Journals week in review: gaming from Opposable Thumbs

Another week in gaming has passed and with it came a hearty mix of stories, including the announcement that Stardock's DRM-less Sins of the Solar Empire sold half a million units, ever-increasing amounts of displeasure with EA's DRM decisions, and the advent of Rock Band 2. Here are the top stories for the week: HangZhou Night Net

Solar Empire moves 500,000 units, shows PC gaming done right. Even though the title had no DRM and could be easily pirated, Stardock's excellent strategy game sold over 500,000 copies. Consumers have spoken: games without DRM are the way to go.

EA gives customers middle finger with "lenient" Red Alert 3 DRM. In contrast to Stardock's success, a dust cloud of anger and resentment has formed around the latest DRM controversy from EA. The company's forthcoming RTS title Red Alert 3 boasts "lenient" DRM that has soured gamers.

Showdown: hard discussion over Creature Creators' obsession. A classic Showdown entry regained popularity this week in the wake of the release of Spore. While some gamers have complained about the game's lack of depth, everyone agrees that penis monsters are on the rise—so to speak.

360 gets political: McCain and Obama square off via download. With the presidential race heating up in the US, gamers are being given the chance to unofficially vote from home through their Xbox 360 units. Both McCain and Obama are squaring off online for gamers' affection.

First impressions: Rock Band 2's ION drums. Our resident rhythm game guru Ben Kuchera scored a pre-release copy of Rock Band 2 and the elite Ion drum set, and he has begun putting them to the test to see if they are worth the $300 standalone fee. Don't miss the full review of the game and the hardware tomorrow night.

Some other interesting stories from the week gone by:

Force is Unleashed on Xbox Live: download records broken. The demo for the new Star Wars title managed to rack up over 2.3 million downloads.Don't play Rock Band 2 early: Harmonix will know. A neat Easter egg in Rock Band 2 displays a special message to those with pre-release copies.VentureBeat explores 360 defects, giving the complete story. The history behind the infamous Red Ring of Death explained in detail.Pure: ATV racer comes out of left field, steals Ars' heart. Both forum goers and Opposable Thumbs are enamored with Disney's hot ATV racer.Interview: Gears of War 2 artist Pete Hayes talks art, life. Pete Hayes sits down with us to talk about life as an artist in the game industry.

Be sure to head over to Opposable Thumbs, our gaming and toy journal, for all the latest news from the game industry, game reviews, and more.

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