The Week’s Hottest Gaming Takes, From GTA 6 To Starfield


The long awaited (official) debut of Grand Theft Auto 6 is nearly upon us, Starfield is shedding like a bad wig, and Coral Island has hunks in every direction.

These are the week’s most interesting perspectives on the wild, wonderful, and sometimes weird world of video game news.

Why Is Starfield Hemorrhaging Active Players?

A non-player character talks to the protagonist in Starfield.

Screenshot: Bethesda / Kotaku

In the weeks following the launch of Skyrim developer Bethesda’s highly anticipated RPG Starfield, the game has caught a bit of attention for its plummeting player numbers on Steam. Its ranking from user reviews has also dropped on Valve’s digital storefront, falling from “Positive” into the pale orange of “Mixed.” Why is one of the biggest RPGs of the last few years seemingly falling out of favor with players so soon? Read More

It Happened To Me: The GameStop Black Friday Deal From Hell

Link and his Hyrule champions confront the better business bureau.

Image: Nintendo

One of my favorite Black Friday traditions is scrolling through GameStop on my phone and getting a bunch of cool games for cheap. Usually it works out just fine. Last weekend it was a nightmare. It’s hard to convey just how terrible navigating the experience of trying to buy something from GameStop has become in 2023, but I’m going to try. Read More

New Disney Movie Wish Could Have Big Ramifications For Kingdom Hearts

Asha is shown viewing various wishes given up by the citizens of Rosas.

Image: Disney

Wish, the 62nd film released by Walt Disney Animation Studios, is a bad movie. The film is meant to celebrate the studio’s 100th anniversary, but instead, its incoherent story and reliance on millennial cliches for cheap jokes come off like it was fed into an AI generator and spat out onto the big screen. And the music, always a staple in Disney films, has some really lovely parts that are sadly weighed down by terrible lyrics. Read More

I Want To Smooch Every Man In This Disney-Inspired Farming Sim

The cast of Coral Island hangs out on the beach.

Image: Stairway Games / David Ardinaryas Lojaya

Coral Island, the new farming and dating sim by Stairway Games, is the latest example of a game in which pursuing a handsome lad is enough to drag me through something I’m otherwise lukewarm on. I’ve spent chunks of my playtime chopping trees trying to make a real farm out of my designated plot of land. But I do not wish to chop trees, I simply wish to climb Coral Island’s residents like trees. Read More

Baldur’s Gate 3’s New Ending Is The One It Deserves

Shep raises his glass at camp.

Screenshot: Larian Studios / Kotaku

I don’t have a lot of complaints about Baldur’s Gate 3, but the original ending is probably my biggest issue with Larian Studios’ excellent RPG. Though I was content with the ways the story concluded, its rushed execution left me wanting more, which was even more readily apparent when I tried the game’s “evil” ending and it was about as fleshed out as an intrusive thought. Larian has been adding new content to the ending since launch, including a new scene dedicated to Karlach, but in Patch #5, the studio has created an entirely new epilogue that feels like the debrief the original game was missing. Read More

Kotaku Asks: What Is The Best Video Game Sequel?

An image shows Gordon Freeman and Alyx from Half-Life 2.

Half-Life 2 (2004)
Image: Valve

I assume most of you reading this have played at least a few video game sequels in your life and while you might have enjoyed them all, this week at Kotaku we want to know: What do you think is the best video game sequel of all time? Read More

Spotify Wrapped Has Us Minmaxing Music Like A Game

Makoto Yuki puts on headphones with Spotify Wrapped cards in the background.

Image: Atlus / Spotify / Kotaku

It’s that time of year again. Today, November 29, Spotify users all over are sharing their year-end “Wrapped” recaps, which try to sum up your past year of musical taste by giving stats and rankings on your most-listened-to artists and songs, alongside a sleek graphic to share on all your socials. I look forward to it every year. But as Spotify Wrapped has practically become an internet holiday, I can’t help but notice that it’s gamified how we listen to music throughout the year. Read More

Kotaku Asks: What Do You Want To See From GTA 6?

A GTA VI image shows two people, a helmeted man (left) and a gun-wielding woman (right), against a blueish, palm tree-laden background.

Image: Rockstar Games / Kotaku

At long last, the GTA VI rumor mill can slow down. Rockstar Games officially announced the sequel in February 2022, but the studio just confirmed that a trailer for the long-awaited crime sim sequel will arrive on December 5. As we gear up for GTA VI‘s reveal, we at Kotaku have just one question: What do y’all want to see from the game? Read More

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