No Man's Sky has had plenty of problems leading up to its release. The developers had their studio flooded on Christmas Eve of December 2013 (nearly again in January 2014), game was delayed, and then it was revealed that the developers at Hello Games had been having a secret lawsuit over the word 'Sky.'
According to a report from Telegraaf, a Dutch based company is claiming that Hello Games borrowed their "superformula" that allows the procedurally generated game to generate the world around them. This is despite the fact that the Dutch based company has not seen the games code, they have simply heard about the game.
"We haven't provided a license to Hello Games", states Jeroen Sparrow from the Dutch based company Genicap, who emphasizes that the licensing system is put in place to protect its customers. "We don't want to stop the launch, but if the formula is used we'll need to have a talk."
Sean Murray has stated that Hello Games' No Man's Sky is using a "superformula."
In an interview with Business Insider (via NeoGaf) last year, Murray discussed using a formula from a Belgium-based plant geneticist named Johan Gielis. According to Geilis, his "superformula" was "a modified version of the equation for a circle" that allowed a computer to generate a generous amount of natural shapes (like animals, shells, snowflakes and more).
Unfortunately, Geilis is a part of the Dutch company - he's the CRO and he has patented the application of the "superformula." Geilis could only patent the application, considering patenting mathematical formulas isn't allowed.
In 2004, Geilis patented the concept of using his fomula to "create 2-D images, 3-D images and/or animations."
According to IT-lawyer, Arnoud Engelfriet, the Dutch company's claim could pose a problem for No Man's Sky. "If there's indeed an infringement of the patent, there'll be a financial compensation and distribution will have to be ceased."
No Man's Sky and Sony have not commented on this.
Hopefully... this doesn't mean there will be another delay.