Chances are, if you own a Wii, you're going to need an extra controller sooner or later. Now's an excellent time to get one, since Nintendo has revamped its lineup of Wii Remotes to integrate MotionPlus inside. The new controllers, called Wii Remote Plus, look exactly like the old Wii remotes (check the box to make sure it's the new version), doing away with the annoying plastic plug-on that MotionPlus used to require.
Microsoft is said to be preparing to shut down Massive, the in-game advertising unit it scooped up in a pricey acquisition back in 2006.
According to Mediaweek, Microsoft has been trying to jettison the unit for months now, and will simply shut it down sometime this month. The report also says that a number of Massive's employees (which once stood at 80) are now being absorbed into other parts of company, short of Massive's general manager JJ Richards, who has been reportedly seeking employment elsewhere.
Massive worked with developers and publishers to build advertising spaces into titles, then … Read more
Thursday's launch of a games trade-in program by Amazon.com has already begun to make waves in the games resale business. Shortly after the program was announced, competitor GameStop's stock took a dive, dropping nearly 14 percent by end of day Thursday.
As a follow-up to the announcement, GameStop's CEO Don Matteo went on the record telling Edge Online he had no faith in Amazon's model based on his company's earlier attempt at a similar program. Matteo was, of course referring to sister site TradeStop. Back in 2005 the site featured a similar offering, where users could get cash for games which the company would then turn around and re-sell on GameStop.com. The service also let people send in DVD movies and music CDs. GameStop discontinued the program at the end of 2005.
Strengths Amazon is bringing something to the table that brick-and-mortar game resellers cannot easily match: Gamers who send in their used titles can spend their Amazon credit on things that aren't video games. For people who are selling games for a system they no longer have or use this is a clean break. It's also a chance for Amazon to make some extra cash when a user buys something that costs more than the credit they earned.
Another thing users may flock to is transparency. Amazon is showing users exactly what it will pay and has made this list able to be searched. Both GameStop and Game Crazy, two of the largest game resellers, offer no such feature on either of their sites. Instead you're limited to a list of hot games or promotional trade-in values, or you have to go into the store to find out the game values. Both companies will mail larger trade-in value lists, but the lack of an online system has led to users creating wikis to chronicle the ever-updating prices that can fluctuate by supply, demand, and retail price drops.
There's no special membership program. Both GameStop and Game Crazy have special memberships that its customers can join to get special discounts or receive a higher trade-in value for their games. Amazon doesn't offer this, which some may find appealing. Amazon pays everyone the same price in return for them logging-in with their Amazon.com account credentials. There's no annual fee, and the cost of shipping your games in is free.
There are no up-sells or pushy salespeople. You never have to talk to a human being in the entire exchange, which can be seen as a step up. Games retailers typically push paid membership programs, game pre-orders, and certain titles based on sales deals or events. For someone trying to offload their games and buy something new Amazon is letting you skip this.… Read more
My CNET colleague Sarju Shah over at Gamespot has put together a great rundown of Web browsers you can run inside of the latest video games. The four solutions tested include PlayXpert, Steam, Rogue, and Xfire
Why run these instead of your standard browser? Simple, these browsers have been designed to run as lean and mean as possible, and play nice with an application that's running in full-screen mode. They also feature niceties you won't find in your standard Web browser like hot keys that can make them appear or disappear in an instant, and transparency that lets … Read more
Sometimes the line between virtual world and real world is blurry. It's been known that Chinese gold farmers make a real living out of the WoW gold. On Friday, Sanrio Digital, maker of the Hello Kitty Online game, for the first time turned the in-game food to real money for a good cause.
The company announced the conclusion of the first Hello Kitty Online charity event called "Food for Friends." The event was held in the final week of the Hello Kitty Online closed beta.
Players created and submitted 344,965 in-game food items. Based on the … Read more
If your kids start to show serious signs of loving New York and you don't know why, this might be the reason.
Sanrio Digital, maker of the Hello Kitty Online 3D virtual world that's currently in beta, announced Friday the game's largest in-game event: the building of New York City. Players of the Hello Kitty Online Founders' Beta can take part in a series of quests to collect and organize materials for the building of a new New York area that will appear in the next phase of the game--and will undoubtedly be far more pink than … Read more
Microsoft showed off its Massive advertising platform in Times Square in New York on Tuesday.
The tech giant wanted to show the advertising world, which is gathered in New York for the annual Advertising Week conference, exactly how the dynamic in-game advertisements work.
Flashing high above 43rd Street were clips from a series of games that showed avatars stopping to view a movie trailer for the Hollywood blockbuster 300. A Toyota advertisement also lined the outfield wall in a baseball game that's played on Microsoft's Xbox game console.
"The idea is to have advertisements appear and fit … Read more
Sony Computer Entertainment America has joined forces with ratings mogul Nielsen to develop a measurement system for the nascent in-game advertising industry, according to a joint release from the two companies on Monday.
Sony will now share its game network data from the PlayStation 3 console as well as the PlayStation Network (which encompasses its new virtual world, PlayStation Home). Nielsen will then combine this with its game usage data, which currently encompasses the activities of more than 12,000 U.S. households. Then, beginning this fall, Nielsen will begin tracking audience statistics and user activity through its GamePlay Metrics system, … Read more