Hello once more NAGyxians and thanks for joining me again for This Week In Gaming. This time around we have more hardware makers bickering about patents – with potentially serious consequences. We also get a look at what the average gamer does with their life, and see how indie makers are going to be forced into putting a little more effort into marketing. Then a mobile game returns from the dead – this time with 50% more morality, while Sledgehammer drops the details on a Call of Duty game that was never released – with a twist. Otherwise, standalone DayZ is about to get more hackers than zombies, and there’s a whole crop of new videos and exciting NAG stuff you may have missed. Hit the jump.
This patent infringement stuff is really getting out of hand. It seems kind of stupid that people can put patents on beveled edges, rounded corners and rectangular screens or whatever, but this is the ridiculously litigious world we live in.
The latest on the chopping block is Nintendo of America, as forgotten electronics company Philips is saying they own the patent to “virtual body control devices”, which is something which lets people control interfaces “using intuitive motions”.
The Wii Remote is a problem too, due to their patent on “user interface system based on a pointing device”.
Ugh. If these patents are successful, a block will be placed on anything with Wii in the title, which should be a major disappointment to the twelve people who were planning on buying a Wii product.
Steam is a console, right? Eh, might as well be. Anyway, Gamasutra have done an extensive Steam analysis, and discovered that more games have been released on the digital platform in the first 20 weeks of 2014 than during the entirety of 2013.
This means that we’re seeing more indies than ever, likely due to Steam’s Greenlight system. What it also means is the market is becoming saturated, and developers are going to have to work hard to get noticed.
With new releases dropping off the front page of Steam within 24 hours, marketing is something that indie developers are now going to have to consider more carefully. Getting Greenlit is great, but relatively pointless if not many people know your game even exists.
Our last bit of news comes from local partner IGN Africa, in the way of a survey done of UK gamers. Runescape developer Jagex interrogated over 1,000 gamers to come up with some interesting stats.
55% of gamers are in a romantic relationship, compared to an average of 30%. Bam, take that geek stereotype. Rather interestingly, only 27% met their partners offline – a pretty low figure.
Gamers also have a higher rate of employment, and a large percentage pull in a decent salary, earning more than bank clerks and police officers.
Talking demographics, an encouraging 18% are female, and 34% are over 35 – if only more of them used voice chat to drown out the pre-teens.
So, how do you fit in?
So, apparently in between the annual Call of Duty releases, there’s enough time to make ones that will never be released.
Sledgehammer Games, the team behind the upcoming Advanced Warfare, have reported that they were working for 6=8 months on an instalment that would be set in Vietnam. Sounds pretty standard, except this one was going to be third-person.
The game was canned when it became clear that Infinity Ward would need some help finishing Modern Warfare 3 on time – mostly due to the two studio founders up and leaving unexpectedly.
According to Sledgehammer’s Schofield, the opportunity to work on the biggest FPS release of the year was just too good to pass up.
Remember Flappy Bird? Well apparently developer Dong Nguyen has had a change of heart on the game “ruining his simple life”; probably he’s halfway through his mountain of cash and realising that he prefers his life not all that simple.
To keep his morals clean however, the game will feature “less addictive gameplay”. And here I was thinking the app didn’t actually have “gameplay” in the first place. Oh, there’ll be multiplayer too, so you can drag your friends down with you into your black hole of helpless addiction.
Steam Early Access title DayZ, also known as the most overrated game since whatever the last Call of Duty was, has been hit by hackers.
Player accounts are thought to be safe, but there’s a decent chance the hackers got the game’s source code. Which means the buggy alpha which has already been overrun with cheaters will be plagued with a brand new bag of exploits and hacks. Oh, goody.
So, as it turns out, gamers are a stubborn lot who don’t want to move with the times. Sorry, that’s not news we actually knew that already.
Anyway, NPD statistics show that of the 34 million “core gamers” in the United States, 74 percent prefer their games on a physical disc to that new-agey digital download nonsense. What say you, progressive NAG Online reader?
Our last bit of gaming news is a disappointing one for some; Tom Clancy’s The Division has been pushed back to 2015, according to publisher Ubisoft.
They rolled out the typical reasons, saying they “don’t want to compromise on quality” and will release the game “when it’s ready”. Blizzard, is that you?
This seems to be a trend lately, but honestly I’d prefer these publishers make us wait a little longer, since another recent trend is games being released unfinished and buggy as hell.
So, 3D Realms and Interceptor Entertainment gave up on making an unlicensed Duke Nukem RPG, but they are releasing pretty much the same game, replacing Duke with a scantily clad woman with a bionic arm and a Miley Cyrus haircut. That game is now called Bombshell, and this week we got our first proper look at it.
Ubisoft isn’t known for leaving much to the imagination, and they’ve stuck to that formula with the highly anticipated Watch Dogs. In this new trailer, you’ll get to see pretty much everything there is to see about the game.
Did you know Bastion developer Supergiant Games is releasing a new game? Did you know that game is coming to PC and PS4 on Tuesday? It’s called Transistor, and it looks pretty cool. Check it out:
Finally we have Xbox One exclusive Sunset Overdrive, which may be the first game to make me want an Xbox One. Watch this pair of videos and tell me this doesn’t look like a blast.
Best of NAG
Wolfenstein is looking pretty damned awesome. Which makes me all the more sad since the news broke that it doesn’t have Multiplayer, which personally feels like an integral part of the Wolfenstein experience to me. But what the hell do I know, amirite? Go here for another amazing trailer that brought me to tears.
Rick de Klerk, aka Spiderman, took The Elder Scrolls Online for a spin this week. So, don’t pony up for the pricey subscription just yet, found out what your friendly neighbourhood games reviewer thought of it here.
Then there’s me, grumpy and bitter, always moaning. Like in my column this week, where I debate whether or not the video game industry is an ever-expanding bubble of overpriced, mediocre games that’s getting ready to burst. There’s a healthy discussion in the comment, so head over here and have your say.
Hey, do you like free stuff? Of course you do, that’s why you’re reading this. If you’re a console owner (or hell, a PC-owning opportunist like myself), head on over here where resident whipcracker Dane Remendes will give you a free copy of MGS V Ground Zeroes – as long as you ask nicely.