The Roundup: Humble Freedom Bundle, We Are Chicago, Prey, and PewDiePie

Hey hey! Jon here back with the Circle Roundup, hoping you’ve all had a wonderful Valentine’s Day!

Valentine’s Day makes me think of Final Fantasy VII. Vincent Valentine, of course. He had a great name. To me, the name indicated he was classy with an air of danger.

But mostly, I think of Cloud’s date at Gold Saucer with Barrett. I better see Barrett as the canon option for the upcoming remake, in all its glorious awkwardness.

And with that, the Roundup!

Chelsea Stark reports that the Humble Bundle is supporting the ACLU with the help of 47 titles. The Humble Freedom Bundle is selling at a minimum of $30 bucks for the whole shebang, and you can decide how much money will go to the ACLU, Doctors Without Borders, and the International Rescue Committee. Read Chelsea’s full report here.

Eb Samuel reviewed Hitman: The Complete First Season. (Hitman won our Best World Award at the New York Game Awards last month.) In the past year, our favorite bald blood merchant went everywhere from Marrakesh to Hokkaido and killed everyone from little old nurses (who moonlighted as serial killers) and Gary Busey. Eb rightfully believed that this was awesome. Read Eb’s full review here.

Jordan Minor reviewed We Are Chicago, a city that he treasures deeply. The South Side of Chicago has a rich history, and major American icons like journalist Ida Wells and former president Barack Obama have called it their home. Unfortunately, it is also an area that suffers heavily from gang violence. Like the district it’s set in, We Are Chicago is rough around the edges, but Jordan still found that the game conveyed what makes the historically black neighborhood so special. Read Jordan’s full review here.

Sherri L. Smith took a look at the upcoming Prey reboot. While the title is the same, the game bears little resemblance to the Navajo mythology inspired action shooter developed by Human Head Studios in 2006. Prey 2017 features a new protagonist, Morgan Yu (hooray for Asians in games!), fighting through a ship that’s been infested with shapeshifting aliens. Prey 2017 also features a leveling system that allows players to augment Morgan with new skills and weapon upgrades. Read Sherri’s full preview here.

Anthony Agnello understands that 2017 hasn’t been off to a great start, so if you want to go back in time, he’s got a list of retro consoles for you. If you’re a child of the third and fourth generation of videogame consoles, check it out. Read Anthony’s list here.

And now for news outside of the Circle. 

Steve Bannon used to run a World of Warcraft gold farming company. Yes, before he began formulating government policy designed to target anyone that isn’t white, he ran an online sweatshop that exploited poor Chinese kids and lost $60 million dollars in the process, despite his workers being paid at 50 American cents an hour. I really hope I ganked this guy at some point in my WoW career. Read more about this bizarre story here.

PewDiePie finds himself at the center of controversy once again, but this time, the stakes are higher. In the wake of his latest anti-Semitic prank, the Swedish YouTube gamer has been dropped by Disney and his YouTube Red web series has been canceled. In his past controversies, PewDiePie has always claimed that the media unfairly scrutinizes him in an effort to drive views. This claim was invoked once more in a video statement he released on the 16th. There have been many takes written about this, but one in particular stood out to me for linking the long, alt-right chain that began with GamerGate. Read it here.

Why should we be videogame critics in a world where horrible things keep happening? Simon Parkin says it’s because videogame criticism shows us how ugly we are, but also how fun life can be. How fun life should be. Read Parkin’s piece here.

And that’s it for this week! Have a good one!

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