Nintendo introduces a Switch model refresh with better battery life


This post is by Darrell Etherington from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Nintendo already announced an entirely new Switch console this month, the Switch Lite, and now it’s bumping some of the specs on the existing Switch with a slightly updated version, spotted by The Verge. This update improves the hardware right where it counts when it comes to Switch portable playing power.

The new model will provide between 4.5 and 9 hours of battery life, depending on use, which is a big bump from the 2.5 to 6.5 hour rating on the original hardware that’s been offered to date. This is likely an improvement derived from a change in the processor used in the console, as well as more power-efficient memory, both of which were detailed in an FCC filing from last week.

Nintendo’s official Switch comparison page lists the models with improved battery life as model number ‘HAC-001(-01), with the bracketed addition distinguishing it from the

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3 lessons from Roblox’s growth to gaming dominance


This post is by Arman Tabatabai from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Our recently published EC-1 on Roblox recounts the origin story and growth prospects of the company. But there’s one more piece to the story: what Roblox’s impact will be on gaming and the broader startup industry, if the company manages to multiply its current 90 million users.

roblox maus 1

Sources: TechCrunch, VentureBeat, Roblox

We’ve distilled three key ideas out of the EC-1 — lessons that may apply not only to game developers and gaming entrepreneurs, but also to the broader startup industry.

Lesson 1: UGC is a missed opportunity in games

Roblox has shown that user-generated content (UGC) is a missed opportunity for much of the game industry. The company aspires, in a way, to be the YouTube of games. And it is succeeding, with 2 million experiences to date.

The game industry generally has two problems with UGC. One is the games themselves: AAA games today are too complex, and lack

Continue reading “3 lessons from Roblox’s growth to gaming dominance”

3 lessons from Roblox’s growth to gaming dominance


This post is by Arman Tabatabai from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Our recently published EC-1 on Roblox recounts the origin story and growth prospects of the company. But there’s one more piece to the story: what Roblox’s impact will be on gaming and the broader startup industry, if the company manages to multiply its current 90 million users.

roblox maus 1

Sources: TechCrunch, VentureBeat, Roblox

We’ve distilled three key ideas out of the EC-1 — lessons that may apply not only to game developers and gaming entrepreneurs, but also to the broader startup industry.

Lesson 1: UGC is a missed opportunity in games

Roblox has shown that user-generated content (UGC) is a missed opportunity for much of the game industry. The company aspires, in a way, to be the YouTube of games. And it is succeeding, with 2 million experiences to date.

The game industry generally has two problems with UGC. One is the games themselves: AAA games today are too complex, and lack

Continue reading “3 lessons from Roblox’s growth to gaming dominance”

Esports org 100 Thieves raises $35 million in Series B


This post is by Jordan Crook from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




100 Thieves has today announced the close of a $35 million Series B funding round. Artist Capital Management led the round, with ACM’s Chief Investment Officer Josh Dienstag joining Mike Sepso, MLG cofounder, on the board of directors. Group Arnault, the investment arm of LVMH, also participated in the round.

CEO and founder Matthew “Nadeshot” Haag confirmed to TechCrunch that this latest round brings 100 Thieves’ post-funding valuation to $160 million, which is up from the $90 million valuation it had in October 2018.

100 Thieves was founded in 2017. Haag is a former pro gamer and content creator with one of the biggest followings in esports.

“The most important lesson I’ve learned going from gaming to leadership is ‘over-communicate, over-communicate, over-communicate’,” said Haag, explaining that he went from working by himself creating content to working with many people each day. “Making sure we’re all aligned on our goals for

Continue reading “Esports org 100 Thieves raises $35 million in Series B”

The need-to-know takeaways from VidCon 2019


This post is by Eric Peckham from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




VidCon, the annual summit in Anaheim, CA for social media stars and their fans to meet each other drew over 75,000 attendees over last week and this past weekend. A small subset of those where entertainment and tech executives convening to share best practices and strike deals.

Of the wide range of topics discussed in the industry-only sessions and casual conversation, five trends stuck out to me as takeaways for Extra Crunch members: the prominence of TikTok, the strong presence of Chinese tech companies in general, the contemplation of deep fakes, curiosity around virtual influencers, and the widespread interest in developing consumer product startups around top content creators.

Newer platforms take center stage

GettyImages 1161447217

Photo by Jerod Harris/Getty Images

TikTok, the Chinese social video app (owned by Bytedance) that exploded onto the US market this past year, was the biggest conversation topic. Executives and talent managers were curious to see where

Continue reading “The need-to-know takeaways from VidCon 2019”

The need-to-know takeaways from VidCon 2019


This post is by Eric Peckham from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




VidCon, the annual summit in Anaheim, CA for social media stars and their fans to meet each other drew over 75,000 attendees over last week and this past weekend. A small subset of those where entertainment and tech executives convening to share best practices and strike deals.

Of the wide range of topics discussed in the industry-only sessions and casual conversation, five trends stuck out to me as takeaways for Extra Crunch members: the prominence of TikTok, the strong presence of Chinese tech companies in general, the contemplation of deep fakes, curiosity around virtual influencers, and the widespread interest in developing consumer product startups around top content creators.

Newer platforms take center stage

GettyImages 1161447217

Photo by Jerod Harris/Getty Images

TikTok, the Chinese social video app (owned by Bytedance) that exploded onto the US market this past year, was the biggest conversation topic. Executives and talent managers were curious to see where

Continue reading “The need-to-know takeaways from VidCon 2019”

Twitch continues to dominate live streaming with its second-biggest quarter to date


This post is by Sarah Perez from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Twitch continues to lead rivals including YouTube Live, Facebook Gaming, and Microsoft’s Mixer when it comes to live streaming video. Despite experiencing its first decline in hours watched in Q2 2019, the Amazon-owned game streaming site still had its second-biggest quarter to date, with over 70% of the hours watched during the quarter.

According to a new report from StreamElements, Twitch viewers live-streamed a total of 2.72+ billion hours in Q2 — or 72.2% of all live hours watched — compared with 735.54 million hours on YouTube Live (19.5%), 197.76 million on Facebook Gaming (5.3%), and just 112.29 million hours (3%) on Mixer.

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Combined, the total hours watched across all four platforms was 3.77 billion in Q2.

While none of Twitch’s rivals are nearly catching up, YouTube Live did have a good month in May, breaking its own record with 284 million

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Continue reading “Twitch continues to dominate live streaming with its second-biggest quarter to date”

Twitch continues to dominate live streaming with its second-biggest quarter to date


This post is by Sarah Perez from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Twitch continues to lead rivals including YouTube Live, Facebook Gaming, and Microsoft’s Mixer when it comes to live streaming video. Despite experiencing its first decline in hours watched in Q2 2019, the Amazon-owned game streaming site still had its second-biggest quarter to date, with over 70% of the hours watched during the quarter.

According to a new report from StreamElements, Twitch viewers live-streamed a total of 2.72+ billion hours in Q2 — or 72.2% of all live hours watched — compared with 735.54 million hours on YouTube Live (19.5%), 197.76 million on Facebook Gaming (5.3%), and just 112.29 million hours (3%) on Mixer.

Page 4

Combined, the total hours watched across all four platforms was 3.77 billion in Q2.

While none of Twitch’s rivals are nearly catching up, YouTube Live did have a good month in May, breaking its own record with 284 million

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Continue reading “Twitch continues to dominate live streaming with its second-biggest quarter to date”

Digging into the Roblox growth strategy


This post is by Arman Tabatabai from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Could Roblox create a new entertainment and communication category, something it calls “social co-experience”?

When it was a small startup, few observers would have believed in that future. But after 15 years — as told in the origin story of our Roblox EC-1 — the company has accumulated 90 million users and a new $150 million venture funding war chest. It has captured the imagination of America’s youth, and become a startup darling in the entertainment space.

But what, exactly, is social co-experience? Well, it can’t be described precisely — because it’s still an emerging category. “It’s almost like that fable where the nine blind men are touching and describing an elephant.

Everyone has a slightly different view,” says co-founder and CEO Dave Baszucki. In Roblox’s view, co-experience means immersive environments where users play, explore, talk, hang out, and create an identity that’s as thoroughly fleshed out (if not as

Lineup All 1

Continue reading “Digging into the Roblox growth strategy”

Digging into the Roblox growth strategy


This post is by Arman Tabatabai from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Could Roblox create a new entertainment and communication category, something it calls “social co-experience”?

When it was a small startup, few observers would have believed in that future. But after 15 years — as told in the origin story of our Roblox EC-1 — the company has accumulated 90 million users and a new $150 million venture funding war chest. It has captured the imagination of America’s youth, and become a startup darling in the entertainment space.

But what, exactly, is social co-experience? Well, it can’t be described precisely — because it’s still an emerging category. “It’s almost like that fable where the nine blind men are touching and describing an elephant.

Everyone has a slightly different view,” says co-founder and CEO Dave Baszucki. In Roblox’s view, co-experience means immersive environments where users play, explore, talk, hang out, and create an identity that’s as thoroughly fleshed out (if not as

Lineup All 1

Continue reading “Digging into the Roblox growth strategy”

AI smokes 5 poker champs at a time in no-limit Hold’em with ‘ruthless consistency’


This post is by Devin Coldewey from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




The machines have proven their superiority in one-on-one games like chess and go, and even poker — but in complex multiplayer versions of the card game humans have retained their edge… until now. An evolution of the last AI agent to flummox poker pros individually is now decisively beating them in championship-style 6-person game.

As documented in a paper published in the journal Science today, the CMU/Facebook collaboration they call Pluribus reliably beats five professional poker players in the same game, or one pro pitted against five independent copies of itself. It’s a major leap forward in capability for the machines, and amazingly is also far more efficient than previous agents as well.

One-on-one poker is a weird game, and not a simple one, but the zero-sum nature of it (whatever you lose, the other player gets) makes it susceptible to certain strategies in which computer able to calculate

traverserj
interface

Continue reading “AI smokes 5 poker champs at a time in no-limit Hold’em with ‘ruthless consistency’”

How Roblox avoided the gaming graveyard and grew into a $2.5B company


This post is by Arman Tabatabai from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




There are successful companies that grow fast and garner tons of press. Then there’s Roblox, a company which took at least a decade to hit its stride and has, relative to its current level of success, barely gotten any recognition or attention.

Why has Roblox’s story gone mostly untold? One reason is that it emerged from a whole generation of gaming portals and platforms. Some, like King.com, got lucky or pivoted their business. Others by and large failed.

Once companies like Facebook, Apple and Google got to the gaming scene, it just looked like a bad idea to try to build your own platform — and thus not worth talking about. Added to that, founder and CEO Dave Baszucki seems uninterested in press.

But overall, the problem has been that Roblox just seemed like an insignificant story for many, many years. The company had millions of users, sure. So

GettyImages 1027412388

Continue reading “How Roblox avoided the gaming graveyard and grew into a $2.5B company”

Nintendo Switch Lite’s trade-off of whimsy for practicality is a good one


This post is by Darrell Etherington from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Nintendo revealed a new Switch Lite version of its current-generation console today, which attaches the controllers permanently, shrinks the hardware a bit, and adds a touch more battery life – but it also takes away the ‘Switch’ part of the equation, because you can only use it handheld, instead of attached to a TV or as a unique tabletop gaming experience.

The changes mostly seem in service of brining the price down, since it will retail for $199 when it goes on sale in September. That’s $100 less than the original Switch, which is a big price cut and could open up the market for Nintendo to a whole new group of players. But it’s also a change that seems to take away a lot of what made the Switch special, including the ability to plug it into a TV for a big-screen experience, or quickly detach the Joy-Con

NSwitchLiteImageWallImg04 image950w

Continue reading “Nintendo Switch Lite’s trade-off of whimsy for practicality is a good one”

Dr. Mario World now available on iOS


This post is by Darrell Etherington from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Nintendo’s latest mobile game is now available for iOS devices, a day before its official target launch date. The game is based on the Nintendo game created in 1990 for the NES and Game Boy, and re-released/re-made a bunch of times over the years for various Nintendo consoles.

Dr. Mario World, the iOS game available now, is, like its predecessors, a matching puzzle game in which you as Dr. Mario (or maybe you’re just a colleague of Dr. Mario? It’s somewhat unclear) cure ‘viruses’ by matching pill colors to the little jerks. This version has a number of additional gameplay features compared to the first, which was pretty Tetris-like in play. It also focuses on drag-and-drop mechanics, instead of manipulating pills like Tetris blocks as they fall.

For instance, you have other Doctors from the rich Mario fictional world to call upon for help, including Dr. Peach and

Continue reading “Dr. Mario World now available on iOS”

HQ Trivia has paid out $6M, but winners complain of delays


This post is by Josh Constine from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




HQ Trivia’s troubles continue after a failed mutiny to oust the CEO, a 92% decline in downloads since versus a year ago, and layoffs of 20% of its staff last week. Now TechCrunch has learned HQ has failed to install a new CEO after months of searching. Meanwhile, users continue to complain about delays for payouts of their prizes from the live mobile trivia game, and about being booted from the game for no reason while on the final question.

Notably, Jeopardy winner Alex Jacob claims he hasn’t been paid the $20,000 he won on HQ Trivia on June 10th. This could shake players faith in HQ and erode their incentive to compete.

Warframe promotional stunt brings a video game gun to the real streets of New York


This post is by Anthony Ha from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




To promote the free-to-play console game Warframe, director
Michael Krivicka brought a little taste of video game mayhem to New York City.

In the video above, you can see bystanders asked to pose for photos with a model of the Opticor, an elaborate gun from the game. They’re warned not to pull the trigger — but what they don’t know is that a nearby police car and mailbox have been rigged to explode. That’s exactly what happens on-camera, leading to shock and embarrassment from participants and bystanders.

I spoke Krivicka earlier this week to learn more about how the video was staged. He explained that the props, created by custom design and fabrication firm A2ZFX, were all synchronized, with a remote control that could set off the gun, car and mailbox at the same time.

The exploding effects use compressed air, with a small team taking about 15

Director Michael Krivicka, Producer Chris Yoon

Continue reading “Warframe promotional stunt brings a video game gun to the real streets of New York”

Mario creator Miyamoto counters cloud gaming hype (but don’t count Nintendo out)


This post is by Devin Coldewey from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Cloud gaming — however a company chooses to define that — is shaping up to be a big part of the next generation of consoles and other platforms. But Mario creator and Nintendo veteran Shigeru Miyamoto says his company won’t be so quick to jump on the bandwagon.

Speaking to shareholders at Nintendo’s annual general meeting, Miyamoto and other executives addressed a variety of issues, among them what some interpret as a failure to keep up with the state of the industry. Sony and Microsoft (together, amazingly) are about to lock horns with Google, Nvidia, and others in the arena of game streaming, but Nintendo has announced no plans whatsoever regarding the powerful new technology.

As reported by GamesIndustry.biz, Miyamoto was unfazed by this allegation.

“We believe it is important to continue to use these diverse technical environments to make

Continue reading “Mario creator Miyamoto counters cloud gaming hype (but don’t count Nintendo out)”

HQ Trivia lays off ~20% as it preps subscriptions


This post is by Josh Constine from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




HQ Trivia is struggling after a mutiny failed to oust its CEO. Downloads per month are down 92% versus last June according to Sensor Tower. And now four sources confirm that HQ laid off staff members this week. One said about 20% of staff was let go, and another said six to seven employees were departing. That aligns with Digiday reporter Kerry Flynn’s tweet that 7 employees were let go bringing HQ to under 30 (shrinking from 35 to 28 staffers would be a 20% drop).

That will leave the company short-handed as it attempts to diversify revenue with the upcoming launch of monthly subscriptions. “HQ Words Everyday. Coming next month . . .  Bigger prizes . . . More ways to win. $9.99/mo. subscription” the company tweeted from the account for its second game, the Wheel Of Fortune-style HQ Words. The company has been trying to regain momentum with new hosts since the departure

hq trivia app 1
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Continue reading “HQ Trivia lays off ~20% as it preps subscriptions”

HQ Trivia lays off ~20% as it preps subscriptions


This post is by Josh Constine from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




HQ Trivia is struggling after a mutiny failed to oust its CEO. Downloads per month are down 92% versus last June according to Sensor Tower. And now four sources confirm that HQ laid off staff members this week. One said about 20% of staff was let go, and another said six to seven employees were departing. That aligns with Digiday reporter Kerry Flynn’s tweet that 7 employees were let go bringing HQ to under 30 (shrinking from 35 to 28 staffers would be a 20% drop).

That will leave the company short-handed as it attempts to diversify revenue with the upcoming launch of monthly subscriptions. “HQ Words Everyday. Coming next month . . .  Bigger prizes . . . More ways to win. $9.99/mo. subscription” the company tweeted from the account for its second game, the Wheel Of Fortune-style HQ Words. The company has been trying to regain momentum with new hosts since the departure

hq trivia app 1
🗓
💰
🕹
🔥

Continue reading “HQ Trivia lays off ~20% as it preps subscriptions”

With Super Mario Maker 2, Nintendo both unleashes and leashes creators


This post is by Devin Coldewey from TechCrunch


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Nintendo’s Mario Maker series is among the most generous gifts the company could have given to its fans, and the new installment on Switch is better than its predecessor in every way. Yet despite the freedom and encouragement it gives, it’s hard not to feel a gentle tug groundward when your ambitions begin to soar.

For those unfamiliar with Mario Maker, the original was a totally unexpected joy on the Wii U and one of the few games that truly took advantage of that console’s unusual hardware. It allowed players to use the touchscreen and stylus to put together Mario levels in a variety of styles, and the resulting number and complexity of creations boggled minds worldwide.

The sequel, Super Mario Maker 2, announced in February and released at the end of June, is a natural evolution of the previous game. It adds new items, new styles, new ways to

mario tutorial
storymode levels
puzzle
mycourse
courseworld

Continue reading “With Super Mario Maker 2, Nintendo both unleashes and leashes creators”