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Destiny

Half a BILLION in the making: Bungie's Destiny reviewed

Game Theory Repetition is a funny thing. If I was to write this review and say everything twice (say everything twice), you’d quite reasonably think I was daft. And yet, we gamers tend to delight in the repeat performance. Destiny - Mulitplayer The usual suspects? We even affectionately refer to it as “grinding” – the system whereby RPGs …
Mike Plant, 15 Sep 2014
Lego Minecraft

Microsoft's rumoured $2.5bn Minecraft gobble expected on Monday

Microsoft is reportedly planning to spend $2.5bn on the rumoured buyout of Minecraft maker Mojang, with a deal speculatively set for Monday. As The Register noted earlier this week, such an acquisition would be the first big payout for new Redmond chief Satya Nadella. Reuters reported that Microsoft would scoop up the game …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Sep 2014
twitchpokemon

Beware geeks bearing gifts: Steam-draining nasty spreads via Twitch

Infosec bods are warning of new malware spreading through game-streaming web hit Twitch: the software nasty subverts Steam accounts to drain player's wallets, and could take away all their precious weaponry. eskimo I've got 99 problems but a Twitch ain't one The malware spreads by bombarding users of Twitch's chat feature …
Iain Thomson, 12 Sep 2014

Gaming supremo creates maps that turn real world into Sim City

Ian Hetherington, formerly of games companies Realtime Worlds and Psygnosis - yes, the company responsible for '90s legend Lemmings - and has applied games technology to mapping, making your 3D navigation feel like a trip to Sim City. eeGeo's maps can show weather conditions – so you can make it snow – and time of day, with …
Simon Rockman, 10 Sep 2014
Denmark Minecraft map

What the BLOCK? Microsoft to gobble Minecraft-maker 'for $2bn'

New Microsoft boss Satya Nadella has set his sights on Minecraft maker Mojang as his first major acquisition, according to whispers. The move is probably worth the rumoured $2bn price tag in “woah” value alone, since it's practically the only thing that could have diverted attention away from Apple's iStuff launch on Tuesday. …

Celeb nudie iCloud pervs hatched photo-slurping Flappy Bird plot

The hacker ring behind last week's celebrity nude self iCloud privacy flap also planned to use malware to obtain private photographs from compromised Android phones. The hackers swapped snaps on the /stol/ (short for “stolen”) forum on image board AnonIB, a spinoff of the notorious 4chan, including intimate snaps of Jennifer …
John Leyden, 8 Sep 2014
Alienware's Area 51 system uses the new Haswell processors

Alienware injects EVEN MORE ALIEN into redesigned Area-51 gaming PC

Pics Alienware has spent five years honing its Area-51 gaming PC, and - in the process - has sexed up the beast with a menacing-looking new "triad chassis" design. The company said it had chosen the unusual and frankly intimidating shape (the inspiration may just have come from Hollywood: perhaps the movie Batman: The Dark Knight …
Team Register, 30 Aug 2014

Ouch... right in the VIDEO GAME: Lizard Squad attacks XBox, Twitch

The hacker crew calling itself the "Lizard Squad" has followed up on high profile assaults on Sony over the weekend with online attacks on Xbox Live and Twitch, a broadcast platform for gamers. Lizard Squad knocked out Twitch after launching a denial of service attack on the service on Tuesday night, but XBox Live proved more …
John Leyden, 27 Aug 2014
Sony Xperia Z2 tablet

Next moneybags kingpins of tech: Fondleslab game devs

The fondleslab games market is set to grow to a comparatively mammoth $13.3bn by the end of the decade, new research from Juniper has predicted. This represents a threefold rise from its current value of $3.6bn. According to a research paper issued by the bods at Juniper, the growth will be driven by ever-increasing storage …
Jasper Hamill, 26 Aug 2014
Logitech gaming keyboard and mouse

Six of the best gaming keyboard and mouse combos

Product round-up I would like to think my gaming skills make me invincible but if I ever do get pwned it’s always easiest to blame the hardware. In the case of the keyboards and mice I’m reviewing, it might be difficult to put forward a convincing argument that they are to blame, as they are all developed to make the very best of my gaming …
Lucy Orr, 26 Aug 2014
Photo of a stack of $100 bills

Amazon Twitch snatch catches Google the gobbler off guard

Amazon has confirmed its purchase of Twitch, the pose-streaming startup beloved of gamers, in a $970m deal which appears to confirm that video gaming is a spectator sport as well as a participatory one. "Today, I'm pleased to announce we've been acquired by Amazon. We chose Amazon because they believe in our community, they …
Iain Thomson, 25 Aug 2014
Killzone: Shadow Fall

Sony's 'Lizard Squad' battered PlayStation Network staggers to feet

Sony says it has beaten off the latest attack against its PlayStation Network – this time by the hacktivist group that calls itself the lizard Squad" – and insists all of the user information it stores is safe. "The networks were taken offline due to a distributed denial of service attack. We have seen no evidence of any …
Iain Thomson, 25 Aug 2014
SteamOS installer splash screen gets psychedelic

The agony and ecstasy of SteamOS: WHERE ARE MY GAMES?

Game Theory Gamers' perception of Steam over the years has changed considerably. This digital distribution platform, which was developed by Valve, was met with derision when it launched back in 2004 – but jump forward 10 years and Steam is the coolest kid on the block. What self-respecting gamer doesn’t blow all their money on a Steam sale …
Lucy Orr, 20 Aug 2014
AMD_R7_Series_SSD

AMD slaps 'Radeon' label on Tosh flash: >Beard stroke< Hmm, cunning ...

X86 CPU and Radeon graphics chipper AMD has come out with an SSD line using Toshiba/OCZ componentry. It's called the Radeon R7-Series, which us a sideways extension of existing graphics processor branding. The SSD uses 19nm Toshibs MLC flash and has been designed, we understand, for balanced read and write workloads. The speeds …
Chris Mellor, 19 Aug 2014

Things are looking up in Flappy Bird sequel

Game developer Dong Nguyen, the man behind Flappy Bird, has revealed the name and look of his next game. “Swing Copters” is the new time-waster's moniker and the gameplay, as recorded by toucharcade, looks an awful lot like Flappy Bird turned 90 degrees to the left. The one new element looks to be swinging hammers that mean the …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Aug 2014
Oculus Rift VR system prototype

Oculus sucked by Zuck? 'I'm over it' – Minecraft supremo Notch

The man behind Minecraft says he is warming to the virtual-reality headsets made by Facebook-owned Oculus – and backing off a threat to never port his world-building game to the Rift hardware. Markus "Notch" Persson tweeted that he was "over" the devouring of Oculus by Mark Zuckerberg's web advertising giant. And about now I'm …
Shaun Nichols, 18 Aug 2014
California Games

Wetsuits, sunshine, bikini babes and a competitive streak: Epyx California Games

Antique Code Show California Games from Epyx cooked up a successful franchise with its winning combination of sunshine, grazed shins, wetsuits and bikini babes. Indeed, its well-considered play mechanics, delivered with multiplayer action and some slightly twisted humour, soon cemented its cult classic status in history. Video from 2004 looking …
Giles Hill, 14 Aug 2014
Xbox in 3D

XBOX One will learn to play media from USB and DLNA sources

Microsoft has announced that its XBOX One will soon gain the power to play media stored on USB devices and gadgets compatible with the Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) standard. Redmond isn't saying just when this will come about, offering only the promise that “A new app will be available soon”. USB support will be …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Aug 2014
3D graphics

What's next for OpenGL for the desktop, mobile devices, and the web?

Siggraph 2014 Graphics standards body the Khronos Group has called on industry players to help draft the next generation of the OpenGL spec, a major rewrite that's expected to help unify the OpenGL development model for desktop PCs, mobile devices, and the web. "Fast-paced work on detailed proposals and designs are already underway, and any …
Neil McAllister, 11 Aug 2014
Farmville on the iPhone

Farmville maker Zynga delays new games after losing 57 MILLION users

Zynga has slashed its financial forecast for this year and delayed the launch of several new titles after reporting weaker-than-expected second quarter results. The company, best known for its FarmVille game on Facebook, has lost 57 million monthly active users since the same quarter last year, dropping to 130 million from 187 …
android tongue

Multiple user accounts coming to Android phones 'n' slabs

It looks like user accounts are coming to Android. This thread in the Android developer preview mailing list includes a post in which a user asks (with spelling and punctuation anomalies) for something like this: Tablets are able to have multiple accounts for multiple users, allowing the users to install an app only for …
Microsoft's digital TV tuner for European XBOX One

Digital dongle transforms European XBOXen into tellies

Microsoft has announced that European XBOX One owners will soon be able to acquire a digital TV tuner for their games consoles. The ₤24.99 or €29.99 device is pretty simple. Plug one end into a TV antenna. Plug the other into the XBOX. If you don't know which end belongs where, it won't take you long to figure it out. Once you …
US soldiers fire a Javelin missile. Credit: US Army

Google pulls Gaza games from Play store

Google has removed the games Bomb Gaza and Gaza Assault: Code Red from its Play app store. The games tasked players with destroying Hamas combatants and rockets without killing civilians, and have been criticised as glorifying violence. Unlike Apple, which pre-approves all games on iTunes, Google does not have a rigorous …
Simon Rockman, 5 Aug 2014

BANGKOK-BLOCKED: Thailand's dictators 'ban dictator sim Tropico 5'

Thailand's censorious military junta has banned Tropico 5, a game in which players assume the role of a censorious dictatorial ruler. That's according to a report by the Associated Press: the game's Thai distributor told the news wire that the nation's Culture Ministry blocked the city-building title from sale on Monday. …
Shaun Nichols, 5 Aug 2014

What the FLOCK? Addictive 'Flappy Bird' is back – and it's coming for your family

Pic Infuriating yet stupidly popular crapp Flappy Bird has officially returned, it appears – and it's now a multi-player game called Flappy Birds Family. It's available for free for Amazon's set-top box, the Android-based Fire TV. According to its app store listing, the software was built by Dotgears Studio, aka Flappy Bird creator …
Naughty Dog - The Last of Us Remastered

Coming to a console near you: Destiny beta and The Last of Us Remastered

Game Theory During my time with the Destiny beta I’ve veered from game to game in a bid to nail down exactly what it is that Destiny reminds me of most. Activision Destiny Beta Character classes: suits you At first that game was Halo and no prizes for guessing why. Not only is Destiny built by Halo’s creator, Bungie, but with its sci-fi …
Mike Plant, 31 Jul 2014
Wii U

Nintend-OH NO! Sorry, Mario – your profits are in another castle

Nintendo is reeling after it posted a $96m loss on the quarter to June 30. The Mario maker said that the quarter, its first of the fiscal year, brought total sales of 74.69bn Yen ($726m), down 8.4 per cent over last year's quarter, and a net income loss of 9.92bn Yen ($96m) compared to a 8.62bn profit last year. That eyebrow- …
Shaun Nichols, 30 Jul 2014
PlayStation Network

Sony tries to make PlayStation Network hack row go away with $15m in cash and games

Sony has offered a $15m settlement to gamers after its PlayStation Network (PSN) was comprehensively pwned, but it refuses to admit that it was at fault. In April 2011 the Japanese giant was forced to shut down PSN after hackers got into its system and pillaged user accounts for information. While credit card information was …
Iain Thomson, 24 Jul 2014
Nvidia Shield Tablet

Shields up! Nvidia crams Tegra K1 into gaming slab to rival your PS3

Nvidia is touting a new 8-inch, Tegra K1-powered Android tablet as a gaming gadget for hardcore players. The graphics biz said its Shield slab was designed to offer punters high-end games performance on the move, with support for Android games and streaming PC titles when connected to desktops with Nvidia's GameStream tech. …
Shaun Nichols, 22 Jul 2014

Games industry set for $5 BILLION haircut, warn beancounters

The computer games industry is set to see its revenues slip from $46.5bn this year to $41bn by 2019, a new study from Juniper Research has claimed. That's about a 12 per cent drop over the next five years. A new market forecast probing the PC and console games market also predicted that consoles will lose market share, with 50 …
Jasper Hamill, 22 Jul 2014

Microsoft's Black Thursday: XBox Live goes down as XBox Studio canned

Microsoft's Xbox Live gaming service fell offline this afternoon, San Francisco time, and remained down for at least a couple of hours. The US giant reported that access to its Xbox Live Core Services and TV, Music and Video services were "limited". "We understand that some of our members are running into issues when attempting …
Jack Clark, 17 Jul 2014

Ex-despot Noriega sues: How dare Call of Duty make me look like, like...

Brutal former Central American dictator Manuel Noriega is mimicking a Hollywood starlet by launching legal proceedings against a computer games designer for using his likeness in a popular franchise. Noriega is suing Activision for "blatant misuse, unlawful exploitation and misappropriation for economic gain" of his image in …
Jasper Hamill, 17 Jul 2014

Dungeons & Dragons relaunches with 'freemium' version 5.0

Dungeons & Dragons is BAAAACK – and it's brought a freemium business model with it. The venerable game was re-released yesterday, with a new Starter Pack reaching retailers and offering a rulebook for players, an “adventure book” for dungeon masters plus a handful of dice to get things going. The $19.99 kit is not, however, …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Jul 2014
Atari Games: Gauntlet

Running the Gauntlet: Atari's classic ... now and then

Antique Code Show Rumours of a new version of the Atari classic Gauntlet at E3 took me straight back to the arcade circa 1985. I remember being dwarfed as a preteen by the fearsome presence of Gauntlet’s massive cabinet. It dominated the arcade and the rest of the machines in the room with its huge screen and impressive multicoloured keypad. …
Lucy Orr, 16 Jul 2014

'We screwed up' sighs Sony bigwig after gaming portals collapse in DNS cock-up riddle

A couple of Sony's websites disappeared from the internet on Tuesday, leading some angry console fiddlers to accuse the Japanese giant of forgetting to pay its domain name bills. The websites www.soe.com and www.SonyOnline.net serve as portals to Sony Online Entertainment's gaming world, allowing players to take part in games …
Jasper Hamill, 16 Jul 2014
HP SlateBook 14

Reg hardware hunter spots HP SlateBook 14 Android in the wild

Pics July isn’t over yet and so it follows, neither is, er, marketing Christmas*. This time Currys/PC World was playing host to this summer PR tech fest that showcases products that’ll be in stores leading up to festive season. Push aside the wrapping paper and ribbons and with any luck you’ll spot an early outing of a product or …
Bob Dormon, 14 Jul 2014
Angry Birds pig

Apple rats on Google to FTC: You thought WE were in-app-ropriate?

Apple turned in Google to the Federal Trade Commission for the same in-app purchase issues for which the iPhone-maker itself had been criticised, according to a report in Politico. Earlier this year, the FTC started cracking down on iPhone and iPad apps that allowed kids to spend their parents’ hard-earned dosh without their …
Destiny

Prepare yourself for PlayStation pr0n: Sony shows off PS 4 beta-fest

Pics It has been out in Japan since November, but Sony’s PlayStation TV is due in the UK this autumn and Sony was waving around a few of its game streaming boxes in London last week. The Japanese firm also presented a range of forthcoming games – most still in beta – along with that unicorn of gaming, a white PS4. Sony PlayStation 4 …
Bob Dormon, 8 Jul 2014
Valiant Hearts

Battle ready: Valiant Hearts and Company of Heroes: Western Front

Game Theory Later this month we commemorate the 100th anniversary of Europe's plunge into the deadly turmoil of World War I. Valiant Hearts War stories The role of dogs in the Great War was varied – sniffing out explosives and lugging equipment are just two of their tasks that spring to mind – but I can presume they played a much …
Lucy Orr, 8 Jul 2014

Girl gamers sexism row: Top e-sports federation finds reverse gear

The International E-Sports Federation (IESF), an organisation that promotes computer games as sport and organises tournaments around the world, has decided it will no longer operate separate contests for men and women. Instead, the outfit has abolished its male division in favour of an “Open for All” division and a “Female” …
Grand Theft Auto Lindsay Lohan lookalike

Lindsay Lohan sues Grand Theft Auto V makers for 'using her image'

Actress Lindsay Lohan is suing game devs Rockstar and Take-Two for allegedly copying her into their Grand Theft Auto V (GTAV) game. Grand Theft Auto Lindsay Lohan lookalike Lohan claims that the character of the rather vapid actress "Lacey Jonas" in the game amounts to using her likeness without permission and has accused …
Angry Birds Valentines

Hate phone games that make you buy in-app gumble? Congrats, you're a niche player

The mobile games sector will swell in value by more than a third over the next two years, a new report from Juniper Research has claimed. According to its figure, the sector will be worth a mammoth $28.9 billion, up almost 38 percent on the $20.9bn it is apparently worth now. The report, titled Mobile & Handheld Games: Discover …
Jasper Hamill, 18 Jun 2014