After Legal Threat, Dbrand Just Makes Its Own PS5 Faceplate

Following a cease and desist letter from Sony, Canadian peripherals company Dbrand announced on Saturday that it had been forced to pull its range of PS5 faceplates from its store. Now, just three days later, the company has released its own original design range of faceplates for the console. In an announcement, Dbrand proclaimed "Darkplates are back, checkmate lawyers."

In a statement posted to the company's subreddit this weekend, Dbrand announced that its PlayStation 5 faceplates were "dead" after it had received official contact from Sony threatening legal action if Dbrand continued to sell them. Up until this point, Dbrand's faceplates were near identical to the ones typically found on the console when purchased. The key difference was, instead of being white, the company's faceplates allowed fans to switch up their consoles to a matte black design.

Despite pulling the original plates on Saturday, Dbrand already has a "Darkplate 2.0" design ready to go, which does suggest that the company could be using Sony's legal threats as a marketing tactic. During the time that the original Darkplates were on sale, Dbrand taunted and provoked Sony, saying "Go ahead, sue us." Following the news on Saturday that Sony had done exactly that, it initially seemed as though perhaps the Canadian brand has pushed their luck one too many times and been made to pay the price. However, now, just three days later, the company has announced a brand new set of faceplates that it claims are safe from future lawsuits.

Dbrand announced its new Darkplates 2.0 over on Reddit in a statement filled with self-assurance, wit, and a few lighthearted digs. "See, while we appreciate all the armchair legal advice that filtered in over the weekend," the statement reads, "the reality of this Darkplates dispute is quite simple."

"You can’t successfully sue someone over an alleged “design infringement” without a registered design patent. Sony did not have a registered design patent for the PS5’s side panels when we launched Darkplates (or for many, many months following the release). We didn’t think they’d ever get one. They did. Here we are."

Dbrand says that instead of choosing to "spend millions fighting the legitimacy of the design patent claims for many years in court," the company opted to start fresh. In doing so, Dbrand has created a brand new design in the Darkplates 2.0 that it believes "closes the loop on this dispute and neutralizes any future infringement claims from Sony."

As well as opting to take a different shape with the design of the Darkplates 2.0, Dbrand has also added vents to its design, which could help your console to run cooler. There is also a small range of color schemes. Fans will be able to choose from black, white, and a third option "color-matched to a retro console which shall remain nameless," – that's PlayStation 1 grey for those looking for a more nostalgic feel to their faceplates.

Dbrand concluded its announcement by considering whether Sony was still going to sue. The statement reads: "Probably. The difference this time is that we’ve created an original design for which they have no basis to allege infringement. If they want to try, they'd better be ready to pay our legal fees."

For more on the PlayStation 5 make sure to check out this article detailing how the console finally broke the Nintendo Switch's 33-month streak at the top of the US Monthly Hardware Charts.

Jared Moore is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter.

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