The biggest video games stories from Monday, May 15, 2017.
HTC Vive gets a finance option
Quite fancy the idea of a virtual reality headset, but don’t want to take on a second mortgage to do it? Well, HTC are going to let you take on a
second mortgage small credit loan, to spread your pricey headset’s payments over two years, Eurogamer reports. At retail a headset costs £759, but with 24 low, low monthly payments of £34.84 (plus initial shipping) it’ll wind up costing you a total of £836 and change. That’s an interest rate of 9.9% if you’re counting.
You’re still going to need a PC costing a grand (or more) to play it on, so it hardly democratises VR in the same way as PlayStation VR, but it’s something.
The Legend of Zelda might be getting a mobile game
If the rumours on the Wall Street Journal (behind a paywall, sorry) are to be believed, Nintendo are working on a mobile version of The Legend of Zelda. At the current time we have no idea what that means, but based on Nintendo’s dramatic variety thus far – a Panini sticker album of a card game in Fire Emblem Heroes, a freemium endless runner version of Mario, and an as-yet unreleased Animal Crossing title – it could be pretty much anything.
Nintendo have always been wary of cannibalising their handheld market with mobile games, but they have effectively already done it with the Nintendo Switch consheld, so all bets are off at this stage. Get your Sheikah Slates ready, folks.
Lego Marvel Super Heroes 2 announced
If you want to make an impact, drop a teaser featuring the adorable Baby Groot while Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is romping around in theatres globally.
Officially announced today, Lego Marvel Super Heroes 2 will launch on November 14, 2017 for PS4, Xbox One, and PC, with a Nintendo Switch release to follow “later this year”. Given there’s not much time between the multi-platform release and the new year, we’d wager Marvel and TT Games will be trying to get that onto Switch before Christmas.
Parappa the Rapper is getting a spiritual sequel
Jeez, have we not had enough of spiritual sequels yet? Didn’t we learn our lesson with Mighty No. 9, or Yooka-Laylee? Well, in any case, Parappa the Rapper’s Masaya Matsuura and Gitaroo Man’s Keiichi Yano have joined forces to create a new rhythm game, tentatively titled Project Rap Rabbit.
Predictably, Project Rap Rabbit is coming in the form of a Kickstarter, and they’re looking for… £855,000? And the Stretch goal for a Switch version is nearly five million dollars? I’m done. Someone else finish the rest of this segment.
Speaking of Kickstarter fatigue
Head on over to Eurogamer to read this interesting piece on the state of play with crowd-funding in the games industry. It covers where everything started, how it got so big, and why it might now be contracting; or at least, shifting sideways onto more business-focused platforms like Fig.
“We’re going to need a bigger balloon”
Devolver Digital, the indie publisher famed for their irreverent, unofficial E3 antics, are stepping up their game again this year. As ever, they’ll be tipping up in a parking lot over the street from the LA Convention Center’s South Hall, but instead of a rough-and-ready tailgate party, they’re switching things up with a gentile picnic.
The Devolver Indie Picnic will be free to all E3 2017 badge holders, and will be open each day between 11am – 7pm, from June 13 – 15, 2017. We’ll see you there (if E3 haven’t popped their balloon before the event starts).
Remember PS1 classic RPG Arc Symphony?
No, and neither do we, but apparently lots of people are doing, in spite of the fact Arc Symphony never existed. Between the relatively convincing box art, the chatter online, and the fact that Japanese RPGs did often fail to see Western releases in those days, you’d be forgiven for thinking it was true.
People really got behind Arc Symphony on social media:
Found this game again! One of our biggest inspirations as a team for Drop Dead Gorgeous! pic.twitter.com/GqPJwqAmGH
— Bespoke Games (@bespoke_games) May 13, 2017
Really, really behind it:
favorite JRPG on PS1?
— Kevin Snow (@bravemule) May 14, 2017
Dig a little deeper and you find that most of the chatter has come from a group of Toronto game developers. Before too long, it was revealed that Arc Symphony was a combination of clever hoax and even cleverer publicity stunt, for Sophia Park’s new itch.io game of the same name.
Hitman might have a stay of execution
And finally, some good news, following the surprising news last week that Square Enix are seeking a buyer for IO Interactive. If rumours from German site Gamestar are to be believed, IO Interactive will retain the rights to the Hitman franchise, and season two of the rebooted, episodic will still be in the works.
It’s unusual for the IP rights to go with the developer and not the publisher, but given that Square Enix are trying to sell IO Interactive – and not just shutter the studio entirely – it would certainly make them more valuable and desirable.
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