Prepare for all hell to break loose.
Episode 17 is hitting the inter webs today, and I toyed with the idea to not post this week. However, this is the calm before the storm as the Summer Game Fest kicks off in a few hours so I figured I’d rather cover everything that I could before I fall too far behind.
Just a quick refresher; here are the partners we should expect announcements from during the Summer Game Fest.
I’m personally excited for today’s showcase (I’ll explain wink wink), and tomorrow for the Netflix Geeked to see how the Cyberpunk show is shaping up.
Okay, I’m done talking about myself.
Here’s what went down Thursday to Thursday.
PlayStation 3rd party madness
PlayStation held their State of Play last Thursday with a focus on “3rd party” (sorry I’m feeling lazy so I put 3rd) titles.
I don’t think I expected anything that they showed and, it was quite the doozy. To save you guys the read, I’m going to focus on what stood out to me with links to their trailers. If you want a full breakdown, here is an article with all of the announcements from the event!
- Resident Evil 4 Remake: Ladies and gentlemen; it’s fucking real. One of the greatest games of all time, one that got me into horror games, is getting a remake following the tradition Capcom has set of remaking older Resident Evil titles. After all the rumors, the trailer finally showcased and wow. I believe it was a blend of gameplay and cutscenes, and it looked really nice showcasing the power of the RE Engine (used for RE7 and pretty much all of the newer Capcom games). The end of the trailer seemed to focus more on Leon’s past and, after playing the previous remakes, I hope they focus on that aspect of his character as Capcom has said the game will feature a “reimagined storyline”. The original game still holds up pretty well so I’m interested to see how they handle this because if they ruin it… sheesh. Resident Evil 4 Remake releases March 24th, 2023. Also, I swear on everything, I thought the announcement was a trailer for that rumored The Last of Us remake.
- The Callisto Protocol: Honestly, I don’t think I’ve been this excited for a game in a long time. Striking Distance Studio dropped a nice little trailer for us, and it got me beyond stoked. I will say this game 100% will probably end up as a carbon copy of Dead Space, but I heckin love Dead Space so who cares. A gameplay demo will be dropping later today, and you bet your sweet behind I will be watching it. I may have watched the trailer a few times already… The Callisto Protocol launches December 2nd, 2022. P.s. this is what I was excited about.
- Final Fantasy 16: I don’t care what anybody says; I actually liked Final Fantasy 15! Final Fantasy 16 seems to follow the same style of action and vibes although to a much darker tone, and it looks really nice and Final Fantasy like. The game is targeting a summer 2023 launch which caught me off guard because I feel like I heard that it was pretty much ready to go.
- Marvel’s Spider-Man Remastered: Following Sony’s plans to bring big titles to PC, the web head will be swinging onto PC August 12, 2022. This is sick, and you have no excuse to skip it as it comes with all of the DLC as well! Here’s my review (excuse my horrid writing style back then holy moly). Plus, I can’t wait for the modders to go to town on the game and bring back Peter’s old face.. I didn’t mind the Tom Holland inspired face, but it was still jarring.
There was a lot more stuff announced especially with heavy focus on the upcoming PS VR2, but those were my hype announcements. Resident Evil 4 Remake is going to be absolutely massive especially with what’s on the line after the lukewarm reaction the Resident Evil 3 (selfish plus again) remake received plus the fact that the original is considered one of the greatest games of all time. You can’t mess with that stuff.
Nuts showcase for Sony, although most of these titles should be multi-platform, and I can’t wait to see what the Summer Game Fest holds for us later today.
Diablo Immortal? More like Diablo Immoral
Shoutout to the gentleman on YouTube (link to a full breakdown of what I’m about to explain) who came up with the title of this section. You rock, Psybev.
By now you’ve probably seen the news, but if you haven’t yet heard, Diablo Immortal is making headlines for all of the wrong reasons.
Diablo Immortal is Blizzard’s next entry in the series launching as a free-to-play title on mobile (you have a phone right?). It just arrived on PC last week and features cross-save; as long as you have a Battle.net account, you can bring your progress with you anywhere. I’ve played a little bit, and when I’m not half asleep, it’s a solid game. It works well on PC even though it was primarily designed for mobile devices and having the option to bring your progress anywhere is awesome. Some developers could learn from that.
Diablo fanatics have put in the time to stomp through the game and have found some sinister shit happening in the game’s endgame. I’m still learning the full story and going through my playthrough so I don’t understand the full scope of the problem but from what I’ve read, and from what you can imagine, as a free-to-play title the game features “optional purchases”. It turns out that those “optional purchases” aren’t really optional as the consumables needed to upgrade your gear are not readily available unless you spend money on said optional items…
and I mean spend a lot of money unless $110,000 is chump change.
The issue here seems to be centered around “Legendary Gems“, a form of in game currency, “Legendary Crests“, a method of amplifying rewards earned in The Rift. Legendary Crests come in two different rarities serving as a modifier for The Rift; the higher the rarity the better the reward come completion of a Rift run. However, the game offers a max of 3 Legendary Crests a month through gameplay encouraging you to spend the money to earn more than max. To further push the issues, in order to purchase the crests, you have to purchase another form of in game currency which you can’t get through gameplay at all.
But wait there’s more.
The Legendary Crests also serve as loot boxes meaning when you get a crest, it’s not guaranteed to be the highest rarity… You see where I’m going with this?
Again, I’m not sure if I’m explaining it correctly, so be sure to check the link for a video explanation.
Now, I don’t have much experience in free-to-play games that sell consumables to help improve your stats. From what I’ve read though, it reminds me of Middle-earth: Shadow of War; a game I thoroughly loved until the endgame. I never completed my run because the game almost pushed you to spend money on microtransations to complete the final encounter. Couple that with the fact the game was a full retail release, and it really ruined what I thought was a phenomenal experience.
Diablo Immortal seems to be doing that, but in a much more heinous way. We should’ve seen the signs when Blizzard announced it wouldn’t be launching the game in Belgium and the Netherlands which are two regions that are heavily opposed to loot boxes which is what the “optional purchases” are. It’s hard to justify spending money on consumables but to spend money on a random chance for a consumable?
Also, the game is getting heavily review bombed. Tin foil hat on; this feels like Blizzard’s final ditch attempt at making people hate them before their impending acquisition by Microsoft.
I have no idea what this game is about, but it has some of the best cat physics I’ve ever seen in my life. I swear I was watching a documentary. Stray hits PS4 and PS5 July 19th!
Street Fighter 6
Street Fighter 6 is alive and well including a slick overhaul in the graphics department and an “immersive single-player mode” that looks open world. No release date has been announced as of yet, but Chun-Li’s badonkadonk has been catching gamers’ eyes… cuz yeah. Insane.
I’m little confused; this is supposed to be a new trailer, but the top comments are from months ago… Anyways, new Atomic Heart footage is here giving us more Atomic Heart action. If you’ve been keeping up with the blog, you’ll know I’m hella excited for this game. There’s still not a set release date besides “#$#%BER 2022”, but it looks good. I will say some of the English voice acting seems sussy, but everything else looks great. Also, the music is fucking sensational. Mick Gordon is really that dude.
This past week has been full of winners and, per usual, I gotta shout them out!
Cloud9 win IEM Dallas
Cloud9 CS:GO took home IEM Dallas 2022 with a dominating 3-0 win over ENCE including a 16-3 smashing on Ancient. Sergey “Ax1Le” Rykhtorov took home MVP honors with a solid performance (link to his stats during the event) on every single map he played.
I’ve been trying to pay attention to the news surrounding this team since the whole roster predicament they were in. I’m mad I missed them hoist the trophy since I was outside “enjoying” the sun, but overall, I’m absolutely happy for the lads. Congrats to them!
Seattle Surge are Surging
Seattle Surge took home the W in Toronto with a 5-3 series win over the Atlanta FaZe beating them twice in one day.
Couple of things to note here;
- Atlanta FaZe have appeared in every Grand Final and have finished second each time. I’m sure they’ll get over the hump, but what a crazy stat.
- Amer “Pred” Zulbeari won Major MVP and is the first player from the APAC region to win a major Call of Duty event. A massive W for the APAC region and well deserved to Pred he’s a beast on the map.
- Five different Call of Duty events this year, five different winners.
- Daunte “Sib” Gray and Pred join an absolutely stacked class of rookies who won a championship in their rookie season joining the likes of Simp, Shotzzy, FormaL and much more (link to the full list of rookie winners).
Huge props to the Seattle Surge. I’m sure they’re loving this after especially after the departure of Octane.
LA Gladiators win the Kickoff Classic
Not going to lie; I don’t know anything about the Overwatch League. I’ve been meaning to watch it, but I forget because it’s on YouTube and most of my time is spent on Twitch.
That being said, the LA Gladiators took home the W in the Kickoff Clash in a dominant 4-0 win over the Dallas Fuel. Like I said, I don’t know much about the OWL, but I do know one player on the Gladiators who has my support: former Valorant player Patiphan Chaiwong. I loved his story and was sad to see him leave Valorant, but he came back to OW and won so that’s all that matters to me!
Congrats to the Gladiators and to MVP of the event Daniel “FunnyAstro” Hathaway!
Potential foreshadowing for Valorant’s competitive scene?
In the Valorant scene, Luminosity Gaming has announced that they are releasing their Valorant roster. The team will continue to compete under the LG banner throughout the remainder of their Stage 2 run, and they will be working with them to find a new home for the players and staff.
Nobody knows the full details, but a couple of plausible reasons for the split could have been LG fearing they won’t make the cut for franchising or because they have lost a shit ton of money. I mean their roster is doing amazing, sitting at 3-1 in the stacked Group B, so what else could be the reason besides the former?
Side note; I feel like I’ve seen LG do something like this before, but I’m not sure where.
We don’t know the full scope, but with each new piece of information coming out in regards to franchising, it seems like Riot may be making a huge mistake. My first knowledge of franchising came from Call of Duty, and while Riot isn’t Activision, a shitty format is still a shitty format no matter how you dress it up.
As we inch closer to franchising, I’m sure we can only expect more teams to make this same move if they don’t make the cut for the franchising invites or feel like they won’t make it at all. A reddit post made a good point that should be something we keep our eye on; Evil Geniuses and Ghost Gaming sit at the top of their Groups despite being considered Tier 2 teams. A comment on that post also pointed out that franchising could possibly break the “smaller regions” such as APAC due to limited invites and limiting potential pros from competing unless they’re signed to a team.
Those reasons are why franchising is so frowned upon, and I really wish Riot would step away from franchising.
We’ll see what happens, but it’s not making me feel good so far.
- I mentioned it awhile ago, but in CS:GO, NAVI let go of their in game leader Kirill “Boombl4” Mikhailov after the completion of Antwerp due to “high reputational risk” possibly relating to his wife’s support of the war in Ukraine. Yesterday, Boombl4 announced he was divorcing his wife, and she went on record blasting him and saying that he was a drug user. It’s absolutely insane stuff.
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022) dropped a reveal trailer yesterday ahead of its gameplay debut today. A lot of info has come out in regards to engine usage, different preorder options and Warzone 2, and I don’t like what I’m reading. No Theater Mode (a feature that was in Black Ops 1 almost a decade ago), Warzone 2 not carrying over your current cosmetics from Warzone and preorder bonuses being previously released skins.. It’s shitty man.
- Kotaku dropped an article yesterday featuring interviews with 10 different members that worked on Fallout 76 and the toll it took on the developers. It’s heinous shit, and something that needs to change in the industry.
- Bend Studios gets a new logo and dropped some information about their next title. Not much was said, but they are looking to build off of the open-world systems introduced in Days Gone and will feature multiplayer.
- Hideo Kojima is rumored to be working on a new horror title named “Overdose”.