Government backs Aussie gaming.
Screen Australia has announced the backing of Aussie games to the tune of $3 million AUD through it’s “Games: Expansion Pack” fund and “First Nations Games Studio” fund. The First Nations Games Studio fund awarded AU$600,000 to two studios, Guck, & Awesome Black, both working on projects related to First Nations storytelling and talent development. Additionally, the Games: Expansion Pack fund provided AU$2.4 million in funding to 21 different studios across the country. The funded games cover a wide range of genres and platforms and aim to accelerate skills and creativity within the Australian games industry. Additionally, the Federal Government has introduced the Digital Games Tax Offset, providing a 30% refundable tax offset for projects with budgets over $500,000. Click the following for a list of all the projects funded and their synopses.
Smell Like a Gamer
In recent news, Xbox is going a bit crazy with the themed sweepstakes with both a Barbie movie tie in with a Barbie Dream House Custom Console, and Barbie and Ken controller face plates. But they pulled out all the stops for the game release of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge. This release not only has a sweepstake for four controllers designed after each of the turtles themselves, but the can also “…come with a built-in scent diffuser shaped like a slice of delicious New York ‘za.” Smell-O-Vision at it’s finest. If you’re interested in the TMNT Mutant Mayhem Controller this giveaway will be running till August 13 this year, where you will need to retweet the Xbox Game Pass sweepstakes tweet or whatever they will end up being called with the X rebrand.
the pizza party never stops with these guys🍕
be sure to see @TMNTMovie in theatres 8/2/23 in the US!
— Xbox Game Pass (@XboxGamePass) July 24, 2023
AI in the News Goes Glorbo
This week the World of Warcraft Reddit community tricked an online publishing AI by feeding it false data about a made-up character, Glorbo, it’s mandatory item Klikclac, and their nemesis Quackion, the Aspect of Ducks, resulting in the generation of fake content presented as actual news under the pseudonym Lucy Reed. This account is credited to writing near 80 articles a day with potentially little to no oversight. This incident raises questions about the validity of AI automated publishing and the potential impact on the increased value of human generated, or at least human moderated, content.
Now in Activision Blizzard News
Sigh… Look I’m just as sick as you that these guys keep being in the news. TL;DR is basically, they screwed up the Diablo 4 season release and people are complaining that company’s being cheap, of unfair nerfing, that the menu design is tricking people into buying the season pass, of new items causing nausea, and that some player’s characters butts are out in the open. Also, that the FTC has backed out of the whole merger with Microsoft blockage, and Overwatch 2 is coming to Steam. To read more about these stories, check out the links in the news post on our Facebook page @ZEDgamesau.
And now for a couple of quick bytes:
- Mods have given your favourite NPCs in Stardew Valley AI Brains, yep, think about that like Jordan Gerblick of GamesRadar;
“…when you know those video game characters had to have their existing inner-workings hollowed out and replaced with the increasingly ominous power of AI, I can only imagine those interactions feeling incredibly creepy – as if it’s not really them anymore.”
(Image credit: Eric Barone)
The mod is Talk to Inworld’s AI Villagers and is now available on NexusMods.
- And the US Entertainment Software Rating Board wants to scan you and child’s face to validate age with digital purchases. The proposal to the FTC would have you upload a photo into a system controlled by Yoti – an Epic Games subsidiary, with collaboration with company SuperAwesome, which would be analysed and then deleted. They go on to claim the system poses no substantial risk to parents’ privacy.
And now for some of the upcoming game releases.
On Friday July 28, Disney Illusion Island is coming to Switch. Monday 31st, F1 Manager 2023 is coming to PC, PlayStation, and Xbox. Wednesday August 2nd, Ninja or Die: Shadow of the Sun is coming to PC. And lastly on Thursday August 3rd, explore nature, relax, and take photos in Flutter Away coming to PC.