Gamer’s “News of the Week” (March 1st – March 7th)
March is knocking at the door, and it brings both good and bad (justified) news.
Gamer, the following 10 “News of the Week” are for you, is you missed what happened in the first week of March.
1) Elder Ring Fans Tricked by Fake Leaks and Disappointed by Canceled Microsoft Event
A handful of Elder Ring rumors and leaks have gossiped about in recent days.
It all started after a supposed gameplay trailer was released and with that, screenshots and discussions all over social media and gaming forums. Although these “leaks” have been debunked, thousands of FromSoftware fans already got tricked by the following videos:
It did not take long until many users began to encourage misinformation with memes and concept arts from other games. And it did not help that FromSoftware hasn’t spoken about Elder Ring since its 2019 reveal and original trailer release.
This was meant to change with Microsoft’s rumored March event announced by tech reporter and Microsoft insider Paul Thurrot, but as in the words of Xbox marketing boss Aaron Greenberg: “Just to set expectations: this is not happening.”
Just to set expectations: this is not happening. There are always things we have in the works, but nothing coming soon that would feature game announcements or world premieres like this. https://t.co/nO868SCbpZ
— Aaron Greenberg 🙅🏼♂️💚U (@aarongreenberg) February 28, 2021
2) Microsoft Start 1080p Stream’s Test for xCloud (xCloud)
A trusted Windows Central source has been sharing screengrabs of Hellblade at a 1080p resolution, running via Microsoft’s Xbox cloud gaming platform, xCloud.
They compared the 1920×1080 version of the game to the 1280×720 one, which has been the standard resolution since its launch.
Rumors have suggested that the cloud streaming service will get a whole set of upgrades from the Xbox One and Series X architecture throughout this year, as well as an upcoming web version of xCloud.
The latest will allow Xbox players to access through Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge, unlocking iPhone and iPad users to use it, after the release of Apple’s strict app policies.
3) Conflict Between Nacon and Frogwares (Developer of “The Sinking City”)
French Publisher Nacon and The Sinking City developer Frogwares are disputing for public accusations thrown online.
1st – Frogware accused Nacon of withholding funds for the production of the Lovecraftian action-adventure game. Frogwares terminated the signed contract with Nacon, delisting the game from the Steam marketplace.
2nd – This led to Nacon taking Frogwares to court (which has still been untested), but the Paris Court of Appeal established that the original contract must stand until the case is ruled.
3rd – Frogwares wrote an accusation on their blog of Nacon cracking/pirating The Sinking City to release it on Steam, and tried to prove theirs through a nine-minute video in which they explained the whole situation.
4) Stardew Valley Gets New Board Game
Stardew Valley’s 5th anniversary proved how strong the game and its community is after all these years. And to celebrate it, Eric “ConcernedApe” Barone partnered with the board game designer Cole Medeiros to release “Stardew Valley: The Board Game.”
It surely contains all kinds of farming activities fans of the series would expect: tend animals, water crops, and expand the farm. You can also fish and explore the mines here, as well as donate items to the museum and develop relationships/get married.
Just like its digital version, this one was developed and published by CorcernedApp, but printed by Delano Games and distributed by Quartermaster Games.
The initial printing has been sold out, ensuring Starday Valley can reach a new market of players with ease.
5) Wii U First Software Update in 8 Years
The small but loyal Wii U player base got excited after a new firmware update was released out of nowhere, without an announcement in advance. Making it Ver. 5.5.5. from now on.
Wii U just received firmware update Ver. 5.5.5 U, the first update since Sept 3rd, 2018 pic.twitter.com/us9YjcWSwN
— Wario64 (@Wario64) March 2, 2021
It adds “improvements to system stability and usability,” of which, fun fact, scares the active modding scene because many speculate this is a slow attempt to remove system exploits, which has “kept alive” the Wii U for so long, but that usually goes against Nintendo’s brand guidelines.
Take into account that its life ended four years ago (March 2017) after the final first-party version of Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was released. September 3rd of 2018 was the last time the console got firmware.
The built-in Miiverse got discontinued, affecting how titles like Xenoblade Chronicles X work. The level-upload support of Super Mario Maker is going to be removed at the end of this month, and it’s a matter of time that the same happens to Mario Kart 8 and Splatoon.
6) Apex Legends Is Out Now On Nintendo Switch
The long-anticipated Apex Legends port to the Nintendo Switch is finally here.
It was officially announced 9 months ago in an EA Play event but it received a lengthy delay 4 months ago due to the challenges of working during the pandemic.
Out now since the 9th of March, Nintendo Switch players of Apex Legends will enjoy full cross-platform support, being able to play with other platforms (PC, Xbox, and Playstation).
It comes right at the start of Season 8, of which Respawn is offering 30 free Battle Pass levels to new Switch players, as well as double XP and a limited-time Pathfinder Skin.
7) The Last of Us “Apocalypse”-themed PS5 Console and Vinyl Records
If you have played The Last of Us, then you will recognize the bricks-and-vine pattern from the newest Retro Licker collection. The British YouTuber and game collector designed an “Apocalypse-themed” version of the PS5 inspired by the game’s world environment.
As you can see, the bricked console contains both The Last of Us title and the Fireflies symbol. Unfortunately, he’s not selling it. But you can enjoy more of its creations by following him on Twitter and/or Instagram.
Fans of the series would love to get real-life items like this, so that’s why the music company Mondo Music produced limited-time vinyl records with the incredible work sound of Gustavo Santaolalla and cover art embedded.
It would be the 2nd time Mondo released the complete “The Last of Us” soundtrack; the first being back in 2015. Pre-orders aren’t available, but you can purchase them on the store’s page.
8) Orlando’s Universal “Super Nintendo World” Construction Has Resumed
Super Nintendo World, Orlando’s new Universal theme park (part of Epic Universe) has restarted its construction delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
While it was first planned to open in 2023, it is now scheduled to open in Early 2025.
Reported by Jerry Denings (Orange County Mayor) and backed-up by a Universal statement, in which it remarks that its construction is expected to take several months, before reaching full-speed, while vendors and the contractor team reassembles.
Something similar happened to Universal’s Super Nintendo World-themed-park in Osaka, Japan, which was set to open on February 4 at first but also got delayed due to COVID-19.
“Super Nintendo World” will reportedly have restaurants, hotels, and shopping centers all across its 750-acre facility.
9) CS:GO Devs Are Making New “Open-World” Dungeon & Dragons
A series of job listings announced by the CS:GO Dev studio, Hidden Path Entertainment, shaped what will be a “triple-A, third-person, open-world fantasy RPG inside the Dungeons & Dragons franchise.”
The cat is finally out of the bag! We are making a AAA, third-person, open-world fantasy RPG that will be taking place inside the Dungeons & Dragons franchise. That’s right, friends, DUNGEONS & DRAGONS
— The Strix (@the_strix) March 3, 2021
The tweet shown above suggests that this writer position is needed to feature a “narrative branching” as well as an “ensemble cast.”
The company’s catalog is strong, with Valve’s Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and numerous Defense Grid games.
A big-scale take like this results exciting to the D&A fan base, which is aware of its large list of licensed properties (like Baldur’s Gate 3) but none like the one announced this time.
10) Valve’s Artifact 2.0 Cancelled and Classic Receives 1,000% Player Count Jump
Valve released Artifact, a digital collectible card game based in Dota 2018, in 2018.
But despite its promising start, the poor implementation of progression and microtransaction systems made it poorly received progressively.
This led to the overhaul project of its reboot “Artifact Foundry” (also known as “Artifact 2.0”) which work has now been discontinued, due to its low player base, which “doesn’t justify the development time.”
The Future of Artifacthttps://t.co/icBVxVtMRP
— Artifact (@PlayArtifact) March 4, 2021
Valve has decided to offer both versions of Artifact (Classic and Foundry/2.0 beta) for free.
While all cards from Artifact Classic are available for free to everyone from the starting point, players of the Artifact Foundry beta can earn them while playing the game.
This move resulted somehow beneficial to them because more people are now playing Artifact ever since March of 2019. This resulted in a 1,000% player base jump increase less than 24 hours after the announcement.