Plus E3 is back from it’s long slumber, CYBERPUNK 2077 enjoys a fantastic second wind thanks to anime
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,
MITCH: and I’m Mitch Loh
KYLE: Welcome to Walkthrough, SIFTER’s weekly recap on the biggest news in video games.
MITCH: This week Google finally calls it quits on Stadia, E3 returns from the almost dead, and Cyberpunk 2077 has it’s biggest week ever. Let’s go
KYLE: Stadia, Google’s streaming only video game platform has been unceremoniously killed.
In a statement posted as an “update” to users Google said that the platform would be shutting down completely in January 2023, and that they’d be offering full refunds for any purchases.
Between now and then players could keep playing their games, but couldn’t buy any new ones, the store was shutdown instantly.
To say this caught a lot of people by surprise is an understatement, a number of developers who had been working on Stadia releases for their games have taken to twitter to say they’ve been blindsided by this change and it seems the google staff working on the project were too…they just pushed a huge UI update to the platform this week.
Stadia never made it out of North America and Europe but the platform has struggled to gain attention against rivals Xbox Game Cloud and even the updated PlayStation Plus, and sadly now has the legacy of lasting less than Nintendo’s failed Wii U console.
MITCH: E3 is back in 2023, after three years of uncertainty.
The once legendary games show was canceled in 2020 due to COVID, was online only in 2021, and fully canceled this year, so it definitely looked like the show was dead.
This week, the president of E3’s parent company Stan Pierre-Louis told the Washington Post the expo would be back next year as a digital and in-person event.
This time it’s being run by the people who run PAX, ReedPop who’ve successfully grown that convention to a global event.
We’ll keep you updated right here on Walkthrough when we know more.
KYLE: Cyberpunk 2077 is having a moment, it seems the CD Project Red title’s rocky launch is firmly behind them.
This week the title clocked up 20million copies sold and over on Steam one million players have been logging in each day.
Here is quest director Paweł Sasko teary eyed about how much this means to the Cyberpunk Team
"it's not time to be depressed, it's time to celebrate, and because the grind was actually all worth it. The grind was all worth it."
"All that work, all that time all that hassle, all the time you know closing those patches delivering those incremental changes for you, I'm so glad that people are playing the game."
It’s been chalked up to the successful launch of Cyberpunk Edgerunners, and the steady stream of fixes and updates that have rolled out to the game.
MITCH: One of Australia’s biggest indie games studios, Mighty Kingdom, announced this week that they would be going into cost-cutting mode in an attempt to ’reduce costs’ and sadly that means a lot of developers are likely to lose their jobs.
In an update to the Australian Securities Exchange, Mighty Kingdom announced that there would be a reduction of full time employment with dev and administration teams, a focus on tighter cost control and reduction of other fixed costs for significant savings.
It comes a week before the major games event Melbourne International Games Week so there is some hope that these now jobless developers might pick up some work while the entire industry is in Melbourne.
CNET’s Jackson Ryan covered the precarious financial situation at Mighty Kingdom in an investigative piece for CNET in August which we’ve previously reported on at Walkthroug, but we’ll pop the link in the show notes for you.
KYLE: Ubisoft have delayed Skull and Bones the pirate MMO again, which was due to arrive this month.
If you’ve been playing at home this game has now been officially delayed five times.
You know what they say… a delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is often doomed to fail.
Put your parrot and cutlass away, because you won’t be taking to the high seas until the 9th of March 2023.
MITCH: Walmart is trying their own “greetings fellow kids moment” with a surprising Roblox activation called Walmart land
Have a listen to this frankly pretty cringeworthy spiel from William White, chief marketing officer at Walmart.
"We've launched Walmart land with the next generation of customers in mind, and are thrilled to be able to meet them where they are and on their terms."
"We hope you take some time today to discover the immersive experiences throughout Walmart land including Electric Island inspired by our best music and entertainment offering in store and online."
I cannot fathom a world where kids think “hey my favourite supermarket mega store is in Roblox better pester mummy and daddy to take me there”, but hey… its 2022.
Walmart land is up and available for you to explore right now on Roblox, go check it out if you have a spare 2min you don’t want back.
KYLE: World of Warcraft’s next expansion has a release date, you’ll be able to take to the skies as a dragon person in Dragonflight, which arrives on the 28th of November.
It features a new playable race called the Drakthyr who has a single class called the evoker which is like a mega magic DPS slash healer.
They are also winding back the clock on talents, making them much more like the multi option build your own character styles of the earliest days of WoW.
MITCH: Koei Tecmo and EA are teaming for a brand new monster hunting series called Wild Hearts.
It looks A LOT like Monster Hunter from the little bit of trailer that’s been shared and is set in a fantasy version of feudal japan, and can be played solo or with a coop partner with full cross play.
Interestingly it’s being published under EA Originals which is more known for smaller titles like It Takes Two but this game is promised to be a big Triple AAA experience.
MITCH: That’s it for news, here are the games releasing this coming week.
The biggest game this week has to be Overwatch 2, in all its controversial glory. I’ve played hundreds of hours of the first game, but will this shift be enough to win over those diehard fans? It’s got cross progression, smaller team comps, and some very questionable free to play mechanics. Grab it on all platforms this Tuesday.
KYLE: Next we’ve got Dakar Desert Rally, the open world racer based on the real-world rally competition, the first title in this series since 2018. If you’re a fan of games like Forza Horizon, this one is definitely worth checking out when it comes to PC, Xbox Series S, X and One, and PlayStation 4 and 5 also out on Tuesday the 4th.
MITCH: Out on the 6th is the 2D indie platformer Triple Take, by developer FlyAway. It’s a graphically stripped back precision platformer that looks like a frustratingly good time. Picture celeste but with Undertale visuals. It’s out on PC this Wednesday.
KYLE: SuperPower 3 is coming this week. It’s the latest in the geopolitical simulator series that puts the player in charge of running the world. You’ll need to manage economic, military and political strategy, going up against other players or teaming up to rule together. Pick it up on PC on the 7th.
KYLE: This has been Walkthrough by SIFTER, my name is Kyle Pauletto,
MITCH: And my name is Mitch Loh Thank you so much for listening.
KYLE: We know you love listening to SIFTER so if you’d like to support our work, we’ve got a Ko-Fi where you can contribute whatever you think it's worth. Head to sifter.com.au/support where even a couple of dollars makes a big difference and helps us keep making the shows you love.
MITCH: SIFTER is produced by Nicholas Kennedy, Kyle Pauletto, Fiona Bartholomaeus, Daniel Ang & Adam Christou. I’m Senior Producer and Gianni Di Giovanni is our Executive Producer.
KYLE: 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.
MITCH: Thanks again for listening, we’ll be back with more news next Sunday.