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Sony's eye tracking technology will be a game changer photo
Sony's eye tracking technology will be a game changer
by Dale North

Imagine never having to use the right analog stick to move a game's camera or reticle. Instead, you'd use your eyeballs to aim or move the camera -- simply look at what you want to shoot at or move to.  

This sounds like some dream for the future of gaming technology, but Sony has a working eye tracking demo at GDC this year. I had my doubts at first, but after having the infrared camera system calibrated to my eyes, I played Infamous: Second Son...

...with my eyes! 

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Push Me Pull You is sumo wrestling meets soccer meets WTF photo
Push Me Pull You is sumo wrestling meets soccer meets WTF
by Hamza CTZ Aziz

Last night I got to play a round of Push Me Pull You during the Venus Patrol party here in San Francisco. It was, without a doubt, the weirdest and best time I've had with a videogame in a long time. 

So here's the basic premise. You and a partner each control one end of the "sports-monster," a conjoined humanoid Catdog like person. You're going up against two other players in control of the same thing, and to win you need to keep control of a ball on your side of the court the longest for multiple rounds. You're able to shrink or increase the length of your body as needed, and you'll be adjusting sizes a lot as you vie for control. 

It's such a ridiculous concept, and it's a little bit disturbing too. It's essentially a f*cked up version of the Tron light cycle battles, expect here you're naked man monsters getting entangled as each team tries to wrap up their entire being around a ball. Videogames are just the greatest. 

I wasn't able to capture any video, but there are these animated gifs that can give you some insight to the gameplay over on Push Me Pull You's website

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10:39 PM on 03.19.2014

GDC Awards led by The Last of Us, Papers, Please

The Game Developers Choice Awards, the premiere peer-based awards show in the gaming industry, took place today in San Francisco, and the big winner of the night was The Last of Us with Game of the Year.  Other bigg...

Hamza CTZ Aziz

10:30 PM on 03.19.2014

Division devs brag about Ubisoft's Snowdrop engine

Ubisoft dropped this video today featuring some of the people working at Massive Entertainment, talking about their experience using the Snowdrop engine to develop Tom Clancy's The Division. If you're hoping to see some addi...

Conrad Zimmerman

9:21 PM on 03.19.2014

Papers, Please leads 2014 Independent Game Festival winners

Papers, Please took the $30,000 Seumas McNally Grand Prize at this year's IGF awards, joining last year's Cart Life.  The other winners include Gorogoa (Excellence in Visual Art), Papers, Please (Excellence in Narrative...

Steven Hansen



Grave is an ever-changing surrealist nightmare with Oculus Rift photo
Grave is an ever-changing surrealist nightmare with Oculus Rift
by Steven Hansen

The sensory deprivation the Oculus Rift provides is great for immersion. And immersion is great for moody, atmospheric, scary games like Grave. Though there is a non Rift version coming, so if you haven't sold your eye souls to virtual reality, don't stop reading yet.  

I'm very glad I've put my face in several strange contraptions, including Rifts, this week and I still have my eyes. Someone is going to get their eyes stolen soon.

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7:33 PM on 03.19.2014

Inafune: Mega Man has indie roots, and those remain with Mighty No. 9

In Keiji Inafune's GDC talk, titled "Meanwhile, In Japan...," he recalled that the feeling around the first Mega Man game was comparable to that of indie game making today.  "Mega Man was the first original total that ca...

Dale North

7:17 PM on 03.19.2014

Does Keiji Inafune still believe that 'Japan is over' now?

Keiji Inafune's GDC talk, titled "Meanwhile, In Japan..." opened by addressing a comment he made a couple of years back during another GDC talk. He was quoted as saying "Japan is over" back then. Today he was asked if he stil...

Dale North



Double Fine's Hack 'N' Slash is like Zelda, but you hack the game photo
Double Fine's Hack 'N' Slash is like Zelda, but you hack the game
by Steven Hansen

Borne out of Double Fine's yearly Amnesia Fortnight game jam, Hack 'N' Slash (as well as Spacebase DF-9) is getting a full release this summer. The top down action adventure game may look like a Legend of Zelda clone, but that's intentional, because the actual mechanics are different. And weird. 

You actually hack the game, rewriting bits of its code and changing values in real time to affect how you interact with these iconic mechanics. I feel a little dumb and intimidated, too, don't worry.

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6:00 PM on 03.19.2014

Crytek to offer royalty-free CryEngine subscription

Well, would you look at that. After hearing Epic Games has plans to roll out a $19.99-per-month subscription plan for Unreal Engine 4, we've know learned Crytek has announced a similar approach for its own CryEngine. But unli...

Jordan Devore

5:38 PM on 03.19.2014

Shenmue: from peach tree prototype to Virtua Fighter RPG to final release

At Yu Suzuki's GDC postmortem of Shenmue, he fully detailed the classic Dreamcast game's development, from an early prototype to a Virtua Fighter RPG to its final beloved form. Many details, images, and concepts were shown for the first time ever, which was a total thrill for me as a huge fan of the game and Suzuki's other works. 

Dale North

4:41 PM on 03.19.2014

'When will Shenmue 3 be released?'

Yu Suzuki took the very first question after his GDC Shenmue postmortem just now, probably knowing exactly what would be asked. You can guess the question.  Suzuki replied, "Of course I want to make one if I have the rig...

Dale North





4:30 PM on 03.19.2014

Animal Crossing is so successful because of its diverse team

Almost half of the people that worked on Animal Crossing: New Leaf are women. When its director Aya Kyogoku started with Nintendo in 2003, she was the only female game designer there. A decade later and that's no longer the c...

Steven Hansen



Nero: First-person visual novel is part Journey, part Myst photo
Nero: First-person visual novel is part Journey, part Myst
by Dale North

Imagine the exploratory experience of Journey, the first-person puzzle solving of Myst, and the look of the world of Avatar, all mixed together in one new game. That's how Storm in a Teacup's Executive Producer, Alberto Belli, describes their upcoming title, Nero.

They call it a visual novel, though it's nothing like the Japanese text-based titles you might imagine from that label.

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12:05 PM on 03.19.2014

Epic Games' new Unreal Engine 4 subscription plan detailed

Epic Games announced a new subscription model for Unreal Engine 4 this morning. Any user can gain full access to their tools and source code for only $19 a month and 5% revenue. Developers can deploy to PC, Mac, iOS, and Andr...

Dale North



Epic Games announces new $19.99/mo Unreal Engine 4 subscription plan photo
Epic Games announces new $19.99/mo Unreal Engine 4 subscription plan
by Dale North

Anyone can gain access to Unreal Engine 4 now with a new subscription plan, priced at $19.99 a month. This was announced this morning in a GDC press conference by Epic co-founder Tim Sweeney. 

With this new plan, users can deploy to four platforms: PC, Mac, iOS, and Android. Developers will pay 5 percent of revenues for full access to Unreal Engine 4. This fee gets you the tools, access to full C++ source code (via GitHub), documentation, and forum support access. This new plan is available today, letting new developers download tools and get started right now (or in a few minutes -- the site is down right now).

Sweeney calls today the start of something new for Epic Games. He said that they’ve been working quietly behind the scene on new technology for awhile now. The future of the engine is inspired by a lot of changes in the game industry. The assumption was that bigger and better was going to be the continual goal for the future of gaming, but things have changed since, with mobile and VR entering the scene in a big way.

The newest form of  Unreal Engine 4 was built to be highly usable for developers of all sizes.   Sweeney says that even if you don’t know how to program, you could build a game in Unreal Engine 4. He confident enough about its ease of use that noted that the engine could potentially be a new outlet for the motivated Minecraft player.

It used to cost many millions of dollars and lots of licensing paperwork for AAA developers to use UE4 to make games. Sweeney admits that this is an outdated plan now. They’re shooting for practicability and accessibility with their new business mode; every developer on earth will have access to all the tools Epic has when they develop their AAA games now. For $20, cancelable at any time. How great is that?

As an example, they showed off a game they made with the tools, called Tappy Chicken. It was developed in two days with Blueprint in UE4, with no programming. Other examples of the tools were shown -- more on these later today.

You'll find the full details on this new plan here.

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