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Charity

$2.3 Million Raised By World of Warcraft Players for Superstorm Sandy Relief

Author:
Brendan Griffiths
Category:
News
Tags:
Charity, Cinder Kitten, Superstorm Sandy, World of Warcraft

.3 Million Raised By World of Warcraft Players for Superstorm Sandy Relief

The World of Warcraft community have raised a mightily impressive 2.3 million dollars for the American Red Cross’s relief efforts for the victims of Superstorm Sandy. The storm ravaged America’s West coast late last year, leaving many people homeless, without food and with huge costs to rebuild their homes.

Click here to read more...

Break Blocks Now Available, Pay What You Want

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Break Blocks, Charity, Greater Good Games, Indie Games, PC games

Break Blocks Now Available, Pay What You Want

Charity Gets 20%

Break Blocks, the debut title from ex-Tripwire Interactive outfit Greater Good Games, has now launched on PC using a pay-what-you want model. We awarded Dayle Flowers' breakdancing puzzler with a worthy 7/10 score in our Break Blocks review, and would highly suggest getting involved since 20% of the profits will be donated to Doctors Without Borders. Plus, you know, you can pay what you want.

Get it here.

Break Blocks Review | Charity Case

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
Break Blocks, Charity, Greater Good Games, Indie Games, Music games, PC games, Puzzle games, Tripwire Interactive

Break Blocks Review | Charity Case

Platform: PC

Developer: Greater Good Games

Publisher: Tripwire Interactive

Have you heard of Greater Good Games? Dayle Flowers, a former Tripwire Interactive employee (a key player behind Killing Floor and Red Orchestra 2) joined forces with illustrator Noah Wood to create a studio who pledge to donate at least 20% of the profits for each sale to Doctors Without Borders - and more when key benchmarks are met for each title. Tripwire are publishing their first effort, Break Blocks, which is a novel mix of colour matching, rhythm games and urban breakdancing.

Block breaking is, as you'd expect, the aim of the game. The action takes place on a circular grid, at the centre of which lies your coloured block. To unlock it, however, you'll need to tap out a series of timed button presses on the beat of a groovy R&B tune, revealing its true colours. You'll then need to rotate both the block and the radial grid and deploy your newfound block to the periphery, with the objecive of making enormous groups of similar shades.

Break Blocks Review | Charity Case

Click here to read more...

Humble Bundle Mojam Makes Nearly Half A Million Dollars

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Charity, Humble Bundle, Indie Games, Mojam, Mojang

Humble Bundle Mojam Makes Nearly Half A Million Dollars

All For Charity

Humble Bundle Mojam, the exciting sponsored develop-a-thon hosted by Mojang and Humble Bundle, has come to an end after raising $458,208.95 for four charities. Catacomb Snatch was the result: an Egyptian cyberpunk strategy shoot 'em up voted for by gamers themselves.

Oxeye Game Studio and Wolfire also participated in the 60 hour dev binge: creating The Broadside Express and Fists Of Resistance respectively.

Sadly, if you missed your chance to donate, you won't now be able to do so (and receive a copy of the games). It's unclear whether these three games will be made available in a future bundle, but we reckon there's a good chance.

Prepare Yourself For Humble Bundle Mojam!

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
Charity, Humble Bundle, Indie Games, Mojam, Mojang, PC games

Mojang & Humble Bundle Team Up For 60 Hour Dev Binge

Mojang is going to make a game this weekend. In sixty hours, streamed live, the Indie titan will develop an entirely new title... with gamers deciding on the genre and theme. You can go and make your choice by heading over to the announcement page.

Humble Bundle will be accepting and handling donations - 100% of which will go to charity - as well as hosting the streams on-site. You'll receive a copy of the game if you donate, as well as contributing towards "some fun and silly incentives" for reaching certain amounts of money.

Get involved. You know you want to be a part of this!

littleBIGbunch Sells 20,000 Bundles, Makes A Mint For GamesAid

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
Bundle, Charity, GamesAid, Indie Games, littleBIGbunch

littleBIGbunch Sells 20,000 Bundles, Makes A Mint For GamesAid

New Bundles Planned

Gaming charity GamesAid has announced that the littleBIGbunch indie bundle (organised in part by Get Games) has sold over 20,000 copies and raised "significant funds" over its three week duration. Ian Livingstone has praised the initiative, and apparently a second bundle will be deploying later this year. However, they'll be focusing on quality rather than saturating the already heaving bundle market.

Click here for more details >>

Daily Bite: Christmas Charity Song- 'Leave The N00bs'

Author:
Matt Gardner
Category:
Funnies
Tags:
Charity, Daily Bite, SpecialEffect

GamerDadsUK have rounded up a few friends to deliver a special Yuletide musical greeting in support of games charity SpecialEffect. The song will be available on iTunes shortly, but you can donate simply by clicking here, with more info on the excellent work SpecialEffect do available here. You can also check out Jon's in-depth interview with SpecialEffect's Dr. Mick Donegan right here.

Little Big Bunch | Pay What You Want | PC

Author:
Matt Gardner
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Awesomeness, Charity, Explodemon, Frozen Synapse, GamesAid, Indie Games, Little Big Bunch, Munch's Oddysee, NS Soccer 5, PC games, Serious Sam Double D

Little Big Bunch | Pay What You Want | PC

  • What: Little Big Bunch Bundle - Explodemon, Frozen Synapse, NS Soccer 5, Munch's Oddysee, Serious Sam: Double D
  • Where: GetGames
  • Current Price: Pay What You Want (minimum £1.50)

The Little Big Bunch bundle has gone live and it's veritably mouthwatering. You can see the lineup above, but for even further encouragement (as if any sane person would need it), you really should check out Jon's reviews of Frozen Synapse and Serious Sam: Double D. The former has already made our Game of the Year shortlist.

This time, everything's quite UK-oriented, with proceeds split between developers and the charity GamesAid. As with Humble Bundle, there's a slider so you can decide how much of your purchase goes where.

Do it. Do it now!

The Humble Indie Bundle #4 | Pay What You Want | PC

Author:
Matt Gardner
Category:
Deals
Tags:
Awesomeness, Bit.Trip Runner, Cave Story+, Charity, Gratuitous Space Battles, Humble Bundle, Jamestown, NightSky HD, PC games, Shank, Super Meat Boy, The Humble Indie Bundle #4

Is this the best Bundle yet? Possibly. Between Shank, Super Meat Boy, Bit.Trip Runner, Jamestown and NightSky HD that's an awful lot of win. Thank you Humble Bundle, and a Merry Christmas to you too!

Once again, it's a case of pay what you think is right, with proceeds split between the developers, charities Child's Play and the American Red Cross, and Humble Bundle themselves. Moreover, if you pay above the average (currently $5.36), you'll get Cave Story+ and Gratuitous Space Battles.

I've already bought mine, have you?

Humble Voxatron Debut Raises Over $900k

Author:
Matt Gardner
Category:
News
Tags:
Charity, Gish, Humble Bundle, Pay What You Want, The Binding of Isaac, The Humble Voxatron Debut, Voxatron

Humble Voxatron Debut Raises Over 0k

The Humble Voxatron Debut has raised a grand total of $902,586.25, Humble Bundle have revealed, after a two week run. 172,269 copies of the bundle were sold in total.

Click here to read more...

SpecialEffect Interview: Charity Through Innovation

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
Charity, Dr. Mick Donegan, Eurogamer Expo 2011, Matt Hampson, SpecialEffect

SpecialEffect Interview: Charity Through InnovationSpecialEffect Interview: Charity Through Innovation

Pioneering UK Charity To Advise Microsoft & Splash Damage

A virtual car careened around a twisting track... controlled by nothing save the tinest movements of my eyes. Retinal biometry is nothing new, but UK gaming charity SpecialEffect had brought along their latest software and IR tech to this year's Eurogamer expo. It was instantly responsive without being wildly twitchy. Calibration only took scant seconds. As I sat motionless in my chair while attempting to add lap times to a Guinness world record attempt, I started to appreciate - if not fully understand - just how important innovations like this are to those with disabilities. Manipulating a computer is one thing as it unlocks the entire world, and being able to get involved with videogames provides an entirely new arena of social interaction and a playing field that's becoming more level with each passing breakthrough.

SpecialEffect has pledged to continually push the boundaries of accessible gaming technology and software... but how do they actually operate? What do they do with their technological marvels after they're completed deep within their Oxfordshire R&D centre? Will they licence their technology for profit - or is there something more exciting going on? I was keen to know more, and I sat down with founder Dr. Mick Dongegan to chat about the past, present and future of the charity. As it turns out, their goal is set a benchmark, a technological breadcrumb trail and beacon for other companies to follow and to actively help them make our games more accessible. To show that it can be done - and then to explain how to anyone who will listen. For nothing. For everyone.

SpecialEffect Interview: Charity Through Innovation

Click here to continue reading our expose about this sensational charity >>

Break Records With SpecialEffect At The Eurogamer Expo

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
Charity, Eurogamer Expo 2011, Motion Control, SpecialEffect

Break Records With SpecialEffect At The Eurogamer Expo

SpecialEffect, the gaming charity dedicated to opening up our hobby to those with special needs and disabilities, will be challenging gamers to break records at this year's Eurogamer Expo. Visitors will be able to take part in the Guiness World Records attempt at "the fastest time lap time in a racing game using only eye-movement sensing controllers" - and add their support to the "greatest number of people competing in a videogames tournament using only eye control technology."

These record attempts are designed to showcase the advances SpecialEffect have made in designing and adapting technology to enable those with a disability or severe illness to be able to play videogames, whether for therapy, rehabilitation or fun. It's an awesome idea, and we have more details after the break.

Click here to read more...

SpecialEffect Raise £11K For Charity Through Industry Fun Run

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
Charity, SpecialEffect

Last weekend, gaming charity SpecialEffect managed to raise a whopping £11,000 by organising an industry-wide sponsored 10 kilometre run. Marketing specialists, PR execs and even a few journalists (those who can manage more than a breathless amble, which counted us out instantly) took to the streets of central London, many of whom opted to dress as classic gaming characters like Mario, Sonic and Lara Croft.

Donations are still open, and we'd like to take a moment to acknowledge the great work that SpecialEffect continue to do. By constantly innovating in the fields of biometric controls, eye recognition and alternate input methods, Dr Mick Donegan and the team are striving to make gaming - and computing in general - accessible to the disabled and gamers with special needs. PM David Cameron officially launched their first accessible gaming centre earlier this year, and we'll keep you posted with their future developments. We wish them the very best.

Capcom Join The Japan Relief Effort

Author:
Matt Gardner
Category:
News
Tags:
Capcom, Charity, Earthquake, Japan, News

Super-Street-Fighter-IV-01
Today Capcom announced four initiatives they've set in place to help the aid effort looking to provide relief to Japan in the wake of Friday's earthquake and tsunami:

  1. From today, for a period of one week, the iPhone/iPod touch version of Street Fighter IV will be discounted to ¥115 (59p or $0.99 for those outside of Japan) and all of the sales over this period will go towards relief efforts. It's a global initiative and will hold true for all markets. You can buy it here.
  2. 100 million yen is to be donated to help the relief effort
  3. Monster Hunter Frontier Online players affected by the earthquake and tsunami will not have to pay monthly usage fees
  4. To conserve energy in the face of shortages, Capcom will, if necessary, close or implement shortened hours at amusement centers and offices in areas that fall under the coverage of Tokyo Electric Power or Tohoku Electric Power. It will also be holding off on events.

We've detailed a few of the other charity initiatives already, but if you find one we've missed or overlooked, drop us a link at the usual address or in the comments below. [andriasang]

Thanks to Andrew for the heads-up.

Games Pledge Japan Earthquake Charity Support [UPDATE]

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
Charity, Earthquake, Games news, Japan, Sports Interactive, Square Enix, Tsunami, Zynga

Local Development Rocked By Tragic Disaster

save the children

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the millions of people affected by the tragic earthquake and tsunami that rocked Japan last week - and pleasingly, several games companies have pledged financial support to help raise money to help the victims. Japanese games development has also been rocked by the disaster; resulting in the delay of many games and the shutdown of several servers to aid in the energy conservation effort. We have the details below.

UPDATE: Several more gaming giants (including Nintendo and Sony) have promised millions of dollars  to the cause, as well as over 300,000 emergency radios and supplies.

Click here to read more...

David Cameron Launches The First Accessible UK Gaming Centre

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
Accessible Video Games Centre, Charity, Games news, SpecialEffect

Facility Will Champion Disabled Gamers

special effect visitor centre

Gaming charity SpecialEffect have been doing sterling work over the last few months, with founder Dr. Mick Donegan being named as our greatest gaming 'Angel' of 2010. This work has now come to fruition with the launch of the world's first Accessible Video Games Centre; designed to help develop and showcase new technologies that grant disabled and special needs gamers access to their favourite hobby. Prime Minister David Cameron was on hand to commission the new venture, and we have the full details below.

Click here for more information about SpecialEffect's new centre...

From Price Hikes To Deus Ex Delays - News Roundup 16th December 2010

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
Charity, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, Games prices, Gaming news, SpecialEffect, Square Enix, UK, VAT rise

UK Games Prices To Rise Next Year?

money

THQ's Danny Bilson recently suggested that games ought to get cheaper in order to inspire greater sales and DLC potential, but a new report from MCV suggests that the exact opposite is more likely to happen. As many of you know, VAT is set to rise next month which will put UK retailers in a very difficult position. A few suppliers will be attempting to freeze game prices, but in the majority of cases, vendors may be forced to up their prices to absorb the new tax increase being passed on from wholesalers.

This could be as much as a quid for a £40 game, but consoles are another matter entirely. They're considerably more expensive (attracting a larger price increase due to the VAT hike) and will probably incur an added cost of between £5-£10 across the board. [MCV]

Finding the best deals will be more important than ever before. Keep your eyes on HUKD and our feeds... and be sure to take advantage of the boxing day sales!

Deus Ex: Human Revolution Slips From Q1 2011

deus_ex_human_revolution_gdc_13

Deus Ex: Human Revolution is one of our most anticipated titles for 2011, but Square have announced that it will miss its Q1 launch window in favour of a post-April release.  Godammit. [Joystiq]

Square Enix have stated that the delay will allow them to "further polish" the experience... and it's plain to see why. The publisher recently slashed its annual earning projections by a whopping 91% (blaming the hopeless Final Fantasy XIV debacle  and weak console game sales), meaning that Deus Ex HR is going to have to be absolutely incredible in order to rake back some cash. From what we've seen, it's on course to do just that.

First Accessible Games Suite Launches In UK

specialeffect banner

UK-based charity SpecialEffect is committed to adapting videogame technology to allow handicapped and disabled gamers to get involved. They've been making massive strides in the fields of webcam-based eye control and other alternative input methods. After a year and a half of hard work, they've opened the first ever accessible gaming suite at the Helen and Douglas House Children’s Hospice in Oxfordshire.

SpecialEffect's Dr. Mick Donegan explained that the new suite will open up gaming in a uniquely inclusive way, taking advantage of the charity's recent technological advances.

The new gaming suite contains a wide range of access technology, from eye-gaze devices to switches, to ensure that as many of the guests are catered for as possible. SpecialEffect hope to continue to work with the hospice by including the suite in our road show project next year and continue to work with the staff and guests at the hospice to help find a way for everyone to play.

We applaud SpecialEffect's work and wish them every success in their worthy cause. Stay tuned for our interview with Dr. Donegan!