U.S. Patent No. 9,393,486: Character simulation and playback notification in game session replay

Issued July 17, 2016, to Amazon Technologies, Inc.
Priority June 27, 2014

U.S. Patent No. 9,393,486 (the ‘486 Patent) relates to U.S. Patent No. 9,409,083 (the ‘083 Patent) titled Spawning new timelines during game session replay, which we covered last week. The ‘083 Patent describes a method for allowing players to “step into” a replay and restart a session from that given point. The ‘486 Patent builds on the ‘083 Patent by describing a system to send out a notification to all players involved in the previous session. The notified players can either participate or spectate the session.

Not all players from a previous session are required to replay a previous session. The ‘486 Patent also describes a system to allow a person to replay a multiplayer session without needing the other players. The system creates a profile based on the behavior of a given player. If a single player wishes to replay a past multiplayer session, then AI bots will take over missing human players. AI will use the player’s profile to inform how the character should behave in a given circumstance.

A game system in which game sessions may be recorded and saved as game records. A previously recorded game session may be selected and replayed, and players may step into and assume control of respective game characters during the replay. When a player steps into and takes control of game a character during replay of a game session, a new timeline is spawned from the original timeline, and a new game record corresponding to the new timeline is generated and stored. Players that were involved in a previously recorded game session that is being replayed may be manually or automatically notified that the game session is being replayed. The notification may occur upon initiation of the replay and/or when a new timeline is spawned. Notified players may view the game session without participating, or may take control their respective characters to participate.

Illustrative Claim:
1. A system, comprising; one or more computing devices configured to implement a game system configured to: store a game record comprising a game session involving one or more game characters acting within a game universe, wherein the game characters are associated with one or more of a plurality of players; begin a playback of the game session as recorded in the stored game record to at least one client device; and for at least one of the one or more game characters involved in the game session being played back, send a notification to a player associated with the respective game character via one or more communications channels, said notification indicating to the player that the game session involving the player’s game character is being played back.