For the record, I'm not opposed to game patents. Currently, they seem to be the only way that people who do what we do - invent game mechanics - can get the same sort of protection that authors get from copyrights. In fact, I'm more predisposed to them than software patents - with software, you can protect yourself with trade secrets *and* copyright. Game mechanics not so.
When a player instructs a movement of a player character from an input device, a control section obtains a position of the player character during a current frame period. The control section obtains a distance between the position of the player character during the current period and a position of a view point of a virtual camera during a previous frame period. If the obtained distance is less than a predetermined critical near distance, the control section moves the position of the view point away from the player character. If the obtained distance exceeds a critical far distance, the control section moves the position of the view point towards the player character. If the obtained distance is in the range between the critical near distance and the critical far distance, the control section does not move the position of the view point.
This was brought to you by Square in 2001. #7,170,508. Is it saying what I think it's saying? Surely there was prior art? I'd love to see them file suit with a company that could afford to fight back.
Yeah. Patent reform. All for it.