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December 11, 2011 | By Matt Stevens, Los Angeles Times
Erin Reynolds is a graduate student, so she knows at least one thing for certain. "Everyone feels stress," she said. That's part of the reason Reynolds and 12 others on her team created a video game that uses heart-rate sensors to help players learn to stay calm as they wind their way through a decrepit house filled with their characters' horrific memories. The 28-year-old USC cinematic arts student said she believes her psychological thriller game, Nevermind, can help people develop ways to cope with stress.
November 30, 2009 | By Tony Barboza
UC Irvine has long sought to be known for preeminence in fields such as engineering, medicine and business. But now the university is embracing a new discipline: video games. Once ridiculed within university halls as merely a nerdy pastime, computer games are being promoted to a full-fledged academic program at the Irvine campus, a medium as ripe for study as the formats before it: film, radio and television. This fall UC Irvine established the Center for Computer Games & Virtual Worlds, and construction is underway on a 4,000-square-foot, 20-room "Cyber-Interaction Observatory" for faculty research.
March 13, 2011 | By Jeannine Stein, Los Angeles Times
When 11-year-old Matthew Garcia of Lancaster wants to get some exercise, he bypasses the two bicycles in his garage and heads to the Antelope Valley Family YMCA for one of his favorite workouts ? an electronic game with light-up targets and a scoreboard that tests his throwing, catching and speed skills. At home, he jumps on the Wii Fit alone, or with his mother. When he's working out, he has one thing on his mind, and it's not his heart rate: "I always think about how much fun I'm having.
April 25, 2010 | By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times
Ask Dan Houser what Red Dead Redemption is about and the usually loquacious VP of creative at Rockstar Games pauses for 10 seconds. "It's America," he finally replies. "The birth of modern America. What was gained and what was lost." Some might scoff at the idea that a video game can tackle such heady themes, but Houser and his brother Sam, the co-founders of Rockstar, are used to being underestimated. Their label, part of Take-Two Interactive, is best known for its massively popular Grand Theft Auto series, which has sold more than 100 million copies and generated lawsuits, boycotts and legislation because of explicit violence and sexual content.
November 16, 2010 | By Mary Forgione, Los Angeles Times
Parents may not like how much their teens play video or computer games, but gaming appears to be harmless for most kids, a new Yale University study suggests. The survey of 4,028 teens found that playing video games didn't lead to unhealthy behaviors in boys, who accounted for the majority of gamers in the study. But 5% who reported "problematic" or addictive gaming habits were more likely to smoke cigarettes, use drugs and get into serious fights. Check out the full study, published Tuesday in the journal Pediatrics . This likely won’t be the last word on the effects of gaming on kids.
November 3, 2012 | By Steven Zeitchik
Among the pleasures of  "Wreck-it- Ralph," the Disney animated movie that has opened to strong reviews  this weekend, is watching a history of video games flash before you (and, perhaps, your own history along with it). There are prominent references to contemporary first-person shooters like "Call of Duty" (here called "Hero's Duty"). But most of the fun comes with nods to titles from video games' early days. The most obvious of them involves the title character, who is situated in "Fix-it Felix," a game clearly inspired by "Donkey Kong.
March 12, 2010 | By Alex Pham
Video game sales in the U.S. plunged 15% in February as skittish consumers continued to ratchet back their spending. The bleak sales report from the NPD Group marks the 10th monthly decline in the last 12 months. Game sales fell to $624 million. Console sales dropped 20% to $426 million, while sales of peripherals such as game controllers slipped 1% to $204 million. The drop occurred despite three major titles released last month: BioShock 2 from Take-Two Interactive Software Inc., Dante's Inferno from Electronic Arts Inc., and Heavy Rain from Sony Corp.
August 29, 2003 | Elaine Dutka
Challenging the stereotype that video games are the domain of teenage boys, an industry group reported that 26% of game players are women 18 or older, while 21% are boys 6 to 17. According to Wired News, the industry has worked to publish games catering to women and older players, in addition to young people. The average age of players has risen to 29, according to the study, released by the Entertainment Software Assn. and conducted by Peter D. Hart Research Associates.
March 22, 2013 | By Chris O'Brien
The cast and creators of HBO's "Game of Thrones" were in San Francisco this week for the Season 3 premiere, which airs Sunday. But along with the return of the show, fans have also been handed a new GOT video game on Facebook called "Ascent" which is officially in "open beta. " The game had 100,000 people signed up waiting for it to finally launch in late February. And when it finally did, the stampede of users downloading it crashed the servers of the company that made it,   Boston-based Disruptor Beam.
May 10, 2013 | By Chris O'Brien, Los Angeles Times
Fly toy helicopters with your mind. Be a DJ and shift musical tracks based on how you feel. Wiggle robotic cat ears by increasing your state of calm. Astonishing advances in the ability to harness brain waves have made the fantastic notion of moving and controlling objects with the mind possible. Now neuroscientists are grappling with another challenge: Find a "killer app" that will demonstrate the true potential of tapping into brain waves and ignite the neurotechnology revolution.
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