Sega to Bring More Games to PC

Sega revealed in an investor Q&A that they will be “aggressively” porting their old library to PC following their success during the pandemic lockdown. They said that “repeat sales” through Steam increased significantly in March and April. In particular, 2012’s Persona 4: Golden performed higher than expected during it’s June Steam launch.


Sega has a massive library from its own catalog and the companies they own including Creative Assembly, Relic Entertainment, Sports Interactive, and Amplitude Studio.

Here are some on my Sega Re-Release wishlist:

  • Altered Beast
  • Comix Zone
  • Nights into Dreams
  • The House of the Dead (VR)
  • MDK2
  • Bayonetta (Remaster)

Sources: gamesindustry.biz, Den of Geeks

The State of Epic vs Apple

The saga continues as Epic and Apple fight over the 30% cut Apple takes from all purchases on the iOS. Quick summary: Epic started things off with undercutting the price of V-bucks and removing Apple’s cut, Apple removed Fortnite from the App Store, then Epic released a video insulting Apple and then suing them for having a monopoly. It’s been a week since this initial back and forth, so how have things been going?

First, we learned that Epic CEO Tim Sweeney went to Apple before these events and asked for a “special deal”. Apple declined saying that making this deal would fundamentally change the App Store. Apple states that the “emergency” Epic finds itself in is self-inflicted and not Apple’s responsibility.

This “emergency” Apple refers to is a plea Epic has made to the judge overseeing the case. They asked for a temporary restraining order (TRO) which would force Apple to bring back Fortnite and give them back their access to Apple development tools. Apple has informed Epic that they will be losing access to all Apple development tools on the 28th. Epic claims this will cause “irreparable harm” to their business. These tools allow developers that use Epic’s Unreal Engine to make games for Apple products. Without access to Apple, developers would seek out other engines to make their games for the Apple audience.

Epic continues to roll out its “troll” style attacks on Apple. They are hosting a #FreeFortnite tournament with anti-Apple prizes. Players have the opportunity to will an in-game skin of the “bad apple” from their spoof 1984 trailer. Other prizes include non-iOS gaming hardware like Alienware laptops, Xboxes, PS4s, and Switches. They also mention in the announcement that all iOS players will not be able to participate in the next season of Fortnite and suggest they move to another platform. The tournament will begin on August 23rd.

We will continue to update you on the situation both here on the site on our weekly podcast. Let us know what you think about this Fortnite battle?

Sources: The Verge, PC Gamer Magazine, NBC News

Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War Officially Announced

Rumors and leaks take the excitement out of the newly announced Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War, but it is nice to have confirmation. We will also be getting more details on the 26th with a worldwide reveal trailer. This teaser does not give us any gameplay but does set up the high stakes and covert nature of the Cold War. The teaser states that the game will be based on real events and even uses narration from Yuri Bezmenov, a KGB defector. Check out the “Know Your History” trailer below.

Just revealed today, the multiplayer feature, Skill Based Matchmaking, is being added. This is often frowned upon by skilled players because it takes some of the fun out and punishes them for their skill. The better they do, the harder the game gets.

*Opinion

As a less talented player, I enjoy this system. I like the multiplayer but will quickly stop when a more talented player begins to hunt me down. I don’t have the interest and time to become a legend at Call of Duty. For those that do, great for you, but I would rather become talented at other games. I am skilled at World of Warcraft. It has a tiered system that does not allow me to play with those just starting out. As a result, I am always pushing to get better against others doing the same. The challenge is the game. Beating down on new players isn’t fun, it’s a waste of time. What are your thoughts? Let us know on social media!

Free Games of the Week

Enter the Gungeon

Enter the Gungeon is a bullet hell dungeon crawler following a band of misfits seeking to shoot, loot, dodge roll and table-flip their way to personal absolution by reaching the legendary Gungeon’s ultimate treasure: the gun that can kill the past.

God’s Trigger

Slay enemies with speed and precision in an over-the-top show of blood and explosions. Play solo or with others, make split-second decisions, dodge bullets, and use weapons and abilities to inflict violence in the most graphic way possible.

Oculus is Forcing Users to Sign in with Facebook

Oculus released a statement on August 18th that all new Oculus device users will be required to login in with their Facebook account starting in October. Previous users will have the option to merge their Oculus and Facebook accounts through Facebook. If you do not want to merge accounts, you will be able to login with your Oculus account for two more years. On January 1, 2023, Oculus will end support for Oculus accounts.

The internet’s reaction has been very negative as many try to distance themselves from Facebook after recent years of privacy concerns. Oculus’ social media accounts are bombarded with demands for them to stop this practice and outrage at the company. If you own an Oculus and don’t want anything to do with Facebook, then you have two more years to enjoy Oculus support.

Source: Oculus Statement

Battle of the Brands: Fall Guys Charity Skin Auction

Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout has taken the internet by storm, and brands from every industry have wanted to get in on the action. We’ve seen Metal Gear Solid, KFC, Spyro, and many more fan creations. We’ll add some below. Today, Fall Guys announced a way to get a brand-related skin into the game. Brands can bid for the coveted spot with proceeds going to the UK-based charity Special Effects.

Currently, the top bidder is G2 Esports but the lead is changing constantly. Their bid is $203,003, beating Ninja’s $200k bid. This is an excellent way to add skins to the game. Giving fans entertainment and charity some funds.

Apple Kicks Fortnite Off the iOS *Update*

Apple’s tight hold on iOS is being exercised again with the removal of the Fortnite App after Epic implemented in-app purchases. With this new payment process, Apple loses out on their 30% cut. The in-app purchase are also live on Andriod phones but Google has not removed the app yet. Apple refuses to budge on their App Store rules which have also caused problems with Project xCloud and Fortnite in the past.

epic_direct_pay_apple_app_store_2045x979_730033169
in-app purchase screenshot from The Verge

Epic is notorious for using its massive Fortnite income to make a statement. First was the 12% cut instead of Steam’s 30% on the PC launchers, then the free games every Thursday to pull people in, and here they are dropping v-buck prices. They announced that v-bucks can now be cheaper because they don’t need to worry about the Apple cut. Normally 1,000 v-bucks are $10 but now it’s only $8 if you use their direct payment process. This move makes Epic look like the good guys to the consumers and put the blame back on Apple if the prices need to go back up. In truth, Epic is simply breaking previous agreements to bring attention to a situation they feel is unfair.

*Update* Google has now removed Fortnite from their store as well. Epic has escalated their attacks by first suing Apple and Google saying they are a monopoly and claiming they are representing thousands of apps. Epic then released a video mimicking Apple’s famed 1984 ad. The new video shows a Fortnite character shattering an screen with a talking Apple. Spotify has come out in support of Epic saying “We applaud Epic Games decision to take a stand against Apple”. We will see many companies take side in what looks to be a long battle. This could change the industry. We’ll keep you updated here.

 

 

Sources: The Verge, CNBC, Cnet

 

WarnerMedia Trying to Sell Crunchyroll

Crunchyroll is a streaming service with a huge anime library and 3 million subscribers. Parent company WarnerMedia, is looking to sell the service as part of its recent restructuring. The current top prospect is Sony, who already owns the competition called Funimation. WarnerMedia wants $1.5 billion but Sony is trying to negotiate a lower price.

This is part of the massive changes coming from Waner along with the possible sell of its gaming division and layoffs at DC Comics. WarnerMedia’s new Chief Jason Kilar is trying to refocus the company and reduce debt. He told The Hollywood Reporter that he wants WarnerMedia to be focused on streaming and global business. This is why HBO Max has received a great deal of support and already has 36.3 million subscribers.

Sources: The Hollywood Reporter, Deadline, Variety

Phil Spencer Talks About Halo Infinite Delay

Xbox boss Phil Spencer was on Gary Whitta’s Animal Talking Twitch show where he discussed the delay of Halo Infinite. Spencer says he was disappointed and wanted Halo to launch with the Series X, but knew the delay was the right thing to do.

“In the end, I have to make the right decision. The strength of the Halo franchise — the health and ability of the team… are things tracking toward the quality of where you want the game?”

  • Phil Psencer on Animal Talk Twitch Show

This sounds like they desired better quality and didn’t want to force extra work on their employees. The graphical deficiencies were made obvious when the internet reacted negatively to the Halo Infinite gameplay reveal trailer. Immediately after, Xbox came out to defend the graphics but it was mostly on deaf ears. To increase the graphic quality at this point would be a massive undertaking and put a strain on an already pandemic-hampered workforce. This “Crunch” has been a big concern in the last couple of years amongst the gaming industry, and developers working to resolve it.

Phil Spencer goes on to mention that Xbox and developer 343 both considered breaking the game up into pieces, with episodic releases, but abandoned the idea.

“I’ll apologise to the fans, because I never like to set up expectations and then not hit them, but I also believe we’re making the right decision, in the long run, for both Xbox and Halo and our customers.”

We will be discussing the pros and cons of the delay of Halo on the next episode of Geek Freaks Podcast. Be sure to join us!

Sources: Animal Talk Twitch Show, Stevivor.com

Olivia Munn in Final Talks to Return to G4

We’ve all been excited about the relaunch of the gaming channel G4, but the hype rises with the possible return of Olivia Munn. The Wrap sources say Munn is in final talks to take on a bigger role on the channel. She was originally a co-host of Attack of the Show and became the face of G4. Munn left for acting opportunities and stared in series and films including an X-Men. Her new role at G4 will include on-air responsibilities and behind the scenes positions. Munn is quite popular now and maybe requesting a producer or director role.

We at Geek Freaks are happy with the return of G4 and believe it could be a home for eSports. Munn’s involvement further shows that Comcast is putting their best foot forward with G4’s return.

Xbox Series S Confirmed by Leaked Xbox Controller

On August 9th, confirmation of the Xbox Series S came from the box of a leaked Xbox Controller. Twitter user @TinyRakan first posted the pictures of the Xbox controller and it’s box. The account is not terribly big but is followed by the Xbox Support Twitter account, giving them legitimacy. The controller is “Robot” White and looks very similar to an Xbox One Elite controller with the circular D-pad. The big leak comes from the controller’s container. On the side, it lists everything it will work with, including PC, iOS, Xbox One, and more. At the top, it states “Xbox Series X/S”, showing support for the already announced Xbox Series X and the not yet announced Series S. The Series S has been rumoured for a while, nicknamed Lockhart, and will be a disk-less version of the next-gen console. Xbox will presumably officially announce the new system soon with additional information on the specs. There is speculation the system may also be paired down in power as well to achieve as low of a price as possible. We will update this article as soon as we have more info.

Apple Blocks Xbox’s Project xCloud App

Apple has confirmed to Business Insider that they will not be supporting game streaming services like Google Stadia and Microsoft’s Project xCloud on iOS. Apple released a statement claiming that the app store is meant to be a safe place for both users and developers. They do not include any specifics as to why they do not want to support game streaming, the believed reason for the ban is because you cannot review each game through the Apple App Store having to trust a third-party review system.

Xbox says they will not be able to bring the Project xCloud app to the iOS due to this block but will continue to work on Apple’s approval.

“Unfortunately, we do not have a path to bring our vision of cloud gaming with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to gamers on iOS via the Apple App Store. Apple stands alone as the only general-purpose platform to deny consumers from cloud gaming and game subscription services like Xbox Game Pass…We are committed to finding a path to bring cloud gaming with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to the iOS platform.”

-Microsoft statement to Verge

So far, the only approved game streaming service allowed on iOS is Steam Link. This was allowed because users stream games already purchased on the PC.

Sources: The Verge, Den of Geeks, Business Insider

 

Animaniacs Reboot Coming Soon to Hulu

Animaniacs are back and are amongst a new slate of shows coming to Hulu. The new Animaniacs is being produced by Steven Spielberg again and made by his Amblin studios. The first of 13 episodes will premiere Friday, November 20. With this announcement came other projects, Monsterland,  Eater’s Guide to the World, No Man’s Land, and I am Greta. Monsterland is an 8 part series based on Nathan Ballingrud’s North American Lake Monsters. This anthology will explore tales of creatures like mermaids and fallen angels. Monsterland will premiere October 2nd. Eater’s Guide to the World will be narrated by Maya Rudolf and feature foods from around the world. No Man’s Land is the story of siblings stuck in the Syrian war. I am Greta is a new documentary about the 15-year-old activist Greta Thunberg.

Sources: Deadline

 

PlayStation’s State of Play

We got a new State of Play today! It wasn’t massive but more details from PlayStation is always a good thing.

Announced:

  • New Gameplay footage for Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time
    • players can wall run and zip climb
    • customizations are earned, no microtransactions
    • four masks will allow you to modify the game
    • Coco is a new character and can be played during the entire game
    • coming to PS4 on October 2
  • Hitman 3
    • coming to PS4 and PS5
    • there is a PSVR mode
      • The whole trilogy will have a VR mode
  • Braid: Anniversary Edition
    • new graphics
    • releasing early 2021
  • Pathless
    • from developer Giant Squid
    • play as a hunter with a bow in an open world
    • a lot of stealth gameplay
    • releasing later this year
  • Spelunky 2
    • includes multiplayer
    • releases September 15
  • Genshin Impact
    • new trailer
    • open-world RPG
  • Aon Must Die
    • new fighting game
    • 2D
  • Anno Mutationem
    • 2D sci-fi
    • releasing December 2020
  • Bugsnax
    • more gameplay
    • joining PS5 end of this year
  • Vader Immortal
    • new VR Star Wars game
    • Releasing August 25
  • Control
    • DLC called AWE
    • brings in Alan Wake
    • August 27
  • Auto Chess
    • coming to PS4 on October 31
  • The Pedestrian
    • 2D platformer
    • the player builds the level
    • January 2021
  • Hood: Outlaw and Legends
    • medieval third-person action game
  • TemTem
    • coming to PS5 in 2021
    • very similar to Pokemon
  • Godfall
    • looter shooter
    • four realms
    • no microtransactions
    • gameplay of boss fight
    • releases end of this year

Watch the full event below:

Overwatch’s Summer Games is Here!

One of the most fun gaming events is finally here, Overwatch’s Summer Games! The event runs from August 4th to August 26th and includes Lucioball and many new skins.

The Lucioball game mode is very similar to Rocket League with a big colorful arena and a fast-paced soccer game. Players all use Lucio and have to use both Lucio’s wall running skate and his cannon to get the ball into the opponent’s net. There are multiple maps that take you around the world. We’re also getting a Lucioball Remix that has two balls at all times with additional balls spawning in randomly.

Along with a new event comes new skins. Here are the ones you can earn:

  • Week 1
    • 3 wins: Baseballmari Player Icon
    • 6 wins: Union Jack Spray
    • 9 wins: Union Jack Tracer Epic Skin
  • Week 2
    • 3 wins: Golfmari Player Icon
    • 6 wins: Sand Castle Spray
    • 9 wins:  Sand Castle Bastion Epic Skin
  • Week 3
    • 3 wins: Surfimari Player Icon
    • 6 wins: Ice Cream Spray
    • 9 wins: Ice Cream Orisa Epic Skin

There are additional skins to unlock through the normal currency or loot boxes. Check the all out below:

 

Walmart Launching Drive-in Theaters

During COVID most indoor theaters remain close. Some have sought out drive-in theaters that are playing classics, but drive-ins and rare and hard to find after their decline. Walmart attempts to fill the need. Walmart is launching Drive-in theaters in their big parking lots starting August 14th to October 21st with all showings starting at 5pm. They are teaming up with Tribeca Film Festival and will be completely free.

“We recognize the challenges our customers and their families have faced over the last few months and we wanted to create an experience where they could come together safely to create new memories. The Walmart Drive-in is one small way we’re supporting the communities we serve.”

  • Janey Whiteside, Walmart’s Chief Customer Officer

The movies to be shown include:

  •  E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
  • Ghostbusters
  • Men in Black: International
  • Black Panther
  • Pokémon Detective Pikachu
  • The Lego Batman Movie
  • Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse
  • Wonder Woman
  • Back to The Future
  • Beetlejuice
  • The Goonies
  • The Iron Giant
  • And much more!

Find out is your local Walmart is on the list at their site thewalmartdrivein.com

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Pikmin 3 Deluxe Heading to the Switch

Nintendo announced that Pikmin 3 Deluxe will be coming to the Switch on October 30th. This is an upgraded version of the 2013 game with additional difficulty modes, missions, and all the DLCs. You will also be able to play the game in co-op with your friends for the first time!

 

Blizzard Announces a Digital Blizzcon for Early 2021

Blizzcon was canceled this year do to COVID-19, but Blizzard is still bringing all the announcements just a few months after the normal event.

“We are planning on channeling the spirit of BlizzCon into a virtual event in the early part of next year. We’re really fortunate to have a passionate and engaged community that’s really looking forward to what we’re creating and what we’re working on. And we’re looking forward to sharing what the teams have been working on for that event.”

  • J. Allen Brack in Earnings Call

There are some massive games on the horizon that we could see coming 2021, and Blizzcon brings the needed hype. Announced at the 2019 Blizzcon was Overwatch 2 and Diablo 4. We will likely get release dates for these titles, presumably before the normal 2021 Blizzcon. That assumes that there will be a standard Blizzcon as well next year. We will also get the next big raid patch for World of Warcraft Shadow Lands. Other projects likely to be addressed is the release of Diablo Immortals and Burning Crusade Classic.

We at Geek Freaks enjoy every year’s Blizzcon. And while this won’t feel the same, we are still excited to share the announcements. We will be doing daily podcast episodes and streams during the event.

This Week’s Show

Hey all! This week we respond to Rogan’s gaming remarks, discuss the new deal between Universal and AMC, Analogue Pocket, Ninja joining Hollywood, the return of G4, and more!

Spider-Man Joins Marvel’s Avengers…for PlayStation

The PlayStation Blog revealed this morning (August 3rd) that Spider-Man will be joining Square Enix’s Marvel’s Avengers exclusively on PlayStation. This will be a PlayStation Exclusive because Sony owns the right to Spider-Man and Crystal Dynamics will likely use the same suit as PS4’s very successful Spider-Man standalone game. He won’t be available until 2021 but will be offered free to owners of the base game. We expect more details during the Sony State of Play on August 6th.

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