Saturday, July 24, 2021

IN THE EVENT YOU Play ” NEW WORLD “? Beta Impressions From The Frontier

Amazon Games’ upcoming MMORPG New World is in the spotlight as a lengthy closed beta session shows off the action ahead of an August 31st release. New World has changed its vision multiple times over the course of development, and now the question on everyone’s mind is – where is this going to land on release? What kind of player is it for? What kind of MMORPG is it? And perhaps the most important question, is it worth your time at all? Over the course of the beta (and a demo session that took me into an endgame slice with a fully-geared character), I’ve seen some areas with huge potential that are currently underserved in the MMORPG space – and some others that could be intense detriments for the title. Let’s talk about New World!It successfully lands a powerful frontier survival vibe If you’re familiar with survival games that have you punching wood to get a house going, New World delivers on this front initially by giving the player myriad survival pursuits. Hunting turkey on the borders of your established safe zones to raise your cooking skill and create rations is far more engaging than it has any right to be. Hunting down elusive saltpeter deposits in mines and crafting your own shells for your old-timey rifles feels fun. Being able to skill up in everything to your liking is a classic system à la Runescape, and its nice to know you can work up every single crafting and gathering skill if you wish, right down to doing some fishing. Banging together your first batch of gathering tools is actually freaking awesome. Digging up carrots and potatoes feels meaningful. Coming back to your town in the middle of the wilderness to trade feed and talk with your fellow explorers has all the allure of bustling about Disney’s Frontiertown, and I’ve rarely had so much investment into crafting and trading systems in MMOs. I can see potential problems with these aspects later down the line, i.e. do I really want to spend my time in the endgame gathering resources just so I can play the game, but for now, there’s plenty of magic in creating my own food, ammunition, and supplies before I trek out into the wild. It feels gritty, it feels raw, and it feels fresh. Faction PVP can be a lot of fun Territory control and faction-based opt-in PVP not only bring back a bit of realm-vs-realm feel from the glory days of Dark Age of Camelot, but they inject something that many online experiences have moved away from in the last decade – social interaction. That means yes, you are going to see a player named PoopyPants (Yes, this was a real player I saw) cutting down trees and screaming outside of town about the price of silver ore, and your chat feed is going to be inundated with comments that make the infamous Barrens chat look downright erudite. However, it also successfully adds shared social stakes to the experience, even if you choose not to interact at the verbal level with any other players. By funneling players into three different factions, you have an investment in your tribe regardless of how deep you want to take it. If you still just want to solo and bring back a load of furs to trade in town, you can – but the real fun is to be had by grouping up, interacting with others, and eventually taking over some territory as your chosen faction. At the solo, guild, and greater level, having game flow dictated by players instead of the “theme park” experience is a bold choice and more than a bit refreshing. The issue here is how interesting and meaningful are these faction wars going to be in the endgame? While I don’t have the answer to that yet, the prospect of really engaging with other players in a meaningful way in a MMORPG gives me a powerful nostalgia bump and some serious differentiation from many other genre offerings today. On the flip side, if you’re not really interested in territory wars or PvP, other existing MMORPGs might be a better choice. The combat is New World’s biggest weakness In almost every MMORPG, you’re going to be doing a ton of combat. It’s probably the biggest portion of the entire gameplay experience. With limited skill options, awkward animations, and very little excitement, New World’s combat is decidedly dull. Now, there’s something to be said about popping an opposing faction member from a great distance before you engage in a 3v3 skirmish that gets real greasy, but that’s more about the player-to-player interaction than the combat, which can often feel wooden and wonky. While I enjoy systems that attempt to break the genre out of the tab-targeting standard that’s been grandfathered into MMOs for ages, it misses the mark here.  I found it hard to determine if the other aspects of the game that seem enjoyable can carry this particular aspect either, as combat is the core of almost every other pursuit. Even if you’re just spelunking for saltpeter, you’re going to have to fight a ton of various zombie-like creatures, wolves, or bears, and it simply does not feel good. This problem is exacerbated in group experiences, both PvP and PvE, but more pronounced in the latter. Chewing into spongey opponents as a pack with the glaring lack of feedback from weaponry is almost comical, and your options in combat feel extremely limited and lacking. Everything can feel the same Enemies, locations, and activities can become a big bowl of mush without breaking it up with some PvP pursuits. You’ll see many of the same rickety little fishing villages, decrepit farms, and crumbling ruins as you traverse the giant world. Killing some undead buccaneers at level 5 feels the same as it does at level 15, and you’re going to be doing a ton of daily-quest/fetch style activities in order to grind out your faction reputation, like wandering around the aforementioned locations for boxes and killing X undead baddies. It feels intensely repetitive even after only twenty hours of gameplay, so I’m concerned about how that will translate to the endgame – will I still, as an elite member of the Syndicate, still be wandering farms killing undead and picking taters? I mean, I do like picking taters... Travel is rough When you’re just starting, it’s fine that you’re walking everywhere because you don’t have far to go. However, this takes a turn at around level 12, where you’ll find the autorun button and some movies on your favorite streaming platform to be your best friends. The world is large, and traveling it all on foot is a huge pain. Without mounts, and the fact that fast travel is limited by resources, moving around the map is an absolute bore and a chore. I realize there are other meaningful concerns that probably flow into this decision, like the implications of having everyone zoom around in a game that’s attempting to create stakes with territory control and PvP, but this becomes harder and harder to ignore the more you play and get quests on opposite ends of your map. Forging ahead Based on the beta, New World is going to be an interesting but potentially niche addition to the current crop of MMORPGs. However, it seems to really serve players that want to play with small groups of friends for faction skirmishes and that are interested in greater territory control wars with big guild politics and all that. If you’re not interested in that kind of greater pursuit with plenty of social interaction and PvP, the PvE elements by themselves do not seem compelling enough to keep things rolling.  While I love the feeling of crafting my own stuff, slowly increasing the areas that I’m strong enough to explore, and fastidiously upping all my gathering and crafting skills, I can see those charms fading rapidly as the activities become somewhat rote. The dynamics involved in faction wars and territory control seem to be the peppy antidote for the never-ending rock farm in various undead shacks and homesteads. As with other games that lean into this kind of emergent gameplay (RIP Shadowbane), some of New World will be what players shape it into.
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    In April the Mandalorian Season 3 Sets Production Start

    Lucasfilm currently has three Star Wars projects lined up for Disney+ which are all set within the timeline of The Mandalorian The post The Mandalorian Season 3 Sets Production Start in April appeared first on ComingSoon.net.

    Robert Rodriguez Jams with Baby Yoda in The Mandalorian BTS video

    Robert Rodriguez Jams with Baby Yoda in The Mandalorian BTS video Earlier this week, Disney has released Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian Making of Season 2. Unlike last year, the studio produced just a one-hour long episode covering all the second go-around. Among the content of the sophomore season of behind-the-scenes sneak peeks for the show, there is also a glimpse of director Robert Rodriguez jamming with the adorable puppet of Baby Yoda/Grogu. In the video, the director is playing the guitar on the set of ‘The Tragedy’ episode. The Child is enjoying it and dancing on time, as if we didn’t have already enough reasons to love Baby Yoda. Luckily for the fans, Rodriguez has posted the full clip on Twitter. You can watch it here below. Here’s a Christmas present to all those who asked me what it’s like to hang out with Baby Yoda on the set of #TheMandalorian #TheTragedy. Check out #DisneyGallery for more behind the scenes! pic.twitter.com/6ShINBxJAN — Robert Rodriguez (@Rodriguez) December 25, 2020 RELATED: CS Soapbox: Is The Mandalorian Fan Service Too Much? Rodriguez also directed the episode, making his The Mandalorian directorial debut. The episode saw the official return of Boba Fett on screen following a brief tease in the season premiere. Shortly after the end of the sophomore season, Disney+ announced that the fan-favorite bounty hunter will get his own spin-off, The Book of Boba Fett. Rodriguez will executive produce the show together with Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni. Recommended Reading: The Art of Star Wars: The Mandalorian (Season One) Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian Making of Season 2 is currently streaming on Disney+. RELATED: Hasbro Reveals New Star Wars: The Black Series Mandalorian Darksaber Plus Boba Fett Helmet & More!  Have you watched Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian Making of Season 2? If so, what did you think about it? Let us know in the comments section below.

    Jon Favreau Says The Mandalorian Season 3 is on Schedule To Film This Year

    Jon Favreau Says The Mandalorian Season 3 is on Schedule To Film This Year While Disney+ hasn’t officially given a greenlight for The Mandalorian season 3, it’s basically a formality. Series creator and showrunner, Jon Favreau, began working on the season 3 scripts earlier this year (via SuperHeroHype). More recently, Favreau told Variety said that The Mandalorian season 3 is “on schedule…[to begin filming] before the end of the year.” RELATED: Din Djarin Shows the Way in The Mandalorian Season 2 Promo “We’re operating under the assumption that we’ll be able to go forward,” added Favreau. “We’re in very small situations and oftentimes we have a lot of characters in masks. And we also have a lot of digital work that augments things. So we’re a show that’s probably well-equipped to be flexible based on the protocols that are emerging surrounding work restarting.” Regarding rumors of a Mandalorian movie, Favreau noted that he’s not in a hurry to make one. “But we’re definitely open to it,” said Favreau. “And excited to see where the story leads us and have that flexibility — because there’s no rulebook now. Technology is always offering new opportunities to tell stories in a fresh way. It’s a very exciting time to be doing this and I feel very grateful that we’re able to be able to work remotely, because of the nature of the technology that we’re dealing with. So we’re continuing to try to move forward and keep the ball rolling, even though it’s been a challenging time for everyone.” However, The Mandalorian star Pedro Pascal was more enthusiastic about a potential film. “I think that the work is so beautiful that I would love for that to be held by a big-screen experience,” said Pascal. “But it seems to work so well that also I’m not sure it’s something that I would want corrupted by any kind of change, you know? I mean, I certainly know that the challenge can be met. It’s not like these people don’t have the experience. If anybody can do it, they can!” RELATED: The Mandalorian Season 2 Character Art Brings Out Your Inner Child The Mandalorian season 2 will premiere on Disney+ on October 30. New episodes will drop every Friday at midnight. What do you think about Favreau and Pascal’s latest comments? Let us know in the comment section below! Recommended Reading: Star Wars: The Bounty Hunter Code

    Din Djarin Shows the Way in The Mandalorian Season 2 Promo

    Din Djarin Shows the Way in The Mandalorian Season 2 Promo In just over two weeks, Disney+ will release the sophomore season of The Mandalorian. To pump up the fans, the streaming service has also dropped a brand new promo for the series. The short video features some fresh footage, especially a desert planet Din Djarin will visit, and some X-wing fighters alongside the Razor Crest. Much to everyone’s disappointment, there is still no sign of Ahsoka Tano’s first appearance in the series. Many Star Wars fans are expecting to discover more about the fan-favorite character’s fate after the final events of Star Wars: Rebels showed her in search of Ezra Bridger. Actress Rosario Dawson is expected to portray the former Jedi Padawan of Anakin Skywalker for the first time ever in live-action. You can check the full The Mandalorian Season 2 promo below (via SuperHeroHype): “Wherever I go, he goes.” Start streaming the new season of #TheMandalorian Oct. 30 on #DisneyPlus. — The Mandalorian (@themandalorian) October 12, 2020 RELATED: The Mandalorian Season 2 Character Art Brings Out Your Inner Child Besides exploring the Mandalorian society and the relationship between what survives of the inhabitants of Mandalore and the Jedi, it appears that the next season will also feature more of the Gamorreans. Both the previous trailer and the promo tease an apparent boxing match between two green-skinned pig-like humanoids. But the contest ends after a brawl explodes in the stands between the titular character and some bounty hunters who wanted to get their hands on Djarin’s inseparable green sidekick, Baby Yoda, a.k.a. The Child. The Mandalorian Season 2 will finally debut on Disney+ starting Oct. 30. What do you think about the latest The Mandalorian Season 2 promo? Let us know in the comments section below. Recommended Reading: Star Wars: The Bounty Hunter Code

    The Story Continues in New The Mandalorian Season 2 Poster

    The Story Continues in New The Mandalorian Season 2 Poster Disney+ has released a brand new poster for the long-awaited second season of The Mandalorian, featuring the titular space bounty hunter and Baby Yoda as they ride together on a speeder bike. The Star Wars prequel series will be making its return on Friday, October 30. Check out the full poster in the gallery below! RELATED: The Mandalorian Season 2 Trailer: “Wherever I Go, He Goes” Recent revelations of the second season of The Mandalorian have revealed that the returns of Temuera Morrison (Aquaman) as Boba Fett, Katee Sackhoff as The Clone Wars‘ Bo-Katan in live-action form and will reportedly feature the live-action debut of Jedi Padawan turned Rebel Alliance spymaster Ahsoka Tano with Rosario Dawson (Zombieland: Double Tap) in talks to portray the fan-favorite character, though the star recently confirmed that the deal is not yet sealed on the part. Timothy Olyphant (Justified) also joined the second season of the series. In addition to the announce of Boba Fett joining the character roster, multiple directors recently confirmed their involvement on the new season, including Robert Rodriguez (Alita: Battle Angel) and Ant-Man franchise director Peyton Reed, who joined the that already includes the returns of Rick Famuyiwa (Dope), Dave Filoni, Carl Weathers and Jon Favreau (The Lion King). After the stories of Jango and Boba Fett, another warrior emerges in the Star Wars universe. The Mandalorian is set after the fall of the Empire and before the emergence of the First Order. We follow the travails of a lone gunfighter in the outer reaches of the galaxy far from the authority of the New Republic. Pedro Pascal (Kingsman: The Golden Circle) stars as a lone Mandalorian gunfighter in the outer reaches of the galaxy and is joined by Gina Carano (Deadpool) who plays Cara Dune, a former Rebel Shock Trooper, having trouble re-integrating herself into society.; and Carl Weathers as Greef, a man who heads a guild of bounty hunters that hires The Mandalorian for a specific job. The series also stars Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad), Emily Swallow (Supernatural), Carl Weathers (Predator), Omid Abtahi (American Gods), Werner Herzog (Grizzly Man) and Nick Nolte (Affliction). RELATED: Exclusive: Giancarlo Esposito on Wielding Mandalorian Season 2’s Darksaber Favreau serves as executive producer and showrunner for the series, Directors for the first season included Dave Filoni (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels), who helm the first episode, plus Deborah Chow (Jessica Jones), Rick Famuyiwa (Dope), Bryce Dallas Howard (Solemates) and Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok), who has also provided the voice for bounty hunter IG-88 in the series. The Mandalorian is executive produced by Jon Favreau, Dave Filoni, Kathleen Kennedy and Colin Wilson. Karen Gilchrist will serve as co-executive producer.

    Star Wars HasLab Razor Crest is Funded Fully, Stretch Goal Announced

    Star Wars HasLab Razor Crest Is Fully Funded, Stretch Goal Announced That was fast. A mere day after Hasbro announced a Razor Crest vehicle from The Mandalorian for crowd-funded preorder, it hit the goal. And now, Hasbro just announced first of two stretch goals. Should the HasLab Razor Crest hit 8,000 backers (spoiler: it will), the sculpt will add in a detachable escape pod. As seen in the diagram above, the pod will fit into the roof, and offer space for Mando to lie down. (And not much more — he better hope for a quick rescue.) Hasbro appears to have found the sweet spot as far as price range goes. It took fans a long time to fully fund the $500 Sail barge and the even costlier Unicron, but at $350, the X-Men Sentinel and Razor Crest moved swiftly. It’s anybody’s guess what could come as the next goal — maybe a speeder for the cargo hold? Or a Blurrg? One thing remains clear. We’re gonna need a lot more 3.75-inch Star Wars figures from The Mandalorian.Cara Dune alone is not enough, and while he would be ridiculously tiny, Baby Yoda still seems like a necessity. Will you go all in on the HasLab Razor Crest now? Did you already? Tell us down in comments. Recommended Purchase: LEGO Star Wars: The Mandalorian The Razor Crest We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. This affiliate advertising program also provides a means to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

    ILM Explores the Making of the Razor Crest in a fresh Mandalorian Featurette

    ILM Explores the Making of the Razor Crest in a New Mandalorian Featurette The Child (a.k.a. Baby Yoda) may have stolen the spotlight from the title character throughout The Mandalorian’s first season. However, if it weren’t for the series’ true unsung hero, the Razor Crest, they never would have crossed paths in the first place. Mando’s ship certainly saw a lot of action last year, and it’s mostly thanks to the talented crew at ILM. Not surprisingly, a lot of work went into designing the bounty hunter’s space ride. But in a new 17-minute featurette, the designers themselves reveal how its creation hearkens back to old-school Star Wars filmmaking (via SuperHeroHype). The featurette includes interviews with several ILM staffers, including design supervisor Doug Chiang. According to Chiang, showrunner Jon Favreau already had a good idea of what he wanted the ship to look like. He was particularly fascinated by the A-10 Warthog, an Air Force plane with two large engines on its rear. Chiang’s team used this as their starting point. They also combined it with “WWII aesthetics” to indicate an “early” spaceship whose design might even pre-date the X-Wings. RELATED: Giancarlo Esposito Teases Future Seasons of The Mandalorian Military aircrafts provided a lot of inspiration to the team as they designed the Razor Crest. Model supervisor Jay Machado explained that they also studied “airport graveyards” to give it a more run-down appearance. Regardless, he admitted that it was “very difficult to make something so shiny look good in all these different environments.” In the long run, concept design supervisor Ryan Church says their goal was to make the vessel look “very intimidating and very strong.” What’s really interesting, however, is how the designers created a model of the Razor Crest for filming. As CGI technology has advanced over the years, this method has been used less and less. But with Favreau’s support, the team 3D-printed a miniature version of the ship, which paved the way for the studio’s first motion-control shoot in 15 years. The Mandalorian (and the Razor Crest) will return to Disney+ for its second season on October 30. You can watch the new featurette below, then share your thoughts in the comment section! Recommended Reading: Star Wars: The Bounty Hunter Code 

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