From February 25th to March 9th Overwatch is running an event that gives Ashe a new Mardi Gras themed skin. Players can earn the skin by winning nine multiplayer games during the event period, with various other cosmetic rewards at different milestones. Alongside the event comes a new game mode with big changes. The Experimental mode lets players opt into playing heroes with massively altered stats and/or abilities, similar to the PTR, but available from the game’s main menu on all platforms.
According to game director Leroy Athanassoff, the development team for Rainbow Six Siege is considering moving to a free to play platform. The team understands that many financial considerations, as well as gameplay concerns, will need to be addressed with this decision. Most of these gameplay concerns center around the removal of a paywall dissuading players from playing, as a number already do. If the game is to become available on a free platform, the development team would need to rework and significantly improve the monitoring systems to identify when a player is abusing a system.
Microsoft has reinforced their Xbox Games Pass by announcing that all first-party games for the foreseeable future will be included in games pass on launch day. They have also announced that the Series X will allow players to keep their Xbox one titles in their libraries. Microsoft expanded on this with their “Smart Delivery” idea, which lets players buy a game once and have it on both consoles. All first-party titles will feature smart delivery, and third-party developers can choose to use this feature for games that came out on Xbox One first.
Nvidia’s GeForce Now continues its rough start as Bethesda now pulls out of the service. This announcement arrives on the heels of the disagreement with Blizzard Activision over the platform and Activision pulling titles. Nividia also made clear that developers ultimately hold final say of their product as the service moves into its final paid status. Not all news for GeForce Now is terrible though, the service left beta before its main competitor, Google’s Stadia, launched its free tier.