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NiP Dominate Titan to Qualify for the Quarter Finals at DreamHack Open: Cluj-Napoca

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Ninjas in Pajamas only grew stronger as they ran through Titan 2-0 to qualify for the quarter finals tomorrow at DreamHack Open: Cluj-Napoca. NiP beat Titan at 16-14 on Cache (titan’s pick) in a competitive game and ran straight through them on Dust 2 (NiP’s pick) to the tune of a 16-1 scoreline. Nip plays against tournament favorite Team Solo Mid tomorrow to get through to the semis.

Map one started in an exciting fashion, but as the game progressed Titan was only left with rpk v NiP, and he went on to ace the entire team but did not have the defuse kit to be able to defuse the planted bomb. Looking back, that one round could’ve changed the scope of the match considering the game ended with a 16-14 scoreline. It seems arbitrary to try and analyze the competitiveness of this game with the dominance exhibited on the second map. It overshadows the performances of shox and rpk on Cache, because Cache isn’t relevant anymore, especially since they lost the map. But there were key moments for each team, and Titan came out swinging like they wanted to make it out of the groups at a major for once. Unfortunately for them, NiP needed this win.

On Dust 2, Allu showed up to play. He opened the match with two head shots mid and continued throughout the map to land awp shots and make key plays. Allu is criticized by viewers pretty heavily, and it’s worth commending his additions to the team’s big win today. While GOD Allu showed up, nobody from Titan did. ScreaM missed tap after tap on multiple enemies, shox looked frantic in an aim dual against friberg in the second pistol on Dust 2. For as much grief as shroud received for his performance yesterday, x6tenz went 1-17 on Dust 2. Sure, he’s the in-game shot caller, but 1-17 is impossible to win with. He’s a veteran who should always post bigger numbers than 1 kill on a map.

NiP has a tough, tough task in front of them now. They’ve been tasked with upsetting a team that has been on a run of dominance that has only been seen in major championship winning teams like Fnatic. NiP is the last team to beat TSM in a best of three, so while all the fans and analysts bet their skins on TSM, NiP can sit and strategize to take down a group of beatable men. How they’ll beat them is a mystery to me.

Titan are no doubt going home disappointed. While they beat Nip on day one, they lost a fairly one-sided game against VP that set them up to play the ninjas again. Even in their first win, they seemingly handed away something like 10 rounds to NiP after Titan had established a significant lead. Much of their triumph this major is obscured by their underwhelming results, and that’s unfortunate for such a talented and skilled group of players. The key may be in just a little more aim training, or better use of utility, or better team work, but whatever it is, they need to identify and fix it before the next major if they have hopes to make it out of the groups for the first time.

Gaming

Sony Has a “Monopoly” on the High-End Japanese Gaming Market, According to a US Senator

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The never-ending saga surrounding Microsoft’s proposed $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard has a new participant.  Today, Senator Maria Cantwell, a Democrat from the state of Washington, said some things about the subject that were hard to understand.

The senator, whose remarks were reported on by ResetEra, spoke at a Senate finance committee hearing on “the president’s 2023 Trade Policy Plan,” which we are sure was quite interesting.

Senator Cantwell said that she had been told that Sony “controls a monopoly of 98% of the high-end game market” despite the fact that “Japan’s government has allowed Sony to engage in blatant anti-competitive conduct through exclusive deals and payments to game publishers, establishing games that are among the most popular in Japan.”

This 98% statistic is highly deceptive because it ignores PC, Nintendo, and mobile games and instead refers to Sony’s adoption rate over Microsoft in Sony’s native country of Japan, a fact that shouldn’t surprise anyone who is even somewhat familiar with the video game business.

What can we do to rectify these problems and create a level playing field, she said of US Trade Representative Katherine Tai after charging Japan’s Federal Trade Commission with improperly failing to look into this purported “exclusionary conduct”?

It is absurd to claim that Sony has a monopoly on the Japanese video game market, as Luke Plunkett of Kotaku correctly points out, “because Sony doesn’t even have a 98% share of the market for the God of War series, a title they own, as Steam is getting 30% of every sale on PC.”

It goes without saying that we can’t expect elected officials to be experts in every field, but this is a visible step at a time when the ongoing attempt to buy the company is at a very important point.

Is it significant that Microsoft, along with Nintendo, maintains its headquarters in Redmond, Washington—Senator Cantwell’s district—or that Microsoft has given Cantwell more than $500,000 over the past two decades?  Let us leave that up to you.

 

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Consoles

Eating trash, Pizza Possum destroys the PS5

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Pizza Possum is an arcade action game in which you, a possum, attempt to consume as much trash as you can without being discovered.  It is a web-based sequel to the anarchy simulator Untitled Goose Game.It will eventually be available on the PS5.

We couldn’t help but notice that the possum in the title doesn’t look like the cute Australian possum that comes out at night to visit people.On the other hand, it looks like the horrible North American opossums are the ones that will attack trash cans and cause general chaos.Even though we think the second choice was better in terms of theme, we prefer the first one and are happy to explain why.

Your thoughts on Pizza Possum?  Does it possess the necessary mass appeal to successfully skitter along the back fenceline while setting the dog off in the process?

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The Mercenaries, a free piece of DLC for Resident Evil 4 Remake, launches on April 7

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Resident Evil 4 is now out, and the excellent remake can be bought right away.Even though you probably plan to play it all this weekend, you can take comfort in the fact that The Mercenaries, Resident Evil’s almost-required challenge mode, will be available as free DLC on April 7.

The mode’s exact details are still unknown, but if it’s anything like previous versions, you can expect some pretty hard tasks to test your skills.

You’re stumped about something? If you are still debating whether to purchase Resident Evil 4 Remake, be sure to look at our exhaustive guide for the answer or our in-depth review. Are you spending this weekend playing Resident Evil 4? Are you anticipating The Mercenaries?

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