More Game Delays Coming, Resident Evil 8 in Europe?

TODAY: Britain’s premier point-and-click series is going VR — Try your hand at a life of crime in 1960s London — Forget nameless things from the deep, grocery shoppers are the quintessential cosmic horror

Game Delays Incoming

Japanese Rating Organisation closed

Japan’s video game rating agency Computer Entertainment Rating Organisation – or CERO – is closing down until May 6th.

This could impact games scheduled for release in Q3 and Q4 as the agency will not be able to test and rate new games while it is closed.

Games are typically rated months before they launch, so games scheduled to go on sale in the next few months will likely be unaffected, but games scheduled for launch after summer could easily miss their street dates. Since Japan is a major territory, publishers might choose to delay games rather than release them in Japan months after other territories.

  • CERO is closed for a month, although it could be extended depending on how the COVID-19 pandemic develops
  • Japanese companies are traditionally averse to employees working from home, unlike for example Germany’s USK rating board which has not been affected by the on-going pandemic

CERO’s official statement: “All work including screening (including those under review) will be entirely suspended from April 8th to May 6th. We will be closed during that time, so we will not be able to receive examination materials such as mail or courier. The resumption of operations after May 7th will be announced on the website in the future.”

Time For A Quick Daily Quiz?

Who plays the mayor of Steelport in Saints Row: The Third?

  • Josh Birk
  • Monica Hughes
  • Burt Reynolds
  • Some Random Head in a Jar

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.

Daily Fact

A hearty helping of sin on Saints Row

Volition started development on Saints Row: The Third before Saints Row 2 shipped in 2008. It is still considered the best in the series, and received massive support from publisher THQ who promised to fund 40 weeks worth of content updates after launch.

In the end, Volition released a ton of little additions and three full expansion packs, but the most notable one was Enter the Dominatrix. Originally announced on April Fool’s day in 2012 and slated as the final DLC pack for Saints Row: The Third, the expansion grew into Saints Row IV and what material didn’t make it into the fourth game was eventually released as DLC.

The Saints Row series has quite a colorful history: It started out as a rather tone-deaf Grand Theft Auto 3 clone, and after perhaps unexpectedly finding success, turned into an increasingly weird, chaotic and high-budget joke about videogames. Volition is currently developing another Saints Row game. What could possibly be next?

Join up with our community on Twitter and Facebook to discuss today’s fact.

Broken Sword in VR?

New Broken Sword VR game in 2021?

The European Commission may have accidentally leaked Broken Sword 6. Univrcity.fr managed to save a summary revealing that Parzival’s Stone VR is actually Broken Sword 6: Parzival’s Stone.

According to the project’s listing on the European Commission website, the game should appear before March 2021.

From the project description: “The player will be there in VR with their loyal heroes George and Nico as they travel on their last epic quest in Europe: unravelling mysterious intrigue, facing sinister villains and solving devilish puzzles in a tale based on history, conspiracy, myths, power, greed… and particle physics.”

  • Broken Sword developer Revolution Software received €150,000 in funding from the European Commission
  • Judging by the European Commission page, Parzival’s Stone VR has been in development for just over two years at this point

Too good to be true? As always, rumours should be taken with a pinch of salt: No-one but univrcity.fr seems to have actually seen the listing.

Resident Evil 8 Heads to Europe

Fresh batch of Resident Evil rumours

Following last week’s rumours, Biohazardcast has published more claims from a source who has playtested the game.

Resident Evil 8 will apparently be called Resident Evil: Village with the VILL part of the name highlighted to spell the roman numeral for 8. The most interesting part of the rumour says that Chris Redfield will play an important part, though not in the ways fans might expect. Perhaps Chris is a villain this time around?

  • The game is set somewhere in Europe, presumably in or around a village
  • Returning characters: Ethan, Mia and Chris Redfield
  • Release date is supposedly Q1 2021, though the on-going COVID-19 pandemic could change that
  • Inventory management is still being tweaked. Capcom is testing solutions inspired by both Resident Evil 4 and 7

Trustworthy? Dusk Golem, who posted the first rumours last week, has given this latest batch a thumbs-up on ResetERA. He explained that “literally hundreds of random people have played the RE8 demo at this point … these tests did make the game leaking a lot more likely.”

Game Spotlight

Forge your own 1960s criminal empire

Company of Crime is the first game from game designer Jussi Audio’s studio Resistance Games, and is set in 1960s London. It’s a turn-based strategy game where you either build a criminal empire across the boroughs of London, or help the police root out organized crime.

Unlike a lot of recent tactical turn-based strategy games, Company of Crime emphasizes melee combat. According to Autio, “X-Com has perfected the gunfighting in turn-based tactics games, so we’ve tried to do the same in regards to melee combat”. That means strong emphasis on positioning: If your thugs occupy just the right spots, you can comfortably pummel your opposition.

Before each mission, you put together a crew and arm them with weapons like knuckle dusters and hammers, before planning the mission. If you want to go on the offence, you might as well barge in the front door – but you can also find alternative entrances and avoid some combat with a bit of stealth.

While you can also arm your thugs with guns, using them is extremely risky and risks blowing the cover on your whole operation. While flashing a few guns will make it easier to extort people, murder is generally bad for business – and whacking coppers will have dire consequences. Cop killers will be relentlessly harassed by the police, and they might even raid your safehouses to get them in cuffs.

Company of Crime will launch sometime in 2020, and while the COVID-19 pandemic could disrupt those plans, Autio is confident working from home will not affect development: “For us, the bigger impact as developers was that we planned to go to events like GDC to sell our other products but we aren’t able to do that now”. The team’s foremost concern is the PC version, but console versions are likely if the game does well.

Indie Talk

A chat with Germfood on retail, COVID-19, and part-time game development

Horror games are nothing new. You have probably battled quite a few zombies, ghosts and even a few psychological manifestations of guilt in your time. But how many games deal with the worst monsters of them all, namely rude customers?

Currently in the early stages of development, Night of the Consumers forces you to juggle stocking shelves and dodging demanding customers. It might look more like a joke than a real game, but its tight time limits and panic-inducing gameplay makes it stand out.

It has also become remarkably timely of late as service workers find themselves on the front lines of a global pandemic. Developer Germfood has been working on the game alongside keeping a job in retail, but still found a bit of time to answer some questions.

Daily Bits: Night of the Consumers is based on your experiences working retail. What made you want to make a game out of it?

Germfood: Just to turn something negative into a positive. Retail work can be very gruelling and stressful, and I thought it was the perfect premise/would translate well into a horror game.

Originally, I wanted to create a more realistic game (similar to The Convenience Store by Chilla’s Art), but I opted for more arcade-like gameplay since I wasn’t enjoying making the game. I would go to my actual job, come back home to work on my game inspired by said job, and repeat. So it was a challenge to make developing the game fun, due to how much time I was spending in a retail environment off and on screen.

Daily Bits: Have you received any responses from retail workers regarding the game? Anyone telling you it’s accurate/not accurate enough?

Germfood: Yeah, there has been a lot of Youtube comments saying that the game captures the retail hellscape very realistically. Although the only thing which is very unrealistic (and some people pointed this out) is that other customers leave you alone in-game when you are already helping another customer. I can’t tell you how many times i’ll be dealing with a customer’s request at my actual job only to be bombarded by other customers who need my help too in the middle of helping someone else. I wish I could have put that in the game, but it was hard to implement.

Daily Bits: We’ve seen plenty of big names in the let’s play community try your game, such as Markiplier, John Wolfe, and Vinesauce. How does it feel to have your game showcased to these audiences?

Germfood: It’s cool, especially Mr Wolfe and don’t forget PhuCat! It helps the game reach a bigger audience, that’s for sure. It’s great to watch people play your game, see what they do differently.

Daily Bits: There’s been a lot of talk regarding COVID-19, both in regards to the games industry and retail. Has that impacted the way you view Night of the Consumers?

Germfood: I don’t think the game would have close to half the downloads it has if it wasn’t for it, which is a weird thing to think about. I’ve kinda stopped watching people play it and I’ve been working on the new update less and less as the virus intensifies. My real job has gotten busier, customers have gotten ruder, and it’s overall just more stressful, which has affected my motivation to finish the game. I just hope the game offers some insight into what retail workers are dealing with at this time, even if it’s slightly exaggerated.

Huge thanks to Germfood for taking the time to talk to us! An early access version of Night of the Consumers’s costs only $1.93 on Itch.io if you’re in the mood for a bit of retail survival horror.

What Else Happened Today?

  • Saints Row: The Third Remastered is coming to PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on May 22nd. Get a load of the trailer to see some of the visual changes
  • Mafia II and Mafia III: Definitive Edition rated for PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One by the Taiwanese Game Rating Committee
  • Rebellion, Codemasters and King include ‘stay at home’ COVID-19 warnings to be served exclusively to UK players. Sniper Elite 4, Dirt Rally 2.0, Candy Crush Saga and others will show the messages
  • Uniqlo launches Super Mario 35th Anniversary clothing line this week. The 35th Anniversary line is only available in men and kids sizes
  • The first Inside Xbox’s episode of the year airs tonight at 2pm PT/5pm ET/10PM BST. Microsoft will not be sharing any news about the Xbox Series X, but they will be talking about Grounded, Gears Tactics, Sea of Thieves and Xbox Game Pass

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The Complex PS4 Code

You have a chance to win a PlayStation 4 code for The Complex if you refer DailyBits to a friend! Use our widget to earn referrals, which you can build up throughout the year giving you a greater chance of being selected.

The Complex is currently available on the PlayStation Network for £9.99 and we’ve got a code to hand out today. This will be available for all our subscribers.

After a major bio-weapon attack on London, two scientists find themselves in a locked-down laboratory with time, and air, running out. With choose-your-own-path style gameplay, your actions and your relationship with other characters will lead you to one of eight suspenseful endings.

Quiz Answer - Did You Get It Right?

Who plays the mayor of Steelport in Saints Row: The Third?

Answer: Burt Reynolds!

Saints Row: The Third is so wacky that it seems perfectly reasonable that Burt Reynolds plays himself as a hedonistic mayor. He is introduced after Arapice Island suffers a zombie outbreak, and he needs help dealing with the chemicals that caused the outbreak. If you finish the whole storyline, you can unlock the Bandit himself as a homie, meaning you can go off an a proper bender with him!

This was not the first game Burt Reynolds appeared in. He also played Avery Carrington – the southern tycoon who owns Shady Acres – in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. Burt Reynolds clearly has a thing for crazy sandbox games.

Today’s issue of DailyBits was written by Gavin Herman, Ken McKown, Erlend Grefsrud, Christian Vaz and Jamie Davey.