Curse Of The Dark

Playing Dark Souls II, you are undead and will suffer wounds of the flesh and mind with every defeat . . . but will never truly expire. This dreary reality of the game is highlighted in this CG launch trailer for Dark Souls II, out now in North America and coming soon to Europe and Australasia.


Share A Photo, Get More Retweets

A new interactive chart from Twitter shows just why they want brands to begin thinking “photo first.” Photo tweets were retweeted 35 percent more than regular old text tweets. Video, while not as effective as photos increase the likelihood of retweets by 28 percent. The chart below also includes the effectiveness of adding hashtags, digits and quotes. The perfect tweet formula is likely a culmination of a few of these.


Source: Twitter

Google Gets Green Throttle Games

Bad news befell Green Throttle Games when it shut down last year, after it failed to launch a start-up game system along the same lines as OUYA and GameStick. However, Google still saw potential in its technology, and has managed to acquire most of what remains of the company, according to PandoDaily.

Through the design of its Atlas controller, pictured above, Green Throttle set out to create an unprecedented gaming experience, coinciding with its Arena software for multiplayer support. In addition, it offered an SDK so developers could build custom experiences specifically for the controller and local living room play.

Even with the demise of Arena last year, the Atlas still remains available for purchase, and Google’s plans could see it come back into the fold as part of its rumored Android-powered console design, which is reportedly set for release later this year.

Source: PandoDaily

Amazon Picks Up Four New Shows

Amazon Studios has made up its mind on four new series out of the 10 pilots the company showcased last month, which will go on to become full shows for the Amazon Prime streaming video service.

The first of these four is Bosch, a series based on the Harry Bosch series. The show follows the title character, played by Titus Welliver, as he chases after a killer of a young body while attending court proceedings over accusations of the murder of a suspected serial killer.

The second is The After, the latest from The X-Files creator Chris Carter. It follows eight strangers who must work with each other to survive violent odds in an ever-changing world.

Those seeking lighter fare will be interested in the two comedy shows ordered: Mozart In the Jungle, which is based on the memoirs of Blair Tindall and follows the goings-on in a symphony; and Transparent, a dark comedy about an L.A. family that’s a bit too nosy for its own good.

There’s no word yet on the remaining pilots, as Amazon hasn’t given indication as to when the others will launch. A “sizzle reel” featuring most of these pilots is included below.


Gamers Buy More Than They’re Playing

It’s quite easy to get caught up in PC game sales, between the Humble Bundle packages and Steam’s holiday sales, among other offers. But how many of those games do people actually play after buying them Surprisingly, more than you might think.

A survey conducted by Famous Aspect that spanned across 1,400 active players revealed a number of interesting statistics. 79 percent feel they enjoy getting a great deal through numerous sites, with 60 percent immediately jumping on any sales that they find.

However, out of those surveyed, those who purchased 11-25 games in the past year have not gotten around to playing 40 percent of them, simply leaving them untouched in their game libraries. As a result, 30 percent of these gamers have approximately 50 or more of these titles sitting in an unused “pile of shame.”

Meanwhile, out of those surveyed, only 20 percent of those customers purchase games at full price – which says a lot when it comes to impulse purchases.

Source: Kotaku

Kids See Marketing Messages Galore

No matter what they seem to be watching — or where they’re watching it — kids still see plenty of advertising, according to a report from the Common Sense Media in Advertising to Children and Teens.

The report states that between product placements, ads in websites and cross-promotions, the amount of advertising is huge. According to an infographic from the company, kids between the ages of 2-11 see an average of 25,600 ads a year, with 40 percent of that ad exposure stemming from non-children’s shows.

In addition, websites that are devoted to kids carry an 87 percent chance of some sort of advertising, while three billion (!) display ads for food and beverages were viewed on similar websites for the period of 2009-2010. One-third of those ads have premium offers in exchange for some sort of product purchase.

Out of all the mediums, TV is the most popular at number one, where kids spend most of their media-oriented time.

Source: Adweek

Nintendo Happy Meals Launching In U.K.

Nintendo, always seeking to please its younger gaming audience with its mascot Mario, has teamed up with McDonald’s for a new Happy Meal promotion that will launch in Europe later this month.

The partnership begins on March 19th and is called The Run, Jump and Power-Up with Super Mario promotion. With it, one of eight Super Mario toys, like the one pictured above, will be included with the meals, featuring such characters as Luigi, Toad, Donkey Kong, the Super Mushroom, and, of course, Mario. Out of these toys, four will be interactive, including the Donkey Kong Barrel Projector and the Super Sound Mushroom.

There’s no word yet if this promotion will work its way to the United States.

Source: MCV UK

Energy Drink Asks For Selfies

Would you take a photo of your groggy, mussed-haired, spittle laden self for a chance to win a 6-pack of energy drinks That’s exactly what 5-Hour Energy asked their followers to do with their #ShowUsYourTiredFace social campaign.

“We realized that it’s the Monday after that hurts,” said Melissa Skabich, the director of communications for 5-Hour Energy in a statement to Digiday. “So, we thought, ‘What about posting a photo of your tired face ’”

The campaign incorporated a few of 5-Hour Energy sponsored athletes, including former Nascar drive Michael Waltrip and current driver Clint Bowyer. Getting all of Twitter to share arguably their most unflattering photos has already increased followers by 9 percent. It helps that the campaign cleverly coincided with daylight savings time, when everyone is feeling the loss of an hour of sleep.

The World’s Largest Game Of ‘Tetris’

We’re always down for an epic game of Tetris, but next month, Frank Lee will launch a bigger one than any of us could’ve ever imagined.

On April 4th, the Drexel University game design professor will launch a new project where he’ll turn a Philadelphia skyscraper into a giant round of the classic Russian puzzle game. The event will tie in with the Philly Tech Week event, and feature a fully-working version of the classic game, where players slot pieces into spots to eliminate lines from a limited play board.

People throughout the city will be able to watch players go head-to-head in the game, which is Lee’s brainchild. Considering he’s the head of Drexel University’s Entrepreneurial Game Studio, there’s no doubt he wants it to make big news.

This isn’t the first time Philly has performed big-time gaming, as the city’s demonstration of Pong took up 59,800 square feet as part of a promotion for the Philadelphia Museum of Art last year.

Source: VentureBeat