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Nintendo Switch saw sales of 1.3 million units across its three models in the initial six months of the year in Japan, marking a 31% decline from the 1.9 million units sold during the same timeframe the year prior. In Japan's first half of 2024, Famitsu's sales data indicates that combined sales of both PlayStation 5 models reached 791,497 units, reflecting a 43% decrease from the 1.4 million units sold in the same period last year
Echo Chunk, an AI startup, has secured $1.4 million in a pre-seed funding round. Spearheaded by A16z Speedrun, this investment will be allocated to the ongoing development of Echo Chunk's free-to-play daily puzzle game, Echo Chess. Noteworthy backers in this round encompass Zynga's founder and chairman Mark Pincus, Opendoor co-founder and CEO Eric Wu, Roblox's head of generative AI Stefano Corazza, Snapser CEO Ajinkya Apte, and ArenaNet co-founder Patrick Wyatt
Capcom's Resident Evil 7 has generated a revenue of $28,140 on iOS so far, according to data from AppMagic cited by Mobilegamer.biz. The game has reportedly been downloaded approximately 83,000 times since its release on July 2. Based on these figures and considering Apple's commission, Mobilegamer.biz estimates that the number of paying users could be around 2,000. GamesIndustry.biz has contacted Capcom for further details
On July 2, Capcom released Resident Evil 7 Biohazard on iOS devices. According to the MobileGamer portal, citing data from AppMagic, the game is not popular. In two weeks, it has been downloaded about 83,000 times
BioShock might never have seen the light of day, recalls game designer Ken Levine in a conversation with EDGE magazine. According to him, publishers showed no interest in the first part of the series
Gfinity Digital Media is facing substantial staff layoffs, according to reports. This information was disclosed by Gfinity and Stealth Optional editor-in-chief Lewis White on social media on July 12, suggesting that his entire team might be dismissed. The exact number of employees impacted across the company remains uncertain. Gfinity Digital Media manages eight gaming-related websites, including Gfinity Esports, Stealth Optional, and Racing Games
GamesIndustry.biz hosted its annual Summer Party last Wednesday during Develop Brighton, coinciding with the Euro 2024 semi-final. The gathering took place at Horatio's Bar on Brighton Pier, where attendees socialized and enjoyed the match as England triumphed over the Netherlands before eventually losing in the finals. The event was sponsored by Games London and Renaissance PR, with the complete photo album available on the GamesIndustry.biz Facebook page
At Develop Brighton last week, Jamie Brayshaw, Ripstone's head of partnerships, delivered a presentation detailing how the studio secured permission from Netflix to develop a Queen's Gambit game – marking both the developer's initial foray into mobile gaming and the first Netflix game to utilize Unreal Engine. Although the Liverpool-based developer was known for its expertise in chess games, such as 2017's Chess Ultra, the Queen's Gambit game emerged from Ripstone's determined approach. Brayshaw recounted their journey, highlighting the challenges of meeting a tight pitching deadline and the difficulties encountered in developing a mobile game with Unreal. "Prior to The Queen's Gambit, we had significant experience with Unreal Engine," Brayshaw noted. "We also had a history of creating mobile games, but typically with proprietary technology and custom engines. This was our inaugural use of Unreal for mobile gaming"
The newest GamesIndustry.biz Microcast can now be downloaded or viewed. This week's episode features James and Chris discussing Microsoft's alterations to Xbox Game Pass, which include price hikes across all existing tiers and the launch of a new Standard tier that excludes day one releases. The discussion delves into the company's strategy for its subscription service, in addition to its fresh 'You don't need an Xbox to play Xbox' ad campaign. The episode also touches on the atmosphere at Develop Brighton 2024 and Nintendo's unconventional teaser campaign for an upcoming horror game
Video game sales in the United Kingdom have declined by nearly 30 percent in the first six months of 2024. Data from the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA), representing digital services and retailers of music, video, and games, indicate a 7.9 percent year-over-year (YoY) increase in music revenue, "significantly outpacing" both video and games. Video sales grew by 5.4 percent, while video game sales fell by 29.4 percent YoY. Despite this significant decline, video games remain the largest revenue generator, bringing in £348.6 million
Embark, the developer behind The Finals, has issued an apology to Xbox players following the delay of its comprehensive 3.4 patch on Microsoft's consoles. While the update was successfully deployed on PC and PS5 last week, Xbox users are facing a "lengthy delay" due to an unspecified issue that is hindering the 3.4 release on the platform. "We're currently working together with Microsoft on the situation that's blocking the 3.4 release on Xbox. I currently don't have an ETA for when we will be able to release, but as soon as I learn anything, I will share it with all of you," an Embark spokesperson stated in the official Discord channel
Voice actors from "Genshin Impact" have voiced concerns about developer MiHoYo, specifically criticizing "the execution of its research and inclusion of elements/aspects of other cultures." Although the regions in "Genshin Impact" are significantly influenced by real-world locations, both the game's fans and its English voice actors have expressed dissatisfaction with MiHoYo's design choices for the upcoming region, Natlan. The region, which is meant to draw inspiration from African, Latin American, and Australasian cultures, has been noted for its lack of diversity in character design. "If a game draws so heavily from real-world cultures and bases a character on the supreme deity of Yoruba religion, and that character ends up looking like pale sasuke Batman, people are absolutely within their rights to demand better representation, ESPECIALLY when said game has a clearly-stated commitment to a *global* audience," stated Khoi Dao, who voices the character Albedo
Specialized UK retailer GAME is expected to cease selling in-store physical currency cards. According to a report from Eurogamer, a sister site of GamesIndustry.biz, while in-store generated digital codes—which are printed on receipts—will still be available, all POSA (point of sale activated) cards are set to be discontinued "within a matter of weeks". As a result, customers will no longer have the option to buy top-up cards for digital stores and games like Nintendo eShop, Roblox, or iTunes credit in their stores
The inaugural Gamescom Latam event proved to be a notable success, drawing more than 100,000 attendees from upwards of 70 nations to the São Paulo Expo center in the final week of June. Participants experienced a diverse range of video games, from locally-developed indie titles to major AAA releases and highly-anticipated first-party games. The event featured contributions from 124 exhibitors across 66 countries, with the industry represented by over 200 publishers and 700 studios. This turnout is remarkable, especially considering it builds upon the foundations of the BIG Festival (Best International Games Festival), which saw a peak of 50,000 visitors the previous year. According to Gamescom Latam CEO Gustavo Steinberg, the demand for the event was apparent early on. He mentioned to GamesIndustry.biz that the initial batch of promotional tickets sold out within just 20 minutes, an outcome that surprised the organizing team
UK gaming firms have until the month's end to participate in this year's salary benchmarking initiative, a joint effort between GamesIndustry.biz and Brightmine. Formerly known as XpertHR, Brightmine is a well-regarded benchmarking service utilized by various industries. Last year, it debuted a pilot program with GamesIndustry.biz, offering valuable insights into industry pay scales. This initiative aims to guide companies in equitable compensation and talent retention. Detailed information on pay disparities can be found here. The 2024 program is currently active, with all data kept confidential and anonymized to ensure anonymity for participating companies and individuals
This September, GamesIndustry.biz is set to host its second HR Summit in London, bringing together 300 UK HR experts and studio leaders. Scheduled for September 18, the event will be held at the illustrious Royal Institution and will address major HR challenges, including reward systems, diversity, leadership, change management, AI, and mental health, among others. The summit will conclude with the seventh edition of the Best Places To Work Awards. This year, partners can reserve spaces for hosting roundtables, demos, and meetings, or choose to sponsor some of the event’s special awards. For sponsorship inquiries, please reach out to George.Corner@gamesindustry.biz
Turkish mobile game developer Grand Games has secured $3 million in a pre-seed funding round. According to GamesBeat, the investment was led by Earlybird Digital East Fund with support from Laton Ventures. The funds will be allocated to developing future games and expanding the team. Grand Games has already soft-launched its debut title, Magic Sort, in the US for both iOS and Android platforms. The company intends to release its second game, Car Match, this month and has scheduled its flagship title for next year
The International Olympic Committee has disclosed that the inaugural Olympic Esports Games are set to take place in Saudi Arabia in 2025. The IOC, alongside the National Olympic Committee of Saudi Arabia, has established a 12-year partnership for this initiative, with events scheduled to occur at regular intervals. The selection of a city and venue remains pending. The IOC announced its intentions for the Olympic Esports Games last October. Esports made an appearance in the 2022 Commonwealth Games but are not slated for inclusion in the 2026 edition.
A representative of "Rostelecom" told the newspaper "Kommersant" that the company is interested in creating a Russian gaming console. They are considering its development "as a promising business direction"
In 2021, Valve spent $444.5 million on employee salaries, Larian Studios considered making the next Fallout or Ultima if they didn't get the Baldur’s Gate license, 10 million people played The First Descendant, — here’s what happened in the gaming industry over the weekend
What constitutes a great game? This question was at the forefront during the Develop:Brighton keynote, which included insights from Shuhei Yoshida and Greg Rice of PlayStation. Speaking with Ella Romanos, COO of Fundamentally Games, the duo—who collectively boast decades of experience with developers, especially in the indie sector—discussed the qualities they observe in highly praised games and studios. Rice pointed out that, although game creation involves various skills, excelling in just one or two technical areas is insufficient to make a game stand out
Employees from service providers Localsoft and Keywords have alleged that Nintendo has miscredited external translators. In an interview with Game Developer, these individuals claimed their contributions to games such as Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild were not properly acknowledged. Additionally, they accused Nintendo of having a policy that excludes the names of translators from external agencies in game credits, prohibiting these professionals from mentioning those projects on their CVs
Throughout the past year, the Swedish holding company Embracer Group has been actively cutting costs, reducing staff, and closing projects, but now it has decided to secure a new loan. The company announced that it has arranged a revolving credit line of 600 million euros for a two-year term
Techland is transitioning most of its employees to either in-studio roles or a 'hybrid' model that combines remote and on-site work. This adjustment was confirmed to GamesIndustry.biz after a report on the Polish gaming site CD Action, which referenced anonymous sources alleging the studio was eliminating the option for home-based work. A spokesperson for Techland informed GamesIndustry.biz that these measures aim to "create a more collaborative work environment"
Nexon has addressed allegations that The First Descendant borrowed designs from Destiny 2. A recent Forbes article pointed out resemblances between iconography and weapon designs in Nexon's free-to-play game and Bungie's title. In a statement shared by Forbes contributor Paul Tassi on social media, Nexon acknowledged the concerns and stated that it will make "adjustments to ensure that the imagery that may appear similar clearly reflects the unique identity of the game"