This week in gaming: Sony commits to charging for PS4-PS5 upgrades, Firaxis reveals how Marvel’s Midnight Suns is not XCOM, #ADayOffTwitch makes an impact, 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!
Sony backtracks and makes PS4-PS5 Horizon: Forbidden West upgrades free again, commits to no more free upgrades
Following severe backlash from fans and journalists, Sony Interactive Entertainment President & CEO Jim Ryan yesterday announced that the company has recommitted to its promise of not making Horizon: Forbidden West players pay for upgrades from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5.
Furthermore, he also added that, going forward, all “PlayStation first-party exclusive cross-gen titles (newly releasing on PS4 & PS5)” can be upgraded to the newer console version for US$10. Therefore, Horizon: Forbidden West will be the last first-party game to get a free upgrade.
After debuting Marvel’s Midnight Suns during Gamescom last week, developer Firaxis Games released a pair of new gameplay trailers revealing that its upcoming game will be a card-based tactical RPG in the vein of Slay the Spire.
The developer later confirmed that Marvel’s Midnight Suns will not feature “loot boxes… or related microtransactions to get more cards” and that in-game purchases will include “purely cosmetic character skins” that have won’t “affect game balance in any way”. Furthermore, Firaxis noted that players will be able to unlock “tons of cosmetics” by simply playing the game.
Publisher 2K Games announced a March 2022 release on PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.
#ADayOffTwitch protest sees Twitch viewership dip by notable amount
According to Gamesight and TwitchTracker’s figures (via Eurogamer and PC Gamer), September 1’s #ADayOffTwitch protest saw Twitch’s total viewership hours drop by 16.5% (approximately 10 million hours) and average peak viewers drop by 22.2% (3.5 million versus 4.5 million).
Despite delaying its annual SUBtember promotion to after this protest against Twitch’s lack of action against groups harassing minority group streamers, a Twitch spokesperson didn’t offer a specific response to the protest when questioned by Eurogamer.
“We support our streamers’ rights to express themselves and bring attention to important issues across our service,” the spokesperson said. “No one should have to experience malicious and hateful attacks based on who they are or what they stand for and we are working hard on improved channel-level ban evasion detection and additional account improvements to help make Twitch a safer place for creators.”
In related news, popular streamers Tim “timthetatman” Betar (7 million followers) and Ben “DrLupo” Lupo (4.5 million followers) both announced that they have signed exclusive streaming deals with YouTube Gaming. Neither of them mentioned doing so in protest of Twitch’s existing harassment policies.
EA reveals Battlefield Mobile details early
EA has published Battlefield Mobile’s Google Play listing and provided more details about the shooter series’s mobile spin-off, most notably the fact that gameplay will take place “in land, sea and air”. As expected from a modern Battlefield game, Mobile will feature character customisation, playable vehicles, and destructive levels. The visual style is a simplified version of the modern warfare aesthetic found in Battlefield 3 and Battlefield 4.
Battlefield Mobile is slated for a 2022 release on Android, iOS, and iPadOS.
Roblox creators will get to test voice chat soon
Roblox Corporation finally announced and added voice chat capability to its uber-popular multiplayer online game/game creation platform Roblox in the form of an invite-onlu Spatial Voice beta for creators. In an official blog post, Chief Product Officer Manuel Bronstein explained that Spatial Voice is proximity-based and will allow players to engage in “1:1 communication, communication with small groups and close friends, and public communication”. Furthermore, players will be able to report, mute, and remove others who don’t abide by “community standards”.
NOTABLE GAME RELEASES
Golf Club: Wasteland (PC, PS4, and Xbox One)
The Medium (PS5)
Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous (PC)
WRC 10 (PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X)
VIDEOS AND TRAILERS
Life is Strange: True Colors — First 15 Minutes of Gameplay
Not long now, folks.
Far Cry 6 — PC Trailer
All you need to know is that it supports ray tracing.
505 Games — 15th Anniversary – Partner Celebrations
Congratulations on 15 years, 505 Games!
Destiny 2: Beyond Light — Season of the Lost “Embodied” Cinematic
Savathun did our boy Osiris wrong.
NBA 2K22 — Official Gameplay Reveal Trailer
Holy shit is that a fantastic choice of song!
Sony’s hosting a PlayStation Showcase next week: PS Blog
Xbox’s hosting its own digital event at this year’s Tokyo Games Show: GameSpot
Aussie developer SMG Studio sells 500 thousand copies of Moving Out: Kotaku
Conscript is an Australian-made survival horror game set during WWI’s Battle of Verdun: Kotaku
Here’s some gameplay from the Australian-made RTS, Age of Darkness: Final Stand: Kotaku
Report: GameBoy and GameBoy Color games are heading to Nintendo Switch Online: Nintendo Life
Microsoft delays Flight Simulator’s Top Gun: Maverick tie-in content to match the film’s new 2022 release: IGN
Shawn Mendes is overseeing the music for HBO’s The Last of Us adaptation: GameSpot
Retailers list unannounced Alan Wake Remastered: Eurogamer
One of Diablo’s creators is boycotting Diablo II: Resurrected and Blizzard as a whole: WCCFTech