Biggest Video Games News Of The Week

The final week of January was nothing if not eventful. While the news cycle was dominated by Gamestop’s meteoric rise on the stock market, otherwise major stories have been entirely sidelined. Grand Theft Auto, Cyberpunk, and Mass Effect fans have a lot to be excited about this week. Meanwhile, Ninja and Activision-Blizzard stay perfectly on-brand by making entirely out of touch statements. It’s been a wild month of ups and downs, and 2021 is just getting started. Without further ado: here are the biggest stories of the week.

Mass Effect Week Starts Tomorrow On TheGamer

Let’s start with some good news. Starting Monday, TheGamer has a full week of exciting Mass Effect news, features, interviews, and articles to share. In anticipation of the release of  Mass Effect: Legendary Edition, we’re taking a look back at the history of the Mass Effect franchise. We’ve got exciting interviews with developers and actors, a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the trilogy, and some mind-blowing revelations that Mass Effect fans will be very excited to hear.

Mass Effect week starts Monday, February 1, and runs until Friday. We’ll be sharing all of the stories on our Twitter and Facebook pages, but fans should check back daily for plenty of Mass Effect goodness.

GTA 6 Rumors Are Piling Up

Rumors of a female protagonist in the next Grand Theft Auto go all the way back to 2019. Though GTA 6 is still unconfirmed, it hasn’t stopped the rumor mill from spinning way out of control. Recently, new “leaks” have emerged on Reddit and Youtube that claim GTA 6 will take place in South America and feature both a male and female playable character. Earlier this week, YouTuber Legacy Killa and Call of Duty leaker Tom Henderson both substantiated these rumors.

According to Legacy Killa, GTA 6 will take place primarily in South America, but players will have the opportunity to visit multiple locations, including Vice City. The next Grand Theft Auto hasn’t been announced and is likely years out, considering GTA 5 is coming to PS5 and Xbox Series X|S this year. Hopefully, we’ll find out if these rumors are true soon.

Gamestonks Send Wallstreet Into Panic Mode

The Wall Street vs. Main Street battle reached a climax this week when Gamestop stock peaked at over $400, forcing the popular retail trading app Robin Hood to temporarily halt trading as they scrambled to raise the one billion dollars necessary to fulfill clearinghouse deposits. The decentralized short squeeze has had a major impact on several hedge funds and investment companies, and even the White House is keeping an eye on the situation.

No matter what impact this saga ends up having on the market, it has energized an important conversation among legislators regarding trade reform. On Friday, New York representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez hosted a livestream on her Twitch channel to address the Gamestonk situation. AOC has been outspoken on Twitter about the purchasing freeze on Robin Hood and has received bipartisan support from political rival Ted Cruz.

Gamestop is trading at $325 at market close on Friday. After-hours trading indicates that a dip down to $315, but rest assured there will be a few more major developments in this story before all is said and done.

Cyberpunk Mods Begin Exactly As You Would Expect

On Tuesday, Cyberpunk 2077 developer CD Projekt Red released a collection of official tools and resources for modders. With official mod support, players can now modify game files and create original content for Cyberpunk 2077 without the risk of copyright violation. The mod tools are only for PC players, so console players that were hoping a skilled modder would fix all of the bugs are, unfortunately, out of luck.

To the surprise of absolutely no one, one of the first really popular mods allowed players to have sex with Keanu Reeve’s Johnny Silverhand. The mod, known as texture swap, could be used to replace one character model with another. Players were swapping the joytoy model with Silverhand’s, and getting it on.

CDPR removed the mod and issued a statement explaining that mod broke one of their most important rules: mods can’t be harmful to others. Since Keanu Reeves can’t consent to all the ways his likeness might be used, CDPR decided it best to remove the mod completely.

Activision-Blizzard Rejects Diversity Proposal

Earlier this week Activision-Blizzard rejected a proposal made by the AFL-CIO that would require certain diversity standards be met in hiring. The company’s lawyers asked the SEC to exempt the company from a requirement to allow investors to vote on the proposal. They argued that that proposal would “amount to an unworkable encroachment on the company’s ability to run its business.”

After the story broke, Activision-Blizzard president Daniel Alegre provided a statement to Dual Shockers stating that “We don’t need the AFL-CIO proposal to reaffirm what we already do – encourage every hiring manager to consider diverse candidates for every position.” Accountability be damned, apparently.

Ninja Reconfirms He’s Full Of Bad Takes

Ninja gave an interview to The New York Times this week and said a bunch of stuff that made a lot of people in the gaming community upset. As the most prominent gaming personality with the biggest audience of young gamers, Ninja told the NYT that he doesn’t think it’s his responsibility to teach kids about racism or bigotry and absconded his position as a role model. Ninja said, “It all comes down to parenting. You want to know who your kid is? Listen to him when he’s playing video games when he thinks you’re not. Here’s another thing: How does a white kid know he has white privilege if his parents never teach him or don’t talk about racism?” Regardless of the impact culture and entertainment have on the thoughts and behaviors of kids, Ninja believes it’s ultimately the role of parents to set the example.

Ninja also doubled down on his stance against streaming or gaming with women. When confronted about excluding women in a 2018 interview with Polygon, Ninja said that he doesn’t play games with women because it often leads to relationship rumors. In this week’s interview, Ninja reiterated this position by saying “It’s like, temptation, man.” 

Next: AGDQ Online Was A Huge Success, But Its Return To Onsite Events Will Be Bigger Than Ever

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Eric Switzer is the Livestream News Editor for TheGamer as well as the lead for VR and Tech. He has written about comics and film for Bloody Disgusting and VFXwire. He is a graduate of University of Missouri – Columbia and Vancouver Film School. Eric loves board games, fan conventions, new technology, and his sweet sweet kitties Bruce and Babs. Favorite games include Destiny 2, Kingdom Hearts, Super Metroid, and Prey…but mostly Prey. His favorite Pokémon is Umbreon.

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