SEC launches investigation into Activision Blizzard

Today: 343 Industries shows off more Halo Infinite multiplayer — Bandai Namco appears to be remastering another classic — Now you can finally evolve Inkay even if your phone lacks a gyroscope

SEC investigates Activision Blizzard

Outdoor seal of the Securities and Exchanges Commission

The United States Securities and Exchanges Commission has started investigating Activision Blizzard following allegations of workplace harassment and mistreatment, and are combing through company documents including Bobby Kotick's emails.

The SEC are specifically looking into the publishing giant's CEO and his communication, and the investigation is separate from the Department of Fair Employment and Housing lawsuit underway in California.

  • SEC is investigating whether investors were misled
  • Federal subpoenas have been served
  • Activision Blizzard is ‘cooperating with SEC’

Federal trouble: Scrutiny from a federal agency is pretty serious business, and could have serious consequences for management if their corporate governance is found to be irresponsible. To aid the investigation, the SEC will read the minutes from every Activision Blizzard meeting since 2019.

Labour complaint: Activision Blizzard is also under attack from within, after staff from Activision Blizzard King filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board alleging that the company uses "intimidation and coercive tactics" against staff.

What was the first polygonal light gun game?

a) House of the Dead
b) Beast Busters
c) Virtua Cop
d) Time Crisis

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 multiplayer developer update

Spartan carrying enemy flag in Big Team Battle

The developers behind the standalone free-to-play Halo Infinite multiplayer get a moment in the spotlight in 343 Industries' September 2021 update.

The update comes right ahead of the upcoming Multiplayer Tech Preview, which will feature tests of Arena (4v4) and Big Team Battle (12v12) modes.

Preview soon: Senior developers talk about the maps, modes, Academy, Bots, and more. Big Team Battle mode wasn’t just about big teams, but ensuring that Halo Infinite's entire toy box is available in one mode.

Legacy respect: “We are all really big fans of legacy BTB so we were careful not to mess with what isn’t broken,” said Senior Multiplayer Designer Fernando Reyes Medina. “We wanted a BTB experience that feels classic and modern at the same time.”

Possible Klonoa and Klonoa 2 remasters

Animation of Klonoa

Looks like Bandai Namco is remastering Klonoa and Klonoa 2 judging by recent trademark filings: "Waffuu Encore" and "1&2 Encore" have suddenly been registered by the publisher.

The word "Waffuu" was a catchphrase in the Klonoa series and Bandai Namco has used it for many of its other remaster projects.

Encore series: Klonoa Encore was trademarked in 2019 alongside Mr Driller Encore and Splatterhouse Encore. The 1&2 Encore" filing has sparked fan speculation that Klonoa: Door to Phantomile and Klonoa 2: Lunatea's Veil is up next.

Speculation: There is of course nothing approaching hard evidence. The original Klonoa launched for PlayStation in 1997, but struggled to find success outside Japan.

2K Publisher and Tenacious Tactics Sale

2K Publisher and Tenacious Tactics sale banners

Humble Bundle has served up a juicy buffet of savings, and the main course is the 2K Publisher Sale offering up to 84% off. Great time to pick up some XCOM, Borderlands, Mafia and Civilization.

If you want some strategy for dessert, then the Tenacious Tactics Sale slices prices up to 90%. Plunder the past with Anno, conquer stars with Stellaris, and try to keep your guests from being eaten in Jurassic World Evolution.

Maze Theory’s Engram for PSVR 2 launch

Maze Theory is considering delaying Engram to make it a launch title for the next-generation PlayStation VR. They “didn’t want to compromise” on Engram’s design by going multiplatform before, but now waiting for the new PSVR seems “sensible”.

New Wanderer gameplay alongside delay

Wanderer has been delayed, but at least we got some gameplay footage out of it. The developers are serving up a two-part series of gameplay previews starting with The Watch: Part 1 while we patiently wait for the release on Oculus, SteamVR, and PlayStation VR.

Escape from Nefertiti's Tomb story trailer

Escape from Nefertiti's Tomb is a singleplayer VR escape room experience launching for Oculus on October 15th and a bit later on SteamVR. You are trapped in an ancient Egyptian tomb, and you need to get out.

What was the first polygonal light gun game?

Virtua Cop's logo, preparing players for great justice.

ANSWER: Virtua Cop!

Light gun games used to be a great excuse to put some digitized actors on a screen, with games like Lethal Enforcers featuring a collage of 3d renders, photographs and videoclips. All that changed with Virtua Cop in 1994, which featured full 3d graphics and allowed smooth movement through complex environments, offering a much more cinematic experience.

Enemies also became more expressive, reacting differently depending on where you shot them. While the art is decidedly low-poly these days, it's got that bold and clear Sega look and still feels pretty fresh. Virtua Cop blazed trails for later games like House of the Dead and Namco's Time Crisis, and alongside Virtua Fighter and Virtua Racer helped bring a 3D revolution to arcades.

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!