Filed Nintendo Patent Deals With Deformation With Expected Use In the Next Zelda Title

Recently another patent has popped up again form Nintendo. Filed on February 11th, 2021, by Takuhiro Dohta, the technical director of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, this patent aims to prevent textures from bleeding through into a separate model. The process Nintendo describes as “Deformation.” Having items such as clothes, armor, pants, and hats that do not cross into the character model is a small detail that I have come to appreciate from Nintendo.

As showcased in figure 6 diagram, we see two models. CH1 shows the model with tighter lines indicating a tighter mesh around the figure, while CH2 has an expanded dotted line to indicate more of a looser fit around the model. Deformation seems to be just a whole separate layer that forms around the model without encroaching its boundaries. It reminds me of layers in such programs as Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator, where each layer is on its own plane of existence in 2D, but you can create and manipulate each piece independently from each other. This being used in a 3D space will provide better looking models, which in the end is more aesthetically pleasing o the players. Though this also may fix issues with programming that the game developers may have been experiencing or its an easier way to program swappable equipment.  

What games will use this patent in the future? Do you think Nintendo needs to patent this type of application? How critical will this detail be in games such as the sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild? Let us know your thoughts on this patent and check out other recent patents such as new controller and mini-maps.

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