itch.io Raises Over $5M for Black Lives Matter and Sony Showcased So Many Games
The gaming community continues to respond to current events with itch.io’s game bundle raising over $5 million for organizations supporting Black Lives Matter. Wizards of the Coast banned racist cards in Magic: The Gathering. Participants have pulled out of the board game event Origins Online and indie developers have left Steam after they felt these organizations lacked a response to George Floyd’s death and Black Lives Matter. Origins Online was later cancelled without mentioning these participants, and an anonymous developer stated the departure was also due to Steam’s overall toxic culture.
In other gaming news, showcases rescheduled due to current events like Sony's PS5 presentation, Guerrilla Collective, PC Gaming Show, and the Future Games Show launched last week, revealing new hardware and new games.
Highlights From This Week's Gaming News
Showcased titles include murder mystery Paradise Killer and RPG Cris Tales. Other events like the Guerrilla Collective, the PC Gaming Show, and the Future Games Show also shed a spotlight on new games.
A developer who requested anonymity explained that this goes beyond a lack of response from Steam on current events surrounding George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement, but also focuses on a generally toxic culture on Steam. (TechRaptor previously reported that the Anti-Defamation League found Steam to be a place that harbored extremists like white supremacists.) Similarly, participants unsatisfied with what looked like the Game Manufacturers Association's lack of response to current events have pulled out of the organization's Origins Online showcase. Origins Online was later officially cancelled without any mention of the participants who dropped out.
Sony's showcase featured the debut of the PS5 and its digital edition, along with new games like Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart, Ghostwire Tokyo, Horizon: Forbidden West, a Spider-Man expansion focused on Miles Morales, and a remake of Demon's Souls.
Wizards of the Coast and Riot Games have teamed up to add a League of Legends location as a new campaign setting in the app D&D Beyond. The setting will also include League of Legends characters Miss Fortune and Gangplank.
Originally founded by Playcrafting in 2017 to give New York its own gaming convention, Play NYC is making the shift to online due to COVID-19 like many other events. It’s scheduled for Aug. 10-16, and though free, tickets can be reserved online. Applications for exhibitors and speakers are also open.
Besides several games, the bundle hosted by itch.io includes creation kits and assets for game development, as well as tabletop RPG books. The massive charity bundle has already raised over $5 million for the Community Bail Fund and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund. People can still buy it for $5 and gain immediate access to a huge gaming library. TechRaptor has also shared some of its favorites from itch.io's Bundle for Racial Justice and Equality, highlighting games like Oxenfree, Night in the Woods, Overland, and Celeste.
Features and Reviews of the Week
TechRaptor dives deep into the development behind the undersea game Beyond Blue, learning about the partnership with BBC and efforts to raise awareness about problems harming the ocean, like pollution and overfishing. TechRaptor also reviewed Beyond Blue, enjoying its free swim mode and scientific accuracy.
Asura's Wrath, the God of War franchise, practically every JRPG, and even Scribblenauts are some of TechRaptor's choices for games with ambitions to overthrow a god or two. The Guerrilla Collective showcase even revealed the new game Almighty: Kill Your Gods.
In a preview of the upcoming 2D action game, TechRaptor admired its pixel art, fun protagonist, and an entertaining boss fight against a giant alligator.
Are you interested in buying itch.io’s charity bundle for $5? What do you think of the PS5 and its new games? Did you see other news in gaming this week that deserves attention? What did we miss from the last week in gaming? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. For more on COVID-19’s ongoing impact on gaming, check out TechRaptor’s evolving hub of COVID-19 updates.