Industry News [Week of November 30]

This is the regular weekly post where I share updates about things happening in gaming, machine learning, audio, or frankly anything that catches my eye and seems relevant to share or discuss here. Let’s hop right in!


Roblox has announced a Ready Player Two treasure hunt to promote the upcoming book. It’s a little on the nose as far as “we are the metaverse” goes, but it’s also great to see folks taking inspiration from stories to really think about pushing our current platforms to the next level.

Speaking of innovation in gaming, check out Rival Peak, an interactive game show where the audience aids the (AI) contestants through live-stream interactive feedback. As someone who was there for the original Twitch Plays Pokemon surge, this feels like a very promising direction to take streaming, and I’ll be watching intently.

The NY Times has published a powerful interactive article showcasing the ability of AI techniques to create synthetic faces. None of this is new technology for folks who’ve been paying attention over the last year or two, but it’s a strong way to package the info together and I think they did a good job finding a balance between showing off the potency of the technique without fearmongering.

TikTok has launched a game publishing arm, in a move that pundits are describing as “duh.” Even if TikTok wasn’t itself one of the best marketing tools out there for a new mobile game, games also compete with TikTok for attention, so it’s a natural hedge that also allows TikTok to get smarter about the games that are out there.

Finally, remember that Travis Scott concert that happened in Fortnite? Apparently it grossed over $20M – an amount more comparable to a full tour than a single concert in the real world. That said, this scale could have a downside – will folks get burned out on their favorite artists faster if the scarcity of “come to this concert now or miss them for three years” goes away?


That’s all for this week! As always, any thoughts or feedback are welcome. Stay safe, healthy, and sane, all!

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