"Everybody loves 'Dance Dance Revolution,' so why not make it massively multiplayer?" seems to be the thinking behind Acclaim's offering of "Dance!" It's a massively multiplayer online game where players "dance" to a beat to compete and can optionally use a USB dance pad. A neat idea, but it indicates the possibility of an entirely new direction when considered along with Endemol's announcement of "Virtual Me...."
The big news this week is the shellacking Rockstar's taking over its upcoming title, "Manhunt 2." Reacting to the game's violence, video ratings boards have either refused to rate it or slapped it with their most prohibitive ratings -- both, seemingly, the game's kiss of death.
Gaming may be in danger of becoming a bubble. I started thinking about this when reading a press release about the founding of Brash Entertainment, a new game studio that will make film-to-videogame adaptations. Said President Nicholas Longano, "It still surprises some people to learn it is an industry bigger than Hollywood, and the growth rates... we're talking about double-digits on an ongoing basis." This kind of thinking worries me. Generally speaking, when a company comes out of the woodwork because things look good on paper -- instead of defining a market need and addressing that need -- it's a …
So, it's looking like by the time the New York State Legislature ends its legislative session on June 21, its members will have reached agreement on a bill that criminalizes the sale of violent or sexually explicit video games to minors, punishable by up to four years in prison. For the purposes of comparison, here are some other offenses that rate four years in prison in New York state: perjury, statutory rape and criminally negligent homicide.
The "Guitar Hero" series of games has been an industry phenomenon, getting a huge amount of buzz and a fan following, and succeeding in a business model that has historically failed. That model is, of course, the peripheral one.