UK discount web site MyVoucherCodes has surveyed its users and found that eighteen percent of those over sixty years old are playing videogames, reports InfoWorld. The survey found the Nintendo DS as the most popular console, owned by nearly a third of those surveyed. About a third of Nintendo DS owners said they were playing Namco Bandai’s Brain Exercise with Dr. Kawashima, making it the most popular title in the survey. Nintendo Wii was the second most popular console among survey respondents, with about a quarter of them saying they owned one. Sony PlayStation 3 was the least owned, with about 80 percent citing its expensive price as the reason for not buying one.
Koei’s trailer for the latest in its Fist of the North Star beat em up franchise manages to feel nostalgic and current at the same time. Parts of it feel like those early CG cinematics that started to appear just about the time game consoles started spinning discs. That’s partly because of the game’s visual style as a classic fighter. Yet the animation is polished, and some clever direction with a few notably subtle if sometimes mystical segues make it entirely watchable. Plus it has that wonderful Asian video trailer characteristic of not exactly telling you the storyline, rather making you wonder what the heck is going on.
Watch it at GameTrailers.
Atari and developer Cryptic might be going for the general structure of most Star Trek films in this trailer for Star Trek Online. With 2009’s Star Trek excepted, there’s usually a lot of buildup, some drawn out scenes, and eventually, with 1979’s Star Trek: The Motion Picture excepted, an explosive finale. But given that the pattern for this video is along the lines of roam, scan, roam, beam up, beam down before it gets to any action, that buildup needs punch. At minimum it could use some context. The beaming and the shooting are self-explanatory, but even a few choice bullet points at the front to explain, say, the running and the scanning. That would help.
Watch it at Joystiq.
MCV UK has this nifty question and answer piece where Activision UK head Andrew Brown interviews first-party UK heads Neil Thompson of Microsoft, Ray Maguire of Sony, and David Yarnton of Nintendo. The interview mostly focuses on coming trends, touching on digital distribution, cloud gaming and social media.
Read the Q&A at MCV UK.
M2 Research’s Wanda Meloni presents her findings for the game industry in 2009 in the most recent periodical brief from the firm. Meloni paints the year as one of ups and downs, marked by drags such as rising development costs and a surge in studio layoffs even as hopeful signs came in the growth of digital distribution and virtual goods. She also looks ahead to coming tech such as 3D games and motion controllers, developments that may ultimately have 2009 remembered as gaming’s gateway year to future trends.
Nielsen has a study aggregating data for media usage across television, web, mobile, videogames, books, music and radio. The firm has a two-page fact sheet presenting some of their data, which although top line comprises useful statistics for TV, mobile, internet and videogames. Included are surprising results for the number of female gamers on handheld systems.
Read the Nielsen fact sheet PDF.
Nintendo says it saw strong holiday sales in the US with both hardware and software performing well, reports Edge-Online. Nintendo says it sold about 3 million units of Wii in December. While it didn’t reveal sales for its other current generation console, Nintendo DS, it said the handheld system set a record in 2009 for most sales in a year in the US for any console. The company said holiday sales were also helped along by Wii title New Super Mario Brothers, which it estimates as selling four million units since its November launch. Read more at Edge-Online.
Capcom’s Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles has become the latest mature-rated Wii game to miss its sales mark. In remarks reported by Edge-Online, Capcom France’s Antoine Seux has told a European game site that the title has sold only about 16,000 units after three weeks. Speaking to GameKult, Seux said there is a very clear problem on Wii with the style of game the latest Resident Evil title represents. The title is an M-Rated light gun shooting game based on the long-running, often brisk selling franchise. Seux says that while the 2007 re-release of Resident Evil 4 sold well on Wii, the market for Nintendo’s console has since radically changed. Read more at Edge-Online.
Google quietly sent out preview units of its smart phone Nexus One in mid-December and details are emerging as its information embargo was lifted yesterday, reports Ad Age. Ad Age says press were not the only ones among lucky preview recipients, but also digital VIPs such as Union Square Ventures partner Fred Wilson. Wilson is among the first to post details about the phone, pointing out one nifty ability being that it can run multiple applications. The ability is an often-touted one as a leg-up over iPhone for all phones running Google’s mobile operating system Android. Wilson also pointed out that the phone s touch screen is missing a couple of iPhone’s neat abilities such as pinching to resize images and swiping to scroll. The phone is expected to be priced at about $180 with a contract through mobile carrier T-Mobile, or about $530 full price. Ad Age points to a full tech review of the Nexus One by Engadget, who reveals that the phone is built by HTC and powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chip. Read more at Ad Age.