Posts Tagged ‘Zynga’

What Happened This Week – The Cold Calculus of Microtransactions

All right, back in business once more.  Hopefully we won’t be hit by another freak storm this weekend, but really it seems like the power dies if someone so much as coughs too loudly.  Let’s get to the news before it happens again.  Here’s what’s going down:

  • Zynga starts getting hit with lawsuits regarding allegations of insider trading, with underwriters paid to help insiders offload stock before it fell.  Also known as “Tuesday on Wall Street.”
  • Not to be outdone, EA has also filed suit that Zynga copied The Sims Social to create The Ville.  Man, who do you root for in that fight?  (The answer is EA, seriously.)
  • Ubisoft’s Uplay exposes players to an exploit that allows websites access to, and control over, a user’s computer.  It’s like they want people to pirate their games.
  • The Old Republic pulls the pin and goes free-to-play.  Should’ve kept the base, BioWare!  And the base I mean your playerbase.  By making KotOR III instead.
  • Sony posts a sizable loss of some $312 million for the first quarter of 2012, including losses in the games division.  Tempting to blame the Vita, but their true problems run deeper.
  • Squenix has an ambitious ten-year plan for Dragon Quest X.  It sounds crazy until you realize they’ve been running Final Fantasy XI for at least that long.
  • Rumors abound regarding Bethesda and the STALKER series, Take Two posts a lower earnings report due to unrealistic expectations, and more!

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What Happened This Week – Naysayers Right and Wrong

News time, everybody! Get it while it’s hot, metaphorically speaking as the transfer of information is not linked to temperature! In tonight’s episode:

  • Zynga’s stock takes a nosedive due to slashed earnings estimates and insiders dumped the stock months ago.  Pardon me, I’ll be over here doing my “I called it” dance.
  • Boston Magazine provides an in-depth postmortem on the many, many warning signs leading up to 38 Studios’ closing.  Short version: Schilling mixed up baseball and business.
  • Key developers come out strongly against Windows 8, with Gabe Newell saying Valve may encourage Linux development as a hedge.  Mr. Newell, hedges are supposed to save money.
  • Crunchyroll breaks down a Japanese poll showing the Japanese are no longer bullish on their own gaming industry.  Clearly, the industry needs more ara ara~
  • Square Enix takes to Twitter to confirm Versus XIII is still alive.  CEO Yoichi Wada has to stop himself from saying it’ll be done “when it’s done.”
  • FFXIV gets rebranded, Irrational Games uses Metacritic as a hiring requirement, OnLive joins up with the Ouya, and more!

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What Happened This Week – Everybody Misses the Nineties

Yaaay, we’re back!  And hopefully we’ll stay on time going forward, or at least we won’t lose power right when I’m about to start writing.  Anyway, news time!

  • Sony acquires streaming game service Gaikai for a cool $380 million.  Speculation abounds as to how doomed modern consoles are (not very, for the moment).
  • Vivendi plans to sell off its stake in Activision-Blizzard.  Possibly a restructuring effort, or maybe they just see Call of Duty being the next Guitar Hero, with all that would imply.
  • Zynga reveals “Zynga With Friends,” and exciting new games ending with -Ville that are totally not the same idea over and over.  One’s even an “epic slot machine adventure” for extra irony.
  • Yoichi Wada asserts Final Fantasy VII isn’t getting remade until they make a game that surpasses it.  My take: better get a DeLorean, ’cause we’ll need the nineties again.
  • Atlus announces and defends its decision to region-lock Persona 4 Arena.  So that’s why the official forums melted down the other day.
  • The EU rules that resale of digital games is legal, Pokemon Black and White 2 makes all of the money, Facebook suffers a sizable email fiasco, and more!

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What Happened This Week – Capitalism Means Never Saying Sorry

Guess who’s back!  How’s everybody doing?  I spent the weekend watching mutants and mercenaries duke it out in the Capitol building.  And then I came home to play Fallout 3 heyoooooooooo!  Okay, yeah, obvious joke is obvious, but DC is a cool town even if you’re not a political junkie such as myself.  But anyway, it’s good to be back at home base, got my computer a shiny new video card, the Mass Effect 3 review finally done, and ready to get down to business.  So let’s get on it!  In today’s headlines we have:

  • Bethesda announces The Elder Scrolls Online.  I explain why this is not going anywhere profitable, and point to a much more interesting property they’re funding for one Shinji Mikami.
  • A Forbes article breaks down that Zynga, Groupon, and Facebook work with an accounting firm that makes rules up as they go.  I wish I were kidding.
  • Eurogamer runs a lengthy piece on the demise of Free Radical.  Long story short, it took a little more treachery than doped-up marines going “Boosh!”
  • NVidia rolls out a top-of-the-line graphics card for $1000.00.  How else can a month’s salary last until next week when they push the envelope even further?
  • FilePlanet is no longer being updated, thus preparing itself for the annals of Internet history.  Behold, children, the days when patches didn’t download themselves.
  • Electronic Arts rolls out an Indie Bundle, upending basically every sensible definition of the term ‘indie.’  And on Steam, no less, making it all the more confusing.
  • A Chinese company develops a console specifically for pirates China, EA asks for feedback on Origin, I speculate based on Sega-centric Steam deals, and more!

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Capitalism Means Never Saying Sorry’ »

What Happened This Week – The Future Needs More RAM

Nothing quite like a sales binge to pick up on games you missed, especially when it reminds you how expensive some of them are. Hey, dude selling Suikoden V for $100: I hope your parents hated you, because I do. Also, a heads-up: I’ll be in DC next week starting Sunday, so no podcast while I’m away. See you all the following week! With that said, here are this week’s headlines:

  • Rumors swirl that EA may be laying people off, though even if they’re true there may be a plausible explanation.  Or EA’s stock could be dropping, it could be that too.
  • That said, Zynga appears to have gone off the deep end, with more OMGPop-style pricey acquisitions in the future.  OMGPop, incidentally, may have peaked the very day of its acquisition.  Get some popcorn, folks.
  • Two of the Big Three schedule their E3 conferences, prompting a rehash of speculation.  My take: Microsoft offers no surprises, Sony needs to explain themselves, and Nintendo will steal headlines whether it wants to or not.
  • Speaking of Sony, the New York Times offers a revealing look on where the electronics giant stumbled.  Short version: departmental tribalism, right down to war paint and scalping.
  • Wired’s Chris Kohler asserts the existing publisher-hardware-retailer model is broken and we don’t really need it.  I agree, but scrapping it all seems premature.
  • Namco-Bandai may avoid using GFWL for the PC version of Dark Souls.  On bended knee, I beseech Bamco to do the right thing and serve the Newell.
  • A rumored meeting between Apple and Valve is debunked, Saints Row DLC may have saved THQ, and more!

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – The Future Needs More RAM’ »

What Happened This Week – Putting the Band Back Together

If life in the retail trenches has taught me anything, it’s that those jobs are really more precautionary prison sentences. True, there’s no cell and there aren’t as many gang fights, but it’s a stain on your past nonetheless, and the longer you stay in the harder it is to get out.

This depressing thought brought to you in part by nostalgia, for which I have that April Fools’ burst of Toonami to thank. Damn but that was good teevee. Anyhow, here’s the news:

  • GAME exits administration, having found a buyer crazy enough willing to take on its debts.
  • Sega, by contrast, announces a sizable drawdown in operations due to an income shortfall.  Basically, don’t expect Valkyria Chronicles 3 in English anytime soon.  Or ever.
  • Meanwhile, Denis Dyack alternates between reassuring people that Too Human is still a thing, and warning that used games will crash the industry and kill your family in their sleep.
  • EVE Online‘s developer partners with Nvidia to offer select video cards for virtual currency.  I’d love to hear Paul Krugman’s take on this.
  • Brian Fargo speaks out on the lopsided balance of power between publishers and developers.  A lengthy interview on RipTen, but a good one: read it all here.
  • Obsidian joins forces with inXile to help develop Wasteland 2, pending a Kickstarter goal of 2.1 million.  So, when I write the check for all of my money, which of you do I make it payable to?
  • An OMGpop developer explains why he balked at Zynga’s offer, Michael Pachter disregards a silly PS4 rumor, GOG.com gets a facelift, and more!

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What Happened This Week – What Do You Do For Money, Hanii

Yeah, I watched the Idolm@ster anime. What can I say? I indulge in the occasional weird Japanese thing. Went better than expected, although I’m not wading into the games anytime soon unless one can guarantee more box malfunctions.

Right then, to the news! This week we have the following:

  • UK retailer GAME files for administration, the UK equivalent of Chapter 11.  Which means it’s game over NO MUST RESIST THE OBVIOUS PUN
  • Meanwhile, Zynga buys out Omgpop, makers of Draw Something, for a whopping $200 million.  They’re gonna have to sell a lot of Zynga funbucks to make it up.
  • BioWare plans “clarification” DLC for the Mass Effect 3 ending.  Forbes, by the way, has a better read on this fiasco than most games media outlets; spoilers aplenty, but give this article a read when you get time.
  • Dragon Age 2 winds down as the team gets ready for Dragon Age 3.  Presumably they’re all just glad they’re not the Mass Effect team right about now.
  • Speaking of dragons, Dragon’s Dogma‘s producer wants to sell ten million copies worldwide.  I’m just going to leave that there and let you picture it.
  • Yet another producer, this one for Resident Evil: Revelations, tells the truth and breaks my heart about where the survival horror genre has gone in recent years.
  • GameStop’s standing in retail is examined, Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition gets confirmed for the iPad, the .Hack series gets a fighting game, and more!

 
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What Happened This Week – Should’ve Kept the Base

You know it’s true.

Sorry for the delay, folks! Man, ME3 and Super Tuesday tomorrow! The political junkie and the Mass Effect fanboy are having a fistfight for dominance in my brain stem. Gonna be busyyyyyy~

Anyway, to the news:

  • Mass Effect 3 comes out tomorrow, or, if pirates are to be believed, today.  Guess somebody got ahold of one of those low-orbit packages.  And speaking of which…
  • …one of them got stuck in a tree north of San Francisco, boldly resisting an intrepid IGN team’s attempt to dislodge it.  Well, at least bears weren’t involved.
  • UK retailer GAME is in a bit of financial trouble, revealing they will be unable to stock Mass Effect 3 or Mario Party 9.  Hey, guys?  I know your parents probably told you honesty is the best policy and all, but, uh, you may have wanted to make something up this one time.
  • The rumor mill is abuzz that Valve may be developing a Steam-centric PC-slash-console with baseline stats for modern games.  Hey Valve, Derek and I got this great idea for a mascot.  You ready for this?  He’s a scientist, see, and he’s fighting an alien invasion…
  • Facebook gaming takes a sharp downturn from 2011, with the company having to work harder to draw in new users.
  • By contrast, Zynga unveils their own content delivery platform to stand apart from Facebook, forgetting how they got so many people playing their games in the first place.
  • Pokemon Black & White Version 2 makes like Daft Punk and goes around the world, Kinect gets a tinfoil hat accessory, and more!

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What Happened This Week – You Keep Using That Word

“Anytime, Fly Girl.”

I don’t know about you guys, but I dropped my pacifist playthrough right then and there.  But enough about how I pass the time waiting for Mass Effect 3, it’s time for the news!  Here’s what we’ve got:

  • A fake Pokemon Yellow gets into the iOS App Store and places at #3 on the chart.  How did an obvious counterfeit get by Apple’s screening process?  The answer is in the question.
  • The above prompts discussion about how Nintendo should release its games on iOS, followed by Pachter claiming the Wii was a bubble.  I explain why that word doesn’t mean what he thinks it means, using Nintendo’s gigantohuge pile of cash and utterly puny debts to illustrate.
  • Beloved podcast group Idle Thumbs launched a Kickstarter project to fund their return.  Yeah, I’ll throw some money down to see these guys return.  In a related story, Double Fine’s project is up to $2.2mil.  Yikes.
  • The Last Story has been confirmed for North America.  Two down, one to go!  The Wii needs stuff like this to smooth the transition to the Wii U.
  • After a lengthy stay as a 360 exclusive, Alan Wake finally makes the jump to PC… and recoups porting costs in two days.  Serve the Newell and share in His bounty.
  • OK’s violent videogame tax dies in committee, fewer videogame transactions are using credit cards, and more!

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What Happened This Week – Capitalism, Ho!

Yes, I’m late to the party on Recettear.  But it’s never too late to make money through overpriced goods!  Anyway, hello everybody!  We’re back from break and ready to tackle the news, and what a couple weeks it has been:

  • Facebook files for its $5 billion IPO, appearing every bit a giant of the tech sector until people start asking how much one would really pay for social networking.
  • In the process we learn that Zynga makes up about 12% of Facebook’s earnings.  As a reminder, Zynga is currently looking for ways to survive without Facebook.  Happy filing, Mr. Zuckerberg!
  • Kazuo Hirai formally assumes his role as President and CEO of Sony, to which his exact words are “Holy s***, now what?”  Truer words have rarely been spoken.
  • Double Fine’s Kickstarter project succeeds far beyond expectations, suggesting a viable path for small-to-midsize developers outside the usual publisher song and dance.  I wouldn’t hold my breath for a rash of publicly-funded games, however.
  • Amazon plans to open a retail store in Seattle, apparently in a bid to corner the market on physical depictions of irony.
  • THQ faces a slew of financial difficulties, from shedding 175 jobs to a potential delisting on the Nasdaq.  They should’ve rolled the North Korean taco truck around some more for Homefront.
  • Square Enix posts a decent profit for 2011, a man named William Fourkiller (OK state rep) wants to tax violent games, Ubisoft’s always-on DRM schemes backfire, and more!

 
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What Happened This Week – The Internet is Safe… For Now

Hey-hey!  Are you all excited?  I know I am, because a Giants-Patriots rematch in the Super Bowl means we’ll get more of this classy gentleman.  Seriously, Carl’s locks make the NFL worth watching long after your team has washed out because you didn’t have a backup quarterback.

Me?  Bitter?  Pshaw.  Anyway, here’s the latest:

  • SOPA and PIPA have been shelved in response to public outcry and prolonged protest.  Major backers withdrawing their support might’ve had something to do with that, too.
  • And yet despite the bills not passing, the FBI and DoJ had no trouble shutting down Megaupload and arresting people in New Zealand.  Why, it’s almost like Washington already has broad powers to pursue people in other countries.
  • Commentary: despite the bills being on hold for now, expect this issue to resurface at some point.  Google “Congress riders” for just one worrying example.
  • All this begs the question of what can be done going forward, both about piracy and the clumsy responses to it.  Ars Technica offers in-depth solutions.  I would start with “try treating your customers like people for a change.”
  • Meanwhile at BioWare, The Old Republic suffers an unfortunate PvP issue right when it can least afford one.  This wouldn’t be quite such a problem if the game weren’t so expensive to produce.
  • Mass Effect 3 aims to ditch the mission-based structure of Mass Effect 2, going for something more fluid and constant.  You mean like Mass Effect 1, right?
  • Zynga buys more mobile game studios.  Yes, Zynga, because that’s what you were doing wrong: not buying enough smaller companies.

 
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What Happened This Week – Zynga All the Way

All right, back in business!  Just in time to let you all know that, naturally, there will not be a podcast on Christmas Day.  Enjoy the holidays everyone, and I’ll see you all in the new year!  Until then let us dig into the bigger happenings this week (and 2011 in general), including the following:

  • Zynga went public and entered its first day of trading, starting at $10/share and never quite getting higher.  You may want to get popcorn for this.
  • Nintendo partnered with the Louvre to use its 3DS as an interactive display guide.  Yes, that Louvre.
  • Meanwhile, DJ Deadmau5 lost and then recovered pretended to lose a demo PS Vita in a cab, while a boat named the PlayStation Vita was capsized at sea.  What’s the over/under on these being roundabout marketing schemes versus ill omens?
  • Square Enix got hacked, with the scope of the theft not known but the company certain no credit card information was leaked.  Affected users were heard to collectively say “Oh no, not again.”
  • CD Projekt pursued Witcher 2 pirates, stating that being anti-DRM and anti-piracy aren’t mutually exclusive.  I am forced to conclude they are trying to confuse the internet, and it’s working.
  • 2011 roundup: my own Top 5 for major events in the gaming industry, from the awesome to the shocking to the just plain sad.
  • Naughty Dog claims The Last of Us will have a heavy story focus (oh, boy), Pokemon partakes in a most unusual crossover, and much more! Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Zynga All the Way’ »

What Happened This Week – Push Button, Receive Social Commentary

While you can’t stop the signal, you can certainly delay it an awful lot by having a wonky, uncooperative internet connection. Yes, at long last that issue’s been resolved and I can get back to updating in a timely fashion, which means more news for you and more chances to posit that Deus Ex is our true Lord and savior. But in the meantime, let’s play catch-up and discuss what happened the past couple weeks:

  • H.R. 3261, the Kill the Internet Stop Online Piracy Act, gains a surprising amount of steam with a who’s who of big-name supporters.  I’m not normally one to pray for Congressional gridlock, but these are hardly normal circumstances.
  • In a related story, I Am Alive‘s creative director cancels the PC version, blaming piracy and accusing PC gamers of bitching…
  • …as Valve, Steam, and Croteam make compelling counterarguments in the form of “make your games less of a hassle to buy and play” and “stop making people hate you.”
  • Bethesda’s probably-not-serious “name your kid Dovahkiin” proposal from a while ago has at last found a taker.  World, meet Dovahkiin Tom Kellermeyer, born 11/11/11.
  • Zynga’s CBO steps down, forfeiting a large chunk of stock while staying on the board in an advisory capacity.  Meanwhile, tech stocks take another brutal dive on Mr. Keynes’ Wild Ride.
  • Meanwhile, Skyrim sets sales records by being awesome.
  • BioWare’s new property might be well outside their comfort zone, Namco-Bandai brings the Tales studio back into the fold, and NPR introduces us all to the mad genius behind Cow Clicker.  Read the whole story if you can, it’s a doozy.

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Push Button, Receive Social Commentary’ »

What Happened This Week – Coercion: Our New Business Strategy

Hello all! Thanks for sticking with us, got some news fresh out of the oven for you fine folks. As an aside, going to be out of town for the week of Thanksgiving so the next episode will be uploaded on the 27th. Enjoy the week, have a happy preemptive Turkey Day, and in the meantime let’s get to tonight’s topics:

  • Zynga is caught forcing employees to either surrender stock or be fired, so they can turn around and use that stock to hire other people. Pretty sure breach-of-contract lawsuits start more or less like this.
  • Steam servers get hacked, and while the damage appears limited Valve kindly reminded people to change passwords and watch credit card activity. See? Was that hard?
  • Meanwhile, CD Projekt reveals digital sales numbers for The Witcher 2, offering a glimpse of the effect the Steam Collective has on the market.
  • A slight error and some carelessness resulted in Japanese MMO M2 being completely deleted, which ironically is the first I’ve ever heard of the game.
  • Sony reveals its complicated UMD conversion process to play PSP games on the Vita. Considering this is currently only in Japan, where the PSP is still an active platform, I can only guess at the the intended audience.
  • Ubisoft says “buy Rayman Origins if you want more Beyond Good and Evil,” armed Frenchmen steal copies of Modern Warfare 3, and more!

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What Happened This Week – Doom For Everyone!

Happy Halloween, everybody! Hope you’re all full on candy already, because we’re fresh out. We do, however, have plenty of delicious DOOOOOOOOOOOM to go around! Help yourself!

In today’s obesity-causing episode:

  • Shooter Season 2011 rolls on as Battlefield 3 launches to great scores attached to surprisingly critical text. Also, install to your hard drive or the game looks like this.
  • Nintendo announces a sizable loss for the year, that may have largely been a fluke in currency exchange rates. Clearly, doom is just around the corner.
  • Zynga’s new properties are eating into their existing userbase, while one of the company’s officers leaves for Las Vegas. Given Nevada’s unemployment rate, somebody’s in a gambling mood… or they didn’t like what they saw at Zynga.
  • Sony states that the PSN hack “woke up dormant customers,” perhaps figuring such a statement might distract people from the Vita’s cumbersome saving mechanism.
  • Bethesda loses its preliminary injunction against Interplay, and so development of Fallout Online can continue in the magical fantasy world that only Interplay inhabits.
  • EA, who once claimed Origin was not a competing service to Steam, starts picking up publishers to commit to Origin. Look, EA, just… let’s not do anything crazy, okay? Put Mass Effect 3 back down and let’s talk.

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What Happened This Week – Square Enix Goes Double Or Nothing

Hello hellooooo! Here’s hoping this brisk fall evening is treating you well, and you’re not smarting from not-insubstantial gambling losses like I am. As mentioned I’m still struggling with Comcast-related internet woes, which were enough to delay but not permanently forestall the news. So let’s get on it, shall we? Today’s lineup covers the following:

  • Square Enix dropped a Final Fantasy-sized bomb by revealing the latest updates for Final Fantasy XIV, including a phase-in for the subscription service. Cue panic and ridicule.
  • That said, the changes do sound pretty swank, and the full list is worth reading if you’re so inclined. The larger question is, who’s in a gambling mood?
  • Speaking of wailing and gnashing of teeth, Mass Effect 3‘s multiplayer mode has caused quite a stir. Best guess: the co-op missions are likely just supplements to the main plot and risk feeling somewhat unnecessary. Further evaluation requires building consensus.
  • Netflix tries to call backsies on that whole Qwikster thing, in the process raising the question of whether we’re even ready for nationwide video streaming. Short answer, no. Long answer, are you out of your mind?!
  • Zynga comes up with Project Z, also known as “our back-up plan in case relations with Facebook turn south.”
  • Rovio overvalues itself even more, Obsidian hires Tim Cain, Sega confirms Valkyria Chronicles 3 isn’t getting localized, and more!

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What Happened This Week – Summon Your Accountant

Finally got to upload this, would’ve had it earlier if not for an inopportune (though easily fixed) network hiccup.  Anyway, hope you’re all enjoying the beautiful Labor Day weekend!  It’s time for the news:

  • Famitsu unveiled a cornucopia of Persona news: a Vita port of 4, a fighting game, and a lot of dancing around Persona 5.  So much speculation, so little time.
  • Bethesda does the timed exclusivity song-and-dance with Skyrim DLC, setting a new record by doing so before the game launches.  The power of the money hat is strong.
  • Zeboyd Games gets a crack at Penny Arcade Adventures: Really Long Subtitle: Episode 3.  Don’t underestimate them; Breath of Death VII is deceptively good.
  • Sony plans another head-mounted TV screen monstrosity.  No, Sony, the “3D” part of it doesn’t make it any more likely to succeed than your last attempt.
  • Square Enix plans to boost the staff at Eidos Montreal, Doom‘s 17-year ban in Germany is removed, and more!
  • Plus, a spotlight on the recent financial workings of Zynga, Groupon, and LinkedIn: fuzzy accounting practices, pending market headaches, and the SEC asking pointed questions like “Why do all these numbers have asterisks by them?” and “Why did your accountant introduce himself with air quotes?”

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Summon Your Accountant’ »

What Happened This Week – Don’t Break the PopCap

We return! Yes, it’s time for another episode of everyone’s favorite news broadcast, with “everyone” defined as “everyone involved in its production.” Well, some of us like it. Pretty quiet this week, I think everybody’s just playing catch-up since the flow of new releases is now something approaching a manageable rate. Anyway, here’s what’s going on:

  • Electronic Arts formally purchases PopCap Games and sets hefty profit expectations.  Cue Godfather quotes in three… two…
  • Meanwhile, Zynga also attempted to buy PopCap for a cool billion-with-a-b in cash.  When asked where it came from, Zynga coughed and nervously changed the subject.
  • Text referencing the 360 is found in Windows 8 code, fueling speculation of how the OS relates to the console.  A bigger question is whether Microsoft has anything real to warrant the upgrade.
  • Sony gives an interview about the PSN fiasco, proving once and for all that history was made to be forgotten.  “Great learning experience,” indeed.
  • Speaking of interviews, 2K Games sends out a man to make a hideously bad music analogy in a bizarre attempt to defend X-Com‘s FPS reboot.  Ray Charles and Kanye West?  Seriously?
  • A Seattle videogame consultant gets banned from the internet by Comcast, someone is preparing to make a Space Invaders movie, and I wake up surrounded by concerned paramedics.  And it’s all this video’s fault!

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Don’t Break the PopCap’ »

What Happened This Week – Visibility and Perspective

I just want you all to know I wrote this all with that Yogurting flash synced to the Droyds remix of Armand van Helden’s “In Your Eyes” playing in the background.  I don’t know why, I think I forgot it was on at some point. Catchy song, though. I digress.  Welcome back, guys!  In What Happened This Week, we discuss the following:

  • Namco-Bandai files suit against CD Projekt’s parent company over The Witcher 2 distribution rights in Europe.  Players express shock that Namco distributes games in other countries.
  • Square Enix pursues legal action against unnamed individuals over the Deus Ex: Human Revolution leak.  Unnamed… or Anonymous?  Probably the first one.
  • My reaction to Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Ehhhhhhhhnnnnn….
  • Zynga opens a studio in Toronto by buying an existing developing and absorbing them.  Guys you already filed for your IPO, you can stop worrying everybody now.  Guys?
  • Indie developers voice their discontent with Xbox Live’s indie game service.  Steam offers to be shoulder-to-cry-on guy while winking knowingly at the camera.
  • I offer commentary and analysis on Senate Bill S.978, and where it fits in the larger picture of US political discourse.  Short version: don’t panic, our problems are much bigger.

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What Happened This Week – Free Market V. Captive Audience

Hello once more, folks! Hope you’re enjoying the weekend, and not too busy getting drunk and shooting bottle rockets at each other to check out the news. Quite a bit happened this past week, so let’s break it down:

  • Zynga prepares to go public, and LinkedIn makes a surprising gain through no action of their own.  Pay no attention to that Greece problem in Europe, that could never affect us!
  • Facebook hires George Hotz, possibly for iPad or security-related development.  So you know, this is the man himself. Feel better about yourself?  I sure do.
  • Resident Evil: The Mercenaries‘ save system prevents players from deleting saves.  Capcom says no really, it’s not about the used market, please don’t be mad GameStop.
  • Nintendo thanks its fans for their loyalty and concern over Xenoblade Chronicles, The Last Story, etc. before ripping their hearts out and stomping on them.
  • Politics: SCOTUS rules in favor of game developers/retailers, while a Senate bill plays dueling banjos while eying up YouTube.
  • IGN reveals the ugly truth about LA Noire‘s stay in development hell.  Read the whole thing then wonder why there aren’t more fistfights in the office.
  • World of Warcraft changes its subscription model, Namco-Bandai’s community manager retracts her statement re: Vesperia on 360, and much more!

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Free Market V. Captive Audience’ »