Sony made a couple of interesting announcements at their annual E3 press conference last night. One was for a streaming program and one was for a device — but both point toward a future that takes the PlayStation out of “PlayStation games” altogether.
The majority of video games in the U.S. are purchased and played by adults. The largest titles make money that Hollywood films could only dream of raking in, and the biggest players in the industry run multibillion-dollar multinational operations that employ thousands of people. Yet many consumers still think of gaming as a kid’s thing that doesn’t merit serious consideration or scrutiny. In an age where our culture recognizes previously sniffed-about industries like professional sports as much more than child’s play, it’s time to get over that same hump about video games. [More]
Once you’ve been certified by the Guinness folks as the owner of the world’s largest video game collection, you can either sit around looking at your library… or you can auction it off in the hopes of making a pile of cash. [More]
What are you worth? Or rather, how much would you want to be paid to have your likeness used in a wildly popular and profitable sports video game? According to video game giant (and two-time Worst Company In America winner) Electronic Arts, the price tag for a college athlete’s face is just shy of one thousand bucks. [More]
Comcast’s been irking a large segment of the internet again this week. This time, though, it doesn’t have anything to do with their pro-merger mania, their stance on net neutrality, or the problems with their actual service. The latest kerfuffle is all about a thirty-second commercial — one that doesn’t even seem to get the basics of its own technology right.
Back in the day when I worked at places where writers were allowed to receive free promotional crap (mostly DVDs and vodka… so much bad vodka) from PR companies, I got all manner of bizarre stuff, the strangest probably being a box that allegedly contained a few of Troy Polamalu’s signature curly locks. But if I received a tiny unmarked safe with a note to “check your voicemail,” and which beeped when I tried to open it, I might have gotten freaked out enough to call the police. [More]
You can only fill the day with so many videos of cute kittens. For the other hours you might be tempted to watch or play a few video games. The transition from cute baby animal videos to action-packed gaming could be smoother now that Google’s YouTube is reportedly close to purchasing streaming video game service Twitch. [More]
While there are millions of video game players who are perfectly nice people, there are enough jerks out there to give the gaming community a bad name, so much so that some folks refuse to play multiplayer games just to avoid dealing with the schoolyard bullying that can sometimes come over the Internet. Last year, Microsoft promised that its new Xbox One console would have a way to minimize jerks’ access to online gaming, and the company says it is now ready to start issuing warnings to users who behave badly. [More]
Starting next week, Walmart shoppers looking for something to do with those Batman: Arkham Origins discs they no longer play will have one more option for unloading their used video games, as the nation’s largest retailer aims to likely become the largest purchaser of customers’ old games. [More]
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.
Nearly 20 years ago, basketball superstar Shaquille O’Neal lent his name and digitized likeness to Shaq Fu, a poorly slapped-together cash-in video game in which even contrarian hipsters have trouble finding any redeeming qualities. Now, with two decades to mull it over, Shaq has not only decided that it’s time for the sequel no one asked for, but that a sizable chunk of the funding should come from consumers. [More]
It’s almost time to start thinking about this year’s Worst Company In America tournament, which can mean only one thing — two-time reigning WCIA champ Electronic Arts is once again making a final push to be hated by its own customers. This time, the video game giant has been caught apparently trying to game the Google Play review and ratings system. [More]
When reigning two-time Worst Company In America champ Electronic Arts released the hugely anticipated SimCity game in April 2013, it unleashed a hornets’ nest of bad publicity by not only requiring that players be online in order to use the game but also grossly underestimating its ability to deal with all of those users trying to play the game at the same time. Many owners of the game were unable to play for weeks until EA resolved the issue, but the company stood by the ill-advised decision to require an Internet connection. Now, ten months and ten updates later, it’s finally relenting. [More]
Streaming media: ever since YouTube became the world’s favorite source of cat videos, it’s been the wave of the future. This year’s CES proved no exception — between the idea of playing cloud-based console games on PlayStation Now and watching ultra-high-definition 4K TV on Netflix, streaming and cloud-based media are clearly still where all the tech companies want us to be. [More]
The PlayStation 4 launched in November and so far has sold and performed well for Sony. One thing it doesn’t have, though, is backwards compatibility. The PS3 was out for seven years before that, and the PlayStation 2 before it sold over 150 million units worldwide. That’s a lot of old video games that don’t run on your shiny new system. [More]
We haven’t even begun to ask for nominations from readers for the next Worst Company In America tournament, but some are already making the case for once again giving the Golden Poo trophy to reigning two-time WCIA winner Electronic Arts. [More]
Because terrorists may be secretly chatting with each other while also trying to level-up their paladins and warlocks, the National Security Agency thought it was a good idea to eavesdrop on online games like World of Warcraft and Second Life, and on gamers who used Xbox Live. [More]
Not so long ago, if you bought a book with missing pages — or a DVD that skipped, or a CD or video game that wouldn’t play — you took it back to the store and got an exchange or a refund because obviously the manufacturer did not intend to provide you with an incomplete or broken product. The relatively new era of digital media delivery has improved upon this by allowing content providers to patch files and fix errors, but it’s also allowing companies to knowingly release inferior and/or broken products, often without giving the consumer any way to seek redress. [More]