2012: The Year of Gaming Woes
Guilt by Association?
Guilt by Association:
While videogames get tied to violent crime regularly, it's usually a loose connection — often made by advocates who have an agenda against videogame publishers.
But when Anders Behring Breivik, who has confessed to killing 77 people in Norway last summer, said he used "Modern Warfare 2" to "train" for the killings, it caught people's attention. (He also called out the game in a 1,500-page manifesto he wrote prior to the attacks.)
While experts and the industry reject his claim that the game could be used to prepare for such horrific crimes, that didn't stop Breivik's claims from making headlines worldwide — and putting the industry under a microscope it thought it had finally escaped after last year's Supreme Court decision, which granted games First Amendment protection.
38 Studios Collapses
38 Studios Collapses:
Former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling was gung-ho about the videogame industry when he retired from baseball.
His company's first title — "Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning" — is the year's 10th best-selling game to date. But enthusiasm and a moderate hit weren't enough to keep the company afloat.
Studios fold all the time, but rarely in such a public fashion. On May 24, the company abruptly laid off all 379 employees.
The developer, which had obtained a $75 million loan from the state of Rhode Island when it moved to the state from Massachusetts, initially failed to make a $1.125 million payment — though it eventually scraped together the funds at the expense of payroll. But it seems unlikely it will be able to make the next one, leaving Rhode Island taxpayers to foot the bill.
Retail Sales Woes
Retail Sales Woes: