[a]list summit – Leading With The Right Trailer

Trailers are an intrinsic part of game advertising, some would even say the most important part. One need only look at the way that the 2011 Dead Island trailer took the internet by storm and got gamers to take a closer look at the franchise.

This panel looks at the right approach to game trailers, looking at the merits and the timing for CG, live action and game play. Participants are Ayzenberg Group creative director Gary Goodman and Nathan Kitada director of operations at Maker Studios Inc. with moderator Richard Scott, executive producer & managing director at Axis Animation.

Double Fine Launches Second Kickstarter

Double Fine Productions has announced that it is launching its second Kickstarter campaign called Massive Chalice. Being pitched as a 3D fantasy tactics game, the game has already raised over two-thirds of the stated funding goal of $725,000.

“Double Fine is committed to remaining independent, and that includes being responsible to our fans above all else. Kickstarter allows us to do exactly that,” said Double Fine president Tim Schafer.

“We love tactical strategy games, roguelikes, and the idea of powerful Game of Thrones-style royal dynasties-Massive Chalice brings all of that together in a unique Double Fine package,” said game lead Brad Muir.

Source: Kickstarter.com

Sony CEO: PS4 Focus Is On Games

Sony was bit early on in this generation of game consoles by issuing confusing messages about the utility of the PS3. Sony CEO Kaz Hirai made no bones about what the focus of the PS4 will be at the D11 conference.

“The most important thing we need to do is agree and understand that the PS4 is a great video game console that appeals to video gamers,” he said. “If we miss that part, I don’t think we get the initial establishment of the console. That formula has worked for us with all our consoles, including the PS3.”

PS4: Artist’s Concept

“Providing other non-game content is an area we will reveal and talk about in the coming months, but it’s first and foremost a video game console,” he added.

Source: CVG

Facebook Sees Advertiser Pushback Over Misogynistic Content

Facebook has been hemorrhaging advertisers after a campaign drew attention to pages on the social media site that promoted violence against women. Women, Action, and the Media launched the campaign to encourage Facebook to end hate speech on its site and urge advertisers to pull their support.

The campaign produced more than 5,000 emails to Facebook advertisers and more than 60,000 posts on Twitter from supporters. Women, Action and the Media said that 15 companies agreed to pull advertising over the matter.

Facebook responded by saying that it will review its guidelines, update training for employees and increase accountability for those who post such material, along with working more closely with women’s groups. “We need to do better — and we will,” Marne Levine, Facebook’s vice president of global public police said in a statement online.

Women, Action and the Media’s Executive Director Jaclyn Friedman noted that they’d been concerned for a while about inappropriate content, but decided to try a different approach by reaching out to both advertisers and Facebook. “We are thrilled with the commitment (Facebook) made,” Friedman said. “It’s about stepping up and being the industry leader that they already are.”

Two of the larger advertisers that responded, Nissan and Zipcar, say they will resume advertising on the social network because of steps Facebook is taking to fix the problem.


Precursor Games Believes In Denis Dyack

Precursor chief operating officer Shawn Jackson went to Reddit to defend the hiring of Silicon Knights founder Denis Dyack as its chief creative officer. He also noted that if the studio does not reach its $1.35 million goal, it will probably not be able to release Shadows of the Eternals.

“We hired him because he’s a valuable asset to the team. We intend to show people the real Denis Dyack through his interactions on the forums and videos. Denis has made many successful games and ran independent studio for over 20 years,” Jackson wrote. “We didn’t anticipate a backlash because we actually know Denis as the person he is. We believe in Denis and with him focusing on creative, he is excelling at something that he loves.”

“Since we do not have any other source of funding, it is unlikely,” Jackson later added. “If the project does not reach it’s goal on Kickstarter, we will refund all pledges made through PayPal on our own site. We will entertain all options to make this game a reality because we believe in this project. However, we can’t be sure a publisher will share our vision for interacting with the community during development or this would work in the traditional model.”

Source: Reddit.com

Motorola Moves To Make Phones In Texas

Motorola Mobility has announced that it is opening a smartphone factory in Texas. While the company was once among the leaders in outsourcing to China, the smartphone maker is part of a movement toward bringing technology jobs back to the United States.

The move comes as other companies like Apple and Lenovo are planning to add U.S. manufacturing capacity. While some see this as a PR move designed to mollify members of congress, Motorola Mobility officials said they see business logic to having a factory close to the engineers who are designing a new flagship smartphone.

“Doing that work of actually assembling the phone close to home will allow us to fix things faster, innovate faster,” said Dennis Woodside, CEO of Motorola Mobility.

The Moto X will be the first phone designed entirely under Google’s ownership. While the manufacturing in the U.S. meets the preferences of Americans, many of the 1,100 component parts will still be made overseas.

“You would have said five years ago this would have been impossible,” said Scott N. Paul, president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing. “It’s interesting that you’re seeing this getting started now. It’s possible this could be part of a larger trend.”

The Moto X will be designed to streamline some common functions, such as taking a picture, to make the process faster and easier for users. The Texas factory will produce smartphones for the U.S. and Mexican markets, allowing for faster shipping times and making it easier for engineers to make changes like colors beyond the standard black or white in response to shifting customer tastes.

“It’s definitely designed to have a much different look and feel than other smartphones and a much purer Google experience,” said Mark Randall, senior vice president for supply chain and operations for Motorola Mobility.

The Fort Worth factory is in a foreign trade zone that has tax advantages for exporters. “Motorola Mobility’s decision to manufacture its new smartphone and create thousands of new jobs in Texas is great news for our growing state,” said Texas Governor Rick Perry said in a statement. “Our strong, healthy economy, built on a foundation of low taxes, smart regulation, fair legal system and a skilled workforce is attracting companies from across the country and around the world.”

Source: WashingtonPost.com

GungHo Wants To Top Nintendo

GungHo Online Entertainment has seen huge profits from Puzzle & Dragons, receiving $3.4 million a day during the first quarter. GungHo CEO and president Kazuki Morishita says that he’s targeting Nintendo in the future.

“I want to top Nintendo’s sales by the time I retire,” said Morishita. “We are targeting children in a bid to increase lifetime customers. We want to sell at least 1 million units just like any other titles we target.”

Source: BusinessWeek

Xbox One Reveal Defended By Avalanche Founder

Microsoft has taken some flak from the gaming media over its primary focus at its Xbox One reveal event on television and sports content. Avalanche Studios’ founder and chief creative officer Christofer Sundberg has come out to defend the reveal and state how he likes the mandatory addition of the Kinect.

“Microsoft has said that it wants to make the Xbox One an entertainment center,” said Sundberg. “If it was dubbed the ultimate gaming machine at this point, Microsoft would lose the attention of general media. This way, they are grabbing mainstream attention first and can focus entirely on gamers at E3. After that they’ll have both in their grasp. The Xbox is and has always been a gaming platform, and I don’t see that changing with the Xbox One.”

“I have dreamt of making an open-world/sandbox game for kids for many years and in that case I can see a strong support for the Kinect enhancing the experience, while I have a hard time making a perfect fit with some of our games in development at the moment,” he added.

Source: Edge