AI and Games
Branching Factor
Branching Factor #014: Sunset Crack Squad

Branching Factor #014: Sunset Crack Squad

Talking Suicide Squad, Helldivers II, Gaming News and More

No transcript...

Tommy's riding solo in this episode, and so he decided to focus on games he's playing, projects he's involved in and the big stories in the news that are going down.

Here are some of the big talking points from this week's edition:

  • The 6th AI and Games Summer School is running from June 17th - 21st in Valetta, Malta. This week long event (not officially associated with AI and Games) is designed to help train up and teach attendees on the variety of ways in which AI intersects with games and the industry. It's hosted by two prominent academics in the game/AI research space (Julian Togelius and Georgios Yanakakis) but they also get a good spread of industry speakers involved as well. They've announced a few speakers already, with early bird registration closing on March 1st. Visit their website for more details.

  • We unpack the recent news of Microsoft looking to publish their Xbox titles on platforms such as Sony PlayStation and Nintendo Switch. When we consider the revenues for Xbox in context of Microsoft's portfolio, their renewed expansion into PC gaming (and Steam), and inconsistent strategy for other platforms, this seems like an expected next step.

  • The first volume of 'Game AI Uncovered', a new textbook series from games industry professionals on AI in commercial titles launches on February 23rd. Edited by 🎮Paul Roberts, this book highlights the practices behind many a commercial game title, with authors spread across the games industry (including yours truly). It will be available on Amazon and all major book stores.

  • After 7 years in development, Rocksteady's Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League has released to a mixed response. A well-constructed and beautiful looking 3rd person shooter that highlights the very best of the studio's competencies, as well as the limitations brought by fitting their work to a live-service format.

  • Spec Ops: The Line being delisted on storefronts (discussed in last weeks issue) is the reality when music licenses expire in a 12 year old game.

  • Meanwhile Helldivers II brings it's own version of third person looter shooter chaos to PC and PlayStation 5, but with a tone and style drastically different from Suicide Squad, and worth checking out if you enjoy shooting aliens in the face with increasingly more powerful weapons.

AI and Games
Branching Factor
Welcome to Branching Factor, a podcast about video games from people who play, develop and research video games. In each episode, join our host Dr. Tommy Thompson as he sits down with friends from all around the gaming world.
Learn about how video games are made, the goings-on of the games industry, what academic research in games is all about, interviews, and more!
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