Twitter Adds Two-Step Authentication Feature

Twitter has finally implemented a two-step authentication feature to keep its users’ accounts more secure. The extra security measure is the use of a phone to verify a user.

“With login verification enabled, your existing applications will continue to work without disruption. If you need to sign in to your Twitter account on other devices or apps, visit your applications page to generate a temporary password to log in and authorize that application,” writes Jim O’Leary, twitter Product Security Team. “Of course, even with this new security option turned on, it’s still important for you to use a strong password and follow the rest of our advice for keeping your account secure.”

“This release is built on top of Twitter via SMS, so we need to be able to send a text to your phone before you can enroll in login verification (which may not work with some cell phone providers),” he added. “However, much of the server-side engineering work required to ship this feature has cleared the way for us to deliver more account security enhancements in the future. Stay tuned.”Source:

Kinect 2.0 PC Bound For 2014

Microsoft has confirmed that the next-generation Kinect will be coming to Windows PCs next year. The device has a 1080p color camera, an infrared sensor, improved skeletal tracking and features a new software development kit.

“We’re continuing our commitment to equipping businesses and organizations with the latest natural technology from Microsoft so that they, in turn, can develop and deploy innovative touch-free applications for their businesses and customers,” wrote Kinect for Windows director Bob Heddle. “Both the new Kinect sensor and the new Kinect for Windows sensor are being built on a shared set of technologies. The precision and intuitive responsiveness that the new platform provides will accelerate the development of voice and gesture experiences on computers.”


Exclusive: Game News Junkies Have A Video Hub

By Meelad Sadat

The trajectories of G4TV and Machinima over the last decade are good indications of how gamers like to take in their video programming. The former is gone. Meanwhile Machinima’s YouTube channel is drawing audiences that eclipse cable networks, and it’s only one among a number of increasingly popular online video channels for games. It only makes sense that filmed news-style programming covering the game industry follows the same path. Enter online news video service, essentially filling the role where there was once satellite news releases, launched by veteran game industry journalist John Gaudiosi late last year.

John Gaudiosi

Right around when PS2 was setting game console install records and buzz was building for this last generation of systems, it seemed video games were headed for big-time TV. Cable giant Comcast launched G4 during that time, going on air in 2002. Other programs such as TechTV’s X-Play and syndicated shows Electric Playground and began rising in popularity, and gaining muscle in the form of publisher PR-marketing support.

While Electric Playground is still around, and Spike TV has carved a niche with its GTTV show, online video nets YouTube and TwitchTV are where most people are looking for game related video today. TwitchTV has established itself as an open source video streamer’s paradise, whether it’s self-styled game experts web casting their play sessions or major game tournaments and special events drawing thousands of viewers. For more TV-style channels and programming, gamers are turning to YouTube. That’s where Machinima is thriving, and even game outlets IGN and GameSpot that previously walled their video content on their own sites have set up channels there.

YouTube is also where Gaudiosi has set up shop for  Along with GamerHub’s video team headed by Greg Burke and Mike Wang, the channel has served more than 1,100 videos since launching in October 2012. Their content, while focused on games, branches outside of the industry. GamerHub has become a mainstay at not just major game trade shows but also big entertainment and sports events, and it frequently features interviews with celebrities and athletes talking about games and tech.

GamerHub is partnered on two fronts to syndicate its content. It works with DBG Video Syndication, which serves major TV networks and is rated by comScore as one of the top five video syndication services. Separately, its slate of content aimed at core gamers, such as reviews, previews and game developer interviews, are syndicated by Tribune McClatchy to over 300 newspapers across the country, including Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times.

We talked with Gaudiosi, who both writes and films for, about his new venture in this exclusive interview.

Tell us about what and who should be using it.

While there are a lot of sites out there focusing on the core gaming audience, the biggest area of growth in video games today is in the mainstream. Because we have a lot of our editorial content syndicated to mass market newspapers like the Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times, we target stories and interviews that will appeal to this broader audience. We also have a lot of exclusive video interviews with big name celebrities and sports athletes talking about video games, which offers another unique way into what has become a global pastime — gaming.

For games, what’s the demand out there for in-depth pieces and interviews, who’s asking for this content?  

As more newspapers are laying people off, issuing furloughs and even closing down, there’s more need for content than ever before. I started writing for The Washington Post back when I was still in undergraduate school at George Mason University. Gaming was new back then, and the paper would only devote small capsule reviews and an occasional feature. Thanks to the internet, there’s now a demand for longer-format features, reviews, interviews and gaming content, which we’ve been able to fill with a variety of veteran and aspiring game writers. We work with Tribune and McClatchy editors to keep a steady flow of gaming content to the mainstream readers of newspaper websites across the country.

What kind of stories play best, and when it comes picking interviewees, what are the right considerations to get maximum play from your syndication partners?

There are a lot of similarities between what the mass market audience is looking for around gaming content and more core gamers seek. Timely reviews of new games are very much in demand. Games cost a lot today and with the economic issues that still effect many consumers, people don’t want to get ripped off paying $60 for a terrible Star Trek video game. There’s also a lot of interest in game previews, as well as coverage of big events like CES, GDC and E3, where a lot of big news happens. With the upcoming launches this fall of the new Xbox and PlayStation 4, next gen consoles are also very popular today.

Since violence in games is frequently in the spotlight, have you run into issues with what kind of content you can syndicate? Do you have any guidelines to share on violent content?

Thanks to a solid ESRB ratings system, which just recently was awarded the most accurate and successful by the FTC of all entertainment, we haven’t run into any issues with violence in video games with our content. The ratings of every game we review are clearly stated, and we review content based on the fact that gamers who are playing these titles have to be the appropriate age to rent or purchase them.

The one thing we won’t do, which I hate to see in the mainstream media, is jump on an erroneous bandwagon that “violent video games are to blame” whenever there’s a tragedy in the U.S. or anywhere in the world. Blaming video games on the actions of a sick individual who has easy access to a semi-automatic weapon is ludicrous and it takes the attention away from the real problems in our country and others. I also think it’s strange when a “news” organization will report that some killer played Call of Duty or some other shooter. These days, with the majority of gamers playing some type of game, the fact that someone plays games isn’t a differentiator. It’s like saying someone watches movies or TV or listens to music. It’s not the cause of any tragedy.

What about the team who started up, how did you come together and where were you before?

I’ve been working with Greg Burke on the video side of the business since 2010. came about after I chose the wrong partner for my last venture, and I wanted to make sure I had people I could trust and with solid gaming backgrounds for this video and editorial syndication venture. We’ve got a great team of people and we’re churning out solid exclusive video content that I believe is on par with any of the big companies out there — and doing it in a streamlined and affordable fashion.

You have notable experience interviewing celebrities with your previous beats for Hollywood Reporter, Variety and Entertainment Weekly. Give us one horror story for a celebrity interview, with or without naming names.

I’ve been pretty lucky with interviews. Honestly, the way Hollywood works, which is the complete opposite of the gaming industry, is that the barrier through to Hollywood talent is wall after wall of publicists. While there are plenty of great Hollywood PR reps, some of them can be very “difficult.” And often most horror stories involved getting through these gatekeepers. By the time all that work has been done, the actual talent is great.

My one exception in all the years of working this beat is Dennis Miller. Back when I was new to the biz I did an on-camera interview with him for The Net. I had already interviewed Sandra Bullock, who was a sweetheart. They gave me Miller before his lunch break, and he didn’t want to do the interview. He wanted to eat. His people made him do the interview, which was on-camera. So he took out a banana and ate it during the interview, while giving me one-word answers to questions. It was very rude. And all of it was captured on camera.

EA Sports Ignite Engine Trailers

Electronic Arts recently showed off their EA Sports Ignite Engine which will power games FIFA 14, EA Sports UFC, Madden NFL 25 and NBA Live 14. Also included here are trailers for touted features “Human Intelligence”, “True Player Motion” and “Living Worlds”.

Capcom Says Mobile Growth Slowing

Capcom released its recent quarterly financial results, saying that they expect a slowdown in mobile growth. The Japanese publisher explained that the market was to blame for the diminishing mobile revenues.

“The main reasons are the fact that the market has stalled somewhat as a result of the diversification of devices and waning popularity for certain genres of games, and a slowdown in the pace of hit products being launched in the fiscal year ended March 2013,” said Capcom. “That said, we are concentrating our efforts on business areas with sustained growth through the introduction of newly created social games and the promotion of diversification in platform games in the current fiscal year ending March 2014.”

Xbox One Combining All Games Into Single Section

Microsoft has announced that they are putting all downloadable games (from full retail releases, Xbox Live Arcade and Indie Games) into one silo for Xbox One. This means that smaller indies will need to find a way to work within the standard Xbox publishing rules.

“We intend to continue to court developers in the ways that we have,” said Microsoft general manager of Redmond game studios and platforms Matt Booty. “I would also expect that for this new generation, that we’re going to continue to explore new business models and new ways of surfacing content. But Microsoft Studios is a publisher that works with a wide range of partners, as do a lot of other people, to bring digital content to the box.”

Source: Shacknews

Global Games Market To Grow 6 percent To $70.4 Billion: Newzoo

Newzoo is reporting that game revenues will grow to $70.4 billion worldwide this year, representing a 6 percent year-on-year increase. At the same time, the number of people who play games is expected to surpass 1.2 billion by the end of 2013.

Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region should see the highest growth at about 11 percent, while North America and Europe will show very modest growth. The market for smartphone and tablet games will grow 35 percent to $12.3 billion, easily outpacing any other segment while the PC grosses the largest share with 39 percent or $27.6 billion.

Asia-Pacific is expected to become the largest game market in the world at $25.1 billion $3.0 billion. The North American market will increase slightly to $22.8 billion followed by gains in the EMEA region with $19.5 billion and a growing Latin America that is still relatively small at $3.0 billion.

“Over the past year, we have received an increasing number of inquiries about the availability of a consistent and clearly defined set of numbers showing the ‘total picture’ for the games market: not just revenues, but also the absolute numbers of players as well as paying players broken down in segments and regions,” adds Peter Warman, CEO of Newzoo. “I am very pleased we are now able to provide this resource to our clients using our new Global Data Model, which we started to develop in 2012.”

Consoles will be $30.6 billion or 43 percent of global games revenues, including all DLC spend and business-to-consumer second-hand trade. Traditional PC gaming (downloads and boxed) is expected to contract slightly to $6.0 billion, offset by 14 percent year-on-year growth for MMO games at $14.9 billion.

Meanwhile, game revenues generated by tablet and smartphones will gross 18 percent of the global games market, surpassing $12 billion. This amount is roughly double the amount spent on games for handheld consoles, and tablets are expected to have 78 percent growth while handheld console games will have a 21 percent decline.

Newzoo noted that the computer screen (encompassing boxed or downloaded, casual, social and MMO games) generating 39 percent of all revenues compared to 36 percent for the TV or Entertainment Screen. Meanwhile, the Personal Screen or mobile phone will show global growth of 22 percent over last year and account for 12 percent of global games market revenues.

Trion Worlds Veteran Says AAA Games Model Is Broken

Former Trion Worlds chief creative officer and Redwood studio general manager Scott Hartsman believes that AAA game development is fundamentally broken due to cost considerations. He thinks that to fix it developers will have to be more aware of the business side, while executives need to know more about the games being made.

“In past generations, in a lot of places, it was, ‘Devs, just do your dev things and let the business people figure out the business-y bits. Business people, figure out which of the eight widget types it is, get it on the shelf, and here’s some money to get people to buy it.’ That’s all changing,” explained Hartsman.

“Going forward, we’ll see an expansion in both directions as developers become more business-aware and non-developers become more product-aware. That’s actually a great thing. It means more people inside of games companies will have to care about the customer than ever before. People of all disciplines now need to be “product people” who are always conscious of their impact on customers and what they experience. Especially online,” he added. “Conversely, we’ll also start to see more traditional product people with a keener sense for what it takes to succeed as a business in ways their customers will genuinely appreciate.”

Source: Massively