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08/21/06 | | Chris Martin
category: culture
With videogames in the spotlight, and movies and television taking a backseat to criticism for a while at least, Professor Nicholas Carnagey of Iowa State University has conducted a study to see if videogame violence desensitises gamers to other forms of violence. Skeptics might be thinking \"of course\"; any kind of violence over prolonged durations will cause the viewer to be desensitised in the end. Well, studies are showing that it\'s much quicker than expected. You might be shocked from the results.



04/23/06 | | Aaron Stanton
category: culture
Every once in a while, something that has to do with video game culture comes along that makes it onto the front page. Sometimes it\'s Mario fans hanging yellow question mark boxes around a paranoid town, and sometimes it\'s as simple as a comedy group that knows their gaming. In this case, it\'s a Google Video of a musical comedy group preforming a song called, \"Make You Happy Tonight.\" The musical tribute starts off innocent enough, but quickly turns into a theme every hardcore gamer will identify with. Or at least their significant others. Trust us that this clip is worth your time to listen to.


03/04/06 | | Shawn Rider
game: Spore
category: culture
Wil Wright gave a presentation at last year\'s Game Developer\'s Conference of his new title, Spore. The video of that presenation has been around for some time now, but it was often low quality or hard to find. Now the video has been posted on Google Video, and it is available for viewing in a variety of ways. This is something that shouldn\'t be missed: Spore is set to become one of the defining moments in gaming history. Check out the video here.


11/24/05 | | Shawn Rider
game: Xbox 360
category: culture
The Xbox 360 brings a lot to the table: Fancy new graphics. Fancy new games. Fancy new controller. But we already had pretty nice graphics. And we\'ve always had fun games. Controllers come and go, plus we can usually find third-party controllers that will work, too. So what\'s next-gen about the Xbox 360? It\'s the meta-gaming experience. It\'s not that the 360 really changes the game (although it does that, too). What\'s really cool about the 360 is that it changes how we PLAY the game. And that\'s an exciting thing.


11/10/05 | | George Holomshek
category: culture
It seems like everytime we turn around these days, some symphony is cashing in on videogames. Who knew those murder simulators would also become music appreciation stimulators? Then again, what better medium to allow composers dozens of hours of time to work with: It\'s like the ultimate symphonic challenge. The recently announced PLAY! tour will bring some more contemporary game music to the orchestra pit, as opposed to other recent symphonic adaptations of classic videogame music. Check the link to tour info and catch it if it\'s coming near you.


10/25/05 | | Aaron Stanton
category: culture
Pepsi Invaders (aka Coke Wins) is an ultra-rare Atari 2600 cartridge that was given to Coca-Cola employees in the early 1980s. Only 125 copies of the game were ever produced, without labels or boxes. Needless to say, this game scores a full 10 on the AtariAge.com rareness meter. A copy of the game surfaced and was recently sold on eBay for $1,825. That\'s a spendy Space Invaders clone.


10/08/05 | | Shawn Rider
category: culture
NPR\'s All Things Considered has an excellent piece covering the recent Corrupted Blood plague in World of Warcraft. They consult everyone from computer mediated social interactions expert Sherry Turkle to other scientists and epidemiologists. The piece also features players discussing their experiences and covers some examples of in-game philanthropy as players donated resurrections and cures to other players who had died in the plague. It\'s a quick audio file, and definitely worth the download. Get it here.


09/27/05 | | Shawn Rider
category: culture
I-Play, developer of mobile games in Europe and the US, has just completed a five country survey of mobile gaming habits. The study compares the views of American and European mobile gamers and finds several interesting differences: Americans are driven by a need to \"win\" the game, yet US mobile gamers prefer \"casual\" games while their Euro counterparts prefer \"action\" titles. Fodder for endless forum speculation and armchair analysis, right here.


09/01/05 | | Aaron Stanton
category: culture
Maybe it\'s because we\'re so universally tied to various Universities around the world, but the idea that video games are a form of art makes us here at GamesFirst very happy. Games should be taken more seriously as an expression of emotion, a source of social interaction, and a medium as capable of expressing ideas as TV and print. But it\'s not. Authors Tracy Spaight and Robbie Cooper are looking for MMO gamers willing to tell their tale for an upcoming book and art project, Alter Ego. Alter Ego will try to contrast real players with their online counterparts, documenting player profiles to see how they compare in both appearance and personality. In other words, they want you... assuming you play online. If you\'re interested in being a part of an interesting International project, make sure you read more to find out how.


08/18/05 | | Shawn Rider
category: culture
The International Game Developers Association (IGDA) has created a Special Interest Group to investigate the issue of \"sex in games.\" They\'ve gotten a handful of developers with an interest in the topic together, and they\'re investigating issues developers are currently facing. Sounds useful at the start, but Ian Bogost, noteworthy gaming journalist, has posted a critique of the effort on Watercooler Games that has us nodding our heads.


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This game is totally cheating.