GeekCaster is alive and well. Staff are adjusting to, and abiding by the NYC quarantine. We are considering temporarily turning the show into a podcast. Please leave a comment if you would like to hear us slice it up on Spotify or another podcast site. But for now; nerd news you may have missed in the pandemic.
Anime and Events
Convention season is officially cancelled. The 2020 Tokyo Olympics will take place in 2021. Spring and early Summer cons are cancelling to comply with the large gathering regulations. Crunchyroll Dubbing is experiencing delays, and new Spring titles are noticeably less. Though slowed, anime production is likely to continue, as most of the production aspects can be done digitally.
The Comics Industry has officially crashed. How? Diamond Comic Distributors is the exclusive direct market distributor for DC, Marvel, and many more. Earlier this month, Diamond announced they are forced to close due to COVID-19. This has put the print comics industry in a choke hold. For the indie side, it’s “pencils down” as production screeches to a halt. For DC and Marvel however, it’s “business as usual”. The big two are expected to release comics digitally as well as utilize smaller distribution companies.
Sales will undoubtedly decrease as most print comics do not sell well online. This is due to indie web comics following a tipping model rather than a purchase model. Sites like Webtoon and Tapas allow creators to earn revenue via ads and reader tipping. And while Comixology is the digital go-to for mainstream style comics, the print format is not web friendly.
Playstation and Microsoft have stated there is no production delay for their new consoles Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X respectively. This news comes as a pleasant surprise as a lot of industries are experiencing delays. Current specs for both are available on this IGN chart. With most of the specs being identical, price will remain priority. We at GeekCaster speculate Playstation will remain on top due to its international consumer base.
Meanwhile, Nintendo is right on time. In addition to the Animal Crossing release, the company had a surprise mini-direct. The direct hints at a new Smash DLC character. The character will be from Nintendo’s newest fighting game; ARMS. Characters Min Min and Twintelle are fan favorites and most speculated to join. The mystery character will release in June.
TV & Film
The Entertainment Industry is floundering. Production grinding to a halt. Release dates pushed back. Films direct-to-streaming. Streaming services like Netflix and Hulu are reducing video quality to conserve bandwidth as the world’s internet usage increases. Netflix is currently the least impacted, with most of it’s original titles wrapping up production just before the virus escalation. The second season of Altered Carbon aired in February. Season 2 of The Umbrella Academy is currently in post-production. The release of Disney+ in France and India is delayed, while the streaming service cuts bandwidth use by 25% in active countries.
Most noted film postponements are the Wonder Woman sequel, Wonder Woman 1984 and Black Widow. Both films feature a female lead, and both films follow the recent hype of Birds of Prey. Comic projects have finally started to focus on women in comics. Because of the virus, we have to wait a little longer.
Doom Eternal and Animal Crossing recently shared a release date (March 20). Game Stop received a large amount of backlash after refusing to close for the releases. The video game retailer attempted to claim “essential business” status, citing their tech products as vital resources for the newly created home workforce. This did not go over well with many state and local governments, Pennsylvania even suspending the company’s business license for the state. Game Stop is set to close 300+ locations in 2020.
Blizzard servers are experiencing an increase in issues due to the surge in online play. Overatch and COD: Modern Warfare have seen an increase in wait time for online matches.