Rocket League – Salty Shores update

Psyonix is once again rewarding us fans of the football/car sensation that is Rocket League. Aside from the expected Competitive Season 8, there are plenty of new things coming. Chief among them (for me at least) are the ‘Rocket League x Monstercat Vol.3’ EP and the new arena ‘Salty Shores’.

While previous ‘Rocket League x Monstercat’ playlists have been fantastic, and this newest one is shaping up to be great also, the thing i’m most excited for in the upcoming update is the aesthetic of the new arena. Having been born in the Eighties, I have somewhat of an obsession with that decade. The resurgence of Eighties design in properties such as Thor: Ragnarok and Stranger Things is a welcome sight for me, and i’m glad that it’s slowly seeping into my favourite competitive game. It brings back memories of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and I can’t wait!

Check out what the developers have to say below:

Which sunblock SPF does a Battle-Car need when it’s soaking up rays and playing in the sand all day? We’ll know soon, because our new Salty Shores Update splashes down on May 29!

This next Content Update is all about Rocket League fun in the sun, starting with the aforementioned ‘Salty Shores,’ our brand new seaside Arena! As our sunniest map to date, Salty Shores should keep the summertime vibes going year-round as a permanent addition to all online Playlists!

Along with a new Arena, we’re also bringing you the start of Competitive Season 8, the distribution of Season 7 Rewards, the new ‘Impact’ Crate, fresh beats from the ‘Rocket League x Monstercat Vol. 3’ EP and more! You’ll also find some nice quality of life improvements in the mix, including a new ‘Report Server’ button for when servers misbehave during an online match.  Our ‘Beach Blast’ in-game Event is coming soon too, but not for a few more weeks — June 11, to be exact! We’ll have more details about Beach Blast closer to the start of the event, so stay tuned!

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Blogging about Pokémon professionally for the first time

Featured image sourced from GameRant

If there is one thing that you can take away from the BestGeekLife blog, it’s that I love Pokémon. When Pokémon Red and Blue released in the UK during 1999, my 10-year-old brain was hooked. At the time, the gameplay was fresh and exciting. Obviously, as I progressed into adulthood, I found later games to be slightly dull and repetitive, but still enjoyable. I have no problem with later Pokémon designs or additions to the series like the new types, Dark, Steel and Fairy. As a franchise, it has developed and changed, just as anything should to stay alive or stay relevant.

But this blog post isn’t about the evolution (haha) of the Pokémon franchise. This blog post is about the first time I was able to write about Pokémon in a professional sense. Interestingly, this opportunity came from the strangest situation. During the summer of 2016, the world was obsessed with Pokémon Go. The fuss generated by this mobile game was so great that it even penetrated the office where I worked at the time, a place where the people were really nice but mostly not geeky or nerdy.

To cut a long story short, I managed to write a blog post on their website that compared playing Pokémon Go with undertaking postgraduate study. Entitled Postgraduate Study Takes (Poké)balls, it definitely was meant to be a funny article, something that should be read with a tongue-in-cheek attitude.  It was an interesting exercise and something that sparked the need to write more blog posts about geeky stuff. It probably seems like a small thing, but getting paid to write about a series of video games that i’ve followed and loved from childhood was something straight off my bucket list.

If you want to read the article, it can be found here.

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Deadpool 2 – review!

It’s great when you walk into a theatre knowing you are going to enjoy a film. It happened back in 2016 when I saw Deadpool and it has happened again with Deadpool 2. I am an absolute sucker for big-budget superhero films. Especially ones that are full of humour and generally have a feel-good vibe.

Instead of the “reuniting with your girlfriend and getting revenge on the guy who messed up your face” plot that the first film centred around, this second film sees Deadpool and friends (old and new) in a plot that is only slightly bigger in scale. There are surprises aplenty, something I found welcome and entertaining. Plot points twist the story and characters develop in ways that I did not expect. In an industry so reliant on formulas, this is damned refreshing.

Every character in this film is larger than life, but the absolute stand-outs are Deadpool himself, Cable, Russell and Domino. Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool is incredible as usual. He breaks the fourth wall, drops one-liners and basically makes the entire audience chortle almost consistently. There are a few jokes that fall flat, but when those jokes hit, they are so funny. There are some emotional moments, and Reynolds mostly gets it right. When Deadpool is paired up with Cable, played by Josh Brolin, sparks definitely fly. Brolin has had such a good year for playing compelling bad guys. He might be killing people, but you know and understand why he’s doing that.

I admire Julian Dennison so much for playing Russell Collins. He brings a brooding teen angst to Russell,  bubbling just under the surface. I’ve only seen two of the four films he has been in, something I really need to fix. Finally, Zazie Beetz plays Domino. It’s very entertaining seeing her embrace her power of luck. Even when the area immediately around her is constantly blowing up, she has an almost nonchalant attitude. There’s no need to panic when you know you aren’t going to get hit by wreckage. Sure, Ryan Reynolds and Josh Brolin take top billing in this film but the real talent comes from Beetz and Dennison.

There are plenty of stunts in this film thanks to David Leitch’s eye for impressive action. These stunts did come at a price though, with stunt actress Joi Harris dying mid-way through the shoot. In fact, a few other complications marred the production. A certain controversial scene concerning baby Hitler was supposedly cut from the film. I completely understand why they took this out, especially as it doesn’t really fit into the narrative that well.

Overall, it’s refreshing to see a film that is still quite a personal story. There isn’t a universe that needs saving, there’s no giant laser shooting up into the sky. It proves that bigger isn’t always better. If you can’t stand superhero films, then this probably won’t change your mind. If you are a fan of Deadpool, then this film will satisfy.

And remember people, watch out for the cameos and stay in your seat when the credits start rolling.

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100 days until my PS4

Featured image sourced from Pixabay

PlayStation vs Xbox vs Nintendo vs PC – the age-old argument of which platform people should play their games on. There is no doubt, each system has exclusive titles that can be enjoyed nowhere else. Lately, this exclusivity is being blurred with games like Rocket League offering crossplay or with schemes such as Xbox Play Anywhere.

Normally, I don’t mind too much about the platform I play games on. I don’t really care about framerates or graphics. Not to say good graphics and stable framerates are not important, but for me, they are irrelevant. Controversial opinion? Maybe? Throughout my life, I have been an avid gamer. In my time i’ve had a multitude of gaming devices, from Gameboys to PCs to my mobile phone. Currently, I have a Wii, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and a PC. I can’t fool myself forever though. I’ve buckled under the sheer amount of incredible PlayStation 4 exclusive games that I am yet to play. Infamous. Horizon: Zero Dawn. The Last of Us. Uncharted. All common, household names. All out of the reach of my sweaty geek hands. I cannot stand it any longer. In 100 days, I will be trading my Xbox One for a PlayStation 4!

After many, many years of owning some kind of Xbox, my allegiance is changing. It’s not that I don’t like my Xbox One. There are many things that are very good about having an Xbox One. My previous post praises the Backwards Compatibility feature offered by Microsoft, but the amount of good Xbox exclusive games just don’t cut it for me. I don’t really enjoy the shooter or racing genre, so that’s Forza, Halo, and Gears of War games out of the window. My betrayal has been a long time coming, and what finally broke me? God of War. Oh my, God of War.

I’ll summarize by saying that I’m very much looking forward to getting my PS4. It’s going to be a painfully slow wait for Saturday 25 August 2018. One question remains though. Why am I going to wait that long and torture myself so? Basically, I can be pretty impatient, and this scenario is perfect to exercise some self-control. Plus, there’s probably a slim chance that E3 might make me change my mind. In the meantime, i’m going to binge watch this playthrough series of Horizon: Zero Dawn and totally ruin the game for myself.

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For the love of Backwards Compatibility

(Featured image sourced from Gamespot)

Released to the public on November 12th 2015, Backwards Compatibility lets gamers play a select number of Xbox 360 games on their Xbox One console. The number of playable games started at 104, but more have been added periodically since then. Personally, I adore the idea of being able to pop my old games into my Xbox One and firing up Gears of War or Alan Wake. Hell, I discovered my love for Beyond Good And Evil HD thanks to it.

It was a smart business move by Microsoft and i’m glad they decided to implement the feature. I confess that i’ve spent no small sum of money during my time on the Xbox 360 and i’m glad it hasn’t gone to waste. Sure, I have my moderately powerful computer to play games on now. It’s something I prefer, but there is a certain satisfaction booting up a console in my living room.

And for all the raging between which platform to play on is better, to me, it doesn’t matter. I play games for the fun of it, and the more games I can experience and enjoy the better. Backward Compatibility is just one of the many options I have. Every so often I log onto my Xbox One and an old dusty game that I forgot I bought a while back pops into my ready to download list. It’s like Christmas and all the presents were bought by me a few years ago.

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