Nintendo may be on the verge of releasing a Classic edition of its iconic Game Boy, a new trademark filing suggests.
The Japanese video game company filed a trademark in its home country on Sept. 15, which included an image of the original 1989 Game Boy. The filing flew under the radar until recently, when Japanese news sites first spotted the application. You can see the patent below, via a Japanese trademark Twitter bot.
It’s worth noting that the trademark application doesn’t specifically use the “Game Boy” name as part of its filing, as Kotaku points out, but the image of the classic handheld system is hard to mistake for literally anything else. The filing does cover a variety of “home video game console” programs, “programs for smartphones,” and various clothing and accessory items such as watches, necklaces, smartphone covers and cases, and key holders.
— 商標速報bot (@trademark_bot) October 6, 2017
The Game Boy isn’t the only iconic Nintendo system that has been trademarked in recent months, either. In July, the company filed a similar trademark application that included an image of the Nintendo 64 controller.
As for why the company is filing these patents, Nintendo could just be attempting to prevent third-party companies from using the likeness of the Game Boy or the Nintendo 64 for non-affiliated products. But the possibility that’s obviously more exciting is that Nintendo is on the verge of releasing a Game Boy Classic Edition, or even a Nintendo 64 Classic Edition console.
The Japanese game company had success with its recent NES Classic Edition and Classic SNES Mini systems, and while the Game Boy form factor isn’t exactly ideal for miniaturization, a Classic Edition of its iconic handheld seems like the next logical step. That move seems even more likely as the 30th anniversary of the first Game Boy will happen in 2019.
To add further fire to these rumors, in a recent interview with Business Insider, Nintendo SVP Doug Bowser said that the Classic Edition series is “clearly” part of Nintendo’s strategy. “We’ve seen the power of retro games and the affinity towards them … so it’s a part of the plan.”
Additionally, the trademark listing can be viewed on the Japan Platform for Patent Information website.