Many Americans would never let their eight year old see an R-rated movie, but according to findings from a January 2013 Harris Poll of 2,278 U.S. adults (ages 18+) interviewed online, some children may be playing video games beyond their maturity level. While only one-third of Americans (32%) said they understand everything or a lot about video game ratings and nearly two in five (38%) indicated they know nothing about the system, the majority (66%) of those U.S. adults with video game-playing children in their households indicate using a video game’s rating to determine whether they allow their child to play it. And, despite nearly three in five Americans (58%) agreeing that there is a link between playing violent video games and teenagers showing violent behavior, 33% of those with young gamers under their roofs indicate allowing those children to play whatever games they want.
“The findings underscore the lack of awareness Americans have about the video game rating system, as well as the confusion in the market,” said Mike de Vere, President of the Harris Poll. “They also factor into a larger discussion playing out across our country and on a political stage around how violent games impact our youth, with President Obama recently announcing his desire to look into ways to fund research examining the impact of violent video games on children.”
Only a combined one-third of Americans (32%) indicate understanding either everything (14%) or a lot (18%) about video game ratings, which compares poorly against familiarity with movie ratings (77% combined, 34% everything, 43% a lot) and TV ratings (50%-17%-34%). Read more
The majority of consumers believe video games should encourage physical activity and that “physically active” video games can complement traditional exercise, according to a new survey released by UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH).
The survey of 1,015 adults, age 18 or older, found that nearly 75 percent of respondents believe that video games should include a component that encourages physical activity. Also, 70 percent said that physically active video games – defined in the survey as video games that require body movements to control the activity on the screen – can complement or supplement traditional exercise.
More than half (54 percent) said that physically active video games would encourage them to be more active, while 60 percent of survey respondents with children in the household said children should be encouraged to play physically active video games as a complement to traditional exercise. Read more
As one of the longest-running MMOs of eight years, Conquer Online continues to deliver new content to its players.
In the newest upcoming expansion, “Invasion of Pirates,” players will be able to fill the shoes of the new Pirate class, adventuring in what’s known as forbidden domain—the Flaming Sea.
But to walk and talk like a pirate, players must know the proper garb and weapons they can arm themselves with. NetDragon unveils the cannon bomb ability, pistols and more to players awaiting the new Invasion of Pirates storyline.
For the new class being introduced, like most historical pirates, pistols and rapiers are the tools of the treacherous trade. In Conquer Online, pirates will also have another powerful trick up their sleeve—the cannon bomb. Read more
Tibia, one of the oldest MMORPGs worldwide, is facing its annual winter update. The major game update consist both of map enhancements and feature additions.
The most exciting addition is without any doubt the introduction of mounts. For the first time in Tibia’s 13 year old history, players are now able to choose between several creatures (i.e. midnight panthers, war bears, etc) which can be tamed and ridden. More mounts are already planned and will be introduced with future updates.
For Tibia’s community, map enhancements have always been an important and inherent part of every new update. This time, two big free-to-play areas (Kazordoon, Outlaw Camp) have been completely overhauled and polished.
In addition, many new world quests have been introduced with this winter update, which will all be launched during the course of next year. World quests are time consuming challenges, which can only be mastered if many players of one game world work together in a coordinated and peaceful manner – sometimes for many days in a row.
As usual, the update is accompanied by the introduction of new items, spells achievements, quests and many more.
26% voting increase as gamers cast 1.54m votes and name Mass Effect 2 their ultimate game
It’s taken 200 days, over 4000 games and 1.54 million votes, with Mass Effect 2, Plants vs. Zombies and the Call of Duty franchise all emerging triumphant with two honours apiece, as the winners of the 28th Annual Golden Joystick Awards (http://www.goldenjoysticks.com) were announced today in London.
The most coveted accolade for “Ultimate Game of the Year” at the world’s most popular gaming awards, was presented to Electronic Arts for Mass Effect 2, which also scooped “RPG of the Year.”
Plants vs. Zombies from Popcap Games also netted two Golden Joysticks, winning “Download Game of the Year” and “Strategy Game of the Year.” Activision’s seemingly unstoppable Call of Duty franchise, continued its annual winning streak with 2010’s third double, bagging “Shooter of the Year” for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and “One to Watch” for the forthcoming Call of Duty: Black Ops – released next month.
The 28th Annual Golden Joystick Awards celebrates a successful year which saw gaming further embed itself into people’s daily lives – as one of the UK’s most popular modern leisure activities. Read more
14th free expansion for sci-fi MMO to launch in November
CCP has announced a new expansion for all subscribers and trial users of EVE Online that will be released in November, 2010.
EVE Online: Incursion will feature the escalating attacks of the deadly Sansha’s Nation which is bent on instituting itsown utopia and exacting vengeance against the pilots who stand in its way. Pilots can join public fleets and co-operate to destroy the Sansha incursions and return the universe to normal, receiving wealthy bounties, earning loyalty rewards and high commendation.
EVE Online: Incursion will also include many improvements as suggested by the Council of Stellar Management, as well as hardware upgrades, software improvements and new cluster components aimed at increasing game and fleet battle performance to even higher levels.
Further improvements include updating the character creator with CCP’s Carbon character technology for fresh pilot portraits, a Sansha Mothership and fighterbomber, the Noctis salvaging vessel, improvements to NPCs and their AI, new coveted loot and rewards, storyline events, amazing new visuals and a more dynamic and simplified system for Planetary Interaction.
EVEGate, the web-based social networking platform for pilots, sees improvements and additions such as new forums which underline the importance of organizational and communication tools in the virtual world. The expansion enhances the power of individual choice in the context of meaningful relationships with other players—EVE’s true strength—as highlighted in the “Causality” trailer and the classic “Butterfly Effect” trailer. Read more
burda:ic has announced that hero cards for LOCO – Land of Chaos Online’s new powerhouse character, AAKbah, are available to all players at no charge for the entirety of today, Monday Sept. 20! Anyone who would like to try out this structure-destroying hero can grab a card right now by logging into LOCO and heading to the AP Shop. Once activated, the hero card is good for 24 hours.
burda:ic has also revealed that new mission boards will be added to LOCO on a weekly basis. Mission boards are similar to a bingo card—when a row of quests on the mission board is completed, players are rewarded with a new item. If the entire mission board is completed, players receive a very rare and unique prize. All the new mission boards will be 7×7, giving players a total of 49 new quests to complete every week!
For more information about LOCO – Land of Chaos Online, head to the newly updated official site at http://loco.en.alaplaya.net/
Land of Chaos Online
Developed by Danal Entertainment, Land of Chaos Online is a truly next-gen multiplayer online game that features high-end graphics, a roster of 30 playable characters with unique skills and personalities, and hectic online combat. LOCO’s unique combination of RTS, Action, and RPG elements is guaranteed to give players around the world a gaming experience unlike anything they’ve ever seen.
Microsoft’s next flight simulator release, Microsoft Flight, is now being featured on the Fly Away Simulation flight simulation website.
The team at Fly Away Simulation has added a whole new dimension to its flight simulator portal following an exciting announcement by Microsoft. Microsoft has announced that they will be releasing the next in its series of flight simulator packages for PC users, with the next release being called Microsoft Flight.
Microsoft Flight is set to become the biggest complete flight simulator package available to PC users. With drastic enhancements in technology, and more powerful machines for the software to run on, the graphics will be like nothing yet seen in a simulation package.
Fly Away Simulation have already begun opening up sections of their website to cover this release. While actual news and information on the product is somewhat speculation at the moment, they have covered all angles on their website.
Fly Away Simulation have already featured Microsoft Flight preview videos, a screenshots gallery, discussion forums and news articles. The main attraction at Fly Away Simulation’s website is their flight simulator downloads section. The download section already boasts over 3,000 add-ons and enhancements for flight simulator packages and with a user base of over 125,000. With the release of Microsoft Flight round the corner, users can expect hundreds of downloads such as aircraft, scenery, tools and utilities to be made available following its release.
While there is no official release date for Microsoft Flight, users should expect the release to be before Christmas 2010. All aspects of the release will be covered on the Fly Away Simulation website (http://flyawaysimulation.com/) in real time.
Users should expect many new features in the next version of the Microsoft Flight Simulator package. New features will include many new aircraft, better scenery and graphics, more realistic flight environment and integration with the Windows Live system.
Aeria Games, a leading publisher of interactive entertainment, has initiated the Closed Beta Test (CBT) for Legendary Champions, the latest title to join its free-to-play catalogue. Players will be able to take an early look at Aeria’s new MMORPG, and get hands-on experience with some of history’s greatest heroes and villains, from King Arthur to Dracula.
Legendary Champions is a fantasy MMORPG which draws from many sources of culture to create a vast world filled with epic characters. Players will ally themselves with one of two factions and collect an army of heroes to aid them in solo quests and PvP battlefields, including DotA-style challenges with the game’s larger-than-life heroes. With over 60 iconic champions to choose, Legendary Champions allows players to decide, once and for all, who would win in a fight – Beowulf, Mulan, Alexander the Great, or Sinbad?
For more information about the game, and to get involved in the CBT, visit http://legendarychampions.aeriagames.com.
Tales of Pirates II is making a splash with players in Closed Beta. Pirates around the world can experience the joy of sailing into uncharted waters and battling against many formidable foes in search of lost treasures. While any pirate can demonstrate his might by using brute force against his foes, what sets the great ones apart is their inner strength. This will be put to the ultimate test in the game’s new instance, the Tribulation of Faith.
Tribulation of Faith
Courageous pirates who set out on this spiritual pilgrimage will journey to the plane of their inner soul. There they must face their greatest fears. Wave after wave of monsters from their own psyche will attack until the seeds of darkness and self-doubt planted in the pirates’ souls are overcome. This is no task for the faint of heart.
A Skeleton in the Closet
At the beginning of the instance, a horde of hideous monsters spawns. Players must defeat them quickly, because a new wave of evil creatures will appear every 100 seconds whether the earlier ones have been eliminated or not. As the waves mount, the resulting chaos can overwhelm the most powerful pirates. Even successful pirates can succumb when faced with so little time to rest. During the 10th and 20th waves, the pirates will come face to face with two of their greatest nightmares. If they survive long enough, they will finally meet the seed of evil in their soul, the skeleton in their closet, in the 25th and final wave. Read more