‘Disco Elysium: The Final Cut’ hits Nintendo Switch on October 12th

Disco Elysium finally has a launch date for the Nintendo Switch over a year after its developer ZA/UM confirmed that it's heading to the console. The Final Cut version of the critically acclaimed title will be available from the Nintendo eShop on October 12th, with a physical release to follow next year. ZA/UM says the version heading to Switch isn't a port, but rather a "painstaking reassembly" of the game, with its redesigned user interface and font-scaling options.

The Final Cut version of the the game first became available for PCs, Stadia and PlayStation earlier this year. It doesn't just come with fresh playable content, but also full voice acting for the detective RPG. The hit indie open-world RPG is plot-heavy and features gameplay mechanics that focuses on dialogue and your choices. In the game, you'll take on the role of a detective trying to solve a murder case while suffering from drug and alcohol-induced amnesia. 

Disco Elysium was originally released for Windows in 2019 and has won multiple awards since then. Last year, ZA/UM and production house Dj2 Entertainment revealed that they're working to turn it into a TV series, though those plans will most likely take a while to solidify. For now, you can pre-order a digital copy of the game for Switch for £35 / US$40 / €40. You can also pre-order a physical collector's edition shipping in the second quarter of 2022 for the Switch or the PS5 for $250. The game is also expected to be available on the Xbox in the future, but ZA/UM has yet to announce a release date for platform.

New York City passes extensive laws to protect food delivery workers

New York City has passed sweeping legislation aimed at protecting workers of app-based food delivery services like Grubhub and DoorDash. The move makes the city one of the first municipalities in the US to aggressively regulate an industry that has grown by leaps and bounds during the pandemic.

Per Bloomberg, the legislation touches nearly every aspect of the job. For instance, addressing an issue that was a subject of a $2.5 million settlement, delivery apps and courier services must disclose their gratuity policies, and guarantee that workers always receive their tips. They must also pay them at least once a week, and provide them with payment options that don’t necessitate the need for a bank account. Another part of the legislation mandates platforms include a clause in their contracts with restaurants to ensure they provide bathroom access to delivery workers.

Both Grubhub and DoorDash told Engadget they support the legislation, though the latter voiced some reservations about specific measures. “We recognize the unique challenges facing delivery workers in New York City and share the goal of identifying policies that will help Dashers and workers like them,” a DoorDash spokesperson said. “We will continue to work with all stakeholders, including the City Council, to identify ways to support all delivery workers in New York City without unintended consequences.”

The company specifically pointed to the restroom mandate, which lawmakers tweaked near the end of the process to put the onus of ensuring compliance on platform holders. It’s also concerned about a provision that gives delivery workers the ability to set limits on their routes. The company contends that’s something that could hurt customers in underserved areas.

Meanwhile, Grubhub voiced, at least publicly, stronger support for the laws. “These bills are common-sense steps to support the delivery workers who work hard every day for New York’s restaurants and residents,” a spokesperson for the company told Engadget. “Ensuring they receive a living wage and have access to restrooms isn’t just a good idea — it’s the right thing to do.”

Just how difficult it can be to make a living as a delivery worker was put in sharp relief last month when Hurricane Ida blanketed New York City with torrential rain. Images and videos of workers navigating flooded streets spread on social media, leading to calls for more regulation.

Chris Pratt and Charlie Day headline the Mario Bros. movie in 2022

During Thursday's latest Nintendo Direct event, acclaimed video game designer Miyamoto Shigeru announced that the company's upcoming feature length animation project — in conjunction with American film studio, Illumination — now has a firm North American theatrical release date of December 21st, 2022.

While release dates for Europe, Japan, and other markets have yet to be revealed, Miyamoto did share the studio's key character casting decisions. Chris Pratt will voice Mario. "He's so cool," Miyamoto commented. Anya Taylor-Joy, star of Netflix's hit series Queen's Gambit will portray Princess Peach while It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia star Charlie Day will voice Luigi. Jack Black will of course be the voice behind series villain, Bowser, while Keegan Michael-Key has been cast as Toad. And, for some reason, Seth Rogan will be in this too as Donkey Kong? The company is also bringing back long-time voice actor Charles Martinet — who has portrayed Mario and the rest of his cohort in a number of games to date — to fill in on various cameos throughout the film.

‘Bayonetta 3’ will progress onto the Switch in 2022

When Nintendo announced Bayonetta 3 in 2017,Reggie Fils-Aimé was still at the company. After the better part of four years, the Switch exclusive finally has a release date. 

Nintendo, Sega and Platinum Games will release Bayonetta 3 in 2022, the gaming giant announced today during its latest Direct presentation. Nintendo also shared a new trailer for the title, showing off gameplay for the first time. In classic Bayonetta style, the clip was completely absurd. At one point, we see Bayonetta controlling kaiju monsters in what almost looks like an action RPG. Take a look for yourself.

Nintendo promised to share more information about the game soon.

Online ‘Expansion Pack’ brings N64 and Genesis games to Nintendo Switch

Nintendo is rolling out a new membership plan for Switch Online, and it'll unlock a library of classic Nintendo 64 and Sega Genesis titles. The Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack subscription tier will go live in October. Nintendo has not shared pricing details yet, but the company says more information is coming soon.

Games in the Online Expansion Pack include Super Mario 64, Mario Kart 64, Starfox 64, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Mario Tennis, Castlevania: Bloodlines, Ecco the Dolphin, Phantasy Star IV, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and Streets of Rage 2, among other iconic titles. Additional N64 games will be added to the lineup over time, including Pokemon Snap, Banjo-Kazooie, The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask and Paper Mario. See a complete list of Expansion Pack titles at the end of the article.

The Expansion Pack tier grants members all of the perks of a traditional Switch Online subscription, and it takes some classic games online for the first time. Mario Kart 64, for instance, will be playable online for up to four players.

Nintendo
Nintendo

Alongside the new (old) games and the fresh Online tier, Nintendo is rolling out wireless N64 and Genesis gamepads just for the Switch, and only for Online subscribers. The controllers are $50 each and will require a Switch Online membership to purchase.

Switch owners have been anxiously waiting for N64 games to hit the system since it launched in 2017, and the inclusion of Genesis titles is the cherry on top of today's news. The surprising part is how the games will be distributed, via a new form of subscription DLC.

Nintendo provided the following list of old-school games included in the Online Expansion Pack:

Launch Lineup of Nintendo 64 Games

  • Super Mario 64

  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

  • Mario Kart 64

  • Star Fox 64

  • Sin and Punishment

  • Dr. Mario 64

  • Mario Tennis 64

  • WinBack

  • Yoshi’s Story

Upcoming Nintendo 64 Games (With More To Come!)

  • Banjo-Kazooie

  • Pokémon Snap

  • The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask

  • Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards

  • Mario Golf

  • Paper Mario

  • F-Zero X

Launch Lineup of SEGA Genesis Games

  • Sonic the Hedgehog 2

  • Streets of Rage 2

  • Ecco the Dolphin

  • Castlevania: Bloodlines

  • Contra: Hard Corps

  • Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine

  • Golden Axe

  • Gunstar Heroes

  • M.U.S.H.A.

  • Phantasy Star IV

  • Ristar

  • Shining Force

  • Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master

  • Strider

‘Kirby and the Forgotten Land’ heads to Nintendo Switch in spring 2022

After a leak earlier in the day spoiled the surprise, Nintendo announced Kirby and the Forgotten Land at its latest Direct presentation. Set to arrive on Switch in the spring of next year, the title will mark the first mainline Kirby game since Nintendo released Kirby Star Allies in 2018. The company shared a trailer that shows Kirby navigating the overgrown remains of a long-forgotten city. 

As in past games, Kirby can inhale enemies to gain their abilities. At one point in the trailer, we see him become a swordsman, complete with a green cap and what looks like a Master Sword. Other stolen abilities allow him to freeze his enemies and breathe fire on them. All in all, it looks an adorable adventure that should make Kirby fans happy.    

Google adds one-button group chats for Calendar meetings

Ever wish you could quickly share notes before a Google Calendar meeting, or follow up afterward? You can now. Google is trotting out updates to Workspace and G Suite users that let you easily create a group chat with everyone from your organization attending a given meeting. You just have to tap a button near the guest list to start the conversation directly from the event, whether you're on the web or your phone.

This won't work with people outside your organization. You may also have to be patient. Web users on a rapid release track are in the midst of a 15-day rollout that quietly began on September 20th, while mobile users and more cautious companies will have to wait until October 4th.

It's a welcome move, if also an expected one. Google is increasingly unifying its Workspace web apps, including Gmail's growing role as a hub for office conversation. The Calendar expansion is a logical extension — it could make Google's chat service an easy choice for meeting organizers who want to message colleagues.

American Nest Hub and Hub Max smart displays can now show Spanish text

Starting today, Google is rolling out more robust Spanish language support to Nest Hub and Nest Hub Max devices in the US. With the update, the company has translated the entirety of the user interface on those devices into Spanish. Additionally, it has added additional commands that weren’t supported previously.

For instance, you can say, “Hey Google, llama a mamá,” to tell your Nest Hub to connect you to your mom over Google Duo. Another new voice command allows you to add groceries and other items to a centralized shopping list. One other new feature make it possible to stream music from both free and paid streaming services. If you’re a YouTube TV subscriber, you can also stream Univision on your smart display. You can switch your Nest Hub or Nest Hub Max to Spanish by navigating to the languages section of the Assistant settings menu in the Google Home app.

Watch September’s Nintendo Direct here at 6PM ET

The third Nintendo Direct stream of 2021 takes place today. Nintendo is promising around 40 minutes of news and updates. The focus will be on games coming to Nintendo Switch this winter, but we might just get a look at some titles that are a little further away.

Metroid Dread, Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, Pokémon Legends: Arceus and Mario Party Superstars all have scheduled release dates in the next few months, so they could be featured on the stream. Then there are the games we know are in development, like Splatoon 3 and the sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, both of which are scheduled to debut in 2022.

We have our fingers and toes crossed for a Hollow Knight: Silksong appearance as well as some other surprises. Rumors abound that Nintendo has a new Kirby game in the pipeline and that it will add Game Boy and Game Boy Color titles to the Switch Online library. FCC filings suggest the company is working on a new controller, perhaps a Nintendo 64-style one, so we could learn about that during the stream too.

The Nintendo Direct starts at 6PM ET. You can watch the virtual event below.

The original Surface Duo will get Android 11 by the end of this year

If you're the early adopter sort who bought the original Surface Duo, you'll soon get an Android update — if not the one you'd expect in late 2021. Microsoft told The Verge in a statement that it expected to upgrade the first Duo to Android 11 "before the end of this year." The company didn't say what to expect with the update, although it wouldn't be surprising if some Surface Duo 2 features carried over to the older dual-screen phone.

Android 11 on the Duo 2 refines the multitasking experience, such as prioritizing the right-hand screen. Google's OS also includes generally improved support for dual-screen devices, potentially improving support for third-party apps. You might also see Microsoft iron out the Duo's still-buggy software, although that's not guaranteed.

The issue, as you might guess, is the timing. Microsoft is delivering Android 11 right as Google is close to releasing Android 12. Surface Duo owners will still be roughly a year behind their counterparts with conventional phones. That's understandable given the challenges of supporting a dual-screen device, but it won't be much consolation to Duo users wanting to try the latest Android features.