Begun the Auto Chess wars have. Valve is developing its own version of the Dota 2 mod. The Dota 2 modders are making a different version called Auto Chess for the Epic Games Store, and Riot have jumped in with their own accessible take on the mode. Which one should you play? This week Jon Bolding considered the options (opens in new tab).
That's not the only conflict we've seen this week. There can sometimes be a lull between E3 and Gamescom, but not this year. Here are the biggest stories of the week.
• CCP has waged war on EVE Online players with a massive NPC invasion (opens in new tab)
We love a good EVE story, and Steven loves writing them.
• The Steam Summer Sale Grand Prix game is confusing the hell out of everyone (opens in new tab)
Sometimes it's fine for a sale to just be a sale rather than a convoluted social experiment. Plus, indie devs have seen a bigger than usual spike in players removing their games from wishlists (opens in new tab), which might have been due to users misunderstanding the contest rules.
• Epic Games boss Tim Sweeney defends the store's exclusivity policy (opens in new tab)
Valve shows no signs of changing the cut it takes from games sold on Steam and the exclusivity policy is surely unsustainable in the long term. Epic has made a big bid to turn the viral success of Fortnite into long-term success in digital retail. How much of the market can Epic capture?
• Bernie Sanders is about to become a Twitch streamer (opens in new tab)
Who's your Apex Legends main, Bernie?
• Oh my god Mount & Blade: Bannerlord is in closed beta (opens in new tab)
This suggests the game might actually come out one day.
Who would you cast as Carmack and Romero?
• A former Blizzard boss discusses the death of Titan and the birth of Overwatch (opens in new tab)
"We failed to control scope" said Mike Morhaime, in an interesting interview about the company's internal agony over the cancellation of its massive new action MMO.
Quiz of the week
I love Destiny lore, and the strange names Bungie comes up with for the game's exotics. However chatting in the office we noticed a crossover with the world of craft beer and at that point a quiz was inevitable (opens in new tab). Yes the 'both' option is cruel and no we're not sorry.
Worst of the week
Sometimes games are bad and it's our job to say they are bad (opens in new tab). I'm sure there are plenty of much poorer games out there we haven't encountered yet, but these 22 games felt particularly grim to work through.
- Wow players can finally go topless (opens in new tab)
- League of Legends gets a big update and a new champion (opens in new tab)
- The battle royale gold rush is over... (opens in new tab)
- With the exception of Flappy Royale (opens in new tab)
- Halle Berry is coming to Fortnite (opens in new tab)
- Bungie is finally going to fix a bug that let you repeatedly open the Menagerie chest (opens in new tab)
- Hearthstone's next expansion teases the return of the League of Explorers (opens in new tab)
- Teamfight Tactics has been struggling to keep up with massive player demand (opens in new tab)
- The excellent Razer Deathadder is getting a big discount on Prime Day (opens in new tab)
Tweet of the week
Woman Disappointed Her Date Doesn’t Look Anything Like His Cutsceneshttps://t.co/IcT8akTqdxJune 25, 2019
Relevant to this tweet: Wes' piece, 'Why the hell do they have mouths,' a Final Fantasy 7 retrospective (opens in new tab).
We also like this thread (opens in new tab) summarising the way different games frame saving your progress.
Around the office
The UK team has been consumed by the release of Neon Genesis Evangelion on Netflix, which most of us have never seen. The sad-people-in-mechs show has generated a lot more chat than expected, and it's felt like a bit of a cultural moment, on Twitter at least. Where are our sad-people-in-mechs games?
More importantly this week, old grudges have been reignited.
Haven't had the time to play the Hitman 2 bank level yet, but I'm excited about the fact that since it's DLC and it's months after release, there's a far lower chance of @Octaeder knocking me off the leaderboard.June 26, 2019
Also, twist! We all turned into esports champs under Chris' highly moral guidance.
I also hired an 'esports private investigator' to spy on other teams. I'm ethical as hell https://t.co/uEohwJM232June 21, 2019
That's all for this week. May your your quicksave key never fail.
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