Tuesday, September 21, 2021

THQ Nordic Announces Outcast 2: A New Beginning

THQ Nordic has announced a revival of the Outcast franchise with the upcoming release of Outcast 2: A New Beginning. Development started in 2018 with at least ten developers from the original Outcast team onboard, including the director and art director from that game. Outcast 2 revives ideas from the original sequel that was being planned in 1999/2000. Due to financial issues with its publisher Infogrames, the project was shelved indefinitely. Appeal Studios, the team behind A New Beginning, wants to make a product that feels like a successor to the cult classic. Appeal is looking to implement a non-linear narrative an enticing world to explore. Click here to watch embedded media Like the first game, Outcast 2 will take place on the planet of Adelpha, and players will step back into the shoes of Cutter Slade 20 years in the future. Due to an accident while escaping the planet, Slade was blipped out of time and found his way back decades later. To keep the world fresh, players will explore a different part of the planet and meet new inhabitants. Combat and movement have been updated, according to THQ Nordic. Outcast 2 is a third-person shooter at heart, with modular weaponry being a focus. However, Cutter will also receive magic-like “Talan powers” and a new mobility-enhancing jetpack. While we don’t have a release date quite yet, THQ Nordic informs us Outcast 2 is nearing the end of its “pre-alpha” stage of development, a good sign we’ll be seeing it sooner rather than later. THQ Nordic and Appeal Studios are releasing Outcast 2 on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, and PC.   Outcast is a game that I missed out on all these years but heard rumblings of it over time. Do you have any Outcast memories you’d like to share? How did the game impact you in the late 90s and beyond? Are you excited about the re-emergence of the franchise? Tell me all about it in the comments! Click image thumbnails to view larger version                                                                                                             
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    Bad Bunny is Spotify's most-streamed artist of 2020

    Spotify ‘Tis the season for top 10 lists, so nearly every streaming service or content-hosting website will release its “best of” roundups between now and the end of the month. Spotify is one of the regulars, and as part of its annual Wrapped festivities, the company has revealed its top charts for the year. For 2020, Bad Bunny is the most-streamed artist on the platform globally with over 8.3 billion streams, followed by Drake, J Balvin, Juice WRLD and The Weeknd — in that order. Billie Eilish is the most popular female artist for a second straight year with Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, Dua Lipa and Halsey rounding out the top 5. The Weeknd’s “Blinding Lights” is the most-streamed song globally with almost 1.6 billion streams this year, while Bad Bunny’s YHLQMDLG is the top album — amassing over 3.3 billion streams. Other popular albums, in order of global rank, include The Weeknd’s After Hours, Post Malone’s Hollywood’s Bleeding, Harry Styles’ Fine Line and Dua Lipa’s Future Nostalgia. When it comes to the rest of the top-five singles, “Dance Monkey” by Tones and I, “The Box” by Roddy Ricch, “Roses - Imanbek Remix” by Imanbek and SAINt JHN and “Don’t Start Now” by Dua Lipa finish up that list. In 2019, Spotify bet big on podcasts and it continued to do so in 2020. This year, future Spotify exclusive show The Joe Rogan Experience is the most popular podcast globally. That’s a pretty impressive feat considering it just debuted on Spotify in September. And of course, that’s a great sign considering the podcast will become exclusive to the service at the end of the year and reports indicate the agreement is worth over $100 million. Interestingly, Rogan’s show falls to number two on the US chart, with NPR News Now eclipsing it for the top spot in the States. TED Talks Daily, The New York Times’ The Daily, The Michelle Obama Podcast and Barstool Sports’ Call Her Daddy also make up Spotify’s year-end top five. As far as podcast genres are concerned, Society & Culture is number one, followed by Comedy, Lifestyle & Health, Arts & Entertainment and Education. In typical Spotify fashion, the company also noted some trends for 2020. Unsurprisingly, the service saw 1,400+ percent increase in work-from-home-themed (WFH) playlists between April and May. What’s more, the company says about 65,000 playlists were created by users with the title “Black Lives Matter” or “BLM.” Perhaps as a coping mechanism, Spotify users contributed to a 180 percent increase in health and wellness podcast listening in 2020. And overall, the most popular time to listen to a podcast this year on the platform was between 6AM-9AM. While the US top charts stack up similarly to the global lists, there are some interesting changes. The full collection of top-five charts for the US are as follows: US Most Streamed Artists: Juice WRLD Drake Lil Uzi Vert Post Malone Taylor Swift US Most Streamed Female Artists: Taylor Swift Billie Eilish Ariana Grande Halsey Megan Thee Stallion US Most Streamed Songs: “The Box” by Roddy Ricch “Blinding Lights” by The Weeknd “Blueberry Faygo” by Lil Mosey “ROCKSTAR (feat Roddy Ricch)” by DaBaby, Roddy Ricch “Life Is Good (feat Drake)” by Drake, Future US Most Streamed Albums: Legends Never Die, Juice WRLD Eternal Atake (Deluxe) - LUV vs. The World 2, Lil Uzi Vert Hollywood’s Bleeding, Post Malone After Hours, The Weeknd Please Excuse Me For Being Antisocial, Roddy Ricch US Most Popular Podcasts: NPR News Now The Joe Rogan Experience The Daily Call Her Daddy The Michelle Obama Podcast US Most Popular Podcast Genres: Comedy Society & Culture Lifestyle & Health News Education In this article: spotify, 2020, top charts, charts, music, music streaming, podcast, podcasts, bad bunny, the weekend, joe rogan, the joe rogan experience, billie eilish, juice wrld, wrapped, news, gear, entertainment All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

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