Posts made in July, 2010

The Ultimate Guide to 3D Gaming

The Ultimate Guide to 3D Gaming

While many media outlets have focused on 3D gaming as one of today’s hottest video game trends, few have taken the time to compile a solid guide to 3D gaming technology, and the options that systems like the PC, PlayStation 3, Wii and Xbox 360 currently offer players interested in making the upgrade – not to mention associated costs. Thankfully, this handy tip sheet, simply called 3-D Video Games and put together by IEEE Spectrum (a publication issued...

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What StarCraft II Means to PC Gaming

What StarCraft II Means to PC Gaming

OK, so maybe PC gaming isn’t dead, dying or even on a downswing, with Facebook titles, free to play online Web browser outings and digital game downloads all actually helping broaden computer games’ reach further and boost profitability levels higher than the industry has ever seen. But with social network games and casual games grabbing the majority of the headlines and profits lately, many consider Blizzard’s newly launched sci-fi real-time...

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Reinventing an Entire Industry

Reinventing an Entire Industry

The irony of discussing and debating issues of relevance to gaming these days is that there is no one single “video game industry” to speak of; you’re actually talking about dozens of individual and equally diverse businesses. Likewise, endlessly opining about when retail software revenues will cease slumping is all but irrelevant, as outside of specific tentpole AAA releases, the field’s mot promising growth areas (social, mobile, free-to-play, etc.)...

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Retail Prices Need to Go Up

Retail Prices Need to Go Up

After pouring 10 hours of gameplay into this summer’s most overlooked title, Deathspank , I realized that I only spent about $1.50 per hour of entertainment, an incredible bargain, and likely the cheapest form of leisure activity that I’ve spent time with all year. It got me thinking, however: When compared to other forms of entertainment that I indulge myself in, are video games among the cheapest? I’ve participated in several activities over the last few...

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Has GameStop Gone Mad?

Has GameStop Gone Mad?

Game publishers and game retailers have, at best, an uneasy relationship – so what happens when one becomes the other? It’s a growing question that should make for some interesting times in the years ahead. Valve Software kicked off the hybrid developer/distributor model in 2003 with Steam, and it wasn’t long before Electronic Arts and Activision followed suit with their own online stores, giving them more control of (and higher margins from) the sale of...

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Publisher’s Letter: Welcome to the Next Level

Publisher’s Letter: Welcome to the Next Level

They tell me that you have a short attention span. They say that you’re shallow, narcissistic… a sucker for a pretty face. Some even swear that you’re content to be spoon-fed. All this and more, we heard on the long, hard road to launch. Luckily, per usual (just ask the wife), we were too stubborn to dial it back. Hey, change is good, right? But nobody knows better than today’s video game enthusiast. So ask yourself – why do so many still insist on...

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Social Gaming is in Serious Trouble

Social Gaming is in Serious Trouble

Magic Mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest one of all? In the world of social gaming, it might be getting easier to tell. New social games lacking a growing virtual goods economy and unable to easily exceed 100,000 daily players (DAU) on Facebook shouldn’t expect to generate much revenue and will likely struggle to recoup their development costs. Despite the rising popularity of social games, only 17 new games released in the first half of 2010 have...

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Game Journalism: We Can Do Better

Game Journalism: We Can Do Better

Like Bruce Banner transforming into Hulk as he witnesses an injustice, I can no longer sit idly by as video game news languishes in the quicksand of immaturity. But before I launch into my tirade, allow me to reflect. I first started reviewing video games for the Vancouver bureau of CTV in 1998. Since then, I’ve spent time discussing or reviewing or reporting on video games for CNN, HLN, CBS News, the Vancouver Sun and even served as “guest editor” for an...

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Virtual Villagers Arrives on Facebook

Virtual Villagers Arrives on Facebook

Last Day of Work and 3 Blokes Studios have announced the launch of Virtual Villagers on Facebook. Fans of little villagers of Isola rejoice! The game promises to bring the island world of Isola with its “island events,” explorations and discoveries to Facebook with an added democratic twist. Players will actually be able to join together and vote on important matters (“Archipelago Events”) which will have an impact on the persistent game world for...

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Are Apps the Future of Garage Development?

Are Apps the Future of Garage Development?

Apple’s iPhone and iPad App Store has been the source of countless get rich quick stories. But for every game developer that’s made a viable business out of selling games to smartphone owners, hundreds will tell you that their plans went terribly awry. Still, the influence of apps seems only to be growing for today’s independent garage developer – or is it? To get to the bottom of the story, we asked Bjorn Larsson, head of Spooky Spirits:...

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