News Blips: Streaming The Darkness 2 demo, legalizing Linux on the PS3, and the free Jetpack Joyride makes bank

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Yesterday, we reported that Minecraft’s Markus Persson suggested that he may be willing to fund Double Fine's Tim Schafer to make a sequel to Psychonauts. Today, Schafer tweeted that him and Notch (as Persson is known to his homies) were having a discussion and that they will have an announcement about “non-traditional game funding to fulfill fan requests” later this evening. My guess is that this "non-traditional" funding will involve human sacrifice — I mean, Notch is a Swede and Schafer is evil, so it fits.

News Blips:

Game-streaming company Gaikai is powering an instant demo for The Darkness 2 on the first-person shooter’s official website. Gamers interested in trying out the violent sequel to one of this generation’s earliest releases can head to Once the site is loaded up, simply click “stream the demo now for free,” and the action will start up in the browser almost instantly. Just make sure that you have a fast enough connection; I kept getting an error because my girlfriend was hogging my bandwidth to stream Law & Order: SVU on Netflix.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a non-profit political advocacy group dedicated to defending digital rights, is asking for help in its fight to “legalize Linux on the PlayStation 3.” When the PS3 launched, the console had an option to install “Other OS.” Power users, in just one example, capitalized on that option by linking Unix-based PS3s into a cheap supercomputer. In April 2010, Sony removed the Other OS setting in a mandatory system update. This famously led to the PS3 being jailbroken by hackers allowing for Linux to once again be installed. But it also allowed for file-sharers to play pirated versions of retail games. Sony sued the people who discovered the loophole in the PS3’s security, claiming that individuals who jailbreak their consoles are in violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The EFF is fighting to get the Copyright Office to create an exception to the DMCA for cracking the PS3 and is asking for people to sign on to a letter in support of said exception. To help illustrate its point, the EFF has created a video showing what people legally can and cannot do to their PS3s. Check it out below. 

Halfbrick Studios has seen more profit from Jetpack Joyride since shifting it to a free-to-play model.The popular iOS title began as a $1 download in the App Store. At that price, nearly one million gamers purchased Jetpack Joyride. In mid-December, Halfbrick cut the game's price to nothing and since then an additional 13 million people have downloaded it to their mobile devices. Despite having no upfront cost, the game has actually made more money since becoming free. The developer attributes its increased revenues to the 5 to 10 percent (0.7 to 1.4 million) of its customers who purchased at least $1 in items through the title’s in-game store. I’m glad that the studio is making money, but these score-chasing games that allow users to purchase advantages always make me uneasy. I’d rather pay an upfront price and have the assurance that everyone on the leaderboard is playing on an even field. At least that’s what I say when I see how pathetic my score is. [ShackNews]

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