Booming Mobile Games Take Backseat at E3

DeNA Mobage Screen Shot
Amid the din of E3’s flashy console game demos, Re/code noted a quiet corner of the Los Angeles Convention Center: The mobile and social gaming pavilion. From the lack of crowds and unassuming placement at the game industry’s largest trade show, it’s hard to believe that mobile gaming is the business’s fastest growing segment and its largest source of digital revenue. Last year, Re/code says, smartphone and tablet games generated $3 billion in U.S. sales. And while sales of packaged… continue…

Skyrim Elder Scrolls Heralds a Shift to Freemium

As a self-confessed Skyrim addict, I view the arrival of the freemium online version — announced at E3 — with some trepidation. The game is not due out until 2013 but with Skyrim still fresh in many player’s minds, the preannouncement’s garnered a lot of interest, and the early videos look breathtaking. My character in Skyrim was a total overachiever who, having become leader of the Dark Brotherhood, College of Wizards, Colleagues and game playing, has eaten up over 180… continue…

EA Finally Prepares to Launch a Freemium Mobile Game

Electronic Arts has dragged its feet when it comes to offering mobile games for free, but no more. Homer Simpson will be the company’s point man (not because he’s gullible, but because he’s popular) in the freemium title The Simpsons: Tapped Out, which will be launched soon. Of course, players will be able to buy doughnuts, credits that can be used to speed up play. Acknowledging the company’s been lagging in the area, the EA’s mobile and social games chief,… continue…

Why A Minecraft Subscription Makes Sense

Minecraft’s Indie developer Markus “Notch” Persson, Founder of Mojang AB, unfortunately won’t be at E3 this week to talk about the blowout performance of the Minecraft Xbox 360 Edition. Last month, within the first 24 hours of its release, the game sold more than 400,000 copies and hit profitability, says GameSpot. Nonetheless, I still think a subscription-based Minecraft makes sense. Under Minecraft’s current pricing plan, once you’ve bought it – that’s it.  This pricing approach was novel when the game… continue…

Sony May Announce a PS3 Cloud Partnership at E3

Sony PSN Logo
E3 is just around the corner but this year we doubt that either Sony or Microsoft will lift the lid on a new gaming console. That doesn’t mean you won’t hear anything from them, though. One rumor making the rounds is that Sony will announce a major partnership with a cloud service provider. It’s expected to involve “cloud gaming services.” The precise meaning of “cloud gaming services” is unclear – but looking at what’s offered by Sony’s and Microsoft’s consoles… continue…

E3: Games or Girls? Booth Babes Tell Us Why People Stop By to Visit

Posted In Living in Tech
If you’ve been to E3, you know about the Booth Babes. (Don’t yell at me. I didn’t come up with the term.) These are the always young, always pretty women who station themselves at the front of the expo’s booths in, let’s say, cutting edge costumes to attract you out of the aisle. They are universally friendly, happy to pose for photos or chat, and should be commended for their patience, for who knows what kind of conversations they have… continue…

E3: The Game Business Feels Good About the Coming Year

At E3, I spoke to a number of video game companies and players about trends in the business. The bottom line: Slow but steady growth this year. And some awesome games.

E3: Assassins Creed Revelations Trailer Just Plain Rocks

Posted In Living in Tech
Without doubt, the most powerful game trailer at E3 was the one for Assassins Creed: Revelations. In a little more than three minutes it shows the scope of the game, its depth of character, its speed of play and the breathtaking world in which it’s played. Really, it speaks for itself: Some others: The Final Fantasy franchise continues when the latest installment, XIII-2, arrives in 2012. Here’s what it’ll look like. Paradox Interactive and Kerberos Studios plunge into more adventure… continue…

E3: 505 Games’ Multi-Platform Lineup

Posted In Living in Tech
505 Games Supremacy MMA
It’s been a busy week for 505 Games. So busy that some of its booth staffed looked dazed at the end of E3′s Day 1. The Los Angeles-based company’s showcasing seven games here, including three exclusive to the Xbox Kinect. The Kinect titles are Michael Phelps: Push the Limit, which puts you in the swimming pool for Olympic-style competition. The shooter Blackwater lets you control the game from either traditional controllers or Kinect. And Grease lets you channel your inner… continue…

E3: To Play The Games, You Have to Survive The Crowd

Posted In Living in Tech
The first day at E3 is the craziest, though crazy is a relative term. While the exhibition floor is always busy in a packed-crowd/mosh pit kind of way, it’s on Day 1 that people line up 30-deep at the doors well before they open. If you’re standing in that crowd when Security finally steps aside, you’re going to be hauled inside whether you want to be or not. Here’s how it looks from the floor.