Supercell loses patent case against Gree

The outcome of the case will be quite costly.
Tencent
Tencent

Tencent lost its Supercell patent case against Gree, and the outcome will be quite costly. As a result of the lawsuit, it was decided that Supercell was charged to pay $92.2 million in damages to Gree for infringing a total of 6 patents. As noted by Bloomberg, Gree claimed that Supercell’s Clash of Clans, Clash Royale, and Hay Day games infringed their patents for network-based features such as performing virtual battles between players, determining the frequency of acquiring valuable items and storing user and game information.

supercell
Supercell is a game company that focuses on mobile games, especially Clash of Clans.

Supercell plans to appeal the decision

Gree’s lawyer Steve Moore told the judges about the violations that Supercell made about $3 billion from these three games in the US. Supercell, owned by the China-based company Tencent, denied these allegations and declared that the patents mentioned were invalid. The jury denied Supercell’s allegations and said the violation was deliberate, meaning that the judge could increase the reward by three times the amount set by the decision.

“Supercell respects the jury system, but of course it was disappointed with the decision,” the company said in a statement and continued: “Supercell plans to appeal.”

Details of patents in the Supercell case

Tencent announced that it will challenge the results of the Supercell patent case. However, game developers could face a serious problem if the verdict is overturned on appeal. Here are Gree’s five patents on the case as highlighted in a tweet by Niko Partners Senior Analyst Daniel “ZhugeEX” Ahmad:

  • A method to improve the usability of city-building games using templates to define the positions of one or more in-game contents that can be applied to in-game areas based on the commands of the player.
  • A server and method for transferring an object between two users, as well as the communication module for sending and receiving requests for transfers from other players.
  • A control method for a touch-screen shooting game which first displays an effective shooting range which then detects whether an attack target is in range and commences the attack base on a command from the player.
  • A recording medium and server method for selecting game content to be used in an in-game battle — the selected item being replaced by another option for a future turn.
  • A server and control method for selecting character cards from a selection and using them in battle against an enemy character — the selected item being replaced by another option for a future turn.

In summary, it can be said that there are many popular games that may contradict one or more of these patents. If the US District Court’s decision upholds, many game developers – particularly mobile developers – may soon have to pay Gree a license fee or prepare themselves for a court battle.

 

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