There never been any doubt, in my mind at least, that gamers are much more competitive in Asia then they are in the states, generally speaking. Korea, for instance, is home to televised Starcraft matches and the first ever rehab center for video game addiction. Well, if there was any doubt before, an incident in the Jilin province of China pretty much seals the deal: After accusing a competitor of cheating during a public match at an internet cafe, a teen picked up a knife and stabbed another 17-year old boy in the head. From the X-Ray above, we can see that the knife through the boy’s skull and brain, almost coming through on the other side.
As horrifying as the incident is, it set the stage for an absolute miracle. Despite the knife going all the way through the victims head, surgeons managed to remove the knife AND keep the boy alive. According to the surgeon, the boy was incredibly lucky, as the blade missed all major arteries and the section of his brain that effects motor function, making his chances of being able to walk very good.
What did we learn? Don’t play at an internet cafe if you’re going to cheat.
OnLive, a service that will stream games to PCs or a “MicroConsole” that connects the service to a television via cloud computing, announced that the service will launch on June 10’th. CEO Steve Perlman mostly spoke about pricing at this juncture: OnLive will cost 14.95 per month for the service, plus the price of individual games. Like most subscription-based services, buying a longer subscription grants a small discount. Also, to get people to sign up Perlman announced that the first 25,000 registered users will get their three months of service free.
Are people still playing Final Fantasy XI?
I’m kidding. But for those who may not realize, the Final Fantasy MMORPG experiment has an extremely loyal fanbase that has kept the game up and running for eight years. To celebrate the game’s eighth anniversary, Square announced at this weekend’s “Vana Fest” fan convention that they will be releasing three new expansion packs that will be released over the course of 2010. The three packs, named “Vision of Abyssea”, “Scars of Abyssea” and “Heroes of Abyssea”, will each cost 10 dollars, and will be released on all platforms simultaneously. Players must already have the game’s two larger expansion packs, “Rise of the Zilart” and “Wings of the Goddess” in order to play them. The first pack (Vision of Abyssea) will become available this summer.
At the same time, Square also announced that the first beta for their NEXT MMORPG, Final Fantasy XIV, will begin on March 14’th. The beta is apparently very small and PC-only. Square consoled upset applicants who didn’t get invited to the beta, saying that they plan to call in more players for an expanded beta in the future. Fans who are sad because they didn’t even know Square was taking applications in December shouldn’t feel left out either: FFXIV is currently expected to be a 2010 release.
Check out the announcement trailer for Civilization V. As of now, Civ 5 should be available for PC gamers winter 2010. Supposedly, the new game is going have a revamped combat system and more diplomatic options. Of course, you can’t see any of that in the trailer, but the video still looks pretty good.