Sony has renewed its Psygnosis trademark in North America.
As spotted by business analyst Roberto Serrano, the Psygnosis name was renewed in December 2021, despite the fact the brand hasn’t been used since 2000.
However, further examination of the trademark’s filing history suggests this may be a straightforward renewal to prevent others from using the Psygnosis name and classic owl logo in North America.
As such, it’s not necessarily indicative that Sony has plans to resurrect the Psygnosis name, despite its acquisition of ‘successor’ studio Firesprite a few months before the renewal.
According to its filing history, an application to register the Psygnosis trademark in North America was made in 1997 and it was officially registered on July 10, 2001 (it had already been registered in the UK before this date).
Trademarks last for 10 years in North America, and a renewal application was sent by Sony on July 7, 2011, despite the fact that the Psygnosis brand had been dropped in 2000 and replaced with SCE Studio Liverpool.
A further 10 years later, on July 7, 2021, Sony sent another renewal application, which was accepted on December 1, protecting the brand until 2031.
This suggests the renewal is a standard procedure to protect the Psygnosis trademark and prevent anyone else from using it.
Psygnosis was founded in 1984 and quickly became renowned for its high-quality home computer and console games, including such series as Lemmings and Shadow of the Beast.
The studio was acquired by Sony in 1993 and was responsible for some of the PlayStation‘s early success stories including Wipeout, Destruction Derby and the Formula 1 series.
In 2000 it was renamed to SCE Studio Liverpool, which was then closed down in 2012. This led to a handful of spin-off studios from former employees, including Firesprite, which was then acquired by Sony in 2021.
Firesprite is now co-developing the upcoming Horizon Call of the Mountain for PlayStation VR 2 along with Guerrilla Games. VGC also understands that it’s working on an upcoming reboot of the Twisted Metal series.