I've long since quite liked trading card games (and Magic: The Gathering in particular) and I have the dream to one day make my own. However, Wizards of the Coast, the creators of Magic (the first game in the genre) holds a patent on their game. It was one of the first patents on a game and honestly, it seems rather ridiculous to me. It's been quite a few years since I did any research on this, but I just now saw that this site existed and it immediately made me want to revisit the topic.
The problems I have with this patent include:
- The patented game was released well before the date the patent was filed (by the company that holds the patent)
- The patent seems overly broad on a quite a number of points, covering just about the entire genre of games, rather than this very game
- There are many games that seem to violate the patent, both games that take a single element that I believe cannot be used due to the patent and games that share much more, and yet there have very few lawsuits based on this (I know of one case where legal actions was taken on a game that was practically a clone of the original)
(4) Additionally, I think the patent may have expired recently, but I'm not exactly sure about that.
I definitely need to do more research on the subject before I start asking questions, but I do want to know all about the situation.
However, I am not quite sure on how to divide this up into questions. I suppose I could ask it all in one question, but that doesn't feel very SE. Problem 1 would make a lot of sense to ask separately, and two and three could be asked either together or separately. I could also divide 2 up further, but in the end I think there's too much entanglement between the different issues for that. Number 4 would definitely be a separate question.
How would you divide this into questions?