Bethesda Buyout Gives Microsoft a Huge Next-Gen Advantage

The day before pre-orders go live for the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S, Microsoft announces the surprise takeover of Bethesda Softworks, immediately cementing its central strategy into place for the next generation — while putting Sony back on the defensive.

For Microsoft, the acquisition is very much in line with the strategy it has trumpeted since the early days of the Series X announcements. Games are no longer a product for the company — they’re a service.

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How Did 3D TV and Movies Rise So High And Fall So Fast?

The 3D revolution started a little over a decade ago. It didn’t last long.

While television manufacturers like Samsung, LG, and Panasonic bet big on the technology — and some top filmmakers, including James Cameron, made a convincing case for it in theaters — it had a lifespan of just seven years. So what happened? Why did 3D fail to catch on?

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Take-Two’s Zelnick Isn’t a Fan of Netflix Pricing for Games

While several publishers in the video game space are touting an all-you-can-play, Netflix-like pricing model, Strauss Zelnick, CEO of Take-Two Interactive Software, has some concerns.

Microsoft is going all-in with GamePass and Ubisoft has Uplay+, both of which include access to older games as well as new releases for a fixed monthly price. Zelnick, though, says it doesn’t make economic sense to include the latest and greatest titles in those packages.

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Coronavirus Search Interest Lags As New Cases Explode

As COVID-19 cases continue to spike across the United States, search interest in the virus and terms surrounding it has faded considerably. And while health and search experts say they don’t believe there’s a direct line between the two statistics, they acknowledge that declining interest online is certainly reflective of a larger societal problem.

To be clear, search interest in the coronavirus has hardly vanished. It topped news, music, and sports on Google on July 4, though it has regularly been outpaced by requests for weather reports since May. But compare the current numbers to what they were in March and it’s a precipitous drop.

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Hollywood or Porn Studios: Who’s Protecting Actors Better?

Mainstream Hollywood and the adult entertainment industry have always had an uneasy coexistence, but as both industries inch back toward shooting new content, they’re facing the same problem: How do you protect actors and crew in the COVID-19 world?

In some ways, the porn industry has a head start. Since 1998, adult performers have been screened regularly for HIV and other communicable diseases. And the industry keeps a broad database of who has been tested and their most recent test dates. That’s something that, until recently, was unthinkable in Hollywood.

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From NBA2K to eNASCAR, are e-sports the new sports?

“Gentlemen, start your engines,” rang the familiar refrain. And on cue, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kyle Busch, and other drivers all got ready to race. Only instead of firing up their cars at the Dixie Vodka 400 in Miami, the NASCAR drivers practiced social distancing and were nowhere near one another—or their cars, for that matter.

Instead, the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Series, which aired live on Fox Sports 1 on March 22, was a multiplayer e-sports competition. The drivers, in essence, were playing a NASCAR video game (though one a bit more polished than home users play). No rubber? No road? No problem. More than 900,000 viewers tuned in to the televised races, regardless.


EA CEO Andrew Wilson: Here’s How We Prepared for a Pandemic

Andrew Wilson used to be on the road almost every week. These days, he’s washing dishes, doing the laundry, and helping homeschool his children. But as CEO of Electronic Arts, he’s also overseeing the most massive and fast-paced overhaul of how the game publisher operates in the company’s history.

All of EA’s 9,700 employees are working from home right now — and Wilson tells Digital Trends that the company is in no rush to get them back to the office.

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Animal Crossing: New Horizons Has a Thriving Black Market

On the surface, you’d be hard-pressed to find a gentler video game than Animal Crossing: New Horizons. There’s no violence of any sort. The world is jam-packed with adorable creatures who are always happy to see you and lend a helping hand. Heck, even the music makes you smile.

Historically, the players who gravitate toward Animal Crossing titles have fit that same mold – helpful and friendly. But as the series has seen a rush of new players, forced to stay at home during the pandemic, a seedier world has started to emerge beneath the surface. And while most players still happily fish their days away, chase butterflies, or gather seashells, there are some whose interests have turned to stock market manipulation, fraudulent deals, and character trafficking.

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What refunds are due to you? Airlines, day care, hotels, gyms and more

As stay-at-home orders continue to stretch out, more and more Americans are taking a look at their recurring expenses (and some canceled plans) and pressuring those companies to issue refunds on their premiums and subscriptions.

It seems simple enough: Plans were canceled or services were unavailable due to the coronavirus pandemic, so you shouldn’t have to pay for those—or should at least receive a partial refund. It’s not always so cut and dried, though. While some companies have been proactive in offering financial recompensation, others have been reluctant to do so.


Craft beer could be the latest COVID-19 victim 

While alcohol consumption is on the rise as people stay at home during the coronavirus pandemic, America’s craft brewers could be on the verge of a crisis that may well devastate the industry.

Because people are largely unable to visit taprooms, the small- and medium-size brewers that run them have lost a primary source of income—and many may not be able to weather an extended lack of customers.