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Minecraft as the Ultimate Coding Education System?

Anonymous Coward writes | about a month and a half ago

Programming 0

An anonymous reader writes "Researchers at UCSD have launched software to help make Minecraft into the ultimate platform for teaching coding to kids. It's like Scratch but for Minecraft, allowing kids to create mods for Minecraft in their browser. They're also offering online Minecraft modding courses for kids, granting college computer science credit hours through UCSD.

The press release:

http://www.jacobsschool.ucsd.e..."

Link to Original Source

Star Citizen Arena Commander (Dogfighting Module) Launched!

HannethCom (585323) writes | about 3 months ago

Games 0

HannethCom (585323) writes "At a hefty 10gb download, Arena Commander Launched!
Don't forget to download the Arena Commander Pilon's Guide.
If you already have the hanger module installed, it will auto update. Else you can go to the Star Citizen Download page.

For those who don't know, Star Citizen is Chris Roberts' new space sim persistent universe. It will also have a single player fully fleshed out story called Squadron 42. Chris Roberts is the man behind the Wing Commander series.
The project is crowd funded and is being released to backers in modules. The first was the hanger allowing you to see the ships you pledged for. The second module just released is the dog fighting module, now called Arena Commander. The Arena Commander module will be in the full Star Citizen game to allow you to fight your friends, or foes in a simulator where you will not have to worry about loosing your hard work of putting together your in game ship."

Cuban Video Game Recreates Revolutionary History

Hugh Pickens writes (1984118) writes | about a year and a half ago

Games 0

Hugh Pickens writes writes "The Guardian reports that Cuban programmers have unveiled a new 3D video game that puts a revolutionary twist on gaming, letting players recreate decisive clashes from the 1959 uprising in which many of their grandparents fought. "The player identifies with the history of Cuba," says Haylin Corujo, head of video game studies for Cuba's Youth Computing Club and leader of the team of developers who created Gesta Final – roughly translated as "Final Heroic Deed". "You can be a participant in the battles that were fought in the war from '56 to '59." The game begins with the user joining the 82 rebels who in 1956 sailed to Cuba from Mexico aboard the Granma. Players then fight their way through swamps shoulder-to-shoulder with bearded guerrillas clad in the olive green of Fidel Castro and Ernesto "Che" Guevara to topple 1950s Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista. The game lets you pick from three player profiles, one in an olive hat similar to the one Fidel Castro was known for, another wearing a Guevara-style beret and the last with the kind of helmet worn by the ill-fated Camilo Cienfuegos in many revolution-era photographs. Rene Vargas, a 29-year-old gamer who tried his hand at "Gesta Final" when it was presented at a technology fair in Havana last week, says the graphics were surprisingly sophisticated. "Bearing in mind the level of technical support there is in Cuba, it looks pretty good," says Vargas. There are about 783,000 computers in this country of some 11 million inhabitants, according to government statistics from 2011. Private ownership of computers is low, but many Cubans access them at work, school or cyber cafes. "We developed (it) keeping in mind the purchasing power and reality of Cubans," says Corujo. "It doesn't require incredible technological features.""

Mozilla and Epic Games Teaming Up To Bring Unreal Engine Gaming To The Browser

MojoKid (1002251) writes | about a year and a half ago

Games 0

MojoKid writes "There’s no doubt that gaming on the Web has improved dramatically in recent years, but Mozilla believes it has developed new technology that will deliver a big leap in what browser-based gaming can become. The company developed a highly-optimized version of Javascript that’s designed to “supercharge” a game’s code to deliver near-native performance. And now that innovation has enabled Mozilla to bring Epic’s Unreal Engine 3 to the browser. As a sort of proof of concept, Mozilla debuted this BananaBread game demo that was built using WebGL, Emscripten, and the new JavaScript version called “asm.js”. Mozilla says that it’s working with the likes of EA, Disney, and ZeptoLab to optimize games for the mobile Web, as well."
Link to Original Source

Razer Edge Gaming Tablet Reviewed

adeelarshad82 (1482093) writes | about a year and a half ago

Portables 0

adeelarshad82 (1482093) writes "After being tweaked and polished for months with the help of feedback from pro gamers and enthusiasts alike, Razer's Project Fiona has finally come of age. Re-named as Razer Edge Pro, this gaming tablet is way more than a mere plaything. Razer Edge Pro is a beast which packs a dual-core Intel Core i7-3517U Ivy Bridge processor with 8GB of RAM and an Nvidia GeForce GT 640M LE graphics card with 2GB of dedicated memory. All this in a small 7 by 11 by 0.8 inches wide frame which weighs only 2.14 pounds. Comparing the Razer Edge to anything else is tough, considering that it doesn't necessarily have a true competitor. However in a series of performance comparisons with other powerful tablets and ultraportable gaming laptops, Razer Edge performed better than the tablets but wasn't at par with ultraportable gaming laptops. For instance when comparing scores from 3DMark 11, the Edge Pro scored 2,503 points at entry settings and 504 points in extreme mode putting it ahead of both competing tablets, the Microsoft Surface Pro (1,055 Entry, 206 Extreme) and Samsung ATIV SmartPC (1,044 Entry, couldn't run at Extreme mode), but behind the gaming-focused laptops, like the the Maingear Pulse 11 (3,868 Entry, 724 Extreme) and the Razer Blade (3,458 Entry, 716 Extreme). What's baffling is that with all accessories incuded (gamepad dock and the console dock) the final price of the tablet is a cool $1,870, which most expensive than not only the two tablets tested but also the two gaming gaming laptops compared. It remains to be seen whether the Razer Edge Pro is something special or just on the edge of it."

Accountant Creates An Entire Role-Playing Game With Microsoft Excel

luckymutt (996573) writes | about a year and a half ago

Games 0

luckymutt (996573) writes "Microsoft Excel can be a powerful tool in the office, however, Canadian accountant Cary Walkin took the program to a whole new level by http://designtaxi.com/news/356751/Accountant-Creates-An-Entire-Role-Playing-Game-With-Microsoft-Excel/> creating an entire role-playing game (RPG) inside a Excel workbook.

Called ‘Arena.Xlsm’, it features a level system where players have to defeat a series of enemies in order to progress through the game, and gain better weapons and skills.
Download here"

Link to Original Source

AI programmers struggle to makes games 'imitate life'

coondoggie (973519) writes | about a year and a half ago

AI 1

coondoggie writes "Artificial intelligence, a field of programming employed by video game developers to make characters smarter and improve their decisions, still has a ways to go before it actually yields intelligent characters. "There are AI games with very little 'I' in them," said Brian Schwab, senior AI and gameplay engineer at Blizzard Entertainment, which has published the hugely successful "Warcraft," "StarCraft" and "Diablo" series of strategy games."
Link to Original Source

Dos Emulation Arrives on the Raspberry Pi

Anonymous Coward writes | about a year and a half ago

Games 0

An anonymous reader writes "Homebrew Coder Pate has released a Dos Emulator for the Raspberry Pi, originally released for the Nintendo DS and Android the emulator currently can emulate a CPU: 80486 processor, including the protected mode features (for running DOS4GW games) but without virtual memory support. The emulation runs at a speed of around 20MHz 80486 (which equals a 40MHz 80386) machine. It has support for Super VGA graphics, Soundblaster 2.0, Memory, USB Keyboard and Mouse. Perfect for playing old classics such as Doom, Duke Nukem 3d and Theme Park."

Agawi Brings PC Games To Tablets (Sort Of)

jfruh (300774) writes | about a year and a half ago

Games 0

jfruh writes "You might remember iSwifter, a service that promised to bring Flash games to iOS devices by running them on their servers and then streaming them to your phone or tablet. Well, the service as been rebranded as Agawi, and now wants to bring any PC game to any Internet-enabled handheld device. Agawi hopes to focus on indie gaming houses that might not have the resources to write a full-on port."
Link to Original Source

Video Game Industry Starting to Feel Heat on Gun Massacres

Anonymous Coward writes | about a year and a half ago

Games 0

An anonymous reader writes "In the 2003 film 'Daredevil', Ben Affleck's character says 'I'm not the bad guy here' twice — first as a statement, then as a question. While much of the scrutiny following the lone gunman-perpetrated massacres at Aurora, CO and Newtown, CT has fallen on the National Rifle Association and its lobbying efforts against gun control, the shooters in both of the aforementioned incidents seemed to have been encouraged (to say the least) by violence in movies and video games. The New York Daily News' Mike Lupica reported last week that investigators of the Newtown case found a huge spreadsheet in the Lanza home where 20-year old Adam Lanza had methodically charted hundreds of past gun massacres, including the number of people killed and the make and model of weapons used. A Connecticut policeman told Lupica 'it sounded like a doctoral thesis, that was the quality of the research', and added, '[Mass killers such as Lanza] don’t believe this was just a spreadsheet. They believe it was a score sheet. This was the work of a video gamer'. In response, the Entertainment Software Association and other lobbyists representing the video game industry have ramped up their Washington lobbying efforts. While still tiny in dollar terms next to the NRA's warchest, this effort seemed to help derail a proposal to fund a Justice Department study of the effects of video games on gun violence, offered as an amendment on the gun control bill by a Republican senator. A spokesman summarized the ESA's position: 'Extensive research has already been conducted and found no connection between media and real-life violence'."

Capcom is Bringing Ducktales Back

jones_supa (887896) writes | about a year and a half ago

Games 0

jones_supa (887896) writes "Many of Slashdotters are probably aware of the 1989 Nintendo Entertainment System platformer classic DuckTales, designed around the Disney cartoon series. Capcom announced today at their PAX East panel that they are resurrecting the beloved game. Developed by Wayforward and Capcom, DuckTales: Remastered is something of a remake based on the original version. The embedded video shows some solid back-to-basics platformer action. The game will be out this summer for Xbox Live, PSN, and Wii U."

Time team: Meet the gamers keeping retro consoles alive

Anonymous Coward writes | about a year and a half ago

Role Playing (Games) 0

An anonymous reader writes "You see those stories popping up every now and then — new Dreamcast game released, first SNES game in 15 years etc — but an in-depth feature published today takes a look at the teams behind the retro revival, and looks at why they do what they do. Surprisingly, there seems to be a viable audience for new releases — one developer says his games sell better on Dreamcast than they do on Nintendo Wii. Even if the buyers vanished, the retro games would still keep coming though: "I wager I'd have to be dead, or suffering from a severe case of amnesia, to ever give this up completely,” says one developer."
Link to Original Source

Blizzard announces Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft "Card Game"

UgLyPuNk (1166251) writes | about a year and a half ago

Games 0

UgLyPuNk (1166251) writes "Blizzard has revealed its "something new" at PAX East 2013: Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft — a "charming collectible strategy game set in the Warcraft universe."We've been working on a little something, different from our other games, and we're pleased to invite you to be the first to see it. It's not a sequel, expansion or that rumored next-gen MMO, but it's something we're excited for you to get your hands on.""
Link to Original Source

Shadowrun Returns: Why a gaming legend ditched Microsoft for indie freedom

Anonymous Coward writes | about a year ago

Role Playing (Games) 0

An anonymous reader writes "Shadowrun is making something of a comeback, with no fewer than two separate games in development after being crowdfunded by Kickstarter fans. In an interview published this week, long time Shadowrun game developer Mitch Gitelman talks about the long journey it took to get to this point: in fact, for Gitelman and Shadowrun creator Jordan Weisman to get a publisher interested, they needed to go multi-platform, and that was not something Microsoft (which owned the rights to the series) was willing to do. "“Basically, Microsoft is focused on their own platforms [IE Xbox and Windows] and the publishers we spoke to did not want to limit the potential audience for the game," he says. Check out the full interview for how they cut the Gordian Knot."
Link to Original Source

Game dev Tommy Refenes: EA's apathy and refunds do more damage than piracy

phenopticon (872198) writes | about a year and a half ago

DRM 0

phenopticon writes "From game developer Tommy Refenes, a blog post that details from his experience why developer apathy and return refunds are infinitely more damaging than piracy or DRM cracking.

Quote: I think I can safely say that Super Meat Boy has been pirated at least 200,000 times. We are closing in on 2 million sales and assuming a 10% piracy to sales ratio does not seem unreasonable. As a forward thinking developer who exists in the present, I realize and accept that a pirated copy of a digital game does not equate to money being taken out of my pocket. Team Meat shows no loss in our year end totals due to piracy and neither should any other developer."

Link to Original Source

Villians & Vigilantes Creators Win Lawsuit, Rights to Game

rcade (4482) writes | about a year and a half ago

Role Playing (Games) 0

rcade (4482) writes "Jeff Dee and Jack Herman, the creators of the old-school super-hero roleplaying game Villains & Vigilantes, have won a copyright and trademark lawsuit over the game's publisher Scott Bizar of Fantasy Games Unlimited. Magistrate Judge Mark E. Aspey of the U.S. District Court of Arizona ruled that Jeff Dee and Jack Herman own the rights to the game based on the 1979 contract they reached with Bizar. The court also found that Bizar never had the right to sell derivative products or ebook PDF editions, which are a big deal to tabletop publishers these days. Too bad this judge didn't hear Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster's case."

Oculus Rift loses Doom 3 BFG edition from Launch package, gains Team Fortress 2.

skade88 (1750548) writes | about a year and a half ago

Games 0

skade88 (1750548) writes "Neoseeker and the Verge are reporting that the Oculus Rift launch will no longer have Doom 3 BFG support. But in some good news to off set the bad, Valve will be releasing an Oculus ready version of TF2 when the Dev kits ship.

For those backers who are upset about not having Doom 3 BFG edition support on launch of the Oculus Rift, they are offering the following options:

$20 Steam Wallet credit, perfect for buying your next game on Steam (including DOOM 3 BFG Edition without Rift developer kit support if you still want it).

$25 Oculus Store credit, which can be applied to future purchases at the Oculus Store including Oculus Latency Testers, new Oculus t-shirts, and more Rift development kits.

A full refund for your pledge. If you’re unhappy with the options above, we completely understand. Email us at support@oculusvr.com, and we’ll be happy to discuss your specific order or refund your pledge in full."

Link to Original Source

Flaw Leaves EA Origin Platform Users Open to Attack

Trailrunner7 (1100399) writes | about a year and a half ago

Security 0

Trailrunner7 (1100399) writes "Five years ago, a pair of security researchers write a book called Exploiting Online Games in which they described a number of ways in which attackers could take advantage of weaknesses in the protection systems for various gaming platforms. Now, with online gaming having emerged as a massive business, other researchers have picked up the ball and begun finding serious flaws. The latest vulnerability to be disclosed is in EA's Origin online game-delivery system, which researchers from ReVuln have shown can be exploited remotely to run malicious code on users' machines.

The problem lies in the way that Origin's custom URI handles commands. Origin is EA's platform for delivering and enabling users to play games without downloading them or playing them from a disc. In order to access content, users download a client that connects to the Origin server. To do so, the client uses a custom URI handler, origin://. So a command to the system to launch a game begins with that URI and then contains several other components. An attacker who can discover the Game ID--which is a unique identifier for each game--can use local vulnerabilities on a user's machine to execute arbitrary code."

Link to Original Source

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