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Up In the mix: PlayStation and mobile gaming

Mobile gaming is one of the hottest ways to play video games these days. Almost everyone has cell phone or other type of mobile device that allows gaming on the go. These devices range from tablets, cell phones and handheld gaming systems. Traditionally, these games were available via Android and iOS markets, respectively.  However, Sony announced earlier this year that along with the PSP and the PlayStation Vita, they will be entering the mix of mobile gaming in the same sense that Android and iOS already have. That’s right. The team behind PlayStation has created PlayStation Mobile, a brand-new ecosystem that looks to move beyond gaming on traditional consoles and mobile gaming devices. The announcement about PlayStation Mobile has left many asking questions about the future of mobile gaming.

What’s the difference?

After the announcement of PlayStation Mobile, many critics and gamers alike were skeptical of Sony’s new game plan. It would seem lans haven’t been completely thought out. For instance, PlayStation Mobile games are only available on certain devices.  It took a while for Sony to actually reveal which devices their new gaming lineup would be available on. The fact that the list is so small certainly limits the number of gamers they can expect to reach.

Many critics of Sony’s new plan are expecting a slightly new look for mobile gaming, but the same games. The screenshots of games that have been released certainly look cool, but for the most part they look exactly like games already available via Android and iOS. Gamers want to know what PlayStation is going to do to stand out. Most are still waiting for Sony to actually release PlayStation Mobile to answer that question.

What does this mean for developers?

The PlayStation Mobile release means learning a new system and knowing which system works best with a particular device. Having a new system could potentially open up doors to more games, more options and new technologies. Mobile gaming application development may just continue to skyrocket to new heights. If PlayStation Mobile takes off the way Sony hopes it does, developers need to prepare themselves.

What does this mean for gamers?

For gamers, PlayStation Mobile means more new games. It also means more downloads and the use of more mobile storage space. However, if Sony’s attempt performs like the company says it will, be prepared to play the same games with the same save files across a variety of different devices, which is a huge step forward for mobile gaming.

It’s still unclear whether Sony has made a sound investment in PlayStation Mobile. Many are still waiting to see what all the fuss is about. For the most part, Sony hasn’t done much to show that games will provide users with an experience they can’t already get with Android and iOS games. One thing is for certain: mobile gaming popularity is on the rise and technological developments will continue to roll out.

Gaming, Social Media and the Cloud

  • Author: JesseLangley
  • Filed under: Game Center
  • Date: Jul 31,2012

Gaming Through Social Media

Social gaming has always been around, whether it was sitting around a Nintendo console or playing CounterStrike with friends online. But in recent years, gaming through social media platforms has become much more visible as a mainstream phenomenon. Of course, we can’t discuss this topic without mentioning Facebook games, which are now easy to play through smartphone and tablet apps as well. Words with Friends is a now-classic example of a multiplayer game that integrates seamlessly with social media, and FarmVille brings memories of tending sunflowers individually, but stopping by friends’ farms to help out, too.

More serious social media gaming is hitting the scene as well, as we see in Plyfe and Kiip, which combine social media, real life and games in just the right way. They allow users to earn real-life rewards, like merchandise, snacks and vacations, by playing games and interacting with others through the platform. These sorts of companies will expand their reach even farther as they tap into established social media networks.

Cloud Gaming Takes Off

The days of simple web games are long gone, thanks to the sudden surge in cloud computing. Now it’s possible to play huge, graphically detailed games, all without downloading anything to a computer. This transition from gaming on connected devices to gaming on the cloud is an important one because it makes it easier for people to connect with one another, given that they’re all tapping into a game run from the same set of servers.

The two leaders in cloud gaming are OnLive and Gaikai, which both allow users to play games on the cloud and connect with others at the same time. For instance, Gaikai has methods in place for people to chat with other gamers and even look in on what they’re doing, all in real time and without having to download anything. This social aspect is appealing, as is the ability to pick up the game from any device, which is important for people who aren’t tied down to a single desktop or laptop computer anymore.

The Future of Gaming: Bringing it All Together

Companies are looking to draw together these converging factors to create new gaming experiences. For example, take GFace, a new social network focused on gaming. The network is cloud-based and seeks to bring gamers console-quality play within the convenience and connections of a social network. By taking a hobby and designing a social network and gaming system around it, companies like GFace are likely to take off as people get drawn into the connectivity and ease of use.

Technology is increasingly shaping the way we spend our time, and it’s largely doing so in a way that connects us with one another. Social media’s role in the gaming world is an increasingly important one, given that technology is allowing people to play high-quality games through Internet connections alone. The connectivity has big implications for the future of gaming as people can more easily connect and collaborate on games in the cloud. With cloud hosting companies like Rackspace–a founder of the open source cloud platform OpenStack–offering high availability in their data centers, it’s only a matter of time before we see more cloud gaming choices pop up and experience a spike in cloud gaming adoption.

Gaming in the Cloud

  • Author: JesseLangley
  • Filed under: Game Center
  • Date: Nov 2,2011

The Game Center has been dead almost since it was introduced in Sept. 2010, but some iOS 5 updates could breathe more life into the stale medium. The idea was supposed to be a cross between playing games on Facebook and the social capabilities of Xbox Live.

The execution fell fairly flat, as friends had no way to communicate or really even interact with their friends except to compete with them. The person on the other side might as well have been AI for all the contact you would have with them. Kudos to the person who remembered to brag about an awesome Ms. Pacman victory when they met up with their friend hours later. Read the rest of this entry »

Review: Save Toshi Deluxe!

Ok, I’m not gonna beat around the bush here…this game is weird.  W-E-I-R-D. The concept is seriously just kinda out there, but as most good iPhone games go, this thing will just pull you in. Save Toshi DX is really just a great game for throwing on some headphones, zoning out, blasting the music, and saving the small asian girl time and time again… Read the rest of this entry »

Review: High Noon

Alright all you aspring bandits out there…mount up for one of the most addicting games that I’ve yet to find for my iPhone.  And that game is….(drum roll)….High Noon!  I absolutely love it when an iPhone developer gets everything about a game right.  From the overall look to the ease of gameplay to the price point, this thing is just awesome.

The game itself is pretty straightforward.  It’s a one-on-one multiplayer western style shooter.  It takes advantage of the iPhone’s anonymous multiplayer features and allows you to challenge other players across the globe.  The point of the game is to become the most hated/feared bandit in all of the old west by increasing your level through repeated duel victories.  Each time you pair up there is a specified “reward” if you kill the other.  As you get more infamous (kill more folks) your level and your reward will all continue to rise. Read the rest of this entry »

Consumer-page for Game Center on Apple’s site

iPhone games, Game Center, Apple, iPod TouchFollowing today’s releasedate announcement of Game Center at today’s keynote, Apple has now placed a Game Center information page on its website to get you ready for Game Center. It does give some info on how you will be able to login, that once you are logged in you stay logged in even if you leave the app and you will be able to change your public nickname. The page doesn’t really reveal any new information, but it’s definitely worth a visit if you like Apple’s productpages and nice pictures.

Apple’s Game Center coming in November in iOS 4.2 update

Apple, Game Center, iPhone, iPod Touch, iPhone 4, iOS 4, iOS 4.1, iOS 4.2, iPhone gamesDuring his press conference, almighty Steve Jobs announced next week’s release of iOS 4.1 next week. This free firmware update for iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad will introduce a bunch of bug fixes and small features. The iOS 4.2 update that will come out in November will be a lot more cooler since this update will bring some exciting new features such as of course Apple’s Game Center.

Steve Jobs dedicated quite some time to Game Center, and showed off some nice features along with Mike Capps from Epic Games. They presented the game Project Sword (codename); a sword fighting game with astonishing graphics, an amazing framerate and a multiplayer mode. Game Center will be all about multiplayer games said mister Jobs. You’ll be able to challenge friends, create duel games and compare scores with other gamers.

It looks like Apple is going to start taking gaming really serious now. This Game Center should become what Xbox Live is to the Xbox 360; one of the most vital things that keeps the platform rocking. The point collecting should be a great method to keep gamers going and to create a community aspect. As of now, there aren’t really any other games that Apple announced as Game Center games, but we know that a lot of developers will implement Game Center features in their existing games and are about to develop new games that support Game Center.