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RIP — the ESA puts E3 down like Old Yeller | Kaser Focus RIP — the ESA puts E3 down like Old Yeller | Kaser Focus
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For my Gen Z and Alpha readers for whom older live-action Disney films may not be the required viewing it was for me: I’m very sorry to spoil one of the most meaningful and beloved animal films of all time, but it’s important. The Entertainment Software Association announced this week that it’s choosing not to revive E3, meaning the legendary conference is as dead as we’ve always joked it was. I’m not using the Old Yeller reference idly — a beloved creature, brought low by age and sickness, mercifully slain by those it once served? Yeah, I think you can see where my head’s at right now.

It’s been a very strange week. One of the first pieces of news we had was the bizarre conclusion of The Day Before’s saga. Four days after it launched, developer Fntastic suddenly declared the game to be a financial failure and said it was immediately closing. Players who were subjected to the game’s panoply of bugs and glitches are left scrambling to try and get refunds, while reportedly former Fntastic staff members are scrubbing their socials.

Other news from this week includes the cancelation of The Last of Us’s standalone multiplayer title, which had been in development for years; Netflix getting the GTA Trilogy, which looks surprisingly good on mobile; and several new feature delays (Spider Man 2’s New Game+ mode; Fallout 4’s next-gen update; Total War Warhammer 3’s DLC) as game publishers get ready to wrap the year up. All three console companies have also rolled out their year-in-review features, so everyone can look at how much gaming they’ve done this year and rejoice.

In personal news, I’m still hard at work getting the EOY list underway. It’s going to be a whopper compared with last year. I’m also finishing up my reviews of Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora and Asgard’s Wrath 2, which might be my final game reviews of 2023. If there’s time, I might also check out House Flipper 2 — I enjoyed the first one well enough, so I’d like to see what improvements the sequel gets.

What to play this week

What’s new:

  • Asgard’s Wrath 2
  • Ready or Not
  • House Flipper 2
  • Stellaris Nexus
  • Granblue Fantasy Versus: Rising
  • Pioneers of Pagonia
  • Cookie Cutter
  • Soulslinger: Envoy of Death

New on subscription services:

  • Far Cry 6 (Xbox Game Pass)
  • Tin Hearts (Xbox Game Pass)
  • Escape the Backrooms (GeForce Now)
  • Flashback 2 (GeForce Now)
  • Forza Horizon 4 (GeForce Now)
  • Forza Horizon 5 (GeForce Now)
  • The Front (GeForce Now)
  • Minecraft Dungeons (GeForce Now)
  • Primal Carnage: Extinction (GeForce Now)
  • Universe Sandbox (GeForce Now)
  • Akka Arrh (Prime Gaming)
  • Aground (Prime Gaming)
  • SeaOrama: World of Shipping (Prime Gaming)

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