The video-gaming industry’s super event E3, which was held annually in May at the L.A. County Convention Center, is getting downsized. According to Gamespot, it is also moving out of the LACC, and will be a feature for hundreds of fans, no longer thousands. The idea here is that since the throng is so large and many games aren’t getting their proper due at the expo, the event should be restructured as to accommodate the products on display efficiently. Quoth Gamespot:
One reason behind the downsizing of the show can be attributed to the dollar cost of the event to exhibitors, including the demands on companies to assign large numbers of staff to focus on the show, expenses associated with travel to the show, and the added expense to polish game builds and demos to be shown to attendees.
Here is the official Japanese Final Fantasy III trailer. The CG is very well done, and its accompanying ambient music makes this one a winner! Available for the Nintendo DS.
Bungie.net claims that the first Halo faceplate for the Xbox 360 will become available to consumers in October. They give neither a specific launch date for the faceplate, nor a price, but the plate looks hot!
In a mere 25 days, Blizzard managed to ban about 59,000 World of Warcraft accounts. This topped the 30,000 or so for the May bannings. From the horse’s mouth:
Once again, I maintain that this is excessive, unsubstantiated, and perhaps motivated by corporate greed (i.e., Blizzard wants a less expensive hosting bill).
Keith Bakker, the American director of the Smith & Jones clinic for gaming addicts in Amsterdam testifies that “the phone has been ringing constantly. Computer game addiction is obviously an even greater problem than we imagined.” Mr. Bakker is a former drug addict himself, and in his mind a computer-gaming addiction is just as severe as any narcotic addiction because they share similar symptoms:
It is not a chemical dependency, but it’s got everything of an obsessive-compulsive disorder and all of the other stuff that comes with chemical dependency
One of their patients, a 21 year-old from Utrecht, said that he barely left his room during a 5 year gaming stint because he was so fixated with his electronic fantasy world. Such cases are quite rare indeed, for most people who game do so in moderation. Quite frankly, I think we should do away with these clinics. Addiction to video-games is a harmless and voluntary occupation, and individuals should be able to do as they will with their lives. Let Darwin do his work.