- The Power-Up
- 2023: a record $86 billion in deals
2023: a record $86 billion in deals
Skull & Bones will run an open Beta, Krafton is facing a lawsuit and a new patch for Cyberpunk.
Remember that your peers are not your competition. They will help you get jobs when you don't have one. - Sinéad Oram, 2D artist, Media Molecule
🎉 But we have so much more:
The PlayStation-exclusive quest for Hogwarts Legacy, Haunted Hogsmeade, will come to all platforms this summer (and that was a great quest!).
Mortal Kombat 1 has achieved a new milestone and a US Senator calls on the FTC to reverse the Activision acquisition.
Don’t miss The Power-Up Chronicles section at the end of this newsletter. It has stories about:
The State of the Industry report
How ForthStar hopes to follow up Golf Clash as another $1 billion UK success story
How to land your dream job in game art
Welcome to The Power-Up #64
🚜 Eric "ConcernedApe" Barone has finished adding major content to Stardew Valley's 1.6 update, now focusing on bug fixes and polishing for a release within the year. The update, more expansive than initially planned, includes new festivals, items, and the whimsical addition of hats for pets.
🪄 Hogwarts Legacy is set to introduce new updates and previously PlayStation-exclusive content to all platforms in Summer 2024, with details on specific features and release dates to be disclosed in the upcoming months.
☠️ The Skull & Bones Open Beta, accessible to all, will run from February 8 to 11 on PS5, PC, and Xbox Series X/S, with all progress transferable to the final game.
🦾 CD Projekt Red is set to release a new patch for Cyberpunk 2077 this week, targeting the resolution of recent minor bugs and improving player-reported issues, including finisher animations.
Some of the games launching this week:
January 30: Rugby 24 (PS4/5, Xbox One/X/S, PC), Death Stranding Director’s Cut (iOs, Mac)
January 31: One Punch Man World (iOs, Android, PC), Poppy Playtime – Chapter 3 (PC)
February 1: Granblue Fantasy: Relink (PS4/5, PC), Jujutsu Kaisen: Cursed Clash (PS4/5, Xbox One/S/X, PC, Switch)
February 2: Persona 3 Reload (PS4/5, Xbox One/S/X, PC), Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League (PS5, Xbox S/X, PC)
😔 Krafton Inc., the publisher of PUBG, is facing a lawsuit from a former employee alleging sexual assault by an executive and wrongful termination after reporting the incident. The lawsuit claims Krafton did not adequately address the complaint, leading to the employee's dismissal and causing her significant emotional and financial distress.
🎮 The Sterling Silver DualSense PS5 controller and matching PS5 console covers are now available on PlayStation Direct, marking the completion of the Deep Earth Collection which includes vibrant colors like Volcanic Red and Cobalt Blue.
🥋 Mortal Kombat 1 has achieved the milestone of selling 3 million units, joining the ranks of Warner Bros.' billion-dollar IPs alongside Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, and DC.
☁️ Apple’s App Store will start accepting game streaming apps. Before this, you needed to make a weird browser app to be able to play GeForce Now or XBox GamePass games on iOS devices (including Apple TV). I think this is a way to make Netflix and YouTube create Vision Pro native apps (since they stream games now, as well).
🚀 The games industry saw a record $86 billion in deals in 2023, significantly propelled by Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard. With a total of 960 deals and notable transactions like Tencent's takeover of Techland, the industry is poised for a steady rise in mergers and acquisitions in 2024, with a focus on early-stage investments in emerging technologies like AI and VR.
🤑 Animoca Ventures led a $3 million private round funding in mobile developer AOFverse to expand in Web3.
🔙 Senator Elizabeth Warren calls on the FTC to reverse Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard following significant layoffs, arguing that the merger harms workers and competition.
😔 Toys for Bob and Sledgehammer Games have faced significant layoffs, with reports indicating up to 40% and 30% staff reductions respectively, as part of Microsoft's broader job cuts impacting nearly 2,000 employees.
The Power-Up Chronicles
The Game Developers Conference's 2024 State of the Industry report, based on a survey of 3,000 developers, highlights a tumultuous year marked by over 10,000 layoffs, concerns over the rise of A.I., and contentious policies from Unity. Despite the success of major games, the industry faces challenges such as rapid growth during the pandemic leading to a correction, with developers expressing concerns about job security, the impact of acquisitions, and the ethics of A.I. in game development.
➡️ Read the article on Gameinformer
Following the success of Golf Clash, Paul Gouge and Alex Rigby, veterans in the gaming industry, have launched a new studio named ForthStar, with $10 million backing from Griffin Gaming Partners.
ForthStar is experimenting with remote working and four-day work weeks to foster a creative and productive environment. The studio is currently focusing on developing a mobile game that could cater to the competitive, casual male gamer market, drawing on lessons learned from their previous ventures
➡️ Read the interview on Pocketgamer.biz.
Sinéad Oram, a 2D artist at Media Molecule, offers guidance for aspiring game artists, emphasizing the importance of aligning one's skills and interests with the right role within game art, such as UI, technical art, or material artist positions. She advises focusing on what you enjoy and are naturally skilled at, and not to shy away from 'killing' projects that aren't meeting standards, as learned from her experience with the unsuccessful project Gang Nations.
➡️ Read the article on Gamesindustry.biz
That’s it for today. Thanks for reading. Stay powered-up until next time.
Bobby & Andrei
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