Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was in Springfield, Ill., Wednesday where she sought to use the symbolism of a historic landmark to draw parallels to a present-day America that is in need of repairing deepening racial and cultural divides.

The Old State Capitol — where Abraham Lincoln delivered his famous "A house divided" speech in 1858 warning against the ills of slavery and where Barack Obama launched his presidential bid in 2007 — served as the backdrop for Clinton as she spoke of how "America's long struggle with race is far from finished."

Episode 711: Hooked on Heroin

1 hour ago

When we meet the heroin dealer called Bone, he has just shot up. He has a lot to say anyway. He tells us about his career--it pretty much tracks the evolution of drug use in America these past ten years or so. He tells us about his rough past. And he tells us about how he died a week ago. He overdosed on his own supply and his friend took his body to the emergency room, then left.

New British Prime Minister Theresa May announced six members of her Cabinet Wednesday.

Amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in Egypt, security forces have forcibly disappeared hundreds of people since the beginning of 2015, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

It's an "unprecedented spike," the group says, with an average of three or four people disappeared every day.

The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don't look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Many public figures who took to Twitter and Facebook following the murder of five police officers in Dallas have faced public blowback and, in some cases, found their employers less than forgiving about inflammatory and sometimes hateful online comments.

As Venezuela unravels — with shortages of food and medicine, as well as runaway inflation — President Nicolas Maduro is increasingly unpopular. But he's still holding onto power.

"The truth in Venezuela is there is real hunger. We are hungry," says a man who has invited me into his house in the northwestern city of Maracaibo, but doesn't want his name used for fear of reprisals by the government.

The wiry man paces angrily as he speaks. It wasn't always this way, he says, showing how loose his pants are now.

Ask a typical teenage girl about the latest slang and girl crushes and you might get answers like "spilling the tea" and Taylor Swift. But at the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., the answers were "intersectional feminism" — the idea that there's no one-size-fits-all definition of feminism — and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres.

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Arizona Hispanics Poised To Swing State Blue

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Developers At Indie Game Festival Looking For Big Break

Oct 5, 2013
Originally published on October 10, 2013 12:25 pm



Sales of the insanely popular video game "Grand Theft Auto V" passed the billion-dollar mark just three days after its release this month. But not everyone sees mainstream titles as the industry's game changers. When searching for the next big thing, some of the biggest gaming companies actually look to the little guys: indie game developers. And as NPR's Daniel Hajek reports, they're finding them this weekend at a Los Angeles festival that brings out the underground talent.

DANIEL HAJEK, BYLINE: They call it the Sundance of the video game world. Every year in Culver City, California, an international community of independent video game creators gather at the IndieCade Festival. Tents are up on sidewalks where visitors play the latest games. But don't bother looking for "Assassin's Creed" or the upcoming "Battlefield 4." It's indie games only, and the developers here are some of the best. They're the trendsetters that the mainstream industry follows.

ADAM BOYES: They take more risks. They do more crazy things. They innovate. They roll the dice a lot.

HAJEK: Adam Boyes is the vice president of publisher and developer relations at Sony. He says this is where PlayStation comes to discover fresh talent.

BOYES: We have a group of people that are cruising around with a checkbook ready to sign sort of the next big indie hits. It absolutely could be somebody's big break, yeah.

HAJEK: Damon Baker from Nintendo's licensing department says indie games have an edge that you won't find from big studio productions.

DAMON BAKER: Some of the best rated content on Nintendo platforms comes from our indie developers. So it's really important for this community to know that we embrace it, we cultivate it. It's awesome.

RAMBOD KERMANIZADEH: So here. So if I take the depth off of it completely and...

HAJEK: Mm-hmm. Game developers were slammed this week preparing for IndieCade. Rambod Kermanizadeh, a senior at USC, along with Trevor Rice and John Bair, spent hours putting the finishing touches on their self-produced computer game called "Code."

KERMANIZADEH: Get it up to 15 and you'll go to the next level. But now we got enemies coming in, which you want to avoid because they'll kill you right away.

HAJEK: At IndieCade, they'll have a chance to meet one-on-one with Sony to pitch their game.

KERMANIZADEH: If we do really good and Sony takes it and they love it, you know, that could be essentially a game changer for us.

HAJEK: It could mean a deal and distribution.

MARTY SLIVA: For me, you know, indie games are sort of like the Wild West. It's where there's really no limitation to what you're going to create.

HAJEK: Marty Sliva is an associate editor at He says competition is fierce because almost anyone with a computer and an idea can create a game.

SLIVA: But the big problem is, well, if there's hundreds of games every day, you know, how does yours rise to the top?

HAJEK: Sliva says some developers have given up careers and spent their life savings to produce games that end up flopping. It's a gamble.

SLIVA: There's been many cases of, you know, depression and relationships breaking up and, really, this just eating away at your life, you know? And there've been a lot of people too who you devote years to to a project and afterwards, you know, it's like, well, what do I do now? Like, this is what I did when I woke up until I went to bed. And now, I don't have, like, I have to start at the beginning again.

HAJEK: But for some, earning that coveted spot in the indie gaming world is worth the risk.

SLIVA: Everyone in this office, you know, gravitates towards these indie games and passes them around when they release. And these are the things we get excited for.

HAJEK: Meanwhile at IndieCade, Kermanizadeh says he can finally take a deep breath. He met with Sony, and it was promising.

KERMANIZADEH: We showed them the game, kind of talked about it. They asked us questions, and they played it. There were smiles on their faces, and they really enjoyed it. So it went great, yeah.

HAJEK: Just one step closer to distribution. Developers like Rambod Kermanizadeh may lack the big studio financing, but they're ready to take on the industry's giants. These indie developers are the ones changing the way we game. Daniel Hajek, NPR News, Culver City. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.