Joseph Madding

As Nerd Interests' Co-Owner and Editor-in-Chief, I oversee daily operations. You can follow me on Twitter @TheVisionEx, or join me on Facebook/TheVisionEx. I'm on the PlayStation Network when I'm not on the PC by the handle of VisionEx. I'm always down to play with anyone who invites me, so long as I have the game you want.

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Blizzard Says No to Overwatch 2, Switch and Mobile Versions “Evaluating”

As Blizzard-Activision’s trendy 6v6 shooter reaches their second anniversary, Overwatch’s most burning questions have been answered thanks to GameSpot.

In an interview with GameSpot, editor Eddie Makuch detailed some of our most anticipated questions ahead of E3. Will Blizzard be announcing Overwatch 2? Will Overwatch be coming to Nintendo Switch? Assistant Game Director Aaron Keller and Senior Game Producer Matthew Hawley spoke on the matters this week.

Regarding Overwatch 2:

Aaron Keller: “I think at the core sitting here at the two-year anniversary, we’ve had a wildly successful 6v6 shooter game which has blown us away with how the community has responded to it. We dip our toes into different areas here and there with the Archives event and Junkenstein. But I think our focus is really on keeping the community engaged with the 6v6 shooter that we have on the live service.

Matthew Hawley: “Running a live service game takes a lot of work and I hope the community knows we have been committed to continually improving the game and creating content. What people might not realise is the team now is significantly bigger than what it was when we shipped the game, and we have put all of that into working on the live game and the new maps, heroes, and events like Anniversary. At least for the time being, [supporting Overwatch] is our focus right now, and we’re excited to work on this game.”

Regarding Overwatch On Switch Or Mobile:

Matthew Hawley: “I think it is one of those things that we constantly evaluate. Where technology is going; where the industry is going. There are challenges in running on the platforms that we’re not already on, otherwise we would probably already be on some of those other platforms. We’ll see where things go. Certainly, there is a huge number of people out there who have Nintendo Switch and mobile phones, but right now, the core development team is focused on supporting the live game.”

GameSpot dug deeper into the immediate direction of Overwatch, including Loot Boxes, more Heroes and more. For more details, head over to GameSpot now.

PlayStation Plus Subscribers Hit All-Time High

The Sony Entertainment Network continues to expand ahead of E3 2018, as Sony announced officially ever-growing numbers of both online subscriptions and PlayStation Network users.

Reaching all-time highs in both categories Sony dropped the news in an official Corporate Strategy Meeting. While sitting down to lay out the future of the PlayStation brand, Sony is projecting reduced PS4 sales futures that may be offset by PSN subscriptions. A record 80 million users log into the PlayStation Network each month, up 12.5% from last year’s 70 million user figures.

Of those 80 million active users, a record 34.2 million users are PlayStation Network Subscribers! This number is up over 22% from 26.4 million last year, meaning new PSN users tend to want the service over day-one owners. Further still, users are more active on the PS4 than last year, up 33%! Reporting 800 million hours this year over 600 million last year. As Sony transitions into the future of the PlayStation 4, the PlayStation Network service will become integral to the company’s revenue streams until the launch of the PlayStation 5.

Sony console sales have largely been driven by first-party and third-party exclusives, pushing 79 million PS4 consoles since launch. Sony intends to “enrich and utilize” exclusive games and “grow and improve recurring revenue” – presumably expanding on the PS4/PSN library of games and games-as-services going into E3. The PlayStation 4 continues to be the best selling platform in the United States, and the platform isn’t projected to be replaced by a PS5 this year.

Move Over Dom, More “Fast and Furious” Cars Are Coming to Rocket League

As the second series of real-world vehicles hits the world of Rocket League, Fast and Furious films are enjoying the limelight of a three year top selling title. Will this mean a future full of cars from our every day lives? Let’s strap a rocket to them and find out.

Putting a sequel on the success of the first DLC, Fast and Furious will be making a call back to the first movies in the series, as the 1970 Dodge Charger and 1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R make their mark once again. Available in their original styling, and with a multitude of decals not from the movie, check out the video below for a quick look.

The ’70 Charger will play similar to that of the Dominus – as they clearly have similar design cues. The 1999 Skyline however will not operate as any other vehicle in the game today. Psyonics specifically called the hitbox a “hybrid”, but not of which vehicles, so we’ll all need a hands-on to be sure if we love it or could do without. Each vehicle will be available for $1.99 as is customary, and will release on October 11th for PC, Xbox One, and PS4 – later to release on Switch during “this holiday season.”

Road Redemption: Motorbikes, Guns, C4 and Road Rash – Launches Today

If you grew up in the 90’s, you’re going to love this spiritual successor to Road Rash.

Developed by indie team Pixel Dash Studios, EQ, Road Redemption is a race first, at any costs kind of title. Designed with the same emotion found in Road Rash on the Sega Genesis, you’ll be expected to beat down other drivers, shoot out the oppositions tires, or simply blow them up with C4, in an all-out test of your wits and firepower. Said to be the “best bits of an action movie”, here’s what the developer has to say about the title.

Road Redemption is an action racing game where you lead your motorcycle gang on an epic journey across the country in a brutal driving combat adventure.

Earn money by completing races, assassinations, robberies, and other challenges in your path. As you collect loot, you’ll upgrade your character, your bike, and your weapons.

One Life To Live

Driving a motorcycle at 100 mph while trying to hit someone with a pipe is dangerous, and death can come quickly. Fortunately, every time you die, all the experience you’ve collected can be used to upgrade your character, your bike, and your weapons.

In the multiplayer mode, you can work with your friends or let out some road rage on them. It’s up to you.

A Truly Epic Quest

Road Redemption takes place in a post-apocalyptic world, ruled by a brutal dictator. Fans of Mad Max will feel right at home here.

After years of bloody street warfare, the country’s biker gangs have settled into an uneasy truce.

This period of peace is interrupted when the leader of the country’s richest weapons cartel is assassinated, and a $15,000,000 bounty is put on the mysterious assassin’s head.

It’s up to you and your fellow gang members to chase down the assassin and claim this prize, but you’ll have to drive through enemy territory to do so. Every biker in the country wants a piece of that $15,000,000 bounty, and they won’t hesitate to take out those who get in their way.

Other Features:

  • Single player campaign fully playable in multiplayer mode.
  • Tons of brutal weapons. This is more Twisted Metal than it is Mario Kart
  • 4-player splitscreen co-op.
  • Online Multiplayer
  • Massive, expandable skill tree. Rack in the loot to upgrade your character, your bike, and your weapons.
  • A deep motorcycle fighting system with grabs, kicks, counters, critical strikes, and more.
  • Full support for both mouse & keyboard and gamepad control configurations.

Take a “First Look” at Halo: Recruit Mixed Reality Game

Virtual Reality Halo; Not good enough. Mixed Reality Halo – Now that’s Microsoft’s style. From the Microsoft Hololens, down to the recently announced Dell Visor, Microsoft is not only selling these headsets, but developing games and demos based on the best titles in their library for what they hope to be a revolutionary launch.

Showcasing 5 minutes of footage, Road to VR helped introduce Microsoft’s steps into the virtual reality space with a new dimension, showing what it’s like to bring your virtual world into the real world. Delivered as a bit of an encyclopedia to new players at start, watch as Guilty Spark begins to initialize you with your adversaries before the real fun starts!

Halo: Recruit can be played live in person at any Microsoft Store, and is a free download on the Windows Store for anyone who steps into the Mixed Reality space. Halo: Recruit launches on October 17th.

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds says “Sorry for Server Issues”

Released to the world as part of a Developer Blog update, the staff is apologizing for server lagging issues, potentially caused by advertisers.

With concurrent player numbers rising almost every day, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds has seen a ton of negative reviews this week on Steam due to latency issues with their servers. A high volume of negative reviews on the official steam page cite not only lag, but an increase in banning on the game from “stream sniping”.

As the development team looks to tackle these issues, they have directly addressed the latency issues in Asia with their latest post.

Many players have asked us about the increased number of server crashes in Asia. Recently, the number of concurrent players in Asia has rapidly increased and there were times the cloud service we’ve been using could not provide more physical servers. To address this problem, we added servers from another cloud service without sufficient testing. Some servers overloaded, which caused frequent crashes. Our development team is investigating the issue in order to prevent it from happening in the future.

The team would go on to explain that with about 1 million concurrent users at launch, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds was built to handle that load. As that number passed well over 1.5 million players on a daily basis, peak players have suffered, and the team says they are working to adjust for this load. As for bans due to “stream sniping”, the development team has not addressed how they will change this in the future, and based on what we’ve seen on Steam’s reviews, that might be considerably more important to the long term health of the game’s reviews.

Blizzcon 2017: What is Happening at the Major Publisher Convention

Just days after the Activision launch of Destiny 2 on PC, Blizzcon is starting up with tournaments from their hit games lineup. What else can we expect from the Activision Blizzard convention? Let’s have a look.

Starting off with an adventure in the Heroes Grand Championships, Heroes of the Storm will fill day 1 – October 26th with the opening week of the tournament. Featuring teams from all over the world, this is the culmination of nearly a full year of tournament and qualifier play and will feature some of the most exciting eSports play in the world. The Heroes Grand Championships will continue through well into the week, and on day 2 will be featured aside the original eSports phenomenon, Starcraft II. The Starcraft II World Championship Series promises to start and finish with a bang, as higher intensity matches and quick macro play take the title. Expect to see more of both of these titles in through Day 3, as they push toward the Finals before taking one day off ahead of those Finals matches.

October 30th will begin the World of Warcraft Arena World Championship, with Group A and B competition pushing throughout the day. All tournaments serve as a preface for the main portion of the convention, where Blizzard begins to announce the future of all of its great games. Friday, November 3rd will begin the major festivities, as Blizzard talks about “What’s Next” for each of their titles, from Hearthstone to Overwatch and more. Featuring “Mythic” main events and “Heroic” skilled craft series, those in attendance online and in person will enjoy a nice variety for the hardcore Blizzard fan.

For the most part, Blizzard isn’t giving away any secrets they plan to release at the convention at this time. If you’re interested in learning more about the convention and its crafty, creative, and industry-leading design, see the full schedule on the Blizzard website for more details: https://blizzcon.com/en-us/schedule#fri-nov-3

PlayStation Gets New President as Andrew House Moves Onward

A new Sun rises in Japan this morning as Sony Interactive Entertainment embraced a new CEO and President of the PlayStation branch.

Sony Corporation has announced that the current Deputy President will be stepping into the big shoes left behind by Andrew House – John (Tsuyoshi) Kodera is now the Face of PlayStation. Appointed by former Sony Interactive boss, and now head of all things Sony, Kaz Hirai will now serve as Kodera’s only superior, and a great mentor and adviser for the PlayStation brand which has of late held up the Sony brand.

With Andrew House stepping aside, one has to wonder why he would decide to go away from a 27 year career with one of the most prestigious companies in the world. House’s response: “to persue new challenges”. As the face of the PlayStation brand through the transition into PS4, House is credited with stepping ahead of the simultaneously launched Xbox One brand, solidifying the securities of Sony as a whole in a weak period of mobile and television sales.

As it compares, John Kodera has spent 25 solid years with the company and has been working with House on a foreseeable transition for the last year. Kodera focused on the game and network services predominately and will bolster product development, business strategy and system network engineering. A look at Sony’s official press release helps us see more into the past and future of this transition, and where PlayStation will be in the future.

Kaz Hirai – “When I passed the baton of leadership for Sony Computer Entertainment to Andrew House in 2011, I was confident that I was leaving the PlayStation business in the best possible hands, and so it has proved. I’m extremely grateful to Andy for the great contribution he has made to evolving the PlayStation business, and firmly positioning it as one of the drivers of our future growth.

Andy and I go back more than 20 years and spent much of this time together, dedicating ourselves to ensuring the success of the PlayStation business. I would like to thank Andy for his contribution over many years, and wish him every success in the future.

John Kodera has led Sony’s network service business since 2013 and played a pivotal role in its growth. He is a truly global executive, possessing strategic understanding, strength of conviction and outstanding leadership capabilities.

Since his appointment as Deputy President of SIE last year, alongside Andy he has also been responsible for the company’s overall business strategy and product planning. With the significance of network services increasing across the entire Sony Group, I believe that John is ideally equipped to build on the foundations Andy has left in place, and drive Sony’s game and network services business to further growth and excitement going forward.”

Andrew House – “I’m tremendously proud of what we’ve built with PlayStation and Sony Interactive Entertainment: entertaining millions globally with the best in games and creating a fully fledged digital entertainment company. PlayStation has been a huge part of my life for more than 20 years but with the business having achieved record-breaking success, now seemed to be the right time for me to pursue new challenges.

I shall always treasure the friendships and people that have made SIE such a wonderful place to work. I’m also grateful to PlayStation fans and gamers around the world for their loyalty and support. John and the team at SIE are world-class and I know the future of PlayStation is very bright.”

John Kodera – “It’s a great honor to take on the role of President and CEO, SIE, and I’m very grateful to Kaz and Andy for the trust and faith they have shown in me. I intend to build on the amazing progress Andy has made enhancing the PlayStation brand and expanding the game and network services business, and will strive to further strengthen the unique value proposition we are able to offer via the PlayStation platform.

I look forward to working together with the SIE team, and everyone across the Sony Group, to continue to strengthen relations with our business partners, and provide the best possible interactive entertainment experiences, that only PlayStation can deliver.”

Every Game Nintendo Announced for the Switch in 2017 [Nintendo Direct]

Announced on April 12th, 2017, the latest Nintendo Direct showcased the future of the Nintendo Switch for all of 2017. In rapid-fire mode, Nintendo pushed out trailer after trailer. Some with solid dates behind them, others with squishy time frames. Announcing everything through Q1 of 2018, let’s have a look at the future of Nintendo Switch.

NEOGEO Masterpieces – April 13th

Showcasing many major features from the ol’ NEOGEO console, the Nintendo Switch eShop will offer titles up from their collection on April 13th and forward. Look for titles such as Samurai Showdown IV, Fatal Fury, and The King of Fighters ’99 at immediate release, with more arcade-style classics coming forward from the aged platform.

Puyo Puyo Tetris – April 25th

Already available for public consumption, you can get your hands on a demo for Puyo Puyo Tetris today, available for release in digital demo.

Minecraft: Nintendo Switch Edition – May 11th

Packing a Mario-themed punch, the Nintendo Switch will pick up Minecraft: Nintendo Switch Edition on May 11th. Minecraft will feature some Switch exclusive multiplayer options, along side this unique theme and will bring a larger scale to a previously limited mobile and home Minecraft space.

Disgaea 5 Complete – May 23rd

The fifth installment to the popular, and previously in the wild Disgaea series will hit the Nintendo Switch on May 23rd. This will serve as one of a limited library of existing JRPG titles out there as of yet, and be a welcome title for any RPG fan.

Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers – May 26th

If you don’t know by now what this game is all about, you don’t know games. The definitive Street Fighter comes back to life on Nintendo Switch on May 26th with Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers. As the series most prestigious title, we can all enjoy a good fighting title soon.

Arms – June 16th

Serving as a serious upgrade to the fun of Wii Boxing as part of the original Wii Sports, “Arms” is just around the corner, and the Nintendo Direct announcement showcased some of the interesting elements of the title that would set it apart from the years-old Wii Sports classic. Launching June 16th, get ready for Arms!

Splatoon 2 – July 21st

The single most successful new IP on Wii U, Splatoon serves as a Call of Duty replacement that’s safe for the whole family to enjoy. Queue, Splatoon 2. Coming July 21st.

Fate/EXTELLA: The Umbral Star – July 25th

Packing in all available DLC offerings for other platforms – 35 pieces of paid DLC, Fate/EXTELLA: The Umbral Star. Filling in a bit more of the JRPG gap on the early Nintendo Switch, this is the last solidly dated title in 2017.

NAMCO MUSEUM – Summer 2017

For those who still yearn for yesteryear, Pac is back with dozens of great NAMCO titles in NAMCO MUSEUM for Switch. Look for it on the eShop this Summer.

Sonic Mania – Summer 2017

Packing in the old, traditional styles of Sonic the Hedgehog on SNES, a new title is on the horizon. Sonic Mania brings the speed we know and the 2D format we loved as kids.

Sine Mora EX – Summer 2017

Developed by THQ Nordic and Grasshopper Manufacture, Sine Mora EX is a sci-fi shoot em’ up ready to bring hours of fun to your home and mobile console experience this Summer. Check out the video below for great style and game play.

Battle Chasers: Nightwar – Late Summer 2017

Set for late Summer 2017, Battle Chasers: Nightwar stages itself as a fantastic mixture of Adventure and the “Classic JRPG format.” Another beautiful title published by THQ Nordic, take a peek.

Monopoly – Fall 2017

Monopoly for the Nintendo Switch. What more can we say? Supporting up to 6 players, the most classic of board games brings its modern generation of digital Monopoly to your hands in Fall.

PAYDAY 2 – Winter 2017

Set up as one of the biggest third party titles announced this year, PAYDAY 2 will launch this Winter, supporting up to four players in co-op.

Sonic Forces – Winter 2017

Sonic Forces launches this Winter for those fans still looking forward to a 3D Sonic title. Packing a new ally into the title, it’s nice to see Sonic cater to the true retro and modern in the same year.

Rayman Legends: Definitive Edition – (TBD) 2017

Launching again on Nintendo Switch as it had in Wii U, Rayman Legends: Definitive Edition is coming for those who may have missed the Wii U era.The Definitive Edition will include “an exclusive Hung Foot experience” with Solo Mode and 8-player multiplayer competition.

Star Wars Battlefront II Teaser Trailer Leaked

With a short chunk of footage appearing online today, Star Wars Battlefront II Footage is now in the wild!

In variance from the original, Star Wars Battlefront II will feature a larger campaign, spanning multiple eras of the Star Wars franchise. This includes a single player campaign that will reach throughout at least all 9 “primary” story arch films, and potentially even Rogue One.

Footage showcased above was expected to be released at the Star Wars Celebration, set for April 13th. While unconfirmed at time of leak, with the celebration set to showcase all things Star Wars, the timing is right for a leak just ahead of the official release.

Inside the trailer we see Kylo Ren, Rey, Toda and Darth Maul, with “The Last Jedi” characters available to all those who pre-order the game. Look for more details on pre-release ordering to come this Thursday.

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