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Madden 21 Reveals New X-Factor Abilities For Wide Receivers And Tight Ends

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 21:49

EA has revealed more of the 50 new Superstar X-Factor abilities in Madden NFL 21. After detailing Quarterback abilities yesterday, the latest update focuses on the offensive side of the ball with wide receivers and tight ends like George Kittle, Julio Jones, Tyreek Hill, and more.

Superstar X-Factors are powerful abilities designed to mimic the real-life talent and characteristics of some of the NFL's best players. By completing specific milestones with an X-Factor player, their special ability will trigger as they enter the zone and only end after certain Knockout conditions are met, such as a dropped catch or consecutive non-targets.

Here is the latest X-Factor reveals:

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Universal Will Spend $200 Million To Shoot Tom Cruise Into Space

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 15:32

Tom Cruise is going to head to space for an upcoming film--the first time a Hollywood movie has ever been shot outside of planet Earth--and he's now secured some serious money to do so. Deadline is reporting that Cruise, along with director Doug Liman and producers Christopher McQuarrie and PJ van Sandwijk, have secured a major production commitment from Universal.

The film, which currently has no script, will be funded for $200 million, the report says. Elon Musk and his company, SpaceX, will partner on the project too, and help get Cruise outside of the Earth's atmosphere.

It's possible that the project will ultimately go on to cost more money, since a production like this has never been done before. Cruise previously worked with Liman on Edge of Tomorrow and American Made. McQuarrie directed Cruise in the last two Mission: Impossible movies.

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Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare/Warzone Get Double XP Just Before Season 5 Launch

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 15:29

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and the battle royale game Warzone are currently offering double XP and more, and the bonuses are set to run all weekend long.

In addition to double XP for standard level progression, the games are offering double weapon XP and double XP for Battle Pass tiers. This comes at a key time, as the Modern Warfare/Warzone Season 4 Battle Pass is about to end.

As such, now is your last chance to unlock the content in the Battle Pass (though its contents can also be purchased with real money at any time). The double XP period ends at 10 AM PT on August 4.

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Halo Infinite: Check Out This Excellent Fan-Made Recreation Of The Gameplay Reveal In Halo 5

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 15:06

The Halo series has long allowed players to create and customize maps through the Forge, and one fan has created something very cool in Halo 5. Fan Alexander Henry has recreated a portion of the map from Halo Infinite, as seen in the recent gameplay reveal (below), and it looks great.

Henry posted a video reel of his map to Twitter, saying that it's a 4v4 Slayer map created within 48 hours of the initial reveal. "I just want a shot at joining 343's Forge team," he said.

You can check out the video below. With Halo Infinite's visuals drawing criticism, it has to be said--it looks pretty nice in the Halo 5 engine.

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Hannibal's Bryan Fuller Is Doing His Best To Make Season 4 Or A Movie Happen

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 14:23

Hannibal ended in 2015 after three seasons on NBC, and the show has gained a cult following since its release. The show, from showrunner Bryan Fuller (Pushing Daisies, American Gods) starred Mads Mikkelsen as the cannibal Hannibal Lecter and Hugh Dancy as criminal investigator Will Graham--all of whom want it to come back.

Now, talking to Collider, Bryan Fuller and Hugh Dancy have talked about the possibility of the show's return, why the rights to the character make it difficult, and what would need to happen to create more Hannibal.

"Martha De Laurentiis controls the rights for the Hannibal character," Fuller says. Gaunmont International Television also needs to be involved, because they own "the rights to those characters and those situations." However, it sounds like De Laurentiis is on board, and has been helping Fuller. "Martha and I, every couple of years, pick up our bags and go door to door and see if anybody’s interested in revisiting," he says.

However, it remains complicated, as the show would need somewhere to live. "I wish there was something that was definitive," Fuller says. "There’s some ideas that I’m very excited about that continue the strange trajectory of season 3. But I have not been approached."

Hannibal recently came to Netflix in the US, and Fuller believes this would be a good place for a new series. "The biggest hurdle is that we were somebody else’s show," he says. "What I love about Netflix platforming the show now is there’s an opportunity for it to be seen as a Netflix show and maybe that will reconfigure their appetite, so to speak."

Fuller and Dancy also expressed a desire to work together again. "I would defer to Bryan’s sense of what would work if the story that he wanted to tell and where he ended up taking it could work in that format," Dancy said. "Obviously, this is a wildly hypothetical question. But in the hypothetical, absolutely. I’m in, basically."

Hannibal's ending was (no spoilers) somehow simultaneously definitive and ambiguous, depending on which angle you looked at it from. The show never rated very well, but was a huge critical success.

One thing's for sure, though--if Hannibal came back, it would not be an adaptation of The Silence of the Lambs, as that story's main character, Clarice Starling, is getting her own series.

If you miss the show as much as we do, check out this gallery of horrifying murder sculptures from all three seasons.

EA Comments On Buying New Studios, But Refuses To Discuss Warner Bros. Rumors

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 13:56

With rumors swirling that Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment is up for sale, gaming giant Electronic Arts has commented about its general approach toward buying studios. As part of the company's latest earnings briefing, EA CFO Blake Jorgensen--who controls the company's money--said EA is "more interested than ever" in buying studios. He refused to comment specifically on Warner Bros. but he pointed out that EA--as one of the biggest gaming companies on the planet--is usually in the mix when studios get put up for sale.

"It is very rare that we don't get a chance to look at anything that is up for sale," Jorgensen said. "You can imagine ... people call us and say we're thinking about selling the business or we're thinking about selling ourselves. We are a place that a lot of people want to come as a long-term home if they decide to sell the business. We get to look at almost everything."

Jorgensen said he "can't comment on any specific acquisition," but he pointed out that EA's acquisitions in the past have come from long-standing partnerships. EA isn't necessarily interested in snapping up a studio to get its portfolio of games--instead, it wants to invest in talent. All of this sure sounds like EA is not going after Warner Bros.

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Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare/Warzone Season 5 Adds New Shadow Company Agency

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 11:52

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Warzone's big Season 5 update is nearly here, and now developer Infinity Ward has offered a few more details on what to expect.

Season 5 introduces the Shadow Company, which is a "mysterious new private military company" that is aligned with the Alliance, but in name only.

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Grindstone's Huge New Update Adds 50 Levels And Daily Challenges To Apple Arcade Exclusive

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 11:36

Grindstone, an Apple Arcade launch title that remains exclusive to the service, has just received a major update full of new content. The Daily Grind update adds a new daily mode, as well as 50 new levels and more.

The new mode is a daily challenge with leaderboards, so you can log in every day and try to dominate. It's designed with long-term players in mind. You'll be able to access the new Shrine of Greed and fight your way through four levels to reach a high score.

The new levels introduced bring the game up to 230 levels total, and they can be unlocked with Grindstones. They'll likely be trickier than what was available in the base game. There's also new items to unlock, with a new Pickaxe and Goldrush Garb to nab.

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Tempest 2000 Dev Jeff Minter's Next Game, Moose Life, Is Out Soon With VR Support

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 11:33

Jeff Minter has been delivering strange, unique games since the early 80s, and that trend is going to continue on August 12 with the release of Moose Life. The game, which now has a Steam page with a release date (as picked up on by Eurogamer), is an arcade shooter with VR support.

The game continues on with the style of gameplay Minter pioneered with 1994's Tempest 2000, meaning that it's another tube-style shooter made to feel like older Vectrex arcade games.

"Moose Life is the latest step on our journey into euphoric trance," the Steam page reads. "Created in the style of an 80s arcade game, but in fully immersive 3D/VR. You'll feel like you are inside the mind of Eugene Jarvis himself."

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Halo Infinite Dev Talks Graphics, Loot Boxes, And Why There May Be No Multiplayer Beta

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 11:12

The first Halo Infinite campaign footage was released during the July 23 Xbox Games Showcase, and people commented that the graphics left something to be desired. In a new blog post, developer 343 Industries responded to the concerns, stating that the company is trying to make a more "classic"-looking game, while also acknowledging the studio still has work to do to make Halo Infinite look better before launch. The blog post also touched on how Halo Infinite will approach microtransactions.

Regarding the graphics, 343 said there are multiple issues at play here, including the overall art style and the visual fidelity. For the art style, 343 is moving back to the "legacy" look of the original Halo trilogy. The company said it's doing this based on the feedback surrounding Halo 4, Halo 5, and Halo Wars 2, which had more modern-looking graphics.

"With Halo Infinite, we're returning to a more 'classic' art style which was a key message going back to the very first reveal that garnered enthusiastic and positive responses," 343 said. "This translates to a more vibrant palette, 'cleaner' models and objects with less 'noise,' though it doesn't mean less detail. While we appreciate this may not be everyone's personal preference, we stand by this decision and are happy to see it resonating with so many fans around the world."

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Amy Adams Will Play A Woman Scared She's Turning Into A Dog In New Film

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 10:45

Amy Adams has signed on for a new film with a wild premise. Deadline is reporting that Adams is attached to star in and produce a film adapted from the upcoming Rachel Yoder novel Nightbitch (that name could change for the cinema release), which will be released through Annapurna Pictures.

The book is a dark comedy about a mother who used to work as an artist, but is now a stay-at-home mother. For one reason or another, the woman believes that she is turning into a dog--hence the name.

Yoder is adapting her own book for the screen, and will serve as executive producer along with Megan Ellison, Sammy Scher, and Sue Naegle. Stacy O'Neil will also produce.

The book is due to be published in Summer 2021, so it's a while away yet. It's not the only Amy Adams adaptation on the horizon, either--she recently wrapped on The Woman in the Window, a Joe Wright (Atonement) adaptation of the popular A. J. Finn book.

Adams has been nominated for six Oscars (Junebug, Doubt, The Fighter, The Master, American Hustle, Vice), but has never won. Her time is surely coming.

GTA 5 Online Offering Bonuses On Arena War And Survival Series This Week

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 10:19

Grand Theft Auto V has announced this week's bonuses, discounts, and Lucky Spin prize car, and if you're a fan of Survival Series of Arena War you're in luck. These modes will pay out higher than usual this week, so they're worth jumping into if you need more GTA$.

The Horde Mode-style Survival Series is paying out double rewards all week long, so you'll be rewarded for enduring at a better rate than usual. Arena War, the game's large-scale destruction derby-style mode, is paying out double RP and GTA$, but it's also giving players triple Arena Points this week.

By competing, you can also get 50% off the Apocalypse variant for any vehicles that can be used in this mode.

The Lucky Wheel at the Diamond Casino and Resort can win you a Dinka Sugoi this week, a hatchback without quite as much oomph as some of the game's other cars, but still a classy little vehicle. Of course, you'll have to rely on luck to land it.

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US House Of Representatives Votes Down AOC's Military Twitch Ban

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 10:10

The U.S. House of Representatives has voted down a measure that would have prevented the military from recruiting on platforms like Twitch. Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez proposed the amendment after the US Army was caught running fake giveaways that would give viewers information to recruiters among other controversies.

The measure would have prevented the military from using video games, esports, and livestreaming services for recruitment, according to Vice. Several branches of the military, including the US Army and Navy, maintain their own esports teams and Twitch channels. The US Army recently paused their recruitment efforts on Twitch after facing backlash.

Numerous controversies regarding the military's Twitch presence have occurred over the past month. The US Army and the US Navy have been banning viewers who ask or talk about war crimes, which is potentially a violation of the First Amendment right to free speech since the organizations are extensions of the federal government. Twitch recently stopped the US Army from promoting the aforementioned giveaways that would give viewers information to recruiters.

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Cyberpunk 2077 Dev Warns Of Beta Scams

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 09:12

Cyberpunk 2077 developer CD Projekt Red has warned users about beta scams related to the much-anticipated role-playing game. Writing on Twitter, the Polish studio said it's aware that bad actors are trying to scam people with fake emails containing codes for a Cyberpunk 2077 beta.

"If you recently received an email claiming to be granting you beta access to Cyberpunk 2077, it's not from us," CD Projekt Red said. "Unfortunately, there have been more of these being sent out over the past few weeks. When we contact you via email, it'll always come from @ cdprojektred com address."

The studio further advised people to stay vigilant about any third-party emails they see claiming to have information about Cyberpunk 2077.

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EA Just Had Its Best June Quarter For Sales In Its 38-Year History

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 08:38

The global pandemic is keeping people staying home and looking for things to do. Gaming, in particular, has enjoyed a huge uptick in play time--and spending--due to the virus. Electronic Arts has now put that increase into perspective with hard data.

The company reported earnings for the quarter ended June 30, and it was the best June quarter in the company's 38-year history.

EA posted total revenue of $1.46 billion for the period, while the company made a profit of $365 million. The overwhelming majority of EA's revenue for the quarter--$1.1 billion--came from microtransactions, which are called "live services."

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EA Said Titanfall During A Financial Call So We'll Never Give Up Hope For A Sequel

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 08:02

An EA Executive casually mentioned the possibility of a new Titanfall game "sometime down the road" while discussing studio acquisitions during a financial call. Blake Jorgensen, EA's COO and CFO, was answering a question about EA possibly acquiring any new studios and brought up the process of acquiring Respawn Entertainment, when he mentioned the magic word.

"It wasn't about Titanfall, and that's no offense to Titanfall; it's an amazing game and we'll maybe see a Titanfall at some point, sometime down the road," Jorgensen said.

Jorgensen was more than likely just using it as an example to strengthen his answer, more stumbling into Titanfall than coyly teasing it. But in a conversation dominated by financial numbers and FIFA Ultimate Team, my ears were burning at the mention of one of EA's best franchises having even the most remote possibility at getting a new entry.

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This Ultrawide Gaming Monitor Is $400 Off Right Now

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 07:50

There are a lot of budget monitors out there for those not looking to spend a lot of money, but if you're on the other end of the spectrum, looking for the best out there with no price limits, then there's an excellent deal at Microsoft right now. The 43.4-inch Lenovo Legion Y44w-10 ultrawide monitor is only $799 right now, down from its regular price of $1,199. That's $400 off, one heck of a deal for an excellent ultrawide display.

If you order now, the Lenovo Legion ultrawide monitor can arrive as soon as August 3 if you order with express shipping. Otherwise, it comes with free two-to-three day shipping, which may take longer due to current conditions with the pandemic.

Lenovo Legion, 43.4-inch ultrawide monitor $799 (was $1,199) See at Amazon

This particular Lenovo Legion boasts a 3840x1200 resolution, a 144Hz refresh rate, and a 6ms response time that can be overclocked to 4ms. On the back, you'll find two HDMI 2.0 ports, two USB-C ports, one DisplayPort port, and four USB 3.1 ports. It's also equipped with FreeSync technology that's compatible with G-Sync, making it possible to take advantage of variable frame rates no matter what your GPU is.

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Impact's Good Brothers Confirm New Japan Pro Wrestling Status

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 07:49

Since leaving WWE, one of the bigger questions the Good Brothers--Karl Anderson and Doc Gallows-- have received is whether or not they'll be returning to New Japan Pro Wrestling. Between 2013 and 2016, the two were primary members of the Bullet Club faction, alongside the likes of Finn Balor, Adam Cole, and the Young Bucks. However, the duo, who are now signed with Impact Wrestling, have yet to indicate any plans for return.

That is, until now. Speaking to GameSpot's Wrestle Buddies podcast the Good Brothers confirm that they will be returning to New Japan. In fact, there's already a deal between the two sides to make it happen. "For sure. There's a deal in place," Anderson said. Gallows added, "Yeah, we're going."

As for when that could happen, the Good Brothers were a bit more coy. "When the time is right we'll probably do a nice surprise thing somewhere," Anderson teased. It's hard to imagine them not having some interaction with the current version of the Bullet Club, though. After all, four of the group's current members--Bad Luck Fale, Tama Tonga, Yujiro Takahashi, and Chase wens--have been part of the group since the Good Brothers' tenure. Some form of reunion between the longtime stablemates would be very entertaining.

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Sea of Thieves Adds Auto Float Accessibility Option To Help Players With Underwater Phobias

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 07:41

Sea of Thieves has a new feature that should help players who fear the dark depths of the ocean. Earlier this month, Rare added an auto float feature that doesn't let the player sink below the surface.

"Should you leap off a high ledge or a cannonball forces you out of the crow's nest and into the deep blue, this option will automatically see you bob to the surface," the studio wrote in a post on its official site. Players can activate the feature by going to the settings menu and turning "Automatically Float in Water" on.

This option could help players with thalassophobia--which includes the fear of being in deep bodies of water, fear of the vast emptiness of the sea, of sea waves, sea creatures, and fear of distance from land--as well as other similar phobias.

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EA Explains Why Star Wars: Squadrons Is Priced Lower Than Most Games

Fri, 07/31/2020 - 07:35

EA has explained why Star Wars: Squadrons--which launches on October 2 for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One--will cost only $40 at launch, much lower than most big-budget games currently releasing on consoles and PC. According to COO and CFO Blake Jorgensen, the game doesn't have the same breadth of content as other more expensive games, as it is more focused on a specific experience.

"We always look at the games and we want to make sure we are providing the greatest value for our players," Jorgensen said. "And, you know, games all have [a] different scale, and most of our games right now have [a] huge scale. We designed [Squadrons] to really focus on what we heard from consumers, which is one of their greatest fantasies, and that's to be able to fly an X-Wing fighter, a Tie Fighter, and be in a dogfight. And so it doesn't have the breadth of some of our games, but it is still an incredible game, and so that's why we chose to price it at a slightly lower level, to also allow access to as many people as possible who have that Star Wars fantasy.

"I think you've seen us over the years differentiate pricing on lots of games. We've differentiated pricing on things like Plants vs. Zombies games because we knew that they were skewed to younger audiences, for example, or maybe didn't have the depth of all of the game modes that you might see in a FIFA or Madden."

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