The Update for week ending 5th March 2017

Hello Fellow Cravers. I am GD, we are here with the top 3 gaming news stories of the last week, we have Top 5 games of the week, new releases for the next week and a recap of YouTube of the week with the Update!

NEWS

3)Nintendo Switch users face issues, is this really a surprise?

Several Nintendo Switch owners are already reporting a variety of hardware issues with their new devices, including bricked consoles and busted consoles. Images of Switch units with blue and orange “screens of death” are piling up on social media alongside other, smaller complaints, giving some expectant buyers a cause for concern.

Nintendo launched the Switch worldwide on Friday, and it’s worth noting that these kinds of problems aren’t uncommon. With any major hardware launch — Nintendo is shipping 2 million Switch consoles this month — a few unlucky customers are bound to end up with units that are defective in some way. It’s also difficult to get a sense of how widespread the individual issues are.

Pictures of Nintendo Switch hardware with error screens are circulating online, showing the console in an unplayable state. A Reddit user who posted about his bricked console said that, after speaking to Nintendo’s customer support, he had no option but to replace the system.

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A Switch with the so-called blue screen of death.
supportdevil/Reddit

Neither Nintendo nor Switch owners have yet pinpointed a cause for the issue, although there are some ideas. Reddit users speculated on whether the blue screen is the result of the required day-one update or a hardware defect; it’s not clear which is the case, although the latter seems more likely.

Owners who have experienced the similar orange screen — another rare issue, it seems — say it’s occurred randomly, but Reddit users have found a fix: Rebooting the system by holding down the power button seems to solve the screen problem.

It’s not clear if that’s the primary solution, however. It also doesn’t work for the blue screen problem, nor did it solve a problem another Switch owner had with a flickering screen. He had to get a replacement, too.

Another hardware issue has to do with the Switch’s dock, not the device itself. Glixel reports that after a week of “daily use,” the site’s Switch bears a number of scratches on its screen. To be clear, the scratches appeared on the lower left part of the bezel, not on the screen itself.

Glixel’s investigation found that the issue seems to be the design of the dock’s interior. Because there’s no soft lining or padding there, players who slide the Switch into the dock with poor aim may miss the USB-C port in the center. “Juggling the device into the slot (even carefully) eventually scrapes it against the hard insides of the dock, resulting in little hairline scratches that start to build up over time,” said Glixel.

Polygon noticed an issue with Nintendo’s official screen protector for the Switch. When they tried to apply it, it came up a little short on both the left and right sides of the unit’s screen. This was the screen protector that came with Nintendo’s Switch carrying case, which costs $19.99 and can hold five game cartridges.

Of course, the more persistent issue with the Switch is the dreaded connectivity problem with the left Joy-Con controller. Nintendo told Polygon that “we have received some reports and are looking into it,” and the company also added a page to its support site about this exact issue. That page recommends removing or turning off devices that could interfere with the Switch’s Bluetooth connection to the controllers, suggesting that the problem is a hardware issue.

Are you having any problems with the Nintendo Switch? A Nintendo Spokesperson has said that “For help with any hardware or software related questions, visit http://support.nintendo.com.”

2)No Man’s Sky wins a GDC Award, no one was around to accept it

No Man’s Sky developer Hello Games won the award for innovation at this year’s Game Developers Choice Awards, but it clearly wasn’t expecting to. As a result, the indie team wasn’t there in person to accept its award from host Tim Schafer.

Why? They were otherwise preoccupied — Hello Games team members who made the trip to San Francisco for GDC were eating dinner at the time — and said they didn’t expect to win anyway.

When Schafer announced that No Man’s Sky had won the Innovation Award at tonight’s festivities, he called out, “Going once… going twice…” after it appeared that no one was en route to the stage to accept the neon green robot trophy. Once it was clear no one from Hello Games was on hand to receive the award, Schafer accepted it on the developer’s behalf.

Shortly after that awkward event transpired, Hello Games code lead Innes McKendrick explained what happened on Twitter:

The Hello Games GDC crew eventually did make its way over to the awards, but they were a little too late to make up for the no-show earlier in the evening.

McKendrick later said the developer’s absence during its award win was “quite embarrassing” — but after Hello Games’ drubbing from consumers and critics over No Man’s Sky’s final product, the presumption from the studio that it wouldn’t win an award is understandable.

Hello Games’ Sean Murray said on Twitter he believed that if No Man’s Sky was going to win anything tonight, the organizers probably would have told them ahead of time. (Apparently they didn’t.)

As for the rest of the winners — most of whom were present to receive their awards and give acceptance speeches — here they are:

GDC Award Winners

Best Debut
Firewatch – Campo Santo

Best Audio
Inside – Playdead

Innovation Award
No Man’s Sky – Hello Games

Best Technology
Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End – Naughty Dog

Best VR/AR
Job Simulator – Owlchemy Labs

Best Visual Art
Inside – Playdead

Best Narrative
Firewatch – Camp Santo

Best Design
Overwatch – Blizzard Entertainment

Best Mobile/Handheld Game
Pokémon Go – Niantic

Audience Award
Battlefield 1 – EA/DICE

Game of the Year
Overwatch – Blizzard Entertainment
IGF Award Winners

Best Student Game
Un Pas Fragile

Excellence in Visual Art
Hyper Light Drifter

Excellence in Audio
Gonner

Alt.Ctrl.GDC Award
Fear Sphere

Nuovo Award
Oikospiel Book I

Excellence in Design
Quadrilateral Cowboy

Excellence in Narrative
Ladykiller in a Bind

Audience Award
Hyper Light Drifter

Seumas McNally Grand Prize
Quadrilateral Cowboy

1)Twitch is partnering with game devs to sell games on site

Twitch announced this week it’s partnering with a variety of developers and studios, including Ubisoft and Telltale Games, to sell games directly to players via Twitch streams.

Viewers will see a button giving them the option to purchase the game just under the main window on a streamers’ page. It can be seen in the photo below. As an extra incentive, when viewers purchase a game through a streamer’s page, the streamer will get five percent of the sale and the viewer purchasing the game will receive a free Twitch Crate. Crate’s come with randomized items that are tailored to specific Twitch streamers and allows the owner of said crate to drop exclusive emotes, chat badges and “Bits for Cheering” while watching that streamer.

Mock_Up_Image_of_how_it_will_look

Games purchased via Twitch can be played via the company’s desktop app or through existing developer and publisher-owned services like UPlay, according to a press release. It appears that games downloaded through Twitch won’t be available to be played through services like Steam, but Polygon has reached out for clarification. Valve isn’t listed as one of the developers teaming up with Twitch. As a result, Valve-owned games, like Dota 2 and Counter Strike: Global Offensive, two of the most popular games broadcasted via Twitch, will not be available to purchase via the streaming service. Riot Games, the developer behind League of Legends, is also not listed as a participating studio.

Developers like Ubisoft, Telltale Games, Digital Extremes, Hi-Rez Studios, tinyBuild, Paradox Interactive, Trion Worlds and Vlambeer will participate in the new sales initiative. When games are sold via stream, the developer will take 70 percent of the profit and Twitch will take 25 percent, leaving 5 present for the streamer if they opt in the program.

“Since the streamer gets a revenue share of purchases made, this is a great way to further support streamers who educate and entertain viewers,” Todd Harris, co-founder and COO of Rez Studios, said in a press release.

Neither Twitch nor the developers listed above have announced which games will be available to purchase through streamers’ channels yet. The promotional photo Twitch released, as seen above, seems to confirm Ubisoft’s The Division will be one of the first games viewers can purchase through the streaming service.

With this news, many have wondered how this will effect streamers who opt in to the program, as it was only back in 2014 when the Advertising Standards Authority ruled any video that the creator is being paid to advertise a product, must make it clear to it’s viewers, creating the now widely known use of #AD in any paid sponsored content.

Now we do not know how and if Twitch will make it clear to viewers if the streamer has Opted in to the program or not, but we will have to see when it begins this Spring.

UK GAME CHARTS

A bumper week for gaming is led by Horizon Zero Dawn which tops the chart as Sony’s biggest ever PS4 launch of a new IP (ahead of No Man’s Sky).  Released on Wednesday Horizon Zero Dawn is also the biggest launch of the year so far and Sony’s biggest launch since Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. Ubisoft’s For Honor falls from No1 to No5, having to make way for both Horizon Zero Dawn and new Nintendo Switch titles.

Released on Friday, Nintendo Switch brings with it The Legend of Zelda: The Breath of the Wild, which debuts at No2 for both Switch and Wii U. 78% of sales were for the Switch version with 22% for Wii U.  The Switch version becomes the 3rd biggest ever launch of a Zelda title, behind Wind Waker on Gamecube and Twilight Princess on Wii. 

There were 5 new Switch games at launch, 3 of which enter the Top 10 including 1-2 Switch new at No4 and Konami’s Super Bomberman R debuting at No7.  The Switch version of Just Dance 2017 helps Ubisoft’s game re-enter the Top 40 at No24, while the Switch version of Skylanders Imaginators fails to lift the title back in to the chart.  The only other new game to make the Top 40 this week is Telltale’s The Walking Dead: The New Frontier which begins life at No19.

Down 4 to No.5:               FOR HONOR

New at No.4:                     1-2 SWITCH

Still at No.3:                       GRAND THEFT AUTO V

New at No.2:                     THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: BREATH OF THE WILD

New at No.1:                      HORIZON ZERO DAWN

NEW RELEASES

GAMES RELEASED ON TUESDAY 7TH MARCH

Ghost Recon: Wildlands (PC, PS4, Xbox One)
Nier: Automata (PS4)
Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 (PC, PS4, Xbox One)
Lego Worlds (PS4, Xbox One)
Atelier Firis: The Alchemist and the Mysterious Journey (PC, PS4, Vita)
Clicker Heroes (PS4)
Darknet (PSVR)
Dino Dini’s Kick Off Revival (PS4, Vita – with cross buy)
Disc Jam (PS4)
Gem Smashers (PS4, Vita)
Loot Rascals (PS4)
Shift Happens (PS4)
Sublevel Zero Redux (PS4)
Talisman Digital Edition (PS4, Vita – with cross buy)
Total Jigsaw (PS4)
Unearthing Mars (PSVR)

GAMES RELEASED ON WEDNESDAY 8TH MARCH
Verdun (Xbox One)

GAMES RELEASED ON THURSDAY 9TH MARCH
Blaster Master Zero (3DS, Switch)
Voez (Switch)

GAMES RELEASED ON FRIDAY 10TH MARCH
2Dark (PS4)

YouTube videos of the week

Welcome as we look back at what went up this week

Don’t forget that we are back with the Podcast this Wednesday. The Update will be back next week with more news, uk charts and game releases.

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