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World War Z: Best Tips, Tricks, & Hints To Know Before Playing

Before you take on the zombie apocalypse in World War Z, prepare yourself with these tips and tricks. Saber Interactive’s zombie apocalypse co-op shooter, World War Z, is finally out in the wild, and players are having a blast with the game’s non-stop barrage of high-octane action and class-based co-op multiplayer.

World War Z isn’t a cakewalk, and even the most hardened players might have hard time trying to survive the endless waves of zombies hungry for the taste of fresh flesh. Especially on harder difficulties, it’s easy to get overrun by the horde. A four-person squad may seem like an unstoppable force, but the tough zombies will exploit any weakness in their quest for yummy brains.

Related: Here’s What Left 4 Dead 3 Could Have Looked Like

For beginning players, as well as those who’ve already cut their teeth in World War Z‘s first week (at least after overcoming the game’s continuing problems with connectivity and crashing), we’ve assembled some pro tips on how to survive World War Z.

  • Start On Easy: There are five difficulty levels in World War Z. The natural instinct might be to start on Normal or Hard, but it’s better to start on Easy. For an initial playthrough, it’s best to just enjoy the light storytelling and get a feel for the levels and which weapons work best for you. It sounds obvious, but it’s best to learn how to play before trying to conquer Insane difficulty.
  • Bring Friends: World War Z is an online multiplayer co-op game. Like Diablo, Borderlands, Destiny, Army of Two, or, honestly, any co-op game, it’s best played with friends. Trying to conquer levels on Hard difficulty or above can be blisteringly difficult without proper communication, and that’s best handled with friends.
  • Stay In Formation: Most levels in World War Z feature numerous encounters where the team is placed in a wide open area and tasked with defending a position from an onslaught of hundreds of zombies. In the very first level, the concept is introduced via the battle at the mall atrium, in which the team must set up defenses and hold the line against a swarm of zeke who are trying to climb a fence and enter the mall. Communication is key; if a well-armed team delegates responsibility over each portion of the fence, the situation can be resolved with only a minimum number of zombies making it into the mall.
  • Stick Together: In addition to the arena-style horde fights, World War Z also features more traditional corridor shooting. It’s tempting to race through these areas and reach the next objective, but that’s an easy way to get killed. Creeper and Bull zombies can overpower an unaware player and incapacitate them until they’re rescued by another player, meaning “lone wolf” players are better served running with the pack, so to speak.
  • Seriously, Stick Together: Several objectives, including the final leg of the first level in New York, involve scouring a large area for items and returning them to a central point. It may seem tempting to split up and cover more ground, but that path can quickly lead to a TPK (total party kill). Zombies don’t have to divide and conquer when players willingly split up and offer themselves up to be eaten by the horde. At the very least, split up into pairs, so one player can always cover the other’s back. Still, on any difficulty harder than Normal, stick together at all costs.
  • Stay Stealthy: Many areas can be conquered without arousing the attention of the whole horde of zombies. Sticking with silenced weapons like the initial pistols and melee strikes can allow like-minded teams to clear even large rooms without taking a single point of damage. Many level 4 or 5 weapons also feature silencers, including the Combat Shotgun and Sporting Combine (two of our personal favorites)
  • Choose Your Weapon: Save for exceptions like the Heavy Weapons class and certainone-offs like the Revolver and Double Barrel Shotgun (not to be confused with the Compact Shotgun), nearly every weapon in the game earns XP with use and can level up, to a maximum of Level 5. Once you find a gun you like, try to stick with it and it can become more powerful after investing some Credits. That being said…
  • Spend Credits Wisely: Whether it’s purchasing class-specific upgrades, upgrading weapons, or even upgrading multiplayer classes, everything in World War Z costs credits. While it can be tempting to upgrade everything, there’s just not enough credits to go around. It’s better to pick and choose. Especially in the early game, where you’ll be playing on the easier difficulties, it’s not worth buying every single upgrade; instead, purchase the Level two versions, which cost 150 credits, and then wait for the Level 5 version, which costs 1000. Beating levels on higher difficulties awards more credits, so the more you play, the more powerful you get, the more credits you earn. The progression curve is surprisingly natural in this respect.

Page 2 of 2: World War Z: Other Tips & Tricks

  • Choose Your Class: There are six classes in World War Z, each with different strengths and quirks. At the start, the classes seem practically identical, though they really start to become distinct around level 10 or so. When playing on Easy and even Normal, there’s not much strategy to class selection, but having a Medic and Fixer on hand becomes vital on the highest difficulties.
  • Bring A Medic And A Fixer: Medics can partially restore their own health when healing allies, and restore more health when using medkits. Since medkits are a scarce and precious resource in World War Z, a little extra healing power truly goes a long way. Starting at Level 10, Fixers can start each level with a rare Breach Charge, which can open doors to exceptionally powerful weapons, defenses, and medkits. On Insane difficulty, a Breach Charge can easily be the difference between triumphant success and embarrassing failure.
  • Seriously, Bring A Fixer: Fixers don’t carry grenades, tasers, or molotov cocktails: instead, they carry supply drops, which can load any teammate’s primary weapon with explosive ammo. These bullets are so powerful, they can tear through even a Bull zombie in a matter of seconds. When holding the line against a swarm, a strategically deployed supply drop can make all the difference.
  • How To Handle A Zombie Wall: Some of the best moments in World War Z come when a swarm of zombies attempts to scale a vertical structure. The visual spectacle of the incredible animation is matched by the tension and excitement of trying to stop the horde from reaching the top. The best way to handle a wall of zombies is to launch explosives at the base, while a sharpshooter or two snipe stragglers who manage to elude fiery death. With coordination and a little luck, a skilled team can take down a wall without a single zombie making it over.
  • How To Dodge A Bull: World War Z lacks a dodge roll, so Bull zombies can be particularly dangerous. They can take a lot of damage before going down, and have a nasty move where they charge a player and grab them, dealing continuous damage until they’re taken down by other players. Once one has its sights on a player, it’s really tough to evade a Bull, but there is a trick: put something between you and the Bull. Try to position yourself so the Bull will crash into a conveniently-placed obstacle; it will save a lot of grief!
  • Watch Out For Creepers: The Bull’s counterpart is the Creeper, who hides until a player gets close before pouncing on its target. As with the Bull, a player grabbed by a Creeper is completely incapacitated and must be rescued by a teammate. However, Creepers don’t have noticeably more health than regular zombies, and a player with quick reflexes can often take one down before they use their grab move. When a Creeper is in the area, the characters will comment on it; use this opportunity to check tight corners, the preferred hiding spot of these nasty critters.
  • Try PvPvZ: In addition to the co-op story, there is also a somewhat traditional multiplayer suite. Zombie swarms are still present in these 4v4 modes, adding a unique twist on an otherwise standard assortment of modes. Winning a match gains players a cool 250 credits, and getting together with a skilled team can lead to a windfall of currency which can be used to further upgrade weapons and classes.

Next: World War Z Releases Hot Fix to Address Launch Connectivity Bugs


2019-04-21 04:04:14

Zak Wojnar

Diablo Trademark Hints That Netflix Series Is Happening

The long-rumored Diablo animated series that is supposedly being produced for Netflix may have finally been proven to exist by a recent trademark registration that hints that the series is still in development.

The rumors of a Diablo series started circulating in September 2018 when screenwriter Andrew Cosby posted on Twitter that he was in final talks to be the showrunner and writer of an upcoming Diablo animated show that was being made in collaboration with Activision and Netflix. Cosby’s tweet was later deleted and no official word has been released concerning a Diablo animated show, even though there has been a BlizzCon since then and the Diablo franchise has been in the news following the Diablo Immortal debacle.

Related: Original Diablo Game On Sale Digitally For First Time Ever

It’s common for TV show and video game announcements to be spoiled by trademark registrations and it seems that Diablo is no exception. According to Spiel Times, Blizzard Entertainment has filed a trademark for a property called Diablo that is listed as being intended for “Downloadable films and movies featuring narratives based on a video game and provided via a video-on-demand service,” which sounds a lot like something is being produced for a service like Netflix. Cosby also wrote another tweet on March 14 where he talks about a secret project that he is working on and how he will be able to talk about it soon.

Netflix has had tremendous success with their Castlevania animated series and it seems that they want to increase their video game adaptation portfolio. A Devil May Cry animated series that is connected to Castlevania is being developed for the service, as well as a Dragon’s Dogma anime series that was recently announced.

The Diablo universe is ripe for a televised adaptation, and the series could use some good press following a rocky end to 2018. Blizzard ended their 2018 BlizzCon event with the reveal of Diablo Immortal, which is an upcoming mobile game that was met with such a negative reaction that it caused Activision Blizzard’s stock value to take a hit. It seems odd that Blizzard didn’t save the announcement of a Diablo animated series for BlizzCon, as it would have made for a far better final reveal trailer for the convention than a mobile game that was being advertised to a PC gaming crowd.

The evidence of a Diablo Netflix show existing keeps piling up and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to deny that the Lord of Terror will be making his way to our screens in the future. The world of Diablo is filled with stories of epic fantasy that are just waiting to be told and Netflix has proven with Castlevania that they are fine with even the darkest tales being told, so long as they do justice to their source material.

More: It Gets Worse: Activision Blizzard Under Investigation For Securities Fraud

Source: Spiel Times


2019-03-17 08:03:41

Scott Baird

10 Hints That Black Mirror Is A Shared Universe

It didn’t start out that way, but it’s becoming more and more clear that Black Mirror is a shared universe. With the release of Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, the evidence is piling up in favor of this theory. That said, Bandersnatch has thrown into question the very nature of this reality. However, each episode has tied more and more, seemingly innocuous strings together to form a tightly-knit, complicated shared universe. Don’t believe us? Here are 10 hints that Black Mirror is a shared universe.

*Warning: spoilers ahead*

10. Raiman’s Milk

In the episode “Men Against Fire,” a soldier named “Hunter” Raiman, played by Madeline Brewer, reveals in passing that her family owns a farm. Later, in the episode “USS Callister,” we see that chocolate and strawberry flavor Raiman-brand milk are favorites of Robert Daly, the disgruntled CTO and co-founder of Callister Inc. While it’s not clear what amount of time, if any, has passed between the events of these episodes, it is clear the Raiman family farm is successful.

RELATED: Black Mirror: Bandersnatch Isn’t the Choose Your Own Adventure We Wanted

9. UKN News

Featuring prominently in the series’ first episode “The National Anthem,” UKN appears to be one of the larger news networks located in the United Kingdom. First seen covering the events of that episode, UKN is later seen in “Be Right Back” in a broadcast regarding the scientific breakthrough of creating lifelike human skin. As well, UKN reporters are on the scene during the events of “The Waldo Moment” and “White Bear.” UKN is featured once again in “Hated in the Nation” covering the events of the #DeathTo movement.

8. Waldo

After the climax of “The Waldo Moment,” the titular cartoon personality is separated from its creator and used ostensibly as a capitalistic cash cow by large organizations. This is seen throughout the Black Mirror series as either the face or name of Waldo appears in multiple episodes thereafter. In “White Christmas,” Joe is channel surfing and briefly flips to a channel featuring Waldo. Also in that episode, there is a visible user ID that reads “I_Am_Waldo.” Waldo’s face is also seen as a sticker on a laptop in “Shut Up and Dance” and on a lunchbox in “Arkangel.”

NEXT: Black Mirror: Bandersnatch Is the Rumored Interactive Story

7. Grains

The full plot of “The Entire History of You” revolves around technology that is only referred to as “grains.” These grains are small implants behind the ear that record everything a person sees and hears. With this technology, you can replay and even delete memories. In “Arkangel,” we see the next step in this technology, and we know it’s the same technology as the user interface is practically identical.

6. TV Shows

In the episode “Fifteen Million Merits,” we see programming for several TV shows. Some of them, like Don’t Scare the Hare and The Whole 19 Yards, are actual British TV shows. However, Botherguts, Hot Shot, and WraithBabes are fictional. The show Hot Shot also appears in “White Christmas” and we learn in “Crocodile” that one of the judges was caught in a hotel room “with a rent boy.” Continuing on with the presumed shared universe, in “Crocodile” Mia is creating her alibi, and we see WraithBabes as a pornographic option.

MORE: 15 Black Mirror Easter Eggs And References Fans Totally Missed

5. Saint Juniper

The events of the fan favorite episode “San Junipero” makes lots of appearances throughout the Black Mirror series. In “USS Callister,” Robert Daly plugs into his virtual world using an uplink device very similar to design and function as the technology seen used by Yorkie and Kelly in “San Junipero.” In “Metalhead,’ a postcard advertising San Junipero can be seen when Bella is rifling a drawer. Rolo Haynes references the conclusion of San Junipero in Black Mirror when he talks about “uploading old people to the cloud.” It is also revealed that Haynes previously worked at a hospital named Saint Juniper. In Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, another Dr. Haynes is seen working at a building named “Saint Juniper’s Medical Practice.”

4. Cookies

Jon Hamm in Black Mirror

First introduced in “White Christmas,” a Cookie is the name given to the digitally replicated consciousness of a human being. Cookies serve as a major plot point in the episode and first raise questions about their legality and the morality of their existence. At the end of “Shut Up and Dance,” an advertisement for the cookie-run home automation service from “White Christmas” is seen quickly on an online news website. In addition, a section of newsfeed seen in “Hated in The Nation” reveals that the European Court of Human Rights has ruled that Cookies have human rights. Cookies show up again in “Black Museum” as a major plot point.

NEXT: What to Expect From Black Mirror Season 5

3. TCKR Systems

TCKR Systems is a neural research and technology company that we first see in the episode “Playtest.” Early in the episode, we see Cooper reading Edge magazine with a headline that reads: “Inside TCKR: Turning Nostalgia Into A Game.” In “San Junipero,” it is revealed that TCKR Systems is the developer behind the creation of a simulated reality that is San Junipero. In “Metalhead,” the letters TCKR are seen on the side of a truck driven by Bella. The episode “Black Museum” reveals that Haynes’ work at the previously mentioned Saint Juniper Hospital was for TCKR Systems. In Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, the name of the software company is Tuckersoft. This company has made several games whose titles allude to previous episodes of Black Mirror, but none are more obviously paralleled than “Metl Hedd.” — a direct copy of the episode “Metalhead.”

2. The Glyph

Previously known as the “White Bear,” this symbol has been separated from our first viewing experience by Black Mirror: Bandersnatch’s reference to this symbol as “the glyph.” We first see this marking on the hunter’s ski mask in the episode “White Bear.” We later see this symbol again in “Playtest.” When Cooper is testing the VR game’s configuration, we see the glyph as one of the symbols that turns into a gopher hole. In Bandersnatch, we learn that the glyph represents branching pathways. In Bandersnatch, visions of the glyph drove Stefan (and author Jerome F. Davis before him) insane with the ideas of free will and determinism.

MORE: Black Mirror: Bandersnatch Movie Plot & Cast Details Surface

1. White Bear

Aside from being the best Black Mirror episode so far, “White Bear” is one of the most referenced episodes within the Black Mirror universe. In “White Christmas,” a news ticker reveals that Victoria Skillane, the protagonist sentenced to the White Bear Justice Park, has had her appeal rejected. At the end of that episode, we learn that Joe Potter is being held at White Bear facility, implying that there is possibly more than one such vigilante justice machine. In “Hated in the Nation,” Blue says she left the force because of the Iain Rannoch case. This is the same one that put Victoria Skillane behind bars in “White Bear.” The planets Skillane IV and Rannoch in “USS Callister” refer to the child killers Iain Rannoch and Victoria Skillane in “White Bear.”



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2018-12-30 05:12:22

Godzilla: King Of The Monsters Trailer Hints At Mothra & Rodan Teaming Up

Iconic kaiju Mothra and Rodan may team up with each other in Godzilla: King of the Monsters, according to the latest trailer. Shortly after Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla reboot released in 2014, Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros. confirmed plans to expand the film into a new shared universe, later dubbed the MonsterVerse. And then it was announced that the movie’s sequel, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, would include Mothra, Rodan, and Ghidorah – three of the most iconic kaiju in Toho’s film library.

After a number of delays, Michael Dougherty’s Godzilla: King of the Monsters is finally going to hit theaters five years after the first movie released – in May 2019 – and it will not only continue the story that left off with the previous film but also set the stage for Adam Wingard’s highly anticipated monster mash-up film, Godzilla vs. Kong, which releases the following summer, in 2020. But before Godzilla takes on the king of the primates, he will first have to face several new kaiju.

Related: Godzilla: King of the Monsters Trailer Breakdown: 30 Story Details and Secrets

It’s unclear how every kaiju – who are officially known as Titans in the MonsterVerse – factors into Godzilla: King of the Monsters, aside from Godzilla taking on Ghidorah at two points in the film. However, it seems that the second Godzilla: King of the Monsters trailer hints at Mothra and Rodan teaming up together.

  • This Page: Mothra & Rodan Team Up in Godzilla: King of the Monsters
  • Next Page: What This Means For Godzilla: King of the Monsters

Godzilla 2 Trailer Hints At Mothra & Rodan Teaming Up

While the first Godzilla: King of the Monsters trailer that debuted during San Diego Comic-Con this past summer offered glimpses of the franchise’s new monsters/Titans, and aimed to set up the story surrounding the latest MonsterVerse installment, the movie’s second trailer put all of that aside to give audiences a look at all the monster action that awaits them; it was a smart move since Edwards’ 2014 movie was criticized for focusing too much on the humans and holding back on Godzilla himself. But that doesn’t seem to be the case anymore, at least in this forthcoming movie. And among the many details shown in the trailer, there’s one scene that may reveal Mothra and Rodan teaming up.

Related: Godzilla 2 Makes Ghidorah’s Alien Origin Canon In The MonsterVerse

At the 1:46 mark in the second Godzilla: King of the Monsters trailer, viewers can see Rodan’s claws trying to grab a hold of a plane. Then, a few moments later, viewers can see Mothra flying in what appears to be the same area. The gust and wind would indicate that they are flying together, an observation that appears to be proven when the trailer is paused at 1:48. In just a few frames, Rodan can be seen in the background, flying right next to Mothra. Since they are flying together, it would seem that the two monsters have found a way to team up in Godzilla: King of the Monsters – and that wouldn’t be something out of the ordinary for them.

Mothra & Rodan Have Teamed Up Before

In Toho’s movies, Mothra and Rodan haven’t always been on the same side, but they have worked together before in order to defend the planet against another, bigger kaiju, such as Ghidorah. Perhaps the most notable team-up between Mothra and Rodan – and Godzilla, for that matter – was in the 1964 movie Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster. It was the first appearance by Ghidorah, and it saw three of the world’s most powerful monsters put aside their differences for a short while in order to defeat Ghidorah. In that film, it was Mothra who approached Godzilla and Rodan (at the request of the Shobijin, aka the twin Fairies who can communicate with Mothra), who were in the middle of a battle with each other, and attempted to convince them to join her in her fight against Ghidorah.

Another time the two monsters teamed-up was in the 1968 movie Destroy All Monsters. Whereas Mothra and Rodan fought to protect Earth in Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, they actually worked together to destroy most of the planet in retaliation for being captured by the United Nations Science Committee and imprisoned on an island called Monsterland. So, while the MonsterVerse is still finding its footing in the world of shared universes, there’s a precedent in Toho’s old movies for Mothra and Rodan teaming up, albeit temporarily.

Page 2 of 2: What This Means For Godzilla: King Of The Monsters

Are Mothra & Rodan “Bad” In Godzilla 2?

It’s unclear where all the monsters’ allegiances lie in the new film – with Godzilla, Ghidorah, or themselves – but the latest trailer for Godzilla 2 doesn’t make the situation any clearer. According to Monarch, every titan in Godzilla: King of the Monsters is vying for supremacy, and they aim to dethrone Godzilla as the planet’s alpha predator. Taking that into account, as well as the fact that Rodan is considered an enemy of humanity in Godzilla 2 (as proven by the Monarch Sciences website), it stands to reason that Rodan starts off as a villain before turning to Godzilla’s side – and the same might happen for Mothra. Although Mothra is typically an ally to Godzilla, that doesn’t mean she has to start off that way. It would be interesting to see Godzilla win them over in the film.

Related: Godzilla: King of the Monsters Trailer Reveals Two More Titans

It’s also safe to assume that Godzilla: King of the Monsters won’t be an exact adaptation of Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, but will rather take elements from that film and incorporate them into the MonsterVerse. One of those elements may surely be the three monsters – Godzilla, Mothra, and Rodan – teaming up to take down Ghidorah in the final act, presumably after Godzilla, who is believed to be the king of the monsters by the humans, loses to Ghidorah when the three-headed dragon breaks out from his containment facility in Antarctica and takes on the iconic kaiju (as shown in the second Godzilla: King of the Monsters trailer).

What This Means For Godzilla: King of the Monsters

Considering that Godzilla: King of the Monsters sees multiple Titans come out of hiding and/or hibernation to seek dominance and to defeat Godzilla, it would make sense that Mothra and Rodan could potentially team-up to take down the supposed king of the monsters before the film’s main opponent (Ghidorah) enters the ring. Several movies such as this one tend to either have multiple battles or fake-out villains; it’s something that’s commonly seen in superhero movies and can even be used in Godzilla: King of the Monsters. After all, the official synopsis for Godzilla 2 even states that Godzilla “collides” with Mothra and Rodan at some point in the film.

Given what’s shown in Godzilla: King of the Monsters, it seems likely that Mothra and Rodan will team-up together to fight Godzilla at first, something that may be a rematch of the Titans’ ancient fight that was teased in the film’s marketing materials, before ultimately aligning with the iconic kaiju to take on Ghidorah in Godzilla: King of the Monsters‘ final act. It doesn’t seem reasonable to kill off either Mothra or Rodan before the movie’s final battle, but that doesn’t mean one of them can’t die at some point in the movie either. Of course, audiences will have to wait and see what happens, but right now, it certainly looks like Godzilla will have his work cut out for him with Mothra and Rodan potentially teaming up.

More: Godzilla 2 Trailer, Cast, Every Update You Need To Know



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2018-12-16 01:12:06

Artifact Game: Tips, Tricks, and Hints for Beginners

Artifact is finally here, and players can use a beginner’s guide to help them get started. The long-anticipated digital card game from developer Valve has appeared poised to shake up the genre in a big way for months now, and so far, Artifact is living up to the billing. Putting aside any issues players might have with the way its economy is structured, the game is certainly a hit in the early going, with plenty of people tuning into streams and downloading the game themselves to give it a shot.

One thing that isn’t immediately obvious about Artifact, though, is the learning curve. This isn’t just another digital card game, and Valve was not afraid to introduce some serious complexity to the way its TCG variant is played. Artifact quickly breaks down into some extremely complicated board states, and players who are unprepared for three lane gameplay will often find themselves running out of clock on their turns or getting overwhelmed by all the information that needs processing.

Related: Hearthstone’s Next Expansion Has Been Fully Revealed

Luckily, that’s where we come in. We’ve compiled a short beginner’s guide to Artifact to arm new players with the kinds of tips and tricks that can be lifesavers during early experiences with the game. Read on to find out how to dominate your lane, destroy your enemy’s Ancient, and not make any egregious errors that will cost you a game (though, in a title like Artifact, that is bound to happen eventually).

Artifact Guide: Seize the Initiative

Initiative isn’t too complex as a mechanic – essentially, there is a coin during gameplay that appears on either side of the board, and the person who has that coin has the first action in a given turn. Artifact is a well-balanced game and there aren’t many cards that are complete blowouts, so usually both players will be able to act with their heroes in a given laning phase.

That isn’t always true, though, and the further one dives into Artifact the more obvious it becomes that managing initiative is a huge boon. Cards that say they grant initiative are deceptively powerful, often letting players chain together a few spells in a turn that can disable or outright kill an enemy hero – if you had initiative to start, then that’s almost like forcing them to skip a turn.

What Artifact doesn’t do a great job of explaining is that if a player simply passes their turn without doing anything in a lane, they’ll get the initiative coin for the next lane. Sometimes, if none of the cards in your hand will do much in a specific lane, it’s better to just pass and use them first in a different lane for maximum effect. That helpfully ties in to our next tip…

Artifact Guide: There Are Three Lanes For a Reason

Artifact is about winning two out of three lanes in a given game (or cheesing the Ancient, which is just as risky in Artifact as it is in DOTA 2). While it’s not a bad idea to approach the game as though it is a MOBA, balancing each lane, managing creep for money, and pushing towers when it is most convenient, that’s not necessarily the best way to win. Much like in DOTA 2, it can often be correct to abandon a lane that is faltering to reinforce the other two and try to push those instead.

In Artifact, that can honestly happen as early as a few turns into the game. There are some bad match-ups for heroes out there that can make laning against them extremely difficult. Often, it’s worth it to concede the match-up in that specific lane and attempt to bolster the remaining two before the opponent realizes what is happening.

Look at it this way: if you have two heroes in one lane and three in the other, and your opponent has one or two stuck in a lane that is already being slowly whittled down, then you have a distinct advantage in the other two lanes. This can certainly backfire, and a wise opponent will look to purchase a Town Scroll quickly to get another hero in one of the lanes you’ve reinforced, but this is a basic principle of Artifact that isn’t obvious when you first begin playing. There are three lanes, but you only need to take two to win. It’s simple, but as a strategy, it can lead to some very fascinating decisions that aren’t as obvious as the mantra makes it sound.

Page 2 of 2: Shop Wisely, Solo Queue, and More

Artifact Guide: Shop Wisely

The shopping phase in Artifact can easily swing games. A player who chooses the right items ahead of time, uses them in the right moments, and plans for their enemies items will be rewarded with many a victory that looked impossible.

The thing is, shopping in Artifact is just as difficult as the rest of the game once you’ve got the basics down. As a quick rule, it’s often better to focus on items that will armor up or bolster the health of your heroes in the early game, while weapons like Blink Dagger later in the game become more valuable as time goes on. Weapons that simply boost attack are typically wasted because they will be replaced the most easily once players have a bit more gold, whereas armor is important and can help heroes survive longer. Remember: when heroes die they keep their equipment for the next deployment phase, so investing into heroes is just that. Sometimes equipping a hero who is about to die is still right to set up a better lane for them the next time you deploy them.

Also, Town Portal is your friend. It seems like it is a disadvantage to remove a hero from a lane and have to deploy them again next turn when you begin Artifact, but saving a hero, cheating your opponent out of five gold, and getting to assess the battlefield are all extremely valuable.

Artifact Guide: Solo Queue is Your Friend

Playing against bots in a multiplayer card game can seem silly. The point is to utterly decimate an opponent and extract a satisfactory friend request at the end of the match – or at least it has been, in digital card games prior. If Magic: The Gathering is Wizard Poker, then Artifact is kind of like Wizard Chess from Harry Potter in the sense that it is equal parts refined and brutal, and while the brutality is easy to experience on both sides of the spectrum, the refinement takes time.

That’s why it’s important to practice in solo queue’s bots. Hats off to Artifact‘s development team, because they’ve created a bot system that is genuinely worth practicing against. The AI might not make all the right plays on Normal difficulty, but they’re a shockingly accurate caricature of other fledgling players for sure, and the bots will even teach you a few neat interactions that you can then use yourself.

Artifact is a game of repetition. There’s no way players will get significantly better without putting a lot of time in. Using solo queue guarantees you’ll be able to get a bunch of fast-paced games in, and lets players practice whatever new strategy they’ve cooked up before taking it out into the wilds of competitive play.

Artifact Guide: Resource Management is King

Everything in Artifact is a resource. The game is sublimely designed, and the result is that there are no wasted parts. Mana, cards, gold, heroes, creep, items, and more are all resources that factor into every single turn decision. That’s before addressing more complex definitions of resources like tower health, minion presence, card advantage, and still other factors.

If that sounds like it is a lot to keep track of, it is. But players who want to get better can do so with one core principle in mind: manage your resources to the best of your ability. Does that mean playing perfectly? Absolutely not. Artifact is the kind of game where the player who makes less mistakes typically wins. It’s almost impossible to play flawlessly, especially this early into the game’s life cycle.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t try, and that’s the best philosophy to have in Artifact. To start, try keeping track of gold, cards, and hero abilities – manage the as best you can, every game, and see how you grow as a player. Then incorporate something else into that plan, like items. Evaluate how best to utilize each of them on every turn, even if it means you get close to time.

We’ll level with you. There’s no quick way to get good at Artifact. It’s going to be a long grind to the top, and these tips and tricks are only meant to get the climb started. That said, you could do way worse than trying to keep these five basic principles in mind the next time you play Artifact, and they’ll help you on your way to becoming laning royalty. Happy card slinging!

More: Top 20 Video Games of 2018, According to Critics



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20 Things Wrong With American Horror Story We All Choose To Ignore

The horror anthology hit TV show American Horror Story just might be the magnum opus of Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuck. Scarier and more riveting than any of the duo’s other projects, the spine-tingling series features a new theme and characters every season that are all still linked to each other’s universe. From the casting announcements to the series hints, theme reveals, and each season’s unique introductory visuals, it’s riveting entertainment all around. Even so, some seasons fall further off the mark than others, with many episodes barely even registering on the “horror” radar while others left us scratching our heads wondering what the heck just happened.

The thing is, we tend to give glaring errors, plot flops, and other things wrong with the show a pass because we love it so much. From intriguing horror to irresistible characters, from unexpected plot twists to some of the best storytelling on TV, American Horror Story keeps us coming back, not because it’s flawless but because it’s still addictive despite, and sometimes because of, its many flaws.

We might love a character and conveniently forget that he or she is a monster. We’ll keep tuning in even after an entire sequence left us feeling disgusted, embarrassed for the actress who had to play out the scene, or even angry at the creators themselves. It’s just that addictive.

We love it and we’ll keep coming back for me, even with these 20 Things Wrong With American Horror Story We All Choose To Ignore.

20 Some Seasons Aren’t Scary

With a name like American Horror Story, you might expect every episode to be a scream-fest. That’s just not the case, especially in seasons four and five. While there’s no shortage of horror-inducing characters in these seasons, they didn’t really give us nightmares like previous and subsequent seasons were able to do.

Were we jaded from all the mutants, ghosts, zombies, and other creatures in previous seasons?

Both Freak Show and Hotel fell short on promises of terror, often vying for more intense drama (a calling card of Falchuck and Murphy) instead. While we still received interesting stories, Gaga’s vampire and Twisty the Clown just weren’t all that scary.

19 There’s No Reason Given For All The Hotel Vampire Kids

In season five, Hotel, Lady Gaga’s character, The Countess Elizabeth, is a little less fabulous than we expected her to be. Perhaps she couldn’t live up to the Gaga we all know and love already. One of the things that just made zero sense about the character was her propensity to collect children and turn them into little vampires. Does Elizabeth have an old woman in the shoe complex? Is she just that bored? What is the point?

Here’s the thing about kids in horror movies: they add instant scare-factor. Take a look at most scary film kids, from Village of the Damned to The Others and you’ll see the scariest moments. The fact that the vampire kid collection wasn’t even scary was a pretty big letdown.

18 Teeth Fall From The Sky For No Reason

Season six of AHS, Roanoke, was able to recover some of the lost ground from the previous two less-scary seasons but still suffered from the lack of the one and only Jessica Lang. The season saw a return to the haunted house theme, always popular in AHS history, and wove in some new elements, like the whole “based on a true story” theme.  Between Deliverance-like hillbillies and more incredible Kathy Bates, Roanake was much better-received than Hotel, but it had some weird unexplained moments, like teeth randomly falling from the sky.

Not only do the teeth inexplicably fall while Matt is at work, but they also disappear.

The reason why is never given, prompting us to chalk this one up to “random scare tactic.”

17 Queenie Tried To Hook Up With A Minotaur

While we definitely applaud Murphy and Falchuck’s use of mythology throughout American Horror Story, it often makes no sense. Gabourey Sidibe was fantastic as Queenie, the young and lonely witch who gave as well as she got, used LaLaurie as her own personal racist slave, and really deserved main credits billing. But there was that one time she tried to hook up with a grotesque Minotaur…

While the inclusion of adult content is pretty standard in AHS, getting involved with a man who has bull’s head sewed over his own is pretty far out there. It didn’t make any sense, nor did Queenie’s own survival following the incident (or anything else including the Minotaur, really), so we just move along and say that there’s nothing to see here.

16 Zoe’s Hell Is Just Life Without Kyle

Zoe Benson, portrayed by Taissa Farmiga, starts out as a compelling character in the third season of American Horror Story, Coven. She has unique powers that pay homage to classic horror and a long journey ahead.

Tossing in a love interest is a great way to derail a personal growth story.

That’s what happened to Zoe with Kyle, her resurrected boyfriend played by Evan Peters. While we’re glad that Murphy and Falchuck used Kyle to illustrate that mothers can be abusive to their sons just as much as fathers can, “life without Kyle” as Zoe’s own personal hell is really stupid and overly angst-ridden.

15 Aliens In Asylum Makes No Sense

When it comes to American Horror Story, many fans reacted to the inclusion of aliens in season two, Asylum, in the same way that fans of Indiana Jones reacted to the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. For many horror fans, aliens don’t enter the territory without very specific rules, and you certainly don’t add aliens into an already-existing story for a scare factor.

The aliens of AHS also just weren’t scary. Sure, they made Pepper more interesting and gave convenient explanations for a few weird happenings, but at the end of the day mixing aliens in with mutants, a mean nun, demons, and war criminals just doesn’t work. It’s a hodgepodge of plot devices tossed together like a salad with too many kinds of dressing. Sometimes simpler is just better.

14 The Musical Sequences

We get that Sister Jude is losing her mind in this tenth episode of season two, Asylum, but must we lose ours as well? The episode itself was gripping, but watching Jessica Lange sashay through “The Name Game” wasn’t nearly as eerie as it should have been. It played off as more of an homage to the creators’ Glee in a way that didn’t work.

While some critics enjoyed the mind-boggling number, many of us like to pretend it never happened.

It’s not the last time the showrunners implemented a bit of music and dance, either. Season four, Freak Show, featured several ditties, including a rendition of “Come As You Are” by Evan Peters, Sarah Paulson’s “Dream a Little Dream of Me”, and Lange singing David Bowie’s “Life on Mars”.

13 What Happens To Dr. Arden’s Experiments?

The mutants created in Dr. Arden’s horrific experiments are the stuff of nightmares, and they definitely present an interesting side story among the rest of the godawful happenings at Briarwood Manor in season two of American Horror Story, Asylum. Their issue, of course, is that they disappear off the radar without much of a peep.

Once turned into a mutant and taken to a hospital, Shelley, played by Chloë Sevigny as a homage to the many women unjustly committed to asylums throughout history, seems as if she may be able to lead the authorities toward Arden, but alas, Joseph Fiennes’ conflicted yet greedy Monsignor Timothy Howard takes her out instead. We don’t hear much about them afterward. What happened to the mutants?

12 The Messed-Up Historical Figures

Anne Frank was lobotomized by the evil Dr. Arden from Briarcliff Manor in season two, Asylum. Not only does this make zero sense, but it also really does a disservice to Anne Frank’s memory. There is a lot of artistic license taken with historical figures throughout American Horror Story, from Delphine Lalaurie to James March. Even characters used as backgrounds for new characters, like Nellie Bly’s inspiration for Lana Winters, often seems a bit much, especially when the representation is so loose.

The misrepresentation or grand re-representation of historical figures is nothing new.

Our own history books present complete falsehoods about everyone from Christopher Columbus to Paul Revere. Perhaps it’s just so glaring because we acknowledge that now, particularly during an age of “fake news” awareness.

11 The Opening Sequence And Spoilers Promise More Than We Get

One of the most exciting elements of a new season of American Horror Story is always the opening sequence and the slowly-revealed spoilers. Cast announcements and cool visuals trickle in until we finally get to see that first episode with its incredible casting graphics. The creepy opening sequence does much more than announce the cast: it revs us up like the announcer for a really scary joust about to take place.

The only problem is that it often goes downhill from there. While season 1 typically delivered, the casting graphics in seasons like Freak Show were actually scarier than the episodes themselves. That’s a real problem if we are supposed to be watching a horror program.

10 We Have No Idea What Happened To The Pig Boys

They were a successful execution of “the scary children” in a way that the little vampire entourage of the previous season just couldn’t seem to manage, so maybe that’s why Murphy and Falchuck decided to never let the “pig boys” of season six be seen again.

Aside from the fact that the boys could have made for some truly scary storytelling, the problem here isn’t just that they had no deeper involvement in the story than “check out these creepy kids” but that they don’t even have a resolution. Why the kids say, “Croatoan!” and why they drink pig milk remains unknown, and we may never know what happened to the charming little tykes.

9 No Consequences for the bad things the “good guys” do

As fans of American Horror Story, we sure do forgive a lot of murderers, don’t we? When someone bad finally goes good, all of their wicked deeds don’t seem to be as problematic. Even sweet Nan takes out Joan. Misty Day, otherwise a kind hippie, offs a couple of guys with alligators.

Were these warranted attacks? Maybe, but that doesn’t erase the fact that many characters end the lives of others and we pretty much turn a blind eye toward it like we wouldn’t if they occurred in real life. Of course, from people returning from the grave to mutant attacks near an asylum, there’s really not a lot in the show that applies to real life.

8 There’s Really No War Between The Coven And The Voodoo Witches

During season three, Coven, there’s a big build up about an oncoming war between the coven and the voodoo witches of the area. Both are led by powerful women, and who wasn’t excited to see Fiona, played by Jessica Lange, and Marie Laveau, played by Angela Bassett, go up against one another?

While there was plenty of tension and a zombie attack, it pretty much stopped there, especially after the witch hunters came to town.

AHS often builds up to something we’re expecting and completely abandon it for another plot instead. While we get that they want to keep us on our toes, broken promises do leave us unsatisfied and underwhelmed.

7 Zoe And Madison Gave Their Souls To Azaezel And It Never Came Up Again

When the bus full of frat boys who assaulted Madison wrecks, taking out all of the monsters on board on Madison’s whim, it’s satisfying. Even seeing Kyle taken out doesn’t bother some of us, given that we’ve already seen Evan Peters return from the grave before and wouldn’t be surprised if he returned. He may have stopped his “brothers” but he certainly tried to help them not get caught, making him complicit in the attack.

When Zoe and Madison decide to put “boy parts” together to resurrect Kyle as the perfect Frankenstein boyfriend, they sell their souls to Azaezel in order to do so, and yet it never comes up again. Given that both girls bite the dust during the show, shouldn’t that at least be an issue?

6 Roanoke’s Reality Show Inception

It was one of the most pointless plot points to ever be inserted into a season of American Horror Story. During season six, Roanoke, we’re treated to a reality show type of setting where re-enactors help us understand what happened to the Millers in “My Roanoke Nightmare”, an obvious play on so many other popular reality-based ghost hunting and experience shows. That’s an intriguing concept that works well for much of the season, but then we’re hit with reality-ception.

Getting all of the actors and people involved in actual events together for the blood moon event is one thing, but what about the disclaimer that nobody even survived the ordeal? If that’s true (which makes sense, since this is Roanoke), how did we get the footage in the first place?

5 There’s No Point To Scathach

Scathach, the mythical warrior from the Isle of Skye in Irish folklore, is an incredible character. It’s too bad we didn’t really get to know her in season six, Roanoke.

Lady Gaga’s Scathnach has a plethora of powers, is said to be the first Supreme and yet has no real point in the series.

The witch does a few nefarious things here and there, from purchasing souls to rendering people evil and insane, but in the grand scheme of things she has no real point except to serve as one of those random elements of horror woven in to just be spooky. Given the history of the traditional character, it would be amazing to see Murphy and Falchuck to use this as a tie-in for a more myth-heavy season.

4 People Are Constantly Offed Only To Be Brought Back

Character losses in the American Horror Story realm are pretty much like those in any comic book series: you don’t ever count them as permanent. Even when an entire series ends and you believe a character to be truly gone, they may return in another season! It’s definitely not a new tactic to have characters return from the grave; it’s a strategy used in everything from Dallas to Supernatural.

It makes us feel a little more jaded and a little less invested when tragedy does strike.

Oh, Fiona is sick? Oh, Ethel’s not going to make it? It’s too often meaningless. We want to feel affected, and we can’t help but worry a bit because we do love these characters, but deep down we’re always still wondering when they’ll return.

3 Twisty’s “Resolution” Is Basically A Deus Ex Machina

Season four’s big villain, Twisty the Clown, turned out to be much more Bozo than Pennywise. Sure, he was scary-looking, and he had the tragic backstory to boot, but Twisty’s crimes felt more garden variety scary movie than the monstrous panache we’d expect from AHS.

Twisty, played by John Carroll Lynch, even had a disappointing resolution as a character. Not only was he never really sorted out by a main character or a victim bent on revenge, but he was literally yanked out of the show to join Edward Mordrake’s nightmarish troupe, collecting the clown’s soul after hearing his tale of woe.

2 Misty Day Was Unjustly Lost

One of the characters fans most resonated with in season three, Coven, was Misty Day, played by the talented Lily Rabe. Misty’s character screamed Supreme, from her unique abilities to her lack of really caring about the position.

Misty was all about fairness, being kind to animals, and protecting the vulnerable, making her a fantastic character to root for.

Unfortunately she was also a red herring. Falchuck and Murphy offed her in such a terrible way in a Hell made up of her own personal vivisection nightmare, which made zero sense given her ability to bring things back to life so easily. Misty didn’t deserve her ending, but neither did Nan and many other characters.

1 Tate Is A School Shooter

Tate Langdon is one of the most romanticized characters in the history of AHS. The season 1 character is a doting friend, devoted boyfriend who would do anything for Violet, and speaks volumes of teen angst to many a smitten heart. It doesn’t hurt that Evan Peters, who plays Tate, is easy on the eyes as well. Is that why it’s so hard to remember that Langdon is such a deplorable character?

Tate is a school shooter. He took the lives of several classmates and should represent what we most despise and do not condone in this nation right now. He also assaulted Violet’s mother, Vivian, causing her to become pregnant with his Antichrist baby. How can anyone still crush on this guy knowing what harm he’s done?

What other problems with American Horror Story do fans overlook? Let us know in the comments!



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2018-10-10 08:10:37 – Sara Schmidt

Assassin’s Creed: 20 Things Only Experts Know How To Do In Odyssey

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey – the latest installment in Ubisoft’s wildly popular video game franchise – has finally landed on shelves. Set in Ancient Greece, Odyssey gives players the opportunity to assume the role of a mercenary from either Athens or Sparta, and to take part in a mythology-infused recreation of the Peloponnesian War.

The game features an even greater emphasis on the RPG elements first introduced in its predecessor, Assassin’s Creed Origins, and boasts multiple endings that are triggered by the player’s actions. Odyssey also sees the return of the controversial Hitbox combat engine which debuted in Origins – albeit in a significantly enhanced form. Thanks to these and other challenging core mechanics – not to mention the daunting size of the game’s virtual environment – Odyssey should prove suitably tough for more casual gamers. But for seasoned veterans of the Assassin’s Creed franchise? Not so much.

Indeed, gamers who have followed the series since the very first entry way back in 2007 aren’t likely to struggle. On the contrary, we expect them to flourish, putting to good use the skills and knowledge they’ve gleaned from the past 11 games in the series – not to mention the six spin-off entries – to finish the main quest in record time.  This will leave them free to start focusing on tracking down Odyssey’s hidden Easter eggs, secret areas, and other bonus content clueless rookies don’t have a chance of tracking down unaided.

Here’s a list of 20 Things Only Experts Know How To Do In Assassin’s Creed Odyssey.

20 Find The Legend Of Zelda Easter Egg

Of all the many classic video game franchises, few are as unanimously beloved by both gamers and developers alike as The Legend of Zelda series. The team at Ubisoft clearly rank amongst this iconic Nintendo series’ admirers – as the easter egg they tucked away in Odyssey proves.

In a tip of the hat to the most recent Zelda instalment, Breath of the Wild, a Korok – a small humanoid figure made out of clay, flower petals and twigs – can be found on the Pandora’s Cove coastline. Although this hidden tribute is now the most well-known Easter egg in the game, experts had no trouble tracking it down on their own within mere days of Odyssey’s release!

19 Achieve The Secret Ending

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey marks a dramatic change in direction for the franchise – from purely action/adventure outings to something closer to an action/RPG hybrid. This is reflected in how important the player’s actions are to the game’s overall narrative, and in particular, how that narrative reaches its climax.

Indeed, what the player decides to do – or just as importantly, say – will determine how events unfold next, and ultimately determine which of the game’s multiple endings they achieve.

Most players should be able to reach at least one ending.

If you complete every side quest and make all of the right decisions to unlock the secret, ultra ending, ensuring the best possible finale for your mercenary.

18 Visit Atlantis

As soon as Assassin’s Creed Odyssey’s Ancient Greece setting was announced, fans immediately began speculating over whether the fabled lost city of Atlantis would be part of its virtual environment. The good news is that Ubisoft hasn’t missed a trick, and Atlantis does indeed count among the many sunken locations scattered across the game’s humongous map. The bad news? It’s highly likely that only experts will be capable of uncovering the most eagerly anticipated (not to mention coolest) secret area in Odyssey.

The steps involved are extremely taxing, requiring players to traverse treacherous terrain, solve fiendish riddles posed by the Sphinx and dispatch a bevy of mythological horrors like Medusa, the Cyclops and the Minotaur!

17 Recruit Legendary NPCs Early

Over the course of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, players can enlist NPCs to serve as crew members aboard their ship, the Adrestia. Recruiting a high calibre crew is a great way to upgrade the Adrestia – so the trick is to bring legendary NPCs into the fold. Casual gamers will wait until they unlock these characters by completing quests, however experts are aware of a hidden mechanic that speeds up the whole process.

There’s a less publicized gameplay mechanic which enables you to recruit legendary NPCs by defeating them in combat using non-lethal takedowns.

Better yet, once your ship’s roster is made up entirely of legendary NPCs, you unlock the “Argonauts” trophy, too!

16 Regain The Cyclops Eye

One of the most frustrating moments in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey arrives early on, when you’re forced to give up the Cyclops’ Eye during Sequence 1. It’s not exactly the most classy of disposals, either: to put it bluntly, you squeeze it up the rear end of a poor, unsuspecting goat. If you’re scratching your head over this last revelation, then just trust us: it makes sense at the time!

Rookies will write off the Eye as a lost cause, but experts up to speed on the game’s secrets won’t give up so quickly. By engaging in an exhaustive goat-hunting expedition in Kephallonia, they’ll recover this valuable artifact, earning the dubious “Stink Eye” achievement, as well.

15 Change Their Ship’s Figurehead

Long-time fans of the series will recall that in Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, you could easily customize your ship’s decorative figurehead as part of the normal upgrade process. Unfortunately, this isn’t something that carries over to Odyssey – and only expert players are likely to work out the secret method of doing this.

For starters, you need to defeat a boss – not exactly a walk in the park itself, by the way – and then behead them.

Once this has been take care of, if you scroll through the inventory of ship upgrade options, you’ll see your new souvenir listed. Select it, and voila! The Adrestia will have itself a brand new (and rather creepy) figurehead!

14 Track Down All Of The Cultist Clues

The underlying mythology of the Assassin’s Creed franchise incorporates several shadowy organisations – and Odyssey is no exception. The latest entry in the series introduces the nefarious Cult of Kosmos, and players aiming to get the most out of game’s story need to track down and eliminate key members of the group. In order to do so, they’ll have to swap their mercenary’s helmet for their detective’s cap, as the cultists’ whereabouts are only revealed by clues sprinkled through Odyssey’s sprawling Ancient Greece setting.

Some of these hints can be uncovered with little effort, whereas others will prove elusive to all but the most seasoned of gamers!

On the plus side, all of this running around pays off, as only players who chase down every single cultist will get to experience the game’s whole story.

13 Unlock Evie Frye

Assassin’s Creed Syndicate – the ninth video game in the main series – is headlined by twins Jacob and Evie Frye. Of the two siblings, Evie is arguably the more memorable – which is probably why she’s an unlockable character in Odyssey. Now, before you get too excited, bear in mind that Evie is a legendary NPC, so you won’t get to play as her directly.

Still, it’s incredibly cool to recruit her as a crew member on your ship, provided you’re an Ubisoft Club member with enough XP to afford her. See, unlocking Evie requires players to part with 7,500 XP in exchange for the “Master Assassin” badge, which only long-time fans of the franchise will have amassed!

12 Access Battle Royale Mode

Battle royale games like Fortnite and Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds are currently the hottest thing on the block. Making the most of modern online multiplayer capabilities, games in this genre pit a pack of players against each other in thrilling, last-man-standing contests.

Obviously, this stands in stark contrast to the single-player, open world experience offered by Assassin’s Creed Odyssey – until experts stumble across the “Call to Arms” sidequest. Found by scouring the island of Melos, this mission – which requires skilled players to wipe out 99 consecutive enemies – represents a thinly-veiled attempt by Ubisoft to acknowledge (or should that be “cash in on”?) the popularity of the battle royale genre!

11 Find The Black Panther Easter Egg

Black Panther is currently the second highest grossing film of 2018, and with that success comes a considerable fanbase, too. At least some of the developers at Ubisoft fall within that category, if the Black Panther Easter egg included in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is anything to go by. As experts will have no doubt already discovered, the game contains a fairly faithful recreation of Black Panther’s two most notable scenes: the duels that occur at the base of a waterfall.

This is staged at the Gortyn Waterfall, where players can first spectate on the melee using Eagle Vision.

That’s not all, though: it’s also possible to clamber up the cliff where the fight is going down, and actually confront the pair of brawlers yourself!

10 Discover Sam Fisher’s Goggles

So far we’ve focused solely on Assassin’s Creed Odyssey’s Ancient Greece setting – which disregards the fact that certain sections of the game are set in a present day safe house. Anyone unfamiliar with the franchise’s convoluted (some would say downright insane) science fiction elements, just trust us when we say that this does make sense.

Regardless of whether or not you buy into this more far-fetched aspect of the Assassin’s Creed mythology, there are multiple Easter eggs to dig up during these segments. Not all of these relate to the franchise either – just ask the experts who’ve unearthed the iconic, three-lensed night vision goggles worn by Sam Fisher, the protagonist of Ubisoft’s Splinter Cell games!

9 Stumble Across The Sword In The Stone

The team at Ubisoft has done a remarkable job of recreating an utterly convincing (albeit wildly fantastical) rendition of Ancient Greece in Odyssey. This awesome attention to detail is reflected in almost every aspect of the virtual environment, particularly the character and weapon design. We say “almost”, because at least one item experts will undoubtedly come across whilst roaming the game map definitely does not fit the time period depicted: the Sword in the Stone from Arthurian legend. Fortunately, this gag is an intentional mistake on the developer’s part.

Unfortunately, you can’t remove this legendary blade from its Lakonia resting place.

That’s a real shame: historical accuracy be damned – there’s always a place for Excalibur in our armory!

8 Locate The Rabbid Figure

Another easter egg squirrelled away in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey’s modern era safe house setting, the Rabbid figure is hard to spot if players blitz through these sequences. However, experts tend to favor a more methodical approach – even when confronted by the franchise’s moments of less than engaging gameplay.

These long-time campaigners will cast their eyes over every inch of the safe house, which means snooping around each room, no matter how empty it appears to be. This will eventually lead them to the shelves of a particularly untidy room. Here, they’ll spy the Rabbid toy – a cute shout-out to Ubisoft’s all-ages Rayman franchise, accompanied by a line of dialogue (“Bwaah?”) associated with these bunny-like characters.

7 Acquire The Epic Unicorn Skin

It doesn’t matter what mythology we’re talking about: unicorns are invariably treated as an incredibly rare species. Certainly, this carries over to the world of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, where players can indeed transform their horse into one of these awe-inspiring creatures – provided they can get their hands on a unicorn pelt.

They sport an eye-watering 6,400 Drachmae price tag!

Rookies who are feeling flush will plump for either the Black Unicorn or undeniably amazing (though sadly, non-flying) Pegasus skins, purchased with real-world cash from the Ubisoft Store. On the other hand, genuine experts prefer to earn their keep, and will trawl merchant stalls for the appropriately named, randomly-spawing Epic Unicorn skin, which leaves rainbow hoof prints.

6 Home Town Pride

The developers of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey hail from Ubisoft’s Montreal headquarters, based in Quebec. Like the citizens of any city or town, these guys and gals are proud of the place they call home – so much so that they managed to sneak a Quebec-related easter egg into the game!

It’s something that will almost certainly go unnoticed by less observant gamers, but experienced players – the type of people who scan the entire game environment for secret material – will discover a travel magazine whilst rifling through the safe house. The destination this mag is promoting? Why, Quebec, of course! True, it’s not exactly the most exciting bonus content in Odyssey, but it’s a nice touch all the same.

5 Put The Arena Spikes To Good Use

A key trait which separates veteran Assassin’s Creed players from newcomers is the willingness of the former to experiment with their surroundings. Take the spikes that dotted around the Arena in Odyssey.

Rookies will probably dismiss these as mere set dressing and completely ignore them once the fighting breaks out.

Don’t expect experts to make the same mistake, though. Already clued up on just how interactive the game worlds in the franchise can be, these gamers will immediately identify the potential for the spikes to deal damage to their opponents. The next thing you know, the edges of the Arena will begin to resemble a shish kebab vendor who trades in skewered would-be gladiatorial champions!

4 Reminisce About The Frye Twins

It turns out Assassin’s Creed Syndicate isn’t the only instalment in the franchise to take place in London – Odyssey does, too. True, the vast majority of the game is set in Ancient Greece, but its modern era sections unfold in London, something that won’t come as a shock to more attentive players.

After all, just by gazing out of the safe house windows, you can take in a decent view of London’s famous skyline, with what tourists would recognize as Big Beg especially prominent. What’s more, if you allow yourself a moment to properly contemplate the sight before your eyes, you’ll even trigger a line of dialogue that references Jacob and Evie Frye, the lead characters in Syndicate!

3 Discover All Of The Underwater Locations

As you might expect from a virtual environment that recreates the entire Aegean Sea, Atlantis isn’t the only submerged area on the Assassin’s Creed Odyssey map.

The ocean floor of Ubisoft’s vision of Ancient Greece is littered with dozens of hidden locations brimming with valuable treasure.

Anyone prepared to embrace their inner Jacques Cousteau will be in for a real treat. That said, given the sheer amount of exploration required to pinpoint all of these sunken locations – fun fact: at 130km², Odyssey’s map is 62% bigger than the already massive world of Origins – we’d wager only experts will visit all of them.

2 Get All Of The Other Endings As Well

Sure, everybody wants to get the best possible Assassin’s Creed Odyssey ending – you know: the super secret, totally awesome one we mentioned earlier. Even so, part of being an expert is also having a completist streak, which is why we think they’ll figure out how to achieve Odyssey’s eight other possible endings, as well.

This might not sound like much, but it’s actually quite a feat, for two main reasons. First of all, this game is absurdly long – the main quest alone clocks in at 40 hours of gameplay – so repeating it again and again is no picnic. Secondly, they’ll need to ensure they get every single word and deed right, in order to arrive at their desired conclusion!

1 Climb Up The Naked Statue

Full disclosure: this entry is unashamedly juvenile in nature, given it revolves around players scaling up a male statue and dangling from part of its anatomy (three guesses which part). Regardless, we’re positive that even the most mature expert will decide to do just that, when they pass by this landmark early on in Odyssey – honestly, it’s just too hard to resist.

You’ll be rewarded for your childish antics if you do.

Performing this act initiates a wry line of dialogue from the player’s mercenary, which just goes to show that Ubisoft definitely predicted this becoming a thing. Although to be honest, they hardly needed the talents of one of Ancient Greece’s oracles to foresee it!

Did we miss out any other things that only experts know how to do in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey? Let us know in the comments!



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2018-10-09 06:10:21 – Leon Miller

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey Beginners Gameplay Tips

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is here, and it offers up something of a different experience from the previous games in the series. Rather than the stealth-based gameplay of old, Odyssey doubles down on the RPG mechanics, becoming a huge, deep open world game for players to enjoy. In essence, it takes what worked from Assassin’s Creed Origins and makes it even better.

The end result is a fantastic take on the Greek myth, albeit one that sometimes struggles a little to bridge the gap between open world RPG and its roots in the larger Assassin’s Creed universe. Nonetheless, those changes could leave some players a bit confused as to where to start, and after working through the opening island of Kephallonia things could become a little bit daunting.

Related: Assassin’s Creed Odyssey – How To Get The Best Ending

That said, there are some ways to make the most of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey from the get go. After all, there’s lot to get to grips with before taking on Medusa or hunting after all those legendary armor sets. Instead, here are some tips for how to take up what Assassin’s Creed Odyssey has to offer fast.

Choose Exploration Mode

The most important first choice to make comes before the player even starts the game. When given the option, it’s highly recommended to choose Exploration Mode as the method of play. This is the way that Assassin’s Creed Odyssey was designed to be played, and for good reason; the additional level of emphasis on discovery is a delight to play, and much more fun than simply following map markers to reach objectives.

Effectively, Exploration Mode works by making the player find their own way through quests. NPCs will give hints towards locations to be discovered when talking about the mission in question, forcing players to use a little of their own intuition. This mode also makes map exploration much more fun, with the player finding random locations as they work their way around the regions hunting down quests.

Exploration Mode also means players will make the most out of eagle companion Ikaros. The eagle is not only able to scout out discovered locations, but also target enemies and notable items within specific locations, such as chests or hostages to release. Finally, remember to seek out Synchronization points to boost the power of Ikaros overall.

Think About Crafting Over Cash

Whether armor or weapons, it’s easy to find loot in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. As such, when players notice they have plenty of unused items sitting around in their inventory, it’s extremely tempting to drop them all off at a nearby blacksmith and make a bit of drachmae.

That said, it’s probably best to hold fire of cashing in. That’s because drachmae are not in short supply in the game, and can be picked up from completing quests, in explored locations, or from dead enemies. Instead, consider breaking down weaker weapons and armor into leather, wood, and metal, as these can be useful as crafting for upgrades to the player’s ship or even to beef up items at a blacksmith.

It’s worth bearing in mind that drachmae are needed in a couple of places in the game, and it’s always worth keeping some around in case of having to pay off a bounty to keep mercenaries off the player’s trail when it’s better to lay low. Nonetheless, put money on the back burner, and instead think about how best to boost the overall power of the misthios.

Choose Your Abilities Wisely

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey has a fairly comprehensive skill tree, but there are some abilities that are better to unlock than others. As explained in our guide to the best abilities to unlock first, There are a few essential abilities, with the Sparta Kick being useful from a warrior perspective alongside beef ups to the assassin skill tree such as Shadow Assassin.

Overall, though, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey gives players the greatest level of flexibility in how they choose to play that the series has seen so far. It’s perhaps best to pick and choose skills based on what works for the player in question, providing they keep enough core skills in each area to make sure they can get out of trouble whatever the situation.

Remember you can always change your choices as well, albeit at a cost. A few drachmae allows the player to reset all of their abilities, so if some skills are found to be less useful than others, it’s easy to drop them and rebuild the character from scratch.

Take To The Waters With Style

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey takes the series back to the high seas, and it’s something that is long overdue. With gameplay reminiscent of Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, the core way to travel between the different islands is to take to the Adrestia and hop from island to island seeking adventure.

Even though a lot of the gameplay takes place on land, it’s truly beneficial to upgrade the ship regularly. This could mean recruiting new lieutenants, which helps both with buffs to the ship’s power and when boarding enemy vessels, or improving things like rowing power or damage caused by ranged attacks. It comes at a cost in terms of drachmae and consumables, but it’s worth it in the long run.

This is because it’s all too easy to get into scraps with pirates, Spartan or Athenian vessels when out at sea. Naval combat is extremely good fun, but when outnumbered it’s much better to have more firepower onside, and it’s always satisfying to take out those Cult of Kosmos members who happen to captain a ship of their own.

Revel In The Game World

It may feel like an obvious rule to follow, but Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is much more fun if taken at the player’s own pace. The title’s story is a compelling, personal adventure that (generally) ties well into the larger plot of Assassin’s Creed, but the game perhaps works best with the player following their own path and doing what’s most fun to them.

As such, it’s important to stretch your legs in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. Between the Conquest Battles, side quests and other additional smaller elements of the game at large, there’s no reason to purely stick to the main quest. This is something the game expects, too – there’s no real reason to grind in the game, providing players make good use of the enthralling, extra content available to them.

Perhaps the best examples of this are the game’s mercenary system, which leads to some excellent one-on-one fights with fearsome combatants, and hunting down the Cult of Kosmos. Although the cult ties into the larger plot as a whole, hunting down smaller members is a fantastic element of the game, and one that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Those are just a few tips to help players make the most of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. However, with a game as expansive as this, players are best suited to decide how best they want to play the game. Regardless of how they choose to enjoy the title, there are bound to be some surprises along the way.

More: Every Assassin’s Creed Game Ranked



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2018-10-09 03:10:13 – Rob Gordon

New York Comic-Con: 26 Biggest Announcements (And 4 Weirdest Possibilities)

It might not be as big as San Diego Comic-Con, but New York’s pop culture celebration is just as eventful. This year’s New York Comic-Con was littered with scoops. Whether it’s juicy rumors or brand new trailers, there was plenty to see and talk about. Of course, the convention weekend can get a bit overwhelming — the onslaught of news, panels, and footage seems endless. Thankfully, we’ve collected all of this biggest topics for those of you who are lost amidst all of the comic book news.

For this list, we’re going to cover the most important stories of this year’s New York Comic-Con, including some big ones that just happened to drop during the week rather than at the convention itself. The list will even feature a few big rumors that have come out of the con for some good measure — or for those of you who just like some gossip. Even those who attended the convention might have missed some of the major stories, so use this as your post-NYCC guide to recap the weekend as things begin to wind down.

We know it’s difficult to keep track of all this news, especially after the convention weekend. This list should make things a bit easier. Even if you didn’t attend, the bombardment of news is probably still filling your news feed. So after you’re finished watching trailers all day and unpacking your NYCC hauls, settle in and we’ll break everything down for you.

Here are the 26 Biggest Announcements From NYCC (And 4 Weirdest Possibilities).

30 Aquaman’s New/Old Armor

The new Aquaman trailer was the highlight of the weekend for many. It revealed a surprising amount of footage — some would say too much. The extended look — roughly five minutes long — featured a plenty of unseen footage.

Audiences were treated to a sequence involving Arthur and Mera in desert ruins, another look at Atlantis, and even an extended action sequence between the two leads as they are chased by Black Manta. Perhaps the biggest spoiler in the trailer was the reveal of Aquaman’s iconic orange and green outfit.

29 Hellboy First Look

While no footage from the Hellboy panel has been released to the public, convention-goers were treated to a poster reveal and an exclusive first look at the upcoming film.

The panel footage wooed many fans in attendance and featured a tone that balanced the movie’s violence and gore with humor. It saw Hellboy receive his iconic handgun and show off the Hand of Doom, and it highlighted his especially shaky relationship with his ally Ben Daimio.

The trailer’s money shot had Hellboy in all-out demon mode, rising out of a pit sporting a flaming sword and crown.

Hopefully it won’t be long before this footage is released to the public.

28 Bullseye in Daredevil Season 3

Daredevil’s new trailers suggest a return to the grounded crime-noir tones of the first season with some big new developments. The first trailer reveals that not only is Kingpin out of prison, but he appears to design a smear campaign to turn New York against Daredevil.

One of the ways this may be happening is through a Daredevil impostor, who is none other than the hero’s most famous villain, Bullseye. Bullseye is the subject of the second new trailer, exploring his life as a government agent-turned-assassin under the employ of Kingpin.

27 Titans Is Grittier Than The DCEU

Titans has already received flak for the marketing’s seriously dark tone. Now, after the first two episodes were screened for viewers at NYCC, it is getting the same criticism.

Not only does Titans sport the DCEU’s same dark tone, but apparently the show is even more violent than the films.

The footage featuring Robin displayed some extremely violent and lethal combat, complete with the same amount of gore and disrespect for human life one might find in — well, anything but a comic book show. With that said, the show did receive a warm reception from the audience, so maybe Titans has potential after all.

26 Possibility — Will Rick Grimes Survive?

The Walking Dead is losing its lead character this season, with the confirmed departure of Rick Grimes actor Andrew Lincoln. His impending exit has been talked about for months now, but fans still don’t know how his character will be written out of the show. In a new rumor, it seems that Rick Grimes might meet a brutal end.

In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, Andrew Lincoln joked that he might not “make it through the credits sequence” teasing Rick’s potential demise. Fans don’t want to say goodbye to Rick, but it will be even harder to do so if he is torn apart by walkers. Can’t somebody get a happy ending on this show?

25 Spock On Star Trek: Discovery

Star Trek fans weren’t left out of the fun this year, with a new trailer for season two of Star Trek: Discovery. The trailer promises a ride that might be just as intense as the first season, with plenty of action, character beats, and visuals so gorgeous that one would think the show had the budget of a feature-length film.

Amidst the sizzle of the trailer is a big reveal — the inclusion of a young, bearded Spock.

The character is supposedly connected to the “Red Angel” visions that Burnham is experiencing, though details on his appearance in the season are still under wraps.

24 First 35 minutes of new Spider-Man movie

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is still a few months out but panel attendees were treated to the first 35 minutes — and apparently what they saw was incredible. Reactions to the NYCC footage is overwhelmingly positive, citing the stylish animation and and lighthearted tone as some of the film’s standout elements. These early reactions come off the back of a new trailer for the film, which shows off several more of the alternate universe versions of Spider-Man.

Of course, this was only the first 35 minutes. Much of the movie is still under wraps and it has a long road ahead of it, being only one of many tentpole releases hitting theaters this December.

23 Deadly Class is coming in 2019

SYFY’s adaptation of the critically acclaimed Deadly Class comic series made a big showing this year. Between the close collaboration with series writer Rick Remender, the promise of intense action, and the Russo brothers at the helm (Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Avengers Infinity War), this long-awaited series has the potential to be a household name.

Not only does the show seem like a contender for the “next big thing” in comic book television, but it finally has a release date.

This was revealed to be January 16 in a new trailer that focuses on the coming-of-age aspect of the anarchic action series.

22 Star Wars’ The Mandalorian

The first image of Jon Favreau’s live-action Star Wars series was released on Thursday, getting fans hyped for the first real TV show in a galaxy far far away. The photo was released alongside new details about the show, namely its title: The Mandalorian.

Set between Return of the Jedi and The Force AwakensThe Mandalorian centers on a warrior from Mandalore travelling across the galaxy. The title character wears the iconic armor that the planet is known for — a costume shared by fan-favorite character Boba Fett. Plenty remains unknown about the series, though it is set to premiere on Disney’s upcoming streaming service.

21 Possibility — Kingpin and Spider-Man Crossover

Marvel fans will rejoice if this rumor comes true — during all of the Daredevil buzz over the convention weekend, Vincent D’Onofrio made a very reassuring tweet.

When a fan tweeted that the world will never see the him as Kingpin in an MCU film, D’Onofrio responded with “Who says?”

Marvel’s Netflix shows have been especially vague in their references to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but having Kingpin show up in a Tom Holland Spider-Man film would be the perfect connection. The chances are slim, but at least there’s hope.

20 Bane On Gotham

Gotham‘s fifth and final season was revealed in a trailer this weekend, promising quite the grand finale. The trailer hints that Gotham will be adapting the classic No Man’s Land comic book story this season, and also teased another big bad.

Actor Shane West has been cast as Bane, one of Batman’s greatest adversaries and one of the only major rogues that the show hasn’t yet adapted. Bane’s appearance so early in Bruce Wayne’s life has been met with mixed reactions among fans, but at least that suggests a bombastic end to the pre-Batman series.

19 The X-Men Go To Space

New York Comic-Con got an extended look at X-Men: Dark Phoenix, despite being subject to what seems like endless delays. The exclusive footage, which still has not been revealed to the public, gave fans a look at the fully-formed X-Men team and their upcoming cosmic adventure.

Highlights of the footage included an argument between Mystique and Professor X, Jean Grey absorbing a solar flare, and the team going on a rescue mission in space.

While most of the movie likely takes place on Earth, it’s nice to know that the movies aren’t above digging into the spacebound shenanigans that the comics do.

18 Penny from The Big Bang Theory is Harley Quinn

Among the many DC Universe announcements this weekend was the trailer for the Harley Quinn animated series, which has taken many fans by surprise. The show looks like a quirky adult comedy with Harley breaking the fourth wall and using foul language.

The show is already being compared to the likes of Deadpool, with positive reactions coming out of NYCC. It also features a great cast, with Kaley Cuoco, Alan Tudyk, Ron Funches, JB Smoove, and Wanda Sykes among the voice talent. It is set to release late in 2019 on the DC Universe streaming service.

17 Umbrella Academy’s Big Debut

Netflix’s adaptation of Gerard Way’s superhero darling The Umbrella Academy came to play during NYCC, with a handful of new images and even a trailer exclusive to the folks at Comic-Con. An Umbrella Academy movie has been in the works for many years, but after the switch to television and some time in development freefall, it finally seems right around the corner.

The series — which consists of a dysfunctional family of superheroes — seems to be maintaining its gothic comic book aesthetic.

The show looks like surreal than its counterpart on the pages, but it already has people excited. Umbrella Academy hits Netflix on February 15, 2019.

16 Doctor Who First Reactions

Those who attended the Doctor Who panel were in for quite the event. The attendees got to see the premiere of the new season as well as have an in-depth talk with the season’s Doctor, Jodie Whittaker. The audience’s response to the episode was ecstatic to say the least, and that sentiment seems to be shared by viewers around the world.

Not only was the show a critical hit, but its viewer ratings were record-breaking. The premiere episode “The Woman Who Fell to Earth” peaked at 9 million viewers, which the highest the show has ever had! Sounds like the new season of Doctor Who is off to a fantastic start.

15 Odin’s true form in American Gods season 2

Last year’s adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s American Gods was a massive hit and the trailer for the new season looks just as enticing.  Shadow Moon and Mr. Wednesday are back on their surreal fantasy roadtrip, accompanied by even more colorful characters and bizarre, unsettling visuals.

The footage teases a war between Mr. Wednesday and Mr. World, with an especially striking shot of Wednesday in his true form: Odin. 

American Gods is a trippy, gorgeous series that many may have missed last year, and with such a great-looking sequel on the way, now might be the time to go back and binge. The second seasons drops in 2019.

14 Possibility — Sabrina/Riverdale Crossover

A full trailer for Chilling Adventures of Sabrina hit the web early last week, revealing a spooky-yet-fun adaptation of the comics, as well as a revival of the late ’90s sitcom. Sadly, Archie fans will be disappointed to hear that Sabrina is not currently attached to the hit CW series, Riverdale.

While the Sabrina was originally set to appear on the CW as Riverdale’s companion show (much like CW’s Arrowverse), the move to Netflix seems to have stifled the idea. Still, Sabrina showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa is holding out hope for a potential crossovers so that the original plan can come to fruition.

13 George R. R. Martin’s new show

Those of you eagerly awaiting Game of Thrones… well, we don’t have any good news for you. But, if you want more content from the mind of George R.R. Martin, an adaptation of his book Nightflyers has received a new trailer and a first-episode premiere at New York Comic-Con.

The sci-fi thriller follows a crew they struggle to survive on their space mission.

Not everything is as it seems on the vessel, as the show promises some solid horror scares as well as a character-driven story. The show doesn’t officially premiere until December 2nd, but at least sci-fi horror fans have something to look forward to.

12 She-Ra And The Princesses’ LGBT rep

Dreamworks Animation has been launching hit after hit lately — between shows like Trollhunters and Voltron: Legendary Defender, their work has earned them much success on Netflix. The newest series from the studio, She-Ra and the Princesses of Power, dropped a poster and teaser trailer at New York Comic-Con that looks like promising fun for young viewers.

The reboot of the ’80s television show sports new cartoony visuals, witty humor, and a diverse cast of characters — even including a same gender couple. While the show’s initial reveal was met with some backlash, the trailer seems infectiously pleasant and fun.

11 Matt Bomer stars in DC’s Doom Patrol

While Titans got plenty of attention at NYCC, the next DC Universe original series got a brief first look. Doom Patrol is set to release next spring, but panel attendees were show some exclusive photos of Brendan Fraser’s character, Robotman. Fraser appeared at the panel and talked through the first look.

Seeing as Doom Patrol is currently filming, it shouldn’t be long before official footage hits the web.

The Robotman design look remarkably accurate to the comics, which has gotten many fans even more excited for the obscure property’s TV adaptation. Supplementing this news was the casting of Matt Bomer as Negative Man — another big name

10 The Spawn Trilogy

Fans hoping for a Spawn trailer at NYCC were out of luck this weekend, but series creator Todd McFarlane spoke at length about his plans for the newly rebooted movie. McFarlane explained that he envisions an ambitious trilogy of Spawn movies, with each one visually and tonally distinct from the last.

The first film might be described as a kind of existential horror-superhero film, with characters wondering if what they see is even real. While the project is still a ways off, the Jamie Foxx-led vehicle is going to emphasize the dark tones of the book with a hard R-rating, as well as cater to the now-older readers of the comic series.

9 DC Universe Streaming Plans

DC Comics and Warner Bros wanted to spotlight their DC Universe streaming service at this year’s NYCC, several small news breaks on he various related properties. Not only did they show footage of Titans, Doom Patrol, and Harley Quinn, but they also revealed the service’s content release schedule over the coming year.

While no specific dates were given, the timeline depicts various release windows for the service’s different original series.

While Young Justice: Outsiders seems to have been split into two parts, Doom Patrol will drop next spring followed by Swamp Thing in the summer, with both Stargirl and Harley Quinn dropping next fall.

8 Pet Sematary First Look

Horror fans might not have had much to talk about at Comic-Con, but during the convention some promo images dropped for the reboot of a Stephen King classic. The first images of the Pet Sematary remake were released, featuring Jason Clarke, John Lithgow, and Amy Seimetz.

The best image of the bunch comes in the form of the Creed family cat, Church, looking meaner and mangier than ever.

While an evil cat may not be the scariest thing you’ll find in Pet Sematary, it’s a nice preview of the Stephen King spookiness to come, especially after the success of 2017’s It. Pet Sematary is set for release on April 5, 2019.

7 Runaways Season 2 Footage

A new trailer for the second season of Runaways shows that the series has moved way past high school drama, and further into superhero action territory. The trailer features the Runaways’ comic book hideout, huge action set-pieces, and plenty of superpowers to go around.

Highlights of the trailer include a kiss between Nico and Karolina, a battle on an airport runway, and a glimpse at Gert’s pet dinosaur Old Lace. The first season of the show was a quiet hit among the newer Marvel properties, but this season promises a much deeper dive into the superhero genre that fans of the series are have been waiting for.

6 How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World

One reveal snuck in towards the end of Comic-Con — a very short trailer for How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World. Although very brief, the trailer is made up of all-new footage.

The trailer consists of baby Hiccup in his father’s arms as he is told about the legendary world of dragons.

During his father’s narration, the titular Hidden World is given a brief tease as hundreds of dragons flutter across a cavernous landscape. It ends with a shot of Hiccup and Toothless overlooking a town covered in dragons. It’s not as extensive as the film’s last trailer, but it might hold fans over until the film’s release on February 22, 2019.

5 Good Omens Trailer

It’s a great year for Neil Gaiman lovers as they got not one, but two different Gaiman projects revealed at NYCC. First was the second season of American Gods, and now Amazon’s adaptation of Good Omens. 

The trailer for the new series pits Michael Sheen and David Tennant against each other as an angel and a demon who must join forces in order to prevent the apocalypse. The dark subject matter is contrasted by the show’s whimsical tone and David Tennant’s devilish charisma. It sets up what looks to be a very fun buddy comedy about he end of the world.

4 First 25 Minutes Of Peter Jackson’s Mortal Engines

Fans of director Peter Jackson were treated to the first 25 minutes of his next project, Mortal Engines, at this year’s New York Comic-Con. Mortal Engines is another expansive world, like the Tolkien material that Jackson has worked with before, but with a post-apocalyptic twist.

The most talked about elements of the footage were the massive scale of the world and the jaw-dropping visuals.

The Mortal Engines footage introduces viewers to Hester, a girl who lives in a world that was ravaged by the “60 Minute War” that destroyed civilization. Now the world consists of giant cities on wheels that fight each other. Audiences won’t see it for themselves until December 14.

3 The Boys Teaser Trailer

Amazon’s adaptation of Garth Ennis’s hyper-violent superhero comic The Boys has finally been revealed with a brief teaser trailer . The teaser features a public service announcement from Vought International, a company that facilitates the operation of the Seven, this world’s league of superheroes. At the end of the PSA, the titular Boys can be seen sitting on a couch, rudely gesturing to their televisions.

The Boys is already setting itself apart from the traditonal superhero fare, and with good reason — the series is about a team of people who keep out-of-control superheroes in check– by blackmailing them, stealing from them, and beating them up. It’s extremely adult-oriented and it already looks like fun.

2 Voltron Ends in December

The release date and synopsis for the eighth and final season of Voltron was revealed at New York Comic-Con, finally bringing the critically acclaimed Netflix series to a close.

The last season will feature the final battle between the Paladins and Witch Haggar.

A few promo images were released as well — one featuring the villain Honerva and another depicting the Voltron Paladins in a control room with Shiro commanding the gang in a background role. While no footage was shown at NYCC, the release date was confirmed to be December 14. The show’s final season will premiere on Netflix.

1 Possibility — Avengers 4 Titled “Avengers: Annihilation”

This rumor went viral during the weekend of NYCC — “Avengers: Annihilation” may or may not be the name of the still untitled Avengers 4. Speculation over the film’s name has driven fans mad in recent months, with “Annihilation” being yet another choice amidstthe rumored titles titles like “Avengers: Forever”, “Avengers: Endgame”, and “The Last Avenger”.

Annihilation comes from the name comic storyline of the same name, though it bears few similarities to the Infinity Gauntlet story that the films are adapting. Seriously, Marvel, just call it “Avengers: Assemble” and get it over with already. Don’t keep us waiting!

What announcements from New York Comic-Con excite you the most? Make sure to leave a comment before you go to share your thoughts!



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2018-10-08 07:10:26 – Jonathan Figueroa

Better Call Saul Season 4 Finale Ending Explained

This post contains SPOILERS for Better Call Saul

Better Call Saul’s fourth season ended with “Winner,” an exciting finale that inches the spinoff closer to its Breaking Bad roots. This year, AMC’s acclaimed drama had to followup the jaw-dropping cliffhanger of season 3, where Chuck died in a horrifying fire. That tragedy is what truly spurred Jimmy McGill’s transformation into Saul Goodman as he dealt with the consequences and aftermath of not only his brother’s death, but also his bar suspension. Over the course of the fourth season, Jimmy became more involved with the criminal underworld of Albuquerque, launching his “get-rich-quick” scheme of selling prepaid cell phones to unsavory individuals.

Elsewhere in the Saul universe, Gus Fring looked to expand his cartel operations, commissioning the construction of the famous “super lab” Walter White and Jesse Pinkman cooked in during Breaking Bad. Entrusting Mike Ehrmantraut to oversee the operation, Gus hired a group of German nationals led by Werner Ziegler. While the project was taking longer than originally planned, the crew was working diligently and hoped to have it finished soon. Of course, things hit a snag at the end of last week’s “Wiedersehen” when Werner went AWOL, leaving only a note with detailed instructions for his team. These storylines (Werner’s disappearance and Jimmy’s bar reinstatement appeal) are the crux of the finale’s narrative, with both resolving in powerful ways.

The Tragedy of Werner Ziegler

Throughout the season, Werner’s team were recurring players, frequently interacting with Mike. Early on, it looked like Kai would be the troublemaker of the group, especially after his incident with the nightclub. However, Kai turned out to be a red herring, and Werner caused the biggest headaches for Gus and Mike. Werner, of course, is far from home and dearly misses his beloved wife. Wishing to see her again, Werner pitched Mike the idea of going home for a weekend, but was denied. Since he couldn’t get his superiors’ approval, Werner took matters into his own hands and hatched a plot for a loving reunion.

“Winner” reveals Werner ran off to a resort where he planned to spend time with his wife. He made travel arrangements that would see her fly over to America for a weekend and go back home. Sadly for Werner, he never gets to see her again. Mike tracks him down and after a discussion with Gus, realizes there’s only one resolution for this setback. Allowing Werner the opportunity to call his wife and tell her to return home before Gus’ people do anything to her, Mike then (reluctantly) kills Werner. Ehrmantraut says Werner’s death will be covered up as a tragic accident and his men will be sent back. As one might expect, Gus is angered by the lack of progress on the super lab (cutting a conversation with Gale short), which he thought would be completed by now.

Related: How Better Call Saul’s (Unseen) Breaking Bad Character Connects To Jimmy

Werner clearly had no ill intent (Mike knew he was jut homesick), but when he ran off, his fate was essentially sealed. This was the second transgression Werner committed against Gus – the first being his friendly chat about construction work with bar patrons. These two incidents back-to-back made it very difficult for Gus to trust Werner moving forward, and by now, fans are well aware of Fring’s ruthlessness. Mike mentions multiple times in the episode there are other ways to go about things, but he can’t convince Gus to spare Werner’s life. No amount of begging or pleading has any effect on Gus when he’s made up his mind about something. Unfortunately for Werner, he never completely understood what he got himself into and crossed the wrong people.

Lalo also factors into this storyline, with the mysterious member of the Salamanca clan tailing Mike and trying to locate Werner for his own reasons. Lalo does discover which resort Werner is staying at and briefly speaks to the Russian over the phone, posing as one of Gus’ employees. Not knowing any better, Werner begins to tell Lalo the first couple of basic instructions for the super lab construction, before Mike arrives in person and interrupts the call. Near the end of the episode, Mike tells Gus about what happened, and it’ll be fascinating to see how this continues in season 5. Of course, Fring does not get along with the Salamancas, and despite Lalo’s cheeky offer of a peace treaty in last week’s episode, the two warring sides will continue their power struggle. Lalo is clearly curious about what Gus is up to and wants to get an upper hand for himself.

Page 2: Jimmy McGill Becomes Saul Goodman

Jimmy McGill Is Finally Saul Goodman

Jimmy’s arc in season 4 is dealing with the fallout of his felony from season 2 (tampering with Chuck’s documents) as he tries to get by in life with his one-year suspension. Picking up lawful employment at CC Mobile, he does everything he’s supposed to do to work himself back in the graces of the committee. However, last week’s episode ended with the shocking twist that Jimmy was denied reinstatement – after he was found to be insincere in his comments. Kim, as she always does, stays by Jimmy’s side to help him win the appeal. In Kim’s mind, the sincerity issue stems from Chuck and Jimmy needs to show remorse for what’s transpired.

The two forge ahead with another one of their brilliant schemes. Jimmy spends the one-year anniversary of Chuck’s death mourning at his brother’s grave. An “anonymous” donation is made to HHM to name the legal library after Chuck, with members of Jimmy’s go-to video team telling people in attendance they heard the gift was from Jimmy. It all builds up to another hearing in front of the committee, where Jimmy uses the letter Chuck left him as a weapon in his favor. After (faking) being unable to read it in place of an opening statement, Jimmy launches into a nostalgic monologue where he reminisces about his brother, talks about wanting to make Chuck proud, and credits Chuck with influencing his interest in a law career. In their celebration afterwards, Kim feels some it was truthful, but Jimmy’s reaction makes it painfully apparent it was all a show for the committee so he could get his law license back. As he prepares to sign the necessary documents, Jimmy states he’ll no longer be practicing under his legal name. Turning to a clearly shocked Kim, he closes out the season by saying, “S’all good, man.”

Related: Bob Odenkirk Responds to Fan Theory About Chuck’s Letter

At a certain time in his life, Jimmy probably aspired to be an honest, hard-working lawyer like Chuck, but the events of Better Call Saul have rendered that impossible. During a key sequence of the episode, Jimmy (as part of his sincerity scheme) sits on the board awarding scholarships in Chuck’s memory. He vouches for a student named Kristy Esposito, who received only one vote (from Jimmy) because she was found guilty of shoplifting. In that moment, Jimmy realizes that the law community at large will never accept someone with a prior record, and clearly sees himself in the young Kristy. Because of his actions in season 2, the most prominent firms in the country will always consider Jimmy a liability, no matter how much he swears he’s changed. Chasing down Kristy after the scholarship meetings, Jimmy basically lays out the Saul Goodman playbook, telling his favorite student to cut corners and to not worry about what others think (because she’ll never “make it” the traditional way).

Instead of conforming to fit within the perceived standards of the field, Jimmy gamed the system to his own advantage. He told the reinstatement committee what they wanted to hear – even though he has no intention of following through on it – and is now set to play by his own rules. In his argument with Kim on the rooftop in “Wiedersehen,” Jimmy went on the defensive about how Kim views him as “the kind of lawyer guilty people hire” and is unworthy of sharing an office with her (while she thrives at a large firm in New Mexico). Jimmy is embracing his reputation. Saul Goodman, as Breaking Bad fans know, is exactly the type of lawyer criminals hire. Howard Hamlin wouldn’t touch Walter White and Jesse Pinkman with a 10-foot pole, but Saul went into business with them, doing whatever he could to protect his clients’ rights and help them avoid jail time.

The beauty of this is how it all traces back to Chuck and recontextualizes the character of Saul Goodman. When he was introduced in the second season of Breaking Bad, he was nothing more than an entertaining side player; a riff on the “sleazy lawyer” archetype who came up with elaborate schemes to win his cases. Now, the persona is revealed as a last resort for a man who once upon a time looked up to his brother, only to have his hopes and dreams destroyed by that very same sibling. Chuck went out of his way to block Jimmy from getting a position at HHM, fearful of what “Slippin’ Jimmy with a law degree” would be capable of. He wasn’t willing to give Jimmy the benefit of the doubt, and ended up unknowingly launching the career of Albuquerque’s shadiest criminal defense attorney. Maybe if he was more accepting and loving towards Jimmy, things would have turned out differently.

It’ll be exciting to see how the confirmed fifth season picks up on this. There were already hints the Jimmy/Kim relationship was fraying (the wonderfully constructed cold open of “Something Stupid”), and the former’s new career path might be the final straw. Kim is never mentioned in Breaking Bad, so obviously something happens there. Better Call Saul correctly took the long road to get to this point, and now the possibilities for its future are wide open.

More: Better Call Saul Fills In Breaking Bad Gaps



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2018-10-08 07:10:07 – Chris Agar