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Gaming: Fallout 76 goes nuclear, Nielsen eyes game tracking, and Metal Gear Solid gets fan makeover

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Sep 6, 2018

In what may be the funniest clip yet in its silly series of pre-release videos showcasing all the features packed into Fallout 76, Bethesda’s offering some useful advice for those times when you’re just a wee bit overmatched: Go nuclear.

Fallout 76’s “Atomics for Peace” public service announcement explains how players can get their hands on the launch codes that’ll help them settle those lingering endgame arguments with radioactive flair — because in the post-apocalypse, Vault-Tec’s narrator chirps, that friendly next-door neighbor may not be coming over “to borrow a cup of sugar — he may be coming over... for murder!”

Bethesda Softworks on YouTube

As Bethesda’s previously indicated, the power to fling nukes across the bucolic West Virginia countryside won’t open until after players have beaten Fallout 76’s main campaign. And it’s a power that comes with both risks and rewards: After your bomb goes off, the area will be an enemy-infested hellscape for a while... but the loot you’ll find there will be of the rare and valuable variety.

We’re still a couple of months away from finally being able to slam our fists down on the big red button: Fallout 76 finally, ahem, launches on Nov. 14.


 

Unlike television and film, the gaming world is notoriously difficult to track when it comes to player engagement and software sales numbers — in part because game companies don’t all release their sales figures the same way, and in part because the ways players access their games — whether mobile, offline, or hooked into a MMORPG — are so diverse.

But in a sign of just how serious the gaming industry continues to get about its statistics, Nielsen is likewise getting serious about finding a way to improve its games tracking, much in the same way it’s long tracked TV viewership.

Nielsen announced this week it’s acquired video game spending tracker SuperData Research, “a leading provider of market intelligence on digital games, gaming video content, and virtual/augmented reality” across both home-based and mobile platforms, according to the company’s release.

While it remains to be seen how effectively the pickup might improve the gaming world’s notoriously hard-to-gauge sales figures, it reflects the financial power that gaming now commands. "We recognize the growing importance of the digital gaming ecosystem,” said Nielsen’s Chris Morley.


 

Finally, get ready to go back to the old-school world of the original Metal Gear Solid — just not how you remember it.

To commemorate the 20th anniversary of Hideo Kojima’s groundbreaking first entry in what would become one of gaming’s most fully realized worlds, German games art director and Metal Gear superfan Erasmus Brosdau decided to update the original game’s blocky, PlayStation-era graphics with a reskin using the processing power of Unreal Engine 4. As you can see from the reimagined intro below, the results are impressive.

Warpgazer on YouTube

In addition to the hard-to-miss visual upgrades, the do-over also features new sound effects, “slightly” remastered audio, and new start-menu animation. The goal in paying modern-day homage to the Metal Gear Solid intro scene, said Brosdau, was to “bring it to a 2018 game quality.” We’d say he’s succeeded: Solid Snake in tactical diving gear has never looked this good.