UK Man Arrested For Christmas Day Attacks on Xbox Live and PlayStation Network

January 16, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

A series of tweets this morning from the official Twitter account for the UK law enforcement agency South East Regional Organized Crime Unit reveals that an unnamed 18-year-old has been arrested in South Port, England for his alleged part in the Christmas day dedicated denial of service (DDoS) attacks that took both PlayStation Network and Xbox Live offline.

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GamesAid Appoints New Trustee

January 13, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

UK-based gaming-related charity GamesAid announced the appointment of a new trustee. Green Man Gaming's Tracey McGarrigan has joined the charity as a trustee. McGarrigan has been an enthusiastic participant over the years in various GamesAid efforts including taking part in a concert, a marathon and a charity bike ride across Europe.

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BBC Radio Asks: Can Video Games Be A Sport?

January 13, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

On Thursday, January 15, BBC Radio 5 Live will present a segment called "Gaming: Rise of the Cyber Athlete." The show will air from 8:30pm-10pm (UK time) on January 15, and will explore whether playing games professionally is a legitimate sport. The BBC website will also offer an online iWonder guide on Wednesday at midnight.

The show will be hosted by radio presenter OJ Borg and guests will include Team Dignitas manager Michael O'Dell (ODEE) and PlayStation racing champ Jann Mardenborough.

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BBC On The Hunt For Game Development Partnerships

January 9, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) is on the hunt for a few good studios to develop games based on its most popular series, according to this Develop report. BBC Worldwide's Game team will be visiting London Mobile Games event later this month, seeking any development and partnership opportunities that will benefit their biggest IPs like Doctor Who and Sherlock.

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UK Politician Not Pleased With Student Parody Game

December 22, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

UKIP leader Nigel Farage is a bit upset with a group of Canterbury, England students for developing a game that spoofs both him and his political party. According to a Kent Online report (by way of MCV) the game is called UKIK, and charges players to take control of a character named Nicholas Fromage.

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Valve's Chet Faliszek To Host Developer Sessions at EGX Rezzed 2015

December 17, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Valve Software's Chet Faliszek will host a developer session at EGX Rezzed 2015. EGX Rezzed is a consumer friendly event dedicated to PC, indie and console gaming taking place March 12-14, 2015 at Tobacco Dock, London.

Faliszek is best known for his writing on Half-Life, Portal, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Left 4 Dead. more details about the developer session are to be announced in January.

Organizers also announced that the following games will be playable during the event.

  -  Adventure Box. City building multiplayer RPG.

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UK Spy Agency Releases 'Fun and Free' Cryptography App for Kids

December 15, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), the UK agency dedicated to surveillance and other hush hush top-secret stuff has released its own Android app to teach secondary school students about cryptography. The app is "free and fun," though it is from the same agency known for cooperating the National Security Agency in a number of surveillance and spying programs around the world.

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Tiga: Video Games Should Officially Be Recognized As Art

December 12, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

UK video games industry trade body Tiga says that games should officially be recognized as art. Speaking to BBC's Newsbeat program, Tiga CEO Dr. Richard Wilson said that video games should officially be classified as cultural products on the same level as Television, film, animation, etc.

British Tory MP Caught Playing 'Candy Crush Saga' During Important Hearing

December 8, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The Guardian reports that Conservative Amber Valley MP Nigel Mills was caught in a photo taken by British newspaper The Sun playing Candy crush Saga on his phone during a meeting of the "works and pensions" committee.

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The Writer's Guild of Great Britain Names 2014 Awards Nominees

December 5, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The Writer's Guild of Great Britain has released its short list for its 2014 writing awards today. The 2014 Writers’ Guild of Great Britain annual Awards will take place at RIBA in London on January 19, 2015. Sandi Toksvig will be this year's presenter at the awards.

"As a long-standing member of the Writers’ Guild I am delighted to be presenting the WGGB Awards,” said Sandi Toksvig. “I am looking forward to an evening of fun and fanfare."

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UK ASA Agency Will Not Punish Gameloft Over Micro-Transactions in 'Littlest Pet Shop' Game

December 3, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The U.K.-based Advertising Standards Authority has decided pursue a complaint against Gameloft over one parent's complaint that its free-to-play mobile game Littlest Pet Shop is specifically designed to exploit children by "coercing them" into making in-app purchases.

While the ASA's ruling acknowledged that the Gameloft game targeted young children, it also noted that the developers of the game put enough warnings in place so that both parents and the player would know about the microtransaction scheme and could oversee their children's use of it.

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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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Thirteen Games Selected for UK Tax Relief Program

November 26, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The British Film Institute, which awards certificates for tax credits from the British government, has selected 13 projects - two of which are being kept secret - which passed the cultural test and will get tax relief.

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Boston Man Sentenced for Attempted Murder of UK Girlfriend He Met in 'RuneScape'

November 24, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Twenty-year-old Boston man Shane Coffey has been sentenced in the UK for attempting to kill his online girlfriend and her brother in their Hook Road, Epsom, Surrey home on April 18. Coffey met 19-year-old Farha Dowlut in the online MMORPG Runescape when she was 13-years-old. They became close friends and later began dating online. Over the years they spent time gaming and chatting online. Dowlut eventually broke off the relationship because she feared that her Muslim family would not approve (because Coffey was not a Muslim).

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Layoffs May Hit 'Transformers Universe' Development Team at Jagex

November 11, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

UK-based RuneScape and Transformers Universe studio Jagex has confirmed with GII that it is currently in a consultation process with members of its staff assigned to work on its Transformers Universe MMO game project. The company says that some of those staffers may secure new roles on other Jagex games, while others face layoffs.

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Sumo Digital Buys Back Its Independence

November 11, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed and LittleBigPlanet 3 developer Sumo Digital has completed a management buyout, acquiring itself from parent company Foundation 9 Entertainment today. The UK-based studio was acquired by mega development studio Foundation 9 back in 2007, and has collaborated on big-name titles and built its own games since then.

The studio was able to buy itself back from Foundation 9 thanks mostly to cash from private equity firm NorthEdge Capital.

NorthEdge did not disclose how much it invested in Sumo Digital.

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Women in Games Jobs Appoints New CEO

November 3, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Jenny Richards-Stewart is the new CEO of Women in Games Jobs. Richards-Stewart previously worked as CEO at the Gremlin Group and as the chair of the board of governors at UK games industry charity GamesAid. Prior to that she worked for six years at the Paddington Academy. Richards-Stewart took on the position because she was keen to help the organization to promote equality within the games industry.

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'Papers, Please' Wins GameCity Prize

October 30, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Nottingham, England-based video game festival GameCity has awarded Papers, Please with the fourth annual GameCity Prize, an award that "celebrates videogames as a cultural art form." Indie game developer Lucas Pop's "dystopian document thriller" joins previous winners Spaceteam (2013), Journey (2012), and Minecraft (2011).

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TIGA Proposes Tax Relief Scheme For Training

October 27, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Video game industry trade group TIGA has called on the British government to greenlight tax relief that can be put towards helping small business - including video game studios - train their employees in important technical and productivity skills.

These tax breaks would be open to small to medium-sized businesses and would allow them to offset expenditures on employee training, continuous professional development and education outreach activities against corporation tax.

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London Mayor Slams UK TTIP Protestors

October 21, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

London Mayor Boris Johnson has called those critical of the US-EU trade deal (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership) "numskulls" and "left-wingers." In his regular column in The Telegraph, Johnson described the protest in the UK over TTIP as spreading panic and fear. His focus is mainly on critics of the trade agreement that are worried about the "irreversible privatization" of England's national healthcare system.

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UK Wants to Add Stricter Penalties to Cyberbullying Laws

October 20, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

UK Justice secretary Chris Grayling has put forth a proposal that would add serious punishment for anyone convicted of online abuse. Currently, those convicted of cyber bullying crimes - using sexually offensive, verbally abusive or threatening material online - can only be imprisoned for a maximum of six months in the UK courts. If Grayling has his way that penalty would be quadrupled to a maximum of two years.

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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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UK Consumers Can Now Legally Make Backup Copies of Music, Movies, and More

October 1, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

A new law in the United Kingdom makes it legal for citizens to make backups of their legally purchased CDs, MP3s, DVDs, Blu-rays and e-books. Consumers can store these backup copies on home PCs or in the cloud, according to the BBC. Obviously it is still illegal to share these backup copies with friends, family, or with the Internet community at large. Prior to this change in the law, it was illegal to rip CDs locally or for use with iTunes.

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Ukie Elects Ten New Board Members

September 26, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

UK video game industry trade group Ukie announced 10 new board members.

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UK Government Teams With Industry Leaders For 'The Next Gen Skills Academy'

September 25, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Several major publishers doing business in the United Kingdom have teamed up with the British government to fund a whole new generation of game designers, according to Gamasutra. Sony Computer Entertainment Europe and Ubisoft Reflections have teamed up with the British government to back The Next Gen Skills Academy, which will fund video game developers, visual effects and animation professionals.

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Report: 'Destiny' Drives PS4 Sales in the UK

September 19, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Apparently Destiny's release in the UK helped increase sales of Sony's PS4 console in the region dramatically. PS4 sales rose by a phenomenal 300 percent week-on-week during the launch of Destiny, according to MCV - citing a source with access to unreleased Chart-Track data.

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TIGA Calls for $4.9 Million in Annual Government-Backed Funding for UK Game Developers

September 12, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

UK video game trade body TIGA has put forth a proposal calling on the British government to create a new Creative Content Fund for video games to the tune of £3 million ($4.9 million) annually. Last month the British government finalized tax breaks for video game production cost to companies that create games that can pass a British cultural test. Naturally TIGA was delighted with this news, after fighting several years to get them on behalf of the shrinking video game industry, but now the trade group wants more.

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One Million PS4s Sold in the UK Since Release

September 9, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

One million PlayStation 4 consoles have been sold in the United Kingdom since launch, according to an announcement from Sony, making its current-generation console the "one of the fasted selling systems in UK history."

At launch in the UK, Sony sold 250,000 units in the first few days of availability, surpassing the Wii U's lifetime total in the country in short order.

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Sports Interactive Dominates at SpecialEffect Soccer Fives Charity Event

September 8, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

UK-based gamer charity SpecialEffect announced the winners of SpecialEffect Soccer Fives and that it managed to raise a cool £3000 for its ongoing mission of helping individuals with disabilities find new and exciting ways to play video games. The soccer event took place last Friday in the shadow of Wembley Stadium, with the Sports Interactive (makers of the Football Manager series) team winning the 2014 SpecialEffect Soccer Fives Trophy by beating out RuneScape maker Jagex.

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Help GamesAid Decide Which UK Charities to Fund in 2014

September 2, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Voting has opened for which UK-based charitable organization GamesAid will support this year through various fundraising efforts. You can help them by visiting this link and casting your vote for one of the following charities. While GamesAid is a gaming-focused charity, the organization hands out donations to a wide variety of worthy causes.

This year's candidates are:

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MattsworknameInfo, Im with goth on this, the moment people start saying "You can but you shouldnt" thats a slow slide into censorship07/01/2015 - 6:05am
InfophileIn other words, you stopped when you found out it was arguing for a position you disagreed with, but before you found out why.07/01/2015 - 5:29am
Goth_Skunk"In short, anyone can write a rape scene—but should they? Chances are, the answer is no." And that's where I stopped reading.07/01/2015 - 5:11am
InfophileRelevant to our discussion of rape in fiction yesterday: http://www.wired.com/2015/06/rape-scenes/07/01/2015 - 4:58am
Mattsworknameof players, over and over for the last seveal years. Among non RPG games, which make up the vast majority of current games, I think that you still see a large scale disparity between male and female in the AAA industry.07/01/2015 - 1:36am
Mattsworknamewilson. Out of RPG players yes, thats true, and in pc ciricles im not suprised, but RPGS make a small fraction of Console games these days and while pc gaming is seeing a resurgance, MMOs are actually retracting in size , as shown by WOW losing millions07/01/2015 - 1:33am
Matthew Wilsonhere is the study to prove it. http://www.pcgamer.com/researchers-find-that-female-pc-gamers-outnumber-males/07/01/2015 - 1:17am
Matthew Wilson@matt wrong over half of rpg players, both singleplayer and mmos, are female.07/01/2015 - 1:15am
MechaCrashRight, women don't usually play AAA games because none are aimed at them because they don't play them because none are aimed at them because okay you see where I'm going with this.07/01/2015 - 1:11am
MattsworknameI think the better path is this, more games built to give you the Choice of playing as male or female, and give the females good voice actors07/01/2015 - 1:08am
Mattsworknameup more then a fraction of the AAA games industry, but they make up a much larger part of the moble market.07/01/2015 - 1:04am
Mattsworknameandrew is right, to a point, as you are seeing a slow increase of women in games, but the sales shows that the lions share of gaming money comes from a male demo, and while andrew is right that it is changing, it's gonna be a LONG time before women make07/01/2015 - 1:04am
Andrew EisenI think more professional gamblers should get into games publishing. They'll play the odds but they'll also take risks to maximize profits.06/30/2015 - 11:57pm
Andrew EisenAt the end of the day, the ball is rolling and it's rolling in the right direction. Maybe not as fast as we'd like, but it is moving. All we can do is play the games that interest us and make our thoughts known.06/30/2015 - 11:55pm
Matthew Wilsonits unfortunate that the dataset is so tiny for female leads, and is a mixed bag, so money people get the wrong idea.06/30/2015 - 11:54pm
Andrew Eisen"Duke Nukem Forever sold poorly. See? Games staring white guys don't sell!" Pretty silly thing to say.06/30/2015 - 11:50pm
Andrew EisenOr, at the very least, that gamers aren't turned off by female leads.06/30/2015 - 11:49pm
Matthew Wilsonyou would think games like metriod, portal and tomb raider would show that it work, but hopefuly those knew ones will.06/30/2015 - 11:47pm
Andrew EisenBut, luckily strides are being made and the money peoples are slowly learning that diversity -> larger targeted audience -> more potential dollars.06/30/2015 - 11:43pm
Andrew EisenSure does. That's why there should be more than just one or two attempts. (7 games at E3 with female leads and 35 with a gender option. I think it's safe to say that not all of these will fail!)06/30/2015 - 11:42pm
 

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