USG Notebook is a weekly column dedicated to rounding up rumors, tidbits, and commentary that didn't get full coverage on the site.
Super Mario remasters would be high-profile releases in any year, but 2020 might be the perfect time for some. This year both marks the 35th anniversary of Super Mario Bros., and due in part to the pandemic the world's facing, it's shaping up to be a huge year for the Nintendo Switch.
As USG's News Editor Eric Van Allen wrote in last week's Notebook column—also, hello, Mat Olson here to tag in for this installment—the Switch is selling out at retailers in the U.S. and Europe. While plenty of folks are flocking to Animal Crossing: New Horizons for a social isolation salve, they'll surely be looking for other things to play soon enough.
While Nintendo's done a solid job getting its marquee franchises on the Switch (still waiting for Metroid, though), the only proper 3D Mario platformer on the system is 2017's Super Mario Odyssey. After we were spoiled with a second Super Mario Galaxy on the Wii, it's hard not to want more on the Switch. With reports coming in from VGC, Gematsu, and our friends at Eurogamer on Switch remasters for Super Mario 64, Sunshine, and Galaxy, maybe we won't be pining for an Odyssey 2 after all.
The Mario anniversary rumblings also bring word of a new Paper Mario title and a Deluxe re-release of the Wii U's Super Mario 3D World for the Switch. At VentureBeat, Jeff Grubb reports that the new Paper Mario title will be closer to the series' RPG origins.
We might be waiting a while for official confirmation from Nintendo on any new Mario titles and remasters coming for the 35th anniversary. Last week, Nintendo finally broke the seal with a smaller Direct presentation. Now that that's out of the way, we might not hear more from Nintendo until around the time it would've originally scheduled another Direct for E3 2020.
Here's the rest of what's been happening this week in gaming news.
From the Rumor Mill
- Resident Evil 3's credits reveal that M-Two, a new studio led by former PlatinumGames CEO Tatsuya Minami, helped with Capcom's Resident Evil 3 remake. VGC was the first to cover M-Two's founding, and now reports that the studio is the primary developer on a new Capcom remake project. On Twitter, AestheticGamer—who has leaked credible information previously—says it's not a remake of Code Veronica or Dino Crisis. Maybe Capcom will keep the mainline Resident Evil remakes rolling?
- Rumors of a Switch comeback for Flipnote Studio, Nintendo's free drawing and animation suite for the DS and 3DS, got fans riled up for a few days. Those expectations then came crashing back down to Earth: the screenshots of a new Flipnote, said to either have been obtained from a beta build or via hacking into a Nintendo server, were actually faked as an April Fool's joke. Underscoring that April Fool's is really the worst holiday, Eurogamer reports that the hoax's creator immediately suffered a wave of abuse after coming clean. Pranks like this are rarely okay, and issuing threats online never is.
News and Tidbits
One of the only good, reliable April Fools gags actually made its way into Overwatch this year. The game-wide change rolled out a bit early in North America, but it was immediately clear that it was a lighthearted goof: now, every hero in Overwatch's roster has googly eyes applied to their faces.
Systemic Reaction, part of the newly rebranded Avalanche Studios Group, released a mysterious teaser trailer for its follow up to 2018's Generation Zero. Spring may be upon us, but it looks like Systemic Reaction's cooking up something cold and frightening.
More companies have announced event cancellations and efforts to help important causes as the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic wears on. Bethesda and id have canceled Quakecon 2020. For the next two months, 5% of net bookings from select Take-Two titles including Red Dead Online and The Outer Worlds will go to coronavirus relief efforts. Humble has a hefty bundle benefiting organizations responding to the crisis, and a massive array of indie titles has been assembled at itch.io for a fundraising effort to help devs who were affected by the cancellation of GDC 2020.
AMD recently announced that it had been contacted by an individual who claimed to have files relevant to some of the company's upcoming graphics products, some of which were briefly posted to GitHub. IGN reports that the leaker claims to have the source code for the Xbox Series X's GPU and is demanding a $100 million ransom. In its statement, AMD says the files removed from GitHub were for testing and verification processes, and that it believes the other files the leaker may have "are not core to the competitiveness or security of [AMD's] graphics products." A criminal investigation is underway—AMD asks that anyone with information relevant to the investigation get in touch with the product security team.