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The Week in Video Games – 30th July, 2017

Had your head in the sand? Mislaid the internet for a few days? We’re here to help with our roundup of the week’s most important video games news.



Pyre - Supergiant

Had your head in the sand? Mislaid the internet for a few days? We’re here to help with our roundup of the week’s most important video games news.

Nintendo Switch sales success continues

In its most recent financial call, Nintendo announced that nearly five million Nintendo Switch consoles have been sold since the hardware was released at the end of March. Game sales are just as impressive, with new IP Arms selling 1.18 million units since its release in June. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has now sold 3.92 million units, and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has roared to 3.54 million units. As it stands the Switch is keeping pace with sales of Xbox One in its first four months.

PUBG crates grate

PlayerUnknown’s Battleground is getting three new crates containing costumes inspired by the film, Battle Royale. The Gamescom Invitational Crate, however, has proved controversial due to its $2.50 unlock price. Also problematic is the likelihood that the free crates will be removed from sale once the game leaves Early Access. Blake Hester, at Rolling Stone, looks into the community’s response.


Madden 18 Xbox One S Bundle announced

If you like really Madden video games and Xboxes, we expect you’re already set. However, on the off-chance you’re not, Microsoft has announced a new Xbox One S Madden NFL 18 bundle. It’s due for release on August 25, and comes with a console, controller, a copy of the game, and a 20% discount voucher for the official NFL online shop.

Pyre review round-up

This week’s big new game release sees Supergiant Games make it three from three with their new title, Pyre. The combination of party-based RPG and basketball has met with a positive critical response. Writing at Polygon, Phillip Kollar says Pyre “feels new, in a way I can rarely say about even the best games, and that newness is intoxicating.” Whilst in her review for Eurogamer, Cassandra Khaw describes the game as “Dante’s Inferno by way of Jean Giraud.” Over at Wired, Matt Kaman says “Pyre is painted with the same deft brushstrokes of originality and fancy that Bastion and Transistor were, but reaches far greater heights than either.” Praise indeed.


PS Plus price rises in Europe

Sony have confirmed that the price of PlayStation Plus membership will rise in Europe from the end of August. A full-year’s subscription for those of us in the UK will increase by £10 to £49.99. For Euro-zone countries, the price will rise from €49.99 to €59.99.

The first Frontier Expo announced

Frontier Developments are holding the first ever Frontier Expo in London on October 7th, 2017. Taking place at the Queen Elizabeth Park, the event will unveil new content for Elite Dangerous, Planet Coaster, and give attendees an in-depth look at studio’s new game. Adult passes start from £39.99, and are on sale now.

The Sims 4 heads to consoles

Electronic Arts have confirmed that The Sims 4 will be coming to Xbox One and PlayStation 4 worldwide on November 17th, 2017. The game was originally released on 2014, and has so far only been available on PC and Mac. The console release will include ‘many’ of the additional content updates added to the game post-launch. As for which updates they are, we’ll have to wait and see.


Mint copy of Super Mario Bros sells on eBay

I own the original Super Mario Bros on 3DS, Wii and Wii U virtual console, plus on my NES Classic mini, and as part of Super Mario All-Stars. In fact, the only format I probably don’t have is an original NES cartridge. They are easy enough to pick up of course, but not so cheap if you are looking for a mint condition, shrink-wrapped copy of the game’s original release. The Metro reports on one Ebayer who as purchased just that, and all for a mere $30,000.


Pokémon Go to the courts

The fallout from last week’s shambolic Pokémon Go Fest in Chicago rumbles on. To make up for the long lines – and general lack of Pokémon catching – developers Niantic have offered to refund the $20 admission fee to all attendees, as well as offer $100 of in-game items as compensation. A welcome move, for sure. However, many of the those at the event travelled far and wide to be there, and one group has decided to file a lawsuit against Niantic, with the aim of recovering their travel expenses.

2018 Pokémon World Championships detailed

In better news, details of the 2018 Pokémon World Championships have been announced. As usual, there will be a range of events open to players of all ages and abilities. The European International Championships have also been confirmed as taking place at London’s ExCeL centre from 17th –19th November 2017.

The Gfinity Elite Series comes to the BBC

The BBC is currently broadcasting coverage from the Gfinity Elite Series. The fun started on Friday, and will continue for the next six weeks. Coverage includes Street Fighter V, Counter Strike: Global Offensive, and Rocket League tournament games, plus additional editorial and life-style content. Find out more on the BBC 3 website.

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Thumbsticks editor and connoisseur of Belgian buns. Currently playing: Triangle Strategy, Kirby and the Forgotten Lands, and Into the Breach.