Blizzard wants to patent the Overwatch Play of the Game feature, which attempts to highlight the most important or exciting moment in a match on the popular multiplayer shooter.
Play of the Game received heavy criticism in the early days of Overwatch, but it has since received many improvements. The feature is now one of the trademark characteristics of the hero shooter, and Blizzard is apparently looking to keep it within Overwatch.
Blizzard Patent Application For 'Overwatch' POTG
Blizzard filed for a patent covering the Overwatch Play of the Game feature on Dec. 9, 2016, several months after the multiplayer shooter was launched. It has been 18 months since then, resulting in the automatic publication of the patent, revealing it to the public.
The Play of the Game feature received criticism in the first few months of Overwatch because it was sometimes faulty, showing mundane moments in a match instead of exciting highlights. Blizzard, however, promised to fix the Overwatch POTG, and it has since become a very reliable feature to show awesome things that players may have missed amid all the action in Overwatch games.
The patent filing dives into deep detail over the Play of the Game choice, which is based on several criteria covering several POTG categories. The categories include High Score, Life Saver, Sharpshooter, and Shutdown.
The approval of the patent by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is still in progress, but even if it is approved, it is unlikely that other developers will be prevented from implementing similar highlight features. For example, the Call of Duty franchise has been using a "kill of the match" feature for over 10 years.
Blizzard is most likely looking to protect the work that it has put into the feature, specifically the type of data and scoring methods used by the Overwatch POTG.
Blizzard Protecting 'Overwatch'
Overwatch has been a massive hit for Blizzard, so it is not surprising that the developer is looking to protect the multiplayer shooter from harm.
Patents on certain Overwatch features are one thing, but the crackdown on Overwatch hackers is another one. A recent report revealed that a South Korean hacker is now facing jail time for creating an Overwatch hacking tool.
Blizzard is taking the fight against Overwatch cheating seriously, which is why it has not backed down from banning players and suing cheat makers. This is helping Blizzard maintain player interest in the multiplayer shooter.