Thursday, September 29, 2005

Video Game News, September 29, 2005

US Government Uses Video Games, Posters to Promote Healthy Eating
by Roland Waite, Earth Times 9/29/05
To curb growing obesity among American children, the US government's Department of Agriculture unveiled the first food pyramid for 6- to 11-year-olds."

Forget Video Games

by Maria Sanchez-Traynor, Greeley Tribune 9/29/05
"There is something more fun than video games."

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Video Game News, September 27, 2005

Video Games that Get Kids Attention Enhance Learning; Children put on helmets linked to sensors that monitor their brains
by Benjamin Pimental, San Francisco Chronicle 9/26/05
"Like many parents, Janet Herlihey tried her best to keep her kids away from video games."

To Tune In, Or Tune Out?
by Michelle Quinn and Mike Antonucci, A+E Interactive, 9/27/05
"...Anyone who keeps a kid on a media-free diet is committing a form of child abuse,'' says Henry Jenkins, a literature and media professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge.

Lawmakers Cracking Down on Video Games

by Lauren O. Kidd, Granite State Bureau 9/27/05
"Two New Jersey lawmakers don't think minors should be able to rent or purchase video games adorned with phrases such as "you'll have to rob, steal and kill just to stay out of serious trouble."

Video Games Can Actually Be Good For
by Mike Snider, USA Today 9/27/05
"Several times a week before dinner, Janet and Jim Herlihey of West Chester, Pa., remind their sons Michael, 12, and Paul, 10, to get in a good half-hour of video game time before eating

Save Money by Renting Video Games Online: This new game is kinder to your wallet
by Jim Robbins, CBS 2 Chicago 9/27/05
Video games seem to be a staple in lots of homes and gamers know it can get expensive to buy them. But as Jim Williams reports, a cheaper alternative is just a few mouse clicks away."

"The Escapist, Issue 12: Whatever happened to..." Now Available

The Escapist's newist issue focuses on the lost: Max Steele hunts down designer Chris Crawford for an interview, Spanner's exposee on the back of the arcade recalls the "real gamer" days of yore, Joe Blancato writes about a game whose production fizzled out, and ADS interrupt the formerly seamless reading of this great online magazine. Read it all at

Monday, September 26, 2005

Video Game News: September 26, 2005

Unshelved Adds Video Games
by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum, Unshelved 9/26/05
The popular library webcomic Unshelved has started a plotline about adding video games to their shelves.

The Video Game Librarian: The Novel Approach
by John Scalzo, Gaming Target 9/26/05
"If publishers took a trip down to their local library they could find hundreds of titles that would translate into great games."

Literary Games
by Aleks Krotoski, Guardian Gamesblog 9/12/05
"While computer games pilfer (and are pilfered for) the annals of Hollywood, there are scant few games in the vast library of interactive entertainment which take their inspiration from novels, pulp fiction, high-brow literature and other variations of the written word."

The Video-Game Novel Also Rises
by Clive Thompson, Wired 9/12/05
"When you wander into any Barnes & Noble, there are shelves groaning under the weight of books written from Resident Evil, Halo, Tomb Raider and MechWarrior. Consider it the ultimate port: cutting-edge digital entertainment delivered via a media platform that's 200 years old."

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Video Game News September 25, 2005

Video Games Not Just for Players Anymore
by Peter Svennson, AP 9/25/05
"Is "frags per round" going to be the batting average of the 21st century? Professional computer gamers certainly hope so."

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Video Game News, September 24, 2005

Conference Explores Medical Use of Video Games
by Chris Landers, Fox News 9/23/05
"Perched on a rocky outcropping, Phil Feldman took careful aim and shot David "Bart" Bartlett once in the head with his sniper rifle. Bartlett shrugged it off — he had a situation to deal with nearby."

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Video Game News, September 22, 2005

WWE Superstars No Longer Allowed to Play Video Games Backstage
by Tim Brown, 24 9/21/05
The Wrestling Observer Newsletter reports that yet another strange rule has been recently added to the long list that WWE has been putting together lately."

Shoe Companies Aligning With Video Games

by Darren Rovell, ESPN 9/20/05
Hoping to catch the eye of their young sports-minded target audience, the battle for athletic shoe supremacy has spilled over into video games."

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

"The Escapist, Issue 11: StateCraft" Now Available

This week's issue of the Escapist tackles government and games. Jason Della Rocca makes a convincing case for his governemnt as Jekyll and Hyde argument, with hypocritical governments supporting game development than mandating ratings that deter purchase or even ban said games; Dave Thomas learns from a soldier why the US Government has spent billions of dollars to develope America's Army; Matthew Hector, Esq provides in-depth coverage of the Illinois Safe Games Act, paired with Nova Barlow's recap of other successful attempts to regulate sales of media to minors; and Mark Wallace examines virtual economies in terms of real-world money and warns that it's only a matter of time before in game economies butt heads with terms of service. Access the full issue online at

Video Game News, September 20, 2005

Avoiding Pokemon Seizures from Video Games, TV: Rapidly Flashing Lights May Trigger Rare Seizures, Experts Report
by Miranda Hitti, WebMD 9/20/05
"The Epilepsy Foundation has issued new guidelines to help avoid rare cases of seizures triggered by flickering lights from TV and video games."

Political Battles Against Video Games Heating Up Across the Nation:Michigan outlaws sale of violent, explicit games to minors; California may be next
by Stephen Totilo, MTVNews 9/19/05
"With the legal momentum against violent and sexually explicit video games picking up steam across the nation last week, some gamers may be wondering why so many politicians are picking on them these days."

Teens Play Violent Video Games

NewzTalk ZB 9/19/05
Parents are being told to wake up to not only what their children are watching, but also playing."

Monday, September 19, 2005

Gamasutra Presents Notes from Tokyo Game Show 2005

News, interviews and editorials about gaming and game development in Japan.

Video Game News, September 19, 2005

Video Games May be Homework for Career
by Lisa M. Sodders, LA Daily News, 9/19/05
"Seth Arnold recalls playing "Super Mario Bros." and "Duck Hunt" for hours on end after getting his first Nintendo video-game system when he was 8 years old. Now 20 and a college student, Arnold still spends hours hunched over a video-game console - not only entertaining himself, but training for his career."

Anime: Spiky Haired Games
by Lou Kesten, AP 9/19/05
The popularity of animé, that uniquely Japanese form of animation, can be traced directly to the growth of video games, especially the Final Fantasy series and other role-playing epics like Dragon Warrior."

Friday, September 16, 2005

Video Game News, September 15, 2005

Granholm Cracks Down on Violent Video Games
by Kirk Yuhnke ABC12 9/15/05
"Gov. Jennifer Granholm is getting tough when it comes to underage children buying violent and sexually explicit video games."

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Video Game News, September 14, 2005

Five Ways to Save Video Games
by Sidney Shuman Games.Net 9/14/05
t's time for video games to move forward, but designers (and publishers) seem to be dead-set on keeping them stuck firmly in the past. Here are five ways they can turn the tide."

Popular Anime-based Games

by AP News, CNN 9/14/05 "After decades on the fringes of American culture, anime -- that uniquely Japanese form of animation -- is everywhere."

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Video Game News, September 13, 2005

Californai Game Bill Passes
by Chris Playo, PSP Advanced Media Network 9/9/05
'Yesterday, the often contested Assembly Bill 1179 successfully passed through the California legislature. The controversial bill passed through the house with a vote of 65 to 7."

"The Escapist, Issue 10: Join or Die" is now available

This week, the Escapist looks atMassive Multiplayer Online Games, or MMOGs. Mark Wallace addresses the corporation building themed Eve's eerie similarity to gangster Brooklyn in the early nineteenth century and the commonalities between gangs, groups, clans and guilds with anaologies like newbies as immigrants to a foreign landscape; M. Junaid Alam looks at how single-player warfare games evolved into MMOG campaigns and compares artificial intelligence (computer generated) vs. human (playing against real people); Joe Blancato writes about socialism, Utopia. and Machiavellian political rivalries in Shadowbane; Sean "Dragons" Stalzer argues that guilds are a staple of MMOGs, and the Syndicate, one of the largest and longest running online guilds is a prime example; and Laura Genender examines of the benefits and disadvantages of guilds. Check it out at

Monday, September 12, 2005

Serious Games Summit - Oct 31-Nov 1 Washington DC

This two day event features 40 sessions that examine nontraditional video games for education, training, health therapy and other uses beyond entertainment. Is anyone in the library field attending?

Innovate Live Announces September Webcast Schedule - Video Games!

The following webcasts are a great example of how to conduct online continuing education, and the topics are of interest to libraries in a digital age.

Innovate-Live webcasts offer an opportunity to synchronously interact with the authors of the articles in the August/September 2005 issue of Innovate. These webcasts are produced as a public service by our partner, ULiveandLearn. If you wish to participate in the webcasts, please register at

All times are Eastern Time zone. You may use the world clock at to coordinate the time with your time zone.

The schedule for the September Innovate-Live Webcasts is provided below.

Game-Informed Learning: Applying Computer Game Processes to Higher Education
Michael Begg, David Dewhurst, and Hamish Macleod
September 13th, 2005 - 12:00pm ET

The Design of Advanced Learning Engines: An Interview with Clark Aldrich
Joel Foreman and Clark Aldrich
September 13th, 2005 - 1:00pm ET

simSchool: The Game of Teaching
Melanie Zibit and David Gibson
September 14th, 2005 - 1:00pm ET

Epistemic Games
David Williamson Shaffer
September 20th, 2005 - 12:00pm ET

What Can K-12 School Leaders Learn from Video Games and Gaming?
Richard Halverson
September 20th, 2005 - 2:00pm ET

Changing the Game:! What Happens When Video Games Enter the Classroom?
Kurt Squire
September 20th, 2005 - 4:00pm ET

Everyone who registers for the webcasts can interact with authors by typing questions/comments in the chat area of the screen. If you would like to interact with the authors using audio, you can do so but you will need to have the proper equipment and training to use the Macromedia Breeze conferencing program. Please go to for details.

f you cannot attend a webcast, note that it will be archived within the features section of the article itself shortly after the webcast.

Video Game News, September 12, 2005

Video Games Take Mind Off Country's Troubles
by Doug Elfman,
Boston Herald 9/11/05
y family barely escaped Hurricane Katrina. They were on the road out of New Orleans when the storm began to destroy the city."

Granholm signs laws restricting minors' access to explicit video games
AP Detroit Free Press, 9/12/05

"Gov. Jennifer Granholm signed legislation that would make it illegal to sell or rent adult-rated video games to those 17 and younger."

Boseman Hopes Video Games Bill is Back in Play Next Session
by Mark Schreiner Star News Online (North Carolina) 9/12/05
"Sen. Julia Boseman, D-New Hanover, got almost everything she wanted out of the 2005 session of the General Assembly."

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Converting Virtual to Real Cash Donations for Katrina

According to BBC News, the virtual worlds of Second Life and There, are letting players donate to those affected by Katrina by converting their virtual cash into the real thing. Gamers Relief is also starting a donation fund.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

When Gamers Become Parents: How those in the industry cope with issues of sex and violence

By Tom Loftus, Columnist,MSNBC 9/10/05
"Steven Rechtschaffner remembers the day his two sons, ages 17 and 13, discovered the copy of “Grand Theft Auto” he had stashed away in his Vancouver home. “It was weird at first,” Rechtschaffner recalled. “But it forced us to talk about the game. It was me asking, what did you think?”

Video game insiders discuss how they treat games like other media - check the ratings, limit gameplay, and make it clear to kids that there are games for children, and games for adults. Communication is key.

Friday, September 09, 2005

"The Escapist, Issue 9: Gamemasters" Now Available

This week's issue, available at, covers the rich roleplaying foundation the video game industry was built upon. Greg Costikyan follows up his attack on the game industry with solutions for improvement: new business models, distribution models, and sales models; Allen Varney backtracks to disseminate the history of tabletop gaming's evolution from pen and paper to computer text to graphics heavey MMOGs, while John Tynes talks about the transitions from tabletop designers making the leap into the video game market with varying degrees of success; and Joe Blancato reviews Dungeons and Dreamers: The Rise of the Computer Game Culture from Geek to Chic by Brad King and John Borland (McGraw Hill/Osborne Media, 2003).

Video Game Reviews... in your local newspaper?

Gwinette Daily Post of Gwinette COunty GA and the Washington Post both popped up with video game reviews this week - and I suspect they are not the only ones. More proof that video games are going mainstream!

Dream a Little Dream
comparison of Darkwatch and Dungeon Seige

Old Time Pinball Flops as it meets Modern Video Games
REview of FlipNic: Ultimate Pinball (CapCom)

Video Game News, September 9, 2005

Parenting and Video Games: One Dad's Tips: Game professional offers tips on navigating the video game minefield
by Tom Loftus, MSNBC 9/9/05
"Matthew Ford has made games professionally for 12 years working on such projects as Asheron's Call, Citizen Zero and Mythica."

World CyberGames Finals Underway: Field of 184 compete in 8 games to win a share of $34,00, right to represent America at worldwide Grand Final Competition
by Brendan SInclair, Yahoo!News 9/8/05
"The action is under way at the World Cyber Games US Finals, which is taking place through Sunday at New York City's historic Hammerstein Ballroom."

Ignore Video Games, Tech's Still On
by James J. Cramer, Real Money 9/8/05
"You know I like tech, and yet some of you may be dissuaded from buying because of Take-Two or because you don't know Intel yet. But Texan sure seemed to deliver according to this release just out."

The King of Halo: Born to play games: Matt "Zyos" Leder turns his passion for video games into a full-time job
by Eyder Peralta, Houston Chronicle 9/8/05
"As soon as he finished eating his steak — on a cardboard plate with a can of soda — Matt Leto picked up his cell phone. "Hey, what's up?" he asked, and before his friend Fonzi could answer he continued, "Is there a chance you can get online so we can game?"

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Video Game News, September 8, 2005

Conquerer in a War of Virtual Worlds
by Seth Schiesel, New York Times 9/6/05
"Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment wanted to make a big splash in the video game world back in March when it introduced Matrix Online, a massively multiplayer online game based on the once-hot film franchise."

Top 10 Video Games
by William ONeil, CNET 9/8/05
"If one thing is true, it's that video games have come of age in the past 10 years."

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Video Game News, September 7, 2005

Survey Shows Parental Attitudes Towards Video Games
by David Jenkins, Gamasutra 9/7/05
"A new survey commissioned by VTech Electronics and performed by research firm Compas has gauged parental attitudes to video games, by interviewing Canadian parents with children aged three to eight."

Some Video Games Force Players Off the Couch
by Lou Kesten, Business Week Online 9/7/05
Every article about America's obesity epidemic seems to mention video games."

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

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Video Game News, September 6, 2005

Eat Your Fruits and Vegetables - and Play Video Games
The Technology Suits, 8/26/05
"The continued battle of the “games are good” “games are bad” war plays on with a recent article in Discover Magazine that examines the growing body of research suggesting that video games exercise the mind similar to the way physical activity exercises the body."

Class on Games is Coming to Teens
by Eric Gwinn, Chicago Tribune 9/6/05
"Big news for Chicago-area high school kids hoping for behind-the-scenes careers in the video game industryA"

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Video Game News, September 3, 2005

Blizzard Wins Lawsuit on Video Game Hacking
by Declan McCullah, CNet News 9/2/05
"A federal appeals court has ruled that computer programmers do not have the right to reverse-engineer Blizzard Entertainment's video games to improve their playability."

Video Game Rentals Easy on Wallet

the Arizona Republic 9/2/05
"If car manufacturers did business the same way as makers of video game platforms, you could buy a Ford Explorer for $2,000. However, specially formulated Ford gas, the only kind to work in your vehicle, would be $150 per gallon."

Ninendogs Game Sell 250,000 units in first week
Reuters 9/1/02
"Nintendo Co. Ltd. (7974.OS: Quote, Profile, Research) said on Thursday its new puppy training game "Nintendogs" sold 250,000 units in its first week, making it the hottest-selling title in the United States."

Friday, September 02, 2005

Video Game News, September 2, 2005

Online Video Games Pose Addiction Risk for Kids: Treatment is available, but many gamers are in denial that their behaviour is unhealthy
MacLeans 8/2/05
"All around the world, more and more kids are becoming online video game addicts."

Dinner Comes with a Side of Games
by Rachel Mesh, Wired News 6/3/05
Pong creator and Atari founder Nolan Bushnell thinks adults just want to have fun. In fact, he's banking on it. Bushnell and his company, UWink, are preparing to open a video-game-themed restaurant aimed at adults in Los Angeles this fall."