Following up from our original post, it seems like the potential return of fighting game franchise Killer Instinct may have hit a snag.
Microsoft’s bid to renew the trademark for the name conflicts with a copyright owned by Fox Television Studios. The only official word on what this refers to is “entertainment services in the nature of a television series featuring drama”. This almost certainly is in regards to the short-lived Fox show Killer Instinct that aired in 2005. No, I never heard of it either.
The patent office that denied Microsoft’s application concluded with the following.
“Upon encountering Killer Instinct for ‘video game software’ and ‘entertainment services, namely, providing online video games’ and Killer Instinct for ‘entertainment services in the nature of a television series featuring drama’, consumers are likely to be confused and mistakenly believe that the respective goods and services emanate from a common source.”
Although this doesn’t outright stop whatever Microsoft has planned (if anything) for the franchise, it seems that there will be a few legal hoops to jump through if there is to be a return of Killer Instinct.