Blizzard's attempt to snag a trademark for its upcoming shooter Overwatch has gone a bit awry. Turns out the US Patent Office was on overwatch for stuff with the same name, and put up a roadblock when it discovered that a paintball system had filed for 'Overwatch' before the Warcraft folk got there.
Innovis Lab's Overwatch system is something to do with sticking your phone to your paint- or airball gun and then having an app do something or other to enhance matters. I'm not convinced I'd like to risk my smartphone getting splattered with paint or indeed having any projectiles bounce off its screen, but maybe the reckless endangerment of a few hundred quid's worth of device is just what the pretend war experience needs.
Anyway, Innovis filed for the Overwatch trademark some seven months before Blizzard did, reports Game Informer, so the latter's application has been suspended while the USPTO figure out what to do. While one is a paintball accessory and software and one is a videogame, it seems they're standing on similar enough terrain to have caused a problem. The paintball system is apparently "inspired by classic first-person shooter video games," so I guess there is scope for confusion.
Any resolution currently hinges on whether Innovis' Overwatch is deemed to be a currently going concern or not, but even if it's not they still have the option to request an extension until next February. Blizzard may well have to change the name of their team shooter, which perhaps isn't the biggest deal given they've only just announced it rather than are a long way down the campaign trail, but I suppose there's always the option of their lobbing a big cheque at Innovis to change their paintball thinger's name instead.
Overwatch is kind of a boring name anyway. I reckon Blizzard should call it BANG BANG LOOK WE'RE THE NEW SHOOTER WITH MORE MONEY THAN ANYONE ELSE EVERYONE'S GOING TO BE TALKING ABOUT IT LET'S BE HONEST YOU'D SELL YOUR CHILDREN TO GET A BETA KEY instead.
BBLWTNSWMWTAEEGTBTAiLBHYSYCTGABK was unveiled at Blizzcon last November, but has no release date as yet.