NEWS THIS WEEK
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SIFTER is produced by Nicholas Kennedy, Kyle Pauletto, Fiona Bartholomaeus, Daniel Ang & Adam Christou. Mitch Loh is Senior Producer and Gianni Di Giovanni is our Executive Producer. Thanks to Omny Studio for their support of SIFTER.
KYLE: Hi I'm Kyle Pauletto,
FIONA: and I’m Fiona Bartholomaeus
KYLE: Welcome to Walkthrough, SIFTER’s weekly recap on the biggest news in video games.
FIONA: This week Disco Elysium’s studio turmoil, CD Project Red announces six new projects and Overwatch 2 has a rocky first couple of days. Let’s go
KYLE: There’s some good and bad news for fans of the phenomenal rpg Disco Elysium, a sequel may still be coming, but the original team won’t be returning.
Martin Luiga, a founding member of Disco Elysium’s dev studio ZA/UM, wrote on his blog that art director Alexander Rostov, lead designer Robert Kurvitz, and lead writer Helen Hin-pair left the company involuntarily late last year.
Luiga said that the ZA/UM “cultural institution” has disappeared, that while the company still exists the soul of it is gone.
Responding to comments via Twitter, Luiga told fans that a sequel was likely still on the way, but there could be quite a long wait.
We’ll keep you updated here on Walkthrough as more information is revealed.
FIONA: Disco Elysium was such a massive hit, and that was largely due to it’s fantastic writing, so without the lead writer involved it’s going to be a tough act to follow, i definitely do not envy whoever has to fill those shoes.
FIONA: Overwatch 2 launched this week, but it definitely wasn’t the smoothest experience for everyone attempting to log in and play.
Anyone trying to log in found themselves in extremely long queues and with servers crashing left and right.
Blizzard president Mike Ybarra said on twitter that the Overwatch servers were “experiencing a mass DDOS (or denial of service) attack” that was impacting login servers.
The queue was in the thousands or tens of thousands at one point but that seems to have been resolved now.
That’s if you could login at all, a new requirement for the game is to attach a phone number which means it blocks out anyone who is using a pre-paid phone.
Massive outcry from fans locked out of the game, especially those Overwatch 1 players who couldn’t play the game they paid for.
It’s been walked back now for those original Overwatch players, but only those original fans, new players will still need a phone on a plan if they want to play.
KYLE: If you’re curious about the initial feel of overwatch 2 and for a bit of chat about its shift to a free-to-play game model, you can check out the latest episode of Mainstream in your podcast feed
KYLE: CD Projekt Red announced a stack of new games including a sequel to Cyberpunk 2077 codenamed “Orion”, which is being developed at their newest studio in Boston instead of the polish headquarters.
There is also a brand new trilogy of games set in the Witcher universe AND an all new IP codenamed “Hadar'' which is in the “earliest stages of the creative process”.
The studio will also be partnering with The Flame In The Flood developers The Molasses Flood and an as-of-yet unnamed 3rd party studio to develop two more Witcher titles, one of which promises multiplayer gameplay alongside a fully fledged single player campaign.
FIONA: Alot was announced but that’s pretty much all we know at this stage.
FIONA: Chalk this up on your rumour blackboard but a site called MP1st is reporting that horizon zero dawn will get a PS5 remake or remaster.
This game isn’t that old and already runs beautifully on the PS5 through backward compatibility but it’s said to focus on accessibility and graphical improvements.
The report goes on to say there is also a standalone multiplayer game set in Horizon’s world in development too.
KYLE: it could be timed for the upcoming TV show, with Sony repeating the same moves they did with the last of us part 1, but more accessible games is a good thing.
KYLE: Company of Heroes 3 has been delayed into next year.
This World War Two strategy game was due to release in mid November but will now be out on February 23 to allow the team to polish off the game.
FIONA: Always great to see developers taking the time to polish off the game rather than a rushed released.
FIONA: For those of you in Australia the Victorian government has announced an expansion to Melbourne International Games Week.
The plan is to expand the events in 2023/24 which already includes PAX Australia and developer conference GCAP.
There’s also more funding available for developers making games in Victoria as well, that’s going to mean more cool Aussie games to check out.
KYLE: Love to see more events that celebrate Australian made games grow and support new developers. We’ll definitely keep you up to date on those events and the new games that will pop up.
KYLE: The first trailer for the super Mario brothers movie released this week and Mario sounds like this.
"Mushroom kingdom here we come"
The visuals look great but it’ll be a lot to get used to Chris Pratt’s just entirely normal voice that he does in every movie.
FIONA: After hearing Bowser’s and Toad’s amazing voices it was kinda strange hearing Chris Pratt but the movie is looking great so we’ll wait and see.
FIONA: That’s it for news, here are the games releasing this coming week.
KYLE: Out on the 11th is the latest installment in the PGA Tour series, PGA Tour 2K23. Tee off on PC, Xbox and PlayStation this Tuesday the 11th
FIONA: LEGO Bricktales, a puzzle-adventure game with a solid building element, where players need to help their grandfather to rebuild his decrepit theme park. This is out on all platforms on Wednesday the 12th.
KYLE: For all the motorsport fans out there, rally racing sim WRC Generations is dropping this week. Jump behind the wheel on PC, Xbox, and PlayStation on Thursday 13th.
FIONA: Also out Thursday is Dragon Ball: The Breakers. It’s a dead by daylight style asymmetric action game, where players will team up to hide and survive from some of the Dragon Ball series' most terrifying villains. It’s out on all platforms on the 13th.
KYLE: And lastly we have the latest game in the Tie-Ko No Tah-tsu-gin series, Rhythm Festival. It’s been four years since the last game in the series, and Rythm festival looks to be bringing back all the fun and charm that the players have come to expect over the last two decades of solid rhythm games. This Switch exclusive is out on the 14th.
KYLE: This has been Walkthrough by Sifter, my name is Kyle Pauletto,
FIONA: And my name is Fiona Bartholomaeus Thank you so much for listening.
KYLE: SIFTER is produced by Nicholas Kennedy, myself, Fiona Bartholomaeus (Bar-tholo-may-US), Daniel Ang, Daniel Hyndes & Adam Christou (CHRIS-TOO). Mitch Loh is Senior Producer and Gianni Di Giovanni is our Executive Producer.
FIONA: Thanks to Brian Fairbanks from Salty Dog Sounds for composing the Walkthrough theme tune. Thanks to both Audio Technica Australia and Omny Studio for their support of SIFTER’s three podcasts.
KYLE: SIFTER is a listener supported podcast network, you can support our independent gaming journalism at sifter.com.au/support, give us a rating or review or share our show with your mates. Thanks again for listening, we’ll be back with more news next Sunday.