US20090082106A1 - System and method for rendering game pieces - Google Patents

System and method for rendering game pieces Download PDF

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Publication number
US20090082106A1
US20090082106A1 US12212953 US21295308A US2009082106A1 US 20090082106 A1 US20090082106 A1 US 20090082106A1 US 12212953 US12212953 US 12212953 US 21295308 A US21295308 A US 21295308A US 2009082106 A1 US2009082106 A1 US 2009082106A1
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Prior art keywords
game
card reader
cards
machine
readable data
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Abandoned
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US12212953
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Arden Yang
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Astro Corp
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Astro Corp
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F13/00Video games, i.e. games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions
    • A63F13/50Controlling the output signals based on the game progress
    • A63F13/52Controlling the output signals based on the game progress involving aspects of the displayed game scene
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F13/00Video games, i.e. games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions
    • A63F13/02Accessories
    • A63F13/06Accessories using player-operated means for controlling the position of a specific area display
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F13/00Video games, i.e. games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions
    • A63F13/20Input arrangements for video game devices
    • A63F13/21Input arrangements for video game devices characterised by their sensors, purposes or types
    • A63F13/214Input arrangements for video game devices characterised by their sensors, purposes or types for locating contacts on a surface, e.g. floor mats or touch pads
    • A63F13/2145Input arrangements for video game devices characterised by their sensors, purposes or types for locating contacts on a surface, e.g. floor mats or touch pads the surface being also a display device, e.g. touch screens
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F9/00Games not otherwise provided for
    • A63F9/24Electric games; Games using electronic circuits not otherwise provided for
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F1/00Card games
    • A63F2001/008Card games adapted for being playable on a screen
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F9/00Games not otherwise provided for
    • A63F9/24Electric games; Games using electronic circuits not otherwise provided for
    • A63F2009/2401Detail of input, input devices
    • A63F2009/2402Input by manual operation
    • A63F2009/241Touch screen
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F9/00Games not otherwise provided for
    • A63F9/24Electric games; Games using electronic circuits not otherwise provided for
    • A63F2009/2401Detail of input, input devices
    • A63F2009/2411Input form cards, tapes, discs
    • A63F2009/2413Magnetic
    • A63F2009/2414Cards
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F9/00Games not otherwise provided for
    • A63F9/24Electric games; Games using electronic circuits not otherwise provided for
    • A63F2009/2448Output devices
    • A63F2009/245Output devices visual
    • A63F2009/2457Display screens, e.g. monitors, video displays
    • A63F2009/246Computer generated or synthesized image
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F9/00Games not otherwise provided for
    • A63F9/24Electric games; Games using electronic circuits not otherwise provided for
    • A63F2009/2483Other characteristics
    • A63F2009/2488Remotely playable
    • A63F2009/2489Remotely playable by radio transmitters, e.g. using RFID
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F2300/00Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game
    • A63F2300/10Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game characterized by input arrangements for converting player-generated signals into game device control signals
    • A63F2300/1068Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game characterized by input arrangements for converting player-generated signals into game device control signals being specially adapted to detect the point of contact of the player on a surface, e.g. floor mat, touch pad
    • A63F2300/1075Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game characterized by input arrangements for converting player-generated signals into game device control signals being specially adapted to detect the point of contact of the player on a surface, e.g. floor mat, touch pad using a touch screen
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F2300/00Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game
    • A63F2300/60Methods for processing data by generating or executing the game program
    • A63F2300/66Methods for processing data by generating or executing the game program for rendering three dimensional images
    • A63F2300/6623Methods for processing data by generating or executing the game program for rendering three dimensional images for animating a group of characters
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F2300/00Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game
    • A63F2300/80Features of games using an electronically generated display having two or more dimensions, e.g. on a television screen, showing representations related to the game specially adapted for executing a specific type of game
    • A63F2300/807Role playing or strategy games

Abstract

A game-piece rendering system includes a plurality of game cards each storing predetermined machine-readable data, and a game host unit. The game host unit includes: a game card reader for reading the machine-readable data stored on the game cards; a processor coupled to the game card reader and executing a rendering program to generate a game screen based on the machine-readable data read by the game card reader, the game screen including a plurality of virtual game pieces corresponding respectively to the game cards read by the game card reader; and a touchscreen display coupled to the processor and displaying the game screen. The processor performs control such that the virtual game pieces are selected and manipulated on the touchscreen display in response to a user touching the touchscreen display. A game-piece rendering method is also disclosed.

Description

    CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION
  • This application claims priority of Taiwanese Application No. 096135414, filed on Sep. 21, 2007.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • 1. Field of the Invention
  • The present invention relates to a game-piece rendering system and method, in which the game-piece rendering system includes a plurality of game cards, and game pieces are automatically rendered on a display in a manner corresponding to the game cards.
  • 2. Description of the Related Art
  • A conventional game-piece rendering system is disclosed in Taiwanese Patent No. I234524. This conventional game-piece rendering system includes a game area, a game card reader, an image generator, and a display. In response to a user placing a game card in the game area, the game card reader reads data of the game card, and the image generator generates a game-piece image on the basis of the data read by the game card reader. Control is performed such that the display subsequently displays the game-piece image generated by the image generator. Additional control is also performed by the system, such as moving the game-piece image on the display in response to user manipulation of the game card in the game area.
  • A drawback of the conventional game-piece rendering system is that since the game cards are continuously handled by the user during game play, the game cards quickly become worn. This reduces the resale value of the game cards. Further, excessive wearing of the game cards may result in difficulties in reading of the game cards by the game card reader. The game area of the system may also become worn over time.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • Therefore, an object of this invention is to provide a game-piece rendering system and method that can overcome the above drawbacks of the prior art.
  • According to one aspect, the game-piece rendering system of this invention comprises: a plurality of game cards each storing predetermined machine-readable data; and a game host unit including a game card reader for reading the machine-readable data stored on the game cards, a processor coupled to the game card reader and executing a rendering program to generate a game screen based on the machine-readable data read by the game card reader, the game screen including a plurality of virtual game pieces corresponding respectively to the game cards read by the game card reader, and a touchscreen display coupled to the processor and displaying the game screen. The processor performs control such that the virtual game pieces are selected and manipulated on the touchscreen display in response to a user touching the touchscreen display.
  • According to another aspect, the game-piece rendering system of this invention comprises: a plurality of game cards each storing predetermined machine-readable data; and a game host unit including a game card reader for reading the machine-readable data stored on the game cards, a processor coupled to the game card reader and executing a rendering program to generate a game screen based on the machine-readable data read by the game card reader, the game screen including a plurality of virtual game pieces corresponding respectively to the game cards read by the game card reader, and a display coupled to the processor and displaying the game screen. The game card reader is one of an electromagnetism-based game card reader and a radio frequency-based game card reader.
  • According to still another aspect, the game-piece rendering method of this invention comprises: a) providing a plurality of game cards each storing predetermined machine-readable data, and a game host unit which includes a game card reader, a processor coupled to the game card reader, and a touchscreen display coupled to the processor; b) reading the machine-readable data stored on the game cards using the game card reader; c) generating a game screen using the processor based on the machine-readable data read by the game card reader, the game screen including a plurality of virtual game pieces corresponding respectively to the game cards read by the game card reader; d) displaying the game screen on the touchscreen display; and e) selecting and manipulating the virtual game pieces using the processor in response to a user touching the touchscreen display.
  • According to yet another aspect, the game-piece rendering method of this invention comprises: a) providing a plurality of game cards each storing predetermined machine-readable data, and a game host unit which includes a game card reader, a processor coupled to the game card reader, and a display coupled to the processor; b) reading the machine-readable data stored on the game cards using the game card reader; c) generating a game screen using the processor based on the machine-readable data read by the game card reader, the game screen including a plurality of virtual game pieces corresponding respectively to the game cards read by the game card reader; and d) displaying the game screen on the display. The game card reader is one of an electromagnetism-based game card reader and a radio frequency-based game card reader.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • Other features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent in the following detailed description of the preferred embodiment with reference to the accompanying drawings, of which:
  • FIG. 1 is a front schematic view of a game-piece rendering system according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 2 is a side schematic view of the preferred embodiment;
  • FIG. 3 is a front view of a game card included in the game-piece rendering system of the preferred embodiment;
  • FIG. 4 is a rear view of the game card of FIG. 3;
  • FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a game card reader of the game-piece rendering system of the preferred embodiment;
  • FIG. 6 is a schematic view of an exemplary game screen displayed on a display of the game-piece rendering system of the preferred embodiment;
  • FIG. 7 is a view similar to FIG. 6, but illustrating an example of how a virtual game piece appearing in the game screen may be manipulated;
  • FIG. 8 is a view similar to FIG. 6, but illustrating another example of how a virtual game piece appearing in the game screen may be manipulated;
  • FIG. 9 is a front view of a memory card included in the game-piece rendering system of the preferred embodiment;
  • FIG. 10 is a rear view of the memory card of FIG. 9; and
  • FIG. 11 is a flowchart of a game-piece rendering method according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT
  • Referring to FIGS. 1 to 5, a game-piece rendering system according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention includes a plurality of game cards 1, a game host unit 2, and a base 3 on which the game host unit 2 is disposed.
  • Many games may be played using the game-piece rendering system of the present invention. For example, a card-based game of strategy played by two or more players, in which each of the players possesses a plurality of game cards, may be played using the game-piece rendering system of the present invention. However, the present invention is not limited in this respect and other types of games involving any number of players (including a single player) may be played using the game-piece rendering system of the present invention. For example, a sports game involving a single player who plays against the game host unit 2 may be played using the game-piece rendering system of the present invention.
  • When a game involving multiple players (4-8 players, for example) is played using the game-piece rendering system of the present invention, it is noted that the game-piece rendering system of the present invention allows the multiple players to simultaneously perform game control through use of a single touchscreen. That is, the control of game pieces of the multiple players through a single touchscreen, and the ability to keep track of different control of different game pieces by the multiple players, is made possible by the present invention.
  • With particular reference to FIGS. 3 and 4, each of the game cards 1 has a front face 11 and a rear face 12. Different types of images and information may be printed on the front and rear faces 11, 12 of each of the game cards 1. For example, a character image 111 associated with the game card 1 may be printed on the front face 11.
  • Furthermore, each of the game cards 1 stores predetermined machine-readable data. In one embodiment, the machine-readable data is stored on each of the game cards 1 using electrically conductive printing ink. In another embodiment, the machine-readable data is stored on each of the game cards 1 using a radio frequency identification (RFID) tag. As an example, the machine-readable data may be a code that is stored using electrically conductive printing ink or a RFID tag.
  • Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, the game host unit 2 includes a housing 21, a game card reader 22 disposed on the housing 21, a touchscreen display 23 disposed on the housing 21, an auxiliary display 24 disposed on the housing 21 above the touchscreen display 23, a pair of speakers 25 mounted in the housing 21 on opposite sides of the touchscreen display 23, a token-receiving module 26 mounted in the housing 21 at one side of the touchscreen display 23, a memory card reader/writer 27 mounted in the housing 21 on the same side as the token-receiving module 26, and a processor 28 disposed in the housing 21 and coupled to the game card reader 22, the touchscreen display 23, the auxiliary display 24, the speakers 25, the token-receiving module 26, and the memory card reader/writer 27.
  • The game card reader 22 reads the machine-readable data stored on the game cards 1. In the embodiment where the machine-readable data is stored on each of the game cards 1 using electrically conductive printing ink, the game card reader 22 is an electrically conductive printing ink reader and reads the machine-readable data stored on the game cards 1 through electromagnetism. Alternatively, in the embodiment where the machine-readable data is stored on each of the game cards 1 using a RFID tag, the game card reader 22 is a RFID reader. Hence, in these two embodiments, the game card reader 22 is one of an electromagnetism-based game card reader and a radio frequency-based game card reader. As best shown in FIG. 5, in the preferred embodiment, the game card reader 22 includes a plurality of insert slots 221 for insertion of the game cards 1, respectively.
  • The processor 28 executes a rendering program to generate a game screen 281 based on the machine-readable data read by the game card reader 22. An example of the game screen 281 is shown in FIG. 6. The game screen 281 includes a plurality of virtual game pieces 283 which correspond respectively to the game cards 1 read by the game card reader 22. The game screen 281 may also include a plurality of virtual game pieces 284 corresponding respectively to an opponent's game cards (not shown).
  • In the preferred embodiment, the processor 28 renders the game screen 281 (and the virtual game pieces 283 included therein) by comparing the data read by the game card reader 22 with a database (not shown) in the game host unit 2. In another embodiment, the processor 28 renders the game screen 281 directly on the basis of the data read by the game card reader 22. In still another embodiment, the game host unit 2 is connected to a network server, and the processor 28 renders the game screen 281 by comparing the data read by the game card reader 22 with a database in the server. In some embodiments, the game host unit 2 includes an image renderer (not shown) for performing such rendering of the game screen 281.
  • The touchscreen display 23 displays the game screen 281. In one embodiment, the touchscreen display 23 is a liquid crystal display that includes a capacitive touchscreen panel. In another embodiment, the touchscreen display 23 is a liquid crystal display that includes a resistive touchscreen panel. Other techniques may also be employed by the touchscreen display 23 to provide the same with touchscreen capabilities, and the present invention is not limited to the use of any particular touchscreen technology.
  • The processor 28 performs control such that the virtual game pieces 283 on the game screen 281 are selected and manipulated on the touchscreen display 23 in response to detection of the user touching the touchscreen display 23.
  • As an example, with reference to FIG. 7, in response to detection of touching of one of the virtual game pieces 283 on the touchscreen display 23 and subsequent touching of a desired position (Y) on the touchscreen display 23, the processor 28 performs control to move said one of the virtual game pieces 283 from an initial position (X) to the desired position (Y) in the touchscreen display 23 along a path (Z) indicated on the touchscreen display 23.
  • As another example, with reference to FIG. 8, in response to detection of touching of one of the virtual game pieces 283 on the touchscreen display 23 and subsequent sliding of a finger of the user on the touchscreen display 23 in a direction (S), the processor 28 performs control such that said one of the virtual game pieces 283 performs a predetermined action (e.g., an attacking action) in the direction (S). Alternatively, in response to such detection, the processor 28 may perform control such that said one of the virtual game pieces 283 is rotated to change the positioning of the same (e.g., into an attack or defense position).
  • It is to be noted that the processor 28 may perform control to select and manipulate the virtual game pieces 283 on the game screen 281 in response to various types of touches on the touchscreen display 23 by the user, and the present invention is not limited to the examples provided above. For example, each of the virtual game pieces 283 may be moved on the game screen 281 in response to latching onto the virtual game piece 283 by the user touching the same on the touchscreen display 23, and subsequent dragging of the virtual game piece 283 to a desired destination on the touchscreen display 23.
  • Referring again to FIGS. 1 and 2, the auxiliary display 24 displays an auxiliary game screen 282 of, for example, close-ups and 3D images of attack and defense moves of the virtual game pieces 283, 284 (see FIG. 6).
  • The speakers 25 emit music and sound effects generated prior to and during play of the game using the game-piece rendering system of the present invention.
  • The token-receiving module 26 includes a token sensor 261 which is formed with a token slot 263, and a token box 262. Before the user has inserted coins (or game tokens) of a predetermined amount through the token slot 263, the processor 28 may perform control such that the game-piece rendering system is in a stand-by mode, in which, for example, predetermined images are displayed on the touchscreen display 23 and the auxiliary display 24 and predetermined sounds are generated through the speakers 25. After the user inserts coins (or game tokens) of the predetermined amount through the token slot 263, the token sensor 261 may output a signal such that the processor 28 executes a game program that includes the rendering program to generate the game screen 281 and, if necessary, the auxiliary game screen 282. The coins (or tokens) inserted by the user enter into and are stored in the token box 262. Such a process may be repeated if needed. For example, the insertion of coins (or game tokens) by the user may be required each time a game stage is completed or after the elapse of a predetermined time interval.
  • Referring to FIGS. 1, 2, 9, and 10, the memory card reader/writer 27 may perform reading and writing with respect to one of a plurality of memory cards 4. Each of the memory cards 4 has a front face 41 with a plurality of images and/or information 411, 412 printed thereon, and a rear face 42 with a plurality of images and/or information 421, 422, 423 printed thereon. Additionally, each memory card 4 stores predetermined game data. In the preferred embodiment, the predetermined game data stored on each memory card 4 provides information related to the game progress of a particular user. As an example, the game progress may include the positioning of the virtual game pieces 283 on the game screen 281 at the time when the user discontinued playing the game. Other related game information may also be stored on the memory cards 4, such as strengths and attributes of the virtual game pieces 283 at the time when the user discontinued playing the game. The memory cards 4 allow different users to use the game-piece rendering system, such as when the game-piece rendering system is provided in a public area.
  • In some embodiments, insertion of the memory card 4 of the user into the memory card reader/writer 27 is a pre-condition to initiating the game-piece rendering system, i.e., a pre-condition that must be satisfied before the processor 28 generates the game screen 281. So, for example, if the memory card 4 of the user has not been inserted into the memory card reader/writer 27, control may be performed such that the token-receiving module 26 returns any coins inserted through the token slot 263 via a token-return slot (not shown), and rendering of the game screen 281 by the processor 28 is not performed.
  • In the preferred embodiment, each of the memory cards 4 is an integrated circuit (IC) card, and the memory card reader/writer 27 is an IC card reader/writer. However, the present invention is not limited in this regard, and the memory cards 4 and the memory card reader/writer 27 may use magnetic stripe technology to store, read, and write the game data.
  • Referring to FIG. 11, in combination with FIGS. 1 to 8, a game-piece rendering method according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention will now be described.
  • First, in step 30, a plurality of the game cards 1 and the game host unit 2 are provided. Each of the game cards 1 stores predetermined machine-readable data. The game host unit 2 includes the game card reader 22, the processor 28 coupled to the game card reader 22, and the touchscreen display 23 coupled to the processor 28.
  • Next, in step 31, the machine-readable data stored on the game cards 1 is read using the game card reader 22.
  • In step 32, the game screen 281 is generated by the processor 28 based on the machine-readable data read by the game card reader 22. The game screen 281 includes a plurality of the virtual game pieces 283 corresponding respectively to the game cards 1 read by the game card reader 22.
  • Subsequently, in step 33, the game screen 281 is displayed on the touchscreen display 23.
  • Next, in step 34, the virtual game pieces 283 are selected and manipulated using the processor 28 in response to the user touching the touchscreen display 23.
  • In step 30, the game card reader is one of an electromagnetism-based game card reader and a radio frequency-based game card reader.
  • Further, in step 30, the game card reader 22 of the game host unit 2 includes a plurality of the insert slots 221 for insertion of the game cards 1, respectively.
  • Further still, in step 30, the machine-readable data is stored on each of the game cards 1 using electrically conductive printing ink, and the game card reader 22 of the game host unit 2 is an electrically conductive printing ink reader. Alternatively, in step 30, the machine-readable data is stored on each of the game cards 1 using a RFID tag, and the game card reader 22 of the game host unit 2 is a RFID reader.
  • In step 34, in response to detection of touching of one of the virtual game pieces 283 on the touchscreen display 23 and subsequent touching of a desired position (Y) on the touchscreen display 23, the processor 28 performs control to move said one of the virtual game pieces 283 from an initial position (X) to the desired position (Y) in the touchscreen display 23.
  • Also, instep 34, in response to detection of touching of one of the virtual game pieces 283 on the touchscreen display 23 and subsequent sliding of a finger of the user on the touchscreen display 23, the processor 28 performs control such that said one of the virtual game pieces 283 is caused to perform a predetermined action in a direction (S) corresponding to that of sliding of the finger on the touchscreen display 23.
  • The game-piece rendering system and method of the present invention described above has a significant advantage over the prior art. Namely, after insertion of the game cards 1 into the game card reader 22, the game cards 1 need not be handled by the user during play of a game. As a result, the game cards 1 are not easily worn and thereby maintain their resale value. This is particularly beneficial when the game cards 1 are rare and therefore valuable. Furthermore, with the use of the touchscreen display 23, users are able to experience a real-life card game feel to their games without risking wear to their game cards 1.
  • While the present invention has been described in connection with what is considered the most practical and preferred embodiment, it is understood that this invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiment but is intended to cover various arrangements included within the spirit and scope of the broadest interpretation so as to encompass all such modifications and equivalent arrangements.

Claims (20)

  1. 1. A game-piece rendering system, comprising:
    a plurality of game cards each storing predetermined machine-readable data; and
    a game host unit including
    a game card reader for reading the machine-readable data stored on said game cards,
    a processor coupled to said game card reader and executing a rendering program to generate a game screen based on the machine-readable data read by said game card reader, the game screen including a plurality of virtual game pieces corresponding respectively to said game cards read by said game card reader, and
    a touchscreen display coupled to said processor and displaying the game screen;
    wherein said processor performs control such that the virtual game pieces are selected and manipulated on said touchscreen display in response to a user touching said touchscreen display.
  2. 2. The game-piece rendering system of claim 1, wherein said game card reader of said game host unit includes a plurality of insert slots for insertion of said game cards, respectively.
  3. 3. The game-piece rendering system of claim 1, wherein the machine-readable data is stored on each of said game cards using electrically conductive printing ink, and said game card reader of said game host unit is an electrically conductive printing ink reader.
  4. 4. The game-piece rendering system of claim 1, wherein the machine-readable data is stored on each of said game cards using a radio frequency identification (RFID) tag, and said game card reader of said game host unit is a RFID reader.
  5. 5. The game-piece rendering system of claim 1, wherein in response to detection of touching of one of the virtual game pieces on said touchscreen display and subsequent touching of a desired position on said touchscreen display, said processor performs control to move said one of the virtual game pieces from an initial position to the desired position in the touchscreen display.
  6. 6. The game-piece rendering system of claim 1, wherein in response to detection of touching of one of the virtual game pieces on said touchscreen display and subsequent sliding of a finger of the user on said touchscreen display, said processor performs control such that said one of the virtual game pieces is caused to perform a predetermined action in a direction corresponding to that of sliding of the finger on said touchscreen display.
  7. 7. A game-piece rendering system, comprising:
    a plurality of game cards each storing predetermined machine-readable data; and
    a game host unit including
    a game card reader for reading the machine-readable data stored on said game cards,
    a processor coupled to said game card reader and executing a rendering program to generate a game screen based on the machine-readable data read by said game card reader, the game screen including a plurality of virtual game pieces corresponding respectively to said game cards read by said game card reader, and
    a display coupled to said process or and displaying the game screen;
    wherein said game card reader is one of an electromagnetism-based game card reader and a radio frequency-based game card reader.
  8. 8. The game-piece rendering system of claim 7, wherein said game card reader of said game host unit includes a plurality of insert slots for insertion of said game cards, respectively.
  9. 9. The game-piece rendering system of claim 7, wherein the machine-readable data is stored on each of said game cards using electrically conductive printing ink, and said game card reader of said game host unit is an electrically conductive printing ink reader.
  10. 10. The game-piece rendering system of claim 7, wherein the machine-readable data is stored on each of said game cards using a radio frequency identification (RFID) tag, and said game card reader of said game host unit is a RFID reader.
  11. 11. A game-piece rendering method, comprising:
    a) providing a plurality of game cards each storing predetermined machine-readable data, and a game host unit which includes a game card reader, a processor coupled to the game card reader, and a touchscreen display coupled to the processor;
    b) reading the machine-readable data stored on the game cards using the game card reader;
    c) generating a game screen using the processor based on the machine-readable data read by the game card reader, the game screen including a plurality of virtual game pieces corresponding respectively to the game cards read by the game card reader;
    d) displaying the game screen on the touchscreen display; and
    e) selecting and manipulating the virtual game pieces using the processor in response to a user touching the touchscreen display.
  12. 12. The game-piece rendering method of claim 11, wherein the game card reader of the game host unit includes a plurality of insert slots for insertion of the game cards, respectively.
  13. 13. The game-piece rendering method of claim 11, wherein the machine-readable data is stored on each of the game cards using electrically conductive printing ink, and the game card reader of the game host unit is an electrically conductive printing ink reader.
  14. 14. The game-piece rendering method of claim 11, wherein the machine-readable data is stored on each of the game cards using a radio frequency identification (RFID) tag, and the game card reader of the game host unit is a RFID reader.
  15. 15. The game-piece rendering method of claim 11, wherein, in step e), in response to detection of touching of one of the virtual game pieces on the touchscreen display and subsequent touching of a desired position on the touchscreen display, the processor performs control to move said one of the virtual game pieces from an initial position to the desired position in the touchscreen display.
  16. 16. The game-piece rendering method of claim 11, wherein, in step e), in response to detection of touching of one of the virtual game pieces on the touchscreen display and subsequent sliding of a finger of the user on the touchscreen display, the processor performs control such that said one of the virtual game pieces is caused to perform a predetermined action in a direction corresponding to that of sliding of the finger on the touchscreen display.
  17. 17. A game-piece rendering method, comprising:
    a) providing a plurality of game cards each storing predetermined machine-readable data, and a game host unit which includes a game card reader, a processor coupled to the game card reader, and a display coupled to the processor;
    b) reading the machine-readable data stored on the game cards using the game card reader;
    c) generating a game screen using the processor based on the machine-readable data read by the game card reader, the game screen including a plurality of virtual game pieces corresponding respectively to the game cards read by the game card reader; and
    d) displaying the game screen on the display;
    wherein the game card reader is one of an electromagnetism-based game card reader and a radio frequency-based game card reader.
  18. 18. The game-piece rendering method of claim 17, wherein the game card reader of the game host unit includes a plurality of insert slots for insertion of the game cards, respectively.
  19. 19. The game-piece rendering method of claim 17, wherein the machine-readable data is stored on each of the game cards using electrically conductive printing ink, and the game card reader of the game host unit is an electrically conductive printing ink reader.
  20. 20. The game-piece rendering method of claim 17, wherein the machine-readable data is stored on each of the game cards using a radio frequency identification (RFID) tag, and the game card reader of the game host unit is a RFID reader.
US12212953 2007-09-21 2008-09-18 System and method for rendering game pieces Abandoned US20090082106A1 (en)

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