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Mario, the mustachioed, overalls-sporting plumber, is the omnipresent figure of video games, an instantly recognizable property in one of the world's biggest entertainment industries. In 1981, Donkey Kong starting taking our quarters at the arcades — here, with Mario at its center, the first platformer was born. When Mario showed up again just a few years later on home consoles with 1985's Super Mario Bros., the result was nothing less than revelatory. Never before had players encountered a game with its level of precision and character-control.

Game Mode: Composer Inon Zur

Jul 16, 2019

“Fallout.” “Dragon Age.” “Prince of Persia.”

Behind these otherworldly games are intricate, otherwordly soundtracks. And behind those soundtracks is Emmy Award-winning composer Inon Zur.

Zur has been composing video game music for over 20 years.

He told Laced Records about the intent behind his work:

Extreme Gaming Has A New Clinical Diagnosis

Jun 19, 2019
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Many people use video games as an escape – a chance to have fun, unwind and sidestep reality, but when does this pastime become a problem? Should excessive gaming be considered a health issue? The World Health Organization says yes.

From Texas Standard:

The total market value of the video-gaming industry reached almost $135 billion in 2018, and with that growth has come an increased demand for game developers. In hopes some of its graduates stand out in that market, the University of Texas at Austin is launching a new degree program in video game design and development.

In this edition of the Here & Now DJ Sessions, host Jeremy Hobson talks with Kate Remington, music director at WSHU, about the composers creating some of the soundtracks to your favorite video games. Gaming music can be just as complex and powerful as music produced for its own sake, Remington says.

With Jane Clayson

“Fortnite” — some call the popular video game addictive. It’s got everyone from kids to professional athletes hooked.


Chris Palmeri, LA bureau chief for Bloomberg News. (@chrispalmeri)

Sergey Galyonkin/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Set in a post-apocalyptic world of builders, the battle royale-style video game Fortnite is all about survival. The game has grown into a cultural phenomenon in the last year. What makes Fornite so influential? Author Jordan Shapiro, Dexerto Network producer Troy Tuttle and Alamo City eLeagues founder Chris Saenz speak to "The Source." 

John, a father of two in Colorado, had no idea what his 15-year-old son had gotten into, until one night last year when John walked into his home office. We're not using his last name to protect his son's privacy.

If you've ever played Tetris — whether it was at an old-school Gameboy, or just on your iPhone — then you know: It's 8-bit enchantment.

"Years of my life were lost disappearing into a game of Tetris on my Nintendo system," says Kate Sweeny, a psychologist at the University of California, Riverside.

From Texas Standard:

In May, President Donald Trump’s so-called "zero tolerance" policy led to the separation of hundreds of migrant kids from their parents. The issue dominated headlines. Now, the news seems to have largely moved on, though many families remain separated despite the reversal of that practice.

While many Texans have spent at least some time near the U.S.-Mexico border, most don’t know what it’s like to cross the border as an immigrant. But a Texas video game designer is trying to bridge that gap.