1、Zipper Interactive总监Jeremy Dunham之前确认《海豹突击队4》首席设计师Travis Steiner已离开工作室，成立自己的新公司。但4月23日，Dunham又表示Steiner会在完成自己的工作后再离开公司发展自己的项目。考虑到Steiner已在Zipper Interactive就职八年有余，游戏邦认为这个还未曾透露实情的新项目值得关注。而且，Steiner很可能会延续该工作室的传统，开发射击类游戏。
3、EA公司声称，其通过游戏内各种活动和内部及合作工作室的努力，使日本地震救援工作捐赠总金额超过100万美元。公司设计多种方式为日本地震及海啸难民筹集资金，每个内部工作室也都通过自己的方法让玩家支持，收益通过红十字会等组织发往日本。公司表示还在加拿大伯纳比向日本捐赠食物，与Kids Against Hunger Organization配合在两天内打包10万份食物，这些物品将送往受地震影响最严重的日本东北部地区。
4、长久以来，电脑游戏都被人当成是有碍社交的事物。但瑞典于默奥大学学者Peter Stenberg近期发表论文，阐述网游有益改善玩家的社交技巧。他在热门网游《魔兽世界》中体验了250天，发现玩家在游戏中塑造的社交关系和人格特征对现实生活不无裨益。他在游戏中可以交易货物、参加公会活动并结交朋友。Stenberg向Sveriges Radio指出，网游的核心要点在于玩家组成了集体社会，这有益于改善社交技巧。（游戏邦注：瑞典青年关怀基金会曾将《魔兽世界》称为“电脑游戏可卡因”。）
1. Zipper Interactive community manager Jeremy Dunham has confirmed SOCOM 4 lead designer Travis Steiner has left the development studio to form his own start-up company. Dunham Tweeted yesterday that Steiner wanted to finish his work on SOCOM 4 before leaving to start his own project — and, other than a very simple flash page, the identity of that project is unknown.
Considering Steiner was with Zipper Interactive for about eight years, we’re sure that whatever his new excursion is will be worth keeping an eye on. Also, judging by his former studio’s lineage, we’re going to guess that said project will feature much shooting. (Source: Gamedaily)
2. Slowly but surely, Mojang’s indie blockbuster Minecraft is working its way into the collective consciousness of every human being on the planet. According to the game’s official site, over two million people have purchased the game — that’s about 28 percent of Minecraft’s seven million-odd registered users.
The title first hit one million paid downloads back in January, meaning to complete its mission for world domination, it only has to keep up this pace of one million purchases every three months for another … 1,700 years? Oh, man. They better keep those free content updates coming. (Source: Joystip)
3. Electronic Arts announced that it has raised a total of more than $1 million for Japanese relief efforts through various campaigns in its games and efforts by its internal and partner studios.
The publisher ran a number of programs designed to raise money for victims of last month’s earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan. Each of its internal studios had its own approach to attract support, and distributed all the proceeds through the Red Cross, Mercy Corps, and Americares.
EA Sports ran a donation program in FIFA 11 Ultimate Team, Visceral Games raised money by auctioning team-autographed Dead Space 2 memorabilia, and BioWare sold four signed and custom-painted Dragon Age II-branded Xbox 360 and PS3 systems on eBay.
On the online side, the company’s Pogo and The Sims divisions invited their audiences to make donations on a Red Cross co-branded microsite. Play4Free Easy Studio and Playfish invited players to buy themed virtual goods in their titles to fund and show support for relief efforts.
Tokyo-based Grasshopper Manufacture, which is creating Shadows of the Damned for the publisher’s EA Partners label, pledged to make a cash donation to relief funds. It released an iOS app, Frog Minutes, to raise money for the earthquake and tsunami victims.
EA says it also assisted food relief efforts at its EA Canada Burnaby campus, working with the Kids Against Hunger Organization for two days on packing 100,000 meals, which were meant to be sent to “the most severely quake-affected areas of northeastern Japan.”
“The devastating earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan last month touched everyone at EA,” says Curt Wilhelm, Real Estate VP at EA’s Facilities and Corporate Services. “We’re very proud to see our employees and Labels come together quickly and decisively to help those truly in need after such a tragic event.” (Source: Gamasutra)
4. COMPUTER games have long been regarded as anti-social, but one of the world’s most popular online games, World of Warcraft, has been credited by a Swedish academic with boosting gamers’ social skills.
Peter Stenberg, from Umea University in Sweden, spent 250 days online playing the game in order to study the game and has released a thesis exposing the social benefits of the game, news website The Local reported.
Ethnologist Stenberg found that the social relations and the persona players develop within the game often has an impact on real life.
“The core of online role-playing games lies in the players’ mundane, often repetitive, work-like everyday life,” he wrote in the introduction to his thesis ‘The serious game. On World of Warcraft and the leakage’.
The “leakage” refers to what Mr Stenberg claims is World of Warcraft’s ability to break down the previously rigid divide between reality and cyberspace.
“I slayed dragons, traded goods and attended parties; I made friends, joined guilds and collected herbs and minerals.
“I took part in rituals and learned written as well as unwritten social norms.”
All this, Mr Stenberg told Sveriges Radio, pointed to the central issue that World of Warcraft players formed a collective society.
“That challenges the rather persistent view of the computer game enthusiast as a lone figure with only a flickering screen for company;” he said.
World of Warcraft is played by over 12 million users. Sweden’s Youth Care Foundation has described it as “the cocaine of computer games”. (Source: news.com.au)
5. Game is the leading high street video games retailer in the UK. However, analysts from Deutsche Bank forecast that the company’s 1,300 stores will deliver profits of £37-39 million (about $61-64 million) for the year to January, a drop of around 60% from last year’s £90 million (just under $150 million) for the same period. This is despite strong sales for titles such as Call of Duty: Black Ops.
The migration of digital entertainment sales onto the Internet is blamed for the ailing fortunes of both Game and more general entertainment retailers such as HMV. In an attempt to counter this, Game announced a “step change” to its own online offering in February, pledging to treble digital sales to £300 million (just under $500 million) by 2013.
The analysts at Deutsche Bank suggest that Game could be at risk of takeover from GameStop, who do not yet have a significant presence in the mainland UK and are rumored to be interested in European expansion.
With Steam raking in an estimated $1 billion in revenue (not profit) last year and other digital services also proving popular, it’s easy to see why brick-and-mortar game stores might be a bit worried about our digital future. (Source: Gamepro)