Welcome to the first edition of the Gamnesia Weekly Recap! Here at Gamnesia we do our best to provide you with around the clock video game news coverage and exclusive content, but we know you probably didn’t catch every single reveal. As such, we’ll be doing a Weekly Recap every Sunday from now on, bringing you highlights of the big news out of Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft, and more!
This week was full of news thanks to San Diego Comic-Con 2014. We’ve got the scoop on Nintendo’s latest reveals for
Super Smash Bros. and Hyrule Warriors, Sony’s movie announcements, and much more! Hit the jump to catch all of this, as well as some Gamnesia exclusive editorials.
It was a big week for Nintendo fans eagerly anticipating Hyrule Warriors. Darunia, Sheik, and Princess Ruto were all revealed as playable characters, and a new gameplay trailer showed all three in action, as well as giving us more footage of all of the other playable characters. Famitsu magazine revealed even more gameplay details about the game, and a special live stream presentation revealed that the worlds of Ocarina of Time, Twilight Princess, and Skyward Sword are all combined for Hyrule Warriors. Finally, Skyloft and Hyrule Field each got some love in some more gameplay videos. Nintendo is really turning up the hype for Hyrule Warriors, but we also got some news on Zelda for Wii U. Producer Eiji Aonuma talked more about the game’s open world, and update to the official Japanese website teased a new Link, a new nemesis, and an indefinite world with no boundaries.
Super Smash Bros. got plenty of love this week as well. The 3DS game’s menu was revealed, and several retailers claim that the game will release on November 21, while Best Buy thinks it will launch on October 24. Nintendo also gave us over 100 new screenshots for the game, revealed Great Fox as a stage for the Wii U version and announced that Wily’s Castle is playable in both versions.
The Pokémon Company recently announced the Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions tour, and we got lots of previews of the event this week.
Nintendo also received some good news outside of individual, specific video games. A new Wii U update allows for easy system transfer and more eShop navigation options, making for a more user friendly overall experience. According to a pair of polls taken both before and after E3, interest in Wii U skyrocketed by 50% thanks to a strong E3 showing. The poll showed that interest in Wii U is actually slightly higher than Xbox One right now. Zelda for Wii U was a big hit as well, with 89% of Wii U owners polled stating that they intend to buy the game. All of this has led to a steady rise in Nintendo’s stock value, and the Big N is now at its highest value since January.
Naughty Dog dominated the Sony news this week thanks to announcements both in the realms of video games and movies. The Last of Us Remastered will require a whopping 50GB install, but it comes with the brand new Photo Mode, which allows players to pause the game, adjust the camera, and take custom screenshots, complete with some editing options. These can then be shared with other players via the DualShock 4’s Share Button. Naughty Dog also revealed that they are unlikely to return to classic games like Crash Bandicoot and Jak and Daxter because their strengths are best suited to story-driven games like The Last of Us and Uncharted.
Speaking of The Last of Us and Uncharted, both of these blockbuster franchises are being turned into movies. With The Amazing Spider-Man 3 being delayed, the Uncharted movie will be taking its release slot and hit theaters on June 10, 2016. Nathan Drake’s actor (hit the weights and contact Sony, Nathan Fillion!) has not yet been announced. The Last of Us has been confirmed for a movie as well, and it was announced at San Diego Comic-Con that Sam Raimi will be directing the film. Additionally, Bruce Campbell is confirmed to be attached to the film (although they stopped short of confirming him as Joel), and Maisie Williams (Arya Stark in Game of Thrones) is in talks to play Ellie.
On a less positive note (for Sony anyway), a settlement was finally reached in the 2011 security breach of PlayStation Network. Sony will be paying out $15 million worth of free games, PlayStation Plus subscriptions, and other content to those affected by the hacking three years ago. Those who had their credit card information compromised will be compensated with up to $2,500 in cash.
One final Sony tidbit is that LittleBigPlanet 3 (which was tons of fun to play at E3!) is set to receive an invite-only beta next month. LittleBigPlanet 3 hits PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 this November.
Microsoft reported less than stellar combined Xbox sales numbers in their latest quarterly report, revealing that a total of 1.1 million total Xbox 360 and Xbox One units were shipped in the last three months. This number refers to total units shipped to retailers, not total units sold through to customers. Sony and Nintendo have not released their complete quarterly sales numbers, so we’re not sure how the 1.1 million stacks up to the competition.
Microsoft also released two new noteworthy videos this week. The first details the upcoming Xbox One update, which adds in features like enhanced activity feed updates, 3D Blu-ray support (which PlayStation 4 is also adding), low battery notifications, and more. The second video is a fantastic look at the beautifully remastered graphics of Halo 2 Anniversary, showcasing the new cinematics on Xbox One with a new trailer.
Other Gaming News
Elsewhere in gaming, there were lots of resignations. Luminous Engine lead and Chief Technology Officer Yoshihisa Hashimoto resigned from Square Enix for personal reasons. His graphics were powering games like Final Fantasy XV and Kingdom Hearts III, so we hope there won’t be any delays as a result of his resignation. Crytek lost yet another key member, as Mike Read (producer of Ryse: Son of Rome and Crysis 3) has quit his job at the company. Crytek finally released an official statement regarding their reported financial troubles and mass resignations, stating that the company is “in a transitional phase” and will have positive news soon. Wrapping up the news on resignations is the conclusion to a story about a firing: former Bungie composer Marty O’Donnell, who was “fired without cause,” won a $95,000 lawsuit against his former employer this week, as it was ruled that Bungie withheld earned paid vacation time and other benefits.
There’s lots of news out of Ubisoft this week. Assassin’s Creed Unity got some time in the spotlight at San Diego Comic-Con, and lots of new gameplay and story details were revealed. One interesting new tidbit is that once you’ve reached the vast city of Paris, there are zero loading screens, making for a seamless world. Ubisoft also teamed up with Rob Zombie to reveal a graphic, stylized video that re-tells the story of the French Revolution, tying it into the plot of Assassins Creed Unity. In addition to Assassin’s Creed, Ubisoft is also reportedly working on a new AAA IP. BioWare is also teasing a new IP to be revealed soon, which may be the “Shadow Realms” trademark they filed earlier this year.
Publishing giant EA announced that they would be delaying the launch of two prominent titles this week. Dragon Age: Inquisition has been bumped from its planned release on October 7 to a new date of November 18. Meanwhile, Battlefield Hardline was set to launch on October 21 of this year, but has now been delayed until sometime early next year. No concrete launch window has yet been established for Hardline‘s release.
In indie games, the Metroidvania style platform shooter Timespinner succeeded its Kickstarter goal and hit all but one of its stretch goals. Because of the extra money raised, Timespinner is coming not only to PC, but also to PlayStation 4, Vita, and 3DS. Developer Lunar Ray Games also released a combination video interview and gameplay demo.
In a move that was rumored months ago, Google has reportedly reached a deal to acquire Twitch. According to reliable sources, Google will soon be paying out around $1 billion to absorb the popular streaming service. Along with YouTube, this gives Google a considerable advantage in the world of online videos.
Finally, this week’s Media Create Sales saw Yokai Watch 2 dominate the Japanese best seller list for the second week in a row. This helped 3DS stay atop the charts for another week. PlayStation 4 continues to struggle in Japan, and it was outsold by PlayStation 3 yet again.
Gamnesia Exclusive Editorials
Welcome to the first edition of Gamnesia Weekly Recap! If you missed any of the top stories or editorials from the past week, we’ve got them all here in one package.