Last night, news broke that could be classified as one of the wildest gaming industry stories in ages. In response to Cyberpunk 2077’s poor console performance, and on last generation consoles in particular, Sony removed it completely from the PlayStation store, meaning the game is no longer for sale across any PlayStation console, including PlayStation 5. They are changing a long-held policy not to refund digital game sales, meaning you can now get a near-instant refund for Cyberpunk, but the cost was that they aren’t going to sell the game anymore at all until it’s fixed.
This is truly one of the most embarrassing moments for a major publisher in industry history, and it’s completely without precedent. Sony has humiliated CDPR on a level here that is hard to comprehend, and most would agree the publisher has earned it.
There is simply no case this high profile of a major storefront de-listing a game because of poor performance and refund issues. We have the Epic versus Apple case, but there Fortnite was removed due to Epic skirting Apple’s payment rules on purpose, triggering a lengthy legal battle. And we have a game like Arkham Knight which had its PC copy taken down, but that was by the publisher, WB, not the storefront. Here, this is Sony acting unilaterally.
How did we get here? Here’s a brief timeline.
Cyberpunk passed certification on PlayStation and Xbox, likely with usual bugs and performance issues, but CDPR assured the companies those would be quickly patched at or near launch, as is the case with most games. Certification is mostly about whether or not your game straight-up breaks a console, so that’s how the game got “approved.”
Cyberpunk 2077 launches and its performance across platforms is massively varied. It runs pretty great on high end PCs for the most part, is mostly solid with upconverted versions on next gen consoles like PS5 and Xbox Series X, but moving into last generation, performance is extremely poor, and on base consoles like PS4 and Xbox One, the game is barely playable with resolution, framerate and pop-in issues.
As such, a ton of players start requesting refunds for the game. CDPR first makes it sound like they are working with Microsoft and Sony on refunds, but it’s soon revealed no such special deal exists. CDPR then sets up a singular email to “help” with refunds, but mostly directs people to just go through Sony and Microsoft’s normal refund process.
The problem? Sony does not give refunds for digital games, and yet they are swamped with angry customers with a barely working copy of Cyberpunk 2077. The anger starts to build not at CDPR, but at Sony.
We don’t know exactly what happens next, but it appears there were some (likely heated) discussions between Sony and CDPR behind the scenes. And so in order to break its own policy and refund copies of Cyberpunk, Sony would strip it from its store completely and not sell new copies until it was fixed. This feels like a nuclear option that CDPR left them no choice but to pursue.
Because there is only one PlayStation store and right now, only one version of the game, the PS4 version, that means even PS5 no longer has a version of Cyberpunk for sale, even if the game is running miles better on that system than on base PS4 or Pro.
At the time I’m writing this, there has been no public statement about this from CDPR except a note to investors announcing that this happened. There are signs that Microsoft will not follow suit, due to a more flexible return policy they have in place, plus they have a marketing deal with CDPR for Cyberpunk for good measure.
This is, without question, a stunningly humiliating moment for CDPR, a company that had all the goodwill in the world after the release of the beloved Witcher 3, and they had said all the right things about Cyberpunk including the repeated phrase, it will be released “when it’s done.” A statement which is now rightly being thrown back in their face.
This caps off a truly horrendous week for CDPR in which they have been caught covering up the poor performance of the game on last gen consoles by providing only PC review copies before launch, and admitting to such. And then they clearly flat-out lied about performance on last generation consoles, as we heard nothing but statements like “it runs surprisingly well” on PS4 and Xbox One ahead of launch, and that’s all we had to go on, given that there was no footage.
There are a lot of takeaways here. CDPR obviously has broken trust with fans, but I wonder how much this might scare off future pre-orders of other major titles that keep arriving in various states of being broken, even if Cyberpunk is the worst example in a long while. And even Sony and Microsoft might be forced to re-examine both their digital return policies and their certification approval process after this.
All of this is just…stunning. We have gotten used to high profile flops, whether that’s Anthem or Fallout 76 or what have you, but CDPR’s deception and the severity of the consequences for that are like nothing we’ve seen in this industry before. At this point you can only wonder what could possibly happen next, if we’ve hit bottom or this will somehow, keep on getting worse.
MediaTek taps TSMC 6-nanometer tech for new flagship 5G phone chips – Cape Breton Post
By Stephen Nellis
(Reuters) – MediaTek Inc on Wednesday said it would use Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co’s 6-nanometer chipmaking technology for its newest chips aimed at premium 5G smartphones.
Taiwan’s MediaTek appears to be one of the first high-volume customers for the technology and is among a handful of companies with modem technology to connect phones to mobile data networks, competing against Qualcomm Inc and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd. The new chips announced Wednesday, called Dimensity 1100 and 1200, build on MediaTek’s efforts to go after higher-priced handsets where Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chips have historically had stronger market share.
Like Qualcomm and Apple, MediaTek designs chips and then contracts out production to outside firms. The newest chips will be made at TSMC, on a chipmaking technology called 6-nanometer. Qualcomm’s chips are being made by Samsung on 5-nanometer technology while Apple Inc uses TSMC’s 5-nanometer technology.
Smaller chipmaker technology is faster and more power efficient. MediaTek’s previous chips used a 7-nanometer process, and moving to newer manufacturing technology along with advances in the chip’s design make it 22% faster at computing tasks while consuming 25% less power, Finbarr Moynihan, general manager of international corporate sales, told Reuters in an interview.
(Reporting by Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Leslie Adler)
Xiaomi Mi 11 Pro flagship smartphone to come with 120x zoom support – gizmochina
After announcing its latest Mi 11 flagship smartphone a few weeks ago, Xiaomi started selling the device earlier this month. Now, the Chinese company is gearing up to launch a new variant in the lineup, dubbed Mi 11 Pro.
Now, the latest report coming from popular leaker ‘Digital Chat Station’ reveals that the upcoming Mi 11 Pro will have support for 120x zoom through its rear-facing camera setup. This seems to be pretty much in line with what has been rumored so far.
Instead of the triple-camera setup on the Mi 11, the Pro variant will come with a quad-camera configuration on the back panel. Also, the company seems to have ditched the design of the vertically-aligned sensor found on Mi 10 Pro to a 2×2 grid design.
As for the other specifications, reports indicate that the Mi 11 Pro smartphone will have the same display as the Mi 11. It will feature a 6.81-inch 2K curved display offering a 120Hz refresh rate, 515PPI pixel density, and a peak brightness of 1500nits. Additionally, the device is also expected to have support for MEMC and SDR to HDR conversion.
Given that it’s a flagship offering from Xiaomi and Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 is the most advanced chipset out there in the market, the device will be powered by the Snapdragon 888 chipset, the same as the Mi 11. We also expected to see multiple versions of the phone based on the memory configuration.
In the software department, the phone is likely to be running the latest Android 11 operating system along with the company’s own MIUI custom user interface on top. More information about the device is expected to surface online ahead of its official launch, which will take place after the Spring Festival in China, after mid-February.
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