Articles of Interest

Check out ARhrrrr, an augmented reality mobile phone game prototype that takes a real-world map and uses a mobile phone’s camera to bring it to life — pardon the pun — with zombies.

Sony has revealed that it is increasing the retailers’ margin on the PSP Go (relative to the old PSP.) This is an unsurprising response to the Go’s digital-only game distribution model. Eventually, all consoles will transition to a state in which the majority (if not all) content is distributed digitally, at which time their manufacturers will also need to give retailers a more generous cut of hardware revenue.

Gamasutra has posted its regular monthly estimate of XBLA sales for May 2009. I’ll have to write a longer post about the fate of episodic content on XBLA, PSN and Wiiware, but here’s a sneak peak: I’m very skeptical in the absence of system improvements that enable consumers to purchase a “season” at a substantial discount to the aggregate episode cost. And even then, I think that episodic content on the console will really struggle until one of the console makers and/or a big publisher (preferably both) decides to promote an episodic franchise in a really big way. By, for example, meaningfully integrating it with a TV show currently on the air. That’s probably not something that will happen anytime soon, given the current economics of the XBLA, PSN and Wiiware.

Warning: very long but good article describing the development and distribution of a mobile app for Blackberry. A nice break from articles about the iPhone…

Ravi has posted a nice article about virtual gifting, what drives it, and why it’s good business. Interesting quote: “HOT or NOT pioneered virtual gifting in the dating industry by letting users send virtual roses ranging from $2 to $10 to prospective dates. In an outcome that turns traditional economic theory on its ear, the $10 virtual roses have been the most popular because they send the clearest signal to the recipient…”

There’s more to life than games:

Well written article about some of the most common problems with business plans.

A summary of Cialdini’s Yes! 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive.

For those of you following the events in Iran as avidly as I am, here’s a twitter feed (generated by one of the protestors, and written primarily in English) that is widely followed and is a remarkable, gripping, and anxiety-inducing view into what is happening in Iran right now.

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