EA Loses Star Wars Exclusivity, Pokémon’s 25th Anniversary

Today: Pokémon is celebrating its 25th birthday with Katy Perry — Get your pink on with new, super-cute gaming collection from Razer — Grab Little Nightmares for free from Bandai Namco’s online store

No more Star Wars exclusivity for EA

Lucasfilm Games has announced its first new Star Wars game – and it’s not being developed by EA, which seems like pretty conclusive proof that Disney is not going to renew EA’s exclusive license when it lapses in 2023.

Star Wars going ‘open world’ under Ubisoft

The new game is in development at Ubisoft's Swedish studio Massive Entertainment, which is working on a “story-driven, open-world” Star Wars game using Massive's own Snowdrop engine. It's not clear what kind of game it is, and whether it will be online or offline.

The Force divided: Since Massive most recently developed The Division, it's not impossible that its new project is a similar hybrid MMO that can be played either alone or in online with friends.

No more exclusivity: CEO Yves Guillemot said Ubisoft is “working closely with Lucasfilm Games to create an original Star Wars adventure that is different from anything that has been done before.” EA will apparently still “play a big role in the future” of Star Wars, so Disney will not simply be replacing one exclusivity deal with another.

Which band performs the Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order opening theme?

a) Inka Marka
b) The Hu
c) Tanya Tagaq
d) Northern Cree

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.

Abe’s tipsy working title sobered up

The working title for Oddworld: Abe’s Exoddus was Abe Gets Boned and Brewed, and the final game’s intoxicating SoulStorm Brew was probably named after the Abe’s Oddysee working title, SoulStorm.

Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus released in late 1998

The support group for hard-drinking mukodons at Alf’s Rehab & Tea from the game’s good ending was inspired by game director Lorne Lannings experience attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings to deal with his father’s alcoholism.

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

Pokémon anniversary with Katy Perry

Pokémon is 25 years old, and the official Pokémon YouTube channel has launched a 25 Years of Memories video to mark the occasion.

Pokémon skates into partnership with Katy Perry

The video whizzes through two and a half decades worth of toys, games, cars, cartoons and other ways the much-loved franchise has manifested itself, ending with a teaser revealing a partnership with none other than Katy Perry.

Gotta Catch 'Em All: “This one goes out to everyone who started out catching Pokémon… but ended up catching feelings instead,” said The Pokémon Company. “We’re kicking off our 25th anniversary celebration by taking a walk down memory lane!”

Music partnership: It's not clear exactly how Katy Perry and Pokémon will intersect, but it's probably pretty substantial. The singer is a bit of a Pokémon fan, and she visited the Pokémon Café during her 2019 trip to Japan.

Razer gets in touch with its feminine side

Raze has a reputation for creating achingly computers and peripherals, particularly their gaming mice named after poisonous snakes. Now they’re going in the completely opposite direction with an adorably pink line of Hello Kitty-branded gaming gear.

Hello Kitty first appeared in November 1974

The Hello Kitty line offers super-kawaii keyboards, mice, headphones and mouse pads. Hello Kitty has grown into a massive phenomenon in Asia over the last 50 years, and has steadily grown more popular in the West as well.

Project Hazel: Razer has also unveiled “the world’s smartest face mask” at CES, complete with the kind of RGB LEDs you typically find in gamer keyboards or computer cases.

Smart mask: The mask features two rechargeable active ventilators with N95 filtration and form-fitting silicon ensuring it remains both tight and comfortable. The mask itself is transparent so your face is not concealed, along with a jolly, programmable light array.

New Mario-themed Switch color scheme

Nintendo is launching a special red and blue switch alongside Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury on February 12th.

Mario Red and Blue Edition

The Mario Red & Blue Edition features Mario's signature color scheme, with a red dock and console alongside blue Joy-Cons. The Joy-Cons have blue details, but will be entirely red when attached to the Switch.

There is still a month left until release, and pre-orders have just opened in the UK but have yet to appear in the US. Keep an eye on Nintendo's official website to find out more.

UK

Nintendo Switch Mario Red & Blue Edition – £279.99 @ Nintendo UK

Nintendo Switch Mario Red & Blue Edition – £299.99 @ Amazon UK

Nintendo Switch Mario Red & Blue Edition with Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury Pack – £329.99 @ Nintendo UK

Nintendo Switch Mario Red & Blue Edition with Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury Pack – £349.98 @ Amazon UK

US

Nintendo Switch Mario Red & Blue Edition – $299.99 @ Nintendo US

Which band performs the Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order opening theme?

ANSWER: The Hu!

The proper music to get into the Jedi mindset? Mongolian rock

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order’s opening broke with Star Wars tradition, eschewing the usual orchestral theme in favour of Sugaan Essena by The Hu, which Kal Cestis is listening to while working at the scrapyard.

The Hu is a Mongolian rock band famous for throat singing and compositions featuring traditional Mongolian instruments. The title means Black Thunder, but it’s not actually Mongolian – it’s an alien language invented for the song. One fan theory says it’s Huttese, but no matter what weird tongue it might be, it certainly gave Fallen Order a unique flavour right off the bat.

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