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  • FIFA Update, Guinness World Records, New Dev Programme From Havok

7th December 2009

FIFA Update, Guinness World Records, New Dev Programme From Havok

FIFA Manager 10Burnaby – For the first time, EA Sports FIFA Manager 10 is equipped with an integrated auto patcher which automatically updates the game to the newest version at the start of the game. After a very successful update 1 which was available already on the release day, update 2 is ready for automatic download as of today. The complete content of the update can be accessed in the developer blog by Lead Designer Gerald Köhler and will include new features for the offline and online mode as well as specific and community-requested bug-fixes including various 3d match improvements.

Guinness World Records 2010 Gamer's EditionGuinness World Records announced today that they will launch the third in their series of books dedicated to video gaming in the new-year. Guinness World Records 2010 Gamer’s Edition will be released on the 4th of January in the United States and the 21st of January in the United Kingdom. Praised by critics as a ‘must have for fans of gaming’, the latest edition is the best in the series yet; packed full of amazing gaming records, reviews, trivia, and cool features!

I searched Chapters.ca for the new edition, but could only find the paperback version which is now available for pre-order, while Amazon.ca lists both paperback and hardcover for pre-order. Both sites list a later-than-announced release date, but perhaps those were just estimated dates. I’ve pre-ordered books before and then received them earlier than the listed release date.

havokHavok™ has announced that as part of the company’s expanding business model it has launched an Independent Developer Program. Designed to enable independent game studios to execute their creative visions using Havok’s premium, developer-preferred middleware technology, the Independent Developer Program helps studios minimize the overall risk and high cost associated with internal creation of the tools and technologies required to power today’s sophisticated video and PC games. Krome Studios is the first to license Havok tools and technology under the Independent Developer Program.

Havok’s Independent Developer Program will give developers access to the company’s full suite of cutting-edge, award-winning products and technologies including: Havok Animation™, Havok AI™, Havok Behavior™, Havok Cloth™, Havok Destruction™ and Havok Physics™. Havok’s modular suite of tools puts power in the hands of creators, empowering them to reach new standards of believability and interactivity in video games. All of Havok’s software tools are fully multithreaded and cross-platform optimized.

“Havok continues to be an industry enabler by providing the best resources at an affordable price to all independent developers,” said David O’Meara, Managing Director of Havok. “Havok is the tools and technologies provider of choice for developers worldwide and featured in over 250 games to date. We are excited to further extend our business model to enable independent game developers to innovate using the industry’s leading cutting edge technologies and tools.”

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3rd December 2009

Submissions, Seminars, Contests and Now Hiring

GDC CanadaVancouver – The call for submissions to present content for lectures, roundtables and panel sessions for the 2010 Game Developers Conference® Canada (GDC Canada) is now open through midnight, Tuesday, January 5, 2010. GDC Canada serves as a nexus point for established and promising young studios to learn best practices for developing new global titles and understanding emerging digital distribution models. The second annual GDC Canada is presented by Reboot Communications and Think Services, the organizers of the industry-leading Game Developers Conference. GDC Canada 2010 will return to the Vancouver Convention Centre in Vancouver, BC from May 6-7, 2010.

Canada houses more than 260 videogame and digital entertainment studios and an ecosystem of more than 60 universities focused on gaming studies. With this accomplished community of national and international talent to draw from, Vancouver’s GDC Canada is the premier event for professionals to discover new insights into developing popular international titles, managing established franchises and taking advantage of thriving digital distribution models.

“GDC Canada provides the perfect opportunity for game development teams to share knowledge for developing established franchises and guidance on taking advantage of new game distribution models,” says Izora de Lillard, event director. “GDC Canada really benefits from the incredibly talented community here, and we can’t wait to see what useful and insightful content they bring with them when GDC returns to Canada in early May.”

The session formats for this year’s content include 25 and 60 minute lectures, panels, and roundtables. The GDC Canada advisory board will rate sessions based on the criteria of concept, depth, organization, credentials and takeaway. The topics for this year include:

— Business/Production
— Digital Distribution
— Game Design
— iPhone Games
— Programming
— Social and Casual Games
— Visual Arts

VIATeCVictoriaVIATeC is pleased to announce the opening of the nomination period for the 2009 VIATeC 25. The VIATeC 25 is an annual listing of the largest technology companies headquartered or founded in Greater Victoria based on revenue. To be eligible for inclusion in the VIATeC 25 please check our guidelines.

Companies listed on the VIATeC 25 will be announced at the exclusive VIATeC Christmas Party on December 17 where members will gather to celebrate the end of another successful year. Results will also be published on the VIATeC website and in the media.

For more information or to submit a nomination please contact Michelle. Cut off for nomination submissions is December 14, 2009.

To RSVP for VIATeC’s Members Only Christmas party on Dec 17 at Sauce Restaurant & Lounge from 3:30 pm please email our office.

Pixar CanadaVancouverPixar Canada, who launched their new web site this week, has now announced some of the job openings for their new Vancouver studio. They are currently looking to fill openings for Layout Artist, Production Manager, Manger of Finance and Manager of Information Systems. Upcoming openings include positions in their IT and Software Engineering departments. Future positions to be filled in 2010 include those who work in Modeling, Shading, Rigging, Animation, Lighting, FX, Simulation, Art, Production Staff…and an ex-Navy SEAL? At least they aren’t looking for a partridge and a pear tree…

digital albertaCalgaryDigital Alberta has announced their New Year’s Evolution event with strategic innovation practitioner, international lecturer and author Alexander Manu. Held in partnership with the Canadian Marketing Association and Telefilm Canada, New Year’s Evolution will take place on January 19th at Calgary’s Theatre Junction Grand and Velvet Lounge. Tickets are $55 for DA or CMA Members and $95 for Non-Members.

UbisoftTorontoUbisoft has made a contest out of announcing where their new Toronto studio will be located. Employee #1 has started posting clues on his FaceBook page with a link to this video on YouTube:

You need to a flashplayer enabled browser to view this YouTube video

The first person to guess the address of Ubisoft Toronto’s new studio location wins a copy of Avatar The Game (from Employee #1 – you must enter via his Facebook page).

Rusty Axe GamesTerrace Rusty Axe Games, a developer and publisher of downloadable game software, is proud to announce the release of Real Estate Empire 2 version 1.0!

Real Estate Empire 2 is the sequel to our popular game, Real E$tate Empire! For the real estate mogul in everybody, Real Estate Empire 2 contains over thirty different levels packed into four different scenarios.

Real Estate Empire 2 features a streamlined upgrade and renovation system that makes the game easier to pick up and play. Real Estate Empire 2 also features a new goals based system that has players leveling up through a variety of different scenarios and goals. The much requested feature of renting has been added – do you wait for good renters who won’t damage your newly renovated bungalow or do you get somebody in there to start paying the mortgage today?

Real E$tate Empire 2’s user friendly difficulty system allows players of all ages and capabilities to enjoy the game. Players will be entertained for hours while learning about real estate management at the same time!

Real Estate Empire 2 is the real estate game that teaches you how to win… at the real estate game!

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30th November 2009

Next Gen Social Gaming Platform Announced At G-Star 2009

dimeRockerVancouver via Busan, South Korea – During his G-Star 2009 keynote speech, “The Deportalization of Online Games – A North American Perspective,” CEO of OverInteractive Media Inc. Glen Lougheed announced the official closed beta launch of dimeRocker, his company’s innovative self-publishing platform that enables Unity 3D game developers to Overinteractive Mediadeploy, manage and monetize their content across the social web from a single, centralized account. Interested game developers are encouraged to register online for the closed beta. Beta participation is initially limited, but will continue to grow as the platform’s capabilities expand.

“It is no longer about people going to a portal for a game, it is about bringing that game to people anywhere, on any platform,” said Lougheed. “This is the future of social gaming, and dimeRocker is perfectly positioned to lead the oncoming wave of next-gen social gaming.”

This first iteration of the dimeRocker platform will grant the first wave of Unity 3D game developers access to exciting new features and services, including:

* The ability to self-publish their games within Facebook
* Real-time global and social leader boards to keep their players in the middle of the action
* Accessibility to other social networks and premiere access to new features as they are added

Most importantly, closed beta participants will be invaluable in helping to shape dimeRocker’s evolution, ensuring that the platform offers a robust set of services to the global game development community.

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26th November 2009

News From The East

audiokineticMontrealAudiokinetic Inc., the leading audio solution provider for the video game industry, released today the latest version of Wwise, its award-winning audio pipeline solution. Wwise 2009.3 introduces new features and enhancements, including access to two McDSP plug-ins. Audiokinetic also unveiled a new pricing structure that will allow customers to save up to 20% on purchase of the company’s product families.

Wwise 2009.3 includes the following new features and enhancements:
• McDSP effects: ML1 and FutzBox
• Peak meters on limiter effects
• Vorbis: major memory optimizations
• New & improved file packager
• Profiler data statistics

Audiokinetic and McDSP had announced a technological partnership a few months ago, and the ML1 and FutzBox plug-ins are the first results of this collaboration.

Audiokinetic also gave a sneak-peek of its roadmap for Wwise for 2010, and revealed that new features will include a convolution reverb. “We’re pursuing our goal to see Wwise become a comprehensive platform for sound design, while answering our customers’ needs,” said Simon Ashby, VP Product Strategy, Audiokinetic. “Our users asked for more high-quality effects and a convolution reverb, so we’re delivering these, and more.”

In parallel, Audiokinetic revealed a new pricing structure based on a “buy more – pay less” approach. The pricing structure allows game developers to qualify for discounts if they purchase several products developed by Audiokinetic.

• Purchase of 2 products grants a 5% discount;
• Purchase of the Power Pack – the combination of Wwise, Wwise Motion, SoundSeed Impact, SoundSeed Air, the 2 McDSP effects and the upcoming convolution reverb – grants a 20% discount.

“Our products are powerful yet affordable, and this new pricing structure offers a great value for money,” said Geneviève Laberge, VP Sales, Audiokinetic. “For example, purchasing the Power Pack for 1 title on 2 platforms now costs $33K – that’s an economy of $8,250 compared to the individual price of these 6 valuable products.”

Wired WomanTorontoWired Woman Toronto is in need of businesswomen who are interested in joining their mentorship programme as mentors. Wired Woman’s Mentorship programs run in both Toronto and Vancouver, and are for women entering or re-entering the work-force and targets women requiring career guidance. This career mentorship experience is enhanced with networking events and education workshops. Applications for prospective mentors and mentees are accepted all year long.

UbisoftMontreal – At some time overnight, an (apparently Russian) hacker took over the official site for Splinter Cell, replacing at least the home page (I didn’t venture through bookmarks to test the other pages) with a black and grey static page and message in Russian, which roughly translates to:

Occasionally the security system will be switched off for planned work and data protection. During such work may be a breach in security from external threats. Thus, all off would be a random character in accordance with a random pattern of Delta-3-6-OscarAvatar the Game

The crest, which first appears on the hacked site and then in a text image makes use of the Romanov double-headed eagle, and the GPS co-ordinates in the lower right corner relate to Saint Petersburg in western Russia. The hacker left a message in the replaced source code, including his hacker handle in order to claim his conquest.

Hopefully the web teams at Ubisoft will be able to reclaim the Splinter Cell site soon and plug the holes which allowed outside access soon.

Still over at Ubisoft, the latest Dev Diary blog has been posted for Avatar the Game; today’s topic is Conquest, which is a real-time strategical mini game in which players must capture and hold territory for their chosen Faction, ultimately gaining control of Pandora.

National Film BoardMontreal – The National Film Board of Canada is proud to release the DVD box set Jacques Drouin: Complete Pinscreen Works as of December 2, 2009. Drouin’s name is inextricably linked to the legendary Alexeïeff-Parker pinscreen, with which he produced a unique and poetic body of work.

The box set will be launched at a tribute to Jacques Drouin at the Sommets du cinéma d’animation, at the Cinémathèque québécoise, on Saturday, December 5 at 5 p.m. The event will include a screening of the documentary portrait Jacques Drouin en relief, by Guillaume Fortin.

“Jacques Drouin is a major figure in NFB history,” said Julie Roy, producer of the box set. “For three decades, he was the only filmmaker in the world who was working with the pinscreen, the incredible “dream machine” invented around 1930 by the Russian-born French filmmaker Alexander Alexeïeff. With his high-quality oeuvre, constant experimentation and eminently personal vision, Drouin proved that the pinscreen could express the imagination of people other than its inventor.”

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20th November 2009

2010 Global Game Jam Registration Opens This Weekend

Global Game Jam 2010The Global Game Jam™ (GGJ) an IGDA event, today announced that registration for the 2010 Global Game Jam will begin this Saturday, November 21st, allowing interested people to secure their spot at one of more than 90 locations worldwide. The 2010 GGJ will take place January 29-31, 2010 and is expected to eclipse last year’s success which saw 1,650 participants across 23 countries and 54 venues.

“The 2010 Global Game Jam is a truly global event and the growth in venues is a great sign of the growing recognition and popularity of GGJ,” said Susan Gold, founder of the Global Game Jam. “There are still a limited number of sponsorship opportunities available for companies wishing to participate and have exposure to thousands of game developers and enthusiasts around the world.”

Confirmed Canadian locations where the Global Game Jam 2010 will take place include the following:

Ottawa – Carleton University during GameDay Weekend
Vancouver – UBC
Calgary – Creative Calgary
Hamilton – Nomnomnomnomers

Game Jams foster innovation and experimentation. If you have ever wanted to make a game, be a part of a team, or go outside of your usual working method, then a game jam is for you. It’s all about making games and in the GGJ you’re part of a global experiment in creativity. A game jam is not for the faint of heart though. It’s two days of hard work, experimentation, little sleep, collaboration, cramped quarters, new friends, great idea, laughs, technical issues and the time of your life.

Everyone is given similar constraints and rules to make their games, it is amazing how different and culturally diverse the games will be. The Nordic Game Jam has honored GGJ with being the flagship Game Jam. The goal is to provide a vehicle for professional developers, students and hobbyist to come together and have an incredible experience in collaboration and inventiveness. The GGJ works perfectly into the mission of the International Game Developers Association, “Connecting members with their peers & promoting professional development.” A Game Jam is not a competition, it is unique “idea space” where sometimes things work and sometimes they don’t.

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29th October 2009

Dawn of Heroes Dev Blog Now Live

Wicked StudiosMontrealWicked Studios and Majesco Entertainment are pleased to announce that the official Dawn of Heroes Blog is now accessible on the game website.

Expect news, commentary, gameplay videos, exclusive wallpapers and music tracks to be posted on the blog. Wicked Studios invites players to inquire about Dawn of Heroes by Dawn of Heroescommenting and asking questions in the blog. A Facebook page is also available for players wishing to join the fan club and get all the latest news about Dawn of Heroes!

Dawn of Heroes – A new breed of SRPG

Brimthule is cursed, filled with malevolent characters, and separated into baronies. Cities have fallen, beasts of all weft and warp are becoming bolder in their attacks and the once beloved six Barons have become evil.

Who’s going to clean this mess up? Heroes will!! Don’t they always? But where are they? Unwilling to deal with an old prophecy to save the realm, a disparate band of mercenaries will learn, through a hilarious adventure, that the reward of being Heroes cannot be counted in gold, jewels, or fame.

• Travel through breathtaking 3D graphics whilst encountering a wide variety of characters from 12 different factions.
• Fight through over 60 missions with optional and hidden objectives.
• Experience a rich storyline filled with action, fun and humour.
• Select a team from over 25 playable classes.
• Test your strategies against other players and trade items through Nintendo DS wireless Play, or Nintendo WFC.

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27th October 2009

Incubator Games Moves Forward, Samsung Dev Fund, SteelSeries Now At Best Buy

Incubator GamesTorontoIncubator Games, a group of young industry professionals, is proud to announce the launch of their new website along with 18 new screenshots for their first game, Tribes of Mexica, which was an entry in Microsoft’s 2009 Dream Build Play contest.

Tribes of Mexica is an action-puzzle title deeply steeped in Aztec Tribes of Mexicamythology. The game’s core mechanics center on rotating concentric rings to match coloured units, powering up spells, and timing attacks and defensive maneuvers. An adventure element ties the battles together, allowing the player to explore exotic locales in ancient Mesoamerica while building up a magical arsenal. Currently in development for the Xbox 360, Incubator Games has plans to port Tribes of Mexica over to the PC/Mac/Linux platforms, and is investigating other platforms as well.

SamsungSamsung Electronics, a leader in consumer electronics and information technology, and Handmark®, a world-leading creator and distributor of mobile applications and services, today announced the launch of a new Global Venture Fund to invest in companies and/or individuals with innovative, market-changing game ideas for next generation Samsung mobile phones. Companies and/or individuals selected will receive up to $250,000 each to fund the development of winning ideas.Handmark

The fund will be managed by Handmark out of its Kansas City and London offices in partnership with Samsung Electronics. The companies are searching for games that best showcase Samsung mobile phones and the advanced features they offer. Both current and new content ideas are encouraged, taking timing and cost into consideration.

“We know there’s a wealth of great ideas out there waiting to be discovered,” said Chris Barnett, senior vice president of Global Sales and Strategic Partnerships for Handmark. “This is a fantastic opportunity for anyone, including big brands, mobile developers or any individual with a unique, creative idea to make it a reality.”

“Samsung recognizes the importance of content and applications for today’s mobile phone users,” said Ho Soo Lee, executive vice president for Samsung Electronics’ Media Solution Center. “We are pleased to broaden our partnership with Handmark to help lead the Global Venture Fund, using their expertise to support us capturing great ideas and raise the standard of mobile innovation.”

In addition to funding those selected, Handmark will also provide assistance with development, testing and certification, as well as distribution of the application through the Samsung Application Store. Deadline for applications is November 20, 2009 at 5 PM CT.

SteelSeriesGame peripheral company SteelSeries has announced a new distributorship deal with Best Buy Canada. A solid supporter of competitive gaming events in Canada including our own Digital Storm LAN, SteelSeries also purchased Canadian game keyboard maker ZBoard in 2008.
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25th October 2009

Vortex Competition Extends Deadline

Vortex CompetitionThis just in from the Competition organizers: Pitch your game idea to Yannis Mallet (Ubisoft CEO Montreal and Toronto) and Kevin O’Leary (Dragons’ Den and Shark Tank, Genstar Capital, and O’Leary Equity Funds)) and other major industry players at Vortex Competition 2009.

Gain insider tips from Kevin O’Leary as he discusses his take on Risk and Return – The Infinite Balance of being an entrepreneur. Ask the mogul how he did it at the Q&A session. Learn the steps to create, produce, protect and commercialize your idea at the 2009 Vortex Boot Camp on November 3 and then pitch your project on November 4th and 5th in Toronto.

Key Notes include:

• Kevin O’Leary
• Blake Lewin
• Peter Williams

Party and network with industry players!

Prize package is worth tens of thousands of dollars and includes $4,000 cash, one-on-one mentoring with industry gurus, and distribution and publishing on Mac and PC platforms for your game.

Submit your one-page game synopsis and CV/Bio but be sure to register by midnight October 27th. The registration fee for Vortext Competition is $100.00, and includes the Boot Camp, Pitch Days and passes for both the Boot Camp Reception and the Competition Awards Gala.

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23rd October 2009

Friday News Mashup

EA GamesEA Montreal has released a new Army of Two: 40th Day trailer. This short video focuses on the multiplayer extraction mode. Army of Two: 40th Day is slated for release on January 12 2010.

You need to a flashplayer enabled browser to view this YouTube video

Vancouver Film School is holding a Halloween makeup contest. Impress their judge, film industry veteran VFSand Head of the Makeup Design for Film & Television program Stan Edmonds (The Butterfly Effect, I, Robot, Unforgiven), and you’ll have the chance to win some great prizes, including a selection of professional-quality makeup supplies! All you have to do is show your Halloween-themed makeup skills – and that can be anything you imagine as long as you’ve created the makeup yourself – on the photo-sharing site Flickr between October 26 and November 1. Once three finalists are chosen by our judge, the public will get to vote on the winner.

CorelOttawaCorel has introduced Corel® Paint it!™ touch, a new digital art studio built explicitly for the Windows 7 platform. Corel Paint it! touch is optimized for use on touch-screen computers, Paint it! touch provides budding artists of any age with a unique artistic experience. Using the program, consumers can create original artwork with the touch of Corel Paintit Touchtheir fingertips. The program’s touch-enabled capabilities let consumers add artistic touches to photos or create art from scratch using a number of realistic brushes and effects.

“With Paint it! touch, it is now possible to bypass mouse clicks and interact directly with your digital canvas, all with the touch of your fingertips,” said David Toeg, Paint it! touch Product Manager for Corel. “Windows 7 and Windows Touch have enabled Corel to create new possibilities for our users by removing barriers and helping them to connect with their digital content in more personal ways. Whether they are creating painted masterpieces, photo projects, or home videos, it can now be an even more spontaneous and interactive experience.”

IUGOIUGO Mobile Entertainment has released information about their latest game which is headed for the Apple App Store – Implode, where players are tasked to carefully plant limited dynamite bundles in order to demo obsolete structures. Sounds easy enough, right? WRONG! Implode! is a classic “easy to learn, hard to master” casual game that will pull you in and won’t let go. IUGO currently has three games in the pipeline for the App Store – Implode, Zombie Attack Second Wave and Cliffed.

Features include:Implode

• 60 dynamite levels
• Reactive UI, touch and drag control options
• Fun chalkboard theme and clean graphics
• Two different types of bombs (traditional bombs and blast bombs)
• Varying structure shapes for ongoing challenge
• Submit score online (online score is the sum of all levels’ high scores)
• Grading system for high scores adding replayability to each level
• 3 Difficulties; Casual, Veteran, and Expert
• In-level help system: Learn as you play!
• IUGO VIP: Sandbox cheat gives you more bombs and you never fail! (high scores disabled with this feature)
• Watch buildings tumble with real physics!

VIATeCVictoriaIsland Tech 09 is looking for speakers. Island Tech takes place on November 13th at the Crystal Garden and will feature an afternoon of thought-provoking discussions, much in the style of the TEDx conferences. They are looking for people that have an interesting topic they would like to present. Talks should be rooted in innovation, or at least connected to technology. The organizers would prefer talks with a broad and/or unconventional scope. Do you have anything you’d like to say that fits this bill? The format for the talks is a 20 minute presentation followed by 10 minutes of Q&A with the audience. People should come away from this part of the Island Tech event thinking “I’ve never thought about it that way”, or “man, that was interesting”, or maybe even “that was brilliant!”. We want these talks to stretch the boundaries a bit, and make people think. Please email Island Tech 09 with a synopsis of your talk.

Mindshare LearningThe MindShare Learning Report—Canada’s, Leading, Learning & Technology eMagazine and title sponsor Microsoft Canada Co., are set to officially launch the Microsoft – MindShare Learning Report™ 21st Century Digital Classroom Challenge (Contest Info – PDF). In its second year running, this event aims to inspire teachers, along with their students from across Canada to share their successful classroom practices using technology. Teachers from publicly funded schools can qualify to win one of three technology prize packs valued at over $15,000 for their school.

The office launch takes place at W.H. Day Elementary School in Bradford, Ontario, the site of one of last year’s contest winners, grade 5 teacher, Mali Bickley. “It is an honour to have the Mindshare Learning Contest launch hosted in my classroom. Winning the Mindshare Learning contest and having the technology for the class helped us connect with so many other classes throughout the world. The technologies were the tools that connected my students in curriculum based projects that truly made a difference in their lives and other students globally,” says Mali Bickley.

Through a video submission, K-12 educators from publicly funded schools across Canada are challenged to share their success stories using technology to support student success. Qualified entrants will be eligible to win one of three classroom technology prize packages, each valued at more than $15,000, from leading classroom technology providers, including: Microsoft Canada, Advanced Education, Dell, EPSON, FrontRow, ISTE, NECTAR Foundation, netTrekker, Pearson, SMART Technologies and MindShare Learning.

“Canadian teachers are excellent stewards in marrying technology with education and are critical in developing instructional environments that use technology to ignite the imaginations of students,” says Shann McGrail, Director of Education, Microsoft Canada. “Microsoft Canada is committed to helping educators to prepare students for today’s and tomorrow’s workforce with education-specific tools and technologies, and this contest maps to our belief that technology is one way to deliver enriched instruction to engage students and improve learning outcomes.”

“The awesome prize packages were carefully selected and represent best-of-class technology to enable 21st century digital learning in the classroom. I’m humbled by the generosity of our sponsors,” says Robert Martellacci, president and publisher, The MindShare Learning Report.

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1st October 2009

Roundhouse Interactive launches The Game Cartel

Roundhouse InteractiveTorontoRoundhouse Interactive (new site under construction) has taken the first step towards the release of the first player-developed console game with the launch of The Game Cartel.The Game Cartel

The Game Cartel is the world’s first demographically driven game development co-operative. Utilizing a web portal and a fee-based membership; the Game Cartel empowers gamers and other interested parties alike, to develop next generation games for the retail market. Roundhouse Interactive President, Mike Montanaro says, “For less than the price of your average video game, users will have input into — and voting rights on — each and every aspect of game development, from genre through character development and game play.”

According to Roundhouse Interactive, The Game Cartel membership will also benefit from special “insider” offers from a select and growing list of partners and affiliates such as Alienware and HiTech Tattoos. In addition, every member will get their name listed in the credits and receive a copy of the final product.

The Game Cartel HomeMontanaro says, “Gamers are a very vocal group who pride themselves on knowing each and every detail of current and upcoming games titles. They are equally quick to decry the games they feel fall short of expectation. They take a sense of ownership in the games they play so it only seemed natural to give them a real voice in the games developed by making them a vested partner. I see it as a new direction for the industry, and a win-win situation for everyone involved.”

All member concepts submitted by the membership will be passed before an advisory board of industry professionals. All submissions will be reviewed to determine their viability and originality, selecting those that will go back to the members for voting and final inclusion in the game.

The membership will have exclusive previews of finished game play, be included in beta testing, and will get a special packaged version of the final game prior to the general retail launch scheduled just in time for Christmas in 2010.

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