Gaming Week In Review: Nintendo Pokemon Direct announces new games and returning classics, Steam Greenlight says goodbye
Nintendo announces “Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon,” “Pokken Tournament DX” and re-releases of the classic “Pokemon Gold and Silver” games for later this year
As a treat tailored specifically to Pokemon fans, Nintendo released a special edition of its Nintendo Direct news broadcast that outlines its plans for the franchise over the next year.
The first major announcement was Nintendo’s first “Pokemon” game for the Switch, “Pokken Tournament DX,” which is a fighting game set in the “Pokemon” universe, intended for older audiences. Through brief glimpses of gameplay, we can see that a large variety of Pokemon will be playable, from the iconic Pikachu to some of the most powerful Pokemon in the franchise, such as Mega Charizard and legendary Pokemon like Darkrai.
The next announcement detailed “Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon,” the sequels to “Pokemon Sun and Moon.” These new installments are going to be an “alternate story set in the ‘Pokemon Sun and Moon’ universe,” according to Nintendo. To enhance the experience, players will have a host of new features to explore, most of which have not yet been announced.
Based on the trailer, we see popular Alola region Pokemon, namely Mimichu and Lycanroc, getting their own special Z-Moves. “Sun and Moon’s” special legendary Pokemon also make a return, but this time they are decked out in some mysterious technological armor. Other than that, the game world displayed seems more fleshed out overall, with extra background details and environmental scenes such as a field full of frolicking Pikachus.
Veteran fans will be happy to hear about “Pokemon Gold and Silver” getting a modern port on the 3DS, which will be available for digital download on the Nintendo Virtual Console. As if to taunt us, the announcement opened with the player battling the infamous Gym Leader Whitney, known for steamrolling young Pokemon fans with her unstoppable rollout-using Milktank. Much like the ports of the original Pokemon games, “Pokemon Red, Blue and Yellow,” the game will be compatible with the Pokemon Bank service on the 3DS, meaning you can take your new friends from the old game with you into future installments.
You can watch the full Pokemon Direct broadcast below:
Steam Greenlight has officially shut down and will be replaced by Steam Direct on June 13
Valve announced quite a while back that it intended to shut down its infamous Steam Greenlight program, where users had the opportunity to vote on specific games to be made available on the Steam platform.
To replace the voting-based system where publishers paid a small fee to put their game up for judgment, Valve has started the Steam Direct Program. This new system requires publishers to pay a $100 fee, fill out some electronic paperwork and provide adequate bank and tax information for a streamlined publishing method. Once the game has made at least $1,000, the original fee will be returned to the developer. This effectively cuts out the community input aspect altogether, in favor of a fee and Valve’s discretion in regards to quality.
While the opportunity to vote on what games made it onto Steam was an intriguing prospect, Valve ultimately had the final say in the process, often arbitrarily deciding what was up to par.
Steam Greenlight was directly responsible for many hit titles, such as “Octodad,” “Project Zomboid” and “Superhot.” But other quality and cult-classic games floundered to make their way onto the platform through the program. For example, it took years for the free “Fire Emblem” inspired “Battle for Wesnoth” to get through the system. Some incidents have left a sour taste in many people’s mouths, such as the game “Paranautical Activity” being denied through Steam Greenlight, getting published by Adult Swim and then denied again for “cheating the system.”
You can check out the full announcement here.
Gaming Week In Review is a semi-regular column by Mathew Brock devoted to recapping recent news from the video game world each week.
You can follow Mathew on Twitter: @MathewQBrock.
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