Raw Rant 40: Terminating Freedom of Speech in Video Games

Posted 05 Jan 2011 in Podcast, The Media Pimps
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Host: Don Hennessey

Guest: Vic Cruz (Pop Culture)

Talkin Aboot:

  • WTF!? Androids with Viruses….
  • Blood Stone 007
  • KINECT Reported to Cause RROD!!!!
  • ESRB Summarizes Kill Zone 3
  • Activision’s George Rose on California Game Violence Ban
  • New Dissidia 012 Trailer – Tons of Game Play
  • College Student Dies After Gaming for 12 Hours Straight
  • Gears of War Ultimate
  • Sneak Peek at 2011 First Person Shooters

WTF!? Androids with Viruses….

Surely one would think that the bad publicity that Sony and a handful of other companies attained due to placing Trojan Horse viruses in any sort of media, would deter other folks from doing so, but that hasn’t been the case this week. A new China born Trojan dubbed “Gemini” has been popping up all over numerous Android mobile phone apps and games including:

  • Monkey Jump 2
  • Sex Positions
  • President vs. Aliens
  • City Defense
  • Baseball Superstars 2010

No, the WTF Moment isn’t that there is a game called Sex Positions, but that such a widespread virus went largely undetected for so long on the market. Gemini basically has the ability to scour files on the user’s phone, once installed, and send said files to a remote server. It could also allow someone to take the device and control it remotely.

What I find amazing is that so many companies such as Apple with the iPhone, Android, and even Facebook have not learned that third party developers need to be reigned in to keep this sort of malicious activity out of our apps and games. Luckily, a site called Lookout has provided an update that essentially blocks the Trojan’s activities.

Blood Stone 007

Blood Stone is a third-person shooter where you play as Daniel Craig’s interpretation of Bond, on a mission to find a man named Malcolm Tedworth who is selling classified research on a cure for Anthrax to the highest bidder. Not long into the game, it turns out a man named Pomerov has purchased this research and created a strain of the disease that can only be cured with this antidote. He plans to spread the plague around the world and cure only those who can pay. Standard Bond trope, but the traditional ‘Bond girl’ (played by Joss Stone) actually adds a few interesting wrinkles to the plot. Blood Stone 2: Bloodier & Stonier? Well, as they say, “James Bond will return…”

The game has many different modes that may appeal to a large audience. The third-person shooting mode has a similar feel to Gears of War but with a cool rounding about corner feature. You can either stay a silent killer with Bond’s P99 or get up close & personal for a little one on one action. The close-range combat is simple, yet satisfying. If you run out of ammo and duck behind a doorway, and an enemy follows you in; it’s a matter of a simple well-timed button press to grab him and smash his face into the wall. It may sound easy, but the challenge comes from lining these hits up in the middle of a firefight.

One of my favorite modes are the driving missions that clearly stand-out on its own. It is no wonder that this was made by Bizarre Creations, chiefly known for their racing games. The physics feel very tight, and the graphics on the cars are some of the best in the game. There’s a real sense of speed involved as you’re chasing a bomb-equipped tanker across a crowded highway. Overall it is a decent game!

KINECT Reported to Cause RROD!!!!

According to several Xbox 360 users on the official Xbox Forums, Kinect has been causing problems for them. Most notably being the dreaded Red Ring of Dead (RROD).

The RROD was mostly found on the older Xbox 360 models. The console’s GPU would overheat, which caused it to automatically shut down. The next time the user turned it on, three red rings would be displayed on the “Rings of Life”, located around the power button. Once a console has the dreaded Red Rings, it will no longer work.

Several complaints made via the official Xbox forums suggest that Kinect is causing older Xbox 360 models to get the Red Rings. There have actually been quite a few topics created on this matter, with nearly every single post being marked as “popular”, receiving thousands of views, and hundreds of responses — some even complaining about the same matter.

There isn’t any solid proof that Kinect is to blame for these issues, the consoles might be dying of old age. You can find several of the complaints via the source.

ESRB Summarizes Kill Zone 3

The Electronics Software Ratings Board, the company responsible for describing potential mature content in video games in the United States, has released a brief summary of upcoming PS3 FPS Killzone 3, detailing a fair bit of gore and general nastiness – by which, of course, I mean pure brilliance. Have a read of this:

“This is a first-person shooter in which players assume the role of interplanetary soldiers who must salvage mankind’s future. Players use electricity guns, pistols, machine guns, flamethrowers, and plasma grenades to destroy robot drones what is cialis professional and enemy soldiers. Frenetic battles are highlighted by realistic gunfire and screams of pain; enemies emit large splashes of blood when shot. The game also depicts intense close-up attacks against enemies: snapping necks, slicing throats, stabbing or gouging eyes. Some weapons (e.g., boltgun and sniper rifle) can decapitate enemy soldiers with headshots, and one blood-splattered environment depicts severed human limbs. Language such as “f*ck” and “sh*t” can be heard in the dialogue.”

Yes, it’s very demonic and evil and gory and excessive, but that goes along with the territory in a Killzone game, and I, for one, have felt my hype for Killzone 3 increase a fair bit. They had me at “electricity gun” and “plasma grenades”, but the “realistic gunfire” and “intense close-up attacks” sound pretty good too. Killzone 3 promises to be a fantastic appearance, but if this description is to be believed, it should be kept well away from your children/nephews/anyone who displays a tendency towards violent murder. The game is to be released on 22nd February 2011.

Activision’s George Rose on California Game Violence Ban

George Rose, executive vice president and chief public policy officer for Activision Blizzard, spoke out in an editorial for the San Francisco Chronicle yesterday. The much-talked-about Schwarzenegger vs. EMA case, which will be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court next year, would ban the sale of violent video games if they overturned the earlier overturning done by the California courts.

“It makes no sense for California to put in place a costly state bureaucracy to replace a privately funded system that is working.” Rose says. “The industry’s ratings partnership has been thoroughly tested and praised by the Federal Trade Commission as thorough and effective.”

Rose continues, criticizing how supporters are using 1997′s Postal as an example of a bad game, but the game was a commercial flop and widely recognized as one of the worst ever, hardly indicative of the entire industry.

“This movement’s supporters also continually misstate that hundreds of studies support the harmful effects on minors from playing video games with violent content.” Rose continues. “But there are no hundreds of studies to cite because they don’t exist. In fact, every court that has looked at this issue has found that whatever research is used to support the idea that games with violent content are harmful lacks credibility. If fact, an unprecedented 82 social scientists, medical scientists and media scholars felt so strongly about Yee’s law that they filed their own brief with the Supreme Court. Their conclusion: it was based on “profoundly flawed research.”"

Rose makes some fine points, and we ourselves have written about studies both for and against a quantifiable link between violent video games and violence in children. Senator Leland Yee wrote a similar editorial with the opposite message from Rose’s. Do you think California or possibly the United States could create a cost-effective program that would be more effective than the ESRB?

New Dissidia 012 Trailer – Tons of Game Play

The new Jump Festa 11 trailer for Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy has been released, and it shows off some flashy moves from our new additions to the roster. Not only that, but if you really pay attention, you’ll be able to catch a sneak character reveal near the end. I’ll put who it is in the list together with the other new characters below, so don’t scroll down if you feel like finding out for yourself.

This means that the current list of new fighters would be the following:

  • Kain Highwind (Final Fantasy IV)
  • Tifa Lockhart (Final Fantasy VII)
  • Lagune Loire (Final Fantasy VIII)
  • Yuna (Final Fantasy X)
  • Vaan (Final Fantasy XII)
  • Lightning (Final Fantasy XIII)

Xbox 360 Tops 50 Million Units Worldwide

With our figures for the Americas now in, and getting processed for upload, VGChartz can confirm that Microsoft’s Xbox 360 is the fifth biggest home console of all time as of Christmas Day 2010. The X360 has topped 50 million units worldwide this week, putting it ahead of the Super Nintendo, the former fifth place home console. X360 sales are more than double the sales of the original Xbox. The original Xbox was Microsoft’s first console and was the second place system of the PS2 era.

Microsoft’s latest system launched in November 2005. Thus the average sales per year are just under 10 million units, as the system has topped 50 million in 61 months. Notable systems such as Sega Genesis, Super Nintendo, Nintendo 64, Xbox 1, Gamecube, Dreamcast, and many others all spent equal or far more time on the market and failed to reach the totals attained by X360.

To date, the X360 is behind only PS2, PS1, Wii, and NES on a worldwide basis. Sony’s PS3, launched a year later, with sales of 46 million is not too far behind X360, but ultimately Microsoft has reached 50 million units before Sony this generation…

College Student Dies After Gaming for 12 Hours Straight

On Monday, a Korean college student in Ulsan, South Korea, died after a 12-hour gaming session at an Internet parlor. The 19-year-old, currently identified as just “Moon”, began his gaming session at 2AM. At 10:30AM, Moon took a short break in order to grab some food from his home and returned straight to the Internet parlor, according to reports.

He carried on playing until he suddenly collapsed. The 19-year-old was rushed straight to hospital, unfortunately, he was confirmed dead upon arriving.

Family and friends stated that Moon “habitually played the online shooting game.” Police are in the middle of investigating the cause of his death.

Live Out Personal Big-Boobed Fantasies With Kinect Mod

DamnLag – “This is one of the more clever things I’ve seen done with Kinect modding. Someone took a model of the extremely well-endowed Ivy from the Soul Calibur series and set it up to imitate the movements of the individual being viewed by the Kinect. What ensues are boob physics that would make Tomonobu “Oatmeal Cookie Face” Itagaki flush in the face.”

Gears of War Ultimate

Microsoft and Epic Games are preparing a new Gears of War bundle for Xbox 360 next year.

A listing for something called Gears of War Ultimate appeared on GameStop’s website yesterday. No details about the product are currently listed, except that it’s priced at $29.99 and has a release date of Feb. 15, 2011.

Sneak Peek at 2011 First Person Shooters

  • Resistance 3
  • SOCOM 4: U.S. Navy Seals
  • Conduit 2
  • F.E.A.R. 3
  • Battlefield 3
  • Crysis 2
  • Bulletstorm
  • Duke Nukem Forever
  • Gears of War 3
  • Killzone 3
  • Brink
  • Homefront
  • Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Future Soldier – 4 PLAYER CO-OP BITCH!!!!
  • Spec Ops: The Line
  • Red Faction: Armageddon
  • Rage
Posted by Brian X
the rawest, man, myth, and legend

11 Comments

  1. Mohawk Elf (05 Jan 2011, 9:58)

    Donny have you tried the Zygor guide yet for WOW?

  2. Arnold (05 Jan 2011, 10:53)

    so hes banning games? or restricting?

  3. Katey Gerald (05 Jan 2011, 11:11)

    What happened to Jade? is she gone for good?

  4. Pozzi Roma (05 Jan 2011, 13:04)

    wait I don’t get it is Arnold trying to ban games?

  5. Brian X (05 Jan 2011, 14:33)

    I have to reactivate the spam guard because we’ve had 1000+ spams and 100 real comments, if anyone has an issue commenting please email me from the contact page

  6. Sara Win (11 Jan 2011, 2:55)

    yea yea pirate this and pirate that

  7. 2011 Here we Come (11 Jan 2011, 4:32)

    Happy New Year!

  8. Tibia (12 Jan 2011, 22:18)

    long live the pirates!!!!!!!

  9. Rad Nad (13 Jan 2011, 3:17)

    Do you people have a facebook fan page? I looked for one on twitter but could not discover one, I would really like to become a fan!

  10. Donald Imes (15 Jan 2011, 17:56)

    Yes finally found it! I was looking for a network full of adam corolas for way to long, now I have somthing to listen to after adam

  11. Free Speech (21 Jan 2011, 8:01)

    Boy Oh Boy, what did it take for you to come up with this one and How Long ??? You are making fun and mocking the religious status of our Lord and Savior , Jesus Christ. How in the World would you even compare the two ? Evidently , all you think about is foolishly worshipping Jesus. Well I don’t like to call anyone a fool, but you fall into the catagory, tremendously. There are no similarities between Jesus and Superman. I suggest that you go get your Parents Bible. The King James version is Great. Hopefully, your parents have one. You are no doubt a non believer. But yet you sound like your very interested in Jesus. Don’t make fun of our Lord and Savior. In the 3rd Chapter of John, verse 16 it read: For God So Loved the World, That He Gave His Only Begotten Son, and Whosoever Believeth in Me, Shall not Parish, but Have Everlasting Life. So what in tarnation, do you have to Loose ??? There is a God and He is the Holy Father to Jesus Christ. Take care and may God bless you and yours , Always.