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J.C. Wigriff is an author and guitarist from IL.

Archive for February, 2012

Violent Video Game Tax Rejected

Posted by J.C. Wigriff on February - 27 - 2012

A bill recently proposed by House Rep William Fourkiller in Oklahoma, that would add a 1 percent sales tax on violent video games, has been defeated. The bill (HB2696) outlined that games rated Teen, Mature, and Adult Only by the ESRB would be subjected to additional taxing.

Rep. Fourkiller (That is actually his name – we couldn’t make this shit up) claimed he was inspired to write the bill based upon first-hand experience on how video games can lead to bullying and obesity.

“A gentleman shot a police officer and stole his car,” he told KFOR-TV in Oklahoma City, referring to a recent incident. “He had been playing Grand Theft Auto.”

Categories: Miscellaneous

World of Warcraft Helps the Elderly

Posted by J.C. Wigriff on February - 24 - 2012

A new study from Gains Through Gaming laboratory at North Carolina State University finds World of Warcraft potentially helps some elderly with cognitive function.

“We chose World of Warcraft because it has attributes we felt may produce benefits – it is a cognitively challenging game in a socially interactive environment that presents users with novel situations,” says Dr. Anne McLaughlin, an assistant professor of psychology and co-director of the lab.

The study had a group of 60 to 77-year olds venture around Azeroth for approximately 14 hours, over a 2 week span. At the end of this period, their cognitive abilities were tested against a group who hadn’t participated.

Categories: Video Games

Augmented Reality with Google Goggles

Posted by J.C. Wigriff on February - 23 - 2012


Smartphones have forever changed the way people connect to the world. Later this year, Google plans on changing things again – with augmented reality.

The Google Goggles App on iPhone is able to recognize objects in the real world, and provide you with relevant information. Unfortunately, this doesn’t happen in real time.

Google wants to change that with the release of Google Goggles. The goggles are eyeglasses that will project information, entertainment, and advertisements onto the lenses. Through a built-in camera on the glasses, Google will be able to stream images in real-time to their servers, and return augmented reality information to the wearer.

Categories: Technology

Sony Vita versus Mobile Gaming

Posted by J.C. Wigriff on February - 22 - 2012

The Sony Playstation Vita goes on sale in North America and Europe today, and gamers everywhere are wondering if the handheld system will be an enormous success – or a total flop.

Some are saying that the Vita can’t hold up in a market dominated by mobile devices. Everywhere you look, you see someone playing Angry Birds on a device that can also make calls, shoot video, check Facebook, stream music, and send texts.

I tend to agree with Barbara Ortutay, a technology writer for the Associate Press. Ortutay claims:

Categories: Video Games

Futile Battle Over Video Game Bill Costs California Nearly $2 Million

Posted by J.C. Wigriff on February - 20 - 2012

A failed law drafted six years ago, under the pretense of protecting California children from video game violence, has ended up costing taxpayers nearly $2 million. The Supreme Court ruled 7-2 that the law violated the First Amendment. Now California has agreed to reimburse the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) $950,000 for legal fees incurred while overturning the state’s law.

The California law aimed at cracking down on sales of video games to children. Former San Francisco Democratic Assemblyman Leland Yee, now a Senator, designed the law to fine retailers $1,000 each time they distributed a video game to minors where they could simulate murder, torture, cruelty, or other heinous acts.

Categories: Miscellaneous

Nostalgia Meets MMO

Posted by J.C. Wigriff on February - 17 - 2012

There are a couple of really groovy options out there for you to capitalize on if you want an MMORPG experience combined with a little 8-bit nostalgia.


First up is 8-BitMMO, a lo-res, 2D, construction-sandbox MMO that you can play right from your browser. You can build a home or a castle, quest, battle enemies, and even PvP! It is completely free-to-play, and rather enjoyable. I found the in-game banter to be amusing and witty, and the only real problem I experienced was some stuttering and slow-down in the starting area because of all of the traffic. The 8BitMMO team is constantly working to improve features, and they keep players up-to-date via Twitter. I would recommend checking this game out. Part RPG, part MMO, part Minecraft and part The Sims – Be careful with this one, because you might end up eating away an entire afternoon playing.

Categories: Video Games

Spicy Next-Gen Xbox News

Posted by J.C. Wigriff on February - 17 - 2012

Speculation has been flying since Nintendo announced the WiiU last year about the possibility of Sony and Microsoft announcing their next-gen consoles at E3 in 2012. Nobody actually knows anything, but that doesn’t stop the dedicated “investigative journalists” at GameSpot from digging up some dirt. Yesterday they posted an article concerning the next Xbox that truly shows journalistic excellence.They reported that:

Multiple sources reportedly close to the Microsoft next-generation team tell Kotaku that the system is currently in development as Durango. Durango is the name of a city in Colorado, as well as a state in Mexico.” ~ GameSpot

Categories: Miscellaneous

Top 11 Video Game Soundtracks Of All Time!

Posted by J.C. Wigriff on February - 16 - 2012

Mario-Composer1-292x242Top 10 Video Game Soundtracks

Quite possibly the most under-appreciated aspect of video games is the music. People obsess over graphical fidelity, control responsiveness, and level design, but sadly a game’s score is often glossed over.

Yet a great soundtrack can drastically increase the gaming experience. Having the right music can be crucial to triggering a visceral, emotional response; to building excitement or emphasizing sadness.

Can you imagine sitting through hours of Civilization V without its beautiful, ambient soundscapes? Or a game like The Last of Us striking all the right emotional chords without hitting all the right musical ones?

Categories: Video Games

Top 5 Video Game Consoles of All Time

Posted by J.C. Wigriff on February - 10 - 2012

We are about to enter the 8th generation of video game consoles with the release of the Wii U, the next Xbox, and whatever Sony has planned. Numerous consoles have come out between 1972 until now. Some of them were revolutionary successes, and some were total flops. In this post I am going to take a look back and rate what I believe to be the top 5 video game consoles ever made.



#5 Atari 2600







Categories: Video Games


Posted by J.C. Wigriff on February - 10 - 2012

Well, it took awhile, but the website is now live and ready for viewing! There will surely be little tweaks and changes going on, but this is basically how things will remain for quite some time. There are a couple of things I would like to make people aware of:

1) You have to register for an account in order to leave comments. I know it is a pain in the butt, but I thought it was better than the alternative of forcing someone to put in their name and email address every time they wanted to comment. I also believe that this will reduce the troll population.

Categories: Miscellaneous
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