Singapore Man Waits 29 Hours for Gears of War 3

September 20, 2011 -

How long would you wait for your favorite video game to be released? Four hours? Eight hours? How about 29 hours? That's how long one man waited in Singapore to get his hands on his copy of Gears of War 3 on Monday. Nanyang Polytechnic student William Ten sat at the Funan DigitalLife Mall on Monday so he could be the first gamer in Singapore to own the latest game from Epic Games and Microsoft. Despite the wait the 22-year-old was in good spirits and good health thanks to his family members who made sure he was okay. The local launch event drew more than 1000 fans.

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SCE Asia Extends Nanyang Polytechnic Partnership

September 9, 2011 -

Sony Computer Entertainment Asia has extended its partnership with Nanyang Polytechnic in Singapore for five more years. The partnership gives final-year students of the school's game design courses access to Sony development kits to create projects. The extension of the deal allows students to also create code for the PlayStation Vita. The partnership began in 2009, and helped to create the NYP Games Resource Centre - the only PlayStation development and educational facility in South East Asia.

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Gamer Compares WOW to New Girlfriend

October 6, 2009 -

A study conducted by Singapore’s National Institute of Education reveals that its youth rack up an average of 27 hours a week playing videogames.

The group has polled over 3,000 students during the course of the three-year study, which The Straits Times reports is still ongoing. Lui Tuck Yew, acting Minister for Information, Communications and the Arts was reportedly “quite surprised and a little bit shocked” at the number of hours spent gaming.

Lawrence Lee, a 16-year old World of Warcraft player, called four hours of gaming a day “nothing,” and compared the game to fledgling love:

It is the novelty, like getting a new girlfriend. You want to spend every minute with her.

Singapore has formed an inter-ministry committee to address “cyber-wellness” issues.

Read the entire scanned article at the Education Soon blog.

19 comments

Report: Singapore Gamers in Suicide Pact

September 8, 2009 -

The Associated Press is reporting that eight teen gamers in Singapore joined a suicide pact last month. However, after watching two of their number leap from a ninth floor window, the rest backed out.

The teens were reportedly fans of a video game called Slayers.

Citing a report Singapore's New Paper, the AP writes:

According to a police investigation, 16-year-old Ku Witaya, a self-proclaimed Taoist medium, convinced his younger brother and six other boys that they had to die to become `slayers' who would kill demons in a World War III.

While we are not familiar with Slayers, a Wikipedia entry seems to indicate that games in the series are quite old:

Slayers is a series of over 50 light novels... Slayers is a Dungeons & Dragons inspired narrative...

Several Slayers role playing games have been released in Japan. Slayers was released by Banpresto on Super Famicom on June 24, 1994. Another game entitled Slayers was released for NEC PC-9801. Slayers Royal was released by Kadokawa Shoten for Sega Saturn on July 25, 1997. and by ESP Software for PlayStation on June 25, 1998. A sequel, Slayers Royal 2 was released on Sega Saturn by ESP Software on September 03, 1998 and on PlayStation on July 11, 1999. Slayers Wonderful [screenshot at left] was published by Banpresto for Sony Playstation on October 22, 1998...

There is more info in the Straits Times.

42 comments

Researcher Disputes Study Equating Violent Games w/Aggression & Prosocial Games w/Helpfulness

June 18, 2009 -

Yesterday GamePolitics reported on a study detailed in the current issue of the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin which found that violent game players displayed aggressive behavior while those who player more prosocial games exhibited helpful behavior. The study actually encompasses three seperate research projects which took place in Japan, Singapore and the United States.

But a researcher from Texas A&M disputes those findings. Prof. Chris Ferguson, who has frequently studied video game issues, commented on yesterday's report which was authored by, among others, University of Michigan's Brad Bushman and Douglas Gentile of Iowa State.

Of the Bushman-Gentile study Ferguson told GamePolitics:

You know trouble is brewing right in the beginning as they start with the false premise that there is an established relationship between video games and aggression. The authors engage in what's called citation bias, which means they only cover research they like and ignore anything they don't like. This is just not good science. Since this literature review is so slanted, that worries me about how they collected and analyzed their data.  

In [one study] they note that there is a high correlation between prosocial exposure and violent game exposure. This suggests that these may be some of the same games that have both kinds of content! They then suggest that there wasn't a problem with multicollinearity (basically means if you include 2 predictors that are too similar it can screw up your results), yet they only say they had no VIF less than 10...yet even something as low as 4 or 5 is pretty high. So multicollinearity may have been a bigger problem than the authors try to suggest.  Therefore, there may be some serious problems with their analyses here.  

[Also] the authors say that prosocial exposure and violence exposure were very highly correlated and then claim they have completely opposite effects. That is just highly unlikely.

In [another study] the standardized coefficient between playing prosocial games and prosocial behavior... suggests that playing prosocial games had almost no overlap with prosocial behavior one year later. Here we have yet another example of a "significant" finding being touted even though it's so small you'd never notice it in the real world. They also assert causality from correlational data which they can't do no matter how they analyze it.

The final study is probably the best of the three, but it's also the most artificial. Indeed, a fair number of their participants express suspicion about what went on. These kinds of studies have a high risk of "demand characteristics" In other words, students will give you the results they think you want and they won't admit to it afterward. Also the resultant effect sizes are all pretty small.

So, at best, a mountain is being made out of a molehill here, and at worst there are some pretty serious flaws in all analyses. I do worry about the "tone" from this research group. They do not comprehensively cover the literature honestly, and appear to have a hypothesis that they favor from the get-go. That tone would lead me to question their objectivity and, as such, the quality of their analyses.

Bottom line  - I doubt you'd see prosocial games solve the world's ills anymore than violent games have caused any outbreak of youth violence. 

28 comments

Singapore Okays GTA IV Expansion's Full Frontal

February 21, 2009 -

Government censors in Singapore have cleared Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned, despite the game's well-publicized snippet of male nudity.

The Straits Times reports that Singapore's Media Development Authority reviewed the game:

Mr Ernest Khoo, head of video games and media content at MDA, said that whether full-frontal male nudity is allowed depends on the context in which it occurs.

In this expansion pack, he said, the depiction is 'non-sexual and can hence fall within the M18 rating', which is also the rating given to the original GTA IV. He added that with the M18 rating, only those 18 years old and above will be buying the game and its expansion pack.

Going by the video game classification system MDA introduced last year, games for online download do not need to be sent for classification before sale here.

Okaying GTA IV L&D is another indication that Singapore has loosened its approach to game content since briefly banning Mass Effect in 2007.

18 comments

Singapore Politician: Why Isn't GTA IV Banned?

September 18, 2008 -

A member of Singapore's Parliament has questioned why Grand Theft Auto IV is permitted to be sold there.

As reported by The Electric New Paper, Christopher de Souza (left) suggested that underage players would get their hands on the game and questioned how the life of crime portrayed in the game fit in with government efforts to discourage drug use, crime and gangs:

The question ought really to be if this game should enter the market in the first place.

By way of response, Minister for Information Communications and the Arts Dr Lee Boon Yang pointed out that GTA IV's rating was consistent with that found in the United States, U.K., Australia and Japan:

When rating the game, the MDA [Media Development Authority] took careful consideration of the content, themes and storyline found in the game, recognising that adults are better equipped to discern fact from fiction.

43 comments

Gumbeat: Fight Oppression with Bubble Gum

September 9, 2008 -

Singapore's The Straits Times reports on an in-development game in which players use the "cheery pink power of bubblegum" to fight government oppression.

Gumbeat is a Flash game being developed as part of a cooperative effort between the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and digital media students in Singapore. So how does Gumbeat play? From the report:

...the heroine chews on candy and blows them into big pink bubbles beside unhappy citizens in the unnamed country in which the candy is banned. This cheers them up enough to entice them to join the protagonist in a revolution, mustering enough angry citizenry to overthrow the oppressive government.

 

This is the aim of the game, said National University of Singapore undergraduate Sharon Chu, who presented her team's game to reporters earlier on Tuesday... The game was made to show that games with serious-themes like say, 'political oppression', can be fun, said Ms Chu.

Chu left the issue of whether the repressive country in question was Singapore up to the "player's interpretation." GamePolitics readers may recall that Singapore's government banned Mass Effect for a time last year over a brief lesbian love scene.

7 comments

In Singapore, Gamers Say Don't Ban GTA

August 8, 2008 -

Singapore may have banned Mass Effect last year (and later un-banned it), but gamers there do not want to see a Grand Theft Auto ban.

As reported by the Electric New Paper, gamers in Singapore are concerned that last week's cabdriver murder in Thailand may prompt a video game backlash:

'It's a game, it's just for fun,' said student Julius Wong, 20, who completed [GTA IV]... 'What makes the game popular is that you get to do things you don't normally get to do in real life.' Playing the game was 'stress relief'.

 

Student Poh Koon Kiat, 23, was also against a ban, saying it would be a knee-jerk reaction. 'I don't think games affect how I act in real life,' he said.

ENP reports that GTA IV was a huge seller in Singapore, with 20,000 copies sold during its first week at retail. Local distributor IAHGames said it was unaware of any move to ban the game.

11 comments

Singapore's Game Pirates Are Wary of Investigators

June 20, 2008 -

Attention from investigators has driven video game pirates away from Singapore's town center, according to the Electric New Paper:

[Some] shops appeared more suspicious of potential buyers. To convince them, you'll have to strike up a conversation - or even buy a few original games - before they'll show you the pirated ones. Only one of the four shops... that we visited was willing to let us examine the cart before we bought them. Others insisted that we buy them.

The ESA, which represents the interests of video game publishers in the United States, maintains a presence in Singapore. From the report:

Mr Cyril Chua, counsel for the [ESA], said that checking on shops in heartland estates is more difficult than investigating stores in central locations.

 

'They often sell pirated wares only to regular customers,' he said.

 

Another problem is that pirated games can now be downloaded from the Internet, then installed on ame consoles by the users themselves.

 

'Piracy over the Internet is more difficult to track than retail piracy,' Mr Chua noted.

 

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Wonderkarpyeah. some people are salty over it. but that wiki article was filled with vitriol01/28/2015 - 12:06pm
prh99Yeah, I saw people complaining about that, claiming Wales was a hypocrite cause he supposedly removed some feminist editors.01/28/2015 - 11:57am
WonderkarpCivility, Wikipedia, and the Conversation on Gamergate https://blog.wikimedia.org/2015/01/27/civility-wikipedia-gamergate/01/28/2015 - 11:45am
Wonderkarpone thing that surprised me...theres a lot of expanded universe books for star wars, star trek, alien, even videogames like resident evil....why not ghostbusters? There's a comic series and cartoon but thats it01/28/2015 - 11:37am
prh99Well it is Hollywood, remakes are the one thing they can be relied on for.01/28/2015 - 11:34am
E. Zachary KnightSo you want a sequel and not a reboot. Fair enough. I think either could work as you have said yourself.01/28/2015 - 11:32am
Wonderkarpotherwise, let it lie. Next thing you know they'll remake/reboot Alien or Godfather01/28/2015 - 11:28am
Wonderkarpand Ghostbusters is my favorite movie and its aged well. it doesnt need a remake. Just like Psycho didnt need one. If they threw in Dan Aykroyd, kept the original tech, and acknowledged the old films without crappy easter eggs, I'd be on board.01/28/2015 - 11:27am
WonderkarpI dont like Reboots/Remakes. For every Batman begins or Invasion of the Body Snatchers, there's a million Robocops, King Kongs, Star Treks, Amazing Spidermans, Taxis, Clash of teh titans, planet of the apes, footloose.01/28/2015 - 11:26am
prh99Wonderkarp, what more do you need? It's been ~26 years, and Harold Ramis died last year. If they can make something decent, who cares?01/28/2015 - 11:19am
prh99I wonder if they will fall into the trap of making those items more scarce in game in order to get people to pay.01/28/2015 - 11:14am
Wonderkarpso its not even ghostbusters then. just in name and concept only. you could call it ghost chasers or spook snatchers01/28/2015 - 11:09am
Andrew EisenKarp - According to the creative team, the new Ghostbusters is a new story, not a gender swapped rehash.01/28/2015 - 10:36am
WonderkarpMan. Resident Evil has fallen hard. I was a Huge fan in the late 90s. I think its time for a reboot. I was playing the hd remaster of the gamecube remake and the dialogue still sucks. Chris asking Rachel if she knows how to use a gun. SHE'S A COP!!01/28/2015 - 10:33am
E. Zachary KnightThe whole point of early Resident Evil games was to beat the game using only those weapons and ammo you could scavenge and use save files sparingly.01/28/2015 - 10:08am
E. Zachary KnightDoesn't the ability to buy health and weapons defeat the whole point of survival horror games?01/28/2015 - 10:07am
PHX Corphttp://www.gamerheadlines.com/2015/01/report-resident-evil-revelations-2-checkpoint-microtransactions/ Report: Resident Evil: Revelations 2 to Have Checkpoint Microtransactions01/28/2015 - 9:57am
Wonderkarpgoogle fiber coming to atlanta georgia. I'm gonna try to get a transfer to atlanta just to get google fiber. lol01/28/2015 - 9:13am
Wonderkarpotherwise Its just going to feel like another unnecessary reboot to me01/28/2015 - 9:09am
Wonderkarpmy god, thats an awesome ghostbusters cast. why couldnt it just be a sequal and not a reboot though!? I hate Reboots and I'd rather have a new story with new characters than a gender swapped rehash. Throw in Dan Aykroyd to link the two franchises.01/28/2015 - 9:08am
 

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