North American Tiddlywinks Association

NATwA founded • 27 February 1966

Tiddlywinks Patents • How to Research

  • European Patent Office’s, with over 130 million patents from many countries around the world
  • US Patent and Trademark Office
    • Search for tiddlywinks patents at the PTO search site, and:
    • enter “ccl/273/353” to find items in the tiddlywinks classification
      • or “title/tiddl*” to find the name in the patent title
      • or “abst/tiddl*” to find it in the patent abstract
  • Google’s Patent Search with full-text search of all US patents
  • Great Britain’s The Patent Office
  • Canada’s Patent Database

Tiddlywinks Patents • United States

U.S. Patent Classification Schemes

U.S. Patents are categorized using a classification scheme. In 2013, the U.S. in conjunction with the European Patent Office adopted the Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) system as the primary taxonomy for classifying patents. The CPC was based on the existing International Patent Classification (IPC) scheme and others. The IPC scheme is less granular than the CPC scheme. Many patents are identified with both CPC and IPC classifications.

In the CPC system, tiddlywinks games are generally classified under the following major class of utility patents, although they can also be found under other classes, such as sports simulations:

  •  CPC A63: Sports; Games; Amusements
    • CPC A63F: Card, Board, or Roulette Games; Indoor Games Using Small Moving Bodies; Video Games; Games not otherwise provided for

To be precise: for “A63F 2009/0295”, the “A” is the CPC section, “63” is the class, “F” is the subclass, and “2009/0295” the group and subgroup. The full classification, “A63F 2009/0295” in this case, is called a CPC symbol.

Each patent is assigned one or more primary CPCs symbols and sometimes additional symbols for cross-reference purposes. The collection of all CPC symbols assigned to a patent is called a combination set.

In the prior U.S. Patent Classification (USPC) scheme, games were generally classified under the following major classes of utility patents:

  • Class 273:  Amusement Devices: Games (manual)
    • Subclass 317
      Aerial Projectile Game, Game Element (e.g., target, etc.) or Accessory Therefore Other Than Projector or Projectile, per se
    • Subclass 348
      . Target
    • Subclass 353
      .. Tiddlywink game

Before 19 February 1980, the following unofficial subclass was used under class 273 prior to the adoption of subclass 353:

  • Subclass 95E
    Aerial Projectile, “Tiddly-Wink”

The U.S. also issues design patents to protect the unique appearance of an item. Games generally fall within the following design patent class:

Games may also be found in other classes and subclasses, or cross-indexed with multiple classifications.

U.S. Patent Resources Online

  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Presentation on Patents and Patent Searching at 2022 AGPI convention by patent examiners David Duffy and Julie Brocketti on 13 May.
  • Google Patent Search. Search the text of all US patents since 1790, and retrieve matching patent images.
  • U.S. patents.  All U.S. patents are online at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.  However, only images are available for most patents from 1790 to 1975.  Patent images are provided in .PDF format.  Searching of the patent text is available for patents since 1975. Searches before 1975 can only be performed on Issue Date, Patent Number, and Current Classification.
  • Free Patents Online includes PDFs of all U.S. patents, and recent European patents.

U.K. Patent Resources Online

Worldwide Patent Resources Online

  • The European Patent Office‘s Espacenet contains patents for over 130 million patents worldwide (including the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada), including complete coverage for some countries. Text in all patents can be searched (though many early ones only have text produced through optical character recognition which isn’t always accurate). In addition, the text in patents can be translated to a variety of languages. Cross-references are provided for the same or quite similar patent granted in multiple countries.

Tiddlywinks Patents • United Kingdom

Note that early UK patent numbers started anew each year, and the numbers are associated with the year of first application, not with the year of registration. Filing dates are usually those of the provisional specifications.

Fincher's non-Tiddlywinks Patents (UK)

Tiddlywinks Patents • United States

The international patent classification for tiddlywinks is A63F 2009/0295.

The legacy US classification:



subclass 348 . Target

subclass 353 .. Tiddlywink game

Before 19 Feb 1980, the following unofficial subclass was used:

subclass 95E Aerial Projectile, “Tiddly-Wink”

Note that each US patent number given below was awarded upon the patent’s registration. OG page is the page in the Official Gazette of the US Patent and Trademark Office, in which a brief summary of patent claims is printed.

Tiddlywinks Patent Applications • United States

US 2005/0017447 A1

subclass • 273/236

date filed • 27 Jan 2003 

application published • 27 Jan 2005

by • David Michael Geshwind

for • “Methods, tiles and boards for playing games that schematize competitive yet …”

  •  Page 7: If one color, pieces can comprise inexpensive reversible tokens like wooden checkers or plastic tiddlywinks;
  • Page 15: These may consist of tiddlywinks, checkers, coins (pennies and dimes), ‘go’ stones, or any other available tokens.

US 2007/0216102 A1

subclass • 273/317

date filed • 31 May 2006

application published • 20 Sep 2007

by • Kimberley Matilla, Andrea Ehret

assignee • Mattel, Inc.

for • “Board Games with Projectiles and Methods of Playing Same”

US 2008/0141282 A1 

subclass • 719/318

date filed • 12 Feb 2008

application published • 12 Jun 2008

by • Gershon Elber, Orit Shaked, Oded Shmueli

for • “Control of Interactions within Virtual Environments”

  • Page 6: Thus for example, a counter restricted to two dimensional space may be used for Snakes-and-Ladders or Ludo, or alternatively be assigned three dimensional mobility, and allowed to move in 3 dimensions and then used for tiddlywinks.

US 2010/0208942 A1

subclass • 382/106

date filed • 8 Dec 2009

application published • 19 Aug 2010

by • Robert Mark Stefan Porter and Clive Henry Gillard

for • “Image Processing Device and Method”

  • Page 11: [0129] However, over distances of tens of meters, which are typically involved when filing sports on sports pitches, such 3D camera systems may lack the depth resolution needed to be able to generate an offset amount for each pixel corresponding to a detected object within a captured image so as to present an effective three-dimensional appearance to a user. Therefore, the embodiments described above in which the offset amount is generated in dependence upon distance data in the depth map data are more applicable to situations in which relevant objects within a scene are within a few metres of the camera. In the context of sports footage, such sports may be boxing, snooker, table tennis, tiddlywinks, gymnastics, fencing and the like, although it will be appreciated that, subject to sufficient depth resolution, other events or scenes could also be captured.

Tiddlywinks Citations in Other Patents • United States

Tiddlywinks Design Patents • United States

Tiddlywinks Citations in Other Design Patents • United States

The design patents listed in this section include those for games similar to tiddlywinks, e.g. catapult games using discs, and those that are not for games
but use the term “tiddlywinks” to describe an effect or action.

Tiddlywinks Patents • Austria

Tiddlywinks Patents • Belgium

Tiddlywinks Patents • Canada

Tiddlywinks Patents • Europe

Tiddlywinks Patents • France

Tiddlywinks Patents • Germany

Tiddlywinks Patents • Guatemala

Tiddlywinks Patents • Japan

Tiddlywinks Patents • Netherlands

Tiddlywinks Patents • South Africa

Tiddlywinks Patents • World Intellectual Property Organization (United Nations)