FFXIV Endwalker players compensated for launch

Today: Only one day left until the Halo Infinite campaign is out — Activision Blizzard struggling to justify studio closure in France — Pokémon Unite celebrates 50 million downloads with Aeos tickets

Endwalker too popular for its own good

Final Fantasy XIV Endwalker animation

Final Fantasy XIV has fallen victim to its own success, as the MMO's servers buckle under the pressure of all the players desperate to play the latest Endwalker expansion.

Director and producer Naoki Yoshida has posted a personal message explaining what is happening, and apologizes for the mess.

  • Record number of concurrent Steam users: 95,150
  • Error 2002 is due to packet loss caused by 17,000+ user logins
  • Peak hours as of December 5th:
    • North America – 12:00pm to 10:00pm (PST) / 20:00 to 6:00 (GMT)
    • European – 3:00am to 3:00pm (PST) / 11:00 to 23:00 (GMT)
    • Japan – 1:00am to 7:00am (PST) / 9:00 to 15:00 (GMT)

Maxed out: “All Worlds across all regions have been hitting the login cap for extremely long periods of time, and the progression of login queues is being slowed dramatically,” Yoshida explains.

Time refund: Game owners and subscribers will be compensated with 7 days of free game time for the trouble, and possibly more depending on how the situation develops.

The post also explains what various error codes mean for the curious. Have you jumped back in to play the Endwalker expansion? Let us know!

What song is Spider-Man 2’s “Pizza Theme” based on?

a) Funiculì, Funiculà
b) Korobeiniki
c) Vesti la giubba
d) Der Hölle Rache

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.

Halo Infinite review round-up

Halo Infinite logo and Spartan model at 343 Industries

This week marks a new beginning for Halo. Sure, the free-to-play Halo Infinite multiplayer launched last week and has both picked up quite a robust following and already caused a minor controversy, but the Halo Infinite campaign still feels like the main course. Fortunately, the critics are finding it rather tasty.

Xbox & PC scores

  • Windows Central (Score 5/5) – ”There's simply no other way to put it: Halo Infinite is a masterpiece.”
  • VG247 (Score 5/5) – ”As Halo’s relevance has felt to wane over recent years, this is a bold statement that, no, Halo isn’t ‘over’.”
  • NME (Score 5/5) – ”If it weren’t for a couple of very minor hang-ups, this could well be my favourite FPS game ever made.”
  • Game Informer (Score 9.25/10) – ”Nails the shots where it counts and heralds a new era for one of gaming’s most recognizable mainstays.”
  • Destructoid (Score 9/10) – ”This is an extremely 2021 Halo, and I think it’s going to win over both lapsed players and diehards.”
  • Dual Shockers (Score 9/10) – ”Halo Infinite is its biggest, boldest, and most creative launch since the series released. “
  • IGN (Score 9/10) – ”Its story falls short for both new and veteran players, but it was worth the six-year wait.”
  • Gamespot (Score 9/10) – ”Feels like the best Halo campaign in years and an excellent evolution of what Halo can be.”
  • PCGamesN (Score 8/10) – ”A phenomenal single-player experience that competes with the best this iconic series has to offer.”
  • PC Gamer (Score 78/100) – ”Halo Infinite's campaign falls just shy of being great Halo.”

Former Blizzard Versailles staff still fighting over redundancy

Reception at former Blizzard Versailles studio

Staff formerly at Blizzard Versailles are still fighting Activision Blizzard over redundancy terms after the studio closed, making around 400 employees redundant between 2018 and 2020.

French law mandates that a particular legal framework must be followed and validated before a company can make significant redundancies, and Blizzard attempted to justify the redundancies on financial grounds.

No proof: Blizzard Versailles made 134 staff redundant in 2019 despite a tribunal invalidating the move, arguing that there was no evidence the French studio was struggling enough to justify the restructuring.

Shuttered: Blizzard went away anyway, arguing that they needed to trim the workforce to remain competitive. That clearly didn't work out – or was a false premise – since the remaining 264 employees were made redundant in 2020 and the studio closed down.

Ubisoft, IMGN.PRO and Digitized sales

Century: Age of Ashes animation

Humble Bundle invites you to save big money at the Ubisoft Celebration Sale offering up to 85% off on Rainbow Six, Assassin's Creed, and Star Trek. Next, the Digitized Bundle is a pay-what-you-want bundle of table-top inspired games.

Indiegala is also serving up bargains in the IMGN.PRO Publisher Sale, featuring up to 80% off games like Superhot and Spintires.

Century: Age of Ashes Giveaway

Century: Age of Ashes animation

We’ve got something very special to giveaway for Century: Age of Ashes, the free-to-play multiplayer game from Playwing, where you fight riding atop huge fire-spitting dragons!

Since it’s already free our Century: Age of Ashes Giveaway will instead be offering you the chance to win a Behemoth Founder's Pack worth almost £50 in in-game items with exclusive skins.

What song is Spider-Man 2’s “Pizza Theme” based on?

Spider-Man from Spider-Man climbing a building, nary a pizza in sight

ANSWER: Funiculì, Funiculà!

The Spider-Man 2 game (the one from 2004, not the upcoming one) is generally considered one of the best movie tie-ins ever, which may not be saying much considering the general quality of movie tie-ins from that era. Anyway, it features pizza delivery side missions soundtracked by a discordant little ditty with roots back in the 19th century.

The tune was composed by Luigi Denza to commemorate the first funicular railway opening on Mount Vesuvius in 1880. It was a commercial success, and a quintessential example of Italian music. The big question is whether Luigi would be amused that we still remember his composition, or furious at what has become of it.

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