Ex-Zynga execs raise $15 million for their new gaming studio, Manticore Games


In the eight years since Frederic Descamps and Jordan Maynard launched their last gaming startup, the industry they helped shape with A Bit Lucky now brings in more than $100 billion in revenues globally.

Games like League of Legends and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds have brought about a resurgence in gaming on personal computers. Indeed, user-generated content from inside the gaming community has produced a string of wildly popular hits, including League of Legends, Defense of the Ancients 2, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds and Rocket League.

Those trends are exactly what the two game developers are hoping to harness with their new, stealthy gaming studio, Manticore Games.

With a new $15 million round led by Benchmark, the company is hard at work on an undisclosed game that will…

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Mario Bear has come to save 2017


It’s been a long year – it feels like it actually spanned about 50, in fact. But now, at the end, some relief: Mario Bear.

Yes, it’s just a bear from Build-A-Bear Workshop. And a ‘brand collaboration,’ that horrific thing that usually just means some executives get a larger Christmas bonus and more people are convinced to part with their hard-earned money for something they don’t need. But this is a Mario Bear.

There’s also a Yoshi. And a Bowser. And a Toad. And a Luigi costume in case you want your bear to represent one of Nintendo’s slightly less appreciated protagonists. And a Princess Peach costume so you can prep your bear for far-flung adventuring (play Super Mario Odyssey if you don’t get this reference).

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Nintendo sells 10 million Switch consoles since launch


Nintendo has sold 10 million units of the Switch console since launch, according to the company.

The console launched back in March, and is selling at a similar pace to Nintendo’s most recent hardware superstar, the Wii. The Wii sold more than 100 million units over its life cycle. In fact, NPD Group suggests that the Switch could possibly beat Wii sales by 20 percent over the first 10 months of sales.

Two major factors are contributing to the Switch’s white-hot sales.

The first is the fact that the Switch is a hybrid device.

Since the launch of the Wii in 2006, our lives have changed dramatically. We’ve grown accustomed to taking our entire digital life with us wherever we go. While portable consoles have been around for a while, none have quite compared to the Switch, which…

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Alohomora! Harry Potter game hits your phone next year with Jam City


Niantic’s much-anticipated Harry Potter follow-up to Pokémon GO is coming next year, but Harry Potter fans who want their first taste of Hogwarts on mobile don’t have to wait, because Harry Potter is coming to the Los Angeles-based mobile gaming studio, Jam City.

Through a partnership with Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Jam City has gotten a license to develop a new mobile game, Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, that lets players create their own character and enroll in Hogwarts.

The new game will not only let players enroll in Hogwarts, but they’ll get to train their characters in all of the magical classes and extracurricular activities the school has to offer. Want to become an Auror? Take Defence Against the Dark Arts. Worried about dueling skills? There’s a…

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Here’s everything new Niantic just added to Pokémon GO

Weather spawns

The weather will influence what spawns around you. If a Pokémon spawns because of weather patterns, it’ll have a more intense ring on the map and an icon next to its name during capture (see red arrows).

– Clear and sunny: More grass, ground and fire Pokémon will spawn

Cloudy: More fairy, fighting and poison Pokémon will spawn

– Foggy: More dark and ghost Pokémon will spawn

– Rainy: More water, electric and bug Pokémon will spawn

– Snowy: More ice and steel Pokémon will spawn

– Windy: More dragon, flying and psychic Pokémon will spawn

Niantic tells me the weather influences spawns, but it’s not set in stone. You might see snow Pokémon pop up when it’s sunny… they’ll just be considerably less common. Meanwhile, weather will…

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Zelda expansion, Death Stranding and other titles hyped at The Game Awards


The Game Awards, an event that’s exactly what it sounds like, took place shortly ago and, like any gaming event, it was shot through with trailers and announcements. What’s the biggest announcement, you ask? It’s probably a tie between the sudden release of a new expansion for Zelda: Breath of the Wild and a teaser for the next project from From Software, the creators of Dark Souls and Bloodborne.

Well, let’s be honest – a new Zelda expansion, available now, is pretty much the only thing that matters in the world. Everything else can wait.