Category Archives: Editorials

The problem with Black Ops 4’s “Black Market” unlockable tiers

[Update: Treyarch reduces the grind for Black Ops 4’s Black Market]

While many of you may have been surprised to see Call of Duty Black Ops 4 release without any microtransaction scandals, reviews have been favorable to the game, and even gamers who didn’t expect to enjoy the title have given it praise, there were signs of something suspicious in the game last weekend.

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Is Battlefield V Doomed?

At the hands of EA, many great game studios and franchises have been strangled to death. More than ever, the future of Battlefield is in serious jeopardy. While there is no shortage of controversy surrounding DICE’s latest entry in the well known shooter series Battlefield, EA Games has also been experiencing lower approval ratings than ever with the gaming community. Adding to the staleness of an aging genre that rarely hits its mark without issues, 2018 is a blockbuster year full of titles like Red Dead Redemption 2, God of War, Fallout 76, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, Marvel’s Spider-Man, and staunch competition from Black Ops 4.

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Bethesda played a role in PS4 – Xbox cross-play and want it for Fallout 76

Update: Pete Hines has released a statement regarding this evolving issue. “Folks, chill. I work with a lot of devs and games for whom this is important going forward. Fallout 76 does not support crossplay, for a number of reasons. I have no idea if it ever will. But I assure you it is not on our radar right now as we focus on B.E.T.A. and launch.” leading us to believe that Sony’s move has been too little too late for Fallout after all. Bethesda’s role in bringing cross-play to the Xbox and PS4 remains, and their ultimatum on The Elder Scrolls Legends a brave move indeed. Below is our original unedited story.

Graciously the biggest gaming company of this console generation has recently announced a Beta for Fortnite cross-play between PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and Xbox adding to the already supported Mobile and PC cross-play functionality. This comes off the tail of a heated debate between fans, Epic Games, Sony, the developers of Rocket League, and surprisingly Bethesda Games.

Continue reading Bethesda played a role in PS4 – Xbox cross-play and want it for Fallout 76

Another Bad Omen: Chief Design Officer Patrick Söderlund is leaving EA Games

Shortly after E3 2018, which saw one of the worst EA Press Conferences of all time many Bioware veterans have been jumping off the Anthem train. It now appears that the exodus of staff who are needed for the success of our industry’s latest “live service” may not just be limited to game developers.

Patrick Söderlund (Chief Design Officer) announced to employees today that he will be exiting his role at EA Games over the course of the next three months. This also comes on the heels of Blake Jorgensen (COO & CFO at EA Games) selling over a million and a half ($1,503,967) worth of EA stock options in early July of 2018. These all seem to be bad signs of what is to come.

Continue reading Another Bad Omen: Chief Design Officer Patrick Söderlund is leaving EA Games

Iconic Xbox franchises that lay dormant – Pt. 1

When it comes to Microsoft’s Xbox brand the first thought in people’s minds right now may be ‘they have no games’, but it wasn’t always such a struggle to think of titles that defined the system. Before the company began to overly rely on the likes of Halo, Gears, Fable, and Forza to an annoying degree, they actually did pursue a catalog of variety and excellent gaming experiences were born from these endeavors. Sadly, many of them have gone the way of the Dodo bird never to be seen again. In this series of articles we will give examples of Xbox franchises that lay dormant, but really deserve another chance to help give the Xbox brand a true identity that stands out.

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Entertainment Software Association president Mike Gallagher out of touch, defends loot box scandal

Perhaps one of the last holdouts on the notion that lootboxes aren’t gambling and are ‘A-Okay’, ESA Prez Mike Gallagher took it a step further at Nordic Game Conference at Malmö Central Station in Malmo, Sweden this previous week by championing the well-hated lootbox mechanic as a source of massive revenue increases. In a long-winded, inaccurate, dry speech given to attendees Gallagher argued that lootboxes never left players upset and never “took their money without giving them something”. Belittling government authorities that have banned lootboxes in video games such as Belgium and the Netherlands, Gallagher simply called these “the lowest common denominator” and sought out to discredit those bodies which have done the research and concluded their findings that lootboxes are dangerous items that will lead to long-term addiction and gambling problems for players of games which contain them.

Many journalists, gamers, and developers have often been on the side of self-regulation for the game industry, which Ghallager goes on to promote. However, the opening up of the conversation beginning with such an avid defense of lootboxes perhaps proves that the authorities currently in place to do such self-regulation can no longer be trusted to keep the best interest of gamers in mind. Gaming has always grown massively year over year, and without the help of predatory lootbox micro-transactions that cause addiction and gambling neural pathways to develop in the human brain. This attempt to combine fear of government regulation with defense of lootboxes proves that the ESA cannot be trusted as an ally to gamers anymore.

While a good amount of this mainly empty power-point presentation from Mike Ghallager argued against lootbox regulation, there were a few other strange anti-consumer points attempting to be made as well. Simply allowing predatory or poorly designed monetization systems to roll out in mainstream games then later be patched via feedback was trotted out as a worthy solution to the current problems of the industry. A label of “in-game purchases” that doesn’t specify lootboxes from micro-transactions or expansive downloadable content was also given as a reason why self-regulation is supposedly working. Video game addiction becoming a World Health Organization classification was brought up as well as USA’s research on the potential link between mass shootings and violent video games (which ultimately ended up undecided).

Ghallager attempted to paint the picture of an innocent game industry that did nothing wrong and was under attack by the big, bad wolf. In reality, Star Wars: Battlefront II destroyed the last remaining bit of belief gamers had in the industry to self-regulate and the ESA is now unable to defend itself against government regulation due to their refusal to hold EA Games and companies like it accountable for their misdeeds. In short, it has become impossible for the ESA to speak out against defamation of the games industry by the World Health Organization and be taken seriously since they have proven they are simply shills for large gaming corporations and don’t care about their own consumers’ well-being.

If Mike Gallagher truly believes the things he said on stage this week, then he’s part of the executive abuse of game developers and video game customers going on which is a plague on this industry. If he doesn’t believe the things he said, and is “just doing his job” as many claim, then he should resign to give some one with more spine a chance to stand up to the forces controlling the ESA through special interest funding deals designed to neuter their ability to represent real gamers.

DICE, EA, & Disney Legal Battle Over Star Wars Battlefront 2 Pay-to-Win Scandal

Disney was blamed by EA Games in statements made to the gaming community referring to their reasoning behind such anti-consumer practices. CFO of EA Blake Jorgensen stated that “-you wouldn’t want a pink Darth Vader-“ as an example of how DICE allegedly wasn’t allowed to do things that alter the canon of Star Wars. This of course, is extremely untrue being that the entire modern Battlefront series has been off-canon blessed by Disney, the owners of the Star Wars universe.

EA Games has lost $3.1 Billion in Stock Value (8.5% Down from Normal) /* Update: EA Games stock value continued to drop a total of $6 Billion lower, signaling that the issue has still not died down at the time of this post*/ recently since the Star Wars Battlefront 2 scandal that rocked the industry regarding Star Cards being the only way for players to progress in the game. These Star Cards are a virtual currency tied up with tokens allowing the game’s entire content to be locked behind a Lootbox system which would cost players $1,200+ on top of the game’s initial $60 price tag or some insane amount of hours that slowed the pace to such a halt.

Government officials have now began to crack down on the game industry as it is likely scrambling behind the scenes to fix the issue before more laws and regulations are passed. In many other countries, the government  already regulates gaming. Overall, the Electronic Software Association regulates gaming itself in the United States – which is owned by game companies (an obvious conflict of interest).

Continue reading DICE, EA, & Disney Legal Battle Over Star Wars Battlefront 2 Pay-to-Win Scandal

Are AAA digital game rentals coming soon or already here?

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PlayStation 4 and Xbox ONE will both soon be offering bigger and better ways to play their games on PC. Sony will use the Online Service PlayStation NOW originally introduced to run PS3 games on PS4 and PSVita.

The subscription service is hoped by many to eventually lead us to some sort of video game digital rental service. Rumors from before Xbox ONE DRM was cancelled still stand and in addition to the recently announced Xbox S/* Service we are shown the future. Microsoft even made a point to specify and reveal the unique ways in which they will partner to retailers like GameStop to sell these digital services through as many channels as gamers need making them easy to buy. Across the pond UK retailer GAME has also been considering premiering a monthly subscription service for video games. Gamefly’s attempts previously at penetrating the digital pc games goods market. GameStop’s new deal with Microsoft to sell their digital games signed in 2017.

Xbox’s original DRM which was announced at many gamers’ angst prompting both Xbox ONE and PS4 to rid themselves of DRM and even HDCP unless tagged by developer as protected content – which only seemed to happen to a handful of games so far mainly during cut-scenes.

Each disc was used as a key. Xbox’s original DRM would have allowed for digital game second hand market to survive in one way. The gamer could sell their game to a friend once but that game could not be sold a second time by the buyer of this used digital game key. In some cases that would mean the key could enter annoying states but this was Microsoft’s early attempts to appease both of the best worlds of physical content and digital content video games. Steam, PSNow, Xbox Games, PS Plus + Xbox LIVE, PS4, PS4 Pro, Xbox ONE, Xbox Scorpio, Pricing.

As time goes on, PlayStation brand has done very well by its players. We will wish to see, going forward, that our library will be as cross-compatible with future hardware as possible. The PS4 architecture leads us to believe this is possible. PS4 Pro is excellent machine many of us enjoy, and the PS4 Slim is great for players on a budget. Sony can expand PS Now and make it part of PS Plus. Sony may allow PS4 rentals, making sure to profit but providing the best potential solution for gamers and the PlayStation brand.

Emulators of old games are sometimes possible, PS4 Ultra specs (rumored) to out-perform Xbox Scorpio in 2019 and this brings back up the topic of the PlayStation Store because Sony may take great heed to the digital libraries gamers all cherish and invest so much in. The PlayStation 3 library didn’t go beyond its owners’ PS3 console – but now with PS4’s x64 architecture Sony can take us from PS4 to PS4 Pro, PS4 Ultra, and hopefully whatever is next for PS5’s generations as well – with a massive growing library eventually rivaling Steam’s.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jon Ireson on 20171116 and was last modified on 20171116 .

Switch is Nintendo’s Chance to Redeem the Mario Party Franchise

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We aren’t going to see a GameCube mini classic edition come out anytime soon, so let’s get Luigi’s Mansion, Super Smash Bros. Melee, Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader and some more N64 content on Virtual Console. There are tons of games on GameCube. I feel like it’s really one of the biggest games in Nintendo history.

Thank you everyone who tuned into my Crash Bandicoot Livestream today, by the way. It’s always appreciated!

Nintendo Switch - Star Wars Rogue Squadron II Rogue Leader - GameCube VC Virtual Console 2017

Nintendo must understand that the Switch NEEDS “A GOOD” Mario Party 11, “A SOLID” Smash Bros. entry, “A GOOD” Virtual Console. We also need some new tracks for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, perhaps some light DLC, perhaps for its Battle Mode. Star Fox 2 being included on the SNES Mini as well as the quality of the overall lineup in general give the gaming industry hope that Nintendo is getting even greater at what they do despite past criticisms.

Nintendo is just sitting on a gold mine with excellent mini-game concepts going unused from Mario Party 1, 2, 3, Game & Watch, Warioware, etc. and I fear the legacy of Mario Party as a franchise is in danger after the release of Mario Party 10 didn’t quite fit the bill. This opportunity is a huge chance for Nintendo to prove this trend of success with Switch and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is in fact not a fluke and that they are back on track to giving gamers what they love most. Now is the chance to redeem Mario Party and show fans you know how to treat their beloved franchises.

Until next time this is Josh Ehresmann AKA YodaThe3rd your RealGamerNewZ Public Relations Editor signing off.

Nintendo Switch - Mario Party 11 - Mario Party 2 3 - RealGamerNewZ

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Josh Ehresmann on 20170705 and was last modified on 20170705 .

What Fire Emblem Switch Could Be

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Fire Emblem had a small title card earlier this, letting us know the franchise is coming to the Nintendo Switch sometime next year. Speculation is key here to what it could be like, but I’d like to share my thoughts. We have seen recently with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and the upcoming Super Mario Odyssey, embracing larger worlds, new mechanics, and heavily changing up the game, but still staying Mario and Zelda. Fire Emblem has the potential for the same thing.

Fire Emblem could go open world, let you walk through the wilds and towns of the kingdom, running into combat arenas and engaging in classic strategic gameplay. Letting you build up your fortress, but letting you walk into the buildings you built, engaging more directly with NPCs and your party members. Make the games graphics look like the cut scenes from Fire Emblem Fates except in beautiful HD with the power of the Nintendo Switch.

These are just some basic ideas on what the game could be like. I have a feeling with Nintendo’s current resonance of their titles, making Fire Emblem to a much bigger and complex title in all ways in the right direction to go in. We will see and I am sure whatever it is, will be great.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Tristan Werbe on 20170627 and was last modified on 20170627 .

My Top 5 Most Anticipated Games for the rest of 2017

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Every year there are games I just really want to play and own. In years past games like Life is Strange, DOOM, Skyrim, and many others I was excited for, now these games are the ones I want to play most for the second half of the year.

5. Quake Champions

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It just looks so much damn fun. When I was younger I was huge fan of Quake III, and this looks like a great return to form for the series, that has been long dead. Plus DOOM was my favorite game of last year, I am ready for more.

4. Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice

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This game looks beautiful, insane, and just like something I want to play. Treating the hack and slash combat more like a puzzle game just get’s my heart pumping.

3. Xenoblade Chronicles 2

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I am a huge of Xeno games, especially Xenoblade Chronicles on the Wii. This just looks even better, I am ready to explore the world of titans while on the go.

2. Super Mario Odyssey

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It looks so charming, so crazy, and so fun. Gives me a feeling of when I played Super Mario 64, and Super Mario Sunshine when I was younger. It’s going to be good what more can I say?

 

Honorable Mentions: Splatoon 2, Wolfenstein II, A Way Out, Cuphead, Crossing Souls, Mario+Rabbids Kingdom Battle, Assassin’s Creed Origins, Rime, and Players Unknown Battlegrounds (Have yet to play it).

 

1. Metroid Samus Returns

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I just can’t believe this is happening. I am the hugest Metroid fan, and not one but two games coming this year and next year. I am so ready I don’t even care if it is on 3ds, it looks perfect.

Those are the games I want most this year, what are yours? Tell me in the comments below. Hope everyone has a great year!

 

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Tristan Werbe on 20170622 and was last modified on 20170622 .

Metroid fans, it’s time to put your money where your mouth is

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As we all know at this past E3 we got not one, but two new Metroid games. Both in the respective styles of the franchise. Classic 2D gameplay with Metroid Samus Returns. Then the first person view with the upcoming Metroid Prime 4. Metroid is a series me and other fans have been begging for a release for years, as Metroid Prime 3 came out in 2007 and Metroid Other M in 2010. Last year we did get a spin off called Metroid Prime: Federation Force, which flopped due to fans, including me boycotting it, making it clear to Nintendo what we wanted from the series.

Now it seems like we have gotten everything we wanted, a Metroid 2 remake, and the fourth title in the Prime series. But now it is up to us, Nintendo is making the game we just have to go out and buy them. Now if these games aren’t good maybe Metroid doesn’t deserve to be revived, but from what I’ve seen from Metroid Samus Returns, I highly doubt it’s going to suck. Metroid Prime 4 was in the top 5 most talked about games at E3 and all we got was a title and logo. So based on this buzz the sales of both of these titles should be high right?

Appealing to the fans of the series which are in the millions, and even a newer audience. So it’s time to go out and support this franchise, and show Nintendo what we want. They faced a similar situation with Fire Emblem back in 2013, if Awakening did not sell, that would have been the final game. Us fans and new people went out and bought it, now Nintendo considers it a core series. Let’s make the same thing happen with Metroid.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Tristan Werbe on 20170620 and was last modified on 20170620 .

What Bethesda’s Creation Club means

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As we all know by now, at E3 Bethesda announced their new system Creation Club. Which provides new paid content for Fallout 4 and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition. Or how Bethesda put’s it from their own Creation Club page “Creation Club is a collection of all-new content for both Fallout 4 and Skyrim. It features new items, abilities, and gameplay created by Bethesda Games Studios and outside development partners including the best community creators. Creation Club content is fully curated and compatible with the main game and official add-ons.”

The way I see this is more of a lie. They are claiming these are more like DLC or Expansions, but they are having modders release this content. They are selling people mods. Now I don’t see the biggest issue with it, aside from them lying about it. As long as the mods are up to par with “DLC quality content.” From the launch lineup I would not say it is quality or worth your hard earned cash. As it is mainly weapons and apparel you can just download for free elsewhere. The content the Creation Club can provide is “Weapons, Apparel, World, Characters, Creatures, and Gameplay.”

Weapons, Apparel, Creatures, and Characters speak for themselves. But World is more akin to locations, like new maps, some added foliage, so maybe some texture updates, and even simple decorations. Gameplay is explained as “New types of gameplay like survival mode, etc.” So maybe some actual new additions, Fallout Kart Racing?

Now the content that should be produced, should be something like expansions, think the Dragonborn Expansion, which adds a new location, new storyline, new weapons, outfits, gameplay features, etc. That is what Bethesda should offer, instead of a new gun or sword by themselves for $1.99. As of now we can’t say how it will turn out, but if they are going to do this, and the content creators are going to get paid to produce high quality content, then we as consumers need to hold them to an example of producing good “DLC” (Mods).

I am all for this if it is genuine content that continues the life of games people love like Fallout 4 and Skyrim. But this could set a awful precedent in the industry if mishandled like Bethesda’s previous attempt at paid mods. One of the biggest things was they were not curated mods, this time they are, or least should be, since the modders/content creators will be paid and employees after they apply for the Creation Club, and are accepted. Let’s just hope they can manage this, and their store won’t be filled with paid horse armor that’s purely cosmetic.

Homepage for the Creation Club: https://creationclub.bethesda.net/en

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Tristan Werbe on 20170615 and was last modified on 20170615 .

Xbox One X – Everything you need to know

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Several days ago, Microsoft showed the world the new Xbox One X, which they call “The World’s most powerful console” which is a true statement. Xbox One X features faster processing power compared to the Xbox One, “The 8-core Custom AMD CPU is clocked at 2.3GHz to bring enhanced AI, real world detail, and smoother interactions to your gaming.” The Xbox One X also features 12 GB of GDDR5 of graphical memory allowing for better draw distance, and bigger worlds. A good example of this is the E3 Demo’s of Assassin’s Creed Origins. The 6 Teraflop GPU also also for more detail, more lifelike environments ranging from trees, to water, to faces. Xbox One X uses advanced liquid cooling and the supercharger-style centrifugal fan which allows it stay cool and also maintain a small size, it is the smallest console Microsoft has ever made, being much smaller than the Xbox One and Xbox One S, despite having much better hardware.

The Xbox One X is also capable of playing games at 4K and 60 fps. Now this ranges from game to game, what developers decide to do, and what the system is even capable of. Forza Motorsport 7 is true 4K and 60fps, which is impressive for a console, but nothing new to people on the PC scene. Xbox One X is going back to the roots of consoles being somewhat more on a higher power side. As the Xbox One and PS4 were severely outdated the moment they were announced. It is designed to allow for cheaper 4K gaming for the consumer market to use. It’ll come out on November 7th for $499.99, which is a fair price for what is in the box, any lower and they would be taking a lose. Now if you should buy it, do you have a 4K TV? Do you care if your games look and run better for a few hundred dollars more? It’s up to you, below I link the official Xbox website which contains even more information about the Xbox One X, educate yourself before purchasing. Until next time.

Source: http://www.xbox.com/en-US/xbox-one-x?&ocid=PORTALS_SEM_google_xbox%20one%20x&cid=PORTALS_SEM_google_xbox%20one%20x

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Tristan Werbe on 20170614 and was last modified on 20170614 .

Star Trek: Bridge Crew Seems to have great Multiplayer

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Star Trek: Bridge Crew is a VR game with a nice twist, cooperative multiplayer. Playing with your friends and having to work together to achieve is a goal isn’t a new idea. But the idea in this title is genius, as it has you and other players taking command and operating a star ship. One player is the Captain, making sure everyone does everything they are supposed to do. Another player is the one who flys the ship, and so on. It has online play, and even local play, which they showed at last E3.

I would say this one of the most unique looking multiplayer games I have seen in a long time. Having you work with friends to fly this massive star ship, it just seems like such a fresh idea, but also something I thought of years ago. All I can say is I hope this title turns out well as the Star Trek IP fits this style of game perfectly, it’s VR, and has a unique multiplayer mode. I hope it turns out great.

Star Trek: Bridge Crew VR comes out on May 30th on PlayStation VR, HTC Vive, and Oculus Rift for $49.99.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Mitch Walters on 20170418 and was last modified on 20170626 .