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Monday, May 17, 2021 Happy National Day (Norway) Hurra, hurra, hurra!

AT&T/Discovery Deal's WBIE Impact

IGN's Julia Alexander tweets that the deal between AT&T and Discovery for a new joint venture includes some, but not all the gaming assets of Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment/Warner Bros. Games. So it would seem some further wheeling and dealing will be involved before all the dust settles. Here's what Julia says:
Correcting part of this tweet:

1) The sale includes some of Warner Bros. Interactive/Warner Bros. Games, but not all.

2) The sale does include DC Comics. Discovery, through the new venture, now effectively co-owns DC Comics with WB.

3) Rooster Teeth is part of the sale, yes.

SAMURAI SHODOWN for Steam Next Month

SNK CORPORATION announce Steam release plans for SAMURAI SHODOWN, SNK's weapon-based fighting game. This will come to Steam on June 14th, just days after the first anniversary of the game's launch on the Epic Games Store on June 11, 2020. Word is the game's Steam launch will come alongside the release of a third character from Season Pass 3:
SAMURAI SHODOWN, which has been enjoyed by players across the globe on PlayStation®4, Xbox Series X|S. Xbox One, Nintendo SwitchTM, Stadia, and the Epic Games Store, is now making its way to Steam on June 14th. On the same day, the third character from Season Pass 3 also joins the fray both on PC and consoles. SHIRO TOKISADA AMAKUSA appeared in the very first SAMURAI SHODOWN game as the final boss back in 1993. Their menacing legacy has made an impact on the series as they’ve also appeared in SAMURAI SHODOWN III (1995), SAMURAI SHODOWN IV: AMAKUSA’S REVENGE (1996), and SAMURAI SHODOWN V SPECIAL (2004). Now, the boss that defined the series has returned to SAMURAI SHODOWN.

Season Pass 3 characters CHAM CHAM and HIBIKI TAKANE are already available, with the fourth character, a fighter from GUILTY GEAR, appearing later this year.

Ships 2022 Announced

Games Box announces Ships 2022, a follow-up to the port management strategy simulation Ships 2017 that's coming to PC and consoles. The Windows edition will arrive first on Steam and the game will follow for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and Switch. Word is: "As announced by the developers, Ships 2022 will offer an open world with ports modelled on real locations and the vast waters of the world ocean. The creators plan to provide players with various ships, including, for example, container ships, tankers, cruise ships, icebreakers and rescue units." Here's the Official Reveal Trailer and word on the game's two different play modes:
Ships 22 features two game modes. In the first, strategic one, your role comes down to broad-based management: you give orders to your employees and you have the last word on the units – their repair, upgrades, and load. You also decide whether and when to start expanding the port in order to increase its capabilities and profitability.

In the second mode, you’ll move from the managerial chair to the deck of the ship to personally lead the sea expedition. This is where Ships 22 changes from an economic strategy to an action/simulation game. Balancing between these two modes increases the immersion, diversifies the gameplay and doesn’t let you get bored.
Continue here to read the full story.

Catsperience Released

Catsperience is now available for Windows on Steam, offering the chance to defy death to satisfy your curiosity over what it's like to be a cat. In particular, "a sarcastic tomcat addicted to catnip." This will allow the player to engage in two of the three favorite activities of a tomcat - destroying furniture and performing intricate experiments with gravity (the third activity is the essence of being a tomcat, but not very family friendly). Here are some fine feline factoids:
Are you curious what it's like to be a cat? This is your chance. Eat, sleep, be a jerk. Repeat. Oh wait, there is a problem. The food provider is missing, what will you do now? A blue-blooded cat doesn't hunt after all. Find him befur you will be in need of such a menial task.

Experience what it’s like to live like a real cat

  • Climb up the furniture, push things off the table and show that human who is the boss in da house.
  • The destructible items of the mansion are waiting for your devastating paws.
  • Hunt those pesky running squeaking meatbags.
  • Speak in sarcastic tone to be be a real aristocratic jerk.
  • Rest in cosy boxes, and feel the purrfection.
  • Be a smart cat and find out how you can get in and out of places where you don't belong.

Chivalry 2 Open Beta This Month

Publisher Tripwire Interactive and developer Torn Banner Studios invite players to participate in a crossplay beta test for Chivalry 2 beginning on May 27th. This will allow Windows, Xbox, and PlayStation gamers to hack, slash, and bash each other prior to the launch of the medieval combat sequel on June 8th. Preloads of the beta should begin on May 26th, and the Windows client will be available through the Epic Games Store. All the details are in this post by Torn Banner Studios. Here's an Open Beta Announce Video Dev Diary and more on the news:
Strongholds were sieged, enemies were crushed, and legends were made in the recent and successful Chivalry 2 Cross-Play Closed Beta. If you missed out on the medieval mayhem, fear not! Torn Banner and Tripwire Presents are giving all players everywhere one more chance to master the blade. Featuring a ton of new maps, features, and updates based on player feedback from the Closed Beta, there is a wealth of new content to experience and discover in the upcoming Cross-Play Open Beta program.

Continue here to read the full story.

The Witcher Anniversary Sale and Giveaway

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the launch of The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings and the sixth anniversary of the release of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, a sale is now underway on GOG.com with discounts on the entire Witcher RPG series. As an additional gift, there's also a Witcher Goodies Collection that's completely free as long as you collect a copy between now and May 20th. Here's word on the contents of your goodie bag:
It includes arts, books, soundtracks, the making of videos, Video Game Show concert, wallpapers, and many more goodies from all The Witcher games gathered together.

Worlds Inc. and Linden Labs Settle Lawsuit

Worlds Inc. and Linden Research announce a settlement has been reached World's lawsuit over Second Life, claiming infringement on U.S. Patent No. 7,181,690, entitled "System and Method for Enabling Users to Interact in a Virtual Space" (the "’690 Patent"). This also has the latest on a similar lawsuit filed by Worlds last year against Microsoft over potential infringement in Minecraft on U.S. Patent No. 8,082,501, also titled "System and Method for Enabling Users to Interact in a Virtual Space," though this is the "’501 Patent." Get out a yellow legal pad and take copious notes, as all of this will be on the test:
The settlement with Linden comes on the heels of an Order issued on April 30, 2021, by the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, where that court concluded that the asserted claims of World’s patents were invalid under 35 U.S.C. § 101. Kidrin previously commented on this recent decision, saying, “We are obviously disappointed in the court’s decision, but we believe the ruling is contrary to the established law of section 101 as announced by the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.”

On May 7, 2021, Worlds and Microsoft jointly asked the Western District of Texas judge to stay their ongoing patent infringement litigation over another of Worlds’ patents, asserted against Microsoft’s Minecraft game until Worlds’ appeal of the Activision decision is concluded. On May 12, 2021, the judge granted that stay. Commenting on these recent events, Kidrin added, “The settlement with Linden confirms our belief of the fundamental importance of Worlds’ technology to such 3D video games and virtual reality experiences. We requested that our case against Microsoft be paused, because we disagree with the Massachusetts court’s ruling and will appeal it to the Federal Circuit.”
Continue here to read the full story.

Out of the Blue

We had a new wildlife sighting yesterday, as a large while bird with long legs and a long bill circled the pond a couple of time before perching in a tree. MrsBlue and I first pondered whether this was a crane, proving once again that neither of us knows all that much about birds. After a little research we figured out this was most likely a Great Egret or a "white phase" Great Blue Heron (which makes sense, since we've seen Great Blue's pretty frequently around here). The easiest tip here is how happy it was in the tree, as perching like that is not something cranes do. Here's hoping the newborn little ones are being careful. A little more reading suggests that the arrival of a heron or an egret shortly after the hatching of the local waterfowl broods is probably not a coincidence, as these birds are fierce predators.

Fierce Round-up
Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.

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