Beam Acquisition Could Lead to New Xbox Streaming Service

Microsoft just acquired Beam Interactive, a Seattle-based startup that enables games to become more interactive. With a software development kit, Beam allows programmers to tweak existing computer games, such as “Minecraft,” so players can live-stream their gaming sessions to friends. Most players are used to a more passive model of playing, available on YouTube and Twitch, but Beam offers crowdsourced controls to let the player direct the play of the person streaming. Beam launched at TechCrunch Disrupt NY 2016. Continue reading Beam Acquisition Could Lead to New Xbox Streaming Service

Free-to-Play “Fable Legends” Arrives to Video Game Consoles

British video game developer, Lionhead Studios, recently announced that it plans to launch a new game console version of its free-to-play “Fable Legends” video game. The company, which was acquired by Microsoft back in 2006, believes that in offering the game for free, it can potentially attract millions of gamers that may eventually start paying for added gameplay features. The game, which will contain as many free features as possible, will be available to PC and Xbox gamers. Continue reading Free-to-Play “Fable Legends” Arrives to Video Game Consoles

Fuffr Develops Multitouch Tech with Focus on Mobile Gaming

Sometimes a smartphone’s surface is just not big enough to make the most of mobile and social gaming. Even today’s largest smartphone screens have limitations that can hinder the multiplayer gaming experience. That is where Fuffr comes into play. The company has designed a mobile case that projects infrared lights to the surrounding areas of the phone, so that these areas too, can be used as multitouch surfaces for gameplay and a variety of other applications. Continue reading Fuffr Develops Multitouch Tech with Focus on Mobile Gaming

Google’s Ingress Game Combines Virtual and Real World Play

“Ingress,” a multiplayer game that uses the entire globe as its game board, made its debut on iOS this week. Now, iPhone users can join in the fun of working with other online gamers to find real life portals in their community and progress through the “Risk”-like game. “Ingress” already has about four million downloads on Android devices in about 200 countries. Google has also taken advantage of advertising opportunities, allowing businesses to pay to become a portal. Continue reading Google’s Ingress Game Combines Virtual and Real World Play

Microsoft and Sony Announce Game Console Sales Figures

Sony and Microsoft have shipped more than 12 million new game consoles since the products launched last fall. One day after Sony announced it has sold more than seven million PlayStation 4 consoles (up one million since March), Microsoft said it has sold more than five million Xbox One units to retail shops. According to NPD Group’s U.S. retail data for March, hardware sales rose 78 percent from the previous year to $395 million, while sales of new console and PC video games in retail stores dropped 28 percent to $432 million. Continue reading Microsoft and Sony Announce Game Console Sales Figures

In 2013, 71 Million People Watched Online Computer Gameplay

Last year, more than 71 million people worldwide watched other people play computer games, according to a report from games research company SuperData. More than half of those people were in the United States and one in five American gamers either watch or participate in eSports, or organized video game competitions. At the League of Legends Season 3 World Championship last year, 32 million people watched the professional gamers battle it out. Continue reading In 2013, 71 Million People Watched Online Computer Gameplay

New Software Lets Chat Apps Connect Phones Without Internet

The recently released FireChat mobile app stands out from competitors as the only messaging app that can be used without cell phone reception. FireChat makes use of Apple’s multipeer connectivity introduced in iOS 7, which enables phones to connect with each other directly via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. FireChat users within 100 feet of one another can exchange messages without sending data through a cellular provider. A future of similar apps not reliant upon the Internet could open new possibilities and address privacy concerns. Continue reading New Software Lets Chat Apps Connect Phones Without Internet

Future Internet Games: Disney Teams with Abertay University

Disney has launched the Future Internet Games Contest with Scotland’s Abertay University in an attempt to find games that blend physical and digital worlds. The contest revolves around three key areas. The first involves consumer products, which includes games based on fashion, toys, etc. The second area is location-based installations that intend to engage visitors with real world objects. The third is citywide games that encourage a large quantity of players to engage with the game in an urban environment. Continue reading Future Internet Games: Disney Teams with Abertay University

EVE Online: The Move From Game to Comic Book to TV Series

Gamemakers are increasingly looking to other platforms. CCP Games announced its plan to create a TV series based on the popular space game “EVE Online” almost one year ago. While the company has met with numerous networks and studio execs to develop a series, they claim to be in no rush to produce it. CCP wants to capitalize on the growing number of the online game’s worldwide players, and will launch “EVE: True Stories” as a comic book before a TV series is produced. Continue reading EVE Online: The Move From Game to Comic Book to TV Series

Will Sony’s Cloud-Based Gaming Have an Impact on Consoles?

Sony announced at CES this week details on its cloud gaming service, which will be coming this summer. Along with the cloud TV service it will also be offering up, Sony intends to connect all its devices and technology to allow them to be more portable, interchangeable and social. Its newest video game console PS4 is selling strong, but its move toward cloud-based services may mean dedicated consoles will one day no longer be necessary. Continue reading Will Sony’s Cloud-Based Gaming Have an Impact on Consoles?

Nintendo to Release $99 Wii Mini Game Console this Month

When Nintendo announced that it was shuttering production of its original Wii game console in order to focus on the Wii U, it seems the Japanese company had some additional plans. Now, Nintendo says its previously Canada-exclusive $99 Wii Mini will be offered in the U.S. on November 17, including a red Wii Remote Plus controller, a red Nunchuk controller and a copy of “Mario Kart Wii.” The release will coincide with new consoles offered by Sony and Microsoft. Continue reading Nintendo to Release $99 Wii Mini Game Console this Month

Microsoft Files Patent for Multiplayer Head-Mounted Display

Microsoft has filed a patent application for a multiplayer gaming headset that could one day rival the Oculus Rift. The application, first filed in January 2012 and recently made public, includes technology related to voice interaction, eye-tracking, facial recognition, and various components for tracking head movement. If the patent application is more than a defensive measure, it could extend the Xbox platform into new hardware and new locations. Continue reading Microsoft Files Patent for Multiplayer Head-Mounted Display

Ingress Brings Augmented Reality to Mobile Video Gaming

Google’s internal startup Niantic Labs has created a game called “Ingress” that is still in closed beta release. It is an augmented reality, massive multiplayer video game that uses location-based augmented reality of actual locations as game play. The augmented reality is based on where the player is physically, and adds layers to the game based on the surroundings. “Ingress” also opens up some compelling possibilities for advertisers. Continue reading Ingress Brings Augmented Reality to Mobile Video Gaming