Category: News

Discworld, Doom, and HELLOOOOOO JOHNNY

Remember The Game Discworld?

The point-and-click adventure game released in 1995, and adapted from the Discworld novels, might get a re-release within our lifetimes! But it could potentially be dependent on the King of England being pretty cool.

The simplified explanation: Discworld (the game) utilises a story written by Terry Prachett for the game, so developers could work with a cohesive plot. However, studios coming and going, and the IP changing hands over the years has made understanding who has IP rights a bit complicated.

Intellectual property rights suggests that King Charles might actually own 50% of the IP, with the other 50% reverting to the original creator.

Who knows what might happen if that’s really the case. Maybe he’s a fan…We still own the IP rights…no one has spoken to us about any re-release” says Rhianna Prachett.

She also previously clarified in 2012 that the company only has ‘rights to the characters’, and not the games themselves.

Yeah… Someone Played Doom On Soundwaves

Here’s what it sounds like:

The visuals of the game are represented in a spectrogram, while the inputs are a range of high frequency notes mapped to specific keys. Instead of a controller or keyboard you use a microphone.

Technically the game doesn’t run on an unintended device, it’s just displayed and played in a weird and unintended way. But if you have a spectrogram you can give it a try yourself as the creator has uploaded the source code, complete with instructions.

Texas Chain Saw Romance

One of the playable characters in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, Johnny, has a fresh new look. Introducing Shirtless Johnny, and don’t you worry, he’s a free cosmetic for everyone. So open a bottle of wine, get comfortable, and then murder video game people. Happy Late Valentine’s!

News Nibbles!

Taco Bell held an E3 style event called Taco Bell’s 2024 Live Mas Event. Complete with hyping up chicken tenders, as well as live performances, all with that ‘gamer pizazz’. This isn’t really gaming related, but it was uncanny.

XBOX will be announcing their new business updates on February 16th at 6am for those of you in Queensland. The announcement will be through their official podcast, and will feature Phil Spencer, Sarah Bond, and Matt Booty.


And now for some upcoming games!

February 16

  • Mario vs. Donkey Kong – Nintendo Switch

February 20

  • Skull and Bones – PC, PS5, Xbox Series X
  • Nightingale – PC

February 21

  • Bandle Tale: A League of Legends story – PC, Nintendo Switch
  • Last Epoch – PC

February 22

  • Pacific Drive – PC, PS5
  • Sons of the Forest – PC

That’s it this week in gaming news!

Restructure and Rebirth

Xbox announcement inbound.

The Xbox rumour mill has been working overtime lately. It started with reports that Hi-fi Rush, Starfield, and other games were planned for release on Playstation 5. Now there’s speculation that we could see a complete overhaul of the Xbox business model, maybe even moving away from consoles entirely. On the 5th of February Phil Spencer, the head of Microsoft Gaming, posted on Twitter: “We’re listening, and we hear you, we’ve been planning a business update event for next week, where we look forward to sharing more details with you about our vision for the future of Xbox. Stay tuned.” While it seems likely they’ll be addressing the rumors, we won’t know for certain until next week so stay tuned!

Final Fantasy VII Rebirth

One week after its State of Play showcase, Playstation treated us to a second SoP exclusively about Final Fantasy VII Rebirth, which won Most Anticipated Game at last year’s game awards. They unveiled a new trailer, eleven minutes of gameplay footage, and plenty of new game details. The standout features being the expansive game map and the intricately detailed graphics.
In the presentation, they also announced a demo, where you can play as both Cloud and Sephiroth. The demo is currently available, and an additional portion will be added before the game’s full release on the 29th of February.

Big Changes coming to Square Enix

Despite the hype around Final Fantasy VII Rebirth, its developer Square Enix has just announced it is changing its approach to production. Takashi Kiry, the company president, shared that the studio intends to reduce its dependence on outsourcing and focus on producing large-scale titles internally. This means fewer games overall but the ability to prioritise quality, which is a damn good thing.

Upcoming Games Releases:

Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden releases to PC, PS5, XSX/S on February 13.
Ultros releases to PS4, PS5, PC on February 13
Tomb Raider Remastered releases to Switch, PC, PS, Xbox on February 14
PlateUp! releases to Nintendo Switch on February 15

100% Glitch, Pokemon Heist, and More Layoffs

Oops! All Done!

Let me set the scene for you. You’re super excited for a Suicide Squad game, and early access has just opened. You might have cleared the evening for this, you’ve got your snacks and you’ve settled in. You let the game install and update while you were at work, so it’s ready to go. You fire it up and! You finished the game?

Rocksteady, the developer of Suicide Squad, had to take their game offline less than an hour after opening, after a number of players booted it up for the first time only to encounter a glitch that auto-completed the game for you. These players had purchased the Deluxe Edition, which is more expensive and grants players access 72 hours before it officially releases on February 2nd. But they got $20 of in-game currency as an apology.

Layoffs This Week

1,900 Activision Blizzard and Xbox employees are being laid off by Microsoft, while Mike Ybarra, Blizzard president, steps down.

“As we move forward in 2024, the leadership of Microsoft Gaming and Activision Blizzard is committed to aligning on a strategy and an execution plan with a sustainable cost structure that will support the whole of our growing business… As part of this process we have made the painful decision to reduce the size of our gaming workforce” says Microsoft Gaming CEO, Phil Spencer.

Allen Adham, Blizzard’s chief design officer, is also stepping down. Microsoft has selected Johanna Faries as Blizzard’s new president, who used to be head of Call of Duty esports.


In other-layoff-news, 61 Sega of America employees will be laid off in March.


In-funnier-layoff-news, one dev at Blizzard was able to utilise his employee perks to get himself World of Warcraft for free until 2033. Adam Holisky, former Blizzard employee, used all the subscription codes he hadn’t activated in Keyring before he got axed. Yay?


That’s right, a Pokemon heist! Or rather, Pokemon cards heist, with three intruders managing to grab over 35,000 Pokemon cards from a collectible store in San Jose, called Tofu’s Trading.

The thieves were able to slide through the side doors, despite the doors being blocked by a fridge. The motion detectors were faulty and without the alarm they were in and out in 10 minutes. They were also able to grab Magic: The Gathering booster packs, and the shop’s WHOLE cash register.

Amy Simpson, the owner, believes it wasn’t targeted as the thieves “didn’t know what to take”. She’s taking it in good humour, making fun of how committed to crawling around the thieves were, all captured on security cameras.

News Nibbles!

Universal in Florida will be presenting ‘Super Nintendo World’ next year, adding a Nintendo-themed theme park to their ‘Epic Universe’, which is supposed to contain five worlds.

Embracer Group cancelled a Deus Ex game, but a group of former Volition developers, who were shut down by Embracer Group, have formed their own studio; Shapeshifter Games.

Nintendo are planning on making 10 million Switch 2s by March 2025, to hopefully prevent a shortage problem upon launch.


And now for some upcoming games!

February 1

  • Granblue Fantasy: Relink – PC, PS5, PS4

February 2

  • Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash – PC, PS5, XSX, PS4, XBO, Switch
  • Persona 3 Reload – PC, XSX, XBO
  • Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League – PC, PS5, XSX

February 6

  • CLeM – PC, Switch

That’s it this week in gaming news!

Palworld Tops, Game Devs Down, and Some Game Bytes

This week in gaming news: Palworld tops the gaming charts and rumour mills, a dismal prediction for Game Devs in 2024, and some special gaming bytes.

For those living under a rock, this week has been dwarfed by the unexpected boom of Palworld into the gaming stratosphere. The monster collecting survival game Palworld, has not only beat out opening week records set by Cyberpunk 2077, Elden Ring and Hogwarts Legacy, selling over 7 million copies in the last 5 days since release, but it also has beaten Valve’s own Counter-Strike 2 All-Time Peak player count, becoming the second most played game of all time with over 1.86 million concurrent players. However, this has not come without hiccups. The game has released in early access on steam and game preview on game pass, so bugs are to be expected, but steam and Microsoft are publishing different versions. Each with their own bugs and server issues that have required emergency meetings with Epic Games backend, and individual updates with expectations that they won’t coalesce until crossplay is established in the future. Until then, Microsoft players will have to deal with the lack of dedicated servers and slow updates, and the quality of life updates seen with steam users.
Internally, developer Pocket Pair has had to deal with a slew of press and player accusations with Community Manager and CEO reporting to have been receiving death threats, “slanderous comments, and outlandish claims.” Some of these being claims they “ripped off Pokémon” and utilised AI to either create the monsters in the game or that GenAI is used in the game. The CEO Takuro Mizobe has responded to at least one claim, stating that “We have absolutely no intention of infringing upon the intellectual property of other companies.” But not all are convinced, with former head of Pokémon’s legal team Dan McGowan saying the game “looks like the usual ripoff nonsense that I would see a thousand times a year when I was Chief Legal Officer of Pokémon.” And not without cause, with a mod already released and removed that not only put Pokémon into Palworld, but also Ash, Misty, and Team Rocket. Creator, Toasted Shoes, put out a statement after the mods removal.

“Nintendo has come for me, please leave me in your thoughts and prayers”

The 2024 Forecast for Game Developers
After more layoffs Game Devs are facing a hard reality this week with Riot laying off 11% of its workforce. That’s 530 people losing their jobs with the blame being put on management’s decision to rapidly expand after the pandemic. And it’s not the only one, with the trend continuing in more studios. 2k’s 31st Union is cutting team members even after the “momentous” move to California. Embracer Group is trying to find a buyer for developer Piranha Bytes. And the developer of recently released VR game Micro Machines: Mini Challenge Mayhem, WIMO Games, has announced they’ve closed their doors with around three dozen staff left out in the cold.
With one third of developers being impacted by layoffs in the last year, and more than half of developers concerned about their futures we can see there are challenges to face in the future. Experts are increasing the worry with expectations the gaming industry will face challenges possibly into 2025 after the abundance of games released in 2020, and 2021 pushing unrealistic release schedules. Despite this, industry leaders are optimistic of the long-term survivability of game development, leaning of the industries resilience and potential growth in the future.

And now for the Gaming Bytes:

  • Awesome Games Done Quick is back with AGDQ2024 streaming over 135 speedruns and raising over 5 million us dollars for The Prevent Cancer Foundation during the week-long event.
  • While earlier this week it was rumoured BulletStorm VR was to be removed from the PS5 Store and auto refunded… it has come to light that only Japan and South Korea will be receiving this golden ticket with the rest of the world left to fend for ourselves.
  • And for those people looking forward to the game Indiana Jones and the Great Ciricle, Harrison Ford is NOT voicing Indiana Jones, rather Troy Baker the voice actor behind The Last of Us’s Joel, BioShock Infinite’s Booker DeWitt , and many more.
  • OH! And the finalists for the Freeplay Awards for 2024 have been announced. If you don’t know what they are, it is the world’s longest-running independent games festival with the awards ceremony to take place on the 29th of February in Melbourne. These awards focus on Australian and New Zealand indi grass roots game artists and developers with this year’s nominees to include Unpacking from Witch Beam Games, Wayward Strand from ghost pattern, and Dap from Melting Parrot, plus many more. For the full list of nominations CLICK HERE

And now for the upcoming game releases.
Friday the 26th brings us two new releases with Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth coming to PC, PlayStation, & Xbox, and Tekken 8 coming to PC and Next Gen Consoles.
On Tuesday the 30th Rugby 24 to PC, PlayStation, & Xbox.
Wednesday the 31st the DLC for 2021’s Eastward, Eastward: Octopia DLC and is coming to PC & Switch
And lastly, Thursday the 1st of February, Granblue Fantasy: Relink comes to PC and PlayStation.

Bad News Can’t Keep a Good Boy Down

Turmoil in the Kingdom

Staff at Australian game studio Mighty Kingdom have indicated they would leave the company if proposed resolutions are approved by shareholders at an upcoming extraordinary General Meeting. Key in these proposals is a replacement of the board and a return of former CEO Shane Yeend. In a letter outlining their position several staff are quoted regarding Mr Yeend’s relationship with the company,

“He was our CEO for 6 whole months and made no real effort to understand us, how we work, and the work and sacrifice it’s taken for us to make the turnaround we have over the past 2 years.”

 “I don’t feel the working environment will be safe if Yeend and his connections are in charge. I won’t stay around for it.”

 “If the resolutions pass, you will have driven a knife through the heart of MK and its people. We will not stay, and everything that is currently representative of a business that will succeed, will simply tumble like a house of cards. Who is going to do the work when we all stand up and leave? I would encourage our shareholders to remember that they are investing in the people and the talent, because it is the people who make the games, not the business. If you vote for Shane, you vote against MK, and we won’t be here to see what happens next if you do this.”

Mr Yeend has posted his own letter defending himself which you can find linked on here.


A Good Boi

Awesome Games Done Quick, the yearly speedrunning event which raises money for the Prevent Cancer Foundation is on again and runs until the 21st of January.  This year’s event  has featured a first however. Peanut Butter part time speedrunner and full time dog has been featured playing the NES classic Gyromite. The shiba inu spent a year of vigorous training to play the game with his custom adaptive controller. Assisted by human JSR_, Peanut Butter livestreamed the play through but due to some unfortunate RNG was unable to post an official time due a game over.  Despite this EVERYBODY agreed that he was a very good boy.

Preview | Alan Wake 2 "The Dark Place" - XboxEra

Take Two? But there can be only one!

Take Two Interactive are suing Remedy to prevent the trademark of the developer’s new logo. They argue that remedy’s logo, a stylised R too closely resembles the logo of subsidiary company Rockstar, which also features the letter R. Take two have a long history of aggressively protecting their trademarks including challenge the trademark of the videogame ‘It Takes Two’.

Rickey's World Famous Louisiana Hot Sauce: A Review | Arcade on a Gravel Road

Billy Mitchell never change

Hot sauce enthusiast, documentary subject and infamous video game player Billy Mitchell has settled his lawsuit against video game record platform Twin Galaxies after being banned and having his scores removed back in 2018 after allegations of cheating.   The outcome of which is that Billy’s scores will be reinstated… in a historic archive showing he used to have those records before they were removed in disgrace.  He is still banned.

Bethesda Reveals New Indiana Jones Game - Game Informer

Xbox, New Games

Set your alarm clocks as Microsoft will be holding an Xbox Developer Direct tomorrow (the 19th of January) morning at 6am AEST! The event is set to include Obsidians new game Avowed, Hellblade 2, Ara: History Untold and a first look at the upcoming Indiana Jones title by Machine Games.

Palworld" creator says game is more than Pokémon with guns

Videogame releases

January 19: Bulletstorm VR (PlayStation VR2, Quest, PC), Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown (Playstation, Xbox, Switch, PC), Turnip Boy Robs A Bank (Xbox, Switch, PC), Another Code: Recollection (Switch), The Last of Us Part II Remastered (PlayStation 5) and Palworld (Xbox and PC)

January 24: Graven (PC), Immortality (PlayStation 5)

January 25: Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy (PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, PC)

The Robots Are Taking Over, Everything is Fine

You love gaming news! I love gaming news! Oh my god let’s be best friends and enjoy some
gaming news together!

Layoffs! Layoffs! Layoffs!

2024 has started off strong with two major rounds of layoffs and we’re not even halfway through January! The first comes from beleaguered middleware development behemoth Unity, who this week announced that they no longer needed a whole 25% of its workforce. That’s 1,800 people who are now competing for an ever-decreasing pool of jobs in the games industry. It’s not all bad news though, because Unity’s share price rose 4% after the layoffs were announced.

Not to be outdone, Amazon just announced they were laying off 35% of Twitch’s employees, estimated to be around 500 people.

AI Voices Are AI-OK

Mere weeks after SAG-AFTRA ended their strikes over issues such as AI being used to replace human actors, the guild has struck a new deal that says that the process is good, actually. On Tuesday, SAG-AFTRA entered into an agreement with Australian-based Replica Studios, an AI voiceover studio, to establish guidelines for the use of artificial intelligence in video games.

The union made the announcement at CES in Las Vegas, with Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, the executive director, highlighting the inclusion of informed consent provisions for the creation of AI-generated voice replicas and the implementation of secure storage protocols for digital assets.

Some prominent voice over artists have come out against the move. Erika Ishii, who voices Valkyrie in Apex Legends, wrote: “Approved by… WHO exactly?? Was any one of the ‘affected members’ who signed off on this a working voice actor?” Elias Toufexis, who has games such as Starfield, Deus Ex and Death Stranding in their credits, added: “I would humbly consider myself one of the top voice actors working in games. No one asked me about this. No one reached out for my opinion.”

Steam heats up its AI terms

Speaking of AI, this week Valve issued new guidelines for how they handle AI content in games released on Steam. From now on, developers will need to describe how they use AI in the development and execution of new releases.

Basically, they’re putting AI into two categories: Pre-Generated, which means that the game uses content made through an AI tool, and Live-generated. In either case, developers have to pinky swear that AI content that is already in the game does not infringe any copyrights, but in Live-generated games they also have to cross their hearts and hope to die that the game won’t generate any illegal content.

Players will be able to alert Valve to games that they believe are infringing these rules through a new button in the Steam overlay.

Last of Us Gets Its Abby

I’ll be honest, I don’t know what any of this means, but it’s big news this week that actress Kaitlyn Dever is joining the second season of the TV adaptation of The Last of Us. She’ll be playing the role of Abby, who was one of the playable characters in The Last Of Us Part 2 who gets tangled up in…I don’t know, I started reading her Wikipedia page and got lost. But apparently Abby is a big deal and Kaitlyn Dever was really good in Unbelievable so here we are.

Series co-creators Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann said that “Nothing matters more than talent, and we’re thrilled to have an acclaimed performer like Kaitlyn join Pedro, Bella and the rest of our family.”

New Game Releases!

That horrible dry season where we were all forced to stop buying new games for a few weeks and go through our backlog is over, so now we can go back to buying games in a futile attempt to fill the empty space in our hearts. Here’s some of the notable games coming out this week!

Today sees the release of
Devil May Cry: Peak of Combat (iOS, Android)
Unstoppable (PC)
Radiance (PC)
Dig Dug (C64)

I need a lie down. Back to the gang in the studio!

Bobby GONE, The Mouse is OUT, Jack Black is Steve, and More!

Bobby Kotick Is Gone

The now-former CEO of Activision Blizzard has officially stepped down now that the 2023 year has ended and the acquisition by Microsoft proceeds. He won’t be the only executive-level employee leaving, with more expected to depart as the transition process develops. Otherwise, the leadership teams for Activision Publishing and Blizzard will remain in place.

The now-vacant CEO spot won’t be filled, and instead executives will report directly to Matt Booty, President of Microsoft Game Content and Studios.

Minecrafters, Grab Your Picks…

If you forgot that there was a Minecraft movie on the way, well, here’s your reminder. And now you also know that Jack Black, who has played Bowser in the Super Mario Bros. Movie, will be starring as the main man himself, Minecraft Steve. You may also know Jack Black from a few other films. The movie will be directed by Jared Hess, known for Nacho Libre, and Napoleon Dynamite.

Jason Momoa had reportedly been in negotiations to voice Minecraft Steve last year.

The Minecraft movie has been in development since 2014, while filming began in December 2023. It is scheduled to release in early April, 2025, meaning it will have been in development for 10-ish years. It hasn’t been the smoothest journey for the movie, as a few directors have dropped out, and the initial release date of May 24th, 2019 obviously not working out.

The Mouse Is OUT!

And a horror game has already been created within 24 hours of ‘Steamboat Willie’ entering the public domain. The game, called Infestation 88, has a terrifying depiction of the mouse hunting the player down in a spooky warehouse.

Disney is rather infamous for its heavy-handed approach to protecting its copyright, as the company has been reported to discourage a stonemason from carving Winnie-the-Pooh into a child’s gravestone. In fact, Steamboat Willie was initially set to enter the public domain in 1984, but the company lobbied US copyright laws to extend to “the life of the author plus 50 years”.

Now that the fated day has finally arrived, along with Infestation 88, a horror movie has been announced, as well as NFTs created, dubstep remixes mixed, and just generally making the mouse do things that Disney definitely wouldn’t approve of.

The 2023 Steam Awards

Let’s round up another round of awards! The Steam Awards is pretty straightforward, nominate your favourite games and then vote for them! Games also can’t win more than two categories.

Sit Back and Relax went to Dave the Diver, and the Labour of Love Award was granted to Red Dead Redemption 2.

Better With Friends went to Lethal Company, and Most Innovative Gameplay went to Starfield.

Outstanding Story-Rich Game and Game of the Year goes to Baldur’s Gate 3.

Some News Nibbles

Peanut Butter, a shiba inu, will be participating in Awesome Games Done Quick, a charity speedrunning event. He is probably the first dog to get into speedrunning video games, and he will be beating Gyromite in front of an audience.

The PlayStation 5 has officially passed 50 million units, managing to sell 10 million units in the latter half of 2023.

Square Enix has expressed a desire to apply AI technology ‘more aggressively’ to create ‘new forms of content’ for consumers, with Square Enix president, Takashi Kiryu stating “I believe that generative AI has the potential not only to reshape was we create, but also to fundamentally change the processes by which we create, including programming”.

And now for some upcoming game releases!

January 11

  • War Hospital – PC, PS5, XBX

That’s it for game releases. You have a week to work through your backlog before games start getting released again.

Hacking, Potential Gacha Regulation and Video Games helping with Depression

GTA6 Hacker Sentenced


Arion Kurtaj, a member of the international hacker group Lapsus$ has been sentenced after a cyber attack on Rockstar Games in 2022 which led to the leaking of about 90 videos of footage from the unreleased GTA6.


The hack in question was made while Kurtaj was on bail in police custody for prior hacking using an Amazon Firestick, his hotel TV and a mobile phone as his laptop was confiscated at the time.


Due to his continued intent to return to hacking as soon as he is able and the high risk to the public because of this he will be confined to a secure hospital for life, unless regarded by doctors to be no longer a threat.


China Cracking Down on Gacha Mechanics?


New laws have been proposed by the Chinese Government to reduce consumer spending in online games and to combat predatory practices.  This would include implementing a spending limit and prohibiting incentives such as daily log-in bonuses or rewards for using real money for the first time.  In addition the laws would require studios to have “reasonable” drop rates in lootbox and gacha mechanics.


After this proposal was announced the share prices of Tencent and NetEase (two of the largest gaming companies in China) fell 16% and 25% respectively.


In response to this the regulator said that “it will study the industry’s reaction and improve the draft rules,”  so it remains to be seen what changes to the regulations will be made and how they will be implemented.


Video Games Help with Depression?


A study undertaken in Germany and published in Frontiers in Psychiatry, titled Effects of a video game intervention on symptoms, training motivation, and visuo-spatial memory in depression has shown that, using Super Mario Odyssey as an intervention for a period of the 6 week trial resulted in more significant reduction of depression symptoms than of those participants who underwent standard treatment or used a cognitive training computer program.


The study aimed to investigate whether playing video games could help people with the cognitive deficits associated with Major Depressive Disorder, specifically mood, training motivation and visuo-spatial memory functions (that is, the ability to retain and process an object’s identity and spatial location).


The participants of the study were 46 individuals who have been diagnosed with depression and who do not frequently play video games in their leisure time.  The participants in the video game group were shown to have a significant decrease of depressive symptoms as well as higher levels of motivation to perform the training.


This is following a study published in 2020, Trauma, treatment and Tetris: video gaming increases hippocampal volume in male patients with combat-related post traumatic stress disorder, where in addition to therapy participants played Tetris for 60 minutes a day resulting in reductions of the symptoms of PTSD, depression and anxiety.

News to ruin your Christmas

Vale Max Payne

Actor James McCaffrey best known for his role of Max Payne from the Max Payne series and the very Max Payne-like but legally distinct Alex Casey from Alan Wake has died at the age of 65. He passed at his home in New York after battling with cancer.  Despite voicing multiple iconic video game characters James never became a fan of the medium saying in a 2020 interview with Saratoga Living:

“I’m not a big fan of video games, and I never have been. The first time I did Max Payne, it was, like, six hours a day in a sound booth, and it was about 400 pages of script. But, I’ve never seen it, I’ve never played it, I have no desire to. I lack the proper appreciation for video games.”

Marvel's Wolverine | Insomniac Games

Insomniac Leak + Suicide Squad Leak

Marvel’s Spiderman 2 developer Insomniac has fallen victim to a massive 1.67 TB data leak by ransomware group Rhysida. Included are development files for released and upcoming projects such as Wolverine, details on cancelled projects like Sunset Overdrive 2, business contract and personal HR records and communications. After failing to ransom the data for $2 million some data was sold to undisclosed buyers and the rest released.

In other leaks the files of a closed alpha version of the upcoming Suicide Squad Kill the Justice League have been pored through by dataminers and released details on the game’s plot including some major character reveals.

“It is very disappointing to see details being shared ahead of the game’s release, so we can only urge you to try to avoid spoilers where you can. And please try not to impact the enjoyment of other players by posting spoilers.”

Naughty Dog Ceases Development Of The Last Of Us Online - Game Informer

Last of Us Online Dead

If you were looking forward to Naughty Dog’s long-teased multiplayer spin off for The Last of Us 2 than I have bad news for you. It has been cancelled. The troubled development saw the studio trying to wrangle their traditional style of development with a live service model at one point even bringing in Bungie to try and find a path forward. This week the studio announced it will be ceasing development on the title after being unable to find the needed balance. In a statement on their website Naughty Dog justifies their decision as such:

“In ramping up to full production, the massive scope of our ambition became clear. To release and support The Last of Us Online we’d have to put all our studio resources behind supporting post launch content for years to come, severely impacting development on future single-player games.”

DOTA2 Bans

Valve has been spreading the holiday cheer in DOTA2 this year with their festive Frostivus event where players have a chance of getting a wide range of gifts. Including bans. Some players found their stocking filled with “Highly Toxic Lump of Coal” when opening their Frostivus gift which liberally gave out timed and permanent bans to accounts who were toxic, smurfing or otherwise violated the Terms of Service. The studio have taken an aggressive position towards cheaters and other toxic members of their community, stating in the release notes:

“If you’re on the Naughty List, we’ve got great news for everybody else and bad news for you because this year is gonna be a bloodbath.”

Hitman's holiday bonus level is a silly, brilliant and entirely welcome little extra | VG247

Game releases

December 25th will see Santa come down your chimney if you’re that way inclined.

The Demise of E3, the Collapse of The Day Before, and the Triumph of Baldur’s Gate 3

Here is your news recap for the 14th of December:

Multiplayer isn’t coming to Starfield anytime soon.

The team behind Skyrim Together, a popular multiplayer mod for Skyrim, has announced that they will not be completing their multiplayer mod for Starfield because the game is “fucking trash.”
In a post to Skyrim Together’s discord sever, one of the developers said “The game is boring, bland, and the main draw of Bethesda games, exploration in a lively and handcrafted world, was completely gone. I’m not gonna put my heart and soul into a mod for a game as mediocre as this.”
There are plenty of Starfield fans out there though and this is disappointing news if you were looking forward to traveling the stars with your friends, but there is some hope. Since they had begun work on the project, already porting about 70% of the code, the team is releasing what they’ve currently done in case anyone wants to finish the mod themselves.

The Day Before was bad, and now it’s gone.

Starting 2023 as one of the most wishlisted games on steam, The Day Before is a zombie shooter that promised a lot and has delivered on practically nothing. It released last week and was immediately inundated with negative reviews citing visual bugs and game-breaking glitches. Players who could actually play the game didn’t find the game they’d been promised in marketing, but a poorly crafted, empty, shooter.

Just four days after it launched, The Day Before was completely removed from steam and developer Fntastic announced its closure. “Today, we announce the closure of Fntastic studio. Unfortunately, The Day Before has failed financially, and we lack the funds to continue. All income received is being used to pay off debts to our partners,” their statement on twitter reads. “We apologize if we didn’t meet your expectations. We did everything within our power, but unfortunately, we miscalculated our capabilities. Creating games is an incredibly challenging endeavor.”

If it seems like a good response on their part, consider this seems to be the end of their accountability. They later reply to some (well-earned) criticism with “This was our first big experience. Shit happens.” Which is less good. If you are one of the unlucky people who bought the game Fntastic have said they’re working with steam to provide refunds for any players who want one.


Baldurs Gate 3 Sweeps the Game Awards.

In case you missed it– Baldurs Gate 3 dominated this year’s Game Awards. It won the Player’s Voice Award and five of its 8 direct nominations, that being Best Performance, Best Community Support, Best RPG, Best Multiplayer, and of course Game of The Year. The only nominations that Baldur’s Gate 3 did not win were Best Music and Score, which went to Final Fantasy, and Best Narrative and Game Direction, both of which were awarded to Alan Wake 2.

E3 is actually dead.

E3 (A.K.A the Electronic Entertainment Expo) is dead. For real this time. Following the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, more and more game publishers opt to manage their presentations independently and so E3 struggled to reclaim its former glory. Now, after years of evident decline, E3 officially closes its doors, marking the end of an era. A statement on the official website simply reads: “After more than two decades of E3, each one bigger than the last, the time has come to say goodbye. Thanks for the memories.”


That’s all, this week, in gaming news.