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This week Call of Duty: WW2 saw the release of its first DLC pack, dubbed, The Resistance, for the PlayStation 4 version of the game. I've put time into the three new multiplayer maps, the new War map and the new Zombies chapter, and can happily report that they're all pretty great, and I had a blast getting to grips with all the new gubbins on offer.
However, playing the DLC, I couldn't help but wish - and not for the first time - that Activision would ditch its premium map model and give new maps to all players for free. There are a few reasons for this.
It's 2018 and Call of Duty still splits its userbase by selling maps. I can't help but feel this is an archaic approach. Obviously selling maps still does the business for Activision otherwise the mega publisher wouldn't do it, and Sony no doubt forks out a pretty penny for 30 day exclusivity on the DLC packs (don't get me started on timed exclusivity on DLC!), but dividing Call of Duty players up into the "haves" and the "have-nots" feels like the wrong thing to do for the community and for the game.
UPDATE 14/2/18: Psyonix has announced that it will begin beta testing Rocket League's highly anticipated Tournament Mode on PC next Wednesday, February 21st.
Anyone with Rocket League on Steam can get involved in the beta; simply right-click the game in your library, select 'Properties, click the 'Betas' tab, and choose 'Tournaments Beta' from the drop-down list. More detailed instructions can be found on Psyonix's website.
The beta begins at 6pm in the UK / 10am PST on February 21st and runs until 1am February 24th in the UK / 5pm PST on February 23rd. The above teaser video offer the merest whiff of things to come in Rocket League's Tournament mode, designed for organised competitions.
Activision has announced the first two charities to each receive $30,000 USD as part of its Call of Duty Endowment programme's expansion into the UK.
The Call of Duty Endowment is a non-profit foundation established by Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick in 2009. It identifies and funds "the most efficient and effective organisations" that assist veterans in finding high-quality employment, and has helped placed more than 43,000 US veterans into full-time civilian jobs since its inception.
In September last year, Activision announced that the Call of Duty Endowment programme would be extending its reach to the UK, and that the process had begun to "identify and forge partnerships with a select group of UK charities".
Gorgeous bug-based exploration adventure (or Metrdoidvania, if you will) Hollow Knight is due to get one final, free expansion update soon -
and developer Team Cherry has offered up a new teaser trailer in anticipation of its arrival.
Hollow Knight's final expansion, Gods & Glory - AKA Content Pack 03 to Kickstarter backers - follows on from last year's substantial freebies The Grimm Troupe and Hidden Dreams.
It introduces a new character and quest, more boss fights, a new game mode, and special Glorify Charms. "Track down this disturbing yet alluring being, break her chains and aid her in an ancient duty", says Team Cherry of new character The Godseeker.
A note from the editor: Jelly Deals is a deals site launched by our parent company, Gamer Network, with a mission to find the best bargains out there. Look out for the Jelly Deals roundup of reduced-price games and kit every Saturday on Eurogamer.
Less than a year ago, Persona 5 saw a release outside of Japan, finally landing on PS3 and PS4 consoles worldwide, to critical acclaim, including our own review by Cassandra Khaw, who gave it an Essential.
In the months since, Persona 5 has held steady at prices of 40 and above - until now, that is, as the game is currently discounted down to its lowest price directly from the PlayStation Store itself. You can currently pick up a PS4 copy of the game for 24.99, or get a PS3 edition for only 15.99.
Blizzard has said Battle for Azeroth, the seventh World of Warcraft expansion, will launch this summer - a date further clarified to mean on or before 21st September 2018.
Pre-purchasing the expansion - buying it outright ahead of time - comes with benefits. One of those is an immediately available free boost to the game's current level cap of 110; another is a head start on quests to unlock Allied Races in the full Battle for Azeroth expansion. It's not clear how much of the quests you can complete.
A more expensive Digital Deluxe Edition ( 53) offers a Seabraid Stallion Alliance mount or Gilded Ravasaur Horde mount in World of Warcraft, and a cute baby Tortollan pet. There are also some voice lines, sprays and icons for Overwatch; a Hearthstone card back; a Heroes of the Storm Flamesaber mount; and Horde and Alliance StarCraft 2 sprays.
Last night was financials night for Electronic Arts and a chance for investors to ask about the sticky situation of suspended microtransactions in Star Wars Battlefront 2.
The most pertinent quote came from a Wall Street Journal report. EA's money man, Blake Jorgensen, told the publication monetisation would be reinstated sometime "in the next few months". "We'll do it when we think it's ready," he reportedly said.
A screenshot of the entire, very short, WSJ article was tweeted by WSJ reporter Sarah E. Needleman. The article itself is available only via the subscription-restricted Dow Jones Newswire.
BioWare's Anthem will now launch in spring 2019, EA has said, confirming recent reports of a delay.
Except it's not a delay, EA boss Andrew Wilson explained to company investors in a call last night (transcribed by Seeking Alpha). The game was progressing "well", but was being given "some free air".
"The first thing about Anthem is regardless of kind of how it's being portrayed, we are not looking at that as a delay in the game," Wilson said. "We've chosen to launch Anthem in Q4 and the date is really determined by portfolio of balancing consideration not for product readiness reasons. It's tracking well on its development milestones. We are really confident of its ship date."
When Epic added a battle royale mode to Fortnite in September last year, PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds publisher Bluehole was pretty upset.
"We are concerned that Fortnite may be replicating the experience for which PUBG is known," said Chang Han Kim, then its executive producer and now CEO of PUBG Corporation, which today runs the breakout shooter. The press release listed concerns over similarities in user interface, gameplay and 'structural replication' between the two games, and made a vague threat about potential legal action, which hasn't apparently gone anywhere.
Fortnite now has 45 million players, which is probably greater than the number which plays PUBG, and Battle Royale mode is what they play. That has to hurt. But it's not to say PUBG has much of a leg to stand on. "Look, I don't claim ownership," Brendan 'PlayerUnknown' Greene told Rock Paper Shotgun last summer. "So, it's a last-man standing deathmatch. That's been around since people could pick up clubs and hit each other. I would never claim ownership over that ... I love to see what the genre has created. It's various versions on something that I guess I popularised, you know? The idea itself is not mine."
There's a new Humble Bundle in town, and it brings together the many and varied delights of Rockstar Games, including Manhunt, Grand Theft Auto, Bully, and Max Payne.
The new Rockstar Humble Bundle, to give it its official, wholly unsurprising name, features three different price tiers, each higher tier netting you more and more games. All titles, incidentally, are redeemable on Steam.
Fork over $1 USD (around 70p), and you'll receive Max Payne, Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto Vice City, and Manhunt. Pay more than the current average of $9.17 (that's around 6.50), and you can add Bully: Scholarship Edition, Grand Theft Auto San Andreas, LA Noire, and Max Payne 2 to your burgeoning collection.