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News

EA closes Visceral, Star Wars now at FIFA studio

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EA closes Visceral, Star Wars now at FIFA studio

EA is shutting down Dead Space developer Visceral Games, the publisher announced today.

In a blog post, EA executive VP Patrick Söderlund wrote that Visceral “will be ramping down and closing” and development of the Star Wars game it had been working will move across to EA’s worldwide studios, led by FIFA series lead EA Vancouver.

Söderlund said the title had been a story-based, linear adventure game, but that player testing, feedback and “shifts in the market” have resulted in EA deciding to “pivot the design”. It is unclear in what direction they are pivoting, but EA’s history and trends in the market might indicate the game could adopt a games-as-service model.

The game was slated for release in 2019, but EA is “now looking at a new timeframe that we will announce in the future”, Söderlund said.

It is also unclear what will happen to the game's director and writer of the Uncharted series Amy Hennig. She moved to Visceral in 2015 after leaving her long-time employer Naughty Dog. In an email to Kotaku, EA said, “We are in discussions with Amy about her next move.”

News

Activision patents new matchmaking system that pushes microtransactions

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Activision patents new matchmaking system that pushes microtransactions

Activision has successfully patented a system it hopes will convince more people to purchase items via microtransactions in multiplayer games.

As reported by Rolling Stone's Brian Crecente, the technology is not currently in any games, and according to Activision it is an "exploratory patent".

Activision usually populates multiplayer games by looking at player factors including skill level, Internet latency, availability of friends, and more.

News

New Sony label to publish games for Switch, PC

New Sony label to publish games for Switch, PC

Sony has announced it will be publishing indie games on the Switch and PC.

Sony's Music Entertainment division has created a new indie publisher called UNTIES, with which it hopes to "penetrate the ever-expanding video game market with indie games".

UNTIES will be publishing games for the PS4, PC and Switch, with its first title, turn-based tactics game Tiny Metal, set to be released on November 21.

News

NZ-made space combat game Outer Rim hits Kickstarter

NZ-made space combat game Outer Rim hits Kickstarter

Outer Rim is space combat game in the vein of Wing Commander and X-Wing that is currently being crowdfunded by a New Zealand developer.

The game has been developed over several years by one man, software engineer Gus Matheson, and is already in its final stages of development.

Matheson has launched the Kickstarter to fund the final stages of development, hoping to make a final push to launch the game in March next year on PC and Mac, with a Linux version hopefully coming later.

News

CD Projekt RED employees debate studio conditions

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CD Projekt RED employees debate studio conditions

Some employees of developer CD Projekt RED have been negatively reviewing the studio online, raising discussion around working conditions and prompting a response from the company heads.

The battle of reviews has been happening over the past several weeks on career website Glass Door, with some employees writing scathing critiques of working conditions in the studio, while others are defending it. CD Projekt RED currently has an aggregate score of 3.1/5 on the site.

One review, titled “Chaos!” and posted on September 28, gives the company one star. In the review, the anonymous employee bullet points cons about the company, including “Managment [sic] is incompetent”, “Fake goals”, “Lies” and “Low salarys [sic]”.

News

Doom on Switch release date announced

Doom on Switch release date announced

Doom is coming to the Nintendo Switch on November 10, id Software announced today.

In a video interview, id creative director Hugo Martin and executive producer Marty Stratton announced the release date, and answered a few lingering questions about the port.

The pair said Doom on Switch will be feature complete, except for SnapMap, which id previously announced would not be part of the port. Otherwise, players can expect all single player and multiplayer content from the game, and all released DLC content, bringing the multiplayer offerings to 18 maps and 12 modes.

News

Dragon Age creative director leaves Bioware

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Dragon Age creative director leaves Bioware

Creative director of the Dragon Age series Mike Laidlaw is leaving BioWare after 14 years with the developer.

Laidlaw worked on some of BioWare’s most beloved games, including Jade Empire and Mass Effect. However, it was with the Dragon Age series that he made his real mark, working as lead designer on the first two games and most recently as creative director on Inquisition.

BioWare has not yet announced a new Dragon Age title, but there have been hints the studio is working on a new entry, including a job listing and comments from writer Alexis Kennedy earlier this year. It is unclear how Laidlaw was – or would have been – involved in this new game, and if his departure will have any effect on the project.

News

A Russian car company hid Tetris in its dashboard computers

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A Russian car company hid Tetris in its dashboard computers

Tetris has been discovered built into the dashboard console of a series of Russian-made vans and trucks.

It is possible to play Tetris on the speedometer screen of these vehicles by following these steps:

1) Turn the ignition on
2) Start the car
3) Activate the right turn signal for three blinks
4) Two click the trip odometer reset twice
5)Push the clutch five times
6) Rev the engine to 2000 RPM while turning on the left turn indicator

News

Cliffy B's Lawbreakers might go free-to-play

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Cliffy B's Lawbreakers might go free-to-play

Boss Key Productions is considering shifting Lawbreakers to a free-to-play model in the face of struggling player counts.

Since its launch, Lawbreakers has seen a player peak of only 7482. That number has continued to dwindle, dropping to as low as 10 players during peak hours this past weekend.

In an interview with Gamespot, lead designer Cliff Bleszinski said although he considers free-to-play “sleazy”, it is something the development team are considering.

Tuesday 17 October

Monday 16 October

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Dragon Age creative director leaves Bioware
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Dragon Age creative director leaves Bioware
A growing trend for the developer.
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