Is it time to Boycott Disney? Gambling in Marvel Future Fight and Star Wars Battlefront 2 Rant!

Is it time to boycott Disney? We can complain about micro-transactions, paywall characters, cool down clocks, and now slot machine loot boxes, but these game mechanics make way too much money for any developer to ignore. If the video game industry can’t police itself on fleecing customers, and introducing gambling to kids, then politicians will need to get involved. I do not want that to happen…

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SomeGadgetGuy B-Day Contest 05: Defense Grid 2 Steam Codes for the Gamers!

It’s my birthday, but YOU get the presents! Want to win a Steam code for the BEST tower defense game ever made, Defense Grid 2? Of course you do! Here’s how you can enter into this contest.


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Google Play to Use ESRB Ratings for Smartphone and Tablet Games

ESRB_EMobile gaming is often derided as “casual” gaming by console and PC gamers, but we’ve witnessed a turn in smartphone and tablet gaming, introducing sophisticated game mechanics and console quality graphics. In this age, it’s also far more likely that a kid’s first gaming experience likely won’t be on a dedicated gaming machine, but on a parent’s multipurpose phone or tablet.

In a move which further legitimizes this market, Google has announced they will be using ESRB ratings for the titles available on Google Play, to better help inform parents about what content they and their children are consuming. It’s not particularly difficult to find very mature content, and while there are age restrictions built into Google’s app store, it can sometimes take a bit of digging to find information on age appropriate material and game content. A zombie game, for instance, might feature cute cartoon walkers or rotting-flesh nightmare-inducing gore.

Using the same tags that console and PC games require is excellent for consistency, and should aid consumers in making purchasing decisions. You can read the ESRB’s full press announcement below.

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Friday Freebie: Play Hundreds of Classic Arcade Games inYour Browser at Archive.org

Screenshot (238)The Internet Archive is a terrific resource for finding old media, from classic films in the Public Domain to old versions of web sites. Recently they branched out into archiving video games, and now they’re announcing a treasure trove of classic arcade games.

Over 900 old school coin-op games are now available to play through your browser for free! They join a growing collection of consoles like the Atari 2600, Colecovision, and Sega Genesis.

It’s an easy way to waste a little time this weekend. Enjoy!

Internet Archive: Internet Arcade

Amazon To Buy Twitch for $970 Million

twitch logoWe’ve been watching this sale unfold over the last several weeks, as Google/Youtube initially pushed forward with an offer, and now Amazon has swooped in to seal the deal. Twitch will be under the Amazon umbrella of services by end of year.

Twitch is a relatively young, but insanely popular video game broadcasting service, where people can share game play and host video game content. As it was starting to struggle under the weight of its own popularity, it made sense that it would eventually get swallowed up by a larger entity. Youtube seemed likely, as it already pushes a mind boggling amount of video every day, but Amazon’s cloud services and servers should also be a huge shot in the arm for Twitch’s stability as a platform.

What should be interesting to watch is the continued battle over Copyright. Recently Youtube started muting videos of game play over music rights issues. Twitch also recently implemented a music ID scan which can mute portions of a broadcast if it detects Copyrighted audio, and whether Twitch sold to Google or Amazon, the deal probably depended in part on their plans to enforce Copyright. As Amazon is an incredibly popular media distribution service, yet they didn’t have a Youtube-like service constantly in lawyer’s sights, moving forward many gamers will be watching to see if Amazon’s approach is stricter than Google’s might have been.

You can read Amazon’s full PR below.

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Time Bending First Person Shooter ‘SuperHot’ now on Kickstarter

super hot game playWe posted about SuperHot last year, a standalone, free, indie game with a novel mechanic. Time only moves when you move.

Now it looks like the developers are looking to expand the concept and they’re turning to Kickstarter to raise funds for a follow up. In it’s first day, it’s already grabbed $88,000 towards it’s $100,000 goal. We can be fairly sure they’ll not only make that goal over the next 29 days,¬†they might need to come up with some stretch goals…

The game’s design is currently very simplistic, but the developers absolutely nailed an eerie and interesting atmosphere. With an actual budget, they’re hoping to polish up the whole experience.

It’s a killer concept, and it’ll only take $14 to snag a copy of the finished product. We’ve got more info after the jump, or you can head directly to Kickstarter to support the project.

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Microsoft Delivering XBox One Without Kinect for $399

xbox kinect 399They said it would never happen, but seeing as how even the release of Titanfall couldn’t help Microsoft close the gap on Sony PS4 sales, it would seem more drastic action was needed.

Announced via Youtube video today, Microsoft took the wraps off their plans to off consumers more pricing choices with an XBox One minus a Kinect smart camera. The reaction here has been mixed, as many early adopters were confident that there wouldn’t be a less expensive offering and ate the $100 difference between One and PS4. This also casts some doubt on what third party development there will be for the wunder-camera, if game devs don’t think every member of their audience will have one.

Does a $100 price drop (and lack of Kinect) change your mind about investing in the XBox ecosystem? Drop us a comment below!

Nintendo Unveils NFC Action Figures For Future Wii U Games

Nintendo NFC Figure 2During Nintendo’s fiscal year briefing, after announcing four straight quarters of losses and acknowledging the luke warm reception the Wii U has received, Nintendo released info they hoped would generate some excitement within their fan base.

First we got confirmation on Super Smash Brothers and Mario Kart 8, and it was announced that Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire from the Gameboy Advance will be getting remakes.

What was also announced was a new gaming platform built to leverage Nintendo’s insanely popular characters, using figurines with NFC chips built into them. Following the success of Activision’s Skylanders franchise, and Disney’s attempt at cracking that market, Nintendo has to know they’re sitting on a potential gold mine with the first party IP they own.

Nintendo NFC Figure

Dubbed “NFP”, for “Nintendo Figurine Program”, players will be able to collect figurines which are then scanned by the Wii U controller, and will be compatible with various software title. Small pieces of information can be stored on the action figures, so while the exact plans haven’t been announced for future games, it’s not difficult to image each figure retaining leveling stats like Skylanders toys can.

It’s another platform for parents to invest in, but with franchises like Super Mario, Kirby, Zelda, Metroid, and Pokemon available, this could be a smart tactic for Nintendo to explore. We’ll have more info on NFP during E3 this year in June!