Master of The Free World Productions | Jumpcut Entertainment Network

Super Mario Maker For 3DS Doesn’t Have 3D Support

Box art featured on the Canadian EB Games (Disclosure: GameStop is Game Informer’s parent company) website for the 3DS version of Super Mario Maker appears to confirm that the handheld title does not include 3D functionality.

[Source: EB Games]

Our Take
I'm not sure who would consider this a dealbreaker in any fashion. I tend to use the 3D feature on the 3DS for about 10 minutes each title before the gimmick gets old and I just want to play the game. This won't influence my decision on whether or not to pick up Super Mario Maker 3DS, and I'm fairly certain it won't influence anyone else either. – The Feed

Miyamoto Doesn’t Think Mario Games Are A Good Fit For VR

Super Mario's creator doesn't think that the iconic plumber would perform well in the VR space.

After Apple's iPhone 7 event, USA Today talked with legendary Nintendo developer Shigeru Miyamoto about the new app Super Mario Run. The designer shared his thoughts on why Nintendo has been slow to embrace gaming on smartphones. “Because up until recently we found that mobile devices weren't best suited to gaming. But that's changing."

Miyamoto went on to comment that he didn’t think Mario would make the transition to VR headsets anytime soon. "I would agree that adapting Mario to new platforms is a key to keeping him relevant, but we want families to play together, and virtual reality (which requires players to be closed off from the real world) doesn't really fit well there," he told USA Today. "We also like people playing for a long time, and it's hard to do that in VR."

For more from Miyamoto, be sure to watch our interview from E3 with the iconic designer right here.

[Source: USA Today]


Our Take
These statements don’t mean that we’ll never see a Mario game in VR. Nintendo was slow to bring its properties into the smartphone space, but it finally has with apps like Pokémon Go and Super Mario Run. Miyamoto’s reservations about VR might be valid with current technology, but they could change as designers innovate on VR and as our culture embraces the technology. – The Feed

Blog: Designing a game and scrapping what doesn’t work

“What goes on after the prototype has been done and art is implemented? Here’s the thought process that has kept me working on game content for weeks.” …

Gamasutra News

Gears Of War 4 Loot Crate Includes Lancer Replica, Doesn’t Require Subscription

Gears of War fans are getting their very own Loot Crate stuffed with swag from Sera. The Gears of War 4 limited edition crate is on sale now, with shipment expected in time for the game’s launch.

While most of the items included are a surprise, Loot Crate and Gears of War 4 developer The Coalition have revealed one of the items. Each crate will come with a seven-inch replica lancer, hoodie, and glassware. There's also a two-inch gold lancer pin for anyone that orders before 9 p.m. Pacific on July 15.

The crate will come in two different versions. You can get it bundled with a digital version of the game for $ 130 or without the game for $ 75. You can sign up here.

This marks the first time that Loot Crate is offering a game pre-order. Gears of War 4 will be out on October 13. For more, check out our coverage hub from April 2016. – The Feed

YouTuber Trevor Martin Admits Ownership Of CS:GO Gambling Site, Doesn’t Apologize For Deception

Update: Trevor Martin has removed his "apology" video from YouTube. He has issued no comment or statement at this time.

Original Story (July 6, 2016 @ 5:47 p.m. Central):

Earlier this week, two popular YouTubers were discovered to be owners of a Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) gambling site that they promoted without disclosure. Videos showed Tom “ProSyndicate” Cassell and Trevor “TmarTn” Martin gambling on CS:GO Lotto, a site they claimed to stumble upon.

This situation came to light through the detective work of a YouTube channel called HonorTheCall and signal boosting by H3H3 Productions. The accused duo, which commands an audience of 17 million subscribers, has been silent since their illicit activities, failure to comply with FTC rules, and all of the related fallout that came to light on July 4.

Today, Martin published a video titled “I’m Sorry.” In it, he suggests that he did not deceive viewers because his ownership of the site was a matter of public record. That means that information could be found if someone went looking, which is not the same as open, unavoidable, and clearly labeled disclosure. “My connection to CS:GO Lotto has been a matter of public record since the company was first organized in December of 2015,” he says. “However, I do feel like I owe you an apology. I am sorry to each and every one of you who felt like that was not made clear enough to you.”

Martin did not include a disclosure on his videos that he owned the company, and even stated that in an earlier clip that he had been made aware of the site. “We found this new site called CS:GO Lotto,” he said in an earlier video. “We were betting on it today, and I won a pot of like $ 69 or something like that. It was a pretty small pot. But it was like the coolest feeling ever. I ended up following them on Twitter and stuff, and they hit me up and they’re talking to me about potentially doing like a skin sponsorship. I’ve been considering doing it.”

In a video that appeared after the news broke that he and Cassell had failed to disclose their ownership of the business, Martin changed his tune. “Tom (ProSyndicate) and I own CS:GO Lotto,” Martin says. “This is something that has never been a secret.”

In today's update, Martin goes on to say that he does not condone underage gambling. The terms of service on CS:GO Lotto now say that anyone under the age of 18 is not permitted, though there is no check or technical prohibition that prevents someone of any age from using the site.

We still have not heard back from Martin or Cassell after reaching out to both of them on Monday, July 4. We've also reached out to YouTube and the FTC for comment. We’ll update should we receive responses to our inquiries.

[Source: Trevor Martin on YouTube (removed)]

Our Take
Martin’s pandering statement is barely an apology, and he takes steps to avoid actually apologizing for wrongdoing. He does not say he’s sorry for failing to disclose. He does not apologize for duping people. He apologizes if people didn’t think it was clear enough, placing partial blame on viewers.

We're curious to see if both YouTube and the FTC take direct, punitive action against Martin and Cassell. Both have betrayed their viewers' trust, and Martin has only salted the wound with this simpering non-apology. – The Feed

Opinion – If Microsoft Doesn’t Understand Project Scorpio, How Can We?

Normally, the unveiling of new hardware is one of the most exciting events in the gaming industry. Hardware evolution carries with it the promise of new experiences, and those experiences ultimately serve as the motivation for consumers to purchase new consoles. When Microsoft revealed Project Scorpio at its E3 2016 press conference, it painted a rosy picture of a future filled with limitless power and 4K gaming – but in the following days, none of Microsoft’s spokespeople were on the same page when it came to articulating the system’s key features or its benefits. If Microsoft doesn’t have a clear vision for what Project Scorpio represents, how are gamers and developers supposed to get excited?

Let’s start by looking at the tentpole feature: 4K gaming. According to the reveal, Project Scorpio’s 6 teraflops of power will make it the most powerful console ever, and can be used to generate visual fidelity unlike any system before it. True 4K gaming sounds great, but what if you don’t have a 4K-capable TV? Xbox head Phil Spencer explained to Xbox Live’s Major Nelson that all of the processing power doesn’t necessarily need to be applied to 4K, and developers could use it in other ways, apparently providing value for gamers without state-of-the-art televisions.

That makes sense so far, but Spencer seemed to contradict himself in a later interview with Eurogamer. When referring to gamers who own a standard 1080p television, Spencer said, “Then you should buy [the Xbox One S], because Scorpio is not going to do anything for you. Scorpio is designed as a 4K console, and if you don't have a 4K TV, the benefit we've designed for, you're not going to see. Clearly, you can buy Scorpio, and if and when you decide you want to buy a 4K television to take advantage of the increased performance, obviously the console will be ready for you.” When you’re revealing a brand new console that won’t be out for another year and a half, it probably isn’t wise to tell a large portion of your consumers that they don’t need to buy it.

Apart from 4K gaming, what other advantages do games on Project Scorpio have? The video shown at Microsoft’s press conference has one person describing the system as “the highest res, the best framerate, no compromises.” Gamers like when their games perform smoothly, so the prospect of a guaranteed framerate increase would be attractive to many. The problem is that it’s not happening. When we asked Microsoft Studios general manager Shannon Loftis about the possibility of framerate superiority on Project Scorpio versus the game on other Xbox hardware, she replied, “No, there wouldn't be a frame rate difference, because typically the frame rate is determined by the game developer and what's right for the gameplay mechanic. You don't necessarily want to create two different mechanics for two different configurations." So though you might get a better resolution when playing in 4K, you may not be getting to jump in performance you’d expect from this supposed powerhouse of a system.

Casting even further doubt on the importance of upgrading is the fact that the Xbox One, Xbox One S, and Project Scorpio will be able to play the same games. “No one gets left behind,” Spencer said during the hardware reveal. In other words, though games on Project Scorpio can use the additional power, they can’t be exclusive to the new hardware; they need to work on Xbox One and Xbox One S, too. That seems pretty straightforward, but when Geoff Keighley asked Loftis about the possibility of Scorpio exclusives, she said, “I don't know about that. We'll see. It's up to the game development community.” This apparently opened the door for Scorpio-only games, though she later tweeted a clarification that she had made a mistake, and that all games would play on all Xbox systems.

Lastly, Microsoft seemed to anticipate the resistance some gamers would have to buying a new console at this point in the generation. In an interview with Wired, Spencer clarified that the company is not aiming for the continuous upgrades seen in the mobile phone industry. “Consumer expectation is that, if you wanted to, you could go buy a new cell phone every year,” Spencer said. “I don’t want to get into that mode with a console…We’re not on a hardware tick-tock that says I need to put out a console every two years or every one year to get people to upgrade. That’s not the console model.”

That’s reassuring. But according to Jeff Rivait, the Xbox platform marketing manager for Xbox Canada, that may not be the case. In an interview with Xbox Enthusiast, Rivait said, “When gamers get to carry forward their games, and they’re not losing the value invested in the ecosystem, in addition to getting more frequent and more powerful hardware, is looking at things like the mobile industry and how they’ve innovated. Yes, if you want to stay on top of things you may be buying consoles more frequently, but you’re also getting better looking and more powerful gaming experiences sooner than you would be getting in previous [generations].”

This implies that we might even see more incremental upgrade consoles, which would support Spencer’s on-stage claims about gaming “beyond generations” and creating a continuous platform service – though it also goes directly against his claims of this kind of cycle not being the console model. Since we can’t take the statements at face value, only time will tell which side of this issue Microsoft ultimately lands on.

I know this all sounds pretty harsh, but to be clear: I am not trying condemn Project Scorpio itself. This all comes down to Microsoft and its inability to deliver a clear, consistent message about what the system is and why we should care about it. If Microsoft can answer those questions between now and holiday 2017, I’ll be lining up to pick up my Scorpio on release day with everyone else. But as an unveiling, this E3 went badly for Project Scorpio thanks to all of the mixed messages. What was undoubtedly meant as a triumphant reveal failed to energize fans, and made Sony look smarter for focusing on games rather than pulling back the curtain on its confirmed “PlayStation Neo.” At least if you don’t say anything about a new system, you don’t run the risk of contradicting yourself and creating more confusion than hype. – The Feed

Blog: China doesn’t want your games

“China is a ‘go big or go home’ scenario; it’s either that you have a kick-ass game, or you develop it from the ground up to meet Chinese needs.” …

Gamasutra News

Growth slows – but doesn’t halt – in the Chinese PC game market

The Chinese market’s value has risen to $ 13.8 billion, but mobile is catching up as growth slows to 11 percent in 2015. …

Gamasutra News

Capcom Doesn’t Object To Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit Of Justice Coming To The West

Court will be in session later this year. Capcom has confirmed that Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice is coming to the West in September.

Phoenix and Apollo Justice will be rejoined by a number of characters from the series’ past. You can check out the announcement trailer below:

(Please visit the site to view this media)

We didn't get the last Ace Attorney game, so seeing this one so soon after its Japanese release is good news. The story sees Phoenix traveling in a land without lawyers, and he decides to intervene to save the day. You'll enlist the help of a royal priestess to see the victim's final moments, giving Phoenix more to consider than ever before. As for Apollo, he has his own story to unravel. 

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice will be out this September on 3DS. Sorry, physical copy fans. This one’s a download only. – The Feed

Four Reasons World War I Works For Battlefield, And Two Reasons It Doesn’t

This story was originally published March 5.

Over the weekend, a retailer may have accidentally leaked the setting for Battlefield 5. It could have been a typo or a joke gone awry, and was promptly removed from the site after people started buzzing. Still, the thoughts of a World War I Battlefield game is rattling around our brains. Would a game set in a war known for trench warfare, years-long stalemates, and poor military tactics that led to ridiculously large casualties really work within the Battlefield paradigm? The more we read about the war, the more we think there is a way DICE could make it work for its venerable multiplayer shooter series. 

Contrary to prevailing sentiment, World War I wasn't just all chemical warfare from entrenched positions. Over the course of the four years of conflict involving six continents, the Great War featured large-scale naval battles, romanticized aerial dogfights, tank battles involving hundreds of armored vehicles, and aggressive technological innovation – plenty of fodder for DICE to make an interesting multiplayer shooter. 

Here are a few reasons why World War I could work for Battlefield, and a few reasons why it it wouldn't, for good measure. 


WWI Is Largely Unexplored In Video Games
Two generations ago, everyone complained about the overabundance of World War II based shooters. Last gen became an arms race to make modern military shooters. Now we're seeing a glut of science-fiction focused FPS games, with franchises like Titanfall, Star Wars Battlefront, all three Call of Duty varieties, and Evolve joining the Dooms and Halos of the world with futuristic weaponry. By taking Battlefield to World War I, DICE will have a huge point of differentiation working in its favor. 

The Great War also takes second billing to World War II in modern entertainment, so setting a game during this time period also affords DICE an opportunity to teach people about a huge part of history they are likely unfamiliar with. While the majority of people think mainly of the battles of mainland Europe, in reality the war extended its reach far across the globe, with skirmishes in Africa, the Middle East, the Pacific Islands, China, and the coasts of both North and South America. That affords DICE a wealth of varied options when designing maps.

Battlefield's Trademark Land, Air, and Sea Battles Translate Well
When you see pictures of World War I, they are often from the perspective of trenches, where defensive battles between the Central Powers and Allies resulted in heavy casualties thanks to strong defensive strategies and limited offensive options that could break the stalemates. But while infantry combat may have been a major part of the war, we also saw large-scale naval conflicts, the rise of air supremacy, and the birth of the tank. 

Yes, many of the standing armies heavily used horses, camels, and other beasts of burden in a military capacity, but as the war dragged on the technology aggressively ramped up. By the end of the war, modern military staples like tanks, planes, anti-air vehicles, armored cars with machine-gun turrets, aircraft carriers, submarines, and battleships all saw extensive action. These elements already translate perfectly into the battlefield.

DICE could also have fun with some of the weird technology that was used during the war, like observation balloons, acoustic locators, and fake horse carcasses snipers used as camouflage.

Aviation Could Be Great Fun, And More Balanced
By the time the war started in 1914, aircraft were already being used militarily, primarily for reconnaissance and close air support. To counter air supremacy, World War I saw the introduction of anti-aircraft guns and fighter aircraft. Aces became the biggest celebrities of the war, with pilots like Eddie Rickenbacker and Manfred von Richthofen (a.k.a. the Red Baron) gaining popularity for their exploits.

Air supremacy has always been a major component of Battlefield, so this rich history is just waiting to be tapped by the series. The aircraft of the time weren't as dominant as modern birds of war (a problem you see DICE continually wrestle with in modern Battlefield installments), which could help keep the air game in better competitive balance with the ground operations. 

Weapons Fit The Battlefield Class System
World War I didn't have an abundance of automatic rifles and machine guns, but that doesn't mean DICE has to completely rework its class system. Enough options exist in most weapon categories to preserve the Assault, Engineer, Support, and Recon division of labor should the studio go that route. 

With more than 20 different standing armies participating in the war, the Assault and Recon classes would have an abundance of options to choose from for bolt-action rifles. Some will be familiar to those who have played World War II games, such as the M1903 Springfield, M1891 Mosin-Nagant, and Pattern 1914 Enfield. Machine guns were largely stationary for the early years of World War I, but light machine guns like the BAR, Lewis Gun, and MP 18 were introduced toward the end of the conflict.

The Engineer class poses more of a problem, but solutions do exist. Infantry proved largely ineffective against armored fighting vehicles in World War I, so military engineers started to develop armor-piercing bullets, "reverse bullets" that had increased propelling charge over standard issue bullets, and eventually anti-tank rifles like the Mauser 1918 T-Gewehr. You could also arm the engineer class with mortars to fight off the tank advancements.


Progression System Could Prove Problematic
The amount of weaponry used in World War I is staggering, but scopes and attachments for standard issues were a rarity, meaning DICE would need to get clever in developing an unlock system for progression. As a silver lining, the stripped-down nature of combat could force DICE to spend more time on competitive balance, even if it comes at the cost of continually getting new gadgets to play with. The crazy gas masks of the time give the studio some interesting cosmetic options to explore.

Are Players Looking For Slower Paced Combat?
One reality DICE simply won't be able to work around is the fact that the pacing of combat in World War I is significantly slower than you'll find in both modern and sci-fi shooters. Don't get me wrong, I don't expect trench warfare and mustard gas to play a dominant role in multiplayer maps – enough large-scale battles that resulted in serious progress for one side or the other occurred that DICE can give us a good variety of battles. But even taking this into account, there's no denying that the tanks are slower, planes are clumsier, and infantry guns fire at a slower rate in World War I. How the market reacts to this different pace would go a long way to making or breaking Battlefield 5.

We still don't know if the World War I setting is real, or if this listing was just a snafu or playful misdirection. But if DICE does go with World War I for Battlefield 5, we think it would be an interesting and entertaining challenge. – The Feed