Posts made in December, 2010

What Have We Learned From the Recession?

What Have We Learned From the Recession?

Some lessons are easy to learn because immediate consequences ensure they’re never repeated. Don’t touch a hot stove. Don’t eat spoiled pork. Don’t shove a cat in a doll’s pram. Other lessons don’t yield quick knowledge, which leads outsiders to wonder if the people involved learned anything at all. Perfect example: The sighing and head-shaking that goes on over politicians’ decisions. Another, more interesting example: The...

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Games Industry 2010: A Hard Look Back

Games Industry 2010: A Hard Look Back

2010 is staggering around and coughing up its lungs. It deserves its rest; it’s been a busy year. But now it’s time to let 2010 die on the cold ground while we look back and contemplate what the year taught the games industry. There’s little reward in supporting the Wii as a third-party developer, especially with “mature” games – This is so sad, but true. Third-party developers just can’t make profitable successes out of...

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The Top Games of 2011

The Top Games of 2011

The year’s end always feels a bit melancholy thanks to the post-Christmas crash and the seemingly endless white stretch of frozen months ahead. If you’ve got the winter blues though, cheer up! Turn your thoughts to the greatest of indoor pastimes: Video gaming. There are some great titles set for 2011. Hopefully this simple reminder will bring sunshine into your life. Or, if not, at least a few decent games to waste time with. The Legend of Zelda:...

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The Best Games of 2010

The Best Games of 2010

Tallying up a year’s “best games” is a good way to get eggs lobbed at your skull. With a few exceptions, nobody can ever agree on which titles should be immortalized in an end-of-the-year top 10 list. Regardless, it’s always fun to try. Here is a sampling of the best games we spent time with in 2010: With the holidays here, we highly recommend treating yourself by snuggling up and getting cozy with all. Red Dead Redemption (Xbox 360,...

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2010 and 2011′s Top Game Industry Trends

2010 and 2011′s Top Game Industry Trends

The video games industry did a lot of growing up through the Aughts and into 2010–though some might argue that a bit of de-evolution occurred as well this year. But perspective is everything, and all teenagers must go through growing pains in order to reach beyond that awkward, long-legged stage that precedes maturity. With that in mind, we’re going to look back at some notable industry trends that started or endured through 2011. Take it upon yourself...

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Who Will Buy Harmonix?

Who Will Buy Harmonix?

Poor Harmonix. The company was the (Guitar) hero of the latter half of the Aughts, and now it’s peering out at the world with wet puppy-dog eyes, begging for a buyer. Whereas it initially looked like Harmonix might go home with EA, that’s become an unlikely scenario: In an interview with Bloomberg last month, Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello said that buying Harmonix would make it appear as if EA is “doubling down on yesterday,” and...

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Why Another Crash Isn’t Coming – Yet

Why Another Crash Isn’t Coming – Yet

Well, the video games industry managed to pull through another year. Whereas self-proclaimed prophets in the real world like to yell about life coming to an end tomorrow (“No, I meant next week–no, next month–all right, next year”), the games community likes to buzz about the inevitable coming of the next video game crash. What seems less certain is when it will happen, and what exactly will cause it, so it stands to reason it probably...

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How Well Are Developers Adapting to DLC?

How Well Are Developers Adapting to DLC?

The future often seems uncertain, frightening, difficult to adapt to. And sometimes, it throws us a bone and offers something that really does appear to benefit everyone. Downloadable game content (DLC), for instance, is a huge boon to developers and gamers alike. Gamers have access to cheap, often innovative games that developers wouldn’t be able to experiment with at regular retail; indie studios can distribute games with minimal cost; and big studios can...

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How to Fix Video Game Award Shows

How to Fix Video Game Award Shows

Whenever we play a video game we enjoy, we also experience an impulse to check around and see if others enjoyed it as well. Hence message board discussions–and arguments, the thorough study of reviews, and so on. And then there are award shows: The ultimate pedestal for a game and our egos. Sure, we’re secure about our fine taste in games, but there’s a deep down satisfaction in watching a game we love receive an award. It’s as if...

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Video Games: Misusing the Word ‘Addiction’

Video Games: Misusing the Word ‘Addiction’

Discussions on the existence (or non-existence) of game addiction always cause a stir. The media does have a tendency to use the term “addiction” before giving its definition a good read-over in their Oxfords. As once pointed out by industry veteran Ernest W. Adams, addictions usually pertain to vices with notable, often severe withdrawal symptoms: Heroin addiction, for instance, or alcoholism. Games, says Adams, can be psychologically compelling, but...

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