Recent events in the gaming world

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Hello everyone! ¬†Due to recent events in my life such as catching up with university work, going on holiday to Spain and starting a new job I haven’t be able to blog as much as I’d like ūüė¶ Here is a catch up of all the events which have happened within the gaming world recently just to catch you, and me up.

Game Developers Conference

25th to 29th March 2013 saw the Game Developers¬†Conference¬†(GDC) being held in San Francisco, California, to catch up in full visit the following link¬†http://www.gamasutra.com/gdc-2013¬† Companies who attended the event included¬†Blizzard Entertainment,¬†Microsoft,¬†OnLive¬†and many more! Sony did not attend this event, I believe they are saving the best for E3 later this year, TechRadar quotes “A room full of potential PS4 developers got a run down of the system’s architecture, design philosophy and online features. However, as local multiplayer fanatics, we loved hearing that the system will use its controller tracking to automatically swap split screen, should players rearrange themselves on the couch.” ¬†Personally it will be¬†interesting¬†to see what will become of this and how it works, if it goes well perhaps other developers will look into this in the future.¬†UMB Tech¬†Game Network have confirmed that¬†GDC 2013 attracted¬†23,000 attendees, the largest crowd in the show’s¬†history. Future game ‘Battlefield 4’ seventeen minute footage was leaked, the footage is shown below.

Electronic Arts¬†Boss¬†denied there is any link between video game content and “actual violence”

Video Games and Violence is a topic of personal interest and hype in the gaming world as many gamers know video games do not cause violence, here are links to my other blog posts which feature this topic https://pwnersmanual.wordpress.com/2013/01/17/a-brief-look-at-video-game-violence-a-political-and-video-gamer-view/ and https://pwnersmanual.wordpress.com/2013/02/21/video-games-and-violence/

John Riccitiello, the boss of EA voiced the thoughts of many gamers in which he says video games can instead be good and they do not cause for any gamer to become violent or take part in violent acts.

Disney cancel the upcoming ‘Star Wars’ game

Sad news for any fan of Star Wars and gaming¬†LucasArts has been closed by Disney.¬†Star Wars 1313 which had a demo at E3 in 2012 will no longer go ahead. This game was set to place¬†“players in control of a deadly bounty hunter as he uses an arsenal of exotic weaponry to hunt down his marks and uncover the truth surrounding a criminal conspiracy.” However LucasFilm spokesperson Miles Perkins, spoke to¬†BBC, saying production on Star Wars 1313 has simply been ‚Äúhalted.‚ÄĚ Therefor this game could still get the go ahead at some time in the future.

 

Sources;

BBC News (2013) EA denies games encourage violence. [online] Available at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-21274482 [Accessed: 6 Apr 2013].

Game Developers Conference (2013) Game Developers Conference | Exhibitor List. [online] Available at: http://www.gdconf.com/expo/exhibitorlist.html [Accessed: 6 Apr 2013].

IGN (2013) Star Wars 1313 . [online] Available at: http://uk.ign.com/games/star-wars-1313-project/xbox-360-135469 [Accessed: 6 Apr 2013].

Mashable (2013) Disney Closes LucasArts. [online] Available at: http://mashable.com/2013/04/03/disney-closes-lucasarts/ [Accessed: 6 Apr 2013].

Norris, E. (2013)¬†Star Wars 1313 Isn‚Äôt Canceled, It‚Äôs Just ‚ÄėHalted‚Äô. [online] Available at: http://www.craveonline.com/gaming/articles/474643-star-wars-1313-isnt-canceled-its-just-halted [Accessed: 6 Apr 2013].

Slash Film (2013)¬†Star Wars Bits: ‚ÄėStar Wars 1313‚Ä≤ Game Would Have Starred Boba Fett. [online] Available at: http://www.slashfilm.com/star-wars-bits-star-wars-1313-game-would-have-starred-boba-fett-plus-ilm-layoffs-and-clone-wars/ [Accessed: 6 Apr 2013].

Sony PS4 Playstation (2013) GDC 2013: Developer Conference record attendance at GDC 2013. [online] Available at: http://sonyps4playstation.com/gdc-2013-developer-conference-record-attendance-at-gdc-2013/ [Accessed: 6 Apr 2013].

TechRadar (2013) GDC 2013: top 10 moments from the conference. [online] Available at: http://www.techradar.com/news/gaming/gdc-2013-what-to-expect-1129300 [Accessed: 6 Apr 2013].

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Video Games and Violence

Hi!

I am doing some research based on video games and violence.  Please can you take some time to complete my survey http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/M8CGXX8  and let me know your thoughts, all answers are anonymous.

For more information surrounding video games and violence check out my blog post, https://pwnersmanual.wordpress.com/2013/01/17/a-brief-look-at-video-game-violence-a-political-and-video-gamer-view/

THANK YOU!

Don’t forget to check out my other gaming posts below.

Hitman HD Trilogy

Set for release on 1st February for all Europe fans and luckily 29th January for all North America fans.

Featured in the Hitman HD Trilogy you can enjoy 3 classic Hitman games. However none of which are the first game, Hitman: Codename47)  The three games are Hitman 2: Silent Assassin ( released in 2002), Hitman Contracts (released in 2004), and Hitman: Blood Money (released in 2006), all remastered for you Hitman gamers out there, as you may have already guessed, in HD.  Available on platforms Xbox 360 and PS3.

As these games have all previously been released the speculation surrounds how good do these games look in HD.  If you would like to find out for yourself scroll down to view some of the latest HD pictures.  For those who have not played any Hitman games before, or would like a reminder, here is a quick review of all 3 games featured. (Warning: Hitman: Contracts contains a spoiler if you have not yet played Hitman: Codename 47)

Hitman 2: Silent Assassin ‚Äď Agent 47 has left his life as an assassin and retreated to a church in Sicily wanting to find peace. 47 works as a gardener for his best friend, and mentor, Father Vittorio.¬†Unfortunately¬†an event occurs meaning, the man we know as Agent 47 has to return to his old life as an assassin. ¬†Making a deal he agrees to work for an agency, on one condition.

Hitman: Contracts ‚Äď The start of the game shows Agent 47 wandering through a dark hotel corridor entering his room. Collapsing, he begins to have flashbacks off past assassinations he has committed, they have taken their toll. Starting with the aftermath of killing Dr. Ort-Meyer. The mission mainly focuses on replays of previous missions that take place in the original game, except this time they are played in reverse.

Hitman: Blood Money ‚Äď This begins with a flash at an abandoned Baltimore, Maryland amusement park. We gather that many people were killed in an incident caused by negligent maintenance of a ferris wheel. The father of one of the victims calls the agency and orders a hit on the park owner, who was cleared of all charges. Agent 47 carries out the hit, following that assignment, he get‚Äôs a string of contracts from American clients all of which are eager to¬†hire¬†the famous hitman.

Latest HD Pictures

The pictures below have all been released by Square Enix, the developers, to show off the newly improved look;v

hitman

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Sources;

So Video Gaming (2013) So Video Gaming. [online] Available at: http://www.sovideogaming.com/ [Accessed: 24 Jan 2013].

The Gaming Liberty (2013) Square-Enix РThe Gaming Liberty . [online] Available at: http://thegamingliberty.com/index.php/tag/square-enix/ [Accessed: 24 Jan 2013].

Video Games: Benefits of Playing

 (catch up)

Only a couple days ago we posted a blog discussing the latest topic in the video game world, and also popular outside the video game world too, which is if the violence we see in video games does have an impact on us, the players.  For those who would like to read the post here is a link; https://pwnersmanual.wordpress.com/2013/01/17/a-brief-look-at-video-game-violence-a-political-and-video-gamer-view/

Video Games

The benefits

Full of strategy and strength, today, in this all new post, it is time to discover the reasons why playing video games are good for you.

  • They can help ease pain

Although you do not feel any pain direct (well at least we hope you don’t!) while playing video games there are¬†two studies which prove just how video games can help the player to feel less pain. ¬†The most recent study, conducted by¬†Keele University (based in the United Kingdom) in 2012, shown that you can increase your pain tolerance by as much as an impressive 65% even if the video game is of violent content.

The other study,  was conducted by the American Pain Society.  In 2010 the society focused upon video games,  carried out the research by looking at what benefits playing a video game had on patients who are undergoing serious procedures.  This led to the discovery that when the patients are immersed in a virtual world, allowing them freedom, they became not only significantly less stressed but also less trepidation.  The study results also show a decrease of around 30 to 50% in pain for burn wound care patients.

  • You can become more creative

Remember as a child when you used to love playing with a cardboard box.  Although it was not just a cardboard box to you, it could become anything you wanted, whenever you wanted.  Such as a dragon or a secret hiding place leading into another universe.  One of my personal favourites was after putting up the Christmas tree my sister and I used to sit in the box it came in while our dad (poor guy) dragged it (with us in) around the living room.

Over time, having to adjust to the adult world, this creativity can¬†unfortunately¬†fade. ¬†It is with playing video games that you can get this¬†creativity¬†back. ¬†Although the study was¬†initially done on children, there could be an pass into our adult like…and atleast telling someone you play video games to further you creativity will sound good right?! ¬†Linda Jackson,¬†professor of psychology and lead researcher on the project at¬†Michigan State University discovered this. ¬†In 2011,¬†Entertainment Software Association revelaed that around 72% of American households play a video game. ¬†She¬†surveyed 491, middle school, 12-year-olds and then assessed how often the students used different forms of technology. ¬†These included playing video games, internet use and mobile (cell) phone use. ¬†The researches used mostly the ‘Torrance Test of Creativity-Figural’. ¬†We¬†believe¬†this to be that, firstly, each child was handed¬†the form of an egg shape on a blank¬†sheet¬†of paper, they then were required to think of a unique picture to could draw with this shape and write a story about what they had just drew. The second stimulus was a picture of an elf lying in front of a small pool of water, staring at its reÔ¨āection, every child then had to answer a¬†collection¬†of hypothetical questions about it. ¬†The results shown the¬†relationship between video game playing led to the greatest creativity.

  • Better eyesight

Did anyone else used to get told as a child that eating carrorts would help to improve your eyesight and belive it? ¬†I did. ¬†Now, ¬†thanks to the¬†University of Rochester, New York, I and now you too, can inform them that a 2007 ¬†study¬†discovered after just 30 hours of ‚Äútraining‚ÄĚ on a first-person shooter, this can result in a significant boost to your spatial resolution (the ability to clearly see small, densely packed together objects). ¬†If they want more convincing explain in¬†2009 a further study, conducted by the same university,¬†found that players of action games can become up to 58% better at perceiving fine contrast differences. Guess Sam Fisher in Splinter Cell must have played many video games while he was younger.

‚ÄúIf you are driving at dusk with light fog it could make the difference between seeing the car in front of you or not seeing it,‚Ä̬†Quoted by research¬†leader Daphne Bavelier.

  • Boost self-esteem

Who needs to and watch the latest television show when playing the latest video game is better for you. ¬†Three researchers,¬†Dr Penny Sweetser,¬†Dr Daniel Johnson¬†and¬†Dr Peta Wyeth,from the¬†Queensland University of Technology¬†in Brisbane, Australia, made a discovery that playing video games can be more¬†beneficial¬†for a child than watching television. ¬†Watching television is a passive experience (you just watch) whereas playing a video game involves the child and allows them to be active and involved in what they are doing.¬†More than 92 per cent of Australian homes have at least one device for playing¬†video games¬† Although¬†the majority of children aged two to five exceeded government recommendations of a maximum of one hour of ‘screen time’ per day. ¬†Analysing data from¬†the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children the¬†researches¬†found¬†children aged two to five¬†spent, on average, some two to three hours watching television compared to less than a half hour playing video games.

Remembering that¬†computer games¬†are an ¬†interactive experience, it is this research which shows this experience boosted children’s self-esteem, cognitive skills such as problem-solving and, in some cases, physical activity levels.

  • Become a faster¬†decision¬†maker¬†¬†

After discovering that video games help to improve your eyesight the researchers at the University of Rochester, New York, decided to see what else you can improve by playing video games. ¬†This time, in 2010, cognitive scientists¬†discovered that while you play a video game, being more immersed in the game, instead of the world around you, can be a good thing. ¬†Being involved in the game it helps to¬†‚Äúdevelop a heightened sensitivity to what is going on around them, and this benefit doesn’t just make them better at playing video games, but improves a wide variety of general skills that can help with everyday activities like multitasking, driving, reading small print, keeping track of friends in a crowd, and navigating around town.‚ÄĚ ¬†The¬†research¬†was carried out by playing¬†50 hours of video games over multiple weeks. It is important to note that it is fast action paced games, such as Call of Duty, which have this effect.

Other benefits include;

  • Tackle Mental Illnesses

  • Improve Motor Skills

  • Increase Social Activity

  • ¬†Help the Elderly Avoid Serious Falls

Sources;

IGN (2012) 5 Reasons Video Games Are Actually Good for You. [online] Available at: http://uk.ign.com/articles/2012/09/10/5-reasons-video-games-are-actually-good-for-you [Accessed: 22 Jan 2013].

IGN (2013) 5 More Reasons Video Games Are Actually Good for You. [online] Available at: http://uk.ign.com/articles/2013/01/21/5-more-reasons-video-games-are-actually-good-for-you [Accessed: 22 Jan 2013].

Kids and Media (2000) When video games are good for you. [online] Available at: http://www.kidsandmedia.co.uk/when-video-games-are-good-for-you/ [Accessed: 22 Jan 2013].

Michigan State University (2011) Video game playing tied to creativity. [online] Available at: http://msutoday.msu.edu/news/2011/video-game-playing-tied-to-creativity/ [Accessed: 22 Jan 2013].

QUT (2013) QUT | News | Video games benefit children: study. [online] Available at: http://www.news.qut.edu.au/cgi-bin/WebObjects/News.woa/wa/goNewsPage?newsEventID=54961 [Accessed: 22 Jan 2013].

R4 revolutionds (2011) 3 Massive Benefits of Video-Gaming. [online] Available at: http://www.r4revolutionds.co.uk/3-massive-benefits-of-video-gaming/ [Accessed: 22 Jan 2013].

Rochester (2010) Video Games Lead to Faster Decisions that are No Less Accurate. [online] Available at: http://rochester.edu/news/show.php?id=3679 [Accessed: 22 Jan 2013].

A brief look at video game violence ‚Äď A political and video gamer view

In the United States of America gun violence is an on-going problem. Many people want to see the numbers of gun crime decrease and in order to do this, to find solutions; they look at what the causes of gun violence could be – even before the tragic Newtown massacre of 26 people, which includes 20 children, which happened on 14th December 2012. Although this has now made American Politicians want to create a new legislation, which, when in place, could prevent a similar tragic event from occurring again.

People have often wondered if playing video games can consequently lead towards gun violence. Vice President, Joe Biden, met with video game industry representatives on Friday 11th January 2013 to discuss possible solutions. They were discussing whether playing video games does create gun violence. He has headed up, along with President Barack Obama, twenty-three executive orders and a number of suggestions (One of which is a requested allocation of $10 million to study violent media) to the Congress.

In today’s society, while it is important to note that not all video games consist of having an act of violence in them, it is the more popular video games that do feature violence in them. (For examples of popular video games see previous post; https://pwnersmanual.wordpress.com/2013/01/16/favourite-game-of-2012-as-voted-for-by-you-and-hottest-game-of-2012-to-purchase)

In a talk with Casey Lynch, who works for IGN, Adam Sessler, the Executive Producer and Editor-in-Chief of Revision3 Games was quoted saying, ‚ÄúWe cannot ignore that the primary virtual interaction in the majority of popular games is an act of violence.‚ÄĚ

This blog post is neither agreeing nor disagreeing; it is quite simply showing important and relevant facts to discuss.

A study done by Keele University, showed that ‚Äúviolent video games help increase your pain tolerance by as much as 65%‚ÄĚ. This means that video games can be an effective way of easing pain. This study was aired on NBC on September 27, 2012.

(For more information on the study see ‘NBC – In Game’ video link at the bottom of this post)

Before coming to any conclusions, in order to have a knowledgeable argument it is important to not only consider, but study, both sides.

One reason why video games are being accused for violence is that, quoted from NBC,

‘”Wayne LaPierre, the executive Vice President of the National Rifle Association, has blamed Hollywood and the video game industry for the rash of U.S. shooting sprees. There exists in this country a callous, corrupt and corrupting shadow industry that sells, and sows, violence against its own people,‚ÄĚ’ he said in a controversial speech last month, citing video games like Grand Theft Auto and Mortal Kombat. He called such games the ‚Äúfilthiest form of pornography.‚ÄĚ”

(For more information see ‘NBC link’ ‘will biden target violent video games and should he?’)

Although upon hearing this, California senator, Leland Yee, entitled this claim “mind-boggling.

A 2006 study, which was done by researchers at the Indiana University School of Medicine, conducted MIR Brain scans on a group of 44 adolescents. Half of which played

‚Äú‚Ķthe high-octane but non-violent racing game ‚ÄúNeed for Speed: Underground.‚ÄĚ The other was the ultra-violent first-person shooter ‚ÄúMedal of Honor: Frontline.‚ÄĚ‚ÄĚ

Afterwards the brain scans of the people that played the violent video game showed an increase in emotional arousal ‚Äď and a corresponding decrease of activity in brain areas involved in self-control, inhibition and attention.

(For more on this study, visit the ‘NBC’ link, ‘does game violence make make teens aggressive’)

Interestingly two recent studies discovered that college students who teamed up to play violent video games later, showed more cooperative behaviour and sometimes less signs of aggression, than students who played the games competitively. David Ewoldsen, co-author of the studies and professor of communication at Ohio State University, wanted to go ahead with this study as he realised that the previous studies have all been looking at how players are individually, whereas now a majority of people use the game and consoles that they are playing on to connect with other players, not only on a national level but also international. “If you’re playing with a rival, and that rival is cooperating with you that violates your expectations — you’re surprised by their cooperation and that makes you even more willing to cooperate‚Ķthe point is that the way you act in the real world very quickly overrides anything that is going on in the video games,” Ewoldsen said. “Video games aren’t controlling who we are.”

(To see the in depth report of both studies , visit the ‘Science Daily ‘ link at the bottom of this post)

Reminder

Don’t forget to check our website and this blog for new posts daily!

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/774884/Websites/claire/site/index.html

Sources;

Gamespot (2013) Violent game bill dies. [online] Available at: http://uk.gamespot.com/news/violent-game-bill-dies-6402205 [Accessed: 17 Jan 2013].

IGN (2013) The Politics of Violence . [online] Available at: http://uk.ign.com/articles/2013/01/16/the-politics-of-violence [Accessed: 17 Jan 2013].

IGN (2013) Obama Asks Congress to Commission Violent Games Study. [online] Available at: http://uk.ign.com/articles/2013/01/16/obama-asks-congress-to-commission-violent-games-study [Accessed: 17 Jan 2013].

NBC News (2013) Will Biden target violent video games? (And should he?). [online] Available at: http://tv.msnbc.com/2013/01/14/will-biden-target-violent-video-games-and-should-he/ [Accessed: 17 Jan 2013].

NBC News (2012) Violent video games can help ease pain. [online] Available at: http://video.msnbc.msn.com/in-game/49201788#49201788 [Accessed: 17 Jan 2013].

NBC News (2008) Playing the blame game. [online] Available at: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23204875/ns/technology_and_science-games/t/playing-blame-game/#.UPfuXyevHSg [Accessed: 17 Jan 2013].

NBC News (2006) Does game violence make teens aggressive?. [online] Available at: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/16099971/ns/technology_and_science-games/t/does-game-violence-make-teens-aggressive/#.UPfuVievHSg [Accessed: 17 Jan 2013].

pwnrsmanual (2013) Favourite Game of 2012! As voted for by you (and hottest game of 2012 to purchase). [online] Available at: https://pwnersmanual.wordpress.com/2013/01/16/favourite-game-of-2012-as-voted-for-by-you-and-hottest-game-of-2012-to-purchase/ [Accessed: 17 Jan 2013].

Science Daily (2012) Violent video games not so bad when players cooperate. [online] Available at: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120904170724.htm [Accessed: 17 Jan 2013].