It’s Friday! Or is it? Time is a social construct, so I could tell you it’s Wednesday today, and how could you prove me wrong? It’s Friday because it’s the fifth day this week, but when did this week start? Can’t prove that either, I’m afraid. Well, the calendar in the bottom right corner of the monitor says it’s Friday. Who told the computer that it’s Friday? Anyone could change that display in the settings. What I can say, for certain, is that events occurred and news transpired in this indefinable time period, and it’s been turned into bite-size chunks, here in the round up…
In the 18th century, the Beast of Gévaudan’s hunting ground was the archaic southern province of Gévaudan, nestled in the Margeride Mountains. The forests of Gévaudan were believed to be magical, and where supernatural energies were at their strongest. The animal – historical records do not confirm what the Beast of Gévaudan actually was – killed between 60 to 100 adults and children, and wounded more than 30 individuals over the course of three years. It had wolf-like qualities, and a red coat striped with black, and was said to be as large as an elephant. News of this monster reached the Palace of Versailles, and reigning monarch Louis XV of France ordered that the French state would assist in the eradication of the animal.
In spite of the country’s equally horrific economic situation, the King decreed that the reward for killing the beast would equal a year’s salary for the average Frenchman. The French people pulled out all the stops: military strategy was employed, poisoned bait was left out, and some soldiers even dressed up as peasant women to attract the murderous monster. But it was a local hunter named Jean Chastel who finally shot the Beast of Gévaudan, with a bullet and buckshot combination coated in silver. And that’s where we get the belief that werewolves are susceptible to silver bullets. You can visit the Musée fantastique de la Bête du Gévaudan in Saugues, that recreates the terror that Gévaudan citizens experienced in 22 dioramas over four floors. I didn’t even mention that it’s Friday the 13th.
Death Stranding shows off almost an hour of new gameplay footage
At Tokyo Game Show, Hideo Kojima ran through an extended look at Death Stranding. Like, physically ran. As we saw during the demo, Sam will take on missions from the BRIDGES initiative and deliver cargo, but must also manage his gear and carrying capacity. Travelling across a version of the United States, Sam will plan his journey and use ladders left behind by previous players, linking to the strand system that Kojima has championed time and time again. Sam looks after his Bridge Baby by monitoring its Happiness meter, and he can sing to it and console it after stressful moments. Once he arrives at his destination, the holographic character thanks him for his efforts, and states that the location is now on the Chiral Network. All in all, it looks like a post-apocalyptic FedEx simulator. Groundbreaking.
There’s a KFC dating simulator where you can romance Colonel Sanders
KFC is publishing I Love You, Colonel Sanders! A Finger Lickin’ Good Dating Simulator and it’s exactly what it sounds like. You play as a promising culinary student and their classmate is the dashing Colonel Sanders. If you impress in cooking battles, discovering secret recipes using those special 11 herbs and spices, Colonel Sanders might choose you to be his business partner… or maybe something more! Oooooh. KFC has been spreading its wings in the gaming industry of late, with strange marketing strategies like an Instagram influencer Sanders, a ‘finger clickin’ good’ Twitch channel, and a sponsored Rainbow Six Siege tournament.
Control will receive expansions The Foundation and AWE next year
Two new expansions are coming to Remedy’s Control next year. One explores The Foundation and delves into the history of the Oldest House, but the one that’s got everybody talking is AWE. AWE will introduce Jesse to the Investigations Sector that investigates the chaotic phenomena arising from Altered World Events. But, looking closely at its promotional artwork, there’s a figure with a torch cutting through the mist, surrounded by fir trees. Below this, Jesse is floating in a red void. Could this be Alan Wake’s escape from the Lake? We’ll have to wait and see, but soon Control will receive a Photo Mode and a new game mode called Expeditions.
Nintendo wins high court case that bans Switch piracy websites
The UK internet service providers Sky, BT, EE, Talktalk, and Virgin Media must ‘block, or at least impede access’ to four identified websites that sell pirated Switch games, promote modified hardware, or provide instructions on how to mod the Switch for piracy reasons. Ukie head of communications George Osborn said, ‘These circumvention devices, which enable the use of unauthorised copies of video games, jeopardise the businesses of those who uphold and rely upon the sales of legitimate products.’ The high court said that there is no legal justification for distributing the hacked hardware and instructions on how to pirate Switch games. Responding to the outcome, a Nintendo representative stated, ‘This decision will help protect the UK games industry and the more than 1,800 developers worldwide that create games for the Nintendo Switch platform, and who rely on legitimate sales of games for their livelihood and to keep bringing quality content to gamers.’
Nintendo says Breath of the Wild sequel will deliver ‘new gaming experiences’
An interview with three of the designers on the Breath of the Wild sequel has revealed that the team’s goal is ‘to offer new gaming experiences that exceed those of the previous game, so we will need the skills of many people to create this new game.’ Nintendo is looking for terrain designers to join the project, which hints that Hyrule will receive quite the makeover, although it will use the same map as the first game. ‘New gaming experiences’ is a strange one, too. It’s already been theorised that Ganondorf will return, and his revival may rupture the land, separating Link and Zelda. This would offer an opportunity to play as Zelda for the first time, which certainly would be a new gaming experience.
Steam’s sliding revenue indicates that PC games are not selling well
In an analysis conducted by Mike Rose of No More Robots, video games released onto Steam are making significantly less revenue this year compared to sales data from last year. The average game in 2019 is priced at $10 and sells 1,500 copies; this is a decrease of 70 per cent year-on-year. The average game in 2019 will generate $16,000 in revenue, which is down 47 per cent compared to 2018 data. Rose offers a few ideas for why this is happening: services like PlayStation Plus and Xbox Games Pass warp the perception of value by offering a collection of high value games as part of a monthly subscription ; and free to play games such as Apex Legends and Fortnite attract players away from single-player games, and in response, developers are undervaluing their products. Whatever the reason, it seems clear that Steam must modernise its business strategy if it is to keep up with the competition.
Ring Fit Adventure is the new Switch fitness game
Last week, Nintendo released a strange video that teased the arrival of a new Switch peripheral. This flexible ring slots one Joy-Con in the circle, and straps the other Joy-Con to the player’s leg, and players were shown to be frenetically sprinting, compressing the wheel, and stretching in V sits. Now, we know what on earth they were actually doing, because it turns out they were playing Ring Fit Adventure. The game will take players on an adventure through 20 fantasy lands to take down Dragaux, an evil buff body-building dragon. To travel, players will jog in place and hop up stairs by doing knee ups, and will encounter monsters that block their path. To battle and charge up powerful attacks, players will squat, press and flex their way through challenges intended for a wide range of body types and varying fitness experience.
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