Train2Game News Survey on Freemium

EA logoAn EA-backed survey brings in a whole lot of new math to support the “freemium” business model and integrating advertising in games.

New data offers some pretty shocking predictions on the purchasing trends of the gamer population over the next few years. A study conducted among 500 gamers by IHS Technology found that 86 percent of players would rather have a free game, supported by ads and in-game transaction, than pay full price for the game itself.

IHS also predicted that micotransactions spent on “freemium” games will account for 39 percent of the total money spent on video games in North America by 2017. Likewise, mobile, tablet and PC gaming, where the majority of games using freemium business model are found, will account for 54 percent of the spending on games content by 2017.

IHS also forecasted that by 2017 only 10 percent of mobile and tablet games will earn their revenue through a paid download, reflecting how prevalent the freemium model will become at that time.

The study was conducted on behalf of Electronic Arts and WildTangent, a company that powers game services for different companies, including PC gaming sites used by EA. The games tracked in the study were EA freemium titles using “EA2/BrandBoost” technology, which featured in-game ads such as long form video, custom mini-games, and branded in-game content.

If a player chooses to interact with an in-game ad, they will usually be rewarded with a game item or, for games that only let you play for so long each day, additional playtime. The survey also found that gamers were more likely to play longer after experiencing an ad that gave them an in-game item.

The study also notes that gamer’s are more positively disposed towards an ad if it happens at the beginning of a game or during a natural pause in the action.

Train2Game News UK Top 20 Games – 31.03.14

inFamousSecondSon-1InFamous Second Son has had a second week at the top of the charts with the highest new debut game this week being the expansion to Diablo III, Reaper of Souls reaching number six. Further down the charts the new Professor Layton and Phoenix Wright cross over game has entered at number fifteen and MXGP: The Official Motocross Video Game has just squeezed in at number nineteen.

All formats

Week ending 29 March 2014

POS.  TITLE  PUBLISHER  LAST
WEEK 
1 INFAMOUS: SECOND SON SONY COMPUTER ENT. 1
2 METAL GEAR SOLID V: GROUND ZEROES KONAMI 2
3 TITANFALL EA GAMES 3
4 FIFA 14 EA SPORTS 6
5 THE LEGO MOVIE VIDEOGAME WARNER BROS. INTERACTIVE 8
6 DIABLO III: REAPER OF SOULS BLIZZARD
7 SOUTH PARK: THE STICK OF TRUTH UBISOFT 5
8 CALL OF DUTY: GHOSTS ACTIVISION 12
9 MINECRAFT: XBOX 360 EDITION MICROSOFT 10
10 FINAL FANTASY X/X-2 HD REMASTER SQUARE ENIX 4
11 PLANTS VS ZOMBIES: GARDEN WARFARE EA GAMES 9
12 DARK SOULS II BANDAI NAMCO GAMES 7
13 BATTLEFIELD 4 EA GAMES 13
14 THIEF SQUARE ENIX 11
15 PROFESSOR LAYTON VS PHOENIX WRIGHT CAPCOM
16 LEGO MARVEL SUPER HEROES WARNER BROS. INTERACTIVE 15
17 ASSASSIN’S CREED IV: BLACK FLAG UBISOFT 14
18 GRAND THEFT AUTO V ROCKSTAR 17
19 MXGP: THE OFFICIAL MOTOCROSS VIDEOGAME MILESTONE
20 NEED FOR SPEED: RIVALS EA GAMES 19
< previous week
Leisure software charts compiled by Chart Track, (C)2014 UKIE Ltd

These charts cannot be reproduced either in print or online without obtaining permission from Ukie. If you wish to reproduce the charts in print or online, please contact david.smith@ukie.org.uk for the appropriate license.

Train2Game News Pixel Shirts

Pixel ShirtsTrain2Game Student Studio, Merkury Games, have started a new business venture to help aid the company financially.

The studio are now selling a range of different merchandise with pixel designs of yourself or pre designed amusing gaming related images. The images can be put on merchandise ranging from Key Chains, T Shirts, Hoodies and even Clocks.

It is a nice idea and shows that the studio is able to think outside of the box to gain funding to aid their studios and furthering their careers.

If you are interested in buying any of the products from Merkury Games for either yourself or a brilliant nerdy gift for your loved ones, visit Merkury Games website at www.merkurygames.co.uk 

Train2Game News 100 most influential games industry Executives

gamerLeading games business publication MCV (The Market for Computer & Video Games) has named the 100 most influential games industry executives – those reshaping the business in the UK and beyond.

The inaugural MCV Brit List features men and women from all different disciplines supporting UK video game businesses. It also names a handful of the famous Brits flying the flag for UK creativity and intelligence on the global stage.

From Twitch to Mind Candy, and Xbox to Apple, the Brit List is a definitive guide to the creative and commercial British brains working in video games.

The list was collated after an extensive entry and lobbying period, and then voted for by a judging panel featuring some of the industry’s most high-profile experts.

Both legends and rising stars feature, with hugely respected leaders such as Rockstar Games founders Dan and Sam Houser, Ukie CEO Dr Jo Twist, and PlayStation CEO Andrew House sat alongside the likes of Tomb Raider writer Rhianna Pratchett, the creators of Yogscast (the UK’s most popular YouTube channel) and Roberta Lucca, co-founder of Bossa Studios.

The full list, featuring interviews and profiles of the 100, is available to download on iPad or view in your browser at: http://www.mcvuk.com/digital-edition. And it’s absolutely free. Featured content will also be posted on www.mcvuk.com over the next seven days.

“The Brit List is a toast to those men and women transforming the games business in the UK – and those flying the flag for British excellence abroad” said Michael French, Publisher of Games at Intent Media.

“The power of UK creativity really means this list could comfortably have been much longer. Congratulations to those that made the list.”

Train2Game News PlayStation 4 one handed controller

benheckonehandedps4_1Ben Heck, who makes some great projects for element14 and Farnell has created a one handed PS4 controller, to make gaming accessible for players with disabilities.

By moving the left analogue stick to the rear of the controller, the player is able to use their leg to manoeuvre the controller. The shoulder buttons and D-pad have also be rewired to the right side of the controller.

This is a great project that allows more people to experience the world of gaming that has helped a lot of us through our lives.

You can enjoy the video of the controller being built below thanks to http://uk.farnell.com/:

Train2Game News UKIE on Tax Relief

UKIE LogoUK games trade body heralds new reliefs as a huge boost to the UK games and interactive entertainment sector and pledges to now further promote the UK games industry to the rest of the world

Following today’s announcement that the long-awaited games production credit scheme has been greenlit by the European Commission, Ukie CEO Dr Jo Twist said: “This is a huge boost to the UK games and interactive entertainment sector and the start of a great new era of games production in the UK. We are delighted the European Commission recognised the clear market failure for the production of games with a British and European flavour, using UK-based creative and highly skilled talent.

“We are extremely happy to have played a part, as a strong collective voice for the industry, to get the scheme over the finishing line. We have been in constant contact with government throughout the process and have applied pressure and evidence for the scheme to be introduced at every opportunity.

“I’d like to thank all the hundreds of games companies and individuals across the country who have worked so hard collectively and who have played such a crucial role in getting to this point. The next strategic priority for us now is in applying pressure in different ways so that games businesses can access more programmes which support access to international markets, training and finance so we can be fully recognised as a sector that can lead the world again.”

Ukie will be focussing on ensuring UK developers from all parts of the country and of all sizes know how to benefit from the scheme. Ukie will also be working with its creative industry partners and the UKTI to ensure more support can be accessed by UK businesses to access new markets and to promote the UK as a destination for studios.

“We are touring the country for a series of events with experts from UK government and other industry experts to give simple, clear advice to the companies so they know what they have to do to benefit.”

Ukie will be launching their tax production credit roadshows and how to workshops around the UK from April with tax experts Saffery Champness and the BFI (who are administering the cultural test) on hand to help developers understand how they can apply for them. The first briefing session will be on 15 April in London at UkieHQ (2pm). Further sessions will also be held on the evening of 30 April in Edinburgh (6pm) in partnership with the Scottish Games Network and in Birmingham on the afternoon of 2 May (2pm), in partnership with Innovation Birmingham.

More dates in Newcastle, Liverpool and Bristol will be confirmed soon. Please register for all the events here.

Train2Game News Free Android optimisation eBook

Intel SoftwareRight now you can claim a free copy of Iggy Krajci and Darren Cummings’ eBook ‘Android on x86: An Introduction to Optimising for Intel Architecture’.

This fantastic resource gives developers a guide to the unique opportunities that arise from x86 architectures, as well as an overview of best practices for x86 app development so far.

Not only geared towards those interested in developing for Android devices featuring Intel architecture, it also includes a rather handy summary of the history and evolution of the operating system itself, from its humble origins through to the present day and Android KitKat 4.4.

You’ll also get a useful overview of the current mobile device and operating system landscape and an introduction to some of the business considerations for Android developers.

The real meat of the eBook goes into great depth about how you can make performance optimisations for Android applications on x86 architecture. It gives you helpful tips and guidance on using development tools such as the Intel Graphics Performance Analyzers and the Intel Power Monitoring Tool, and how you can get the best out of them with step by step walkthroughs.

If you’re completely new to Android and x86, or just looking to brush up on your knowledge, this is a really useful resource that is currently provided completely free of charge. It’s available from the Apress site in a variety of digital formats and this useful post on Intel Developer Zone has the steps to follow if you need any help claiming your copy!

Source: Develop

Train2Game News Facebook buy Oculus Rift

Oculus RiftThe news broke last night that Facebook has bought the Oculus Rift firm for $2 billion. The company is working on a virtual reality headset.

Oculus Rift got off the ground thanks to Kickstarter funding which allowed them to work on their virtual reality headset which would allow for extremely immersive gaming. Oculus’ crowdfunding campaign raised $2.4m, 10 times the amount originally sought, it then received a further $75m from investors. The Oculus Rift has yet to be released, but more than 75,000 orders for development kits have already been placed.

In a statement released by the Social Media Company, Facebook said it plans to expand the use of Oculus technologies to include “communications, media and entertainment, education and other areas”.

Commenting on the deal, Mr Zuckerberg said: “Mobile is the platform of today, and now we’re also getting ready for the platforms of tomorrow.”

The deal includes $400m in cash and just over 23 million Facebook shares, valued at $1.6bn. Oculus employees will also receive an additional $300m if the company achieves certain targets.

How this will affect the future of Oculus Rift is yet to be seen but the future is definitely on its way.

Source: BBC News

Train2Game News Last BioShock Infinite DLC available today

bioshock_infinite_episode_two_burial_at_sea-wide2K and Irrational Games announced today that BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea – Episode Two is downloadable starting today.

BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea – Episode Two, developed from the ground up by Irrational Games, is the final content pack for the award-winning BioShock Infinite, and features Elizabeth in a film noir-style story that provides players with a different perspective on the BioShock universe.

“I think the work the team did on this final chapter speaks for itself,” said Ken Levine, creative director of Irrational Games. “We built something that is larger in scope and length, and at the same time put the player in Elizabeth’s shoes. This required overhauling the experience to make the player see the world and approach problems as Elizabeth would: leveraging stealth, mechanical insight, new weapons and tactics. The inclusion of a separate 1998 Mode demands the player complete the experience without any lethal action. BioShock fans are going to plotz.”

BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea – Episode Two can be purchased as part of the BioShock Infinite Season Pass, which is priced at $19.99. The Season Pass, which is available for purchase via online marketplaces on all available platforms, contains over $35 of playable content in three add-on packs for $19.99, including both Burial at Sea episodes, the previously released Clash in the Clouds add-on pack, as well as the Early Bird Special Pack that has powerful weapon upgrades, exclusive gold weapon skins and infusion bottles to upgrade player abilities. BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea – Episode 2 can also be purchased separately for $14.99.

You can enjoy the launch trailer for BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea: Episode Two below:

Train2Game News Watch Dogs release date

Watch DogsUbisoft and Sony Computer Entertainment Europe announced that Watch Dogs, the highly anticipated open world action adventure title, will offer additional content only available on PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3.

The exclusive content includes four extra missions, representing one hour of exclusive gameplay, as well as a unique ‘White Hat’ Hacker Outfit.  By playing this additional content, players will have a deeper knowledge of DedSec, a key and powerful faction in the Watch Dogs universe. Once complete, a Hacking Boost named Superior Capacity is acquired which gives players one additional Battery Slot.

The scenario takes place after Aiden Pearce, the vigilante hero of Watch Dogs, catches the eye of DedSec, a notorious hacker group fighting for freedom and security in the digital age. Aiden receives an encoded message asking him to help some members of this organization who want payback. Pearce must use his knowledge of Chicago’s complex ctOS network to discover digital vulnerabilities in Umeni Technologies’ security network and earn his reward.

We are pleased to also announce that Watch Dogs bundles for both PS4 and PS3 will be available for launch in Europe, which include all of the Sony exclusive content.

Watch Dogs will be released worldwide on May 27, 2014 on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Microsoft Xbox One the all-in-one games and entertainment system, Microsoft Xbox 360 video game and entertainment system and Windows PC. The Wii U version will release at a later date.