Summer Games Done Quick postponed, coronavirus relief marathon set for April

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Summer Games Done Quick postponed, coronavirus relief marathon set for April

The organizers at Games Done Quick, which holds two popular speedrunning events each year, are making adjustments due to the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic. While they have elected to postpone Summer Games Done Quick (SGDQ), an in-person event that raises millions for charity each year, they’ve also announced an online event to help provide relief for those impacted by COVID-19.

Organizers announced Friday that SGDQ is postponed. The event was originally scheduled to be held in Bloomington, Minnesota in June, and is now scheduled for Aug. 16-23. They also announced Corona Relief Done Quick, which will take place April 17-19. Donations from the event will benefit Direct Relief, “a humanitarian aid organization with a mission to improve the health and lives of people affected by poverty or emergencies,” organizers said. Game submissions are open until April 2, with a games list and schedule coming on April 13.

Your landlord in Final Fantasy 14 won’t demolish your house during the pandemic

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Your landlord in Final Fantasy 14 won’t demolish your house during the pandemic

If you have a house in Final Fantasy 14, you won’t be evicted if the COVID-19 outbreak is keeping you — in real life — from keeping up your virtual property.

“Taking into account the world-wide spread of the COVID-19 (also known as ‘novel coronavirus’) and the economical effects of various cities going into lock-down, we have decided to temporarily suspend automatic housing demolition,” developers wrote Thursday night on The Lodestone, the FF14 official community hub.

Call of Duty: Warzone’s Loadout Drops are now a lot more expensive

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Call of Duty: Warzone’s Loadout Drops are now a lot more expensive

Call of Duty: Warzone finally has its first real patch. While it’s mostly dedicated to fixing bugs, there are a few meaningful changes to some of battle royale game’s most used features. The patch also brings a handful of additions to Modern Warfare, including a new Operator called Talon.

The biggest change battle royale players are going to find in this patch is the increased price of Loadout Drops. This Buy Station item is an essential for every squad and player in battle royale and most people will buy one every game. While it used to cost just $6,000 in-game, with this patch Infinity Ward has upped the price to $8,500. This won’t eliminate Loadouts from the mode completely, but it should keep the best guns out of player’s hands at least for the first few minutes of each match.

Reminder: Steam lets you easily play local multiplayer games online

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Reminder: Steam lets you easily play local multiplayer games online

Steam is reminding developers and players that Remote Play Together, which launched in November, is a very fast and easy way to group up and play with friends, couch-co-op style — a nice feature as millions try to keep their distance and prevent COVID-19 from spreading further.

Steamworks’ Twitter account noted for developers yesterday evening that Remote Play Together is enabled automatically for games with local multiplayer, local co-op, or shared/split screen features (though if the feature isn’t appropriate for their game, developers can disable it, too). The account also suggests developers enable Remote Play Together on single-player games, so the players can replicate the experience of passing “the controls back and forth as if they’re on the same couch.”

The board game industry is coming together to help indie stores during the pandemic

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The board game industry is coming together to help indie stores during the pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic is forcing state and local governments to order so-called “non-essential” businesses to shut down. The economic cost of those closures is being felt by everyone, from bars, restaurants, and retail shops, and their employees. That includes independent tabletop game stores.

The lifeblood of the modern tabletop industry is a vast network of local game stores and the communities they help to bring together. Role-playing groups use them to search for new members, and for organized play events like those sponsored by Paizo’s Pathfinder Society. Collectible card games like Magic: The Gathering and The Pokémon Trading Card Game both have elaborate calendars filled with events taking place at stores. So to do the titles from Fantasy Flight, like Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game and Star Wars: Legion. Nearly all of those activities have come to a halt, and the associated loss of revenue for local retailers is cause for concern.

Ghost Recon Breakpoint, trying to win back fans, is free for everyone this weekend

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Ghost Recon Breakpoint, trying to win back fans, is free for everyone this weekend

Ghost Recon Breakpoint is free-to-play for this weekend on all platforms as Ubisoft showcases the big update and a story expansion, which evokes the Splinter Cell franchise, that launched this week.

The free weekend runs from Thursday to Monday, March 30 and involves the full version of the game on PlayStation 4, Windows PC, and Xbox One. On Tuesday, Breakpoint was updated with the highly touted “Ghost Experience” patch, which introduces a new ruleset for the campaign that places a greater focus on survival and tactical elements.

Horizon Zero Dawn comic book series coming later this year

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Horizon Zero Dawn comic book series coming later this year

PlayStation exclusive Horizon Zero Dawnset to launch on PC for the first time later this year — is getting a comic series based off of its post-post-apocalyptic world. In the collaboration between developer Guerrilla Games and Titan Comics, readers will be able to check in on Aloy’s story after the events of the game.

Titan Comics will release Horizon Zero Dawn #1 into comic stores and onto digital devices on July 22. According to the press release, readers would also be able to pick up a prequel comic as part of Free Comic Book Day 2020, May 2. Free Comic Book Day has been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and so it’s unclear if the prequel comic will still become available on May 2. Polygon has reached out to Titan Comics for clarification.

Animal Crossing fans are contributing to a real museum, too

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Animal Crossing fans are contributing to a real museum, too

The Museum of English Rural Life closed its door to the public on March 20 in response to the growing threat of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. It’s not alone in trying to “flatten the curve” of the disease, but it does mean that museum patrons can now only interact with its collections online. And they are, by creating artifacts in Animal Crossing: New Horizons — for the real-life museum, not the in-game one.

The Museum of English Rural Life is already famous for its social media presence; in 2018, it went viral after posting an old photo of a ram with a relevant caption: “look at this absolute unit.”

Twitch hosting a celebrity-filled charity stream for WHO on March 28

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Twitch hosting a celebrity-filled charity stream for WHO on March 28

On Saturday, March 28, Twitch will host a 12-hour charity livestream to benefit the World Health Organization (WHO). This Twitch Stream Aid brings together celebrities in the music, sports, and gaming worlds to raise money for the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund. The stream runs from noon to midnight EDT.

The Twitch Stream Aid’s main two games are Fortnite and Uno. Famous players like Joe Jonas, Drew Taggart, and Lost Kings will participate in tournaments for these games to help raise money. Musical guests will perform during special breaks as well, including Diplo, Cole Swindell, LAUV, Charlie Pluth, Krewella, Die Antwoord, Jordin Sparks, and more.

YouTube signs exclusive contract with streamer and content creator Typical Gamer

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YouTube signs exclusive contract with streamer and content creator Typical Gamer

Andre “Typical Gamer” Rebelo, one of YouTube’s biggest gaming stars, has signed an exclusive contract to continue streaming on the platform. Rebelo announced the deal Thursday afternoon via a new video on his YouTube channel.

In the video, Rebelo also announces that he’ll be donating $10,000 to Extra Life. In partnership with the charity organization, Rebelo also visits a fan born with a heart defect. After the visit he talks about his rise to fame on YouTube and how much its meant to him, before announcing that he’ll continue to stream exclusively on YouTube Gaming.