The Unfinished Swan

November 4, 2008

Check out this game currently in development by independant game designer, Ian Dallas.

The Unfinished Swan puts the player in a completely white (or at times, black) world where you can only find your way around by splashing paint on your surroundings. 

Check out this video:

It’s nice to see some real INNOVATION in games. So many people complain that it’s all been done while games like The Unfinished Swan and Portal are proving them wrong.

The Unfinished Swan will hopefully be out in March 2009. Can’t wait!

Amazon Window Shop in Beta

October 28, 2008


Amazon have launched the beta of their new Window Shop, where users can browse a selection of new/promoted store items such as books, movies and games using just their keyboard or mouse. Once an item is selected, a high-quality sample or video trailer is played and you can throw an item in your cart with a click.

It’s an interesting idea from Amazon with the user having no control over the selection of items on display. Essentially the opposite to Amazon’s site search and categories, I found more than a few things I wouldn’t have found on the regular site. It looks nice, too!

The content of the Window Shop is updated every Tuesday.

New Viral Games : October releases

October 21, 2008

As part of a monthly round up of Viral Game releases around the world (good, bad and utterly unplayable) here’s our digest of BRAND NEW releases within the past 30 days – compiled by Amnesia. If you would like to include your game in the next roundup let me know via twitter (here).

Second Life viral game (link to overview)

Popcorn Flicks
Popcorn flicking… Do it from the safety of your monitor… 

Peanut Pickup

The History Channel – Ice Road Truckers program

Top Gear – Rocket Robin

Top Gear – Office Drive

Top Gear – Amphibious Challenge

The Cell

Granny Bash Bingo

Holiday Fling

Volvo Ocean Race

Callum the Chameleon

CanonBall Crisis

Luminex World Golf

Suicide Kittens

– Have fun 🙂 See you next month.

Smallest Game Ever

August 1, 2008

You know when you get the shakes… the “i Need to play a game” withdrawal shakes?

For those of you with a game playing addiction and really good 20/20 vision, you can now play “Defender of the Favicon” in your browser, in the icon.  It’s a remake of the old school arcade game, Defender in 16×16 pixels.

Yup, smallest game ever… nuff said.

Microsoft Introduces New Xbox 360 Dashboard

July 18, 2008

For the games industry, it’s that time of year again. E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, is the most significant showcase of upcoming games and games hardware each year. Despite being recently scaled down the event still plays host to important press conferences from the big three, Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo.

Normally these press conferences are used to lay out roadmaps for each company’s platforms over the ensuing 12 months. Platform refreshes are normally tied to the introduction of new hardware (the announcement of new consoles or the introduction of slim models). For the first time in this ‘next generation’, fundamentally changing the platform experience can be driven by software alone.

Apple are proving this with the iPhone and iPod touch platforms (although poor old iPod touch users have to pay for the firmware upgrades.) Sony has proven this with numerous updates to its initially feature-barren XBM (cross media bar) PLAYSTATION 3 interface and continues to tease the PLAYSTATION Home platform (a fully 3D, Second Life-style world that will hopefully be released in Q4 2008). Even Nintendo’s underpowered but highly popular motion controlled Wii delivers occasional interface updates via the Web. 

A Full Tour Below…

Not prepared to be left behind, in the wake of PLAYSTATION Home’s imminent arrival and Nintendo’s Mii avatar system, Microsoft’s John Schappert took to the stage in LA this week to announce the revamped ‘Xbox Experience’, an all-new Xbox 360 user interface featuring 3D avatars, full Net Flix integration (at least, if you live in the US) and highly visual, streamlined community interaction. Gone are the days of the full-screen Blades and scrolling friend lists. The new Dashboard will be available to download in the coming months.

It’s an interesting challenge, melding function with impactful, highly visual design (all the while taking into consideration the resolutions and aspect ratios that players may be using – 4:3, 16:9, 480i all the way up to 1080p…) Hesitatingly I’d say it looks like Microsoft has pulled it off. Ever-so-subtly, this new UI takes inspiration from Sony’s XBM and allows users to navigate core options via the up and down controls with secondary options controlled via movements to the left and right (this principle is applied in the reverse on Sony’s console). It’s also interesting to note that all in-Dashboard advertising space has been eliminated (praise the Gods!), although certain content has fully themed backgrounds which still allows film studios and/or products on the Xbox Live Marketplace to push their branding straight into your living room.

Microsoft’s Official Spot

For the full minute 22 second promo spot shown at the conference, check out the video above. The revamped Dashboard will be available to download in Q4 this year.