E3 public tickets on sale next week

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E3 public tickets on sale next week

Consumer tickets for this year’s E3 will go on sale Feb. 12, according to show organizer the Entertainment Software Association.

The video game industry’s annual jamboree has been running since 1995. Until last year, it was only open to members of the trade such as retailers, developers and publishers as well as media. But last year, the ESA sold 15,000 tickets to consumers, reversing a general decline in attendance.

Kirby Star Allies’ multiplayer is built around charming your worst enemies

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Kirby Star Allies’ multiplayer is built around charming your worst enemies

When the first commercials appeared for the Nintendo Switch, the company made sure to stress its portability, but also that it can be used as the life of a party. By highlighting its multiplayer games out of the gate, the Switch could be something the other consoles couldn’t. So it makes sense that Kirby Star Allies, the latest addition in the Kirby franchise, would prominently feature multiplayer.

I recently got the chance to play two early Star Allies levels, and that experienced focused on heavily on the multiplayer component. It’s easy to see why. It’s a completely new way to play Kirby.

Quantic Dream calls harassment allegations ‘unfounded,’ pursuing legal action

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Quantic Dream calls harassment allegations ‘unfounded,’ pursuing legal action

After refuting reported claims of workplace harassment last month, French developer Quantic Dream says it is looking into legal action in order to “defend the reputation of our studio” against what it calls “unfounded attacks.”

“Since January 14, 2018, Quantic Dream has been the subject of a smear campaign by some [media], based on slanderous statements, the truthfulness and origin of which are questionable,” the developer wrote in a French-language post on its Facebook page.

Game of Thrones creators working on new series of Star Wars films

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Game of Thrones creators working on new series of Star Wars films

The creators behind HBO’s Game of Thrones, David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, are working on a new series of Star Wars movies, Lucasfilm announced today. Benioff and Weiss will write and produce the unnamed Star Wars series.

The new Star Wars films will be separate from the “episodic Skywalker saga” — Episodes I through IX — and the recently announced trilogy being developed by Star Wars: The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson.

Counter-Strike co-creator charged with paying minor for sex

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Counter-Strike co-creator charged with paying minor for sex

Seattle police have charged Counter-Strike co-creator Jess Cliffe with commercial sexual abuse of a minor, according to a police report. Cliffe was arrested last week for sexual exploitation of a child as part of an investigation by the King County Sheriffs Office that dates back to May 2017.

Cliffe, who was released on $150,000 bail, is accused of paying a 16-year-old girl for sex on multiple occasions.

Viz Media enters games publishing with an anime-inspired debut

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Viz Media enters games publishing with an anime-inspired debut

Viz Media, best known for publishing comic and animated adaptations of gaming franchises like The Legend of Zelda and Pokémon, is adding actual, original video games to its roster. The company announced that it has teamed up with Portland-based indie studio Rose City Games to release its debut project, the rad-looking The World Next Door.

The focus of Viz Media’s new gaming arm will be what it calls “original, narrative-driven games,” the first of which will be developed by Rose City Games. Viz Media said that it’s also “accepting publishing inquiries from developers with games at all stages of production.”

Close Combat: The Bloody First is coming out this year

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Close Combat: The Bloody First is coming out this year

The Close Combat series, first launched in 1996, is getting a new release this year. Close Combat: The Bloody First, which has languished in development limbo since 2014, will be released sometime in 2018, according to the series’ publisher, Slitherine.

Close Combat is a series of World War II-themed real-time strategy games. Designed from a top-down perspective, players take the role of a unit commander, issuing orders to soldiers in the field. Morale is a significant factor in every engagement, as are the principles of command and control. Push too far, too fast, and your units will lose contact with their leaders and, likely, the will to fight. The series predates the WWII bubble of the early 2000s, that included shooters like Medal of Honor (1999) and Call of Duty (2003). It’s closest contemporary is the Combat Mission series.

Report: Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 coming this year

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Report: Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 coming this year

This year, Call of Duty will return to what is perhaps the franchise’s most popular subseries, Black Ops, for a fourth entry, according to a report from Eurogamer.

Citing multiple sources, Eurogamer reports that Activision subsidiary Treyarch is working on Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 for a launch “late in the year.” It would be no surprise for Treyarch to develop this year’s title — it is Treyarch’s turn in the three-year rotation that the Call of Duty franchise runs on, and the studio made the previous Black Ops games. Sledgehammer Games developed last year’s title, Call of Duty: WWII, and Infinity Ward made 2016’s entry in the series, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare.

Pokémon Go challenge quests incoming, says datamine

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Pokémon Go challenge quests incoming, says datamine

Pokémon Go will soon include a quests feature, according to a datamine of the game’s latest update. Included in the mobile game’s files are several hints that quests will deepen the lore of Pokémon Go — including giving some of its original characters more to do in-game.

The Silph Road community of Pokémon Go “researchers” unpacked the version 0.91.1 update, which will soon go live for Android and iOS users. The game’s biggest Reddit community is known for its deep dives into Pokémon Go’s new and forthcoming updates, often revealing features ahead of their official introduction.