Industry News

"A Feminist Deck" Kickstarter Folds

A project heavily criticized on social media, entitled "A Feminist Deck" announced in a private backer update they are cancelling the project and offering refunds.  The update, sent by a source who wishes to remain anonymous, sheds some light on why the project was cancelled.

News: New Legend of Zelda Title Announced

Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is coming to Nintendo Wii U and NX systems in 2017.  New features, and a video preview were released at E3, and attendees were treated to demo play as well.  Players saw just a small portion of what is reported to be a very large game, and the reaction overall seems to have been fairly positive.

News: Squadron 42 Split from Star Citizen Base Game

An apparently planned change to the Star Citizen project is underway, as developers Cloud Imperium have split Squadron 42, the single-player element, from the Star Citizen base game.  While this won't effect past backers, anyone buying into the game after the 14th of February will have to purchase Squadron 42, the single-player portion, separate from the persistent universe release of the game.  Prices are set to act like expansions, or DLC, with one large purchase price for one portion, and smaller price points for the other add-ons which is relatively similar to the structure of other AAA games.  Backers who have already purchased at least the initial game will have both releases in their account already, which is in line with the developer's statement that they wanted early backers to get the game cheaper as prices go up when they get closer to release and the full retail price of the game.

News: GOG Launches "Games in Development"

GoG has announced their own option for gamers to get a hold of games still in development, with their own unique system for selecting and providing what they say will be a good customer experience.  Games are said undergo a bit of screening before being made available to cut down on the excessive volume of incomplete games, and as GoG puts it, give customers a product the company can stand behind.  A 14-day refund policy seems to be in keeping with the idea of making sure customers get the product they want when risking money on a game that's not yet complete, as does the ability to roll back versions in case something breaks along the way.  They already have five games on the list ready to look at.

News: Curse of Strahd Coming to D&D

Return to the Demiplane of Dread this March with Curse of Strahd, a new hardcover adventure bringing together the classic Ravenloft module, and writers Tracy and Laura Hickman, with new material and creators.  Designed for levels 1-10, the adventure should give new and old fans of Dungeons and Dragons something to look forward to.  Players will visit Castle Ravenloft, meet its evil lord, and explore his realm, Barovia.  A physical tarokka deck will be available from Gale Force 9, and you can get a virtual tarokka reading from Madam Eva's official Twitter account.

News: Political Pressure Causes "Stolen" Developers to Pull Game

In an environment when gamers are increasingly concerned about censorship, political pressure on gaming, and developer's being forced to change their art, the mobile game Stolen has been pulled from app stores after political and critical pressure.  The criticism has pointed to the possibility the game could be used to harass or abuse people online because of the app's mechanic that allows players to collect Twitter profiles like baseball cards, comment on and even edit the images.  The developers first offered an opt-out feature for users who did not want their Twitter profile included in the game, but voluntarily pulled the app after a Congresswoman sent a letter to both Apple and Twitter, urging the game be pulled by those companies.

News: Re-imagined Shadowgate Released on Mobile

The classic adventure Shadowgate is returning after 28 years.  After a successful Kickstarter, Shadowgate has come to mobile devices in a remastered and revamped new edition.  If you've played the classic, the developers promise you will see new puzzles, rooms, and music, while players new to the game will experience the classic through updated visuals and design.  Available now for iPhone, Android and Kindle devices.

News: Third Annual Hour of Code Announced

Code.org and Disney partner to bring an hour of code back this year with a Star Wars theme.  Students and young people can sign up for free classes and tutorials on coding, which will have them create their own Star Wars themed mobile game.  The event will be held during Computer Science Education Week, December 7-13, 2015 and include giveaways for participating classrooms and educators.  The program, that has already seen over 5 million participants, will be available world-wide, translated into over 40 languages, and include instructional videos by industry leaders.  Beyond the week-long event students can take tutorials and courses year round and classroom material is available to help boost childhood interest in programming and computer sciences.

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