The longstanding PlayStation 3 is on its way out. Having enjoyed a healthy life since its release in 2006-2007 (depending on your region), it has garnered one of the biggest libraries of games for a console. Sony has announced its plans to discontinue the production of the long-standing console in Japan, while the rest of the world is expected to follow suit.
In the meantime, the PlayStation 3 has still been getting game releases. Indie titles like the arcade shooter #KillAllZombies arrived just a few days prior. The console will also be receiving the highly anticipated Persona 5 along with its successor, the PlayStation 4.
The PlayStation 3 was beloved for its many hit games like The Last Of Us and had strong features like the ability to play Blu-ray discs, and were even cheaper than most standalone Blu-ray players for a very long time.
This past week, Mass Effect Andromeda‘s character animations became talk of the town in gaming circles, with many noting that not only have they been downgraded since the initial reveal, but that they also look quite poor for a AAA game (note: we’re reserving our judgement for our review). Things took an interesting turn when some folks identified the game’s lead facial animator as Allie Rose-Marie Leost, resulting in people directly addressing her on social media.
Alongside criticism, it appears that she started receiving some unpleasant messages, which prompted BioWare to release the following statement:
Here’s where this gets weirder. Twitter user Ethan Ralph (of The Ralph Retort) posted screenshots under the tweet that appear to identify Leost as the lead animator on Andromeda before her profile was changed so we’re not sure if she actually worked on the game or not and in what capacity.
In the midst of this, another development came to light. BioWare’s Manveer Heir, who’s been the subject of controversy himself due to a series of tweets about “white people,” has left the developer. This was confirmed by the studio’s General Manager, Aaryn Flynn, in response to a user who asked if BioWare was going to address the issue. Heir later made a formal announcement, stating that he left BioWare soon after work on Andromeda was complete, and has set up an indie studio.
As for Leost, her involvement in the game remains a mystery.
The winners for the 2017 SXSW Gaming Awards have been announced.
Naughty Dog’s Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End took home the coveted Game of the Year award, earning it because voters decided the game “exemplifies overall excellence and creates a distinct gaming experience across all platforms and genres.”
Dishonored 2, Doom, Overwatch,and Titanfall 2 were also nominated for Game of the Year.
There are 23 categories in all for the SXSW Gaming Awards. The Mobile Game of the Year award went to Pokemon Go, with Overwatch winning Esports game of the year, Excellence in Multiplayer, and Trending Game of the Year. The Fan Creation of the Year award was given to the Brutal Doom 64 mod.
Twitter has announced a partnership with esports organizations ESL and DreamHack to live stream esports events and original content throughout 2017.
The partnership means that ESL One, Intel Extreme Masters, and DreamHack events will be live streamed on Twitter. The first of these will be IEM Katowice, with the Twitter stream starting on Saturday, March 4th.
The live stream will feature exclusive content created for Twitter, including a 30-minute show featuring highlights and behind-the-scenes footage. DreamHack events will also be live streamed on Twitter, beginning with DreamHack Austin, which stars April 28.
Users around the world will be able to watch the live streams on esl.twitter.com, iem.twitter.com, and dreamhack.twitter.com. The Twitter live streams will have advertising packages with television-style ad spots in addition to the original highlights.
“Esports is growing at a rapid pace and we see this collaboration as a way to tap into the engaged audience of gamers that are already using Twitter as a primary source of content,” said Twitter chief operating officer Anthony Noto. “By partnering with the leading esports companies like ESL and DreamHack, we look forward to bringing the best of esports live video and conversation together on Twitter.”
IEM Katowice’s CS:GO quarterfinals are scheduled to start this Friday, March 3 at 3:45AM PST. Yahoo Esports will be covering the event, so be sure to stay tuned to site for more content from the show floor.
Ghost Recon Wildlands is, for most of us, a video game. For the governments of France (home to publishers Ubisoft) and Bolivia, though, it’s now a cause of national beef.
Wildlands, which is set in a fictional version of Bolivia where the country is controlled by Mexican drug cartels, has upset the South American country’s government so much that it has “filed a formal complaint with the French embassy” over its depiction in the game.
Reuters reports that Carlos Romero, Bolivia’s interior minister, has “asked that the French government intervene, adding that Bolivia reserved the right to take legal action.”
“We have the standing to do it (take legal action), but at first we prefer to go the route of diplomatic negotiation,” he told reporters.
Ubisoft, in their defence, say that the fictional video game is indeed a work of fiction, issuing a statement to Reuters that says “While the game’s premise imagines a different reality than the one that exists in Bolivia today, we do hope that the in-game world comes close to representing the country’s beautiful topography.”
Who best to start a new IP for Neal Moritz’s Original Film (Fast and Furious) than the Ip Man himself? Martial artist Donnie Yen is set to star in a new feature from Moritz entitled Sleeping Dogs, which is based on the top-selling video game by Square Enix.
Yen, who recently co-starred in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and xXx: Return of Xander Cage, follows an undercover police officer (Yen) on a mission to take down one of the most powerful and dangerous criminal organizations in the world: the notorious Triads. The movie based on an action video game is set in Hong Kong and focuses on martial arts fighting, racing, boat chases … and shooting while doing all of that.
Yen, a Chinese martial artist, has long been a fight choreographer and is probably best known to audiences as the star — and Wing Chun grandmaster — of the Ip Man franchise. Original Film is producing with DJ2 Entertainment, specifically producers will be Moritz, Dmitri Johnson and Dan Jevons with Toby Ascher and Stephan Bugaj executive producing. DJ2 is currently co-producing the upcoming live-action/CG feature Sonic the Hedgehog for Sony.
Overwatch’s new and 24th hero is the robot tank Orisa, who fights with a “fusion driver,” or a projectile machine gun. In a developer update video, Overwatch game developer Jeff Kaplan says her weapon has more range than nearly any other tank hero. She’s currently on the PTR.
The robot was created by the 11-year-old genius Efi Oladele, who crafted it from discarded defense robot parts in Numbani.
Orisa’s overview describes her as the “central anchor of her team,” who defends with a protective barrier. Her “fortify” ability allows her to reduce incoming damage, and her protective barrier shields allies, like Zarya. Her “Halt!” attack is a sort mini-graviton surge that allows her to pull enemies from around corners or slow them down. And her ultimate move is a supercharger that, when thrown, damage-boosts allies within line-of-sight.
We all know trading was put on the backburner when Pokemon GO exploded in popularity and spoofing/botting with it. Since that point, there have been rumors that trading was still a long ways out.
Polygon interviewed Niantic’s senior product manager over Pokemon GO (Tatsuo Nomura) at Game Developers Conference in San Francisco and got a little bit of concrete intel:
“[Trading] won’t be through the internet,” he said of the mechanic, which remains in development and heavily under wraps. “You shouldn’t be able to exchange your Pokémon with someone who is 100 miles away from you. … The person needs to be in your proximity.”
“We don’t want to just have that be an online game that you can just exchange virtually.”
Well, that confirms it, travelers. Trading is currently intended not to be a worldwide exchange, wondertrade, or internet hookup, but is instead proximity based.
Everyone’s next thought is, of course, “well won’t spoofers just destroy it?”
Nomura recognizes just how much weight the feature holds for hardcore players.
“We’re still trying to come up with an answer [to trading] that makes sense so it doesn’t kill the game,” he said. “If we fail this, we can easily kill the game.”
It’s great to see Niantic articulate how aware they are of the devastating potential of a flawed trading economy. We wish them the best in creating a solution that makes everyone happy.
We’re also … a little bit HYPED that proximity-based trading may be what we dreamed up over a year ago at the birth of the Silph Road! This could mean that global trade routes may indeed help us all complete our dex. Time will tell!
Fun fact: Horizon Zero Dawn uses the Decima Engine, which will also power Hideo Kojima’s future mindfuck, Death Stranding. Horizon gives a little nod to this partnership in-game, and it’s easy to miss given all the robot dinosaurs out and about.
Arekkz Gaming walks us through the easter egg in the video below:
If you trade in all the items to a specific merchant, he’ll reward you with some free goodies, including, bizarrely, some warm socks. Nothing major, but it’s neat to see. I’m just going to assume the socks are a weird Mads Mikkelsen reference that nobody but Kojima will understand.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild sounds like a good video game. That absolutely works in Nintendo’s favor as it’s the largest title for the Nintendo Switch’s launch.
One particularly important point of praise comes from Japanese gaming magazin Famitsu. Since its first weekly issue in 1986, Famitsu has only tossed out 23 perfect scores.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is the 24th perfect score for Famitsu. It scored a 10/10/10/10, in the magazine’s typical format.
Not to denigrate the honor Nintendo received from Famitsu, but perfect scores have been awarded to less than perfect games. There are some wonderful ones, make no mistake, but then there are ones that don’t make much sense.