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Parents: everything you know about video games is wrong

Tuesday, 27 March 2012 12:58 GMT By Scott Steinberg

We know gaming can be a healthy pastime for children, but many parents see it as an unnecessary evil. Scott Steinberg, author of The Modern Parent’s Guide book series, hopes to redress the balance.

As you’re aware, video games are one of today’s most positive, uplifting and enjoyable escapes, and a pop culture medium that even the famed Smithsonian’s now recognizing as among the era’s defining art forms. Alas, many parents still believe that gaming is evil, promotes violence and can foster issues like addiction, obesity and stunted social growth, despite mounting evidence to the contrary. Happily, the next time someone tells you “video games are bad for kids,” or you observe a mother or father going into apoplexy just because their child asks for a PlayStation Vita, well… Here’s why you might gently suggest they plug themselves back into reality.

Fact: Controversy sells when it comes to games, but doesn’t necessarily reflect the status quo. While many popular games are rated M, and intended for discerning adults, not only is the average player a 37 year-old male – most game titles are perfectly safe and fun for everyone. “Games can definitely be good for the family,” says the ESRB’s Patricia Vance. “There’s plenty of selection. Oftentimes I think parents feel that they’re not because video games in the media are portrayed as violent, and hardcore games tend to get the lion’s share of publicity. But parents also need to be comforted knowing that E for Everyone is by far largest category [of software]. Nearly 60% of the almost 1700 ratings we assigned last year were E for Everyone, which means there’s a huge selection of games available that are appropriate for all ages.”

Fact: Research shows games can be tremendously beneficial to kids’ growth. Per a recent piece in Parents magazine by Harvard Medical School collaborator Cheryl Olson, “parent-approved video games played in moderation can help young kids develop in educational, social, and physical ways.” Having surveyed interviews with over 1,000 public-school students, her data shows that playing even nondescript outings (read: everyday titles found on GameStop’s shelves) can confer tremendous benefits on children. Beyond encouraging planning, problem solving, and creative self-expression, she also points out that many titles can promote lifelong loves of history and literature, while others encourage socialization, exercise, healthy competition, and leadership. Setting stereotypes aside, as she points out in no uncertain terms, games (shocker) are a perfectly normal part of childhood.

Fact: Games are a powerful tool for teaching and providing new perspectives on the everyday challenges kids face. Unlike boring, passive lectures and training courses, games and virtual worlds actively engage children, encourage them to experiment without fear of embarrassment or repercussion, and let them problem-solve in lifelike scenarios that evolve in real-time. Providing an experience that more closely resembles real-world scenarios, better engages pupils and promotes heightened retention, Duke University’s Dr. Jeffrey Taekman actually calls them the future of education. “The traditional textbook will soon become passé,” he asserts. “Gaming platforms will offer an interactive way for students to learn and apply information in context.” As you’ll happily note, even medical students are now being trained this way – a fact which may come in handy the next time newscasters run a sensationalized media story and Mom has a proverbial heart attack. Oh, and added bonus: Because of their ability to promote strategic thinking, interpretive analysis and rapid adaptation to change, The Federation of American Scientists even claims the skills games teach map well to those sought by today’s top employers. Next time someone tells you to get off the PC and get a job, you may want to let them know you’re actually building valuable career skills.

Fact: Games have great social benefits. Beyond titles such as Just Dance 3, which help bring families together, and can bridge the gap between generations, there are also many games that have positive social messages and encourage families to be a force for good. In a series of experiments published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, researchers found that participants who had just played a “pro-social” game in which characters must work together to help each other out as compared to those who had just played a “neutral” game (e.g. Tetris) were more likely to engage in helpful behaviors. So-called “serious games,” specifically designed to teach and inform, are also teaching kids about real-life issues, humanitarianism, and geopolitical concerns. Even titles not specifically designated as educational help build confidence as well, providing kids with a sense of positive reinforcement and achievement as they solve puzzles and rise to the challenges contained within.

Fact: Gaming doesn’t have to make you fat and lazy, and can have marked physical benefits. Naturally, kids need both physical and mental exercise – cheerfully, motion-controlled games for Kinect, Wii and PlayStation Move help provide both kinds of workouts at the same time. In fact, the American Heart Association now recommends video games as a fun and entertaining way to enjoy physical activity. Upsides of active play are considerable too. A study reported in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine of 39 Boston middle-school children who played with six different interactive gaming systems found that the games compared favorably with walking on a treadmill at three miles per hour, with four out of the six activities resulting in higher energy expenditure. Other studies show that action video games can improve several aspects of brain activity, including multitasking. “The attentional and working memory demands of video games can be much greater than other tasks,” says Michael Stroud, a professor of psychology at Merrimack College. “Consider Pac-Man as an example. In Pac-Man, you must navigate your character through a spatial layout while monitoring the separate paths of four additional objects (the ghosts), while keeping the overall goal of clearing the small pellets in memory, as well as keeping track of the remaining large pellets. Think about how this may apply to skills such as driving… When you drive your car, you are faced with a constantly changing environment in the road, not to mention several other distractions that compete for attention that reside in the car. At the same time, you are attempting to navigate through the environment to reach a goal.”

High-tech parenting expert Scott Steinberg is the author of The Modern Parent’s Guide book series and host of “Family Tech: Technology for Parents and Kids.” A noted games industry consultant and business keynote speaker, the following is excerpted from latest book, The Modern Parent’s Guide to Kids and Video Games, free to download now.

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13 Comments

  1. LOLshock94

    ive played games all my life and im retarded

    #1 3 years ago
  2. Maximum Payne

    @1 Actually that is very true.

    #2 3 years ago
  3. Colin Gallacher

    Nice piece Scott, my parents have always been in the unnecessary evil camp. I think they’re starting to accept that it’s not just a fad that will disappear over time.

    I like to think that gaming has certainly helped me in educational ways over the years, especially in memory and planning situations.

    #3 3 years ago
  4. daspadger

    My youngest son is 10. He’s been playing video games since the age of 2 or so (he completed Simpsons hit and run aged 2.5). He’s plays them most days and given I work in the industry, he’s exposed to practically every gaming platform and most of the titles you’d think you need to see.

    At school he’s way ahead of where he should be in maths, reading and his focus is spot on. He’s creative, entertaining and very popular with his peers. He’s a normal child (other than being afflicted with a daft dad) in every way.

    Athletically, he’s also been the fastest in the school come summer race day, for 3 consecutive years.

    I’ve read a ton about the nonsense gaming is supposed to harm kids, and yeah, I don’t hold much sway in it.

    #4 3 years ago
  5. Christopher Jack

    @4, I’d assume you’d also push him to ‘get out’ & play some sports or something in the backyard, it’s the obsessive gaming in kids that cause problems, I think an active parent encourages active children.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. OlderGamer

    A little rose tinted glass viewing me thinks.

    Sure some of what was written makes sense. But there are so many counters it is just silly. One of the largest being; what looks good on paper isn’t always or even often the applied science at work.

    As an example, the games being described as good for you/kids aren’t the games that kids covet. Howmany kids want to play Pacman? Do you want to put down Assasins Creed to play Pacman? Which one do you think an average 10 yr old bugs their parents for? Most of what this piece and the “studies” it references (btw 35 kids doesn’t a study make, too small a size), would promote Wii gaming(and to be fair Kinect/Move). But just like many of you folks here, most kids would snicker at playing Wii. They would rather play the newest CoD. Just like most of you/us.

    I am not saying that games are the root of evil or anything. But I am also not convienced that gaming can make us a better society and better people either. As a whole, obiesity is way up, esp in kids. The education levels of graduating students (in performance testing) is down from where it was 30 and 40 years ago. Just two things that go directly against what this piece would proclaim.

    I like games too, right now I am here writting this only because my wow server is on a rolling restart. But no way I could look at another parent(I raised two kids), and say, “Hey have you thought about Xbox or Playstation?” I know parents that don’t allow games, at all. Those kids are very VERY happy. They play, laugh, and otherwise have a great time(reminds me of being a kid). They don’t miss them. Until they get into school. Then those parents(happend twice that I saw) lose their kids to the influence of other kids that see games as a needed aspect of their lifestyles.

    I think it is unrealistic to keep kids away from games. prolly unhealthy in the way that “when in rome, do as the romens do” type of thing. Games are a big part of our everyday life. They are everywhere, better to teach your kids how to manage their time, then to preach about them being evil. The kids would rebel from that anyway.

    Call me old, but if you think todays media atmosphere is good and healthy(and I am including games to social media) I just can’t agree and can’t see it. Cause I think we will indeed end up with a bunch of lazy, selfish, self centered, overwieght, anti social, ego maniacs that can’t make their own ways in the world.

    Perhaps I could barrow someones rose tinted glasses for a bit? I have a nice tin foil hat to trade.

    #6 3 years ago
  7. DSB

    I completely agree with your stance on this kind of research OG, but I also think that the whole thing is fundamentally out of context.

    People are acting like entertainment shapes people, when that has pretty much never been the case. It’s people who shape entertainment.

    When I was a kid I was watching bad American action movies, playing with guns, playing violent videogames. It meant absolutely nothing to me. I thought it was exciting, but both of my parents were really humanistically oriented, so there was never any doubt in my mind as to the application of violence or what it means.

    And that’s really the issue. You can’t point your finger at any violent event and go “That happened because of a song” or “That happened because of a videogame”. It’s simply never the case.

    The only thing I saw on TV as a kid that left me with nightmares was people being murdered on the streets of Sarajevo.

    Kids need to be taught right from wrong. Games aren’t a part of that. They’re an outside influence that kids need to be equipped to handle. And kids are different. Some may be too exciteable to handle a certain level of intensity, and some may be completely impervious to even the bloodiest videogames.

    It’s a question of where their heads are at (and what their parents have done to recognize and affect that) – Not where the games are at. The cause and effect is completely misrepresented in this debate. Probably because it’s defined and perpetuated by people who don’t have a relationship with the medium.

    #7 3 years ago
  8. OrbitMonkey

    This is a nice counter-point to the EVE-Online bullying story isn’t it? :-D

    Oh wait it’s not the game making kids douches, their douches playing games… But made worse cuz of what their playing? It’s a real chicken or egg conundrum ;-)

    #8 3 years ago
  9. Freek

    Games, the internet and social media are definetly a ppsitive influence to society. They are a way of binging knowledge and social interaction to almost everyone, everywhere.

    You only have to look at projects like this:
    http://boingboing.net/2010/09/30/it-gets-better-video.html

    And
    http://www.ted.com/talks

    And
    http://bigthink.com/

    To see that, you no longer grow up in isolation without any perspective on the world. It’s verry easy to find knowledge and share it with other people.

    Why do you think opressive regimes try to block out the internet? It’s far to easy for citicens to start seeing the world the way it really is and start using social media to start a revolution. Exactly what is happening in the Middle East right now.

    That inlcudes games too. You start playing online, soon you make friends and start meeting up in real life.
    It is not a tool for social isolation when you play responsibly.

    And the example of Pac-Man is merely a simplification of a principle that aplies to all games.
    Problem solving skills and spacial awareness are key to almost every game. he could have just as easely said Tomb Raider, or Half Life or Portal.

    And it’s also utterly bizar to think that kids do not want to play Wii or Kinect games.
    Where do you think all those millions of units sold go to? Not to the hardcore gamer, he/she is not interested in it, but families and kids are. That is where the motion control money is made.
    That 60% E for Everyone marketshare doesn’t come out of thin air. It’s sales and money being made. The majority of games being bought, played and sold are not violent.

    Yes, bullying and obesity exist in this world, but do not go blamming people’s own lack of self control personality flaws on some of the greatest new technologies mankind has come up with. A way to interact and share all our knowledge and entertainment with nearly everyone.

    #9 3 years ago
  10. Ireland Michael

    “How many kids want to play Pacman? Do you want to put down Assasins Creed to play Pacman? Which one do you think an average 10 yr old bugs their parents for?”

    My son actively plays Pac-Man: Championship Edition DX on my Xbox 360 every chance he gets, and fully accepts that games above his age rating (he’s 12), like Assassin’s Creed, are not allowed to be played without the prior consent of his mother and I first. We’ll monitor the content he plays, but never to the point of being totalitarian about it.

    His interest in games of a violent nature or heavy in action is almost completely non-existent anyway, and he spends 90% of his gaming time engrossed in ones that allow for creative building, customization and level design – LittleBigPlanet, Minecraft, etc.

    We both encourage this because we believe that its very healthy and productive for him to nurture his personal desire for creativity. I think this interactive element is probably the single best thing about gaming, and it has some powerful applications for learning when done right.

    (Tangent – I learned more about the colonization of America, the Founding Fathers and the American Revolution from playing Colonization on my crappy 586 Gateway 2000 PC back in the 90s then I ever did in any stuffy history class in school. Just sayin’.)

    Allow me to stroke our egos for a second and say that I wish more parents would follow our examples.

    Mind you, I so agree that the article comes across a little one sided, but I think the point of it wasn’t to champion gaming as some sort of all-encompassing, life-affirming hobby, but to dispel some of the more extreme myths about its negative sides. I’m sure Scott is more than aware that they exist, and what those negative sides are.

    Gaming, part of an active healthy diet!

    #10 3 years ago
  11. absolutezero

    “most kids would snicker at playing Wii. They would rather play the newest CoD. Just like most of you/us.”

    I’ll kill you to death.

    My Nephew is still playing Mario 3D Land on his 3DS he just got 100 coins. He has a Wii. He has shown no interest in the worst that the “mature” side of gaming has to offer.

    Im pretty proud of the little guy.

    #11 3 years ago
  12. DarkElfa

    I like pie.

    #12 3 years ago
  13. shadela16

    Ah, I like this article.

    I am 17 years old. I like playing video games. I like playing VIOLENT video games. Such as Halo, Assassin’s Creed, maybe CoD if I go see my older brother (as I don’t have it, but he does).

    I have no interest in drugs, or commiting acts of violence (such as a shooting spree).

    @ #6 This is totally personal, but I play Assassin’s Creed. Do you know what this did for me? It got me interested in history. I am currently taking a world history class and I love it, because it is something I’m interested in. I wasn’t nearly as interested in history before I played those games. That same game has gotten me thinking about my education and my career, since now I really want to travel to multiple places in Europe, such as Italy (which is where Assassin’s Creed 2 takes place).

    Though there are many problems that can come about with children playing video games that are violent, there CAN be some good things that come out of them.

    What I’m saying is, parents shouldn’t be so PESSIMISTIC about video games. Try to see the good things that come out of them. Of course, encourage children to go outside, but allow them to have their play time too.

    #13 3 years ago

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    Destiny has some beautiful environments, which screenshots don’t necessarily do justice to. Walking around Destiny exclaiming over the lighting effects and the tiny animated details is the best way to experience Bungie’s tremendous achievements, but these panorama images stitched together from in-game screenshots are a good second. Click to see them fullsize. Redditor CenturyEagle made […]

  • Star Wars Disney Infinity re-release on the cards – rumour

    Star Wars is a no-brainer for Disney Infinity, and at long last it looks like it’s happening. A Star Wars re-release called Disney Infinity 3.0 has reportedly leaked from German retailers. We have to lable this one a rumour as we haven’t seen the original source, but the story was originally reported by DisKingdom, which […]

  • Award-winning mobile indie Monument Valley out now on Windows Phone

    Windows Phone’s game selection can be a bit restrictive, but has expanded delightfully today: Monument Valley is now available. Monument Valley is one of those gorgeous, mind-bending puzzlers the indie scene produces on the regular, winning awards and consuming everyone’s lives for weeks on end. Developed by Ustwo Games, with beautiful, understated art from Ken […]

  • Old-school EverQuest servers safe from legal troubles thanks to Daybreak agreement

    EverQuest rights holder Daybreak Game Company given its blessing to the wonderful Project 1999. EverQuest: Project 1999 is one of those lovely ideas that it are all too often crushed by the realities of the games industry. An entirely fan-managed affair, it provides an emulated version of the classic EverQuest experience, which is no longer […]

  • Free Dragon Age short stories fill us in on Corypheus’s followers

    Dragon Age: Inquisition developer BioWare invites you to learn more about the lore and characters that make up its beautiful role-playing setting. Dragon Age is set in Thedas, a world still only partially revealed by the three core games to date. BioWare puts a heck of a lot of work into its worldbuilding, employing a […]

  • Remember that gorgeous Luminous Engine tech demo? It now utilizes DirectX 12

    Remember the gorgeous Luminous Engine tech demo Square Enix showed off three years ago? The firm showed it again at Microsoft’s Build Conference, this time utilizing DirectX 12. The Witch Chapter 0 [cry] real-time tech demo was created from research Square conducted using real-time CG technology and DX12 in collaboration with Microsoft and Nvidia. The […]

  • Stealth Inc 2: A Game of Clones sneaks onto GOG and Steam services

    Stealth Inc 2: A Game of Clones can now be purchased through GOG and Steam. On both services it will run you £12.99/€14.99/$14.99. Links here and here. The game features: Fully explorable ‘Metroidvania’ style overworld, laying siege to a diabolical cloning facility with varied and detailed environments. A variety of special equipment to unlock new […]

  • Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare DLC Ascendance has arrived on PC, PlayStation consoles

    Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare players on PC and PlayStation consoles can now download the Ascendance DLC. The second content pack contains the OHM weapon, the OHM Werewolf custom variant, and the second entry in the Exo Zombies saga, Infection. Four new maps are also included: Perplex, Site 244, Climate, and Chop Shop. Ascendance was […]

  • Latest Xbox 360 system update is live, now supports 2TB hard drives

    Xbox 360 now supports 2TB hard drives via the latest system update for the console. Support for the drives was announced earlier this month and has been available for preview members. “In addition we will also no longer reserve space in advance on your hard drive,” said the firm. “If you are using 16GB of […]

  • Kickstarter for Banjo-Kazooie spiritual successor Yooka-Laylee launches tomorrow

    Playtonic Games has announced the Kickstarter campaign for its spiritual successor to the Banjo Kazooie series, Yooka-Laylee, will launch tomorrow. The title of the game was announced today along with the Kickstarter date. Formerly known as Project Ukulele, the 3D platformer is said to be “between the size of Banjo-Kazooie and Banjo-Tooie,” and stars Yooka […]

  • Console version of Mistwalker’s Terra Battle is in development

    Now that Mistwalker’s Terra Battle has surpassed 2 million downloads on mobile, the developer is now working on a console version of the tactical RPG. As part of the original Download Starter campaign, the 2 million milestone means the company will begin development on Terra Battle’s console version with details to be announced at a […]

  • Prison break game The Escapists is heading to PlayStation 4 from May 29

    The Escapists, Mouldy Toof’s prison break game originally released as a timed console exclusive Xbox One, has a release date for PlayStation 4. For those unfamiliar with the title, which is also a PC release, it tasks players’ time management skills as they do a bit of digging and crafting, and other prison-type stuff as […]

  • Dead Island 2 delayed into 2016 to ensure series is “taken to the next level”

    Dead Island 2 has been delayed into 2016 by Yager in order to ensure the sequel “takes Dead Island to the next level.” According to a tweet from the developer, it set “big goal” for the game, and in order to deliver what fans expect, the team needs more time to reach development goals. “We […]

  • Project Cars: here’s a list of all available cars at launch

    Project Cars will contain many, many cars and if we are counting correctly, there will be 74 total at launch. The standard edition contains 65 total, and when factoring the free car as well as the Modified and Limited Edition cars packs, you can add an additional nine cars to the mix. Comb through the […]

  • Competitive matchmaking support is coming to Team Fortress 2

    Team Fortress 2 will soon feature support for competitive matchmaking, which Valve says is a “high priority” project for it at the moment. According to a report from TeamFortress.tv, which visited Valve headquarters recently, Valve is looking into the possibility of 6v6 or 9v9 matches 9v9, a possible quick play option and it is also […]

  • GTA 5 PC patch fixes garage, Job crashes – full notes here

    Rockstar has pushed out a 353 MB patch for GTA 5 on PC The patch fixes a number of annoying bugs related to vehicles and garages, some deathmatch issues and purchase errors. It should also fix various freezing and crashing bugs, as well as a little issue with Steam. Time will tell if the patch […]

  • Fire Emblem If will come in White Kingdom and Black Kingdom versions with amiibo support

    We’ve finally got some juicy details on the next Fire Emblem game, but the most interesting aspect is that there will be two versions of the game. According to Siliconera, who translated an interview between Intelligent Systems and 4Gamer, there will a White Kingdom and a Black Kingdom version that offer different aspects of the […]

  • Deception 4: The Nightmare Princess heads west with “Golden Toilet” pre-order bonus

    Deception 4: The Nightmare Princess will debut on western PlayStation 4 systems this summer, Koei Tecmo has announced. It is also coming to PS3 and Vita. The game was produced by Keisuke Kikuchi of Fatal Frame fame and takes up where Deception 4: Blood Ties left off allowing players to relive Laegrinna’s pursuit to free […]

  • Nintendo US eShop update: Puzzle & Dragons Super Mario demo, Paper Mario, more

    Nintendo has updated the North American end of the eShop with a demo of Puzzle & Dragons Super Mario Bros. Edition, Paper Mario on Virtual Console, and amiibo Tap. The full update is below. eShop update amiibo Tap – free – Wii U Star Wars Pinball DLC – Wii U Paper Mario – Wii U […]

  • Deus Ex: Mankind Divided PC port handed off to Nixxes

    The PC port of the new Deus Ex has been handed over to Netherlands based studio, Nixxes software. After the initial reveal trailer at the beginning of April, we’ve only had a few morsels in the way of additional news. The most intriguing tidbit to date has got to be the fact that you’ll be […]

  • First-ever PC Gaming Show to take place at E3 2015 in June

    PC gaming will finally have its very own E3 press conference this year, thanks to PC Gamer and AMD. The PC Gaming Show will take place on June 16 at the Belasco Theater in Los Angeles and it will be livestreamed on Twitch. PC Gamer said speakers at the presentation will include representatives from Blizzard, […]

  • Majora’s Mask light available now on Club Nintendo for 6000 stars

    Club Nintendo shuts up shop on September 30 and members are being encouraged to spend accumulated stars before then. And what better to spend them on, than this adorable Majora’s Mask light? If you’re a member based in Europe you can nab it for 6000 stars. If you’re in Australia or New Zealand, it’ll only […]

  • Unity support announced for HoloLens, will work with Windows universal apps

    Microsoft is partnering with game engine developers Unity in order to make HoloLens compatible with apps and games which use the cross-platform engine. The partnership was announced yesterday during its Build Developer Conference. Universal apps for Windows 10 systems will also be available on Xbox One later this year, suggesting possible HoloLens functionality with the […]

  • Splatoon Nintendo Direct airs Thursday, May 7

    A Nintendo Direct focused on Splatoon, the Wii U multiplayer title, on May 7. It will kick off at 7am PDT/10am EDT/3pm UK and it can be watched via the Nintendo Direct website. You can also have a look at the game through Nintendo’s Twitch channel. The last game-specific presentation took place last week and […]

  • GTA 5 PC: clean up the streets as a member of the San Andreas PD with this new mod

    Remember the awesome mods for GTA 4 and San Andreas that let you run amok online as a member of the po-po? Well, dust off your taser and load up your gun, because it’s coming to GTA 5. The new mod for GTA 5 is currently in alpha and can be downloaded at palmbeachgames.com. You […]

  • Indie shoot ‘em up Project Root comes to Xbox One, PS4 and PSVita

    Project Root is a self-proclaimed rejig of the shoot ‘em up genre that was released on PC last year, and it’s finally coming to consoles. Combining free-roaming elements with the usual business of shooting things, Project Root was released this week for Xbox One, PS4 and the PSVita.

  • You can now bet on eSports online, starting with League of Legends

    If you’re getting bored with sticking a pony on the races, you can expand your gambling horizons at Unikrn where you can watch esports streams and get a little action on the side. The new platform was set up by Rahul Sood – previously the general manager of Microsoft Ventures. At the moment, customers are […]

  • Has Watch Dogs 2 been leaked?

    Ubisoft employee, Julien Risse, may have inadvertently confirmed Watch Dogs 2, thanks to his online CV over at LinkedIn. Videogamer.com spotted the slip up, in which Risse lists Watch Dogs, the DLC Bad Blood, and Watch Dogs 2 on his profile. Creative Director Jonathan Morin has already talked about his ideas for improvements for the […]

  • GTA 5′s Trevor makes his Jackass debut, complete with leopard-print knickers

    YouTuber Abstract Mode has shared his vision of what Trevor Philips’ life might have been like, had he not been completely batshit crazy. Watch Trevor get mauled, run over, and hit by a train, before taking a majestic swan-dive into someone else’s pool at the climax. Thanks, Kotaku.

  • Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 season pass will cost you £35

    Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 isn’t released until November 6, but you can already hand over your cash for the Season Pass. The Season Pass is available for pre-purchase on Steam for £34.99, and will cover four DLC packs – although the details we have on the content are limited to ‘exciting’ at this […]

  • GTA Online’s cheating assholes are no match for this player’s vengeance

    Think you’re smart for using invisibility and infinite ammo glitches? You need to be taught a lesson, sucker. You can have all the hacks you want but if your GTA Online game is weak, you’ll still get your ass handed to you. As this fool discovered when attempting to hassle another player. There’s a fair […]

  • PS4 sales help Sony’s games division swing to profit

    Sony’s PlayStation business has made an operating profit of 48.1 billion yen ($404m / £261.5m) in the past 12 months. That’s thanks to stellar sales of the PlayStation 4 and PS Plus, even as sales of the PS3 have stalled and the company wrote off costs for the PSTV and PS Vita. The profit puts […]

  • New patch for Dirt Rally gives co-driver’s attitude a tune-up

    Dirt Rally gets a new patch three days after release on Steam. On Monday, we reported that the newest Dirt game has popped up on Steam’s Early Access and is available to pick up for £24.99, as well as giving you an eyeful of tasty screenshots. The patch – released yesterday – fixes some issues […]

  • New The Witcher 3 screenshots show combat, exploration and general carousing

    New screenshots released on the official facebook page for The Witcher 3 show Geralt annihilating a winged beast, out and about in the world exploring, and living the life of Reily amidst a bustling feast. We were already treated to some glorious screenshots a few days ago, but these new ones are in-game and give […]

  • Destiny: 14 things you might have missed during House of Wolves intel drops

    Destiny: House of Wolves does a great deal more than just slap some new content on the existing game structure. House of Wolves changes Destiny in a lot of interesting and very welcome ways. Bungie showed off many of these changes in its livestream, and let both me and Arekkz come and have a look […]

  • Scratch that cyberpunk itch with Technobabylon on May 21 – new trailer

    Technobabylon more like Wrecked-yo-babbling with my smooth flow about how good Wadjet Eye games are. I don’t know y’all, it’s clock off time and everything feels like a reach. Wadjet Eye makes pretty good adventure games – award winning, in fact. The latest project to spring forth from the benevolent, sheltering hand of the label […]

  • Skullgirls 2nd Encore brings exclusive new features to PS4, Vita in northern summer

    Skullgirls, the little indie fighter that could, is getting another crack at it. Skullgirls 2nd Encore is the second re-release of the one-time troubled 2D versus fighter from lab Zero Games. Having survived the shut down of its developer and collapse of its publishing contrast, Skullgirls re-emerged as Skullgirls: Encore, adding in a ton of […]

  • Danganronpa series generates “impressive” sales for Vita exclusive

    Danganronpa is selling quite nicely, thank you, says NIS America. Danganronpa is a series of murder mystery visual novel puzzlers in a similar vein to games like 999. Two of these have been released for Vita in the west – Trigger Happy Havoc and Goodbye Despair. Speaking to MCV, NIS America CEO and president Takuro […]

  • I have no idea what is going on in J-Stars Victory VS+ but I kind of like it

    In this J-Stars Victory VS+ trailer, we see – uhh. Well. We certainly see some things. Look y’all, I was a massive weaboo in high school, but that was back in the dark ages when we had to take out Manga Entertainment VHS tapes from dingy little specialist rental joints that were literally underground, and […]

  • Please just watch this terrific trailer for Toren

    Toren is the kind of game I dream about when I drift off to sleep at night. This indie puzzle adventure strikes a spark in my little soul in the same way as Ico and Tequila Works’ Rime do. Mysterious, almost ethereal fantasy setting – check. Chance to actually walk around in that setting – […]

  • Play classic MS-DOS games on your own tweets

    In today’s episode of “what will they think of next”, someone’s figured out how to post playable versions of classic games in tweets. For some time now, Twitter has allowed you to embed various forms of media in tweets, most noticeably YouTube videos, simply by pasting a URL into the compose field. Turns out this […]

  • VR: Unreal Engine to add HTC Vive support

    The biggest digital PC game distributor and the most popular game development engine have both backed VR. It’s going to happen. An upcoming Unreal Engine 4 update will expand the development suite’s support to the HTC Vive, Valve’s VR headset. In this glorious new future where work on one of the most important engines in […]

  • WWE 2K15 PC supports modding

    WWE 2K15 may be the series’ PC debut, but it’s already getting into the spirit of the platform. WWE 2K15 does indeed support mods on PC, 2K’s Marcus Stephenson has confirmed. @ElementGamesTV you can. Now buy. — Marcus Stephenson (@stephensonmc) April 28, 2015 As Destructoid points out, this opens the door to all sorts of […]

  • Overkill’s The Walking Dead coming to PC, PS4 and Xbox One in 2016

    Overkill’s The Walking Dead is one step closer to your grasping little paws. Overkill’s The Walking Dead will be published by 505 Games, Overkill parent Starbreeze has announced. 505 also published Payday 2, Overkill’s previous title, so the two companies have established a working relationship. In a press release, the publisher said the co-op title […]

  • Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 pre-orders net Advanced Warfare DLC

    Buy Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 for later, enjoy bonus Advanced Warfare content now. Blacks Ops 3 is being supported by a rather cunning pre-order incentive even more likely to get you to lay your cash down sooner than you might otherwise. Gamespot reports a Black Ops 3 pre-order will receive a couple of […]

  • Steam Game Ban system lets developers determine who to block

    Steam users can now be blocked from individual games by their developers. Steam has always supported multiplayer bans for disruptive users, but a newly-implemented system allows developers to ban users from individual games using their own anti-cheat systems. Game Bans are enforced by Valve, but are enacted at the developer’s request and discretion. This change […]

  • Far Cry 4 devs matching Red Cross donations up to $100K to aid Nepal earthquake victims

    Far Cry 4 developer Ubisoft Montreal will match any pledges made to The Red Cross up to $100,000 to aid Nepal after the 7.8 earthquake struck the area in and around Kathmandu in Nepal. According to Ubisoft: “Having spent the last few years working on Far Cry 4, a game heavily inspired by Nepal and […]

  • Tales of Zestiria retail listing notes September release date, PS4 version

    Tales of Zestiria is coming west in northern autumn, and while it’s confirmed as a PlayStation 3 release, a Dutch retailer has it listed as coming to PS4 as well. Of course, listing it for PS4 could also be a typo, not that I would personally know about that sort of thing, really. However, according […]

  • Official mod tools for Total War: Attila are now available

    Official mod tools for Total War: Attila are now available and you can grab the new Assembly Kit as a beta through the tools menu via your Steam library. The Creative Assembly said the tools will be “immediately familiar” to modders of Rome 2 and Shogun 2, but the new version is the most “extensive” […]

  • How to get level 34 Ascended Raid gear in Destiny: House of Wolves

    Watch: two videos showing you how to get level 34 raid gear and a shopping list of what you need. One of the big changes that House of Wolves is bringing to Destiny is the chance to upgrade your weapons and gear to level 34. In these videos Arekkz Gaming shows you how to use […]

  • Destiny: House of Wolves puts PvP back in the spotlight

    Destiny PvP players, your time has come to shine. New Crucible maps. New Crucible rewards. And the glorious wonder of Elimination mode. Destiny: House of Wolves puts PvP front and centre. When Destiny was first detailed, one of the things Bungie stressed was that there’d be something for everyone. If you wanted to play solo […]