Bungie is making changes to just about every aspect of Destiny 2 next month. We already knew a number of exotic items, including a fan-favorite, would see some nerfs. This week, Bungie outlined some changes it’s making to how players make their way to the new raid, Crown of Sorrow, as well as the real-money Eververse shop.

Destiny 2’s raids have normally launched after the start of their respective seasons. The Crown of Sorrow, however, will launch on the afternoon of the first day of the season, and accompanying that change are some tweaks to how players make their way up to it, as well as the race to be the first fireteam to clear the raid.

Before you can even enter the raid, you’ll have to complete a new quest that will reward you with 690-level gear not just for one character, but for all characters on your account after completing it just once. Until Crown of Sorrow is beaten, the two previous raids (Last Wish and Scourge of the Past) will be unavailable to prevent players from saving up Ethereal Keys (items acquired at the end of the Last Wish raid) from using them all at once to gain a large amount of power quickly.

What’s more, there will be a new modifier called Contest for the first 24 hours of the new season that will scale encounters more actively, preventing power levels beyond a certain threshold (700 for the raid’s first encounter, 720 for the final encounter) from providing a bonus. You can find out more about this change here.

Bungie is also making changes to the Eververse, its cosmetic item shop with real-money hooks. All new cosmetic items from this new season will be available for direct purchase on a weekly rotation. Cosmetic armor sets, also will be available as a bundle with fixed perk rolls, as well as individually. Additionally, this season’s cosmetic engram (the ones that drop when your experience bar fills up), will offer items from past seasons, with a focus on the game’s first year. Finally, items purchased for silver (the currency you pay real money for) are now “wrapped” and must be opened before you can use them normally. Any wrapped item can be refunded within seven days of purchase.

[Source: Bungie]

This weekend we get one of the biggest fighting game events of the year, some hot Counter-Strike action, and the beginning of the Hearthstone Grandmasters league.

Combo Breaker is probably the biggest fighting game event this side of Evo, and lots of heavy-hitters and coming to compete in just about every fighting game you can think of. The event’s 24 (!!!) tournaments include new hits like Mortal Kombat 11 and Soulcalibur VI, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, as well as classic games like Capcom vs. SNK 2Darkstalkers 3, and more. (Streams and Schedule)

There’s also Momocon, which will host a number of other games, inlcuding Super Smash Bros. Melee, Puyo Puyo Tetris, and more. (Streams and Schedule)

The main League of Legends circuit might be in a lull right now, but you can still watch the last few rounds of the game’s collegiate league. (Stream and Schedule)

You can catch two Counter-Strike: Global Offensive events this weekend. First, the last rounds of the ECS’ seventh season end for both its European and North American divisions, leading into the finals next month. (Stream) Second, BeyondTheSummit is hosting its next Summit event for the game this weekend, which promises to offer a more laid-back affair. (Stream)

This year’s Hearthstone Grandmasters season has kicked off, and will pit the game’s best players against each other in regular matches in North American, Asia, and European divisions until July. (Stream / Schedule)

That’s it for this weekend! Let us know if we missed an event, or if there’s a scene you’d like us to cover, in the comments.

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In 1997, french auteur filmmaker Jean-Pierre Jeunet wedged a film written by Joss Whedon between his mesmerizing The City of Lost Children and the delightful Amélie. That film was, of course, Alien: Resurrection. It was … weird.

A video game based on the film released three years later from developer Argonaut Games (Star Fox, Croc) and it fared about as well critically as the film that inspired it. It had a few things going for it, though, like dual-analog FPS controls on the original PlayStation and some legitimate scares. If you watch the video you will see both of those game elements in action!

For the Roulette portion of Replay this week, we play arguably the most forgettable game ever released for one of the biggest franchises in the world.

Days Gone

June is rapidly approaching. The days are getting warmer and longer (though it is sometimes hard to tell), and what better way to enjoy the beautiful weather than to ride a virtual motorcycle around zombie-infested Oregon? Some of us jump back into Days Gone, some live out their dreams of being a robot in Observation, and some go a different direction all together. Here’s what the gang is playing. Let us know about your games of choice for this weekend in the comments!

Imran Khan (@imranzomg) – This weekend, I’m flying home for a bit to visit family, which means a five-hour plane ride. I don’t do well in one seat for multiple hours, so I’ll be putting my Switch in my carry-on and playing more Final Fantasy XII. I have officially reached the part of the game I quit at in 2006, the Sandsea, and the fact that there is a 4x Fast Forward mode and per-room checkpoints makes it a lot less anxiety-inducing now. I also realized I never finished Splatoon 2’s campaign or ever even started its DLC, so I might bring that with me just in case.

Joe Juba (@Joejuba) – I’ve been enjoying Shakedown: Hawaii in bite-sized bits as an easy and fun way to unwind, so I’ll probably keep up that mayhem in the coming days. I’ve also been meaning to start Observation after all the buzz surrounding it this week. And, of course, I’m still playing Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen on Switch — though that’s basically just occasional farming for top-tier armor at this point.

Matthew Kato (@MattKato) – Excited to start playing Observation, which I’ve heard is pretty great – especially for a Kubrick fan like myself.

Javy Gwaltney – This weekend I’m playing Metal Gear Leon 4 in a café on my switch with a trust cup of coffee at my side and then probably trying to make a bigger dent in Days Gone.

Jeff Marchiafava (@GIJeffM) – I’ve been immersed in Dreams for the past couple weeks, and I don’t expect that to change anytime soon – making dumb creations and playing other people’s creations is a ton of fun. Unfortunately, I’ve also got a bunch of yard work to do this weekend, which I’ll try to fool myself into believing is like playing Stardew Valley in real life.

Daniel Tack (@dantack) – World of Warcraft beta classic. We’re going home!

Brian Shea (@BrianPShea) – This weekend, I plan on playing a bunch of the Overwatch anniversary event (big surprise, right?), but I also want to finally spend more time with Days Gone. The game should be right up my alley, and I’m at the point where I’m told it really opens up, so I’m excited to spend some quality time with it.

Suriel Vazquez (@SurielVazquez) – Returning to the Spire of Stars as I scavenge the pink-hued post-apocalypse with Cassie Cage once again.

Kyle Hilliard (@KyleMHilliard) – After some travel for work, I will be relaxing this weekend. I might mow the lawn (which is legally a jungle now thanks to my laziness), and I might go see Aladdin. I’ve always been enjoying Days Gone, so I’ll probably keep going on that.

Leo Vader (@LeoVader) – The usual Siege but I’ve also been getting really into Mordhau lately. Really deep, rewarding combat, lots of weapon ranges and frames to learn. So satisfying to just take two men’s heads off in one sweep in the middle of a huge team battle. Even if one or both of them are your teammates! Besides that, maybe I’ll get some friends together to give Red Dead Online another chance. I want nothing more than for that to be the best experience possible, and I really like the direction they’re taking it. HAGS!

Jenifer Vinson (@JenMarie_Vinson) – Friday I’m playing my Dragon Age tabletop RPG campaign with some friends. Saturday is my birthday, so I think I’ll be going out to celebrate.  Might hit up the Memory Lanes block party.  On Sunday I’m photographing a friend’s Samara cosplay from Mass Effect.

Emma Welch-Murphy (@EmmaMcmurphy) – I’m going to go see Brightburn. I’m really just interested in how it ends considering it’s neither DC nor Marvel. There won’t be any Avengers to take him down, so I’m curious to see how it goes.

Blake Woog (@woog_blake) – The name of the game is catch-up this weekend. I’m going to get through Fallout 4 so I can finally move on to Devil May Cry 5. My backlog is far too long. 

Elsie Favis (@elsiefavis) – I’ll be spending my long weekend playing Observation, getting some personal writing done, and hopefully getting back into Days Gone. I’m most excited to return to Observation, though. Outside of some obscure puzzle-solving moments where I’m not too sure what to do next, it’s a pretty great sci-fi experience.

Joseph Stanichar (@JosephStanichar) – I’ll be spending this weekend working on beating the last two DLC episodes of Spider-Man, “The Heist” and “Turf Wars.” The first episode was more of the same, but the same is pretty darn good in my book. I committed to play one indie game per month this year, so I’m currently playing through A Night in the Woods, which is my… March game. I’ll catch up eventually!

Funny To A Point – 11 Wonderfully Goofy Dreams Games

Dreams has been out in early access a little over a month now, and if you haven’t read my review, I’m a big fan. Dreams doesn’t just give players a stunningly robust and flexible toolset for creating games, movies, and art – the tools are also easy and intuitive enough to make the creation process fun. No matter how dumb your ideas are.

I’m no stranger to dabbling in user-created content, from the downright brilliant emblems I made for Battlefield 1, to a regrettable house of horrors in House Flipper. I’ve got plenty of ingenious ideas for video games – but not the technical knowhow to bring them to life.

As I laid out in this handy feature right here (along with a little Cuthbert shaming), Dreams’ incredibly cool tools manage to overcome that hurdle. Seriously, no matter how sucky of an artist you might be, you really can make interesting things in Dreams. I know that kind of sounds like an infomercial, but even infomercial idiots could make cool stuff in Dreams. Well, maybe not that taco lady.

Anyway, people are already using Dreams to make some amazing and impressive creations, but this isn’t a list of those things. Last night I set out to find the dumbest and silliest projects possible for this column, and once again, Dreams didn’t fail me. Here’s my collection of strange and funny collections that made me laugh, which you can also find and explore in the “Wonderfully Goofy” collection I made in Dreams! It’s like Inception up in here!

Dreams Screenshot

Comedy Simulator

By Kissy_Face_Mwuh

What better way to open a collection of humorous game than with an official Comedy Simulator? I won’t give too much away, but it doesn’t take long to realize that Comedy Simulator really does understand comedy – the Seinfeldian bass proves it!

Dreams Screenshot

Spongebob Horror Collectathon

By Gallan_ _

Slenderman clones were inevitable Dreams, but I wasn’t expecting a Spongebob-themed take on the iconic indie horror title. What really made me laugh is that it’s not just good ole squarepants – everything about the simple adventure adheres to the Spongebob universe. Hearing your boxy predator’s laughter through the dualshock’s speaker is a little unnerving (and eventually annoying), but nightmares are still technically dreams, so it’s all good.

Dreams Screenshot


By TheOneironaut

Speaking of unnerving: Radical is a profoundly disturbing animated music video that I still haven’t fully processed. I also laughed out loud several times while watching it though, so it earned a spot on the list, despite not technically being a game. Just don’t complain to me if you end up with aerobics-themed nightmares after watching it!

Dreams Screenshot

Mario 2077

By tarsouin

Plenty of people are working on Super Mario clones in Dreams, which thankfully Nintendo hasn’t seemed to figure out yet. Mario 2077 is a little buggy, and not particularly interesting from a gameplay perspective at all. If you get to the end of the level, however, you’ll find out why I included it here. I did NOT see that coming!

Dreams Screenshot

Stepping on LEGO Simulator

By Johndom1996

Stepping on LEGO Simulator is a very simple and dumb game, but it’s also the perfect example of why Dreams is so great – no one would waste their time trying to create and publish a game based on the excruciating pain of stepping on those stupid plastic blocks in, say, Unity, for example. In Dreams, however, even the silliest idea can be whipped together and shared with other players – 2,541 players at the time of this writing, to be exact! That’s a lot of aching virtual feet!

Dreams Screenshot

PlayStation Home

By iAnony

I can’t say for certain that this ongoing, meticulous recreation of PlayStation Home is supposed to be a joke, but I’m going to assume it is. Otherwise it’s just depressing, and that’s like the opposite of what Dreams is supposed to be about!

Dreams Screenshot

Cat Pile

By Drifty254 and TalesSong

Just in case the PlayStation Home project is unironic, here’s a hefty dose of adorable to wipe away the blues. Cat Pile is probably the most fleshed-out game in on this list. In it you control an anthropomorphic cat as you try to navigate a series of puzzles. The main mechanic is a series of cat cannons, which when funded, will shoot a stream of kittens into an ever-growing pile that you can climb to reach the next area. It may not be a laugh-out-loud experience, but it’s very quirky and has plenty of cat puns for people who like that kind of thing.

Also, if that “Catbucks” in the corner caught your eye, can we take a moment and appreciate that none of the creations in Dreams are tainted by microtransactions, freemium schemes, or any other modern-day monetization horse crap? Now that’s a dream come true!

Dreams Screenshot

Proptosis Pete

By Splapp-me-do

Proptosis Pete is 100-percent less adorable than Cat Pile, but nonetheless impressive. Pete has kind of an Earthworm Jim vibe going on, only he can shoot an endless supply of eyeballs out of his head. The rest of the game is equally strange, but once again demonstrates what a nirvana Dreams is for creative weirdos.

Dreams Screenshot

The Classical Order

By sdcxsfd

Here’s a project that’s funny AND educational! The Classical Order teaches players all about Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian columns used in Greek architecture. Why? Because that’s what The Classical Order’s creator is into, and it’s their dream for the rest of us to be less ignorant! You’ll want to pay attention during the informative bits, however, because there’s a Guitar Hero-style quiz at the end that you’ll totally flunk if you don’t. I speak from experience.

Dreams Screenshot

Duck Quacks Don’t Echo

By OgTheEnigma

The most challenging game on this list, Duck Quacks Don’t Echo gives you two tasks to perform simultaneously: hold down the correct buttons on the controller as they are displayed, and catch falling ducks by moving the water basin back and forth with the DualShock’s gyroscope. I struggled with just holding the right buttons, but for some reason was compelled to keep trying despite how rudimentary – not to mention completely absurd – the game is. I’m clearly not the only one either, as Dreams players have currently spent over 168 hours playing the game!

Another quick aside: If you add a scoring mechanism to your game, Dreams automatically generates leaderboards that everyone who plays is listed on. This is an ingenious addition – if Mario Party has taught us anything, even the simplest challenges are fun when you’re competing against other people. Hell, even real life teaches us that – baseball is basically just a ball and a stick, people!

Dreams Screenshot

Shrek Survival 2: The Rise


Make no mistake, I saved my best pick for last. Shrek Survival 2 is so amazing that I’m not even going to describe it to you for fear of diminishing the experience. All I’ll say is that it has everything you could hope for: a tense and dramatic story, rich character development, and a shocking conclusion that puts lesser works like Game of Thrones to shame. If you’ve got Dreams, go play it right now!

As mentioned at the beginning, I’ve added all of these creations to a collection appropriately entitled “Wonderfully Goofy,” which you should be able to find through the search option in Dreams. If you’ve come across any other funny/strange creations – or made your own – let me know in the comments below and I’ll check them out!

Music is such an essential component of the RPG experience. It accentuates the mood of emotional scenes, gives special places in the world like towns personality, and often pumps us up during intense battles. More and more JRPGs have received the vinyl treatment, providing cool designs and serving as a memento from our time with the game.  Whether it’s purely for aesthetic or for the fantastic soundtrack, here are five JRPG vinyls you shouldn’t miss out on.

Skies of Arcadia

Coming up on its 20th anniversary, Skies of Arcadia is a beloved game that first made its way to Dreamcast, then Gamecube, and remains one of the more requested JRPG franchises for revival. Sega still hasn’t made those dreams a reality. At the very least, you have this great collector’s item that allows you to enjoy Yutaka Minobe and Tatsuyuki Maeda’s memorable melodies and be transported right back into the life of a sky pirate. The vinyl edition includes 30 tracks from the game on three LP discs and features brand-new artwork made especially for this edition by Skies of Arcadia’s original designer Itsuki Hoshi. You can find more out about it here. 

Persona 5

As a stylish RPG series, Persona adds even more life and personality with its fantastic music. Persona 5 is no exception. Its memorable score, filled with everything from pop to jazzy tunes, helps create Persona 5’s atmosphere and explore its larger themes. The vinyl has been a hot item, selling out almost immediately whenever it goes in stock. Just a quick look at the photo above will showcase why; the impressive art and extensive detail are hard to miss. The vinyl incorporates Persona 5’s school and Phantom Thief life alongside its red and black color scheme to make an impression that’s as strong as its music.  You can find out more about it here.

Nier: Automata and Nier Gestalt & Replicant 

Outside of the eccentric mind of creator Yoko Taro, Nier’s music is one of the most talked about and revered parts of the experience. As Taro put it so eloquently in one of our interviews: “It’s almost like the game is a slave to the music in a lot of ways. The emotions that are created in the players themselves are [a result of the music] and the game just sort of follows along behind that.” For this special vinyl edition, you get four LP records with 35 tracks that were selected by composer Keiichi Okabe. The beautiful artwork on the package was drawn by Sui Ishida, the creator of Tokyo Ghoul. Interested? Thankfully, this Japanese import can be ordered off of Square Enix’s official store.


Look, if you’re a JRPG fan, I don’t have to tell you about the brilliance of Yasunori Mitsuda. Before Xenosaga and Xenoblade, Xenogears started it all and Mitsuda lent his talents to make it truly something special. This vinyl edition was released to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Xenogears and contains remastered “Revival” tracks and songs from the arranged CDs “Creid” and “Myth.” These were selected under the supervision of Mitsuda. Head to Square Enix’s store if it’s a must-have for you.

Final Fantasy Vinyls

The Final Fantasy series has graced us with wonderful music throughout the years. Everyone has their favorite tracks and games from the series, and this vinyl collection has you covered in more ways than one. Spanning across five discs, the vinyls features 30 remastered tracks, supervised by legendary series composer Nobuo Uematsu. The vinyl was released in 2012 and has music from the very first entry all the way to Final Fantasy X. It’s definitely the best way to capture an iconic era of Square.

CBS has been actively working to revitalize the Star Trek brand in recent years, especially through the roll-out of a number of new series, including Star Trek: Discovery, which recently completed its second season, and ran on CBS’ All-Access streaming service.

We’ve known for some time that Patrick Stewart is involved in another series, focusing on the character of Jean-Luc Picard, who he played for seven seasons of Star Trek: The Next Generation, not to mention several follow-up feature films. Yesterday brought us the first look at a teaser trailer for the new series, which began to paint a picture of what to expect from the series. Check the trailer out at the bottom of this story if you haven’t had a chance to watch it yet.

While it’s only a little over a minute, there are some potent details to unpack, offering some significant hints about the plot, themes, and setting of the upcoming Star Trek: Picard.

  • Star Trek: Picard seems to have a delicate relationship with the established canon. While it’s likely that the moments depicted in the earlier TV series and the movies are sacrosanct, enthusiastic fans would be wise to not get too wrapped up in some of the other events depicted in Picard’s life in other mediums, including the novels and comics. Given Picard’s long retirement from Starfleet depicted in this trailer, not to mention his seemingly lonely life on a vineyard, it’s safe to assume that many storylines from those other mediums are being left behind.
  • Picard left Starfleet under unhappy circumstances some time ago, and the reasons why figure prominently in the story of the show. From the dour expression on his face during the voiceover, to the looming storm clouds that set the tone of the trailer, it’s clear that the question of Picard’s departure from the organization that defined his career is important to this story.
  • Before leaving Starfleet, Picard became an admiral. In Star Trek: Generations, during the fateful meeting of the fiction’s two most famous captains, Kirk warns Picard not to ever get promoted, because as long as he’s in the chair of his own ship, he can make a difference. Whether that memorable conversation factors in to Star Trek: Picard, and whatever unfortunate thing happened to its lead character, remains to be seen.
  • Picard has taken up his brother’s passion as a winemaker. Early in season 4 of TNG, Picard returns home to La Barre, France, on Earth after his devastating encounter with the Borg (in which he becomes Locutus), and we meet both his elder brother, Robert, as well as his brother’s wife and son. Later, in the film Star Trek Generations, Picard receives the devastating news that his brother and his brother’s son died in a house fire. Jean-Luc is heartbroken, and relays (to Counselor Troi) that he’s struggling with the news that he is likely the end of the Picard family line. The wine bottles he’s preparing in this recent trailer show that they’re being produced at Chateau Picard, so it’s clear that he is indeed at the same vineyard that was once run by his brother. His place as a vintner at that same vineyard suggests that Picard, late in life, is still struggling with the concept of family legacy.
  • It’s clear that Picard’s involvement with the Romulans is also integral to the story. In the TNG series, his connection to Spock and the efforts for Romulan/Vulcan reunification are highlighted, and Picard’s connection to Romulus is reinforced in the film, Star Trek: Nemesis. In the complicated interplay between this timeline and the one presented in the Abrams-helmed 2009 film reboot, we know that Romulus in Picard’s time gets destroyed by a powerful supernova in the year 2387. While unconfirmed, it seems likely that the effort to save survivors of this supernova is the “rescue armada” referenced in the trailer, which we learn was led by Picard.
  • The musical score for the trailer features a poignant easter egg. In the final moments of the teaser, we hear the iconic Star Trek: The Next Generation musical theme, but reinterpreted through the quiet tones of what fans will likely identify as the Ressikan flute. In an episode of season 5 of TNG, Picard is overwhelmed by an alien probe from the planet of Kataan. While his shipmates aboard the Enterprise experience only a short period of time, Picard is given the memories of an entire lifetime on the planet. During his time in that life, he took up the local variant of a flute, and that same flute is left behind in the probe after Picard returns to his real life. His love of playing the flute became a running concept in later episodes, and references a melancholy but hopeful theme within the fiction.  

What other hints did you pick up on in the teaser? What do you think the new series will be about? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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In this excerpt from The Game Informer Show podcast, Ben Hanson interviews Marvel Games’ vice president and creative director Bill Rosemann on the possibility of a Marvel Games Universe and the development of Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order on the Nintendo Switch.

You can watch the interview above or subscribe to The Game Informer Show podcast and listen to the interview on the latest episode.

Learn more about Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order on the Nintendo Switch by clicking on the banner below and checking out our overflowing hub of exclusive content.

This past week Rage 2 released to thunderous a mild and polite smattering of applause. In spite of the game’s fantastic combat system, its world, story, vehicular gameplay, and pretty much everything else outside of charging into the fray with mutants and bandits leaves much to be desired. However, in spite of those failings, it’s worth expanding on just how great Rage 2’s combat system is and why I hope this troubled outing isn’t the last we’ve seen of it.

When Gears Of War and Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare changed the industry’s approach to shooters, resulting in a years-long bombardment of the genre that was obsessed with gritty realism or embracing bleak edgy material, a lot of the more frantic shooters went away for a bit. However, to say that Rage 2’s gunplay is merely an arcadey throwback to the likes of Doom, Quake, Unreal Tournament, and other fantastical retro bloodbaths is a disservice to what this surprise sequel does right. Wolfenstein reinvented itself by bearing down on a tragic, epic story featuring well thought out characters and dollops of wacky, blood-soaked shenanigans. The 2016 Doom reboot didn’t really reinvent itself as much as it put its best elements forward and modernized them for a new generation, forcing players to become a constant whirlwind of shotgun-toting death if they have any hope of surviving the horrors of hell.

Rage 2 is…well, it’s different because its combat is about the toolset at hand, a colorful array of death-dealing weapons capable of flattening, splattering, disintegrating, and launching foes head-long into their death. Sure, you could argue that Doom is also a shooter that’s about having a creative toolset. However, I would argue that Rage’s flexibility sets it apart. In Doom, you constantly need to be switching weapons to stay alive, knowing which tool is the right one for the purpose. A wave of zombies and imps at the end of the corridor before you? Better whip out that shotgun and do some shell-sweeping. Giant demon? It’s time for the mini-gun or the rocket launcher. At its best, Doom feels like a violent ballet, with you constantly having to switch your weapons at the right moment to overcome the hordes as they descend on you.

Rage 2 doesn’t require that sort of dexterity. Its toolset isn’t rigid. You can blast through the entire game with only a shotgun and assault rifle combo if you so choose. While the slack in difficulty means that you’re not forced as often into pulling off death-defying feats of amazement, it also means you’re given enough room to get creative as hell when it comes to using Rage 2’s arsenal of dastardly amusements.

My personal favorite? The Grav-Dart launcher. The Grav-Dart launcher functions like a more weaponized version of the Gravity Gun from Half-Life 2. You hit your target with a number of darts and then, once you have your target stuck with the desired number of darts, you point elsewhere (say at a water tower, vehicle, gas canister, or even up into the blue sky) and click the left trigger to send that target flying into wherever you’re aiming your cursor. The more darts they’re stuck with, the harder the target will be flung.

I’ve gone entire fights in Rage 2 slamming enemies into distant objects (or even other enemies) and watching their bodies erupt into gory explosions. Once, I was fighting some foes near an open road when a vehicle came back. I had just tagged a bandit with some darts and fired into the road with the left trigger. I watched breathlessly as the foe zoomed into that road and was immediately transformed into red paste by the truck as it zoomed past. Rage 2’s combat is filled with amazing, emergent mini-stories like this, and learning how to string those stories together with your weapons like combos is incredibly satisfying.

Near the last third of Rage 2, I had gathered all of the game’s weapons and powers, and was strolling into enemy encampments as a nearly invincible killing machine, showering foes in fiery wrath. Where Doom delights in challenging players with lopsided odds, Rage 2 reverses that paradigm, making you the all-powerful killer. The real fun comes with how you approach taking out your foes. If you’re a person with a startling deficit of imagination, you might settle for mowing down every foe with your shotgun. Boring. A real artist of death and mayhem will style things up a bit. Why not throw down a gravity vortex that sucks all your foes to a singular spot and then toss a grenade into the vortex with them as you walk on by? Not bad. Or, you could use your Shatter ability (think Star Wars’ Force Push) to throw those foes into one of your barriers that you’ve upgraded to disintegrate enemies on touch for an impromptu barbecue. Or, if you really want to get fancy, you can run around the camp, peppering foes with rounds from your Firestorm Revolver, and doing a nifty Thanos snap to set all of them on fire.

There’s an uncommon kind of bloody harmony amongst all the weapons and powers that’s hard to appreciate if you get distracted by the game’s failings. The sheer swift, stylish nature of sliding into a foe, blasting them into the sky with the shotgun, and then Shatter-pushing them literally miles into the sky for them to fall back down to a splattery grave is so cool. When everything is coming together, I feel like John freakin’ Wick, effortlessly painting entertaining scenes of masterful mayhem.

I’ve put 15 hours into Rage 2, which is hilarious to me because it’s main path takes you less than five. It speaks to just how great and unique the combat system is that I willingly spent (and continue to spend) time pursuing foes in such an uninteresting, barren world. The most tragic thing about Rage 2 is that deep down at its core, there’s an incredible loop of action gameplay that just belongs in a different game. If Rage 2, for example, was a story-driven linear shooter à la Titanfall 2 or Wolfenstein, it’d be so much more appealing as a cohesive work of art. Instead, it feels like I’m playing one great game jammed into another mediocre-at-best one.

Rage 2 is a sequel that I imagine few people asked for. Strangely enough, given the tepid reception the game’s got, I find myself hoping for yet another one, one that throws away the uninspired open world and goes all in on that phenomenal combat system.

The Sonic the Hedgehog movie has more twists and turns than a mobius strip. After teases and recoils to Sonic’s design, the trailer finally came out last month. It…wasn’t great. The reaction was so bad that director Jeff Fowler promised to fix the hedgehog’s design as a result of that feedback. Well, now the movie is seeing a delay, likely because of those fixes, into February of 2020.

The news, once again, comes courtesy of Jeff Fowler.

When it was announced that the studio was fixing the design, a lot of people raised the valid concern that doing so would be a terrible strain on the VFX artists that would be tasked with fixing what was undoubtedly a higher creative team’s decision to have Sonic look more human-like. That meant a lot more work (and inevitably crunch) to get the move out in time for its November release date. As alluded to in the tweet, the studio seems aware of this and doesn’t want to be tarred with the poor reputation.

So we’re going to have to wait a little bit longer to see the Sonic the Hedgehog movie, but it being on Valentine’s Day specifically setting all my irony sensors off that were excited to see the movie in the first place. I’m still cool with it.