This week, we have a game about space travel and a major executive shakeup at Electronic Arts. First, though, Amazon finally wins a video game.
Amazon Tops the Video Game Market at Long Last.
Amazon.com Inc.’s newly released online game, New World, was initially so upsetting to Native Americans that the game’s creators hired a tribal consultant to adjust the game’s tone.
Years later, after having had its racist depictions removed and connections to its original purpose as a game about colonising America removed, New World seems to be Amazon’s first significant video game hit. On Steam, a PC platform, the game now boasts more than 750,000 players at once, and hundreds of thousands more are tuning in to watch the action on Twitch.
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As it is only three days since the game’s release, formal reviews cannot be written yet, and Amazon has not disclosed sales data. However, New World has been receiving more attention than any of the company’s previous games.
Long lines formed merely to enter the stadium. Fans have praised the game’s combat, crafting system, and the dynamic landscape that changes dependent on their actions. (There are three distinct groups in this game, and they are constantly at war with one another for dominance of the territory. If your group controls a certain area, you gain advantages.
Amazon Game Studios has come a long way from its inception in 2014, when it first attempted to create console games. New World, Breakaway, and Crucible are the 2016 games announced by the company.
The show Breakaway has been cancelled. Crucible was released, then un-published, then also cancelled. Other games that were in development were shelved before their unveiling, including the Nova and Intensity projects.
Although Jeff Bezos had a lot of success with Amazon in other areas, such as goods deliveries and smart speakers, the video game industry was one of the few that he couldn’t get into.
The tech titan, though, has finally tasted victory this week. Early reviews for New World have been all over the place, but the numbers are fantastic.
I spoke with a handful of the developers who worked on New World, and they expressed their gratitude that the game had found players after all they went through to make it. Since Crucible was cancelled last year, the game has been postponed multiple times, and morale is bad.
The gaming division seems to be doing well for Bezos. And yet, in light of the recent cultural upheaval at Activision Blizzard Inc. around sexual discrimination and harassment, it’s also worthwhile to revisit a section of our study from earlier this year concerning Amazon’s difficulties in the video game industry.
In some ways, working for Amazon was like working for a more traditional video game developer. Ex-workers say the studios fostered a “bro culture” in which women were treated less favourably than men.
According to four female game developers, Amazon was the workplace where they encountered the most misogyny. Women described how male bosses neglected and devalued them, and how they were ultimately “forced out of the organisation.” An ex-worker claims that her male coworkers often ignored her input during meetings.
Another claims a high-ranking official stifled her advancement because she didn’t agree with him, and that the official then filled the newly established positions of authority with men.
There were many aspects of the story that we had to leave out because they may be used to identify sources or inflict harm in some other way. However, the sexism described in stories concerning Amazon’s workplace atmosphere was as overt as that described at Activision or Ubisoft Entertainment SA. Some considerations for those who have avoided Blizzard’s World of Warcraft but are considering New World.
Weekend entertainment options
Outer Wilds is a game that puts you on a rusty old starship and sends you to the stars if you’d rather do that than fight magical monsters with muskets.
You take on the role of an archaeologist/explorer who has been dispatched to a foreign galaxy in search of artefacts related to a long-lost extraterrestrial civilization.
While Outer Wilds was released in 2019, its stunning new addition, Echoes of the Eye, was just released this week.
A lot of wonderful stuff is hiding out there, and there are mysteries to be Unravelled and uncharted alien territory to be discovered.
Perfectly Accurate Author: Olga Kharif
Here’s some news on a major personnel change in the gaming industry: Electronic Arts Inc. has named Laura Miele its new chief operating officer. That makes her the most influential woman in the game industry.
Female executives in charge of PR and HR departments have been added at Activision Blizzard. CFO of Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. is a woman. Miele, however, is the highest-ranking female employee who actively contributes to the video game industry’s overall business strategy, having previously supervised EA’s twenty or more studios.
In light of recent employee outcry against sexism at major game publishers like Ubisoft and Activision, her hire stands out.
Miele, who also works as a mentor to other women in her spare time, is one of the few women to have reached the top of her industry, and she may serve as an example to the many women who wish to see a shift in the current male-dominated status quo.
In the gaming world this week
The long-rumored Nintendo Switch Pro, said to be a more powerful version of the popular gaming device, nevertheless raises questions. It is unclear if or when this 4K development for the Switch will translate to actual hardware, but employees from 11 gaming companies informed Bloomberg that their teams were in possession of such a development. Nintendo firmly refuted the rumour. Not until late 2022 do we anticipate a Switch that can run games at 4K resolution.
Netflix acquires its first video game developer.
The streaming service has made video games a top focus, and as such, it recently acquired Night School Studio, developer of the critically acclaimed eerie mystery adventure Oxenfree and its planned sequel. Netflix is working to add games to its subscription service, which will allow users to play them without having to endure annoying advertisements or pay extra for more content.
Destiny’s developer, Bungie,
ends all employee mandatory arbitration agreements “given the rising concern that arbitration may not be the fairest approach to handle employment issues,” Bungie CEO Pete Parsons stated. This summer, Activision Blizzard employees asked for the removal of mandatory arbitrary conditions, but the firm did not respond.
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As Blizzard continues to deal with the ramifications,
The World of Warcraft devs are currently combing the game and deleting numerous comedic elements. “Wacky jokes and the occasional mature innuendo are part of WoW, and probably always will be,” they added. We do, however, want to keep in mind whether or not some aspects of that environment are inclusive of all players. For the most part, we’d prefer that our humour not be demeaning.
Will Wright, inventor of The Sims, is currently developing a new game that makes use of blockchain technology and artificial intelligence.
The goal of Proxi is for the player to take themselves on a journey of self-discovery by filling snow globes with their favourite memories. After converting your memory into an NFT, you can use it like any other asset, including purchasing or selling the memories of others. The revelation that the renowned designer is collaborating with environmentally damaging cryptocurrencies caused a stir.