Weekly

Kylo Ben Weekly #1738

#weekly

In a surprise turn, Ubisoft announced a new online mutiplayer FPS titled Atomega which will be available tomorrow (19th September) for $10. It is developed by the same studio responsible for Grow Home and Grow Up so may be one to watch. [link]

If you've ever wanted to see an online multiplayer version of Super Mario 64 then you're probably too late as the video I was going to link to has already been hit by the Nintendo hammer. A shame, as it was an incredibly good mod with the ability to play as several characters (including Peach and Rosalina) with 24 players on several servers. [link]

PC Gamer had an interesting article about the state of HDR on PC and how it is currently being "stunted by reluctant developer support". I find HDR to be a bigger deal than a bump in resolution and would gladly settle for a 1440p with HDR than a 2160p screen without. In fact, I like it so much that I played most of Forza Horizon 3 on my Xbox One S with HDR (at around 900p@30fps) over my PC without (at at 1440pUltrawide@100fps) as HDR looked so much better. I really hope more developers start to support this. [link]

Touch Arcade took me on a trip down memory lane recently when they pointed out that iOS classic Ramp Champ had been updated to run on modern devices. This was a truly amazing game on a phone back in 2008 but seems insanely dated now; it is amazing how far mobile devices have come in such a short amount of time.[link]

Microsoft have confirmed that the Windows 10 Creators Update in April had a bug which causes stuttering in games for some users. It is due to be fixed as part of the Fall Creators Update. Whilst I'm not sure if I've experienced this issue or not, it is good to know a fix is in the works. [link]

PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds released a new patch which adds foggy weather, some new guns, and a host of bug fixes and UI updates. They also gave an update on their highly-anticipated vaulting mechanic, stopped idle players from earning battle points, and added more FPP servers. [link]

Sticking with PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds for a moment, they also broke that record I mentioned last week of most consecutive users online. Previously held by Dota 2, the record was smashed with 1,348,374 concurrent users. It seems safe to say that the PUBG hype train isn't slowing down yet! [link]

Apple had their annual presentation in which they release new iPhones. Along with a cellular Apple Watch they announced the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus with a 6-core processor, Apple-build GPU, and wireless charging. There was also the iPhone X with a new edge-to-edge display and 3D facial recognition. The biggest thing for these iPhones (and previous A9 devices including iPads) will be ARKit that launches as part of iOS 11 this week and is bound to be the hot new thing before Christmas. It is also worth pointing out that GeekBench pegs the new A11 Bionic chip in these devices as faster than a 2017 MacBook Pro! A new Apple TV with 4K support was also announced for an additional £30 over the 1080p version which bumps the A8 processor up to an A10X and adds HDR. Will this be enough to get some better games on the Apple TV? Probably not. Apple don't seem particularly keen to build a platform for gaming beyond the freemium 5 minute experiences that currently pervade the App Store. [link]

Thimbleweed Park is coming to iOS on September 19th and Android on October 3rd. I massively enjoyed this on PC and it is probably one of those rare PC games that actually makes sense on a touch-based interface, especially as it is something you can just dip in and out of. I've already completed it twice so don't think I'll pick this up but would be a great companion to a long flight and would actually work better on an iPad than on a Switch. [link]

Despite my earlier rant about games on iOS, there is another stalwart releasing what looks to be an interesting gem. Ironhide Game Studios, developers of tower defence classic Kingdom Rush, released an RTS with a colourful sci-fi theme this week titled Iron Marines. I haven't had a chance to pick it up yet but it is on my list as soon as I've published this article! [link]

Whilst this shouldn't be a story as it shouldn't even have happened in the first place, the atrocious Nintendo Switch app has been updated so you can actually use the voice chat functionality whilst the screen is turned off or you are using other apps. [link]

I mentioned the upcoming Rocket League update last week so I won't go into it too much now aside from to say that Psyonix have done a fantastic job creating a beautiful website which highlights all of the new stuff. There are a few new bits not announced previously such as the "Farmstead" arena and some new cars but this update is likely to be remembered for the standardisation of arenas and introduction of player banners. [link]

Psyonix also announced what is next for Rocket League beyond the Autumn Update with a Tournaments beta and a party system built on their own PsyNet technology to eventually allow party play between platforms (i.e. I could play in a team with a friend on Switch whilst I'm on my PC). There is also an events system on the way with limited-time events for earning customisation items. [link]

Klei had several announcements regarding their Don't Starve games including new DLC for the standalone game titled Don't Starve: Hamlet in which Wilson can access a new civilisation detailing the origins of the Pigmen. It is scheduled for release in the first half of 2018. The previously released DLC Don't Starve: Shipwrecked received a free update adding several new creatures and craftables including the terrifying sounding Crockodogs that will *hound* you at land and sea. For Don't Starve: Together, there is a series of events beginning in November with the introduction of The Forge, an interesting arena-based 6-player co-op battle; this will be free as the developers don't want to add paid DLC to the multiplayer version of their game instead opting for monetisation via skins. Finally, Don't Starve: Together is getting a new challenger, Winona, inspired by the Rose the Riveter WWII poster. All of these updates are coming to PC and will spread to other systems at an unspecified time in the future. [link]

Bethesda had a number of exciting announcements for Switch owners including a release date of 11th November for Skyrim. Amazingly, they also announced Switch ports of both Wolfenstein 2: The New colossus (coming 2018) and DOOM (coming later this year). When I first saw that DOOM was coming I assumed it was the original or maybe Doom 3 but it is the full 2016 version complete with the multiplayer mode including DLC. This is incredibly good news for Nintendo as, especially in the case of Wolfenstein 2, these are new games rather than something like Skyrim which is from the Xbox 360 era. [link]

Nintendo were determined to show that the 3DS isn't dead due to the Switch and so, in the week that Metroid: Samus Returns launched they announced Kirby Battle Royale, a battling game where Kirby bizarrely takes on Kirby leading me to wonder if he isn't a single character so much as a species. I've never really gotten on with Kirby games so I'll likely give this a miss but it is good to see that there is both online and local multiplayer. It does make me wonder if this would work better on the Switch though...[link]

Dell have revealed that their Visor Windows Mixed Reality headset is available for pre-order for day one delivery on 17th October to coincide with the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update. The headset contains dual 1400x1400 displays at 90Hz and the goggles are on a hinge so you can lift them up easily to see the real world without having to disentangle yourself from the full headset and cabling. The specs of the visor are slightly better than expected as well with RGB subpixel LCD displays from Sharp. In true Dell style, the price is a bizarre £358.39 with the controllers costing £108.40; whilst there is a bundle with the two in the US for $449, that isn't the case in the UK making it significantly more expensive. The improved resolution over something like the HTC Vive makes this a tempting proposition but the 3D tracking is allegedly not that great, especially with the controllers which disappear if they can't be seen by the cameras on the headset making it tricky with certain games. [link]

Elite Dangerous v2.4, "The Return", is launching on 26th September and will see you taking on the Thargoids. [link]

Hollow Knight, one of my favourite games of the year, is getting another chunk of free DLC on Halloween in the form of The Grimm Troupe. It features a major quest, new boss fights, and more charms, enemies, friends, map markers, and music. [link]

Fallout Shelter has been played by over 100 million people and they released a funky infographic to celebrate. They are also doing a 5-day giveaway of around $10 of in-game loot which started on 15th September. [link]

Twitch has added a new 'Gear on Amazon' feature that lets streamers list what gear they are using and then earn an affiliate kickback if their viewers buy anything. This isn't really a new thing as Amazon have had an affiliate scheme for as long as I can remember but it is wrapped up in a nice UI and is a no-brainer for most streamers. Amazon bought Twitch back in 2014 so don't expect to see this rolled out to other companies, especially as it is likely that most people buy their computer hardware elsewhere. [link]

Fast RMX received a v1.3 update titled "Remix" on the Switch adding 6 new tracks over 2 new cups. These tracks are crossovers with various elements from existing maps being recycled with each other (such as the sand worms from Scorpio Circuit appearing in an environment from Willard Mine). There are also some bug fixes including improvements to the CPU Driver AI. [link]

Battleborn will not be getting anymore updates after the upcoming Fall Update but the servers are being left on for the foreseeable future. It remains to be seen how foreseeable that future is. [link]

And finally, Mario took his shirt off in a new trailer for Super Mario Odyssey and so there are lots of memes about his nipples (although not his belly button as this is covered by his swim shorts). Enjoy. [link]