Thursday, February 9

Tag: Video game companies

Gaming

Sonic Co-Creator Yuji Naka Arrested Over Dragon Quest Game

Over the past 24 hours a number of people in Japan—including a Square Enix employee—have been arrested on insider trading charges related to a Dragon Quest game announcement. Legendary Sega designer Yuji Naka is reportedly among them.The scandal centers around a studio called Aiming, which in 2020 was announced as the developer of a new Dragon Quest game, called Tact. Last night, it was first alleged that 38-year-old Square Enix employee Taisuke Sazaki, who has worked on Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts games, knew of the deal before it was publicly announced, and along with a friend purchased a ton of shares in Aiming, hoping to profit when their share price (presumably) went up.Naka, 57, who is credited as one of the main creators of Sonic the Hedgehog and who has also worked on everythi...
Gaming

Bobby Kotick Donates To Republican Who Protested 2020 Election

Rep. Mike Garcia on the campaign trailPhoto: Myung J. Chun (Getty Images)While it’s normal for prominent business people to donate to both sides of the political aisle—so that whoever wins an election they can call in some favours—as the Republican Party lurches further to the right, some of the candidates being supported are deserving of a bit more scrutiny than usual.As Axios reports, the race for a US House seat in California’s 27th District—part of the city of Los Angeles—is expected to go down to the wire on Tuesday, after the 2020 election saw Rep. Mike Garcia win by just 333 votes. His rival this week (as it was in 2020) is Democrat Christy Smith, and to help the incumbent over the line, three wealthy donors have handed Garcia $50,000.One of those three donors is Activision CEO Bobb...
Gaming

What To Know To Earn Exclusives

Image: Blizzard / KotakuUPDATE 10:05 a.m. ET, Tuesday October 11: A number of players have reported issues redeeming either Kiriko’s voice line or skin (or sometimes both). Kotaku has reached out to Blizzard for comment on this. For now, we recommend double-checking that your Twitch and Battle.net accounts have been relinked, that you’re following all the steps outlined below, and that you wait at least 24 hours after claiming the items from your Drop Inventory. Additionally, you may want to be sure that you’re watching a stream with Drops enabled. Check the title of a stream, the text chat, or ask a streamer if they’ve done so. Overwatch 2 landed this week with a bunch of changes compared to the first game, not the least of which were its new heroes. And if you’re looking to kit out the g...
Gaming

Overwatch 2 ‘Launch Experience Has Been Frustrating’

Image: Activision BlizzardOverwatch 2 has not been having a good time. After undergoing two attacks by external parties that made it nearly impossible to play, the hero shooter came under fire for its bad cell phone policy. Then, many had issues trying to play Overwatch 2 with friends. Blizzard worked to ease these pains, axing the phone requirement outright and allowing more players to experience the sequel as the week went on, but not before some extended downtime on Thursday night. By Friday, fans had discovered a chat bug that randomly spent their real-world money on the shop. Now it’s the evening, and to kick the weekend off, Blizzard has another update. In a new status update post, Blizzard expressed gratitude that fans have been “patient” through this entire saga, and while there ar...
Gaming

Controversial Executive Steps Down From Call Of Duty Publisher

Screenshot: CBS Viacom / KotakuIn a past life, Frances Townsend defended the legal basis for the torture method called waterboarding during George W. Bush’s war on terror. In a more recent one, she helped lead Activision Blizzard’s initially tone-deaf response to a major sexual harassment lawsuit by the state of California. Now she’s stepping down as the Call of Duty publisher’s chief compliance officer after less than two years in the position.CEO Bobby Kotick announced the move to staff in an email on Thursday, The Wall Street Journal reports. Despite stepping down from the position, Townsend will still remain an official advisor to Kotick and to Activision Blizzard’s Board of Directors, over which Kotick presides. This shift in the company’s governing structure comes as Microsoft tries ...
Gaming

Call Of Duty Remains On PlayStation A Few More Years

Sony gets “several more years” of joint custody over Call of Duty with Microsoft.Photo: Activision / Kotaku / Barone Firenze (Shutterstock) (Shutterstock)Good news PlayStation Call of Duty players: Microsoft says you get to have “several more years” of playing the shoot-bang game on your Sony console. According to The Verge, earlier this year Microsoft’s Xbox boss Phil Spencer made that commitment to PlayStation boss Jim Ryan in a written letter saying that Call of Duty wasn’t going to disappear off the PlayStation storefront anytime soon if Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard is approved by regulators.“In January, we provided a signed agreement to Sony to guarantee Call of Duty on PlayStation, with feature and content parity, for at least several more years beyond the current S...
Gaming

FIFA 23 Accidentally Sells For Six Cents, EA Honors The Mistake

Image: EA SportsFIFA 23 is currently up for preorder around the world, and is supposed to be a full-price retail release, but in one particular market on one particular store, customers could get one hell of a bargain.Last month, anyone browsing the Epic Games Store in India would have seen that while the standard edition of FIFA 23 cost ₹3,499 (USD$44), the Ultimate Edition—which should have been ₹4,799 (USD$60) was instead listed at ₹4.80.The error was first discovered in late JulyImage: TwitterThat is not a sale price, that is an error, one where the store has clearly put the decimal point in the wrong spot. ₹4.80 works out to be six cents, and as word spread about the savings, users flocked to the store and bought the game. And not just Indian gamers, either; once news got out, fans we...
Gaming

Diablo Devs Say Activision Back To Its Old Union-Busting Tricks

Image: BlizzardNearly two months after Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick announced the company would finally begin bargaining its first union contract with the Game Workers Alliance at Raven Software, staff at Blizzard Albany, currently working on Diablo IV, say the publisher is back to trying to union-bust. They accuse Activision Blizzard of rehiring the law firm Reed Smith to undermine their own organizing effort rather than voluntarily recognize the company’s second union.“Instead of following Microsoft’s lead and committing to a labor neutrality agreement, Activision has made the clear and conscious decision to deny us our basic labor rights while once again spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on a union-busting firm,” Albany Game Workers Alliance, which is organizing for thi...
Gaming

Tony Hawk Says A Pro Skater 3+4 Remake Was Killed By Activision

Image: Tony Hawk Pro Skater 4From 1991 until 2021, Vicarious Visions was the name of a studio that made a ton of pretty cool licensed games, but which had also contributed to the beloved Tony Hawk Pro Skater series. Then Activision stepped in and made some changes.In January 2021, having just released a remake of Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1+2, Activision announced that the developers were being merged into Blizzard, and would also be receiving a name change, effectively killing off the studio as we knew it.I said at the time, “This sucks!”, but it sucks even more now because of the claims—from someone who would know—that the developers had been planning on repeating the remake treatment with Tony Hawk Pro Skater 3+4.On a recent stream by Neversoft, and Vicarious veteran andyTHPS, Tony Hawk hims...