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There's A New Twist In The PS5 Custom Plates Story

Earlier this week, CMP Shells, the would-be seller of custom PS5 faceplates, announced that it was officially back in business following a copyright dispute with Sony. But today, that announcement appears to have been a bit premature. The company has seemingly removed its "Kratos Bundle," a PS5 controller and shell set inspired by God of War: Ragnarok, from its online store.

CMP Shells quietly removed the Kratos Bundle one day after announcing that it had redesigned their PS5 shell to avoid violating the copyright on Sony's proprietary design. The company also promised that all purchases would definitely be honored this time around. CMP Shells' website still says that while the patent is still pending for its PS5 shells, "All sales finalized before [the patent is] approved are untouchable."

CMP Shells hasn't yet addressed the removal of the Kratos Bundle or offered an explanation for why it's no longer available. The company did announce today that it had already sold out their first batch of shells in about 24 hours, and that another batch is now available. CMP Shells hasn't said whether any customers purchased the Kratos Bundle in that period or whether refunds would be forthcoming. 

The removal of the Kratos Bundle comes at a time when CMP Shells has been working hard to re-earn customers' trust. The UK-based company was created in Oct. 2020 to capitalize on the demand for custom PS5 shells. It first launched under the name PlateStation, but then had to change it to CustomizeMyPlates to avoid confusion with the PlayStation brand. But then the company was forced to rebrand a second time to CMPShells.

But not even two name changes were enough to satisfy Sony. The console maker also felt that CMP Shells' design itself was too similar to the PS5's proprietary plate. As reported by IGN, under pressure from Sony, the company cancelled hundreds of existing orders in early Nov. 2020. CMP Shells also claimed to have offered more than $20,000 in refunds. At the time, a company representative told IGN that offering refunds was proof that CMP Shells is a legitimate company. 

Since CMP Shells hasn't addressed the Kratos Bundle removal, it's unclear whether that was due to a licensing issue with God of War: Ragnarok publisher Sony Interactive Entertainment. Any company that makes third-party accessories for video game consoles has to navigate complex legal issues. But trying to sell a third-party product before those issues have been resolved is always a risky strategy.