We’re just a few weeks away from the theatrical debut of Detective Pikachu, the first major live-action Pokémon movie. Last year, British singer/actress Rita Ora joined the cast of the film as a scientist, and she’s since released a song (performed with the DJ Kygo) that will be featured in it. Additionally, Ora has released a music video for the song, Carry On, that takes place in some of Detective Pikachu‘s settings and includes clips from the movie.
Last month (following numerous rumors), Nintendo confirmed that they’ve partnered with Microsoft to bring Cuphead to Switch. This popular run-and-gun platformer caught the eyes of many gamers thanks to its 1930s-inspired art style, and as of today, you can enjoy it on Nintendo’s hybrid console. Eventually, it will even support Xbox Live, but that will require a post-launch patch. In the meantime, developer Studio MDHR has released a short and sweet launch trailer.
The potential audience for Nintendo Switch just got a lot bigger. Earlier today, a report surfaced from China suggesting that Tencent, one of the world’s largest game publishers, has been provisionally approved to sell Nintendo Switch bundled with a demo version of New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe in China. Shortly after this story broke, Nintendo confirmed a Chinese partnership with Tencent to The Wall Street Journal.
Although the partner companies have received initial approval, there are still more steps to take. The ruling on Tencent’s ability to distribute Switch in China is in a comment period that lasts until April 24th. Meanwhile, neither company has yet acquired permission to begin publishing games in China, which will require a second approval.
Nintendo has been preparing for this move for some time now. A January update added Chinese language support to Switch’s UI, and more recently the same support was added to Nintendo Switch Online’s digital library of NES games. This is a move that will certainly please investors (who ask Nintendo President Shuntaro Furukawa about the Chinese market in every shareholder’s meeting), and we can already see the impact it’s having. The company’s stock value is currently up over 12% in the US.
Update: Parts of US Gamer’s translation have been called incorrect by outlets with a better track record for Japanese translation. Corrected information has been included below.
The rumor mill has been buzzing with reports of new Nintendo Switch models on the horizon in recent months, and today yet another one surfaced. The latest comes from Japanese publication Nikkei, the world’s largest financial newspaper and the same group that reported Nintendo was working on a smaller, cheaper Switch in January. They’ve since acquired more information from their sources about both the “Switch Lite” and a second, more powerful model.
Last month, The Wall Street Journal reported that two new Switch models are in development. That story stated that the lighter, cheaper model would cut out rumble features. Eurogamer corroborated some of those details and added some more claims of their own. According to Eurogamer, the cheaper Switch will be handheld-only and re-designed to be more “kid-proof.” Both sites reported that the other model would feature improved hardware, but not on the level of PlayStation 4 Pro or Xbox One X.
The latest Nikkei report is in a similar vein, but it contradicts some of the finer details. According to Nikkei’s sources (as translated by US Gamer), the cheaper model is indeed coming this year (specifically this Fall), but it will be compatible with a dock and TV. It’s unclear what sacrifices this model will have to make to reach the cheaper price point.
As for the rumored “Switch Pro,” Nikkei believes its release is further out. According to their sources, a “next-generation” version of Switch is in development, but its planned release has been pushed back due to technical issues that include troubles with the operating system and power consumption. It’s unclear whether this “next-generation” Switch is the same as the Switch Pro or an entirely different piece of hardware, but it’s hard to imagine three separate iterations of Switch all deep in development at the same time.
As usual with these types of unconfirmed reports, we advise a healthy dose of skepticism. It seems extremely likely that Nintendo has new hardware in the works, but the exact details are unknown. Perhaps Nintendo’s E3 Direct will clear things up.
Update: According to Dr. Serkan Toto and Gematsu the information about power consumption problems is an incorrect translation on the part of US Gamer. They both see the second, more powerful console as being a next generation device rather than a “Pro” Switch. The confusion about a “delay” seems to stem from the fact that Nintendo is still in the experimental phase, and it’s unclear who will be heading up development. Gematsu reports that Nintendo is experimenting with operating system changes, but any claims of it causing a “delay” are false according to Dr. Toto.
Last year, Nintendo surprised fans by announcing that they had secured Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 as a Nintendo Switch exclusive. With Avengers: Endgame about to hit theaters, the Marvel hype will be high this Summer, and Nintendo’s capitalizing on that energy with a long-awaited sequel.
Thanks to a recent press release, we now have more details about the game, including its release date. Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order hits Switch on July 19th, reviving the once-beloved series after a decade-long hiatus. The plot sees heroes from all over the Marvel universe teaming up to stop Thanos and The Black Order from using the Infinity Stones to unleash chaos.
“Teaming up with Nintendo to bring Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order to the Nintendo Switch system elevates the Marvel Ultimate Alliance series to even greater heights. With the ability to play at home or on the go, solo, co-op and online with friends, Marvel fans can save the world from Thanos and high stakes threats in any way they like, anytime, anywhere.” — Jay Ong, Executive Vice President at Marvel Entertainment
Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order will launch this Summer with the standard $60 price tag. There’s sure to be more exciting trailers in the future (including at E3 in June), but in the meantime, you can check out the official website for more information.
We’ve been hearing rumblings about a new Xbox model since last year, and the rumors of a disc-free Xbox One really picked up last month with talk of an imminent reveal. While this isn’t always the case with rumors, this time all that smoke was coming from a very real fire. During the ongoing episode of Inside Xbox, Microsoft has just unveiled a new Xbox model.
As previously reported by multiple sources, Microsoft will indeed be launching a cheaper Xbox One model that only plays digital games. This new model is called Xbox One S All-Digital Edition and it launches on May 7th. Thurrott had predicted that it would cost “$200 or less,” but the actual price tag is $250. You can check out the somewhat bizarre reveal trailer above.
Update: According to Tech Crunch the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition will come with download codes for three games: Sea of Thieves, Minecraft, and Forza Horizon 3. This adds some solid value to the bundle despite its higher than anticipated price tag.
Last night, millions of Nintendo Switch consoles around the world were upgraded to Version 8.0.0. A variety of new features were added, including new icons, the ability to sort software, and a zoom feature in the System Settings, but the biggest new addition is the often-requested ability to transfer save data from one Switch to another.
In the past, it was possible to transfer an entire user profile from one Switch to another, but you couldn’t (for example) simply grab your Super Smash Bros. Ultimate save file and take it to a new Switch by itself. Now you can! This addition came at an interesting time when you consider the fact that Nintendo is reportedly launching new Switch models this year. This new feature should make it easier for people who plan to pick up a new model to distribute their save files however they please. In the meantime, you can check out the full patch notes below.
Added the following system functionality:
A Sort Software feature is available after selecting to view All Software from the HOME Menu
Software can be sorted by time last played, total play time, software title, and software publisher
The All Software option displays when there are 13 or more software icons on the HOME Menu
A View All Available News option is available within News, allowing you to view all news items currently being distributed
Go to News > Channel List > View More
Select from 15 new icons from the Splatoon™ 2 and Yoshi’s Crafted World™ games for your user
To edit your user icon, head to your My Page on the top left of the HOME Menu > Profile
A feature to Transfer Your Save Data is now available, allowing you to transfer your save data for individual games between your Nintendo Switch systems
Go to System Settings > Data Management > Transfer Your Save Data
Save data will not remain on your source system after the transfer process completes
A Zoom feature can be enabled from within System Settings
Go to System Settings > System to turn Zoom ON
Once enabled, you can use the Zoom feature by pressing the HOME Button twice
An option is available to prevent the system from waking from Sleep Mode when an AC adapter is disconnected
Go to System Settings > Sleep Mode > Wake When AC Adapter is Disconnected
This also applies when undocking your console
A VR Mode (3D Visuals) restriction is available within Parental Controls
This will also be available in the Nintendo Switch Parental Controls app through a later update
Go to System Settings > Parental Controls
These settings can also be changed from within Nintendo Labo Toy-Con 04: VR Kit
Hong Kong / Taiwan / South Korea is available for selection in Region
Go to System Settings > System > Region
The following names have been changed (functionality remains the same)
Save Data Cloud Backup > Save Data Cloud
Transfer Your User and Save Data > Transfer Your User Data
Before home consoles became a living room staple, video games were largely found in arcades. Capcom was one of the biggest players in this space with classic hits like Street Fighter and Final Fight. To this day, many dedicated players will shell out for an arcade-style controller to play certain games… but what if that controller came pre-loaded with some of the best arcade games?
Capcom has decided to answer that question. Following a recent teaser, Capcom dropped a reveal trailer for “Capcom Home Arcade” today. This upcoming plug and play device features a full-size Sanwa arcade control setup with 16 blockbuster Capcom games pre-installed. It’s even WiFi enabled, so you can share your high scores on an online leaderboard.
Capcom Home Arcade launches on October 25th, and you can currently pre-order it on Capcom’s European website for 229.99€, or around $260. Other retail options will be announced soon. In the meantime, you can check out the reveal trailer above, and you can peruse the list of available games below.
We’ve known for quite some time now that the next PlayStation is on the way, but today we received an unexpected update. Rather than revealing PlayStation 5 (name unofficial) details during a State of Play video or at E3 (which Sony isn’t attending), architect Mark Cerny decided to spill the beans by inviting Wired to come check out a development kit and learn about its hardware.
Although we don’t know the console’s name or what it will look like, Cerny revealed a surprising amount of detail about its inner workings. For starters, Sony is promising a “true generational shift,” and not merely another stopgap upgrade like the PlayStation 4 Pro. However, it will still be backwards compatible with PlayStation 4 games.
Their next console will be powered by a CPU that is “based on the third generation of AMD’s Ryzen line and contains eight cores of the company’s new 7nm Zen 2 microarchitecture.” Meanwhile, the GPU is a custom variant of Radeon’s Navi family. One of its big upsides is that it will support ray tracing, greatly increasing the realistic types of lighting it can produce.
The AMD chip is also equipped with “a custom unit for 3D audio that Cerny thinks will redefine what sound can do in a videogame.” Cerny claims this will be a massive leap in sound quality, as opposed to the “frustration” of how little PlayStation 4’s audio improved over PlayStation 3’s. Cerny believes Sony’s next console will offer a much more immersive experience.
Sony’s next big reveal is a feature that Cerny calls “the key to the next generation.” Sony’s next console will feature an SSD that has “a raw bandwidth higher than any SSD available for PCs.” Cerny demonstrated its speed by running Insomniac’s Spider-Man game on both a PlayStation 4 and the next-gen dev kit to test load times. Fast traveling took around 15 seconds on PlayStation 4, but less than one second on the new hardware.
Cerny went on to explain that an even bigger benefit is the rate at which worlds can be generated, which he once again put to the test with a PlayStation 4 and the next-gen console side by side. Cerny explained that Spidey’s max swinging speed is capped by the PlayStation 4’s loading capabilities. In other words, if Spidey were to swing any faster, he’d be swinging into a barren, unloaded New York. On the new hardware, the camera zips through the game “like it’s mounted to a fighter jet,” with Cerny periodically pausing to prove that the demo still looks good when stopped. The demo took place on a 4K TV, but Cerny says the new hardware will be compatible with 8K TVs as well.
Sony declined to discuss software, services, and various other features during this meeting. He confirmed that the next console will not launch in 2019, but no true release window was given. Unsurprisingly, Cerny also stopped short of revealing a price tag. Given that it’s not coming this year, Sony still has plenty of time to solidify and unveil all of those details.
It’s a good time to be a fan of Nintendo art. About a month ago, we learned that The Art of Super Mario Odyssey is getting a Western release this October, and it won’t be alone. Nintendo has just announced (via Amazon listings) that The Art of Splatoon 2 is also coming to North America and Europe the same month. If you’re a fan of those stylish squids and kids, you won’t want to pass this up!
The Art of Splatoon 2 features 380 pages off “illustrations, key art, and designs of your favorite colorful characters, weapons, gear, locations, maps, and brands.” There will also be storyboards and other extras. All of that is wrapped up in a beautiful hardcover book that sells for $39.99. You can get your hands on this treasure trove of Splatoon goodness on October 15th, courtesy of publisher Dark Horse Books.
Even though it launched with zero marketing build-up, Apex Legends has quickly become one of the most popular games in the world, with over 50 million players attracted in its first month. Despite this phenomenal start, there’s still room for improvement. Apex Legends is currently available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. But what about Nintendo’s fast-selling Switch console?
Respawn Entertainment Project Lead Drew McCoy has indicated in the past that he “would love” to bring Apex Legends to Switch, as well as mobile devices, but so far there’s been no official announcement. He recently posted a Q/A video where he tackled the topic again. McCoy confirmed (at around the 7:18 mark) that his team is listening to Switch players, but there’s still nothing to announce at this time.
“If Switch was coming, we would tell you, and we would blast it across the world. We are hearing all the Switch players who say they want the game. I can’t make any promises right now. We have a lot of things that we’re working on, so stay tuned for anything in the future. But currently we don’t have anything to announce.” — Drew McCoy
I’m sure Respawn has their hands full with managing one of the hottest games around, but an eventual Switch (and mobile) release just makes too much sense to keep passing up on for much longer. When Fortnite, a similar game with a similar free-to-play price model, launched on Switch, it was quickly downloaded by around half of all Switch owners. That’s a heck of a boost to the player count!
During last month’s Nindies Showcase, we got a good look at an upcoming game called Katana Zero. This fast-paced action-platformer from Askiisoft features nothing but one hit KOs… for the enemies and you. Fortunately, you can rewind time upon your death, learn from your mistakes, and try again. Katana Zero hits Switch and PC on April 18th. If you’re not sure about buying it yet, we have some good news! Lots of footage has surfaced from review copies, including the game’s first 30+ minutes.
Few gaming executives have ever captured the hearts of players like Reggie Fils-Aime. After being hired as Nintendo’s Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing in 2003, Reggie quickly became a fan favorite thanks to his E3 2004 appearance, where he famously declared, “I’m about kicking ass, I’m about taking names, and we’re about making games.” By 2016, Reggie had been promoted to President and COO of Nintendo of America, and he has continued to hold that post until today. All good things must come to an end, and today Reggie will step away from Nintendo to spend time with friends and family, leaving the position of President to Doug Bowser.
Reggie’s tenure at Nintendo was an extremely successful one. Sure, there were tough times during the struggles of Wii U, but Reggie also oversaw extremely successful marketing campaigns that led the DS and Wii to be Nintendo’s most successful handheld and home console of all time, respectively. Reggie will be leaving Nintendo on a high note, as Switch is seeing similar success to Wii.
All of his business successes aside, Reggie will mostly be remembered for his on-camera persona. Reggie has been the face of Nintendo of America for well over a decade, talking to fans in E3 presentations, Nintendo Directs, and more. His charm, charisma, and general willingness to be silly endeared him to millions of fans around the world and cemented him as a meme legend. He will be missed by Nintendo, his fans, and the video game industry in general. But this doesn’t have to be goodbye! Reggie may be leaving Nintendo, but he just joined Twitter, so it looks like he’ll still have a public presence going forward.
If you’d like to know more about Reggie, you can check out a recent episode of Gamnesia’s Switched On! Podcast where we discuss his retirement and the impact he had on the video game industry. You can also check out a recent Did You Know Gaming that digs into his history.
Last year, there were rumors regarding a possible sequel to Horizon Zero Dawn. Guerrilla Games’ 2017 hit has sold over 10 million copies worldwide, so capitalizing on that success with another game seems like a no-brainer, but so far there’s been no official announcement. However, someone who worked on the game claims a sequel is in development.
Janina Gavankar, the voice actress for Horizon Zero Dawn‘s Taitai, recently attended Star Wars Celebration while cosplaying as Iden Versio. During the festivities she ran into a fellow cosplayer who struck up a conversation about Horizon Zero Dawn. Gavankar was recorded saying “It’s incredible, wait ’til you see the sequel. You’re gonna die – I know some secrets! – you’re gonna die.”
Obviously at this point, the game’s existence is not confirmed by Guerrilla Games, but it seems likely to be the real deal. Will the game release in the twilight years of PlayStation 4, or will we see it early next generation?
Last May, Epic Games teamed up with Marvel for a crossover event that brought the villainous Thanos and his all-powerful Infinity Gauntlet to Fortnitefor a limited time event. Players could find and equip the gauntlet to transform into Thanos himself and wreak havoc on their opponents with overpowered punches and laser attacks.
The event was short-lived, but it may soon be returning. Data miners have been digging through the version 8.30 update, and they’ve discovered new kill and death feed messages that mention Thanos. Last year’s event kicked off shortly after Avengers: Infinity War hit theaters, so it would make sense to bring it back around the same time that Avengers: Endgame begins its run later this month.
Pokémon GO exploded onto the scene in the Summer of 2016. The monster-catching augmented reality adventure quickly gained a passionate following of tens of millions of players, and it absolutely dominated social media for months after its release. Developer Niantic has managed to keep the game popular with regular updates adding new features and new Pokémon, and that continued support has helped it reach a major milestone.
According to a press release from The Pokemon Company (issued as part of a preview of the Pokemon Center in Singapore), Pokémon GO has been downloaded over one billion times. That’s nearly one download for every seven people on the entire planet, though some people have certainly downloaded the game on multiple devices. Pokémon GO has far surpassed Niantic’s wildest ambitions, and there’s no end to its success in sight.
A few months back Celeste developer Matt Thorson revealed that a new chapter is headed to the game as DLC. This final update is titled Chapter 9: Farewell, and it will be free on all platforms. Farewell will be a single, continuous chapter (no B-Side) with some new mechanics, and it’s said to be the hardest Celeste challenge yet.
We haven’t heard much about it since January, but Matt and his team are still hard at work. The official Celeste Twitter account just broke the silence to inform fans that development is “on the home stretch.” Although it won’t be out this month, it shouldn’t be much longer after that. The update also confirmed that the team is waiting to release the physical version of the game until after Farewell is completed.
Last week, we got the surprising news that Super Mario Odyssey is getting a virtual reality mode. Customers who purchase the Nintendo Labo VR Kit will be able to enjoy three new missions in this new view, but that’s not all. Since that announcement, Nintendo has also revealed that a “Theater Mode” will hit the game on April 25th, the same day as the VR update.
Theater Mode will allow players to go back and re-watch all of the game’s cutscenes in virtual reality with the Nintendo Labo VR Kit, which just launched today. Watching the scenes play out in VR adds an extra layer of depth to the experience, but even if you don’t have Labo VR, you can still go back and watch the cutscenes the normal way.
Last summer, Square Enix launched Octopath Traveler exclusively on Nintendo Switch, and the old-school RPG topped the sales charts and received critical acclaim. Square’s new hit has stayed exclusive to Nintendo’s hybrid console thus far, but that will soon change. The game was recently rated for a PC release in Korea, and today someone at Square apparently jumped the gun and leaked the official announcement.
As reported by Gematsu, the official Square Enix website published a blog post for a PC release for Octopath Traveler, then quickly deleted it. The post indicated that the RPG will hit Steam and the Square Enix store on June 7th. It also contained a brief overview of the game’s characters and features, although there wasn’t anything new.
Square Enix has grown quite confident in the selling power of games on Nintendo Switch, and the division that developed Octopath Traveleris focused primarily on that console, but after nearly a year of exclusivity, it seems they’re looking to bring it to a new audience. Square is also working on a mobile prequel to Octopath Traveler, so expanding the brand is clearly a priority.
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, described by developer Ninja Theory as an “independent AAA game,” made a huge splash back in 2017. Its blend of combat, puzzle-solving, and story-telling (which itself blends themes of mythology and mental health) captivated players. These days Microsoft owns the property, but that didn’t stop the game from coming to Nintendo Switch. Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice is available today on Nintendo’s hybrid console.