Congressional Gun Violence Prevention Task Force Calls for More Research on Violent Video Games

February 8, 2013 -

Yesterday Congressman Mike Thompson (D-CA) released "A Comprehensive Plan That Reduces Gun Violence and Respects the 2nd Amendment Rights of Law-Abiding Americans," which details the recommendations of the " Congressional Gun Violence Prevention Task Force." While there are plenty of recommendations on guns and curbing gun violence, mental health issues and school safety, there is a portion of the report dedicated to violent media.

UK Tabloid Highlights Questionable 'Nerd Calendar'

January 30, 2013 -

The UK tabloid The Sun is running a feature length story about a saucy calendar featuring gaming and scantily clad women that is apparently all the rage in Germany - right alongside David Hasselhoff... The article is titled "Nerd is the word," and highlights the fact that the "calendar featuring classic gaming consoles and sexy girls" is a "big hit.." We think it's a big miss personally because it objectifies women in the name of geek culture.

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Gazillion Boss Defends Pricy Content Pack for Marvel Heroes

January 21, 2013 -

Dave Brevik of Gazillion, the developer behind the upcoming Marvel Heroes free-to-play MMO action game, is defending a pricey content pack for the game that costs well over $100. The pack, the Marvel Heroes Ultimate Pack, gives players every hero and costume the game, as well as in-game currency and early access prior to the game's launch. Being that this is a free-to-play title some have scoffed at the huge price tag for the package, but Brevik doesn't think it's that big of a deal.

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Deep Silver Apologizes for Statue in Dead Island Riptide Zombie Bait Edition

January 15, 2013 -

A special edition of Dead Island Riptide announced today has put publisher Deep Silver in some hot water with fans for some extras that many consider incredibly tasteless and gross. Deep Silver announced this morning the Dead Island: Riptide Zombie Bait Edition, which comes with a myriad of extras including a statue of a bloody headless and armless bikini clad female torso wearing the Union Jack colors. Another special edition of the game called the "Rigor Mortis" edition comes packed with zombie hula girl bobble figurine, a zombie arm bottle opener, and a wooden keychain.

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Massachusetts Department of Transportation Pulls 'Violent' Arcade Games From Turnpike Service Areas

January 11, 2013 -

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation has removed several arcade games from a state Rest Stop after citizens complained about it because it is fairly close to Newtown, Connecticut. According to a Boston Globe report, Andrew Hyams, his wife Tracey, and their son Josh, said that hearing people playing arcade games at a rest stop in Charlton on the Massachusetts Turnpike on Christmas Eve reminded them of the of the Newtown massacre.

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Business Roundtable Endorses Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act

January 10, 2013 -

Trade organization the Business Roundtable issued a 32-page report this week backing the approach taken by the House of Representatives to fight cybersecurity threats. That approach, the bill called the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), passed the House. The Senate proposed another bill called the Cybersecurity Act of 2012. The House bill passed, but the President didn't think it offered enough protections for American Internet users' privacy rights.

Dubbed a Success, Microsoft Promises More Xbox Live Ads

January 9, 2013 -

If you don't care too much for those ads on Xbox Live.. well too bad, because more are coming, according to Microsoft. Apparently taking a page from Hulu Plus where subscribers who pay a monthly subscription are still forced to watch ads, Microsoft says that the first wave of NUads (or "natural user-interface ads"), which were deployed in the fourth quarter of 2012, were "highly successful" and that it plans to put additional investment in the space.

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Former Virginian Republican State Senate Candidate Fights for Spam Using Net Neutrality Rules

December 13, 2012 -

Former Virginia Republican State Senate Candidate and online mass marketer Jason Flanary is asking the Federal Communications Commission to whitelist "political messaging" (or spam as many who receive it but don't want it call it) or declare bulk messaging and email as general protected free speech. He is doing this under the idea that limiting messaging is a violation of his free speech rights and net neutrality rules.

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Sega Targets 'Shining Force' Videos on YouTube

November 30, 2012 -

According to this Reddit thread Sega has been forcing YouTube users to remove videos relating to the Sega Saturn hit strategy RPG Shining Force III. Many are speculating that Sega is doing this to prepare for the launch of a new PSP installment in the Shining series, Shining Ark, which will launch in Japan in February.

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Far Cry 3 PC Gets Launch-Day Update

November 29, 2012 -

Ubisoft says that when Far Cry 3 is released on PC in Europe and North America, players will have to download what they categorize as a "critical" day-one patch for the game. The version 1.01 patch fixes a number of single and multiplayer bugs, promises improved stability and performance in multiplayer, adds options to the game's online leaderboard, fixes a voice chat issue that mutes players by default, fixes graphical issues on loading screen hints, and a bug that prevents maps from showing up the first time a user enters Public co-op play.

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Reader Details Wal-Mart Black Friday Game Sale Discrepancies

November 23, 2012 -

A regular GamePolitics reader (who has asked to remain anonymous) points out that something is a little screwy with Wal-Mart's prices listed in its ads and how they ring up at the cash register. His tale begins with this leaked Black Friday flyer at theblackfriday.com, which shows select video games with price points set at $10, $15,and $25.

5 comments | Read more

New XBLA Karaoke Game to Charge By the Hour

November 19, 2012 -

Today Microsoft announced an upcoming app from Microsoft and The Karaoke Channel that lets you try your best to be a Karaoke King or Queen using an estimated 8,000 tracks using your avatar and the Kinect. Sound good, right? Well it turns out that Microsoft has decided that it will charge users who want to play this game by the hour - funds to be paid in Microsoft Points. While Microsoft has yet to reveal just how much it will cost you per-hour to play this game, this marks the first time that the company has monetized any game in this way.

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Nintendo ID Requires Credit Card Verification For Minors

November 19, 2012 -

The new ID system for Nintendo Wii U, Nintendo ID, requires that minors have a valid credit card on hand for identification. According to this news story and screengrab from Joystiq, the credit card is charged a "one-time $0.50 fee via credit card to provide consent for minors to access Nintendo Network." We assume the charge is to verify the credit card as well.

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Xbox Live's Ridiculous Halo 4 Promotion

November 8, 2012 -

Hey kids!  Do you have absolutely nothing better to do this month than play Halo 4 every day for hours on end?

If so, Xbox Live's "Halo 4 Combat Tour Offer" might be right up your alley!

This month, you can earn Microsoft points by playing Halo 4 in multiplayer mode.

 

5 comments | Read more

SCE France Print Ad Uses Breasts to Promote PS Vita Touch Screens

November 1, 2012 -

A new print ad from Sony Computer Entertainment France is getting some attention for pushing the boundaries of sexism to promote the company's PS Vita hand-held. The ad (pictured left and courtesy of MCV) shows a female body with four breasts and compares those four breasts to the PS Vita's front and rear touch screens.

The tagline for the ad is "Touch both sides, twice the sensations."

Some are chalking the ad up to what is acceptable in French advertising and cultural standards.

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Serious Sam 3 Publisher Encourages Gamers to Criticize Medal of Honor for a Free Copy of Its Game

October 30, 2012 -

Serious Sam 3 publisher Devolver Digital is urging fans to openly criticize EA's newest Medal of Honor game for a free copy its first-person shooter.

"During this busy season of video game releases the team at Devolver Digital realize that not every game will live up to expectations. One such game has been Medal of Honor: Warfighter – yet another military shooter where cover is king and most folks spend their time peeking out from behind a wall or a strategically placed concrete barrier," a post on the Devolver site reads.

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Super Podcast Action Committee - Episode 25

October 23, 2012 -

In Episode 25 of the Super Podcast Action Committee hosts Andrew Eisen and E. Zachary Knight talk about what happens when a fully funded Kickstarter project (in this case the game Haunts: The Manse Macabre) fails to become reality, the wisdom of knowing when to shut down a failing Kickstarter campaign (the focus of that topic being Loot Drop's attempts to fund the 'Old School RPG'), the latest on the "six strikes" copyright enforcement scheme adopted by U.S. ISPs, Andrew's latest video, and the horrors of using voice chat on Nintendo's Wii U.

Report: Former RIAA Lobbyist Firm Hired as Independent Technical Expert to Review 'Six Strikes' System

October 22, 2012 -

Next month the "Six Strikes" system to deal with online piracy and illegal file-sharing will be fully operational in the United States. The new rules - mutually agreed on by several major ISP's and trade groups representing intellectual property holders (the RIAA, and the MPAA) required that copyright infringement claims be investigated by an external company. This was one of the sticking points for ISPs and rightsholders seemed to happily comply.

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ISPs Prepare Alert System to Fight Illegal File-Sharing Among Subscribers

October 17, 2012 -

Illegal file-sharers beware: there's a new sheriff in town and its name is whoever your service provider happens to be... AT&T, Verizon, Comcast and other Internet service providers are about to launch a copyright alert system to curtail illegal peer-to-peer file sharing of copyrighted material "over the next several weeks," according to Jill Lesser, the executive director of the Center for Copyright Information.

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Secretary of Defense Calls for Passage of Cybersecurity Legislation, Warns of 'Cyber-Pearl Harbor'

October 12, 2012 -

United States Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta is sounding the alarm bells about cyber terrorist attacks, saying that passing the CISPA bill or enacting some kind of executive order to implement protections are necessary to avoid what he calls "Cyber-Pearl Harbor."

He says that the U.S. should act preemptively to protect "national interests in cyberspace" by working fastidiously on some sort of safeguards for critical infrastructure.

Bridgestone Responds to Sony's 'Kevin Butler' Lawsuit

October 9, 2012 -

Bridgestone Tires has responded to a Sony lawsuit claiming that a recent Bridgestone tire ad featuring actor Jerry Lambert infringed on its IP. Sony alleges that Lambert was playing fictional PlayStation executive Kevin Butler in its new ad which featured lab technicians playing Mario Kart on the Wii. According to a Bridgestone representative, the actor who plays Kevin Butler simply appeared in the commercial as one of the company's engineers.

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U.S. House Intelligence Committee Chair Pushes CISPA

October 5, 2012 -

Throwing out the specter of a new cyber threat from a country not usually associated with such activities, Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), the chair of the U.S. House Intelligence Committee, is making a final push to get the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act through the lame duck session of Congress by saying that this threat from an unnamed source is on the horizon. In a speech this week before the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Rogers tried to play up the threat and claimed urgency for the adoption of CISPA or something like it.

Kixeye Fires Four Employees after Complaints of 'Institutional Racism'

October 4, 2012 -

Following up on yesterday's accusation by an employee that social game developer Kixeye engaged in "institutional racism," four employees have been fired today. The accusations were made by an unnamed contractor who wrote a blog post under the name of Qu33riousity. He claimed yesterday that he was the victim of racial discrimination and has also seen it directed at others.

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Silly Rumor: Valve in Discussions with NCsoft and Nexon about Possible Merger

September 27, 2012 -

South Korean publication Joongang News (by way of GamesBeat) may be reading WAY TOO MUCH into a meeting between Nexon, NCsoft and Valve Software in South Korea this week.

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GameStop Offers Wii U Waiting List, But Only for PowerUp Rewards Members

September 26, 2012 -

Yesterday we reported that retailer GameStop halted its pre-orders for both models of Nintendo's Wii U console. Today the retailer wants those who didn't get in on the action to get in on a waiting list. The problem is it's only for PowerUp Rewards members. A cynical person would suggest that this is all some clandestine plan by GameStop to boot its PowerUp Rewards membership numbers.

From the FAQ:

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Saints Row The Third GOTY Gets Sexy Name

September 24, 2012 -

Continuing to push the envelope ever-so-slightly, THQ announced that the next retail release to its popular and sometimes adult themed third-person sandbox action game Saints Row The Third will happen on November 6 and will be called "The Full Package." No one will ever think there's something sexually suggestive about that title... Whatever happened to calling this kind of compilation a "Game of the Year" Edition?

3 comments | Read more

iOS Developer Outs 'Pay-for-Review' Sites

August 30, 2012 -

One developer who is angry over web sites charging for expedited reviews of mobile game apps has decided to publicly call the web sites out. Luckily most people who consider themselves even casual gamers have never heard of these web sites, but apparently they have been running a racket for quite some time.

3 comments | Read more

Black Isle Studios is Back... Sort Of

August 27, 2012 -

You may have heard the announcement that "Black Isle Studios is back," but is it really? The Interplay label responsible for such role-playing game hits as Baldur's Gate, Icewind Dale, Planescape Torment, and many others may be back but it is in name only and the developers that once wandered its hallowed halls are somewhere else working on such games as the upcoming enhanced edition of Baldur's Gate and a South Park PRG.

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AC3 Creative Director: Japanese Developers Get a Free Pass from Journalists on Bad Story-Telling

August 17, 2012 -

In a recent interview with Computer & Video Games, Ubisoft's Alex Hutchinson, the creative director of Assassin's Creed 3, said that games journalists are engaging in subtle racism when they give Japanese games a free pass on bad or odd story-telling while putting Western games through the ringer. When asked about why Nintendo can get away with endlessly reiterating the same basic stories with games like Super Mario Bros., Hutchinson offered a blunt response.

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U.S. Wary of Proposed Internet Changes to Be Discussed at UN's ITR Meeting in December

August 3, 2012 -

While some hay is being made over the United Nations' International Telecommunication Union meeting in Dubai in December, most believe it is much ado about nothing. The way the Internet is regulated internationally will face a review in December, but the United States is already pointing out a number of changes that it will absolutely not allow under any circumstances. The regulations under review are from 1988.

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Matthew WilsonI heard reports of cheating, what else is happening?11/29/2014 - 1:28am
Papa MidnightThings are getting ugly over at the CS:GO tournament section of DreamHack Winter 201411/29/2014 - 1:27am
Matthew Wilsonhttp://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/11/music-publishers-finally-pull-the-trigger-sue-an-isp-over-piracy/ this is just stupid.11/29/2014 - 12:56am
Papa MidnightWhat Andrew Said. I also got directed to a Blu-Ray for Dragon Ball Z.11/29/2014 - 12:38am
Andrew EisenI don't get it. That's a link to a Dragon Ball Z set.11/29/2014 - 12:21am
MaskedPixelantehttps://hmv.ca/en/Search/Details?sku=763440 Real life Metroidvania.11/28/2014 - 8:33pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/nov/25/lee-rigby-report-internet-firms-safe-haven-terrorists-pm wow... come on uk really?11/28/2014 - 2:39pm
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.nintendolife.com/news/2014/11/two_tetris_downloads_to_be_removed_from_the_3ds_eshop_in_europe Tetris to be removed from the 3DS VC at the end of the year in Europe. Other regions unknown, but will probably all happen too.11/28/2014 - 9:16am
Andrew EisenThe story you just linked to? The story you asked if anyone had seen? Yes, THAT obnoxiousness. I've heard it parroted for nearly two years now.11/27/2014 - 7:57pm
ZippyDSMleeAndrew Eisen: That shes an ex con man?11/27/2014 - 7:54pm
Andrew EisenI've heard the same obnoxious horse poo for years. It's nothing new.11/27/2014 - 7:45pm
ZippyDSMleeAlso anyone see this? http://guardianlv.com/2014/11/anita-sarkeesian-unmasked-feminist-icon-or-con-artist/11/27/2014 - 7:28pm
ZippyDSMleeEvil within is a badly designed game.11/27/2014 - 7:28pm
Andrew EisenSure but you said "widens," hence my confusion. Looking into it, yep, there's a tweak to completely re-frame the image, adding more info at the top and bottom. You apparently need a fairly beefy rig to keep it running smooth when you do that though.11/27/2014 - 6:48pm
Matthew Wilsonthere is vertical fov, not just horizontal fov11/27/2014 - 6:38pm
Andrew EisenWell, you can widen it to 3:1 or even 10:1 but I don't know why you'd want to. From what I understand it's the missing visual info at the top and bottom that some object to, not that there isn't enough on either side.11/27/2014 - 6:36pm
Matthew WilsonI think it widenss the fov, so you get to see more.11/27/2014 - 6:31pm
Andrew EisenI don't see how as doing so would not add any visual information to the top or bottom of the screen.11/27/2014 - 6:04pm
Matthew Wilsonfrom what I read, getting rid of the black bars and stretching it out made for a better play experience.11/27/2014 - 5:59pm
Andrew EisenFrom what I hear, there's a ton of "look up and shoot at the guys above you" stuff in the game that the wider frame doesn't accommodate such actions well.11/27/2014 - 5:55pm
 

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