Tag: gaming news

Nintendo, Animal Crossing, and The Game Awards 2020

Getting the warm fuzzies from Animal Crossing.

Earlier this month, Professor Andrew Przybylski (@ShuhBillSkee), Director of Research at the Oxford Internet Institute, released a study on the effects of the amount of time playing games on reported well-being. He surveyed 3274 players of Plants vs Zombies: Battle for Neighbourville and Animal Crossing: New Horizons and found that players of Animal Crossing: New Horizons had a significant positive relationship between the two variables, showing that the amount of time played increased reported wellbeing. These results were particularly prominent in feelings of autonomy and belonging. In brief, more Animal Crossing game time equals more feelings of fulfillment and freedom. Thus, more feelings of happiness and connection.

The study concludes that while there is a significant positive correlation, this was an explorative study, indicating a need for further studies to expand our knowledge into how gaming affects our health and wellbeing.

Nintendo in the headlines

Nintendo is asking businesses to refrain from bringing politics into Animal Crossing: New Horizons, and as such has published guidelines. These guidelines focus primarily on keeping the game G rated, removing political content (for example, Joe Biden’s campaign created island), and indirect or direct advertising/ profiteering within the game. Disrespecting these guidelines will result in being “ask[ed] to stop” and possibly being prohibited from future access to the Game.

Nintendo has also ordered the cease and desist of the annual “The Big House” GameCube Smash Bros Melee tournament. The competition, which has run since 2011, had moved online due to the current covid-19 pandemic. This was only possible due to the help of the Wii and GameCube emulator Dolphin, and mods such as Slippi. These allowed for smooth online play, currently unavailable to the Nintendo GameCube.

The tournament was forced to cancel the competition to comply with Nintendo’s claim of “illegally copied versions of the game” and use of the mod Slippi. The cancelling of the competition has led to public outcries of unfair treatment by Nintendo towards the Smash community and the hashtag #SaveSmash trending on Twitter.

The Game Awards 2020

The Game Awards Nominees for 2020 have been announced with The Last of Us Part II, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Ghost of Tsushima, Doom Eternal, Hades, and Final Fantasy 7 Remake going up for Game of the Year.

The big hitters this year are The Last of Us Part II receiving 10 nominations, Hades with 8, and Ghosts of Tsushima with 7, all spanning over several categories from art, music, narration, and the new category “Innovation in Accessibility”.

The Livestream will be broadcast through YouTube at 10 am on December 11th Brisbane time. And don’t forget to place your vote, head over to The Game Awards, and make your click count!

TV, Music, Playtesting, & Pick Ups

The filming of The Witcher season 2 comes to a halt due to COVID outbreak, again.

The second season of Netflix’s The Witcher staring Henry Cavil has stopped for the second time, four people working on the show have tested positive for the virus and those that have been impacted are now being isolated and are not part of the main cast. The last halt on production lasted from March until August. Hopefully, this time it doesn’t stretch for that same length of time.

Steam has a new play test feature for developers.

That’s right, Steam has created a request option so that players may be able to play test games for developers right from the games Steam page. Value is intending on adding this feature so that players no longer need a beta key to gain access. This new feature is called Steam Playtest; developers will also be able to see how many people are requesting access including expressed interest. Valve says that Playtests aren’t intended to replace Steam Early Access and that games can still have a Playtest alongside an Early Access version.

The Gorillaz have a new music video and it’s inside the world of GTA5.

The most recent release from the Gorillaz’s Song Machine project is called The Valley of The Pagans and it takes place within Grand Theft Auto V. The video begins by transporting the cartoon musicians into the city of Los Santos and features Beck’s voice on a call using the iconic iFruit phone from the game. Song Machine is a big music project by the Gorillaz and also features other artists such as ScHoolboy Q and Elton John.

Pick up your Xbox Series X and PS5 safely this week.

With the arrival of the next generation of consoles it’s important to be COVID safe. If you haven’t got delivery and intend on picking up your new Xbox or PlayStation from EB games, JB-HI-FI, or other distribution outlets click here for Kotaku who have published an article highlighting all the different outlets and their coronavirus response plans. Please remember to be kind, patient and respectful so that everyone can have a safe and happy gaming experience.

Cancellations, Crunch, & The Cloud

Facebook debuts new cloud-streaming service for Facebook Gaming

This new service will be integrated with Facebook Gaming and is already in the beta form for some users. According to Jason Rubin Facebook’s vice president of play over 200,000 people have already played games on the beta cloud streaming service. Currently there are five games available; Asphalt 9: Legends, Mobile Legends: Adventure, PGA TOUR Gold Shootout, Solitaire: Arthur’s Tale and WWE SuperCard. Facebook are promising more games as the platforms continues to get better throughout this testing phase. Rubin has said, “Even with latency-tolerant games players may notice some glitches. We’ll occasionally show player rating cards and feedback forms to help improve the experience over time. Cloud game streaming for the masses still has a way to go, and it’s important to embrace both the advantages and the reality of the technology rather than try to oversell where it’ll be in the future.”

Sad news for PS4 lovers as Night Call is no longer coming to the console

Developers Monkey Moon and Black Muffin have announced that the game will not go to PS4, this news comes just a month after the game Uppers was cancelled after 6 years in development. According to the developers of both games it simply comes down to a lack of funds. Night Call’s official twitter account has stated that the game hasn’t done very well with sales not to mention issues with porting the game. A tweet sent out by Night Call has said, “Dear PlayStation players, we’re super sorry to announce that the PS4 version of Night Call is officially cancelled. Please note that we’re probably as disappointed as you are. But we just can’t afford it.” Fortunately, Uppers will still be available to play on the PC for roughly $40 should you be sad about either of these games not coming PS4.

Features being cut from Cyberpunk 2077 ahead of launch and a 21-day delay

With the release of CD Projekt Red’s most anticipated release of the year Cyberpunk 2077 has had some big feature cuts after being delayed 3 times already, actually make that 4. Miles Tost the senior level designer has said, “Cutting features and scope is a very normal part of development, you can witness it so openly with our game, because we happily gave in to community wishes and showed you that 2018 demo.” Tost goes on to emphasise these feature cuts will only enhance the game play experience and that these cuts were “hard decisions” to make for the developers who truly love working on the game. There is much speculation around this as these feature cuts come after not a month ago Cyberpunk 2077 received criticism for its staff working under strenuous working conditions also known as crunch leading up to the game’s launch that appeared to be enforced by the studio. Only time will tell how it all turns out after release on the now new release date 10th of December.