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12/24/05 | | Shawn Rider
game: Xbox 360
category: happening
OpenXbox360 has posted a link to a YouTube video that supposedly shows a regular, retail version of the Xbox 360 playing an unsigned, burned copy of Perfect Dark Zero by using a hack that involved running some program on the PSP. No details about the hack or methods involved are known so far, and the video could easily be a fake. But it\'s a slow news day here on Xmas Eve, and it\'s a curious video. Check out the video for yourself, as well as the post on OpenXbox360, and keep an eye on this as the story develops.


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12/24/05 | | Shawn Rider
game: Xbox Live
category: announced
Microsoft has announced a new perks card for members of their Xbox Live Gold service. Gold level members now qualify for a free \"Diamond\" card, which is an actual, real gamercard you can carry in your pocket. Now you can show off your Xbox geekiness even when you\'re away from your console. And wait, it doesn\'t stop there: The Diamond card qualifies holders for special deals and discounts at an array of retailers. If you\'re a Gold level member of Xbox Live, sign yourself up.


12/21/05 | | Shawn Rider
game: Xbox 360
category: cool site
Via Major Nelson (the Xbox Live Director of Programming), we discovered Sean Alexander\'s blog posting about how to keep track of recent Xbox 360 shipments. Alexander describes a method of using the Ben\'s Bargains Xbox 360 Shipment Tracker along with URLy Warning, a program that allows you to monitor web pages for any changes. By following the simple instructions outlined on Alexander\'s blog, you can be sure to find the Xbox 360s as soon as they arrive in your neighborhood. Check it out.


12/18/05 | | Aaron Stanton
game: Xbox 360
category: happening
Before it was released, Xbox 360 engineer Chris Satchell went on record as saying that the system would include security measures, \"the hacker community has never seen before.\" At the time we could only speculate what that meant. Microsoft was claiming the system would be close to unhackable. Now, it looks like the hacking community is making progress. Turns out that members of Team PI Coders have found a way to pull source files off the Xbox 360 as games are loaded. Let the race begin.


12/17/05 | | Shawn Rider
category: announced
Slamdance, the indy film festival that runs opposite Sundance (the just-shy-of-Hollywood film festival), will hold a Guerilla Gamemaker Competition this year. Featuring well-known indy and art games such as Cloud and Facade among a list of others. Slamdance will feature a Game Lounge area where attendees can play all of these indy games and Slamdance will bestow an array of awards on the independent developers, students and artists who have created some of the most unique games we\'ve ever seen.


12/13/05 | | Aaron Stanton
category: cool site
The Movies has disappointed a lot of people by being a great sim game, but a less than flexible Machinima tool. The sandbox mode, instead of being an unlimited playground for creative use, is limited in some respects by what you\'ve unlocked in the campaign mode. In an attempt to highlight the fan community\'s use of their game as a way to express themselves, Activision is bringing attention to one fan created movie called, \"The French Democracy.\" And they\'ve chosen well. Retelling the events of the French riots in October of 2005, it\'s easily one of the most interesting examples of using The Movies as a creative tool we\'ve seen.


12/12/05 | | George Holomshek
category: announced
Konami has announced that a yet to be named Castlevania double pack will be making its way to the Game Boy Advance early next year. Two of the series most highly rated titles, Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance and Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow, will be put on a single GBA cartridge to give players a double-dose of Dracula whippin\' fun.


12/11/05 | | Aaron Stanton
category: happening
We here at GamesFirst want to congratulate everyone working on the King\'s Quest IV project, and a thumbs up to everyone that helped save it. On December 9th, 2005, Vivendi Universal, who owns the publishing rights to King\'s Quest, announced that they would allow King\'s Quest IV to be developed with a name change to, \"The Silver Lining.\" This came about after the gaming community pulled together and made enough noise to change Vivendi\'s mind, who had shut down the project with a cease and desist letter. Kudos to Vivendi, as well, for being a large company that\'s still willing to change its mind from time to time.


12/11/05 | | Shawn Rider
category: announced
Konami has announced that they will begin selling their products directly to customers via their new online storefront, KonamiStyle.com. The online storefront launches with a catalog of 75 Konami titles, including fan-favorite franchises Castlevania, Metal Gear Solid, Silent Hill, Yu-Gi Oh, and Dance Dance Revolution. The move to a direct-sales website will also open up possibilities for Konami to offer customer incentive and reward programs, which Konami hopes will help maintain a community of loyal gamers around the publisher\'s many games.


12/07/05 | | Laurie Taylor
category: press release
Women in Games International, a non-profit organization in the interactive entertainment industry, today announced their next conference, Women in Games International-San Francisco, titled \"Games for Women, Games by Women.\" Scheduled on Saturday, February 18 from 1 pm to 6 pm at the Fort Mason Conference Center in San Francisco, this conference addresses the myth that women don\'t \"do\" games by discussing statistics, game genres and careers in game development. Check out the full story for the complete announcement about this conference.


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