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Sony PlayStation Weekly Roundup

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Sony Interactive Entertainment will not be at E3 2019.

The most reported Sony PlayStation news this week is that Sony will not be attending E3 in 2019. The news comes as a surprise as Sony is usually a reliable source for some decent announcements and highlights. 2018 was a bit of an odd assortment though, which included a gameplay trailer for The Last of Us: Part 2, more bizarre gameplay for Death Stranding and details on Ghost of Tsushima complete with a theatrical flute accompaniment.  However, E3 is not the only way for developers and publishers to shine a spotlight on their work. Sony themselves released a statement saying that they were “exploring new and familiar ways to engage the community in 2019.” Hopefully, more details will be released on Sony’s plan for the future early next year.

More Black Friday deals across the US and the UK.

Black Friday is almost upon us and with it, even more deals are popping up for PlayStation consoles and games across both the United Kingdom and the United States.  In the UK, the PS VR starter pack is starting at £179.99 across stores such as GAME, Amazon and Argos and GAME also have an offer on a 500GB PS4 with Red Dead Redemption 2, Doom and Overwatch for £270. Some of the best game offers include Marvel’s SpiderMan for £28.99 at Argos, God of War for £19.99 at Smyths and Detroit: Become Human for £13.99, also at Argos. Across the pond in the US, the deals are also extensive. Best Buy has a deal on a bundle for a 1TB PlayStation with Marvel’s SpiderMan for $199.99 and Target have got a PS VR bundle with Astrobot: Rescue Mission and Moss also for $199.99. Target and Best Buy have got some great game deals, offering Overwatch: Game of the Year edition for $19.99 at Target and Shadow of the Colossus for $19.99 and God of War for $39.99 at Best Buy.  A fair amount of the sales have gone live already, so check them out if you’re looking for some great game, console and accessory deals. Black Friday kicks off this Friday, November 23rd.

Fallout 76’s massive PS4 patch.

Since the release of Fallout 76, the online multiplayer game and the latest installment in the Fallout franchise, the game has had several bugs and technical problems. Bethesda was quick to release a patch to resolve these issues, however, the patch on the PlayStation 4 is a rather large one so prepare yourself for the download. Bethesda’s PS4 patch is a whopping 47GB. Considering that the game download itself is around 53GB, the patch will take up a huge amount of storage along with the original download. So if you’re in the market for the game, make sure you have enough room on your console or have a hard drive at hand.

 

Trailer of the Week- Kingdom Hearts III: Together Trailer

Another Kingdom Hearts trailer was released this week and this one is particularly noteworthy as it was released alongside the announcement from Square Enix that the game has officially wrapped up development. The sequel we’ve been waiting almost a decade for has finally gone gold and is ready for us. The “Together” trailer itself gives us the most extensive look yet at several worlds, rather than just focusing on one. We see glimpses of the worlds of Hercules, Tangled, Frozen, Pirates of the Caribbean, Toy Story and Big Hero Six. There’s also a look at some other Disney characters who seem to be appearing as summons, including Ariel from The Little Mermaid and Ralph from Wreck it Ralph. Only a bit of combat is shown off here, but this particular trailer seems to be mainly showcasing the worlds we will be travelling to and the characters we will encounter. What is certain is that the game looks to be heaps of fun for fans of the Kingdom Hearts series and will probably attract some Disney and Pixar fans to play too. Thankfully, we don’t have to wait much longer for this one.

Kingdom Hearts III is due for release January 29th, 2019 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Indie Game of the Week- Journey

The indie game Journey is the perfect example of how a simple concept can be transformed into a unique and memorable gaming experience. Journey was released in 2012 for the PlayStation 3 and was distributed by Sony and developed by thatgamingcompany. It was later released on the PlayStation 4 in 2015. It’s a relatively short game, lasting around 90 minutes and 120 minutes depending on how the player goes about completing the game. The premise of the game is in the name itself, it’s a journey. And though short and sweet, it has a meaningful impact that stays with you long after the game is over.

The player starts the game in a desert setting, playing as a hooded figure whose goal is to reach the large mountain that looms in the background. The player interacts with pieces of cloth scattered throughout the world. The cloth then illuminates bright red and glows, allowing the player brief bursts of gliding and flying as it attaches itself to you like a scarf. As you collect glowing symbols, the scarf becomes longer, allowing for more time in the air. The physics of the game are beautiful in themselves, creating the seamless feeling of gliding elegantly through the air. It feels effortless and works incredibly well with the environments in the game.  Even when not flying, the player can slide down hills in the desert in a smooth and flawless motion. As the story progresses, the gliding elements of the game adapt to the differing environments but still maintain their fluid feeling. A level set in snowy tundra makes the gliding feature get more and more stilted, as if reacting to the harsher weather conditions. It’s an innovative feature which is both fun to play and fun to look at due to the incredible art design.

The distinctive art style of the game is another feature which makes Journey stand out. Colours and patterns play an essential role. There are three main set pieces in the game, the rolling desert dunes, the underwater caverns, and the snow-covered mountain base. Each area has a different colour palette and offers something a bit different to the style. The desert has the sandy dunes and orange and yellow colours which blend well with the red of the player’s outfit and scarf. The underwater areas are murkier with grey and blue tones whilst the blizzard area is mostly whites and greys as the snow envelopes your character. What I loved about it though is how seamlessly each level transitioned into the next. I wasn’t even aware that I had come to an underwater level until I had been there for a few moments. The transitions are carried out with a refined subtlety that emphasizes the brilliance of the artistic design. The character design is also simple yet effective. You route for your character to complete their journey despite mostly being a cloth based entity. The cloth creatures you encounter who help you are loveable and I was saddened when some of them were disintegrated. Even the beastly creatures who fly above are intimidating despite being little more than flying metal. It’s a true artistic achievement to make the player feel so invested with such simple designs.

One of the most affecting features in Journey is the musical score. Composed by Austin Wintory, the soundtrack is an essential element of the game as it corresponds to the actions and movements of the player as well as with interactive objects. This makes the music feel like part of the journey in a defining way rather than just a background element. There are no voices in Journey either, so the story is told entirely through the music and sound. One core musical theme runs throughout, which Wintory establishes as the theme of the players’ journey. It’s an interesting concept to use when a lot of game soundtracks tend to veer toward individual character themes and I think it works brilliantly. There is a scene later on in the game where the music slowly begins to fade before becoming non-existent. It creates a sudden sense of loneliness and despair when the theme that has been a constant presence throughout disappears. Wintory’s masterful score adds to the wonder of Journey.

The multiplayer aspect of the game is implemented in an original way with another player able to enter your journey. I was initially unsure of how the multiplayer would work so when I saw another character who looked identical to me, I thought it was an NPC. It wasn’t until I noticed they were doing exactly the same thing I was, though admittedly much more proficiently, that I realised it was another player. It adds to the experience when another player joins, I couldn’t help the feeling of camaraderie and companionship as I huddled in the snow with another player, hiding from a flying metal monster. You can only communicate with your companion through sounds emitted from your character and you don’t even see their name until you have completed the game. Despite the lack of communication and anonymity, I still felt a bond with my fellow traveller. This creative take on multiplayer is definitely a prominent feature and one which makes Journey unique.

Journey is a tale of a traveller with one goal, to complete their journey. The mysteriously mystical settings, creatures, and protagonist make the game compelling despite its minimalism. Journey is the perfect example of how something simple can be in-depth, emotional and enjoyable if done well.

 

 

Antonia Haynes resides in a small seaside town in England where she has lived her whole life. She's a simple girl with a passion for zombies, writing, film, television, drawing, superheroes, Disney and, of course, video games. Her ideal day would consist of junk food, fluffy pyjamas and video games because quite frankly going outside is overrated. Follow her on Twitter on @RainbowMachete

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Watch the Trailer for ‘The Mandalorian’ the First Live-Action ‘Star Wars’ Series

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Thanks to the arrival of the D23 Expo, Disney has revealed the first trailer for its long-awaited Star Wars original series, The Mandalorian.

Created by Jon Favreau (Iron Man), the series is set after the events of Return of the Jedi and follows Pedro Pascal as a mysterious, gun-slinging Mandalorian bounty hunter who navigates the seedier side of the Star Wars universe.

Along with Pedro Pascal, The Mandalorian stars Gina Carano, Nick Nolte, Giancarlo Esposito, Emily Swallow, Carl Weathers, Omid Abtahi, Werner Herzog, and Taika Waititi. The first season of episodes will be directed by filmmakers like Dave Filoni, Taika Waititi, Bryce Dallas Howard, Rick Famuyiwa, and Deborah Chow.

the mandalorian trailer

Here’s the official description of The Mandalorian:

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.

The Mandalorian begins streaming on Disney+ on November 12, 2019.

Check out The Mandalorian trailer below.

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Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’ Soundtrack Gets a Vinyl Release

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While we don’t publish music news or music reviews here at Goomba Stomp, we are huge fans of vinyl and since we cover film, we figured this announcement would interest some of our readers.

Back in 2017, Jordan Peele’s Get Out topped our list of the best films of 2017 and while the year isn’t yet over, there’s a good chance his follow-up Us, will land somewhere on our best of the year list as well. There are many reasons why we love Peele’s ambitious sophomore film including for the suspense, cinematography, performances, and direction, but one thing that doesn’t get enough praise is the soundtrack by Michael Abels. And if you like us, love the original score, you’re going to love this bit of news.

After giving his Get Out soundtrack a vinyl release last year, Jordan Peele is now doing the same for the soundtrack to Us.

WaxWork Records announced the news earlier today and if you’re planning on buying a copy, you don’t have to wait since it is now available to purchase through the label’s website.

The soundtrack, which received a digital release earlier this year, features composer Michael Abels’ score, in addition to songs from Janelle Monáe, Minnie Ripperton and the “Tethered Mix” of Luniz’s “I Got 5 on It” that appeared in the film’s first trailer. The album artwork was created by illustrator Edward Kinsella and features an interactive die-cut mirror board back cover, a heavyweight art print and an exclusive essay from UCLA Professor, scholar, and activist Shana L. Redmond Ph.D.

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Trailer for the Twisted Dark Comedy thriller ‘Villains’

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Alter has released the first poster and the official trailer for Villains, the upcoming dark comedy thriller which stars Bill Skarsgård (IT) and Maika Monroe (It Follows) as a couple who rob a gas station and scores enough cash to start a new life in Florida. Unfortunately for them, their getaway plans turn upside down and the young couple end up stumbling on much more than they bargained for.

Villains hits theaters on September 20th and was written and directed by Dan Berk and Robert Olsen. In addition to Skarsgard and Monroe, the movie also stars Jeffrey Donovan and Kyra Sedgwick. It’s co-produced by Bron Studios, Star Thrower Entertainment, Creative Wealth Media Finance, and The Realm Films. You can watch the trailer for Villains below.

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Beanie Babies: The Collectables with Heart

Toys We Love Spotlight

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For our Toys We Love Spotlight, I’m looking at one of my personal favourites: Beanie Babies. I had collected so many of these growing up, and households worldwide in the 90s and early 2000s were sure to have at least one Beanie Baby in their possession (was it even the 90s if they didn’t?). These plushie companions were cute, cuddly, and collectable, so it’s not a surprise that the Beanie Babies craze swept the globe, forcing parents and toy collectors everywhere to dig into their wallets.


Beanie Babies had a few aspects to them that made them stand out from your average plushie. Firstly, they did not have as much stuffing as most soft toys. Whilst some thought that this made them look cheap, it also made them light, posable, and gave them a realistic feel and look. The bear Beanie Babies were particularly good to pose, and this set them apart from run-of-the-mill teddy bears. Another element that made Beanie Babies more unique was their special tag. Each toy had a tag attached which had the toy’s name, date of birth, and a quotation etched inside. The former was something that could have been a risky choice, as although it wasn’t completely taking away the child’s choice of name — there was nothing stopping them from just calling their Beanie whatever they wanted — a pre-selected name can be difficult to sell, as kids can often take great pride and pleasure in naming their toys.

It was a great success, however, and worked as a nice finishing touch for the Beanie Babies, adding a dash of personality and flair (something much needed in the often critically over-saturated soft toy market), as well as making each Beanie Baby feel like their own creature with their own little stories. Adding to that was the wide variety of animals that were available, such as Tiny the Chihuahua, Pegasus the Unicorn or Swampy the Alligator. This means that the desires of each individual child or enthusiastic collector could be catered to (I myself favoured the dogs and bears).

The puppies were my Beanie Baby of choice. They were all such good boys and girls.

The Beanie Babies also had their own way of tackling difficult issues in society, showing them to kids through the guise of a soft toy. I’ll give you an example through my own experience: I had a Beanie Baby that (as odd as it may sound) gave me more of an understanding of the horrors of September 11th. Weird, right? Allow me to explain. I was only just nine years old on that now-historical day when the twin towers in New York were attacked and so many innocent people lost their lives. I had come home from school (it was afternoon time here in the UK when it happened), and I remember my mum watching it on television in complete shock. She had watched the whole thing whilst I’d been at school.

I didn’t really understand what was happening to be honest. Even when I was watching the repeats of the plane crashing into the side of the tower, I was somewhat oblivious the gravity of the situation (though as a nine year old child, I suppose I could be forgiven for that). The news continued to report the tragedy for a long time, and my school held assemblies to discuss the matter. I knew people had died, and that made me very sad, but I remember thinking that people died all the time, so why was this one incident reported on so much? About a month or so after, TY released three Beanie Babies as a tribute to those lost during 9/11. One of these was a Dalmatian Beanie Baby called Rescue, and I wanted him the moment I saw him, not really knowing the true nature of his purpose. My mum obliged happily, knowing what he represented. I remember taking my little Dalmatian with the red collar and American flag on his leg home and reading his tag. It read:

To honor our heroes
who lost their lives in the
national catastrophe that
took place on September 11, 2001.
We mourn for them and express our
deepest sympathy to their families.
God Bless America

Rescue the Dalmatian was joined by America the Bear and Courage the German Shepherd. The Beanies were a set of three released to honor those who perished in the tragedy of 9/11.

I found Rescue in my room recently, and the memories flooded back to me upon reading it again. I remember looking into all the acts of heroism and bravery after reading Rescue’s tag, and that’s when the situation really hit home to me. I looked into the stories of firefighters and first responders and those who had died, as well as all the search-and-rescue dogs attempting to save people among the chaos. As a child, it can be hard to see past your immediate opinion and truly consider the sheer weight of a situation, but with Rescue’s help, I was able to see just how this event was indeed very different to anything I had ever seen before, and how serious it was. It was the first time I felt like I was thinking like a grown up. I looked at the world differently from then on — obviously as I got older, but also from my ability to think harder and search deeper. Honestly, I don’t know if I would have even bothered if it wasn’t for Rescue reminding me of exactly how much was lost on that day.

Rescue, perhaps the goodest and bravest boy of them all.

Beanie babies will forever be ingrained in culture. They are still bought, sold and collected even now and will remain a timeless staple of most of our childhoods. They certainly are for me. Especially you Rescue, the bravest firefighting Dalmatian the world has ever known.

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‘Shenmue III’ Gamescom Trailer Details a Day in the Life of Ryo

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The original Shenmue games pioneered the open world genre, in part through their inclusion of many different minigames and side activities. The Kickstarter-funded Shenmue III looks to continue that legacy, as developer Ys Net and publisher Deep Silver have debuted a new trailer at Gamescom 2019 entitled “A Day in Shenmue.”

The developers provided the following description of the trailer via their latest Kickstarter update: “Exploring the town, playing minigames and battling! We hope it feels just how a Shenmue day should!” Sure enough, the footage showcases the series protagonist Ryo participating in a number of minigames, such as a boxing game and a pachinko machine. The end of the trailer also includes a good look at the series’ signature kung fu combat.

Beyond the new trailer, the Kickstarter update also noted that Yu Suzuki, the famed creator of Shenmue, will be present at Gamescom for autograph signings.

After numerous delays, Shenmue III will finally launch on November 19, 2019 for PS4 and PC via the Epic Games Store.

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Goomba Stomp is the joint effort of a team of like-minded writers from across the globe. We provide smart readers with sharp, entertaining writing on a wide range of topics in pop culture, offering an escape from the usual hype and gossip. We are currently looking for Film, TV, Anime and Comic writers.

Contact us: Editor@GoombaStomp.com

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