Indie developers including the makers of The Witness, Thomas Was Alone, VVVVVV, and Ridiculous Fishing, are railing against YouTube and Google over their new copyright detection policies after being the target of false copyright claims on videos of their own games.
Mike Bithell, creator of puzzle platformer game Thomas Was Alone, was the target of a claim by a group called 'Indmusic' for "systematically" claiming rights to footage of his game. He lashed out at the group via Twitter:
In an email to YouTube content creators yesterday (obtained by Kotaku), Google defended its automated "Content ID" system deployed last week and offered some advice on what those affected by it could do if they feel they have become the target of a false copyright claim.
By all accounts online retailer Zavvi made a mistake when it mailed out a PlayStation Vita and Tearaway bundle to UK customers who simply ordered only the PS Vita game, but the company's response to customers is what's making news this morning. According to Eurogamer, the retailer has sent customers who received the PS Vita bundle by accident emails filled with ultimatums and legal threats.
You've probably heard of games being cancelled while being in early development, in beta, and at various stages of development but one game is likely the first to be cancelled after it has been released. Published by 505 Games and developed by Trickstar, Ashes Cricket 2013 is the first game to be cancelled publicly by a publisher - in addition to being unceremoniously pulled from Steam for being awful. Naturally 505 Games points its fingers at the game's developer who did not deliver a game up to anyone's standards.
According to this Reddit thread unearthed by Eurogamer, Microsoft has been banning Xbox One users who have been deemed to have used foul language in their chats via Skype and uploaded videos through Upload Studios. Dozens of users have also complained about the bans on the Xbox forums, according to Eurogamer.
FIFA Manager series' founder Gerald Köhler announced that FIFA Manager 14 will be the last game in the soccer/football management series.
"Today I’m writing to tell you that FIFA MANAGER 14 will be the last installment of the football simulation series marketed by EA SPORTS. This is was a very tough decision, so I want to take the time to explain it. This probably comes as a big disappointment to many of you, and it is understandable that you would ask why."
Over the weekend Kotaku continued to report on disc drive failures in Microsoft's new Xbox One console, according to the publication, it has received over 150 readers saying that they have bought an Xbox One with a faulty disc drive. In addition editors from websites Polygon, IGN, and GamesRadar have reported receiving one of these faulty units directly from Microsoft.
Microsoft has been pretty lukewarm in its response to the news:
As the PlayStation 4 hit North America some consumers took their shiny new next-generation home and realized that it didn't work very well. On Friday Sony said that it was looking into an issue some customers were experiencing with the PS4, and today they have put together a page dedicated to working out the problem. What was the problem? Some customers in North America were reporting that the console was giving them a blue blinking light. A blue blinking light was replacing the white solid light, which means that the console is in the "powered on" state.
What started out as a goodwill Halloween gesture to the community by indie developer Wadjet Eye Games turned into a nightmare last night. Wadjet Eye Games made the latest game in its popular point-and-click adventure game series Blackwell Deception available for free. It was supposed to be available until midnight on November 1, but Wadjet Eye Games was forced to shut the promotion down early, leaving many who found out about the freebie later to miss out. Fans who didn't know what was going on were obviously peeved with the indie developer.
Taiwan’s Fair Trade Commission (FTC) has fined Samsung and two local PR firms for what it described as an organized campaign to post positive reviews of its products, while maligning competitors' products. Samsung reportedly carried this plan out through two local public relations firms who used a "large number of hired writers and designated employees" to get the job done. Samsung and the two local firms were fined $100,000 each, though the original fine it faced was much higher - as much as $1 million.
A tweet from Crytek has rubbed several developers the wrong way leading some to lash out at the company in a very public fashion. Talking about finishing up its upcoming game Ryse, Crytek tweeted that the development team had been in crunch mode as it pushed hard to have the title ready to ship in time for the Xbox One launch on November 15.
"By the time #Ryse ships for #XboxOne, we will have served the crunching team more than 11,500 dinners throughout development. #RyseFacts," the official Twitter account for the game joked.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has filed a lawsuit in federal court against the founder of Left Behind Games and Ronald Zaucha. The SEC claims that Left Behind Games CEO and CFO Troy Lyndon inflated the company's reported revenue by 1,300 percent by issuing nearly 2 billion shares of stock to Zaucha as "purported compensation for consulting services" to the California-based company.
Kickstarter-funded sword fighting game Clang has run out of cash and is looking - with little success - for additional funding. In an update to the Kickstarter page for the game, Neal Stephenson from Subutai Studio told backers that the $526,000 pledged by Kickstarter donors in July 2012 is all gone and raising funding from other sources has proven difficult because publishers and investors interested in the sector are "risk-averse."
Wired contributor Rachel Edidin has joined a growing contingent of writers and game developers that say they won't be attending PAX events in the future. Edidin says that a Q&A with Mike Krahulik (the artist of the web comic Penny Arcade and co-founder of PAX) this weekend was the final straw that broke the camel's back for her. She is not alone in that assertion.
This week Nintendo of America announced that it plans on knocking $50 off the retail price of its Wii U console in September and that it would launch a special Wind Waker HD Limited Edition Wii U Bundle that includes the game, the Wii U console, a specially branded Zelda gamepad, and a digital copy of the Hyrule Historia book.
While America is getting all of this, apparently Australia is getting a big fat goose egg.
Yesterday, it was suggested that GameStop received a new shipment of the fairly rare and in demand RPG Xenoblade Chronicles and is selling them as 'used' for $90.
Why would GameStop mislabel a batch of new games as 'used' when it could command a higher price selling them new? Like the number of licks required to reach the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop, the world may never know because all anyone's been able to get out of the games retailer is why a used copy of Xenoblade costs so darn much.
When you go to eBay, Craigslist, or some off-the-beaten-path retro game store you expect some level of price gouging to happen. People selling old games in these spaces categorize them as collector's items and try to sucker you into paying $500 for an old copy of a game (like Minish Cap for GBA). But when GameStop does it, you have to wonder what the heck is going on. Apparently that is exactly what the world's largest video gaming retailer is doing, according to this Kotaku report.
Russian distributor 1C-SoftClub was forced to halt sales of the WWII real-time strategy game Company of Heroes 2 after consumers complained about the portrayal of Russian forces in the game. After numerous player complaints about Russian forces being portrayed as having a ruthless leadership and taking liberties with history, the distributor decided to stop shipping the game to retailers, and reached out to publisher Sega. Sega said that it was looking into these concerns.
The Wii U version of Ubisoft's next Splinter Cell title apparently WILL have multiplayer but it WON'T have offline multiplayer. Ubisoft producer Liu Jim told Nintendo Life that Splinter Cell: Blacklist for the Wii U won't have four-player local co-op because the company just didn't have enough time to devote to it before it ships. The game will ship on all platforms at the same time - August 20.
According to this Reuters report, the Taiwanese company Pegatron Corp. is being accused of forced overtime, low wages and the use of underage workers. Pegatron is one of several companies that works in Apple's supply chain for various iOS devices. So who is accusing the company of such horrendous practices?
Backers of the The Doom That Came to Atlantic City boardgame Kickstarter are learning a harsh lesson about crowd-funding: there's always a risk that the project you put money into will fail miserably. Eurogamer chronicled the epic failure of this popular Kickstarter-funded board game in an extensive report this morning.
Zynga is in a bad spot. New information revealed through an earnings statement filed Thursday with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) shows that the social game maker has lost a lot of daily active players and had a substantial loss in Q3 2013. In its filing Zynga reported that the number of daily average users (DAU) dropped from 52 million to 39 million in the quarter. This is the lowest number of daily active users since the company started tracking those numbers. Roughly 25 percent of its daily user base has stopped playing Zynga games in a single quarter.
After Treyarch released a new update to Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, some fans of the game showed that they lack basic communication skills. For example, it's not usually good form to wish someone to die or for harm to come to their family... But that is exactly what some fans wished for Treyarch design director David Vonderhaar via Twitter as he talked about some minor changes to three weapons in the game.
Update: Rich Ferraro, Vice President of Communications for the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), was kind enough to offer his opinion on the WBC's planned protest of GaymerX. He also confirmed that members of his organization plan on attending the event.
A new report from The Guardian reveals the scope of Microsoft's alleged collaboration with the National Security Agency and its PRISM domestic spying program. According to the report, which cites top secret documents obtained by the Guardian, Microsoft helped the NSA to circumvent its encryption related to its Outlook portal and web chat services; provided help with Hotmail mail services, its cloud storage service SkyDrive; and Skype.