Kingdom Hearts coming to PC on March 30

One of Square ENIX’s best-selling series, Kingdom Hearts, is coming to PC on March 30. The Kingdom Hearts collection will be available on the Epic Games Store. This ends nearly 20 years of console exclusivity for the franchise. The first Kingdom Hearts game came out in 2002, Kingdom Hearts II came out in 2005, and Kingdom Hearts III came out in 2019 after being in development for over a decade. In between, there were lots of spin-off games in the franchise which can also be found on PC.

Epic Games announced the release of the Kingdom Hearts series on PC in a tweet. “The iconic @KINGDOMHEARTS series is coming to PC for the first time ever on March 30th!” they said. “Are you ready to join Sora and friends in their battle against the darkness? Pre-order all the titles in the @KINGDOMHEARTS series starting today!”

Epic Games has announced that the following games are coming out for PC at $49.99 for Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 Remix:

  • Kingdom Hearts Final Mix
  • Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories
  • Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days (HD remastered cinematics)
  • Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix
  • Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep Final Mix
  • Kingdom Hearts Re:coded (HD remastered cinematics)

Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue includes the following at $59.99:

  • Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance HD
  • Kingdom Hearts 0.2: Birth by Sleep – A fragmentary passage –
  • Kingdom Hearts χ Back Cover (movie)

Kingdom Hearts III and Kingdom Hearts Melody of Memory will be both $59.99 on PC.

Kingdom Hearts

Square ENIX has not yet confirmed whether or not this will remain an Epic Games exclusive or if it will be released on Steam in the future. Fans were hopeful for a Steam release in the future in response to the announcement. Are you buying these games (again) on PC? Are you excited to see this franchise hit the PC? Let us know in the comments below!

Dustin “Screech” Diamond passes away at age 44

Fans of the classic 90s show Saved By the Bell were thrown for a loop this morning upon learning about the passing of one of its beloved characters, “Screech.”

Dustin Diamond was only 44 years old.

Dustin Diamond, the actor who portrayed the strange but lovable goofball from the NBC series that ran from 1989 to 1993, passed away earlier today at the age of 44 in Florida, following his bout with stage 4 lung cancer.

“We are saddened to confirm of Dustin Diamond’s passing on Monday, February 1st, 2021 due to carcinoma,” his reps from Roger Paul, Inc. said in a statement earlier today. “He was diagnosed with this brutal, relentless form of malignant cancer only three weeks ago. In that time, it managed to spread rapidly throughout his system; the only mercy it exhibited was its sharp and swift execution. Dustin did not suffer. He did not have to lie submerged in pain. For that, we are grateful.”

Diamond’s actions weren’t always easy to take. Following his fame in the series, he self-produced a sex tape, wrote a tell-all book spilling the secrets on working on the show, and was even arrested in a bar fight back in 2014. However, the reps acknowledged these actions, stating that Dustin “was a character in and of himself: an unpredictable spitfire who always left us shocked, but never left us bored. We are thankful he trusted us enough to share his genuine, authentic self with our team. We wish you knew him in the way that we did.”

Along with his appearances in Saved By the Bell and some of its spinoffs, Diamond also appeared in such films as Made, Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star and American Pie Presents: The Book of Love. He was also a subject on reality shows like Celebrity Big Brother and Celebrity Fit Club.

Our thoughts are with Diamond’s family and friends. We’ve included a memorandum clip below, highlighting Diamond’s best moments on the show.

Rest in peace, Screech.

Reckful, former top-ranked World of Warcraft PvPer, commits suicide at age 31

Reckful once held the highest PvP ranking in the game’s history.

Byron “Reckful” Bernstein was once a fixture in the World of Warcraft arena scene for many years, playing a rogue. He was in the middle of developing his own video game before he sadly took his own life at the age of 31. His roommate and ex-girlfriend confirmed his death via Twitter. Many others in the gaming world paid tribute to Reckful, who once held the highest PvP ranking in World of Warcraft history.

What made Reckful even more prominent was his openness with his struggle with mental health issues. Typically, mental health issues are still a taboo subject even in the gaming world, where a higher percentage of individuals may suffer from mental health issues than the general population. He even talked with a psychiatrist on his stream to encourage other viewers who were also undergoing depression and other mental health issues to seek help. Sadly, some people took advantage of Reckful’s vulnerable state. Some viewers even openly encouraged him to commit suicide despite their knowledge of his mental health issues.

Hours ago, Reckful made a series of tweets proposing to his ex-girlfriend and even apologized to people who had to deal with his struggles with mental health. These were the last tweets he would make before taking his own life.

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Reckful was developing a game called Everland at the time of his death. He will be missed by everyone in the World of Warcraft community and the gaming world. We would like to use this time to remind everyone to be kind to one another and check in on all your friends during this difficult time, especially those who are struggling with mental health issues.

If you are struggling and want to reach out, here are some global resources for you to use.

Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1+2 Remaster Coming September 4, 2020

Skateboards out this September.

It’s time to get back on the skateboard—Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1+2 is coming to the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC on September 4, 2020. Today also happens to be skateboarding legend Tony Hawk’s birthday. Original publisher Activision and developer Vicarious Visions (who also did the Crash Bandicoot remasters) are working on the project.

The last game in the series, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 5, came out in 2015. The licensing deal between Tony Hawk and Activision was set to expire at the end of the year, and fans were disappointed in the game. There were rumors of a remaster of the series in 2019, and today, the remaster has been officially announced.

“Thanks to all the fans of our series for keeping this dream alive,” Hawk said on Twitter. The original cast from the games will be returning. Skateboarding fans will recognize faces such as Steve Caballero, Geoff Rowley, Bucky Lasek, Elissa Steamer, Kareem Campbell, Andrew Reynolds, Bob Burnquist, Eric Koston, Rodney Mullen, Jamie Thomas, Rune Glifberg, and Chad Muska.

The 4K resolution graphics aren’t the only new thing coming to this remaster.

While everyone would love to skate their favorite levels in 4K resolution, you can also do tricks like wall plants, reverts, and lip tricks. The game is also known for its iconic soundtrack, but due to licensing issues, some of the tracks from both games will not be available in the remastered version.

You can even create your own skater and your own skatepark, and even share those parks with your friends online. The game will be available on September 4, 2020, for $39.99. You can purchase the digital deluxe edition for $49.99, or even get the collector’s edition for $99.99, which includes a full-sized Birdhouse deck autographed by Tony Hawk himself.

What do you think about the remaster of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater? Are you ready to get on the sticks and start grinding and kickflipping your way to skateboarding supremacy? Let us know in the comments below.

Michael Chu Leaves Blizzard

Lead Overwatch Writer Searches for New Opportunities

After 20 years at Blizzard, Overwatch lead writer Michael Chu is leaving the company to pursue other adventures. Chu is a significant contributor to the ongoing Overwatch lore and story outside of the game. He’s written many of the hero’s origin stories and flushed out the universe in which the game takes place both through comics and short fiction. Two of Chu’s pieces, “Bastet” and “Reflections” were celebrated throughout the community for revealing Soldier:76 and Tracer as LGBTQ+ heroes. Chu also worked on Diablo 3, World of Warcraft, and the in-development Overwatch 2.

On Chu’s website, he stated that: “Overwatch has been a life-changing experience. I have always felt that games and the stories they tell have the unique ability to bring people closer together and that the empathy you feel from stepping into someone else’s shoes, even virtually, can bridge the gap between miles, cultures, and nations.”

Whoever takes Chu’s place has big shoes to fill. Overwatch 2, which will feature a story-driven campaign, will rely heavily on the writing done by his replacement. While Overwatch lore has always been a hot topic for discussion, I’m hoping that Overwatch 2 will teach us more about the characters and the world they inhabit than ever before. While lore exists in the game, many players don’t seem to know much about the world, nor do they care. Hopefully, a game based around the story aspect will entice players new and old to learn about the characters that make up this world. It’s one of my few expectations for the new game.

Here’s Blizzard’s statement on Michael Chu’s departure: “Michael’s contributions to the games and stories of the Warcraft, Diablo, and Overwatch universes have been a source of inspiration, and we will always be thankful for the time he spent at Blizzard. We wish him the best for the future.”

New Overwatch Hero Echo Could be Game Changing

The Newest Hero

When Blizzard announced Overwatch 2 at Blizzcon, it left many fans wondering what it meant for the original game. Would we still see consistent updates? Or would Overwatch be put on the backburner during the development of the sequel? Only time would tell.

Luckily, it turns out that the developers still have a couple of surprises for their fans and players alike. On March 18, @PlayOverwatch tweeted the reveal of the new hero Echo. Her origin story revolves around Dr. Liao, a Singaporean scientist who worked to create and eventually fight the omnics. Liao was an expert in artificial intelligence, an employee of the Omnica Corporation, and the sixth founder of Overwatch. When she was killed in an attack on the Overwatch facility, Echo, Liao’s creation, adapted to Liao’s personality and goals. Dr. Liao built Echo to fulfill her dream of helping the world; she is an echo of her legacy.

Echo was initially introduced back in the 2018 “Reunion” short for Ashe and McCree and later took a more significant role in the Overwatch 2 teaser trailer. It turns out her origins go back before the 2018 video and before Overwatch itself. Echo was formerly an asset from Blizzard’s MMO Titan, which was canceled in 2013. Her appearance has changed since then – she’s much more humanoid and sleek – but her concept has stayed relatively the same.

Echo’s Abilities

It turns our Echo is Overwatch’s newest DPS hero and not a support character like many players assumed. Her abilities are energy-based and seem to be quite strong so far. Her primary, Tri-shot, lets her shoot a triangular burst from her hand. She also has a sticky bomb ability that explodes after a few seconds, and a Focusing Beam that deals high amounts of damage for a limited time. Not to mention, she can fly and glide in a way similar to Mercy and Pharah.

Echo’s most substantial ability is her ultimate Duplicate. It allows her to copy any enemy team hero – minus another Echo – and use their abilities as her own for a short period. This technique means she can fill any role, tank, support, or DPS, and use their ultimate to her advantage.

Echo’s Abilities Courtesy of @RevertMercySays on Twitter

According to Jeff Kaplan, Echo is most likely the last new hero we’ll see until Overwatch 2. If you want to try her out for yourself, she’s currently live on PTR servers.

Hockey Takes a Penalty

Hockey is temporarily off the table.

Here in Canada, we take a few things very seriously, that includes but is not limited to; Hockey and Coffee. And as you’ve all may or may not heard, but both of these Canadian staples are being rocked by C-19 Virus that has erupted across the globe. The National Hockey League (NHL) has officially released a statement regarding their LIVE games and the attendees who were planning on visiting.  

The following is a statement on behalf of Hockey Canada from Tom Renney, chief executive officer, and Scott Smith, president and chief operating officer, on the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. 

“Without question, this is an unprecedented period of difficulty for the sports world. The health and safety of all participants in sport, including players, coaches, staff, officials, fans, family, volunteers and the general public, is of the utmost importance to Hockey Canada. 

After much consultation with the Hockey Canada membership, our chief medical officer and public health officials, the Hockey Canada Board of Directors has made the decision to cancel all Hockey Canada-sanctioned activities, including our national championships, until further notice, effective Friday, March 13, 2020. 

We recognize the tremendous effort that has been put forth all year by individuals across the country as they participate in Canada’s game. Although it is difficult to process the hockey season ending abruptly, we feel this is the best course of action in order to do our part in keeping our country safe.”

COVID-19 has caused cancellations far beyond hockey.

So as you can guess, Canada is currently in an upwind about our National Sports being canceled outright for the year due to this outbreak. Hockey fans across Canada have announced their distaste as they exclaim their selfish reasonings as to why the season should continue. Hockey is not the only sport taking this safety stance against the C-19 Virus. Rugby, Curling, the CFL, and minor leagues are also canceling outright. Schools across Canada are canceling their own sports as well, in which schools are remaining open.

In the midst of all of this mayhem, there is one thing to be said that is true. No matter the situation, Canadians will always want their coffee. In all of the stores closing and preventions in place, Tim Hortons is also taking their own preventative actions as they close their dining rooms across Canada. Only allowing drive-thrus to remain open during this time.  

So as you leave to grab your morning coffee, before whatever important matter you have to leave your home for… Wash your hands, take some Lysol wipes with you and wipe down your most used surfaces including your debit card and wallet/purse. Be safe, from all of us here at DVS Gaming. 

Diablo and Overwatch Rumored to get Animated TV Adaptations

Overwatch Animated Shorts

Since Overwatch’s launch, Blizzard has released some stunning animations to show players the character lore and to explain essential events in the world’s history. We’ve seen a deathly dual between Hanzo and Genji, the reunion between McCree and Ashe, the loss of Mei’s team, and many other heart-wrenching scenarios revolving around the heroes and villains of the game.

After watching these animated shorts, it’s no surprise that an animated show based on Overwatch’s lore may be in the works. While nothing is confirmed yet, some leaked information may prove that both Overwatch and Diablo may be on more than just our computer screens in the future.

McCree from Overwatch animated “Reunion” Courtesy of GameSpot

The Reveal

According to the LinkedIn profile of Nick van Dyk, the co-president of Activision Blizzard Studios, he states that he worked on both a Diablo and an Overwatch series. It seems that Diablo will get an adaptation “rendered in anime style,” which is in pre-production and will release globally through Netflix. Based on this rudimentary description, I imagine it will be artistically comparable to Castlevania’s adaptation currently on Netflix.

Further down, van Dyk also lists that he “developed and sold an animated series based on Blizzard’s Overwatch franchise.” There is no confirmation about this project, and it’s not yet clear who bought the series, but it does suggest potential in a future animated show.

Even if this information is accurate, it does not mean we’ll ever see these shows. The Overwatch series has only been bought, not greenlit, and the Diablo show can only be said to have been in pre-production at some point. If we do see some new animated series of the two, they will join the ranks of video game turned show along with games like Castlevania and The Witcher. Both show a lot of potential.

Blizzard has not yet made an official announcement surrounding either project.

Activision Demands That Reddit Identify Call of Duty Leaker

Activision has invoked the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) against a Reddit user.

While leaks are everywhere on the Internet about the next big game, Activision has sent a clear message to the sleuths of the gaming world: don’t leak Call of Duty.

The game developer has used the DMCA to file a subpoena against Reddit to identify those who leaked the upcoming Warzone mode of the Call of Duty franchise. The filing was submitted on February 14 in California’s Northern District Court. “The Content infringes Activision’s exclusive rights under copyright law. Specifically, it infringes Activision’s rights in its popular video game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. The Reddit user, Assyrian2410, has had his post taken down.

Could other game developers follow suit?

The DMCA protects Internet companies including Reddit and YouTube from liability for copyright infringement if a user of the website posts copyrighted material without permission from the original copyright holder. In exchange, the company has to take down infringing content, which is what was done in this case.

Activision is deciding to go after the individual in this case—Assyrian2410—and is currently seeking legal action against the user for the leaks. They want information such as names, addresses, telephone numbers, email addresses, and IP addresses to identify the individual. It is unknown if Reddit has handed any of this information to Activision, or even what they do with user data after account deletion. If Activision is successful, it may be seen as a sort of Pyrrhic victory because of the amount of time and resources they may spend to go after Assyrian2410.

The Warzone mode is scheduled for release in March, but this definitely shines a light on how far major game companies will go to take on random Reddit users. What do you think? Let us know in the comments below!