The games industry has been grappling with crunch as companies rush to complete projects by their release date, but staff at Epic Games have reportedly complained of similar conditions due to the explosive success of Fortnite.
Polygon reports that several current and former staff members spoke under the condition of anonymity about the crunch culture at the studio. While Epic had always needed to pull long hours at some points, developers felt they knew when the periods were coming and could prepare themselves. Fortnite was different because the wild popularity of its battle royale mode was so sudden and unexpected.
The result was reportedly long work weeks, some as much as 70-100 hours, with employees complaining of stress and unhealthy behaviors. While it wasn't strictly required, they said, some employees were fired for missing deadlines after choosing not to work weekends. That helped create a culture of expectation for the long hours.
While Fallout 76 has gotten off to a rough start, Bethesda continues to implement bug fixes and patch updates to get the game into a more playable state. The game's latest patch update, Wild Appalachia Patch 8.5, intends to address growing pains, adds the controversial repair kits, introduces a new photo mode, and more. Here's a rundown on the highlights and the full patch notes.
The update is out now on PS4, Xbox One, and PC. On consoles, it's approximately 2GB in size, while the PC version is a little under 1GB. The headlining feature is the addition of repair kits. These single-use items, which restore an item to 100% (Basic) or 150% (Improved) condition, have been added to the Atomic Shop and can be purchased using Atoms unlocked with either microtransactions or by completing in-game challenges.
In response to criticism, Bethesda has explained why these new items have made their way into Fallout 76. "While Repair Kits do offer a way to fix an item in the field, we feel you will find that they are a convenient option you can utilize during your adventures," the patch update reads. "If we find that Repair Kits do offer any sort of competitive advantage once they are available, we will make any changes necessary to ensure that advantage is removed."
With E3 2019 less than two months away, many publishers have begun detailing their plans for this year's show. Last week, Microsoft confirmed the date and time of its annual Xbox press conference, and now Square Enix has announced it is holding another live presentation of its own at this year's expo.
The Square Enix Live broadcast is scheduled to take place on Monday, June 10, at 6 PM PT / 9 PM ET--the time slot traditionally occupied by Sony's E3 press conference. Sony, of course, won't be using that time slot this year, as the company announced back in November that it won't be attending E3 2019, leaving a sizable gap for other publishers to fill.
The Square Enix Live presentation will be broadcast online on the company's website and other social media channels. As for what will be revealed during the broadcast, Square Enix has only hinted that it will focus on "another exciting line up of titles." Last year, the company showcased Kingdom Hearts 3, Just Cause 4, and even revealed a handful of unannounced games like Babylon's Fall, a new title from Bayonetta developer Platinum Games.
Avengers: Endgame is nearly upon us. A whole year after the traumatic events of Infinity War, the next movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe finally releases in theaters this Friday, April 26. Ahead of that, another new TV spot has been released.
It’s very short and doesn't offer any footage of Iron Man, Black Widow, and company that we've not already seen in previous teasers, but we do get some new dialogue. It's really just a countdown--both to the movie's release in three days time and the Avengers' mission to save their friends and stop Thanos. We see Earth's Mightiest Heroes gathered and ready for some kind of operation to undo the catastrophic events of Infinity War, seemingly with Bruce Banner counting down to some kind of go signal. Nonetheless, it's all still very exciting--check it out above.
This is the latest in quite a bit of promotional material released over the past few weeks. There was a TV spot featuring new footage of Captain Marvel's new suit, another that showed Hawkeye getting into a fight on a street, a teaser that focuses on the team's mission, and the first full clip from the movie.
While checking out what is new on Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, or Hulu seems to be a daily part of our routine in this day in age, there are still plenty of people buying physical copies of movies, as well as shopping for them digitally. This week, there are a few new movies to check out from digital sellers like Google Play and iTunes, and a couple new DVD/Blu-ray releases of note.
It's a pretty light week for releases, but there is one worth picking up, and that's Escape Room. It wasn't a huge hit and critics felt lukewarm about it, but the movie ended up being a ton of fun. The movie follows a group of people who are trying to win a cash prize by beating an escape room that can kill you. It's like Cube meets Saw, but they took out all the gore. It's very much a "turn off your brain and enjoy the ride" type of movie, which is a nice refresher between movies where superheroes are punching people through walls. GameSpot recently spoke with Escape Room star Deborah Ann Woll about her role in the film: "Generally in my career, I get cast as the sort of strong willed person with their heart on their sleeve. And it was really nice to play a physical person [this time]." You can check out an exclusive clip from the film above.