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The long-rumored Apple console, free-to-play games, and the future of the living room

I've never worked in the games business, and I have no major reason to have opinions about it. But I've been thinking about this one for a really long time and I don't see it being fully explained anywhere. So here's my thesis about what's going to happen with console gaming.

One day, Apple will expand Apple TV into an iOS device that can support third-party apps, perhaps renaming it in the process. The biggest reason they have to take this step is the rise of free-to-play (F2P) games. F2P games have made major inroads in mobile and PC gaming, but nobody has taken them into the living room. Apple will be the company to do this, beating Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, and Valve to the punch. It will give the company a major footprint in the living room, strengthen its position as a distributor of streaming entertainment, and grow Apple TV into a massive new product line.

Free-to-play gaming is a tidal wave

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They're just game controllers. They're just game controllers.

Who in their right mind spends money on branded game controllers? I mean, just use the ones you’ve already got. Seriously. So what if they’re pegged to the upcoming Tron sequel. Or that the design is actually pretty nice. And who cares that they actually light up like you were sitting in the Tron universe piloting a solar sailer or something. I just don’t see the point of having them sitting around, looking cool, and glowing all the time. Um.

[Via Kotaku and Gizmodo]

Portal fucking 2

OMG OMG OMG.

Portal 2 will include cooperative play, and new game dynamics. This video from E3 shows off moving walls and streams of paint which seem to be important … maybe the paint makes you slide faster?

Anyway, it doesn’t come out ‘til 2011, so that will leave plenty of time for feverish nerd overthinking and anticipation.

There's a team deathmatch in my mouth, and everybody's invited

Next-generation video game cereals:

Kotaku ‘Shop Contest: Next-Gen Cereal System Edition Winners

Your neighbors are going to love this one

A video game where you play by screaming:

The future is another country

I know Christmas is over, but there’s no shame in a late gift if the gift really kicks ass. Just saying.

Soviet Arcade Game Posters (via Kotaku)

Objective updated. Endure tedious small talk.


Ultra-Realistic Modern Warfare Game Features Awaiting Orders, Repairing Trucks

Street Fighter in 15 pixels

Via Kotaku.

Pew pew pew

Sequels for pwning n00bs in the 2009 holiday season

If November comes around and you don’t hear from me or see me for a while, you can blame these two:

I don’t know what it says about me that Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare is my main shooter: It’s a paranoid, twitchy chaotic experience but I love it. The lefty in me gets sort of freaked out about all the teenage suburban boys who play this, but I can’t deny it’s a phenomenally well-done game.

Some gamers are hating on Valve for coming out with a L4D sequel soon, but if the deets in this preview are correct, they’ve added a ton of awesome stuff. Dynamic weather effects, campaign scenes in full daylight, pathways that change depending on the whim of the AI Director, panic events that force you to move forward to finish instead of hiding out, and, oh yeah, more realistic and gory damage modeling. Also, is it just me or are half the characters black? That’s a nice touch too.

And yes, I am only 15 years old. What’s your point?