Articles of Interest

  • The Singapore-MIT GAMBIT Game Lab is hiring postdocs and game development staff. Postdocs will be required to fulfill a combination of teaching, management, research and publishing roles. Applicants for staff positions should have at least three years of industry experience as a lead programmer, artist, or designer.
  • Via Kim, Street Fighter meets Judeo-Christian biblical figures in Bible Fight on
  • Jane McGonigal’s World Without Oil ARG launched last week. It is billed as an attempt to explore “what happens when a great economy built entirely on cheap oil begins to run short.”
  • Two weeks ago, GameTap announced that it will offer free-to-play games supported by advertising revenue. All the free games I saw listed were non-casual; i.e. arcade retro and titles like Tomb Raider. I wonder if GameTap is doing this primarily in hopes of subsequently upselling the subscription service to free service users? Works for Pogo.
  • Interesting survey of (mostly newer) Second Life users. What caught my eye: “Nearly a quarter play as another gender, and as another race, and as a different nationality, while 11% have an avatar of a different political orientation.”
  • Via Ben, I’ve discovered SimExchange, a free prediction market that encourages visitors to come together and predict the sales of video games. You can also submit articles, images, and videos for listed games. I love it, but I should add that it’s unclear whether there’s sufficient motivation for users to make meaningful predictions (i.e. they aren’t betting their own real money, which is generally the best motivator.) SimExchange is instead encouraging a playfully-competitive atmosphere, which certainly could help. I suppose we’ll know soon enough!
  • The Behemoth, developer of Alien Hominid HD, has a neat marketing idea; they’ve created some great-looking trophies that they’re awarding to leaderboard winners on Xbox Live Arcade! Wish I was good enough to actually earn one.
  • One Laptop per Child has announced the first OLPC Game Jam on June 8-10. The three-day event will be hosted by Olin College in Needham, Mass. One hundred game developers, educators, authors, musicians, artists, and writers from across the United States will work round-the-clock to create open source games for education in the span of a weekend.

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