Epic Online Services launches, giving other games access to Fortnite-style cross-play and more

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Epic Online Services launches, giving other games access to Fortnite-style cross-play and more

Epic Online Services is now available, giving developers free access to the same kinds of tools used to support Epic Games’ massive Fortnite player base. The new suite, which went live on Wednesday, enables a unified gameplay experience across multiple platforms, including Nintendo Switch, PlayStation, PC platforms (Windows, Mac, and Linux), and Xbox. It gives developers and their communities ready access to features like cross-play, cross-progression, unified matchmaking, lobbies, and more. Support for Android and iOS platforms will be added soon.

“At Epic, we believe in open, integrated platforms and in the future of gaming being a highly social and connected experience,” said Chris Dyl, general manager of online services at Epic Games, in a news release. “Through Epic Online Services, we strive to help build a user-friendly ecosystem for both developers and players, where creators can benefit regardless of how they choose to build and publish their games, and where players can play games with their friends and enjoy the same quality experience regardless of the hardware they own.”

Here’s Unreal Engine 5 running on the PlayStation 5

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Here’s Unreal Engine 5 running on the PlayStation 5

Epic Games unveiled the newest version of its game engine, Unreal Engine 5, on Wednesday, showcasing what its next generation of game technology will look like — while also giving us our first official look at software running on Sony’s PlayStation 5.

The demo, which Epic says is running in real time on a PS5, is impressive. At the heart of Epic Games’ next-gen engine are two new pieces of technology: Nanite, a virtualized geometry system that will let artists import and render 3D models and environments composed of billions of polygons; and Lumen, a global illumination system that will enable dynamic, highly realistic lighting in games. The demo also showcases the fast loading of massive game worlds that will be enabled by built-in SSD technology in the PlayStation 5. Don’t let the demo’s ol’ shimmying-through-a-narrow-gap loading trick dissuade you — the end of the demo pays off with an astounding fly-through of the game world.

Fortnite will be on PS5 and Xbox Series X at launch

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Fortnite will be on PS5 and Xbox Series X at launch

Epic Games revealed Unreal Engine 5 on Wednesday, the latest iteration of its popular game engine. Epic’s presentation was very next-generation-focused, so it’s no surprise that the company also announced that Fortnite will be a launch title for both the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.

During the presentation, Epic showed off footage of the new Unreal Engine running on a PS5, but Fortnite won’t be running on Unreal Engine 5 when it launches on next-gen consoles. It will initially be the Unreal Engine 4 version that’s currently available everywhere else; Epic said that it will bring Fortnite to Unreal Engine 5 in mid-2021.

PlayStation 5 still on track for holiday 2020 launch, Sony says

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PlayStation 5 still on track for holiday 2020 launch, Sony says

Sony’s PlayStation 5 is still on track for its holiday 2020 launch window, the company said in a statement issued in its financial results (PDF). Next-generation games shouldn’t be affected either, Sony said.

“Regarding the launch of PlayStation 5, although factors such as employees working from home and restrictions on international travel have presented some challenges in regards to part of the testing process and the qualification of production lines, development is progressing with the launch of the console scheduled for the 2020 holiday season,” Sony said in the statement. “At this point in time major problems have not arisen in the game software development pipeline for Sony’s own first-party studios or its partners’ studios.”

Mafia: Trilogy remaster teased by 2K

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Mafia: Trilogy remaster teased by 2K

The Mafia series, one of the most underrated modern gaming franchises, is getting a new release as a complete trilogy, 2K games and Hangar 13 revealed on Wednesday.

The announcement came with a very short teaser that flashes between characters from all three games, but doesn’t show much else. The trailer confirms Mafia: Trilogy for PlayStation 4, Windows PC (via Steam and the Epic Games Store), and Xbox One. Each Mafia game came out for a completely different console generation, which means this is the first time they’ll all be playable on the same system — excluding PC.

Animal Crossing fans find a complex item duplication glitch

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Animal Crossing fans find a complex item duplication glitch

Animal Crossing: New Horizons players keep finding increasingly complex item duplication glitches. First, there was the cloning glitch that required two separate players and a spinning item. The next worked under highly specific circumstances — 2x1 items could be duplicated by rotating them around a table. Now, there’s another one that lets you duplicate any item you can send in the mail, but it’s got a heckuva lot of steps. Oh, and it’s also essentially a speedrun.

To do this glitch, you’ll need three separate characters on your island, moveable mailboxes, and two Joy-Con controllers. But before you begin, you’ll want to move mailboxes close to your Resident Services plaza to make things quicker — but if you can’t do that, there are still ways to make this work. It’s just harder.

Sony unveils PlayStation Studios’ new look with a Marvel Studios-like intro

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Sony unveils PlayStation Studios’ new look with a Marvel Studios-like intro

Sony is simplifying the branding it uses for games developed by its Sony Interactive Entertainment Worldwide Studios teams with a new logo and a new, much shorter name: PlayStation Studios. On Tuesday the company unveiled the branding, which comes with a new animation that, yes, does indeed look very much like the Marvel Studios intro that plays before Marvel’s movies.

The opening animation for PlayStation Studios games features Sony’s characters — Nathan Drake from Uncharted, Aloy from Horizon Zero Dawn, Kratos from God of War, Ratchet and Clank, and others — reflected upon the 3D versions of the triangle, circle, cross, and square icons.

Valorant team bans over 8,000 cheaters in closed beta

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Valorant team bans over 8,000 cheaters in closed beta

Valorant, the competitive shooter from Riot Games, is still in closed beta. Would-be players can get beta keys by watching select Twitch streams, but the doors aren’t open to everyone quite yet. Riot is still fine-tuning the game, including its anti-cheat detection. Today, Riot Games anti-cheat developer Phillip Koskinas tweeted that nearly 9,000 accounts had been banned from playing Valorant.

Even though this is just closed beta, we've promised that we're going to be heavily committed to anti-cheat. This banwave is still only the beginning. We're going to ensure the highest standard of competitive integrity in VALORANT. https://t.co/EjxuYG0JEE

Netflix’s Trollhunters cartoon is getting a video game adaptation

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Netflix’s Trollhunters cartoon is getting a video game adaptation

Trollhunters: Tales of Arcadia, the Netflix series created by Guillermo del Toro, will get a video game adaptation set to release on PC and consoles this September 25, 2020. The game, to be called Defenders of Arcadia, will be produced by Outright Games and Universal Games and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment Europe.

The Tales of Arcadia trilogy on Netflix is made up of three shows: Trollhunters, 3Below, and an upcoming series called Wizards. Trollhunters is about a teenage boy who finds an amulet and gets access to a secret realm full of trolls and other magical creatures. The cast of suburban teens have to protect the “normal” world from the creatures that come from the other realm.

Pokémon Go’s May Community Day will feature Seedot

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Pokémon Go’s May Community Day will feature Seedot

The next Pokémon Go Community Day will be held on May 24 and will feature the acorn Pokémon, Seedot.

From 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. in your local time, Seedot will spawn in abundance. Its Shiny form will also debut during this event and will pop up more often than it normally would.