Battlefield Reveal in June, Odyssey team on Donkey Kong?

Rain is scheduled for the weekend, so we’re thinking about what games we can check out. How about you? Let’s take a look at what’s happened with games since we last appeared in your inbox.

Today: Nintendo could be putting its A team to work on Donkey Kong — Slitherine bets big on strategy games — Sega doesn’t mind you making Sonic games as long as you don’t go commercial

Ubisoft plans pivot to free-to-play

Battlefield 5 launched in November 2018

Ubisoft and EA have both published financial reports, and alongside it new content strategies with Ubisoft in particular making a major course correction.

Ubisoft won't be abandoning high-budget projects, but they will shift their focus towards “high-end free-to-play” titles according to chief financial officer Frederick Duguet. That means the end of 3-4 annual premium releases strategy.

Original IP: All Ubisoft first-party games will be branded as Ubisoft Originals, hopefully indicating a continued dedication to developing new properties rather than relying on licenses. 2020 was the best year ever for the Assassin's Creed series, and the upcoming Skull and Bones has been delayed yet again.

Prepare for battle: EA will reveal Battlefield 6 in June and launch it on PC and console alongside the usual range of EA Sports games.

Which macho voice actor voiced Big the Cat in Sonic Adventure?

a) John Cygan
b) Jon St. John
c) David Hayter 
d) Rob Wiethoff

The answer will be revealed at the bottom of today's issue. Join up with our community on Twitter and Facebook to discuss what the answer could be.

Ladder leap was too much for the West

Sunsoft’s NES classic Blaster Master – known as Metafight in Japan – featured an incredibly difficult leap of faith at the end of area 4: A ladder just off the edge of the screen that you would have to make a lucky jump off a cliff to reach.

One giant leap a little too giant

It was so difficult and confusing that US staff complained about it and demanded that the Western version should change the section. Extra platforms and ladders were added, making the section considerably more straightforward.

Join our community on Twitter and Facebook to discuss today's fact.

Odyssey devs working on Donkey Kong

Rare’s Donkey Kong Country reignited the series

Persistent rumours claim that the Super Mario Odyssey dev team is working on a brand new Donkey Kong game.

Super Mario Odyssey launched for Switch in October 2017, and was well-received for its fresh take on the old Mario formula, and for the gameplay variations enabled by Mario's hat spirit Cappy.

Get funky: The last major Donkey Kong game was Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze for Wii U in 2014, unless you count Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars from 2015.

Rumour mill: Several sources claim that the project is indeed real, so maybe there is reason to keep a faint hope alive in your monkey heart.

Home of Wargames Live+ 2021 round-up

Slitherine has over 15 games in development, including a new Stargate game

SlitherineGames just broadcast the Home of Wargames Live+ 2021 online event and announced four new games in development. The publisher also has more than 15 unannounced projects in development across 40 different studios.

Game announcements

  • Broken Arrow (Steel Balalaika)Reveal Trailer
    “Broken Arrow is a large-scale real-time modern warfare tactics game. A unique army building system and deep units customisation tools allow for endless replayability. With 200+ realistic military units and technologies, each battle is more immersive than ever before.”
  • Scramble: Battle of Britain (Slitherine)Game page
    ”Scramble: Battle of Britain is a simultaneous turn-based dogfighting game with dynamic flight physics. Shred your enemies in a 3D airspace by planning your flight path, executing spectacular maneuvers, and reviewing each planes’ movements at the end of every turn.”
  • Master of Magic (MuHa Games)Reveal Trailer
    ”Take up the role of a great wizard, wield powerful spells, command fantasy races and challenge your rivals in this remake of a cult turn-based strategy classic. Do you have what it takes to become Master of Magic?”
  • Stargate: Timekeepers (Creative Forge Games)Teaser trailer
    ”Stargate: Timekeepers departs from the end of season 7 of the Stargate SG-1 main plot to create a wholly original story starting during the Battle of Antarctica, where Command Eva McCain and her team are tasked with supporting the SG-1 against Anubis’s fleet. The aftermath of the battle sees Commander McCain and her squad face an epic adventure that spans multiple original locations.”
  • Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Wrath of the Druids DLC out now accompanied by a new trailer
  • Pokémon Sword & Shield updated to 1.3.2 includes various fixes such as correct game icons for online and local battles
  • Quick Resume feature renamed in latest Xbox system update which also promises faster load times and passthrough audio
  • Artists and game makers free to use Sonic the Hedgehog but not to make money from him
  • Sony's Days of Play 2021 event begins on May 18th awarding prizes for playing PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 games

Which macho voice actor voiced Big the Cat in Sonic Adventure?

I got frogs of steel!

ANSWER: Jon St. John!

One of the funniest things about voice actors is discovering how many different roles performers have played. Did you, for example, know that that the man who voiced Duke Nukem also played the dopey fishing cat in Sonic Adventure? That's right, the blond beast who rips off alien heads and defecates down their exposed throats also played a meek feline looking for his pet frog.

Jon St. John also appeared as e102 Gamma in another early 3D Sonic game, and kept appearing in the series until Sonic Heroes. Big the Cat was later voiced by Oliver Wyman and then Kyle Herbert, but in our minds he will always be one tonal shift away from kicking ass and chewing bubble gum.

Today's issue of DailyBits was written by Gavin Herman, Nick Akerman, Erlend Grefsrud, Simon Priest, and Jamie Davey. If you have any feedback or news tips for the team, please email us!