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Natalie Flores

(she/her)

Natalie is Fanbyte's Featured Contributor, with bylines at places like VICE, Polygon, PC Gamer, Paste Magazine, and more.


Stonefly Preview: Nonviolence, Cute Buggos, and a Coming of Age Story Take Center Stage

2021 is shaping up to be an incredible year for gorgeous indie games. There’s the recently announced The Garden Path, the life simulator that looks like a watercolor painting. There’s Sable, which we’ll be seeing more of soon in the Tribeca Games Festival. And then there’s Stonefly, the tranquil adventure…

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Cyberpunk 2077 Gets a New Game Director

Cyberpunk 2077 now has a new game director. Going forward, Gabriel Amatangelo, who joined CD Projekt Red in January 2020 as a creative director for the title, will fulfill the role. The news was first reported by GamesIndustry.biz earlier this week on May 27. Amatangelo was previously the design director…

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NEWS

Chicory: A Colorful Tale Will Bring Color Into Your Life Next Month

Earlier this week, the developers behind the incredibly charming Chicory: A Colorful Tale announced its release date. The much-anticipated creative exploration game that will let you play as a dog who wields a magic brush will be released on June 10. Chicory: A Colorful Tale was first officially unveiled on…

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NEWS

Upcoming Life Simulator The Garden Path Is One of the Most Beautiful Games I’ve Seen

Developer carrotcake revealed The Garden Path, a slice-of-life sim about the joys of gardening and the comforts of building a safe place with new friends, earlier this week. It’s set to release in 2021 — and it’s one of the most beautiful games I’ve ever looked at. You inhabit the…

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NEWS

FFXIV Director Naoki Yoshida Speaks About Fan Fest, Y’shtola’s Skin Color Changes, and NPC Dating

Since taking up the mantle as Final Fantasy XIV‘s director and producer, there have been many difficult and busy moments in Naoki Yoshida’s life. More than once, he felt he was facing his biggest challenge yet.  “Looking at what I’m doing now, it’s even more busy,” he tells Fanbyte in…

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FEATURES

Across Many Servers, the FFXIV Community Honors the Legacy of Kentaro Miura

On May 19, it was announced that Kentaro Miura — the beloved mangaka of Berserk — passed away on May 6, 2021. He died at the age of 54 due to acute aortic dissection. Fans around the world immediately mourned upon seeing the announcement from publisher Young Animal Comics. Not…

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FFXIV Expansion

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SMITE Community Mourns the Passing of Hi-Rez Esports Caster John Finch

The SMITE community is mourning the death of caster and community figure John ‘Finch’ Finch. Earlier today, it was confirmed that he passed away on Thursday, May 20. He was only 28 years old. The announcement was made by Stewart Chisam, CEO of Hi-Rez Studios. Rest in peace with all…

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NEWS

Resident Evil Village Development Video Highlights How Quality Assurance Saved the Game

In a new development video, the Resident Evil Village team highlights how its QA testers essentially saved the game. The clip uploaded on May 21, titled “The Internal Struggle,” links the game’s original concept of “a struggle to survive” with the struggles the team faced while creating the next mainline…

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NEWS

Square Enix Labels Outriders Its Next Big Franchise, Citing 3.5 Million Unique Players

Square Enix has announced Outriders — People Can Fly’s co-op RPG shooter — is poised to be the company’s “next big franchise.” With over 3.5 million unique players in the first month, the future for the game seems bright despite its troubled launch. In Square Enix’s own words, “with acclaim…

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Outriders Which Class

NEWS

Resident Evil Village Makes Me Appreciate Games With Good Journals

I finished Resident Evil Village (or Resident Evil 8, whatever you prefer) yesterday. I liked it well enough! It was fun to watch unfold, even if it fell apart in the last quarter and never reached the highs of Resident Evil 7: Biohazard for me. It has an exquisite art…

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The Witcher 3’s Modding Community May Be Involved With Its Next-Gen Upgrade

In September, CD Projekt Red announced The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will be getting a PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S upgrade in 2021. The next-gen package will be called The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt — Complete Edition, which will include the base game and its additional content along with…

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NEWS

Unbeatable [White Label] Is the Only Demo I See Myself Replaying Until the Full Release

Out of all the video game demos that are constantly released, a rare few will capture your attention well enough to make you check them out. Even fewer will spark your interest strongly enough to entice you for the full release. But, as incredible as many of the demos I’ve…

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Colorful and Relaxing Mech Adventure Stonefly Is Out Next Month

Stonefly, the beautiful and tranquil top-down action-adventure from Flight School Studio and MWM Interactive, is coming out on June 1. In Stonefly, you play Annika Stonefly, a brilliant and optimistic but naïve young inventor on a quest to recover a lost family heirloom. One day, a mysterious thief in the…

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NEWS

GDC’s 2021 State of the Game Industry Report Points to Slow but Certain Evolutions

GDC has released its 2021 “State of the Games Industry” report, a collection of statistics resulting from over 3,000 game developers which represents the current industry. The report goes over topics such as how the COVID-19 pandemic affected productivity, hardware preferences (there’s a strong interest in the PlayStation 5, for…

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NEWS

NEO: The World Ends With You Looks to the Past to Change the Future

It feels a little surreal that we’re getting a sequel to The World Ends With You 14 years later. Though it’s more accurate to say this is a sequel to the currently airing anime and a “follow-up” to the Square Enix title on the Nintendo DS. The series has generated…

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FEATURES

Use This Firefox Plugin to Access the Fully Functional Old PlayStation Store

A Firefox plugin called “Valkyrie PS Store” will allow you to access the old PlayStation store on your computer. The old PlayStation Network web store with access to PlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita, and PlayStation 3 titles was taken down at the end of last month. This encouraged users like Silica,…

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NEWS

Cyberpunk 2077 Has Taught CD Projekt Red “a Huge Lesson” Despite Best Financial Year Yet

CD Projekt Red’s earnings call with investors on April 22 revealed plenty of key data and statistics following the rocky launch of Cyberpunk 2077. Ultimately, while the Polish developer has had its most financially successful year yet, it has learned “a huge lesson” from the reception to the long-awaited 2020…

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NEWS

Indie Games Store Itch.io Is Now Available On the Epic Games Store

Itch.io, the open marketplace that is largely dedicated to featuring indies, can now be accessed through the Epic Games Store. On April 22, Itch.io made its way to the storefront along with apps like open-source digital painting app Krita; 2D pixel art to 3D model transformation tool KenShape; open-source browser…

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NEWS

Life Is Strange: True Colors Is Already Making My Gay Heart Explode

Every time I think I can’t be more excited about Life is Strange: True Colors, I’m proven wrong. It just had a pretty big news week, with several press interviews — particularly with narrative director Felice Kuan and Erika Mori, the voice and performance actor for protagonist Alex Chen —…

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life is strange alex chen

NEWS

This Week in News Is About the Big Players and Indie Joy

Welcome to This Week in News, where we run you through the week’s biggest stories so you can get caught up in a few minutes with an option to dive deeper! News editor Imran Khan is normally in charge of this, but he is on a lovely and deserved vacation,…

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mass effect ashley

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