Patriots offering free parking for home games

The Patriots are offering free parking for home games during the 2020 season, the club announced in a letter to its season-ticket members on Monday.
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'Horizon Zero Dawn' hits Steam and Epic Games Store on August 7th

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Source: NFLPA board wants no preseason games

The NFL shortened its preseason from four weeks to two to account for the coronavirus pandemic, but the league’s players don’t think that move went far enough.
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Here’s who would have won MVP after 60 games in every recent MLB season

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Who is built for 60 games and who could struggle? Our MLB experts weigh in

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Sources: MLB plans 60 games, awaits 2 answers

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PS5: PlayStation 5 console and games revealed

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As 'League of Legends' summer games begin, the pros talk player health

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Riot Games executive resigns after ‘abhorrent’ George Floyd post

Ron Johnson posted a meme about George Floyd’s criminal record on Facebook.
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From Spider-Man to Grand Theft Auto – here’s all 26 games announced for PS5

Twenty-six games were announced as coming to PlayStation 5 during Sony’s launch event for its new console on Thursday, including brand new titles and highly-anticipated sequels.
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PS5 Games Reveal Event Wowed Us

On this week’s packed episode of IGN’s weekly PlayStation show Podcast Beyond!, host Jonathon Dornbush is joined by Brian Altano, Lucy O’Brien, and Max Scoville to break down all the big reveals from the PS5 game reveal event. We discuss the look of the PS5 console, big exclusives like Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, Ratche & Clank: Rift Apart, Horizon Forbidden West, and so much more. Plus multiplatform releases like Resident Evil: Village, indies like Stray, and more.

Watch the episode below:

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For more from the event, check out all the details about the PS5 consoles revealed, watch the full PS5 conference, and check out all the confirmed PS5 games so far.

Download or listen to the show on these platforms:

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Podcast Beyond! is live every Wednesday. For more on PS5, check out the PS5 full specs list, why we’re excited about PS5’s 3D audio focus, and an analysis of what teraflops really mean for the PS5 and Xbox Series X.

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Jonathon Dornbush is IGN’s Senior News Editor, host of Podcast Beyond!, and PlayStation lead. Talk to him on Twitter @jmdornbush.
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PlayStation 5: Sony gives first look at the PS5 console and games

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Sony gives first look at new PlayStation 5 console and games

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NetEase Chinese Games Giant Plays Well With Hong Kong Investors

Shares in NetEase made a strong start in Hong Kong, where they began trading on Thursday. The Chinese company is the world’s second largest games firm by revenue. The company is already listed in on the U.S.’s NASDAQ market. The secondary listing in Hong Kong gives it wider access to capital markets should the cold […]

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The Games Industry on the Best Games of the Last Decade

Just over a decade ago, IGN ran two roundtable features; one that asked a broad panel of industry insiders to look back at the decade leading up to 2010 and one that charged them with prognosticating on what they thought gaming would be like in 2020. We recently revisited their 2020 predictions to see what the panel got right, what they got wrong, and what they were blindsided by – and the results were pretty interesting. Turns out a lot has changed in only ten years.

We’ve now pulled together a new panel of more than 30 industry veterans to recreate the same concept, starting out with a look back at the last decade. In a previous feature, our participants told us what they think have been the most important changes in the games industry, and now we’re moving on to the best games and most memorable experiences.

Please note that we haven’t included all responses, and some responses have been edited for length.

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In the first part of this feature, our roundtable members answer the question:

What was your favourite game of the last ten years and why?

Lee Mather, Game Director, F1 2019, Codemasters: There have been so many outstanding games over the last ten years, and all for very different reasons, be that innovative and fun gameplay, amazing characterisation, brilliant storytelling or groundbreaking technology. Based on that list, there’s one game which hits all of those areas and then some, and that’s GTAV. It’s hard to know where to start when it comes to why, but having such a vast and beautifully constructed lifelike playground, where the most believable and most obscure things could happen at any time instantly pulls you in. You can waste hours doing nothing more than driving round sightseeing. I’m also always a sucker for a good story and character driven game and GTAV hits both of those perfectly. You instantly get each of the characters, and their personality types and lifestyle decisions! The script writing is second to none and guaranteed to provoke a reaction. There’s a reason why it’s still going strong seven years after launch.

Atsushi Inaba, Chief Creative Officer, PlatinumGames (Bayonetta): GTAV and Monument Valley. GTAV feels like the ultimate version of an open-world game that is truly fun. Monument Valley was impactful because it opened a big change in an industry that was focused on AAA titles. I see it as one of the top titles that helped popularize the indie scene.

Masachika Kawata, Producer, Resident Evil series: I think the most impactful on a cultural level was Pokémon GO! for sure. I downloaded it while I was at San Diego Comic-Con in 2016, and the city was just full of people walking around catching Pokémon! A similar movement sprung up out of nowhere in Japan, and you would think there was a festival going on every time you walked by a park, due to the big crowds of people hanging around every public space playing the game. I was one of those people! And I was really glad to be a part of something which got the whole of society wrapped up in it – something I hadn’t felt for a while as a game fan.

As for my personal favourite game, that would have to be Bloodborne. It had that directness of concept and balanced challenge that is the signature of what we would now call the “Souls-like” genre. Capcom has found success with games in this genre before. Bloodborne was tough, challenging and fun, so even when I would die over and over and have to repeat the same section to try to progress, it was still enjoyable and I felt a great sense of accomplishment when I’d finally do it. That’s why it was my favourite game of the last decade.

J. Allen Brack, President, Blizzard Entertainment (World of Warcraft): [I]n the family, I’ll do a special callout and say I love Overwatch, but I do love all my children equally. Overwatch was new IP for us, created completely from the ground up, which advanced the class-based shooter genre with abilities and characters that you can truly love.

Outside of Blizzard, the game I enjoyed the most in the last ten years was probably Portal 2. Great gameplay, great writing, the story was excellent, I loved the co-op – the game was innovative. I’m currently playing Subnautica, which is a great story-based take on the survival space. I’m enjoying it a lot. On mobile, Monument Valley is my favorite game of the last decade, I really love it. For more of a puzzle/platformer type of game, I love Inside. It has an excellent mood and tone, and compelling puzzle gameplay.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/05/19/overwatch-review-2020-update”]

Overwatch has evolved significantly since launch.

David Gaider, Co-Founder and Creative Director, Summerfall Studios (Chorus): The Last of Us. It… really upbraided my snobbish belief that you needed an RPG to go really in-depth into a narrative. It, along with a few other games since like Horizon: Zero Dawn and Insomniac’s Spider-Man, has really upped the bar in terms of narrative presentation. They’re delivering on the promise of what interactive narrative is capable of.

Andy Sum, Director, Hipster Whale (Crossy Road): The Last of Us. The intro sequence left me speechless, and the narrative was surprising and engaging. Environments were beautiful to look at with plenty of vistas, while the level design and mechanics were interesting. Gun play was satisfying. And best of all, competitive multiplayer was unexpectedly deep and tactical. There was a lot of watching and waiting for your enemies, which was pretty unique for a competitive game.

I’ve put more hours into other games – Overwatch, Rainbow Six Siege – but The Last of Us was the most impactful.

Tanya X. Short, Co-Founder, Kitfox Games (Moon Hunters): 80 Days wins “#1 game that made me nervous to call myself a game designer anymore, in case someone ever compares what I make to that.” Its elegance and craft were so purposeful, so insightful, and the narrative and systems dovetailed so well, that I despaired existentially for awhile. I guess I really enjoy existential despair, because it’s hard to say if there’s any game I’ve liked more in the past ten years.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%2280%20Days%20wins%20’%231%20game%20that%20made%20me%20nervous%20to%20call%20myself%20a%20game%20designer%20anymore%2C%20in%20case%20someone%20ever%20compares%20what%20I%20make%20to%20that.’%22%20-%20Tanya%20X.%20Short%2C%20Kitfox%20Games”]

Viktor Bocan, Design Director, Warhorse Studios (Kingdom Come: Deliverance): Dark Souls. All of it, Bloodborne and Sekiro included. Not only because of the amazing game design and execution, but also for what it proved: that there can be hardcore games that don’t need to please everyone and don’t need to compromise for some illusionary “wider target group.” That you really can make a complicated and not easily approachable AAA game and there is a market for that.

Rebecca Ford, Live Operations and Community Director, Digital Extremes (Warframe): Not including Warframe – which is my most played game of all time – it has to be a tie between The Witcher 3 and Nier: Automata. I had the right amount of free time to dive in deep to each, and both worlds were beautiful in art and scope every step of the way. I can’t pick between them because they both represent the best of the past ten years of gaming – complete commitment to the art and science of game development. I also only like white-haired protagonists, apparently.

Saxs Persson, Creative Director, Minecraft franchise: The obvious answer for me is Minecraft, of course. I dropped everything to join the Mojang team about five years into Minecraft and I continue to be amazed at the impact the game is having every single day. For other games that I played, I’d say Inside had the biggest impression on me. It’s a masterpiece! I even played through the game again to find every Orb and get the special ending. We still discuss at home what the ending really means. That’s a good game that challenges and satisfies. Can’t wait to see what’s next from that team.

Marc Merrill, Co-Founder, Riot Games (League of Legends): If I can’t say League of Legends, then it has to be World of Warcraft among videogames. WoW still reigns supreme as the best in class MMO, although I have a strong personal preference for the earlier versions of the game. In regards to tabletop, Warhammer 40K takes the cake for me; 8th edition 40K has seen Games Workshop improve how they do live balance, simplify the rules to make the game less painful and this has helped spur the growth of the competitive scene.

Lars Janssen, Director of Studio Relations, Koch Media: This is a tough one… and I will cheat a little and name three games: World of Warcraft, Mass Effect 2, and Journey.

Obviously, World of Warcraft was released more than ten years ago but I haven’t spent more time in any other game in the last decade, so I think it deserves the trophy for connecting people and building long-lasting communities in an easily accessible way. For the Horde!

Mass Effect 2 is competing only with Final Fantasy VII for my personal “Best Action RPG of All Time” crown. I completely immersed myself into the story, felt with the characters, and enjoyed every minute of the game until the very end, craving for more.

Journey is very special to me as it showed how emotions can be triggered through sounds, music, and other players that share parts of your journey without the typical interaction possibilities.

Paul Sage, Creative Director, Borderlands 3: Tough question. Games are about mood, and the answer to this would vary depending on the day you ask. Let’s say some choices would be Mass Effect 2, Skyrim, God of War, The Last of Us, or Titanfall 2. Out of these, I will pick Mass Effect 2, based on my mood today. Mass Effect 2 grabs you with the soundtrack immediately. When you dive in, it is a fully realized universe with tons of depth and great characters. The story is incredibly interesting, and the gameplay was solid. But in the end for me, it was about my choices. Sometimes those choices were illusions, but other times they were really meaningful. It gave me a feeling of control and joy as a player with the high-quality trappings. Loved it.

Ville Heijari, CMO, Rovio (Angry Birds): I’ve probably clocked the most hours over a number of Angry Birds games, but I have to be honest and name Red Dead Redemption 2. For me, the game is simply the most perfect cinematic, escapist masterpiece, with just the right pacing, fascinating world with a surplus of detail, and gripping narrative. Having started playing games on Commodore 64 in the 80s, playing games like this can be mesmerising.

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Red Dead Redemption 2 was a landmark release.

Denby Grace, Executive Producer, 2K (Mafia III): Red Dead Redemption 2, without a doubt. As a feat of engineering, design, and production, the scope and quality of that game is insane… it hurts my head to think about how that game must have come together. In terms of the story – a Western fantasy, the experience of being in a world I never wanted to leave – it’s simply a masterpiece.

An honourable mention goes out to Florence. That game tugged at me emotionally in a way I always wished, but didn’t know, a game could. Beautiful experience.

Jodie Azhar, Game Director, Teazelcat Games: While I’m much more drawn to relaxing games where I can take my time and the main mechanic isn’t fighting these days, I think the game I’ve put the most time into is Monster Hunter: World. I’ve been playing the series since Monster Hunter Freedom Unite came out in 2009, so seeing it grow in popularity in the West and come out with Monster Hunter: World, which so many of my friends picked up as their first Monster Hunter game, has been great.

It’s the only game I really play with other people, and while I miss the days of physically hanging out with friends and our PSPs, it’s nice to be able to go online and team up with people I know to take down a giant monster from the comforts of our own homes.

Naoki Yoshida, Producer and Director, Final Fantasy XIV: Monster Hunter: World. As I’m sure you’re aware, Monster Hunter is a well-known hunting action game series in Japan, but it did not make as much of an impact outside of Japan. However, I feel that by choosing PlayStation 4 as the platform and making the development team think outside the box, they managed to create a new Monster Hunter from scratch. I felt that this was a tremendously risky challenge, and I’d like to give my highest praise to the team that made this happen. I’ve played several hundreds of hours myself. For the same reason, I’d like to mention The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild as well.

Ryozo Tsujimoto, Producer, Monster Hunter series: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. The game world and gameplay were simply stunning. I always define a great game as being one you don’t want to get to the end of – in other words, you want to stay in that world as long as you can. Breath of the Wild made me feel that way.

Keith Schuler, Lead Mission Designer, Gearbox Software (Borderlands 3): The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. I felt like it was a return to what drew me into video gaming in the first place: rock-solid game mechanics against a backdrop of adventure, wonder, and beauty. Also, throwing chickens.

Takahisa Taura, Director, Astral Chain, PlatinumGames: That would be The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild… I was very impressed by its level and terrain design, which made it an engaging world to simply explore.

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Even hundreds of hours in, there’s still stuff to discover in Breath of the Wild.

Sam Barlow, Founder, Drowning a Mermaid Productions (Telling Lies): The easy answer would be Zelda: Breath of the Wild. But statistically I give it to Gorogoa, a game that was my GOTY in several years thanks to its early demo release and my getting a subsequent early hands on. Gorogoa is magical and transformative. It’s the creation of a focused vision and does something that is so, so complex it is hard to imagine how it was ever created. It’s a new mechanic, a new interface. It seamlessly incorporates art, craft, story, and some straight-up puzzling. It’s everything I ever got out of Escher, or Kit Williams, or my favorite fairy tales – the magic paintbrush in particular. It made me gasp, it made my heart and my mind fill with joy. It’s such a singular thing that Jason Roberts is welcome to never make another game, just sit back and be content. Economics again, may suggest differently.

Ross Gowing, Game Director, Dirt Rally 2.0, Codemasters: Assuming I’m not allowed to go for DiRT Rally 2.0, I’d probably choose Far Cry 3. I sank so many hours into that game and bought it for Xbox 360 and then again for PS4 when the generations changed I enjoyed playing it that much! The storytelling and decision making twinned with the general open world chaos was exactly what I wanted at the time and was a real blast to play, twice.

Hideki Kamiya, Chief Game Designer, PlatinumGames (Bayonetta): I don’t really remember which games I played over the last ten years, but recently the Resident Evil 2 remake left a big impact on me. I was developing the original in around 1997, so it felt like a miracle to see that game revived on high-performance hardware with amazing polish more than 20 years later.

The only drawback of the game is that it’s too scary. I had to really do my best to complete both Leon and Claire’s scenario once each, but after that I was just too scared to go on. I want to replay the game, so I hope that Capcom will implement a mode that makes it more fun to play by making the zombies look cute.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22Resident%20Evil%202%20remake%20left%20a%20big%20impact%20on%20me.%20I%20was%20developing%20the%20original%20in%20around%201997%2C%20so%20it%20felt%20like%20a%20miracle%20to%20see%20that%20game%20revived%20on%20high-performance%20hardware%20with%20amazing%20polish%20more%20than%2020%20years%20later.%22%20-%20Hideki%20Kamiya%2C%20PlatinumGames”]

Jeremiah Slaczka, Co-Founder and Creative Director, 5th Cell (Scribblenauts Unlimited): Obviously this is an impossible task. There’s been so many incredible and memorable games. But what captured my attention the most was PlayerUnknown’s BattleGrounds. It spawned a litany of copycats and arguably one of the biggest games of all times with Fortnite. It’s such a simple, yet powerful concept that was executed very well – even though it was very buggy. It was the first real shift in online shooters in many years.

Joe Neate, Executive Producer of Sea of Thieves, Rare: PUBG. This introduced an entirely new multiplayer genre with absolutely brilliant design to a massive audience. It’s so simple, yet so effective, and there was no comparable feeling like getting down to the final few players for the first time. I still vividly remember my first win. The tension, the excitement, and the fear. Absolutely phenomenal stuff. It’s a game where it’s pretty rare to win, but you always feel like you’ve got a chance. It’s also one where the purity of the core experience was always enough to tempt you back for another session, nothing to do with the progression systems or rewards. You just wanted to experience the adrenaline rush.

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PUBG was an instant classic.

Takashi Iizuka, Head of Sonic Team, SEGA (Sonic Forces): I have had so many favorite games from the last ten years that it is hard to narrow it down to just one. If I had to choose the most memorable one though, it would have to be Dragon Quest X, the first online RPG in the game’s series. I had played many online games for work before then, but it was the first MMORPG that I played in my personal time that I got invested in. I have some fond memories of chatting and going on quests with people I met through the game and playing until the early hours of the morning. It was a ton of fun.

Ed Beach, Civilization Franchise Lead Designer, Firaxis: I’m not sure this is going to hold up as my favorite game of the decade once I’ve had some more time to reflect on it, but I have to answer Death Stranding right now since I’m currently obsessed with it. I love the fact that this is a very immersive, story-driven game title that is all built around a backpacking simulator. I never thought of hiking as gameplay that would captivate me, but it has. I’m having a great time planning out my routes, choosing just the right equipment, and seeing the world change over time as shared structures get built and brought online. Events of the last few months have made it clear how much I’ve missed gatherings like that.

Gareth Wilson, Creative Director, Traveller’s Tales (The LEGO Movie 2 Videogame): Titanfall 2. An incredibly polished, thrilling single player campaign which has some of the best level design and shooter mechanics I’ve ever played, combined with a fantastic multiplayer.

Pim Holfve, CEO, Avalanche Studios Group (Rage 2): The 2010s had so many great games. I’m torn between Firewatch and theHunter: Call of the Wild, both succeeded in creating immersive wildlife experiences in radically different ways. I was mesmerized by Firewatch’s heavily stylized art direction and a compelling story. Of course, I’m partial when it comes to theHunter: Call of the Wild, but I think that the Expansive Worlds team has created a truly special experience that immerses players in what we believe is the best version of the great outdoors. Every time I put on my headphones and close my eyes, I can almost feel the breeze rustling through the leaves.

Kellee Santiago, Head of Developer Relations, Niantic, Inc. (Pokemon GO): Ack, I always have a hard time with these kinds of questions! There was, and continues to be, so much variety in games that it’s just so hard to pick one. So, I’m going to sort of side-step it and pick Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, because of the memories it has given me. You know, previously as a gamer, I would have really looked down on all of the options Nintendo gives in their games now to make it easy to play, or practically auto-play. I didn’t really get it. But in MK8D, it allowed my then four-year-old son and I to really play together for the first time. It was just magical. We could each play with settings that allowed us to be evenly matched. Everyone had a great time, and Nintendo enabled that!

Phil Harrison, Vice President and GM, Google (Stadia): I always think about games in particular moments. So probably the most fun that I’ve had playing a game in the last ten years has been playing Mario Kart with my kids, because it was an experience that I shared with my family. It wasn’t necessarily the best game, or the most amazing graphics, but simply the fact that it drew us in time and time again to all be on the couch enjoying it together.

I also kind of book-end the last ten years with the 3DS remake of Ocarina of Time just because it allowed me to play more of a game I loved. And then more recently, Breath of the Wild. Those are highlights of creativity in the industry and the beginning and end of the decade.

And then there’s… Inside from Playdead, the people who made Limbo. I finished and absolutely loved every minute of that game. I also really got into Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. I thought that the craft and the depth of the story and the characters there was incredibly impressive.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2016/06/30/inside-official-launch-trailer”]

Inside’s art direction, mood and pacing were superb.

Jamie Jackson, Chief Creative Officer, Mythical Games: This is tough! It’s actually impossible… but I gotta go with FIFA 17. It’s probably the game I’ve spent the most time with because of the friends I play with and the competition it brings out in us. One of my best friends and I have a running count of the actual games of FIFA we played each other for the last nine years – I play Barca, he plays Real Madrid. Of course, I’m winning!

Luc Duchaine, Executive Marketing Director, Ubisoft’s Canadian Studios: I loved the Batman series, Spider-Man, and God of War. I have to say that I played a lot of Tetris 99 on Switch and managed to win a couple of times; it’s the only Battle Royale in which I can really perform!

Tim Heaton, Studio Director, Creative Assembly and EVP Studios (Total War: Three Kingdoms): The most fun I had was from the Forza series, the one I played the most is Mini Metro, and the one I most respect is The Return of the Obra Dinn. Shout out to Tetris Effect, too. Oh, and Reigns. I played a lot of Street Fighter 2 on the Mega Drive Mini over Christmas, but I’m guessing that’s not allowed on the list.

Yoko Taro, Director, NieR: Automata: The PlayStation 3 remaster of the action adventure game Ico. I chose a remaster game because no game that piqued my interest more than Ico appeared during the past ten years.

Greg Street, VP of IP and Entertainment, Riot Games (League of Legends): I really struggle with “your favorite” questions. I get them all the time about my favorite LoL champion or favorite WoW expansion, but I just don’t approach life that way. But in the spirit of the question, here are ten games that I loved from the past ten years:

Dark Souls – Such great in-game storytelling and a difficulty system that just tells you that you need to be better. I’ve probably logged more hours in Bloodborne, which demands a more aggressive play style.

Into the Breach – I finally figured out that my frustration with rogue-likes is the randomness. Into the Breach doesn’t have any!

Slay the Spire – Such a perfect game. Despite so many different strategies and situations the game is remarkably well-balanced. It gives you a lot of chances to feel smart, which is what players want out of most games.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2019/01/25/slay-the-spire-review”]

Slay the Spire has near infinite replayability.

Horizon: Zero Dawn – While I love open-world games, they usually sacrifice good combat for more content. Not so for Horizon. Add in great writing, acting, and world-building and you get one of my favorite games ever.

Persona 5 – It’s not easy to get me to fall in love with characters so much that I never want the journey to end and wonder what the characters are doing today.

Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag – I felt like I was playing Sid Meier’s Pirates with 1000x more detail.

Hollow Knight – This is everything I want in a game. Tough combat, variable builds, a world to explore, a spooky narrative about fallen empires.

Dungeons and Dragons Edition 5 – Did you only mean video games? I’ve been a D&D fan for life, and likely owe my career to it. The new edition took the best parts of several old editions, and leveraged digital – especially streaming – to capture a new audience.

Gloomhaven – It’s very expensive, it’s very long. But the strategy feels really deep and it gets me to sit down at a table with friends in an era when expert matchmaking in most online games means that friends just tend to slow me down.

World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria – I think Lich King probably has the more epic story, but it’s older than ten years. Mists also had a tight focus on world building, beautiful content, a great story, and a bunch of features that changed WoW forever.

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And now for the second part, in which our roundtable members answer the question:

What was your favourite gaming or gaming-related experience of the last ten years and why?

Jodie Azhar, Game Director, Teazelcat Games: BAFTA introduced the Beyond Entertainment Award in the 2018 BAFTA Games Awards and this feels really significant to me. This award recognises games that educate, inspire, or have social impact, showing that games are not just for fun but can significantly impact players in positive ways.

The BAFTA Games Awards have always helped legitimise video games as an art form and this award goes a step further by recognising that they can be a source of good and be used to share information, ideas, cultures, and difficult topics in a way that’s accessible to a wide audience.

Sam Barlow, Founder, Drowning a Mermaid Productions (Telling Lies): Sailing the sandsea in Zelda: Skyward Sword! An incredible combination of dynamic music and a concept that was only truly explorable in a game context. Wow, that section was heartbreakingly poignant and beautiful. The whole timestone thing was an incredible mechanic that Nintendo totally explored to the nth degree and really should be talked about more. But in that one section they used it to make me feel something and it was the deepest hit of melancholy in a series that is already pretty good at scratching that particular itch.

Hideki Kamiya, Chief Game Designer, PlatinumGames (Bayonetta): The Nintendo Switch. Being able to play classics like Gradius and Ninja-kun: Adventure of Devil Castle on a high-performance mobile gaming device like that while lying in bed made me super happy. That being said, it was a real bummer that the Arcade Cabinet Mode of Space Harrier’s 3DS version, which simulated the movement of the original cabinet, was cut out of the Nintendo Switch version. That really sucked.

Lars Janssen, Director of Studio Relations, Koch Media: It was probably the Ghostbusters version of The Void in New York. Even though I’m very critical of VR in general, when my wife and I killed the Marshmallow Man together and the entire room smelled like the sugary good stuff afterwards, it was probably the most immersive experience I’ve ever had in gaming. I can only recommend experiencing a The Void installation for yourself if you get the chance.

J. Allen Brack, President, Blizzard Entertainment (World of Warcraft): I have two answers for this because I think they both represent things that I love the most about games.

The first are live experiences like Dreamscape and The Void – custom experiences with hardware that allow people to immerse themselves completely. These are incredible gaming experiences and I think a sign of what’s to come. If you think about this tech today, with the power of compound interest, what does this look like in five or ten years?  It’s hard to believe that this won’t be transformative entertainment in some way.

For the second answer, I’d like to relay a story of ultimate nerd-dom. Imagine a group of friends that have traveled to a far-off land, the land of Las Vegas, for a bachelor party. We’d rented rooms in Las Vegas, we had the fancy dinner, we’re sitting around, there’s wine being consumed, it’s Saturday night: what are we going to do? We’re going to hook up the laptop to the TV and watch StarCraft esports! We did that until 3am. That is one of my favorite gaming memories because it encompasses what I love about games most – that feeling of community and togetherness you get when you share your love for a game, even in unexpected places.

Paul Sage, Creative Director, Borderlands 3: Maybe Stan Lee’s cameo in Spider-Man? It is the most Stan Lee, I think – and he’d just recently passed. He looks at Peter and Mary Jane and says, “You two always were my favorites.” It was gently fourth wall-breaking, but super touching on a lot of levels for me. It felt genuine.

Greg Street, VP of IP and Entertainment, Riot Games (League of Legends): I’ll almost always answer World of Warcraft raiding. Having 40 (or even 25, or ten) players working together to overcome a really challenging problem is just not an experience you can capture in any game that isn’t an MMO and almost impossible to capture outside of a game.

Masachika Kawata, Producer, Resident Evil series: I’m sorry to name one of my own games, but Resident Evil 7 on PS VR was really a brand-new kind of experience for me and I loved it. During development, I tried out various other VR games and content as research, and I was amazed at how fresh the sensation of place was, how it hadn’t been done before in a game. I think the future of VR is further hardware evolution and working on making the player feel like they are even more in the game world.

Pim Holfve, CEO, Avalanche Studios Group (Rage 2): While VR still has some way to go, my first experience with an early prototype of Project Morpheus, which would later become PlayStation VR, was one of my favorite gaming moments of the last decade. I was completely blown away by how immersive it was, for being a prototype, and left the demo with great expectations.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22While%20VR%20still%20has%20some%20way%20to%20go%2C%20my%20first%20experience%20with%20an%20early%20prototype%20of%20Project%20Morpheus…%20was%20one%20of%20my%20favorite%20gaming%20moments%20of%20the%20last%20decade.%22%20-%20Pim%20Holfve%2C%20Avalanche”]

Gareth Wilson, Creative Director, Traveller’s Tales (The LEGO Movie 2 Videogame): Using the Oculus Quest for the first time last year was a real highlight for me. It’s the first time I’ve used a VR device which really delivered on what VR could be: light, self-contained and portable to play anywhere with no wires!

Viktor Bocan, Design Director, Warhorse Studios (Kingdom Come: Deliverance): It would be shooting in VR games and the whole virtual reality thing. I really believe that this is the revolution. Control-wise it’s probably the biggest one since introducing a computer mouse into gaming. Suddenly you have much more control over your game: independent left hand, right hand and head so you can do many things at once. Some of this experience (shooting, archery, driving) is incomparable to what it was before. And there is no way back.

Kellee Santiago, Head of Developer Relations, Niantic, Inc. (Pokemon GO): Witnessing the launch of Pokémon GO! Seeing so many people, especially families with multiple generations, getting outside in their communities and sharing the game together. It was in the wake of Gamergate, and a period of time of intense divide in the gaming community. When Pokémon GO! came out it was such a beautiful reminder of what I love about games most – the ability to share joy and fun and create new memories with each other that are unique and meaningful.

Tanya X. Short, Co-Founder, Kitfox Games (Moon Hunters): Releasing Moon Hunters in 2016 was a disappointing affair, at first. The launch was rocky. Sales were bad; the team was disillusioned. But we held our launch party anyway (complete with drink tickets and a hired DJ, wow), even though none of us wanted to go, and… the support and encouragement we received from our friends and colleagues at that launch party really opened my eyes to why Kitfox makes games. This is a medium that can bring joy, and this is an industry that can be incredibly warm and supportive. It keeps me going, when things seem too hard. I know I’m not alone. Not really.

Naoki Yoshida, Producer and Director, Final Fantasy XIV: It’s been such a dramatic ten years for me, so I can only talk about my game for this question. For me, the last ten years was about how to re-launch the disaster that was the original FFXIV, and how to regain the trust of fans, players, and members of the media. After frantically developing and operating the renewed FFXIV, 2014 came along. During the first US Fan Festival that was held in Las Vegas, we announced the first expansion pack, Heavensward. I will never forget the excitement and cheer that erupted from the players in that moment.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22For%20me%2C%20the%20last%20ten%20years%20was%20about%20how%20to%20re-launch%20the%20disaster%20that%20was%20the%20original%20FFXIV%2C%20and%20how%20to%20regain%20the%20trust%20of%20fans%2C%20players%20and%20members%20of%20the%20media.%22%20-%20Naoki%20Yoshida%2C%20Square%20Enix”]

Jeremiah Slaczka, Co-Founder and Creative Director, 5th Cell (Scribblenauts Unlimited): I’ve really enjoyed all the fan connectivity and interaction that spawned from YouTube Let’s Plays and Twitch streaming blowing up. I think that really helped propel new ideas and games to catch hold when they wouldn’t be able to prior to these platforms’ existence.

Ed Beach, Civilization Franchise Lead Designer, Firaxis: My trips to various PAX conferences have been experiences I will never forget. As a developer it is so easy to lose track of how large and passionate our audiences have become. It’s important to connect with our fans first-hand, see their enthusiasm, listen to their ideas, and share stories. Every time I come back from PAX I’m energized and want to elevate our games even further.

Yoshinori Kitase, Producer, Final Fantasy VII Remake: This might be slightly off-question, but… going around the world to promote the different Final Fantasy games I’ve been making for the last ten years is always a really great experience. Hearing feedback about the games from people from all sorts of different countries… of course, there are some really nice things they say about the games, [and] there are some opinions that I really don’t like hearing, but it’s still very important. It’s just a really valuable exercise, and I always feel really satisfied having done it.

Luc Duchaine, Executive Marketing Director, Ubisoft’s Canadian Studios: I’m obsessed with proximity with the players and having the chance to meet and discuss with them is priceless. I have attended tons of events over the past 20 years, but the rise of social media, streaming, and consumer events brought us closer to our players and this is fantastic. On For Honor, we hosted community workshops in the studio, get togethers in certain events, we had weekly live shows which are all great opportunities to discuss. Those meetings are super gratifying because you meet people who love what you do and humbling because they are so dedicated, it’s insane. I would recommend all game developers to go and meet players.

If I may, I would like to talk about a second one: esports. Gaming tournaments aren’t new. When I worked at Nintendo in the 90s, we organised tournaments and it was a blast. Now, those live events are pure entertainment. In 2014, I visited a DOTA event at the famous Madison Square Garden with my wife and it was amazing. I felt the same way I do when I go watch a hockey game and the same energy here in Quebec with the Six Invitational event.

Joe Neate, Executive Producer, Sea of Thieves, Rare: From a purely personal perspective, it has to be the growth of the community around Sea of Thieves, and to discover what the game means to so many people. I’m sure this will be echoed across so many games and communities, but the number of stories our players have shared with us about the impact this game has had on their lives has been humbling.

We talk a lot at Rare about why we do what we do, and the motivation of serving our players. To me, the stories we hear about friendships being formed, or maintained over long distances, to being a place people can just escape a bad day, or even meeting people and falling in love, are the thing that constantly feeds my motivation and drive. I absolutely love that people share these deeply personal stories with us, and we do our utmost to share them across the team. The gaming industry can have such a positive impact on people around the world, and it’s a privilege to be a small part of it.

Marc Merrill, Co-Founder, Riot Games (League of Legends): We’ve had world championship events at iconic venues around the world, so there have been some truly amazing moments, but this one is easy for me personally.

Last October with the League of Legends ten-year anniversary, we finally showed the world what other things we’d been working on the past ten years. We revealed a bunch of new games, but more importantly, we had a chance to re-engage both Rioters and players with what Riot is all about, trying to make impossible dreams come true for players. It was an uplifting, exciting, and emotional experience and will be forever a moment I look back on with pride and gratitude to our players for their continued support.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/05/14/legends-of-runeterra-review”]

One of Riot’s new games – the superb Legends of Runeterra.

Takashi Iizuka, Head of Sonic Team, SEGA (Sonic Forces): My favourite gaming-related experience of the decade was seeing the Sonic Movie get created. We had conversations about making a Sonic the Hedgehog movie over ten years ago, but it would always move forward and then get put on hold, then move forward and get put on hold, again and again. I am so happy that this year one of my dreams is finally coming true. Getting to work with the movie’s director, Jeff Fowler, and the many Hollywood movie staff on that project, while also living in Los Angeles, was an incredibly memorable and important experience for me.

Denby Grace, Executive Producer, 2K (Mafia III): I was very fortunate to get to work with Turtle Rock on Evolve. I have never had a better multiplayer gaming experience than when working on that title and playing games late into the night with the team here at 2K. When it came together and you had an experienced team against an experienced monster, the game delivered adrenaline like nothing I’ve ever experienced.

Keith Schuler, Lead Mission Designer, Gearbox Software (Borderlands 3): I’m going to cheat a little by answering something that technically started October 2009: the debut of the Borderlands series. For the past ten years, I’ve been a part of that series, and it’s amazing to see how it’s grown and what it’s become. There is no better feeling for a developer than for their game to be out there in the hands of gamers. That’s why we create, right? Prior to that, I’d spent nearly ten years working on Duke Nukem Forever, so…

Tim Heaton, Studio Director, Creative Assembly and EVP Studios (Total War: Three Kingdoms): My favourite gaming-related experience was making Alien: Isolation here at CA. Drama, intrigue, Hollywood moments, depressing lows and astonishing highs – and that was just making it. To have the actual game so positively received by players, and still highly regarded is a high point of my time at CA.

Lee Mather, Game Director, F1 2019, Codemasters: This is potentially a bit of a personal one to me; attending the Formula 1 Esports Final at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was something very special. It was special not just because of the location, but because it was a massive leap forward for competitive racing gaming. We didn’t start the series small, we came out of the gates with a high level production, with some of the best and most competitive racers competing in a series backed by Formula 1. Since then we’ve seen the series change people’s lives and expand the appeal of both Formula 1 as a sport and competitive gaming as a valid career and route into real world motorsport. Seeing the positive impact the series has had on so many people has been really inspiring.

Ville Heijari, CMO, Rovio (Angry Birds): At Rovio, we annually host a friends and family-style conference for employees, partners, and local industry guests in Helsinki, Finland. For the 2017 iteration of RovioCon, we invited Dong Nguyen, the creator of Flappy Bird as a guest speaker. Hearing his humble, honest, and unique story of creating the game and being completely taken by surprise by its success, and the subsequent conversations are something I find myself thinking about often. I guess that makes my interaction with Flappy Bird a favourite gaming moment of the last decade.

Jamie Jackson, Chief Creative Officer, Mythical Games: First was PUBG and how it did a great job of levelling the playing field for different skill bases of players. I find great enjoyment hanging with my friends and hiding for as long as I possibly can. My games in general are go, drop-in, loot, try not to get seen, hide like f–k, maybe kill someone, place top five, be happy. Rinse and repeat.

Second, esports. I still find it hard to call it a sport, but to see an entire industry emerge from something I have dedicated my life to growing and providing legitimate earning potential for players is incredibly fun to watch. And 15-year-old me is pissed it took so long.

Rebecca Ford, Live Operations and Community Director, Digital Extremes (Warframe): Even though I don’t play Fortnite, my favourite experience would have to be watching its emergence, dominance, and subsequent maintenance and battle for audiences. This (free) franchise came out of nowhere, and watching the industry and people react to it has been full of lessons. It firmly established the best (and worst) of influencer culture which devs and marketers rely on more and more. It firmly carved a model people want to imitate — in terms of developers looking for success, and players looking for big breaks.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22Even%20though%20I%20don%E2%80%99t%20play%20Fortnite%2C%20my%20favourite%20experience%20would%20have%20to%20be%20watching%20its%20emergence%2C%20dominance%2C%20and%20subsequent%20maintenance%20and%20battle%20for%20audiences.%22%20-%20Rebecca%20Ford%2C%20Digital%20Extremes”]

Saxs Persson, Creative Director, Minecraft franchise: Easily my first night in Minecraft. I played the game for the first time with my son. We didn’t know much about Minecraft other than it had become popular really fast. We fooled around during the day, and then came the sunset! The sound of monsters nearby made us hastily dig a hole in the wall and barricade ourselves. From inside we watched through a hole in the ceiling as the night passed. The stars moved and, finally, the sky started to change color ever so slowly. When the sun finally rose over the horizon, I felt more relief than in any game I can remember. Just pure elation.

David Gaider, Co-Founder and Creative Director, Summerfall Studios (Chorus): My favorite gaming experience? Probably my discovery in 2018’s Spider-Man that traversal could actually be fun.

Ross Gowing, Game Director, Dirt Rally 2.0, Codemasters: Probably playing through Portal and Portal 2 – it blew my mind! I’m not a big player of puzzle games, so all of a sudden having to solve complex 3D puzzles complete with timing intricacies really made me think in different ways. Stephen Merchant’s VO in Portal 2 really added to the experience and made it more memorable too, I think I’d been watching him in Extras on TV recently at that point, so it created quite a surreal overlap.

Takahisa Taura, Director, Astral Chain, PlatinumGames: I’m really fond of the ability of the Nintendo Switch to allow the player to freely change playstyle between a home console and mobile device. It actually made me play more games.

The experience of playing a full-fledged VR game might have been even more exciting, but VR sickness has prevented me from actually enjoying those games, so that’s too bad.

Yoko Taro, Director, NieR: Automata: The Nintendo Switch remaster of the shooting game Ikaruga. I chose a remaster game because no game that piqued my interest more than when Ikaruga appeared.

Andy Sum, Director, Hipster Whale (Crossy Road): My favourite gaming experience was in DayZ, only because it was very memorable. Due to DayZ’s permadeath mechanic, the game would really build up tension in players. It could take hours or even days to build up your inventory from scavenging items around the map, and when you died you lost everything – hours of work gone. This sense of loss was what made surviving feel so satisfying, and beating other players feel so powerful. There were consequences.

Surprisingly, there were plenty of friendly players in the world, looking to help out others. One time, I spawned into the game surrounded by AI-controlled zombies facing certain doom. There was no way I was going to survive, when suddenly another player in a jeep pulled up next to me, killed all the zombies, and bandaged me up. In-game voice-chat allowed nearby players to talk to one another, so I said thank you and he kindly gave me a full kit of powerful weapons and items. He then invited me into his vehicle to drive around.

We bantered for a few minutes. We laughed. He told me that he’d been collecting items over multiple days and building up his character. Vehicles were especially rare and I’d never driven one in game, so I asked if I could have a go. We swapped seats and I drove us along a long road. DayZ had awful movement controls and physics. Vehicles were much worse. I turned a corner sharply, veering off the road and into a tree, crashing the jeep and killing both of us. We both lost all our progress, and he lost all of the items he had been collecting for days. I felt pure guilt, knowing that I had inflicted pain on another human being who had been so nice to me. It was as if I’d walked into a museum and accidentally knocked over a priceless sculpture.

I closed the game, walked outside, and never played again.

Can you think of any game that has ever made you feel truly guilty?

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Cam Shea heads up IGN’s Sydney studio. Check out his feature analysing what the games industry thought 2020 would be like in 2010 and be sure to read part one of the new roundtable. He’s on Twitter.
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The Biggest Changes in Gaming Over the Last Decade According to the Games Industry

Ten years ago, we published two roundtable features on IGN; one that asked a broad panel of industry insiders to look back at the decade leading up to 2010 and one that charged them with prognosticating on what they thought gaming would be like in 2020. (We recently took a look at how accurate those predictions proved to be.)

We’ve now pulled together a new panel of more than 30 industry veterans to recreate the same concept, with everything from indie to triple A, mobile to PC, and casual to core covered off. In this feature our panel answers two questions looking back at the last ten years.

Please note that we haven’t included all responses, and some responses have been edited for length. Responses have also been grouped into broad themes.

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In the first part of this feature, our roundtable members answer the question:

What have been the most important changes in video games, video game technology, and in the wider video game industry over the last ten years?

Democratisation

Tanya X. Short, Co-Founder, Kitfox Games (Moon Hunters): Creating video games has become much, much more accessible. It used to be that games were all made by people who as children happened to take an interest in programming. A few newbie-friendly engines were around ten years ago, but now they’ve been normalized and rightly celebrated. With all the resources available both online and the variety of tools, you can literally have no experience with programming, and wake up one morning wanting to make a game, and have something playable by dinner. Heck, lunch, depending on when you tend to wake up in the morning. This accessibility has made game development and games themselves much more diverse, but it’s also ratcheted up the competition, in the indie and mid-tier space.

Andy Sum, Director, Hipster Whale (Crossy Road): Every step in the chain from creating to publishing a game has become more accessible. Unity and Unreal are now both free to use and the rapid increase in user generated content means that there’s more tutorials and information on how to start creating games. Because of this, over the past ten years, there have been more games created and many new people involved in the video game industry.

Distribution has changed to keep up with this too. Steam opened up Greenlight, Early Access, and then Steam Direct. Crowdfunding like Kickstarter has also helped fund many developer’s projects. Multiple digital stores have appeared worldwide.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2018/06/22/hollow-knight-review”]

Hollow Knight started out as a Kickstarter project.

Mobile Gaming and Diversification

Ville Heijari, CMO, Rovio (Angry Birds): So many things have evolved radically around gaming, and listing the significant ones is quite a challenge. There’s the growing popularity of esports, the massive phenomenon of streaming, and so forth. Looking from a Rovio perspective, it’s obviously the ridiculously rapid adoption of smartphones as the everyday entertainment platform, but specifically the sensational growth of mobile gaming, which now represents (based on combined smartphone and tablet game revenues) 45% of the global games market. Sure, the iPhone and Android launched in the previous decade already, but the past ten years have represented the lightspeed growth and coming of age for the mobile games industry.

Jodie Azhar, Game Director, Teazelcat Games: The surge in mobile gaming has definitely changed the industry. We’re seen new game genres emerge and new monetisation models become prevalent. But most importantly it’s hugely increased the access to games for the wider population. Rather than having to buy specialist hardware to play games, they’re easily accessible from a device that most of us now already own. So many people now play some kind of video game, whether for five minutes or five hours a day, and we’re accepting them more as a part of life.

Ryozo Tsujimoto, Producer, Monster Hunter series: I think it has to be smartphones and the resulting diversification of the gaming audience and gaming life. There were social games before, but I think it’s only in the last decade that they have really taken off. We can now play everything from meaty console and PC gaming experiences to more casual games that we can pick up and play in a spare moment on the go. Gaming genres have diversified, and we’ve had an increase in the number of players on the casual end of the spectrum.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22Gaming%20genres%20have%20diversified%2C%20and%20we%E2%80%99ve%20had%20an%20increase%20in%20the%20number%20of%20players%20on%20the%20casual%20end%20of%20the%20spectrum.%22%20-%20Ryozo%20Tsujimoto%2C%20Capcom”]

Mobile Gaming and the Death of Diversity

Yoko Taro, Director, NieR: Automata: I think it’s “the death of diversity, brought on by the rise of the flat-screen smartphone”. The iPhone’s design of “touching the screen with your finger” is a simple and well-made UI, and all smartphones in the world (the most common gadget in the world) have been unified to “a flat screen that you touch with your finger”.

On the other hand, all other inputs using pens or buttons have become extinct, and smartphone games are (almost) limited to “games that you touch”, despite being the biggest gaming market. I feel that it was an example of an advanced design that revolutionised the world yet took away diversity from the world.

Digital Distribution

Phil Harrison, Vice President and GM, Google (Stadia): I think without a doubt, one of the most important changes in our industry has been the rise of networks as a distribution methodology for the games people want. In particular, the app stores on iOS and Android allowed the games industry to go from being tens of millions of gamers to hundreds of millions… and now billions of gamers. The biggest fuel of economic growth has been mobile.

But as it relates to PC and console, the rise of digital distribution led to improved access to games, without requiring a trip to your local retailer. On the whole, it has been a very healthy positive trend for creativity in the industry. Games that would not otherwise have been made or had the right distribution. Of course this was an incredible opportunity for independent developers, using that new distribution to reach audiences they wouldn’t have before.

Jeremiah Slaczka, Co-Founder and Creative Director, 5th Cell (Scribblenauts): Easily the most important is the proliferation of digital platforms. It completely reinvented the landscape of games. From mobile games, to the indie scene to even the rise and fall of Facebook games. The old gatekeeper that held control over what games got distributed no longer exist and have allowed a golden age of development. Of course, some of those things were abused like free to play and loot boxes, but overall it’s been a wonderful time to both make and play games.

Rebecca Ford, Live Operations and Community Director, Digital Extremes (Warframe): The means of distribution has been one of the most important changes – the mobile app stores setting the pace for ‘instant digital access’, and major platforms following suit. The physical market is one for collectors, the digital market is one for convenience. Distribution changes have had a bigger impact than anything else. We at Warframe are working on a seven-year-old game and not once has anyone physically touched our game – our success is all ones and zeroes.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22We%20at%20Warframe%20are%20working%20on%20a%20seven-year-old%20game%20and%20not%20once%20has%20anyone%20physically%20touched%20our%20game%E2%80%94our%20success%20is%20all%20ones%20and%20zeroes.%22%20-%20Rebecca%20Ford%2C%20Digital%20Extremes”]

Ross Gowing, Game Director, Dirt Rally 2.0, Codemasters: I think digital marketplaces stand out as being very different to ten years ago – in 2010 I was only purchasing small-ish games on Xbox Live Arcade, and all of the blockbuster games I’d play would be on disc from a bricks-and-mortar shop. These days I think nothing of buying and downloading a 70GB game and never having to leave the house before enjoying it!

Sam Barlow, Founder, Drowning a Mermaid Productions (Telling Lies): Digital distribution was the biggie. It allowed smaller creators to connect directly to an audience of millions and overnight that enabled a whole strata of games to become financially viable. There was no world where I could have released Her Story through a boxed game publisher or even a more niche publisher – but with Steam and the App Store I had access to millions upon millions of eyeballs and the game found its audience.

It’s also made the games industry more international – I have discovered and played games from Africa, China, Iran that would never have showed up in Gamestop. And players from every country in the world (at least those plugged into Steam) have played my games. There’s a lot more to be done in both these cases – as the market has exploded, the freedom of the digital stores has been eroded. The onset of Platform thinking and subscription services potentially adds back in a layer of gatekeepers that turns back the clock somewhat. The market still isn’t truly international – there are all sorts of barriers to entry and on the surface the mainstream videogame industry chatter is still mostly focused on the English speaking perspective. But there’s reasons to be positive. In film they’re still wrestling with the foreign film category and in gaming it feels like we’re already over that – Ingmar Bergman never had a hit like Minecraft.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2015/06/03/her-story-trailer”]

Her Story was one of the best games of 2015.

Ubiquitous Online

Kellee Santiago, Head of Developer Relations, Niantic, Inc. (Pokemon GO): Certainly, faster and more accessible internet connections. It powered the breadth and depth of online multiplayer gaming which has exploded in the last decade. It enables real-world games like Pokemon GO! It also led to new ways of gamers and game makers interacting with each other through streaming, play through commentary, and the live-streaming of actual development. And it supports the continued growth of online distribution of video games, which means instead of competing for a miniscule number of slots of a shelf in a retail store, anyone can distribute their game to anywhere.

On the flip side, we saw the Indie-pocalypse happen, when there became so many games released every day it was hard for an independent developer to stand out. We saw and continue to see online distribution channels struggle with the balance between enabling game makers at all levels to be able to share their creations, while also providing some level of quality control to make sure gamers are seeing the games they want to play. I imagine we will continue to see innovations in this space in the coming decade.

Free to Play and Games as a Service

Gareth Wilson, Creative Director, Traveller’s Tales (The LEGO Movie 2 Videogame): In 2010… I said many things will be the same, and on the surface they are. The big three are still battling it out in the console wars. But scratch the surface and things have changed massively. Very few people predicted the rise of free to play in 2010, first on mobile and then on PC and console. If you’d told me ten years ago the biggest game in 2019 was a free to play multiplatform shooter I would have been very surprised! Speaking of multiplatform, I’m delighted we’ve finally broken the walled garden of the consoles and have crossplay, it’s a massive step forwards which I wouldn’t have predicted. The rise of the YouTube star was a surprise, we predicted people watching live “e-sports” type championships of the best players, but not the massive growth of the “let’s play” video. Finally, the beginnings of game streaming and subscription services are game changers. I think they’re incredibly healthy for the industry and allow quality indie titles to reach audiences they could only previously dream of.

Tim Heaton, Studio Director, Creative Assembly and EVP Studios (Total War: Three Kingdoms): I think ‘free to play’ becoming a prevalent part of the gaming market is the trend that has had most impact. Sure, it began earlier than 2010, but it’s matured all the way through the last decade, with the latest thinking trying to restructure the negative aspects it can create – with initiatives like banning loot boxes and services like Apple Arcade.

The long life of individual games has also become more and more important. By that I mean both the long sales curves, driven by the digital storefronts, and the long engagement times that players have with a single game. These games-as-a-service are designed from the ground up to engage players for months and years, driven by new content and multiplayer opportunities. It’s changed every element of the business, from design, through the way the games are marketed, to the demands for ongoing support services.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22Games-as-a-service…%20%5Bhas%5D%20changed%20every%20element%20of%20the%20business%2C%20from%20design%2C%20through%20the%20way%20the%20games%20are%20marketed%2C%20to%20the%20demands%20for%20ongoing%20support%20services.%22%20-%20Tim%20Heaton%2C%20Creative%20Assembly”]

Luc Duchaine, Executive Marketing Director, Ubisoft’s Canadian Studios: While games like DOTA and League of Legends were pioneers in the games-as-a-service genre, the past five years really confirmed the importance of those games. At Ubisoft, we have Rainbow Six Siege that is entering its fifth year, For Honor it’s the fourth year and we have brands like The Crew and The Division that are still updating their offers for the players.

Ed Beach, Civilization Franchise Lead Designer, Firaxis: I see two major developments that have changed the nature of gaming in the past decade. First, games have gotten much, much bigger. We now have so many open world games and those all have numerous areas to explore; it can easily take hundreds of hours to experience it all. That’s an amazing change and great for players, but has also made development very expensive and challenging. In a similar vein, the shelf-life for games has gotten a lot longer. Most developers are adopting a games-as-a-service model which means they will be supporting their titles with fresh content over many years. Once again, as a player I love this. However, as a developer I certainly am aware of this as a big new hurdle to overcome.

The Rise of Streaming and Let’s Plays

Joe Neate, Executive Producer, Sea of Thieves, Rare: The growth of games-as-a-service, and the growth of streaming games to audiences.

It’s been fascinating to see player behavior evolve, and to figure out what kind of experiences would convince players to both give you a chance and then stick with you. We’ve had people playing Sea of Thieves since our first Technical Alpha three years ago who are still with us and as excited as ever! It has also been fascinating to start thinking about how you design a game to not only be great to play, but also to watch. I love when you see a random game blow up because everyone has suddenly started streaming it and you’re trying to figure out how it happened and what you can learn from it.

Masachika Kawata, Producer, Resident Evil series: [O]ne of the biggest changes in video games as a whole has probably been that, on top of the basic enjoyment of playing a game oneself, watching others play games has become a form of entertainment in and of itself.

Obviously, people have always watched their friends play alongside them or crowded around arcade machines, but the sheer number of people who found an additional way to enjoy watching games played by other people has really expanded the reach of gaming as a medium.

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Let’s Plays have become a huge part of gaming.

The Power of Celebrity

Marc Merrill, Co-Founder, Riot Games (League of Legends): There’s been so many: the steady growth of esports, the rise of streaming technology, games gaining more mainstream acceptance, the influence of China, and the rapid growth of mobile both from a market perspective but also as a platform that can credibly deliver high quality experiences.

I would argue it’s the power of celebrity that has been the most transformative and impactful. I’m not referring to famous players (although special shoutout to Rick Fox), despite the obvious star power they bring, but more the way that players have embraced streaming/video platforms to share their passion and engage directly with other players. Videogames are best when played with friends; streaming platforms in particular have made it possible for committed, passionate content creators to grow an incredibly large audience where it’s clear that the future of celebrity is along digital pathways.

Cross-Platform Play

Jamie Jackson, Chief Creative Officer, Mythical Games: For me, the most important change happened in the latter part of the decade: cross-platform play! This was a huge game-changer. Seeing all the major platform players fully embracing gamers and allowing and encouraging them to play together for the first time was incredible. It does give us developers new challenges in terms of matchmaking and balance, but being able to holistically think about audience really helps with launching new IP and continuing to establish existing brands.

Connection

Lars Janssen, Director of Studio Relations, Koch Media: Video games have become a core part of our culture and have an impact beyond the traditional video game community. Games are focusing on providing social experiences more than ever before, communities are stronger and create movements that span way beyond the actual game world. Connectivity in-home and on the go allows players to stay connected to their games and their friends regardless of time and location. Most games are not a one-time experience any longer but rather a service that connects people and keeps them entertained for many years.

Creating these experiences, on the other hand, has become much more complex and surprise hits are a lot less likely. It was leading to consolidation in the market and fewer companies succeeded in building up new global IPs from scratch.

The Connection Between Players and Developers

Saxs Persson, Minecraft Chief Creative Officer: The role that strong communities now play influencing and driving game development has been the biggest change I have felt the last ten years, as well as having direct communication with our players as a game is being developed. Early access, Kickstarter, etcetera, are all different ways that we try and get players involved as early as possible to get feedback and mold games to what people really want to play.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22The%20role%20that%20strong%20communities%20now%20play%20influencing%20and%20driving%20game%20development%20has%20been%20the%20biggest%20change…%22%20-%20Saxs%20Persson%2C%20Minecraft%20CCO”]

Naoki Yoshida, Producer and Director, Final Fantasy XIV: Personally, I think it’s the relationship between the player community and developers (or video game company) rather than the technology. Back in the day, there was quite a distance between gamers and game developers, and in the case of MMORPGs, I think that there was a strong sense that “the developers are the enemy”. Thanks to the growth of social media in recent years, messages from developers and dev companies have become close to gamers, and I feel that communications have become more direct. Feedback from gamers are taken more seriously and gamers are able to receive messages from developers, and various games have progressed as a result.

J. Allen Brack, President, Blizzard Entertainment (World of Warcraft): [I]n ye olden times, MMO communities and developers enjoyed a special relationship with their players, where developers and the community encouraged feedback and dialog throughout the dev and live play cycle.

Today, many games have dedicated communities of players, irrespective of game category. So, the most visible and important changes are the ways online communities have evolved and the more direct relationships developers have with their players. This has greatly accelerated over the last ten years. Now most games from giant AAA titles to smaller indie games have online communities of all kinds – from dedicated Discords to sub-Reddits, not to mention Twitter and Instagram communities. It’s never been easier to engage with like-minded people. Whether you’re a hardcore player, or a casual player that enjoys watching streams of people playing the game you love, or a fan artist, or a cosplayer, no matter how much time you have to give, there are places for you to engage with your favorite hobby.

The rise of player streaming has been instrumental, giving players a tool to create or participate in tight-knit communities around the games or game genres they love. Good streamers and content creators are super important to us – they are faces of the game experience and incredible sources of feedback that keep us honest. Along with streaming comes the accelerated rise of esports, and what an incredible expression of love that is. To see professional players dedicate their time to pushing the limits of what we create, to their mastery, is humbling for us as creators. For fans of those professional players, it gives them another outlet to express their passion for a game.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22To%20see%20professional%20players%20dedicate%20their%20time%20to%20pushing%20the%20limits%20of%20what%20we%20create%2C%20to%20their%20mastery%2C%20is%20humbling%20for%20us%20as%20creators.%22%20-%20J.%20Allen%20Brack%2C%20Blizzard”]

Audience Expectations

David Gaider, Co-Founder and Creative Director, Summerfall Studios (Chorus): You know, I’m going to say that there haven’t been any astounding advances in game technology. You can look back at games which came out in 2010 and be justified in saying they’re just as pretty as anything put out today. Most of the changes, I think, have been in the evolution of the genres as well as the audience. Social media, in particular, has led to fans becoming armed camps with vested interests in their games giving them exactly what they expect – the relationship between fans and creators has never been more tense.

The Discourse Around Games

Paul Sage, Creative Director, Borderlands 3: Players streaming games, alternate revenue streams [and] digital sales, procedural systems [and] machine learning tools, better physics and graphics.

Out of all of these, however, I think one that should be expounded upon is the shift in the culture and discourse surrounding games. The fact is that we work in a subjective business, and while there are objective quality elements in games, the invective present sometimes in the press and community harms our industry. Having a huge variety of games and entertainment, even in areas you find uncomfortable, is a blessing, not a curse. I hope we start seeing a move away from this mentality and instead we just keep seeing growth of many points of view. Which means we as developers have to keep encouraging a diversified industry.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22Having%20a%20huge%20variety%20of%20games%20and%20entertainment%2C%20even%20in%20areas%20you%20find%20uncomfortable%2C%20is%20a%20blessing%2C%20not%20a%20curse.%22%20-%20Paul%20Sage%2C%20Gearbox”]

Subscription Services

Atsushi Inaba, Chief Creative Officer, PlatinumGames (Bayonetta): The rise of subscription services like Netflix and Amazon Prime in the film industry. The fact that all content is accessible after a fixed payment changes the way we look at entertainment, not just as consumers but also as creators. It will take more time for this business model to be fully incorporated into video games, but I strongly feel that it could change our industry in many ways.

Accessibility and Acceptance of Gaming as Mainstream

Denby Grace, Executive Producer, 2K (Mafia): Great gaming experiences are more accessible than ever before. Variation in hardware, delivery methods, price points, and ways to engage with content has allowed a wider audience to consume games in an assortment of ways. The industry has never been in better health.

Takashi Iizuka, Head of Sonic Team, SEGA (Sonic Forces): Over the past ten years, games have become a much more accessible and popular form of entertainment to people around the world. Thinking back to a decade ago, the Wii had just come out and I believe that was around the time that games started appearing on smartphones. Prior to 2010, most gaming experiences consisted of sitting in front of a television set and using only your fingertips to control the game. Since then, controllers have adapted to allow players more ease of use and mobility. Players can now make commands by shaking or moving the controller or inputting actions by gestures and posing with their bodies. Advancements in controllers have also increased the accessibility of games for novice players that may not have owned a console before and has allowed players to engage in a variety of different gaming experiences.

Xbox’s Adaptive Controller welcomed even more players to the fold.

Lee Mather, Game Director, F1 2019, Codemasters: The most striking changes to me have been in the acceptance of video gaming, not only as a creative medium which is seen on the same level as film and TV, but also as an industry where you can cultivate a career. When I joined the industry back in 1992 I could never have foreseen we’d be experiencing game launches with the same level of exposure and excitement as a Hollywood movie or films and TV series being made off the back of video games. From a technology perspective, I think we’re in an iterative phase right now. As the big ‘wow’ moments in mobile phone tech have slowed, it’s a similar case with gaming hardware. It’s all going to be about giving users access to the highest quality experiences possible in as many different ways as possible.

Expanding What Constitutes a Game

Keith Schuler, Lead Mission Designer, Gearbox Software (Borderlands 3): The ever-expanding definition of what a video game is, and what they can offer. I’m not just talking about pushing more polygons and shaders to the screen, though that’s part of it. Mental health, politics, cancer, civil liberties, and more, are all legitimate topics for games to explore. They always have been, but as our audience grows and our reach expands, these sorts of conversations are more and more accepted as legitimate discourse, and that influence expands outward beyond just video games. It’s not just the independent studios, either, although they are certainly leading the charge. These past ten years, it has become easier than ever to point to video games and say, ‘This is art. This is an important facet of human society.’[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22These%20past%2010%20years%2C%20it%20has%20become%20easier%20than%20ever%20to%20point%20to%20video%20games%20and%20say%2C%20%E2%80%98This%20is%20art.%20This%20is%20an%20important%20facet%20of%20human%20society.%E2%80%99%22%20-%20Keith%20Schuler%2C%20Gearbox”]

Games Coverage

Viktor Bocan, Design Director, Warhorse Studios (Kingdom Come: Deliverance): As a developer, what I feel most is the shift in reporting about games. What was the domain of professional videogame journalists before, is now an open battlefield for streamers, YouTubers, and the Reddit community. I don’t see it necessarily as bad, but it is very different. And sometimes quite unpredictable and unfathomable.

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And now for the second part, in which our roundtable members answer the question:

What technology or concept seemed within reach in the last ten years but never quite delivered? And why do you think that is?

Gaming’s Hidden Depths

Sam Barlow, Founder, Drowning a Mermaid Productions (Telling Lies): Well, I think the dream is of gaming as accessible and mainstream and deep. And we missed that one. Phones opened things up, but the market quickly raced to the bottom of the barrel and – generalizing hugely here – never really offered up experiences as deep as you’d find in other media. Netflix and iTunes and Kindle and Criterion Channel might frequently raise my understanding of humanity, move me deeply, whilst the value proposition of mobile gaming is still largely to help me waste time on the subway. And consoles resolutely stuck to the same old model, again and again – a $ 600 box for space marine shooter games. It’s the economics and the short term interests of investors – looking to cash in on the reliable audience, looking to sell phones, subscriptions, consoles, and hit their growth numbers rather than lay the foundations for a medium. Hopefully the convergence of TV and gaming will help us get to a place that feels more wholesome.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22Consoles%20resolutely%20stuck%20to%20the%20same%20old%20model%2C%20again%20and%20again%20%E2%80%94%20a%20%24600%20box%20for%20space%20marine%20shooter%20games.%22%20-%20Sam%20Barlow%2C%20Drowning%20a%20Mermaid%20Productions”]

Truly Living, Breathing Worlds

Joe Neate, Executive Producer, Sea of Thieves, Rare: I chatted about this with Mike Chapman, the Sea of Thieves Creative Director, and I agree with him that what we’ve not really hit yet is truly immersive, living breathing worlds. Despite the advances in sandbox games, despite the incredible worlds that have been built, if you peek behind the curtain they still feel like scripted worlds with scripted quests or events. There is still so much more promise in this area. Creating truly immersive worlds for players to escape in together, to feel like they are genuinely adventuring in another place, to have that true form of escapism – there is so much potential here.

Innovative MMOs

Tanya X. Short, Co-Founder, Kitfox Games (Moon Hunters): I’m disappointed that the indie/innovative MMO as a genre hasn’t really taken off, with only a few exceptions. Yes, yes, there have been a few popular lower-budget MMOs, but almost all of them are very post-World of Warcraft, to their detriment. With the tools available for the past five or six years especially, people should have been innovating new bizarre multiplayer worlds, but they haven’t, really. It’s just been… more quests. Things like One Hour One Life give me hope that maybe we could enter a new realm of digital worlds, but… it’s not being talked about enough, not by a longshot. There are many reasons why this is – multiplayer is harder to develop, it’s riskier business-wise if it doesn’t also accommodate single-player play, etcetera – but the most persistent reason seems to be that there’s a cultural side-eye against MMOs among game devs, possibly because we all played them too much as teens? Or because the play experience can be so truly, remarkably varied that it’s difficult to even compare for purposes of reviews [and] analysis.

VR and AR

Pim Holfve, CEO, Avalanche Studios (Rage 2): Despite showing great promise in the early 2010s, we never really saw the virtual reality and augmented reality revolution. I think that there are several reasons for this, such as the maturity of the technology,  cost of the headsets, setup time, hardware requirements, and no standardized control schemes. While there certainly are some great VR and AR games and experiences out there, the technology still feels more aspirational than fully realized.

Kellee Santiago, Head of Developer Relations, Niantic, Inc. (Pokemon GO): Accessible and meaningful VR. It seemed like we were getting so close in 2016! Google Cardboard was fantastic, but somehow never picked up enough of an audience to make it self-sustainable to creators. StreetView VR was my favorite thing to do. Even though it was the lowest-fidelity VR experience, it allowed me to still feel like I was standing somewhere else on Earth for a moment. Of course, the price on materials to create more immersive experiences then stayed too high to gain wide adoption. The Oculus Quest is a great piece of hardware, and a step towards this balance between high-fidelity and lower price-point. Unfortunately, the industry as a whole didn’t make it there before 2020.

Saxs Persson, Minecraft Chief Creative Officer: I’ve been excited for VR since I was a kid! A few years ago, it felt inevitable that VR would be a mass-market experience. Oculus, Vive, and Sony all did a great job getting unique games for their respective platforms, but so far VR as a whole has not quite delivered on the utopian future where we are having deep experiences in amazing, immersive worlds. That said, the recent release of Oculus Quest has me more optimistic. It being untethered and easy to setup has made it a regular platform of choice in my household. Hopefully, we will see more unique games in the next couple of years that make VR a platform more gamers will want to own.

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When will VR be mass market?

Andy Sum, Director, Hipster Whale (Crossy Road): VR and AR still haven’t kicked off as much as many would hope. I lump them together because they suffer from a similar issue which is adopting them into your everyday life. Even though VR experiences are very fun and unique, it’s still a large effort to use them. They take a lot of configuration, they’re uncomfortable, the battery doesn’t last long (or they have long cables), and they’re quirky in public. It’s not so much the underlying tech as the usability issues preventing adoption.

Atsushi Inaba, Chief Creative Officer, PlatinumGames (Bayonetta): VR, MR, and AR technology.

I’m still confident of the potential of these technologies, but we are far away from a point in time where these can be enjoyed by everyone. When you can dive into a VR or MR world that is so immersive that you totally forget about the device you’re using, that’s when I believe the technology is ready to cause a true revolution.

At the same time, I think that it should be questioned if this technology should really become easy to access in the first place. Just like the debate on whether AI technology should be restricted or not, new technology that can fundamentally change the everyday life of human beings is always a double-edged sword. However, as a creator I think it’s very interesting.

Cross-Platform Play

Greg Street, VP of IP and Entertainment, Riot Games (League of Legends): Cross-platform play. It seems (from the outside) like something that should be incredibly valuable for a player, but (from the inside) there are a ton of technical, design and even business reasons why it may not even make sense as a goal.

Cloud Gaming and Streaming

Lee Mather, Game Director, F1 2019, Codemasters: I feel like streaming gaming services have had a number of false starts in recent years. We’ve seen it tried numerous times over the last ten years, but the network infrastructure in most countries wasn’t up to scratch, the titles themselves weren’t there or quality was compromised, or users weren’t comfortable with not having ‘physical media’. Now the internet connections have improved, and will continue to do so, both in the home and over the cellular networks, that’s one barrier to entry which is slowly being removed. People are now familiar and comfortable with streaming services for TV and film, and are used to a subscription based model, which again lends itself well to a streaming gaming service. With the likes of Google Stadia and Microsoft Project xCloud we’re seeing some of the world’s most powerful software companies backing streaming, already with massively versatile and powerful back-end services in place.

3D Displays

Takashi Iizuka, Head of Sonic Team, SEGA (Sonic Forces): Personally, I was hoping that the technology behind 3D displays would have been more widely adopted. When Nintendo launched the 3DS, I fully expected there to be more content available that utilized the realism of 3D visuals. We even worked hard to put 3D support on console for the release of Sonic Generations in 2011! Ultimately, the day that 3D overtook 2D displays never came, which is too bad.

AI Controlled Digital Actors

Yoshinori Kitase, Producer, Final Fantasy VII Remake: [I]n my experience of working on story-based games, things like Final Fantasy X for example, you’ve got a performance that you can get from a computer-generated [character] – having programmers do everything to create it, or you’ve got the other option of using real-life actors and motion capturing it. The big difference there is, with the completely computer-generated side, it won’t do anything spontaneously off its own back. The programmers have to write every little detail in, they have to decide it down to the letter. Whereas with real-life actors, you can, for example, give them a very small bit of direction… you [may] want a scene where the characters cry, and they come up with a really different approach to crying and express it in a way that we’ve never seen before.

[W]hat I really hope we can get to [in the future], is a stage where you’ve got full AI-controlled digital actors, and the director of the game can give them very simple instructions, like we need this kind of performance, and it’ll come out with a beautiful nuanced performance from AI processing. Obviously, we’re not there yet, but that’s where I really think we’re going. That’s what I really hope we can see.

Virtual Arcades

Hideki Kamiya, Chief Game Designer, PlatinumGames (Bayonetta): I was hoping that somebody would evolve the Game Room you had on Xbox 360, and that you could have arcade cabinets lined up in a virtual space, which would essentially be a VR Game Room, but nobody created it. I think that’s because the higher-ups in video game companies don’t care about the history of video games. That’s too bad.

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Japan is still home to many incredible arcades.

Real Arcades!

Yoko Taro, Director, NieR: Automata: Dedicated hardware for vertical shooters and pinball. I think they didn’t become a reality because the hardware manufacturers weren’t motivated enough. Show us what you’re capable of! You can do it!

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Cam Shea heads up IGN’s Australian content team and loves CCGs. Check out his feature analysing what the games industry thought 2020 would be like in 2010. He’s on Twitter.
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What Did the Games Industry Think 2020 Would Be Like in 2010?

Cast your mind back to 2010. It was a time when games – by and large – weren’t a service. Nor were many of them free-to-play. Back then loot boxes were on the fringe and micro-transactions were really only just getting going. In 2010, we were still playing on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and the Wii. League of Legends was a new thing, as was Minecraft. World of Warcraft, meanwhile, was ancient – five years old! Ten years ago people weren’t spending their free time absorbed in Let’s Plays or watching players broadcasting their games. At this point, Twitch didn’t exist. Remember Justin.tv? And thanks to the Wii, motion control seemed an inevitable part of the future, with PlayStation and Microsoft both about to jump in, with Move and Kinect (then known as Natal) respectively.

A lot has changed, then. Would it have been possible to predict where we’d be by now, in 2020? Let’s find out, because ten years ago IGN polled a panel of industry veterans about what they thought gaming would be like in 2020. Let’s see how their predictions worked out.

Games Will Be Everywhere and Played by Everyone

A common thread amongst our panel back in 2010 was the belief that games would continue to become more mainstream; that the audience would expand to encompass wider demographics. “Nintendo have recently hit a gold mine with the Wii and the DS and the brand new market of non-gamers it’s attracted,” Paul Denning, Senior Gameplay Programmer at Rocksteady Studios (the Batman: Arkham games) told us back then. “Microsoft and Sony are eyeing the market and licking their lips. Both are bringing out their own tech to entice people to their platform and that can only be a good thing.”

The traditional platform holders didn’t really deliver when it came to their own tech. Move was underwhelming and never became core to PlayStation’s offering, while Kinect proved to be a costly distraction for Microsoft, seeing the company chasing a broad audience while under-serving its existing player base.

Denning was, nevertheless, absolutely correct about games becoming more mainstream. It’s just that Microsoft and Sony weren’t the prime drivers of that change. “In 2010… I said many things will be the same, and on the surface they are,” says Gareth Wilson, who worked on Project Gotham Racing 3 and 4 as Lead Designer at Bizarre Creations ten years ago, and now oversees new IP development as Creative Director at Traveller’s Tales, the studio famous for its LEGO video games. “The big three are still battling it out in the console wars. But scratch the surface and things have changed massively. Very few people predicted the rise of free-to-play in 2010, first on mobile and then on PC and console. If you’d told me ten years ago the biggest game in 2019 was a free-to-play multiplatform shooter I would have been very surprised!”[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=%22If%20you%E2%80%99d%20told%20me%20ten%20years%20ago%20the%20biggest%20game%20in%202019%20was%20a%20free-to-play%20multiplatform%20shooter%20I%20would%20have%20been%20very%20surprised!%E2%80%9D%20-%20Gareth%20Wilson”]

Free-to-play games were just one part of the broadening of the market. Other key changes were the explosion of mobile gaming, the growth of digital marketplaces, the influence of key regions outside the West, and the rise of Let’s Plays and streaming. All these factors helped contribute to growth that has seen global sales of game hardware and software go from $ 67 billion in 2010 according to a report from research firm Gartner, to more than $ 160 billion in 2020 according to research firm Newzoo.

Our panel foresaw many knock-on effects from games becoming more mainstream too. “I believe video games will become an important extension of all visual entertainment,” said Chris Pickford, who was an associate producer working on Project Gotham Racing and other titles at Bizarre Creations at the time, and is now working on an unannounced multiplayer action game at Improbable Game Studios. “There will be lots more crossover between different media formats – films, games, websites, even theme parks! As companies get smarter with their IPs and learn to manage their ideas, they’ll be able to use different aspects of them in different ways, and create full encompassing experiences for the end user.”

Nintendo’s present strategy is a great example of this, allowing it to use the strength of its own IP to expand its reach and awareness through mobile games, theme parks, movies, and more. Strong IP and cross-platform support also allowed Nintendo’s Amiibos to ride the rise and fall of the toys-to-life category, whereas the likes of Skylanders and Disney Infinity are now just footnotes.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/03/12/lego-super-mario-reveal-trailer”]

We’ll See An Interface Revolution

One of the bigger topics in 2010 was the idea that the next decade would see significant interface innovations. “We’re going to see some fundamental changes to both the input and the output of games devices,” said Hermen Hulst, former Managing Director of Guerrilla Games (Killzone, Horizon: Zero Dawn), now head of Worldwide Studios. “Gestural interfaces are already happening, of course, and the screen as we know it might be a thing of the past too. I’m not sure if there will be a complete virtualization by 2020, but I like the idea of a wearable device – one that we control and interact with through natural hand gestures, and that we use to augment our physical world.”

Hulst’s prediction is very much the end goal for devices like HoloLens, but the path to the maturation of that technology – and AR in general – is proving to be a long one. Back in 2010, it was the success of the Wii that was the impetus for a lot of the conversations around gesture controls, but despite the fact that both Microsoft and Sony were prepping their own solutions, many members of the panel weren’t entirely convinced.

“There will be a lot of experimenting with interfaces during the next ten years but I think the basic general purpose controllers that will be used by the majority of the games will stay pretty similar to what they are now,” said Avalanche Studios Lead Game Designer Peter Johansson, who has worked on the Just Cause series and Mad Max. “Pressing a button is still often the easiest way to do an action. Motion controls will play a part but have matured into being used where it really enhances the experience.”

That’s certainly proven to be true for console gaming, where we use motion controls in combination with buttons to do things like throw Cappy in Super Mario Odyssey, or guide petals around a meadow in Flower. While motion controls were ultimately a sideshow, we have nonetheless been part of an actual interface revolution over the last ten years that has fundamentally changed how we lead our digital lives and play games on the go.

In the last ten years touch screen devices have become our ever-present technology portals, and a whole generation of kids are now growing up as touch screen natives. The new era ushered in by smartphones represented a paradigm shift, and games in turn adapted to play a large role in the new ecosystem.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=In%20the%20last%20ten%20years%20touch%20screen%20devices%20have%20become%20our%20ever-present%20technology%20portals%2C%20and%20a%20whole%20generation%20of%20kids%20are%20now%20growing%20up%20as%20touch%20screen%20natives.”]

There have been other advances in interfaces too – geolocation games like Pokemon GO make the entire globe a playspace, toys came to life in our living rooms, and the re-emergence of VR, and in particular room-scale VR, changed how we interact with virtual spaces… and spurred some controller evolution too.

Digital Distribution Will Be Transformative

The rise of the smartphone came hand in hand with the growing importance of digital storefronts. Ten years ago, Steam was well-established, the App Store was beginning its meteoric growth after launching with a selection of 500 apps in 2008, and Xbox Live Arcade and the PlayStation Store had been around since late 2004 and late 2006 respectively. Digital distribution was here to stay, but exactly how much it would change the games industry was still up for debate.

“Digital distribution will be huge,” declared Jeremiah Slaczka, Co-Founder and Creative Director of 5th Cell, which is best known for the Scribblenauts games. “It changed the way music is sold and I think it will have a huge impact on games as well. In 2000 we were just being introduced to 300kbps DSL. In 2010 10mbps is normal in a lot of places. Where will we be in 2020? Cloud computing is a possible avenue. I don’t think physical media will be wiped out, but think it’s possible for the majority of games, like music, to be downloaded from online-enabled platforms. It’s happening already now.”

“I’ll be amazed if we’re still doing boxed product in 2020,” commented Jamie Jackson, who was Creative Director at DJ Hero developer FreeStyleGames and is now Chief Creative Officer at Mythical Games, a technology studio with a blockchain-based platform. “Digital distribution may be the only way to access your entertainment, be it games, TV, or films.”

Other panelists were more conservative. “Although online distribution will become even more important (expect full game downloads to be commonplace),” said Traveller’s Tales’ Gareth Wilson, “people will still be buying games from shops in ten years time. There will be people who simply prefer to physically own a title, and a download doesn’t make a good birthday present.”

It was Dan Greenawalt, Game Director at Forza Motorsport developer Turn 10 Studios, however, who really honed in on how digital distribution will fundamentally change game publishing itself, as well as how we’ll interact with games. Gaming, he said, “will continue to trend along the same lines as recent developments: ubiquity of games and devices catering to a bigger and even more diverse audience who are hungry for interactive entertainment; digital distribution having effectively leveled the publishing field so you have risky, experimental indie games coexisting with huge blockbuster titles in a virtual and sustainable marketplace; and of course, the uber-connectedness of it all – with social media and user-generated content playing central roles in how players define themselves and the experiences they have with the games they play.”

The Definition of a “Game” Will Continue to Evolve

But what, exactly, would those games be like? “Of course a few new genres will come into existence, probably enabled by the fact that our games consoles are increasingly networked, mobile, and equipped with innovative interfaces,” PlayStation’s Worldwide Studios head Hermen Hulst told us. “But most of today’s basic genres will still exist in 2020, just like most of today’s genres were already there in 2000. I guess playing a game like Cowboys and Indians is always appealing, regardless of the state of technology.”

Hulst was certainly spot on in terms of new genres being enabled by networking and mobility. The battle royale genre is absolutely the product of a thoroughly networked age, for instance, and the genre has a large audience playing on mobile too. Auto Battlers also, are very much at the nexus of networking and mobile gaming. Other new genres from the last decade include incremental games (initially popularised by Cookie Clicker) and walking simulators (spearheaded by Dear Esther, which technically was available as a free-to-play mod in 2008, but only commercially released in 2012).

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A number of other notable genres found the spotlight in the last ten years. Modern survival games kicked off with Minecraft, but evolved when DayZ came on the scene. Digital CCGs blew up, thanks to Hearthstone. You could also argue that this was the decade of loot shooters (Borderlands was released in 2009), hero shooters (Team Fortress 2 led the way in 2007) and Souls-likes (Demon’s Souls came out in 2009).

Avalanche Studios’ Peter Johansson had a broader response to what the games of 2020 would be like. “The definition of what constitutes a game will be less clear since all games will be so integrated with other forms of entertainment,” he said.

This is certainly becoming true. Think about the distinction between a game like Her Story and a TV show like Black Mirror: Bandersnatch. The lines can be very blurred indeed. Telltale’s Minecraft: Story Mode is another interesting example; it now exists as both a game and an interactive show on Netflix, in which the game’s action sequences are automated, but you can still make all the dialogue decisions.

In a general sense the definition of what a “game” is continues to evolve. Ten years ago it had already changed drastically, with game devices capable of encompassing a broad suite of experiences, from Brain Training and Nintendogs to Wii Fit. Since then we’ve seen walking simulators put storytelling front and centre, we’ve seen incremental games create never-ending, ever-escalating gameplay loops, and we’ve seen a whole lot of experimentation – think 80 Days, Heavy Rain, The Stanley Parable, P.T., Return of the Obra Dinn, and many more.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/04/25/how-pt-became-a-modern-urban-legend”]

Online Connectivity Will Be Taken for Granted

“All games will be online but by that I don’t mean massive multiplayer,” said Avalanche Studios’ Peter Johansson in 2010. “‘Online’ will be firmly integrated into our way of life and games will naturally tap into that connectivity. I’m talking about social networks, digital distribution, downloadable content, mobile connectivity, community, etc. There’s so much untapped potential there of which we’ve only just begun to scratch the surface.”

Being online – or at least having the ability to be online at any time – is very much a given in many parts of the world now, with games wrapped up in that expectation in countless ways. Blizzard Entertainment’s President J. Allen Brack, who was working on World of Warcraft at the time, also touched on what that might mean. “You’ll have everything online,” he said. “There’ll still be single player games, but there’ll be a lot more connectedness in games than we have now. I think potentially you’ll look back on the idea of connecting to small numbers of players like we have right now as kind of quaint. I’m a big believer in the ‘everyone playing together’ kind of model and there will be more games that come along that are everyone playing together.”

Connecting a hundred players in games like PUBG and Fortnite is no big deal in 2020, nor is queueing into just about any mode of popular online titles like Call of Duty or League of Legends. All of that works so smoothly – the matchmaking, the low queue times – because behind the scenes there are hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of active players.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/03/23/call-of-duty-warzone-review”]

Of course, there are issues with everyone playing together – toxicity in chat can be a major problem, and so voice chat is often restricted to players that are grouped up, which is a disappointing – but not unexpected – limitation of our always-connected age. It has the byproduct, however, of reducing humanisation in many of our online interactions.

That humanisation can be absent in other places too. The ubiquitous nature of social media and online life has introduced direct lines of communication between members of the games industry and consumers, for both better and worse. At its worst, this has resulted in campaigns of harassment, and the formation of an us versus them mentality. At its best, it has led to tight knit communities in which gamers are actively involved in the development process.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=The%20ubiquitous%20nature%20of%20social%20media%20and%20online%20life%20has%20introduced%20direct%20lines%20of%20communication%20between%20members%20of%20the%20games%20industry%20and%20consumers%2C%20for%20both%20better%20and%20worse.”]

Also, for better and worse, gamers have shown over the last decade that they can wield real power. Recent examples include the overwhelming response to Blizzard’s heavy-handed handling of pro Hearthstone player Blitzchung, who made a pro Hong Kong statement at the end of an official tournament stream, and was stripped of prize money and banned for a year, effectively ending his career. (The company later walked the punishment back.) EA’s implementation of loot boxes and pay-to-win elements in Star Wars Battlefront 2 also became a cause to rally round, eventually seeing the game’s microtransactions disabled shortly before the game’s wide release, so large was the furor.

Other aspects of the games industry have also come under the spotlight in the last decade. We’ve seen revelations of sexism and toxicity at companies like Riot Games and we’ve read about the persistence of crunch culture in studios including Epic Games, in which developers work long hours for weeks or months on end to hit a deadline. Consumers and lawmakers have also targeted game companies over loot boxes, accusing the industry of employing exploitative business models that are tantamount to gambling.

Rising Development Costs Will Impact Design

Micro-transactions were already part of the conversation in 2010. Street Fighter Series Executive Producer Yoshinori Ono saw how things would develop, commenting that micro-transactions were now “in almost every game released. This has also created a new marketplace (literally) and this trend will continue. Games will have to be designed with this in mind.”

The changes to the mobile games market over the last decade really highlight what Ono foresaw. Where initially developers could price their games somewhat fairly, they quickly had to drop to a dollar at most, and before long the expectation for consumers became that mobile games are free… which meant that revenue had to come from in-app purchases.

On PC and consoles, development costs continued their long rise, so the increasing importance of loot boxes and other micro-transactions, not to mention the introduction of concepts like season passes, were part of a broader shift towards business models that could help generate ongoing revenue.

These factors, alongside others – such as the emergence of free-to-play on PC and the rise of early access/playable alphas – culminated in one of the defining trends of the last ten years, that many games became a service.

This was accompanied by a move towards smaller release slates from many of the big publishers. In late 2009, for instance, after laying off 1500 staff and cancelling a number of projects, then-Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello said the company would be cutting its releases from more than 50 titles in 2009 to around 40 in the 2010 fiscal year. Fast forward to the fiscal year ending March 2021 and EA will be releasing 14 games, and that includes two remasters and several annual sports titles.

Another way publishers have combated rising development costs and team sizes is through “external development”, or outsourcing, which is a large part of modern game development. They also continued the well-established trend of taking advantage of tax breaks or lower labour costs by opening studios in financially favourable locations.

Major publishers may have released less games in the last decade than in the decade before, but overall we now have more games to choose from each year, and that’s due to the rise of independent developers. To put it in perspective, in 2010, there were 276 new games released on Steam. By 2016 this had jumped to 4,207, and by 2018 it hit 9,050. Gaming is now a saturated market for lower profile titles, where quality is no guarantee of success and discoverability is one of the biggest hurdles.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=In%202010%2C%20there%20were%20276%20new%20games%20released%20on%20Steam.%20By%202018%20it%20was%209%2C050.”]

China Could Play a Major Role

The landscape has changed dramatically, but there’s a large aspect we haven’t even mentioned yet – the ascendancy of China. China came to be the largest gaming market in the world in 2015 and held that position until 2019. (2019 revenues were predicted to be USD $ 36.5 billion, just shy of the U.S. market prediction of USD $ 36.9 billion.)

Rocksteady’s Paul Denning singled out China in our original roundtable. “There’s a huge untapped potential in places like China that if used correctly could help the industry grow,” he said. “Already there’s been some companies that have started development there… Ubisoft have already started this process with their EndWar team for instance.” Denning was talking about making games in China, and essentially anticipating that big games would increasingly be made by studios all around the world. 2018’s Assassin’s Creed Odyssey was created by ten studios, for instance.

China has proven to be an important emerging market too. In the last decade a number of publishers from other parts of the world have established large player bases there, such as Bluehole Studio with PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) and Blizzard Entertainment with Overwatch. Both partnered with Chinese companies to make it happen. During PUBG’s early access success Tencent Games inked a deal to publish the Windows version of PUBG in China, then developed what would come to be known as PUBG: Mobile. NetEase has published Blizzard’s games in China since 2008, and is a development partner on Diablo Immortal.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2018/03/24/pubg-mobile-review”]

Even so, there is a strict approvals process around what can be released, so many non-Chinese games must be modified before they’re greenlit. This was the case for the Windows version of PUBG, while PUBG: Mobile wasn’t approved for monetisation in China at all, forcing Tencent to release the similar, but state-friendly, Peacekeeper Elite. All publishers are subject to the whims of the Chinese government too. It instituted a nine-month approval freeze on new games in 2018, for instance, and has also introduced measures to curb hours played by minors.

Over the last decade, as publishers like Activision-Blizzard have looked to grow their mainland Chinese audience, so too have Chinese companies grown their foothold outside the country. Tencent – now the largest games publisher in the world – has full ownership of Riot Games, a 40% stake in Epic Games, a 5% stake in Ubisoft, and to come full circle, a 5% stake in Activision-Blizzard, and more than 10% in Bluehole Studio. And that’s just some of its investments.

Gaming Will Be a Pillar of the Entertainment Industry

The games industry in 2020 is both familiar yet radically different to its 2010 self. In terms of reach and revenue it has expanded significantly, yet many of the drivers of those changes have only come into their own in the last ten years: mobile, free-to-play, digital distribution, the importance of China.

Nonetheless, our panel made some astute observations about where we might be by now. And while many saw significant challenges ahead, due to factors like escalating budgets and team sizes, there was also a sense that gaming would be more important than ever by 2020.[poilib element=”quoteBox” parameters=”excerpt=The%20games%20industry%20in%202020%20is%20both%20familiar%20yet%20radically%20different%20to%20its%202010%20self.”]

“My take is that the industry will strengthen its place as one of the main pillars of the entertainment industry,” said Yannis Mallat, former CEO of Ubisoft Montreal (Assassin’s Creed, Far Cry), now CEO of Ubisoft’s Canadian Studios, “becoming even more mass market, widening its reach and cementing its place as a cultural product.”

How might things look in another ten years? Keep an eye on IGN in the coming days, as we’re going to find out.

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Cam Shea heads up IGN’s Australian content team and loves CCGs. Check out his Legends of Runeterra review and say hey on Twitter.
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The games that made Tracy McGrady a Hall of Famer

Whether it was putting up triple-doubles, dropping 62 points or scoring 13 in 33 seconds, Tracy McGrady racked up his fair share of memorable performances in his Hall of Fame career.
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Ohio State eyes football games with 20K-50K fans

Ohio State’s football stadium, with a normal capacity of more than 100,000, could hold a crowd of 20,000 in social distancing models the school has run for potential games this fall and up to 50,000 if guidelines are relaxed.
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Governors signal to leagues: Let the games begin

The governors of New York, California and Texas all said on Monday that their states are ready for sports to return, sooner rather than later. It's go time.

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May 2020’s Nintendo Switch Online NES and SNES Games Announced

Nintendo has announced that NES’ Rygar and SNES’ Wild Guns, Panel de Pon, and Operation Logic Bomb will be added to Nintendo Switch Online on May 20, 2020.

These titles will bring the total NES and SNES titles on Nintendo Switch Online to 82, and are the first additions since Nintendo added Pop’n TwinBee, Smash Tennis, Shadow of the Ninja, and Eliminator Boat Duel in February.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/05/15/nintendo-switch-online-may-2020-game-updates”]

Rygar was released on NES in 1986 and was originally an arcade game in Japan called Warrior of Argus. The official description from Nintendo is as follows;

An old legend proclaimed, “When the peaceful land is covered with evil spirits, a brave soldier will be brought to life from the dead.” Luckily, Rygar, the mythical hero from Argus, has arrived in order to defeat the evil king Ligar and his army of dangerous beasts. Join forces with Rygar for a hybrid action-adventure game with a distinct blend of platforming and role-playing elements!

Wild Guns arrived on the SNES in 1994 and infuses the Wild, Wild West with Sci-Fi for a unique shooting gallery experience. The official description from Nintendo is as follows;

The Kid gang and their army of robots have taken over! Blast your way through villainous outlaws,diabolical robots and towering, screen-filling bosses. Fortunately, you’ve got plenty of moves to help you survive the firepower headed your way. You’ll need a sharp eye and quick-on-the-draw reflexes to survive on your own. Or team up with a friend and go out blazing in two-player co-op.

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Panel de Pon was only ever released in Japan, but those in other regions of the world may know it as Tetris Attack. It was released in 1995 on the SNES and came to Game Boy a year later. The Tetris Attack/Panel de Pon legacy was continued with such titles as Pokemon Puzzle League for the N64. The official description from Nintendo is as follows:

As the stack of puzzle pieces rises, think fast to match panels and set off cascading chain reactions and combos. You’ll have to make strategic choices quickly to counteract the relentless competitor attacks from above. A selection of single-player and two-player modes and options provides escalating action and zippy fun. This title originally launched for the Super Famicom in 1995, but this is the first time this version of the game will be available in the U.S. Though this title was never translated into English, it may seem familiar!

Operation Logic Bomb: The Ultimate Search & Destroy was originally released on the SNES in 1993 and is an overhead action game that was a sequel to the Game Boy’s Fortified Zone. The official description from Nintendo is as follows;

Agent Logan has been fitted with bioelectronic implants that grant him superior strength, reflexes and analytical abilities. He’s been charged with a mission to save the Subspace Particle Transfer Project. Now it’s up to him to infiltrate, neutralize the intruders and rescue the scientists in a top-down shooter with giant bosses and frenzied action that doesn’t let up.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/05/14/paper-mario-the-origami-king-announcement-trailer”]

This news follows Nintendo’s reveal of Paper Mario: The Origami King from earlier today, which arrives on the Switch on July 17, 2020.

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Have a tip for us? Want to discuss a possible story? Please send an email to newstips@ign.com.

Adam Bankhurst is a news writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @AdamBankhurst and on Twitch.
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Grand Theft Auto free download crashes Epic Games store

Within minutes of the offer going live the website began experiencing glitches.
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Grand Theft Auto free download crashes Epic Games store

Within minutes of the offer going live the website began experiencing glitches.
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Grand Theft Auto free download crashes Epic Games store

Within minutes of the offer going live the website began experiencing glitches.
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China TV still not planning to air NBA games

Despite the hiring of Michael Ma as the new CEO of NBA China, CCTV said it is “reiterating its consistent stance on national sovereignty” and has no plans to resume airing NBA games.
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See Every Frame in Games With the Best 240hz Gaming Monitors

We’ve got the top options for your 240Hz gaming monitor for your Esports or competitive online gaming needs.
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See Every Frame in Games With the Best 240hz Gaming Monitors

We’ve got the top options for your 240Hz gaming monitor for your Esports or competitive online gaming needs.
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Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, Gollum Give Us Look at PS5 Games

IGN’s weekly PlayStation show breaks down the latest PS5 news and games, plus the big news on PS4’s big games.
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Adding Brady pays with five prime-time games for Bucs

The Bucs have never had more than four prime-time games in a year, but in 2020 they’ll face the Bears, Raiders, Giants, Saints and Rams in prime time.
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The 25 Scariest Games of This Generation

This generation saw a boom in quality horror games and we’re counting down the 25 scariest.
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NHL, NHLPA cancel international games in 2020

The NHL has postponed its international games in 2020, the league and players’ union announced in a joint statement on Friday.
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Xbox: Microsoft reveals first games for Series X console

The Xbox team shows off new footage of the highly anticipated Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla.
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How to pick family-friendly video games in lockdown

Navigating the gaming landscape can be tough but there are guides which can aid parents and carers.
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Daily Deals: 50% Off SNK’s NEOGEO Mini International Arcade with 40 Games

Today’s spotlight deal is a whopping 50% off the NEOGEO Mini International Arcade, which comes preloaded with 40 of SNK’s most popular classic titles. The Oculus Quest is also finally available at Gamestop, but not for long. Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla went up for preorder today and you can still score 40% off a PS Plus membership.

50% Off SNK’s Official NEOGEO Mini International Arcade for $ 29.99

Own a piece of gaming history at a ridiculously good price. This is a fantastic deal considering it sells for $ 60 or more everywhere else. This mini arcade includes 40 preloaded masterpieces, including Metal Slug, King of Fighters, Samurai Showdown, Fatal Fury, King of Monsters, and more. The arcade itself is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand and yet still houses a 3.5″ display and joystick controls. For a more traditional style of play, it also includes an HDMI port for playing on your TV and two external controller ports.

Oculus Quest VR Headset Back in Stock at Gamestop (Compatible with Half-Life: Alyx)

Gamestop has both the 64GB model (with case bundle) and 128GB for preorder, They’ll ship out on May 22. These VR headsets have been extremely hard to find and a May ship date is actually surprisingly soon. There are many reasons why the Quest is the best VR headset to get right now. It’s completely untethered with no external sensors to set up, it’s powerful enough to play games like Half-Life: Alyx, Beat Saber (the best VR game of 2019), Vader Immortal, and Pistol Whip, and it’s far less expensive than all the other newer generation VR headsets that have been released. The Oculus Link software which allows you to connect the Quest to a PC using a Type C cable and use it like a regular VR headset powered by your gaming PC. You can purchase the official cable for $ 79. If you want to try your luck, there are reports that many generic USB Type C Gen 1 or Gen 2 cables will work like this $ 18 cable.

40% Off 1 Year of PS Plus Membership, Now $ 36.99

Use code “DSPLYMBR”

PS Plus membership discounts only happen a few times a year so grab this deal when you can. This membership lets you play games online (absolutely necessary for games like NBA 2K20, Madden NFL 20, FIFA 20, Overwatch, Rocket League, and more). You’ll also get PS Plus exclusive discounts at the PlayStation Store as well as new free games every month. For example, right now PS Plus members get the outstanding Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End and Dirt Rally 2.0 for free. Best of all, it’s email delivery so you’ll get your code within 24 hours.

Up for Preorder: Assassin’s Creed Valhalla

The newest Assassin’s Creed game is up for preorder today. More details have emerged and you can read all about it here. Preorder it on Amazon and you won’t be charged until the game actually ships out. Also your price is automatically adjusted  every time a price drop that might occur without you having to do anything.

Only 2 Days Left to Get TIDAL 4-Month HiFi Music Streaming Plan for $ 4

Pay $ 1/month for four months (the normal cost of the HiFi plan is $ 19.99/mo). TIDAL is a music streaming service that offers 60+ million tracks and 250,000+ videos with premium quality audio. The HiFi plan upgrades the audio to lossless high-fidelity.

HP OMEN Obelisk Intel Core i5-9600K RTX 2080 Ti Gaming PC for $ 1682.99

I’ve never seen a prebuilt gaming PC with an RTX 2080 Ti (the fastest video card out right now) for this price. This PC is customizable on HP’s website, but buying the base config has its merits. In terms of gaming, upgrading from an Intel Core i5-9600K to an Intel Core i7 is a waste… performance-wise they are identical. Also, by upgrading the RAM and storage on your own, you can save alot of money and pick your own, better parts at the same time.

  • Click Here
  • Select Graphics Card – NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti (+$ 450)
  • At cart, apply code “10GAMERSPRING
  • Price should show up as $ 1682.99

HP OMEN 15″ 4K 3840×2160 Intel Core i7-9750H Gaming Laptop with RTX 2080 for $ 1826.10

It’s hard enough to find an RTX 2080-equipped gaming laptop for under $ 2000, but this one doesn’t skip on any other spec either. In fact, you get a true 4K 3840×2160 display, a 9th gen Intel Core i7 processor, and plenty of RAM and SSD storage.

  • Click Here
  • Select Processor and Graphics – i7-9750H + RTX 2080 (+$ 630)
  • Select Display – 15.6″ 4K IPS (+$ 150)
  • Proceed to shopping cart
  • At cart, apply code “10GAMERSPRING
  • Price should show up as $ 1826.10

HP OMEN 15″ 1080p 144Hz Intel Core i7-9750H Gaming Laptop with RTX 2070 for $ 1430.99

This laptop is every bit as good for gaming but you’ll save about $ 350 compared to the above config. The RTX 2070 video card is almost as powerful as the previous generation’s GTX 1080, which used to be the most powerful mobile GPU. It should be more than enough handle any game on the 15″ 1080p display, even at 144Hz refresh rate. If you want to, you can upgrade to 12GB RAM and 512GB SSD for $ 180.

  • Click Here
  • Select Processor and Graphics – i7-9750H + RTX 2070 (+$ 450)
  • Select Display – 15.6″ FHD 144Hz IPS (+$ 70)
  • Proceed to shopping cart
  • At cart, apply code “10GAMERSPRING
  • Price should show up as $ 1430.99

Alienware m15 15″ 4K Ultra HD 3840×2160 OLED 1ms Intel Core i7-9750H RTX 2070 Gaming Laptop with Dual 512GB SSD for $ 1877.40

Use code “AW950OFF”

Upgrade to a very rare and very awesome 4K Ultra HD 3840×2160 display for only $ 200. We reviewed a very similar OLED equipped model less than a year ago (with inferior specs) with a price tag of $ 2800 and we LOVED it.

ComiXology Free Trial Extended to 60 Days

The ComiXology trial period is normally 30 days.  ComiXology is Amazon’s digital comic platform and is the largest digital retailer of American comics. The site hosts 20,000 digital comics, graphic novels, and manga from DC, Marvel, Image, Dark Horse, and more. Here’s your chance to access all of it, totally free, for 30 60 days. If you’re an avid comic reader, you might want to consider continuing on afterwards, since it’s only $ 5.99/month. You can even sign in with your Amazon account.

Alienware Aurora R8 Intel Core i7-9700 RTX 2080 SUPER Gaming PC with 16GB RAM, 256GB SSD, and 2TB HDD for $ 1593

Use code “LCS10OFF”

This gaming PC boasts a 9th gen Intel Core i7 processor and the newest RTX 2080 SUPER video card. It’s about 10% more powerful than the non-SUPER model and considerably more powerful than the GTX 1080 Ti.  For those of you who would rather have a PC preinstalled with all the RAM and storage you’ll ever need, this model has 16GB RAM and dual drive storage.

Alienware Aurora R8 Intel Core i7-9700 RTX 2080 SUPER Gaming PC for $ 1404

Use code “LCS10OFF”

If you want upgrade the RAM and hard drive yourself, you can save alot of money compared to adding pre-configured upgrades. Like the new R9 chassis, the R8 features easy toolless entry. Swapping components doesn’t void the warranty.

New Alienware Aurora R9 AMD Ryzen 7 3700X AMD Radeon RX 5700 XT Gaming Desktop PC for $ 1089

Use code “LCS10OFF”

For those of you who haven’t been keeping up with the Intel vs AMD CPU war, AMD has been giving Intel a run for its money with its flagship processors. The new AMD Ryzen 7 3700X 8-core processor is comparable to the Intel Core i7-9700, both in terms of gaming and workstation performance. It’s paired with an RX 5700 XT video card, which is on par with the RTX 2070. If you want to upgrade the RAM or hard drive, I’d suggest doing it on your own. You’ll save money, and the Aurora R9 allows for toolless access without voiding your warranty.

Save 73% Off 1-Year IPVanish VPN Plan

IPVanish is offering  73% off its 1 year VPN plan, dropping the price to $ 39. That’s only $ 3.25 a month for a service that provides some great benefits. VPN is the first and easiest step to making your internet activity a bit more anonymous. VPN is also a great way to “trick” a host site into thinking you’re in another part of the world. That’s great for watching region-locked content from streaming services like Netflix. IPVanish boasts a very user-friendly interface, doesn’t hog resources, and has a zero-log policy. We also gave it a great review.

Online Learning Course Bundles from Stack Social

Want to be more productive at home? Stack Social has plenty of practical courses that can kick start your career. For under $ 40 per bundle you get dozens of hours of online instruction in programming, game creation, video production, ethical hacking, and more… all from the safety of your home.

3 Months of Amazon Music Unlimited for Free

This deal only works for new Amazon Music Unlimited subscribers, but you don’t have to be a Prime member. Normally you’d be paying $ 9.99/month for this service (or $ 7.99/mo for Prime members). Amazon Music Unlimited works alot like the paid ad-free versions of Spotify or Pandora. Get access to millions of songs and playlists that you can stream anywhere.

Free Sling TV from 5pm to Midnight (CNN, MSNBC, Food Network, HGTV, Cartoon Network, and More)

No Credit Card Required for Signup

Sling’s Happy Hour promotion is offering free Sling Blue from 5pm to midnight (normally $ 30/month). You can keep up with live news about the COVID virus from CNN, MSNBC, HLN, and Fox News, or just lose yourself in family friendly TV shows from HGTV, Food Network, A&E, Bravo, TNT, Comedy Central, Cartoon Network, The Discovery Channel, Nick Jr, and more. Best of all no credit card is required.

______________________________

Eric Song is IGN’s deal curator and spends 25% of his pay on stuff he posts.
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MLB teams to begin refunding fans for lost games

Major League Baseball will permit teams to set up refund policies for unplayed games. ESPN reported Tuesday that all 30 teams will dictate how their refund process works. The league is contemplating a return in mid-June or July, according to a Tuesday report in The Athletic, with a maximum of 100 games played in the regular season.

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The NHL’s coronavirus pause: Where the games could be played, latest on the draft, more

The neutral-site idea is not happening. Here are the cities that could host games. Plus, what’s going on with the 2020 draft?
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The NHL’s coronavirus pause: Where the games could be played, latest on the draft, more

The neutral-site idea is not happening. Here are the cities that could host games. Plus, what’s going on with the 2020 draft?
www.espn.com – NHL

GeForce Now loses Microsoft, Warner Bros. games on April 24th

GeForce Now loses Microsoft, Warner Bros. games on April 24thNVIDIA's GeForce Now gaming service continues to bleed titles as Microsoft, Warner Bros. and others pull their catalogs.



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The NHL’s coronavirus pause: Scenarios for fanless games, impact on 2020-21 and more

Our weekly rundown of intel, including the newest possible return timeline, comments from NHLPA head Donald Fehr and more.
www.espn.com – NHL

9 Games That Made a Major Comeback

Many of the most popular games started in a rough spot and took years to make things right. Here are 9 of the best and biggest video game comebacks.
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Republic acquires Fig, adding games to its startup crowdfunding platform

Republic acquires Fig, adding games to its startup crowdfunding platformCrowdfunding platform for startups Republic has acquired crowdfunding platform for games Fig, joining forces to help creators get their ideas off the ground. Users of each service will be happy to know they’ll continue as-is for the foreseeable future. Startups of a wide variety have raised hundreds of thousands on Republic, while Fig has had a great year with games like the critically acclaimed (and popular) Outer Wilds and What the Golf.



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Epic Games delays the release of Fortnite’s new season

The gaming industry has experienced delays because of restrictions on developers working from home.
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Board Games Celebrity Parents Swear By

E-Comm: Celebrity Board Game Picks, Christina Anstead, Tess Holliday, Alfonso RibeiroWe love these products, and we hope you do too. E! has affiliate relationships, so we may get a small share of the revenue from your purchases. Items are sold by the retailer, not E!.
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Why NBA games won’t start immediately if the season is cleared to resume

There’s no guarantee that the NBA will return to action this season. If it does, athletic training staffs are concerned about the time it will take to recondition players.
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Poll: Fans won’t attend games without vaccine

A majority of fans in a recent poll said they would not attend games before a vaccine is developed for coronavirus.
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Lockdown isn’t a windfall for the British games industry

Globally the coronavirus pandemic is proving to be a double-edged sword for the games industry.
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Bafta Games Awards: Outer Wilds wins Best Game

Outer Wilds and Disco Elysium both win three golden masks at this year’s Bafta Games Awards.
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Coronavirus: Video games add ‘stay at home’ Covid-19 adverts

Candy Crush Saga, Dirt Rally 2.0 and Sniper Elite 4 are among titles that show a government campaign.
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Bafta Games Awards: How to host a ceremony in lockdown

The Bafta Games Awards will be the first major awards to take place during social distancing rules.
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Sharks president defends hosting March games

Jonathan Becher said the San Jose Sharks made the best decision with the information available in early March when the team elected to play three home games despite a recommendation by the county against large gatherings.
www.espn.com – NHL

Canada, Australia pull athletes out of Olympics, as the IOC says it will consider postponing Tokyo Games

Canada, Australia pull athletes out of Olympics, as the IOC says it will consider postponing Tokyo GamesThe Canadian Olympic Committee announced that it will not send athletes to the Tokyo Olympic Games, as the International Olympic Committee weighs a decision on whether or not to postpone the event during the COVID-19 pandemic is currently. Meanwhile, the Australian Olympic Committee told athletes to prepare for the Games being delayed by year. The Canadian and Australian announcements were made after the International Olympic Committee said on Sunday that it will make a decision on whether or not to postpone the games within the next four weeks.



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These Video Games Will Help Keep Your Brain Busy

E-Comm: Video Games to keep your mind busyWe love these products, and we hope you do too. E! has affiliate relationships, so we may get a small share of the revenue from your purchases. Items are sold by the retailer, not E!.
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Google details what you need to play Stadia games in 4K on the web

Google details what you need to play Stadia games in 4K on the webNow that you can play Google Stadia games in 4K on the web, you're probably wondering just what you need to see the game streaming service reach its visual potential. The company is happy to help — although it might be disappointing for some would-be players. It recently posted requirements, and the main demand is a Chromebook or Windows PC that can decode video in Google's preferred VP9 format, a 4K display to match and enough bandwidth to handle the "best visual quality" option. Stadia won't be too picky about the overall power of your computer, then.



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Blue Jackets will play home games without fans

The Blue Jackets became the first NHL team to announce that they will play home games without fans due to the coronavirus crisis.
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MAC tourneys closed to public; Jackets games not

In the wake of Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s recommendation that sporting events at indoor facilities take place without spectators, the MAC said its postseason tournaments will be closed to the general public, while the Blue Jackets will continue to host fans.
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Sources: NBA mulls moving games due to virus

The NBA is discussing the possibility of moving some games to NBA cities that have yet to suffer outbreaks of the coronavirus, league sources told ESPN.
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Fifa streamer Kurt0411 banned from all EA Games for ‘abuse’

EA Games says Kurt Fenech posted abusive messages about its employees – a claim he denies.
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Lakers to wait ‘a few games’ before Waiters’ debut

“It’s probably going to be a few games,” Frank Vogel said Saturday after Dion Waiters’ first practice when asked when the 28-year-old guard could see some action.
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Source: Some owners want ‘no’ vote, 18 games

Some NFL owners are hoping the players vote “no” on the CBA proposal, with the hope of countering with a better deal for the league that could include an 18-game season, a source told ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler.
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Chicago State cancels hoops games due to virus

Chicago State said late Tuesday its men’s basketball team will not travel for two regularly scheduled conference games this week and that its women’s team will not host two games, citing the spread of the coronavirus.
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Zion to play back-to-back games after reevaluation

Despite initially saying Zion Williamson wouldn’t play on back-to-back nights, the Pelicans will let their star rookie play Wednesday against the Mavericks, just one night after he put up 25 points in a loss to the Timberwolves.
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How Platinum Games’ Project G.G. Builds Off of Viewtiful Joe, Wonderful 101

Platinum Games has officially announced Project G.G; or Project A Go-Go. According to studio director, Hideki Kamiya, Project G.G. is the first wholly-owned Platinum Games project, and while the studio says this new project will keep with the studio’s love of the action-genre, the game will also be broader in scope.

“We have labelled it as being part of the Hideki Kamiya hero trilogy,” said Kamiya in an interview with IGN Japan. “The first two titles being Viewtiful Joe, which is a solo hero story, and The Wonderful 101, which is a story of a group of heroes. In Japan, the next type of hero would be the giant hero, and I’ve always wanted to make a game based on that idea.”

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/02/26/project-gg-teaser-trailer”]

The giant hero and kaiju genre, or tokusatsu, is best known in the west from shows like Power Rangers. But while Kamiya says he’s inspired by the genre, Project G.G. isn’t a straight adaptation of it.

“[I]t won’t be a very niche kind of game; giant hero stories are popular in Japan, with things like Ultraman, and the game will have that kind of flavor to it, but I don’t want to restrict myself to the Japanese hero genre,” Kamiya says. “So the setting will probably not be Japan, as that might be restrictive. But I haven’t decided yet.”

Not much else is known about Project G.G. other than how Platinum is aiming to launch on every current console. “Basically we’d like to hit PS4, Xbox One, Switch and Steam, and then of course PS5 and Series X are coming soon. We don’t know exactly when this will come out, but we’d like to release it on whatever are the main platforms at that time,” Platinum Chief Creative Officer Atsushi Inaba said.

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Even the release date isn’t concrete with Inaba and Kamiya both saying that while anything can happen in game development the studio wants to deliver Project G.G “as soon as we can.”

In the meantime, Platinum Games still has one more announcement to make as part of its “Four” initiative which included The Wonderful 101 Kickstarter, Project G.G., and a brand new Tokyo-based studio. But IGN will be there to cover the big surprise when it’s announced.
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The Best Arcade Cabinets for Playing Classic Games in Your Home

These arcade cabinets will bring the best of classic arcade gaming into your home.
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Wild’s Parise: Games hard to play amid trade talk

Zach Parise said he can focus on the Wild’s playoff push now that he knows he’s staying put for at least the remainder of the season.
www.espn.com – NHL

Coronavirus quarantine sparks China download boom in games and apps

China’s coronavirus outbreak has fuelled record downloads of apps and games by millions of quarantined households, fresh data reveals.
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Jon Bon Jovi to record charity single for Harry’s Invictus Games

Jon Bon Jovi is to record a charity single for Prince Harry’s Invictus Games Foundation.
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Silver uncertain on preseason games in China

Commissioner Adam Silver said he hoped for “a return to normalcy fairly soon” with the NBA’s relationship with China, but admitted there was no clarity on when the league would have preseason games there again.
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How do the Blue Jackets just keep winning games?

Columbus just lost Seth Jones. But it’s nothing new for the Blue Jackets, who continue finding ways to win amid injuries. Here’s how they’re doing it.
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Two SNES Games Never Before Released in the US Coming to Switch Online

Two SNES game never before released in the United States are being added to the Nintendo Switch Online lineup for February 2020.

According to Business Wire, the two SNES games coming to Nintendo Switch Online on February 19 – Pop’n TwinBee and Smash Tennis – have never had official releases in North America before now. They will be joined by two NES titles – Shadow of the Ninja and Eliminator Boat Duel.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2020/02/12/nintendo-switch-online-february-2020-game-updates”]

Pop’n TwinBee is a vertically scrolling top down shooter developed by Konami which released in 1993 in Japan and then also in PAL regions but never made it to the United States. Smash Tennis also released in 1993, but was under the name Super Family Tennis in Japan and made by Namco. It gained the title Smash Tennis when it released in Europe in 1994.

These two titles bring the number of SNES games available on Nintendo Switch Online to 52 since they became available back in September 2019. This makes it a grand total of 78 games on the service which include other cool unreleased games like Star Fox 2, which came out in last December’s offering.

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If you haven’t looked into a Nintendo Switch Online membership yet, you can find out how to set up the most cost-effective membership for multiple people here.

[poilib element=”accentDivider”]Hope Corrigan is an Australian freelance writer for IGN. You can follow her on Twitter and Instagram.
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Bruins’ Lauzon suspended 2 games for illegal hit

Bruins defenseman Jeremy Lauzon has been given a two-game suspension for an illegal hit during Saturday’s game against the Arizona Coyotes, the NHL department of player safety announced Sunday.
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Rockstar Games founder Dan Houser leaves studio

Dan Houser founded the studio behind Grand Theft Auto with his brother in 1998.
BBC News – Technology

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Play Your PC Games From the Couch in Style With the Best Lapboard

Not all PC gaming has to take place in an uncomfortable office chair. Kick back on the couch once in awhile with one of these lapboards.
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Jags to play two London games to boost revenue

The Jaguars will play two games in London next season in an attempt to increase their local revenue and escape the bottom quartile of the league in that category.
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Four big questions for the conference title games: Can Derrick Henry keep this up?

The Titans have won two road playoff games on the back of their star running back. Can they do it again?
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Microsoft's first Xbox Series X games will be cross-gen releases

Microsoft's first Xbox Series X games will be cross-gen releasesIt's been known for a while that Halo: Infinite will be available on Xbox One as well as Xbox Series X and PC. In a wide-ranging interview with MCVUK, Xbox Game Studios chief Matt Booty said other first-party Series X titles will also be playable on Xbox One. In fact, Microsoft's own Series X games won't be exclusive to that console for a while.



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CES 2020: Wonder Painter lets players star in its video games

A Chinese app uses artificial intelligence technologies to place its users into scribbled worlds.
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Stars’ Perry suspended 5 games for elbowing Ellis

Dallas’ Corey Perry was suspended for five games due to an elbow he delivered to Nashville’s Ryan Ellis during the teams’ Winter Classic game Wednesday in Dallas.
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Top 10s of the 2010s: What were our favourite songs, films, books, TV shows and games?

It’s been the decade of Ed Sheeran, Star Wars sequels and the Fifty Shades phenomenon.
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Sources: Clips’ Beverley to miss multiple games

LA Clippers point guard Patrick Beverley is expected to miss a few games because of a right wrist sprain, league sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
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NFL announces kickoff times, TV info for the four playoff games on wild-card weekend

There were a lot of playoff questions to be answered in Week 17 of the NFL season, and there were some unexpected shakeups. The Philadelphia Eagles and Tennessee Titans clinched the final two open slots with wins Sunday. The Bills and Texans rested many key starters in Week 17.

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2016 indie hit 'Hyper Light Drifter' is free in the Epic Games Store

2016 indie hit 'Hyper Light Drifter' is free in the Epic Games StoreThe Epic Holiday Sale is still going, and today's daily free game is Hyper Light Drifter. The top-down action RPG was crowdfunded a few years ago before it was eventually released in 2016, and now you can try it out yourself for zero dollars. Hyper Light Drifter's 88 Metacritic score and list of awards won indicates it's at least worth your time among the slew of retro 2D games that fill digital store shelves.

Plus, now is a great time to try it out before Heart Machine drops its next game, Solar Ash Kingdom, which features "wild high-speed traversal" and massive enemy encounters in a surreal world. Epic's free offer lasts through 11 AM ET on Saturday, although if you miss out or just prefer to fill your Steam library, it's available there for $ 10, 50 percent off the usual price, until January 2nd.



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Valiant's superheroes will get multi-platform video games

Valiant's superheroes will get multi-platform video gamesValiant wants some of that money you're setting aside for superhero stuff. In addition to making a Bloodshot movie with Vin Diesel, the company has also teamed up with indie developer Blowfish Studios to create multi-platform video games based on Valiant characters. They didn't reveal much about the scope of their team-up, but they said that it's a multi-game partnership for a "slate of all new action-packed video games."



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Seahawks DT Woods suspended four games

Seahawks defensive tackle Al Woods will immediately begin serving his suspension. He’ll miss the final two games of the regular season and any playoff games in which he’d be eligible to participate.
www.espn.com – NFL

Twitch avoids Russia ban over pirated Premier League games

Russia’s state media reports that the matter was resolved after Twitch removed pirated recordings.
BBC News – Technology

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OHL postpones 2 games after goalie’s injury

The Ontario Hockey League announced that two more game have been postponed following a serious injury to Niagara goalie Tucker Tynan Thursday night.
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See the Sharpest Looking Games on the Best 4K Gaming Monitor

Looking for the next level gaming? We’ve picked out the best 4K gaming monitors that will give you the sharpest picture you’ve ever experienced.
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Ranking the 39 bowl games in 2019 from best to worst

Penn State (10-2) vs. No. Memphis (12-1) — Dec. 28, Noon (ESPN) Penn State was passed over for the Rose Bowl by Wisconsin and now gets to play a Group of Five champion, Memphis, that won't have its head coach after Mike Norvell left for Florida State. Still, it will be fun to see how Memphis deals with the speed of Penn State's front seven and, on a broader scale, how an AAC power contends with one of the Big Ten's best.

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Projecting all 41 bowl games, including the College Football Playoff

See how our experts envision the entire bowl schedule panning out.
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Riot Games is expanding 'League of Legends' universe with third-party titles

Riot Games is expanding 'League of Legends' universe with third-party titlesRiot Games plans to release more titles to expand the League of Legends universe, but the company won't be making those entries itself. It's teaming up with independent third-party studios under a new publishing label called Riot Forge, which it says will "complement [its own] research and development program."



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Projecting all 41 bowl games, including the College Football Playoff

With less than a week to go until the final selections are made, see how our experts envision the entire bowl schedule playing out.
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Riot Games pays $10 million to settle gender discrimination lawsuit

Riot Games pays $  10 million to settle gender discrimination lawsuitIn August, Riot Games settled a class action lawsuit over gender discrimination and its sexist culture, though details of the settlement weren't clear. Now according to new court documents seen by Los Angeles Times, the developer has agreed to pay at least $ 10 million to employees and contractors who identify as female and who've worked at the company over the last five years. Around 1,000 workers will be entitled to a payout from the pot, but the amount they're getting will depend on how long they worked for the company. Full-time employees are also getting more money than contractors.



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Cards’ Shaw suspended for betting on NFL games

The Cardinals’ Josh Shaw has been suspended through at least the 2020 season for betting on NFL games on multiple occasions, though the league says no contests were compromised.
www.espn.com – NFL

Ranking Week 14’s biggest games by playoff implications

Ohio State and LSU can likely withstand losing to their rivals, but Alabama must beat Auburn convincingly to keep its CFP hopes alive.
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NFL suspends free agent Max McCaffrey 10 games

The NFL suspended free agent Max McCaffrey for 10 weeks of this season. The league announced the suspension, which runs from Week Eight to Week 17 of this season, on its Saturday transactions report, Howard Balzer reports. The receiver previously served a four-game suspension to begin the 2018 season when he also was a free agent.

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Jokic hits second late winner in as many games

Nikola Jokic hit a fadeaway jumper with 2.4 seconds left to give the Denver Nuggets a 100-98 overtime victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday — just two days after hitting another game-winner to beat the 76ers.
www.espn.com – NBA

Projecting all 41 bowl games, including the College Football Playoff

There are still many big games left on the schedule, but see how our experts envision the entire bowl season playing out.
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Heat suspend Waiters 10 games after incident

The Heat suspended Dion Waiters 10 games, starting Friday, for “conduct detrimental to the team.”
www.espn.com – NBA

Knicks brass ‘not happy’ 10 games into season

After a blowout loss at home to the Cavaliers dropped the Knicks to 2-8 on Sunday, team president Steve Mills said, “this is not where we expected to be at this point.”
www.espn.com – NBA

What the playoff and New Year’s Six bowl games would be today

Here’s what the CFP and New Year’s Six bowl games would look like based on Tuesday’s rankings.
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See Games at Their Best With a 4K Gaming Monitor

Looking for the next level gaming? We’ve picked out the best 4K gaming monitors that will give you the sharpest picture you’ve ever experienced.
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Flames’ Lucic suspended 2 games for roughing

Flames forward Milan Lucic has been suspended for two games without pay by the NHL for roughing Blue Jackets forward Kole Sherwood during Saturday’s game.
www.espn.com – NHL

Embiid, Towns banned 2 games after throwdown

Joel Embiid and Karl-Anthony Towns both received two-game suspensions for their skirmish Wednesday night.
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Tarasenko (upper body) to miss 2 Blues games

Vladimir Tarasenko will not travel with the Blues for weekend games at Boston and Detroit after suffering an unspecified upper-body injury Thursday night.
www.espn.com – NHL

NVIDIA will remaster more games with RTX ray tracing

NVIDIA will remaster more games with RTX ray tracingQuake II RTX is far from the last game to receive an NVIDIA ray tracing upgrade. DSOG has discovered that NVIDIA is hiring a producer for its Lightspeed Studios unit to lead work on a "game remastering program" that will add RTX ray tracing to more classic titles. The GPU maker is unsurprisingly shy about just which games are in the pipeline. The next project is a game "you know and love" — not a real clue, but promising nonetheless.



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Play Games at the Highest Resolution With These 4k Gaming Monitors

Looking for the next level gaming? We’ve picked out the best 4K gaming monitors that will give you the sharpest picture you’ve ever experienced.
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Progress reports for playoff contenders and the best games of Week 5

A Clemson title hangover? Nope. Josh Gattis bringing excitement to Michigan? Not so much. We break down these and more.
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The seven games this weekend that will affect the playoff

Notre Dame-Georgia, Texas A&M-Auburn and Michigan-Wisconsin each could make a huge impact.
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Ranking the eight best NBA games of the 2010s

Our list features career-defining playoff moments and a couple of the most entertaining regular-season games of all time.
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Ban children from gambling in games, MPs say

In-game spending should be regulated by gambling laws and loot boxes banned for children, they say.
BBC News – Technology

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Govt urged to crackdown on ‘gambling’ loot boxes in games like FIFA

Loot boxes that have seen players rack up huge bills in popular games like FIFA should be recognised as a form of gambling and banned from being sold to children, according to a damning new report.
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NHL reaches deal to stream all games in Russia

The NHL is expanding its reach into Russia through a new streaming agreement that’s set to make every regular-season and playoff game available in the country.
www.espn.com – NHL

We simulated the entire 2019 season: Scores and storylines for all 267 games

We played out one of FPI’s 20,000 sims of the NFL season with score predictions, from Week 1 through Super Bowl LIV.
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There's no evidence to back up Trump's claim that video games cause mass shootings

There's no evidence to back up Trump's claim that video games cause mass shootingsTrump is trying to lay the blame for the weekend's mass shootings on video games, but there's no evidence to back it up.



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Ben Simmons will probably beat you one-on-one — in video games

Besides being good at basketball, Philadelphia 76ers star Ben Simmons is good at video games. The Australian guard’s current favorite is PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, but his love for video games began while playing Resistance and Call of Duty.
www.espn.com – NBA

Cari Watterton gives her tips on how to get into the games industry

Young developer Cari Watterton, who works for a games firm located in Dundee, offers her tips for getting into the business
BBC News – Technology

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Wal-Mart.com USA, LLC

E3 2019: Here's when we'll get a Netflix for video games

E3 2019: Here's when we'll get a Netflix for video gamesE3 2019 brought us plenty of news about cloud gaming. Here's where the major playings including Google, Microsoft, and Sony stack up.



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Durant travels to Toronto ahead of Games 1, 2

Injured star Kevin Durant is accompanying the Warriors to Toronto for Games 1 and 2, even though he has already been ruled out of Game 1 with a strained calf.
www.espn.com – NBA

Why these 6 baseball teams still won't let you watch their games online

Why these 6 baseball teams still won't let you watch their games onlineA number of baseball teams still don't let their hometown fans stream games online.



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LeBron (groin) out at least the next 2 games

LeBron James (groin) will miss at least the next two games for the Lakers and won’t travel with the team on an upcoming two-game road trip, his agent told ESPN.
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Spin Master Games – Beat The Bell Five Spot

Spin Master Games – Beat The Bell Five Spot


Beat the Bell Spot Five is the thrilling Five of the Same fruit racing game. It’s fun and easy for the whole family to play. Each player simultaneously flips their cards in front of them onto the table, one by one. Watch closely and think quickly: do you see a combination of players’ cards that totals exactly five of the same fruit? If you Spot Five exactly, be the first to ring the bell and you’ll earn all of the cards that have been turned over since the last winner beat the bell. But don’t slip up: if you ring the bell and you’re wrong, you have to give each player one of your cards as a penalty. If you Beat the Bell and Spot Five enough to earn the most cards, you win the game!

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Magic The Gathering Pop Games Vinyl Figure Liliana Vess

Magic The Gathering Pop Games Vinyl Figure Liliana Vess


From the popular trading card game Magic: The Gathering, comes this Liliana Vess Pop! Vinyl figure. Magic: The Gathering, has spanned for nearly 2 decades and finally gets the Funko Pop! Vinyl makeover! This Magic The Gathering Liliana Espoo! Vinyl Figure stands about 3 3/4-Inch tall and comes in a window display box. This Liliana Vess Pop! Vinyl figure makes a great addition to any MTG fans collection!

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10 Most Devastating Virus Outbreaks in Games

From The Last of Us to Resident Evil, from Sunset Overdrive to The Division, viral outbreaks can ruin video game worlds in any number of ways. But what is it that makes certain video game pandemics stand out for the ever-growing zombie-infested crowd?

The following list explores our most memorable digital contagions, why they struck a chord with us, and the legacy they’ve left on the virus-ridden video game landscape.

Although viral outbreaks in video games tend to be based on fantastical circumstances, the most harrowing examples are the ones that could actually occur in reality. It’s not that I don’t believe in zombies per se, however when the illness or disease in question already exists in the real world, the possibility of a devastating plague feels easier to stomach. Add that to a feasible real life scenario and I’ll be over here cowering behind the couch. Tom Clancy’s The Division introduces Manhattan and the world to a smallpox pandemic that’s circulated via contaminated banknotes on one of the world’s busiest shopping days, Black Friday, dubbing the outbreak “Green Poison” and the “Dollar Flu.” Suddenly, the unrelenting moral panic and high-level hysteria the killer bug initiates seems just as terrifying as the ever-rising body count it has inflicted on society.

Continue reading…

IGN All

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DirecTV to Carry MLB Network Games in 4K Ultra HD

AT&T’s DirecTV continues to double down on high-end features and programming, in a bid to lure new customers and counter the ongoing threat of cord-cutting. The satellite broadcaster announced a deal to deliver up to 25 MLB Network games live in 4K Ultra UHD this season — the first time Major League Baseball games will be… Read more »

Variety

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Mom’s Movie Minute – The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2

Is ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2’ too intense for your kids? Janell Inez tells you what to expect on Mom’s Movie Minute.
Mom’s Movie Minute

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Hunger Games Star Patina Miller Shares Her Beauty Secrets

Here, we chat with the 31-year-old actress about all her beauty secrets.
The latest from allure.com
The must-have lipstick of the season, a do-it-all hair product, and our new mask obsession.
The latest from allure.com
MillionaireMatch.com - the best dating site for sexy, successful singles!
MillionaireMatch.com – the best dating site for sexy, successful singles!

Science Air and Space: Folder Games for Classroom

Science Air and Space: Folder Games for Classroom


Science should be an integral, fun, hands-on part of daily classroom activity; often, however, it is not. This activity guide offers real life science activities which establish a strong foundation of scientific principles and concepts. The author distills her extensive scientific teaching background into easy-to-do activities in math, science, air and space travel, weather, women in space, and the environment. Includes resource lists and a preface by NASA Space Shuttle Pilot Colonel Gregory.
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Club Pack of 60 Cute As A Button Blue Baby Boy Bingo Party Games 10″

Club Pack of 60 Cute As A Button Blue Baby Boy Bingo Party Games 10″


Engage your guests in a fun game of bingo! Cards feature a cute button theme in blue Instructions included Dimensions: 10″H x 6.5″W x 0.25″D Material(s): paper Pack includes 60 of the item shown
List Price: $ 64.99
Price: $ 64.99

Driveway Games Bolo Toss 3D Game

Driveway Games Bolo Toss 3D Game


Driveway Games Bolo Toss Game 3-D is an innovative twist on the already popular game of Ladder Golf. Players fling bolo balls at a target trying to get the bolos to wrap around the different levels of poles to score various points; first to 21 points wins! With 58% smaller packaging than any competitor and components that create three games in one this bolo game`s design sets it apart from the pack.INCLUDES:1 – Collapsible 3-D Bolo Tower – with Dropping Bolos Mat6 – Bolos (3 each of 2 colors)1 – Zippered Nylon Carry Bag – with Shoulder StrapMultiple Game Rules
List Price: $ 35.00
Price: $ 27.99

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 (2015)

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2 (2015) Opens Friday, Nov 20, 2015

After being symbolized as the “Mockingjay”, Katniss Everdeen and District 13 engage in an all-out revolution against the autocratic Capitol.

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101 Family Vacation Games

101 Family Vacation Games


Playing with your offspring helps parents to meet their children as equals and to bring fun and laughter into family life. When we laugh and have fun together, tensions are dissolved, and we come fully alive. In this age of electronic media, families are simply forgetting the many wonderful ways of playing together.101 FAMILY VACATION GAMES includes different types of games new and old and from all around the world that create a wonderful repertoire for parents to explore with their families. The author encourages parents to use games as a parenting skill and finds that parents who do this cause their families to blossom and bubble over with vitality. Although the book focuses on games for families on vacation, the games can be used for any time when parents or other adults want to engage with children in a positive and fun-filled manner, helping the children to learn and laugh, and building lasting relationships between children and adults. The book includes games to play at the beach, camping, in the car, on the plane, at picnics, at vacation homes, and at birthday parties. Some sample games: Word Tennis, Treasure Hunt, Pebble Pictures, Storytelling Starters. Age level is 4 and up.

Price: $
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Articles on Audio Games, Including: Audio Game, Simon (Game), Bbbeat, Bop It, Merlin (Game), Chillingham (Game), Touch Me (Arcade Game), Real Sound: Kaze No Regret, Torx (Game), Top It, Zing It, Brain Warp

Articles on Audio Games, Including: Audio Game, Simon (Game), Bbbeat, Bop It, Merlin (Game), Chillingham (Game), Touch Me (Arcade Game), Real Sound: Kaze No Regret, Torx (Game), Top It, Zing It, Brain Warp


Used – Please note that the content of this book primarily consists of articles available from Wikipedia or other free sources online. Hephaestus Books represents a new publishing paradigm, allowing disparate content sources to be curated into cohesive, relevant, and informative books. To date, this content has been curated from Wikipedia articles and images under Creative Commons licensing, although as Hephaestus Books continues to increase in scope and dimension, more licensed and public domai

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GT Countdown Top Ten Metal Gear Games

GT Countdown - Top Ten Metal Gear Games - Thumb

As the legacy of Hideo Kojima’s Metal Gear comes to a close, we look back fondly at the best of an elite franchise in gaming.
GameTrailers.com Videos Hub

GT Countdown Top Ten Metal Gear Games

GT Countdown - Top Ten Metal Gear Games - Thumb

As the legacy of Hideo Kojima’s Metal Gear comes to a close, we look back fondly at the best of an elite franchise in gaming.
GameTrailers.com Videos Hub

Atari 5200 Games: Pac-Man, Space Invaders, Mario Bros., Pole Position, Kaboom!, Star Raiders, Q*bert, Berzerk, Zaxxon, Pitfall!, Defender, Robotron: 2084, Joust, Breakout, Frogger, Centipede, Ms. Pac-Man, Missile Command, Dig Dug

Atari 5200 Games: Pac-Man, Space Invaders, Mario Bros., Pole Position, Kaboom!, Star Raiders, Q*bert, Berzerk, Zaxxon, Pitfall!, Defender, Robotron: 2084, Joust, Breakout, Frogger, Centipede, Ms. Pac-Man, Missile Command, Dig Dug


New – Please note that the content of this book primarily consists of articles available from Wikipedia or other free sources online. Pages: 79. Chapters: Pac-Man, Space Invaders, Mario Bros., Pole Position, Kaboom!, Star Raiders, Q*bert, Berzerk, Zaxxon, Pitfall!, Defender, Robotron: 2084, Joust, Breakout, Frogger, Centipede, Ms. Pac-Man, Missile Command, Dig Dug, Galaxian, Pitfall II: Lost Caverns, Choplifter, Gyruss, Star Wars, Klax, Gorf, Pengo, Rescue on Fractalus!, Popeye, Space Dungeon, B

Price: $
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Magnetic Travel Games

Magnetic Travel Games


These assorted magnetic classic board games make the perfect travel or camp companion. All game pieces needed for play are included, in a neat self contained 5.5″ tin box. Features: -Games are assorted and change per stock order. Game may not be the same as game pictured -Recommended for ages 8 and up
List Price: $ 7.99
Price: $ 7.99

Power Games

Power Games


Music entertains, but the music business is a power game. Steve’s connections make him a player-he can move an act to the top. So people do whatever he wants. But the rules of the game are changing and new players moving in. Steve is trying to adapt to the new game; Amber and her band are part of the new wave. They have different connections and as the balance of power shifts, she has her own plans for her band that don’t include him.

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The Nature of Computer Games: Play as Semiosis

The Nature of Computer Games: Play as Semiosis


New – What is the nature of computer games, and what happens when we play them? This book describes human play as a semiotic process and computer game play as a fundamental act of human cognition, or ? semiosis. Offering one of the first fully articulated theories of computer games based on game play rather than game texts, The Nature of Computer Games mounts a serious challenge to literary critics, cultural theorists, and others who might assume computer game play is best understood with refere

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Using Games to Enhance Learning and Teaching: A Beginner’s Guide

Using Games to Enhance Learning and Teaching: A Beginner’s Guide


Using Games to Enhance Learning and Teaching provides educators with easy and practical ways of using games to support student engagement and learning. Despite growing interest in digital game-based learning and teaching, until now most teachers have lacked the resources or technical knowledge to create games that meet their needs. The only realistic option for many has been to use existing games which too often are out of step with curriculum goals, difficult to integrate, and require high-end technology. Using Games to Enhance Learning and Teaching offers a comprehensive solution, presenting five principles for games that can be embedded into traditional or online learning environments to enhance student engagement and interactivity. Extensive case studies explore specific academic perspectives, and featured insights from professional game designers show how educational games can be designed using readily accessible, low-end technologies, providing an explicit link between theory and practice. Practical in nature, the book has a sound theoretical base that draws from a range of international literature and research.

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