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U.S. Patent No. 7,704,146: Multiply interconnectable environmentally interactive character simulation module method and system
Issued April 27, 2010, to Mattel, Inc.


Summary:

The ‘146 patent describes a hand held game much like the Tamagotchi toys that were popular over the past ten years. The system described here involves two systems which can be electrically connected to each other. The first character has different traits than the second one. The two characters have their own screens (operated by different players), but when the two systems are connected both characters appear and interact on the same screen.

Abstract: 

The present invention relates to a game, including a first module having a housing, a processor, a display operably coupled to the processor and an electrical contact positioned such that access is available to the electrical contact of the first module through the first module housing, and a second module having a housing, a processor, a display operably coupled to the processor and an electrical contact positioned such that access is available to the electrical contact of the second module through the second module housing, the electrical contact of the second module configured to contact the electrical contact of the first module, allowing the processor of the first module to communicate with the processor of the second module. Wherein when the processor of the second module is in communication with the processor of the first module, the first module display and the second module display are configured to each display a portion of a the game, each such portion configured to not overlap each other such portion.

Illustrative Claim:

1. A game, comprising: a first module having a first electrical contact, a first processor and a first display, the processor configured to display a first character on the display, the character having a first set of traits; and a second module having a second electrical contact, a second processor and a second display, the processor configured to display a second character on the display, the character having a second set of traits; wherein the first electrical contact and second electrical contact are configured to electrically couple in two or more interconnection configurations, each interconnection configuration allowing the first and second processors to communicate, wherein the processor is programmed to display a first animation sequence if the first module and the second module are arranged in a first interconnection configuration, and wherein the processor is programmed to display a second animation sequence if the module and the second module are arranged in a second interconnection configuration, the second interconnection configuration being different from the first interconnection configuration, the second animation sequence being different from the second animation sequence.

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