The Game - updates

Rappler's latest stories on The Game

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LOOK BACK: Our favorite ABS-CBN game shows from the past

Feb 24, 2020 - 11:30 AM

Pilipinas, game ka pa rin ba?

China cracks down on cross-border crimes as POGOs thrive in PH

Feb 23, 2020 - 6:25 PM

There are reports that China has canceled the passports of thousands of Chinese working for Philippine offshore gaming operators

PAGE 2019 (the Phil-Asian Gaming Expo) at SMX Convention Center in Pasay on July 12-14, 2019. Photo by Rappler

Vico Sotto shuts down illegal Chinese restaurant in Pasig, says no to POGO

Feb 23, 2020 - 11:38 AM

'Kakapal ng mukha!' Indignant at owners of a permit-less restaurant, the Pasig mayor offers to help the Bureau of Immigration track down and deport illegal workers and businessmen in the city.

VICO SOTTO. Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto addresses residents on October 8, 2019, his 100th day in office. File photo by Lisa Marie David/Rappler

BIR shuts down POGO for failing to pay P114-million taxes

Feb 21, 2020 - 5:54 PM

Synchronization Anywhere for You Incorporated is the first POGO firm to be padlocked by the Bureau of Internal Revenue

CLOSED DOWN. BIR closes down Synchronization Anywhere for You Inc in Pasay City. Photo courtesy of BIR

The Chinese among us

Feb 21, 2020 - 11:00 AM

They can be crime suspects, victims, or complicit Filipinos

Going viral: Demand for disease-themed movies and games explodes

Feb 21, 2020 - 9:29 AM

Interest in 2011's 'Contagion' film, mobile phone game 'Plague Inc,' and Netflix's 'Pandemic' docuseries soar around the world

Duterte says he 'loves' immigration chief Morente amid POGO bribery mess

Feb 20, 2020 - 11:54 PM

Does the President exempt Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente, a former Davao police chief, from accountability for the bribery scheme that let illegal Chinese workers slip into the country?

IMMIGRATION CHIEF. Bureau Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente in July 2016. File photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Majority of immigration officers part of 'pastillas scheme' – BI whistleblower

Feb 20, 2020 - 7:56 PM

Whistleblower Allison Chiong says immigration officers in NAIA Terminal 1 receive as much as P20,000 a week in the bribery scheme

WHISTLEBLOWER. Immigration Officer 1 Allison Chiong tells all at the Senate hearing on POGO operations. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Duterte sacks immigration officials, employees over POGO bribery scheme

Feb 20, 2020 - 3:25 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte found 'probable cause' to investigate allegations that immigration officers have taken bribes to let illegal Chinese workers slip into the country, says his spokesman

DUTERTE. President Rodrigo Roa Duterte witnesses the program proper during the Philippine Air Force Change of Command ecremony at the Col. Jesus Villamor Air Base in Pasay City on January 16, 2020. Malacanang photo

LIVE: Senate hearing on sex trafficking in POGO industry

Feb 20, 2020 - 1:23 PM

Senator Risa Hontiveros' committee investigates sex trafficking, prostitution rings, and exploitative work of women in the Philippine offshore gaming operators industry

COMMITTEE HEARING ON WOMEN, CHILDREN: Senator Risa Hontiveros, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Women, Children, Family Relations and Gender Equality presides over a public hearing Monday, 20 January 2020 on the additional benefits and privileges of single parents, prevention of teenage pregnancy, prohibition of child marriage as well as the domestic adoption of Filipino children. Cesar Tomanbo/Senate PRIB

BI sacks heads of NAIA terminals as it probes bribery claims

Feb 18, 2020 - 1:12 PM

Bureau of Immigration spokesperson Dana Sandoval says the officials 'were removed from their posts due to command responsibility' while the BI investigates the alleged 'pastillas' scheme for arriving POGO workers

NAIA. The facade of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Kawhi dedicates All-Star MVP to Kobe: 'This one's for him'

Feb 17, 2020 - 9:34 PM

Kawhi Leonard wins the first-ever Kobe Bryant All-Star Game MVP award after helping Team LeBron topple Team Giannis

MAIDEN. Kawhi Leonard captures his first NBA All-Star Game MVP plum. Photo from Instagram/@nba


LOOK: How syndicates, airport officials split P10,000 bribe from POGO workers

Feb 17, 2020 - 8:59 PM

In a modus called 'pastillas,' POGOs pay P10,000 per person and provide free lunch to get VIP treatment

BREAKDOWN. A table from an informant shows how airport officials split a P2,000 bribe among them.

‘Magkano at hanggang kanino?’: Hontiveros reveals bribery in entry of POGO workers

Feb 17, 2020 - 3:07 PM

(UPDATED) The senator confronts immigration officials at a hearing after an informant alleges that the entry of POGO employees is facilitated for P10,000 per person

Senator Risa Hontiveros, chairperson of Senate Committee on Women, Children Family Relations and Gender Equality, presides the senate inquiry on the sexual trafficking connected to POGO operations in the country. February 17, 2020. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Team LeBron nips Team Giannis in All-Star Game honoring Kobe

Feb 17, 2020 - 1:34 PM

A tweaked format paying homage to the late NBA icon Kobe Bryant turns the All-Star Game into an ultra-competitive match

REPEAT. LeBron James and Team LeBron frustrate Giannis Antetokounmpo and Team Giannis anew. Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images/AFP


LOOK: Team Giannis, Team LeBron chill in All-Star practice

Feb 16, 2020 - 6:25 PM

NBA superstars head to the Windy City all bundled up as they gear up for the All-Star spectacle

WATCH: Derrick Jones tops All-Star dunk delights

Feb 16, 2020 - 1:26 PM

Heat forward Derrick Jones bags the Slam Dunk crown while Kings guard Buddy Hield emerges as Three-Point king

INSANE. Derrick Jones Jr soars and finishes through the legs in the NBA All-Star Slam Dunk competition. Photo by Nuccio Dinuzzo/EPA-EFE

NBA names All-Star MVP award in honor of Kobe Bryant

Feb 16, 2020 - 11:30 AM

Reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo describes Kobe Bryant as the 'Michael Jordan of our generation'

ICONIC. The NBA continues to pay tribute to league legend Kobe Bryant. Photo by Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images/AFP

Zion Williamson caught in first All-Star whirlwind

Feb 15, 2020 - 5:36 PM

Teen sensation Zion Williamson rocks the Rising Stars game, quite literally, as his rim-rattling dunk bends the backboard

BIG JAM. Pelicans star Zion Williamson puts on a dunk show. Photo by  Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images/AFP

No missing Trae Young in busy All-Star action

Feb 15, 2020 - 4:42 PM

It isn't exactly an All-Star break for young Hawks star Trae Young as he sees action in all 3 days of the annual NBA spectacle

HAMMING IT UP. Trae Young shares a laugh with fellow sophomore sensation Luka Doncic. Photo by Nuccio Dinuzzo/EPA-EFE

Team USA rallies past Team World in Rising Stars contest

Feb 15, 2020 - 3:13 PM

Team USA overpowers Team World in the NBA's Rising Stars showdown that virtually turns into a dunk contest

WORLD'S TARGET. Team USA star Zion Williamson (center) gets ganged up on by Team World's (from left) RJ Barrett of Canada, Rui Hachimura of Japan and Brandon Clarke of Canada. Photo by Nuccio Dinuzzo/EPA-EFE

LOOK: NBA young guns gear up for Rising Stars duel

Feb 15, 2020 - 10:41 AM

Mavs hotshot Luka Doncic banners the World Team going up against the US Team of Pelicans rookie sensation Zion Williamson

HOTSHOT. It's going to be a busy weekend for Mavs sensation Luka Doncic as he sees action in both the Rising Stars and All-Star games. Photo by Paul Mata/Rappler

NBA All-Stars, rookie phenom Zion marvel at fan Obama

Feb 15, 2020 - 9:27 AM

'He said I was playing great. I kind of zoned out after that,' says 19-year-old star rookie Zion Williamson after meeting former US President Barack Obama

STARSTRUCK. Zion Williamson says he's surprised that Barack Obama follows his games. Photo by Sean Gardner / Getty Images North America/AFP

Kobe tributes abound at NBA All-Star Game in Chicago

Feb 14, 2020 - 10:54 AM

Tributes to 18-time All-Star Kobe Bryant take center stage as the annual league spectacle honors the late NBA icon

Photo by Larry W. Smith/EPA

Booker to replace ailing Lillard in All-Star Game

Feb 14, 2020 - 9:25 AM

Suns star Devin Booker gets a last-minute All-Star call-up as streaky Trail Blazer guard Damian Lillard suffers an injury

Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images/AFP

Rescued Taiwanese worker tags a 'Michael Yang' as POGO protector in gov't

Feb 12, 2020 - 10:12 PM

(UPDATED) Senator Risa Hontiveros says they have yet to check if the Michael Yang name-dropped by POGO owners is President Duterte's former 'economic adviser'

HUMAN TRAFFICKING. Senator Risa Hontiveros presents to the media a 23-year old Taiwanese woman, Lai Yu Cian, who claimed she was recruited by a Chinese man to be an advertising employees but instead worked in a POGO. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Money laundering threat: Villanueva recommends suspending POGOs

Feb 11, 2020 - 3:45 PM

Conflicting employment figures, unpaid taxes, and rising crimes lead Senate labor committee chair Joel Villanueva to recommend suspending online gambling in the Philippines

LeBron, Giannis pick their NBA All-Star teams

Feb 07, 2020 - 11:39 AM

'There's no wrong choice,' says LeBron James after assembling his All-Star team bannered by Lakers teammate Anthony Davis

SALUTE. LeBron James and the All-Star cast are set to pay tribute to Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna in the NBA weekend showcase. Photo from 2020 NBA All-Star

Batang Pinoy, other sports events postponed amid coronavirus threat

Feb 06, 2020 - 6:11 PM

The Philippine Sports Commission postpones several national sporting events as a 'safety measure' against the novel coronavirus

PREVENTIVE MEASURE. The PSC has canceled all sports gatherings and activities exceeding 40 people. File photo

Pagcor gaming revenues up 11.7% in 2019

Feb 05, 2020 - 2:50 PM

Because of higher revenues in 2019, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation is able to remit P56 billion to the government

Dwight Howard returns to Slam Dunk event at NBA All-Stars

Feb 05, 2020 - 11:00 AM

Best remembered for wearing a Superman cape in one slam jam spectacle, Dwight Howard returns to the All-Stars slam dunk contest after 11 years

STUNT MAN. At 34, Dwight Howard still hopes to put on a show. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images/AFP

'GirlDad' LeBron James picks Gianna Bryant's number for All-Star Game

Feb 04, 2020 - 10:49 AM

LeBron James is set to wear Gianna Bryant's No. 2 as he is also a proud 'Girl Dad' like Kobe Bryant

REMEMBERING KOBE. LeBron James speaks during the Los Angeles Lakers pregame ceremony to honor Kobe Bryant before the game against the Portland Trail Blazers at Staples Center on January 31, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. File photo by Harry How/Getty Images/AFP

Hontiveros sees link between influx of POGO workers, rise of sex trafficking in Manila

Jan 28, 2020 - 11:40 PM

Senator Risa Hontiveros says photos of trafficked women are being passed around in WeChat and Telegram chat groups, where there are 'menus of services, as though in a restaurant'

PROSTITUTION DENS. Senator Risa Hontiveros, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Women, Children, Family Relations and Gender Equality, presides over a public hearing Tuesday, 28 January 2020 on the proliferation of human trafficking activities in the country brought about by the influx of Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGO). Photo by Albert Calvelo/Senate PRIB

Pagcor orders POGOs to quarantine new workers

Jan 28, 2020 - 7:40 AM

The predominantly Chinese industry is also told by Philippine regulators to 'exercise extreme caution' in hiring new employees amid the spread of the novel coronavirus in several countries

Taxes from POGOs soar 169% to P6.4 billion in 2019

Jan 27, 2020 - 11:31 AM

The Philippine government improves in getting cash from tax-dodging online gambling operators, but it still falls short of its target

PH SEA Games team to be honored as Athlete of the Year in PSA Awards

Jan 20, 2020 - 5:24 PM

This is the second time the Philippine Sportswriters Association will recognize the entire Team Philippines as its Athlete of the Year awardee

HONORED. Athletes who represented the country in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games will be feted by the Philippine Sportswriters Association. File photo by Josh Albelda/Rappler


How a one-man team created a place to play

Jan 18, 2020 - 8:45 AM

At the Roll Play Game Lounge, there’s no need to purchase food or drinks. Once you enter, all you need to do is play.

LeBron stretches lead in NBA All-Star Game fan voting

Jan 17, 2020 - 9:09 AM

After trailing Mavs hotshot Luka Doncic in the early tally, LeBron James surges ahead to virtually clinch the overall lead

Manila to host PNG, Batang Pinoy in 2020

Jan 10, 2020 - 12:01 PM

This year's major national multi-sport events are set to unfold in the newly renovated Rizal Memorial Sports Complex and Philsports Arena

RESTORED. The Rizal Memorial Sports Complex gets a face lift in time for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games. Photo from PHISGOC Media

Professionals and hobbyist game devs celebrated at GDAP's Game On 2019 Awards

Jan 04, 2020 - 10:46 AM

Here's a rundown of the winners in the local game development scene's 2019 Game On Awards!

Cayetano’s charm offensive in House shields him from SEA Games backlash

Dec 29, 2019 - 10:00 AM

Once the least trusted among the bets for Speaker, Alan Peter Cayetano works double time to woo House members. His tactics seem to be paying off.

THE VICTOR. Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano addresses the House of Representatives for the first time on July 22, 2019. Photo by Lito Borras/Rappler

Dream come true: EJ Obiena caps off stellar year with SEA Games gold

Dec 20, 2019 - 7:50 PM

'It's like a telenovela. I couldn't have written it better. Things have been going really bad and in my home country, I finally win the gold,' says EJ Obiena

VINDICATION. EJ Obiena completes a six-year wait for the elusive SEA Games gold in front of the home crowd. Photo by Josh Albelda/Rappler

342 Chinese POGO workers without visas set to be deported

Dec 20, 2019 - 7:46 PM

POGOs are the country's fastest-growing industry. They have caused friction because of allegations of widespread tax evasion and the influx of tens of thousands of immigrant workers.

GAMING WORKERS. The Phil-Asian Gaming Expo at SMX Convention Center in Pasay on July 12-14, 2019. File photo by Rappler

10th ASEAN Para Games rescheduled to March 2020

Dec 20, 2019 - 4:44 PM

The ASEAN Para Games will be rescheduled due to funding and logistical constraints

RESCHEDULED. The 10th ASEAN Para Games will be moved to March 2020. Photo courtesy of Janet Tenorio

Are we hopeful for 2020? We have to be.

Dec 20, 2019 - 9:00 AM

How to move on from the #Facepalm year that was 2019

Ozil cut from video game in China over Xinjiang comments

Dec 19, 2019 - 1:45 PM

US-listed Chinese internet company NetEase removes Ozil from the game due to his 'extreme comment about China'

CONTROVERSIAL. Mesut Ozil's character in the video game gets removed in China. Photo by Adrian Dennis/AFP

Duterte confers Order of Lapulapu to SEA Games athletes

Dec 18, 2019 - 9:18 PM

The special presidential recognition is on top of cash incentives for medal-winning Filipino athletes

Duterte awards SEA Games athletes. RTVM screenshot

PH athletes clamor for same support in Vietnam SEA Games 2021

Dec 18, 2019 - 12:08 PM

'Hopefully, we still get that kind of preparation by the next SEA Games in Vietnam,' says men’s water polo team member Roy Cañete

READY FOR 2021. The Filipino athletes hope to ride on their momentum in the 2021 Vietnam SEA Games. Photo by Josh Albelda/Rappler

Husband of kidnapped Chinese woman claims she is back home

Dec 17, 2019 - 12:12 AM

But Makati Police Investigation Unit chief Major Gideon Ines Jr says they have yet to verify whether Zhou Mei, a POGO employee, is already back home

Zhou Mei's photo courtesy of Makati Police

Experts see bright PH jiu-jitsu future after SEA Games surprise

Dec 16, 2019 - 8:55 PM

The Philippine jiu-jitsu team collects 5 gold, 3 silver, and 3 bronze medals in the 2019 SEA Games

GOLDEN GIRL. Meggie Ochoa leads the Philippines' dominant display in jiu-jitsu's debut in the SEA Games. File photo by Adrian Portugal/Rappler