National Endowment for the Humanities Gives Nearly $100K Grant for Small Pox History Game

December 12, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Lisa Rosner, a distinguished professor of history at Richard Stockton College in Galloway, NJ, has been awarded grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to develop a game about the early history of smallpox vaccination. The NEH has given professor Rosner $99,837 to create a game called "Pox Hunter," as part of a project called "A 3D Strategy Game for the History of Medicine." She is building the game with the help of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia and digital learning game developer Eduweb.

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IndieCade East Returns February 13 - 15 At The Museum of the Moving Image

December 11, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Independent game festival IndieCade, and Museum of the Moving Image announced that they will partner for a third year to present IndieCade East from February 13 - 15, 2015 at Museum of the Moving Image. The Festival program includes a professional conference featuring panels and discussions headlined by prominent game makers, academics, artists, marketers, and journalists.

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Adventure Book 'Ruby Wizardry' Teaches Children How To Code

December 10, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

A new adventure book for children promises to teach them how to code using the Ruby programming language.

Published by No Starch Press, Ruby Wizardry is the creation of New Yorker-published poet, professional programmer, and former Codecademy content architect Eric Weinstein. The book (which retails for $29.99) follows the adventures of young heroes Ruben and Scarlet, as they learn programming skills.

The book promises to teach the following (according to No Starch Press):

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'Elegy for a Dead World' Now Available On Steam

December 10, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Elegy for a Dead World from Dejobaan Games is now available for Windows, Mac, and Linux on Steam for $15. The game is interesting for a couple of reasons. First, because it encourages players to write their own creative stories based on locations they visit and the people they meet within several locations throughout the game.

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President Obama Shows Off His Coding Skills

December 9, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

President Barack Obama has become the first sitting president to write a program. Promoting the annual Computer Science Education Week by participating in the "Hour of Code" event in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House complex, President Obama wrote a simple computer program using a few lines of code that draws a square on a screen.

"All programming starts simple," says Hadi Partovi, co-founder Code.org. Code.org promotes computer science education in the United States. "No one starts by creating a complicated game.”

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'That Dragon, Cancer' Within Striking Distance of Reaching Funding Goal

December 4, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

With less than eight days to go That Dragon, Cancer needs a little over $12,000 to be successfully funded on Kickstarter. As of this writing the game has generated $72,513 of its $85,000 goal from 2,415 backers. Developers Ryan Green and Josh Larson turned to Kickstarter in November to fund the rest of the game's development. If successfully funded the game will released in 2015 on multiple platforms including Ouya, Windows, Mac, and Linux.

Research: Girls Better at Designing Story-Driven Games Than Boys

December 1, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

New research coming out of the University of Sussex in England suggests that girls may be better than boys in designing more complex story-driven games. The study conducted by Dr. Kate Howland and Dr. Judith Good - and recently published in Computers and Education journal - came to the conclusion that girls in the classroom wrote more complex programs in their games and learned more about coding than boys did.

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USC Creates Game To Teach Students The Process of Applying for College

November 25, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The University of Southern California (USC) Pullias Center for Higher Education has developed a new Facebook game called Mission: Admission, which aims to encourage low-income students to attend college by teaching high school students the importance of meeting deadlines and learning the application process of the college.

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Because Science Examines Halo's 'Ringworlds'

November 13, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The latest episode of Because Science (from the folks at The Nerdist) applies real-world science to the life-destroying ringworlds in Halo - no doubt in honor of the Master Chief Collection being released this week for Xbox One.

In "How Could We Build A HALO Ringworld?," host Kyle Hill tries to figure out how one would build such a devastating device:

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Chrysler Uses Video Games To Train Dealers

October 27, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Auto News has a fascinating report on how the Chrysler Group has launched video games to help better train salespeople about its various brands. The automaker has created four different trivia based video games to help salespeople learn the finer points of its various vehicle brands including Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, and Ram.

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Sen. Coburn's 2014 Wastebook Attempts to Shame Tax-Payer Funded Games and Research

October 22, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Senator Tom Coburn's 2014 Wastebook report is out, detailing all the tax payer-funded programs that the Republican Senator from Oklahoma thinks are wasteful or pork barrel spending. While he offers plenty of red meat for fiscally conservative types, we are really only interested in what game related items made the cut this year.

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NGA Releases Gamification Software To The Masses

October 22, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Gamasutra reports that the United States' National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency has made gamification software it created available for free on GitHub under an MIT free software license, allowing programmers and the general public tools and assets to tinker with.

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Free 'Doctor Who' Game Teaches Children Basic Programming

October 20, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

A new game from the BBC and BBC Doctor Who Interactive hopes to use the popular sci-fi television icon to teach young people how to program. The game, "The Doctor and the Dalek," was being designed to help children learn some basic programming skills. The game is set to launch on Oct. 22, and features voice narration from current Doctor Peter Capaldi, and a new story by Phil Ford, who has written for the TV show.

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'Journey' Executive Producer Joins UC Santa Cruz Faculty in 2015

October 14, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Robin Hunicke, the game designer and producer responsible for creating Journey at thatgamecompany, has been hired by the University of California Santa Cruz as Associate Professor of Art & Game Design. Hunicke will officially join the faculty in January 2015 and be in charge of leading the new undergraduate program in Games and Playable Media at UC Santa Cruz.

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Ian Livingstone Hopes to Launch School That Utilizes Video Game-Based Curriculum in 2016

October 9, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Eidos President for Life Ian Livingstone has applied to launch a free school in England that will deliver lessons to students using video games. Livingstone told the BBC that he wanted to start a school that uses games-based learning and get away from what he called the  "relentless testing" method used and most schools in the country.

"I'm passionate about children who have been born into the internet," he told the BBC. "I think they learn in a different way."

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GitHub Offers Game Development Tools and Services to Student For Free

October 8, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

GitHub revealed that it will give free access to a suite of development tools that small-scale game makers may find useful. The only catch? You have to prove that you are a student.

The offer is part of the GitHub Education initiative, and is available to students over the age of 13 and currently enrolled in an academic program. If you can do that, you can get access to project development help and tools like the Crowdflower crowdsourcing platform, a hosting plan with the DNSimple DNS management service, and free access to Unreal Engine 4.

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Mantis Digital Arts Launches Crowdfunding Campaign for Educational Game 'Buzz Whizz Bees'

October 7, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Mantis Digital Arts has just launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund an educational game about bees, with plans to launch it shortly thereafter. The game, Buzz Whizz Bees, is being developed for web browsers, Android, Ouya, and iOS - and will sell for $2.99.

The game is being designed to help teachers and parents introduce children ages four to eight to the interesting world of bees by letting them play "as a varying range of different bee species, enabling them to comprehend bee behavior by gathering food, scouting for new food sources and defending the hive."

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Study: 'Portal 2' Beats 'Lumosity' in Brain Training Exercise

October 1, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

A new study from Florida State University finds that Portal 2 might be better at "brain training" than software designed specifically for the task.

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How The NY Academy of Sciences Will Use 'Galxyz' To Teach Children About Science

September 26, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The New York Academy of Sciences will be keeping an eye on players of the upcoming online science education game Galxyz when it launches in 2015. The inspirations for developing an online educational game for children that teaches STEM education (for kindergartners to 12th graders) came from a father watching his young daughters quickly getting bored while playing science education games. He wanted to create something a bit more challenging, and ultimately more effective.

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Riot Announces NCAC 2014-2015 Season

September 24, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Riot Games announced that the North American Collegiate Championship (NACC) is ready to kick off its 2014-2015 season. The NCAC is a League of Legends collegiate competition featuring hundreds of teams from universities across the U.S. and Canada. Last year 540 teams from over 300 universities competed for a chance to win thousands of dollars in scholarship money.

The 2014-2015 NCAC competition will now span the entire academic year and North America has been divided into four new regional brackets: North, South, East, and West.

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'Angry Birds Epic' In-Game Purchase Supports Room to Read Charity

September 19, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Rovio has teamed up with Room to Read, a non-profit literacy advocacy group whose goal is to promote reading and gender equality in Asia and Africa. For the next two weeks Rovio will offer a "Good Deed" coin as an in-game purchase for Angry Birds Epic. Rovio will donate $1.40 from each $3.99 purchase to Room to Read to help drive its initiatives abroad.

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Educational iPad Accessory Kit Generates $2 Million in Pre-Orders

September 18, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Educational game company Tangible Play has generated around $2 million in pre-orders for Osmo, its educational game platform for iPad, according to Gamasutra. The accessory kit, which retails for around $49, is shipping to to preorder customers - including more than 2,000 schools. Tangible Play is a Silicon Valley startup founded by former Google, Disney and Ubisoft employees.

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ESA: 390 U.S. Colleges and Universities Offer Video Game Degrees

September 11, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

According to statistics released by the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) this week, around 390 academic institutions across the country are now offering video game-related certificates, undergraduate and graduate degrees.

As the ESA points out in its release, that represents a 50 percent increase over the 254 schools that offered video game-related education in 2009. While there are schools all over the country that are now offering these types of courses, California had the most with 73 schools, followed by New York with 26, and 24 each in Illinois and Texas.

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The SETI Institute Announces The 'SETI-Jam'

September 11, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The SETI Institute announced that it will be hosting the "SETI-JAM" October 17th-19th at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California. What the hell is a SETI-Jam? It's a collaborative game-building event that will include over 70 scientists who will design games of any genre that use genuine SETI data. The event's focus is on the Drake Equation, a calculation that estimates the number of 'communicative extra-terrestrial civilizations' in the Milky Way galaxy.

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Valve Offers Free Games, Source SDK Access to iD Tech Attendees

September 10, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Valve Software is increasing its support for iD Tech by providing attendees with free access to Valve-created games, free Steam accounts, and access to the company's Source SDK. Valve has been a long-time corporate sponsor of the iD Tech educational program.

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White House Hosts First-Ever 'White House Game Jam'

September 8, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Over the weekend the White House hosted the White House Game Jam, where game creators in the serious games and "Games for Change" space took part to show "the beneficial properties of games."

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How 'Minecraft' is Encouraging Children to Read More

September 8, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Parents have a hard time getting their young children to read, so if that means letting them read "anything" that can capture their imaginations, then they'll take that option. This Associated Press report offers some anecdotal evidence that books associated with Mojang's game Minecraft is a popular choice for kids as reading options, and parents and even teachers are happy with that.

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'Unreal Engine 4' Free to Students and Teachers

September 4, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Epic Games announced today that it is giving away its Unreal Engine 4 game development suite for free to universities and students. Teachers and students interested in obtaining Unreal Engine 4 for free can now submit their credentials through Epic's official site at www.unrealengine.com/education. Once approved, they will have access to the suite for free. Normally that Unreal Engine 4 license would cost $19 per month.

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'Lizard Island Observation' Teaches Children to Think Like Scientists

August 20, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

A new game from Budding Biologist created in collaboration with scientists at UC Davis teaches first- and fifth-graders to think like a scientist using inquiry-based tools on a fun adventure.

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'Save Trees - A Game for Social Cause' Now Available

August 20, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Zabuza Labs has launched "Save Trees - A Game for Social Cause" for Android-based devices, a simple game that offers a message about conservation and protecting the environment. The game promises to entertain with simple gameplay mechanics while delivering a "social message" and educational information on trees.

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Should 'Hatred' have been removed from Steam Greenlight?:

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PHX Corphttp://www.ign.com/videos/2014/12/17/what-the-heck-is-wrong-with-tetris-ps4 I give up on ubisoft12/17/2014 - 6:01pm
MaskedPixelantehttp://comicbook.com/blog/2014/08/16/exclusive-original-unaltered-cut-of-star-wars-trilogy-to-be-rele/ Yeah, this'll never happen.12/17/2014 - 5:03pm
NeenekoThey have and exercise control over which games are allowed on their privately controlled 'open forum'. Their endorsement is fairly minimal since it is only 'we do not reject this', but it is still an endorsement of sorts.12/17/2014 - 3:58pm
NeenekoHistorically there have been issues with libraries allowing some groups but not others. Perhaps 'endorsement' is too strong a word, but their editorial control IS a preapproval process, even if the standards are pretty minimal.12/17/2014 - 3:56pm
E. Zachary KnightLet's put this a different way. My local library allows any group to reserve and use multipurpose rooms. That does not mean that the Library endorses all events that take place in those rooms.12/17/2014 - 12:54pm
E. Zachary KnightValve's editorial control comes from removing problem games and accepting games to Steam. They make no claim over any games otherwise.12/17/2014 - 12:52pm
E. Zachary KnightNeeneko, It is not at all a form of endorsement. Grenlight is an open forum for game developers to pitch their game to Valve/Steam and Steam users. Does Valve have some editorial control? Yes, but not to the point that they preapprove games.12/17/2014 - 12:51pm
Neeneko@EZK - I disagree. Greenlight is built off Valve's brand. While not an explicit endorsement, it is a form of it, otherwise Greenlight would have no value over other platforms.12/17/2014 - 12:05pm
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.latino-review.com/news/exclusive-viola-davis-bags-amanda-waller-role-in-suicide-squad Latino Review says Viola Davis will be Amanda Waller. History of Latino Review says "wait for a REAL news site to confirm".12/17/2014 - 10:48am
PHX Corphttp://www.polygon.com/2014/12/17/7407869/assassins-creed-unity-glitch-broken-problems-xbox-one-patch -Facepalm- Screwup means Assassin's Creed Unity's patch is the 40GB full game on Xbox One12/17/2014 - 10:17am
PHX Corphttp://www.theverge.com/2014/12/16/7401769/the-mpaa-wants-to-strike-at-dns-records-piracy-sopa-leaked-documents Sony leaks reveal Hollywood is trying to break DNS, the backbone of the internet12/17/2014 - 10:05am
E. Zachary KnightA Game being on Greenlight is not an endorsement of said game by Valve, Steam or anyone related to Valve or Steam. Greenlight is a combined sales pitch to Steam and its users.12/17/2014 - 9:51am
E. Zachary KnightThe Life cycle of a Greenlight game: A game gets made->Developer puts it on Greenlight->Gamers vote for it->Valve decides it is worthy of a Steam release->Game is sold on Steam. While the game is merely on greenlight, it is not available for sale on Steam12/17/2014 - 9:50am
InfophileGreenlight games may in the future be sold through Steam. A game there may be "greenlit" and then sold on Steam proper, or it may not, and never actually be sold on steam. That quote refers to them selecting some games from Greenlight which they will sell12/17/2014 - 9:39am
MechaTama31"Today we’ve Greenlit another batch of 50 titles to advance through Steam Greenlight, and be offered worldwide distribution via Steam." Am I missing something here? Because it sounds like Greenlight games are sold through Steam.12/17/2014 - 9:00am
MechaTama31From the Greenlight page: "Browse through the entries here and rate up the games you want to see made available via Steam"12/17/2014 - 8:59am
MechaTama31Greenlight games aren't sold through Steam? Then what exactly *is* Greenlight?12/17/2014 - 8:58am
prh99I just wish if they are going to curate (as selective and rare as that is) for content, they'd do little for quality (like does this game actually function at all). Personally, I avoid GreenLight and Early Access like the plague because of lax standards.12/17/2014 - 1:34am
prh99EZK: My point wasn't that they are responsible for people's purchase decisions, but that their policies and criteria for approval needs some work. As far as refunds go, you know it's bad when EA has a better policy. EA, former worst company in America.12/17/2014 - 1:21am
Andrew EisenAnd 'Hatred' is back on Steam Greenlight. No comment from Valve so far as I've seen.12/17/2014 - 12:14am
 

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