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Here's what you need to know for Tuesday, Oct. 1

Xi3's Piston modular console available Nov. 29

Xi3 will launch the palm-sized customizable Piston console on Nov. 29. The console features 8 GB of RAM and an 128 GB SSD, "native triple monitor support," support for controllers, keyboard and mouse and virtual reality headsets, computer and TV displays – and all of that can be upgraded and customized at users' whims. Piston is available for pre-order through Xi3's website for $999.

Researchers express concerns about APA Task Force on Violent Media

The Entertainment Software Association is on board with proposed revisions to a 2005 American Psychological Association policy statement on media and violence. A group of 228 academics, researchers and psychologists called upon the APA yesterday to use an "objective scientific process" when revisiting and revising the policy, which the group stated has "methodological flaws, ideological biases, and conclusions drawn from inconsistent or weak evidence."

The cult of the cookie clicker: When is a game not a game?

Cookie Clicker. Why does it exist? What does it mean? Creator Julien Thiennot doesn't call himself a game developer, but he does profess to make "experimental prototypes." Cookie Clicker is one of them. We sat down with Thiennot to learn the origin of the rolling-pin-wielding granny-laden game and the other projects on his table.

Assassin's Creed 4 launching Nov. 19 on PC; Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag and the terrible beauty of naval warfare

According to game director Ashraf Ismail, Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag isn't going for realism with its depiction of naval warfare — but rather, "credibility." Real-life moves have been tweaked to produce more fast-paced and fluid mechanics that will keep players having fun. But a smooth, naval-based mode for multiplayer just wasn't an option — Ubisoft felt it couldn't make a sufficiently polished one without "negatively impacting the rest of the game."

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