Jade Empire Trademark Was Just Filed by EA - What Does It Mean?

Jade Empire

EA just filed a trademark for Jade Empire, a 2005 kung fu RPG. Set in a fantasy world based on Ancient China, Jade Empire drew inspiration from Chinese folklore, famous wuxia novels and kung fu films from the 1970s and 1980s.

Developed by BioWare and published by Microsoft Game Studios, Jade Empire originally launched as an Xbox exclusive, but in 2007 was ported to the PC, the platform where BioWare's RPGs had found the most success. The game was released on Android and iOS in 2016. In Jade Empire, players controlled a character called a "Spirit Monk" who could learn various martial arts styles and techniques as the story progressed. The Spirit Monk could battle opponents using hand-to-hand fighting styles, or by utilizing various weapons from Chinese culture and magic.

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It's been reported that EA (hat tip Destructoid), who acquired BioWare in 2007, has filed a trademark for Jade Empire, though it's not yet clear why. The trademark could mean that EA is either planning a sequel or a remastered edition. As a fan-favorite BioWare RPG, there's been plenty of demand for Jade Empire to make a comeback, so a remastered or enhanced edition would certainly make sense, particularly when considering the huge success that other remastered titles have received in recent years, including Crash Bandicoot: N. Sane Trilogy, Spyro Reignited Trilogy, and more.

Jade Empire

A sequel, on the other hand, would of course be the most exciting option. BioWare currently has their hands full with Anthem, and is expected to move on to the recently-announced fourth Dragon Age installment next. However, Dragon Age 4 is still years away, and isn't necessarily BioWare's next project. It's possible that Jade Empire 2 will come before Dragon Age 4.

Jade Empire has a lot in common with BioWare's other popular titles, such as the Baldur's Gate, Neverwinter Nights, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Dragon Age, and Mass Effect franchises. They all followed a formula which focused on the protagonist making important, moral decisions that could change the direction of the game, while being joined by a colorful cast of characters who react to the player's actions. The main difference between Jade Empire and these other games is that Jade Empire never spawned a franchise. Despite all the praise that was heaped on it by critics, it never received a sequel. Though it's been nearly 15 years since the game's release, a Jade Empire 2 may finally be a real possibility.

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Source: JUSTIA Trademarks [via Destructoid]

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