Attention matters on Registration of Game Trademark in China

With the development of Internet, the video game once again gains the popularity. For instance, the well known “Angry Bird” has enjoyed a global download volume of more than 500 million times, and the name of it has been widely known as a brand. Therefore, more and more game companies choose to register the game name as trademarks in order to protect their brands. And the followings are the tips from Bridge IP Law Commentary in trademark registration:

I. What kind of game names can be registered as trademarks? 

According to China Trademark Law, only the “distinctive” logo can be registered as the trademark. It is also provided that the logo similar to the national flag, national emblem or is detrimental to socialist morals or customs cannot be registered as trademarks. While in the field of game, there have been widely adopted the words of violence or lack of distinctiveness in the game names, such as “war machine”, “Diablo”, “PE soccer”. Therefore, the game company should pay attention to the choice of the name of the game, and to avoid the registration failure for the inconformity of the legal standard.

In addition, a skill may help to avert the abovementioned risks, that the company shall register the game name and logo together and separately so as to avoid the registration failure due to the “noncompliance” in the name or logo.

II. The classes related to the game name regisrtation.   

It’s legally demanded to choose the registration classes by the Trademark Classification for the trademark registration in both China and abroad. And the game company should pay attention to the range to be registered, and the most common classes include the Class 9 of the PC software and Class 41 of the online game (by the way, there’s no specific class for the smart phone for it is deemed as the computer in essence). In addition, the game developer shall also pay attention to other classes for the game peripheral products for the fully registration at the first time, and the classes mainly include Class 25 of the clothing, Class 28 of toys and Class 14 of ornaments, thus the trademark squatting could be effectively prevented.

Of course, it’s most insured to register in all the 45 classes, though it may cost more registration fees, it’s a good bargain compared with the development expense of big amount and any possible legal obstacles in the future.

Author: Mr. Luo Yanjie
Attorney-at-law of DeBund Law Offices
Co-author: Mr. You Yunting
Founder & Editor-in-Chief of Bridge IP Law Commentary
Partner & Attorney-at-law of Shanghai DeBund Law Offices
Email:, Tel: 8621-5213-4900,
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Bridge IP Law Commentary is a website focus on the introduction of commercial laws in China, especially the intellectual property laws. All the posts here are our original works. And all news or cases referred here are from public reports, and our comments or analysis are of due diligence, neutrality and impartiality, representing our own opinions only and are our original works. You may contact us shall you have any opinions or suggestions.

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