Friday, February 09, 2018

Weekly Link Round Up

It's Friday! Thank goodness. It could not arrive soon enough. Which means it's time for the weekly link round up! A collection of the best, worst, and weirdest gaming news on the internet. Here's what we've found:

- Google's Deep Mind team taught it's AI how to multitask by using video games. Using a training set built on Id Software's Quake III, along with 57 Atari games, the AI was expected to play every game at the same time, fast. In doing so, it would learn how to play all of them over time to an effective level. It's creepy and cool that we're at this point in our technology that AI's could one day best speedrunners.

- WhatCulture is back with a list of 10 games that will kill you no matter what. I'm going to assume they mean in-game deaths and not IRL. Otherwise, we wouldn't be talking about this! On the list there's Silent Hill, Outlast, and the first Walking Dead game. All aspects that require your main character to die before you can proceed...or you die and the game ends. To it's credit, this is better then last week's WhatCulture list, even if it's bland.

- Project 'Yeti' is underway, according to sources close to Google. The newest video game streaming service! Given the success of Google Fiber, in spite of cable companies trying to block it at every turn (seriously Verizon/Frontier, I want my Google), this will be a new phase for Google's continuing reach. News first broke on 'The Information' but Google has not commented on if this rumor is true. So we don't know the details, other then it could easily rival Microsoft and Sony's services if Google offers streaming at a cheaper rate. Which they will, if Fiber is an example.

- Monster Hunter: World has now hit 6 million units shipped, making it one of the fastest shipped games in Capcom's history. Please remember everyone: shipped does not equal units sold. But given how quickly this game is flying off of store shelves, it's safe to assume that every one of those copies will be purchased. It's a fun game! Though I wish I had more time to play it.

- Jack Thompson. Bet you didn't think you'd see that name again. The disbarred attorney is lending his aid, pro-bono, to the Marshall County High School shooting, which occurred last month. And of course he is suggesting that video games were the cause for the violence. Insert the eye roll here. Thompson is offering to provide a sworn brief detailing his assistance to other families in violent shooting cases that he believes were caused by violent video games. Please keep in mind that Thompson was disbarred twice as an attorney, permanently now, and was found guilty of 27 violations in the practice of law. Don't take his word for anything.

- This week The Sims turns 18. Man I feel like a dinosaur now. In honor of the top-selling franchise (seriously it's up there with Mario), Metro lists 5 reasons why this game series is the best ever. While I don't know if it's as quality as other best seller choices, The Sims has permeated into gaming culture and changed the way we approach immersive content. And it's a really fun building simulator to boot!

- Another player with the Overwatch League is in trouble, and again it's the Dallas Fuel (guys, stop it). This time Hyeon “Effect” Hwang has been suspended from ranked play until Sunday for making a false report against another player. At this point, it's surprising and appalling that the league still hasn't published rules of conduct. Blizzard/Activision need to get their butt on that. Now.

- And while eSports is still trying to make its way into the Olympics, one of the largest Starcraft II competitions was held in South Korea earlier this week. It's only a matter of time before eSports takes over. And congrats to Scarlett for her first international win! You keep doing us proud!

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