Items tagged with Video Games

Traditional media, like TV and movies, have speed aside somewhat for video games becoming a popular way for people to spend time. According to new reports, typically traditional media company Netflix is eyeing a foray into the video games market. Today, The Information reports that Netflix has been looking to hire an executive to oversee an expansion to the video game market. The Los Gatos, California-based company has supposedly reached out to veteran game industry executives about joining the company or perhaps just to learn about the market. However, Netflix has already had some game content come out, like the Stranger Things games or interactive “choose your adventure” type content... Read more...
Somewhere between Babe and Elon Musk’s Neuralink experiments are pigs playing video games for science. Though it may sound bizarre, researchers Candace Croney and Sarah Boysen wanted to better understand the cognitive ability of pigs, through training and manipulating a joystick-operated video game task. This training and subsequent research has since led to some interesting results. Over the years, it has been found that pigs are relatively smart animals, and it has become something of common knowledge. While the humane treatment of farm animals in an effort to gauge intelligence may raise ethical concerns, this new research is simply interesting to dig into. For the experiment, the subjects... Read more...
2020 was a weird year. A pandemic changed the way we do many things, and it heavily impacted the entertainment world. This does not include the video games market, though, which seemed to be reasonably healthy in 2020. Mat Piscatella of the NPD Group tweeted out charts showing how much was spent on video games, including hardware, software, and accessories in 2020 and December alone. Take a look for yourself, but the numbers for gaming are quite impressive. Dec 2020 US NPD THREAD - December 2020 consumer spending across video game hardware, content and accessories reached a December record $7.7B, 25% higher when compared to a year ago. Full year spending also set a new record, totaling $56.9B,... Read more...
Over the years, several studies have linked violent video games to violent behaviors in real life. However, those studies have been a pain in the side of ordinary people who understand the studies are a bunch of hogwash. A new ten-year-long study has come out, explaining that violent video games do not cause kids to become violent adults. Boom, headshot! Since 2011 and perhaps even earlier, Sarah M. Coyne and Laura Stockdale studied the effects of violent video games on adolescents. Their research has now been published in the Journal of Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking. The journal article explains that the researchers used a “person-centered approach” to the research,... Read more...
While anyone could say a good movie, book, or video game made them feel emotional, scientists did not understand why until now. A research team at the University of Geneva, Switzerland, found that emotions result from the synchronization of several neural systems throughout the brain. They found this out by analyzing volunteers' "feelings, expressions, and physiological responses" while playing a video game designed for arousing different emotions depending on the game's progress. As the University of Geneva press release explains, "Emotions are complex phenomena that influence our minds, bodies, and behavior." This complexity makes emotions challenging to understand and study. Previously, theories... Read more...
There are currently several AI tools whose purpose is to create more life-like images. The most recent addition is PULSE (Photo Upsampling via Latent Space Exploration), an AI-infused application that can transform low-resolution pixelated images into high-resolution images. The creators of PULSE’s mainly focused on human faces, but others have already used the tool to create slightly terrifying images of video game characters that may just haunt your dreams. PULSE was developed by a team at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. It varies from other tools because “instead of starting with the LR (low resolution) image and slowly adding detail, PULSE traverses the high-resolution... Read more...
April Fools’ Day is here and this year we could all especially use a laugh. Some companies like Google are not participating in April Fools’ Day, but there are still plenty of pranks to be found in video games. Here are some of the best 2020 April Fools’ Day tricks that are floating around a few of our favorite video games. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Infinity Ward just released two new playlists that involve the map “Shipment”. Shipment is one of the most popular and one of smallest maps in the game. The “I Have Trust Issues” playlist will place players into 24/7 Piccadilly, one of the least popular maps, instead of Shipment. The playlist includes the... Read more...
Some video games are just better with a friend. However, gaming can quickly become frustrating and still isolating if you and your good friends play on different platforms. Thankfully there are plenty of games that feature cross-play for inter-platform gaming fun. Here are some of the best video games that can be played with friends on a truly wide variety of gaming platforms and ecosystems. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019) and Call of Duty: Warzone (2020) Call of Duty: Modern Warfare was released this past September and garnered $600 million in sales in just three day. Its gameplay was certainly a major attraction, but gamers were also thrilled that the game offered cross-play. It is... Read more...
Many of us are spending more time indoors than usual this season and some are taking the opportunity to revisit a few favorite video games. While it is fun to be able to replay or delve deeper into the video games that you already own, sometimes you simply crave some new content. If you find that you are a little bored with your current line-up, this is the article for you. Here are some of the video games that HotHardware's staff recommends for killing time during the COVID-19 Quarantine. Games that offer an immersive adventure Doom 2016 (2016): Doom 2016 is a first-person shooter video game that is set in the future on Mars. Players are pitted against demons from Hell that have been set free... Read more...
The devs behind the incredibly popular game, Minecraft, have announced bad news about a long-anticipated update for the game. The Super Duper Graphics Pack that was promised years ago has been canceled. The first we heard of Super Duper was during E3 2017, and in November of 2017, the devs promised that Super Duper would land in 2018. That launch never happened, and now Minecraft devs are canceling the graphics pack altogether. The devs said that they realize the cancellation of the graphics package will be a disappointment to some fans, but it was shelved due to poor performance. Devs say they weren't happy with the way the Super Duper Graphics Pack performed across devices. Development on the... Read more...
The video game industry is absolutely massive and is outpacing even Hollywood when it comes to generating money. The video game industry racked up $43.4 billion in revenue in 2018 and it may surprise you to learn that the average gamer in the U.S. isn't a teen. The average gamer is 33 years old and plays mostly on their smartphone according to research from the Entertainment Software Association (ESA). Not only is the average U.S. gamer playing mainly on a smartphone, but they are also spending significantly on content with spending up 20% compared to a year ago and up 85% from 2015. The $43.4 billion spent on video games in 2018 was mostly on content rather than hardware and accessories.... Read more...
Each year a new round of video games are inducted into The Strong's World Video Game Hall of Fame, and this year four new titles were added. Most of the newly inducted titles are popular enough that people will be familiar with them. One of the titles has come on every Windows computer since 1991 and that game is Microsoft Windows Solitaire. We've all gotten bored at some point and resorted to playing this game. Every single computer running the Windows OS between 1990 and 2013 had Solitare pre-installed, and it can be downloaded on machines running newer versions of Windows. The game has been installed on over a billion computers and played by billions of people around the world. Mortal Kombat... Read more...
It seems that everyone wants in on the game streaming market of late. Reports have indicated that Verizon wants into the game streaming segment, as does Amazon. Start-ups like VectorDash have announced game streaming services that leverage unused GPU power from crypto-mining rigs recently as well. And of course Google unveiled plans for its Stadia game streaming at GDC 2019 this week. Today, a new report claims that retail giant Walmart is looking at getting into game streaming as well. The report comes from USGamer, claiming that multiple sources familiar with Walmart's plans have noted that the retail giant is looking into its own streaming game platform. The unnamed sources... Read more...
Amazon isn't getting high marks from gamers for its latest policy decision relating to Prime members. The company sent out emails earlier today to Prime members letting them know that the 20 percent video game pre-order discount is ending.  Given that we're all gamers around here and that it's a high chance that you have an Amazon Prime membership, it's likely that you're affected. The 20 percent discount on game pre-orders has been a boon to those who like to receive games on release day and save quite a few bucks in the process. In its place, Amazon will now be giving customers $10 in store credit when pre-ordering "select video games". To qualify for the $10 credit, the game will have... Read more...
If you're into extremely rare Japanese video games, we may have a real treat for you courtesy of a unveiled stash. A folder full of roughly 70 ROMs (weighing in a 67GB in size) was uploaded to a private forum earlier this year, but eventually made its way into the public domain. It should be noted that the games in this collection have been circulated by avid gamers in secret for quite some time. However, one of the game collectors that had access to the titles decided to go rogue and posted a video of Labyrinthe: Horror Tour 3 to YouTube. At that point, any remnant of secrecy was now gone. "A reader sent me the collection earlier this year, and we agreed to wait a long period of time to share... Read more...
PUBG gamers that are good enough to get an invite to this summer's invitational tournament have the chance to duke it out for a prize pool worth $2 million. PUBG Corp. will be sending out invites to twenty top teams from all around the world who will gather in Berlin, Germany from July 25 through July 29 for the event. This will be the first major tournament held by PUBG Corp and is called the PUBG Global Invitational 2018. Teams will be selected for the event by qualifying for tournaments in each of the major regions including North America, Europe, and Asia. There will be separate tournaments held for gamers who like the first-person perspective and for players preferring the third person perspective.... Read more...
PUBG fans who enjoyed playing the Codename: Savage map on the Closed Experimental Server the last time it was available have another opportunity to play the new map. Savage launched again on the experimental server last night at 9 PM ET. The map will be available to play until Wednesday, April 18. Just as before you will need a beta key to access the server and try the map this time around. You can still register for beta keys here, but they are not guaranteed to be given to all who want one. If you had a beta key last time, it will still work for this round of testing. The Savage map has been changed significantly since the last round of testing. The map is now more dense than it was before,... Read more...
The weekend is nearly here and if you have nothing planned or winter is still holding on in your area as it is in mine, perhaps the best weekend is spent indoors playing some sweet games. The good news is that Steam is having a massive sale right now and it has some awesome games that you can pick up for bargain basement prices. My favorite on the list is Sid Meier's Civilization V. Civ V isn't the newest game in the franchise by any means, but if you throw a rock into a room filled with Civ fans you will hit a bunch who think Civ V is the best game in the franchise. The game originally landed in September of 2010 and still looks good and plays well today. Civ V runs well on most modern computers... Read more...
Blizzard has announced that it is rolling out a new tool for Overwatch players that will allow them to avoid people that make their gameplay experience less than ideal. This less than ideal gameplay can be because the player and you clash and don’t communicate well, or perhaps the player doesn’t meet your expectations for team play and skill. To help you avoid having to deal with this sort of player Blizzard has added a new "Avoid as Teammate" option. If you choose to use the option, the matchmaker won't place you on a team with that player starting with the next match for up to one week. Blizzard writes, "Sometimes you don’t want to play with someone as a teammate because you... Read more...
One of the most popular game franchises to ever grace the PC was Half-Life, which hailed from Valve. Fans have wanted to delve back into the world of Gordon Freeman for many years now, and have all but given up any hope of Half-Life 3. The flames of hope for Half-Life 3 are starting to be stoked again with Valve's Gabe Newell having announced that Valve is "going to start shipping games again." The first game is certainly not what fans hoped for; it's a game called Artifact, a Dota 2-themed card game that was announced last year. The good news is that Newell did clearly state that isn’t the only game Valve has plans for. Newell said that Artifact was "the first of several games" that Valve... Read more...
A new poll has been published by UMass Lowell-Washington Post that looked at the popularity of competitive gaming among young adults in the 14 to 21-year-old age range. The poll has found that among that group, e-sports are about as big and popular as football. A full 40% of people who fall into that age group says they are fans of football while 38% of the same group say they are also fans of e-sports. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons (Marco Verch) This is a good thing for the popularity and growth of new e-sports leagues like The Overwatch League that launched in January. That league plays major matches in the former "The Tonight Show" studio in California. The matches are streamed all... Read more...
We all know how it is, you roll into GameStop to pick up a used game, get it home, and find out that you don’t like it. Unfortunately, that’s just money down the drain. Or you get the game home and beat it in short order and need something new to play. GameStop has a new program set to launch in November that might appease gamers that have an itchy trigger finger when it comes to game purchases. The new program is called PowerPass and allows gamers to pay $60 and gain access to all the pre-owned games you want to play for six months. This is essentially a rental program for the large catalog of used games that most GameStop locations have. When you are done playing that used title, you take... Read more...
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