MMO Business Roundup: Comic Con 2021, Apple v. Epic, and Twitch transparency

Plus: FFXIV masks and the return of League of Legends esports

    
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Welcome back to another roundup of MMO and MMO-adjacent industry news.

Comic-Con 2021: Organizers have now canceled the core Comic-Con event for the second year in a row, specifically owing to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic. “While we are buoyed by the rollout of the vaccine and the growing number of individuals being inoculated, it appears that July will still be too early to safely hold an in-person event of the magnitude of Comic-Con,” the announcement reads. “For this reason, we have made the challenging decision to postpone Comic-Con 2021 as an in-person gathering until our 2022 dates.” The San Diego Comic-Con is still on for November, while the core event will be held online.

Twitch: Twitch released its annual transparency report, and while most of it is a bit granular – and familiar, if you’ve paid attention to the company’s ongoing efforts to appear to be battling toxicity – but there are some interesting data on offer too. More streams than ever are using Twitch’s AutoMod, for example. Big channels are using live mods more often, and more people are chatting – but more messages were being reported and removed for various infractions too.

Apple v. Epic: The ongoing Epic and Apple legal battle drama now has a confirmed premiere date of May 3rd with an in-person trial that will meet California’s stringent pandemic measures. Get caught up on the entire drama.

Esports: Riot Games will return to esports with the 2021 Mid-Season Invitational. Organizers revealed it’ll take place in Iceland this year, though we’re presuming that the in-person audience will be minimal.

Mask up: We’ll end on an amusing note here, as Famitsu reports that Square-Enix is selling Final Fantasy XIV masks in Japan. Unlike a lot of fandom masks, these are pretty subtle – I’m not sure I’d have noticed the iconography without staring hard. Whatever it takes to get people to wear them.

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