Archived News:

Wednesday, Mar 29, 2023

Electronic Arts Lays Off Hundreds

An SEC filing from Electronic Arts today announces the company is laying off 6% of its workforce amid a restructuring plan. does the math on this, estimating it means around 775 lost jobs based on the 12,900 global employees reported by EA's latest annual financials. Here's the announcement:
On March 27, 2023, the Board of Directors of Electronic Arts Inc. (the "Company") approved a restructuring plan (the "Plan") focused on prioritizing investments to the Company's growth opportunities and optimizing its real estate portfolio. The Plan includes actions driven by portfolio rationalization, including intellectual property impairment charges and headcount reductions impacting approximately 6% of the Company's workforce, in addition to office space reductions.

The Company estimates that it will incur approximately $170 million to $200 million in charges in connection with the Plan. These charges consist primarily of approximately $65 million to $70 million in charges related to intellectual property impairment, approximately $55 million to $65 million related to employee severance and employee-related costs, approximately $45 million to $55 million associated with office space reductions, and approximately $5 million to $10 million of other charges, including contract cancellations. Of the aggregate amount of charges that the Company estimates it will incur, the Company expects that approximately $80 million to $100 million will be future cash expenditures.

The actions associated with the Plan are expected to be substantially complete by September 30, 2023. Certain payments associated with lease obligations will be paid in accordance with their terms.

Forspoken: In Tanta We Trust Announced

Square Enix announces In Tanta We Trust, new DLC coming to Forspoken on May 26th. Players who purchased the Forspoken Digital Deluxe will get this three days earlier, on the 23rd. In Tanta We Trust serves as a prequel to the action/RPG, depicting events 25 years before the main storyline. Here are the first details:
Forspoken: In Tanta We Trust story DLC will serve as a prequel to the main game and takes place 25 years prior the events of Forspoken. Continuing her search for a way to eradicate the Break from Athia once and for all, Frey finds herself following a mysterious voice that leads her to a place that somehow transports her to the Purge of the Rheddig, the legendary battle that devastated Athia and eventually drove the Tantas to madness. Accompanied by Tanta Cinta and a new set of magical abilities, Frey must uncover the answers and save Athia once more – and attempt to save herself.

In the Forspoken: In Tanta We Trust DLC, players will battle alongside Tanta Cinta using Frey’s newfound magical ability to unlock new combat strategies and coordinate devastating attack combos against the invading Rheddig forces. Scale to new heights in unique, vertically-designed environments with Frey’s honed magic-enhanced parkour skills.

Forspoken: In Tanta We Trust DLC will be launching on May 26, 2023. Players who purchased the Digital Deluxe edition of Forspoken will receive early access to the story DLC on May 23, 2023. Players who own the main game will be able purchase Forspoken: In Tanta We Trust DLC separately.

Crime Boss: Rockay City Released

Crime Boss: Rockay City is now available for Windows on the Epic Games Store, offering an organized crime first-person shooter with a Hollywood cast. This is set in the 90s, features actors from the 90s, though sadly has not garnered any review scores in the 90s. Here's the Launch Trailer and here's more:
Rockay City. A thriving metropolis with excitement buzzing from the sandy bay to the towering skyscrapers. But beyond the glamour, there is a fierce turf war raging on…

After the demise of the previous crime boss, there’s an open vacancy for a new King of Rockay City – but it isn’t just you who is fighting for the throne. Choose your crew based on their skills and expertise, and execute daring missions with the hopes of walking away with the cash, the turf and, ultimately, the crown.

Rockay City doesn’t just look and feel like the 90s, you’ll find a few familiar faces there too. From the charismatic Travis Baker (Michael Madsen) and his team of planners and handlers (Michael Rooker, Kim Basinger, Danny Glover and Damion Poitier), to rival gang bosses (Danny Trejo and Vanilla Ice) and the righteous Sheriff Norris (Chuck Norris): it’s not what you know, but who you know.

New Intel Drivers

Speaking of Crime Boss: Rockay City, support for the release is the main feature mentioned about the new Intel® Arc Game On Driver. Word is:
The theatrical visuals of Crime Boss look great on Intel Arc graphics with launch day support. The Intel Arc A750 averages a buttery-smooth 67 FPS at 1440p on Epic settings — 79% more performance per dollar than the Nvidia RTX 3060*. For even smoother safecracking, Intel XeSS in Balanced mode kicks the action into overdrive with 88 FPS at 1440p, 31% faster than going for the big score with XeSS off.

Cowboys & Rustlers Announced

Games Operators announces Cowboys & Rustlers, a top-down wild west adventure that's a spinoff of Rustler (Grand Theft Horse). This has a Steam Listing, but carries no release date at this point. Like Rustler, this does not take itself very seriously. This is shown in the Announcement Trailer and the announcement:
Become the most joyful cowboy that Wild West has ever seen. Use lasso, revolvers, dynamite, and emotional intelligence as universal tools of communication. Explore the magic of a top-down action video game while crossing the prairies in search of the sense of spittoons (and life).

Your adventure will not be a lonely one. Theodore is your companion, who will have a lot to say about your actions and will be your best friend in the west. He is using your journey to write his own revolutionary science-fiction novel. Together you’ll rob banks and roller-coasters and summon ghosts at cemeteries. Did we mention that he is also a talking horse?
Continue here to read the full story.

Do You See Sparky Prologue

Sparky Marky is now available on, offering a prologue of Do You See Sparky, a horror game in the works at Clapperheads which is "coming soon" to Steam. The demo is a 30 minutes prologue to the multiplayer social deduction game, introducing its setting in an abandoned children's camp. Here's Sparky Marky Launch Trailer along with more:
In this 30 minute prologue, you take on the role of a young investigator looking to get to the bottom of the mystery of Sparky. Solve puzzles and use gadgets to unlock clues that will help you solve the mystery. The abandoned camp certainly fits the stories that you’ve heard about Sparky, but will you uncover its secrets in time? In addition to giving players a feel for the world of Do You See Sparky?, Sparky Marky introduces you to the titular Sparky, although it’s recommended that you keep the introductions brief. While he may seem cuddly on the outside, who knows what terrible evil is lurking within...
Continue here to read the full story.

On Sale

*Blue's News may receive a commission on sales of this item.

Resident Evil 4 Sells 3M in Two Days

A statement from Capcom announces that the Resident Evil 4 remake managed to sell over three million units in just two days following its release (thanks Wario64). For perspective, PC Gamer notes the original Resident Evil 4 took a year to hit this sales milestone following its release in 2005, though versions for platforms like PC were not part of that launch. Here's word:
Capcom Co., Ltd. (Capcom) today announced that new title Resident Evil 4 for PlayStation®5, PlayStation®4, Xbox Series X|S and PC has sold over 3 million units worldwide.

The Resident Evil franchise features survival horror games in which players utilize a variety of weapons and other items to escape terrifying situations. Cumulative shipments of the games in the series now exceed 135 million units* since the first title debuted in 1996. Now, more than 27 years later, continuous support from the passionate fan base across the globe makes it Capcom’s flagship game series.
Continue here to read the full story.

Big Ambitions Sells Big

In another successful launch, Hovgaard Games announces Big Ambitions is fulfilling its big ambitions. We're told the business simulation sold more than 150,000 copies in the two weeks following its release into Early Access on Steam. Here's word:
With over 3,000 Very Positive reviews on Steam (96%), a top 5 place on Steam’s sales chart, a top 10 placement for global sales, and a peak of 11,000 Concurrent Players, Big Ambitions has made its mark. Combined with daily sales of 5,000 units (that shows no signs of slowing down) the 4-person development studio now has the financial freedom to realise their vision.

“We always knew we had a great game, but we never expected a result like this, considering the game is only just entering Early Access. We're very grateful and proud to be able to entertain so many people around the world. This is only the beginning.” - Jonas Hovgaard, CEO and Founder

Metal: Hellsinger - Dream of the Beast Released

Dream of the Beast is now available for Windows on Steam and for consoles, unleashing the first DLC for Metal: Hellsinger, the rhythm first-person shooter set in hell, where the sound system is always turned up to 11. The DLC includes new songs, and an update to the base game adds a new song selector feature. Check out the release trailer to see if you are metal enough to handle this. Here's more:
In Metal: Hellsinger, you ride through the Hells on bullets and vengeance to take back your voice from the devil herself. Blast hordes of demons as you shoot, dash, and perform takedowns to the beat of a critically acclaimed original soundtrack.

With today’s DLC and the new free Song Selector feature, you can choose any song (new ones included) you want to play on each level. Since gameplay and music are two horns on the same hand, this adds a whole new variety to Metal: Hellsinger.

Dream of the Beast further expands your arsenal by adding a new impossible weapon and three powerful outfits with special modifiers, including shields, healing, or more max ammo. Feel the beat thrum in your hands with the new four-barrel machine gun, an amalgam of both heaven and hell. Use it to dispatch demons in a new variable burst pattern.
Continue here to read the full story.

Gripper Released

The opportunity to get your grips on Gripper is now within your grasp, as this story-driven motorcycle action game now available for Windows on* and Steam as well as for Switch. Word is: "Created with love by a team of talented developers from across the world, Gripper is a frantic boss rush experience, set in the driver's seat of a high-speed cyberbike, complete with grappling hook attachment, and a robotic stuffed cat at your side." Here's a Launch Trailer and more:
In Gripper, players take control of None, a cyber biker trapped inside a world on the brink of collapse. Long-estranged from his parents, None is jolted back into their lives and forced to save the world from the mysterious AI known as Zero. Aided by his childhood stuffed animal, turned mechanized cat buddy, Kat-Kit, None must race across post-apocalyptic wastelands, explore treacherous tunnels, and defeat challenging bosses by gripping and ripping their hearts out. Working through grief is never easy, especially when the fate of the world is in your hands.
*Blue's News may receive a commission on sales of this item. Continue here to read the full story.

Atlas Fallen Delayed

Focus Entertainment and Deck13 Interactive recently announced a May 16th release date for Atlas Fallen. But that was so March 1st. Now just four weeks later, a new tweet announces the action/RPG will arrive on August 10th, almost three months after that. So it would seem that a lot has changed in a very short time. There's no mystery here, the explanation is simply that extra development time will make for a better game:
Thank you for the tremendous support we received so far on Atlas Fallen! From your enthusiastic comments on our video teasers online and in person at PAX EAST to the positive previews from critics, we're grateful and honored to have you excited to play our game.

Our goal has always been to create a memorable A-RPG experience in a unique setting, with exciting gameplay and the option for fully playable seamless co-op with a friend. We'd love to give the game some extra time which will allow us to deliver the best possible version of Atlas Fallen.

To achieve this, we have made the difficult decision to delay the worldwide launch of Atlas Fallen to AUGUST 10, 2023. We apologize for this disappointing news.

We'll come back in early summer to share updates on the game, including new gameplay footage and your first look at drop-in co-op gameplay. We can't wait to bring you a fantastic experience in the deserted lands of Atlas this summer!
Continue here to read the full story.

Smalland: Survive the Wilds Early Access

Attention Steve Martin fans! The Epic Games Store and Steam are offering the chance to get small with the Early Access launch of Smalland: Survive the Wilds. Actually it's much more accurate to invoke Ant-Man, Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, and Land of the Giants, as you play as a tiny race battling terrors that would seem trivially small to humans. This also involves base-building, so add Marcel the Shell with Shoes On to its list of influences. Here's the Early Access Trailer and here's more:
Explore a rich and immersive landscape as the Smallfolk, a tiny race of people battling lake sized puddles, mountainous trees and monstrous creatures from grasshoppers to geckos that see you as lower on the food chain. Scavenge materials to build encampments, craft powerful armour sets and delicious heart-warming food as you carve out your legacy in the wilds.

As you gain a foothold in this dangerous environment, find and tame creatures to ride into battle and explore the world from a whole new perspective.

Scale skyscraper sized trees, scramble through cavernous cracks in roads, and more as you experience the unique biomes of Smalland’s huge open world.

Play solo or with up to 9 additional friends in multiplayer with crossplay between Steam and Epic Games Store. Explore the world and survive together or toggle friendly fire to bring the fight to others.
Continue here to read the full story.

Out of the Blue

I got my first voicemail on my new Galaxy phone yesterday. Thankfully it was a butt-dial from my brother, because it took me a while to listen to it. When I tried, I was told the visual voicemail app requires precise location permissions. I never saw this before, so I guess it was enabled on my old phone? I don't get myself too worked up about every corporation in the world wanting to know what uninteresting things I'm up to, but this seems particularly egregious. I haven't seen an explanation of why Verizon or Google would need my location to play back my own voicemails for me (I doubt there's an acceptable one). But I haven't seen a workaround either. I was able to access the voicemail by dialing in (after resetting a password I hadn't used in ages). But that was a nightmare. I had listen to about a minute of robot voice prompts telling me about my message, and then I had to listen to all three minutes of rustling and background noise before I could delete it since I didn't remember the shortcut. I'll try and hold out trading privacy for convenience in this case, which I may be able to do since I don't get a lot of voice messages. But I also wonder why I bother. I'm sure they've got the full book on me already.

Voicemail Round-up
Thanks Ant and Neutronbeam.

Breakfast Links





About That Ad Blocker
We see you're using an ad blocker. While we strive to make our ads behave, we understand your desire for peace and privacy. So please consider becoming a supporter to take advantage of the no ads version of Blue's News. This will help sustain our efforts to bring you the best in gaming and tech news without requiring you to see ads or suffer a guilty conscience. You'll even get a nifty forum badge that will be the envy of the neighborhood!
Support the Site!