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Showing posts from January, 2010

Sabbatical Cruising - Next Stop: Serious Games Summit @ GDC 2010

Dear All
I'll be traveling about over the next few weeks. My next stop will be early March, in San Francisco, to attend the Serious Games Summit at GDC 2010.

As my friends from Electric Owl Studios, Pittsburgh, PA, said: GDC is a "blast" - I would add: an "unmissable" (blast).

Brazil's Video Game Ecosystem: Superior Serious Games Products

Via: Gamasutra - Analysis: Inside Brazil's Video Game Ecosystem
by James Portnow
Gamasutra has posted on January 20 an in-depth analysis of Brazil's video game market, authored by Divide By Zero CEO - James Portnow. According to the article, Brazil's game dev. market is underdeveloped, but James Portnow believes it has "infinite possibility." In this detailed regional analysis, he explains why.
James also states that "The Brazilian government has been active in subsidizing, assisting, and incentivizing the creation of educational games". As a result, the Serious Games products coming out of Brazil are, in his opinion, superior to what he has seen come out of the US.
Here is the full article:
Recently, an unusual opportunity came across my desk. It required that I do some business in Brazil. I knew nothing of the Brazilian games industry, so I began to ask around. To my surprise, no one else seemed to know much about either, so I just took the leap and heade…

New Book: Creating Independent Serious Games From Start to Finish

Via: End to End Game Development Blog

About The Book

The tools for game creation are more widely available, and less costly, than ever before. Schools, businesses, organizations (public and private) and political movements are all aware of the power of interactive games to teach, train, and persuade — and grants, internal corporate funding and other monies are often available to create serious game and simulation products. But if you’ve never made a game before, what do you do with that money?

End to End Game Development: Creating Independent Serious Games From Start to Finish, issued in December 15, 2009, is about the process of conceptualizing, developing, producing, distributing and marketing independent serious games and simulations.

Written by two veteran media content producers and creators, End to End Game Development provides no-nonsense advice and a step-by-step process to building an independent, low-budget serious game or simulation from start to finish.

About The Authors


Cerebral Vortex: Research Driven Serious Games

Via: Cerebral Vortex Games - Free iPhone Games On President’s Birthday

THOROLD, ON – January 22, 2010 – Cerebral Vortex Games, Inc. (CVG), a Thorold, ONTARIO-based developer of casual games, has announced that its President, Keith Makse is giving their iPhone games away for free.

“Birthdays are like spinny rides”, said Makse. “You keep going around giggling until you lose your lunch. Then you get on again!”

In his best imitation of a spinny ride, Makse has dropped the price of his popular iPhone games, Word Burst, Sonus and iPrioritize to Free. “I should be celebrating my birthday like this every year”, said Makse, “Instead of me getting presents, I’m going to give them away! It’s like I’m January’s Santa!”

Established in October 2006, Cerebral Vortex Games is an independent Canadian-based developer creating casual and research driven serious games.

Cerebral Vortex Games is developing the Augmented Reality Game, Ghost Breaker, and have also been working on the psychology recor…

BBC Back To The Games Market

Via: MCV - BBC Gets Back Into Games

The BBC's commercial arm is to make a return to the world of games "in a big way" following the closure of its multimedia division in 2005, reports exclusively industry news source MCV.

BBC Worldwide is looking for publishers and developers who can turn suitable intellectual properties into games for the Nintendo DS, the Nintendo Wii, the iPhone and even into online games for the likes of Facebook.

The Worldwide department has even hired a former EA and Yahoo exec, Robert Nashak, as executive VP of digital entertainment in order to do so.

Children's brands such as "In The Night Garden" are said to be ripe for DS and Wii games, while Doctor Who titles could appeal to the older child and the likes of Top Gear to the big kid in all of us.

"We are open to conversations with anybody in games about all kinds of business models to see how we can extract more value", MCV quotes Neil Ross Russell, MD of children's and …

Games Market: Specialization Proceeds At Extraordinary Pace


Daily Newsletter dated January 14th states that although most commentators agree that the story of games business in the past few years has been all about breaking into the mainstream, an  assessment of what's actually happened in games of late is a tale of companies learning about the value of specialization.

"The mid-section of this narrative is about companies learning that actually, the only way to keep those profit margins high is to learn what their strengths are, and focus on those areas - and about companies who can't make that transition gradually falling by the wayside."

Tha author goes further by saying that he suspects that this story ends in a few years' time, with a landscape largely made up of highly specialized companies, each focused on a relatively tight market segment. Some of them  will be modern publishers who have learned to focus; some will be developers who have learned that such tight focus can actually remove the need…

Total Immersion Serious Games Transforming Brand Assets

MARRYING THE MARKETING TO THE PRODUCT, TOTAL IMMERSION BRINGS AUGMENTED REALITY TO MARQUEE HOME ENTERTAINMENT RELEASES AR Gives Movie Buffs Reason for a Double Take – And Marks Company’s First Music Industry Campaign, for Universal LOS ANGELES (January 20, 2010) – In what may herald a new benchmark in entertainment marketing, augmented reality is beginning to transform the way key brand assets of hot film and music properties – performers, characters, scenes, and more – migrate from the original medium to the consumer’s world.
The just-concluded holiday season affirms the trend. With the DVD launch an increasingly important coda to tentpole titles, Total Immersion ( has infused augmented reality (AR) into three of this season’s hottest home entertainment packages – for Paramount’s Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and Star Trek, and Fox’s Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian.
At the same time, the company has executed its first campaign for the…

New ARG EVOKE: Serious Games Changing The World

Via: Avant Game Blog - URGENT EVOKE: Help Run A 10-Week Crash Course In Changing The World

Avant Game (Jane McGonigal) is launching a new Alternate Reality Game called Evoke - a crash course in changing the world.

The goal of the game is to help empower young people all over the world, and especially young people in Africa, to come up with creative solutions to our most pressing problems: hunger, poverty, disease, war and oppression, water access, education, climate change.

The game is a project for the World Bank Institute (the learning and knowledge arm of the World Bank).

The game runs for 10 weeks, with a new mission and a new quest each week.

Players who successfully complete all 10 missions and all 10 quests will be able to claim their honors: World Bank Institute Certified Social Innovator – Class of 2010.

Top players will also earn mentorships with experienced social innovators and business leaders from around the world.

If you just want to play the game, follow @evokenet on Twitt…

Serious Games By Serious Factory - France

Via: - Serious Factory Birth

Boulogne-Billancourt, January 19, 2010 - SoBuzzy, a leading publisher of 3D environments and AD-Invaders, a video game studio, yesterday announced their merger to give birth to Serious Factory, a group specialized in interactive 3D communication.

"3D virtualization is the future of the Web", says William Perez, CEO of Serious Factory. The synergy between 3D environments and video games responds to the increasing demand for experiential online content.

3DWeb and Free2Play games are a key element of Internet evolution. They provide immersion capabilities to game worlds, allowing anyone to manipulate objects and offering more realistic online experiences.

This rationale has become part of SoBuzzy and AD-Invaders natural evolution.

The purpose of Serious Factory is to democratize the use of 3D content in the work environment by means of integration with business communication”, says Sebastien Bru, co-founder of AD-Invaders and Serious Fact…

GDC 10 Serious Games Summit: Videogames Can Make A Difference

Via: Game Developers Conference 2010 - Serious Games Summit

SGS Session: Violence Prevention - Playing A Video Game Can Make A Difference

Speaker: Allan McCullough (President, Child Safety Research & Innovation Center)

Session Description

Video games haven’t always been associated with preventing violence against children but a new Serious Game entity intends to change that. The Child Safety Research & Innovation Center (CSRIC) is a non-profit organization that uses video games to teach children how to respond safety to potentially dangerous situations.

One of the most difficult challenges violence prevention experts have is measuring prevention, CSRIC uses the power of video games to track and measure the child’s change in behavior game play by game play - tracking the child’s prevention skills. To help bridge the child’s learning from the game to the real world CSRIC provides parents and educators with animated vignettes showing the teachable moments with guides these trusted ad…