Welcome, fellow game players. I, personally,  have some news—this will be my last time sitting down with you (across the vastness of the internet) to share the gaming industry’s news. It’s time for me to move on to larger projects, such as, uh, editing this site. Our copyeditor, Emily Durham, will be taking over my spot from now on, which is great! You’ll like her.

Anyway, let’s get to the news you actually care about, shall we?

Fallout 76 Has Bag Problems

So, uh, Fallout 76, huh? I confess, I haven’t played it—I’ve never been a fan of the series. But for those who are, the game seems to be a bit of a mess, but crashes and a lonely world aren’t why it’s in the spotlight right now.

What’s drawn player ire is that purchasers of the game’s Power Armor Edition didn’t receive the promised canvas bag as part of the package. Instead, they received a nylon bag of noticeably thinner material. According to an email screenshot posted to Twitter, Bethesda’s response to an inquiry about the bag was, “The bag shown in the media was a prototype and was too expensive to make. We aren’t planning on doing anything about it.”

Bethesda followed up on @AllGamesDelta_‘s tweet to say that the person who answered the email was not a Bethesda employee and responded incorrectly.

The company followed up again to say that it material unavailability was the actual reason the canvas bags were not produced.

The purchase page for the Power Armor Edition of the game has been updated to say that the image is not correct and the description has been updated to read “Nylon Carrying Bag” instead of “West Tek Canvas Carrying Bag,” as it did originally. Bethesda issued an apology and directed customers who were affected to contact support to receive 500 Atoms (worth $4.99) in their in-game account.

But that’s not the end of the story. YouTuber HeelsvsBabyFace noticed that some influencers had received canvas bags from the company, albeit from a different promotion and of a different style than those advertised in the Power Armor Edition of Fallout 76. On December 3, Bethesda announced they will be issuing replacement canvas bags to those that request them by January 31, 2019.

As if that wasn’t enough, a law firm in Washington D.C. is currently looking into claims that Bethesda released a buggy game and is refusing to refund it for many players. The Terms of Service for Fallout 76 include a line that states the return policy does not apply if the product has been opened or used. It’s also worth noting that the law firm has written similar blog posts in the past that have not resulted in a class-action lawsuit, as many purchasers are the game are hoping for. Regardless, Fallout 76‘s release has been a tumultuous one.

A group of players has been banned for life after spouting homophobic slurs and threats in Fallout 76. One of the banned players, who spoke to Kotaku about the incident, said he didn’t regret it and wouldn’t apologize, and that it was all “playful immaturity.” There are no words for the level of awful the incident is, and despite Bethesda’s other sketchy moves, it’s a relief that the group has been banned.

Gaming News Tidbits

Steam is catering even harder to AAA developers with new changes to their financial terms. Under these new terms, if a game makes over $10 million, the revenue share will increase to 75 percent earnings going to the publisher and 25 percent going to steam. This increases again at $50 million to an 80/20 split.

As if on cue, Epic Games announced they’d be launching their own digital game marketplace—one that will split all revenue, regardless of a game’s earnings—with 88 percent going to the developer and 12 percent going to Epic. The digital storefront is scheduled to roll out in 2019.

Al Lowe, creator of the Leisure Suit Larry series, has listed the source code for several Sierra OnLine games on eBay.

BioWare teased a Dragon Age announcement for sometime this month.

Nintendo has updated their guidelines for streaming and other content creators to allow monetization. This is a big move for the company, which previously required creators to join a Nintendo-specific program that gave a portion of the money earned to both Nintendo and Google. Without that program, streamers and YouTubers can earn the same amount of money as they would with any other publisher’s games.

FTC Chairman Joseph Simons agreed to begin investigating loot box systems in video games. Many other countries have begun investigating or limiting loot box implementation to prevent the systems from potentially taking advantage of children.

Games Done Quick has parted ways with several previous participants after another speedrunner revealed screenshots from private Discord servers that showed them making transphobic, antisemitic, and misogynistic remarks. Games Done Quick had previously announced that they wouldn’t be taking action against the streamers due to a lack of evidence, but after pressure from the community, the organization announced the streamers would no longer be participating in any GDQ events indefinitely.

Carolyn Enlow, one of Sierra OnLine’s first female coders, has passed away at 77. Enlow primarily worked on educational games, and left Sierra OnLine to design her own game with her then-husband, Bob Box.

In the wake of news that Tumblr will be removing adult content from the site starting December 17, game designer Robert Yang tweeted that he was pretty certain the Tumblr account for Cobra Club, in which players snap dick pics for a dating app, was the most prolific gay porn account. Unfortunately, it’s almost certain that these posts will all be taken down along with the rest of the adult content on Tumblr—if you want to take a look at a seriously impressive array of dick pics, now’s your last chance.

Also, Dragon Age 2, a game I called “solid” once, earning me the ire of one person online who called me an “EA shill,” is free on Xbox Gold next week. I stand by my opinion. (Where’s my paycheck, EA?)

Games Bleat

Welcome to Games Bleat! I’m Joesph, the gaming gremlin, and I’ve been squatting in a cave all week, searching Lolth’s web for deals and new releases! Boy howdy did it pay off, turns out Lolth is into LAN parties! Who knew?

Anyway I’ll start off with the deals that the spider queen so thoughtfully gifted us.

PC

Next are some new releases coming in hot this week!

First is Iris.Fall, a puzzle adventure game that takes chiaroscuro to a whole new level! Yes, gremlins can know what chiaroscuro is. Gremlins can have art degrees as well as game! Anyway, Iris.Fall looks absolutely gorgeous, with a varied style that brings a whole lot of depth with it, not the least bit because of the whole light and shadow thing.

Next is KATAMARI DAMACY REROLL! There’s really no real way to describe Katamari games, not in a manner that does them justice. Just know there’s a lot of rolling, and a vague sense of whimsical dread that just keeps driving you through the game. In a fun way, you know?

Finally I have Simmiland, a game by the Sokpop Collective (who are making really cool games demi-monthly over on their patreon btw ). Simmiland is a god game about playing cards until the apocalypse comes. Birth humans, build a following, gather their faith, and maybe save their lives in the face of impending doom. It’s a small game, but it’s price also starts at $5, so what’s there to lose?

And that’s it for this week’s bleat! Lolth and I have to go set up our connection for a Civilization marathon, but I’ll catch you next time for more deals, releases, and charming affectations!

Melissa Brinks is Sidequest’s editor in chief, co-creator of the Fake Geek Girls podcast, author of The Compendium of Magical Beasts, and an aspiring beekeeper. She once won an argument on the internet, and tweets at @MelissaBrinks.

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