A slightly shorter edition of the news this week – condensed down into its purest, high-grade potency. Try a small dose before working your way up to the full article. Drink plenty of water.
This week the tenth anniversary celebrations for Minecraft took another interesting turn, with the announcement of Minecraft Earth, a free-to-play location-based mobile game in the Minecraft universe. With a lot of information about certain aspects of the game – it will not use loot boxes, there will be a 24/7 moderation team to protect players, and it is going into beta this summer – there’s a lot of buzz about the game before we even know how it all works.
From the description provided so far, it sounds like you will traverse the world and discover treasure chests (containing blocks and items), as well as finding mobs and adventures dotted around the world to interact with. You can build in AR on a tabletop view before placing this building into the world in “real-life” scale. It appears that players can collaborate on building structures, and see the buildings of other players around the map. It’s ambitious and exciting, but will either rely on a good community of players (or a diligent team of moderators and protective functionality) to prevent it becoming a griefer fest.
In other news, in a blog post this week it was confirmed that Minecraft has sold 176 million copies across all platforms, potentially overtaking Tetris (170m copies) to become the highest selling game of all time. It’s certainly an impressive figure and with the constant support and updates the game receives then it doesn’t look like that pace will drop any time soon!
Are you excited to punch trees in the real world?
Sony and Microsoft tag team gaming
In a bizarre partnership that could have profound importance for the state of console gaming for years to come, this week we learned that Sony and Microsoft have signed a “Memorandum of Understanding” to explore the benefits of sharing resources and development for AI and cloud-based services to support gaming.
With Microsoft’s Azure services being mentioned alongside Sony’s high-tech image sensors and semiconductors, this partnership could allow them to produce systems which might bring cloud gaming development to a unified platform.
There is little information so far about what this exactly means but with Google Stadia moving into the cloud gaming market in the coming months then it makes sense for Microsoft and Sony to try and position themselves to compete against that behemoth. Although we’re yet to see exactly what Stadia or Sonycrosoft’s new services will offer, it appears that these industry giants expect cloud and AI-enhanced gaming services to be the next big market.
What do you think this new and unexpected partnership could bring?
This week brings a whole new batch of digital joy to keep your idle hands busy. The basics are listed below in a neat little tabular summary but your friend Google will fill in the rest of the details.
|American Fugitive||PC/PS4||Curve Digital||21/5/2019|
|Killing Floor: Double Feature||PS4||Tripwire Interactive||21/5/2019|
|Team Sonic Racing||NS/PC/PS4/XO||SEGA||21/5/2019|
|Gladiabots||PC||Future Friends Games||22/5/2019|
|Splitgate: Arena Warfare||PC||1047 Games||22/5/2019|
|The Last Door||NS/PS4/XO (online)||The Game Kitchen||22/5/2019|
|American Fugitive||NS||Curve Digital||23/5/2019|
|Nelly Cootalot: Spoonbeaks Ahoy!||Lin/Mac/PC||Publisher TBA||23/5/2019|
|Total War: Three Kingdoms||Lin/Mac/PC||SEGA||23/5/2019|
|American Fugitive||XO||Curve Digital||24/5/2019|
|For The King||NS/PS4||Merge Games||24/5/2019|
|Hungry Baby: Party Treats||NS||Digital Melody Games||24/5/2019|
|Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization Deluxe Edition||NS||Bandai Namco||24/5/2019|
Now a quick roundup of the other stuff that you might have missed, probably because you had better things to do. Fortunately, we didn’t…. So here they are.
- Game of Thrones’ biggest star this season is getting a cameo in Skyrim
- Many new and sought-after bugs features are included in World of Warcraft Classic
- The Division 2 takes its name too literally with console players having a hard time with the new raid
- Not happy fixing up crappy houses? My back garden needs some attention too
- Fortnite players might be in the money if they can just 360 no scope an octopus
- Coming to a cinema near you next summer, one bandicoot is on a mission…
- Weird-ass Pokemon game that sorta died has been resurrected
- Some additional teasing from the Sega Genesis Mini means that we now know ¾ of the lineup
- Apparently pirates are unreliable with their expected arrival times
- George RR Martin is pissed off that TV wrapped up his story before he managed it, so he responds by writing a new RPG
- Playstation Cinquo “no loading times” tagline will definitely not bite them in the ass
- Riot Games have learned absolutely fuck all following the employee walkout
Matt Tiernan – your roving games reporter