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E72: PlayStation and Xbox made exciting announcements this week.
Good morning gamers! As PlayStation gears up to launch their updated PS Plus subscription service, we’re starting to piece together some of the exciting features that PlayStation is working towards. Here’s what they have brewing.
PlayStation Plus will launch in June and the premium tier includes access to more than 340 retro PS1, PS2, PS3 (via cloud streaming) and PSP games. So far four retro PS1 games leaked on PSN’s backend servers (Mr. Driller, Tekken 2, Worms Armageddon and Worms World Party 1) and four original Syphon Filter games have been rated for the PS4 and PS5. Additionally,
Sony is reportedly requiring developers to include two-hour long game trials for games that wholesale at more than USD $34 if they wish to be included in the PS Plus Premium tier.
PlayStation has created and started to staff their new “Game Preservation” team. The scope of the department is still unclear but reports suggest that they want to keep beloved classic games playable on modern consoles.
PlayStation PC is becoming a reality as they continue to search for a Senior Director of PC Planning and Strategy to help bolster their offering. To date, PC players have been blessed with God of War, Days Gone, Horizon: Zero Dawn and the soon-to-be released Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection. PlayStation is looking to bring more major exclusives to PC in the future.
Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase
Xbox and Bethesda officially announced a joint Games Showcase to be held on Sunday, June 12 (live-streamed on Twitch, YouTube, Facebook and TikTok). The showcase will feature “amazing titles coming from Xbox Game Studios, Bethesda, and our [their] partners around the world”. The lineup will dive into games coming soon to the “Xbox ecosystem, including upcoming releases to Game Pass on Xbox and PC”.
Microsoft announced their Earnings Release for the quarter ending March 31, 2022. Xbox Gaming revenue was up 6% year-over-year for the quarter, Hardware sales were up 14% year-over-year and software and services were up 4% year-over-year from Xbox Game Pass. Xbox Gaming had their best non-holiday quarter earning $3.74 billion.
Activision Blizzard shareholders have officially approved the sale to Microsoft. According to the SEC filing there were 539 million votes for the sale and under 9 million votes against. When and if the deal is approved, Microsoft will become the world's third biggest video game company behind Tencent and Sony.
Riot Games have announced they plan to introduce three new international premier-level leagues to the 2023 Valorant pro circuit. Teams from the Americas, Europe and Asia will compete in various weekly competitions granting them additional opportunities to qualify for the Masters events and the Valorant Champions Tour. Additionally, both the Regional and Game Changers leagues will be expanded to help cover more players in more countries and a new in-game competitive experience will be introduced.
OpTic Gaming announced the signing of the former Esports Arena roster “dooplex”, “Skittlecakes” and “Knoqd” to compete in Apex Legends. The trio is considered the best team in Apex Legends esports (despite losing star player Evan Verhulst to TSM) and are the favorites to win the upcoming $250,000 ALGS Pro League LAN in Stockholm.
The ESL announced major changes to the qualification system for the ESL Pro Tour Championship events: Intel Extreme Masters Katowice and Cologne. Starting in 2023, ESL Pro Tour points will no longer exist, and seeding for the various stages of the Pro Tour events will be based on ESL World Rankings, EPT event winners and winners from other CS:GO Majors.
According to games market data research firm Newzoo, the global esports audience is projected to reach 532 million viewers in 2022. The projection is based on a split between “Esports Enthusiasts” (people who consume esports content more than once a month) and “Occasional Viewers” (people who consume esports content less than once a month).
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order 2 is rumored to be for the PS5, Xbox Series X/S and PC only. The reveal is expected during the Star Wars Celebration event.
Twitch is considering changes to their partner program including new ad incentives, revenue splits, tiers system, no more exclusivity and more.
Roundhouse Studios, the American video game developer, is reportedly working on a PvP/PvE game based on Marvel IP.
2K Games is reportedly developing a competitor to Rocket League called “Gravity Goal”. Players will ride TRON-like bikes and have access to “discs”.
Halo Infinite’s Battle Royale mode is reportedly called “Tatanka”. The mode is PvP/PvE and will be different from traditional Battle Royale games.
Warner Bros. Discovery is reportedly interested in selling their game development studios and licensing out their different IPs.
Indiana Jones’ development is underway at Bethesda alongside several other projects. A new teaser will reportedly be released next summer.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 was officially announced by Infinity Ward. The game will reportedly be released alongside Warzone 2.
Gotham Knights was rated in Taiwan for the PS5 and Xbox Series X/S only. However, it is still expected to be released on PS4 and Xbox One.
Final Fantasy XVI is in the final stages of development and it will feature a well thought out story according to game producer Naoki Yoshida.
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