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Lost Planet: Extreme Condition (Xbox 360) Review

January 24, 2007 After you've heard about Lost Planet selling one million copies since its initial release less than a month ago (only a week if you're outside Japan), you're probably wondering if this figure is more to do with the lack of any Christmas blockbusters for the Xbox 360, or because it's a great game in its own right. Our Games Editor has the lowdown after spending a bit too much quality time with the game.  Read More

Crackdown demo about to hit Xbox Live Marketplace

January 23, 2007 [UPDATE: Read our full length review of the retail version] Crackdown is the latest brainchild of Dave Jones, whose prior masterpieces include smash hits such as Lemmings and Grand Theft Auto. Realtime Worlds have developed the title exclusively for Microsoft Game Studios and the Xbox 360, and a demo offering both single and multiplayer modes is set to hit the Xbox Live Marketplace later today.  Read More

Trivial Pursuit Intellectual Property dispute drawing to a close

January 6, 2007 Humans have been playing board games for at least 8000 years, with the most popular board game in history being Monopoly. In 1981, Trivial Pursuit burst onto the scene, establishing a new genre of board game and with more than 90 million games sold in 33 countries and 19 languages, three television shows spawned (in the United States, United Kingdom and Germany), and an electronic version now available on mobile phones from most major mobile carriers in the U.S., the success of the game and its inventors is the stuff of legend, business school case studies and … law suits. A case currently before the courts in Nova Scotia (Canada) is going down to the wire to decide the rightful inventor of the wildly popular board game. The dispute dates back 12 years and centres around the claims of Cape Breton resident David Wall who says Chris Haney (one of the two acknowledged inventors of the game along with Scott Abbott) picked him up hitchhiking in 1979 and during the ride he described his concept for the game to Haney who went on to collect the biggest royalty cheque in board game history. The local newspaper, the Cape Breton Post, has all the details. If there’s a moral in the story for our audience of people who love clever ideas, it’s that good ideas (i.e. valuable Intellectual Porperty) should not be disclosed to complete strangers.  Read More

The AddMirror - highly effective ambient media

December 19, 2006 The world of ambient media seems to grow more crowded by the day, as advertisers seek an opportunity to cut through the clutter of the myriad adverts which have dulled our awareness to them. In terms of attention, there are few more effective mediums than the mirror where everyone becomes the centre of their own attention. So we’re pleased to report that the most effective medium in history now takes advertising. Addirect was founded in 2003 with the idea of bringing together advertising and technical innovation to create highly-targeted ambient media and they have certainly achieved that with the AddMirror. Working exactly like a regular mirror, The AddMirror reveals up to six A4-sized “hidden” advertisements using pre-set lighting sequences. The rationale behind The AddMirror is that it’s a dynamic medium for advertisers that compels audiences to engage with their creative work. Simply put, people looking in washroom mirrors cannot fail to see their adverts. Moreover, AddMirrors are strategically located in sites that guarantee high visitor traffic.  Read More

Call of Duty 3 (Nintendo Wii) Review

December 14, 2006 The shooting scenes in Rayman: Raving Rabbids proved that on-the-rails shooters work very well on the Wii, which as well as whetting our appetites for a port of Virtua Cop or Time Crisis, led us to have fairly high expectations of how a first-person shooter (FPS) would fare using the Wii Remote. Call of Duty 3 is the first Wii FPS we've had our hands on - and it's a bittersweet experience.  Read More

Game of the Year - Gears of War (Xbox 360)

December 14, 2006 An epic story line, polished controls, amazing graphics and a furious (and incredibly addictive) multiplayer game make Gears of War the game of the year. Our games editor hasn't been very productive for the last week - here's his fairly detailed excuse.  Read More

Avatar technology comes to mobile phones

December 12, 2006 8, 2006: The news of the coming of the first avatar-based mobile game from CBS Interactive and Hong Kong-based Artificial Life (a regular subject of our stories such as the Virtual Girlfriend V1.0 and V2.0, and the development of the first Massive Multi Player 3G Game) is exciting indeed. CBS Interactive will launch the first avatar-based mobile game tied to a major TV show for The CW's America's Next Top Model. The mobile game which enables avatars (virtual characters ) to live on user's cell phones is the first of many mainstream uses for Avatars which many futurists feel will ultimately represent the real time embodiment of people in cyberspace and lead to meaningful on-line community – for people of any common pursuit, regardless of whether it’s business or personal. These are the first fledgling steps of a future three dimensional superstar – YOU in zeroes and ones, and the first inhabitants of cyberspace. Avatars are already widely used in Internet chat rooms, allowing people to be represented by an image, that masks their actual character, behaviour and even gender.  Read More

Internet Video Revenues to exceed US$7 Billion in 2010: Advertising revenues spur initial ...

December 8, 2006 The Internet Juggernaut is now in full stride. What began just a dozen years ago as a fledgling commercial medium is now well into its second billion users – first it was text, then text and pictures then it fueled the digital music revolution and now it is getting set to do the same for video. Annual U.S. revenues from Internet video services – spanning user-generated content to television shows and movies – will exceed US$7 billion by 2010, according to Parks Associates’ Internet Video: Direct-to-Consumer Services. The report also notes this growth will accompany an ongoing shift toward greater parity between the revenue sources. In 2007, approximately 85% of revenue will be from advertisements attached to user-generated content and television and news streams. By 2010, services for renting and downloading TV shows and movies will account for nearly 40% of total revenues.  Read More

Splinter Cell: Double Agent playable demo on Xbox Live

December 6, 2006 Fetching a score of 86 at MetaCritic is no mean feat - only two titles on the 360 have managed any better, putting Splinter Cell: Double Agent on the must have list this Christmas. Those of you who remain unconvinced by 47 positive reviews can now test it out for yourself by downloading the single player demo from Xbox Live Marketplace.  Read More

Research shows the message in advertising is irrelevant

December 5, 2006 Now here’s a story that is certain to fuel debate – new research undertaken by the University of Bath’s School of Management shows that creativity and emotion are what makes advertising successful, not the message it is trying to get over. University of Bath’s Dr Robert Heath (pictured) found that advertisements with high levels of emotional content enhanced how people felt about brands, even when there was no real message. However, advertisements which were low on emotional content had no effect on how favourable the public were towards brands, even if the ad was high in news and information.  Read More

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