Good news from Eurogamer for gamers in the United Kingdom - you'll have one day less to wait for new releases from Electronic Arts. The company says that instead of releasing games on Fridays - as companies - including EA - have traditionally done for as long as we can remember, it will start releasing games on Thursday.
Northern Ireland's government, has recreated its region in Minecraft. The recreation of Northern Ireland was initially commissioned by Finance minister Arlene Foster and is a free download for PC and Mac versions of Mojang and Microsoft's popular game.
The mod was developed using Land & Property Service's Ordnance Survey NI (OSNI) digital mapping data. It spans across nearly 14,000 square kilometers.
In a release dated June 4, 2015 UK regulatory agency the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) revealed that it has referred three online games to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) to consider whether to launch investigations. The games, which were not revealed in the release, are being looked into specifically for questionable marketing of in-app micro-purchases aimed at children/their parents.
Remember when ripping DVDs and music CDS for personal use was legal in the United Kingdom? Well those days are officially over thanks to a new court ruling. Ars Technica reports that the 2014 regulation that made it legal to make personal copies of "performances" has been nullified.
The BBC is giving away a million free computers to every grade seven child, according to this report in Eurogamer. The computer, billed as the "BBC micro:bit," is a pocket-sized, codeable computer - and one million have been earmarked for every 11 or 12-year-old child in year 7 or equivalent in the UK for free.
If you are a game developer living in England then you might want to attend GunsGamesGiving (G3 - get it?), a one-day clay pigeon shooting contest for teams of four. The event is designed to benefit worthy UK-based game-related charity Special Effect. It will take place at Gosterwood Manor in Surrey on August 28 and you can get tickets here.
While the PC version of Batman Arkham Knight might be having some serious technical issues, these problems don't appear to be affecting sales - at least early ones - if you believe the latest numbers from the UK collected by Chart Track. According to Chart-Track sales data from last week, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment's latest Batman game is the biggest release of 2015 so far, stealing The Wither 3: Wild Hunt's title and knocking The Elder Scrolls Online from the top spot.
According to data collected through a new TIGA survey of "new" British game developers, there appears to be a trend towards making games more for the PC. According to the trade group representing British game developers, more than half of all new developers launched in the UK during 2014 are primarily focused on the PC, showing that some are moving away from mobile game development. Around 52 percent of British games companies started in 2014 are focused on the PC, versus 35 percent on mobile.
Actor Bill Paxton says that the upcoming Grand Theft Auto film will show Take-Two and Rockstar on a collision course with the former lawyer and anti-game crusader Jack Thompson. In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Paxton (who plays Thompson in the made-for-TV movie "Game Changer" that is being produced by the BBC) said that the film focuses on the drawn-out fight between the makers of GTA and Thompson, who claimed that the game(s) had an undue influence on young people.
Pro-consumer BBC television program "Watchdog" will take on Sony over its digital refunds policy related to its home console systems tonight, GamesIndustry.biz reports. The episode is the result of some high profile complaints against Sony's refund policy for digital goods on the PS3 - with a particular focus on a victim of identity theft named John Lappin.
The United Kingdom Interactive Entertainment (Ukie) has added executives from Candy Crush maker King and Electronic Arts to its board of directors.
The trade group representing the interactive entertainment industry in the United Kingdom has added two new board members to replace Kate Booth and Keith Ramsdale, who are stepping down. They are being replaced by EA UK country manager Shaun Campbell and King's chief legal officer Rob Miller.
According to this Eurogamer report, UK-based retailer GAME is informing customers that a truck carrying copies of the Wii U game Splatoon and various Amiibo figures was hijacked and stolen. According to GAME, the truck, which was coming from Nintendo's European headquarters and going to GAME's UK warehouse, never made it to its destination.
The BBC's movie about the making of Grand Theft Auto has just run into a mountain-sized obstacle: Take Two Interactive. The publisher of the series and the owner of Rockstar Games is suing the BBC over its upcoming film based on the book, Jacked: The Outlaw Story of Grand Theft Auto.
Grand Theft Auto series creator Rockstar Games released a statement written by parent company Take Two Interactive announcing that it was suing the BBC for trademark infringement.
This week's numbers for retail sales in the United Kingdom via Chart-Track reveal that Grand Theft Auto V has sold over five million copies in the UK since launch - and those sales numbers apparently don't include digital sales (Steam, etc.). The last official tally from Rockstar - at the end of December 2014 - noted that 45 million copies of the game had been shipped worldwide.
Last week Zynga announced that, despite decent profits, it would be laying off 18 percent of its workforce. It looks like the first studio to feel the results of that plan is developer NaturalMotion. According to sources close to the situation who spoke to Eurogamer today, 20 people have been laid off at NaturalMotion's QA department. According to those sources, that leaves around five employees in the department. Zynga bought the UK-based studio in 2014.
UK watchdog agency the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) is taking Sony to task over the way the company and retailer GAME handled a competition to buy its 20th Anniversary Edition console. Only 12,300 units of the 20th Anniversary Edition PS4 were made available for purchase worldwide, and only a small portion of those systems were sold in the UK. The systems were highly coveted by consumers, so when Sony and GAME rolled out a competition in December of last year to have the privilege of buying one, people were excited.
Electronic Arts was named "Publisher of the Year" at last week's MCV Pacific Awards 2015 gala event. Winners of the UK-based games industry awards were chosen by 227 members of the industry to honor individuals and companies in 16 categories. Other winners included retailer EB Games (Online Retailer of the Year), Destiny (Marketing Campaign of the Year), and PlayStation Store (Digital Retailer of the Year).
The UK version of Microsoft's Xbox One console has received a price cut, according to a report in Eurogamer this morning. The new price point is £299.99, down from £329.99.
Rights groups Amnesty International, Liberty and Privacy International, and others have announced that it will take its fight against security agencies such as GCHQ in the United Kingdom conducting mass surveillance and data collection on British citizens to Europe's highest court.
According to this wild report in the Independent, parents who let their young children play games like Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty could be reported to police and children’s social care as it is being negligent.
A new report from UK-based market research firm Childwise claims that screen time among children has dramatically increased over the last twenty years. Details from the research, "The Connected Kids," were revealed today in a detailed BBC report. This biggest takeaway is that children in the UK spend at least six hours a day in front of a screen.
GamesIndustry International reports that during UK-based children's charity SpecialEffect's February GameBlast charity gaming weekend, it managed to rake in over £120,000 in donations, surpassing last year's total by an impressive £50,000.
"We are genuinely blown away by the huge amount of support that we've had from gamers and the gaming industry all over the world," said CEO Mick Donegan.
Play.com has shut down, with the once popular gaming destination redirecting to Japanese retail specialist Rakuten's UK website (www.rakuten.co.uk), according to MCV. Rakuten bought the website back in 2011 for around £25 million. After that purchase, the website no longer sold products directly and became a marketplace for third-party retailers to hawk their wares.
Rakuten didn't disclose why it decided to shut down in a statement to MCV today:
EA's cops vs. robbers game is having a good showing in the United Kingdom, according to new data from Gfk Chart-Track. EA's Battlefield Hardline debuted at the top spot in the Gfk Chart-Track Top 40, and is the biggest launch of 2015 so far in the region. For perspective, the last title in the series, Battlefield 4, debuted on the same UK charts in Nov. of 2013 at number two.
The BBC will give away one million micro computing devices to children in the UK as part of its "Make It Digital" initiative. Through this initiative, the BBC will distribute a wearable coding device called a "Micro Bit" to every year 7 student (ages 11 to 13) in the country, totalling one million devices.
Destiny won the top honor today at the 2015 BAFTA Games Awards, picking up the Best Game award. Bungie's online shooter managed to beat out such heavyweights as Monument Valley, Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, Dragon Age: Inquisition, Mario Kart 8, and Alien: Isolation.
Monument Valley was the only game to pick up two awards - the British Game award and Mobile & Handheld award.
Lumino City picked up the Artistic Achievement award, while Alien Isolation won for Best Audio, and Never Alone won the Debut Game award.
SpecialEffect's GameBlast charity gaming marathon weekend now has garnered £80,000 in pledged donations, according to Games Industry International. That is a substantial improvement from the money raised at last year's event - £70,000. In case you didn't know, the UK-based charity helps people with physical disabilities by providing support and special equipment to enable them to play games.
A couple from South Yorkshire, England are currently on trial for their part in giving their infant son brain damage. According to a report in The Star, the couple (who are not named) played a newly launched "Call of Duty" video game while their four-month-old son lay in his crib with a severe brain injury, according to what the court was told by prosecutors at the couple's ongoing trial.