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Main article: Gaming

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A multiverse, not the metaverse

19:00 | 25 February

Following web forums, web platforms and mobile apps, we are entering a new stage of social media — the multiverse era — where the virtual worlds of games expand to become mainstream hubs for social interaction and entertainment. In a seven-part Extra Crunch series, we will explore why that is the case and which challenges and opportunities are making it happen.

In 10 years, we will have undergone a paradigm shift in social media and human-computer interaction, moving away from 2D apps centered on posting content toward shared feeds and an era where mixed reality (viewed with lightweight headsets) mixes virtual and physical worlds. But we’re not technologically or culturally ready for that future yet. The “metaverse” of science fiction is not arriving imminently.

Instead, the virtual worlds of multiplayer games — still accessed from phones, tablets, PCs and consoles — are our stepping stones during this next phase.

Understanding this gradual transition helps us reconcile the futuristic visions of many in tech with the reality of how most humans will participate in virtual worlds and how social media impacts society. This transition centers on the merging of gaming and social media and leads to a new model of virtual worlds that are directly connected with our physical world, instead of isolated from it.

Multiverse virtual worlds will come to function almost like new countries in our society, countries that exist in cyberspace rather than physical locations but have complex economic and political systems that interact with the physical world.

Throughout these posts, I make a distinction between the “physical,” “virtual,” and “real” worlds. Our physical world defines tangible existence like in-person interactions and geographic location. The virtual world is that of digital technology and cyberspace: websites, social media, games. The real world is defined by the norms of what we accept as normal and meaningful in society. Laws and finance aren’t physical, but they are universally accepted as concrete aspects of life. I’ll argue here that social media apps are virtual worlds we have accepted as real — unified with normal life rather than separate from it — and that multiverse virtual worlds will make the same crossover.

In fact, because they incentivize small group interactions and accomplishment of collaborative tasks rather than promotion of viral posts, multiverse virtual worlds will bring a healthier era for social media’s societal impact.

The popularity of massive multiplayer online (MMO) gaming is exploding at the same time that the technology to access persistent virtual worlds with high-quality graphics from nearly any device is hitting the market. The rise of Epic Games’ Fortnite since 2017 accelerated interest in MMO games from both consumers who don’t consider themselves gamers and from journalists and investors who hadn’t paid much attention to gaming before.

In the decade ahead, people will come to socialize as much in virtual worlds that evolved from games as they will on platforms like Instagram, Twitter and TikTok. Building things with friends within virtual worlds will become common, and major events within the most popular virtual worlds will become pop culture news stories.

Right now, three-quarters of U.S.-based Facebook users interact with the site on a daily basis; Instagram (63%), Snapchat (61%), YouTube (51%) and Twitter (41%) have similarly penetrated the daily lives of Americans. By comparison, the percentage of people who play a game on any given day increased from just 8% in 2003 to 11% in 2016. Within the next few years, that number will multiply as the virtual worlds within games become more fulfilling social, entertainment and commercial platforms.

As I mentioned in my 2020 media predictions article, Facebook is readying itself for this future and VCs are funding numerous startups that are building toward it, like Klang Games, Darewise Entertainment and Singularity 6. Epic Games joins Roblox and Mojang (the company behind Minecraft) as among the best-positioned large gaming companies to seize this opportunity. Startups are already popping up to provide the middleware for virtual economies as they become larger and more complex, and a more intense wave of such startups will arrive over the next few years to provide that infrastructure as a service.

Over the next few years, there will be a trend: new open-world MMO games that emphasize social functionality that engages users, even if they don’t care much about the mission of the game itself. These new products will target casual gamers wanting to enter the world for merely a few minutes at a time since hardcore gamers are already well-served by game publishers.

Some of these more casual, socializing-oriented MMOs will gain widespread popularity, the economy within and around them will soar and the original gaming scenario that provided a focus on what to do will diminish as content created by users becomes the main attraction.

Let’s explore the forces that underpin this transition. Here are the seven articles in this series:

  1. Games already are social networks
  2. Social apps already are lightweight virtual worlds
  3. What virtual worlds in this transition era look like
  4. Why didn’t this already happen?
  5. How virtual worlds could save society
  6. The rise of virtual economies and their merging with our “real” economy
  7. Competitive landscape of the multiverse

 


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Voodoo Games thrives by upending conventional product design

03:17 | 18 February

Will Robbins Contributor
Will Robbins is an early-stage investor at Contrary.

Voodoo Games is one of the most interesting startups alive today. In mid-2018, it had 150 million MAUs and raised $200 million from Goldman Sachs, yet I’ve never heard anyone mention the company. That might be normal for an obscure enterprise SaaS play, but Voodoo is consumer-facing through and through.

Quantitative success aside, Voodoo upends much of the conventional thinking about product design and gaming. If it can do it, how can similar strategies apply to other products?

But first, some background: What is Voodoo Games?

Voodoo is best described as a product conglomerate. Take a look at its App Store page. It has dozens of generic-looking apps. The basic playbook is:

  • Quickly build a relatively low-quality, single-purpose game.
  • Make sure one mechanic is really fun. It doesn’t matter if users churn 20 minutes after downloading it.

 


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The drunken HQ Trivia finale before it shut down was insane

20:55 | 15 February

“Not gonna lie. This f*cking sucks. This is the last HQ ever” yelled host Matt Richards . And it just got crazier from there.The farewell game of HQ Trivia before it shut down last night was a beautiful disaster. The hosts cursed, sprayed champagne, threatened to defecate on the homes of trolls in the chat window, and begged for new jobs. Imagine Jeopardy but Trebek is blacked-out.

Yesterday HQ Trivia ran out of money, laid off its 25 employees, and shut down. It was in talks to be acquired, but the buyer pulled out last minute and investors weren’t willing to pour any money into the sagging game show. It had paid out $6 million in prizes from its $15 million-plus in venture capital.

But HQ was in steady decline since February 2018 when it peaked at over 2.3 million concurrent players to just tens of thousands. The games grew repetitive, prize money was split between too many winners, original host and quiz daddy Scott Rogowski was let go, and the startup’s staff failed in an attempt to mutiny and oust the CEO. You can read how it all went down here.

But rather than wither away, the momentary cultural phenemenon went out with a bang. “Should HQ trivia shut down? No? Yes? Or f*ck no!” Richards cackled.

You can watch the final show here, and we’ve laid out some of Richards and co-host Anna Roisman’s choicest quotes from HQ’s last game:

  • “If you just got here, this is HQ Trivia. It’s a live mobile gameshow. We’re gonna read about 34 questions and then you’re gonna win about 2 cents and you’re gonna fucking loooooove it” -Roisman
  • “This $5 prize is coming out of my own pocket. We ran out of money. we just kept giving it away. We gave it all to the players to you, you loyal HQties” -Richards
  • “Take this time now to buy some extra lives, you never know when you’re going to need them. I wish we had an extra life for the company. I’m sorry. I fucking can’t. I’m gonna cry. My dogs eat $200 worth of food a day. My dogs are gonna starve” -Richards
  • “Why are we shutting down? I don’t know. Ask our investors. What am I going to do with my fish tank? I think our investors ran out of money” -Richards
  • “Who likes healthy snacks! That’s why the investors stopped giving us money, because there wasn’t any fucking snacks in this bitch. We were snackless. Who the fuck can work in a place without snacks!” -Richards
  • “I met a couple who told me HQ is part of their foreplay” -Richards
  • “Who’s going to miss the HQ chat? I’m going to miss all those people telling me I don’t have eyebrows or to do the Carlton” -Richards
  • “Maybe we should close every night. These are the nicest f*cking comments I’ve ever seen. Wow, you’re finally telling me I look hot. I tried for a year and ahalf -Roisman
  • [Reading comments] “‘won’t miss you at all, good riddance'” -Roisman. “Who said that? Let’s find that mothefucker and sh*t on his porch” -Richards
  • “Hire everyone! All the people who don’t have jobs they fucking rock!” -Richards
  • [While doing a headtand] “Someone hire me! I’m fucking talented” -Roisman
  • “We should have unionized a long time ago” -Richards
  • [To his girlfriend] “Hello baby! I don’t got a job, you still love me?” -Richards
  • “We bought this giant bottle of champagne for when we hit 3 million players” -Richards (HQ never got there)
  • [Shakening it up and opening to a disappointing trickle] “It wasn’t as big as I thought it was gonna be” -Richards.  “That’s what she said. It was anti-climactic” -Roisman. “Much like this episode” -Richards. “Much like this app” -Roisman
  • “They gave me like two double shots of tequila” -Richards, on why he was drunk

Then things really went off the rails at 41 minutes in, cued up here:

  • [Upon a bunch of people getting a question wrong] “Y’all fucking fucked up!  You are dumb! I’m kidding, you’re not dumb. You fucked up. It happens” -Richards
  • [Reading the final question together] “What does Subway call it’s employees? Ham hands, sandwich artists, or beef sculptors?”
  • “520 people are splitting $5. Send me your Venmo requests and I’ll send you your fraction of a penny” -Richards

Farewell, HQ Trivia, you glorious beast.

 


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The Meta, a training platform for gamers, builds on Kovaak’s FPS Aim Trainer

18:00 | 4 February

As esports grows and creates opportunities for gamers to level up to the pro or streamer level, there is still a huge barrier in the way. There is not a wealth of training options for gamers. If you can’t get better within the environment of the game itself, then you’ve peaked. Practice makes perfect, but what if there’s no such thing as practice?

The Meta is looking to change that with the launch of a new training platform that builds off the success of KovaaK’s FPS Aim Trainer. Kovaak is a former Quake pro, known for his hyper accurate aim, who built Kovaak’s FPS Aim Trainer out of personal need. He wanted a way to grind out his mechanical aiming skills, and built out various scenarios across 10+ major titles to practice.

The Meta cofounders Duncan Haberly and Chris Olson had been working on their own training platform that focuses on guided trainings around specific skills, with physics and gun mechanics identical to popular titles, to let gamers learn from their mistakes and train better habits.

After the two esports entrepreneurial teams met, they decided to join forces and offer what they believe to be the ultimate training tool.

It’s comprised of two parts. The first is The Meta’s self-guided training platform, with various branches that focus on a different skill set in FPS gaming. The second is Kovaak’s Sandbox, the aim trainer that lets users test the skills they’ve learned by playing through more than 2600 user-generated scenarios.

For now, the Meta guided training focuses on flicking (otherwise known as click timing), with plans to introduce tracking and scoping skill branches soon. The self-guided training side of the platform feeds users insights about their deficiencies — maybe they tend to miss their shots when enemies are in the upper left quadrant of the screen — so they can dedicate time and energy to improving that part of their game in the aim trainer.

[gallery ids="1941505,1941506,1941507,1941508"]

The Meta is available on Steam for PC players, with plans to launch for consoles in the future.

The Flicking trainer has more than 40 sub-levels, with support for Overwatch and Fortnite. Kovaak’s Sandbox, as the FPS Aim Trainer is now known, has more than 2600 user-created scenarios and supports titles like Overwatch, Fortnite, Quake, Call of Duty, Apex Legends, Paladins, CS:GO, Battlefield, and Rainbow 6.

The Meta is $9.99, as a single-time payment, and the company says it’s currently averaging 20k units sold per month. The gaming startup has raised $2.5 million in funding from investors like Village Global, Canaan Beta Fund, Courtside VC, AET Fund (Akatsuki Entertainment Technology), betaworks, and GFR Fund (GREE).

There is movement in the esports space around training and improvement. In 2018, Epic Games introduced Playground Mode to allow players a chance to experience the Fortnite environment without dropping in alongside 99 other gamers. PlayVS, the startup looking to take esports infrastructure to the high school and college level, is investing heavily in data, reporting stats and analysis to players, coaches, fans and recruiters. StateSpace, a direct competitor to The Meta with $4 million in funding, uses neuroscience to help gamers train, hoping to create a standardized metric by which gamers’ skills can be measured.

Esports is growing across almost every metric, from viewership to awareness to revenue, and with that, we can only expect to see more startups dive into the space and stake their claim.

 


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This Week in Apps: Apple antitrust issues come to Congress, subscription apps boom, Tencent takes on TikTok

19:04 | 25 January

Welcome back to ThisWeek in Apps, the Extra Crunch series that recaps the latest OS news, the applications they support and the money that flows through it all.

The app industry is as hot as ever with a record 204 billion downloads in 2019 and $120 billion in consumer spending in 2019, according to App Annie’s recently released “State of Mobile” annual report. People are now spending 3 hours and 40 minutes per day using apps, rivaling TV. Apps aren’t just a way to pass idle hours — they’re a big business. In 2019, mobile-first companies had a combined $544 billion valuation, 6.5x higher than those without a mobile focus.

In this Extra Crunch series, we help you keep up with the latest news from the world of apps, delivered on a weekly basis.

This week, there was a ton of app news. We’re digging into the latest with Apple’s antitrust issues, Tencent’s plan to leverage WeChat to fend off the TikTok threat, AppsFlyer’s massive new round, the booming subscription economy, Disney’s mobile game studio sale, Pokémon GO’s boost to tourism, Match Group’s latest investment and much more. And did you see the app that lets you use your phone from within a paper envelope? Or the new AR social network? It’s Weird App Week, apparently.

Headlines

 


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Fortnite just officially became a high school and college sport

18:00 | 22 January

Fortnite, one of the world’s most popular games, will now be an official high school sport and college sport thanks to an LA-based startup called PlayVS .

The company has partnered with Epic Games to bring competitive league play to the collegiate and high school level. This also marks PlayVS’s entry into colleges and universities.

PlayVS launched in April of 2018 with a mission of bringing esports to high school, with a league akin to traditional sports like basketball or football. Though a partnership with the NFHS, high schools (or parents, or the students themselves) can pay $64/player to be placed in a league to compete with neighboring schools, just like any other sport.

But PlayVS partnerships go deeper than the NFHS (the NCAA of high school sports), as the company is also partnering with the publishers themselves. This is the part that puts PlayVS a step ahead of its competition, according to founder Delane Parnell .

While other companies are setting up paid competitive leagues around video games, very few if any have partnerships at the publisher level. This means that those startups could be shut down on a whim by the publishers themselves, who own the IP of the game.

PlayVS is the first to score such a partnership with Epic Games, the maker of the world’s most popular video game.

These publisher partnerships also allow PlayVS to productize the experience in a way that requires almost no lift for schools and organizations. Players simply sign into PlayVS and get dropped into their scheduled match. At the end, PlayVS pulls stats and insights directly from the match, which can be made available to the players, coaches, fans and even recruiters.

For PlayVS, the college landscape presents a new challenge. With high school expansion, the NFHS fueled fast and expansive growth. Since launch, more than 13,000 high schools have joined the waitlist to get a varsity esports team through PlayVS, which represents 68% of the country. PlayVS says that just over 14,000 high schools in the United States have a football program, to give you a comparison.

The NFHS has a relationship with the NCAA, but no such official partnership has been signed, meaning that PlayVS has to go directly to individual colleges to pitch their technology. Luckily, they’re going in armed with the most popular game in the world, and at a time when many colleges are looking to incorporate esports scholarships and programs.

And it doesn’t hurt that PlayVS has quite a bit of cash in the bank — the company has raised $96 million since launch.

Unlike the rest of the PlayVS titles, the first season of Fortnite competition will be free to registered users, courtesy of the partnership with Epic Games. Registration for the first seasons closes on February 17 for high schools, and February 24 for colleges and universities. The season officially kicks off on March 2.

The format for competition will be Duos, and organizations can submit as many teams of two as they like. The top teams will be invited to the playoffs with a chance to win a spot in the championship in May.

 


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Tencent to grow gaming empire with $148M acquisition of Conan publisher Funcom in Norway

15:23 | 22 January

Tencent, one of the world’s biggest videogaming companies by revenue, today made another move to help cement that position. The Chinese firm has made an offer to fully acquire Funcom, the games developer behind Conan Exiles (and others in the Conan franchise), Dune and some 28 other titles. The deal, when approved, would value the Oslo-based company at $148 million (NOK 1.33 billion) and give the company a much-needed cash injection to follow through on longer-term strategy around its next generation of games.

Funcom is traded publicly on the Oslo Stock Exchange, and the board has already recommended the offer, which is being made at NOK 17 per share, or around 27% higher than its closing share price the day before (Tuesday).

The news is being made with some interesting timing. Today, Tencent competes against the likes of Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo in terms of mass-market, gaming revenues. But just earlier this week, it was reported that ByteDance — the publisher behind breakout social media app TikTok — was readying its own foray into the world of gaming.

That would set up another level of rivalry between the two companies, since Tencent also has a massive interest in the social media space, specifically by way of its messaging app WeChat . While many consumers will have multiple apps, when it comes down to it, spending money in one represents a constraint on spending money in another.

Today, Tencent is one of the world’s biggest video game companies: in its last reported quarter (Q3 in November), Tencent said that it make RMB28.6 billion ($4.1 billion) in online gaming revenue, with smartphone games accounting for RMB24.3 billion of that.

Acquisitions and controlling stakes form a key part of the company’s growth strategy in gaming. Among its very biggest deals, Tencent paid $8.6 billion for a majority stake in Finland’s Supercell back in 2016. It also has a range of controlling stakes in Riot Games, Epic, Ubisoft, Paradox, Frontier and Miniclip. These companies, in turn, also are making deals: just earlier this month it was reported (and sources have also told us) that Miniclip acquired Israel’s Ilyon Games (of Bubble Shooter fame) for $100 million.

Turning back to Funcom, Tencent was already an investor in the company: it took a 29% stake in it in September 2019 in a secondary deal, buying out KGJ Capital (which had previously been the biggest shareholder).

“Tencent has a reputation for being a responsible long-term investor, and for its renowned operational capabilities in online games,” said Funcom CEO Rui Casais at the time. “The insight, experience, and knowledge that Tencent will bring is of great value to us and we look forward to working closely with them as we continue to develop great games and build a successful future for Funcom.”

In retrospect, this was laying the groundwork and relationships for a bigger deal just months down the line. 

“We have a great relationship with Tencent as our largest shareholder and we are very excited to be part of the Tencent team,” Casais said in a statement today. “We will continue to develop great games that people all over the world will play, and believe that the support of Tencent will take Funcom to the next level. Tencent will provide Funcom with operational leverage and insights from its vast knowledge as the leading company in the game space.”

The rationale for Funcom is that the company had already determined that it needed further investment in order to follow through on its longer-term strategy.

According to a statement issued before it recommended the offer, the company is continuing to build out the “Open World Survival segment” using the Games-as-a-Service business model (where you pay to fuel up with more credits); and is building an ambitious Dune project set to launch in two years.

“Such increased focus would require a redirection of resources from other initiatives, the most significant being the co-op shooter game, initially scheduled for release during 2020 that has been impacted by scope changes due to external/market pressures with increasingly strong competition and internal delays,” the board writes, and if it goes ahead with its strategy, “It is likely that the Company will need additional financing to supplement the revenue generated from current operations.”

 


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Razer shows off Sila, the first 5G router built for gaming

17:21 | 7 January

Gaming — with its huge demands on bandwidth, graphics and overall processing power — is likely to be one of the big use cases for 5G networking in the future, and today one of the big players in consumer gaming hardware showed off a 5G router that underscores that trend. Razer, the consumer electronics upstart that has long billed itself as “for gamers, by gamers,” today at CES showed off a new product called the Razer Sila 5G Home Router — a high-speed networking device that both automatically prioritizes bandwidth for gaming and streaming, and also lets users choose which devices on the network get more or less juice.

Alongside that, it also unveiled a new universal mobile gaming controller — Razer Kishi; a new gaming desktop Razer Tomahawk Gaming Desktop, and a new Razer e-racing simulator created in collaboration with game publishers and vendors. The Sila and e-racing simulator are both concept pieces at this point, while the Android- and iOS-compatible controller will be on the market in early 2020. (No date given for the Tomahawk.)

Razer — which went public in 2017 (market cap currently around $1.5 billion) — has faced recent controversy from a number of former employees coming out to criticize its figurehead and CEO, Min-Liang Tan, and how he runs the company, alleging a culture of fear with violent threats and more. Tan at the time of the reports brushed off the remarks claiming they were in jest, but it’s notable that he doesn’t seem to be making himself particularly visible or available this year at the show — a contrast from years before.

Instead, we are presented with the fruits of the company’s labor over the past year, a time where it has continued to produce hardware — computers, peripherals like controllers, mainly — but has made a number of moves to figure out the best way ahead with software and services, where it says it is increasing its share of revenue, but has also shut down its digital game store, as well as its Ouya and Forge TV services.

Although it’s only still a concept, the Sila 5G Home Router is perhaps the most exciting of the pack of announcements this year, as it is tapping into a bigger wave of interest in 5G by giving it a more relevant feel to the consumer market; and represents a notable new area for Razer itself (in routers).

The Sila is described as a “high-speed networking device tailored for gamers” and notable features include ultra-low latency during both stationary and mobile gameplay, built on Razer’s FasTrack engine — which allows a user to play a game with no pings or interruptions from other services or network glitches. The router has a built-in rechargeable battery so you can travel with it and use it outside the home.

It is built using a Qualcomm SDX55 + Hawkeye IPQ8072A chipset, and is also usable with 4G LTE over a 802.11ax 4×4 WiFi connection, with one 2.5Gbps WAN, 4 x 1Gbps LAN and 1 x USB 3.0 ports, along with a SIM slot to link up to the cellular network. All of it can be controlled through Android or iOS apps.

Razer’s presence at CES where it shows off its latest ideas has become a regular fixture at the annual event for good reason.

As gaming has expanded beyond traditional consoles and into the cloud and across the web to PCs and phones, it has become one of the most demanding uses of computer processing power, putting machines through their paces not just in graphics, but audio and overall responsiveness when it comes to gameplay. At CES, if you go to any of the big product launches for the computing giants (Nvidia, AMD, Intel, Qualcomm), or visit any number of stands showing off the latest in computing tech, gaming is the most common demo you will see as a “proof point” — not just because it’s eye-catching, but because it genuinely is a test of how well something works.

So it’s no surprise that Razer, a company building hardware specifically for the gaming market, has a regular, big presence at CES, where it shows off both products that it plans to launch as well as those that are still in concept, in order to test market interest and have some fun with what could be in the future.

(It’s also a very obvious reason why Intel became an investor in the company many years ago when it was still in startup mode. It was a strategic move that helped ensure both that Intel could collaborate with Razer to have a closer idea of what is needed and should be built, but also to make sure that its chipsets are at the core of those new gaming-focused machines).
CES 2020 coverage - TechCrunch

 


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Need more buttons for your PS4 controller? This gadget adds two on the caboose

22:08 | 17 December

When you play games on your PS4, it’s fair to say that your thumbs and index fingers are generally doing most of the work. Why not put the rest of your lazy digits to work with this accessory that puts two programmable buttons on the rear of the DualShock 4 controller?

Called, imaginatively, the Back Button Attachment, the gadget plugs into the PS4’s accessory port and adds three interactive items to the back end of the controller. There are two paddle-style buttons that seem suited for middle fingers to hit easily, each of which can be programmed to be any of the ordinary buttons.

There’s also a little OLED screen that provides “real-time” information on what the buttons are set to. It doesn’t seem like there’s ever much urgency to find that information out or show others, but hey. The screen also double as a button for switching between configurations or changing the settings on the fly.

Great idea from Sony, right? Wrong! The rear button thing has been done for some time by high-end third-party controller makers like Scuf and Astro, which with their customizable sticks and buttons have been adopted widely by pro gamers. (Microsoft, for its part, has a patent for a Braille display and input on the back.)

It doesn’t look good to have all the performance-oriented gamers using third party gear, but with the PS5 around the corner and a new controller coming with it, it doesn’t make much sense to put out a stopgap “DualShock 4.5” with extra buttons. So this accessory makes a lot of sense. (Don’t worry, it has a 3.5mm headphone jack pass-through, so you can still use a headset.)

And the price is reasonable, too: $30. That makes it a fairly easy impulse buy for anyone who likes the idea of the extra buttons but doesn’t want to drop a bill or more on a Scuf or Astro controller.

The Back Button Attachment won’t be available in time for the holidays, though — not until January 23. Chances are we’ll see it on display at CES before that, though.

 


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Nintendo’s Switch just had its best sales week in the US

21:39 | 4 December

Nintendo today noted that the Switch just had its best-ever week of sales week in the States. Over the course of Thanksgiving week, the three-year-old console moved more than 830,000 units. That brings the system up to a combine 17.5 million units in the U.S., by Nintendo’s count. It’s pretty impressive momentum for a mature console.

Back in late October, the Switch hit the 15 million mark in the States. It continues to sit atop the console sales charts posted by analytics firms like NPD. The numbers, of course, were juiced by both the upcoming holidays, the addition of the the new, lower-price Switch Lite and various Black Friday offers that bundle in things like a free copy of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.

The system is expected to get another major boost outside of the U.S., which a forthcoming launch in China. Nintendo is teaming up with Tencent to deliver the system to a potentially massive market at around $300 a pop. Preorders in the country opened today, with sales starting on December 10, along with a trio of Mario titles.

As of late-September, the system has sold in excess of 40 million units globally — a healthy upgrade from its lukewarmly received predecessor, the Wii U, which only managed to move 13.5 million in its lifetime. The Switch still has some catching up to do with the eight-year-old 3DS, which has sold 75.5 million copies, globally. 

 


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U.K. Push For Better Broadband For Startups
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There has to an email option icon to send to the clowns in MTNL ... the govt of India's service pro…
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CrunchWeek: Apple Makes Music, Oculus Aims For Mainstream, Twitter CEO Shakeup
Peter Short
Noted Google maybe grooming Twitter as a partner in Social Media but with whistle blowing coming to…
Peter Short

CrunchWeek: Apple Makes Music, Oculus Aims For Mainstream, Twitter CEO Shakeup
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Noted Google maybe grooming Twitter as a partner in Social Media but with whistle blowing coming to…
Peter Short