Every year, we talk about all of the fantastic games that came out and the impact they had. However, we rarely look into significant events in the gaming industry as a whole, despite the waves such events might have made in the community! This year, we decided to change that by highlighting some of the most shocking and impactful moments in the gaming industry from 2018. We hope you enjoy this brief look back at some of the most significant moments!
Telltale Games Shuts Down
One of the biggest stories from this year came from the abrupt announcement that Telltale Games was shutting down. The studio became popular for their narrative, choice-driven games, including episodes from Game of Thrones, Minecraft, and their most well-known project, The Walking Dead series. When the company’s latest round of financing ultimately failed, they were forced to let go almost all of their employees. Needless to say, though many employees were said to have known Telltale Games was struggling, they were still caught off guard by the abrupt announcement.
It was a stark reminder for many of us that game developers still live in an unpredictable state, particularly with the changing opinions of fans and critics controlling the market. Though there may have been a few other studios struggling with finances or even shutting down, Telltale’s announcement struck us the hardest because they helped define a new genre of narrative games and brought us a few of our favorite stories over these past few years. At least the Walking Dead series will still have its definitive end, as several investors stepped up to make sure the game would be able to complete its course. As for Telltale’s other potential deals with Netflix and other such entities, we’ll have to see if someone can eventually make those visions come to light as well…
Sony Approves Cross-Platform Play for the First Time
In some happier news for the gaming community, for the first time, Sony decided to allow cross-platform play for a few of their multiplayer titles. PlayStation Worldwide Studios Chairman Shawn Layden addressed the situation on the PlayStation Blogcast, saying that they had wanted to enable cross-platform play for some time but needed to make sure it was released with a certain level of quality first. So what was the game that finally pushed this big change? You guessed it, Fortnite! As for other multiplayer games, Sony has only recently announced Rocket League as the follow-up to their full cross-platform play expedition, but it seems they will be slow to fully integrate this level of play on much else. If there is one thing we are sure of, it is that the fans of these games are the reason that they have been moved into cross-platform play. So if there is a game you want to see cross-platform play for on the PlayStation, be sure to let Sony know about it!
Square Enix Cancels Planned Final Fantasy XV DLC
Another upsetting story from 2018 came when Square Enix announced they would be releasing only one of their planned Final Fantasy XV DLC, scrapping the other three. With much of the story still to be revealed in Episode Aranea, Episode Lunafreya and Episode Noctis, it was certainly disappointing to hear that fans would not be getting to see any of the long-awaited content. Episode Ardyn will be released as the final DLC for the series in March 2019, which is in addition to the animated short for Ardyn that we already saw a few weeks ago. Square Enix also gave us Final Fantasy XV Multiplayer Comrades as a standalone project.
Regardless, it seems the studio’s strategy of releasing a partial game and adding DLC to continue its story content will stop here, much to the disappointment of FFXV fans. While the game has had ambitious plans for content since its release, it seems that the resignation of director Hajime Tabata has finally sealed the game’s fate. FFXV was quite popular, despite many criticisms, and told an epic story that we would have liked to learn much more about. Overall, the game should have had much more life than it did in the end.
Though 2018 was an eventful year for the gaming industry in terms of hit releases like Red Dead Redemption 2, Fortnite, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, not all of the news was good. The gaming industry can be volatile, and this year was no exception, with studios like Telltale Games closing their doors and Final Fantasy XV officially cutting off its remaining DLC projects. However, with fans backing the things they care about, we can see things like Sony finally allowing cross-platform play, bringing the gaming community one step closer together.
What did you think of these events in the gaming industry? What are your hopes for the upcoming year in gaming? We’re only a couple of months into 2019–anything could be possible! Let us know your craziest dreams for the future of the gaming industry in the comments below!