This Week In Gaming

Greetings NAGulzioos, and thanks for coming back for This Week In Gaming. The weekend may be over, but next week is a four day week, which should help stave off the crippling existential crisis for one more week. Just remember to press F for all those working on Thursday.

A new Chinese console boasts PS4 Pro performance and an AMD CPU

AMD has partnered up with hardware maker Zhongshan Subor to create a custom console for the Chinese market, with early performance reports something on the level of a PS4 Pro.

While a launch in the next month will take the form of a Windows PC, a dedicated console making use of a custom OS will be dropping later this year. The console will pair Ryzen cores with Radeon graphics in a fully integrated SoC (system-on-chip) setup.

The rig will forgo DDR4 RAM in favour of 8GB of GDDR5, much like the PS4. This is the first time we’ve seen AMD do something like this, with previous integrated CPU-GPU systems making use of traditional RAM for its memory requirements. What this console will translate to in terms of performance and ease-of-use remains to be seen.

FIFA 19 adds a survival mode

It’s been getting a fair amount of crap for shoehorning a battle royale into a soccer sim, but creative director Matt Prior insists the idea was in place long before the success of Fortnite and PUBG.

It’s all tongue-in-cheek anyway, you’re not running onto the pitch with a machete tucked into your knee-socks. Survival mode actually sounds pretty interesting – every time you score a goal, you lose a player, making each successive goal harder than the last. As per actual soccer rules, the match will be abandoned if you get to less than 7 players, which means you win immediately if you score five goals.

The game adds a ton of tweaking as well. You can turn off the ref, or add restrictions like only goals scored via volleys or headers count. I must say, I’m a fan of this kind of approach. I’m less into the super-serious-sports-simulator so much as more arcade style sports games, and I think its pretty cool to have a bit of both.

Want to play a tournament with everything in place as it should be? FIFA 19 can do that. Want to play a battle royale where cheating is allowed? FIFA 19 can do that too. Good stuff.

Dead Cells leaves early access, gets sweet new trailer

Dead Cells is a “metroidvania” game, whatever the hell that actually means. I can no longer keep up with all the sub-genres of dungeon crawlers or RPGs or whatever exactly these things are. I’m used to there being like five types of games, now get off my lawn.

Whatever Dead Cells is, it does look fun. Check it out:

Epic boardgame Gloomhaven gets digital release

Gloomhaven is kind of a big deal in the boardgame world. A massive box that contains a rather unwieldy co-operative dungeon crawler that boasts a campaign that can easily last you over 100 hours, with new characters unlocked and boxes of stuff being opened as you go.

As ambitious as it is successful, it’s second printing saw it shoot to the top of the ranking, where it currently holds the top spot as the de facto best boardgame in the world.

That being said, it is not for the faint of heart. It is sprawling and complex, with niggly combat rules and a ton of upkeep required by the players. Many who have criticised it have said it would function better as a digital game, where all that upkeep can be handled for you.

Now we have exactly that, thanks to an announcement by Asmodee Digital that they’ll be releasing the game for solo digital play on Steam in 2019.

Epic snubs Google, skips Google Play Store for the Fortnite Android release

There’s no “rule” that you have to use the Google Play store to peddle your wares on Android – its an open system after all.

That being said, its extremely rare for a company to cut themselves off from the kind of exposure and visibility you get from being on the store. After all, you have zero native discoverability, relying on potential customers to manually install your game.

This is exactly what Epic is asking Fortnite players to do, however, saying that they don’t believe Google earns the 30 percent cut it takes from those who use the store. This is no doubt true – Google has very little, if any, input into the creation of Fortnite or its maintenance. It’s essentially a marketing cost, one that Epic doesn’t need considering Fortnite is the biggest game in the world.

“Epic’s goal is to bring its games directly to customers. We believe gamers will benefit from competition among software sources on Android,” says Tim Sweeney. “Competition among services gives consumers lots of great choices and enables the best to succeed based on merit.”

I can’t say I disagree.

Life is Strange 2 gets a short teaser

Um yeah, here it is:

Destiny 2 gets an even shorter teaser

This is one of those annoying teasers of a teaser – there’s a Destiny 2 livestream coming on Tuesday that’s going to detail some big combat changes, but for now all you have is this. Enjoy.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 taking flak for body armour and TTK

The Black Ops 4 beta is in the wild, and there’s been a lot of concern over the game’s “TTK”, or Time To Kill. CoD has always been a game where taking down an enemy is fast – gunfights are swift, with any kind of extended engagement being rare. It adds to the game’s momentum and fast pace, and it’s reportedly absent in BLOPS 4.

There’s a new health recovery mechanic, there are medics which can heal the team and, worst of all, there is body armour. This armour is one of the perks/customisations a player has access to, and early feedback is that it warps the game in a very unfun way by simply being way too strong, as well as not being in the “spirit” of the shooter. Here’s someone complaining about it:

Have a good week, everybody.

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