Bundle of Holding -- a name-your-price download service -- is currently promoting a collection of family-friendly RPGs, including several games that are suitable for age 5 and up. Ten percent of the purchase price goes to two worthy kids' charities (Save the Children and St Jude's Children's Hospital), and you can choose how much you pay (the recommended payment is $17). If you give more than $14.14, you get six bonus games, as well. Click through below for a list of the games in the bundle:
It's the one-year anniversary of the shuttering of Glitch, the lovely, sweetly fun game created by Tiny Speck. On the anniversary, Janice has written a fine remembrance for the game, which was quite unlike anything else.
These "game-scented" soaps shaped like SNES cartridges are £13, available for pre-order now for 2014 delivery. They come in a replica dust-cover, are suitable for (dirty) vegans, and celebrate the following games: Donkey Kong Country; Street Fighter II Turbo; Super Mario Kart; and
The Legend of Zelda.
A new Snowden leak details how the NSA and GCHQ tasked agents to infiltrate Second Life, World of Warcraft, and other MMOs to find jihadis and spy on them. The battalions of undercover orcs did indeed take much of gamespace, but there's no evidence they ever spotted a plot. I was once questioned by members of an "unnamed branch of the State Department" at a games and public diplomacy event about the likelihood that jihadis were playing MMOs; and I said something like, "Sure, of course. Everyone plays MMOs." I didn't realize they'd take it all quite so much to heart.
The absurdity of sending spies to infiltrate Warcraft can best be understood as a natural outflow of the doctrine that holds that if any two bad guys, anywhere in the world, can communicate in such a way that the NSA can't listen in on them, all of society will crumble. Once you set yourself the insane task of eavesdropping on all conversations, everywhere, always, it's inevitable that you'll send Secret Squirrel and his pals to Azeroth.
Apps for Kids is sponsored by Little Blueprint: Personalized and ready-made children's books based on brain science, empowering kids to thrive through life's challenges and celebrations.
Apps for Kids is Boing Boing's podcast about cool smartphone apps for kids and parents. My co-host is my 10-year-old daughter, Jane.
In this episode, we set down our smartphones to talk about the Plants vs. Zombies graphic novel, in which two kids team up with Crazy Dave, the deranged zombie prepper, to rid Neighborville of the invading horde of undead humans. Jane also grabs my staple remover that I was repairing with Sugru and messes it up.
And, we present a new "Would you rather?" question:
If you're an app developer and would like to have Jane and me try one of your apps for possible review, email a redeem code to email@example.com.
As mentioned earlier, the new edition of A Theory of Fun For Game Design by Raph Koster ships today -- with updated text and color illustrations. It's an absolutely indispensable book about the phenomenon of fun, full of mind-blowing and very applicable insights into games, from a legendary designer (Koster led the design of Star Wars Galaxies and Ultima Online, among other accomplishments). Just as Understanding Comics is a fascinating read, even if you never plan on making a comic book, so will A Theory of Fun fascinate and inform everyone, not just games-makers.
This post sponsored by the delicious caramel, chocolate and nougat inside every Milky Way®
For some of you, sites like this one are a welcome distraction from what you really should be doing or, more likely, what someone else thinks you really should be doing. So to go one recursive step further, here are five distractions from this distraction, a short list of fantastic free browser games, from Cookie Clicker to Kingdom of Loathing:
Sony's Playstation 4 comes with a slow, but swappable hard drive. How much faster is it with a high-end SSD? tl;dr: significantly, but probably not enough to bother with given the prices involved. Nice upgrade, though!
If you listen to Boing Boing's Apps for Kids podcast, you know that Jane and I love the iOS app, Kingdom Rush, and its follow-up title, Kingdom Rush Frontiers (They are on Android, too!). The object of these tower defense games is to wisely use your treasure to build different kinds of defense towers and to deploy troops to stop oncoming waves of monstrous invaders. The excellent cartoony graphics and elements of humor add enhance this addictive resource-management challenge.
Today, Armor Games announced that Kingdom Rush Frontiers is free to play on its website. From the press release: "The Kingdom Rush Frontiers Flash version features 15 stages set across three unique terrains, with three epic Boss Fights, over 40 enemy types, nine heroes including six that are unlockable through gameplay and plenty of fun Easter Eggs throughout."
Here's a new installment in Anita Sarkeesian's Kickstarter-funded, misogynist-enraging, must-watch "Tropes vs Women in Video Games" series: Ms Male Character: a closely annotated, fascinating 25 minutes on the practice of producing a "female" version of video-games by feminizing the lead characters.