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From the Magnificent Six to the Rise of Social Gaming - News Roundup 20th July 2010

Jonathan Lester
Activision, FarmVille, Games news, Modern Warfare, Report, Six legends, Social network gaming, Subscriptions, World Record

Activision Refute CoD Subscription Rumours

From the Magnificent Six to the Rise of Social Gaming - News Roundup 20th July 2010

The question of Activision instigating a subscription-based membership system for the Call of Duty series has been weighing heavily on our worried minds for some time... and the (albeit slightly suspect) MW gameplay video released yesterday did little to ease our burden. However, Activision's Dan Amrich has stepped forward to nip these rumours in the bud.

"No such [subscription] plan exists for this or any other Call of Duty (including the upcoming Black Ops)."

So there... for now. Call of Duty Subs are something that Activision deeply desires, though- and I doubt we've heard the last of this. [fourzerotwo]

Dutch Gamers Break 50 Hour Gaming Record

From the Magnificent Six to the Rise of Social Gaming - News Roundup 20th July 2010

A team of six Dutch gamers have beaten the world record for consecutive gaming by playing Red Dead Redemption for 50 hours straight. That means no breaks... for anything. Whilst this has been technically achieved before (resulting in the death of a Korean World of Warcraft player), the Guinness team were on hand to monitor the proceedings and ensure the safety of everyone involved.

In a stunning and genuinely heartwarming display of gaming solidarity, the six hardcore contenders started out as competitors, but decided to work together in order to win the title as allies.

“The participants entered as foes and left as worldrecord-holding friends.” - Gaz Deaves, Guinness World Records official

Brothers, we salute you. [Video Games Blogger]

Report: Social Gaming to Make $1bn by 2012

From the Magnificent Six to the Rise of Social Gaming - News Roundup 20th July 2010

There's no doubt that casual and application games are clawing their way into the games market... but social networking-based games are tipped to become The social network gaming market earned a whopping $639 million dollars last year (exploding from $76 million in 2008)- and according to a new report by the Screen Digest analyst firm, this figure is set to top $1bn by 2012. I can believe it- after all, Zynga (the developers behind the insidious mind control software fantastically-successful Farmville series) is already netting over 100 million dollars! Screen Digest predict that this will start putting the squeeze on the casual and indie scene.

"There is no doubt that the traditional PC casual markets of ‘try and buy’ and subscriptions have come under pressure from the success of games on social networks,"

"As users of social networks have increased and the volume of social games content has expanded rapidly, casual games portals have had to work harder to compete." - Piers Harding Rolls, Screen Digest

So what does this mean for the mainstream games industry? In my opinion, not necessarily that much. Busy people with only a few minutes a day to log on to Facebook or an iPhone app are a very different (and entirely new) consumer base than hardcore gamers... though we can expect big publishers to take a growing interest in the social market. In fact, they already are... [Gamesindustry]

How often do you play social networking-based games? Are they a threat to the games market as a whole... or just a much-need evolution of our beloved medium? Have your say in the comments!

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