Rory McIlroy Already Covering PGA Game

Rory McIlroy, a young Northern Irish golfer, just won the PGA Tour’s U.S. Open, and that’s a big win for him and for Electronic Arts. Turns out, EA bet big by putting McIlroy on the cover of Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 as part of the game’s emphasis on the Ryder Cup, and now they’re in with the 22 year-old athlete on the ground floor.

The future of golf

Source: AdWeek

Zynga Sees Over 30 Million Recruits For Empires & Allies

The newest Zynga game Empires & Allies has already breached the 30 million active user mark. The game, evocative of Civilization, reached the mark of nearly 33 million in less than three weeks.

So far, Empires & Allies has over 6.5 million daily active users. 23 million of the players that have signed on the game have started playing in the past week.

Source: AppData

Halo Anniversary Getting Kinect Support

Microsoft has implied that all first-party Microsoft games will eventually include some sort of Kinect functionality, and they’re not waiting on making that move. Open to vocal and other forms of interaction is the upcoming entry in the Halo franchise.

As a first-party, we believe that Kinect will be important to all genres of games,” stated Microsoft Game Studios boss Phil Spencer. “Be it racing games with Forza, combat games like Ryse. Even games like Halo Anniversary have Kinect integration.”

Source: MCV

Bigpoint Reaches 200 Million Registered Users

Bigpoint has announced that it has reached 200 million registered users, doubled over the past 18 months. The publisher of Battlestar Galactica Online has attracted an average of 250,000 new users every day.

“This is another major milestone that our company has achieved in a short period of time,” explains Heiko Hubertz, founder of Bigpoint. “It shows that members of our community recognize our commitment to delivering high-quality games and online experiences, and we want to celebrate that.”

The company runs completely on digital sales, with all the titles being free-to-play, with 180 payment solutions available worldwide. Battlestar Galactica Online has generated over 2 million registrations in just 3 months and Bigpoint processes over one billion transactions every day.

Source: TechCrunch

Obama Tells Dads To Get Kids To Read, Not Play Games

The gaming industry has had an ambivalent relationship with President Obama. On one hand, he’s tech savvy and has had perhaps more hands on experience with video games than any other president on the other hand, he’s made statements encouraging parents to steer their kids away from videogames, which he did again during his Fathers’ Day address.

“We know that every father has a personal responsibility to do right by their kids,” said President Obama. “To encourage them to turn off the video games and pick up a book; to teach them the difference between right and wrong; to show them through our own example the value in treating one another as we wish to be treated. And most of all, to play an active and engaged role in their lives.”

Sony Veteran Sees Gaming Future Online, In the Cloud

Current London Venture Partners member Phil Harrison has doubled down on digital since leaving SCE Worldwide. He’s currently on the advisory board for Gaikai and thinks that’s a reflection of the future.

“There is undoubtedly a generation of kids alive on the planet today who will never purchase a physical media package for any of their digital entertainment,” he stated. “The console companies, if they wanted to take true market leadership, could do it in the next generation. There s no reason why Microsoft and Sony, in particular, couldn t push that change for the next iteration of their major consoles.”

“If you extrapolate the market-share gains that [Apple] are making, forward for ten years if they carry on unrestrained in their growth, then there s a pretty good chance that Apple will be the games industry,” he said. “The fact that the consumer purchase and discovery mechanism is so well integrated you see something on the App Store, you click a button, the product delivers to your device. That end-to-end shopping experience, if you want to call it that, has been so elegantly built by Apple and they will continue to refine it.”

“I probably buy more through Amazon, in terms of value, than any other retailer throughout the year,” Harrison noted. “I find that the rest of the world meaning Apple, Amazon, Steam are showing the future of how content will be consumed, adding to that NetFlix and LoveFilm and the like, and that console companies run the risk of becoming a little antiquated unless they change their business model.”

“With streaming through the web available now, he thinks the next console war will extend to new categories. First of all a web browser will stop looking like a web browser. It won t necessarily have a URL bar at the top and it won t necessarily have the same user-interface functionality that we know from Chrome or Firefox today,” Harrison explained. “But the idea of a set of pixels that are on a surface and which are updated from a cloud which is basically what a web browser does that is going to become much more the de facto way of interfacing with content, whether entertainment or information.”

“If that console, physical device goes away that s fine but that doesn t mean that PlayStation or Xbox as brands go away. It could be that the game and browser of the future is powered by PlayStation, or powered by Xbox Live or Nintendo,” added Harrison. “I think that that s where you ll see the battleground: not necessarily putting boxes full of chips and hard drives into your living room but giving you a storefront, navigation, discovery, a business model and user-interface.”

Source: Edge {link no longer active}

Duke Nukem Eats Up Sales, Critics

Duke Nukem Forever has so far been unkindly received by most critics, targeting issues ranging from the gameplay, graphics and technical holdups. Despite this, it’s tops in the U.K. sales chart and Gearbox Software CEO Randy Pitchford is happy with how the fans have received it.

“With sales data, It seems like *customers* love Duke, tweeted Pitchford. I guess sometimes we want greasy hamburgers instead of caviar…”

Jon St. John, the voice actor for Duke Nukem, was less subtle in his write off of critics. “I have no comments regarding bad reviews by clueless critics,” said Jon St. John to TheJoyPads {link no longer active}. “They seem to want to compare Duke Nukem Forever to Call Of Duty and other FPS’ and they are missing the point. My thoughts about Duke Nukem Forever: It freakin ROCKS! Lots of action, lots of fun, sexy, funny, irreverent… It’s everything I hoped it would be.”