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Gears of War, one of the biggest video game franchises on the Xbox platform, is heading to Netflix.

The announcement comes after long months of negotiations in a competitive environment, with the streamer nabbing the media rights and partnering with The Coalition, the Canadian game developer behind the franchise.

Netflix has grand ambitions for the title and a plan that includes first adapting the video game saga into a live-action feature followed by an adult animated series. If everything turns up roses, more stories would follow.


Check out the five-minute gameplay reveal trailer for Blight: Survival, a third-person cinematic action-adventure survival game that its developers describe as an "action-horror roguelite" – with four-player co-op as well. A new blight is raising the dead, and you'll use your choice of medieval weapons and warfare to stop it.



More than two years after his public falling out with Bethesda Softworks, Doom Eternal composer Mick Gordon has issued a lengthy and detailed statement on his side of the dispute. Gordon claims he was the target of unfair and dishonest behavior on id Software's part, perpetrated primarily by Doom Eternal executive producer Marty Stratton, but defends his commitment to the game, saying, "I never quit Doom. I quit a toxic client."

Cracks in the surface first appeared following the release of the official Doom Eternal OST in April 2020. The audio quality was dodgy, and Gordon quickly revealed that he had not mixed most of the tracks. He also expressed doubt at the time that he'd work with Bethesda again. It was a very surprising statement in light of his long and seemingly-successful relationship with the studio across games including the 2016 Doom reboot, the Wolfenstein reboot, and Prey.

In May, Stratton posted an "open letter" on Reddit in which he praised Gordon as a composer but portrayed him as unreliable and difficult to work with. He said Gordon could not meet the OST deadline he'd agreed to, and that a two-month extension granted at his request wasn't sufficient either, forcing id Software to give responsibility for it to lead audio designer Chad Mossholder. Stratton said his Reddit statement was prompted by "direct and personal attacks" made by Gordon against Mossholder, and while he wished Gordon well, added that Bethesda and id Software would not be working with him on any Doom Eternal DLC.

Gordon declined to comment at the time, but today's statement paints a very different picture than the one presented by Stratton. In it, Gordon disputes much of Stratton's 2020 message, saying that Stratton "lied about the circumstances surrounding the Doom Eternal Soundtrack" and "used disinformation and innuendo" to unfairly blame him for its failure.

"Marty’s Reddit post severely impacted both my professional and personal reputation," Gordon wrote. "In releasing this statement, I’m exercising my right to defend myself. It is a defense, not an unprovoked attack, issued with extreme reluctance only after all other attempts to resolve the matter have failed."

Gordon also called on his fans and followers to not respond with abusive behavior toward anyone involved: "This statement is not an excuse for a hate campaign. Acts of hate dished out online won’t result in any positive change. In fact, it only makes things worse."

After explaining the nature of his employment—Gordon is not an employee of id Software or Bethesda, but an independent contractor—and his work, Gordon stated that he encountered a number of difficulties while composing for Doom Eternal, including a tight deadline, lack of direction and supporting materials, slow communication, and multiple interruptions. The schedule was "a masterpiece in Excel but a disaster in reality," he wrote, but efforts to come up with something more workable went badly. He said that Stratton "rejected" his criticism of the schedule, and characterized it as "a sign of incompetence."

This was very near the start of the project, and according to Gordon, things grew worse as development continued. Gordon alleges that he worked for months-long stretches (nearly a full year at one point) without being paid, and that he was not aware of the plan to release an official soundtrack until it was announced at E3 in 2019. Crunch, he says, was brutal, for him and id Software both: Gordon speculated that one of the reasons there was no proper strategy for an OST release is that "id Software was stretched thin by the overwhelming push to make the November 22 release date and had no capacity to deal with other problems looming."

Doom Eternal was eventually released to acclaim, but Gordon said he still had no contract for the soundtrack, and he claims that when the OST was delayed in March 2020, he still hadn't been offered a contract to do the job. Stratton eventually revealed to Gordon that id Software had been working on an "alternative OST" for at least six months prior to the contract offer, which Gordon said finally arrived just two days ahead of Doom Eternal's release. Last-minute efforts to collaborate on the project failed, at which point Stratton decided that Mossholder's work would be released.

"I could have protested, but it wouldn’t have done any good," Gordon wrote. "Under the contract, Marty was guaranteed veto power and complete creative control. Ultimately, I’m just a contractor—it’s their product, and they govern every aspect.

"I voiced my anxieties over [Chad Mossholder’s] edits and hoped they had improved since the week before. I said they should ensure the album adheres to mastering standards and provided specific details in that regard."

Ultimately, Bethesda confirmed that Gordon had met his contractual obligations and paid him what he was owed. But Gordon took serious issue with the state of the OST, which he said "was full of real, obvious technical faults, mistakes, and errors resulting from careless editing." But the worst thing, he said, was discovering that the OST included a "massive amount" of music for which he had not been paid, including rejected tracks, demos, sketches, and mockups. That led to a call between Gordon and Stratton, during which Gordon said he and Stratton agreed to release a joint statement on fixing the OST problems. Shortly thereafter, however, Stratton posted his "open letter" on Reddit which blamed the troubles on Gordon.

"I was horrified," Gordon wrote. "Not just at Marty turning his back on what was our agreed path forward but also at his shameless disregard for the truth in his attack: the Reddit post was littered with lies and disinformation which directly contradicted the actual events and contractual clauses."

Lawyers became involved and settlement offers were allegedly exchanged: Gordon says he was offered a "six-figure sum" in exchange for taking responsibility for the problems with the soundtrack, which he declined, while his offer to produce a proper OST was hung up on Stratton's refusal to take down the Reddit post, which his lawyers allegedly said "would reflect poorly on his reputation."

Tired of having his reputation called into question by Stratton's open letter (he said "incidences of online abuse escalated at an alarming rate" following the post), Gordon eventually had the post taken down himself by way of a sympathetic Doom subreddit mod. That apparently ended any hope of reaching an agreement, as Stratton's lawyers allegedly then told Gordon that Stratton was "greatly offended" and "furious" over the post's removal, and "made it clear in the strongest terms that an amicable resolution would be impossible."

Gordon said Stratton's reaction put him in a position where his only option was to make a public statement in order to repair his reputation.

"Marty couldn’t accept that I never wanted to work with him again, and made his best attempt to send my career into a nosedive as punishment," Gordon wrote. "He resorted to lies and innuendo that fell apart under the most basic level of scrutiny, then tried to bury the issue under a stack of cash.

"Using NDAs, settlements and gag orders to silence truths is an appalling tactic used by people in high positions of power fearful of accountability. I am choosing to speak out because the alternative was to accept that tactic as okay."



Sarah Schachner, one of the most prolific and well-known composers working in video games, has issued a statement today saying that she will no longer be creating any music for Modern Warfare II or Warzone.

Schachner, whose credits as a composer and musician include the Assassin’s Creed series (Unity, Black Flag, Origins & Valhalla), Far Cry, Need for Speed, Bioware’s Anthem, and Call of Duty games (Infinite Warfare, Modern Warfare & Modern Warfare II), posted the statement on Twitter, saying that she “can no longer continue to compose music” for Activision’s latest shooter.

“Over the past couple of months the working dynamic with the audio director has become increasingly challenging and I don’t see any path forward,” the statement says. “As of now, I am unsure of the status and release plan for the soundtrack as it’s been taken out of my hands.”

Those soundtrack plans have been the subject of fan curiosity ever since the game’s release, since it’s rare for a major blockbuster like this to come out and not have its official album accompany it. Schachner’s statement suggests that her “challenging'' dynamic with the audio director (which Variety reports is Stephen Miller) is at least partly down to this soundtrack release, as she adds “what will be released on the soundtrack is not my artistic intent in regards to mixing and mastering.”



Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, the new monster-collecting RPGs from Game Freak, have been getting dragged since they launched on November 18 for objectively terrible technical performance that is only outshone by the immense number of glitches.

These two games clearly weren’t ready for prime time, and now some players are seeking refunds from Nintendo.

“I got a refund from the eshop last night of Violet after feeling the game is not in a state I feel acceptable for a AAA release,” Redditor Hotdog_Daddy posted to r/Pokémon on November 20. “The rep actually told me that given the situation regarding the state of Pokémon S/V she would elevate my case to ensure the refund was approved. It was approved an hour later.”

“Welcome to the refund team,” came one reply. “Honestly, it sucks to have to even do this. But we are actually potentially making some decent backlash. Maybe we will get a decent patch and updates, in which case I’ll buy the game used. Until then, never will [I] buy a new Pokémon game unless it’s actually AAA tier.”

In these and a fair few other threads, various Redditors are sharing their own experiences attempting to get refunds from Nintendo. Many claim success, but some say that Nintendo customer support requires some finessing before acquiescing to a refund.

Kotaku reached out to Nintendo for comment but couldn’t independently confirm details of refunds being issued.



In an interview this week with podcaster and AI researcher Lex Fridmen, Todd Howard answered a question that's been on the minds of every Fallout fan. Will the story of Amazon's upcoming Fallout TV series be an original one, or is it an adaptation of one of the many Fallout games we've played over the years?

"It's not retelling a game story," Howard said. "It's basically an area of the map, let's tell a story here that fits in the world that we have built. It doesn't break any of the rules, it can reference things in the games, but isn't a retelling of the games. It exists in the same world but is its own unique thing."

It's great to have that finally confirmed, but it's not an entire surprise. We recently learned that the Fallout TV series will involve Vault 33, which hasn't been used in any of the Fallout games yet. That makes a little more sense knowing that the story is a wholly original one.



Stop me if you've heard this one before: Dead Island 2 will arrive later than expected. The zombie-smashing game re-emerged in August with a trailer, gameplay video and a firm release date of February 3rd. As it turns out, that release date was actually malleable. Publisher Deep Silver and developer Dambuster Studios have pushed Dead Island 2 back to April 28th.

"The irony of delaying Dead Island 2 is not lost on us and we are as disappointed as you undoubtedly are," a note on the game's Twitter account reads. "The delay is just 12 short weeks and development is on the final straight now. We're going to take the time we need to make sure we can launch a game we're proud to launch."

Dead Island 2 was announced all the way back in 2014. The project has twice moved to a different studio, with Dambuster taking over in 2019, and it's finally coming to fruition.



Remedy has yet to show its co-op Control spinoff, but that isn't stopping the developer from unveiling a true follow-up. The company and its publisher 505 Games have announced joint development of Control 2 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S and PC. This isn't exactly a shock when the two teased a "bigger-budget" title (now known to be the sequel) last year, but it's good news for anyone who misses exploring the Oldest House.

The creators haven't shared any details of the plot, game mechanics or release date. Even the teaser image shares little besides what's likely a Control Point. Control 2 will still use Remedy's Northlight engine, however, and that budget is a sizeable $51.5 million. Work is still in the "concept stage," Remedy says.



Microsoft’s Game Pass service is profitable and accounts for about 15 percent of the company’s overall Xbox content and services revenue. Microsoft Gaming chief Phil Spencer shared the tidbit of information in an on-stage interview at The Wall Street Journal’s Tech Live conference (via The Verge).

“Game Pass as an overall part of our content and services revenue is probably 15 percent,” he told The Journal’s Sarah Needleman. “I don’t think it gets bigger than that. I think the overall revenue grows to 15 percent of a bigger number, but we don’t have this future where I think 50 to 70 percent of our revenue comes from subscriptions.”

Spencer added that Microsoft has recently seen “incredible” growth on PC, with uptake slowing on consoles primarily due to saturation. “... at some point you’ve reached everybody on console that wants to subscribe,” he said. Microsoft announced earlier this week that PC Game Pass subscriptions increased by 159 percent year over year during Q1 2023. The company has also seen people stream more games over its Xbox Cloud Gaming platform. Spencer hinted that mobile would play a major role in the future of Game Pass.


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