Last Week Sony Interactive Entertainment America filed to trademark the name of Hideo Kojima’s upcoming game “Death Stranding” with the United States Patent and Trademark Offoce.
This follows the European registration happened in June just before E3.
Contrary to popular belief, registering the trademark is not an equivalent to owning the IP, which is dictated by contract among the parts involved. What it does show, is that Sony is very involved with Kojima Productions’ new game, possibly taking care of all the bureaucratic elements in order to let the team focus on creating a great game.
The house of PlayStation does this quite often with the independent developers when a publishing deal is in place, regardless of future platforms. For instance, Sony still owns the trademark of Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture by The Chinese Room. On the other hand, it doesn’t always happens. As an example, Hello Games owns the trademark to No Man’s Sky directly.
The trademark was registered for a myriad of classes, which definitely isn’t done for every game. Besides games and online games (which indicates any kind of online functionality, so don’t read too much into it), we get jewelry, printed materials (including comic books and novels), bags, tableware, clothing, collectible figures and drinks.
This basically prepares the trademark for a wide range of merchandising and for the use as a cross-media franchise, which isn’t so far fetched considering Hideo Kojima’s popularity.