PDXCon announcements, Humble Choice, much more

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How’s it going everybody, Adrian Simple here from thegamingobserver.com, for Monday October 21st. We’ve got tons of news from the weekend, let’s take a look.

Paradox announces new games, and new DLC!

Paradox came out swinging at their convention, announcing many new things from their IPs. First of all, Crusader Kings III has been announced, which will come in 2020 on Steam and Xbox Game Pass for PC. Alongside that was the reveal that Crusader Kings II is now a free-to-play game. This is very surprising, but incredibly welcoming, I heavily encourage everyone to at least give it a try. Survivng the Aftermath which I’ve talked about before is also available in Early Access now. Now we’ve got a ton of DLCs and expansions. Stellaris gets a new diplomacy-focused DLC called “Federations” on the 24th, which also includes a new species. Age of Wonders: Planetfall gets its first expansion on November 19th called “Revelations”. BATTLETECH has a new expansion on November 21st called “Heavy Metal.” Hearts of Iron IV gets a new expansion called “La Resistance”, no release date. Lastly, Prison Architect is getting an expansion called “Psych Ward: Warden’s Edition”, which was already on consoles but is now going to PC with some extra goodies. So basically all your favourite Paradox games have gotten something new in their pipeline.

Humble Monthly becomes Humble Choice

The Humble Bundle Monthly is going to be going through some changes. Right now, it’s $12/month for a handful of high-quality games. Most people have been pretty happy with the service, especially with some of the headliners that have been around at such a low pricepoint. Well, it will now be rebranding to Humble Choice. Essentially a group of games will be presented upfront, and subscribers will be able to choose which games they’d like to own. At the Basic tier, which $15/month, you can choose 3 games. At the premium tier, $20/month, you can choose 9. Now, before they make the change, they’re giving you the chance to lock in the $12 price point, where you can pick from 10 games. So cheaper than both of the new options, and more games as well. You can keep that plan for as long as you are subscribed — as soon you cancel, you have to move over to the new system. We knew a change like this was inevitable, but we definitely got a solid few years out of this. Who knows they might be able to keep the quality, we’ll see how it plays out.

Xbox Game Pass helps diversify game genres

Not only is the Xbox Game Pass doing good things for players and game developers, it’s also contributing to the overall games industry. A rep from Xbox has explained that that subscribers of the service are playing 40% more games than they normally do, including titles that are outside the catalogue of Game Pass. Part of the reason for this is that players are trying more genres than they normally do, since they didn’t have to pay for it. He makes the analogy to video “you go in for the blockbuster, and then you spend hours watching documentaries or stand-up comedy.” This change in perspective means that developers can safetly try something a little more niche, because people are actually interested in trying new things when they don’t have to put money on the line. This is an aspect of subscription services that I hadn’t really considered before, so I thought I’d share with you.

Legends of Runeterra has no paid booster packs

Last Thursday, Kato talked about the new card game from Riot called Legends of Runeterra. You’re able to pre-register for it right now, but the thing that I find most fascinating about it is that they don’t have any paid booster packs. You can earn card packs in the game, but otherwise the only monetization is directly paying for cards. Right now they are emphasizing that it’s not pay-to-win, and players don’t have to pay anything in order to have a good experience, as opposed to something like Hearthstone. We’ll see if they can stay true to that promise, especially when they’re so heavily pushing mobile and esports, and hopefully it will be a key player in the card game genre.

That’s the news for today, thank you very much for tuning in for the start of your new week. Folks I will be back tomorrow, as I am every day, and until then…Happy Gaming everyone.