Sony Patents “Interactive TV,” Bad Movies Become Fun Again


Sony Computer Entertainment America filed a patent for a program to overlay avatars upon a tv show or movie, opening doors for the Mystery Science Theater 3000 game for which we’ve all been clamoring.

In a patent filed recently, SCEA describes a program designed to place players’ avatars in the corner of a movie or tv show. It’s unclear where the avatars come from, if they are native to this program or if Sony will institute a Mii or XBLA-type avatar system. Several minigames are listed for players to participate in using these avatars, from tossing tomatoes to literally kicking the actor’s ass. From the patent documents:

“For example, avatars displayed to a user, in response to user gestures in the real world, e.g. in response to manipulation of a game controller or other such expedient, may toss tomatoes that stick to the actor’s face or bounce off the actor’s face and roll along a table that appears in the movie or television show.”

The player, or viewer I suppose, would then receive points based on their performance. Sony hints at getting more points for hitting lead actors with tomatoes as opposed to just bit players.

The minigames seem a bit juvenile, but, then again, so is Mystery Science Theater 3000, which the patent lists as inspiration. While the game described above might be enjoyable to some, I’d personally rather just watch the movie without all of the hullabaloo.

There is one caveat though. If Sony figures out a way to let you comment on the action as if you were sitting with Mike, Crow and Servo, then I’m all for it. It would be hard for an algorithm to award points on funny-ness, but a voting system could be implemented so that each player could rate comments on a scale of “Yes, that was funny” or “No dude, stop.” Suddenly, all those crappy Uwe Boll movies might actually be fun to watch.

via Siliconera

About the author