Friday, December 01, 2017

Weekly Link Round Up

You know what time it is. It's the Weekly Link Round Up! A collection of some of the best, worst, and weirdest gaming news. Welcome to another week of madness:

- Curious about how The Video Game Awards came together in the post-Spike era? Kotaku's Jason talks to Geoff about the show's development and how it's flourished in a YouTube/Twitch era.

- There's a new ICO that is expected to change the world of video games. Game Protocol is a video game economy based off of 4 pillars: a decentralized game store, a co-working development community, a crypto-based crowdfunding community, and free developer tools. While that sounds nice, that's not how the real world works. Activision/Blizzard, Sony, Nintendo - these developers do not share content to help maintain their brands. Also, there's this thing called copyright. Kind of important. But read the article and see what you think. It sounds too good and has no idea how to implement itself.

- Desert Bus has a sequel.The ubiquitous stamina game that now has an annual marathon, was created by magic duo Penn & Teller in 1995. It's dubbed as one of the worst games, but the charm has kept fans interested. This year the game marathon raised $4 million for the charity Child's Play. You can thank Gearbox for Desert Bus VR, which is Desert Bus...in VR mode. The game takes 8 hours to complete with no pauses. You have to drive from Tuscon, Arizona to Las Vegas. If you complete the game, there's now a bonus level! A drive back to Tuscon.

- Want to know the history of video games in a nice infographic that's easy to comprehend? Head over to History Degree.net. The layout is a good overview for those interested in gaming's past. Now it does skip over a few landmarks and milestones, and begins it's journey arcades instead of personal computers. But for kids wanting to see how gaming began, it's a good place to start.

- Epic Games went after several users this week, sending out a legal summons for cheating in their game Fortnite. The problem is one of those players is a 14 year old. The mother of the child has sent a response back to Epic Games, since you can't technically sue a minor in the U.S. But in Epic's defense, they probably didn't know the user was a child. The game is rated T by the ESRB, but if the user had purchased anything in the game's store, they had to agree to the TOS and confirm their age. If he entered in a fake age, that's on the teen - not Epic. The story is still panning out and we're waiting on a response from Epic Games on what will happen next. At least one of the other users is settling out of court.

- Do you play your games on mute? A new study posted in the The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America suggests that playing games without the sound on, or using your own music, can affect your game play. A number of games utilize sound cues for players to know when to initiate an action. Without having that sound on, you're more likely to screw up. Seems like an obvious statement, but I didn't get grant money to study this. If you ask any MMO player, they know the importance of the game's sound. Even if you mute the soundtrack, keep the sounds on. This helps you know when an enemy is attacking or prepping to cast a spell, so you can counteract it. In Final Fantasy XI, I knew what the spell sounds for Paralyze, Slow, Gravity, and Silence sounded like so I could quickly heal my party. Those extra fractions of a second is the difference between digital life, and deleveling.

- Another Pokémon cafe is opening up in Japan in 2018, and once again it reminds us that we never get cool stuff like this here. Go look at all the cool stuff it'll have. Not fair!

- It wouldn't be a Round Up without a WhatCulture list! This time it's 10 of the best games of 2017 you haven't played. The list includes Nier:Automata (which I call bull on that - the game has sold over 2 million copies since it's release in March), Prey, and Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus? Okay WhatCulture. Your drunk again. This list sucks. Even Cuphead is listed. CUPHEAD! Really? One of the critical hits of the year? The writer of this list needs to rethink life beyond Zelda and Destiny II.

- Finally, it's been 45 years of Pong and The Nerdist looks back at the game that created the arcade craze. If you read one article today, make it this one.

Hey look! No news about EA or Star Wars: Battlefront II! It's a miracle.

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