Posts Tagged ‘BBC’

BBC Three showing live esports for next six weekends

05rocketleague

Well, East me Enders and Pano my Rama: live Esports is coming to to the BBC this month. BBC Three (which is now online only) will broadcast the new Gfinity Elite League Series One, which means four hours of Rocket League, CS:GO and Street Fighter V on iPlayer every weekend for the next six weeks.

There’s a proper schedule and everything: Fridays at 9pm is for Street Fighter, which in a massive programming screw up clashes with Gardener’s World. Saturday nights from 9-11 is CS:GO (no Casualty for me then), and Rocket League is happening Sunday afternoon from 5. It’s all coming live from the Gfinity Arena in West London, with eight organisations taking part.

Read the rest of this entry »

Time Commanders brings Total War back to TV tonight

Time Commanders, the BBC game show where contestants order around someone playing Total War, returns to British screens tonight. Imagine a blind Let’s Play of Rome: Total War directed by teams who didn’t know what Total War was but did between them share a Desmond in classics, a Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, experience leading their university rugger society, and four awful haircuts. After eleven years away, Time Commanders is back tonight with Gregg Wallace off Masterchef pitting board gamers against wrestlers in a recreation of 202 BC’s Battle of Zama. Have a butcher’s at this: Read the rest of this entry »

BBC Reveal Concept For Multiplayer Gaming TV Show

FUTURE?

The BBC have unveiled a concept for a live television game show based upon a multiplayer video game, smooshing together bits of The Crystal Maze with livestreaming and a top-down shooter. It sees contestants playing a game at home while a live-action presenter in the studio is zapped into the game world to be mean to them. This here ‘Multiplayer Broadcasting’ is not a show the BBC are actually making, to be clear, rather an idea Auntie’s R&D folks have been tinkering with. They’re interested in the future of audience interaction, see. Here, have a look:

Read the rest of this entry »

The Doctor Who Game Maker Is A Bit Rubbish But Vital

The essential problem with modern Doctor Who – other than its broad abandonment of science fiction in favour of magic did it – is that it’s a show which earns an enormous amount from kids’ merchandise but whose most fervent audience is adult. This creates impossible expectations: to be light and fluffy and full of funny monsters, but to be complex and dark and with long, involved plot arcs filled with secrets and lore. The BBC’s laudable Doctor Who Game Maker project is entirely stranded in that vast no man’s land between ‘y’know, for kids’ and adult expectation. Create your own Doctor Who game – here are easy tools and a ton of official artwork to use as you like, then share it with the world. Anything your imagination can conceive, etc, etc.

The reality: hope you like crude platformers! But I think this is an extremely worthwhile project nonethless.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Gamechangers And Showing Creativity

On Tuesday night, the BBC aired The Gamechangers, their one-off drama about the making of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and the court cases brought against Rockstar Games by US lawyer Jack Thompson. This seems like rich subject matter, but the results proved a disappointment in nearly every way.

Other people have already written accurate reviews and rounded up what Rockstar and former GTA developers thought of it, so I’m not going to do either of those things. Instead I want to talk about the film’s failure to offer insight – or even to attempt to depict – the game development process. Mostly I’m going to talk about James L. Brooks’ 1987 movie Broadcast News.

Read the rest of this entry »

Scrubbing In For Casualty’s First Day Experiment

Damnit, I'm a doctor not a gamer

Okay. *Technically* it’s an interactive episode but First Day [official site although it might be UK only] is the closest thing I have to a Casualty tie-in game right now and an interactive episode is basically a choose your own adventure with a couple of quick time events so I’m going to write about it. It is also surprisingly gory so bear that in mind because screenshots after the jump.

THOUGHTS!

Read the rest of this entry »

Regeneration Game: Free Doctor Who Game Maker

The BBC have been stealthily using the Doctor Who license to push game design and programming onto kids for a while now. Those monsters: corrupting the minds of the innocent, turning them into people with useful practical skills for a digital future. Scrap the license fee and sell the corporation to Murdoch, that’s what I say. The latest step in their campaign of edutainment oppression is The Doctor Who Game Maker, a free tool due later this month and which, if their bluster is correct, won’t just be capable of making crap platformers. “From the simple to the staggering, the only limits are your imagination and ambition.”

I don’t have either of those things in abundance, but I am totally going to try this. Though if they don’t have Tom Baker and Sylvester McCoy character models, I’ll have a right old sulk.

Read the rest of this entry »

Watch Daniel Radcliffe In BBC GTA Drama

The BBC have released a teaser trailer for The Gamechangers, their Grand Theft Auto docudrama. It’s got Daniel Radcliffe as co-founder and president of Rockstar Games, Sam Houser, and Bill Paxton as (now disbarred) lawyer, Jack Thompson.

Read the rest of this entry »

Grand Theft Auto BBC Drama Hit With Take Two Lawsuit

Our Graham was the one to post about the BBC making a “factual drama” about the Grand Theft Auto series and Jack Thompson’s crusade against video games, perhaps because I could only frame my response as a series of contorted facial expressions. But no, really, they are doing it, and it’ll star Daniel Radcliffe and Bill Paxton. Well, if they don’t get shut down.

Take Two Interactive, the owners of GTA makers Rockstar Games, have filed a lawsuit against the BBC for trademark infringement. See, they’re none too pleased that they haven’t been consulted.

Read the rest of this entry »

BBC Announce One-Off Drama About The Making Of GTA

The BBC are producing a drama about the making of Grand Theft Auto. Announced as part of the BBC’s Make It Digital campaign, which also donates computers to schools, the project is described as a 90-minute, one-off drama that “will center on the minds behind its creation.” So Dave Jones running about Dundee then, talking about his days at the watch factory. I would watch this show.

Read the rest of this entry »

Editorial: We Need The BBC In Videogames

We know what television is. We also know what the publicly-funded BBC’s role in television is. Neither was the case in 1945. All that people knew then was that both the BBC and television itself had tremendous power, and that they were going to be important in the decades ahead. So people sat down and said: what is this new medium; what could it be used for; and how do we make sure that whatever happens, it’s used for the benefit of all people?

We should be doing the same for videogames. The BBC should be doing the same for videogames.

Read the rest of this entry »

Degenerating: Doctor Who – Worlds In Time Shutting Down

I don’t keep up to date with Doctor Who but when the nature of your job means that you follow a bunch of geeky McNerdsters on Twitter, it’s impossible to avoid the basics. It was impossible to avoid the revelation that the new Doctor is the sweariest man on television and I couldn’t ignore the fury of the people who were annoyed by the episode in which the Doc’s most faithful companion got married and the show turned into a bit of a sitcom. Correct me if I’m wrong on any of this. Despte being one of the internet’s most popular franchises, with all kinds of ready made scenarios and villains, Doctor Who hasn’t made a comfortable switch into the world of games. The latest evidence? The BBC’s puzzling MMO is shutting down on Feb 28th.

Read the rest of this entry »

Doctor Who: Worlds In Time Semi-Launches

The Doctor has kissed everyone in that picture, including himself

There’s been another MMO launch today, sort of. The ‘open preview’ of Doctor Who: Worlds In Time can now be played over here. With The Old Republic now available, it would be fun if this was turned into a clash between widely loved sci-fi franchises but that is not to be. The two games are as different as two games can be, unless one were hopscotch and the other were the clash of Empires that was The Great Game of the nineteenth century. Doctor Who: WIT, you see, appears to be in the same mould as Three Rings’ previous title Puzzle Pirates. There’s a Doctor to dish out missions, themed puzzles and a bunch of familiar worlds to investigate. Could be fun. Sign up here, watch trailer below.

Read the rest of this entry »

You’re Getting Dr Who For Christmas


The fourth episode in the Dr Who adventure game series, Shadows of the Vashta Nerada, will go online as soon as the television Christmas special episode finishes airing in the UK. That’s the plan, anyway. Producer Steven Moffat says: “Shadows of the Vashta Nerada takes place entirely underwater – something which would be impossible for the TV series, as water is so expensive. It’s thrilling, terrifying, educational and fun. Just steer clear of those shadows…” The BBC’s game budget is set to expand, too, with more Dr Who games turning up next year, and probably some other stuff, too.

Britons can get the rest of the games for free here. I haven’t played a single one of these. Any good?

Where There’s A Will: Legacy

Yeah, you'll see why I didn't use a screenshot of the game.

I’ve only had a quick prod at this, but it’s interesting enough to post – and there’s a reason why posting sooner rather than later, as there’s a sorta-time-limit here. Radio 7 have done a two part radio drama, about a pair of siblings discovering that their inheritance is harder to get than you may expect. However, it’s complimented by an audio-lead web-adventure . The game concentrates on one brother’s perspective. The radio play concentrates on the other. By experiencing them all, you’ll get more of the picture. The game’s produced by DESQ, and is graphically simple and based around simple adventure-style interaction (Finding items, examining stuff, combining, etc), but with pretty neat audio. While the game’s online indefinitely, the radio play is only on the iPlayer service – which means the first part isn’t there any more and the second one only has another five days on its clock. So get a move on, eh? Fascinating to see the BBC trying something that’s as determinedly cross-media as this. Go play here or listen here.

EDIT: However, the play will be broadcast again on the 17th and 24th of September, meaning that it’ll be back on Iplayer for a week then.

Dr Who’s Marvellous Videogame Adventures


I can’t wait to see if these games are good, because then I can use the phrase “time-lauded”. In fact I’ve probably already used it. Anyway, the first footage from the BBC’s free-to-play adventures with The Doctor has materialised on the distant edge of the YouTube nebulae, and we’ve embedded it below. Daleks make threats that their sink plungers can’t cash, or something.
Read the rest of this entry »

Our Boys On The News! BBC On Indies

This caption applies to every story I use it for.

Aw, I feel so proud. It’s like seeing your own children in the papers, but without their having had to stab someone to get there. For winning a really tough swimming race or something. Because today on the real actual Queen’s official BBC News is a story about Mr Cliff Harris and Mr Dan Marshall. That’s Cliffski and Dan Off Of Time Gentlemen Please to you and me. It’s a story about the “return of the bedroom coder”, focusing on Positech and Zombie Cow as examples of British independent developers, and explaining that they can be successful in the larger world of gaming. Cliffski and Dan! We know them! They’re on the news!

Read the rest of this entry »

Habbo Hotel: Unvirtual Crime

It's a fair cop.

The BBC reports (brought to our attention by the proper-reporter-blokes at Gamesindustry.biz) that a teenager has been arrest for the theft of virtual items in ludicrously popular chatroom Habbo Hotel. 4000 Euros (which is 2,840 pounds or nearly 190 copies of Peggle) of goods were stolen my a seventeen-year old mischievous scamp who now faces a spell in chokey (Probably). An Artful-Dodger-esque collection of five other fifteen year olds were also questioned.

So, does this open the door for prosecutions against that git who stole your sword of Scarab-slaying +3? Nah, probably not. The key thing here appears to be that the furniture items were purchased with real-world money, making them – according to the police in their Holland headquarters – have real value and equivalent of real world scams. In most games, there’s no official way to buy better equipment, so the same isn’t true. Even in games with a micro-payment system, I suspect that the difference between being scammed in Habbo and them will be the difference between being scammed by a market-stall trader and someone bluffing you in a game of Poker. When you sat down at the table, you accept that may happen. It may be ungentlemanly and be cracked down on by the GM but, I suspect, the police will stay clear.

Of course, this is a debate that’s raged for years with some of gaming’s biggest brains chipping in. I’m sure you have a take.