October 25: A Red Letter Day


Geoff Keighley, as written about by Robert Florence (click)

A Eurogamer article criticizing Geoff Keighley was pulled, amended and reuploaded to great controversy. To summarize today’s convoluted game journalism drama: Robert Florence wrote an article blasting Geoff Keighley, the Games Media Awards and a couple other caffeinated sponsor-happy game journo figures. One of them was Lauren Wainright, a journalist whose Tomb Raider-themed Twitter page and enthusiasm for a particular Playstation giveaway contest caught the suspicion of Florence. She complained to Eurogamer, who soon pulled the article. Rumors of a threatened libel suit cropped up. Robert Florence stepped down from Eurogamer, and the article was uploaded again with any mentions of Wainright removed.

“Urm… Trion were giving away PS3s to journalists at the GMAs. Not sure why that’s a bad thing?” – Laura Wainright, on Twitter (link added by SBH)

So here’s the thing. No one cited in the article has the legal protection to bring suit to Eurogamer. In order to sue for libel, one’s published words must be malicious and false– and the Internet has permanently archived the existence of Wainright’s suspicious tweets. In order to sue for defamation, one’s published words must be of another’s private facts that aren’t of public concern. Wainright’s tweets weren’t private, and her decision to publish and promote them to the press made them public.

Here’s the other thing: Eurogamer has bowed to pressure from somone, and that kind of softness doesn’t look good. I’ve always liked Eurogamer, too.

What made them pull the story? Was it legal pressure from Intent Media, one of Wainright’s employers? The PA Report seems to think so. Was it pressure from Wainright’s own complaints? Eurogamer has stated as much.

The paragraphs removed from Forence’s article can be viewed below:

Read more →

October 24: Hard Times

Left 4 Dead 2 is free to play this weekend! If you don’t already own the game, what the hell have you been waiting for? Click the link to find out more.

Nintendo predicts that it’ll be selling 70% less merch than expected, says Ars. Demand for the 3DS is less than expected, and the impending launch of the Wii U isn’t exactly the hottest topic in the news.

This certainly isn’t the kind of news Nintendo made five years ago. It still feels like the gaming hardware of this generation has peaked, and Sony and Microsoft still haven’t revealed the next-gen consoles competing with the Wii U. Maybe buyers just don’t feel the need for new consoles like they used to. Maybe everyone just plays games on their cell phones now. Maybe the appeal of casual game marketing finally wore off.

Read more →

Octobor 23: Layoffs, Layoffs, Layoffs

Prepare for high Octane manly cuddling – Click image to visit XCOM: Enemy Unknown’s website.

Another happy day in news for video game companies. Zynga, developer of Words with Friends as well other mobile app and social network games and a company whose imminent death has been quite grotesque to watch, has been reported to have shutdown their Boston office entirely and laid off over two-thirds of its Austin staff. Watching a company scramble for air like this hurts. Makes one wish someone would just put a bullet in it already.

A California district judge has ruled against the plaintiffs in a class action lawsuit regarding the privacy breach and following downtime of Sony’s PlayStation Network for repairs. Though this may come as a shocker to some, it is important to note that not only does Sony cover their rears with their license agreement, but it’s a free frickin’ service folks. Whenever you put any personal information on the internet you are at risk for security breaches. Read more →

Let’s Try to Play: Ape Escape (part 2)

Last week, we tried to play Ape Escape and learned the shocking truth behind the disappearance of Nathan’s lost brother’s fiance’s nipple rings. Will George confront Nathan about his dark past, or will they forfeit the inheritance? Find out this week on Super Bunnyhop.

Critical Close-up: Zelda (part 2)

“Critical Close-Up” is our new series of game analysis videos. The basic idea is that we read stuff, apply it to our favorite games, and then talk about it.
The first target: Zelda.

This concludes last week’s video, which can be found here:

Trivializing Our Successes: Achievements and Trophies Ruining the Idea That We Are Accomplishing Anything

By: Nathan Velliquette

“Achievement Unlocked: Complete Level One.” Does that not say enough? Does it not make you laugh? Let’s start by looking at the definitions of achievement: “something accomplished, especially by superior ability, special effort, great courage, etc.; a great or heroic deed.” Thank you dictionary.com.

Any regular gamer should immediately realize the fallacy that completing the first level of a game is hardly considered a great accomplishment (unless they are playing Ninja Gaiden on Super Dragon of Doom difficulty.) What happened to the day when playing a game was rewarding without giving the player arbitrary trophies or chaotically selected numerical values? Out the window, that’s where. And it is disappointing. Read more →

October 22: It begins.

Photo taken by Isaiah-Triforce Johnson. Click to find him on Facebook!

The wait for Nintendo’s next console has officially begun. Isaiah-Triforce Johnson, who apparently makes a point out of being the first person to buy every new Nintendo machine, has started camping in line at the Nintendo World Store in Manhattan over a month ahead of time. Isaiah posted to Twitter that “My trusty Nintendo 3DS, @duxterinc and twitter will be my best friends for a month. @NintendoAmerica.” If he keeps up the same pace that he has for the last few years, the TriForceGameMaster would be the first person in North America to be sold the first home console of a new generation.

Tom Hall (the guy wh conceived and conceded DOOM) and Brenda Brathwaite (veteran of the Wizardry series) have been hoping to develop a new old-school RPG that was unfortunately cancelled. The culprit– there simply wasn’t enough funding momentum on their Kickstarter page. Read more →

October 21: Super Sony Kerfuffle

“The Ultimate Match Ups!” – A modding project for SSB featuring PSAS charachters. Click image for link.

Sony’s PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale is a concept (and title) that must’ve driven countless IP lawyers mad. It’s a competitive imitation of the ethos behind Super Smash Bros. Brawl, which itself managed to break sacred legal boundaries by signing on non-company characters onto Nintendo’s game roster. Now modders have crossed the paths of both games in what has to be the most bafflingly fitting mod project of all time: a cross-platform combination of these two company’s cross-IP fighters.

The Ultimate Match Ups” imports all of Sony’s Battle Royale charachters over to Brawl, with the exception of Killzone’s Colonial Radec. But in his place are the additions of Nico Bellic, John Marston, Lara Croft, Old Snake, Isaac Clarke, Toomba, Kazuya Mishima and Commander Shepard. Insanity has arrived. Read more →

October 20: Apps, Comics, and Dead Handhelds, Oh My!

Found on Second Quest’s Kickstarter – Click for link

David Hellman and Tevis Thompson have teamed up and are seeking funding for a Zelda-inspired comic. Hellman was drawn to Tevis when he posted an essay about the failings of current Legend of Zelda games. Call it nostalgia if you will, but Tevis makes a decent argument in his essay found here as to why Zelda games have begun to stagnate.

Justin Success Brooks was recently arrested for pirating and bootlegging Nintendo games online. Though, sure it’s so epic that his middle name is Success, it is more interesting to see authorities taking legal action against video game pirates. Maybe it’s about time to start wiping our hard drives, fellas! Read more →

October 19: Start Kicking

Star Citizen is a Kickstarter project now, which is weird because I just now learned that it wasn’t before. Who knew? All the favorite kickstarter elements were there: semi-famous developer from the 90s, quiet PC genre, lofty goals of reviving old standards. On a similar note, old Quest for Glory devs are Kick Starter-ing a new project called Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption.

This is all on the same day that doubts surrounding the crowdsourcing platform are arising thanks to the troubled development of Haunt, a project whose online fundraising efforts weren’t enough to push the game to completion. Chris Avellone shares his thoughts about the phenomenon here. Read more →