This Week In Gaming

bioware teaser

Hello again NAGutters, and thanks for coming back for This Week In Gaming. This time around we’ve got some interesting news regarding a Steam feature aimed at protecting your self-image, does some damage control, Bungie talks Xbox One vs PS4 and Valve may have quietly launched a long-awaited release. Then we have the latest of the Bioware teaser series, more Destiny talk on what life after the beta looks like and a new set of stats reveals the games women play a lot more of than men. There’s also a bunch of cool videos, some highlights from the week and other things you may need to catch up on. So pour yourself a cold pre-noon beer and hit the jump.

Console News

After Google picked up recently, people began to fear that this may spell the end to the somewhat Wild West feel of livestreams.

These fears were further confirmed earlier this week when Twitch seemed to be putting into place audio recognition technology that aimed to clamp down on the use of unlicensed music in VODs. This could spell disaster, since most game streamers would have music playing in the background, and the tech could simply mute the stream’s audio entirely if detecting copyrighted music.

Fortunately, Twitch boss Emmet Shear sought to clear up the confusion in a Reddit AMA last night, saying that Twitch “have no intention whatsoever of bringing audio-recognition to live streams on Twitch. This is a VOD-only change for Twitch.”

He also went on to say that they have no intention of flagging original in-game music, and that they’re working on a resolution to in-game music being incorrectly flagged. So, our favourite streaming site is still safe then – for now.

Still the King, baby.
Still the King, baby.

In more geeky news, it seems that Valve may have very quietly launched Source Engine 2. This is due to the release of the new Dota 2 Workshop tools, which reportedly contain all the game’s assets and codes ported over to Source 2.

According to Redditor RoyAwesome, “The general consensus around the Source reverse engineering community is that this is really Source 2.”

Keep in mind these are just the tools for DotA, so it may be one part to be used with the engine and not the engine proper. We can expect a comment from Valve soon, I’m sure.

We’ve all pretty much accepted at this point that, for now, the PS4 has a little more oomph than its green counterpart. So should gamers be managing expectations for multi-platform releases like Destiny? According to Bungie, they needn’t worry.

We’re working really hard to make sure that the best experience and the quality of the game we’re trying to deliver is equal across the platforms.

“Each console has their own nuances; there is always like little tweaks and things,” he said. “That’s standard. Anytime you’re working cross-platforms there is a-lot of new nuances to each console and we’re making sure that the game looks best on all of them and it does; it looks really good. I think we’ve succeeded. It definitely looks good.”

That sounds a little wishy-washy to me, but the consoles are close enough in power that I wouldn’t worry, I’m sure Destiny will be equally bland on both (oh snap).

"Space. Yay." - Salty PC gamer.
“Space. Yay.” – Salty PC gamer.

So, tell me, how many hours have you spent playing My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic? Or how about Leisure Suit Larry? Or that Japanese dating simulator you thought nobody would recognise the name of?

Sadly for you, it’s as easy as checking out your Steam profile to see how many hundreds of hours you’ve put into The Sims.

Happily for you, Steam is getting a new feature which allows you to hide the games you’re most ashamed of. Yup, in the Steam beta right now is the ability to hide away your guilty pleasures from public view, so you can finish your third playthrough of Duke Nukem Forever without so much as a raised eyebrow from your friends.

So, what will YOU be hiding?

Sources: Eurogamer, Eurogamer, Gamespot, PCGamer

Gaming News

Bioware have released their third (and maybe final) teaser trailer for their yet unannounced new title bearing the tagline “You’ve Been Chosen”. It seems I’ll be getting my wish and they’ll be revealing the new IP at Gamescom, as with this new teaser the publisher has promised a live, four hour event at the exhibition next Wednesday.

Of course they’ll use that four hours for all their Bioware goodness, but it seems a safe bet at this point that this game will feature. In the meantime, here’s that teaser:

Good news for those who enjoyed their time with the Destiny beta (and bad news for those who didn’t) – the final release isn’t going to be all that different.

In an investors call this week, Activision Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg said that they were happy with Destiny’s fundamentals, and said that any changes made would be what he would call “tweaks and not major changes”.

This isn’t all that surprising since the game is only a month away, but it is in stark contrast to something like the Battlefield Hardline beta, which will likely be quite different from the final release considering the somewhat heavy criticism of fans and the delayed release date.

How do you feel about Destiny staying pretty much as it was in the beta? Tell me your experience/expectations in the comments.

A new study by mobile analytics and monetisation platform Flurry shows that women, traditionally stereotyped as non-gamers, have been dominating men in the casual gaming department.

The global statistics show that women spend, on average, 35% more time in gaming apps than men, as well as making 31% more in-app purchases.

They’re more loyal too – with a 7-day retention rate sitting at 42% above their masculine counterparts. That means that men spend less on mobile games, play less mobile games and ditch mobile games faster than women do.

As for genre, women predominantly played solitaire and management/simulation games (The Sims stereotype still holds true at least, despite Miklos trying desperately to claim otherwise); while men spent most of their time on card/battle and strategy titles.

Above: Miklos, having a "quiet night in".
Above: Miklos, having a “quiet night in”.

So, what are your mobile gaming habits?

Sources: CVG, Gamespot, IGN


A new video from 2K Australia shows off Pandora’s Moon, Elpis, in the second Episode of a behind-the-scenes series on the development of Borderlands: The Pre Sequel. It’s not just a new environment either – there’re new weapons too.

Another dev diary this week, this time it’s the third (and final) instalment in Ubisoft’s Far Cry 4 mini-documentary of the developers’ trek to Nepal. Previous episodes looked at the country’s climate and landscape, which you can find links to alongside this video.

Next we have a new video showcasing Mortal Kombat X, this time covering iconic character Raiden and his three forms – Thunder God, Displacer and Storm Lord. Sound cool? It is; check it out.

The more I see of Evolve, the more I want to play it. It looks fresh, original, and a buttload of fun. So then, here’s another awesome video to show you just what a good time it is.

Best of NAG

Let’s start with the really good news – the August issue of NAG Magazine has hit the shelves and is available for your toilet-reading pleasure. Or on the couch or in bed, or whatever. This issue covers (ha, that was a pun, ‘cause it’s ON the cover, see?) Rainbow Six: Siege, which looks rather pretty. Then there’s E3, Computex, and a whole buttload of reviews alongside a similarly packed preview section, looking at the new Borderlands and Battlefield titles, amongst others. There’s also a discussion on the new wave of Early Access titles, a whole lot of hardware information and a motherboard showdown. Seriously, it was worth the wait. Check out all the details here.

Then we have my column for the week, an optimistic look at what I’m hoping to see at Gamescom this year. Some are more realistic than others, but where would we be without our hopes and dreams? Have a look over here and then let me know what it is you’d like to see.

For a little more self-promotion, let’s talk about the NAG Online podcast. We’re now an official thing, up on the NAG YouTube channel and everything. The show runs a little over an hour, and we do a live recording every week that you can be a part of. We just got done with Episode 3, which you can find right over here.

Last but not least is fellow caster Delano’s repeating column Throwback Thursday, which dives into the gaming vault for something particularly weird, wonderful or just forgotten. This time around he takes a look at Necrovision, an FPS with blue lightning and bloody nuns and stuff. You should check it out immediately.