#51: Oculus Quest winners!

TODAY: Spend your weekend talking to a deceased serial killer in The Black Widow – Activision’s looking to explore more remakes and new IPs – Oculus Quest winners, you’ve got mail!

Top Story

Activision Blizzard has “new IP initiatives” in the works

There are few internally developed new IPs from Activision Blizzard these days as they mostly stick with established franchises. Most will think of Call of Duty, Warcraft, StarCraft and Diablo when looking at ActiBlizz.

Overwatch has been the new big thing from Blizzard Entertainment but the rest of the publishing goliath has been slow to bring about any new IP creations. COO Coddy Johnson says they have a “very rigorous” approach to new ideas and prototype a lot of new things, but most simply don’t make it. Activision, Blizzard and their mobile arm King are all part of the “new IP” initiative.

New IPs, remasters and sequels are on the way

During an investor call the topic of remasters was brought up and Activision do appear keen to see what the appetite is for more updated versions of past hits. Later this year the Spyro Reignited Trilogy will arrive for PC, having already glided onto consoles in November 2018. The Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy is already on console and PC having been well received. Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled is the latest remaster that skidded onto consoles this past June.

Sequels are definitely Activision Blizzard’s bread and butter with Overwatch 2 in the pipeline, alongside the long rumoured Diablo IV at Blizzard. As long as there’s still air to breathe there’ll be another Call of Duty. What new ideas could Activision Blizzard be cooking up? Many, apparently, but what will we ever get to see released?

Time For A Quick Daily Quiz?

Up until now, how many ‘Episodes’ of DC Universe Online have there been?

  • Maybe a lady godiva
  • Pff, at least a cockle or so
  • Prob’ly more than a pony
  • Shedloads mate, a monkey’s worth

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

News Bits

Just Cause 4: Danger Rising gives Rico a hoverboard

The third and final expansion to Avalanche Studios’ Just Cause 4 will let us live the Back to the Future dream of owning our own hoverboard, if we can pretend we’re Rico. This board-wot-hovers will come in handy (footy?) as we take on a submarine sent specifically to kill Rico. Just Cause 4: Danger Rising will be out August 29 for Gold Edition and Expansion Pass holders, otherwise it’s out September 5.

Trine 4 and Ultimate Collection is releasing October 8

The physics-manipulating action puzzle platformer that is Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince will be out October 8. Joining in the fun will be the Trine: Ultimate Collection, which includes all four games in a single package from developer Frozenbyte. It releases for PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch.

Daily Fact

Wildhammer Fact Checker, slayer of lore inconsistencies

If you manage to pull a real world Comic Book Guy moment – bringing the ‘Ackchyually’ meme to life – then you could find yourself immortalised. One such guy, who became infamously known as Red Shirt Guy, managed to strike fear into the hearts of World of Warcraft developers Blizzard Entertainment when he caught them out in a lore inconsistency during a Q&A at BlizzCon 2010.

This catapulted Ian Bates into the halls of geekdom and so blindsided were the devs that they decided to create a very special NPC named Wildhammer Fact Checker. He stays within the Alliance dwarven city of Ironforge, sitting next to Falstad Wildhammer, over which the lore inconsistency was spotted and corrected. His NPC self also wears a red shirt to commemorate the incident.

World of Warcraft has become a treasure trove of memes over the years and even likes to include some as Easter eggs. Leeroy Jenkins remains the most notorious, and is typically used to describe someone as having caused everything to go wrong for everyone else in a usually spectacular manner.

Daily News

Two-part Genesis expansion revealed for ARK: Survival Evolved

Coming this December for ARK: Survival Evolved is a two-part expansion called Genesis. Simply put its split across two releases, effectively making it the fourth and fifth paid expansion for Wildcard’s survival action game.

Scorched Earth, Aberration, and Extinction were the first three expansions and these two new Genesis additions will make up the second season pass. ARK: Survival Evolved has spent much of its life as an early access title, and it ruffled some feathers when it began charging for paid expansions despite not having fully launched.

Turtles with worlds on their backs? [Terry Pratchett intensifies]

Much of the Genesis expansion remains secretive for now but it will feature a ‘really cool map’, according to an almost hour long ARK livestream. A much shorter Genesis announcement trailer has also been posted. The first map – which sports a snowy mountain, active volcano and water biomes – is part of a ‘simulation’ that lets Wildcard go crazy with new creatures and environments. Who doesn’t want a pet Lava Lizard that seems to be made of magma?

There’s even an underwater turtle so large you can actually build stuff on its shell, turning this permanently tamed creature into a mobile submersible base. It’s capable of growing resources on its shell and can generate a huge breathable bubble to keep players alive underwater. Genesis’ first part will be launching for PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 this December, with the second part due around winter 2020.

Walmart purges demos and displays of ‘violent imagery’ from games

Bowing to certain public and political pressures, Walmart has been instructing employees to begin removing “any signing or displays that contain violent images or aggressive behaviour,” specifically mentioning videogames in some cases.

This of course comes in the wake of recent mass shootings in the United States that took place shortly after one another. Any event that was scheduled to promote shooter titles has also been cancelled, and a memorandum on playing scenes from violent movies or hunting season videos has been put in place as well. Two of the mass shootings were at Walmart store locations, with the first on July 30 at Southaven, Mississippi where an employee killed another two co-workers.

Comic books, films, TV, music and videogames are often scapegoated

The bigger incident was August 3 at a Walmart store in El Paso, Texas that saw 22 people killed and a further 24 injured. This particular massacre is believed to have been motivated by supremacist ideology with police “reasonably confident” he published a manifesto. Another shooting then took place in Dayton, Ohio where 10 people were killed, including the gunman, and a further 27 were injured. The Dayton shooter’s social media activity reveals he was a far left activist, although precise motive is yet to be determined.

The US President in a speech on the massacres also suggested that “gruesome, grisly video games” may have had a role to play in the killing-sprees, despite most scientific evidence suggesting little connection between violence in video games and increased violence within society. Walmart continues to sell firearms within stores, and both mass shooters used legally purchased weapons. Walmart has stated they will not be changing their policy regarding the sale of firearms.

Weekly Deals

What are ya buyin’?

Our second set of weekly deals brings you some of the best games of 2018 at a bargain price. Marvel’s Spider-Man and Monster Hunter World were at the very top of a lot of the 2018 GOTY lists, and now you can purchase these games at a third of what they originally launched at.

You lucky Americans have an exclusive deal on Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice as it drops to a historical low since it was released back in March. We’ve also included this week’s free game on Epic Games Store, GNOG, a 3D puzzle game about exploring whimsical monster heads and the secret worlds inside them.

GNOG (PC) Free @ Epic Game Store

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice (PC) $39.99 ($29.99 with coupon code EMCTDTD33) @ Newegg

Mario Tennis Aces (Nintendo Switch) $41.99 @ Nintendo eShop

Marvelís Spider-Man (PS4) $19.99 ($15.99 with PS+) @ PlayStation Store

Prey (PS4/Xbox One/PC) $7.99 @ Best Buy

No Manís Sky (PC) $29.99 @ Steam

Monster Hunter World (PC) $20.89 @ CDKeys

Whether you are into cute indie games or AAA titles that demand the most from you in order to survive, there’s certainly something for everyone in today’s deals. The only deal that really stands out amongst these ones has to be Mario Tennis Aces, though if you’ve ever tried to buy Nintendo games (even years after release), you’ll know they almost never drop in price. For a first party Nintendo game, this lower price is as good as it gets!

Under The Radar - The Black Widow

Fancy talking to a deceased serial killer?

(Flux – PC, Mac, Android, iOS)

Do you enjoy watching horror movies or reading thrillers inspired by real events? If so, we’ve got a new game to add to your list of eerie stories to delve into this weekend.

The Black Widow provides you with the ultimate tool to communicate with the deceased: a spirit board charged with restless energy. With a story shrouded in the remnants of true events – thanks to old court case files and letters – The Black Widow will have players scouring the mysteries behind Australia’s first female serial killer. It’ll be up to you to determine whether this lady really is a cold-blooded maniac, or whether she was unjustly executed. Only time and a trail of old evidence will reveal the potentially sad or downright evil twists that this title promises.

Set in the Victorian era, The Black Widow looks to encapsulate all the gothic staples of an unnerving murder-mystery. Complete with lines taken directly from the case files, this game features creepy voice acting to bring the ghost of Louisa Collins to life. Based on the book, Black Widow by Carol Baxter, the thing that makes this title so unsettling to play through is that it’s based on a real human being, who may have actually committed these crimes. This will surely make the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end, particularly if you choose to play this in a dark, quiet room.

An interactive take on True Crime

Gameplay will largely consist of players listening to Louisa Collins speak, before communicating with her via a Ouija board. To move the story forward, you’ll have to pick out specific keywords from the passages that she recites and type them out using the spirit board. Selecting the correct keywords may lead to her revealing more information regarding some of the individuals involved in her case, providing you with a deeper knowledge and understanding of the murders and Louisa, herself.

While very little has been said about The Black Widow, Richard Fox, the game’s creator and designer has spoken in the past about the intended atmosphere in an interview with GamesBeat.

“There’s someone within the game who’s identified this picture which seems to be haunted by this spirit that may have had some traumatic experience…And so it’s a bit mysterious, whether you’re talking to an actual spirit, or whether it’s the picture. It’s a 19th century photograph that comes alive, essentially. It’s something to do with that photograph. Is the spirit there now, or are you communicating through time? That’s kind of the mystery.”

Fans of Her Story will want to check out The Black Widow as the gameplay is very similar (you input text based off of the clues you have picked up on). While this game is available on PC and Mac, we’d recommend picking up either the iOS or Android versions as this is the type of game you might want to play during a commute. The Black Widow feels a lot like a mobile game that has been ported to the PC and Mac, though if you were to play it on a computer you would still be experiencing the exact same game.

News Bits

Two minutes of Atelier Ryza: Ever Darkness & the Secret Hideout

That’s all you’re getting right now – just two minutes of Atelier Ryza: Ever Darkness & the Secret Hideout from Koei Tecmo and Gust. That’s your lot, and it’ll be in Japanese! You’ll have to wait until September 26 in Japan, October 29 in North America and November 1 in Europe. It’s coming to PC via Steam, PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch.

Full launch trailer for No Man’s Sky: Beyond, out August 14

There’s an even shorter tease for the upcoming August 14 update of No Man’s Sky: Beyond. You don’t even get two minutes! The game will have full PlayStation VR, Oculus Rift and HTC Vive support, enhanced online and social features, ridable animals, as well as more vivid detail for ships and buildings. VR and non-VR space explorers can also play together, and live in harmony.

Giveaway Announcement

Oculus Quest Winners Contacted!

Thank you to everyone that has subscribed to DailyBits so far, and by doing so all of you had been automatically entered into our Oculus Quest giveaway, which was ended yesterday.

Congratulations to the winners, all three of our lucky members have been contacted, although we haven’t heard from you yet, so please do check your inboxes and perhaps spam folders just in case! As soon as we’ve confirmed shipment, we will be revealing the winners names and location, including a picture or two – hopefully!

This doesn’t mean that the fun is going to end, because we’re going to giveaway another Oculus Quest to a lucky member of our community, along with the chance to win one of two Switch Lites. The winners will be selected on the 100th issue of DailyBits.

Everyone will be automatically entered into this giveaway, even if you’ve only read one issue, so good luck!

Quiz Answer - Did You Get It Right?

Up until now, how many ‘Episodes’ of DC Universe Online have there been?

Answer: Prob’ly more than a pony!

Alright, alright, we didn’t want to make it too easy on you, okay? And we’re fudging things a little anyway, as most of these Cockney Rhyming Slang words are actually about money rather than straight numbers – Lady Godiva is £5, cockle is £10, a pony’s £25, and a monkey is £100 – and there’s admittedly more than £100’s worth of content in DC Universe Online right now.

However, in terms of straight numbers – there have been 34 Episodes of DC Universe Online up until now, with Episodes 35 and 36 due this year. All of which add new stories, challenges, characters, gear, powers and more to DCUO – and all of which are available on Nintendo Switch, on which the game is now out as of this week. Switch owners will get the new Episodes – based on the Dark Nights: Metal comics event – the same time as other players too. Still, over 30 Episodes… you’re ‘aving a giraffe.

DailyBits Feedback

Help us Improve DailyBits!

We hope you’ve enjoyed this issue of our e-zine, DailyBits! Feedback is extremely important, and we are grateful for any time you can spare to provide feedback on this issue and help us improve future ones. It would be very helpful if you could add us to your email contact list, or otherwise drag our emails from the “Promotions” folder to “Primary” (on Gmail only) just to ensure that future editions don’t come in as spam.

Please feel free to send any feedback over to team@dailybits.news. Thank You!