Tencent Patent Could Let People Inherit In-Game Items

As the world moves closer and closer to becoming almost completely digitalized, Chinese gaming giant Tencent has issued a patent on digital legacy. The patent would allow people to pass on their digital assets to the next generation when they die.

As the overall age of the gaming and online community ages, and with the potential for monetary values that could be put to their online possessions in the form of long-time account sales and NFTs, more companies seem to be thinking of adding legacy clauses for customers to be able to pass on their digital assets just as they would with physical assets through a will.

Last month, at WWDC21, Apple announced a new Digital Legacy program called Apple iOS15.

After a user has added an estate contact to the account, in the event of the user’s death, the digital estate contact can access the user’s digital assets and transmit the relevant content through an iCloud account.

Tencent is one of the first companies to begin the process of passing digital assets onto the next generation with a patent. This patent will allow for direct transfers of digital legacy accounts from the deceased to the beneficiary upon the death of the owner. This would include accounts and in-game items from Tencent’s growing number of games, now including a stake in GTFO devs 10 Chambers.

This new Tencent patent was not accompanied by a plan of how to roll out these new asset inheritance plans. The public number of the patent is CN110245940B. It states that the new technology would supply “information processing methods, and related devices in the inheritance and transfer of digital asset certificates.” It would require users to upload their wills and name beneficiaries for their digital items in some sort of app or perhaps in the game itself.

While not fully related to video games, it has sparked discussions online about game accounts / virtual item inheritance.

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