The Oregon Trail and educational video games done right

If you grew up (or raised a child) any time between the 1970s and early 2000s, chances are you’ve played an educational video game. Whether it was one of the many Carmen Sandiego titles or a classic like The Oregon Trail, there’s probably at least one piece of “edutainment” in your past. But let me ask you this: How many of these learning tools would you still find fun today? Where is the balance between fun and learning, and why does it seem so hard to combine work and play?

Gaming’s vicarious thrills need a real-life foundation

“Video games give us the ability to control and do something which we would never be able to do in real life. The majority of us have little control over our lives; this is just the way the world works, so having the power, for once, to be something different and to have some power over what happens is one of the reasons why so many people around the world play video games.” – Joshua Temblett, Editor-in-Chief of Candlelight-Studios.com.

The bravest (and luckiest) StarCraft 2 player

I'm terrible at StarCraft 2. I don't know a barracks from a hatchery, and my opponent usually rushes my base with an army the size of a small country before I can even build my first soldier. Well, maybe I should take some notes from the player in this video. He was ballsy enough to build his base right next to his opponent's. The result? Victory in less than five minutes.

Before Kickstarter: How Konami made dating-sim fans into investors

Kickstarter is seemingly everywhere lately, and with games and related projects like Ouya (an in development console using the free-to-play business model for all supported titles) taking in pledges hand over fist, that's not likely to change any time soon. While the popular crowdfunding platform is still young and fresh, the idea of "crowdsourcing," Kickstarter-speak for fans putting up capital to bring projects to life, isn't as new to video games as you might believe.