Archive for November, 2011

Barcraft lets you watch pro gamers in your local boozer – Console news

Is online gaming coming out of the bedroom and into the boozer? We went along to a pub in North London to investigate the new ‘Barcraft’ trend that began in Seattle and has spread throughout North America and Europe. Landlords are turning off the footy and streaming tournaments of strategy blockbuster Starcraft II instead.

Hundreds of fans packed out the Assembly House pub in Kentish Town last weekend for a marathon two-day viewing session. They watched pro players compete in the Major League Gaming Starcraft II tournament held in Providence, Rhode Island. At stake was a $50,000 first prize and a serious buff to their reputations.

Competition among elite Starcraft II players is fierce, with top-ranking gamers such as Huk, Idra and Leenock performing upwards of 300 in-game actions every minute. But putting in the hours to master the game can reap great rewards, with the best players earning hundreds of thousands of pounds in prize money and endorsements.

Barcraft London organisers say convincing pubs to show their sport wasn’t easy. They approached 40 establishments in the capital before they found one willing to put Starcraft II on their plasma screens. But the landlord who said yes is reaping the benefits — he says Starcraft fans are better behaved and stay longer than fans of other sports. Since Starcraft tournaments are screened free of charge, he can also avoid licensing fees.

But what is it about Starcraft II that makes it such a popular spectator sport? How do the pub’s regulars react when they stumble upon hundreds of fired-up fans screaming at a computer screen? And should traditional sports be worried about this new trend? Find out all this and more by watching the video. You can hear more on this week’s CNET UK podcast, where we’ll be discussing the future of digital sports.

And if you want to attend or set up a Barcraft event in your area, you can contact the organisers on Facebook or Twitter. Let us know what you think down in the comments, or over on our own Facebook page.

Our site is updated several times every day with all latest gaming system news and console reviews.

Posted on November 30th, 2011 by  |  No Comments »

PS3 Slim news: PlayStation PS3 Move.Me Game Designed to Help Kids Cope with Cancer

Over the summer I had the privilege of working with a group of doctors, graduate students, and other professionals on a very special video game code named the “P.E. Game” or patient empowerment game.

Read Full Post is updated frequently per day with the very latest Free PS3 news and reviews.

Posted on November 29th, 2011 by  |  No Comments »

Games industry, you deserve to lose to Apple

The games industry is trying to save its business by strangling the second-hand games market. But if it doesn’t start treating paying customers with more respect, in a year or two there won’t be anything left worth saving.

Arkham City limits

Do you like Batman? I like Batman. That’s why, like 4.6 million other chumps, I paid about 40 quid for Batman: Arkham City in the first week it came out, happy to part with my cash in exchange for the opportunity to smack someone in the chops with a Batarang.

But while the game turned out to be cracking fun, there was something that soured my enjoyment before I even donned Batman’s pointy-eared cowl. To play the bits where you get to be Catwoman, I had to enter a 20-letter code printed on a bit of paper inside the box, and initiate a 250MB download.

That’s about 500 per cent more hassle than anyone who’s just thrown down forty sheets should ever have to endure. Being a naive soul, I asked Twitter why it was proving so hard to play the game I’d just paid for, and was promptly informed that making the Catwoman bits a code-reliant download are a measure taken by the game’s publisher to prevent second-hand sales.

For, you see, that code only works once. So anyone thinking of buying the game second-hand would have to pay extra to download the Catwoman missions, which take up what I (having completed the game) would judge to comprise a significant portion of the story.

In essence, any copy of the game that isn’t brand-new is a lame duck, only fit to be foisted upon unsuspecting nieces and nephews who won’t notice half the game is missing. And if you haven’t connected your console to the Internet, those Catwoman missions will forever lie beyond your grasp.

Thank you for buying our game. Now prove it

This isn’t an isolated situation, neither is it a new one. Battlefield 3 requires you to input a one-use code that comes with the game in order to play it online (ludicrous when the game is so online-focused in the first place), as does Uncharted 3.

Assassin’s Creed: Revelations has a similar setup, in which your code is tied to a single Uplay account, a separate service run by publisher Ubisoft you’ll need to sign up for in order to play online. And if you’re anything like me, seeing the words ‘account’, ‘sign up’ and ‘Uplay’ used in conjunction will have your enthusiasm levels gargling down the drain.

So to recap, having paid full price for a game, not only do you have to sit there like a loser, painstakingly entering codes to make your new game work, you’re then left with a physical lump of matter you legally own, but will struggle to sell.

If you’re the kind of person who likes to wait a bit and then buy a game pre-owned, you’ll have to go through the hassle of buying separate codes to make your games work properly. And that’s saying nothing of the fact that many blockbuster titles launch with expensive DLC ready to go live that really could have been squeezed on to the disc. Thanks guys. Thanks a bunch. Here, have another forty quid.

Second-hand smoked

With these measures games publishers are out to kill the second-hand trade. Should you care that it’s now much harder to lend a game to a friend, or sell it on once you’re finished? Yes you should, because despite introducing these restrictive measures, games are still very expensive to buy. Expensive to buy, hard to sell. A winning combination for them, but not for you.

When I download a movie from iTunes or play a song on Spotify, I know I can’t sell those things on or loan them to a buddy, but I don’t mind because the fact that they’re digital products, devoid of expensive physical materials and shipping costs, means they’re a darn sight cheaper than buying a DVD or a CD. But here is a situation where you’re paying full physical-media prices for something that basically exists in half-digital form.

Okay, having to buy a game new, enter a code and sign up for some stuff you don’t want isn’t the end of the world. But it’s a degree of annoyance you shouldn’t have to put up with, and it smacks of easy arrogance and a level of complacency that the games industry can ill afford.

Because I can play games on my iPhone, and I can play them on the iPad, and if I don’t have the cash to splash on those devices I can play them on an iPod touch. Games for iOS and Android are good. They’re really good. And there are thousands of them. You can download them in seconds, and usually for less than a quid.

Mobile masterpieces

In the time that 250MB worth of Catwoman took to squeeze itself down the intertubes into my Xbox 360, I could have paid for and be playing Tiny Wings, Whale Trail, Jetpack Joyride or any of the other brilliant timewasters that populate Apple’s App Store.

Hardcore gamers will scoff, but they shouldn’t. Mobile games have come on leaps and bounds in the last few years, and with processing power in smart phones and tablets increasing at an alarming rate, it won’t be long before the only thing that separates console games from mobile games is the fact that you have to walk to HMV to buy the bloody thing.

Angry Birds, which debuted in 2009, has been downloaded 500 million times across its various editions. If you combine the sales of all the core Super Mario games ever made, they total about 262 million. As former Escapist editor-in-chief Russ Pitts writes for GameSpot, “Think about that while you’re spending your Q4 reading and writing about AAA ‘blockbusters’.”

Kings of convenience

People will tell you games publishers are only protecting themselves with these measures, that when you buy a game second-hand none of that cash goes to the game-maker, and that these tools are a valuable weapon in the fight against piracy.

But try this one: I don’t care. And neither will the hordes of gamers out there who are increasingly used to having their entertainment delivered conveniently, fast and affordably. Because those are the factors that matter to people, not a publisher’s bottom line.

Apple’s gadgets are awfully convenient. And here’s something else — Apple takes a 30 per cent cut of all sales through the App Store, a cost that I suspect many games publishers would struggle to cope with, should Apple become the dominant force in gaming. So unless publishers want the future of videogames to be fruit-shaped, I would suggest it’s time to treat gamers a little better.

Downloads and digital technology offer consumers convenience, choice and affordability. But while so many companies are embracing this (Amazon, Apple, BBC, Google, Netflix, Spotify, Valve, to name just a few in alphabetical order), it feels like many games publishers see the digital revolution as an opportunity to restrict gamers, and find inventive new ways to bleed them for every last penny.

And that’s the behaviour of a jerk. Games industry, don’t be a jerk.

This site is updated frequently every day with the latest video game news and reviews.

Posted on November 29th, 2011 by  |  No Comments »

PS3 Slim news: Weekend Essentials 102

Recent PS3 news:

Feel the burn with Move Fitness and master the King of Iron Fist tournament in TEKKEN Hybrid with PlayStation this weekend.

Get in shape with Move Fitness Prepare to start burning those calories and shape up with the release of Move Fitness on PlayStation 3 this weekend. You’ll be able to get fit and toned from the comfort of your own living room with Move Fitness’s array of gut-busting exercises. If you think you can handle the burn pick up your copy today, or whet your appetite for breaking into a sweat by downloading the demo from PlayStation Store for free.

Mini-game madness in Start the Party! Save the World Get your party started with Start the Party! Save the World on PlayStation 3. Dr Terrible has unleashed his evil plan to take over the world and only you have the power to stop him. Turn your PlayStation Move motion controller into crazy gadgets to fix broken robots, get rid of nasty bugs and fight off angry bears in this epic and fun sequel. Pick up a copy on Blu-ray Disc this weekend.

Liven up your weekend with SingStar Party PackGrab your mic and get ready to experience SingStar in an entirely new way with the SingStar Party Pack. This very special bundle includes two Wireless SingStar Microphones, a voucher code to download SingStar and another voucher code to download 20 floor fillers from SingStore. Pick up the SingStar Party Pack on PlayStation 3 this weekend and start hitting the high notes.

Enter the King of Iron First tournament in TEKKEN HybridBattle it out this weekend in TEKKEN Hybrid, which includes the PlayStation 2 classic, TEKKEN Tag Tournament, remastered for PlayStation 3 in High Definition, and an exclusive prologue to TEKKEN Tag Tournament 2, all on a single Blu-ray Disc. Once you’ve claimed the ring go beyond the realm of the hit game in TEKKEN Blood Vengeance, a stunning stereoscopic 3D computer generated movie included on the same Blu-ray Disc.

Return to Rayman and get in the ring with WWE ’12 Still looking for more great games this weekend on PlayStation? Then why not return to the magical universe and legendary gameplay that captured the hearts of millions of fans in Rayman Origins on PlayStation 3? It’s packed with a charming solo campaign and a funky world filled with distinctive characters and environments.

If you’re looking for something with a little more kick, then hit your nearest store and ask for a copy of WWE ’12 on PlayStation 3. It’s the wrestling experience you’ve been demanding complete with fresh, fluid and strategic gameplay that looks, feels and plays better than ever before. Plus, you can now create spectacular entrances and devastating finishing moves, before venturing online via PlayStation Network to share your creations with the WWE universe.

Take a peek at Carnival Island on PlayStation 3 Discover a world of wonders in the thrilling demo for Carnival Island this weekend and take on friends and family in fun-filled games and attractions in a bid to win exciting interactive prizes using PlayStation Move. Download it today for free from PlayStation Store.

Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare explodes onto PlayStation StoreFeel like staying in this weekend? Then get yourself to PlayStation Store where you’ll find the awesome Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare available to download to your PlayStation 3. The blockbuster game that started it all arms you with an arsenal of advanced firepower, before transporting you to the most treacherous hot spots around the globe in a bid to take down a rogue enemy group threatening the world.

Hit the tracks in Daytona USAEight years after it tore up arcades around the world, SEGA’s classic arcade racer, Daytona USA, arrives on PlayStation Store this weekend. This spectacular crowd-pleaser marks a return to the hallmark sense of speed and control of SEGA’s world-famous racing series with this re-creation of the classic game. Download it from PlayStation Store today.

Grab some great PlayStation prizesHead over to to win a trip for Tokyo to the launch of PlayStation Vita, tickets to the UEFA Champions League Final in Germany or a 3D TV with After Hours Athletes. There’s also a chance to bag a PlayStation 3 system with Start the Party! Save the World, so what are you waiting for? Enter to get your hands on these tasty treats.

Check out the PS Vita news on PlayStation BlogThis week saw some huge announcements for PlayStation Vita, so get yourself to PlayStation Blog at to see what games are launching with the mighty handheld system in Europe in February 2012. There are also a few special announcements in store too, so don’t waste any more time – head over there now.

Keep an eye on PlayStation.Blog at for the latest PlayStation news.

Visit for your chance to win great prizes.

Follow us on Twitter at

Join in with a variety of activities on the Official PlayStation Facebook page at

Have your say in the official PlayStation Forums at

Sign up to Inside PS Vita at to be first with the news on the revolutionary handheld coming to PlayStation in 2012. is updated several times each day with the latest Free Slim PS3 news and games reviews.

Posted on November 27th, 2011 by  |  No Comments »

PS3 Slim news: Access TV Episode 10

Catch Access TV Episode 10 on PlayStation Store now.

In the words of undisputed champion of the internet, Zack Ryder – “It’s time for the latest episode of Access. Woo, woo, woo. You know it.” The wrestling superstar features heavily in Episode 10, as THQ’s grapple-heavy WWE ’12 goes under the Game of the Week spotlight. There’s also insight from lead gameplay designer, Bryan Williams – you don’t want to miss it.

Gran Turismo fans are in for a treat too, as Access visits the elite gamers of the GT Academy and gets whizzed round Silverstone by current champion Jann Mardenborough. Plus you’ll get an inside look at how the GT Academy programme plucks mega-skilled gamers and transforms them into professional racers.

Access Game of the Year voting also starts this week, so make sure you check out the reel of 2011’s very best games, before heading to to have your say.

Elsewhere there’s the usual round-up of what’s hot on PlayStation Store, featuring Batman: Arkham City downloads and Rayman Origins, plus a quick blast through the latest PlayStation 3 news which this week includes a very special cosplay lady.

To see Access TV before anyone else, download the latest episode from PlayStation Store every Wednesday – it’s free for all UK PlayStation Network users. is updated several times each day with the very latest Free PS3 news and games reviews.

Posted on November 23rd, 2011 by  |  No Comments »

Slim PS3 news: Win tickets to the UEFA Champions League Final Munich 2012

Fancy a free trip to Germany for the UEFA Champions League Final Munich 2012? Inside PS Vita can get you there…

It’s the most prestigious tournament in European club football – and you can be there for its big showdown. The UEFA Champions League plays host to some of the biggest names in football, and you – with a lucky guest of your choosing – can watch the heart-stopping final at the Fußball Arena München in Munich during May 2012.

All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning this fantastic prize is sign up to Inside PS Vita before 22 February 2012. By signing up you’ll receive exclusive updates on exciting developments ahead of the February 2012 launch of the next generation in portable gaming, PlayStation Vita, as well as the chance to win a pair of tickets for the UEFA Champions League Final Munich 2012. Your travel and accommodation are included, so all you will need to do is sit back and enjoy the match.

Fußball Arena München awaits the two best teams in Europe – and you. So what are you waiting for?

Please make sure you have read and understood the terms and conditions before entering this competition.

Good luck!

Our site is updated regularly every day with the latest Free PS3 news and hardware reviews.

Posted on November 23rd, 2011 by  |  No Comments »

PS3 news: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Review [TheHDRoom]

Latest news: HDR: Skyrim is easily one of the best video games I have ever played. It is easy to lose HOURS just doing meaningless tasks, but in the end, your character comes out stronger because of it. Games should be fun to play and engrossing, and Skyrim is both in spades. I may have been late to the party, but I don’t plan to leave anytime soon. is updated regularly each day with the very latest Free Slim PS3 news.

Posted on November 21st, 2011 by  |  No Comments »

PS3 Slim news: Get Up And Dance Launch Trailer

Realm of Gaming has posted the launch trailer of Get Up And Dance along with the full song list. Slim PS3 is updated regularly each day with the latest Free Slim PS3 news and hardware reviews.

Posted on November 21st, 2011 by  |  No Comments »

Slim PS3 news: PlayStation PS3 Move.Me Game Designed to Help Kids Cope with Cancer

Recent PS3 news:
Over the summer I had the privilege of working with a group of doctors, graduate students, and other professionals on a very special video game code named the “P.E. Game” or patient empowerment game.

Read Full Post is updated regularly per day with the very latest Slim PS3 news and reviews.

Posted on November 19th, 2011 by  |  No Comments »

PS3 news: Enemy Front takes the FPS back to WW2

It wasnt all that long ago people were crying out for a break from the once-tiresome WW2 FPS scene, only to have COD4 blow our minds with its super cool modern warfare setting. Theres no denying, however, that the once impressive and original modern setting has dwindled recently after what can only be viewed as over-use. Well happily fans of the classic FPS setting can load up their Thompsons and shine up their Nazi killing badges, because Enemy Front is taking us back to the Second World War. is updated several times per day with the very latest Free PlayStation 3 news and reviews.

Posted on November 18th, 2011 by  |  No Comments »