It's tempting to compete for a spot in the Overwatch League -- make it big and you could earn a solid income from your Mercy or Reinhardt skills. But getting there isn't necessarily easy, and Blizzard thinks it can help. As of March, the studio is expanding Overwatch Contenders (its development league) to cover virtually the entire globe. The existing regional leagues in China, South Korea and Asia-Pacific are becoming Contenders leagues, while there are new Contenders leagues in Australia and South America. Your team will have more chances to prove itself and, hopefully, attract the attention of Overwatch League scouts.
Amazon probably isn't the first company you think of when it comes to augmented or virtual reality (with a few exceptions), but it's determined to change your mind. The internet giant has unveiled a developer service, Sumerian, that promises to simplify creating AR and VR apps -- and general 3D apps, for that matter. You can drag-and-drop objects to quickly create 3D scenes, produce animated AI-driven characters (powered by AWS cloud services, naturally) and script interactions between the user and other objects.
The fight against people cheating in online games is getting ugly. Specifically, Epic Games is suing 14 year-old Caleb Rogers for allegedly modding the game and causing the developer to lose profits from his activity in the free-to-play "Battle Royale" mode for Fortnite. Rogers' mother filed a letter with North Carolina's US District Court saying that Epic "has no capability of proving any form of modification" because her son merely installed cheats he downloaded from Addicted Cheats, versus altering the game's source code himself.
You've seen basketball and soccer (aka football) teams dive into eSports, and now it's the turn for individual Formula One drivers to get in on the action. McLaren Honda driver Fernando Alonso has launched an eSports team in partnership with Logitech, with Alonso serving as a team principal. The FA Racing G2 Logitech G team -- yes, it's a mouthful -- will compete in a slew of games across multiple platforms, and has already enlisted F1 eSports league finalist Cem Bolukbasi.
For everybody that's watched Ghost in the Shell and thought to themselves, "yes, I too would like to experience tearing tanks apart with my bare hands," your day has come. Well, sort of. Bandai Namco has partnered with VR Zone Shinjuku, a 40,000-square foot VR arcade center, to develop an eight player competitive shooter based on the GiTS universe and they're calling it Ghost in the Shell: Arise Stealth Hounds.
If you still don't own an SNES Classic Edition, you'll have a chance to get one tomorrow, November 25th. Best Buy has announced that it will sell Nintendo's mini, retro console in stores across the US starting at 9AM local time. Not surprisingly, you'll have to be at the door early since stock will be limited. There's going to be a cap of one per customer, and Best Buy said in a blog post that it's going to offer a first-come, first-served ticketing system for customers waiting in line.
Tamagotchi is celebrating its 20th birthday this year with the release of a special anniversary edition, which was good enough to land on our holiday gift guide. But, the festivities don't end there, as the virtual pet is (at long last) making the leap to smartphones in 2018. My Tamagotchi Forever for iOS and Android gives the pixellated blob with a face a much-needed makeover. The game is set in colorful "Tamatown," home to other cutesy inhabitants that you can make friends with -- much like Nintendo's latest mobile offering, Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp.
Developers are still eager to show their gratitude to Nintendo's late Satoru Iwata. Gamers have learned that Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon include a clear, heartfelt tribute to the company's long-serving president. It requires that you have a creature carried over from Pokémon Silver (thankfully available in the eShop) and a trek to the Game Freak building in Heahea City, but it's worth the effort to read a short-but-sweet anecdote about one of Nintendo's most appreciated leaders.