GAMING UPDATE October 2010 GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 //
October UPDATE GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // From virtual gardening to shooting Mafiosi with tommy-guns, October is a great month for gaming. Developers, researchers and hardware producers are using every opportunity to share their latest news and create some buzz now the holiday season is getting closer. At the recent Tokyo Gaming Show, Microsoft showed new motion-control Kinect games, while Sony revealed some mind-blowing numbers. All of that and more in this Update. Enjoy!
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // LEGO UNIVERSE //LAUNCH DAY The 8th of October was a big day for us here at Advance and the LEGO Universe teams involved at LEGO and Netdevil. For months, we’ve been looking forward to the launch of the coolest massively multiplayer online game to date… (at least we think so, but maybe we’re a bit biased). What’s not to like about running around a virtual LEGO world, battling, building and customizing your mini-fig. We can’t wait to get our hands on a copy, and rebuild that massive castle we always dreamed of… We are very proud to be a part of this. Surf to shop.lego.com , it’s OUT NOW! TRAILER www.legouniverse.com
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // IN-GAME ADS DO THE TRICK //MORE GAMING, MORE SALES Will our gaming worlds be invaded by ads in the future, resembling the real world more and more? Will Red Dead Redemption bring the Wild West to Times Square while Martha Stewart takes over the kitchen of every Sim? According to the new Nielsen in-game ad numbers…most definitely, yes. From this new research, it’s clear that in-game ads do boost sales in the real world. Nielsen took the test with more than 100,000 US households, focussing on Gatorade ads within six EA Sports titles. The families who had one of those games on their entertainment shelf, spent 24 per cent more on Gatorade. 24 per cent! According to Elizabeth Harz, senior VP of global media sales at EA, this is a milestone for interactive entertainment. “For the first time, advertisers are able to link the value of their in-game marketing or sponsorship to actual sales. Now brands can feel confident adding gaming as a core media channel for their advertising.” We knew that video games are highly engaging, but this just knocks our socks off. GATORADE source: Electronic Arts
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // KINECT GAMES ARE COMING //THE JAPANESE INVASION At the Tokyo Game Show, Microsoft announced five new games for its upcoming Kinect motion control device. As history has shown, it is not the hardware that decides success, but actually the cool games you can play. So what did the Japanese game developers bring to the table? Watch the teaser trailers below: Codename D Steel Battalion Heavy Armor Project Draco Rise of Nightmares Haunt source: Kimbei Kusakabe
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // WHEN YOU WANT MORE THAN THE GAME //PAYING FOR IN-GAME MOVIES If it’s up to Bobby Kotick, Activision’s big kahuna, we will be paying for in-game movies within the next five years. The idea is to pack together all the little movie clips you now get in a game, and turn them into a separate movie for around $30. “ If we were to go to an audience and say 'We have this great hour and a half of linear video that we'd like to make available to you at a $20 or $30 price point, you'd have the biggest opening weekend of any film ever. Within the next five years, you are likely to see us do that. It might be in a partnership with somebody or alone, but there will be a time where we'll capitalize on the relationship we have with our audience; deliver them something that is really extraordinary and let them consume it directly through us instead of theatrical distribution.” But what about the storytelling in the game, Bobby? And what about those short periods of rest and entertainment in between long stretches of concentration and action? We need those moments to scratch our nose or to check our mobile phones. www.activisionblizzard.com source: Activision Blizzard
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // HALO REACH //$200 MILLION ON DAY ONE How much can a game make in one day, you might wonder? Well, the new Halo game sold over 3 million copies on its first day in stores, totalling $200 million. Just for comparison, the best opening day for a movie this year was for Avatar, with revenue of $27 million. www.halo.xbox.com source: Microsoft
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // THE MINI - PROJECTOR //BIG SCREEN MOBILE GAMING? Lemoptix has developed a micro-projector that could change your whole mobile experience forever. The little gadget can project a 15-inch image at a minimum distance of 50 centimeters. Imagine the possibilities when integrated with our electronics. No more looking over shoulders when your friend shares the latest pictures he took with his phone. Showing slideshows directly from your phone during a business lunch and playing games projected on the seat in front of you while you’re on the train. And just imagine projecting virtual reality on the real world. Having a transparent science fiction visor in front of your eyes might soon be a reality. www.lemoptix.com
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // DOWN THE HILL AND UP THE RANKING //LEVEL UP AT AMERICAN SKI RESORTS One day, everything will be a game. We’ve said it before and we’ll keep saying it. From brushing your teeth to buying milk, you will be very busy upgrading, unlocking and playing in the future. And now the travel industry is picking up on this trend. Five Colorado, Nevada and California ski resorts will be using EpicMix, from this November. EpicMix is an online tool and iPhone app that uses the rfid chip in your ski-pass to keep track of your every move. As scary as an evil snow yeti? Well, maybe it will get less frightening when you win awards, badges and the chance to show off to your friends. Your ski-stats will be automatically uploaded to the EpicMix website, where it will show which slopes you conquered, how many vertical feet you navigated and more. You can then automically share your achievements through Twitter and Facebook… but what’s new about that? TRAILER www.snow.com/epicmix source: Epic Mix
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // FACEBOOK GAMES REACH NEW RECORDS //200 MILLION MONTHLY PLAYERS Gaming is moving online more and more. Social games like Farmville and Mafia Wars have incredible numbers of players and Facebook is putting itself right at the top as a platform for these games. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s founder and CEO, confirmed that 40% of its userbase play social games through Facebook. There is a weird dynamic going on though. While these games are in the top five things people like about Facebook, they are also in the top five things that people hate. But that aside, 2/5 of Facebook users? That’s an incredible amount, ensuring the top ten games have at least 12 million users each. Which equals twice the Danish population, for the tenth most popular social game. www.facebook.com
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // OBAMA’S VIDEO GAME CHALLENGE //INNOVATING EDUCATION A president with two teenage daughters must care about innovation in education. And what better way to do it than with video games? President Barack Obama has announced the National STEM Video Game Challenge, a competition in two parts: the Youth Prize for middle school students who design the most original video game, and a Developer Prize for game designers who focus on education. As Obama puts it: “Our success as a nation depends on strengthening America's role as the world's engine of discovery and innovation.” With a focus on educational video games, Obama wants to strengthen America’s leadership in the 21 st century by improving education in science, technology, engineering and math. Seems like we were all born a little too early. www.stemchallenge.org source: www.whitehouse.gov
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // INCEPTION THE GAME //NOT JUST A DREAM? It’s a strange place, the Inception dream world. In what must be one of the most exciting movies of 2010, Leonardo DiCaprio and his buddies try to plant an idea in someone’s head by intruding that person’s dream, and even more bizarrely, the dreams within the initial dream. Do you follow? Inception director Christopher Nolan, probably a dreamer himself, now wants to turn his multi-level movie into a video game. Christopher already has many ideas that you can’t put in a movie but would certainly work in a game. But an Inception-based game won’t come to your computer screen or console soon. It is a multi-year project, based on multiple dreams funded with multiple amounts of money… or something like that. www.inceptionmovie.warnerbros.com source: Warner Brothers
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // SONY’S ALL-TIME HARDWARE SALES //WOULD BUY YOU A LOT OF BIG MACS Sony’s president Hiroshi Kawano revealed some numbers at the Tokyo Game Show this year: 38 million Playstation 3’s and 62 million PSP’s (the portable Playstation) have been sold to date. If all those Sony toys were bought at your typical Best Buy store, for the same amount you could buy around 5.5 billion Big Macs ($4) on the other side of the parking lot. www.playstation.com www.mcdonalds.com source: Sony USA
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // MY GARDEN FOR NINTENDO 3DS //GARDENING WITHOUT THE DIRT Are you one of those people who daydreams about cutting roses and getting muddy fingers while you pass cold concrete office buildings on your morning commute? Then EA’s My Garden is made just for you. Take your own little patch of land with you wherever you go, without trailing dirt and fallen leaves everywhere. In six miniature 3D environments (remember what the 3D in 3DS stands for), a Japanese raccoon dog will accompany you while you plant and grow beautiful tulips and other wonders of nature. A nighttime rooftop, Japanese Zen or desert oasis; your gardening horizons will expand dramatically. With photo challenges along the way, the virtual gardener in you will be rewarded with new outfits for your raccoon-buddy. Can I get a flower dress please? TGS UNVEILING www.ea.com/games/my-garden source: Electronic Arts
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // FASTER DECISIONS THROUGH GAMING //SHOULD I PUSH THE RED BUTTON? You should, and you better do it fast! A study by the University of Rochester found that action games push your reaction speed up 25% without cannibalizing accuracy. The research used 18 to 25-year-olds who hardly ever played games. Afer dividing them in two groups, one group had to play 50 hours of action games, the other 50 hours of strategy games. The tasks that followed after the gaming sessions clearly showed a difference in reaction speed. The action gamers answered 25% faster than the group who played strategy games like The Sims, while giving the same amount of correct answers. Decision-making is based on the amount of information your brain can take in. Action games, according to this research, can program your brain to make you process this information faster. So if your son wants to be a pilot, or your daughter wants to become a doctor, run to the store as fast as possible and get them the latest action shooter! www.rochester.edu PUSH
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // KINECT OBJECT SCANNING //FANCY A SKIN-COLORED CAR? If you’ve seen the Kinect launch trailer, you might remember the boy who scans his skateboard with the Kinect camera. The next scene shows in-game footage of the boy’s avatar riding his real-life skateboard. Pretty cool huh… but actually we’re not quite there yet. For now we’re stuck with old technology, capturing colour and adding it to your virtual car or world. LittleBigPlanet already did this trick with the Playstation Eye, so let’s hope for some more innovative ideas in the future. But if you really enjoy putting your own October skin colour on your fine tuned car, you’ll feel like a kid in a candy store! TRAILER www.xbox.com/kinect
GAMING UPDATE // OCTOBER 2010 // MAFIA F#*KING 2 //STACKING UP THE F-WORDS A new record for Mafia 2. The game should get an award for using the most F-words. We don’t know if this is something to be proud of or not, but it certainly stays true to the mafia theme. Just watch the F-ing movie, Antonio! VIDEO www.mafia2game.com IPHONE FINGER OLYMPICS //WARMING-UP RECOMMENDED If you don’t have rheumatism in your fingers yet and you really want to get some, this game might be for you. ‘Fingerrun’ the 100 meters as fast as you can and make your way into the real-time world ranking (yes, you can even put a flag next to your name). A little bit of exercise never hurt anyone, or did it? www.itunes.apple.com
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