Today's round-up includes news on a company hoping to cash in on the California violent video game bill, more information on the casual and indie-friendly Xbox 360 Live Arcade service, and Bill Gates' surprise choice of favorite video game, as well as today's product news and Gamasutra job postings.
- PSVratings, a private firm seeking to compete with the industry-standard Electronic Software Ratings Board, has seized the opportunity of the many anti-violent gaming bills circulating to tout its own services. In a letter to California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who recently signed
measure AB1179, PSVratings president David Kinney offered his company's ratings as an alternative. "The current video game ratings that you see on the video game boxes themselves may leave retailers and parents confused and defenseless when it comes to figuring out which games kids are not allowed to buy," claimed Kinney. "Only by using an independent ratings system such as PSVratings can an objective definition of violence be established."
- A partial list of Xbox 360 Live Arcade games scheduled to be available for the system's launch has been revealed, following new demonstrations of the service to the gaming press. In addition to the already-mentioned Marble Blast Ultra
and Hexic HD
(the latter of which will come preloaded on the system hard drive), some of the initially available titles to be available for downloadable purchase at a $10-$20 price point will include IGF winner Wik & The Fable of Souls
, an upgraded Mutant Storm
, and Geometry Wars
, an enhanced version of the bonus game from Project Gotham Racing 2
- Microsoft founder and chairman Bill Gates, one of the world's richest men, surprised a University of Wisconsin computer science class with an unannounced visit. Gates answered the students' questions as part of an event being filmed by mtvU, a college TV network, and extolled the virtues of the computer programmer life. "Jobs in software are really fun jobs," said Gates. "These are not jobs about just closing the door and writing a lot of code." Gates also revealed his favorite video game to be Project Gotham Racing
, in contrast with Xbox manager J Allard, who differs in believing Halo 2
to be the best game ever
- Also updated today: product news including Mobile Interaction's signing of Terraplay’s Move technology
for multiplayer mobile gaming, as well as today's Gamasutra job postings
, including positions from Activision/Treyarch, Disney Buena Vista Games, Infospace, Mad Doc Software, Midway Games, and Virtual Heroes.