Nintendo would try to patent some of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom’s mechanics and design elements. Some of these are very specific elements of the game, such as using the Ultraman ability that allows us to build different structures and vehicles through objects and elements of the environment; others are more comprehensive, such as using the loading screens to show us the map.
As reported by the Automaton mediaspecializing in the Japanese video game industry, Nintendo filed 31 applications with the Japan Patent Office between July 10th and August 4th related to Tears of the Kingdom.
Some of the patents have to do with the game’s physics, such as the way Link interacts with moving objects, such as a vehicle. It’s not as if The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is the only game to use this type of calculation, but the Nintendo title has a very special way of handling it. In a few words and to put it in a slightly simplified way: What happens in the game is that the objects have their own physics of movement, and this also applies to Link. When Link comes into contact with a moving object, his physics will match those of the object itself. The calculations of, for example, the pull force or the inclination of Link become those of this object. Automaton explains that while this isn’t the way games approach this relationship, it’s also difficult to say if Nintendo was the first company to come up with this idea.
Others of this have to do with more specific elements, such as using the Ultramano or Fusion ability, or the abilities of certain supporting characters.
Of all the mechanisms that Nintendo wants to patent, perhaps the most peculiar are the loading screens that appear when we die or fast travel, given their broad concept that show us a small part of the map. Nintendo describes it as “a game processing tool that can enrich gameplay presentation during a wait where at least some processing is suspended.” which meant that they could not be used in any video game unrelated to the company until 2015.