Over, for now
The trouble is, I'm a college student, and not an affluent one, and I simply do not have the time, energy, or resources to fight this battle right now. There's a point at which I am willing to give up and be practical, to let the world have its way with that ever-mistreated little ideal of “principle”. Thus, it's with great sadness that I must announce that I'll be pulling Tris from the App Store on Wednesday, August 27th, to remain in Apple's systems but publicly unavailable until I work out a solution to this.
A few last words on the subject, then. I don't believe The Tetris® Company consider themselves to be acting in bad faith. The lack of protection for the idea of a game is troubling, in that it promotes quick ripoffs of a concept that someone, somewhere, spent a lot of effort on. The Tetris® Company are protecting their own interest; without a name that meant something to license, they would have, as I understand it, no significant assets at all.
That said: the approach they're taking seems to me little more than petty bullying. They have little to no legitimate legal claim, and are, presumably, relying on my being a small developer with insufficient resources to defend myself. And — hey ho — it appears to be working. All I can suggest is that, if you have the slightest interest in playing Tris, you download it while you still can.
To clarify: if Apple had not told me they'd “take action” of their own if I didn't resolve the “dispute”, Tris would be staying up. I don't think this will be permanent; when I have the time and can find a good copyright lawyer, I'll be figuring out exactly what my position is and how I can make Tris available again.
To further clarify: several news sites have taken this to mean I consider Apple at fault here. This is completely and totally untrue, and I have received no form of official legal notice, threats, or anything of the sort — indeed, anything other than polite and helpful communication — from them. Apple, as I see it, are making sure they aren't liable for individual developers' mistakes, and they're doing it the right way. Please don't take this up as an “Apple are being evil corporate jerks” story, because they aren't and it isn't.