creators have released a statement on the ReImagine Discord, which has now been pulled offline.

“We were recently informed that one of our ‘competitors’ was served a court filing, and that Atlus is currently seeking legal action against them and the COMP_Hack team. While ReImagine hasn’t been served any sort of notice (that we know of), Atlus’s decision to outright sue instead of issue a C&D has made us worry about the safety of the users who helped keep the game alive,” it reads.

“So with a heavy heart, we regret to inform everyone that the decision has been made to close down the ReImagine server permanently.”

While there are certainly copyright complications, the lawsuit does once again bring the issue of game preservation to the forefront.