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The Week in Video Games – May 6, 2018

This week in video games: Fortnite Season 4 begins, Red Dead Redemption 2 gets a new trailer, and Xbox One sales increase. Here’s our roundup of the week’s top video game news stories.

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Fortnite Season 4

This week in video games: Fortnite Season 4 begins, Red Dead Redemption 2 gets a new trailer, and Xbox One sales increase. Here’s our roundup of the week’s top video game news stories.

Fortnite Battle Royale news

Season 4 of Fornite arrived with a bang last week. Those meteors finally hit, bringing with them a clutch of new features, significant updates to the battle royale map, and a collection of gameplay tweaks and UI improvements. You can view the update’s full patch notes on the Epic Games website.

Over on GamesIndustry.biz, Rob Fahey examines recent press coverage of Fortnite and free-to-play games.

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds news

PUBG‘s limited time Desert Knights mode – a 50-player team deathmatch – began on Thursday, only to finish earlier than planned due to server issues.

Over on Xbox One, the test server for PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds is back in business until Monday May 7, 2018. The test includes access to both the Miramar and Erangel maps on random basis. The test’s patch notes has full details.

And in China, fifteen people have been arrested in connection with hacking PUBG, and have subsequently been fined over $5.1 million.

New Red Dead Redemption 2 trailer and gameplay details

Rockstar Games has released a spectacular third trailer for Red Dead Redemption 2. Meanwhile, IGN’s Alex Simmons reports on a 45 minute gameplay demo:

“If this demo is anything to go by, it’s a story driven by an ambition to create something deeper, more expansive and immersive than ever before.”

Nintendo to focus on mobile

Speaking at Nintendo’s quarterly investor Q&A, incoming president, Shuntaro Furukawa, explained that the company will be managed by a next-generation collective comprised of leaders from the hardware, software, sales, and marketing divisions. And speaking to Nikkei, he says that smartphone games will increasingly be a focus for the company:

“From what I can see, smartphone games are the ones I want to expand the most. The idea that something will emerge that transforms into something big, in the same manner as game consoles, is the defining motive of the Nintendo business.”

Minecraft gets a final update on last-gen consoles

Minecraft‘s upcoming Update Aquatic will be the last released for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PS Vita and Wii U. According to a post on the game’s official website, last-generation platforms account for fewer than 5% of active Minecraft players.

Charles ‘Mario’ Martinet to star in Runner3

Bit.Trip developer Choice Provisions has announced that the upcoming Runner3 will feature cameos from Shovel Knight, Brutal Legend‘s Eddie Riggs, and none other than the voice of Mario himself, Charles Martinet.

Madden NFL creative director departs

Rex Dickson, creative director of EA’s Madden NFL franchise, has left the company after five years. In a statement published to Twitter, Dickson suggested that the series could be heading in a ‘new direction’.

“We collectively agreed this was the best path forward for everyone involved. This is as much for me and my family as it is about giving the team, the community, and the Madden franchise a chance for a new direction.”

Xbox One sales increase in 2018

There’s good news for the Xbox One, with 2018 sales increasing 15 percent on the same period last year. Exact numbers aren’t forthcoming, however, with Microsoft telling Variety that they use a different measure for success.

“We are continuing to look at engagement as our key metric for success and are no longer reporting on total console sales.”

Microsoft also reported that players have now spent over a billion hours playing backwards compatible games on Xbox One.

New Beyond Good and Evil 2 footage revealed

Developer Michel Ancel has revealed more details about the upcoming Beyond Good and Evil 2. This week’s Space Monkey Report Twitch stream showed off melee and spaceship combat, and explained how the game will feature a character customisation system.

Utomik officially launches

The Utomik subscription PC gaming service officially launched this week. The service offers access to over 750 games from 100 publishers for a standard monthly subscription fee. Single and family passes are available.

Google launches new game company

Google has soft-launched Arcade, a new social gaming company. Arcade will be run by the 21 year-old Michael Sayman, and is reportedly working on a trivia game for release later this year.

Stardew Valley gets online multiplayer

ConcernedApe has released a new beta for Stardew Valley that adds online multiplayer, plus a host of new single player changes. Up to three friends can join your farm in co-op mode, and you can try it out by opting-in to the beta via Steam.

Video Game Hall of Fame reveals new inductees

The National Museum of Play has announced that Spacewar!, John Madden Football, Tomb Raider, and Final Fantasy VII have been inducted into the World Video Game Hall of Fame. The games were selected because of their impact on the video game industry, popular culture, and society in general. Titles that missed out included MetroidHalf-Life, King’s Quest, and Ms. Pac-Man.

Mega Man games get a new cartridge release

To mark the 30th anniversary of Capcom’s Mega Man series, iam8bit are publishing a limited edition run of reproduction Mega Man 2 and Mega Man X cartridges. They feature foil and gloss embossed packaging, plus a premium instruction booklet with a foreword by Salvatore Pane. They’re not cheap but they are lovely.

Nintendo to launch new Mii making tool

With Miitomo about to bite the dust, Nintendo has announced that those still interested in creating and editing Mii characters will soon be able to use a new web-based Mii-making tool. It’s 2018, how does this not exist already?

Some Sunday reading…

In this week’s Cut Scenes – our ongoing series that explores the fuzzy space between film and video games – Josh Wise dives into The Truman Show and Prey.

Elsewhere on Thumbsticks we also have reviews of The Swords of Ditto and Minit, plus our Physical Foundry takes in-depth look at the differences between the Nintendo Switch and Wii U versions of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.

Also worth reading are two articles marking the 20th anniversary of Panzer Dragoon Saga. Polygon has pulled together a fascinating oral history, and The Ringer looks at the creation and impact of the game.

A note from the Thumbsticks editorial team

If you like what we do, then please consider supporting us via Patreon. Every penny we earn is poured back into the site, into giving new and aspiring writers an opportunity, and into bringing you more quality content to enjoy. And if you are an aspiring new writer, read this.


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New PlayStation 4 releases: January 27-31, 2020

Kentucky Route Zero and Journey to the Savage Planet headline next week’s lineup of new PlayStation releases.

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New PlayStation 4 game releases
Sony / Thumbsticks

Kentucky Route Zero and Journey to the Savage Planet are the highlights of next week’s new PlayStation 4, PS VR and PS Vita releases.

Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition is our PlayStation 4 pick of the week. The new edition encompasses all five acts – and the ‘interludes’ – of Cardboard Computer’s acclaimed adventure game. It’s an atmospheric subversion of a time-worn genre, and one to be savoured. Enjoy the journey.

Speaking of which, Typhoon Studio’s debut, Journey to the Savage Planet, is a promising science-fiction adventure with a comedic edge. If the likes of No Man’s Sky and The Outer Worlds are too daunting, this could be the perfect trip.

And speaking of games by Obsidian, the studio’s 2018 RPG Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire also arrives on PlayStation 4 next week.

Other new releases include Coffee TalkIt Came From Space And Ate Our Brains and Code Shifter. An early 80s classic also gets an update in shape of Lode Runner Legacy.

Here’s the complete lineup of next week’s new PlayStation Store releases.

New PlayStation 4 releases – January 27-31, 2020

Monday, January 27, 2020

  • No releases

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

  • Coffee Talk
  • Journey to the Savage Planet
  • Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition
  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire
  • Pro Deer Hunting
  • Shadow the Ronin
  • Vigilante Ranger

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

  • Lode Runner Legacy
  • Music Racer
  • Sisters Royale: Five Sisters Under Fire
  • Top Run

Thursday, January 30, 2020

  • Arc of Alchemist
  • Autobahn Police Simulator 2
  • Bookbound Brigade
  • Code Shifter
  • The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing III
  • It Came From Space And Ate Our Brains
  • Mad Age & This Guy
  • Milo’s Quest (+ PS Vita)
  • Throw Anything

Friday, January 31, 2020

  • The Inner Friend
  • Kwaidan
  • oOo: Ascension
  • Saboteur!
  • Willy Jetman: Astromonkey’s Revenge

More gaming news from Thumbsticks

Visit our new releases page for updates on the latest PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch games. You can also follow Thumbsticks on Flipboard, Facebook, Google News, and Twitter for a daily news delivery.

Support Thumbsticks

We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


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New Xbox One releases: January 27-31, 2020

Kentucky Route Zero and Journey to the Savage Planet headline next week’s new Xbox One video game releases.

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New Xbox One game releases
Microsoft / Thumbsticks

Journey to the Savage Planet and Kentucky Route Zero headline next week’s lineup of new Xbox One releases.

Cardboard Computer’s striking point-and-click adventure game, Kentucky Route Zero, comes to an end this week with the release of its fifth and final act. Seven years in the making, it’s rightly acclaimed as a stunning example of what video games can be. It’s pretty much essential.

Comical space adventures also beckon in Journey to the Savage Planet. The debut game from Typhoon Studios is a colourful exploratory adventure in the Douglas Adams vein. Google is evidently impressed and has acquired the studio – which was set up by Ubisoft and Electronic Arts alumni – to make exclusive games for Stadia.

Other new releases include licensed motorcycle racer Supercross 3, Milo’s Quest, and Coffee Talk, a game about helping people with problems from the comforting haze of a Seattle coffee shop.

Each new release can be purchased from the Xbox One digital games store and Microsoft online store. Here’s the confirmed lineup.

New Xbox One games – January 27-31, 2020

Monday, January 27, 2020

  • Stone

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

  • It Came from Space and Ate Our Brains
  • Journey to the Savage Planet
  • Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition
  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire – Ultimate Edition

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

  • Milo’s Quest: Console Edition
  • Music Racer

Thursday, January 30, 2020

  • Code Shifter
  • Monster Energy Supercross 3 – Special Edition

Friday, January 31, 2020

  • Coffee Talk
  • HyperDot
  • Sky Rogue

More video games from Thumbsticks

Visit the Thumbsticks new releases page for regular updates on the latest Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 games. Follow us on Flipboard, Facebook, Google News, and Twitter for daily gaming news updates.

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We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


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Wasteland Remastered gets a release date

Wasteland Remastered will upgrade the 1988 RPG’s look just in time for Wasteland 3.

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Wasteland Remastered release date
inXile

Wasteland Remastered will upgrade the 1988 RPG’s look just in time for Wasteland 3.

inXile Entertainment announced the remaster back in 2018, with a scheduled 2019 release. But with release dates prone to slipping, instead, Wasteland Remastered will launch on February 25 2020. That’s my birthday if you’ve been wondering what to get me. [Duly noted – Ed.]

The game will simultaneously launch on Steam, the Windows Store and GOG, inXile said. Additionally, Wasteland Remastered will be available via the console and PC versions of Xbox Game Pass.

“Wasteland Remastered is an overhaul of the 1988 title that brought the post-apocalypse to video games,” inXile said in a post on its website. “The Remastered title brings new graphics, audio, music, and digitizes the physical paragraphs book from the original with brand new artwork.”

Here are the before and after pictures. It’s like weirdly-specific time travel.

Wasteland remastered

The remaster is being handled by Krome Studios. That’s a name I haven’t heard in years. Krome developed the Ty the Tasmanian Tiger games in the PS2 era and rebooted the Spyro franchise in 2006. It also remastered the Bard’s Tale games.

Wasteland 3 is set to launch on May 19. Its predecessors were recently free on GOG.


More video games from Thumbsticks

Head over to our new releases page for the latest Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 games. You can also stay up to date by following Thumbsticks on FacebookGoogle NewsTwitter, and Flipboard.

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We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


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Pick up The Bridge, an Escher-inspired puzzler, for free

The Bridge, a perspective-swapping puzzler is free on the Epic Games Store.

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The Bridge - Epic Games Store
The Quantum Astrophysics Guild

The Bridge, a perspective-swapping puzzler is free on the Epic Games Store.

According to its Epic description, The Bridge “forces the player to reevaluate their preconceptions of physics and perspective.” And, its black-and-white, pencil-drawn graphics certainly make it look like a brain-breaking M.C. Escher drawing. But, with a bearded suit-wearing guy – who wouldn’t look out of place in Braid – exploring it.

I missed this one back in 2013. When it came out, I was in the middle of my freshman year of college and taking a break from video games. But, if I had been playing games at the time, this one’s mash-up of Fez mechanics and philosophical self-importance absolutely would have appealed to me.

Make of that what you will.

The Bridge screenshot

Now that The Bridge is free, Epic has unveiled next week’s freebie. Get ready to simulate some farming. That’s right Farming Simulator 19 will be up for grabs next Thursday.


More video games from Thumbsticks

Head over to our new releases page for the latest Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 games. You can also stay up to date by following Thumbsticks on Facebook, Google News, Twitter, and Flipboard.

Support Thumbsticks

We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


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This week’s best Nintendo eShop bargains

Are you looking for something new to play on Nintendo Switch this weekend? Here’s news of some new eShop discounts.

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Nintendo eShop Sale - VVVVVV

Are you looking for something new to play on Nintendo Switch this weekend? Here’s news of some new eShop video game discounts.

This week’s crop of Nintendo Switch digital discounts in Europe includes a range of classic indie games published by Nicalis.

We’ll never stop recommending Terry Cavanagh’s masterful platformer VVVVVV, even if he is a little sheepish about its qualities these days. Likewise, Daisuke Amaya’s timeless Metroid-style adventure game, Cave Story+. Classic shmup Ikaruga also comes highly recommended, particularly as it can be played on Switch in Tate Mode.

Other discounted games include sports sim Football Manager 2020, futuristic stunt racer FutureGrind, and no less than five titles from the Jackbox Party series.

We’ll also highlight Super Life of Pixel. It’s a simple and charming platform game that takes players on a trip through various console generations. Originally released on Wii U, the Switch version includes six new vintage consoles. It’s a neat idea, delightfully executed.

Here are some more sale recommendations. Visit the Nintendo eShop in your country for the full lineup of discounted games.

Nintendo Switch sale highlights

  • The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth+
  • The End is Nigh
  • Ikaruga
  • VVVVVV
  • Cave Story +
  • Toki Tori
  • Toki Tori 2+: Nintendo Switch Edition
  • Football Manager 2020
  • Johnny Turbo’s Arcade: Super Burger Time
  • FutureGrind
  • Crystal Crisis
  • RemiLore
  • Umihara Kawase Fresh!
  • Blade Strangers
  • Redout
  • Code of Princess EX
  • Tiny Barbarian DX
  • Swords & Soldiers
  • The Jackbox Party Packs 2-6
  • Gear.Club Unlimited 2

More video game bargains from Thumbsticks

Bookmark our sales page for the latest Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 offer. You can also get regular gaming news updates by following Thumbsticks on FacebookGoogle News, Twitter, and Flipboard.

Support Thumbsticks

We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


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