LittleBigPlanet Gets New Community Site

MediaMolecule has announced the launching of a new community site. This enables users to check out what their friends and favorite creators are up to and also search for new levels to play, leveraging user content and creating a new way to create awareness around it.

Because this takes info from the game and puts it on the web, users are recommended to adjust their privacy settings. Check it out at lbp.me.

App Store Coming To Macs January 6

Apple has announced that the latest version of the App Store will launch on January 6. This latest version will work with the Snow Leopard version of OSX and the upcoming update Lion, bringing a variety of downloadable applications to Mac computers.

“The App Store revolutionized mobile apps,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “We hope to do the same for PC apps with the Mac App Store by making finding and buying PC apps easy and fun. We can’t wait to get started on January 6.”

Nielsen Report Shows Separate Uses Of Consoles

Nielsen has released a series of statistics on consoles, showing that they are increasingly being used as multimedia devices. It’s interesting to see not just how consumers use their consoles, but the differences between the consoles.

“Fully 87 percent of users age 13+ say they have played video games of some kind for Xbox 360 and Wii, with 80 percent saying they have done so for PlayStation 3,” notes the report. “Much of this is the result of traditional offline play, but nearly half of Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 users say they play games online, writes Nielsen. With this in mind, what share of time do both offline and online gaming account for across these consoles On average, Xbox 360 users claim to spend 62 percent of their time with the system on gaming, with online play accounting for nearly the same share as offline. Comparatively, PlayStation 3 users spend just under half of their usage time gaming, and engage relatively more in offline vs. online play than Xbox 360 users.”

DVD/Blu-Ray use is also another popular category, leading the way on the PS3 where it occupies 27 percent of their time with the console, compared to only 11 percent of time on Xbox 360. The Wii, by contrast, is mostly used for its offline capabilities; nearly double the percentage of users’ time is spent in offline gaming for the Wii than any other console.

“All of the analysis of console time up to this point has looked at consumer-reported share of time rather than electronically measured hours,” the report adds. “Though a different data source, metered console usage data can help us understand how big the pie is that is being sliced for each console. Indeed, the total amount of time in hours differs markedly by console. Users 13+ spend 4.9 total hours per week on the Xbox 360, 4.1 hours on the PlayStation 3 and 1.4 hours on the Wii. Males drive these averages for all three consoles, surpassing females in time spent. These differences in time, coupled with the nuances in how that time is allocated, underscore the unique profile of use for each console.”

Source: Nielsen Blog

VGAs See Down Ratings, But Silver Lining

Reports say that the ratings for the 2010 VGAs were down for the fourth consecutive year. The 627,000 watchers represented a three percent drop from roughly 650,000 last year.

Still, the news is not all bad for Spike TV’s video game award show. Adults 18-49 were up 12 percent from 370,000 to 450,000 while adults 18-34 were up five percent from 278,000 to 292,000 and men 18-34 saw a 15 percent climb from 218,000 to 251,000.

Source: Variety

Mass Effect 2 For PS3 Running On Mass Effect 3 Engine

BioWare has made some remarkable promises for the PS3 version of Mass Effect 2, detailing that it would be as good or better than any other version of the game. Jesse Houston, producer for the PS3 version of Mass Effect 2, detailed that it was possible using the Mass Effect 3 engine.

“We’ve actually created the engine for Mass Effect 3 and use that to make Mass Effect 2 PS3, said Houston. So we took the content and the story and all the other assets that made up Mass Effect 2 and we put them in the Mass Effect 3 engine. And that s what we are actually delivering.”

Source: Blog.Bioware.com

Nintendo Event In January Giving 3DS Details

Nintendo has sent out invitations to a media event in Amsterdam. While the event is mostly enigmatic, it will deal with Nintendo’s new portable platform, the 3DS.

It is believed that this event will see the revelation of an official European release date; up until now, only Japan has gotten a firm launch date, February 26, 2011. The day-one launch line-up and pricing are also expected to be unveiled.

Source: MCV

Kobe Bryant Signs On For Social Game

Kobe Bryant has partnered with Endemol USA in order to be the inspiration and focus of a new social game. The game, co-produced by 6waves, will see the L.A. Lakers star play an important role in the creative development.

“This is an unprecedented opportunity to transform the world of social games,” said Rex Ng, co-founder & CEO of 6waves. “While social games are incredibly popular, they have never included a global entertainment icon such as Kobe Bryant. Social gaming is still a fairly young platform, and we are going to completely change the experience for the player.”

The social title will give players a chance to win prizes like Bryant-autographed memorabilia or tickets to attend a Lakers game and will integrate into Bryant’s online video series, Dream Makers. Endemol USA will co-produce the game and secure sponsorships and brand integrations while 6waves will manage the development and distribution of the game on Facebook and other social networking sites globally.

“Expanding into the exciting world of social gaming feels like a natural progression for Endemol and we are thrilled to collaborate on this project with Kobe Bryant, one of worlds most talented athletes and the gaming masterminds of 6waves,” said David Goldberg, Chairman of Endemol North America.

“I’m excited to partner with Endemol USA and bring unprecedented entertainment programming to gaming fans worldwide, added Bryant.

Nexon Taps PlaySpan For UltimatePay

Nexon America announced that they have signed a new partnership with PlaySpan. The MMO user will take advantage of PlaySpan’s credit card processing and fraud risk management services.

“Our selection of PlaySpan’s platform will allow us to deliver greater payment alternatives to our players, ensuring that they will always have access to premium entertainment content,” said Daniel Kim, Nexon America s CEO. “This is yet another in a series of partnerships we are working on to provide our players with a safe and secure platform so they can focus on what really matters having fun.”

“Nexon’s selection of UltimatePay to manage credit card payments for gamers who purchase Nexon Cash is testament to our superior risk management features,” said Karl Mehta, Founder & CEO of PlaySpan. “We’re pleased to add one of the most recognized brands in the MMO space to our growing list of world class game developers and publishers.”