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Other People's Misfortune

Madden Rivalry Turns MurderousAn argument over a game of Madden turned deadly in Kansas late last week. According to police, on Thursday night, four "friends" were chilling out and playing Madden on the PlayStation 3 when a fight broke out. When the dust settled, Luke German, 22, was dead on the front lawn, and his three friends were wanted by police. 

According to Lt. Ken Landwehr, head of the Wichita Police Department's homicide section, German died of "severe internal injuries" consistent with being kicked, punched and perhaps struck by a pipe. He was taken to a hospital, but died shortly thereafter.

As for the motive: "Somebody was accused of cheating," Landwehr said. Obviously, this is the worst reason to kill someone ever, except, maybe religion.

Two suspects were arrested immediately in the case, while a third, Benjamin Redgate, was just picked up this morning. That's Redgate in the photo to the right.

Source: 

Kansas.com

Farmville

Alexandra V. Tobias, a young mother and casual game aficionado from Florida, is at the center of a tragic murder. The Jacksonville resident  pleaded guilty to second degree murder this week, admitting that she'd killed her three-month-old child because he disturbed her while she was trying to play Farmville.

In her confession, Tobias said her baby started crying, interrupting her important game. She shook him, smoked a cigarette to calm down, then shook him again. She says he may have hit his head at some point. I wonder if she finished harvesting her crops?

Tobias could face life in prison. Keep your fingers crossed.

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BlubberellaPost-modern filmic auter Uwe Boll never fails to surprise us. He spent many years taking well-love (and sorta-liked) video game franchises and created widely despised films from them. Then, he shocked us all by creating a movie that got good reviews (non-video game related 1968 Tunnel Rats), and now, he's making a super hero movie. About a fat chick. Called "Blubberella."

(If you could see me, you'd know I was applauding right now.)

There has been little information released about this horror-comedy beyond a small reproduction of the film's poster, a listing in The Film Catalog, and this description:

The first female fat superhero ...
She will kick major ass - with her major ass ...

All the BLOODRAYNE fans will love that movie!

I want to see this movie. As the morbid obesity increases in the United States, and we all slowly murder ourselves with the product of our own affluence, the cultural meaning of fat itself will change, and if any film-maker has the sensitivity and taste to portray this with the seriousness and sensitivity it deserves, it's Uwe Boll. Plus, lots of fat jokes!

Source: Twitch

Nugget From The Net: Try Not To Punch A Wall

I've thrown controllers over some (most) of the items in the picture you see above. The full version is under the cut.

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Blasphemy! The Hobbit Production To Leave New Zealand?

Oh, will the industry drama ever end for The Hobbit? It seems that the perpetually-embattled production didn't get much time to celebrate its recent greenlight, as the specter of its troubles with Actors Unions have crept back to the forefront. The issue started as a play for negotiations by the New Zealand Actor's Equity (in conjunction with a powerful Australian Union.) The result, was a ping on the radars of Unions around the world that would lead to a "Member Alert" from the US Screen Actors Guild discouraging actors from taking work on The Hobbit, perhaps New Zealand's most economically critical film production. Fast-forward to the present, and despite the NZ Union seemingly lifting its blacklist after a highly visible protest march by actors, the damage may have already been done. According to director Peter Jackson, it seems that Warner Brothers, who have invested $100 million into the production are ready to pull the switch and relocate the entire production, likely to the UK. Will the loss of those iconic exterior shots from the Lord of the Rings films affect the sanctity of our return to Middle Earth?

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Game Room

According to unnamed sources cited by game site IGN, Krome Studios, Australia's largest game developer, has closed its doors for good. Reportedly, Krome's remaining staff was let go on Friday, although there is a possibility that some members of the team will be kept on for a bit as independent contractors to finish off existing projects.

Krome is the company behind Microsoft's excellent Game Room, the old school arcade simulator available through Xbox Live, as well as cross-platform downloadable platformer Blade Kitten, and the PS2 and Wii versions of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed.

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Back To The Jackasses

Epictober is down to it's last day, but luckily once you get done checking out all of the great exclusives and features, there will still be plenty of time to see what else is happening on the internet. Enjoy the links, suckers!

  • Burn your temple with a curling iron on Jackass for girls. [CollegeHumor]
  • Here are 20 celebrities who look like Sesame Street characters. [SuperTremendous]
  • If you missed it, here's video of Eric Stoltz playing Marty McFly in Back To The Future before they replaced him. [FilmDrunk]
     

 




Jack Thompson Bill Amendment Passes in Utah State House CommitteeA brief addendum to the controversy surrounding Electronic Arts' shooter Medal of Honor: Game-hating activist Jack Thompson has claimed victory. Here's Thompson's quote, from gaming site RipTen:

"I win again, as usual. Any gamers who don’t think so and who don’t appreciate what I do to protect our culture can go to Hell... Any gamers that don’t know how to get to Hell on an expedited basis, let me know, and I’ll send along the cheat code to get there more quickly."

I would think EA was probably more concerned about the opposition of Liam Fox, the U.K. defense minister, or the fact that the military plans to ban the game from on-base stores, but I guess it was Thompson all along. (I'd like those cheat codes anyway, please.)

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British Paper Pays Rockstar Games For Libel

British tabloid The Daily Star has lost a court case against Rockstar games, and has been forced to pay Rockstar an undisclosed, but substantial sum for libel.

At issue: A July story (since pulled) in which The Star claimed Rockstar was planning to release a game in the Grand Theft Auto series called "Grand Theft Auto: Rothbury" about the murders of British killer Raoul Moat. The Star went as far as soliciting comment from a relative of one of Moat's victims about the game.

The problem with the story is that it's entirely false, and seems to be based on nothing more than a poorly done photoshop that appeared on the internet. Check it out above (I blacked out the image in the top right for gore.), and consider for a moment that a journalist at the Star saw that image and believed it was the cover a new video game.  Sure, the proper journalistic thing to do would have been to contact Rockstar to get comment before running the story, but the Star could have avoided even that, basic step with some simple common sense: Anyone should be able to immediately see that the photo above is not a game cover. Besides, questions of taste aside, "Grand Theft Auto: Rothbury" is the worst idea for a game ever.

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Lucha Libre: AAA Heroes of the Ring

If you pre-ordered Mexican wrestling extravaganza Lucha Libre AAA: Heroes Del Ring because you really, really wanted the Mexican wrestling mask that ships with the game, we're terribly sorry. The product did not meet the standards of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008, so the game's creator, Slang, has decided to cancel the pre-order bonus/free mask giveaway promotion with retail outlets in the US and Canada.

“Rather than post a warning sign on the official AAA mask, we have decided to cancel the mask pre-order gift with purchase because we could not in good conscious (sic) distribute them to consumers due to the potential health risk," said Abraham Bautista, CEO of Slang.

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When someone on the planet earth posts a picture of their brand new Billy Mitchell tattoo, we're there:

Billy Mitchell Tattoo

I'd love to tell you which human being is awesome enough to permanently mark their skin with the visage of one-time Donkey Kong high scorer and hot sauce king Mitchell, but I can't. I saw it on Reddit, and there isn't any identifying info. I guess you'll just have to spend your life looking for the most rad person, and when you've found him/her, he/she will be marked with the Mitchell-sign.

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Rock Band 3

Bad news, Playstation 3 rockers: When Rock Band 3 launches on October 26, you will not be able to buy a bundle with the new keyboard peripheral. From the official game forums:

"You may have seen that retailers have taken down the Rock Band 3 keyboard/software bundle pre-orders for PlayStation 3. Unfortunately, this SKU will not be available in the U.S. due to the agreement terms for the region. However, Mad Catz and MTV Games are working with those retailers that accepted pre-orders to enable them, if they choose, to honor those pre-orders placed prior to this change as soft bundles (separate discs and keyboards), at pre-order pricing. These retailers will have more details shortly."

If you're planning on playing the game on the 360 or the Wii, you'll be able to be fully keyboard-bundled. If you're PS3 owner, though, you'll have to purchase the game and the keys separately.

I'm way psyched for the 360 version of Rock Band 3; I love keyboards and harmonies, and both will be represented here. But lately, excitement levels for music games have seemed much less than in the past. Do you guys even care about Rock Band 3?


Razer To Make

Blizzard has made good on a threat/warning it issued a couple weeks ago, and banned over 5000 Starcraft 2 cheaters, 'sploiters and cads.

"Maintaining a stable, safe, and secure online-gaming experience for legitimate players is a top priority for us, and we'll be continuing to keep watch on Battle.net and take action as needed," Blizzard said in a statement.

In other words: Don't cheat and you won't have to worry about being banned.

I like the way Blizzard bans people all at once, saving up their ire and then publically announcing it. It's like an invading army sticking their enemies heads on pikes as if to say, "Do not cross us."

Bobby KotickA war of words has broken out between Activision head Bobby Kotick and Electronic Arts, so let's all get some popcorn, and enjoy the insult hurling and boiling invectives while we wait for the next Fallout game to hit, shall we? 

It begins in an interview with Edge, where Kotick offers some choice words about how EA treats their development studios and why the company has trouble keeping the top talents.

"The core principle of how we run the company is the exact opposite of EA," he says. "EA will buy a developer and then it will become ‘EA Florida’, ‘EA Vancouver’, ‘EA New Jersey’, whatever. We always looked and said, 'You know what? What we like about a developer is that they have a culture, they have an independent vision and that’s what makes them so successful.' We don’t have an Activision anything - it’s Treyarch, Infinity Ward, Sledgehammer.

"That, to me, is one of the unassailable rules of building a publishing company. And in every case except for two, the original founders of the studios are still running the studios today. The only thing that we try to do is to provide a support structure to make them more successful. If you do a really good job - and a lot of our studios do - you get to pick what is, in my view, the most difficult thing to pick in the industry: to make original intellectual property."

EA, you've been served...

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Peter Jackson Meeting With Actors For The Hobbit

Over the weekend, the mysterious mystical forces whose sole purpose in this universe has been to use its divine powers of fate to stop The Hobbit from being made have struck yet again. This time, it came in the form of a "Member Alert" issued from the Screen Actors Guild advising members to not accept work from the beleaguered New Zealand production due to its alleged non-union status. -- At least until union contracts were negotiated for all the actors involved in the film, anyway. While that might sound like a dry, rather minor setback to the uninitiated, the key concept to grasp here, is that The Hobbit may not only be held-up again, but it may be forced to relocate from the beautiful, now-iconic NZ countryside settings in which the Lord of the Rings films were shot. If you think that fans are pissed about this prospect, then just wait until you hear what the film's would-be director Peter Jackson had to say. The typically chipper director put on his angry hat and let loose on his detractors.

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