Posts made in May, 2011

Should Japan Be Blocking the PSN’s Return?

Should Japan Be Blocking the PSN’s Return?

After nearly a month of downtime, the PlayStation Network has returned. It doesn’t seem real; it’s as if we’ll open our eyes and be whisked out of Narnia, or we’ll go online and the whole network will shatter again. It’s not an illusion, though: The PlayStation Network exists on the fleshly plane once more. You may touch it. Unless you live in Japan. The PlayStation Network remains down in Sony’s homeland until Sony discloses...

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How the Game Industry is Changing

How the Game Industry is Changing

The past few years have been pretty rough for the games industry, but no one can say they’ve been boring. Anyone who’s familiar with gaming’s history might lean back and declare that this is the biggest shift the pastime has undergone since the North American market resurrected with the Nintendo Entertainment System, and for the most part, they’re right. Over at GamesIndustry.biz, Rob Fahey wrote two columns, “Rock and a Hard...

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Protecting Your Games From Online Fraud

Protecting Your Games From Online Fraud

Life delivers few experiences as stomach-dropping as the sudden realization that someone has gone on a bender with your stolen credit card information. Even though it’s wonderful to be a gamer in an era where scoring great games is as simple as selecting them from an online menu, the trade-off is a civilization wherein a determined hacker can walk away with your information for the sake of financial gain. Identity theft and money-making scams are as old as...

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Is the Game Industry Recovering from the Recession?

Is the Game Industry Recovering from the Recession?

Another big video game publisher is prophesying huge profit losses for the fiscal year ending in March 2011, news that’s now on the same level as “the sun rose today.” This time, Square-Enix is in trouble. The company behind the Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest franchises projects a loss of ¥12 billion or $148.2 million USD for the previous fiscal year, a significant tumble from the fiscal year ending in March 2010. The worst of the 2008 recession...

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Sony at Risk of a PSN Developer Exodus?

Sony at Risk of a PSN Developer Exodus?

The PlayStation Network is on the mend, and Sony has free games in store for users who have been burned by the month-long downtime and theft of personal info. Players are happy enough to get back to “work,” but studios that depend on the PSN for their daily bread aren’t about to be pacified by a pat on the back and a copy of LittleBigPlanet. For instance, games that were supposed to be released in the window of the PSN’s downtime tripped...

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What Single-Player Plus Means for Gamers

What Single-Player Plus Means for Gamers

Those of us who enjoy gaming in dark solitude got a bit of a scare earlier this month when Valve insinuated that Portal 2 might be the last completely single-player experience that the studio will develop. Valve’s dad, Gabe Newell, assured fans through an interview that Valve is by no means abandoning the single-player experience. Instead, Valve will simply be focusing its energies on games that are “single-player plus.” “Single-player is...

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Video Game Violence: A History and Education

Video Game Violence: A History and Education

Gaming is slowly gaining recognition in the mainstream as a pastime that’s healthy and beneficial as long as it’s done in moderation. However, there are still some tough stereotypes to overcome. If you try and talk to certain parents about possibly buying their offspring a game console, there’s a chance said parent will clap their hands over their child’s ears and drag them away, mumbling something about the evils of video game...

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Annualized Video Game Franchises: Bad Idea?

Annualized Video Game Franchises: Bad Idea?

It’s strange to think that two video game franchises based on war are being maneuvered like actual soldiers by the companies that publish them. Activision and EA are circling each other, each one seeking to outdo the other’s war games. Their next big bout is already written in the stars: EA is counting on Battlefield 3 to out-do Activision’s gargantuan hit, Call of Duty: Black Ops, this fall. If Battlefield 3 does indeed fill Call of Duty with...

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Can iOS MMOs Make it Big?

Can iOS MMOs Make it Big?

With the mobile game scene thriving, it’s not a surprise to learn that big publishers want to get serious about bringing the massively multiplayer online (MMO) experience from the PC to iOS devices like iPhones and iPads. Jeremy Gaffney, the CEO and executive producer of NCsoft West, has several notable MMOs under his belt, including City of Heroes and Dungeons & Dragons Online. He told GamesIndustry.Biz in an interview that the time is ripe for MMOs to...

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Can In-Game Video Advertising Work in Downloadable Games?

Can In-Game Video Advertising Work in Downloadable Games?

On July 1, “Facebook Credits” will become the mandatory currency for microtransactions in Facebook games. Facebook obviously wants its game-crazy userbase to understand the new order of things, and it has begun spreading the word through in-game advertisements. Most of the Internet’s populace doesn’t grant a second look at online advertisements, as you can only be bombarded with so many offers for “a b1gger p3n15” so many times...

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