This week Paul heads the Zed Games crew with Cam and Peter to talk the week in Gaming News reported by Maylee. The team then discuss the 2023 Gaming Awards, before Paul takes us on a walk on the wild side through the Irish countryside in Highland Song, and Tobi rounds it out with an obsessive look into the idle game Progress Knight.
So grab your walking sticks and auto clicking macros listen here or find us at your favourite podcast player.
Tag: game development
Fallout Is Canon!
Fans and fiends of Fallout, you’ve probably heard about the upcoming live-action series coming to Prime Video in April, and if not, now you have! And here’s what we know about it so far: it takes place nine years after the events of Fallout 4, in the year 2296. It’s supposed to be accessible to those unfamiliar with the games, but still contain the humour and vibe of the games. And one more thing; the events in the show will be canon according to Todd Howard.
“We view what’s happening in the show as canon. That’s what’s great when someone else looks at your work and then translates it in some fashion.”
It’s not the first time developers have been inspired by a live-action adaptation of their games, as The Last Of Us creators also felt similarly inspired by the live-action show.
What Even Is An Indie Game Anyway?
Dave the Diver is a game that was nominated for Best Indie Game at The Game Awards, which has sparked some discussion over what constitutes an indie game as the team, Mint Rocket, that made the game was a subsidiary of a multi-billion-dollar company, Nexon.
Mint Rocket is a team of less than 30 people and was launched by Nexon as a division that specialises in games, “focusing on the essence of fun”. As a result, many people don’t consider Dave the Diver to be a ‘true indie’.
Geoff Keighly, host and producer of The Game Awards has weighed in, saying “You can argue, does independent mean the budget of the game, does independent mean where the source of financing was, does it mean the team size?”
“The definition of an indie game is hard to define, and that ultimately it’s up to The Game Awards jury to pick nominees.”
Why Does Naruto Sound Like That?
There’s a Naruto fighting game out and about called Naruto X Boruto Ultimate Ninja STORM CONNECTIONS, it’s got fast-paced ninja battles and a story, but I’m not here to talk about that. I’m here to talk about the more awkward line deliveries that have been discovered.
Understandably, it has faced some criticisms, however, the voice actors insist that they didn’t actually record those lines… entirely.
The game covers snippets of events that have taken place across the franchise, and even dives into scenes that would be very familiar to those who have played Naruto games in the past. Except that when comparing the scenes, well, the original line delivery was just better. And fans aren’t the only ones confused about it.
Maile Flanagan, Naruto’s English voice actor, has said “I can guarantee I did not say that line that way… And I guarantee no voice director of Naruto or the games would have me do that in that way.”
Why Does Silent Hill Ascension Sound Like That?
The interactive television series, Silent Hill: Ascension, has sparked rumours that the script might have been written by AI. Users can stream the episodes and collectively vote on choices in the series, influencing its direction. However, some scenes have been facing some scrutiny.
One particular scene of note has the main characters out in the woods, doing Silent Hill business, when a lone NPC comes across them in a flustered state. He declares he has been foraging for berries, and he has foraged for berries for many seasons. And he makes jams. And he offers the jams before disappearing into the forest, presumably to forage for more berries.
Jacob Navok insists that every word in Ascension was written by real people.
And now for some upcoming games!
- Biomutant – Switch
- Gangs of Sherwood – PC, PS5, XSX
- Hawked – PC
- Pixel Cafe – PC, PS5, XSX, Switch
- This Means Warp – PS5, XSX, PS4, XBO, Switch
- Tintin Reporter – Cigars of the Pharaoh – PS4
- Toasterball – Switch
- Batman: Arkham Trilogy – Switch
- Dragon Quest Monsters: The Dark Prince – Switch
- Make Way – PC
- The Wagadu Chronicles – PC
- Born of Bread – PC
- Tram Simulator Urban Transit – PC
- Arizona Sunshine 2 – PC VR, PSVR 2
- The Day Before – PC
- Lego Bricktales VR – Quest
- Terminator: Dark Fate – Defiance – PC
- Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader – PC, PS5, XSX
That’s it this week in gaming news!
This week the Zed Gamers goes wild, with Maylee talking Roblox in Gaming News, Caroline travels through bits, chips, and cosmic insanity with a review of WORLD OF HORROR (ALL CAPS), and Cameron gets convoluted in a remake/remix/rewind twisty twisted review of Air Twister.
Take-Two Talks Taking More
Last week saw GTA 6 developer Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick have a different take on gaming pricing. While gaming fans hold the game time to price value high, Zelnick wants to take that on board with future titles with a statement to investors saying
“In terms of pricing for any entertainment property, basically the algorithm is the value of the expected entertainment usage, which is to say the per hour value times the number of expected hours plus the terminal value that’s perceived by the customer in ownership, if the title is owned rather than rented or subscribed to.” While this does sound like a dollar per hour measurement, he has clarified the statement this week that this is not a linear relationship, but rather a statement on the value of games. And we can definitely trust the CEO of Take-Two, a company whose biggest earner is GTA Online.
Game Engine Gamemaker Goes Game Dev Friendly
In the wake of Game Publishers Unity and Epic calling for price “restructuring”, Gamemaker, a popular tool for creating 2D and 3D games, has released their new price point and bucked the recent trend. Because of the recent three-fold increase in active users since they joined the Opera family, instead of gouging the user base and changing from a monthly model to a per game install or price per hour played, Gamemaker is celebrating the explosion in users by announcing a new free option for non-commercial use with the ability to export their games to Windows, Mac, and Linux without paying any fees. They’ve also included their asset bundles for use in this free tier. Upgrading is also simple, want to monetise? $99.99USD. Want to put it on consoles? Well, that’s an Enterprise subscription. With games utilising this engine like Undertale, Webbed, Honey, I joined a Cult, and over 290 more listed in Gamemaker’s showcase, we can be sure to see a gamut of Indi games from this engine in the future.
Roblox Sued Over Child Safety
In the pandemic years Roblox saw a massive influx of underage users (over 60% of users are under 16 years of age) due to the social nature and declaration of safety for minors that the platform claims. The community guidelines claim that ““Roblox is a safe space for meeting online friends, chatting, and collaborating on creative projects.” And “If your child is under 13, we make it extremely difficult for strangers on Roblox to contact them.”
However, a group of parents have filed a civil action suit against Roblox for not meeting their end of the deal, with claims of grooming, sexual content, and the inability to monitor their children’s purchases due to Robux obscuring transaction worth.
Roblox Corp provided a statement to PCGAMER disputing the allegations and reinforced that the site was safe “for people of all ages.”
Now for some quick gaming bytes!
- Xbox is running a Bluey Sweepstakes to celebrate the upcoming release of Bluey the Videogame coming to PC and consoles. The winner will not only receive the game but also receive a custom Bluey Themed Xbox Series S and controller. Wackadoo!
The perfect way to play Bluey The Videogame: with a #Bluey Xbox!
— Xbox (@Xbox) November 17, 2023
- This week Half-Life turned 25 and celebrated by a going free for a limited time. Valve also released a special anniversary update for the game which included bug fixes, official Steam Deck support, multiplayer maps, and more.
Now it’s time for this week’s game releases!
Friday November 24, survive the post apocalypse in the side scroller shooter Evil Diary coming to PC and consoles.
Tuesday the 28th, take a train ride home through civil war in the RTS Last Train Home coming to PC.
On Wednesday the 29th, get stuck in time loops in puzzle/adventure game Orten Was The Case coming to PC and consoles.
And next week on the 30th, find yourself one cup at a time in Pixel Cafe coming to PC, Switch, and next gen consoles. Want to play FTL but as a roguelike with friends? Well, This Means Warp has you covered, coming to PlayStation, Xbox, and Switch.
This week Zed Gamers, Paul, Hazel, & Zahra get all Up Close and Personal talking Gaming News, Paul picks apart the puzzler Talos Principal 2 from Croteam, and Zahra gets in early with some wholesome farming in Coral Island from Stairway Games.
This week Zed Gamers put your hands together for Hazel, Cam, & Peter as they throw bants talking the week in Gaming News, Caroline pokes trash in Hidden Through Time 2: Myths & Magic from Rogueside, Hazel can’t stop playing Trigahex, and they chat the pre-show incoming for GTA6 later this year.
Sued Over Video Game Addiction
A lawsuit in Arkansas, United States, has been filed against Microsoft, Epic Games, Activision Blizzard, and other companies claiming that they ‘use patented designs, algorithms, and marketing containing addictive features and technology’, subsequently leading to addiction.
The concern over gaming addiction isn’t new, with a clinic in the UK being established to help those with ‘gaming disorders’ experiencing a massive influx of new patients in recent months.
Tina Bullock, the attorney representing the family who filed the lawsuit, states that she believes video game addiction is serious, and should be treated as such. The firm she represents claims that this is only the first of many lawsuits that will be filed in the foreseeable future.
Revenant Hill Ain’t Coming
We got to see Revenant Hill unveiled earlier this year during the PlayStation showcase, in development by the same team behind Night in the Woods, and in a similar style, and unfortunately development won’t be continuing. The reason? Key developers impacted by severe health issues.
“We are a cooperative, and we make decisions as a group. For us, this was the clear path to take for the well-being of the team, which is frankly more important than games.” says The Glory Society in a statement on their website.
Live Action Zelda: It’s Happening
Wes Ball, the director of the movie Maze Runner, will be directing the live-action movie based on The Legend of Zelda franchise. Shigeru Miyamoto, Legend of Zelda creator, and Avi Arad, who produced Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse, will also be involved as producers, with the movie being co-funded between Nintendo and Sony Pictures Entertainment.
“I have been working on the live-action film… for many years now… It will take time until its completion, but I hope you look forward to seeing it.” said Miyamoto on socials. So it’ll still be a bit of a wait.
Video Games In School
No no, I’m not talking about Coolmath Games, and I’m not talking about the games of CounterStrike you’re definitely not supposed to be playing. Thanks to the increasing popularity of esports there’s some renewed conversation among parents and teachers about the future of welcoming online video games into school.
With 50,000 students from over 300 schools taking part in the Fuse Cup, an international esports competition for children, it’s no longer just a fun oddity, it is becoming as embedded as traditional sports. Recently 60 players from 25 schools across Australia competed in the national esports finals on the Gold Coast. Although the esports scene isn’t quite as lucrative in Australia as it is in Europe or Asia, it was an Australian teen, Lucas Malissa, who was crowned champion in the Olympic Esports Series held in Singapore earlier this year.
Of course, this acceptance also means that schools can delve into topics with their students about healthy gaming habits, keeping themselves safe online, and other fun stuff like that.
And now for some upcoming games!
- Air Twister – PC, PS5, XSX, PS4, XBO, Switch
- Spirittea – PC, XSX, XBO, Switch
- Gods of the Twilight – PC
- Checkmate Showdown – PC
- Lake: Season’s Greetings DLC – PC, PS5, XSX, PS4, XBO
- The Last Faith – PC, PS5, XSX, PS4, XBO, Switch
- Teardown – PS5, XSX
- Flashback 2 – PC, PS5, XSX, PS4, XBO, Switch
- Jagged Alliance 3 – PS5, XSX, PS4, XBO
- Loddlenaut – PC
That’s it this week in gaming news!
Rani’s back with a BANG! Joined by Paul and Caroline the team talks Gaming News and the death-knell of Bandcamp and it’s effect on gaming music. Then Rani chats with Directors Ricard Cussó & Tania Vincent and Producer Ryan Greaves from Brisbane’s Like A Photon Creative and their new film based on the game Scarygirl . Zed then gets uncomfortable while Paul reviews the audio visual experience that is Decarnation.
It’s been in the works for a while, but Microsoft has finalised its deal to acquire Blizzard Activision for a whopping $68.7 billion. It has taken 20 months of duking it out with regulators, restructuring the deal to appeal to the Competition and Markets Authority in the UK, and defeating the Federal Trade Commission in the US federal court, but now it’s finally done.
“We love gaming. We play games, create games, and know first-hand how much gaming means to all of us as individuals and collectively, as a community. And today, we officially welcome Activision Blizzard and their teams to Xbox,” says Phil Spencer, Xbox chief. “As one team, we’ll learn, innovate, and continue to deliver on our promise to bring the joy and community of gaming to more people.”
And just so you know, Activision or Blizzard games will NOT be coming to Game Pass this year.
300 MILLION SALES
Minecraft has officially become the first video game to hit 300 million sales. To put that in perspective, Minecraft’s biggest rival in sales is Grand Theft Auto V, which has sold over 185 million copies. (Tetris doesn’t count as it’s considered a series). It is suspected that a good portion of these sales might be from people purchasing multiple copies.
Minecraft has been available since 2009 in its pre-release version, before being officially launched in November 2011. And it still has a grip on the gaming community to this day. Congratulations!
Epic Gains Bandcamp, Employees Lose
Epic Games acquired Bandcamp a year ago, a platform that co-founder Ethan Diamond hoped would “bring the power of healing to everyone” through music.
Well, Epic Games sold it to Songtradr, and following it, roughly half its staff laid off. Songtradr, the music licensing company, states “… the operating costs of Bandcamp have significantly increased. It required some adjustments to ensure a sustainable and healthy company that can serve its community of artists and fans.”
50% of Bandcamp employees have accepted offers to join Songtradr, with the remaining 120 employees being laid off with 6 months severance, while negotiations with Bandcamp’s union continue.
Pokemon Van Gogh Cards Gone
The Pokemon and Van Gogh collaboration event, which involved giving a special promo card, Pikachu with Grey Felt Hat, to customers who bought any item at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, has been ruined by scalpers, because scalpers ruin everything.
Now collectors will have to spend a minimum of $30 on Pokemon Trading Card Game products to receive one of the cards. So, stop looking at that online listing that’s going for $500.
And now for some upcoming games!
- Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 – PS5
- Super Mario Bros Wonder – Switch
- Just Dance 2024 Edition – PS5, XSX, Switch
- Three Minutes To Eight – PC
- Cities Skylines 2 – PC, PS5, XSX
- Dark Envoy – PC
- The Lord of the Rings: Return to Moria – PC, PS5
- Metal Gear Solid Master Collection: Volume 1 – PC, PS5, XSX, Switch