Have you heard the rumour? If you have a dream where you’re falling and you don’t wake up before you hit the ground, you die in real life… (more…)

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Well, well, well! After a wonderful phone call from my friend at GAME at Charlestown, I am now in possession of Catherine: Stray Sheep Edition! (more…)

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Holy crap, guys!

I’ve been thinking about this day for about 2 years now and it’s finally here! No, it’s not my wedding, it’s the day that the R18+ Rating for Video Games is being introduced into Parliament.

Federal Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare is continuing the work that former minister Brendan O’Connor started last year.

Clare said,

This will bring the classification categories for computer games into line with existing categories used to classify films and make the Australian classification regime more consistent with international standards.

There is still a lot to be done, however. While the bill has been introduced, it still needs the support of two cross-bencher’s in the lower to be passed into the Senate, then will need the support of the Coalition or the Greens (Both have shown sympathy to the cause) to be made into proper legislation. Not to mention that a MP Ed Husic has asked for the bill to be pushed into enquiry, via twitter:

After we finally intro’d the R+18 Video Game laws to Parliament today, this arvo the Coalition referred the Bill to yet ANOTHER inquiry!

Enquiries are generally pushed through quickly, it’s one more wall that needs to be broken down to succeed in our plight.

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XBox

The rumour mill works exceptionally hard when it comes to consoles.

Someone speculates about the specs of what might be, basing it off current generation. The looks, the games, the ways the manufacturers might screw over the legitimate user.

Microsoft released the Xbox 360 S to extend their console life cycle. They made minor improvements and fixed old problems that bothered their customers with the original console. The idea was so they could avoid releasing an expensive new console. Their idea worked, to a point.

Currently, the rumours that are circulating are about the latest Xbox addition, “due for release” in Winter 2013. Consumers are wanting more and fueling rumours. Currently, the new “Xbox 720” as it has been dubbed will sport technology that disables users from playing second hand games, use blu-ray, be as quick as modern day PC’s. The latest rumour is that the 720 is going to use a touch-screen controller; something simmiliar to Nintendo’s WiiU.

While Microsoft haven’t confirmed or denied any of the aforementioned rumours, the next 12 to 18-months should prove to be interesting if Microsoft do choose to annouce their latest weapon in the console wars.

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Okay, may be not Combo Breaker, but Gamebreakers! A new podcast with my friends and I talking about games!

It’s a little rough at the moment, but it works!

http://nowracappella.podomatic.com/entry/2012-01-22T00_22_08-08_00

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A stereotypical caricature of a pirate.

(Written by a self-confessed pirate)

Let’s talk about piracy. (more…)

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Image representing Electronic Arts as depicted...

On a whim (and a severe inability to be able to crack a game) I decided to buy some of The Sims 3* stuff on Origin because it was on sale. The whole process was a little more painful than what I’m used to, but that’s more to never

have used the Origin check out system before.

My first red flag appeared when after I had entered in all my credit card information, this wonderfully grey screen which said, “Your purchase is being processed, you’ll be informed of the outcome soon” appeared and didn’t leave. While a little unnerving, I closed Origin and went to my grandparents place to drop of their belated Christmas present hoping that when I got home, I would have 11 shiny new Sims 3 packs in my Origin list.

Wishful thinking on my part, apparently.

When I got home, I checked my emails. Curiously, there was no confirmation email with my receipt number on it. Checking Origin,

there weren’t any games in my list and when I checked my order history, it flashed nothing and went straight to the store. What HAD happened is that my credit card had been debited $200.

I put in a trouble ticket and I’m waiting to hear back from them but this makes me once bitten, twice shy about Origin. With all the issues EA had before they’d released Origin (You know, how you either accepted the fact they were allowed to rummage through everything in your computer or you don’t use their system), this doesn’t bode well for the newest digital distribution system on the market. Especially since one made by a universally despised company like EA.

*Don’t judge me.

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The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim amulet

Image by Sergey Galyonkin via Flickr

I didn’t ever expect to be writing this.

I hate Morrow Wind with the fiery passion of the Sun.

I accidentally played Skyrim for nearly 9 hours with Boyfling this afternoon.

There’s a meeting for this kind of thing, right?

As it goes, I started played Skyrim on Boyfling’s PC to see if it was any good; and by good, I mean, “Better than Morrow Wind.” Turns out, I started enjoying it okay. Crash here or there but it was okay. Boyfling kept kicking me off so I got him to buy me a copy for the Xbox.

Bad choice.

I need to study for my STAT Test this week and I can’t answer with Dovahkiin. I don’t think the markers would understand.

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Batman as he was depicted in Batman: The Anima...

In the last two months, three games have broken street date in Australia: Batman, Battlefield 3 and as of today, Skyrim. While most gamers are happy that they don’t have to wait for the release date for games, I’m not entirely pleased with the whole situation. This could have a shocking effect on gaming in Australia.

For those who aren’t familiar, a street date is a date set by the publishers for when a game is released. If the game breaks that, it means that the game is being sold earlier. From the couple of people I know who work in a bricks-and-mortar games shop, this can be a pricey mistake with penalties upwards of AU$20,000 for releasing a game pre-maturely.

Australia seems to be suffering from pre-mature release syndrome and it isn’t just the stores that suffer. Since we have the worst track record for breaking the date with games, what’s stopping publishers from delaying the game even longer and “punish us” persay? Isn’t half the fun of pre-ordering a game or getting the game on the day of release the launch day parties and such? Getting excited for the game with all the marketing and anticipation of going to a midnight launch; seeing all the other people who have been anxious to get their hands on the game. Something about a broken street date makes it seem like a wastes effort. My boyfriend picked up Skyrim today and it doesn’t even unlock till midnight, so what’s the point?

Breaking street date might not hurt us now, but I can see in the future that publishers might not choose to ship certain games to Australia without some kind of iron-clad agreement signed from sellers to say that they’ll accept any penalties for releasing the game early. It’ll be the only way to ensure that publishers get the outcome they want without it being spoiled by retailers.

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Now, let’s get one thing straight before I dive into this: I like to think of myself as a diverse gamer with certain preferences. In my house at the moment there are two gaming rigs, a gaming laptop, three Xboxes, two PS3s and a Wii. Now while they might not be all mine (they are shared between my boyfriend and our roommates), I have played my fair share of video games on all of them so I like to think of myself as objective in this. With that out of the way, let’s get to it. (more…)

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