Bungie has filed a trademark for something called “Matter.” The trademark filing is in the European Union, and is licenses for goods and services. In particular “computer game software” and “entertainment services.” The Destiny developer signed a $100 million deal with Chinese company NetEase which hinted at new games from Bungie in the future. The Bungie Matter trademark could be that new IP.
The European trademark was filed today as a “figurative mark”. These marks are used for when non-standard characters, stylization, layout, and graphics. The trademark image is shown above, and seems to be the logo for “Matter.” The application is currently under review, and there are no trademarks filed by Bungie for “Matter” in the United States. There are also no “Matter” trademarks from NetEase in the U.S., which could imply Bungie owns whatever this trademark is for.
When NetEase announced their investment in Bungie they mentioned “new worlds to come.” It seems likely that “Matter” is the beginning of that partnership. NetEase also owns a minority stake in the studio, and it are looking to expand Bungie significantly to take on this endeavor. The Bungie Matter trademark is almost assuredly unrelated to the cancelled Xbox 360 title of the same name.
Bungie is well known for creating expansive, epic sci-fi worlds for players to explore and inhabit. The developer’s Marathon series in the 1990s were successful Mac first-person shooters. That sci-fi franchise bowed out for a few years until Halo took over in 2001. Destiny and Destiny 2 are the most recent games from the developer. Matter will likely follow suit and be a sci-fi themed first-person shooter.
Bungie signed a 10-year contract with Activision in 2010. That contract has brought us Destiny and Destiny 2 along with their myriad expansions in between. Bungie remained independent, and maintained the rights to Destiny. The developer did this after splitting from Microsoft in 2007. Microsoft maintained ownership of the Halo IP, and Bungie was contracted to release several more games before being able to go truly independent.
Bungie’s 2010 deal with Activision came to fruition in 2014, over four years after the announcement. Now, Bungie is mostly through that deal and Activision has been bringing in other studios to continue work on Destiny 2 expansions. Activision’s Vicarious Visions and High Moon Studios both helped develop Destiny 2 and its live content.