The Last of Us Part 2 release Feb. 21, 2020

The Last of Us Part 2 finally has a release date. The new trailer showed Ellie with a group of survivors and losing a loved one. This drives Ellie in a quest for revenge against an organized group.

Clickers, humans, and dogs are the enemy in the game. But most importantly, Joel is showcased in the trailer. Many fans speculated whether the character died in between games due to lack of the character’s appearance in trailers.

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Twitch continues to dominate the Game Streaming Service

Video game streaming has become a bigger entertainment on the internet. There are so many different games to watch, personalities, and styles of playing. As game streaming has become more popular, more alternate streaming sites have showed up. YouTube Game Streaming has been around for a few years but recently Google shut down YouTube Gaming because it confused users. Facebook Gaming is the newest competitor and it can connect already fans of the games to streamers. Twitch, which is owned by Amazon, is the most popular service. Most of the audience data comes from StreamElements. StreamElements is a new growing streaming service. It started back in late 2017 and it allows streamers to show games through multiple channels; including Twitch, YouTube, and Facebook. It also has a professional interface and helps provide useful data to streamers.

Who has the biggest audience?

According to the Wall-Street Journal, Twitch maintains the highest amount of game audience with 70% of hours watched among all services. 2nd is YouTube which had 19.5% of audiences according to StreamElements. Facebook Gaming has approximately 5% while Microsoft Mixer has 3%.

It will be interesting to see if the other platforms can take more of an percentage from Twitch. The platform still has the easiest streaming service, search functions, and most importantly: a dedicated gaming audience. While there are many people use YouTube and Facebook, a huge percentage aren’t dedicated or people who enjoy games. Twitch started with a core audience in mind and has continually improved their services for viewers. Many online personalities also have their core audience on Twitch. Unless the company does something horrendous that would deter the personalities, I think Twitch will remain top dog.

 

Skybound Game will finish Telltale’s The Walking Dead

Telltale has found a company to finish Clem’s story for The Walking Dead: The Final Season. 

Announced during New York Comic-Con by Robert Kirkman (Creator of the Walking Dead), Skybound Games will finish the game. Skybound Entertainment, the parent company, publishes The Walking Dead comic book series and many more. A part of the good news is that Skybound will work with the original Telltale team for the project. While final details are still unclear on when the full game will release or who is working on the project, fans can rejoice as The Walking Dead: The Final Season will be finished. Skybound Games have worked on mobile games and tabletop games for The Walking Dead series. They have also published video games such as The Long Dark and Slime Rancher.

Sources:

Skybound News

Skybound Twitter

Should Gaming Addiction be considered a Mental Disorder?

Today, the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared video game addiction is a mental disorder. For clarification from WHO, gaming addiction is prioritizing games over relationship building, interacting with others, daily activities and thought process. For it to be considered a gaming disorder, it has to be seen over the course of 12 months. Dr. Vladimir Poznyak, a member of WHO’s Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse, spoke further on the topic and stated only qualified doctors should be able to diagnose properly. While it stated it has to be seen over the course of 12 months, severe cases can be an exception. They have compared gaming addiction similar to gambling and substance use. Poznyak hopes” that inclusion of gaming disorder in the classification will stimulate debate as well as further research and international collaboration.”

Recently, BBC posted an article/video of a teen talking about his “addiction” as play games for 20 hours a week. The article became famous and spread throughout the internet on Monday which further villainized gaming. However, we should remain skeptical of the reasoning. Games have been villainized by organizations and government for causing violence and shootings despite huge lack of evidence. With the popularization of Fortnite in mainstream media, it has caused an even bigger target regarding gaming addiction.

Even researchers disagree on the gaming addiction as a mental disorder such as Anthony Bean, a licensed psychologist and executive director at The Telos Project, a nonprofit mental health clinic in Fort Worth, Texas. He stated, “I’m a clinician and a researcher, so I see people who play video games and believe themselves to be on the lines of addicted.” In his experience, they’re actually using gaming “more as a coping mechanism for either anxiety or depression.” He also noted that most clinical doctors aren’t too familiar with gaming habits, in general, to diagnose people with “gaming addiction.” If they aren’t familiar with a illness, how can you accurately state somebody with a mental disorder if you are unfamiliar with the topic? Bean also noted that different effects on different people. Someone playing “Minecraft” is going to be completely different from someone playing “World of Warcraft,” he said: “They’re two vastly different genres.” They have different effects because the games are in different environments and you interact with people differently.

Games often receive a harsh feedback because gaming isn’t age-gated like drugs or gambling. Anybody can play which is the beauty in it. Of course, anything done in excess is bad, whether it’s eating, watching television, or exercising. Scientist and researchers don’t have enough information to fully develop a conclusion on the effects of gaming because every game is different. Other countries like Korea and China have huge gaming addicts who go to PC cafes all day. Korea even has gaming rehab centers for addicts. It’s a tricky thing to solve but I personally believe considering gaming addiction as a mental disorder is too extreme.

What do you think about people who play too many games? Do you know anybody whose gaming has ruined parts of their lives?

Sources:

WHO statement on Gaming Addiction

NBC news

BBC – 20 hours weekly video

CNN – WHO and Bean’s statement on gaming addiction

Business Insider – South Korea rehab centers