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This is a discussion on Game Tech News within the Electronics forums, part of the Non-Related Discussion category; Many of today’s biggest games feature loot box gameplay mechanics that critics claim are little different than gambling. Now, the ...

      
   
  1. #751
    Senior Member HiGame's Avatar
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    ESRB Game Ratings Will Now Call Out Loot Boxes

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    Many of today’s biggest games feature loot box gameplay mechanics that critics claim are little different than gambling. Now, the Entertainment Software Ratings Board (ESRB) has announced it will take loot boxes a bit more seriously. Going forward, titles that rely on these microtransactions will get a special warning on the label right next to the main ESRB rating.

    Microtransactions are nothing new in gaming. That idea stretches back to the Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, which tried to upsell gamers on cosmetic horse armor for $5. While gamers mocked Bethesda for the move, this would become a common element of game monetization in the intervening years. Today, popular games like Overwatch, Star Wars: Battlefront, and FIFA have leaned heavily on randomized loot boxes to make publishers more money. You can’t just buy the modern equivalent of horse armor in these games. You have to open random crates until you get the stuff you want.

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    The Nintendo Switch Has Now Outsold the N64 and GameCube Combined

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    Out of all the video game companies, Nintendo seems to be the one best-positioned to ride out the pandemic sweeping the planet. While Sony and Microsoft are enjoying an increased wave of gamers in their ecosystems as well, the realities of the console cycle are working against each company. With the PS5 and Xbox Series X expected to launch in November, existing gamers may be buying more titles for the Xbox One and PS4, but they aren’t exactly rushing out to purchase hardware. (AMD has confirmed this already, by noting that it recorded negligible semicustom console revenue in Q1 due to drawdowns in preparation for future launches).

    Nintendo, though, is having no such problems. The Switch has had a banner quarter, driven by an enormous surge of interest in games like Animal Crossing. Nintendo sold 3.29M Switches in the previous quarter, up 1.33x over Q1 2019. Lifetime sales of the Switch, which debuted on March 3, 2017 are now 55.77M, larger than both the GameCube and the N64, which sold 21.74M and 32.93M, respectively. It’s also above the lifetime estimated sales of the Xbox One family, despite the fact that the Xbox One turns seven this year, while the Switch is barely three. From April 2019 – March 2020, Nintendo sold 21.03M Switches, 1.53M units higher than its previous target.

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    Diablo II Remaster Coming in Q4 2020

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    There are persistent rumors that both Diablo II and Diablo IV could drop before the end of the year, alongside the upcoming World of Warcraft expansion, Shadowlands. Blizzard has reportedly come under pressure to show more return on investment on an ongoing basis over the past few years, and this push towards multiple simultaneous launches at the back half of the year could be the company’s way of moving in that direction.

    The rumor comes from French site ActuGaming, which has previously broken accurate rumors about upcoming Blizzard projects. Supposedly Vicarious Visions is supporting Blizzard on the remakes, which would make some sense; that company has been involved in a number of remastering efforts over the past few years. A launch date before the end of the year would put Diablo II: Resurrected in danger of colliding with Diablo IV, which might not be something Blizzard wants to tee up.

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    Epic Unveils Unreal Engine 5 With Photorealistic PS5 Demo

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    Before Fortnite, Epic Games’ biggest contribution to gaming was the Unreal Engine. It has been six years since a major update, but that will change with the release of next-generation game consoles from Sony and Microsoft. Today, Epic showed off a demo of the new Unreal Engine 5 (UE5) running on a PlayStation 5, and it’s pretty amazing.

    The first thing to know about this demo is that it’s not pre-rendered — it’s rendering in real-time on the PlayStation 5 dev kit. That speaks to the power of the console’s hardware as well as the abilities of the engine, which looks almost photorealistic. Epic designed this demo to show off the two new graphics technologies at work in Unreal Engine 5: Nanite and Lumen.

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    The 5 best laptop deals at Lenovo's Memorial Day sale

    Lenovo is starting the summer with deep discounts on some of our favorite 2-in-1 convertible laptops. Models from both the premium Yoga C940 series and mainstream Yoga C740 line -- both of which currently reside on our best laptops of 2020 list -- are marked down, and a business-minded ThinkPad X1 Yoga (our favorite premium business 2-in-1) is discounted by more than $1,000. Also marked down is the IdeaPad 3, one of the best configurations you'll find in a laptop that costs less than $500.
    Note that each of these deals require discount codes that we've listed below. Which that small caveat, let's dive into the deals.

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    Epic Confirms High-End Gaming PCs Can Run PS5s Unreal Tech Demo

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    When Epic released footage from its upcoming Unreal 5 tech demo last week, one major question was whether PC gamers would be able to enjoy equivalent performance or capabilities. As we discussed last week, any major boost to console performance that relies explicitly on storage hardware could require relatively fast hardware on the PC side of things.

    Epic has now chimed in and confirmed our expectations. According to Epic Games China (via DSOGaming), the PS5 version of the game ran at 1440p at 30fps. A PC equipped with an RTX 2080 notebook and a Samsung 970 EVO is capable of running the demo at ~40fps.
    And I can ensure that we can run this demo in our notebook, in editor , not cooked, it even can 40FPS. ( After someone in BBS confirm that the device is RTX2080 and 970EVO )

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    Nintendo Suing to Stop Release of Switch Hacking Kits

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    The Switch is the biggest hardware success for Nintendo in years, but the money it makes on the console is nothing compared with game sales. Naturally, Nintendo is quick to deploy its army of lawyers when someone threatens to undermine those sales. For example, if you’re running a ROM repository. Hacking collective Team-Xecuter is set to release a tool that can unlock the Switch to play homebrew and pirated games. Nintendo would very much like to stop that from happening, so it has filed a lawsuit.

    You might know Team-Xecuter from its last major project, a USB dongle that can install the custom SX OS on Switch units from June 2018 and earlier. Those consoles have an older version of the Nvidia Tegra SoC with an exploitable flaw that Team-Xecuter and others have used to mod the software. Newer consoles have a patched chip that blocks such mods, but Team-Xecuter says its upcoming SX Core (standard Switch) and SX Lite (Switch Lite) kits will be able to get SX OS on even the upgraded models.

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    Mortal Kombat 11 Serves Up the Ultimate 80s Fight: RoboCop vs. Terminator

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    Mortal Kombat 11 players will soon be able to play out one of the most-discussed cinematic battles of the 1980s that never actually happened. RoboCop and Terminator are both coming to the franchise, finally allowing gamers to answer for themselves what we used to argue over during lunch.

    Now, personally, I have to say — I’ve always been 100 percent on Team Terminator on this issue. In fact, I don’t even see how the “PRoboCop” faction even has a leg to stand on.

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    The best outdoor games to play with your family

    Now that spring weather and warmer temperatures have arrived, it's time to venture outside. Of course, for some folks, that might not be much further than your front yard since many parts of the country are still maintaining social distancing. But at least your family can still have fun together, so this might be the ideal time to add a new game into the mix. (Let's face it, cornhole is played out, and most people don't have space for bocce ball or croquet in their yard.)

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    Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles pinball

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    The pinball maker's newest table screams '90s.

    Stern Pinball Just try and look at pictures of Stern's newest pinball machine and not hear that classic 90s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon theme music pop in your head. You can't do it.
    The pinball maker's newest table screams out that nostalgia, especially for players who grew up on the cartoon series from the 90s.

    Stern Pinball TMNT pinball looks as if it was ripped out of the cartoon style of the 90s, and may take cues from the classic arcade cabinet from the same era. There're all the usual suspects represented on the playfield: the turtles, Splinter, Shredder, April O'Neil and more, but even some deeper cuts like Baxter Stockman and the mousers.

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