Texas company sues 12 companies claiming electronic trading card patent infringement via online TCG’s

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Wildcat Intellectual Property Holdings LLC filed a lawsuit against a dozen companies this week in a Texas Eastern District Court claiming that electronic trading cards and similar virtual trading card creations in trading card games are in violation of its patented intellectual property.

Among the companies are Panini America, Topps, Wizards of the Coast, 4Kids Entertainment, Chaotic USA, Konami, Nintendo, Pokemon USA, Sony Computer Entertainment, Sony Online Entertainment and Zynga.

Wildcat, a Plano, Texas-based company, is seeking a jury trial, a judgment that the companies have infringed upon its patent for an electronic trading card, a permanent injunction for the products and games that are alleged to infringe upon the patent along with damages, costs and expenses of the case.

In 1995, an application for an electronic trading card was filed and it was awarded on March 13, 2001, with its definition being “a system for the application of a trading card metaphor to a disassociated computer program and the unique design of several hardware and software systems supports and enhances collecting trading, game playing and creating of digital electronic trading cards.”

Wildcat’s patent includes a several pages of graphics to illustrate its concept with its lawsuit filing. It cites Panini’s NFL Adrenalyn XL online game, Topps’ ToppsTown, EA’s BattleForge video game, Konami’s Marvel trading card video game and Yu-Gi-Oh! Online Duel Accelerator video game, Nintendo’s Pokemon Online TCG, SCEA’s The Eye of Judgment Legends, SOE’s Legends of Norrah online TCG, Wizards’ Magic Online game and Zynga’s Warstorm as alleged infringers in the filing.

To view the full patent in PDF form, click here.

Chris Olds is the editor of Beckett Baseball magazine. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at colds@beckett.com. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.


  1. Tim Thompson
    Posted July 8, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    Wow!!! This could change several things and be a huge downfall to many popular games

  2. Posted July 8, 2011 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    hahaha that’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. Based on this logic nobody else is allowed to make video games because one company patented the idea of “video games” like forty years ago. Frivolous garbage…I hope Wildcat loses a TON of money battling this frivolous lawsuit…sure hope none of the companies give in and try to settle.

  3. chrisolds
    Posted July 8, 2011 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

    We’ll see.

  4. A DAVIS
    Posted July 8, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    I hope a judge throws it out and they do not waste a ton of money going forward with the lawsuit. While you may think it would serve them right or punish them, the other companies would have to spend a ton of money on it too. lawsuits like this make lawyers a lot of money and products more expensive for the rest of us.

  5. Posted July 8, 2011 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

    I wonder why UD didn’t get sued? Is it because they had e-cards before May of 2001?

  6. charles faires
    Posted July 8, 2011 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

    i read the patent, and it looks like they mite take down the big guys a peg or two, you never know the lawyers mite read it different, it will be up to interpitation of the patent by the courts, but i do belive that the cost will effect new product prices. it a shame players, owners fighting over money, card companys stabing each other in the back, E-bay, PayPal rip offs, rampit drug use starting in high school all the way thur the pros, criminal activity in both college and the pros, this is crap, all this rolls down hill to someone that justs wants to collect cardboard cards of there favorite sports player

  7. Dallas_Booker
    Posted July 10, 2011 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    First to the market must ALWAYS play defense. Arriving second, third and fourth to the market allows the ability to forego the huge capital investment by copying and then later settling out. Wildcat played this very well, and will reap the rewards, the others will pay as a cost of doing business. Easy come easy go, hard part will be the net 30, 60, 90, and more suits for collection upon judgement/settlement. Its business.

  8. Dav-O
    Posted July 11, 2011 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

    A key question, does Wildcat have a product that was infringed on? They can’t just patent something, and never make it. (I believe)

  9. chrisolds
    Posted July 11, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

    I could be wrong, but once a patent is owned I believe it has to be licensed for use if it applies. Whether the companies infringed will be up to courts.


  10. Tom Waldron
    Posted July 11, 2011 at 8:49 pm | Permalink

    One thing we have to see is did Panini and others hava a Patient for their concept.
    I mean one simple change can be a totally diffrent concept. Seems to market the idea of Adrenaline etc.. wouldn’t you have to see if it already is patent or copywritted on one form or another. Reminds me the issues over Kobe and the La company vs Panini.
    This will be fun to watch I bet Wildcat will get some bucks too many lawyers someone has to pay and usually it’s you and me in the end. Nice tibit Chris another Beckett scoop.

  11. Joe
    Posted August 6, 2011 at 8:30 pm | Permalink

    Well, Chaotic has already taken a big hit. Because of this lawsuit (or at least, I’m pretty sure THIS is the lawsuit) the staff has pretty much had to abandon the game site and the production of the new cards. With it being an entire year since the last update, a ton of the players have either given up or have tried to stay active, which is difficult when there is no staff to take care of bugs and issues. Hopefully this stupid piece of trash lawsuit will be resolved in favor of Chaotic and the rest of the companies, or else a ton of great games, including Chaotic, are going to be devasted because of some stupid arrogant texas football game.

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  1. By Morning Roundup: 7/9/11 on July 9, 2011 at 9:14 am

    […] -Magic Online, Topps Town and many others could be in trouble after a lawsuit was filed against them … […]

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