Doom, the original bad boy of gaming, is 20 years old this week.

Doom, the original bad boy of gaming, is 20 years old this week.

Xbox One tops two million sales, best console launch in Australian history

Microsoft's new Xbox One seems to be lagging behind the phenomenally popular PlayStation 4, but it's hardly a flop. Microsoft announced last week that it had shifted two million units worldwide in less than three weeks, a very impressive achievement.

Even more impressive was the local launch, which saw over 65,000 Xbox Ones purchased in its first three days on sale in Australia, setting a new record. The previous best launch was the original Wii, which sold 32,000 in the same period

South Australian government launches ad campaign linking video games and gambling

South Australia continues to be a thorn in the side of the Australian video game industry, this time funding a series of advertising billboards and bus stop ads that feature the slogan "Gambling starts with games", accompanied by a picture of a young girl using an iPad. Beneath the image is the URL NoGame.sa.gov.au.

Outrage was swift, with many video gaming websites condemning the campaign, and IGEA's Ron Curry demanding it be withdrawn.

For their part, the SA government is now claiming they did not mean to target gaming and gamers with the campaign, and that they were specifically going after gambling-style games. Apparently future billboards will have revised wording that they claim will make this clearer.

Thanks to reader Schmole for sending that news article in.

Valve's game-changing Steam Machines appearing in the wild

PC gaming giant Valve has sent out the first 300 test units of their upcoming Steam Machine gaming platform to some randomly-selected Steam users, and first impressions are starting to creep out onto the internet, along with the usual unboxing videos and such.

Valve hopes to make gaming PCs as ubiquitous in our living rooms as Xboxes and PlayStations, with low-cost standard hardware in attractive, TV unit friendly cases. They have created their own version of Linux, dubbed SteamOS, and even created a bizarre new controller with two circular touch-pads instead of analogue sticks. It can also stream Windows games from a PC in another room, over the network, and onto a TV.

This 300 machine pilot program is the first public test of the machine' specs, with the boxes received by different people reportedly containing slightly different hardware, no doubt in an effort to find the sweet spot between cost and power. When this test is complete, a full roll-out should occur some time in 2014.

Could there be a real competition between low-cost gaming PCs and game consoles? It will be interesting to see how this turns out.

Doom turns 20

It may be the most influential video game in history, and this past week it turned 20. Doom was released on 10 December 1993, and immediately became a hit. In no time it was spawning sequels, spin-offs, and untold numbers of imitators, creating the first person shooter genre in the process.

Wolfenstein 3D, Id Software's previous super-violent shooter classic, had set the groundwork for the genre, but it was Doom that truly cemented the tropes of what a shooter should be, and also gave rise to multiplayer. Twenty years down the track, multiplayer shooters are the biggest gaming success story in history, in the form of the Call of Duty franchise.

Happy birthday Doom, or "that horrible game" as a friend of mine's girlfriend always called it way back in the day.

Got any news stories you think should be in our weekly round-up? Send your tips to DexX at SPYourTurn@gmail.com.

 - James "DexX" Dominguez

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