The Quest log: April 8, 2017

Welcome back to the Quest Log, where we regularly feature the top highlights in gaming news.

Microsoft Shows Off Impressive Scorpio Specs

Earlier this week, Digital Foundry released an exclusive look at the guts of Microsoft’s Project Scorpio, the Xbox update slated for release this fall. The new console will feature both a custom 8-core CPU, clocked at 2.3 Ghz per core, and a custom 40-core GPU clocked at 1172 Mhz. From a hardware perspective, it definitely looks like Microsoft will have the most powerful console on the market this year, but the finer details of software and developer support remain to be seen.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RE2hNrq1Zxs

Nier: Automata Ships Over 1 Million Units

Square Enix announced in an official press release earlier this week that Nier: Automata, the postmodern action JRPG developed by Platinum Games, had shipped over one million physical and digital units. The success of the game is largely unprecedented given its predecessors’ largely niche status. The game’s director, Yoko Taro, made a heartfelt tweet thanking all of the players who’ve made the game a success.

http://press.na.square-enix.com/releases/945/nier-automata-shipments-and-digital-sales-exceed-one-million

Atlus Threatens Persona 5 Streamers

Atlus, the developers behind Persona 5, the best JRPG since Final Fantasy IX, have issued a formal threat to social media streamers who, stating:

“If you decide to stream past 7/7 (I HIGHLY RECOMMEND NOT DOING THIS, YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED), you do so at the risk of being issued a content ID claim or worse, a channel strike/account suspension.”

The idea here seems to be that as a story-driven game with relatively linear progression, Atlys is concerned that streamers will diminish the value of actually buying the game (why play when you can watch?), which is of course ludicrous.

http://kotaku.com/atlus-threatens-to-go-after-people-who-stream-too-far-i-1794004068

Mass Effect Patch Improves Character Faces

Mass Effect: Andromeda got its first major update since BioWare laid out their plans for post-launch support, and it’s having a surprisingly positive impact on the appearance of characters throughout the game. One character, Director Foster Addison, who was the subject of plenty of criticism prior to the patch looks markedly better than before.

Gaming Payment Processor Xsolla Begins Collecting “Tips” from Buyers

Xsolla, a popular payment processor used by gaming services such as Twitch and Steam, has reportedly begun including tips of up to 18% by default as part of their regular transactions. The tip goes directly to the payment processor as opposed to, say, the game developer, publisher, or retailer, and is akin to tipping someone for taking your money and handing it over to someone else, which is itself already in addition to Xsolla’s regular service fees. It would appear that the setting can be altered at the request of the Xsolla subscriber (i.e., Twitch), but if you’re planning on sending some money via Twitch to one of your favorite streamers via Xsolla, it behooves you to check the final total at checkout.

https://www.reddit.com/r/Games/comments/63zewd/popular_gaming_payment_processor_xsolla_has/

The Quest Log: March 10, 2017

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Breaks a Metacritic Record

It’s no mystery that the latest, seminal entry in the series is getting rave reviews, but it’s difficult to quantify just how well it’s being received. To that end, the game’s already surpassed one major milestone as it now holds more 100 (i.e., perfect) review scores on review aggregator Metacritic than any other released title in history. Breath of the Wild takes the mantle from one of Nintendo’s own, Super Mario Galaxy 2, as well as GTA IV. The latest Zelda title currently holds an average critical score of 98.

http://www.metacritic.com/game/switch/the-legend-of-zelda-breath-of-the-wild/critic-reviews

Steam User Review Scores Will No Longer Include Non-paying Gamers

In their official community blog, Steam announced today that they will no longer include user reviews of gamers who did not directly purchase a given title in the game’s customer review score in the store, which means that players who received game codes by other means (e.g., developer giveaway, bundle, etc.) will no longer be able to affect the game’s average. This restriction is an expansion of one put in place just last September as a continued effort to “improve the relevance of the score by better reflecting the sentiment expressed by invested, paying customers.”

http://steamcommunity.com/games/593110/announcements/detail/563352991934009789

Project Scorpio Will See Improved Performance for All Xbox One Titles Right Out of the Box

While official details on Microsoft’s Project Scorpio are few and far between, Windows Central revealed new details about the upcoming console in an exclusive detail. They report that not only will Scorpio enable 4k gaming for supported titles, it will also improve the performance of existing 1080p (or less) Xbox One games right out of the box. This revelation comes hot on the heels of Sony’s recently released “boost mode” for the PS4 Pro.

http://www.windowscentral.com/project-scorpio-supersampling-for-1080p-tvs