The Quest Log: June 7, 2017
EA's and Microsoft's press conferences are happening this weekend, which means that E3 is nearly upon us! In the meantime, there's already plenty going on in the industry with yet another Valve writer on his way out the door, a trio of Pokémon games revealed via Nintendo Direct, and more. Check out our highlights below:
Jay Pinkerton Departs Valve
Yet another industry veteran has left Valve, it would seem. Via his officialTwitter account, Chet Faliszek, one of the Valve writer who worked on the Half-Life series as well as the original Portal, seemingly confirmed that Jay Pinkerton, who wrote Portal 2, had departed the studio. Valve, who are better known for Steam than they are for game development these days, lost two other writers earlier this year, leaving us to wonder just how much writing talent could possibly be remaining at the studio.
Nintendo Announce Three New Pokémon Titles for 3DS and Switch
Nintendo announced three new Pokémon titles earlier this week during a Nintendo Direct broadcast. The more traditional Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon are coming to the 3DS this November while an enhanced port of the Wii-U's Pokémon Tournament will appear on Switch this September as Pokémon Tournament DX.
I'd hoped we'd see a proper franchise entry also make find a port to Switch, but at least for now that doesn't appear to be the case.
Battleborn's Competitive Multiplayer Goes Free-to-play
Battleborn actually came up during our conversation on the last Heads Up Display episode, which seems like a pretty wild coincidence. The shooter-MOBA hybrid from Gearbox failed to make a huge splash when it launched last year ahead of Overwatch. Gearbox's marketing had largely attempted to create a rivalry with Blizzard's team-based shooter in spite of the fact that the two games played remarkably differently from one another.
With online populations dwindling, many assumed that Battleborn would go free-to-play before long, and today is finally that day. Well, sort-of. The game's competitive multiplayer is now free to play without limit, but the generally well-received cooperative game modes are still locked behind the game's retail price tag.