This Weeks Gaming News: 10/07/23
By Nikola Hristov
Welcome everybody! In this weekly roundup of all the trending news from the past seven days we have compiled everything that's important for you to stay up to date! What exactly is happening in the online space, and what can you expect from your beloved franchises in the future? Well, let's find out right now!
1. PS5 Slim potentially coming later this year?
Ah yes, the trial regarding the Microsoft buyout of Activision Blizzard, the gift that keeps on giving! As we all know, Sony is very strictly against this acquisition, since one of the most profitable franchises on PlayStation is Call of Duty, property of Activision's. Despite all the promises that it will stay on Sony's consoles, PlayStation executives refuse to believe that, so the fight will probably continue for a while. Microsoft's main argument is that they are currently losing the "console wars" between PlayStation, Nintendo and Xbox, and they're constantly trying to undermine their opposition by revealing their future marketing plans. In a twist of events, they ended up revealing that the already rumoured PS5 Slim is not only expected to come out later this year, but also priced the same as the Digital PS5 – 399.99$. Despite the console shortage pretty much not being a problem anywhere now, this is exciting news for people who still may not own this amazing console! Slim versions also don't necessarily lose out on performance compared to the originals, so this may just be a better upgrade no matter how you look at it. One of the PS5's biggest drawbacks is its massive size, which depending on your setup, may be a deciding factor on where to put it. With a slimmer build, that shouldn't be a problem anymore.
2. Marvel's Spider-Man 2 news confirmed for San Diego Comic Con
One of, if not the most hyped up releases this year is Insomniac Games' next instalment in the Marvel's Spider-Man franchise, coming exclusively to PlayStation 5 on October 20th. However, ever since the PS showcase in May and the release date reveal during Summer Game Fest, fans have been thirsty for more news about the game. Thankfully, the developers themselves have officially confirmed that we will be getting extra news regarding the so-called "Symbiotic relationships" in the game. Most likely alluding to Peter Parker's new Symbiote suit, and of course Venom. We're all excited and can't wait to see what they've got in store for us during SDCC! The panel will happen on July 20th.
3. Baldur's Gate 3 lets you…do what with a bear?
Man is this a funny one. Larian, the developers of the game coming out on the 3rd of August, have teased some very unusual romance options in Baldur's Gate 3. Yea, it's exactly as you expect – there's an NPC called Halsin, who you rescue from a prison. In classic RPG fashion, if you do the right things and choose the right choices…then options appear in front of you – including some 'sexy' ones. However, this is on a whole another level – a druid has the ability to transform into animals, and Halsin does exactly that. So yeah, you get a romance option with a shapeshifting bear, who is actually a druid. Interesting, to say the least…but the memes will be glorious!
4. Mortal Kombat 1's new Lin Kuei trailer confirms new characters and lore changes
NetherRealm Studios put out a new trailer along with the Mortal Kombat event "Kombat Kast" where they revealed new characters and gameplay features about the upcoming game. They showcased Scorpion and Johnny Cage gameplay, along with the Kameo versions of Kung Lao and Kano. However, by far the most exciting part are the additions to the roster, which while old, still feel like new characters – Smoke and Rain. Fans of the franchise remember both of them from previous entries, because of their unique skillsets using…well, smoke abilities and water. What's more interesting however is the fact that Rain has a staff and therefore a new skillset now, while Smoke is part of the Lin Kuei clan along with Sub-Zero and Scorpion, and they're all brothers in arms. It will be really interesting to see how the new lore changes the relationships of the characters. So far, the game looks excellent and like a breath of fresh air for the MK Franchise.
5. Assassin's Creed Mirage's educational purpose
Ubisoft have revealed that on top of the gameplay changes that are made as a love letter to the old AC games, such as no RPG mechanics and more focus on parkour and stealth, Mirage is also expected to mirror what the older games did with their historical settings. For example, in the Ezio trilogy, players would visit specific historical sites that each had a paragraph or two that you unlocked by going to them, thus telling the story of the buildings and the people around them. It seems this is also coming back, as the developers have confirmed that they truly aim to educate players on the history of Baghdad during the Abbasid Caliphate period. This is great news, as one of the core aspects of these games is historical accuracy. They can teach you quite a lot about their respective time periods. I know that's true for me, I never would've known as much about Renaissance Italy if it wasn't for AC 2 and Brotherhood.
6. Xbox and Bethesda are attending Gamescom 2023
Here's a little bit of exciting news for Xbox fans as well – Bethesda have confirmed that they will appear on the floor in Cologne, Germany during Gamescom this year. Sony won't be there, but Nintendo will, just as they announced back in April. The real exciting part is the fact that players will be able to try the most hyped up release for Xbox this year – Starfield, before its September 6th release date. We may also expect some news about other games, most likely updates for titles we already know about, but potential announcements are always possible. The event will happen from the 23rd till the 27th of August.
7. Genesis – the Overwatch 2 Anime short with a promising future
Though I haven't played Overwatch since the release of OW 2, back in the day, especially 2018, I played it daily and almost non-stop. However, because of how greedily Blizzard have handled the battle pass and skin obtainability system, I refuse to log in again, despite how much I love this franchise. The announcement of the PvE Mode's cancelation, or rather, its change-up into yet ANOTHER piece of content for you to pay 15$ to play, was the nail in the coffin for my interest in the game. Thankfully, just like Riot did with League and Arcane, and just like CD Projekt did with Cyberpunk 2077 and Edgerunners, Blizzard have chosen the way of videogame show adaptations – as an Overwatch anime called Genesis regarding the omnics and their history inside the world of the game is being released. This has a lot of promise to it – and if Blizzard get it right, they may even reignite players' interest in the franchise. Episode 1 of 3 was published on YouTube and it was fine. But just like everything, Blizzard need to up their quality and quantity, as they've lost the fanbase's trust during these last few years, and they need a way to get it back.
8. Netflix' The Witcher is not going in the right direction
Okay, this one's a bit personal for me, as I'm a massive fan of the games and books, and the franchise as a whole. The show has always been a mess, especially in season 2 with its questionable decisions about Eskel and other characters, but it has its moments of brilliance, especially when Henry Cavil is involved. We know, however, that he will be replaced as Geralt during season 4 of the series, yet the current season airing on Netflix still features him. And the company has made sure people know that by blasting the message "Henry is still Geralt" everywhere, both in real life and social media. They know he's the main thing that draws fans to watch the show – because we understand that Henry 'gets' The Witcher's story and we love him for it. In fact, that's probably why he left. As much as I want to be optimistic, I fully believe Lauren Hissrich has no idea what she's doing, as she refuses to follow the source material and continuously ignores fans' pleads to do so. Look, the games were also different from the books, but the same soul of the franchise was still there. This just ain't it chief – and I'm certain The Witcher is just a ticking time bomb we're all waiting to explode when Henry officially gets replaced.
9. Deadpool 3 might be bringing back…Elektra?
For all 5 fans of the original Daredevil movie with Ben Affleck, this is exciting news! For everyone else – it's very confusing news! We know that Deadpool 3 will star both Ryan Reynolds and Hugh Jackman as DP and Wolverine, and we all guessed that it would have something to do with the multiverse too. Rumours started flying around about Ben Affleck's return as Daredevil, but now with the casting of Garner that seems pretty much confirmed. Which is weird for two reasons – one, the movie was NOT well received by fans, and more importantly – Affleck and Garner are ex-spouses. So this will probably be awkward for them…but when the mouse says do something for money, Marvel have to listen! Pretty much no one will be watching Deadpool 3 for these two though – instead, we're all looking forward to the exciting return of the hairy Canadian with claws and the merc with a mouth.
10. Barbie banned in Vietnam?
We are all excited about Barbenheimer day, right? The day where we watch the goofiest movie in the world, and the most depressing one right after. July 21st will be glorious! But not for everybody it seems – as Barbie was banned from Vietnam's cinemas. And the reason is quite interesting – the movie features a scene regarding the Nine-Dash line – which essentially features territorial claims made by China, which other countries around it don't agree with – specifically Vietnam and the Philippines. Margot Robbie herself stated that the scene isn't meant to incite offense between the Eastern Asian countries and while that's obviously the case, the governments of Vietnam have already made their decision, while the Philippines are considering it. Sucks for you, Vietnamese movie-goers…you may miss the biggest masterpiece in cinema history! Oh well, at least you still have Chris Nolan and Cillian Murphy's flick, for what it's worth…
Well, that's about everything for this week's news! Stay tuned for more gaming reviews and articles regarding all your favourite franchises right here, on One Up Gaming.
Written by: Nikola Hristov