Activision Blizzard workers walk out, call for CEO Bobby Kotick’s resignation

about X hours ago from
Activision Blizzard workers walk out, call for CEO Bobby Kotick’s resignation

Activision Blizzard workers are walking out of work — both virtually, from home. and in person at Blizzard Entertainment’s offices — following a new report from the Wall Street Journal. Workers are calling for CEO Bobby Kotick’s resignation after the Journal reported that Kotick not only knew about employee misconduct — including an alleged rape — but minimized its severity to Activision Blizzard employees and its board of directors. The report also detailed former Blizzard co-leader Jen Oneal’s departure from the company after she reportedly lost faith that the company could turn around its toxic culture.

“We have instituted our own Zero Tolerance Policy,” Activision Blizzard workers tweeted from the ABK Workers Alliance Twitter account on Tuesday. “We will not be silenced until Bobby Kotick has been replaced as CEO, and continue to hold our original demand for Third-Party review by an employee-chosen source. We are staging a Walkout today. We welcome you to join us.”

Halo Infinite developers already reevaluating its stingy battle pass

about X hours ago from
Halo Infinite developers already reevaluating its stingy battle pass

343 Industries surprise-launched the multiplayer of Halo Infinite on Monday, and while the reception has been mostly positive, players absolutely hate the battle pass. It seems that 343 is already taking a look at the system and trying to figure out how best to proceed after players’ day-one frustration.

There are multiple reasons that players are angry with Halo Infinite’s battle pass system, and a brief trip through the Halo subreddit will show you quite a few of them. Some feel the system is too slow, requiring multiple hours to finish even the earliest levels of the pass. Others are more frustrated that XP to upgrade the pass can be earned only through challenges (like playing specific modes, completing specific actions, or getting kills with certain weapons), rather than by simply playing games.

Call of Duty studio head quits after sexual harassment accusation report

about X hours ago from
Call of Duty studio head quits after sexual harassment accusation report

The co-head of Call of Duty developer Treyarch, Dan Bunting, has left the studio after a Wall Street Journal investigation into a sexual harassment claim against him from 2017. Bunting’s departure is part of a larger story about Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick’s awareness of and response to serious sexual harassment allegations at the publisher’s owned studios, including Sledgehammer Games and Treyarch.

Bunting was the subject of an internal investigation in 2019 over accusations that he sexually harassed a female employee in 2017, according to the Wall Street Journal. The result of that investigation recommended that Bunting be fired, the Journal reports, but Kotick intervened and Bunting was allowed to keep his position.

Activision’s Kotick knew of rape allegations, kept them quiet, new report says

about X hours ago from
Activision’s Kotick knew of rape allegations, kept them quiet, new report says

A Wall Street Journal report on Tuesday said that, despite what he told Activision Blizzard’s board of directors, chief executive Bobby Kotick did know of allegations of employee sexual misconduct throughout the company, including a rape allegation one former Sledgehammer Games employee made against a co-worker.

Kotick, says the Journal, cut his own salary and promised zero-tolerance changes to Activision’s harassment policy after the newspaper asked questions regarding the Sledgehammer rape allegation last month. Tuesday’s report depicts Kotick, Activision’s boss for the past 25 years, as minimizing the problem to his board, if not outright hiding his full knowledge of it from them.

The Expanse season 6 trailer finds the Roci crew making their last stand

about X hours ago from
The Expanse season 6 trailer finds the Roci crew making their last stand

While it’s a shame that The Expanse’s upcoming sixth season will be its last (at least for now), the new trailer for the final six episodes shows that the sci-fi drama is going out with a bang.

When newly reinstated Secretary General Chrisjen Avasarala (Shohreh Aghdashloo) sends Bobbi Draper (Frankie Adams) to the Rocinante to recruit Holden’s (Steven Strait) crew for a new mission, they’re once again thrown onto the frontlines in the war against Marcos (Keon Alexander) and his Free Navy. But weary after spending years fighting for humanity and still processing the grief over Alex’s (Cas Anvar) death, the beautiful bond the Roci family has built threatens to crumble under the compounding weights of their pasts and obligations to humanity’s future.

Riot Games surprise-releases Ruined King RPG and announces more games

about X hours ago from
Riot Games surprise-releases Ruined King RPG and announces more games

Riot Games on Tuesday unexpectedly launched the first titles from its Riot Forge publishing arm. Both Ruined King: A League of Legends Story, and Hextech Mayhem: A League of Legends Story were released during a special event in which the company shared details about more titles on the way.

Ruined King is a turned-based single-player RPG and is developed by Airship Syndicate (Darksiders: Genesis). The game was supposed to launch in early 2021, but it was delayed until an unspecified time later this year. As it turned out, Riot never officially announced a release date for the game, and dropped it bysurprise on Tuesday.

Xbox Game Pass gets Dead Space, Dragon Age: Origins, and My Friend Pedro in November

about X hours ago from
Xbox Game Pass gets Dead Space, Dragon Age: Origins, and My Friend Pedro in November

Xbox Game Pass subscribers are getting a few more new games this month including Xbox 360-era classics like Dead Space and Dragon Age: Origins. November’s offerings will also the day one releases of Next Space Rebels and Undungeon.

All four Dead Space games and the Dragon Age trilogy are already available to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers via EA Play, whose library joined the service about a year ago (and in March for PC.)

Dying Light 2 gives its unique parkour a bigger, better city

about X hours ago from
Dying Light 2 gives its unique parkour a bigger, better city

The first Dying Light largely executed on its novel approach to the zombie genre — survive the horde with parkour and melee, ambitiously presented as a first-person experience — while coming up short in some of the supporting elements. In this way, it was a bit like the sports video games I routinely review, something that had a solid gameplay base, but maybe a drooping career mode that didn’t sustain much interest.

I reached that comparison after playing Dying Light 2 Stay Human in a preview event and then compared it to the first game’s Platinum Edition (which just launched on Nintendo Switch). Techland didn’t fix what wasn’t broken; Dying Light’s fluid traversal and balletic combat is still here, still easy to learn and apply, still hard to master, like all worthwhile athletic endeavors. In Dying Light 2, it’s supported by a much more interesting cityscape, stronger role-playing game systems and narrative hooks, and a new kind of open-world progression that should culminate in more meaningful choices, as opposed to clearing an area or a jumping puzzle for their own sake.

The new Dragon Ball game looks like Dead by Daylight

about X hours ago from
The new Dragon Ball game looks like Dead by Daylight

Bandai Namco and developer Dimps revealed Dragon Ball: The Breakers on Tuesday, a new game with an intriguing gameplay twist for the Dragon Ball franchise: It’s an asymmetrical online multiplayer game, where players fight to survive in 7v1 matches.

In other words, Dragon Ball: The Breakers’ closest comparisons appear to be horror-tinged asymmetrical multiplayer games like Dead by Daylight, Evolve, and Friday the 13th. In Dragon Ball: The Breakers, seven Survivors will try to outwit, outsmart, and outlast the player assuming the role of The Raider. Players in that role can choose either Cell, Buu, or Frieza, who are overwhelmingly more powerful than the other players. The underpowered Survivors — which includes the shapeshifting pig Oolong — must hide, use gadgets, weapons, and power-ups, or disguise themselves among the environment.