Gaming

PlayStation games might also get in-game ads

Potentially by the end of the year

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Samsung Neo QLED

Recently, Microsoft announced a surprising plan to install ads in its gallery of free-to-play games. Though the company hasn’t implemented its plans yet, the possibility of ads can incite quite a lot of ire from consumers. However, things might not stop with Microsoft. Sony and PlayStation are reportedly considering the same strategy.

Reported by Insider (the same source as Microsoft’s plan), Sony is hoping to implement the strategy by the end of the year. Much like Microsoft, Sony’s plan will only affect free-to-play PlayStation games.

There are a few proposals as to where the ads will pop up. Some will affect inconspicuous parts of a game, such as billboards in an open-world game. Some might come as optional prompts wherein players can earn in-game rewards if they watch enough ads.

Developers can sell ad space through a private marketplace. According to the report, it will offer developers another way to monetize their free-to-play games. Usually, these games come littered with microtransactions to earn money. Now, players might have to deal with another effort towards monetization.

Besides inciting the annoyance of gamers, developers also have to worry about how their game might be perceived. While video games are more tolerated in today’s society, advertisers might still find it hard to mix their branding with a potentially violet game.

SEE ALSO: Square Enix headlines Sony’s State of Play this March

Gaming

Diablo Immortal to be available in Asia Pacific by July 8

Preloading available now

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Diablo Immortal

Blizzard Entertainment is officially launching Diablo Immortal in the Asia Pacific region on July 8, 2022.

It will be available in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Macao, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam (PC Open Beta).

Players may also test their adventures as early as July 4 by preloading Diablo Immortal here.

The game is downloadable via the Google Play Store, Apple App Store, and on Windows PC via Battle.net.

In Diablo Immortal, gamers may choose between Barbarian, Crusader, Demon Hunter, Monk, Necromancer, or Wizard and traverse the game’s eight expansive zones.

The main quest is to stop Skarn, the Lord of Damnation and his battle-hungry forces.

They will do this by scouring the Sanctuary’s locales and searching for fragments from the shattered Worldstone, before being able to face off against Skarn.

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Accessories

Razer Kishi V2 review

Handheld console mobile gaming

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Razer Kishi V2

There’s always been this quest to recreate and/or bring the feeling of console gaming to mobile. 

In 2022, there are more than a handful of iterations. We have the actual handheld gaming console – the Nintendo Switch. More recently, Valve released the Steam Deck. And then you have the ultra-gaming-focused smartphones like the ROG Phone and the Lenovo Legion Phone Duel. 

For a while, Razer attempted to compete in the gaming smartphone space. Ultimately, they decided, instead of competing, they’ll just complement it through accessories. That strategy gave birth to the Razer Kishi and now its newest iteration — the Razer Kishi V2.

A new look

It’s gone through some design changes. Most notably on how it looks in its no-phone-attached state. 

The original version had this more compact look, almost like a controller all on its own. 

Razer Kishi V2
Meanwhile, the Razer Kishi V2 is more open, showing a bridge instead of being totally closed. This may have been done in order to accommodate larger smartphones. 

Razer Kishi V2

The button layout is mostly the same. You have the universal X,Y,A, and B face button on the right hand side. Right below it is a joystick. 

Razer Kishi V2

Over on the left side you have the joystick up top with the directional pad and/or buttons right underneath it. 

Razer Kishi V2

You also still get the Right Button (RB) and Right Trigger (TR)… buttons as well as their left side counterparts. New on the V2 though, are the M1 and M2 buttons situated right next to the aforementioned buttons. 

Razer Kishi V2
New ones are the screenshot button on the lower left hand side as well as a dedicated Nexus button which fires up the Razer Kishi V2’s companion app — the Razer Nexus. 

Razer Kishi V2

Naturally, you have the USB-C connector to plug-in to the port of your smartphone. 

Razer Kishi V2

You can charge the phone while playing through the port on the lower left hand side of the controller.

How to use it

Razer Kishi V2

The Razer Kishi V2 is technically plug and play. Simply slide your smartphone in, fire-up any controller-supported mobile game, and it’ll just work. 

Sounds simple enough, right? But the keywords there are “controller-supported mobile game(s),” which, to be honest, are not a lot. And the most talked about and/or most played ones typically do not support them. 

So, how does one find these games? You can go to the Google Play Store and simply type some variation of “controller support” or “control support” and it’ll pull-up games that have controller support. 

Alternatively, you can download the companion app called Razer Nexus. On its main screen you’ll find the games you already have installed and below it are games it recommends. Each row is separate by genre, and you immediately know they have controller support. You can also connect your YouTube and Twitch accounts should you want to stream your games.

What games can I play?

Razer Kishi V2

There is a wide selection of games to choose from. We were able to play the following titles: 

  • Asphalt 9 
  • Diablo Immortal
  • Final Fantasy VII: First Soldier
  • Life is Strange 

The games above presented the least friction when it comes to playing. They are controller-supported and the areas on the screen where you would tap show the buttons on the controller you should press to take any sort of action. Pretty straightforward. 

 

There were plenty of other suggested games that seemed like pretty good titles. The ones that piqued my interest were: 

  • Dead Cells
  • Catalyst Black
  • Leo’s Fortune
  • Star Wars: Knights of the Republic
  • Final Fantasy (all the mainline titles ported to mobile)

That’s a decent enough selection. But the thing is, none of these rank in some of the most played games on smartphones. Just off the top of my head, the titles that come to mind are Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, Call of Duty: Mobile, and Genshin Impact. 

None of these titles have built-in controller support. You’ll have to use some button mapping app to make this work and that’s a process that may take about an hour, depending on your patience and the number of games you want to use it on. It’s seriously a hassle and I ultimately ended up not going through with it. 

What’s it like playing?

Razer Kishi V2

Playing feels fantastic. I have always preferred gaming with physical buttons. This is, perhaps why, the only time I really play any mobile games is when I’m working on a smartphone review or reviewing an accessory like the Razer Kishi V2 (which doesn’t happen often). 

The overall build quality is fantastic. I have had the chance to hold other, more obscure, controllers for smartphones and I just immediately felt the difference. The Razer Kishi V2 is lightweight without feeling fragile and cheap. 

The face buttons feel almost just like the ones on bigger controllers meant for actual consoles. The same feels true for the joysticks and the directional pad. 

The triggers also feel great but I can’t say the same for the shoulder buttons. They’re not bad, but due to the size, they feel more squishy than crunchy. I personally would have preferred a crunchier feel. But that’s not to say that they are terrible. They’re fine, but maybe they could have been better. 

Overall, it really does feel like you’re playing on a handheld console, especially if your phone has the power to run the supported games at max settings. In case you’re curious, I used the Honor Magic4 Pro, OPPO Find X3 Pro, and vivo T1x during this review. 

Remote Play

Razer Kishi V2

What made things even more fun was using Steam Link. If you’re a PC gamer, this lets you stream, on low-latency, the games on your Steam Library to your smartphone. 

With the Razer Kishi V2 attached, it almost feels like you’re playing on a Steam Deck. Of course, I’m just speculating since I’ve yet to try a Steam Deck. 

The catch, of course, is that your PC and smartphone have to be connected in the same network. So, you can’t really go out and take your Steam Library with you, wherever. But the idea is that you’re able to play your Steam Library without being in front of your PC (laptop/desktop). 

Is the Razer Kishi V2 your GadgetMatch?

Razer Kishi V2

A couple of lifetimes ago, I was getting ready for a job that required plenty of travel. At that point in my life, I didn’t have any gaming console whatsoever but knew that I needed some type of gaming to keep me sane. 

At the time, all these mobile handheld devices weren’t a thing yet. Yes, not even the Nintendo Switch. I resorted to using a OnePlus phone and a much, much cheaper version of a mobile phone controller. Having something like the Razer Kishi V2 would have been a godsend. 

Fast forward to 2022 and there is absolutely no shortage of options when it comes to mobile play. But if you don’t have the means to splurge on a Switch (or a Steam Deck which is still pretty scarce), this may be the next best thing. Especially if you already have a smartphone that can run some of the supported games. 

There are a few things I wish it had. The Razer Nexus app feels bare. Other than the suggested games and remapping the M1, M2 buttons, I wish you had the option to map buttons for games that didn’t have automatic controller support.

However, if, like this writer, you absolutely must-have the satisfying feeling of pressing buttons when you play, the Razer Kishi V2 is a worthy pick-up. It’s well-built, feels great, and won’t take up too much space in your bag. 

The Razer Kishi V2 is available now and retails for PhP 5,999 / SG$ 149 / US$ 99. Right now it’s only for Android smartphones. An iPhone version, one with a lightning port, is coming later in 2022. 

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Gaming

ACC is official game for 2022 FIA Motorsport Games

New DLC also released

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ACC

505 Games and KUNOS Simulazioni’s Assetto Corsa Competizione (ACC) has just been chosen as the official game of the 2022 FIA Motorsport Games’ esports competition.

The competition will take place from October 26 to 30, 2022, allowing GT fans to experience a whole new level of esports racing across 17 disciplines in ACC’s roster of GT3 vehicles.

The FIA Motorsport Games challenges esports competitors around the world in GT, GT Sprint, and Endurance disciplines to become the annual champion of the simulation racing world.

It will be the first time that ACC will headline the event. Fittingly, the American Track Pack DLC has just released on PC via Steam, featuring renowned US speedways for the first time.

Among those scanned and rendered for absolute accuracy are the Watkins Glen, Indianapolis, and Circuit of the Americas (COTA) race tracks.

The DLC is available now on PC for the following rates:

  • SG$ 25.90
  • VND 245,000
  • PhP 539.99
  • IDR 229,000
  • MYR 80
  • THB 599
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