"2013 marks 35 years of video game music (Space Invaders, released in 1978 was the first game to feature a continuous soundtrack). So we took the opportunity to take a look back at some of our favourite examples of video game music and build a 19 track mashup, combining them with some other tracks we love. The tracks used vary from some of the original 8-bit tracks from the Atari, GameBoy, through '90s N64 and PS1 classics, right up to modern day symphonic epics that accompany some of today's blockbuster games." —I am at the point in life where every previous experience or memory is starting to blend together [...]
Diablo 3, a hack-and-slash role-playing game for the PC published by Blizzard (which also makes World of Warcraft), was released a month and a half ago. There was about a decade’s worth of anticipation from fans of the series who had profoundly nostalgic memories of late nights with Domino’s Pizza and cans of soda and Diablo 1 or 2 and a depressingly short AOL Instant Messenger buddy list.
Within 24 hours of Diablo 3’s May 15 release, about 3.5 million people had bought it, either that day or as a preorder. Many of them have been playing it obsessively since the release. But all is not well, because, [...]
As far as occupational hazards go there are far worse ones than my personal burden of being the guy who sees a news item about a Sega videogame for the bathroom that is operated by the force of one's micturition and shaking his head in the knowledge that the story is over a year old. So I won't be so quick to dismiss it, especially when one of the games is described thus:
'Battle! Milk From Nose' is a multiplayer game where you compete against the person who last used the urinal. The strength of your urine streams are compared, and translated into milk spraying out [...]
"Text-based adventure games are often perceived as a pixelated debacle of trolls, orcs and wizards, testing the patience of the player as they travel down a road stolen from Tolkein’s imagination. However, a little known independent video games developer named Mark Richards, has reinvented the turn based genre by adding the raucous ruling of politics into the mix. He has reconstructed the parliamentary roleplaying that is the Prime Minister’s Questions, into a homemade pixelated game." —Somebody go try this out and let me know how it is.
"An editorial on Friday about the Supreme Court’s review of a California law barring the sale or rental of violent video games to minors incorrectly described the content of three games. Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, Postal 2, and Duke Nukem 3D graphically depict many repellent acts. They do not depict rape." —What happens when people defend the right of unpleasant speech who have still never walked a mile in Tommy Vercetti's shoes. Still, a counterpoint: "Wait, does getting your money back from a hooker by beating her up count as rape?"
People are hot for The New Theories about violent videogames and violent popular art in relation to the crime rate. Already back in 2008, one study thought perhaps "violent films prevent violent crime by attracting would-be assailants and keeping them cloistered in darkened, alcohol-free environs." Now some are thinking much the same about Grand Theft Auto, et al. (Also probably Mario Brothers. Really do you know what the body count is in Mario, if you count Shellcreepers and Koopa Troopas and whatnot?) Still, the more popular view is still that the insanely high incarceration level is what keeps the current crime rate low-ish. But that sort of neglects the [...]
This Korean ad for ramen in which the group Girl's Generation sings the theme to classic videogame "Bubble Bobble" is burning up the Internets right now, and for good reason: Ramen, videogames, Korean advertising, girl groups-it's like a checklist for virality! Please do enjoy. [Via Brooklyn Radio via Idolator via, uh, our Business Guy's blog. And so the circle is unbroken.]
Oh my God, do you remember video arcades? You do? Hahahaha, that was a trick question to see who's old. And it's you! Those of you who don't remember video arcades—and, frankly, the rest of you, who are probably so forgetful at this point that most of this will come as a surprise to you—should take some time to read this article about the life and death of the American arcade.
I have very little interest in videogames, but I found this article about Jonathan Blow, apparently one of the most innovative and unique figures in the industry, fascinating. It almost makes me want to play something. Almost.
"I am pretty disappointed in this beta. This book just isn't finished! Man, there was a part in Chapter 3 where every time I turned the page, it was the same page again, over and over and over… I kept having to start over from the beginning, nothing made any sense! The translation seems off, like they're having trouble getting the words right." —The publishing of books could ACTUALLY BE WORSE: they could be published like videogames.
"The Redner Group's official Twitter account posted something you almost never see: an open threat stating that outlets who reviewed Duke Nukem Forever poorly may not receive review copies of games in the future. Anyone who has done this job for any amount of time has suffered through a dry spell after giving a publisher a bad review, but this is the first time the threat of a blacklist has been made public." They've since apologized, but, yow. (via
This makes me SICK TO MY STOMACH.
On Oct. 12 Electronic Arts, one of the world's biggest game publishers, is set to release a first-person combat title called Medal of Honor. Developed with advice from elite American special forces, the new game is set during Operation Anaconda, part of the Western war in Afghanistan that followed the Sept. 11 attacks.
So far, so conventional. But in Medal of Honor's online multiplayer mode, in which teams of players battle over the Internet, one side in each match will be the Americans and the other side will play the role of Taliban fighters.
It's a very special day today: Pac-Man, perhaps the world's most popular arcade game, turns 30 years old. We checked in on IM with Pac-Man himself to see how he was celebrating the big event.
BALK: Hey, buddy, happy birthday. dotmuncher80: Dude, don't even. I've spent all morning trying to forget about it.
There are two ways to think about Q -Bert. Or not. Maybe there are an indefinite number of ways. Look at all this punctuation.
"Punctuation," the word, always sounded to me like the name of some creepy camp in Pennsylvania, like the one, not the one next to, but the one next to the one next to Crystal Lake.
( ) : ; look at that shit.
Will the release of Halo 4 "keep dedicated players from voting"? Um, I hope so?
"It’s a deeply strange artifact: an A4-sized, full color glossy affair, abundantly illustrated with captioned photographs, screen shots, and lavish illustrations of exploding space ships and lunar landscapes. It boasts a perfunctory introduction by Steven Spielberg ('read this book and learn from young Martin’s horrific odyssey round the world’s arcades before you too become a video-junkie'), complete with full-page portrait of the Hollywood Boy Wonder leaning awkwardly against an arcade machine like some sort of geeky, high-waisted Fonz. We’re not even into the text proper, and already its cup runneth over with 100-proof WTF." —Mark O'Connell examines Invasion of the Space Invaders: An Addict’s Guide to Battle Tactics, Big [...]
“You can actually make it to the front. I did it yesterday and it took 5 hours. But once you get to the front, you can stare into her eyes for as long as you want.” —Computer game research professor Pippin Barr discusses his videogame "The Artist Is Present," which "simulates the experience of waiting in line to see contemporary artist Marina Abramović, who held an exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 2010" of the same name. It's a funny old world. [Vaguely related]
Deep Silver, the publishers-to-be of the videogame "Dead Island," claimed yesterday that they hadn't yet sold film rights to their as-of-yet unfinished and unreleased product, in development since basically forever, despite reports to the contrary. Here's a working theory about this unusual event (the "Dead Island" trailer: has like 2.5 million views, from the last five days): "My theory: Deep Silver knew Dead Island was in video game purgatory and they needed something to gauge the interest in it to determine if they should shelve it or issue yet another release date. So they came up with this bit of cinematic genius, something that would go viral [...]
A new videogame will help middle school students learn how to say no when sex pops up its head and rubs its firm, grasping hands up and down their bodies. Or something. I don't know. I thought videogames were already a good way of preventing sex.
The Beatles: Rock Band did okay: in September, in the U.S., it sold 595,000 units. That's just decent. But the thing about the game is that it kind of sucks, in terms of playability. (Though it rules in terms of gorgeousness-the visuals are awesome.) As a game itself, though, there's almost nothing there. It comes with so few tracks, it isn't terribly challenging, and in terms of a "game," as in, an advancing storyline, it is abysmal. Last week, Rock Band released a Queen ten-song pack, and in terms of playability and fun, those ten Queen songs are more than ten times the fun of Beatles: Rock Band. (EVEN IF [...]