Eight news stories 6.12

 A very slow news week. Or, more accurately, a one story week. Yet the Vivendi move was inevitable. Or something like it was. And there will be plenty more of the same coming up. 

  • Analysts state the obvious again. They think that the Blizzard/Activision deal could spur more industry consolidation. And you will get wet if you stand out in the rain. The forces behind consolidation have been dealt with repeatedly on here. All the latest news does is to accelerate the race for survival amongst the big global media companies.
  • Microsoft survey finds the obvious. 75% of parents are concerned about video game content. This is hardly surprising when they are fed a diet of ignorant Fox News/Daily Mail invective. 43% don’t realise there is an age rating system. Well I am surprised that 57% do. Parents should take their own responsibility for what their child reads, watches and plays. I bet that a far higher percentage of parents are unaware of the parental controls built into the 360.
  • Need for Speed does it-just. Number one in the UK all formats chart in the run up to Christmas is an EA tradition. So it must be disturbing for them to see Assasin’s Creed still top of the PS3 and 360 charts. Remarkable for the first iteration of a new, original IP. And a lesson, perhaps, to many.
  • Game acquisition of Gamestation cleared by UK competition authorities. You’d wonder why they bothered. There are plenty of alternative places on the high street to buy your games in cardboard and plastic format, never mind the interweb. But ultimately high street game retail is a doomed business model as digital distribution replaces physical distribution.
  • Wii tops internet searches on shopping sites in November. Beating iPod, iPhone and everything else. Regular readers here will not be surprised. It will be interesting to see how much momentum this has in the new year (Wii Fit will help). And what the real long term consequences will be for video gaming.
  • Lawyer Drums Up Fear Of Game Violence. Kym Worthy jumps on the bandwagon. It probably pays better than ambulance chasing. This story is a classic piece of misleading rubbish. Here is her list of games that create criminals out of children (notice that none of them are age rated for children!!):
     1.    Grand Theft Auto
     2.    Manhunt
     3.    Scarface
     4.    50 Cent Bulletproof
     5.    300 The Videogame
     6.    The Godfather
     7.    Killer-7
     8.    Resident Evil 4
     9.    God of War
    10.   Hitman Blood Money
  • Repressive US regime interferes in game tournament. They won’t give visas to a Chinese team to come to the Championship Gaming Series world final. It is a good job the Americans aren’t running the next Olympics.
  • The Sun newspaper says video games are responsible for illiteracy. It is amazing that this low rent Murdoch tabloid have discovered irony. Will any of their readers understand it? Seriously, do these journalists realise that the future of News Corporation lies in gaming and that they are shooting their great leader in the foot?