More female gamers than ever!

September 18th, 2014 No Comments By Ian Wade

Old women on laptop 300x221 More female gamers than ever!The patriarchy appears to have been quashed!

Or at least it has in the world of video games, which now shows that women account for 52% of all gamers in the UK.

That’s an increase from the 49% of three years ago.

This has been driven by 25-to 44-year-old women downloading free puzzle-type stuff and trivia game apps onto their smartphones, according to a report from the Internet Advertising Bureau UK (IAB).

According to a survey of over 4,000 individuals, half of the women in this age group cited puzzle, trivia and word games as their favourite genre, compared to one third of respondents overall.

Steve Chester, director of data and industry programmes at the Internet Advertising Bureau said: “The internet and mobile devices have changed the gaming landscape forever.”

“They’ve brought down the barriers to entry, making gaming far more accessible and opened it up to a whole new audience. In the past you needed to go out and buy an expensive console and the discs on top to get a decent experience, now you can just download a free app.”

The average gaming Briton who games spends six hours per week playing games, across three different devices.

The study also reveals there are now more people over 44 years old playing games than children and teenagers, with 56% of the 45-54 age group, 44% of the 55-64s and 32% of the 65-74s admitting to have played a video game in the last six months, the mucky herberts.

Now, where’s the rage from men spitting their Wotsits out saying “oooooh, they’re not proper games!” and saying that they haven’t met any women who play games via their dirty Call of Duty headsets?

Microsoft buys up Minecraft

September 16th, 2014 2 Comments By Ian Wade

Microsoft have been shopping and have bought Mojang, who own Minecraft. The computery GIANT has shelled out $2.5 billion (£1.5 billion) for it too.

minecraft gratis 500x227 Microsoft buys up Minecraft

The Swedish-based company Mojang’s popular Minecraft has sold over 54 million copies, and lets players build structures in their own little world, but can connect up with other users and have battles and the like.

Mojang’s three founders will leave the company – possibly to build a house made out of gold – but have assured fans that “everything is going to be OK”.

It is hoped that now owning Minecraft will be enough to woo anyone who is on the fence about owning one of Microsoft’s Windows Phones, but the company have assured gamers that Minecraft will still be on all the other platforms.

Minecraft is one of the top-selling apps on both Apple’s iOS store and and Android’s Google Play, and has recently been released for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. It was the third most popular console game last month, too, according to market research firm NPD Group.

Mojang, who’ve been knocking around since 2009, made over $100 million in profit in 2013, and has a staff of 40. Microsoft said the Mojang team would join its game studio, which is responsible for titles such as Halo, Forza and Fable.

Microsoft chief executive, Satya Nadella, said: “Minecraft is more than a great game franchise – it is an open world platform, driven by a vibrant community we care deeply about, and rich with new opportunities for that community and for Microsoft.”

FIFA15: Stuff to do with goalkeepers

September 8th, 2014 No Comments By Mof Gimmers

While everyone in the know is getting a cheap PS4 or Xbox One from our Deals of the Day, there’s good news for football fans as FIFA15 is due out, which means, basically, new kits and boots for people to salivate over.

Of course, there’s going to be a load of tweaks and other subtle improvements, which non FIFA players won’t at all understand. And some FIFA lovers might not really understand it either. Doesn’t matter. Once you’re in with EA’s famous football franchise, it hooks you in like you’re a smack fiend.

The latest is that there’s going to be improved AI for the goalkeepers.

As you can see from the trailer, EA has promised that goalies will be smarter and more realistic, and not only that, they’ve utilised Team USA and Everton’s Tim Howard to talk about it.

No. He doesn’t do a load of involuntary swearing, you monsters.

Is FIFA 15 going to be the best one yet? We’ll find out when it gets released in September. Will it be the same as all the others, but everyone will buy it anyway? Of course it will.

YouTube: More than a billion viewers a month

September 2nd, 2014 1 Comment By Ian Wade

youtube 300x300 YouTube: More than a billion viewers a monthYouTube is now attracting more than 1 BILLION viewers a month.

This billion-odd are watch 6 billion hours of video, and 40% of them are watching it on mobile devices [as an aside, anyone who makes their videos unavailable on mobile devices should be beaten with a rubber hose and left unconscious in the street as an example to anyone else thinking of doing it - Ed].

YouTube channels have grown by 80.5% in the last year, according to new data published by online video industry site Tubefilter and analytics firm OpenSlate.

Tubefilter’s Top 100 rundown of the most viewed channels saw that they collectively raked up 9.46 billion views in July 2014, up from 5.24 billion the year before.

No.1 is some herbert named PewDiePie, whose monthly views have gone from 221.6 million to 438.9 million.

Let’s see what all the fuss is about, eh?

DisneyCollector, are at No.2, racking up 268 million views in the month, edging it past Shakira’s frankly pathetic 226.6 million views. Seems some people think her hips do lie.

In fourth place there’s gaming effort Stampy (199.6m views) and The Diamond Minecart (186.1m views) gets fifth. Gaming is still quite the thing though, with content generating 4.34 billion viewings in July.

Amazon goes shopping

August 26th, 2014 No Comments By Ian Wade

twitch 300x300 Amazon goes shoppingAmazon.com have bought live-streaming gaming network Twitch and they’ve paid $970 million for it too.

In cash.

They’d been in a bidding war with Google for Twitch, which allows gamers to broadcast live streams from PCs, XBox and PS4 consoles of themselves playing video games.

Twitch, who we banged on about here, also run gaming events and redistributes content from Joystiq, Gamespot, and Destructoid, Manvsgame and more.

Twitch also has 55 million visitors, which might have something to do with the keen interest from both companies.

This is seen as another step in Amazon’s strategy to big up their entertainment services, and video games are a big old market where cash literally grows on trees (especially in the online game ‘Cash Trees’ where you play a tax-dodging entity having to hoover up as much cash off trees or something).

But what has Jeff Bezos to say, hmmm?

“Broadcasting and watching gameplay is a global phenomenon, and Twitch has built a platform that brings together tens of millions of people who watch billions of minutes of games each month.”

Tens of millions. Bet his pants tightened at that.

Help save Earth from cybercrime!

August 22nd, 2014 No Comments By Ian Wade

GCHQ Help save Earth from cybercrime!Fancy yourself as some kind of cyber-crim thwarter? Well, you’re in luck.

The British intelligence agency GCHQ, have launched an online game to test whether you’d be any good at stopping a fictional attack.

GCHQ are hoping to find some masterminds among the gameplayers, and then use them, USE THEM FOR THEIR MINDS.

And it’s not a piece of puff, winners of previous missions have gone on to work at the agency.

In the game, called ‘Assignment: Astute Explorer’, users must protect a fictitious aerospace technology company threatened by imminent attack from imaginary cyber terrorists called The Flag Day Associates. There’s even YouTube threats and all sorts. Fancy that!

The story goes that fictitious company Ebell are concerned about the threat of an imminent attack and have asked GCHQ operatives (the public playing the game) to assess the scale of the threat. Sounds like fun.

If you fancy your chances at, you know, one day possibly saving the world, head here.

Playstation ruining gamers bank holiday

August 22nd, 2014 No Comments By Ian Wade

playstation network 300x216 Playstation ruining gamers bank holidayPlaystation is having a scheduled maintenance. On Bank Holiday Monday.

“THE BASTARDS!”, some of you cry.

The Playstation Network will be off at 5.40pm and won’t be back until 0.50am Tuesday.

PlayStation users will be unable to access the PlayStation Store, PSN account management and Network account registration.

Entertainment services and online gameplay will also be unavailable, and you won’t be able to sign into PSN via the PlayStation website.

So, you know. Go outside. Visit friends.

Finally put those shelves up.

Flappy Birds chap reveals Swing Copters

August 20th, 2014 No Comments By Ian Wade

Flappy Bird lovers unite, for the creator has announced a new game which will entertain you in a way that is so frustrating that you might chew your own hands off!

The brilliantly named Flappy Bird creator Dong Nguyen has come up with a new time-wasting bit of addictive nonsense in the form of Swing Copters.

swing copters 500x292 Flappy Birds chap reveals Swing Copters

The scrolling game demands its players to tap to make a character, handily wearing a propeller hat, fly from side to side, while avoiding troublesome platforms and hammers.

It’s out on August 21st as a free download, and there’ll be the option for players to pay 69p via an in-app thing which lays off the adverts.

Poor old Dong got it right in the neck when he took Flappy Birds down in February, after he was a bit concerned at how huge it had become.

Online critics gave heavy shade, and even – you big people – death threats were being thrown at him. He did however remain unkilled long enough to launch Flappy Birds Family on Amazon’s set-top box thing.

So anyway. Put down those weapons and rejoice again!

Apps: We’re just not as bothered as we were

August 19th, 2014 1 Comment By Ian Wade

apps 300x199 Apps: Were just not as bothered as we werePeople are not as arsed as they once were with smartphone apps, according to some new research.

A report by Deloitte shows that the average amount of apps downloaded per user per month is on the wane and declined a fair bit over the last year.

Almost a third of smartphoners in the UK do not download any apps in an average month, which is up from one-in-five last year.

Users tend to be more savvy and have a set amount a favourite apps sorted within the first few months of getting a new phone.

But it’s not a full-on sign of the collapse of the app market, as Deloitte reckon that more smartphone users over the age of 50 aren’t that bothered in adding additional stuff.

Paul Lee, whose job title ‘Head of research for technology, media and telecommunications at Deloitte’ is a bit longwinded, said, “The new adopters of smartphones use them mostly for text messaging. When you look at who uses IM services like WhatsApp and WeChat, it tends to be younger age groups and it declines very steeply with age.”

“The ‘if in doubt download it’ attitude to consumer apps is clearly on the decline,” he points out.

xbox one square Dad called cops after sons Xbox extravaganceA dad shopped his own son after he blew nearly £3,000 on Xbox games.

Using the family business card, Daniel Holmes managed to make 77 payments to the Xbox Live network.

Naturally, dad Ian hit the roof, and called the police when he discovered the payments on his card statement.

Daniel  made 77 payments to Xbox live, which came to £2,400. With interest this totalled £2,800, North Devon Magistrates’ heard on Friday.

While Daniel had an investment in the family business, and had the card legitimately, once confronted by his dad about it, did not deny it, but admitted that he couldn’t pay it back.

Tim Hook, defending Daniel, said: “The defendant continued to use it, on each occasion buying Xbox games and carrying on a form of gambling which increased into a relatively substantial sum.”

His father asked him to repay it. He said he was extremely annoyed and “could hit him”".

He also realised that Daniel – then unemployed – would be unable to pay £200 a month. Hence a court case. Holmes Jnr, of Ilfracombe, Devon, was ordered to do 100 hours of unpaid work and pay compensation of £2,097.88.

Don’t let your children use your credit cards. That’s the blindingly obvious lesson here.

Man sues Sony for their LIES

August 8th, 2014 2 Comments By Ian Wade

killzone shadow fall Man sues Sony for their LIESSony are being sued by one unhappy man.

Californian Douglas Ladore is taking Sony to court as he reckons they falsely advertised the native resolution of the multiplayer mode in Killzone Shadow Fall as 1080p

Mr Ladore boo-hoos that Sony is guilty of, “negligent misrepresentation, false advertisement, unfair competition and fraud in the inducement” for various claims from the company that a ‘native’ 1080p resolution was present in the game’s multiplayer.

Going on to shade them with “Unfortunately, Sony’s marketing and on-box representations turned out to be nothing more than fiction.”

Sony have always said that Killzone Shadow Fall runs at native 1080 and 60fps in both its single and multiplayer modes. However the game actually uses a thing called ‘temporal reprojection’ to achieve this 1080p image from a lower resolution render.

This ‘temporal reprojection’ lark tracks the position of pixels and manages to predict where they’ll be to form a higher-resolution new frame.

Obviously Ladore is having none of it, claiming how this is more a “technological shortcut” rather than an actual native to the game as he claims advertised.

There’s getting upset about something and then there’s going through the process of thinking “yes, I’m going to sue this company for their LIES” and then doing so.

Some people eh? They need to go outside and have a minute.

Anti-deathwatch: HMV

August 5th, 2014 2 Comments By Ian Wade

hmv 300x168 Anti deathwatch: HMVYou remember when HMV was all dead. Dead. DEAD?

Well not anymore they aren’t, they are quite literally back. Back. BACK.

Indeed, the entertainment retailer has been apparently winning shoppers from the supermarkets, according to entertainment industry data findings.

The retailer grew its share of CD, DVD and video game sales in the UK from 13.6% to 14.7p% in the 12 weeks to July 6, allowing HMV to reclaim second place in the market from Tesco.

These latest show that although HMV’s market share has fallen slightly year-on-year from 15.1% to 14.7%, which is primarily due to store closures, it grew quarter-on-quarter.

Which is all good karmically, seeing as it was the antics of the supermarkets that caused most of the collapse at HMV in the first place.

The remaining 125 HMV stores are now said to be very profitable, but also this could also be down to supermarkets not really giving much of a shit about CDs and DVDs like they used to, with most of them relying on guaranteed sellers such as Now compilations and Ed Sheeran rather than focusing less on Top Ten-oriented acts.

Amazon still remains the largest entertainment retailer in the UK though, with its market share growing from 20.2% to 21.8% during the 12-week period.

They might see even more success if they think about reducing the cost of albums though…

EA announce subscription service

July 30th, 2014 No Comments By Mof Gimmers

ea electronic arts EA announce subscription serviceEA have announced that they’re launching a subscription service for the Xbox One, which basically means that, for a monthly fee, you’ll get access to some of Electronic Arts’ games for $4.99 a month. The service will be launching in Europe soon.

If you are willing to pay for a Spotify or Netflix subscription, is this any different? Or do you see this as an awful development in gaming?

You can either pay $4.99 per month, or an annual subscription of $29.99, say Gizmodo.

The service is called ‘EA Access’ and you’ll be able to choose games from ‘The Vault’. There’s four main games to pick from initially, notably, FIFA 14, Peggle 2, Madden NFL 25, and Battlefield 4.

On top of that, those signed-up with EA Access with get a 10% discount when purchasing any digital content from EA on the Xbox One. So that’s things like Battlefield 4 Premium and Dragon Age: Inquisition. Subscribers will also get access to new releases “up to five days before the release date.”

A beta version is being introduced to some Xbox One-havers this week, and there’s no word of a roll-out as yet. Either way, what do you make of this?

FIFA 15 to have ‘emotional intelligence’

July 21st, 2014 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

Gamers are getting excited for EA Sports’ new trailers for the forthcoming FIFA 15.

Of course, people who don’t like the FIFA franchise can’t fathom why it stays so popular. The simple answer is NEW KITS. Such is the life of a football fan.

Naturally, there are gaming developments, most of which are too boring to relay here. However, there’s one new feature which is exciting – ‘emotional intelligence’.

Basically, FIFA 15 is going to put more focus on the players and fans emotions, so playing feels more like you’re at the ground or watching it on telly.

The video below shows commentators reacting to what the fans do, while players learn to encourage each other or, even better, learn to develop frustrations and hatred. Splendid.

FIFA 15 is scheduled for release across all formats in September, just in-time to make a Christmas No.1 bid.

PES 2015: Now with in-app purchases

July 3rd, 2014 No Comments By Mof Gimmers

pro evo PES 2015: Now with in app purchasesPES 2015, or Pro Evo if you prefer, has been announced for the PS4 and Xbox One, which is all very exciting for gaming football fans.

However, there’s going to be some moaning about it as the new version of the game’s Master League Online will have support in-app purchases. Of course, that’s not quite the correct terminology (micro-transactions would be better), but either way, once you buy the game, you will be asked for more money.

The Master League mode now ‘allows players and managers to be added using accumulated GP or via microtransactions within club dealings. Agents now used to meet player requirement criteria, while unhappy players can upset the balance of a side to detrimental effect. Extends to offline play’.

Basically, you can cough up your real money if you want instant access to players and the like. If you’ve got the disposable income, then this will be a treat. If your kid wants everything yesterday, then expect to be mithered.

 

There’s more developments too. There’ll be a new shooting system and passing options have been expanded. All in all, these make the ball move around more realistically.

Positioning plays a key role too, with the ability to dribble into space and beat your marker now improved. Sounds alright, eh? There’s a teaser video too, but alas, no gameplay.

You’ll have to wait for that. Unless of course, you want to make a microtransaction to Konami and they might give it to you earlier.