Gaming

This Week in Apps: Apple launches a COVID-19 app, the outbreak’s impact on social and video apps and more

Welcome back to This Week in Apps, the Extra Crunch series that recaps the latest OS news, the applications they support and the money that flows through it all. The app industry saw a record 204 bill

Second Life-maker calls it quits on their VR follow-up

The game developer behind Second Life has abandoned its grand efforts for a virtual reality follow-up to its early 2000s hit. SF-based Linden Lab announced today that they’ve sold off assets rel

Game downloads will be throttled to manage internet congestion

For the billions stuck at home during the global effort to flatten the curve, gaming is a welcome escape. But it’s also a bandwidth-heavy one, and Microsoft, Sony and others are working to make

Half-Life: Alyx delivers the watershed moment VR gaming needs

If you weren’t playing games when Half-Life came out, it’s hard to drive home just how shocking a departure it was from what had come before. Though some familiar mechanics served as a base to bui

Google Cloud launches Game Servers, a managed cloud backend for games

Google Cloud today announced the beta launch of Game Servers, a managed service that provides game developers with the usual backend services for running their games, including multi-player games, in

With kids and adults staying at home, are virtual worlds ready for primetime?

We’ve been diligently following the development of virtual worlds, also known as the “metaverse,” on TechCrunch. Hanging out within the virtual worlds of games has become more popular in

Gaming company Scopely adds $200 million more to its M&A stockpile

Scopely, the mobile gaming publisher behind titles including Marvel Strike Force, Scrabble Go, Yahtzee with Buddies and Star Trek Fleet Command, has added another $200 million to its hoard of cash for

Despite canceled trade shows, gaming startups can still win an extra life

Large developers can come out unscathed, but smaller apps and developers who can’t wait six months for their launch moment need to do something.

‘Cloud-first’ game studio Mainframe raises $8.1M led by Andreessen Horowitz

With most new social media startups seeming to dial in on specific communities to thrive in a still Facebook-dominated sphere, some of the more broadly focused social investments from top VCs are goin

Venture investment in esports looks light as Q1 races to a close

Even with an expected decline in Q1 2020 venture round and venture dollar results due to lag, the most recent venture data looks grim.

Women-led Robin Games raises $7M to combine lifestyle content with fantasy gaming

As a former Jam City executive, Jill Wilson led teams behind some of the top-grossing gaming franchises, like Cookie Jam and Panda Pop. Now she’s running her own startup, Robin Games, where a te

Sony finally unveils PlayStation 5 details

The PlayStation 5 warranted little more than a mention when it was introduced at CES back in January. Sony was planning a much bigger reveal in a few weeks at GDC in SF, but, well, COVID-19 happened.

Watch Sony unveil the PlayStation 5 live right here

A couple of days after Microsoft unveiled a ton of info about the Xbox Series X, Sony is about to do the exact same thing in a live video. Sony is hosting a live broadcast about the PlayStation 5 toda

Nintendo’s online Switch services are experiencing an outage when we need them most

The era of social distancing is going to put a lot of existing systems to the test. Nintendo’s online services for the Switch have been experiencing outages in the U.S. and parts of Europe. The comp

Microsoft just revealed a ton of new info about the Xbox Series X

There will be no E3 this summer. And quite frankly, the future of just about every conference for the year looks to be in jeopardy, at best. Understandably, Microsoft is releasing most of the Xbox Ser

Reporters Without Borders uses Minecraft to sneak censored works across borders

Censorship takes many forms, but even the most restrictive countries can’t block every single path for information they’d rather not get in (or out). Reporters Without Borders has identifi

YC-backed Legionfarm lets competitive gamers pay to play with pro coaches

Legionfarm, a YC-backed company, is looking to bring coaches to the competitive gaming world. Esports teams at the very top often have coaches, but the rest of the massive competitive gaming scene has

Lego Super Mario is coming later this year

Toys are better now. There, I said it. Don’t get me wrong, I treasure the tub of action figures gathering decades of dust in my parents’ attic, but get a load of this Super Mario Lego play set. I

Cloud gaming platform Shadow brings its new plans to the US

Blade, the French startup behind Shadow, announced plans to overhaul its subscription tiers back in October. The company is now bringing the new plans to the U.S. with a new entry tier at $11.99 per m

Pragma is a back-end toolkit for gaming companies, so game developers can focus on games

These days, most of the games developed need to be social, multi-platform and extensible, but there are only a few developers with the expertise to bring those toolsets to the profusion of new games t
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