Canadian PhD Student Designing Games for Seniors

October 21, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

University of Saskatchewan computer science PhD student Kathrin Gerling is designing video games specifically for the benefit of senior citizens. Gerling, who loves video games, wants to combine her love for her hobby with her passion for her community by working with seniors in local nursing homes to make accessible games. Gerling was inspired to do this by a number of studies that showed that seniors who play games gain mental and physical benefits from them.

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Operation Supply Drop Doubles Goal for 4th of July Video Game Packages

July 2, 2013 -

Operation Supply Drop was hoping to raise $12,000 in video game systems, gear and games for six care packages. Five of these packages will be sent to soldiers deployed in combat zones, while a sixth package will be sent to Walter Reed military hospitals. This fundraising drive, codenamed "PIXEL FIREWORKS," is already a huge success, bringing in almost double what was needed with several days left to go. For this particular initiative the charity has raised right around $24,736.

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Valve CEO Gabe Newell to be Honored with BAFTA Fellowship

February 25, 2013 -

Valve CEO and co-founder Gabe Newell will be honored by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) with the Academy Fellowship at this year's British Academy Games Awards. He'll be honored with this prestigious award at a ceremony taking place on March 5 at the London Hilton, Park Lane.

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Valve: We're Not Cancelling Any Projects

February 14, 2013 -

Valve's Gabe Newell took the unusual step of breaking his silence on recent developments inside Valve after it was reported yesterday that as many as 25 employees have been let go. Valve did not confirm that that number was accurate. Among those confirmed to be leaving the company are Valve’s director of business Jason Holtman and hardware engineer Jeri Ellsworth.

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GameStop Executive: Blocking Used Game Sales Will Hurt Next-Gen Console Adoption by Consumers

February 7, 2013 -

Speaking to Bloomberg GameStop VP of public and investor relations Matt Hodges said that the consumer's desire to purchase a next-generation console will be "significantly diminished" if manufacturers were to block the ability to play used games.

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Director J.J. Abrams Talks About Portal, Half-Life Movie Plans

February 6, 2013 -

Speaking to Polygon, Star Trek and Star Wars: Episode VII director J.J. Abrams says that plans for movies based on Valve Software's hit franchises Portal and Half-Life are in the early stages and that that he's personally interested in bringing those universes to film. Abrams made his comments to the publication at the 2013 DICE Summit going on this week near Las Vegas.

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Valve's Gabe Newell Talks About Invading the Living Room Gaming Space

January 14, 2013 -

Recently Valve Software co-founder Gabe Newell sat down with Chris Hardwick of The Nerdist Podcast to talk about the company's plans to take over the living room entertainment space with Steam's Big Picture Mode and with hardware like Steam Box. Some of that conversation was transcribed by Games Industry International.

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Gabe Newell to be Inducted into the AIAS Hall of Fame

November 15, 2012 -

The Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences (AIAS) announced this morning that Valve president and co-founder Gabe Newell will be the 17th inductee into the AIAS Hall of Fame. He will also deliver the 2013 D.I.C.E. Summit as its Thursday conference keynote. The 2013 Hall of Fame Award will be presented to Gabe by Epic Games President Dr. Michael Capps, who serves on the AIAS board of directors and the AIAS awards committee.

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Valve Co-Founder Gabe Newell to be Honored at Nite to Unite – For Kids Event

October 3, 2012 -

Valve Software co-founder and managing director Gabe Newell will be honored at Entertainment Software Association Foundation's 'Nite to Unite – For Kids' event on October 18. Newell is being honored for creating software used to develop problem solving skills in young students. The award ties to a 2011 partnership between Valve and the United States Department of Education to use a modified version of Portal in classrooms across the United States.

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Blizzard Exec Echoes Valve's Concerns about Windows 8

July 27, 2012 -

Valve Software's Gabe Newell isn't the only one that thinks Windows 8 is a "catastrophe" for game makers, apparently. Responding to Newell's speech made earlier this week at the Casual Connect game conference where he made some disparaging remarks about the upcoming operating system from Microsoft, Blizzard's executive vice president of game design Rob Pardo had similar words for Microsoft.

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Gabe Newell Calls Windows 8 a 'catastrophe' for PC Game Developers

July 26, 2012 -

Speaking at the Casual Connect game conference this week, Valve CEO Gabe Newell described Microsoft's next Windows operating system, Windows 8, as a "catastrophe" for PC game developers. If that isn't an apocalyptic prophecy for gamers, I don't know what is.

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Zynga Donates Talent to 'Social Action' Charity Facebook Game

July 16, 2012 -

Zynga is loaning several of its developers to create a social charity game on Facebook. Development on a "social action" game based on the book Half the Sky by Pulitzer Prize winners Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn is well underway according to GamesBeat.

The book is about "turning oppression into opportunity for women worldwide." The game will be released on Facebook on November 13.

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Valve's Gabe Newell on EA's Progress with Origin

April 23, 2012 -

EA's digital distribution platform "has a long way to go," according to Valve's Gabe Newell, who owns Steam. As part of episode one of the Seven Day Cooldown podcast, Newell gave a blunt response when asked what he thought about EA's digital distribution platform.

"They have a lot of work to do to get to where they need to be and where I as a customer would want them to be," he said.

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BioWare Addresses Complaints About Mass Effect 3 Ending

March 21, 2012 -

BioWare co-founder Dr. Ray Muzyka has written an open letter to the community about the ending to Mass Effect 3 and what the company plans to do in the future to make fans feel a little bit happier. In that lengthy letter posted on the BioWare forums, Muzyka admits that the company's first instinct is to defend the work they have done on Mass Effect 3, but at the end of the day he has to acknowledge the will of the fans who were clearly not satisfied with how the game ended.

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Valve Software's Gabe Newell Valued at $1.5 Billion, According to Forbes

March 8, 2012 -

Valve Software's Gabe Newell has a net worth of approximately $1.5 billion dollars, putting him on Forbes Magazine's list of the richest people in the world. Newell ranks 854th in the 1,226 list of worldwide billionaires. Newell did not disclose his new worth to the magazine and since Valve is a privately-held company, Forbes had to estimate the figure listed above.

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Captain Lazy Eye for iPad Released

November 9, 2011 -

Parents with children suffering from amblyopia (referred to by some as "Lazy Eye") frequently have trouble with kids refusing to do vision correction exercises. Since these exercises are important to correcting this type of vision problem, parents need tools to make the activity more fun and engaging for youngsters. Correction of amblyopia typically involves some sort of repetitive coordinative exercise, such as navigating a maze on paper, drawing lines on paper, etc. The problem is that some kids find these activities to be tedious and unchallenging.

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Gabe Newell: New Apple Hardware Could Render Consoles 'Obsolete'

October 12, 2011 -

Valve front man Gabe Newell fears that Apple will release new hardware that could render traditional gaming consoles obsolete. At least that is what he said during a game panel at the WTIA TechNW conference - as reported by the Seattle Times.

"I suspect Apple will launch a living room product that redefines people's expectations really strongly and the notion of a separate console platform will disappear," said Newell.

Newell also called the rise of "closed" platforms like Apple's iOS and Xbox Live "ominous."

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NASA Releases 'NetworKing' Game

October 11, 2011 -

NASA has released an interactive educational video game today called NetworKing that its Space Communication and Navigation (SCaN) network operates. The release of the video game coincides with the close of World Space Week, Oct. 4-10. Developed by the Information Technology Office at NASA's Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, California, its developers say that NetworKing gives players an insider's perspective into how astronauts, mission controllers and scientists communicate during space missions.

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Free Passes Offered for Students, Industry Local to GDC Online

September 22, 2011 -

GDC Online organizers announced two programs that will grant free Expo Passes to video game and tech industry locals (to Austin and the state where the event takes place next month) and qualifying students. The new program is part of the event's outreach to local talent including students and working professionals.

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Fukushima Game Jam Announced

August 26, 2011 -

IGDA Japan is organizing the Fukushima Game Jam, a developer event that it hopes will stimulate game development following the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan last year. The Game Jam is organized with the help 9Leap, a student development contest and will take place from August 27 to 28 in Minami-Souma city. The event is modeled after Global Game Jam hosted by the IGDA each year, where development teams take a theme given by organizers to create a game in a limited amount of time.

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Serious Play Award Winners Announced

August 26, 2011 -

The 2011 International Serious Play Awards, which honors "outstanding corporate, military, healthcare and learning" software titles, announced that it has recognized 20 serious games. The medal winners were revealed at the Serious Play Conference, held August 23-25 at Redmond, WA's DigiPen Institute of Technology, as attended by Gamasutra. Air Medic Sky One from University Medical Center Utrecht won Best of Show.

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Newell: Microsoft Should Be More Like Sony

August 25, 2011 -

Valve co-founder Gabe Newell says that Microsoft needs to relax the terms and conditions of Xbox Live to allow other platforms onto Xbox Live. Newell made his comments related to the upcoming Counter-Strike: Global Offensive release, which features Steamworks integration. Newell said that Microsoft would do well to emulate Sony, whose decision to allow Steamworks support in the PlayStation 3 release of Portal 2 resulted in better experience on that platform.

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Indie Rental Stores Promote 'Video Store Day'

August 18, 2011 -

Independent video rental stores across the U.S. and Canada are banding together for a common cause: to promote a Video Store Day Oct. 15. The goal of this special day is to show the public that there are still alternatives to rental kiosks like Redbox and from Blockbuster, and streaming entertainment services such as Netflix and Hulu. Clearly local video rental stores have taken a savage beating at the hands of those juggernauts.

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The Sensimmer Simulator: Game-Like, But Serious Business

July 19, 2011 -

Chicago-based technology firm ImmersiveTouch has been working in consultation with the Memphis-based Medical Education & Research Institute (MERI) on surgery simulator technology that looks and feels like a next-generation video game. The inventors say that while it might be video game-like, it has far more serious implications for medical training and surgery.

MERI does not have a financial stake in the company or in the simulator, but many of the doctors and surgeons who pass through the training center have offered their input in developing the product.

"We are engineers. We are not physicians," said Cristian Luciano, Sensimmer's co-inventor and ImmersiveTouch vice president. "The needs that are coming from the physicians and surgeons drive the (product development) efforts as we produce solutions for them."

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Konami Tackles Childhood Obesity with First Ever Summit

July 15, 2011 -

Konami, along with health professionals, policy makers, students, parents, and teachers, across West Virginia are heading to Charleston later this month to address childhood obesity. Konami is spearheading an event - the Childhood Obesity Summit - to discuss the best ways to deal with the issue. The company will also host the second annual DanceDanceRevolution West Virginia State Championship Tournament at the same time.

The West Virginia University Extension Service, West Virginia Public Employees Insurance Agency (PEIA), and Konami organized the summit to promote collaboration and develop a referral base for coordinated prevention and treatment of childhood obesity statewide.

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Utah Politician Gives Up on Video Game Legislation

June 29, 2011 -

In response to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling to strike down the 2005 California law regulating violent video games, one Utah lawmaker says that he will not pursue a similar law he tried to pass in 2008. Rep. Michael Morley, (R-Spanish Fork, Utah) told the Deseret News that he felt his bill was very different from the California law that was struck down on Monday.

For one, the bill did not impose a fine on retailers who sold mature-rated games to children, but did give parents the power to file a lawsuit against the offending business. The bill would allow parents to sue under a claim of false advertising. While the 2008 video game bill passed with broad support in both houses, former Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. vetoed the bill. Former Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff backed the governor's position at the time. Both expressed concern over the impact to local businesses and free speech rights.

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Lionhead to Launch Local Educational Program Next Week

June 24, 2011 -

Fable series developer and wholly-owned Microsoft studio Lionhead plans to launch a work experience program for local students next week. The company says that it wants to help build a relationship between the British development sector and area schools in the hopes that young people will be inspired to build games for a living. Students from schools in close proximity to Lionhead can get work experience on-site, and will learn about "all of the six main disciplines of making a game," according to Lionhead. Each student will also have a personal mentor to work with.

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GameStop Will Honor Old Duke Nukem Forever Pre-Orders

May 30, 2011 -

GameStop is doing something a bit unprecedented: it is honoring ancient pre-orders for Duke Nukem Forever. GamePro asked the retailer if they would honor pre-orders taken just after the game was originally announced many years ago. The company confirmed that it would.

"With a long-anticipated release like Duke Nukem Forever, we encourage customers who pre-ordered more than a year ago to verify their reservation with their local store prior to launch," a GameStop representative told GamePro. "Provided the customer has a receipt, we will honor even those pre-orders taken long ago. At this time, we expect that all pre-order customers will receive Duke's Big Package at time of purchase, regardless of when the reservation was made."

Duke Nukem Forever releases June 10 on various platforms, with a demo coming June 3. Obviously it is rated "M" for "Mature" by the ESRB.

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New Game Hopes To Help Youth Avoid HIV

May 20, 2011 -

A new video game created by Yale School of Medicine researchers hopes to help "at-risk" youths learn about and avoid the risks associated with HIV. The game was developed as part of the Play2Prevent initiative at Yale, a collaboration and partnership between scientists, educators, video game designers and developers, and community-based organizations. The game development process is being spearheaded by Schell Games.

Dr. Lynn E. Fiellin, associate professor of medicine at Yale, says the goal is to develop educational materials and "targeted interventions" that produces risk reduction and prevention in youth and young adults.

"Games are powerful tools in helping people explore roles and risks before life makes them all-too-real and risky," says Fiellin. "The Play2Prevent initiative focused on helping its players meet the challenges at-risk youth must face head on."

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Researchers Use Video Game to Crack the 'Language Code'

May 18, 2011 -

Carnegie Mellon University's Lori Holt and Sung-Joo Lim and Stockholm University's Francisco Lacerda are using video game training with a mock "alien" language to replicate the challenges of learning languages as an infant. The research found that listeners were to quick recognize word-like units. The study was funded by grants from the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health and Riksbankens Jubileumsfond.

To uncover how spoken sounds are decoded by the brain, the research team designed a video game narrated in deliberately distorted speech. The soundtrack (unintelligible babble in any language) was the only source of instruction for the 77 adult players in the study. After only two hours of play, the participants could reliably extract world-length sound categories from continuous alien sounds and apply that learning to advance through the game.

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MaskedPixelanteIt's my secret hope that Nintendo announces Xenoblade HD to be released in the leadup to Xenoblade Chronicles X, or at least a mass market version of the first game so that people aren't going into this one blind.08/01/2014 - 12:40pm
PHX CorpI'm going to do a test stream later today, if anyone is intrested07/31/2014 - 2:40pm
Andrew EisenYes, I'm such a big Nintendo dork that I read Nintendo's quarterly financial reports.07/31/2014 - 2:09pm
Andrew EisenCool tidbit - Mario Kart 8 sales account for more than half of total Wii U software sales for the last quarter even though it was only available for the last third.07/31/2014 - 2:09pm
Andrew EisenStill a pretty cool promotion. Unfortunately for me, I'm not interested in purchasing Mario Kart 8 and I already owned or didn't want any of the free games on offer.07/31/2014 - 1:43pm
Andrew EisenInteresting that EU had 10 games to choose from while North America only had four.07/31/2014 - 1:41pm
MaskedPixelanteIt certainly worked, I probably would never have bought Mario Kart 8 if it didn't come with a free copy of Wind Waker HD.07/31/2014 - 1:14pm
Andrew EisenI imagine will see similar promotions like "Buy Mario Kart 8 get a download code for one of these specific games" but almost certainly not for all of its (however you would define) biggest releases.07/31/2014 - 11:24am
MaskedPixelanteI wonder if Nintendo is going to be doing "buy one get one free" promos for all their biggest releases going forward.07/31/2014 - 10:48am
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.mcvuk.com/news/read/special-report-retail-revolt-over-pc-code-strippers/013614007/31/2014 - 8:27am
ZippyDSMleeWouldn't they be able to afford and get done in a timely manner a general gba emluator for the 3DS? It seems to me if they want to make money off sales they need to do it.07/31/2014 - 7:25am
Sora-ChanAmbassador program, that's what I was looking for. Anyway the other games that have been made no longer exclusive to the early adopters got updates in their software. It'll only be a matter of time more than likely for the GBA to get the same treatment.07/31/2014 - 5:35am
Sora-ChanI might be naming it incorrectly when I say "founder" i mean the program for earlier adopters.07/31/2014 - 5:34am
Sora-Chanthe 3DS's GBA emulator was a rush job due to the founder program. No other GBA titles have been released on the 3DS yet. If/When they do get around to it, they'll more than likely update the emulation software.07/31/2014 - 5:32am
Zenemulator...it's not just a slap job that makes "some" work..they do it for each which is why they work so well. I would rather have the quality over just a slap job.07/30/2014 - 5:48pm
ZenMatthew there is a difference between "worked" and "accurate". You play the Nintendo VC titles they play as damn close to the original as possible. The PSP would just run them as best they could, issues and all. And Masked...EACH VC title has their own07/30/2014 - 5:48pm
MaskedPixelanteOnce again, the 3DS already HAS a GBA emulator, it just can't run at the same time as the 3DS OS.07/30/2014 - 4:54pm
Matthew Wilsonyou cant street pass in ds mode ether, and if moders can make a gba emulator that runs very well on the psp as I understand it. you are telling me that Nintendo devs are not as good as moders?07/30/2014 - 4:49pm
Zenperformance. Halo 1 and 2 worked great because they actually did custom work on each of them...just like Nintendo does now lol07/30/2014 - 4:08pm
Zenexisting hardware while the GBA has to be emulated completely. Same reason the 360 couldn't run most Original Xbox games correctly, or had issues because they just did "blanket approach" for their emulation which led to game killing bugs or horrible07/30/2014 - 4:07pm
 

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