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Sanjay’s Super Team brings Indian mythology into the digital age

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. Pixar’s Oscar-nominated animated short Sanjay’s Super Team (2015) premiered last year, delivering a personal story about Indian culture and spirituality to a global audience. A largely autobiographical tale directed by Sanjay Patel, it centers around the duality of his Indian-American identity, a largely underrepresented demographic in the Western-dominated field of animation and digital storytelling. In an interview with The Verge, Patel said “It felt really important to me to have America see this, and have Pixar and Disney say it’s normal.” In the short, little Sanjay is enamored by a Transformers-like…

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The rise of women working in Indian videogames

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. Many see gaming as a “boys’ club,” but Indian women are proving them wrong. Aside from the growing demographic of female players, Indian female game designers are also telling their own stories in innovative ways, showing just how creative the medium can be. While The Economic Times reported that women only made up 20 percent of the Indian gaming population in 2010, data gathered by Mauj Mobile this past April told a different story. Men still dominate the total percentage of players, but on average women proved to be more…

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Nioh brings a real-life samurai legend to videogames

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. Fumihiko Yasuda, the director of upcoming samurai game Nioh, has been learning a little bushido lately. To bring the way of the warrior to life, he and his fellow developers at Team Ninja focused on how to translate a historic samurai legend into videogame mechanics. Emphasizing the distinct samurai fighting style, Yasuda took up the sword himself to ensure the game would feel as authentic and satisfying as possible. “I’m a little scared of how cleanly I can cut through things [now]. I’m a little hesitant,” he joked at E3, having…

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The physical intimacy of Push Me Pull You’s design

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. The multiplayer game Push Me Pull You builds a sense of community with the help of a bizarre but goofy premise. In a world populated by strange two-headed “sports monsters,” players must face off against each other in a friendly game of ball without getting too tangled in their own bodies. Despite the odd (or slightly queasy) concept, Push Me Pull You draws players in with undeniable charm, creating a welcoming environment for people from all walks of life, regardless of age, race, or skill level. Created by the small…

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Social Gaming: Making Minecraft a game for everyone

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. Defying the stereotype that paints gaming as an isolating hobby, Minecrafters use the virtual world as a means of connecting with family and friends in real life. Minecraft (2009) has redefined social gaming for nearly a decade, driven mostly by prolific online communities of creative people. A growing population of Minecrafters is harnessing the power of portable computer technology to interconnect in new ways, bringing their creativity in the digital world into reality. Aside from a thriving community of modders who build upon each other’s work to achieve incredible feats, a huge…

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The new generation of arcades

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. Nostalgic arcade games offer larger-than-life experiences on big-screen TVs, encouraging new generations of gamers to come together and play. The clang of quarters dropping into Frogger (1981) or Tetris (1984) cabinets is a fleeing memory for many, but the joy of playing original arcade games like Pac-Man (1980), Donkey Kong (1981) and Space Invaders (1978) is far from dead. Instead, the combination of creative independent developers and technologies that easily bring these indie games to big-screen TVs is sparking an arcade game renaissance that’s spreading across living rooms and festivals…

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The mixed reality mods that are changing Minecraft

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. More than 20 million people use their imaginations to create endless virtual worlds in Minecraft (2009). Unlike most games, however, players (rather than developers) push the boundaries of Minecraft’s expansiveness. They build everything from virtual voxel versions of the Taj Mahal to the entire country of Denmark, replicas of things that exist in the real world but can be shared and modified in world of Minecraft. “The Minecraft community brings together coders, artists, musicians and content creators from all over,” said Razz, a modder best known for her decorative block models. Razz said many…

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7 Independent Games Best Played on Big Screens

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. Advances in technology lead to bigger, shinier games each year, but outside the mainstream flows a river of creative and entertaining independent games that play well across a variety of devices and screen sizes. Many small studios use innovative design techniques to create incredible adventures that rival games from bigger studios. They commonly deliver gorgeous pixel and 2D art without requiring a high-end computer processor and graphic chips. That means these games work across different devices, including hardware like the Intel Compute Stick, a tiny PC that plugs into TVs…

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Does Esports Even Need Network TV?

This article is part of a collaboration with iQ by Intel. Broadcasting esports on TV is the latest craze, but the internet-born phenomenon may have already hit its stride live-streaming. Four decades after the first videogame competition, esports finally hit primetime television on May 27 with TBS’s ELeague. Interest in esports is skyrocketing around the world, but the question remains whether the excitement of videogame matchups, which thrill millions of fans via livestreaming on internet sites like Twitch and YouTube, will succeed on a cable television network. “Everybody is waiting with baited breath to see how ELeague is received,” said Matt Hill, senior vice president…