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Gaming: Bethesda settles suit accusing Westworld of replicating Fallout Shelter; Nintendo smashes Amazon; more

By Benjamin Bullard
Fallout Shelter via official website screen grab 2019

Bethesda Softworks has settled its lawsuit against the makers of a Westworld-themed game that accused the HBO-based mobile title of a very Westworld-sounding transgression: playing copycat.

Via The Hollywood Reporter, the Fallout developer agreed to drop its suit against Warner Bros. and Behaviour Interactive, after alleging last year that the Westworld mobile game was a “blatant rip-off” of its own Fallout Shelter — a game Behaviour Interactive also had worked on.

Fallout Shelter, a 2015 free-to-play game originally conceived as a way to promote Fallout 4 ahead of its release, turned into a surprise success as a pick-up-and-play title that let gamers step into the role of vault overseer, growing and nurturing their very own population of nuclear holocaust survivors. 

Westworld, Bethesda originally alleged, hewed closely to the same overall gameplay formula as Fallout Shelter, and the suit, filed in June of last year, reportedly accused the plaintiffs of copyright infringement, breach of contract, and unfair competition. While neither party made details of the settlement public, both Westworld and Fallout Shelter remain available for iOS and Android, with Fallout Shelter also available on PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and Xbox One.

Nintendo boasted ahead of the release of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate that pre-orders for the game were, well, smashing previous records — and they must not have been kidding. Despite only releasing on Dec. 7, the party brawler reportedly was Amazon’s top-selling game for all of 2018.

Via, Ultimate reigned supreme atop Amazon’s year-end list of gaming best sellers, galloping away from Red Dead Redemption 2, the next best-selling title, which finished a distant 14th. Occupying slots 2-13 were gaming-related goodies like PlayStation Store gift cards, Switch screen protectors, game controllers, and the Switch itself — but no actual games. The only other games to make Amazon’s top 20 list were Super Mario Party at no. 15, and Spider-Man at no. 19. 

Finally, get ready for all your favorite Hitman games to target current-gen consoles, thanks to a new collection that assembles 12 years’ worth of Agent 47 missions all in one updated package. 

Developer IOInteractive has revealed the upcoming enhanced edition of Hitman 2 will also bundle in a pair of stone-cold stealth classics — 2006’s Hitman: Blood Money, and 2012’s Hitman: Absolution — all reworked to run at a buttery 60 fps frame rate, 4K resolution, and more.

Like Agent 47 himself, the new Hitman HD Enhanced Collection has snuck up on us like a thief in the night. Even though each of the previous Hitman releases got separate HD upgrades last year, the new bundle assembles everything in one convenient package, and it’ll be here before we’ve even had a chance to blink. The whole HD collection arrives for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on Jan. 11.