For the second year, Blizzard has launched a seasonal event to celebrate the Lunar New Year. As promised in a Developer Update video earlier this week, players get a new Thailand-inspired map and competitive mode for Capture The Flag, as well as new skins. There are a couple more changes, too -- including, at long last, the ability to change your hero's outfit at the start of the match.
Sasha 'Scarlett' Hostyn is one of the most skilled and successful women in eSports, and she just won a major StarCraft 2 tournament. Not just any competition, either: An Intel Extreme Masters (IEM) tournament was held in Pyeongchang ahead of this weekend's Winter Olympics and, most importantly, is the first competition backed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). In other words, as Polygon pointed out, Scarlett became the first female winner of a big international StarCraft 2 tournament, which itself is a promising foray in eSports and Olympic collaboration.
The Game Developers Conference (GDC) takes place in San Francisco next month and this year's event includes the GDC's first ever film festival. For three days starting March 19th, the GDC will host a selection of documentary and narrative films focused on the art and culture of video games, and Q&As with the filmmakers will follow most of the screenings.
If you buy a lot of Switch games, good news — Nintendo is about to reward you with some discounted software. The company announced in a blog post today that you'll soon be able to spend Gold Points — earned by purchasing Nintendo games — on Switch software in the eShop. Each Gold Point is worth one British pence, which means you'll need to buy a lot of games (a £40 game on the eShop will net you 200 Gold Points, or £2) before you can get something substantial for free. If you don't have enough points, you can always make up the difference with regular cash.
Monster Hunter: World is the latest entry in a decade-plus game franchise dedicated to killing huge monsters. But the series has another reputation: barely explained mechanics, labyrinthine menus and difficult co-op play. Capcom smoothed out a lot of those rough edges for Monster Hunter: World and released it simultaneously worldwide, which has made it the most accessible of the franchise. Now, finally, it can take the crown as the best co-op boss fight experience out there.
This year's EVO, arguably the biggest fighting game tournament, will feature eight titles in Las Vegas year, including established favorites like Street Fighter 5, Tekken 7 and Super Smash Bros. Melee. Capcom's Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite, however, will not be making an appearance this year. The series has regularly appeared at the tournament, but the newest addition apparently hasn't made the cut. Don't worry though, in its place there's new games!
It's the Year of the Dog in Overwatch, and Blizzard game director Jeff Kaplan has revealed a little more about what we can expect from the game's seasonal event. The biggest headline is a new, Thailand-based map, which Kaplan says is "absolutely gorgeous". One side boasts an ancient feel, with a temple, the other is more "bright and beautiful" and modern. More importantly, though, this is the first map Blizzard has ever made specifically for Capture the Flag, which is also returning with the event.