This week in gaming: Sony celebrates a PlayStation milestone, Riot’s “culture of sexism” comes to light, Rockstar shows off Red Dead Redemption 2 gameplay, and more!
In the spirit of keeping our readers up to date with what’s happening in the video game industry, the Doublejump Digest is a brief collection of the major news stories from the past week. Keep an eye out for the Digest every Sunday night, and head on into the archive for news from weeks gone by!
John investigated the state – and potential future – of the arcade racing genre in light of Evolution Studios’ recent closure.
Sony celebrates 500M PlayStation milestone with a beautiful PS4 Pro: Eric Lempel took to the European PlayStation Blog to announce the absolutely stunning dark blue console, which features a translucent strip that allows players to see its interior when powered on, as well as a commemorative copper plate and copper-coloured accents. It is set to be released on August 24, and Lempel promised that fans will have the opportunity to win the console as well.
The console will come bundled with a matching DualShock 4 controller, vertical stand and mono headset, with a Gold Wireless Headset of the same design available for separate purchase. The DualShock 4 is also set to be sold separately from August 24, and is one for collectors to get their hands on.
Riot Games’ disturbing “culture of sexism” exposed: After six months of research, Kotaku’s Cecilia D’Anastasio released a lengthy piece of work in which two dozen current and former employees reveal that the League of Legends developer’s culture is “steeped in sexism”. It would be a disservice to quote any small segment of the article in this summary, but its release has shed light on sexism at all levels within the company and encouraged more women – including some of those quoted within the piece – to come forward and share their own experiences. We can only hope that this article serves as a catalyst for change, not only at Riot but throughout the games industry.
Here’s our first look at Red Dead Redemption 2’s gameplay: Christmas has come early for Red Dead Redemption fans, with a narrated gameplay showcase captured entirely from in-game footage in 4K, showing off the game’s graphics, characters, gameplay, story and more. There’s not much else to say about this but “wow”, so just sit back, relax and enjoy!
IGN stands down its Nintendo editor following Dead Cells review plagiarism accusation: Posted earlier this week on both IGN’s website and YouTube channel, Filip Miucin’s review appeared to borrow quite heavily from Boomstick Gaming’s, with the latter sharing a number of clips where IGN’s review – which was posted weeks after his – appears to ever-so-slightly reword a point he made in his own. The website released a statement on Twitter in which it revealed that it had parted ways with the reviewer, and issued an apology to “[its] readers, developer Motion Twin, and most especially the YouTuber known under Boomstick Gaming” for the plagiarism.
This is not the first time Miucin has been “inspired” by another reviewer’s work, either, with Kotaku shedding light on two more examples of plagiarism (1, 2) from before he worked for IGN. Muicin did eventually respond to the accusation, claiming that the plagiarism was “not at all intentional”, but his response was so poorly received that he has since removed it from his YouTube channel altogether. IGN re-reviewed the game this past Friday, with a statement explaining that the re-review “meets its editorial standards”.
Bethesda devs show off DOOM Eternal and RAGE 2 gameplay, Fallout 76 skips Steam at launch: Veteran shooter developer id Software’s Hugo Martin and Marty Stratton used the annual QuakeCon fan event to debut gameplay footage of DOOM Eternal and announcing a new competitive multiplayer mode.
DOOM Eternal will feature a slew of new weapons (including a wrist blade and shoulder rocket launcher) and abilities that the Doom Slayer will need when taking on “twice as many” enemy variants as 2016’s DOOM including returning ones from the first two games. Furthermore, enemies bodies will show physical damage as they are riddled with player’ bullets.
As for RAGE 2, Avalanche premiered a new gameplay video showcasing the game’s version of Earth that is “completely free of load screens” and encompass various climates from humid swamps to arid deserts. The video also features some of the game’s DOOM-inspired weapon and ability arsenal.
In related news, a Bethesda Softworks representative confirmed to PC Gamer that Fallout 76 will not be released through Steam “both the B.E.T.A. and the launch” and “will be only via [the] Bethesda.net” launcher on PC. The company’s wording does not exclude the possibility that the multiplayer game will come to Valve’s platform in the future, but it has not announced such plans as of this writing.
Twitch is shuttering its Communities feature: The system, which was only launched last year, has been seen as a failure on Twitch’s end, with the company reporting that only 3% of its viewers actually used the feature to find streams to watch. Twitch will automatically add a series of tags for streamers to choose from, but the most agency a streamer will have in defining their own tags is to suggest them to Twitch and hope that the company implements them.
The change is slated for mid-September.Additionally, the streaming giant used its Trello board to reveal that it plans to remove the Creative and IRL categories from its platform at the same time, replacing them with more specific categories in order to make it easier for non-gaming streamers to find an audience.
Discord will start selling games: In a lengthy announcement, the popular communications app’s team revealed that Nitro subscribers who are in the beta program will now receive access to “a curated selection of games” – “kinda like Netflix for games” – alongside their current perks. Additionally, Discord is planning to launch “a curated game store experience similar to one of those cozy neighbourhood book shops”, with recommendations, a purchase portal and a convenient library to boot.
The biggest piece of information to come out of this announcement is the fact that Discord is planning to work more closely with game developers and run a “First on Discord” campaign, releasing games on its own store for a period before they’re released on other platforms. This is a move that the company says “pushes the boundary of creative game design and is important to innovation and the long term health of the industry”, and we couldn’t agree more.
The beta is currently available to 50,000 Canadian Nitro members at present, with a larger rollout to come.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Direct comes with some huge announcements: This game is looking to live right on up to its Ultimate moniker, with Nintendo announcing two new characters – Castlevania’s Simon Belmont and Donkey Kong Country’s King K. Rool – alongside new “Echo Fighters”, new Stages and the Stage Morph feature, a stack of music, new items to pick up, new Pokémon to come out of Poké Balls, and a whole hell of a lot more! View the entire direct below, or check out Nintendo’s own recap of the announcements on Nintendo Everything if you’d prefer to read it all.
Notable game releases:
Dead Cells (PS4, Switch, Xbox One)
Monster Hunter: World (PC)
Madden NFL 19 (PS4, Xbox One)
Okami HD (Nintendo Switch)
Videos and trailer releases:
Destiny 2: Forsaken – Dreaming City Trailer: The Dreaming City is Destiny’s “largest endgame experience ever”, and it’s available on September 4!
Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege – Grim Sky: Map Rework Hereford Base: Ubisoft spends a minute showing us how it’s reworked the SAS training ground “to provide one of the best competitive environments”, and promises a full reveal during the Paris Major finals on August 20.
F1 2018 – Making Headlines | F1 Car Handling: The game’s Senior Car Handling Designer, David Greco, gives us a nine-minute insight into how his real-life experience informed the upcoming title’s handling mechanics.
Forza Horizon 4 – Features Preview: Here are some highlights from Playground Games’ recent showcase stream.
Polygon – How a Number Launched the PlayStation and Nearly Killed Sega: As Sony celebrates 500 million PlayStations sold, Polygon takes a look back at the moment that represented “the final nail in Sega’s hardware coffin”.
Street Fighter V – Character Introduction Series: G: Capcom’s Community and eSports Manager, Matt Edwards, tells us a little more about this “mysterious new character” who appears to be cosplaying Abraham Lincoln.
Street Fighter V – Character Introduction Series: Sagat: Edwards returns to take us through the latest iteration of Ryu’s greatest nemesis – and one of Jake’s personal favourites from the series.
Tekken 7 – Season Pass 2 reveal: The trailer shows off three upcoming fighters: the bazooka-wielding Anna Williams, the Lei-d back (sorry, I had to) Lei Wulong and The Walking Dead antagonist Negan.
Slam Land is available now: Bread Machine Games’ comical party game arrived on Mac, Windows PC, PS4 and Switch earlier this week, and it looks like just the kind of quirky game to liven up any party.
Epic Games veterans reveal Soundfall: The first offering from Drastic Games, Soundfall is set to combine mechanics from rhythm games and twin-stick shooters with a beautiful art style and procedurally-generated dungeon crawling gameplay, and includes a couch co-op mode for up to four players. The game is set to be released on Switch, PC, PS4 and Xbox One at some point next year, and will be playable at PAX Australia later this year.
Daemonical brings a new twist to the 4v1 PvP genre this week: One for the horror fans, Daemonical is a multiplayer survival horror game in which five players start their battle for survival in the middle of a remote island, with one randomly-selected player transforming into a demon during battle and forced to hunt the other four. Players can choose to fight, or simply hide until the morning to survive in a game being marketed as “one of the first truly scary multiplayer horror games around.”