Did you miss us? We sure missed you. Most of all, we missed bringing you the latest gaming industry news and trends in this excited-for-E3 issue of PLAYED. This month, we consider the celebrity of developers and how it may shape the industry in years to come. We also check out Apple’s latest step into the gaming space with their Game Center mobile network and proprietary approach to the mobile space, along with the industry’s “green” efforts towards an improved environment. Finally, with achievements and rewards an integral part of gaming, we look at how high scores and in-game bonuses are influencing real-life programs and activities.
Issue #59 of Reflecteur makes us question why we love infomercials so much (hint: the fails), how a common grammatical error turned into a living, breathing creature (so proof read), and what you get when you combine any two of the Seven Deadly Sins (we may or may not be guilty of one or two of them).
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Last week, Denuologist Matt Story participated as a speaker at the 2010 Digital Hollywood Spring event in Santa Monica, CA. A collection of leaders from the media, creative, technology and entertainment industries gathered for this three-day event exploring topics ranging from smartphones to online video to music to Hollywood to videogames.
Matt’s panel focused on the strategies, market and rewards for games, music and content. It also specifically spoke to the rise of SmartPhones, iPads and digital tablets. Joining him on the panel was Stephen Jackson, President and CEO of Smashing Ideas; Jason Henderson, Games Product Manager at Verizon; Michael Schade, CEO and Co-Founder of Fishlabs; Daniele Calabrese, Founder and CEO of sountrckr; and Jennifer Cooper, Founder and Principal of Rocket Spark Media, who also participated as the panel moderator.
There’s been a lot of talk over the past few years about approachable gaming mechanics infiltrating the hardcore space. When Madden 2011 releases this August, it will include a new gameplay feature meant to acclimate the gamer to an overwhelming virtual playing field of multi-button juke moves, coverage audibles, and receiver hot routes by speaking directly in the player’s ear. Sam Fisher’s latest adventure scrapped the classic Splinter Cell pure stealth, trial and error gameplay in favor of a more accessible choose-your-own-style-of-killing-bad-guys approach, to the chagrin of some of the series’ more rabid fans. Even Bioware toned down many of the traditional RPG elements in Mass Effect’s sequel in an effort to reach a wider market of shooter fans. Developers and publishers have an obvious interest in growing their audiences, especially considering the multi-million dollar price tags associated with AAA titles. Amongst all that approachable talk, however, there’s been little mention of the other side of that coin, that is, the hardcore mechanics of approachable, and social, gaming.
This month’s issue of PLAYED takes a trip to the Game Developers Conference to bring you the insights and trends that are taking shape from the core of the gaming industry. From Sony’s motion control to new advents in digital distribution, the conference showcased what the future of gaming could be through the eyes of gaming’s best and brightest. We also take a look at how publishers are changing the way they promote their media opportunities to marketers, and check out how Valve’s Steam distribution platform continues its trendsetting ways. Finally, in an increasingly connected culture where information is accessed instantly, we look at how gaming behavior is shifting to match this demand. .