Game Network

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Game Network
Game Network's Logo
Launched 1999
Closed February 27, 2006
Owned by Cellcast
Audience share N/A (Channel, Closed)
Replaced by Babestation
Availability
At time of closure
Satellite
Sky Digital Channel 172
SKY Italia Channel 816

Game Network was a European online game and television network company. It was initially owned by Digital Bros. group, but was later sold to Cellcast. Game Network was, during its broadcast, the only television channel in Europe dedicated to covering multimedia entertainment, and generally focused on video games.

History[edit]

Originally, Game Network's television channel was available all over Europe, with the UK version (produced by Cellcast) overlaying their own regional content to the channel, with programs including Digital Crack,'Me in Mir, The Weekly Chart Show, Game Guru, Reloaded, Livewire, and most recently, Evolution. The channel expanded in 2003 with the launch of non-gaming programmes such as Babestation, a late-night "tease" show. The success of this show lead to many other clone programmes appearing on other channels, and this alternative revenue stream lead to a later influx of phone-in quiz shows, of which Game Network shows many. As of 2005, Game Network's UK games programming is largely limited to a block of raw games footage from 5:30am - 10am, with Game Guru airing from 5pm until 7pm, followed by programmes such as Psychic Interactive, which continue until Babestation starts.

The major gaming shows, such as LiveWire was cancelled in May 2005, and the Italian-language feed from Hotbird ceased in September 2005. At this time, Digital Bros. sold Game Network in the UK, to a company called Cellcast. The channel was run in tandem by Sem Mioli (Digital Bros.) and Jonathan French/Craig Gardiner (Cellcast). 2003 to 2006.

Online Video Games[edit]

During the time in which Game Network ran as a television channel, they also hosted various online games including Horizons Online, Droiyan Online, The Legend of Mir, 2 and 3, and Myth of Soma. Although when Game Network ceased as a television channel, their online side involving the video games that they provided to the public continued as GNOnline.

British version[edit]

As of 20 February 2006, Game Network UK had been renamed Babestation, with all video game content being dropped. On 28 February, the channel was moved to the adult section of the Sky EPG.

Shows[edit]

Digital Crack

(April 2001-September 2001)

The show was a magazine format with chat, game play and news between the 3 presenters Carl Hagan, Bettina Perrie and Alison Riley The show was fast paced with reviews, game battles and email requests and replies. The three presenters were very popular and had a great on screen chemistry.

Me in Mir

A comedy show where Carl Hagan would get dressed up, sing songs and chat to players live in Legend of Mir. This was probably one of the most popular shows ever on Game Network and remains part of its legacy.

Game Guru

(December 2001 – February 2006)

The show was a live daily phone-in video gaming show originally presented by one "guru" presenter via webcam. After October 2003 (Series 2) the format changed to two presenters, one working on Phone Calls while presenting on camera, while the other worked on Texts (He/she often could be heard in many episodes).

Members of the public would ring or text in and ask for cheats or walkthroughs to various video games such as Bubble Bobble on the Commodore 64, after which the Gurus would explain how and/or post up the solution on television via a chatroom like text program. Viewers could also ask for game release dates, opinions on what game/console to buy next or for news about the gaming industry.

LiveWire

(November 2004 - June 2005)

A live Saturday news, reviews and previews show, presented by Gareth Williams, Mike Rushton, Chris Jeffery and, in later shows, Stuart Headlam. Often with a special guest from the gaming industry. The show once even had a special guest appearance from Goldie Looking Chain.

Reloaded

Series 1 (January 2005 - June 2005)

(AKA Game Guru Reloaded) Another live show. Originally a daily, then a Saturday show, where the Game Gurus would challenge the public to bouts of various games online, either over PS2, Xbox Live (Original and 360) or PC. The show would often be presented by a random presenter (see the presenter list above). The Game Gurus usually played games like Halo 2, Rainbow Six 3 Black Arrow and PGR2 via Xbox Live. (Gamertags: GameGuruUk and GameGuruUK2)

Series 2 (November 2005 - February 2006)

In the second series, Reloaded also incorporated the features of LiveWire, which did not return due to copyright reasons with the name.

Evolution

(September 2005 - February 2006)

One of Game Network's only pre-recorded shows. The concept was quite bizarre, originally meant to be presented from DJ NES's (Daniel Scammel) and Peter Browning's (Game Network Producer) Flat. It consisted of news, reviews, interviews and previews presented by a naked man in a towel, a guy who called himself "Duck Recon", and Game Guru's "Guru Larry" (Larry Bundy Jr) streaming video over a PC monitor. The show moved direction to be presented in the usual Game Network studio (grey sofa, large plasma TV in the background), and then into a more information based show with the main screen in a window, with information, text, release dates etc. filling the rest of the screen.

Incomplete and unaired shows[edit]

7 Days in LA

A short lived documentary based on the E3 conference of 2005. 3 show regulars (Mike Rushton, Chris Jeffery and Dom Lawler) along with 2 randoms (Scott Doherty and Ryan Hadley) took part in this observational documentary that not only focused on the goings on of the exhibition but also the behind the scenes action. Due to the cancellation of Game Guru in early June 2005, only 4 of the 12 episodes aired, though many of the later episodes did eventually appear on websites.

Guru Larry's Hack Job

An all out comedy show involving Guru Larry presenting the show with his own bizarre and funny twist on the industry, often making fun of people in the games industry such as Jack Thompson. Although a series was made, it never made it to air because of the cancellation of the channel. Some clips of the show remain on the internet.

Video clips[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]