Check Out Build-A-Bear Mew, EA Talks Battlefield 6

Today: The next Battlefield game is ahead of schedule and will be out this year — Embracer Group has given Gearbox Software the money hug — Over 4.5 million PlayStation 5 units sold despite massive shortages

News from EA’s latest earnings call

EA just bought Codemasters for no less than $1.2 billion, and their plan is to release racing games on an annual schedule similar to other EA sports titles like FIFA and Madden.

Codemasters will be adding to the EA Sports catalogue

Need For Speed hasn't been particularly noteworthy for the last decade, and Burnout has been on hiatus since Burnout Paradise in 2008, so EA's racing line-up definitely needs a fresh coat of lacquer. Codemasters has licenses to produce Formula 1 and World Rally Championship games, and a broad stable of racing brands like Grid, Dirt and Project Cars.

Back to battle: EA CEO Andrew Wilson has also confirmed that the next Battlefield game will be revealed this spring and launch later this year. The game is apparently ahead of schedule, and on track for a holiday launch.

All-out war: “Featuring maps with unprecedented scale, the next edition of Battlefield takes all the destruction, player agency, vehicle and weapon combat that the franchise is known for and elevates it to another level,” said Wilson, promising “massive, immersive battles”.

What was the PlayStation 3’s initial market price for the full console?

a) $299
b) $399
c) $499
d) $599

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.

Shanoa doesn’t have time for continuity

Castlevania Judgement suffers from a slight continuity problem: According to the story, Shanoa is looking for Albus when she enters the time rift – but she also uses Dextro Custos and Sinestro Custos, which she only finds after defeating Albus in Mystery Manor!

Stick your continuity where the rift don’t shine

It’s also worth noting that Aeon’s hyper attack features unique dialogue for each of the game’s characters, which is and there’s quite a lot of them: Pretty much all major characters from the Castlevania series, plus a few new ones whipped up for the occasion.

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

Team Go Rocket event in Pokémon Go

The Team Go Rocket Celebration event is on, so expect loads of trouble and a bunch of poison-type Pokémon in Pokémon Go.

Poison-types get a boost in Pokémon GO

The next big Pokémon Go event will be the Lunar New Year celebration, which will increase the spawn rate of red coloured Pokémon. You can also grab an adorable yet sinister Mew bundle at Build-A-Bear, complete with a cap, a hoodie and sound board.

Pokémon Café Mix

  • Torterra Special Customer Event repeats until February 10th

Pokémon Go

  • Team Go Rocket Celebration Event
    • Lasts until February 7th
    • Team Go Rocket appearances boosted
    • Increased poison-type spawn rate in the wilds
    • New timed research
  • Pokémon Go Kanto Tour event
    • Begins on February 20th
    • Select which group you want to be part of
    • Each group gets exclusive spawns for trading

Pokémon Master EX

  • Next egg event starts February 4th
  • Focused on fighting, grass and rock-types

Embracer Group gobbles up Gearbox, Aspyr could be behind new Star Wars RPG

Borderlands developer Gearbox Software is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Embracer Group, which has been hoovering up developers and publishers over the last few years, building an impressive catalogue of studios and intellectual properties.

Gearbox Software was founded in Feb. 1999

The Swedish company already owns THQ Nortic, Saber Interactive and Koch Media, and Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford called the acquisition a “propellent for the exciting future we have planned,”.

The Force Awakens: Embracer subsidiary Aspyr Media is working on a $70 million dollar project at their Austin studio, and rumours say this is the new Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic game. Aspyr previously published ports of the two previous Knights of the Old Republic games for Apple devices, and even fixed up the famously buggy second game with a Restored Content Mod.

No stranger to Star Wars: Aspyr also ported the Star Wars: Jedi Knight and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed games for various platforms, and has also published Bloober Team's horror games. While they're not exactly a household name, they are a well-connected company with over two decades of experience in videogames.

What was the PlayStation 3’s initial market price for the full console?

ANSWER: $599!

Only in the 2000s could a price tag become a meme

Remember how crazy expensive PlayStation 3 was at launch in 2006? The console cost $599 at launch, which didn’t sit particularly well with gamers. Sony repeatedly tried to justify the price tag, but it took years and several hardware revisions before sales picked up properly.

A big part of the cost was down to the blu-ray drive and the ahead-of-its time Cell processor, both of which heralded the HD era. The transition from SD to HD came at a high price: Not only were the consoles unusually expensive, a lot of studios fell by the wayside during the transition as development costs ballooned.

Today's issue of DailyBits was written by Gavin Herman, Erlend Grefsrud, Simon Priest, and Jamie Davey.