God of War storms Steam charts on PC

Today: Explore the history of lockpicking in The Museum of Mechanics — Square Enix is finally expanding Final Fantasy XIV server capacity — Troy Baker throws himself on the NFT bandwagon

God of War hits 70,000 concurrent players

PlayStation Studios curated page on Steam

Sony Santa Monica's much-lauded God of War is finally available on PC – the first time the long-running series appears outside a PlayStation platform – and over 70,000 players were hacking and slashing their way across Midgard.

The peak number of players was on Sunday, January 16th, with 70,129 concurrent players. The player count topped off at just above 49,400 on launch day before steadily growing over the course of the weekend.

  • God of War is the 4th game in the main series
  • Launched for PlayStation 4 in 2018
  • God of War Ragnarök is due later in 2022
  • No guarantee Ragnarök will also come to PC

Second chance: Sony started introducing its PlayStation first-party games to PC with Horizon Zero Dawn, which reached 56,557 concurrent players on August 7th, 2020. Days Gone launched on May 18th, 2021, and reached its peak concurrent player count of 27,450 on May 23rd.

More to come: God of War was one of the biggest games of 2018, so it's hardly surprising that it has outperformed both Horizon Zero Dawn and Days Gone. Sony will launch Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection on Steam later this year.

What fictional drug is a major plot point in Lisa: The Painful?

a) Zyme
b) Remedy
c) Joy
d) Spank

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.

Rainbow Six Extraction takes on aliens

Rainbow Six Extraction cinematic

This week starts off with 90s cult classic Shadow Man: Remastered for Switch, before Rainbow Six Extraction finally hits PC and consoles on Thursday.

Monday – January 17th

  • Shadow Man: Remastered for NS

Tuesday – January 18th

  • Nobody Saves the World for PC, XBO, XSX

Thursday – January 20th

  • RPGolf Legends for PC, NS, PS4, XBO
  • Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Extraction for PC, PS4, PS5, XBO, XSX, Stadia
  • Windjammers 2 for PC, NS, PS4, XBO, Stadia

Friday – January 21st

  • MouseCraft for XBO

Unlock game design with Johnnemann

The game's titular museum, showcasing its low-light aesthetic

Compilations and collections like Midway Arcade Treasures or Sega's Genesis Collections are pretty common, but it's still rare to see an anthology of games designed around a single mechanic. The Museum of Mechanics: Lockpicking by Johnnemann Nordhagen, who you might know from games like Gone Home and Where the Water Tastes Like Wine, is not exactly flashy but it's comprehensive and unusually interesting.

Test Your Skill: The “goal” is to unlock each lock in the museum using a range of lockpicking mechanics from different games.

  • This culminates in a marathon challenge to unlock the museum’s golden door, and although that's the goal it is not really the point of the experience.
  • Like the title suggests, the game is a museum presenting an opportunity to explore and discover rather than conquer and complete. If you can't quite tame your competitive spirit, certain locks feature leaderboards where you can prove your mettle.

Dark Museum, Bright Analysis: The presentation is spartan yet effective, emphasising function over form and focusing on the lockpicking mechanics rather than flashy graphics.

  • Each lock is accompanied by a plaque featuring details about the game the lockpicking mechanic is from, how it works, and a little analysis courtesy of the curator.
  • Much of the text is quite straightforward and perfunctory, but Johnnemann's analyses are illuminating and engaging and reveal a deep understanding of game design.
  • It's not just a showcase either: Johnnemann is not afraid to be critical, and candidly discusses the strengths and weaknesses of different mechanical approaches to lockpicking.

It's a short and experimental game, and won't take much more than half an hour to rush through. If you care about game design and find the evolution of a mechanic over time and across games an interesting subject, the Museum of Mechanics will most likely delight you. Hopefully, Johnnemann will keep the project going, and explore more mechanics in the future.

Brave Browser rewards you for surfing

Brave Browser

Maybe your internet connection is fast, but what about your browser? The Brave Browser is built from the ground up for speed, privacy and providing an ad-free Internet.

You can opt-in for ads that respect your privacy, and even earn rewards. It’s quick and easy to use, featuring the same comforts and conveniences you expect from a modern browser.

  • Square Enix opens new Oceanian data center for Final Fantasy XIV and promises EU and NA server expansions later this year
  • Actor Troy Baker teams up with Voiceverse NFT, triggering an immediate wave of mockery from unimpressed gamers
  • 2.21 reveals new Twinsen’s Little Big Adventure branding which will unify the new and old Little Big Adventure games
  • Shiro and Funcom presents a Dune: Spice Wars FAQ explaining the hybrid RTS and 4X design and its approach to the adaptation
  • Techland promises “5 years of Dying Light 2” and pledges to support the game with expansions, events, stories, and items long after launch

What fictional drug is a major plot point in Lisa: The Painful?

Brad watches a mutant, a couple joy pills beside him

ANSWER: Joy!

Is there joy in your heart? If so, you might want a doctor to check that out. In Lisa: The Painful, the protagonist Brad uses a drug called joy to cope with his life in the wastes. The drug simply strips away emotions, leaving users numb to pain.

The drug is particularly useful in combat, since it fully heals you and increases your critical hit chance – but like any drug, there are side effects. The withdrawal symptoms are harsh enough, but the real problem is that it can transform users into horrifying monsters. Remember kids, winners don't do drugs!

Quite a few of our readers emailed in yesterday to mention what game's you have played for over 500 hours; World of Warcraft, Pokémon Diamond and Pearl, Rocket League, and Minecraft came out on top.

Here's something great that we spotted over the weekend. The original Tomb Raider runs very well on the Game Boy Advanced. Impressive?

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!