Tag Archive | games

National Day of Unplugging

Is your life ruled by your tech? Do you have a Pavlovian reaction to the notification tones of other people’s smartphones? If so… it might be time to unplug. I know — it’ll be hard. Your cell phone calls, text messages, television shows, email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs, and multitude of apps, web sites, and other technological wonders have become embedded in your daily routine. They’re a constant part of your life, now, right? Unplugging would just be… I don’t know… weird, or something.

Don’t worry, though, you won’t be alone. At the time of this writing there are already 1,382 people and climbing who have pledged to stand with you as you boldly step forward, out of the teeming masses, and turn your shit off.

Ok, so I admit that I’m not really taking “National Day of Unplugging” seriously. I like the idea — I even practice it on my own from time to time — but I’m not much of a joiner. What I find interesting is that there has become a need for something like this, at all. We’ve become so overwhelmed by the constant deluge of information that’s hammering into us on a daily basis that people actually feel the need to band together and say “no more!”

Well, no more until tomorrow, anyway.

This brings me to questions: Will turning off your gadgets from sunset on Friday March 23rd, 2012, until sunset on Saturday, the 24th, actually accomplish anything? Also… will the people who made the pledge actually be able to follow through? On the National Day of Unplugging page of Causes.com, they say that you can use the time to (among other things) “connect with loved ones” and “eat together.” But what if your loved ones and/or potential eating partners are best reached and coordinated with via social media, email, or cell phone? What if you have a flat tire on your way to meet them? What if, the universe help you, you are waiting for the bus and you are soooooooo Freaking Bored without your favourite iPhone or Android game that you feel compelled to throw yourself repeatedly into the flimsy plastic wall of the bus shelter? Huh? What then?

Still… if you are getting up close an personal with bus shelters because you can’t be alone with your thoughts for a few moments instead of playing Angry Birds, then I’m thinking that unplugging for a day probably isn’t going to do too much for you, anyway. You may be better off unplugging forever and hiding yourself away in a remote mountaintop monastery that can’t get cell phone service. Or, maybe… now I know this is a bit radical, and all, but hear me out! Maybe you could consider practising a bit of moderation in your life. A bit of balance, or something. I don’t want to come off sounding like some “dirty hippy” or something — but I think it’s worth a shot!

National Day of Unplugging is a fun idea, and I agree wholeheartedly with its message and the principles behind it. I think there are a lot of people who could benefit from a day off from the socio-tech-connected world and get back to a bit of tangible Zen. I think people should take it beyond just one day, though, and adopt aspects of it into their day to day lives. Without that… I’m not sure I see the point.

Modern Warfare 3 Sets New Record

Modern Warfare 3, the latest installment in Activision’s juggernaut shooter franchise, has set a new entertainment industry record for the biggest product launch of all time, selling 6.5 million copies in the U.S. and U.K. in its first 24 hours and earning $400 million in the process. That tops the $360 million Call of Duty: Black Ops made last year in its first 24 hours and the $310 million Modern Warfare 2 took in during its first day in 2009.

“We believe the launch of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is the biggest entertainment launch of all time in any medium, and we achieved this record with sales from only two territories,” said Bobby Kotick, CEO of Activision Blizzard. “Other than Call of Duty, there has never been another entertainment franchise that has set opening day records three years in a row.”

Analysts expect Modern Warfare 3 to sell nearly 20 million units by the end of the calendar year, generating roughly $1.2 billion in revenue. Black Ops cracked the $1 billion mark in six months.

Pre-orders for the game were also the biggest on record, and given that the last two installments of Modern Warfare previously held the launch record, this achievement isn’t exactly a shocking one.

It’s still notable, though, given the competition Modern Warfare 3 faces this year from EA’s Battlefield 3, which sold 5 million copies in its first week. Some also thought Call of Duty’s numbers could be hampered by lingering negative feeling among core gamers following the abrupt dismissal of series creators Jason West and Vince Zampella after the release of Modern Warfare 2.

Both factors put Modern Warfare 3 under the microscope, but the success of the game certainly backs up what analysts have been saying all along: Most players are more concerned about the game, rather than the developers behind it. And with so many people buying a copy, even those who held a grudge or resented the game because of its success, still purchased (and will likely purchase) the game so they can play with the people on their friends list.

“Call of Duty is more than a game,” said Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision Publishing. “It’s become a major part of the pop cultural landscape. It is a game that core enthusiasts love, but that also consistently draws new people into the medium.”

Activision also announced that they’ve donated $3 million of the game’s sales to the Call of Duty Endowment, a non-profit corporation that seeks to provide job placement and training for veterans.

Apple Has Eliminated The Click Wheel Games

CLICK wheel games debuted alongside the iPod classic in 2006, and were backward-compatible with the iPod nano and iPod video. They were basically something that would eventually become iOS games available for iPod touch, iPhone and iPad devices. While no public SDK was ever released for click wheel game development, third-party developers like Gameloft, EA, PopCap and Disney all released software for the platform. In total, 49 games were released for click wheel iPods, with the latest arriving in 2009.

Previously, users could access the games via a link in the iTunes App Store called “iPod Click Wheel Games.” These games date back to Apple’s very first iPod model and include titles like Brick, Vortex, iQuiz, and Texas Hold’Em, totaling about 49 titles that all rely on the touch-sensitive wheel of the classic iPod. However, the link to this category of games is no longer available from the iTunes App Store menu.

It is believed that the official announcement of the execution , murder, put to rest will happen this Tuesday at the ‘Let’s Talk iPhone’ event.