Apr 28, 2024 3 min read

#48: Gaming's Boogeyman is restructuring

#48: Gaming's Boogeyman is restructuring

Hello, welcome, good day, good evening!

Welcome to a new edition of the overkill digest newsletter.

I've been playing around with the AYANEO Flip KB and like the device so far. I'm surprised how much better Windows on a handheld becomes as soon as you pair it with a keyboard. I think my review should be ready in a week or so.

On the other hand, I have also been spending more time with Delta for iOS — mostly to play Pokémon ROM hacks. It's a great app, and I'm happy we can finally play old ROMs on our iPhones (even if I've been considering Android more and more). But one of the side effects of using Delta I didn't expect is how often it made me pick up my Anbernic RG35XX. Despite owning a controller holder, a dedicated device is still a better experience.

But I still really want a clamshell one now!

Let's get to this week's news!

Big This Week

Gaming's Boogeyman, Embracer Group, is splitting into three companies.

Embracer Group, a company trying to get Gaming's most hated company badge, has announced it would split into three: Asmodee Group, Coffee Stain & Friends, and Middle-earth Enterprises & Friends.

All three companies follow different goals. Asmodee is a new arm dedicated to tabletop games like CATAN and Exploding Kittens. It is also working on licensed tabletop games for Lord of the Rings, Marvel, Game of Thrones, and Star Wars.

Coffee Stain & Friends will focus on indies, free-to-play games, and mid-market games (whatever that means). This company will own franchises like Deep Rock GalacticGoat SimulatorSatisfactory, and Valheim.

Finally, there's Middle-earth Enterprises & Friends. This is what the Embracer Group will rename itself into. It will retain the rights to all the major IPs like Dead Island, Killing Floor, Kingdom Come DeliveranceTomb Raider, and –  if it wasn't obvious with that name – The Lord of the Rings IP.

I'm not a financial expert, so I can't really say why Embracer thinks this is the way to go. But after they killed off several projects, including cancelling a new Deus Ex game, selling Borderlands developer Gearbox and laying off over 900 employees, I'm not sure these changes are enough to put the company in a better light again.

But maybe, now they at least stop killing projects!

Also, if you were wondering who owns who, here's an older infographic from 2022 I found interesting (Gearbox is here still listed under Embracer):

Visit the email in the browser to zoom in. (Also, lol at all these Ubisoft sub-companies.)

In other news

  • Updated Settings for Fallout 4. Following the Next-Gen Patch, Timo updated the settings guide for Steam Deck.
  • The AYANEO Pocket S is now available for preorder. The Pocket S might be the best-looking handheld currently on the market, at least going by the renders. It remains to be seen how good the device will be in everyday use, especially at that $399 starting price, but I plan to find out.
  • Someone built their own handheld. A Redditor with way more skills than I'll ever have decided to create their own custom handheld based on a small-form-factor PC. It's a fascinating build (you can see the different steps in this gallery), and shows you how creative and skilled some people are. However, the Redditor claimed they didn't know the Steam Deck existed while working on this project, and I'm wondering why they never googled "Handheld PC"???
  • Garry's Mod is removing Nintendo assets. And Nintendo has found the next developer to bully. Garry Newman, developer of the famous Garry's Mod sandbox game, has announced that they removed all player-made Nintendo-related content following a copyright takedown request. Now, this one, I feel, is a bit more legitimate than the recent cases Nintendo was involved in. After all, Garry's Mod allowed you to do things like turn Super Mario 64 into a first-person shooter.
  • No BlizzCon 2024. Blizzard announced there wouldn't be a BlizzCon this year and instead would announce details about its upcoming games during other events (their own smaller events and other shows like gamescom). Then again, so far, they have only announced two new titles: the tenth WoW Expansion, The War Within, and the first Diablo IV expansion, Vessel of Hatred. A bit light for a whole event.

OK, that's all for this week.

See ya!


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