What's faster than a speeding train? Apparently U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), who was nearly clipped by one at a press conference on Friday while standing on a train platform. Ironically enough, Sen. Blumenthal (who is known on GamePolitics as a politician keen on passing laws against gaming and the video games industry at large) was at the train stop to promote train safety.
While it's been operating in stealth mode since the beginning of 2013, the Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA) has officially launched TheECADigital channel on YouTube. The channel offers new content every Wednesday including the latest gaming news, Let's Play videos, event coverage, and more.
In Andrew Eisen's latest video he shows off just some of the bugs and glitches you can enjoy yourself by picking a copy of The LEGO Movie Videogame. It's fun for the whole family, unless your family isn't a fan of buggy, glitchy, anger-inducing bugs.
He's got a whole list of them over at his IGN blog.
The winners of the National Coalition Against Censorship's ninth annual Youth Free Expression Project Film Contest have been chosen Winners will be flown into New York City for a screening event and an awards ceremony at the New York Film Academy on March 29. This year's theme, "Video Games in the Crosshairs," is of particular interest to those who love games because it asked contestants to make a video dealing with such issues as gaming, violence, virtual reality, and censorship.
The National Coalition Against Censorship let us know that the Youth Free Expression Film Contest 2013 Semifinalists are now online, featuring the work of teen filmmakers that explore video games, gamer culture, and censorship. Judges will select the top three winners on February 25.
YouTube viewers can also participate by "liking" their favorite video, with the "most liked" video being honored with a People's Choice Award.
One of Andrew Eisen's latest videos (has been busy in the last week or so) points out that Ubisoft's latest move - to delay the Wii version of Watch Dogs to an undetermined date well after the Spring release of the game on other platforms - ensures that that version of the game will have crappy sales.
Some would say that Ubisoft is creating a self-fulfilling prophecy by doing this, giving other publishers an example to point to when they abandon development of their top properties for Wii U.
Around 40 percent of consumers will watch video on mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones by 2018, according to a new report from research firm ABI Research. This the firm says, is in spite of strong efforts to bring online video to new devices such as Google’s Chromecast and new video game consoles from Microsoft and Sony.
Andrew Eisen is a bit of a Nintendo fanboy (see his ongoing list of games "not on Wii U"), so his latest video in the midst of all the bad news about Nintendo's Wii U sales during Christmas and its subsequent walking back of Wii U and 3DS sales estimate for the fiscal year is not surprising at all.
Here's the lead-in from Andrew's YouTube channel:
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.
Last night on Comedy Central's the Colbert Report, host Stephen Colbert spent a bit of time picking on the idea of the National Security Agency snooping around Second Life. Recently reports revealed that new documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden showed that the NSA was lurking in World of Warcraft, on Xbox Live, and in Second Life (of all places) to keep tabs on terrorists who they believed might be organizing attacks in these virtual worlds. Stephen Colbert poked fun at the recent revelation, showing clips from the game while cracking jokes like this one:
Cultural historian Richard Slotkin talks about Newtown shooter Adam Lanza in a rather lengthy interview with journalist Bill Moyers. The interview touches upon some other topics as well, but a fair bit of it is spent discussing Adam Lanza's behavior, his fascination with guns and violent video games, and his deep study of school shootings dating back to the late 1800's.
Google has implemented a new system that auto detects content that is supposedly in breach of copyright this week, and it is affecting many YouTube stars. They are claiming that dozens or even hundreds of their videos are being removed. Since these claims are automatic because of the new system, many game companies who own the copyrights in question are doing their best to help those affected by the new system.
You can subscribe to Andrew's YouTube channel here.
Bill Cosby always said that kids say the 'darndest things,' but he never did a show about how adults say the dumbest things about just about everything. In Andrew Eisen's latest video he details the "The Twenty Dumbest Things Ever Said About Video Games."
It's a veritable who's who of people spouting off uneducated and misinformed quotes about everything from how games turn little children into killing machines to how someone can tell a person's heart rate by watching surveillance footage...
We are not sure if the man in this video shot outside a Montreal Best Buy is pulling an elaborate prank, is genuinely angry about something or is simply out of his flipping mind, but it provides the official "WTF" moment of the day. If you watch the video to your left you'll see a man appear in the frame suddenly go berserk with what we assume is a freshly purchased PlayStation 4. He angrily tears at the console's box, raises it over his head and slams it on to the pavement.
I am pretty sure his warranty doesn't cover THAT.
2PlayerProductions has released Minecraft: The Story of Mojang on YouTube for free. Minecraft: The Story of Mojang is a feature length documentary about the ultra-popular indie sandbox title and the people that made it on YouTube. The Minecraft documentary began as successful Kickstarter project in February 2011 where it received $210,297 out of a $150,000 goal.
2PlayerProductions is a documentary film company that is currently working on a documentary about the making of Double Fine's Broken Age adventure game and Keiji Inafune's Mega Man successor, Mighty No. 9.
The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) has released a new public service announcement on its YouTube channel to highlight and promote the ESRB's video games ratings system and the parental controls they can use to keep their kids from playing inappropriate games.
Andrew Eisen is currently enjoying Scribblenauts Unmasked for the Wii U, but during a recent play through he found a particular scene a bit darker than the rest of the light-hearted fun the game is known for. You'll have to watch the video to see what he's talking about.
Virality Farms offers a live action reimagining of the classic Nintendo Entertainment System light gun game, Duck Hunt, complete with a crazy hunter, a smart assed dog, and a duck that can be pretty hard to hit. You can check out the video to your left. A few take-aways from the video:
- Never let your dog hold your gun while riding a four-wheeler.
- PETA might not like this video as both the duck and the dog are exploited and abused.
You can find more Virality farms videos here.
In a new edition of GameSpot's "Reality Check" video series, host Cam Robinson tries to answer questions surrounding the claim that playing games like Grand Theft Auto V and other shooters can train a person to be a "killer" in the real world?
Late Night with Conan O'Brien tackles Diablo III in a segment featuring the Barbarian and Demon Hunter classes frolicking in the early part of the game. The voice-overs chatter on about smores, micro-brews, auctions, and roaring fires, along with copious amounts of somersaulting.
"For such a dark, gritty game, it seems to feature a lot of lighthearted somersaulting," notes the description of the video on YouTube.
I think Team Coco may have captured the essence of Blizzard's action RPG better than anyone else has yet... Watch the video to your left.
Jinni has inked a multi-year agreement with Microsoft to enhance entertainment discovery on Xbox video game and entertainment systems including the Xbox 360 and the upcoming Xbox One releasing in late November. Jinni is described by its creators as a "taste-and-mood based engine" that enables entertainment discovery using "content genetics" and an understanding of user preference analytics.
"Temple Run - High Holiday Edition," the latest episode of the video series Jewbellish: The Show, is an amusing take on the popular endless runner game Temple Run and what might happen if you (assuming you are Jewish) felt like running out of Temple on Rosh Hashana or Yom Kippur.
Temple Run - High Holiday Edition was directed by comedian Mendy Pellin for the Jewish sketch comedy web series and stars Jason Lott and Kai Cofer, amongst others.
Today Microsoft launched a new contest that encourages Xbox One fans to create and submit a one minute video about the Xbox One games they like. The creators of the chosen videos will win a series of Xbox One related goodies when the system launches this fall including an Xbox One system, a one-year Xbox Live Gold subscription, an undetermined amount of free Xbox One launch titles, and the opportunity to work with Microsoft's Upload team in the future.
Writer Sophie Prell has launched a Kickstarter to fund a bi-monthly web show that focuses on video games, the people that make them, and the fans (who will get a chance to interact with the games industry in various ways). The show will be called "Sincerely Sophie" and will run two shows a month for ten months if she can meet her funding goal of $16,000.
Here's more from the Kickstarter page:
Andrew Eisen's latest video commemorates the recent anniversary of Brown v. EMA, with a pacifist play through of Postal 2. While Andrew rattles off facts about the case that overturned a silly law written by Leland Yee, we are subjected to more brown textures than most of us can handle.
Check out the video to your left. If you don't subscribe to Andrew's videos, you can do so at his YouTube channel.
Valve Software and Twitch have inked a deal this week that will allow Steam users to link their Twitch accounts and watch video streams outside of a game. The deal is mainly for DOTA2 players, who will become eligible for tournament item drops while watching a Twitch stream. Valve said it plans to expand on the features available through the deal, and is asking players for feedback on the matter.
The deal came to light as part of a new DOTA 2 update that added a number of new features into the game including six new tutorial missions and a new Limited Heroes mode.
A new study released by Google related to its YouTube video service concludes that community created gaming videos represent 47 percent of views, while pre-launch material uploaded from publishers and PR make up 50 percent of views. Google's report also reveals that one-in-three views are from a smartphone or tablet. Google calls these "second screen" views, and suggests that they are watched while playing the game for guidance and tips. The study also noted that 95 percent of consumers watch gaming videos on YouTube.
Scott J. Weiselberg claims in a new lawsuit against Apple that the company charges a $1 premium for renting HD movies, TV shows and other videos from its iTunes store - even if consumers do not have an HD-capable device. Attorneys for Weiselberg claim that the iTunes store's default download offering is the more expensive HD option.
Libertarian publication Reason has a new song from resident parody prodigy Remy about the NSA's mobile phone surveillance program called "Tap It: The NSA Slow Jam." The song makes fun of the NSA's PRISM program and its practice of collecting Americans' mobile phone meta-data that was leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.
The best line in the song, in my opinion:
"Text yourself about it, let us know how you feel."
You can find the lyrics here.