Yesterday, 14 year-old Danny Johnson reclaimed his record for the highest score for a single song in "Guitar Hero III" by playing DragonForce's "Through the Fire and Flames" on Expert. See the champ with his prize. Read More...

"Sofa Boy," a new children's book written by industry veteran Scott Langteau, aims to teach kids how to limit their video game usage and avoid "Sofa Boy Syndrome." Read More...

Former Primus bass player Les Claypool has never written game music before "Mushroom Men." But it has nothing to do with his feelings for or against games.

It was actually a series of seemingly coincidental events that lead to Claypool signing on, involving his children, the game's stylized artwork and playing with with mushrooms the same day project was pitched to him.

Claypool explained how all of these happenstances came together during a phone interview this morning with MTV Multiplayer.


Yesterday, those in the New York City area were able stop by the public "Lego Batman" launch event.

The party was held in the Weston Pavilion at the American Museum of Natural History to celebrate the release of the new Lego title, in stores this week. Passersby and press were invited to play the game and enjoy free carnival-type food and activities themed around "Lego Batman."

If you couldn't make it, check out photos of the event. Read More...

"The thing about Lego [is that] it's a tool for being creative. So it's great when you have creative ideas and can take it to different places. I think [the public relations department] will not stop me from categorically saying: We're not making 'Lego Halo.' ... 'Halo' is not a game that is age-rated for young players, and it's not appropriate for us to sort of recruit people into that experience."

TT Games studio head and lead "LEGO Batman" designer Jonathan Smith on the feasibility of making a "LEGO Halo" based on EGM's April Fool's joke, during a telephone interview with MTV Multiplayer this morning.

When Red Fly Studio and Gamecock approached Les Claypool to contribute original music to the upcoming Wii title "Mushroom Men: The Spore Wars," the Primus frontman wasn't quite sure he was into it.

But his kids were, according to "Mushroom Men" producer Chad Barron, who stopped by MTV earlier today to show me the game. After the Claypool children learned what the fungi-laden platformer was all about, they urged their doubtful dad to take on the project. In fact, after playing "Mushroom Men" for the past few months, they love the game and even made their own drawings for it. Above are two pieces of artwork drawn by Cage and Lena Claypool.

And to be clear, Barron told me that there are no cats or bloody weapons in the E-rated game, though he'll consider them for use in future Red Fly titles.

You can check out "Mushroom Men: Rise of the Fungi" on DS in October and "Mushroom Men: The Spore Wars" on Wii in November.

Related Posts:
'Mushroom Men' Aiming For Most Interesting Audio On The Wii
I've Seen 'Mushroom Men''s Hidden Fungi Civil War

I am the mother of a baby boy.

A virtual baby boy, that is. I recently got a chance to play a build of SouthPeak's "My Baby" for the DS. In "My Baby Boy" or "My Baby Girl," players can take care of a baby by feeding it, playing with it, bathing it and... changing its diapers.

Patrick Klepek may have been too terrified to touch virtual poop, but not me. Just watch my get my hands stylus dirty... Read More...

carlokid.jpgLast week I asked, "What's the best age for someone to start playing video games?"

Some say seven is the right age, while others don't think kids should play video games at all. Recently I interviewed two mothers about video games and their children; they each had different opinions. One mom didn't allow consoles in her house, the other said games had a positive impact on her family.

This week, I spoke with two fathers on the subject. See why a gamer dad is uncomfortable with letting his kids see the pain inflicted in "Pain" and how "World of Warcraft" finally made another father put his foot down...

Carlo, 30 year-old creative director at an ad agency from Edison, NJ
Children: Two sons, ages 3 and 5
Systems Owned: VTech, Leapfrog Leapster, PC, DS, PSP, Wii, Xbox 360, PS3
Age OK for Kids to Play Games: Let kids play VTech at ages 2 and 4
Games Allowed to Play: E-rated games
Time Allowed: Up to 3 hours per weekday; more on weekends
Would Never Let Kids Play: "Shooting games with guns, explosions, limbs, blood;" "cartoony" violence


mariogalaxyandchildWhat's the best age for someone to start playing video games? That's a question that's been asked quite a bit lately.

Is it seven? According to educational psychologist Jane Healy, who spoke at the recent Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, children should be kept away from video games until the age of seven to "allow their brains to develop normally."

The paperback edition of "How Computer Games Help Children Learn" by David Williamson Shaffer hit stores this week, basically explaining how video games can be good for children. We've also heard firsthand accounts from people -- video game legends, even -- who began playing games at an early age, and they seemed to turn out pretty normal (or in some cases, brilliant).

In light of all this, I wondered what actual parents thought. We know what a lot of children's specialists, media watchdog groups and industry researchers think. I decided to ask some parents I knew (and parents that friends and co-workers knew) about their opinions on the subject.

First up, I spoke with two mothers with very different answers.

Who: Alisa, 38 year-old business owner from Boston, MA
Children: Two daughters, ages 6 and 9
Systems Owned: LeapFrog, Mac computer
Age OK for Kids to Play Games: Let her daughter play LeapFrog at age 4, but only web games since
Games Allowed to Play: Pre-approved web games only
Time Allowed: 30 minutes, several times a week
Would Never Let Kids Play: Any violent games or games that let you "beat up or say crude things to a woman"


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