Nightly News Roundup: 2010.08.27

Teaser image for the next Bit.Trip game released, Chinese Mario fans congregate and the U.S. Supreme Court preps to judge California’s violent games law.

By M. Noah Ward. Posted 08/27/2010 21:22 1 Comment     ShareThis

Bit.Trip Runner Artwork

Unreleased Bit.Trip Game Gets Conceptual

Several of us at Nintendojo love Gaijin Games’ Bit.Trip WiiWare series, and the fifth game in the six-game series is closer to tangibility with its name (Bit.Trip Fate) and teaser art released, which is shown below. Other than guessing that gamers will jockey back and forth between “warm” and “cool” areas, figuring out the new rhythm/puzzle game’s premise is unlikely, especially since the Bit.Trip series has had its share of beautiful but obscure artwork. To compare, the concept art for Bit.Trip Runner, which was released a few months ago, can be seen at the top of this story.

Bit.Trip Fate Artwork

The Bit.Trip series is known for its simple-yet-difficult gameplay, ’80s-styled pixel visuals and catchy chip-tune soundtracks. The games are often a bargain on WiiWare, with the first three games having a price point of 600 Nintendo Points, while Runner has an 800 point price.

Source: Gaijin Games

Chinese Show Massive Love of Mario Cosplay

If you ever find yourself walking through Chifeng City, China, you’ll know you’re in hardcore Mario-loving land. 230 students there– presumably out of 519 total “participants”– dressed up as Mario in an event organized by the New Weekend of North News and Chifeng Animation Association (NWNNCAA– not much of an acronym-friendly name). Guinness World Records decided this feat was worth immortalizing and officially named it the “largest gathering of people dressed as the Nintendo character Mario.”

Largest Gathering of Mario Cosplay

As Tidman and Wampler will tell you, cosplaying is a glorious pasttime, and seeing this much concentrated Mario (and Luigi, and Waluigi) love is almost enough to encourage our entire staff to get matching costumes. Almost. Until then, you’ll just have to imagine Evan, Tidman and I in our Professor Layton cosplay– sadly undocumented by us or Guinness.

Source: GameCulture

U.S. Supreme Court Sets Date to Hear California Game Law Case

Nothing like dropping the serious news under two pieces of fluff.  With written arguments already accepted, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear verbal arguments for and against California’s anti-violent-video game law on Tuesday November 2, 2010. The bill has a long, five-year history that will have its constitutionality ultimately decided at the United States’ highest court, generating repercussions for folks who decry the impact of violent video games on children.

Here’s some background on the battered law. In 2005, California’s Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed California Assembly Bill 1179 into law. The bill, authored by California state senator Leland Yee, banned the sale and rental of “violent” video games (note a specific Entertainment Software Association rating is not cited) to California minors. Retailers who violated this law would be charged a $1,000 fine for each offense. Further, any such “violent” games would require a two-by-two inch sticker reading “18” placed on their covers to ensure there was no ambiguity of the minimum age required to play the game.

Phoenix Wright Objects! ArtworkThe law never took effect, as it was immediately challenged in court by the ESA and the Interactive Entertainment Merchants Association. At that time, a judge swiftly imposed an injunction to stop the law in its tracks. In 2007, a circuit court judge officially struck the law down as unconstitutional (games are protected by the first amendment’s freedom of expression clause), much as similar laws were dismissed in Louisiana and Michigan. The California decision was appealed by Yee, however, and a 2009 appellate court judge reconfirmed the unconstitutionality of the law, so the case was appealed yet again to the Supreme Court, where it will meet a final decision, hopefully complemented by plenty of Phoenix Wright-styled finger pointing and “Objections!

Source: Gamespot

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