SAG-AFTRA members have voted over 98% in favor of authorizing video game strike

In a move that demonstrates how far the industry has shifted, SAG-AFTRA members have voted over 98% in favor of authorizing video game st. While the union has no obligation to call a strike, the vote allows its National Executive Board the option of doing so if it can’t reach a contract with the signatory companies of the Interactive Media Agreement (video game work). This would be in addition to the Writers Guild of America (WGA) strike that has impacted the film and TV industries since May 2, and marks the first time that actors and writers have simultaneously gone on strike in Hollywood history.

The main issues in this particular dispute center around wages that keep up with inflation, health care for on-camera performers and protections against unrestrained use of artificial intelligence in the production process. These concerns mirror those raised by the WGA in its broader contract fight with the AMPTP.

However, the specifics of SAG-AFTRA’s stance on these issues are what sets this strike apart from the WGA’s. Unlike the writers, SAG-AFTRA’s demands on video games focus more heavily on technology and less so on traditional issues like residuals. For example, the union is seeking more pay for its motion capture performers who perform on set to provide facial and body movements for digital characters in video games. The union is also seeking better medical coverage and breaks for these workers who have to spend long periods of time in suits with cameras pointed at their faces.

As of now, SAG-AFTRA has only offered its video game signatory companies “interim agreements” to address some of these concerns, which have been largely ignored by the companies in exchange for the perks that come with signing an interim agreement. The union claims that it will continue to negotiate in good faith with the signatory companies until it is able to reach a deal that it feels reflects the importance of video game work for its membership.

But this approach, which essentially spits in the face of its own membership’s will and desire to be treated in a way that is at least remotely fair, may backfire. Rather than bringing the negotiating parties closer together, it is likely to push them further apart, and could ultimately lead to a full-blown strike that will have even more of an impact on the entertainment industry and its ability to attract viewers and subscribers to streaming services.

In light of the tremendous support the actors’ and writers’ strikes have received, it is clear that if the AMPTP wants to avoid a lengthy strike—which could cost them billions in lost revenue—it is going to have to take more serious, creative risks. Hopefully, the next step in this historic struggle will involve building independent rank-and-file committees that can unite both actors and writers as well as other sections of the working class to stand with them in their fight against a system that is increasingly putting all forms of media out of reach for most people.

Starfield’s sun doesn’t shine on AMD graphics cards

Starfield is one of the most highly anticipated PC games of the year. Bethesda Softworks’ first new role-playing game IP since Fallout 3 promises a distinctly unique NASA-punk art style, massive star systems to explore, and a fully dynamic universe that varies depending on your GPU’s capability. Considering the game’s demanding CPU-bound nature, it’s no surprise that Bethesda has built in support for AMD’s DLSS and FSR spatial upscaling technology to keep frame rates high enough to enjoy the game’s full potential.

Unfortunately, that attention to detail has led to a bug in Starfield that renders the game’s sun completely invisible on AMD graphics cards. According to a popular Reddit post titled “Dear AMD Card User,” the game won’t render a star when you travel in-game to the dayside of any planetary body or moon without an atmosphere. This includes planets with a thin or full class M atmosphere as well as asteroid belts and moons in other solar systems. The problem only appears to impact users with AMD Radeon graphics cards, as Nvidia GeForce GPUs are not affected.

This is a bit of a shame, as the issue seems to be a simple fix for Bethesda and AMD. The aforementioned Reddit post shows a photo of the skybox from a moon without an atmosphere rendered with a Radeon RX 7900 XT, followed by a screenshot from that same spot taken with a Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Ti. The difference is striking.

Seeing as AMD has been the exclusive PC partner for the Starfield launch, this seems like a simple oversight on both parts. It’s not as if the game isn’t optimized for AMD hardware, as it runs a lot faster on the company’s chips versus Nvidia’s RTX series of cards. But, even if the developers only had time to focus on optimizing Starfield for Ryzen and Radeon GPUs, it shouldn’t have been that hard to ensure that the game properly renders all of its features, including those supported by AMD’s own FSR spatial upscaling technology.

It’s a bummer to see this issue in Starfield, especially as Bethesda’s other recent releases, from Remnant 2 to Cyberpunk 2077, support AMD FSR and DLSS with flying colors. With the release of a modded version of the game on the horizon, it’s probably not a bad idea for both AMD and Bethesda to come together and figure out how to resolve this missing star issue as soon as possible. Otherwise, the game may not be the immersive experience many players were hoping for. That’s a shame for everyone involved. Check out our review of the Radeon RX 6800 XT to find out why it’s a great choice for PC gamers on a budget. It offers a solid 1440p gaming performance that rivals a pricier Nvidia GTX 1070 for $100 less. And, if you do decide to pick up an RX 6800 XT or another AMD Radeon card, remember to get the best CPU for gaming as well.

Veteran Red Dead Redemption writer leaves Rockstar after 16 years

Veteran Red Dead Redemption writer leaves Rockstar after 16 years

It’s not unusual for employees to leave a company, especially one as large as Rockstar Games. The developer behind the popular Grand Theft Auto series has had quite a few high-profile departures in recent years, with Lazlow Jones and Dan Houser waving goodbye to the studio earlier this year. And now it looks like another long-time member of the team is packing his bags. Earlier this week, it was announced that Michael Unsworth, the vice president of writing for Rockstar, has left the company after more than a decade of service. Unsworth’s lengthy resume includes writing credits on all of the major GTA titles, as well as Red Dead Redemption and Red Dead Redemption 2. He also wrote for other notable Rockstar games, including Grand Theft Auto 4, L.A. Noire, and Max Payne 3.

Originally spotted by GTAForums user Rucke and reposted by the official Rockstar news Twitter account SWEGTA, Unsworth’s LinkedIn profile has been updated to reflect his departure from the company. He did not elaborate on his decision to leave or give any details about what’s next for him. But the move is notable given that he was a key writer for the studio’s last big release, 2018’s Red Dead Redemption 2, along with co-founder Dan Houser and another credited writer, Sam Houser.

Unsworth’s departure comes just days after Rockstar revealed that work has begun on the upcoming Grand Theft Auto VI. While the studio hasn’t confirmed any specific details about what’s in store for the franchise, it is expected to be set in Vice City. The game is currently in development, with a 2022 release date targeted by the company.

While it’s not unusual for employees to leave prestigious companies, the departure of Unsworth is a sign that Rockstar may be struggling to keep the team together as it continues to work on future titles. It’s been a rough few years for the studio, with prominent members like Rockstar North president Leslie Benzies and former GTA creative lead Lazlow Jones leaving in 2020. But Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick remained confident in the studio’s future in the wake of Houser’s exit, saying things couldn’t be better.

While it’s not clear exactly why Unsworth has left the company, it’s easy to see why he would want to do so. His massive writing resume includes the works of some of the biggest names in gaming, and he has proven himself as a valuable asset to the studio over the past decade or so. Hopefully, the rest of the team can pick up the slack in his absence and continue to deliver top-notch entertainment. Then again, with a few more years in the pipeline before GTA 6 arrives, that might be a tall order to fill. Regardless, we look forward to the studio’s next release, which is likely just around the corner.

Granblue Fantasy: Relink secures February 2024 launch date

After a lengthy wait, Granblue Fantasy: Relink has secured a February 1, 2024 launch date. During Gamescom Opening Night Live 2023, Cygames unveiled a new release trailer for the action RPG that showcased large-scale battles and a look at the game’s combo-driven gameplay.

Fans of the long-running series have been waiting for an action RPG since its initial announcement in 2016. The title suffered multiple delays and even saw development shifted from PlatinumGames to Cygames Osaka before being finally released this year. The publisher has also outlined several special editions for the title that will include a Proto Bahamut figure and a hefty artbook.

The new release trailer showcases several narrative story beats as well as a strong emphasis on the massive Primal Beasts that players will encounter throughout the game. The team at Cygames has also released a handful of new screenshots and a gallery for the game to give fans a better look at some of these massive creatures as well as the game’s colorful world.

The slick hack and slash style battle system is one of the main draws for the game, as the player can switch between a wide variety of characters that are all unique in their own way. From a quick and nimble gunner to a heavy damage-dealer, the character selection is extensive and allows players to mix and match their party for obscenely over-the-top attacks. Those flashy combos can be linked together for ‘Link Bursts’ which see the entire party perform a showy attack that can deal massive damage to all enemies onscreen.

Aside from the large-scale battles, the game will also feature a number of in-game activities that encourage players to explore and interact with various areas of the Sky Realm. Some of these include the ability to take on a series of challenges that offer rewards such as new equipment or a chance to fight a Primal Beast.

In addition to this, the game will be supported by a full suite of social features including online multiplayer, voice chat, and social media integration. The game will be available on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and PC via Steam.

Gematsu sat down with Granblue Fantasy: Relink general director Tetsuya Fukuhara as well as the game’s creative director Yasuyuki Kaji to discuss the title and what to expect when it releases next year.

Fukuhara spoke about the long wait that fans have endured for the title and how the team at Cygames wanted the game to feel like a spectacle in every aspect. He also talked about what it was like directing the game after taking over from PlatinumGames and how that influenced the way the team approached the project.

For those interested in securing a copy of the title for their console or PC, the publisher has announced that preorders are now open. Fans can find all the details on the special editions and pricing for the game on the official website.

Meta is bringing Threads to the web – is this the final nail in the coffin for X

Earlier this year, Meta launched Threads to be its latest Twitter-like social media platform. The app hit the app store with a bang and grabbed 10 million users within hours of its release, but since then, signups have slowed and user engagement has dropped. Meta hopes to revive the app’s popularity by bringing Threads to the web.

The company will reportedly launch a browser-based version of the app early this week, allowing people to use it on their computers instead of mobile devices. The move comes as part of a series of changes that are aimed at making Threads feel more complete.

In the weeks since the app’s launch, Meta has introduced a number of features including reposts, a new way to filter notifications in the Activity tab and the ability to follow other users (although you still can’t see their posts in a chronological feed). The most recent update brought post translations, which allow you to see a translated version of a message that would otherwise be unavailable.

All of these changes are a response to feedback that the app isn’t as functional as it could be. While they’re a good start, Meta needs to do much more in order to keep the app relevant. At an internal town hall meeting, Reuters reports that Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted that more than half of the 100 million users who signed up for Threads did not stick around. He noted that it’s normal for a new app to lose some initial users as it establishes itself in the market, but he also promised more retention-driving hooks would be added.

A web-based Threads may help the app retain some of its existing users, but it won’t make it more appealing to those who didn’t get in on the ground floor and already have established habits with other platforms. And a lack of any sort of reach metric means that it will be difficult for marketers and influencers to gauge how well the app is performing.

Meta is a little late to the party with this move, but it’s an important one for its long-term success. It’s a good indicator that the company hasn’t given up on the app, which is a big gamble for a firm that has invested tens of millions of dollars in its virtual reality project, the Metaverse.

Shares of Meta closed up about 3% on Wednesday, outpacing gains for the tech sector as a whole. The gains came despite the fact that the company had warned of lower than expected earnings due to the slowdown in its core Instagram business. But a strong web-based release of Threads might give the company a needed boost as it continues to struggle to turn around its fortunes.

Episode 1 of Apple TV Plus’ most spectacular sci-fi show is coming to YouTube for free

Apple helped launch the personal computer revolution in the 1980s, revolutionized the music industry with iTunes and iPods in the 2000s, and led the tablet, smartphone and smartwatch crazes with its iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch in the 2010s. Now, the company has its sights set on the streaming service market with Apple TV Plus. The service has a small but mighty library of original titles, and more are being added all the time.

If you’re a sci-fi fan, it’s worth checking out. It has a number of popular shows, including Ted Lasso, For All Mankind, Severance and the movie Finch. It also has some interesting originals, including Extraordinary, a show about a woman who develops superpowers as she gets older. Hulu is another great option for sci-fi fans, with classics like Lost and Buffy the Vampire Slayer as well as newer shows such as The Handmaid’s Tale and Extraordinary.

Netflix also has a decent selection of sci-fi, with originals like Stranger Things and The X-Files. However, the company’s decision to shed a lot of licensed content means that its sci-fi offerings aren’t quite as deep as they used to be.

It’s a good thing that other streaming services exist, because they have a lot of great shows to choose from. Amazon Prime Video is another major player in the market, and it has a huge catalog of shows. It also offers 4K streaming and a number of originals that aren’t available anywhere else.

Apple TV Plus is also a good choice for science fiction fans, because it has a lot of its own originals. The service has a ton of new movies and shows every month, and many are available for free. You can try a seven-day free trial of the service, and you can stream most of its original shows on any Apple device.

You can also find plenty of great shows on YouTube, which has a big collection of content from all types of genres. For example, Mr Sci-Fi is a popular channel that covers movies related to science fiction and fantasy. It features reviews, interviews and behind-the-scenes look at production.

There are also a lot of shorts on YouTube that are perfect for fans of science fiction. For example, Alientologists is a fun, short film from the company Dust that features aliens learning about human culture by examining their trash. It has some funny jokes about Game Boys and bras, but it’s still a very entertaining short. You can check it out here.

Mortal Kombat 1 stress test code sells for over

Mortal Kombat 1 is set to hit shelves on September 19, 2023 for PlayStation 5, PC, Nintendo Switch and Xbox Series X/S. In anticipation of the reboot, NetherRealm Studios and WB Games are holding an online stress test over the weekend to test the game’s servers. Players who are selected to take part in the stress test will be sent a code and can begin playing at 4pm BST on June 23 until Monday, June 26. As is the case with any stress test, a few shady users are trying to cash in on the opportunity by selling their codes for eye-watering prices.

The first batch of codes that will allow players to participate in the Mortal Kombat 1 stress test began sending out this week. It wasn’t long before a number of these codes were found on eBay with listings going as high as $1,000, which met with a swift backlash from the community. Fortunately, some of the lucky players who chose to hold onto their codes have reported positive experiences with the testing period so far.

Those who are looking to get their hands on one of these exclusive codes are going to have a hard time finding them. While some people have managed to find them, the vast majority of the codes that will be available in the stress test have already been sold. As such, if you are interested in taking part in the test, it is important to keep your eyes peeled for any new listings on eBay and act quickly.

As of this writing, the latest listing on eBay for a code to participate in the Mortal Kombat 1 online stress test is going for over $500. The seller also tries to direct would-be buyers to Discord instead of eBay, which is a red flag in any circumstance. This is a clear attempt to circumvent the terms and conditions of the stress test, which state that anyone who attempts to sell a code will be banned from participating in future tests.

It is not yet known how many participants will be able to access the test, or if NetherRealm Studios plans to run more than one. The stress test is meant to deliberately put a strain on the server infrastructure and identify any issues that could affect the launch of the full game. Those who are not able to participate in the test may be able to do so during an upcoming beta phase for those that have made a pre-order for the game.

As always, we recommend that gamers avoid supporting scalpers and stand firm until the release of a given title. By refusing to give into greedy sellers, you will be able to enjoy the full experience of NetherRealm’s reboot when it arrives on September 19. For those who are interested in seeing more of Mortal Kombat 1, we have a detailed list of all of the confirmed characters for the reboot.

Hate writing emails? Gmail will soon do it for you on iOS and Android

Gmail is one of the most used tools for communication and business on the planet. Its high-speed backend connectivity and a host of built-in features make it easy for people to use it in their work and personal lives alike. However, the service does have a few annoyances that can make using it more frustrating than necessary.

For example, you can easily get carried away when writing emails and accidentally send something off without reading it through first. This can cause embarrassing or potentially problematic situations for everyone involved. But soon, Gmail will have an extra safeguard to prevent that from happening. The company is introducing a feature that will read your drafts for you before sending them. The company says it will do this so you can catch errors and avoid mistakes before a message is sent.

When you compose a new email, a small menu will appear with several actions you can take to edit the message: Delete, Undo, Archive, Mark as read or unread and Snooze. You can also select “Review” to view the email in full screen and do a final review before sending. This feature will be available on iOS and Android phones later this month.

Another annoyance many users have with Gmail is the difficulty of sorting through large numbers of messages. While threaded conversations help with this, it would be helpful to have a quick and easy way to sort messages by size or subject. For this, there are a couple of workarounds you can try. On desktop, you can search for emails by size by typing in Size:[int(x) for x in input()] into the search box. For example, searching for Size:10M will return all messages greater than 10 MB.

On the mobile app, you can use the same type of search to find emails by file type by entering filetype:[int(x) for X in input()] into the search box. If you need to find a specific file, you can even enter the extension into the search box.

The final major annoyance for some is that Gmail’s layout and design feels outdated. While there are some workarounds and third-party apps to solve this, it’s worth noting that Gmail is working on changing this in the future. The company is updating the service to give it a more modern look that will make it easier to use on mobile devices. It is also implementing a number of other improvements including improved search and typo corrections. The latest Gmail update is rolling out to all users and should be available within 15 days.

The next major Windows 11 update is coming soon – but could disappoint

After years of blockbuster Windows version upgrades, Microsoft seems to be going a different direction with the OS. Instead of an annual feature update, the company has moved to a series of incremental updates that are delivered throughout the year. These smaller updates are called “Moment” updates, and they have started to include new features in recent months.

In fact, the latest Moment update is expected to be a bit of a letdown. That’s because it might not have some of the major features that were rumored ahead of its release. Instead, this first “Moment” of 2023 could be a bit underwhelming unless you are specifically looking for some new AI-powered functionality.

The Microsoft blog post detailing the new update says that this latest bundle will start rolling out on March 14th. However, it is still not clear what will be included. It will be interesting to see if Microsoft is ready to make some big changes this time around. In the past, it has opted for smaller bundles in order to deliver more significant improvements with each one.

As an example, the last bundle, codenamed 22H2, included a new tabbed File Explorer and a few other notable improvements. It also included a set of features that are more focused on accessibility, including a new option for displaying text captions in media apps and a new way to configure keyboard shortcuts. There was even a way to create a live kernel dump in Task Manager that is more useful for developers.

Microsoft has also added a few other minor enhancements to the current release. For example, the Snipping Tool now has a dark mode for easier use on screens with lower contrast settings. And the Notepad app has a more pleasant color scheme that should help with eye strain.

While this is a step in the right direction, it’s not enough for some users. There are a number of top requested Windows 11 features that have not yet been released, and some users have complained about the fact that changing default programs has become less straightforward and that AMD-based PCs are experiencing annoying performance issues. In addition, there are a lot of people who prefer to keep their computers updated at their own discretion rather than waiting for the system to automatically apply updates at an inconvenient time.

The good news is that there is a solution to all of this, at least for those who are running the Enterprise or Education versions of the operating system. Microsoft has announced that these upcoming “Moment” releases will ship with the new features off by default, and admins can choose to turn them on. That will give them more control over the timing and prevent them from being pushed to machines that they cannot support. It is an important change that should be appreciated by those who are using these updates for work. Then again, if you are interested in receiving the latest news and commentary on technology, Forbes Daily has you covered.

Microsoft could be about to begin testing Windows 12

For avid users of windows, news that microsoft could soon begin testing windows 12 is exciting indeed. For several months, rumors have been circulating that the tech giant has been working on a new operating system to replace the widely used windows 10.

The redmond-based technology firm has yet to confirm any details about when — or even if — a new version of its flagship product will be released.

But recent reports suggest that beta testing for the new version could begin as soon as this summer, or possibly later in the year. This won’t be the first time microsoft has replaced its existing product with a completely redesigned operating system.

Back in 1995, it released windows 95 and launched an entirely different experience compared to its predecessors. There are now reports suggesting window 12 could bring an even bigger shift in what people can expect from their computers when they launch this successor to windows 10.

One potential major change which will come with it is support for 5g networks, allowing users of connected devices such as phones and tablets to access much higher internet speeds than ever before when running tasks such as streaming movies or downloading large files over a wireless network connection.

This would certainly make doing computing tasks more enjoyable and efficient than ever before! The latest rumors also suggest that cortana will be more integrated into window 12 than it