Entertainium Extra is our weekly news round-up highlighting some of the bigger, interesting, or just plain weird stories from the past week.
Sega acquires Atlus
Or, more specifically, their parent company Index Corporation, which filed for bankruptcy back in June.
After a few months on the market, Atlus has found itself a new owner. Sega bought them for $140 million, according to a statement released by the company, thus gaining access to Atlus IPs like the Shin Megami Tensei franchise, Catherine, Trauma Center, along with many more. The acquisition will become official on November 1, Atlus reassuring everyone that it’ll be business as usual going forward.
Bit of an odd choice. Never saw Sega as the sort to pursue Atlus’ penchant for niche games. Then again, they probably saw this as an opportunity to finally gain some ground in that space. They’re publishing efforts these days seem less focused on Japanese games. Most of their E3 presence consisted of Company of Heroes 2 and Total War: Rome 2. Atlus’ appetite for quirky games might allow them to bring more State-side with Sega’s backing. If nothing else, I hope this means Europe won’t have to wait so long for Atlus games anymore.
Race the Sun sales struggle, highlights the importance of launching on Steam
The excellent Race the Sun hasn’t performed well since its release last month. Developer Flippfly disclosed sales numbers for the game’s first month over on the company blog. How did it do? Not so well.
As of the post’s writing, Flippfly only sold 771 copies of Race the Sun, which amounts to $7,400 in profits. All this despite having received exposure from over 100 different media outlets (ours included) and tones of positive reviews. So what happened? Steam.
If you don’t launch on Steam, you lose a large percentage of potential buyers. Flippfly’s seen plenty of messages from people saying they would only pick up the game were it in Steam (or available in a bundle), leaving the company between a rock and a hard place, as the game is still sitting in Greenlight waiting to gain approval. It’s position amongst the competition has improved drastically this week (they’re in the top 50, as of this writing), so it’s well on its way to finally arriving on Valve’s much-praised distribution service.
Still – it’s interesting to see just how strong an impact a single storefront can have on a game’s success. Even with platforms like GOG and Desura available, neither has the reach or volume of users that Steam controls. Getting your game released through multiple channels certainly helps, but more and more it’s looking like Steam is an absolute necessity regardless of any reservations anyone may have.
PS4 will allow video capture over HDMI, but not at launch
As YouTube, Twitch, and other streaming services become ever more popular for sharing gameplay footage, it becomes all the more important that consoles make the process of capturing video easier. HDMI ports make that difficult, as high-bandwidth digital content protection (or HDCP) prevents anyone from recording anything through HDMI. And seeing Sony’s latest console only has HDMI input, that spells trouble for let’s players and such.
Sony, thankfully, confirmed that such restrictions will not be in place with the PlayStation 4,thus making everyone’s lives easier as a result. Except, that functionality won’t be available until sometime after launch. President of Worldwide Studios Shuhei Yoshida unveiled the news via Twitter in response to a person’s query on the matter. So that’s disappointing.
Twitch streaming looks to be still on-track for launch, at least, though it’s definitely not the ideal solution for most. Far as I can tell, there’s no way to add commentary to such streams, so if you’re the sort who likes to commentate while you play, you’re out of luck in the meantime. Unless you’re willing to invest in one of those HDCP strippers, but that’s a questionable pursuit at best.
Dark Souls 2 has a release date; available now for pre-order
March 11, 2014 in North America, the 14 of that month for Europe and Australia. Collector’s editions are available for pre-order now. The Black Armor Edition comes with a steel casing for the game as well as the soundtrack, while the full collector’s edition adds a cloth map of the game world and a statue.
PayPal hasn’t been getting along with crowdfunding, locks down accounts for numerous projects
As great a service PayPal is, it’s got a ton of weird issues. Especially in regard to crowdfunding. Giant Bomb posted a report on the matter, examining a few recent instances of PayPal withholding cash. I urge you all to just read Giant Bomb’s full story on the matter. Klepek explains it way more eloquently than I could.