#37: Drifting into Joy

TODAY: Digital Gandhi doesn’t take kindly to democracy — Play Pokémon Masters early if you’re from the right country — Ride a dragon and unite a divided world in Savior

Top Story

Nintendo reportedly to ‘stop charging’ for Joy-Con repairs

There are reports that Nintendo has stopped charging for Joy-Con repairs, and that they are refunding customers who have been charged for repairs.

It seems like the charitable offer is local to the United States: “A statement was released by Nintendo of America acknowledging known issues with Nintendo Switch Joy-Con controllers. Our Nintendo UK process remains the same – to provide recommended troubleshooting and advise repair if unsuccessful”, they told Eurogamer.

Leave the drifting to Mario Kart

Many Switch owners have been plagued by so-called ‘Joy-Con drift’ where the analogue sticks register slight movement even without input, which can be pretty annoying in games that map character or camera movement to the analogue sticks.

“Customers will no longer be requested to provide proof of purchase for Joy-Con repairs,” reports VICE. “Additionally it is not necessary to confirm warranty status. If a customer requests a refund for a previously paid Joy-Con repair … confirm the prior repair and then issue a refund.”

Time For A Quick Daily Quiz?

How long did it take GTA Online to arrive in Grand Theft Auto 5?

  • 2 Weeks
  • 1 Month
  • 2 Months
  • A beta at 1 month, but not until 8 months later

The answer will be revealed at the end of this issue!

News Bits

Civilization VI: Rise & Fall and Gathering Storm for Switch

According to the official Civilization Twitter account, Firaxis is aiming to “bring both the Rise & Fall and Gathering Storm expansions” to the Nintendo Switch in 2019. Sid Meier’s Civilization VI hit the Switch in November 2018, and iOS in December 2017. What about a future Xbox One release? “We don’t have anything additional to share.”

Hand of Fate’s Defiant Development “ceasing” operations

It’s a sad moment for the Australian game development scene as Brisbane-based Defiant Development is closing down. The studio behind Hand of Fate and its sequel were apparently unable to “change quickly enough” to keep up with the industry they love. Their studio was founded in 2010 and now they’re asking for help to rehome their talented devs.

Daily Fact

Gandhi’s nuclear manifesto in Sid Meier’s Civilization

Thanks to the quirks of old timey 8-bit gaming, in the original Sid Meier’s Civilization you could get a highly aggressive Mahatma Gandhi leading the world in nuclear proliferation and probable fallout. The famously pacifist independence-seeking lawyer had the lowest aggression rating of all the possible leaders, but thanks to 8-bit magic he could become a monster.

Gandhi’s aggression rating was a mere 1 out of a possible 255, but should your civilization become a Democracy then any leader would have their aggression lowered by 2. This meant Gandhi should have gotten a negative level of aggression at -1 when you install the ballot boxes – but thanks to an integer underflow bug, Gandhi would suddenly flip to having a maximum 255 aggression instead.

It seems once he got into office Gandhi developed quite the itchy trigger finger. It must have been all those campaign promises. Since the original game in the series, Gandhi has always remained the least aggressive, although that can change in later releases – but at least it was intended this time. A vote for Gandhi is a vote for atomised independence! There’ll be no going back!

Daily News

MMO Black Desert’s PlayStation 4 beta August 9-13

Black Desert, originally launched for PC in 2015 as Black Desert Online, is launching worldwide for PlayStation 4 on August 22nd, following a short beta test running between August 9th and 13th.

Pearl Abyss’s MMO eschews the typical tab-targeting paradigm in favour of a more action-oriented movement model and combat system similar to typical third-person shooters, as well as fishing, farming, player housing, PvP events, castle sieges and trading – there’s even mounted combat!

The beauty pageant of MMOs comes to PS4

The PlayStation 4 beta allows you to explore the Calpheon with your character, which can be one of six classes and has a level cap of 50. A PlayStation Plus subscription will be mandatory to play the release version, but you can play the beta without one – and signing up will earn you a Sky Hawk pet.

Black Desert launched for Xbox One in March, and there’s a good chance the mobile version will be ported for the Nintendo Switch.

Pre-registration open for Pokémon Masters, launches August 29

The new battle-focused Pokémon Masters from developer DeNa will hit iOS and Android next month on August 29th. Pre-registration for the new mobile game is now open.

There’s going to be a ‘preview’ version for limited testing coming out July 25 in Singapore and a little later for Canada, and saves will carry over to the full release. If you’re not lucky enough to live in either country, you’ll just have to wait for the end of August. Pokémon Masters is described as free-to-start, which just means it’ll be free but parts of it remain locked behind in-app purchases.

Get the gang back together with Synergy

Pokémon Masters isn’t your typical Pokémon game where you hunt and capture Pokémon: It’s all about the battles. It features famous Trainers from earlier games in the series, and supports co-op battles against AI. The ‘sync pair’ system is also new, and means each Trainer is teamed up with a single Pokémon and require special new outfits to pair up with new ones.

Six new trailers reveal more about Pokémon Masters:

Weekly Deals

What are ya buyin’?

This week we’ve got some deals that are almost as hot as the weather! Bethesda is having a huge sale on the Steam Store, with heavy discounts on the Fallout and Dishonored franchises. It’s a great week for PC gamers overall, but we’ve still managed to dig out a few sweet deals for console players too.

Life is Strange: Before the Storm Complete Season (PS4) £4.29 @ PlayStation Store

Dishonored 2 & Prey Bundle (PC) £8.08 @ Steam

Fallout: New Vegas (PC) £1.99 @ Steam

Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus (PC) £13.19 @ Steam

Tekken 7 & Project Cars 2 Bundle (Xbox One) £14.99 @ Currys PC World

Gears of War 4 (Xbox One/PC) £2.99 @ CDKeys

Titanfall 2 (PC) £3.59 @ Origin

While the top section of our list has been dominated by single player experiences, we’ve squeezed some multiplayers in towards the end. PlayStation 4 owners will be happy to hear that the PlayStation Store is celebrating its summer sale, with up to 75% off a selection of titles.

There’s no need to rush in though, since the sale will be running until August 20th. If you have an American PSN account, there is a much wider catalogue of games on sale than the UK store.

Weekly Giveaway

Rise of Insanity

It’s time for another awesome giveaway from all of us here at Dailybits – and this one’s not for the faint of heart. It’s a first-person psychological horror game called Rise of Insanity – think Silent Hill, Layers of Fear, or P.T., except a little bit scarier. It’s even got VR support, if you think you’re brave enough…

Every day this week, we will give one lucky winner on our active reader list a PS4 code!

“Set in America in the 1970s, the story centers around Dr. Stephen Dowell, a renowned psychologist faced with a difficult patient who shows distinct yet contradictory symptoms of different mental disorders.
The life of the doctor himself is also shrouded in mystery – you must step into his shoes to find out the truth. What terrible fate has befallen your wife and child? Is your new patient, on whom you are testing your experimental treatment methods, somewhat responsible for what happened?

Who is to blame? Don’t lose your nerve, and overcome your fear.”

Hands-on Preview - WARSAW

Experience History Through This Tactical RPG

(Pixelated Milk – PC, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch)

Set in 1944, WARSAW is a turn-based RPG set in the Nazi-occupied Polish capital. You play a group of resistance fighters pushing back against the Nazi invaders in strategic combat scenarios as you progress through a touching story focusing on less well-known sides of the Second World War.

Players will be able to assemble a team of heroes, each equipped with unique skills that make them useful in specific situations. Our starter team consisted of three roles: a medic, tank and DPS (damage per second). WARSAW uses turn-based combat, meaning that you’ll have to spend your action points in order to perform moves each turn. Every action costs points, whether you want to use your medic to heal a character, or simply move a character to another tile.

Offensive actions such as shooting a gun will display the probability of the shot actually landing, as well as the range of damage that the shot might inflict. Each combat is also littered with a few obstacles that can be used as cover and can absorb some of the damage from incoming attacks. As a result, this makes each combat feel slightly unpredictable as not all of your attacks will land, encouraging you to play carefully and anticipate every possible outcome.

As we mentioned before, enemy encounters are set across a number of tiles, and each of your heroes will have actions that may only reach certain tiles. For example, we found that our tank’s attacks could only be used at close range, whereas our DPS could focus on the further tiles. We were also able to experiment with other compositions, with one of the younger characters, a small boy, using a pistol and another female character using a grenade launcher.

After a few missions, some members of your team will likely need a rest and may have to visit the infirmary at the HQ to recover. For this reason, it’ll be worth making yourself familiar with all of the characters in the game to learn their strengths and weaknesses. Pixelated Milk has made a conscious effort to include “people from all walks of life.” spanning soldiers and civilians, young and old to demonstrate how the uprising affected everyone in the area.

Do you have what it takes to survive a hand-painted retelling of the Warsaw Uprising?

WARSAW’s events unfold over sixty-three days – the same length as the real Warsaw Uprising – and if you manage to get your entire team killed while out on a mission, your death will be permanent, forcing you to begin a new run. We spoke to Krzysztof Paplinski, the game’s producer, who explained to us that you probably won’t complete the game on your first run and that each attempt should be a learning experience that helps you to improve your strategic thinking for your next try.

This will certainly pave the way for significant replay value once players get to grips with WARSAW’s mechanics. From what we’ve experienced so far, we’d say that a good place to start any run is by selecting your squad carefully, ensuring that you have a balanced team that can bail you out of trouble.

We found that early missions were quite short, lasting a day or two, although we imagine that as the difficulty ramps up over time, these could grow considerably longer. Each mission will have one or more objectives, but you can also run into random events as you traverse the streets of Warsaw. While it’s interesting to explore what’s occurring outside of your encounters with the Nazis, you’ll want to keep an eye on how often you wander away from the main objective as you only have a limited amount of stamina to use navigating the map each mission.

Overall, we really enjoyed checking out WARSAW and are looking forward to revisiting it on September 4th, when it’s due to release on PC. The developer also has plans to release it on consoles, although we’re still awaiting a solid release date for that version. One thing that really stuck with us at the preview event was how Pixelated Milk have managed to weave historically accurate information into WARSAW, without it feeling awkwardly sandwiched in. If you’re a fan of tactical RPGs and consider yourself to be a bit of a history buff, you’ll want to add this to your wishlist and watch The Making Of WARSAW trailer.

News Bits

Koei Tecmo re-releasing original Monster Rancher in 2019

Monster Rancher (known as Monster Farm in Japan) hit the original PlayStation back in 1997, and now Koei Tecmo is porting the original game, although it’s not clear what platforms they are targeting. They use the word “haishin” which means a digital release in Japanese, so it could be going mobile.

2D pixel art platformer Savior announced

Prepare to feast your eyes on gorgeous, smoothly animated pixel art in the announcement trailer for action/adventure platformer Savior. It’s full of ducking, diving, weaving, jumping, fighting and there’s even a freaking dragon to ride through the sky! Featuring an open world with “pain-free intuitive” platforming, Savior blends fantasy with science-fiction and invites you to “rebuild a desperately divided civilization.”

Quiz Answer - Did You Get It Right?

How long did it take GTA Online to arrive in Grand Theft Auto 5?

Answer: 2 Weeks!

This week sees the release of the Diamond Casino & Resort update for GTA Online, the latest in a long line of major expansions to Grand Theft Auto 5’s online mode – which remains incredibly popular even 6 years after launch.

While offering little more than unsupervised multiplayer shenanigans across GTAV’s vast world when it launched, GTA Online arrived for the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions of the game on October 1st 2013 – just two weeks after the game’s release on September 17th 2013.

The PS4, Xbox One, and PC versions of GTA5 would arrive later, but they all came complete with GTA Online. Compare this to Rockstar’s more recent game Red Dead Redemption 2, which only featured a bare-bones beta for Red Dead Online a month after release in October 2018 – and players didn’t get the full release until May this year. Some might say it’s still pretty bare-bones even now, especially compared to the insane amount of content available in GTA Online.

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