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This Week in Gaming News: There’s no Return From 76



Scouring the internet for the latest gaming news to regurgitate to you, my hungry gamer children, is often a pretty laborious affair – especially as I am very picky about what gets included and what inspires the largest amount of positive or negative emotion in me. This week, however, the amount of work required to sift through news stories was intensified tenfold thanks to the poster child of all psychological capitalism – Black Friday. Seriously, go search for ‘video game news’ yourselves and see how many websites have been plastering video game deals all over their news sections this last week.

Black Friday can ruin an attempt at some honest research, but it can also ruin your self-esteem. Before we get down to the news, I’m just going to give you all a tip: beware early Black Friday sales – they are a lie. I got sent an email from Amazon last week advertising early Black Friday deals on TVs and finally took the plunge into the land of 4K. I got what I thought was a decent price on the TV I’d been eyeing for a while, only to find that a mere five days later it had dropped even further. During a conversation with the Amazon customer service chat man, he basically told me it was tough shit, they wouldn’t refund me the difference and, come Cyber Monday, the price would probably be even lower. Patience is a virtue, kids.

Oh, Of Course Microsoft Has Loads Planned for E3

Let’s get this non-surprise out of the way first. I think anyone with even a slightly vested interest in video games could have bet their granny on Microsoft going big on the hype for their 2019 E3 showcase in the wake of Sony announcing last week they were dropping out completely. Sometimes the marketing just does itself, folks.

The official Xbox Twitter account got the shithouse ball rolling with a simple enough tweet of “We can’t wait to see you all at ?@E3 2019,” which is to be expected as it’s pretty much marketing 101. As soon as Sony drop out, you publicly double down on the fact that you haven’t. Bish, bash, bosh – job done. But Xbox wasn’t done there, as the exec vice prez of gaming, Phil Spencer, later added (also via Twitter) “A lot to share with fans at E3 2019. Always a high point of the year to witness the industry’s creativity and the energy of the community.

This might not be SEGA vs Nintendo in the 90’s, but I’m going to drink it all in nonetheless. I don’t want to put words in Big Philly’s mouth, but I really hope that ‘witness the industry’s creativity’ line is a little jab at the fact that Sony have basically nothing to show us this year. One thing that is certain, however, is that Microsoft has been boasting about all the studios they’ve been acquiring in recent months, and we’re yet to see any games come out of it. By that logic, I’d expect them to have a solid number of exclusive titles to see out the Xbox One’s life. Anything else would be a severe misstep.

’76’ Experiences Its Own Nuclear Fallout

I could not be happier with the week that Fallout 76 has had. I may be a huge Fallout fan, and I may not have played the game (because why the hell would I want to?), but the amount of shit being thrown at this game from all circles is the kind of schadenfreude I haul my miserable arse out of bed for.

Firstly, and probably the best of all, the game has sold terribly. That B.E.T.A. event (which apparently did absolutely nothing to sort out any bugs or even server issues) was as misguided as the premise for the entire game, as it seems to have actively put a large number of potential players off. Yes, the gaming public has finally been savvy enough with its money to avoid buying it, with The Metro reporting sales are down 82% from Fallout 4 and other reports that it’s been discounted by $20 already – including directly from Bethesda.

A downturn in sales appears to be just desserts for the game, which has been roundly panned by just about every corner of the gaming media. I’ve yet to see anything close to a positive review, and most are simply baffled at what Bethesda really expected people to think of a buggy, broken and boring game that has stripped out almost every aspect linking it to the franchise in the first place. Giant Bomb’s legend Jeff Gerstmann said on their recent podcast that they were unlikely to even review Fallout 76 because “no one on staff wants to play any more of this video game.

My worry here is that this can obviously go two ways. It should rightly go the way that Bethesda never do anything like this ever again, but of course it could cause the schmucks in suits to lose faith in the franchise if they just study the numbers. Honestly, though, what were they thinking? How has this broken insult to Fallout fans seen the light of day at all, let alone in the state that it released AFTER having a beta test?

Gaming News Fallout 76

Well, there goes the franchise, fellas

Bethesda have had too much of a free pass in the last two generations for the terrible build quality of their games, and it turns out that people are a lot less willing to forgive that when the developer takes out NPCs and an interesting story, ruins the V.A.T.S. system, and builds a massive map that only has 24 players on it. It’s a bad idea done very badly, and the more the gaming public reacts negatively to industry bullshit like this, the better the future will hopefully be.

‘Gears of War’ News Pops Up

There were a couple pieces of Gears of War news this week, one likely to intrigue and one likely to instigate a rolling of the eyes. Do you want the good news first or the bad news? Bad news it is.

A gameplay trailer for the still inexplicable Gears POP! surfaced recently, showing off the snails-pace gameplay of the PvP strategy title. I suppose it can’t be argued that the game isn’t showing reverence to at least the characters of the Gears universe, as there will be plenty of unlockable POPs for your ‘deck’ (almost certainly for a price), but the gameplay could not be more removed, and quite frankly looks mind-numbingly bollocks. Don’t just take my word for it, bore yourself in the video below.

At least Gears POP! shouldn’t be the death knell for the franchise – even if it is yet another misguided attempt from a major developer to try to convince us that mobile gaming still matters – because some more information about Gears of War 5 emerged this week thanks to a transcription (taken from from an X018 panel with Coalition studio head Rod Ferguson.

Rod stated that, for Gears 4, the fact that they were seen as something of a new studio having taken over from Cliff Bleszinski’s Epic Games, meant they had to play it relatively safe. He said, “we really felt that we had to prove ourselves, that we could make an authentic Gears of War experience.” Of course, anyone who played Gears 4 can certainly attest to the notion that it was a very by-the-numbers attempt to replicate a well-trodden formula, and that general consensus definitely put a downer on the reveal of Gears 5, with questions being asked as to what the series has left to offer.

Gaming News Gears of War 5

“I’ve just completed Gears POP! on this thing, can you burn it for me?”

Ferguson has moved to try and regain interest in the game, and indeed the series, as he explained “now, Gears 5 is about bringing The Coalition’s personality to the game. Now we’re gonna see a bunch of innovation, a bunch of change, a bunch of things that are really exciting, that are really different, but still feel very Gears of War.” Take from that what you will, but at least the studio previously proved they know how to make a Gears game that feels right, and they’re now willing to stamp their own mark on the franchise going forward, which is exactly what’s needed.

The Latest Snivelling Apologists Are Ubisoft (Again)

My word, the amount of joy I’ve been able to take from the misery of shitty studios and their shitty practices this week has been glorious. Remember a few weeks ago when Ubisoft were going to remove things like skulls, gambling and blood splatter from the global build of Rainbow Six: Siege to adhere to ‘Asian territories,’ despite the fact that they didn’t even expect any in-game interaction between that market and the west? Well, if you haven’t figured out by now that they’ve backtracked on that after fan uproar, then you’re not reading this article properly.

In a blog post on Tuesday, Ubisoft explained the following:

We have been following the conversation with our community closely over the past couple of weeks… and we want to ensure that the experience for all our players, especially those that have been with us from the beginning, remains as true to the original artistic intent as possible.”

If this year in video games has taught us anything, it’s that if you all shout loud enough and long enough (in as respectful a way as possible, preferably) at publishers who make twatty decisions based on nothing but their own greed, they will eventually apologise and back down. Of course, anyone who wants to remain on the ‘gamers are entitled’ bandwagon could probably have a field day with this, but I’d say you’re probably allowed to feel a little entitled to expect your $60 game you’ve continued to play for years to retain its integrity and not bow down to a new, untested, unproven and potentially unviable market at your expense.

Gaming News Rainbow Six

Skulls are coming back, y’all!

The blog post doesn’t explicitly detail whether the changes will remain in the build for the Asian territories – as it simply states that “Current players in Asian territories can continue enjoying the same game as the other players.” Assuming it keeps the changes over there and reverts back here in the west, it kind of renders this whole episode a totally pointless waste of everyone’s time, doesn’t it? Well done, Ubisoft.

Wanted: Waluigi

Speaking of shouting at publishers, there are few fans less vocal than Smash Bros. fans. Of course, you don’t even have to be listening that hard to hear the cries for Waluigi to be included as a full character in Smash Ultimate, especially in the aftermath of Nintendo announcing they’d prefer to put a potted plant in there instead. Man, that’s got to be a pretty low blow to Waluigi – lower down the pecking order than a fucking plant.

Speaking with Okay, Cool, Nintendo of Canada’s Andrew Collins responded to the recent ire by saying, “As a marketer, when you have something that goes viral like that it’s brilliant. You can’t buy that. You can’t create it. And when the fans do something like that, it’s amazing. But it’s so good to see from a passionate side of things. And let’s face it, it’s funny.”

Gaming News Smash Ultimate

If Waluigi ever gets to use himself as an assist trophy, life will be complete

That last sentence could well annoy some of the more die-hard Smash fandom out there, especially if they think Nintendo are more content to sit and laugh at their collective whining than actually give them what they want, but I like that. As somewhat of a prick myself, I hope they really do sit there laughing while they mug us all off. Of course, this could conversely mean that Nintendo will eventually include Waluigi in Smash Ultimate and are just playing the long game to tease us and make us all go insane, but it could mean nothing other than they go on Reddit sometimes. It’s definitely a little promising, no?

Right, that’s your lot this week, I’m now off to record both the NXpress Podcast and the Not Red E Podcast before I go to bed, so you lot can go and practise your written gratitude for my hard work, enjoy your week, and I’ll see you in seven.

Crotchety Englishman who spends hundreds of pounds on video game tattoos and Amiibo in equally wallet-crippling measure. Likes grammar a lot, but not as much as he likes ranting about the latest gaming news in his weekly column.



  1. Gnio

    November 28, 2018 at 8:00 am

    I never comment in articles, but you dude just earned one. Reading you is exquisite.

    • Alex Aldridge

      November 28, 2018 at 9:23 am

      I rarely get comments on these posts., but ones like this make it all worthwhile. You can officially give yourself the title of ‘Top-notch Human Being’ and accept a ton of love from yours truly. Keep being one of the good ones, yeah?

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‘The Mandalorian’ Trailer: A Shot-by-Shot Analysis



With Disney’s D23 Expo well underway in Anaheim, California, we got a slew of information about upcoming Disney, Marvel, and Star Wars projects. One of the most anticipated of these announcements was the trailer for Jon Favreau’s upcoming television series The Mandalorian. The show will take place following the events of the original trilogy of Star Wars films, set a few years after Return of the Jedi, when the Empire has been defeated, and will follow the titular gunfighter. The Mandalorian trailer suggests a darker tone for the Star Wars franchise; story-wise, we haven’t had much information, so let’s break down the trailer and see what we can decipher.

Stormtrooper Graveyard

One of the most striking images from the entire Mandalorian trailer is the opening shot of decimated Stormtrooper helmets in the sand. The setting of the series is emphasised here, with the collapse of the Empire highlighted by what looks like a shrine to their demise.

We also get this image of the helmets on pikes, suggesting a dark and violent tone. It is understandable that the inhabitants of the Star Wars universe would be vengeful towards the Empire, but this imagery illustrates just how deeply rooted this anger is throughout the galaxy. It is also a rather violent image, suggesting that the show will have a more adult nature similar to that of the Rogue One film.

Razor Crest

We then get a look at the Mandalorian’s ship as it cruises across a lush planet flourishing with greenery. The ship itself is known as the Razor Crest, a fact that was given back in April at the The Mandalorian panel at the Star Wars Celebration event in Chicago.

Prepare for Landing

The next shot we see is of some kind of ship port where the Mandalorian has docked the Razor Crest. He obviously travels far and wide within the galaxy for his contracts, and it could be interesting to see where his work takes him throughout the series. This particular port looks like it has seen better days. It’s likely that it took a beating during the civil war between the Empire and the Rebel Alliance. The effects that the war had on the rest of the galaxy could also be a fascinating element to explore.

Greef Carga

Next we see the Mandalorian exchanging what looks like credits of some kind with a character confirmed to be called Greef Carga, played by Carl Weathers. Carga is said to be the leader of a guild of bounty hunters who hires the titular character to track down an asset of great value.

Desert Plains

The Mandalorian trailer then sees the Razor Crest flying across a planet with a cracked, desert style terrain. This is another great example of the various worlds that we might see across the span of the series.  The scene is also visually stunning, and the production values are incredibly impressive for a television series. You can see that Disney is investing a lot in the show.

Suit Up

The Mandalorian readies his armour and weaponry in the next shot, obviously preparing for a fight. The mystery of the man behind the Mandolorian mask is clearly going to be a strong element of the series, much like with fellow Mandolorian bounty hunter Boba Fett, who became a fan favourite despite his minimal screen time. We know that the title character will be played by Pedro Pascal (Game of Thrones, Narcos), but little else is known about him.

Cara Dune

Gina Carano’s Cara Dune is seen in the following shot. Dune is a former Rebel solider, having been a Rebel Shock Trooper beforehand.  Carano described her as a “loner” who has trouble fitting back into regular society following the end of the Galactic Civil War. This is also an interesting story element that could bring some relatable human moments to a galaxy far, far away. Soldiers often have trouble adjusting back into ordinary civilian life following a long stint on the battlefield, and seeing this via Carano’s character could really humanise the Rebel soldiers who weren’t necessarily big players in the war, but just regular troopers. They are often overlooked in big adventure stories such as Star Wars in favour of the unobtainable heroes, so to explore the stories of the other Rebels could be interesting.


We then see an Uganaught  riding on what looks a bit like a worm with legs (that is my best scientific description). Uganaughts are humanoid creatures that have a slight resemblance to pigs. They come from the planet Gentes, and have made appearances across the wealth of Star Wars media. It’s nice to see the inclusion of a variety of alien species from the Star Wars universe here.

Twi’lek Ladies Get it Done

Similar to the Uganaught species, the Twi’lek are an alien species who have made appearances across the various Star Wars books, television shows, and video games. This particular Twi’lek woman looks like she has some sass to her, and I’m a sucker for strong sci-fi ladies. Girl power and all that.

The Lone Ranger

This is personally my favourite shot of the whole Mandalorian trailer. We see the Mandalorian walking by himself as the sun sets on a desert landscape. This shot encapsulates the lone nature of the bounty hunter. His dark silhouette slowly approaching is somewhat menacing as well, and makes for a fantastic shot that not only looks terrific, but also suggests the dark tones of the show and the moral ambiguity of the character.

Mother and Child

The next shot shows a woman and child cowering. This shot could be taken from any moment in the show, and could be a flashback or an important event in the series. Either way, it is likely that they are related to the Mandalorian in some way. Whether they were family to him or they are characters that he protects, I am certain they will play some role in the events that occur.

Ready, Aim, Fire

The next shot seems to be edited together in a way to make it seem like the line up of Deathtroopers are aiming at the woman and child in the previous shot. Though this is most likely purposely edited, it shows that the Empire still has loyal followers attempting to uphold the regime.

From the Hip

We see the Mandalorian’s itchy trigger finger next as he stands off against an unknown adversary. The trailer is certainly establishing a Western theme and this moment truly captures the feel of traditional gun-slinging Westerns.

Moff Gideon

Giancarlo Esposito’s Moff Gideon is the next character introduced in the Mandalorian trailer. Esposito confirmed that his character is still serving the Empire despite their fall in Return of the Jedi. He seems to have an ensemble of  Deathtroopers behind him, so he clearly isn’t alone in his dedication to the Empire. We know that the First Order will step up and take the place of the Empire in the future, so perhaps Gideon will play a part in establishing the new regime. It could also be that Gideon is an independent party, acting alone with his team of troopers.

Bounty Hunter for Hire

The close up of the classic Mandalorian helmet brings back memories of fellow Mandalorians — Boba Fett from the original trilogy, as well as his father, Jango Fett, from the prequels. The people of the planet Mandalore were ravaged by war on their world, so I’d be interested to see if we get to see the Mandalorian home planet, get more of an insight into the Mandalorian people, and learn how they were affected by their planets violent history.


We then see a man aboard a swoop bike back in the desert at night confronting some sort of space craft.  This looks like it could be the Mandalorian, but he is missing his signature helmet. Hopefully, we will get a look at the man under the mask at some point in the series.


A battle rages in the night in the next shot. You can see trenches set up and ships blasting at those on the ground. The ship makes the classic ‘pew pew’ noise when it fires, which is always the best part of anything Star Wars-related.


Someone carrying a child runs through a street where a battle is raging; could it be possible that the valuable asset that Greef Carga has tasked the Mandalorian with transporting is indeed this child? It would make sense if the person carrying the child is the Mandalorian himself without his helmet again, but it could also be possible that this is just a child and parent affected by the war, trying to escape the battle. Either way, you can clearly see how the fighting is affecting someone so young.

Knock Knock, Open up the Door

Another cool scene from the Mandalorian trailer is this moment with the Mandalorian and a droid. The droid was confirmed to be named IG-11 after fans were originally thinking that he was an IG-88 assassin droid seen in the previous Star Wars movies. IG-11 will be voiced by Taika Waititi, so he is sure to have some attitude, and hopefully will deliver some one liners. If IG-11 has a similar personality to some of Waititi’s others roles, such as Korg from Thor: Ragnorak, then it could be a nice contrast to have him team up with the stalwart and stoic Mandalorian.

Space Battle

For a series set in space in a franchise known as Star Wars, we only get one glimpse of an actual fight in space.

IG -11

After seeing the Mandolorian gunning down some people in a battle, IG- 11 gets a moment to shine as he takes out several people with his laser pistol. Hopefully, the droid will pay a significant role in the series, perhaps forming a similar relationship with the Mandolorian that Cassian Andor and K2-S0 had in Rogue One.

Mexican Standoff

One of the finishing shots of the Mandalorian trailer shows the Mandalorian standing off against a group of Stormtroopers. He seems to be outnumbered and outgunned. At least until…

Hold the Door

He pulls a finishing move on this guy by tripping him as he tries to run, grabbing him with some kind of grappling hook, and pulling him back in through the door. He then shoots a panel next to door, forcing it to close on the attempted runaway. The shot cuts away before we get the bloody shot of someone getting chopped in two (this is still a Disney production after all), but the tone is clear. This guy is skilled, he is precise, and he is certainly not to be messed with.


A brief shot of an alien frozen in carbonite is seen next, showing that this isn’t a punishment just reserved for the likes of Han Solo. We also hear some voice lines from acclaimed actor, director, writer and all around artist Werner Herzog who states “Bounty Hunting is a complicated thing.”

Herzog Himself

Then we cut to the man himself. It is unclear as to who Herzog will be playing, but to have such an acclaimed person on board is pretty promising. He finishes his speech, “Don’t you agree?” I really hope that the series explores the moral ambiguities of what a bounty hunter is, and this small yet poignant speech from Herzog’s character suggests that this could come into question.

The Mandalorian

Jon Favreau is clearly a huge fan of the Star Wars series, and I have no doubt that he will bring us an interesting story that explores the dark underworld of the bounty hunting business in the Star Wars universe, whilst also maintaining the conflict between the Rebels, the ordinary citizens, and the last remnants of the Empire. With an impressive cast and crew working on it, The Mandalorian has the potential to be a brilliant addition to the Star Wars lore.

The Mandalorian will be available to stream from November 12th on Disney’s streaming service, Disney+.

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Watch Ninja On An Episode Of Family Feud

Don’t miss the moment Steve Harvey meets Ninja for the first time.




Tyler ‘Ninja’ Blevins is heading up a team on Celebrity Family Feud this weekend, but it’s not the first time the famed Fortnite streamer has appeared on the show.

Long before he reached household name status in the gaming community, Ninja appeared on the televised game show Family Feud in 2015, when he and his family went on a three-day winning streak before losing to the Beams family of Hendersonville, Tennessee.

With Blevins now appearing on an upcoming episode of Celebrity Family Feud, we thought it would be fun to revisit those earlier episodes which have now all been uploaded online.

Regardless if you like Ninja and/or the show, you’ll get a kick out of watching his introduction when he tells host Steve Harvey that he’s a professional video game player who travels across the country and competes, playing video games. The reaction on Harvey’s face is priceless since nobody at the time could have ever guessed how popular Ninja, not to mention streaming video games, would eventually become.

Watch the videos below. Enjoy!

[via Dexerto]

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Check Out the Explosive First Gameplay of ‘Kerbal Space Program 2’



Kerbal Space Program 2

Gamescom 2019 brought with it a host of surprising game announcements and updates on existing games. One of the most unexpected announcements was the reveal of Kerbal Space Program 2, the sequel to the viral, totally accurate space simulator that first released on PC back in 2011.

Now, shortly after its initial reveal, Gamespot has gone live with the first gameplay of this much-anticipated sequel. Fittingly enough, the footage showcases all the spectacularly explosive spaceships, interstellar exploration, and intrepid Kerbal explorers that the series has become known for.

It should be noted that the footage is pre-alpha, so although the gameplay does show some issues with frame rate and graphics, those should be polished up before the game’s full launch on PC, PS4, and Xbox One in 2020.

Here’s the full description of the game, courtesy of its official website:

With the original Kerbal Space Program having become one of the most beloved games of all time and now bigger than ever, Kerbal Space Program 2 has been fully redesigned from the ground up to meet the demands of modern and next-generation space exploration, all while maintaining the monumental foundations of the first game. Build a space program, construct powerful spacecraft, design resource-gathering colonies, and much more to uncover the secrets of the galaxy. A plethora of exciting new features will captivate veteran and returning players, as well as usher in a whole new wave of Kerbonauts to the ingenious and comedic world that has entertained millions of players.

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Netflix Releases Teaser for ‘El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie’

The Netflix Television Event will launch globally on Friday, October 11




It was on September 29, 2013, that Breaking Bad came to an end with the final episode of that series, “Felina” in which Walter White evades a nationwide manhunt in order to return to New Mexico and deliver the remaining profits from his illegal methamphetamine empire to his family. Knowing cancer will soon kill him, Walt revisits his former acquaintances to settle his affairs and prepare himself for the conflict and his death. When the credits rolled, audiences believed it would be the last time they would see many of these characters and while we did get a spinoff show in Better Call Saul, one character who hasn’t returned in any other show as of yet is Jesse Pinkman. That’s about to change…

Netflix announced on Saturday that it will release a new Breaking Bad movie that will center on Pinkman (Aaron Paul), who was last seen in the TV series speeding off in a stolen Chevrolet El Camino to parts unknown.

The film, titled El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie, was written and directed by Vince Gilligan, the creator of Breaking Bad, and will be released on Netflix on Oct. 11. The film is also expected to be broadcast at a later date on AMC, the cable network where the TV series was originally shown from 2008 to 2013.

Official Synopsis:

The Netflix Television Event El Camino: Breaking Bad Movie reunites fans with Jesse Pinkman (Emmy-winner Aaron Paul).  In the wake of his dramatic escape from captivity, Jesse must come to terms with his past in order to forge some kind of future.  This gripping thriller is written and directed by Vince Gilligan, the creator of Breaking Bad.  The movie is produced by Mark Johnson, Melissa Bernstein, Charles Newirth, Diane Mercer and Aaron Paul, in association with Sony Pictures Television.

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




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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