The next Xbox could boast a dramatically improved graphical experience, AMD's director of ISV relationship management, Neal Robison, told Official Xbox Magazine in an interview published yesterday.
According to Robison, whose company has been heavily involved in Xbox graphics hardware, the next iteration in Microsoft's console line will come "pretty darn close" to offering the graphical sophistication of 2009 megahit "Avatar." The movie set new standards in computer-generated graphics, and was celebrated by critics and graphical technicians alike for its breathtaking visuals.
Even better for those who want more-realistic gameplay experiences, Robison says artificial … Read more
Augmented reality, which brings together the physical and digital worlds, holds much promise for gaming. So why do most augmented-reality games suck? Here's the key: Most aren't true augmented reality. They're little more than animations overlaid on a video feed.
Enter Ball Invasion, a game from Swedish software developer 13th Lab. The iPad 2 game is a leap forward. It's also simple: Shoot a stream of round black bullets at the colorful balls that emerge on your screen. Unlike other augmented-reality games, however, you can bounce your animated bullets off the real walls around you. Check out the video below.
Here's what goes on under the hood. Ball Invasion uses Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM) to build and continuously update a 3D digital representation of the physical space in the iPad camera's field of view. This is the technology many robots, including NASA planetary rovers, use to get a sense of where they are.… Read more
A new Web game has finally brought every American taxpayer's fantasy to life. Budget Hero 2.0, a timely update to an earlier title, gives players the chance to choose where their tax dollars are spent while simultaneously working to save our ailing economy.
It's somewhat ironic that the game was created at least in part with the help of federal tax dollars by American Public Media, which produces public-radio shows including "Marketplace" and "Prairie Home Companion."
Budget Hero uses data from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, which keeps track of the budget and makes predictions about the impact of all sorts of proposed policies. This allows the game to get pretty wonky very quickly, with options to "extend the Bush tax cuts" and link that amount to inflation right off the bat. It's almost as confusing as calculating hit points, for all you old-school D&Ders out there.… Read more
The U.S. video game industry continued to show signs of weakness in June, research firm NPD Group reported today.
Total video game industry sales in the country, which includes hardware, software, and accessories, fell 10 percent to $995 million, compared to June 2010. Software sales fell steepest--12 percent--to $469.5 million. Sales of accessories dived 11 percent to $158.9 million, while hardware sales slid 9 percent to $366.6 million.
When I was a kid, I went to my fair share of educational summer programs: language camp, clay animation camp, invention camp (and I loved them all). But those are so 20th century. These days, the hot, educational activity during the summer months is tech camp, the obvious choice for kids who are obsessed with playing on their computers, conquering video games, and mastering the thousands of apps for their iPods, tablets, or smartphones.
Now in its 13th season, iD Tech Camps is a ubiquitous program that offers summer courses in a wide range of techie topics at 60 universities … Read more
While Nintendo often has a reputation for being a bit behind the curve on cutting-edge tech, Netflix on the 3DS marks the first time that a gaming handheld has gotten outfitted with Netflix streaming.
The app is free, but requires a Netflix streaming subscription to connect to. There's no log-in page when the application is launched; instead, you're given a code to activate on Netflix's Web site. For a kid-driven device like the 3DS, that type of clean connection method makes sense.
Even though Netflix doesn't support 3D content, the interface has a little gloss of 3D added to it: movie titles and text windows seem to float at slightly different depth layers on the top screen. Otherwise, the interface mirrors what you'd find the PS3/Wii versions of Netflix, but spread across two screens. Your instant queue and other recommendation lists show up in browsable rows of movie thumbnails on the 3DS' lower screen. Considering the screen resolution, the whole affair looks surprisingly crisp. … Read more
Netflix streaming has made its way to the Nintendo 3DS.
Owners of the portable game player can now head over to the Nintendo eShop and download the streaming application for free. According to Nintendo, Netflix content can be viewed only on the 3DS' upper screen.
Netflix's launch on the 3DS comes at a difficult time for Nintendo's portable. The device, which allows users to play 3D games without the need for special glasses, hasn't been selling as well as Nintendo had hoped. During a financial results briefing in April, Nintendo chief Satoru Iwata acknowledged his company's … Read more
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.-- Earlier this week, I spent the day at Google's first-ever Science Fair, and I'll admit it was a little hard not to be intimidated.
After all, I was surrounded by high schoolers who are inventing new types of sailboats, preventing trains from ever derailing again, or who seem on the verge of curing cancer.
The event could well be one of the globe's biggest science competitions, with more than 10,000 13- to 18-year-olds from around the world entering a total of 7,500 projects in the hopes of walking away with the … Read more
Unlike the aesthetically crude Comedy Central show it was based on, South Park's first brush with gaming in the late '90s was objectively not good. However, Microsoft and Comedy Central went a long way to righting the franchise in gamers' minds with their 2009 tower-defense title South Park Let's Go Tower Defense Play.
Now, it appears that a second South Park game is headed exclusively to the Xbox 360. Speaking to Joystiq, 345 Games Creative Director Prithvi Virasinghe confirmed that his studio is collaborating with Microsoft on a new title based on the tiny-town travails of Kyle, Stan, Kenny, and Cartman.
About six months after Electronic Arts discontinued online play for several of its dustier titles, the company has expanded the list.
Army of Two, Battlefield 2: Modern Combat, NCAA Football 10, and a handful of other titles that currently allow for online gaming on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 will no longer be available to users as of August 11, the game publisher recently announced on its service-update page. PlayStation Portable games, including Medal of Honor Airborne and Need for Speed Undercover, will also have their online play discontinued on that date.