(Of Corgis & Cocktails)

The Competition Is As Fake As The Blood: Why New Video Games Are Always The Same Price

Video games have gotten ridiculously predictable. Not in stories, writing, or mechanics (although sometimes those, too) but in release, pricing, and distribution. When it comes to the big-budget blockbuster console-ready games, by now pretty much every player can recite the pricing timetable by heart. [More]

Xbox Live Marketplace Card Already Used, Even Though It Was Opened Only Moments Ago

Xbox Live Marketplace Card Already Used, Even Though It Was Opened Only Moments Ago

Tyler says that on four different occasions now, the Xbox Live points and subscription cards he’s bought have been invalid when he redeems them. He had a friend at Gamestop help him out with the invalid subscription card, but he’s stuck with useless paper when it comes to the points cards. [More]

Blockbuster Chases GameFly, Offers Game Rentals By Mail

Blockbuster Chases GameFly, Offers Game Rentals By Mail

Yesterday we noted that Blockbuster was launching a new DVD-by-mail rental service (which Netflix promptly one-upped by announcing a new streaming agreement), and today we’re getting tips from people that the beleaguered brick and mortar movie rental company is throwing games into the offer as well. FastCompany notes that GameFly offers around 7,000 game titles compared to Blockbuster’s library of 3,000 titles. On the other hand, Blockbuster’s rental plans start at $9/mo compared to GameFly’s $16/mo (both for one disc at a time). [More]

GameStop Buys Pre-Owned Website Kongregate

GameStop Buys Pre-Owned Website Kongregate

If you play games on the website Kongregate–its founders say 10 million players stop by every month–then congratulations, you’re about to become GameStop’s new BFF. There’s no word yet on how this will affect the Kongregate community; the site lets people play online games for free, and GameStop says that the its founders will continue to run things for now. If we start seeing offers to pre-order an upcoming online free game, I guess we’ll know the takeover is complete. [More]

Awesome Game Offer Removes All Incentives For Piracy, Gets Pirated Anyway

Awesome Game Offer Removes All Incentives For Piracy, Gets Pirated Anyway

Wolfire Games is running a special sale called the Humble Bundle, where you can pay as little as one penny via PayPal, Google Checkout, or Amazon, for five cross-platform indie games that are completely free of DRM or even serial numbers. Despite that, says the company, it looks like over 25% of downloads are coming from “shared links from forums and other places without actually contributing anything.” That’s not counting anything happening over BitTorrent. [More]

Sony Takes Away PS3's Ability To Use Linux

Sony Takes Away PS3's Ability To Use Linux

When the PS3 came out in 2006, one of the features that got geeks excited was the system’s ability to let you partition the hard drive and install Linux to use the console as a computer. Sony announced on its blog that it’s taking the feature away with a firmware update. [More]

Adidas Launches Shoes That Double As Game Controllers

Adidas Launches Shoes That Double As Game Controllers

I’ve been thinking lately that my sneakers are too stupid. They don’t do anything, at least not anything video game related, which is where it matters. Adidas has recognized this problem and has announced a new “augmented reality” sneaker that you have to hold in front of your webcam in order to play special online games. [More]

Diablo 2 Scammer Inadvertently Shines Spotlight On Self

Diablo 2 Scammer Inadvertently Shines Spotlight On Self

Robert usually writes about energy and the environment on his blog. However, he recently ran into a scammer online, and surprised the scammer by fighting back:

After I didn’t roll over for him, he resorted to sending me numerous threats and harassing e-mails, going so far as to threaten harm to my elementary school aged son. I wasn’t about to let him get away with this. [More]

Game Crazy Customer Gets Response From District Manager

Game Crazy Customer Gets Response From District Manager

Lu, who caught a Game Crazy cashier adding bogus fees to a purchase, has sent in a couple of updates.

Beyond Solitaire And Minesweeper: A Flood Of Free Games

Beyond Solitaire And Minesweeper: A Flood Of Free Games

What the fat cats don’t want you to know as they charge you $50 for computer games is that the Internets are aswarm with freebies.

Gamestop Ruins Yet Another Customer Experience

Gamestop Ruins Yet Another Customer Experience

Sometimes we think Gamestop is run by some sort of secret cabal of anti-videogame fanatics, and they use the store as a front to spread hatred of games and game purchasing across America.

GameFly Accuses US Postal Service Of Breaking, Losing, And Stealing Its Game Discs

GameFly Accuses US Postal Service Of Breaking, Losing, And Stealing Its Game Discs

Late last year we pointed out that GameFly, a Netflix-style program for video games, was beginning to develop a reputation for rotten service and slow turnaround. It looks like the United States Postal Service may be partly to blame, at least as far as GameFly is concerned. They’ve filed a complaint against the USPS over lost, stolen, and damaged discs, as well as discriminatory treatment when compared to Netflix and Blockbuster.

Activision Is Looking To Hire A Professional Screenshot Faker

Activision Is Looking To Hire A Professional Screenshot Faker

As someone who relies on friends to recommend games after they’ve been out for awhile, I’d never heard the term “bullshot,” but now that I have, it makes perfect sense. It refers to a promotional screenshot that looks, um, a little too good… as if it had been… doctored somehow…

Amazon Pulls Negative Reviews Of 'Spore,' Then Reinstates Them

Amazon Pulls Negative Reviews Of 'Spore,' Then Reinstates Them

Earlier today, about 2200 reviews of the game Spore disappeared from the product page on Amazon.com, almost all of them negative. Did Amazon censor the reviews because of their anti-DRM nature? Amazon says no, that it was a technical glitch, and they restored the reviews by the end of today. An Amazon spokesperson told Ars Technica, “Amazon doesn’t censor or edit customer reviews based [on their content] and we’d only remove a review if it fell outside our guidelines.” Spore’s rating is back to a single star, and it’s #5 on Amazon’s video games chart.

Did CNET's Gamespot Fire Reviewer For Angering Advertisers?

Did CNET's Gamespot Fire Reviewer For Angering Advertisers?

So much for even the illusion of editorial independence in video game reviews. One of Gamespot’s editors and top reviewers was apparently fired this week after writing an unenthusiastic review for the game “Kane & Lynch,” which was being advertised heavily all over the Gamespot site, according to…

GameStop's Golden Price Tags Mean Higher Value, Not "Used"

GameStop's Golden Price Tags Mean Higher Value, Not "Used"

The great thing about a used game is someone else has already worked out all the bugs and made it better—at least, that’s what we assume this GameStop wants us to believe, since they’ve got the used version priced $5 more than the brand new one. That’s why the sticker is golden, see, to show that it’s more valuable.

Dear Nvidia’s Mister Perez…

We’re passing on a message from our buddies over at Church of the Customer Blog:

Ice Cream Man Convicted for Pirating Videogames

Ice Cream Man Convicted for Pirating Videogames

100,000 or $174,345.29 in unilateral decision making money.