WarDucks raises $3.8 million for augmented reality game studio

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Venture Beat reports: “WarDucks has raised $3.8 million in funding to launch a location-based augmented reality game studio, and it has tapped Doom co-creator John Romero for help with game design. The funding will help drive the development of WarDucks’ new location-based AR game and expand the company’s development team.”

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Google’s Stadia looks like an early beta of the future of gaming

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The Verge reports: “Just like how humans have built stadiums for sports over hundreds of years, Google believes it’s building a virtual stadium, aptly dubbed Stadia, for the future of games to be played anywhere. You won’t need an expensive gaming PC or a dedicated game console. Instead, you’ll just need access to Google’s Chrome browser to instantly play games on a phone, tablet, PC, or TV. ”

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Snapchat to unveil gaming platform next month

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Gamesindustry.biz reports: “Snapchat is getting into the game. Cheddar is reporting that Snap Inc. will announce its gaming initiative April 4 at the Snap Partner Summit in West Hollywood, California. The invite-only event is being promoted with the tagline, ‘Less Talk. More Play.’ Snap’s interest in turning its app into a gaming platform was first reported last June.”

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Music’s next big startup Splice raises $57.5M to sell samples

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Tech Crunch reports: “Tech has a bad reputation for pulling money out of musicians’ pockets, but Splice is changing that. The audio sample marketplace and music production collaboration tool has now paid out $15 million to artists since 2013, doubling in the last year. Splice lets musicians sell their sounds for royalty-free use, and songs by Eminem, Ariana Grande, and Marshmello that were powered by those samples have topped the charts.”

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Nexstar to Sell 19 TV Stations for $1.32 Billion

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Image by Karen Arnold from Pixabay and logo via Nexstar Broadcasting Group under the Creative Commons License

The Hollywood Reporter reports: “Nexstar Media Group said Wednesday that it has struck deals to sell 19 local TV stations in 15 markets for $1.32 billion, making good on its promise to sell assets after its $4.1 billion deal to buy Tribune Media. TV station company Tegna Inc. has reached a definitive agreement with Nexstar to purchase 11 stations in eight markets for $740 million, contingent on the closing of the Nexstar-Tribune deal, which is expected late in the third quarter or early in the fourth quarter.”

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Disney Closes $71 Billion 21st Century Fox Deal

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Variety reports: “After 15 months of wrangling and planning, Disney has formally sealed the deal on its $71 billion acquisition of 21st Century Fox. Disney took possession of 21st Century Fox at 12:02 a.m. ET. Assets changing hands in the deal include: Twentieth Century Fox, Fox Searchlight Pictures, Fox 2000 Pictures, Fox Family, and Fox Animation; Fox’s television creative units, Twentieth Century Fox Television, FX Productions, and Fox21; FX Networks; National Geographic Partners; Fox Networks Group International; Star India; and Fox’s interests in Hulu, Tata Sky, and Endemol Shine Group.”

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Google Hit With $1.7 Billion Fine By European Union

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Billboard reports: “European Union regulators have hit Google with a 1.49 billion euro ($1.68 billion) fine for abusing its dominant role in online advertising. It’s the third time the commission has slapped Google with an antitrust penalty, following multibillion-dollar fines resulting from separate probes into two other parts of the Silicon Valley giant’s business.”

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Oculus “phasing out” Rift, launching $399 Rift S this spring

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Gamesindustry.biz reports: “Oculus has unveiled a brand new virtual reality headset designed to replace its flagship product, the Oculus Rift. Unveiled during this year’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, the Oculus Rift S is the next iteration of the firm’s PC-powered virtual reality headset and draws on breakthroughs made with the standalone Oculus Quest.”

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Amazon Focused on Building the Game Industry’s Digital Infrastructure

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Variety reports: “While most of the discussion around Amazon’s presence in the game industry revolves around their scattershot game projects and rumored cloud gaming platform, the tech giant has been far more involved in building the backend infrastructure for major games. Companies like Square Enix and Zynga both use Amazon Games Tech.”

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TikTok parent Bytedance is getting serious about games

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Tech Crunch reports: “A turbulent 2018 for China’s gaming market hasn’t held back newcomers. Bytedance, the world’s most valuable startup behind a collection of rising new media apps including TikTok and Jinri Toutiao, is making a further push into video games after it took control of a mobile game developer through a roundabout deal.”

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