Updated: Mar 01, 2021 7:00 pm EST (GMT -05:00)

Monday, Mar 01, 2021

Need for Speed Delayed

During an interview Polygon, Laura Miele, chief studios officer at Electronic Arts, reveals that EA is delaying the next Need for Speed game. This is because they have temporarily reassigned developer Criterion to work with DICE on the next Battlefield. She explains that EA's Codemasters acquisition means they will release a racing title this year, giving them leeway to push Need for Speed into 2022. Here's the explanation:
Rather than hustle to push the next Need for Speed out the door, when it might get lost or cannibalized by a Codemasters release around the same time, Criterion’s capabilities would be better spent on Battlefield, Miele said. But, she stressed, Criterion Games will return to work on Need for Speed — the series is not being shut down, taken from the Guildford, England studio, nor given over to Codemasters, which is two hours away in Southam. The next Need for Speed will also launch on current and previous generations of PlayStation and Xbox, Miele said.

“They own the Need for Speed franchise; that’s why they managed the remaster,” Miele said. “Anything that’s happening within the Need for Speed brand, they are responsible for, or things come through them to ensure that they’re on board with it.”

Frogwares Accuses Nacon of Pirating The Sinking City

An update from Frogwares follows up on their recent request that no one buy the version of The Sinking City that's relisted on Steam (thanks Kxmode). This includes a video titled "How Nacon Cracked and Pirated The Sinking City," something that's detailed in their article, which alleges that Nacon has attempted to pirate the game three times now. Here's a bit:
Since the release of The Sinking City was released on the 27th of June 2019, Frogwares has encountered continual problems with its licensee, Nacon. This post/video will look into a particular aspect of the game’s contract and the findings that we, Frogwares, have made.

Steam is one of the listed platforms of commercialization in the contract between Frogwares and Nacon. But since the release of the game, Nacon’s unlawful actions have forced Frogwares to defend its property and react in front of the French Justice for lack of payments, attempts to steal our IPs, etc which we made a public letter about back in August 2020.

Since then Nacon has tried to force Frogwares to deliver a new master version of the game through the use of their lawyers. The French Justice refused Nacon’s demands twice, first in July 2020 and then in October 2020 during an appeal. The final decision on whether Frogwares is obligated to deliver the Steam version that Nacon is demanding is still set to be judged in trial court in the next months or even years.
Continue here to read the full story.

Dota Plus Plans

The Dota 2Blog offers a spring 2021 update on what's going on with Dota Plus, the monthly subscription add-on for Dota 2, Valve's MOBA. They go into detail on what's covered in this concise overview:
With spring just around the corner, it’s time to help cast off the mantle of winter with a refreshing influx of new features and content for Dota Plus. Featuring updates to Hero Relics, added Turbo functionality, a seasonal treasure, and refreshed guild quests and rewards, there’s ample for Dota Plus members to explore.

1971: Indian Naval Front Announced

Indie developer Neosphere Interactive announces 1971: Indian Naval Front, a historical game coming to Steam in Q2. This is set during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, a 13-day war between India and Pakistan. Here's a trailer showing that the game features aerial and naval combat. The trailer concludes calling the game a tribute to the Indian navy, which, along with the title and the fact that the developer is based in Mumbai gives a good sense of the side this game takes. Here's word:
In 1971: Indian Naval Front you can revive history and experience the clashes in the Indian Ocean between India and Pakistan during their war in the seventies.

“1971: Indian Naval Front will enable you to take part in pretty much all the Indian Navy operations executed during the 1971 War including transmission of intel through morse codes”, says Hitesh Ramchandani, co-founder at Neosphere Interactive.

The Campaign Mode (Single player) is played from the perspective of Indian Navy, where the player engages in different combat missions like Maritime Interdiction Operations, Naval Air Squadron Sorties, Search and Rescue and others. All the missions are based on actual incidents which took place during the war.
Continue here to read the full story.

Wonhon: A Vengeful Spirit Announced

Publisher Super.com and developer BUSAN SANAI GAMES announce Wonhon: A Vengeful Spirit, a stealthy action/adventure coming to Steam in Q2 of this year. There's a chance to play this right now, though, as a Wonhon: Prologue is now available, and this video shows a playthrough. Word is: "The Prologue is a prequel to the events in the game, where the player will be introduced to both the stealth and combat mechanics of Wonhon." Here are the details:
Wonhon: A Vengeful Spirit is a paranormal stealth-action and tactics game about revenge and its price in a 1920’s era Korea. The main character is a Korean girl who was killed along with her family during an attack on their village. Jeoseung Saja, the God of Death, gives the girl the paranormal ability to turn into a ghost and possess living creatures.

The core game mechanic of Wonhon is stealth. Since the girl is not protected by anything, and her only weapon is an ability to turn into a ghost, caution is key to survival. The protagonist can also possess living beings, which allows her to slip past enemies, or engage in combat with them when needed.
Continue here to read the full story.

BUNGIECON TM Discovered

Trademark247 shows that Bungie, Inc. has registered a trademark for BUNGIECON (thanks ResetEra). This seems like a strong suggestion that a Bungie-specific game show will follow, but as is the case with such filings, it's hard to get a sense from the goods and services this is said to cover:
jewelry Instruction guides and reference guides in the fields of video games, science fiction, fantasy and action-adventure stories; posters, calendars, trading cards other than for games, books, namely, novels, graphic novels and comic books in the fields of video games, science fiction, fantasy and action-adventure stories; stickers Halloween costumes and masks sold in connection therewith; costumes for use in role-playing; apparel, namely, shirts, sweatshirts, pants, shorts, hats, baseball caps, jackets, footwear, shoes, boots, namely, boots featuring video game characters, scenes and symbols Toys, namely, action figures and related accessories; playing cards and card games; trading card games; board games; plush toys education and entertainment services, namely, organizing and conducting fan conventions in the fields of video and computer games; entertainment services, namely, providing a website for news, reviews, previews and information, all related to video and computer games

M.U.L.E. Returns

GOG.com has revived M.U.L.E., offering a version of the multiplayer strategy game updated to work on modern Windows systems. Originally released for Atari 8-bit computers in 1983 and PC-DOS in 1985, M.U.L.E. is a true classic designed by late industry pioneer Danielle Bunten Berry. To celebrate the re-release, there's a strategy game sale on GOG.com with discounts up to 90%. Here's a refresher:
M.U.L.E. is about four hopeful explorers trying to make a fortune on a virgin planet. This is done by producing various goods (Food, Energy, Smithore, Crystite). Each of these goods have their uses: if you don't have enough food, you will have less time during your turn. If you don't have enough energy, your output will be lower. If enough smithore isn't produced, there will be a shortage of M.U.L.E.s. Crystite is the big earner that can make or break your game.

You start the game by selecting your species. Some are easier to play, some harder. There are three levels of difficulty, in the easiest the game only lasts 6 turns, but the real game is 12 turns. Crystite is not available at the easiest level.
Continue here to read the full story.

Surgeon Simulator 2 Bad Blood Update

Bossa Studios announces a new update is coming today for Surgeon Simulator 2. The "Bad Blood" update adds nine competitive levels, leaderboards, and more to the medical malpractice sequel. The game is available on the Epic Games Store where they inexplicably still don't have the capability of posting news about patches like this, so here's an outline of all that this brings:
With Bad Blood, Bossa Studios is looking to test every would-be doctor in the form of nine new competitive levels — all of which are coming today to Surgeon Simulator 2 owners completely free of charge! Jump in and go head to head in these awesome new challenges:

  • WASD Heroes: Keep-up with floor targets in a bombastic free-for-all homage to classic arcade dance machines!
  • Panel Smash: Channel that inner appetite for destruction in a mad dash to the finish line. Be advised: may involve ball pits.
  • Match 4: Supermarket Sweep has swept over the surgery with this organ-fuelled time-trial. It's the perfect speed-run candidate, brimming with challenges!
  • Anatomy Theft: The ultimate test of player’s surgery skills in an anatomy-orientated trial. Hopefully distinguishing between kidney and lungs isn’t too hard?
  • Limb-Ripper: Self-explanatory: rip and tear until the job’s done!
  • Surgical Mayhem: Fight over Bob’s very limited supply of body parts. Whoever secures enough limbs will be crowned victorious!
  • Heading Out: A classic, carnival-style coconut shy but with Bob’s heads. Dunk the most Bob heads to win in this fun-for-all-the-family rapid level.
  • Top Of The World: The sky may be the limit, but players have to get there first! It’s a race to the top in a series of challenges that must be toppled along the way.
  • Surgery Relay: Sports day is back, and this time, it’s surgical. Cooperate in this relay-style challenge, but keep an eye out for competitors, who will take any and all opportunities to sabotage any rivals…

Continue here to read the full story.

Morning Crowdfunding

Out of the Blue

So March is upon us, the month that's said to come in like a lion and go out like a lamb. As I look out on the frozen tundra I can only hope this is the case. As I often point out, this saying always reminds me of John Belushi's marvelous rant on SNL Weekend Update back in 1976. Here's the quote I first posted from this a couple of years ago: "There's a country where March hops in like a kangaroo, it stays a kangaroo for a while, and then it becomes a smaller kangaroo. Then for a couple of days it's sort of a cross between a frilled lizard and a common housecat. Then it changes back into a smaller kangaroo, and then it goes out like a wild dingo. And it's not Australia! Now you'd think it would be Australia, but it's not!"

Obituary: Legendary Artist Gary Meyer.

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Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.

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Thanks Max.

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Sunday, Feb 28, 2021

E3 2021 Live Event Reportedly Cancelled

A Los Angeles City Report indicates E3's 2021 live event has been cancelled (thanks ResetEra). A report on VGC from earlier this month stated that ESA is proposing that E3 2021 be a digital event. Here's what the report on LA's citywide conventions for the event says:
It says: "Cancelled live event in 2021. Working with production team on broadcast options at LA Live/LACC. Working on 2022 & 2023 license."

DOOM Eternal Earned $450M in Nine Months

The LinkedIn Profile of David S. has some sales information about DOOM Eternal, as the Product Manager at Gearbox Publishing lists a previous position as "monetization designer" at id Software (thanks PCGamesN). He cites SuperData as the source for saying the first-person shooter sequel generated $450 million in its first nine months:
Product Management Lead for id Software products. Responsibilities included product KPI development, game monetization, economy, analytics, feature specs, feature roadmaps, and more. One major focus was on Doom Eternal, which generated over $450m in revenue in the first 9 months of release (per Superdata public information).

Steam Top 10

Here's the new rundown of the 10 bestselling titles for last week on Steam. Remember, this information is provided for entertainment purposes only. Please, no wagering. We're guessing the duplicates at the fourth and fifth positions are due to the Digital Deluxe Edition of Persona 5 Strikers.

  1. Valheim.
  2. Valve Index VR Kit.
  3. 鬼谷八荒.
  4. Persona 5 Strikers.
  5. Persona 5 Strikers.
  6. Stardew Valley.
  7. Pre-purchase OUTRIDERS.
  8. Nioh 2 – The Complete Edition.
  9. Baldur's Gate 3.
  10. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive - Operation Broken Fang.

Out of the Blue

I'm pretty pleased with the brunch I whipped up for MrsBlue and myself today. I recently made a frittata, which was really good, but very basic. Besides oil and seasoning it was essentially three ingredients: potatoes, onions, and eggs. Today I augmented it with bacon, cheddar cheese, and broccoli. This certainly took away from the healthy aspects of it, but it also definitely upped the ante as far as flavor goes. As I say, I'm pretty happy considering how off-book I was going from the original recipe. But of course it's pretty hard to go wrong by adding bacon and cheese to anything.

Cheesy Round-up
Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.

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