Entries in Video Games (15)


Video Game Collection Sells for $1.2 Million

eBay(NEW YORK) -- A collection of video games sold on eBay for more than $1.2 million.

The collection of about 7,000 video games includes every video game for each Sega console among others.

The French seller is a 32-year-old man named Andre who said his mission was to collect sets for every Sega, Nintendo and NEC system.

"Now that the mission is complete, maybe it's time to move on," he told the L.A. Times.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Nintendo Super-Sizes its 3DS Handheld With 3DS XL

Nintendo(NEW YORK) -- After just a little over a year on the market, the Nintendo 3DS is getting a makeover with bigger screens, better battery life and a wider girth.

Nintendo of America President and COO Reggie Fils-Aime said the “3DS XL gives owners even more real estate on their screens to enjoy entertainment applications like Nintendo Video and Netflix.” The new system will feature about an hour of extended battery life, 90 percent larger screens and will come in red and blue with what looks like a black interior. The 3DS XL is set for an American release on Aug. 19, along with the launch of Nintendo’s latest game, “New Super Mario Bros. 2.”

Last year’s medium sized model is expected to continue to be produced in addition to this year’s extra large device, as was the case with the original Nintendo DS and its big brother, the Nintendo DSi XL.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Microsoft Announces XBox SmartGlass for Tablets, Phones at E3

Microsoft(LOS ANGELES) -- Microsoft’s XBox is jumping into this year’s big gaming shift, using touch screen devices to interact with and control media through your game console and then display content on your TV, Windows 8 PC or portable device. The announcement was made Monday in advance of E3, the giant Electronic Entertainment Expo.

But don’t expect to pick up an Xbox-branded tablet controller for the experience…yet. The new functionality, dubbed “XBox SmartGlass,” is being touted as an app for existing smartphones and tablets.  This is in sharp contrast to Nintendo’s move forward this week, reintroducing its new gamepad controller, which will feature a touch screen display right in the center of the device.

XBox also plans to use the app to foray into Web browsing on your television, hoping that touch screens can make for a smooth and enjoyable navigation experience.

Many were hoping to see the announcement of an XBox 360 successor at E3 this year, but as the machine is currently the No. 1-selling console worldwide, Microsoft seems in no hurry to usher in a 720. Instead we’ve seen tweaks to Microsoft’s Kinect motion-sensing system, as well as user interface and now apps, improving and adding to the existing experience. No word on when the apps will begin to roll out just yet.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Nintendo Brings Social Networking to Your Games, TV with Wii U

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- During a Direct Pre E3 Presentation on Sunday, Nintendo President Satoru Iwata announced a number of ground breaking new features for the upcoming successor to the Wii, the Nintendo Wii U.

Since last year’s E3 conference it’s been known that the new system, which has been in the works since 2008, would feature a controller with a touchscreen pad.  On Sunday, gamers learned that Nintendo is calling the device the Wii U GamePad.

The GamePad will register both stylus and finger-touch interaction, serve as a universal infrared television remote and allow players to conduct video chats over their TV sets using the controller’s built-in webcam.  The device will also have a sensor that can read codes and feed information into games.

Along with new touchscreen controller, Iwata made a clear move at also catering to hardcore gamers, introducing a second, very XBox-looking “pro” controller stripped of touch controls.  He went on to tout the Wii U’s anticipated high definition graphics.

These moves look to welcome third party developers back to Nintendo, who have long been focused on HD titles for PS3 and XBox 360.

In addition, Nintendo shared that the Wii U GamePad would serve as a “social window,” allowing users to send text messages to a new social networking service designed around Nintendo gameplay.  The network allows gamers to post on boards and chat with friends before, during and after gameplay.  Nintendo assured that this network will also be made available on the 3DS, on PC and mobile devices.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Zynga CEO and the Value of 'Boring Conference Calls'

Zynga(LOS ANGELES) -- Zynga, maker of such popular social games as Words With Friends and Farmville, has seen lots of growth with its mobile games, but the CEO of the company, Mark Pincus, isn’t worried about the disappearance of the PC.

“I think Facebook will be important on the Web and the PC, and it has the potential to be important for us on mobile,” Pincus said at the All Things D conference in Los Angeles. “But let’s not forget the opportunity on PCs. A lot of the traffic happens when people are at work on boring conference calls.”  Most of Zynga’s traffic, Pincus said, occurs during work hours while players are on their computers and logged into Facebook.

Still, Pincus and Zynga remain focused on mobile. It just hasn’t become the main revenue driver yet.

“Mobile lets you put play in your cab or on the train. And it’s growing very quickly. But in mobile we’re still at an early stage where we’re building audience,” Pincus said on stage. “Our games are monetizing well in that space, but the audience is still small and growing. It’s going to take a while for the aggregate revenues to get where we want them.”

Zynga most of its money through sales of virtual goods — those poker chips or farm animals you can purchase while playing its games.

Pincus spoke about the recent acquisition of Draw Something and said it was too early to tell if it was a successful purchase.

He did make one thing clear: The company doesn’t plan to get into the hardware business. When asked by interviewer Kara Swisher if the company would get into gaming consoles, Pincus answered in one word: “no.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Parents Sue Apple for Purchases Made by Kids

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- A group of California parents unhappy with Apple over money they didn’t know their children were spending in games has now gotten the go-ahead from a California judge to proceed with a class action lawsuit against the company.

The suit revolves around “game currencies” -- real money used within games to buy coins or other in-game tools -- that the parents claim children purchased without their knowledge.

According to the suit, “children were able to purchase ‘game currencies’ without their parents’ knowledge or authorization while playing game applications, provided by Apple and advertised as free.”

The parents also claim the games are designed to be “highly addictive,” with specific reference to the Smurf Village app as a “bait-and-switch” type game in which the app is free, but the 1,000 in-app credits offered cost $59.

The suit was filed by Garen Meguerian on behalf of a number of others in April 2011. Additional groups of parents have filed similar suits in the state, which were then consolidated into one large class-action suit.

Prior to early 2011, Apple let users buy game currency up to 15 times without re-entering a password in the game. The parents claim they were unaware that purchases could be made without re-entering the password, which resulted in children charging the parents’ accounts in amounts ranging from $99.99 to $338.72.

Apple did fix the issue in early 2011, but the parents claim the company was in the wrong and that it still makes it too easy for kids to buy without parent permission.

Apple has argued that the issue should be dismissed because the in-app purchases were stated in the Terms & Conditions signed by the parents before purchasing the app, “thus making the individuals purchases not voidable.” However, Judge Edward Davila ruled against Apple’s request to dismiss the case.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Video Games: 'Call of Duty' Shatters Record

Activision(NEW YORK) -- Modern Warfare 3 has shattered another record. The latest game in the Call of Duty series has racked up $1 billion in sales -- and it took just 16 days to do it.

Last year's Call of Duty game -- Black Ops -- is the best-selling video game of all time, and Modern Warfare 3 appears well on the way to topping it.

An estimated 30 million people have played at least one Call of Duty game since the franchise debuted in 2003.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Free App for Checking Video Game Ratings

ABC News/Activision(NEW YORK) -- Wanna check the rating on a video game without looking at the package?  There’s an app for that.  Patricia Vance, president of the Entertainment Software Ratings Board, says it is now offering a free mobile app that features voice recognition technology so users can simply say the name of the game to obtain a ratings summary.  The app works for over 20-thousand video game titles.

Vance says, “There's really no excuse for parents to be surprised when they bring these gifts home for the holidays and then the kid starts to play the game and they discover that's there's some sort of content that they weren't aware of.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Nintendo Unveils Life-Sized Mario Karts

Nintendo(LOS ANGELES) -- Mario Kart jumped out of the screen and raced into the showroom at the L.A. auto show Thursday when Nintendo unveiled two life-size Mario Karts it commissioned from West Coast Customs.

The working models of Mario’s personal race car and Luigi’s Bumble V car were built to promote Mario Kart 7, which hits stores Dec. 4 as the franchise’s first 3-D game.

Visitors to the auto show can view the cars and play Mario Kart 7 at Nintendo’s display. Unfortunately for die-hard fans, the glider attachment on Mario’s car and the rear propeller on Luigi’s car don’t actually work, so the cars won’t be flying high or exploring the deep just yet.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Supreme Court Decisions to Watch: Walmart, Violent Video Games & More

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The Supreme Court term is winding down and the Justices have saved some of the most interesting cases for last. On Monday they will announce anywhere from one to four decisions. All the cases should be decided by the last week of June.

Walmart:  The Court will decide whether to allow one of the largest employment discrimination cases in history to go forward.  The case stems from a suit filed by six women who say they had been paid less than men in comparable positions despite having higher performance ratings and greater seniority.

Violent Video Games:  The Court will decide whether states can forbid the sale of violent video games to children. At issue is a California law, never allowed to go into effect, that provides for up to a $1,000 fine to retailers who sell violent video games to minors. The law defines the games as depicting   “maiming, dismembering, or sexually assaulting an image of a human being.” The video game industry argues that the law violates free speech and that parents should be left to decide what their children buy. Americans spend more than $10 billion a year on video games.

Global Warming: The Court will decide whether a coalition of states can sue five of the largest power companies and force them to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions. The states say the plants emit 650 million tons of carbon dioxide each year , and they seek to sue under the common law of public nuisance. The companies, joined by the Obama administration argue that the issue should be handled by the political branches of government and not by the courts.

Campaign Spending Law: In its first campaign finance case since Citizen's United, the Court will review an Arizona public financing law. A provision of the Clean Elections Act gives public money to candidates who choose to forgo private fundraising. Supporters of campaign finance reform believe that laws like the 1998 Clean Elections Act could ultimately reduce spending. But private groups say the law squelches the First Amendment rights of organizations seeking to have their message heard.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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