The Sims 4 sexual orientation update is free — here’s why
Plus: Wash the week away with our game rec.
Was your weekend not quite long enough? I hear you — it happens to the best of us. But if you need help unwinding at the end of the day, or just a little productive distraction, then we have an idea. It’s to do with cleaning. But don’t let that put you off! There’s no elbow grease involved in this cleansing activity.
Welcome to Monday. Today, we want to give you a quick video game news and reviews round-up, including a wonderful nostalgia trip back to 1999 (pretty sure I had my first not-adult-dispensed booze that year). We’re thrilled you are with us today and every day. Thanks for reading.
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You need to play the best Pokémon spinoff ever on Nintendo Switch ASAP
If there is one thing the ‘90s thrived on, it was crazes. I firmly recall Pogs, troll dolls, varying stickers, Digimon, Spice Girl Barbies, Furbies, Tamagotchis, Beanie Babies, and more becoming international sensations that defined my school playground politics. And then there is Pokémon, the sensation that lived after Y2K.
When Pokémon Red and Blue first became available in North America in late 1998, the success was instant and overwhelming. “Gotta catch ‘em all!” entered the lexicon and it never quite left. Over the next year, America was introduced to Pokémon: The First Movie, the animated series, and marketing tie-ins at Burger King that made Pikachu feel inescapable.
Pokémon Snap, released in July 1999 for the Nintendo 64, was the beginning of a conversation that could explain the pop-culture phenomenon’s incredible draw.
GTA 6 leak debunks a popular rumor about Rockstar's sequel
An actually credible source has weighed in on a recent Reddit leak claiming that the next Grand Theft Auto game will feature three protagonists — that’s via Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier. He recently posted in the Gaming Leaks and Rumors subreddit with a take that debunks the latest alleged GTA 6 leak while indirectly revealing a key detail about the upcoming sequel.
Rockstar quietly announced the “next entry” in the series was in development at the end of a Grand Theft Auto 5 and GTA Online press release in February 2022. Yet because official info about GTA 6 is so rare, the community soaks up leaks like a sponge. This isn’t Genshin Impact, where most of the leaks turn out to be real, yet fans are so thirsty for information that they’re willing to entertain anything that makes sense.
On July 7, a redditor shared what they claimed was detailed information about the “new GTA and GTA Online DLC” on the Gaming Leaks and Rumors subreddit. The original poster has since deleted the document they shared but not, but not before Schreier weighed in.
“That doc is fanfiction,” Schreier wrote. “GTA VI does not have three protagonists. That’s all I’ll say for now.”
Monster Hunter Rise Sunbreak review: More meaty challenges and brutal beasts
Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak is action gaming at its finest. Despite some sharp edges and arcane systems, the game does its best to welcome newbies with open arms. Our writer Steven Wright dives in:
After hundreds of hours of Monster Hunter, I’m used to the tough monsters KOing me every now and then, but I rarely fail a quest outright. I gathered my potions after a short break, upgraded my sword, and rode my friendly dog companion to the battle again.
This time, instead of sprinting into the breach to fish for counters, I kept my distance and learned the beast's moveset, strike by strike. Patience, not aggression, would win the day. Twenty minutes later, I struck the final blow and carved his corpse for parts, another victim of the Long Sword's powerful new three-hit capstone combo.
In an hour of play, I had experienced every emotion that a video game can kindle — apprehension of a new challenge, the agony of defeat, and the triumph of victory. In those moments, Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak is action gaming at its finest. Though not every player will have the patience for Sunbreak's sharp edges and arcane systems, the game does its best to welcome newbies with open arms.
Sims 4 devs reveal why the Sexual Orientation update is free for all players
The newest feature update in The Sims 4 continues to show the franchise's commitment to creating an inclusive gaming experience for all players. The Sims series, developed by Maxis and published by Electronic Arts, has always been a part of the expansion of diversity and inclusion in games. The original game was released in 2000 and offered players the option to pursue same-sex relationships and the latest entry, The Sims 4, has received consistent updates to expand the representation of the LGBTQIA+ community.
The latest update coming to the game adds the Sexual Orientation feature, which will let players create attraction parameters for sims, including what genders they are interested in romantically and physically. Senior Designer and Design Lead Jessica Croft maintains that diversity in games is a valuable tool in reflecting the diversity of identities in the real world. That’s why Sexual Orientation isn’t just an “optional” feature or added purchase.
“You can’t turn off queer people,” Croft tells Inverse, “That is an important stance for us to take.”
INVERSE RECOMMENDS: Play 2022’s most soothing game
Godliness is a big thing in gaming. We love to feel powerful, to control things, to create. Games let us live forever or repeat our mistakes over and over until we get them right. Yet, there is an aspect of godliness many games overlook. Cleanliness, which the Bible says is next to godliness, is hardly explored as a power fantasy. Until now.
This power fantasy is of the washing variety. PowerWash Simulator may seem dull as dishwater on the surface, but if you keep scrubbing you’ll find a game that is strangely soothing. It’s a unique and refreshing reminder that video games can still surprise us and that new ideas still exist.
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- On this day in history: On July 18, 1918, the world welcomed Nelson Mandela, the first president of South Africa (1994) and anti-apartheid hero.
- Song of the day: “Free Nelson Mandela,” by The Specials.