Graphics Patent Holder Sues Entire Gaming Industry

A new lawsuit states that if you make a game with 3D action (like, say, Quake or Halo) and display it on a 2D monitor, you could be violating a patent.

The patent, number 4,734,690 is owned by one-time printing and graphics specialist Tektronix and covers the display of a 3D image in 2D. It was filed in April, 1987 and granted almost a year later.

US legal firm, Dallas, Texas-based McKool Smith, has been retained to file lawsuits against a large number of major game makers including Electronic Arts, Activision, Take Two, Ubisoft, Atari, THQ, Vivendi Universal, Sega, Square Enix, Tecmo, Lucasarts and Namco. Some smaller firms will also have lawsuits filed against them in the near future.

Theoretically, everything from CAD renderings to 3D vector-based web appliactions to Flash animation and more could fall under the patent infringement. If it's three-dimensional and displayed on a two-dimensional display, it's open ground for this lawsuit.

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