Let the Maddening controversy begin

Also, the latest on the Microsoft Activision merger and a new Pet Project

Let the Maddening controversy begin
Madden 24

No X's here, just the top headlines for this week.

The Madden Effect

Madden 24

In preparation for Madden 24, Electronic Arts released their player ratings for the new season. There was plenty of analysis and conversation from rookies and professionals on their scores.

EA created a searchable database of ratings that makes it easy and fun to compare players. But who are the top players in the game? EA gave five players a score of 99 - the highest in the game - and five players a 98. Here are the top players:


Aaron Donald, RE, Los Angeles Rams
Justin Jefferson, WR, Minnesota Vikings
Patrick Mahomes, QB, Kansas City Chiefs
Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs
Zack Martin, RG, Dallas Cowboys


Lane Johnson, RT, Philadelphia Eagles
Myles Garrett, RE, Cleveland Browns
Nick Bosa, RE, San Francisco 49ers
Trent Williams, RT, San Francisco 49ers
Tyreek Hill, WR, Miami Dolphins

Who is overrated or underrated? Let us know in the comments.

Join The Games Letter

Subscribe to our email newsletter and receive this content in your inbox every Monday morning! It also helps support our website. Join today!

Subscribe today!

The Latest on the Microsoft Activision merger

We wrote at length about the Microsoft and Activision Blizzard merger last week, including deadlines and court cases. Here is the latest headline:

The Supreme Court rejected a bid to block the Activision Blizzard sale to Microsoft.

Members of the House called on the FTC to drop their opposition to the merger. The FTC withdrew their in-house case, although they could re-file.

Microsoft and Activision extend their acquisition deadline to October 18, with a new termination fee of $4.5 billion if the merger is not completed.

Could the FTC have used Halo to make a better case against the merger? Why didn’t they?

Blizzard is releasing Overwatch 2 on Steam, with other games to follow. This after releasing Call of Duty exclusively on Battle.net was a “resounding failure.”

Pet Project: Chocobo

Final Fantasy XVI

It’s a quiet week, so we decided to take a look at another pet in video games, the chocobo. Chocobos appear in almost all of the Final Fantasy games, including the latest, XVI. These large birds are flightless, and are often used as ground transportation, similar to horses in other realms. You can even breed chocobos in FInal Fantasy VII. They first appeared in Final Fantasy II, and have been pulling carts, transporting heroes or causing a ruckus ever since.

We asked our in-house pet Sirius Black the cat for his thoughts on Chocobos. His response:

Sirius Black
Ah, the Chocobo. This is yet another classic example of how humans get it wrong time and time again. In typical human fashion, the characters in these Final Fantasy games mistake this giant tasty bird as a mode of transportation and not sustenance. Only a human would opt to ride, and not eat, something that is very obviously a chicken.
I do credit the creators of Final Fantasy for creating quite a delicious looking treat, even if they continue to mistake its primary use. If you’re reading this, creators, might I suggest this narrative for Final Fantasy XVII: lost and starving, the character is forced to eat their Chocobo, and in doing so realizes how yummy it is and then goes on to manufacture Chocobo cat food. This would surely sell millions of games. In exchange for this idea, I will accept a lifetime supply of said food. Mmmmmmm, Chocobo.
Mortal Kombat 1 DLC

😡 Ubisoft is suspending and deleting inactive accounts on their service, causing players to lose access to games they have purchased. It is unclear how long it takes for an account to be considered “inactive.”

👾 Roblox experienced a data breach, with personal information of over 4,000 developers leaked. Specifically, those who attended the Roblox Developer Conference between 2017-2020.

📰 Roblox also announced they plan to let developers offer subscriptions through their service.  

🥞 The creator of the daily word game Waffle says he turned down “life-changing money” to keep the project independent.

⚽️ Despite losing its contract with FIFA, EA signed a licensing agreement with the Premiere League that includes every club and player.

🥊 Mortal Kombat 1’s first DLC will feature Homelander from The Boys, Peacemaker and Omni-Man from Invincible.

😈 Diablo 4 is Blizzard's fastest-selling game of all time. However, after negative reaction to the first game update, Blizzard is changing their patching process and says “We don’t plan on doing a patch like this ever again.”

♟️ The FTC warns board game content creators to properly disclose free games from publishers.

🎬 Actors can still work on video games during the SAG-AFTRA strike.

🎰 The UK games industry agrees to restrict access to loot boxes in games to players over 18. Related read: “How Loot Boxes In Children’s Video Games Encourage Gambling.”

🇺🇸 Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez returned to Twitch Saturday for games and discussion. You can watch the replay or read more about the gamer Congresswoman.

👮🏽 The FBI found an abducted child by using their Switch to locate them.

🐬 Dolphin emulator is no longer coming to Steam after Nintendo threatens legal action.

🤖 Redditors show how AI can be manipulated by creating a fake World of Warcraft character, and having a website write an article on them.

🃏 Why the Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship is such a big deal - and why you should be watching.

New Releases this week:

Remnant II

7/24: Super Catboy (PC)
7/25: Remnant II (PlayStation, Xbox and PC)
7/26: Super Intern Story (Switch and PC)
7/27: Double Dragon Gaiden: Rise of the Dragons (PlayStation, Xbox, Switch and PC)
7/27: Koa and the Five Pirates of Mara (PlayStation, Xbox, Switch and PC)
7/27: The Expanse: A Telltale Series (PlayStation, Xbox and PC)
7/28: Disney Illusion Island (Switch)

Enjoy The Games Letter? Tell a friend and have them subscribe. Help us reach our goal of 100 subscribers this summer. Thanks for reading!