One of the first big reveals of E3 2019 is that FIFA 20 will include the new Volta mode taking the world’s game to the streets. Volta is inspired by the small-sided football played in the streets, cages and indoor futsal courts across the globe. Gameplay receives a shakeup to match street skills with added flicks, flairs and the ability to rebound the ball off of walls.
The word Volta is Portuguese and the translation is ‘to return.’ Volta was chosen as it refers to football returning to the streets, preceding the professional game and as a throwback to the FIFA Street games from over a decade ago.
Volta matches can be customised with 3v3 Rush, 4v4, 4v4 Rush, 5v5 and Professional Futsal rules. Also, Volta offers different sized arenas and environments with and without walls, giving players the freedom to play exactly how they want. EA has so far revealed that arenas vary from an underpass in Amsterdam to a neighbourhood cage in London and a Tokyo rooftop.
Players can customise their teams through gender, clothing, shoes, hairstyles, tattoos, and celebratory emotes. Additional items are unlocked by progressing through Volta and completing in-game challenges.
Four Volta football modes have been revealed. Kick-Off takes professional teams to the streets. Volta World allows players to build a team, recruit players and compete in single player matches.
Volta Story follows a custom footballer through a narrative-driven experience, where they face off against various legends of street football from around the world. Earn rewards, customise the player, and earn recruits for the squad, culminating in the Volta World Championship tournament in Buenos Aires.
Volta League is the online portion of street football, where players from around the world compete and wins lead to promotion into higher divisions.
Of course, FIFA 20 will feature the authentic on-field football experience of previous games along with an abundance of changes and improvements. But for now, we’re excited by Volta and look forward to hitting the streets when FIFA 20 launches September 27 for PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. A Nintendo Switch version is also on its way; sadly, Volta will not be available on the handheld console.
Playdate Handheld Gaming System Gets Cranky
Panic got onto everyone’s radar by publishing Firewatch and Untitled Goose Game, and now it wants to make its way into the handheld gaming industry with a new system they’ve called Playdate.
Of course, that’s not an easy feat to accomplish, which is why Panic isn’t setting its eyes on competing with the big boys. “Playdate isn’t trying to compete with the other devices that we already play and love. It’s designed to be complementary. It’s designed to deliver a jolt of fun in-between the times you spend with your phone and your home console; something to fill the moments when you just want a game you can pick-up and play,” explains Panic’s website.
It’s a novel approach, but not the only original thing about the system.
One interesting aspect of the system is how you get games. You won’t be buying them, instead, they’ll be delivered to your console in “seasons” with a new game being delivered each week. Panic isn’t revealing what the games are, opting instead to keep them a surprise.
Another differentiating characteristic is the crank on the side of the system, which isn’t meant to power the device, but to be an analog controller for the games created for the Playdate.
Playdate is a unique piece of technology—from its bright yellow format to its monochromatic screen. It just might crank out some pretty big changes to the industry.
Razer Raiju Ultimate Review: the Superior PS4 Controller
Back in the day of split-screen gaming, there was a stigma surrounding third-party controllers. For the most part, they were cheap, ugly, and uncomfortable, so reserved for a visiting friend or younger sibling. Then the rise of online gaming changed everything. Competitive gamers began looking for tips, tricks and accessories to give them an edge over the competition. These days, professional gaming is big business, with the top streamers earning up to $50k per hour. It pays to be leader of the pack.
Razer released the Raiju Ultimate controller to elevate the PlayStation 4 experience. This premium accessory offers precision controls, replaceable thumbsticks and the ability to remap buttons, encouraging gamers to play to their strengths and potentially eliminate weaknesses. In many ways, Raiju Ultimate is superior to the standard DualShock 4. The main downside is its price – RRP $350.
When raising the controller, the first thing you notice is its weight. Razer’s Raiju Ultimate is heavy. 360 grams may not sound like a lot, but it weighs close to double that of a standard PS4 DualShock controller. It’s not a deal breaker but does take some time getting used to.
Raiju Ultimate is larger than the standard controller. It’s closer in size and shape to an Xbox One or Nintendo Switch Pro Controller. This redesign results in more ergonomic triggers and an improved grip, which benefit prolonged sessions with racing games and first-person shooters. The triggers are wider, making them easier to press and they possess a nice amount of spring and firmness, bouncing back up much faster.
An alternate d-pad is included, so users can select between the standard four-directional design and a more accurate tilting d-pad that’s often favoured by fans of fighting games. A pair of alternate thumbsticks have domed grips similar the classic design of PlayStation 3 controllers. The d-pad and thumbsticks are held in place with magnets, so they simply clip on and off. The accompanying carry case has space to house the spare parts and the controller when it’s not in use.
The main benefit of this pro controller is its extra buttons. Two paddles designated M3 and M4 are found on the back, similar to gear-shift paddles on the reverse side of some steering wheels. Another two buttons are on top. They are labelled M1 and M2.
Using the Razer app, you can remap these buttons for a custom setup. The paddles can be a real game changer for competitive gaming, potentially offering a quick-fire alternative to the L1 and R1 buttons, but they can be customised to replace any button or trigger. The paddles are not perfect and are easily pressed by accident as they reside where the middle and ring fingers naturally grip the controller. The M buttons and paddles can also be switched off.
The Razer app offers four profiles, allowing custom setups catering to different genres. With the app, users can remap each button, adjust the sensitivity of the thumbsticks and fine-tune the rumble motors.
The four main buttons: x, square, circle and triangle are slightly smaller than those found on the standard PS4 controller, with the extra space in between potentially benefiting larger hands.
Razer Raiju Ultimate is wireless, connecting to both PS4 consoles and PC via Bluetooth. At the bottom is a 3.5mm jack for a headset and microphone although the controller has to be connected to the PS4 via USB for the accessories to work. Thankfully, the included cable is extra-long coming in at 2.8 metres.
It wouldn’t be a modern gaming device without some RGB lighting. So you better believe Razer included custom Chroma lighting. Light surrounds the touchpad with colours, patterns and pulses customised via the Razer app. It’s possible to colour code the Chroma lighting to match an eSports team or a user’s favourite colours. The lighting can also be switched off entirely.
The Razer Raiju Ultimate controller may not appeal to casual PS4 gamers, although aspiring professionals or hard-core online competitors should certainly check it out. The main downside is the price. At RRP $350, Raiju Ultimate is bound to frustrate some potential buyers. The good news is that JB Hi-Fi has dropped the price to $280. It’s still high, but if the standard PS4 controller gets between you and victory, it may be time to upgrade.
Man of Many received a controller for review courtesy of Razer.
Did You Know Top Live-Streamers Make $50,000 an Hour?
The next time your mum, dad, or girlfriend complains about how much time you spend playing video games, point them to the Wall Street Journal. A recent article titled “Top ‘Live-Streamers’ Get $50,000 an Hour to Play New Videogames Online” should be a strong enough argument that you are doing something with your life.
The article reports that companies like Electronic Arts, Activision Blizzard, Ubisoft, and Take-Two Interactive Software are just some of the video game publishers that are paying out massive amounts of cash to popular live-streamers to play their games. The streamers broadcast their experiences with the games on Twitch or upload videos to their YouTube channels. “Having celebrity streamers play games is an important part of the business,” explains Strauss Zelnick, Take-Two’s CEO. “It’s relatively new, but it has to be organic. The streamers have to believe in it.”
And there’s definitely a career to be had in playing games. Take, for instance, Sean “Jacksepticeye” McLoughlin. The “professional gamer” has more than 22 million subscribers and earns about USD$300,000 per month. Not convincing enough? Consider Tyler “Ninja” Blevins, who also has over 22 million subscribers and rakes in between USD$500,000 and $1 million per month.
Now there’s a take-home pay that no one can complain about.
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