Season 7 of Call of Duty Mobile is right around the corner. Touted for an August 27 launch, Season 7 will introduce new modes, guns, and maps into CoD Mobile. Some of these are old Call of Duty content being brought back but a lot of it is entirely new.
The headline announcement for Call of Duty fans is that Modern Warfare 2’s Scrapyard is being added. Titled ‘Scrapyard 2019’, this adaptation is based on the rebooted version of the map present in Modern Warfare 2019. The other map being added in Monastery, an original addition previously available in the Chinese version of CoD Mobile.
Load up the barracks
Two new weapons have been teased ahead of Season 7’s launch. One is the Hades, an LMG from Black Ops 4. This primary is best known for its surprisingly high mobility and accurate hip fire. The other weapon is the crossbow from Modern Warfare. This is a precision marksman weapon that is completely silent.
Season 7 of CoD Mobile will also add two new game modes. The new core multiplayer mode is ‘Payout Search and Destroy’. Although largely similar to regular Search and Destroy, this variation has players earn cash to buy equipment. This format is similar to how the Counter Strike series functions.
Players who prefer battle royale aren’t being left out either. The other new mode is ‘Solid Gold’, a battle royale mode where all items spawned are legendary. This should result in some high-level gun fights with the whole lobby being stacked with loot.
The patch notes also detail a large variety of balancing tweaks. This includes nerfs for the Type 25, Shorty, and Fennec. The largest changes are made to the Holger 26 which has been reworked to better fit into the meta. Interestingly, the Holger received a similar rework on Modern Warfare 2019 where it made its Call of Duty debut.
Bethesda has announced that an Anniversary Edition of Skyrim will release later this year. Confirmed for a November 11 launch, it will celebrate the fan favourite RPG’s 10th anniversary. Existing owners of Skyrim Special Edition will be able to upgrade to the Anniversary Edition for free.
Although primarily targeted owners of the new consoles, PC players can benefit from this too. Once the upgrade goes live, Skyrim Special Edition will automatically upgrade in your Steam library. Also, subscribers of Xbox Game Pass will be able to play Anniversary Edition on release day.
Over its ten-year history Bethesda’sSkyrim has become one of the most remade titles of all time. The original was released in 2011, Legendary Edition in 2013, Special Edition in 2016, a Switch port in 2017, and a VR port in 2018. With the Anniversary Edition of Skyrim, we now have six versions of the same game.
What changes does the Anniversary Edition introduce? For one, fishing makes its debut in the Elder Scrolls series. It’s unclear if fishing will be or important or just another method of gathering food. Generally, in Skyrim food has limited uses beyond the first few hours as potions are more effective.
Otherwise, the only other notable feature of Anniversary Edition is that it will support over 500+ Creation Club mods. Creation Club is a modding platform comparable to Nexus where mod developers can upload their creations. It isn’t too useful on PC where better options exist but opens up the potential for console mods.
It isn’t confirmed but console players should expect performance improvements too. Given how old Skyrim is, it seems likely that Anniversary Edition will run at 60 FPS. I’d say it will be interesting to see if gamers once again buy into Skyrim after all this time. But deep down we all already know that they will.
Activision has been strangely quiet about the next Call of Duty title. It’s only recently that the publisher even confirmed that it would be called Vanguard through a series of various teasers. However, a leak via the PlayStation Store suggests that we can expect an official reveal of Call of Duty: Vanguard later this week.
The PlayStation Store entry for Vanguard was accidently updated too early. Although technically just a placeholder, it featured a thumbnail image that gave away some crucial information. The thumbnail reads: ‘World reveal of Call of Duty: Vanguard – August 19, 10:30 AM PT in Call of Duty: Warzone’.
Vanguard is coming
Needless to say, the thumbnail’s message is hardly cryptic. It would appear that the official reveal for Vanguard will take place this Thursday on August 19. The reveal will happen in the Call of Duty: Warzonebattle royale game in some form.
Any further details as to what to expect are currently unknown. Based on the past, the most likely outcome is that Warzone developer Raven Software either places a teaser in Warzone or potentially add a new playlist. The latter was the method used to announce Black Ops Cold War’s integration with Warzone last April.
The playlist titled The Destruction of Verdansk saw the Ukraine based Warzone map bombed and destroyed. Following this event Verdansk was updated to be set in 1984, the same year as Black Ops Cold War. It’s possible that the reveal for Vanguard could be similar but this time focused on World War II.
There’s a lot of pressure on Activision to get this right. Not only is Warzone struggling right now with players moving on to other games, but the recent allegations don’t help either. Some gamers are losing faith in Activision but this reveal at least presents an opportunity to earn some of that faith back.
As we get closer to its release, Electronic Arts has been running various playtests for Battlefield 2042. Aimed to test server strain and identify bugs, these playtests are a vital part of any multiplayer game’s development. However, the recent playtest for Battlefield 2042 has backfired with several gameplay leaks surfacing via it.
The technical alpha is running between August 12 and August 15. Participants will have signed a non-disclosure agreement limiting what they can say about it. Specifically, posting gameplay or revealing unconfirmed features would breach the agreement.
What went wrong?
Unfortunately for EA, it doesn’t appear that some participants took the NDA seriously. After just one day of the technical alpha gameplay, several Battlefield 2042 gameplay leaks have already surfaced. These leaks include key features being used like the ability to change weapon attachments on the go.
From a publisher’s perspective, this is not good. The problem with earlier versions of games is that they tend to be buggy and unfished. This is why publishers don’t like early access footage being leaked to the public. It makes its game look bad and could even put off potential consumers from buying it.
The reality is that every game ever made has had a point where it looked like this. Even blockbuster titles and all-time best sellers like Grand Theft Auto V were not always so good. Unfortunately, the average gamer probably doesn’t understand game development all that well. Seeing a buggy mess just a few months before launch could put them off.
For this reason, moving forward you can expect EA to try and remove all gameplay leaks of Battlefield 2042. If you’re interested in seeing clips then check here to see what’s posted. I’ll avoid linking to specific videos as most will be taken down within 24 hours anyway. The full game is expected to release on October 15 for EA Play subscribers and October 22 worldwide.
Take-Two Interactive are one of the biggest names in the video game industry. Responsible for 2K Games and Rockstar Games, it owns an awful lot. Recently, in its latest financial presentation, it provided details of what it had planned for the future. Amongst these details was the confirmation that Take-Two has three unannounced remasters in the works.
Before you jump the gun and get overly excited, there is more to this. For one, the parent company emphasises that ‘some of these titles will not be developed through completion, or some may be delayed’. Also, we have no idea what games these could be and they are most likely not what you want.
What is it remaking?
Historically, Take-Two hasn’t been the biggest proponent of remasters. Even its most successful series, Grand Theft Auto, has never received a single remaster over its extensive 24-year history. The settings of Liberty City, Vice City, and San Andreas are re-used but an actual remake has yet to surface.
The 2k Games side has provided more efforts to remake old titles. Both the Bioshock and Borderlands series saw remasters for its earlier titles. These were mostly released to modernise fan favourite games, ready to be bundled together to resell them on newer hardware.
So what games are going to be turned into remasters by Take-Two? Certainly, an older Grand Theft Auto title is a possibility. Specifically, somewhere between GTA 3 and GTA San Andreas seems most likely. I doubt we’ll see a Vice City remake as it is heavily speculated that GTA 6 will be set in Vice City anyway.
Otherwise, I’d place my bets on Bully and Midnight Club. Both are series that gamers loved back in the day but were left behind in favour of other projects. They are well known enough to build hype and could even be used to gauge if there is a market for potential future sequels.
PUBG just got its second re-branding since it was initially released in 2017. Originally titled PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, this was later shortened to just PUBG for convenience. However, publisher Krafton Inc. Has once again rebranded it. This time around it has been titled PUBG Battlegrounds for some reason.
In other words, the battle royale’s new functional title is PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds Battlegrounds. It’s not exactly the catchiest name and if truth be told, we’re not even sure why Krafton has changed it. Speak to just about any gamer and they will refer to it as PUBG and nothing else. Before this change I’m not convinced that anyone referred to it by its new title even once.
Why the rebrand?
PC Gamer reached out to Krafton’s PR team to try to understand why this rebrand was done. Unfortunately, they refused to give specifics as to why this was done. Instead, PC Gamer got hit by a typical PR reply that confirms just about nothing.
According to Krafton’s PR Team: “Krafton is actively expanding the PUBG brand through a variety of new experiences set in its universe,” the PR representative said to PC Gamer. “Rebranding PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds to PUBG Battlegrounds is the first step in us realizing this vision.”
There is certainly some truth to Krafton’s claims. After all, we already know that Distance Studios’ The Callisto Protocol is an upcoming horror game set in the PUBG universe. Perhaps Krafton has more planned and intends to expand PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds into something more than just another battle royale game.
Beyond it sounding bad, the name PUBG Battlegrounds does raise one more concern. It begins to feel as though Krafton is trying to remove PlayerUnknown’s, aka. Brendan Greene, history as the game’s founder. For many he is recognised as the inventor of the modern battle royale and having his legacy tarnished like this is not a good look for Krafton.
Fans of the Elder Scrolls series have been eagerly awaiting more news on the fantasy RPG’s next instalment. Unfortunately, it looks as though these fans will have to wait a while longer. In an episode of IGN’s Unlocked Podcast, Xbox vice president Phil Spencer provided some disappointing, yet unsurprising insight into The Elder Scrolls 6.
According to Spencer, the next Xbox exclusive RPG gamers can look forward to is Obsidian’s Avowed. Furthermore, he expects that Playground Games’ Fable reboot will release before any Elder Scrolls game. He describes The Elder Scrolls’ development as being ‘further out’, insinuating that we won’t see it for some time.
Where is the next Elder Scrolls game?
The Elder Scrolls 6 is in development but very little is currently known about it. Its existence was confirmed at E3 2018 with an official announcement teaser. However, since then next to no further information has been provided.
At one point there was a theory that the next Elder Scrolls would be titled Redfall. Parent company ZeniMax Media disputed a trademark for the name Redfall. One of the regions of Tamriel is called Hammerfell, and it is home to the Redguards. Given the potential overlap fans began to speculate that this would be the setting for the upcoming Elder Scrolls game.
But it turned out to be the name of a completely different game developed by Arkane Studios. And beyond this misunderstanding we know absolutely nothing about The Elder Scrolls 6. It didn’t even make a cameo appearance at this year’s E3.
Spencer’s comments simply reaffirm the idea that the next Elder Scrolls is a long way away. Realistically, franchise fans may have to wait several more years for it. The only positive is that thanks to other RPGs like Fable 4 and Avowed, there will be plenty to do in the meantime.
There are a lot of ways to get banned from a first-person shooter. Be it cheating or inappropriate language, rules are in place to protect players. However, Twitch streamer Charles ‘Moistcr1tikal’ White managed to get banned from Halo Infinite for something surprising.
White had intended to find an area on a map where the player could bypass the death zone and glitch out of the map. Bugs like this are common place and betas are usually a good way to filter them out. However, after dying a certain number of times from jumping out of the map he received an expected message. As punishment for committing suicide too many times, he was permanently banned from playing the Halo Infinite beta.
A little harsh?
Presumably, developer 343 Industries implemented this system to deter trolling. In a game of team deathmatch it would be possible to tank your own team’s score by dying over and over. But regardless, a permanent ban with no prior warning seems harsh for something that is relatively minor.
Regardless, this ban stopped Moistcr1tikal from playing Halo Infinite, ending his steam prematurely. It’s not expected that this ban will carry over to the main game but it does suggest that 343 Industries still have some work to do. It’s one thing to ban someone in a free beta, but repeating this with a full price game would be disastrous.
The last thing Microsoft needs is thousands of frustrated customers complaining that they got banned trying to parkour. Especially as Halo has always had somewhat of a parkour culture with its grenade and rocket jumping. It’s not farfetched to assume that players thought they could do this as it’s been allowed in the past.
Otherwise, the Halo Infinite beta has gone down well with Moistcr1tikal’s experience being an exception, and not the rule. Fans can expect the popular shooter to launch later this year on PC, Xbox Series X/S, and Xbox One.
It hasn’t been a good week for Activision. The American games publisher was sued by the state of California for several cases of sexual harassment targeted against female employees. These cases dated back decades. To make matters worse, higher ups like CEO Bobby Kotick have not said anything since the accusations surfaced. This lack of acknowledgement has gone down so badly that a group of Activision Blizzard employees have put together a letter condemning Activision’s response.
As reported by Polygon, 800 employees have signed a letter in support of demands that the publisher recognize the seriousness of the accusations. The employees involved have requested that Activision puts out a meaningful statement. Up until now, it has seemingly been trying to sweep the matter under the rug.
The letter posted by Activision Blizzard employees outlines several issues with the company’s response. It starts out by expressing concerns that the leadership at Activision are not accurately representing their employees’ values.
Furthermore, workers at Activision are concerned that the publisher’s actions are damaging the ongoing quest for equality. Those involved were particularly disappointed in Activision’s choice to label the accusations as ‘distorted’ and ‘false’ rather than take responsibility.
These words spoken by vice president Frances Townsend were labelled as ‘abhorrent’ and ‘insulting’. The letter even pushes for Townsend to step down from her role as executive sponsor of the ABK Employee Women’s Network. This request was made with the goal of creating a community where people can comfortably speak out and come forward.
As of writing this, Activision Blizzard has neither responded to Polygon or the letter itself. It’s unclear what actions the publisher plans to take having been pushed into a corner by its employees. The original plan to manage the situation internally seems impossible now but we’ll have to wait and see how the situation develops.
Following in the footsteps of its competitors, Football Manager will be introducing women’s football in the next few years. Up until now, women have only featured in Football Manager as staff members in the men’s game. However, in the near future this will change to include female footballers too.
This change isn’t just a simple database tweak either. In a blog post discussing the update, developer Sports Interactive described some of the challenges. Some attributes are being reworked and rescaled to better represent the women’s game. The match engine is being tweaked to run plays and actions more likely to occur in the women’s game. It’s a huge endeavour that has been in the works for years.
Perhaps one of the biggest changes relates to animations. Currently, Football Manager has thousands of animations for men but many of these don’t translate well to women. To get around this Sports Interactive has had to use motion capture software to recapture thousands of female specific actions.
Furthermore, the existing female models were created for background staff. They are simpler and less sophisticated than the player models. Therefore, the art team at Sports Interactive has had to create a wide range of new models just for the women’s game.
A big change that many may have not thought about is how this affects the game’s text strings. Currently, all commentary lines, inbox messages, and reports are designed to use male pronouns. Fixing this is going to involve rewriting 100,000 strings for English alone. A further 2.9 million strings are required for the remaining 18 languages.
Clearly, adding women into Football Manager is a huge task. Sports Interactive deserves as much credit as possible for attempting this as the short-term benefits aren’t necessarily all that clear. From a diversity standpoint this is fantastic but it’s unlikely the developer will see financial returns on this for many years. It is doing this because it is the right thing to do. Sadly, that’s by no means a common thing in the modern games industry.