Archive for the ‘E3’ tag

Nintendo Takes Over Airports & Malls This Holiday Season

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Nintendo

Photo Credits – Left: Chelsea Webster, Center: Monica McGovern, Right: Reb Powers

In 2013, Nintendo’s primary goal was to get the new Wii U console in to as many consumers’ hands as possible. To do this, they had to look beyond their past holiday experiences, and insert themselves into spaces where the consumer would be looking for a fun escape during their hectic holiday shopping and travel schedules. So in addition to their 8th year activating the Holiday Mall Experience, Nintendo partnered with Southwest Airlines to become their official video game partner and bring Wii U Gaming Lounges to 6 airports across the country. Both experiences bring the Wii U console and some of the best-reviewed games of the year to 23 malls and 6 airports across the country, from November 25th – December 22nd.

The Mall activations feature both the Wii U and the 3DS family of products, and visitors have the option of playing 30 titles across all products. Each site also features a compact version of the prize wheel featured at E3 this year, and these have already proven to be a popular draw at every site.

The inaugural Wii U Gaming Lounges at 6 airports across the country (Chicago – Midway, Tampa, St. Louis, Dallas Love Field, Atlanta, and Denver) feature 6 Wii U consoles with the opportunity to demo the brand new Super Mario 3D World. Nintendo and Southwest are also partnering for additional events, including their launch event on November 26th where all passengers on a Southwest flight from New Orleans to Dallas Love Field received a voucher for a free Wii U.

So take a break in between dashing between Black Friday sales and snow delays at the airport to demo the latest Nintendo systems and games – click this link to find a mall location and visit before December 22nd!

Written by: Caitlin Buggy

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Battle: GDC 2013

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GDC13Photo Credit: Chris Liao

Every March, GDC–the Game Developers Conference, for the uninitiated–rolls around in San Francisco without fail. It is the harbinger of E3 and herald of the non-stop gauntlet of the summer convention/conference/tradeshow season. In contrast to its ritzy and manic infused cousin, GDC forgoes the smoke and bright lights and opts for intimate meeting rooms and extensive one-on-one showcasing of the magic that makes games tick. But make no mistake; a battle is taking place behind the seemingly calm landscape. The gaming world is undergoing a fundamental shift. Developers in droves are choosing to go indie, swearing allegiance not to a console or publisher but to their games themselves.

If the gaming world is a battlefield, developers are the warriors, and the consumers the proverbial spoils…GDC would be their armory. The only impetus guiding a developer’s weapon of choice: innovate or die. The newest, fastest, greatest and latest are shown on the expo floor. Ranging from graphics engines, processors, gadgets, and user interfaces.

There is no lack of cool, shiny new things to discover.  Case and point, Activision’s R&D team and the Unreal 4 Engine blew us away with their respective Real Time Demos–graphics in games are lunging headfirst toward the other side of the uncanny valley, where characters and animations are so realistic they are indistinguishable from reality. Nvidia with their Tegra 4 chips and Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chips are set to level the playing field between traditional consoles and mobile platforms.

And in the chaos of the rise of the indie developer and agnostic gaming, disruptive bleeding edge user interfaces, like the Neurosky Mindwave (a headset that can read your brainwaves) and Oculus VR’s Oculus Rift (a reactive 3D virtual reality) manage to stand out as a beacon of what’s to come.

2013 will no doubt prove that we live in interesting times, indeed. For a gaming industry in flux, we’re eagerly waiting to see how the cookies crumble.

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