Microsoft Reverses Xbox Live Gold Price Increase Amid Backlash

On the 23rd of January, Microsoft announced that there would be a price increase for Xbox Live Gold, Microsoft attempted to raise the price from $9.99 (1 month), $24.99 (3 months), and $39.99 (6 months), to $10.99, $29.99, and $59.99 respectively. A price increase in subscription services is usually a normal occurrence, especially considering Microsoft has invested heavily into its services like Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass to make them worth the cost. 

However, Microsoft was forced to revert the price increase on the same day it was announced due to huge backlash from Xbox fans. In a statement on the official Xbox website, the Xbox Live Gold Team said “We messed up today and you were right to let us know. As a result, we have decided not to change Xbox Live Gold pricing.” 

The team did go on to turn their bad press moment into a positive, as they announced that Xbox Live Gold would no longer be required for players to experience free-to-play games, similar to how Sony’s PlayStation Plus service works. 

It goes to show that fans can get their voices heard, and use it for good. 

Housemarque’s Latest Game, Returnal, Has Been Delayed to April 2021

The PS5 exclusive from Housemarque, Returnal, has been delayed from its original release date of March 19th to April 30th 2021. The official PlayStation account took to Twitter to announce the new release date, stating “Update: Returnal has a new release date of April 30, 2021. SIE and Housemarque have made the decision to move the release date in order to give the team extra time to continue to polish the game to the level of quality players expect from Housemarque.” 

Returnal was announced during PlayStations huge ‘Future of Gaming Showcase’ and went onto announce the release date at The Game Awards. Players will be able to take control of a woman named Selene after she crash-lands on an alien planet, called Atropos. The environment in the game is always evolving and players must fight to survive as they try to escape the alien planet. 

You’ll be able to get your hands Returnal on April 30th, 2021 for PS5 exclusively. Watch the trailer here.

A New ‘Knights of the Old Republic’ Title is Being Developed, But Not By EA

It’s been over 15 years since the release of Knights of the Old Republic, and fans are eagerly awaiting news of a remake or sequel to the hit game. Rumours first started surrounding a new entry in the series last year when a report from Cinelinx stated that EA was working on a new Star Wars game that would be a remake of the original Knights of the Old Republic title. 

Now the rumours are in full swing again as Lucasfilm announced the Star Wars license would now be available to other developers, such as Ubisoft, who announced an open-world game set in the Star Wars universe. In a recent podcast, Bespin Bulletin, a Star Wars insider, stated that a new game is being developed by an unnamed developer. He goes on to state: “Amongst my digging, I heard there is a Knights of the Old Republic project in development somewhere. I found out that Jasin Schreier said that it’s not with EA”. 

The license to Star Wars has only just gone to developers that aren’t EA, so fans shouldn’t expect any trailers or gameplay anytime soon, but you can keep your fingers crossed that an announcement may come sooner rather than later!

Mediatonic Announces a Fall Guys Mid-Season Update, Bringing New Level Variations

Fall Guys Season 3 launched at the end of last year, on the 15th of December and was a winter-themed update adding 7 new levels, 30+ new skins, and many more features. Now, the official account for Fall Guys took to Twitter to announce a mid-season update, or a Season 3.5, if you will. The update will include:

  • A brand new level
  • 40+ new variations for existing levels
  • Fall Feed
  • New DLC pack
  • Godzilla, Sonic, and Goose Game costumes returning to the store
  • New shows and costumes to go live over the coming weeks

For a midseason update, Season 3.5 looks to be adding more than enough content to keep players content until the inevitable release of Season 4. It’s nice to see the game receiving more frequent updates after Season 2 fell short after not adding a whole lot of new content, Mediatonic has definitely upped their game for Season 3.

Despite some recent confusion, it was announced Fall Guys would not be coming to Xbox Game Pass, but you can play it now on PC and PlayStation 4. 

PlayStation Plus Announces February Monthly Games, Including Destruction AllStars

PlayStation Plus members were able to grab Maneater (PS5), Shadow of the Tomb Raider (PS4), and Greedfall (PS4) as their January monthly games. Now, PlayStation has taken to Twitter to officially announce the lineup of games coming to the subscription service in February. 

PlayStation Plus members will be able to grab Destruction AllStars (PS5), Control Ultimate Edition (PS5/4), and Concrete Genie (PS4) beginning from February 2nd. 

It was announced some time ago that Destruction AllStars would be apart of the February free games, but paired with Control: Ultimate Edition and Concrete Genie, it’s looking to be a good month for PS+ members. As someone that still hasn’t played Control, and is constantly told by friends to play it, I’m glad I held out! 

Don’t forget to add all three games to your library from February 2nd on PlayStation Plus. 

Sonic the Hedgehog Voice Actor Has Departed the Role After 10 Years

Sega has confirmed that after 10 years, Roger Craig Smith, the famous voice of Sonic the Hedgehog, has left the role. After Smith tweeted “Welp, 10 years was an amazing run. Onward to new zones! Much love to the fans who’ve been so kind. It’s been an honor.”, Sega then confirmed the news with a follow-up tweet on the official Sonic account “For over 10 years, Roger Craig Smith has been an integral part of the SEGA family. He brought the voice of Sonic to life, and we are forever grateful for his never-ending enthusiasm in helping the community and spreading joy. Thank you, Roger, for all you’ve done for Sonic.”

Roger Craig Smith is not only known for the famous voice of Sonic, but also numerous other voice roles such as Ezio in Assassin’s Creed II, Batman in Batman: Arkham Origins, and more recently, Diago Dojima in Yakuza: Like a Dragon

Although this definitely won’t be the last we hear of Roger Craig Smith, no pun intended, it’s a sad day for Sonic fans around the world; but now the question arises, who will take over the iconic role?

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Kyle Knight
24 | Coventry | Film and Television Graduate

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