The Daily Moot: Cyberpunk CrunchNews Picks
1. Cyberpunk Crunch
CD Projekt Red has announced that they will be implementing a “crunch” period ahead of the Cyberpunk 2077 launch. CD Projekt Red has long advocated against crunch, which often sees developers working extremely long hours with very few breaks in order to ensure that a game is ready by its publicly stated launch date. In regards to the mandatory crunch for Cyberpunk 2077, studio boss Adam Badowski said, “I take it upon myself to receive the full backlash for the decision. This is in direct opposition to what we've said about crunch…but we've extended all other possible means of navigating the situation.” It is worth noting however, that unlike most companies during crunch, CD Projekt will only have their employees working 48 hour weeks (rather than 70+) and will be paying overtime rates for the extra hours.
2. Cold War Zombies Reveal Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War’s zombies mode has officially been revealed. As expected, the mode will take place in the Cold War era, and players will have to make use of Cold War-era weapons in order to fend off increasingly difficult waves of World War II-era Nazi zombies. Much of the gameplay will be exactly what players have come to expect from the game mode, but there are a few changes. Most notably, there will no longer be a limit to how many perks you can use, meaning that players could theoretically equip every single perk in the game as long as they have enough points to do so. Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is set to launch on November 13; you can check out the reveal video for the game’s zombies mode below.
3. Diablo 4 Skills Overhaul Diablo 4 will soon be getting a massive overhaul to its skills and talents system. Blizzard explained that they felt the current system was “too simple” and “created issues where a player would have no meaningful reason to spend their skill points.” The new system will consist of a skill tree which will present a wide variety of gameplay possibilities. Players will have to choose carefully however, as Blizzard estimates that endgame characters will only be able to complete 30-40 percent of the tree. No release date for the revamped system has been announced yet, but Blizzard is welcoming community feedback and “constructive discussions” in order to make the new system as good as possible before launch.
4. Golden Joystick Awards Community voting for the Golden Joystick Awards is officially underway. The Golden Joystick awards is the largest annual community-voted gaming awards ceremony on the planet, and the 2020 edition marks the 38th anniversary of the event. There are currently 18 different categories open for voting, including the Game of the Year awards for PC, PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo. The winners will be revealed during a live-streamed ceremony in November of this year; you can check out the nominees for each category via the link below.
5. EA Play on Xbox Game Pass EA Play will soon be coming to the Xbox Game Pass, both for PC and console. Microsoft first announced the partnership earlier this month, and now we know exactly how it will work. A huge chunk of EA’s library will be added to the console version of the Game Pass starting on November 10, including series like Mass Effect, Battlefield, The Sims, and Titanfall. PC players will have to wait a bit longer, with the migration set to happen sometime in December. Unlike Microsoft’s recent partnership with Bethesda, it doesn’t appear that every new EA title will be available via Game Pass on launch day. Regardless however, with EA and Bethesda now becoming a significant part of the Xbox Game Pass, Microsoft’s subscription service is starting to look like a very good deal for most gamers. Xbox Game Pass is available for $10 per month for access on one platform, or $15 per month for the “Ultimate” edition which provides complete access on every compatible platform: PC, Xbox, xCloud, and Android.