February 2011

Nexon America has begun taking applications for a second round of its Nexon iNitiative program, which will fund $1 million worth of independent free-to-play games with a North American focus “that align with Nexon’s focus on community building and long-term user engagement.”

Primarily known for major free-to-play MMOs including Maple Story, Mabinogi and Dungeon Fighter Online!, the initiative is part of Nexon America’s effort to branch out to new genres and new platforms, with a specific focus on the North American audience.

“I think there are types of games that are just more popular here in the U.S. than in other markets,” Won Il Sue, Nexon America’s vice president of business development, told Gamasutra in a new interview. “A great example is the tower defense type of games — they’re hugely popular here in the U.S., not so much popular in the East.”

That doesn’t mean the company is focused exclusively on American developers and Western-targeted games for the contest, however. “We could have a studio from Singapore that has a great idea for the Western market,” Sue said.

“Generally, though, the people here know the market better. … If we find something that we think will work globally, we’ll be very interested in that as well.”

(full article)

Video games are by and large about projecting power, and who’s more powerful than the leader of the free world? Video game appearances by U.S. presidents — both real and fictional — run the gamut from inspiring to embarrassing. It’s one thing to have your leader spur you on with a rousing speech or a cry to battle, but having your president thank you for saving his life by offering to take you out for a burger? That’s humiliating. Thanks, Ronnie.

With the Big Gipper included in the bunch, here are a few of our Presidential favorites on both sides of the coin. While you’re kicking back on this President’s Day, think about your favorite video game leaders, and whether you would have voted for them, or shoved them off the ballot.

(full article)

Today, when my colleagues see console fanboys arguing fruitlessly in comment threads, they see a group of illogically territorial misanthropes more concerned with winning an argument than enjoying games. But that’s not what I see. When I see a fanboy, I see someone eager to relive the joy of their first exposure to videogames by sticking with the company that brought it to them. I see someone who’s invested an important part of their identity into what a videogame company has come to represent to them. I see someone trying with all their might to convince themselves that they’re not missing out on anything over the rich kids whose parents can buy them all three major consoles and dozens of games every year.

When I see a fanboy, I see the person I was – someone trying to recapture a simpler time, when videogames meant only one thing and also meant everything.

(full article)


Recently appointed Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences President Martin Rae tells Gamasutra the D.I.C.E.-organizing body plans to offer a membership option for individual developers “in the next six months.”

“There’s no question we’re going to work toward defining and providing more benefits to individual members,” Rae said in an interview ahead of this week’s D.I.C.E. game executive conference in Las Vegas, which Gamasutra will be covering in depth.

“As digital distribution and iPhone development is becoming easier to take advantage of, there’s a lot of individual developers that we would like as members of the academy, so we’re looking at that in a big way,” he continued. “We don’t have a defined set plan, but we will within the next six months.”

(full article)

After the plumbing thing didn’t work out, Mario went on to be a juggler, a soldier, and even a pinball flipper!

(full article)