So! You are almost done with your shopping? Then it hits you that you forgot to get little Jamie a present! What do you do? Do you rush out to get Jamie the latest Turbo-Man toy? NO! That would be silly, and you would probably end up locked in holiday toy combat with a disgruntled postal worker while someone you don’t like is at home eating your cookies! Instead, just look below and pick one – you won’t be disappointed! I mean, JAMIE won’t be disappointed! 🙂
HP Omen X 35 Inch Curved Display
HP’s Omen X line of computers and gaming peripherals is a stylish and performance-driven lineup. What stood out most to me, however, was its HP 35 Curved Display – it’s ultra-wide and CURVED! Also, it has an exceptional sense of style as well as 100Hz refresh rate and G-SYNC compatibility. This display is simply exceptional.
Creative Labs crafted a very impressive PC gaming headset with their Sound BlasterX H7 Tournament Edition. Featuring a 50mm tilt-driver setup which creates small acoustic chambers in the ear cups, the Sound BlasterX H7 TE is also very comfortable to wear for long gaming sessions. Finally, its removable mic has some great noise cancellation for chatting with your team mates. These are just a few reasons why it made our “Seal of Excellence” award!
Keeping my coffee hot during my morning routine never goes well and inevitably ends up with me pouring a cold cup of coffee in the sink. The Ember electronically controls your drink’s temperature by way of an iOS app and is rechargeable! Couple that with its ceramic mug style lip and push-to-open operation, drinking from the Ember travel mug is terrific and makes a great gift for the busy person in your life.
Xbox One gamers in your life will love the Plantronics RIG 800LX with its free DOLBY Atmos capabilities and comfortable ear cups. Additionally, it’s super-comfortable for long gaming sessions and has a nifty flip up boom microphone which auto-mutes when in the up position. You can also adjust the headset for various head heights which is something you don’t usually see. Finally, the DOLBY Atmos provides some seriously-cool positional audio which will blow your mind!
Creative Labs makes this list a second time with their iRoar Go bluetooth speaker. Not only does it have some great styling and lines, but it also features some seriously powerful audio from a considerably portable product thanks to its “SuperWide” technology. This technology allows the small iRoar Go to sound almost like a much larger sound bar that you would have in your home/dorm/office theater system!
The holiday season is upon us once more, and again we make the pilgrimage to Knott’s Merry Farm to checkout their seasonal offerings. Knott’s Merry Farm, for those of you unaware, is the holiday season makeover undertaken by Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park, CA. It runs from now until January 7, 2018 and costs no added charge on top of the standard ticket price. For not paying anything more, however, you are certainly getting a lot extra! I should note that, in the past, Knott’s offered a special, reduced-price ticket to visit just the crafting village. However, I do not see that option available this year – call the park for clarification.
First, you get access to the craft village setup in the Calico Ghost Town area of the park. There, you will find a plethora of vendors hawking their wares – wares such as hand-made soaps, ornaments, and a whole lot more. Also, the park designers have done an excellent job of decorating Calico Ghost Town for the holiday season. There are boughs of holly, ornaments, trees, and a lot more gracing the usually-Spartan, grizzled Western town. Even the Calico Railroad has been made up some for the holiday season and you may not run into your usual train bandits during the excursion around the park.
Further down the road into Calico Ghost Town you’ll find Santa’s Christmas Cabin, where the big man himself waits to take photographs with guests and their families. Also in the cabin is a delightful array of holiday treats. There are freshly-dipped caramel apples, hot cocoa, tamales, wine selections, popcorn, and a host of other offerings that you owe it to yourself to sample upon your visit, so don’t fill up elsewhere! Even the Calico Railroad has been made up some for the holiday season and you may not run into your usual train bandits during the excursion around the park.
Also taking place during Knott’s Merry Farm is the award-winning Merry Christmas Snoopy! ice show with an impressive cadre of skaters as well as Peanuts characters on the ice. Unfortunately, while the skaters and dancers are very skilled, the ice show hasn’t changed much in the last few years and I hope they update it for the 2018 Knott’s Merry Farm event. Also returning this season are A Christmas Carol and Gift of the Magi in the Birdcage Theatre. These short format plays are a lot of fun and a must-see during your visit. At night, you can enjoy the lighting of the very impressive Calico Christmas tree across the way from the new Calico Main Stage. Speaking of which, you can also watch the It’s The Merriest Christmas Show Ever, Charlie Brown stage show there. This show is well produced and features many memorable moments. Also roaming the ghost town are the Calico Carolers, a vocal quartet that bump up their impressive singing with equally-impressive bell work!
Of course, you have access to all the standard Knott’s Berry Farm rides and attractions during the Merry Farm, and you can even see the progression of the parks upcoming Hang Time roller coaster as it is being constructed! The Calico Mine Ride and Timber Mountain Log Ride are operational and it is always a treat to ride these classic attractions. They really don’t make them like that anymore and the two fit right in with the old thyme holiday theme.
Overall, Knott’s Merry Farm is a Southern California holiday tradition that is not to be missed. It is fun for all ages and a delightful place to visit. Knott’s Merry Farm runs from now until January 7, 2018 during normal park operating hours. You can find out more about Knott’s Merry Farm such as ticket information and hours at the park’s official website.
20th Century Fox has debuted the official trailer for ALITA: BATTLE ANGEL from visionary filmmakers James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez starring Rosa Salazar, Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Connelly, Mahershala Ali, Ed Skrein, Jackie Earle Haley and Keean Johnson!
(Glendale, CA) December 7, 2017 – Marvel Entertainment announced today, “Marvel Rising,” a brand-new, multi-platform animation franchise starring the next generation of Marvel heroes set to launch in 2018. The program will launch with six, four-minute digital shorts that spotlight Spider-Gwen with her new secret moniker, Ghost-Spider, and introduce audiences to the world of “Marvel Rising.” Following the shorts, a feature-length animated film, “Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors” will premiere later that year. Distribution partners for the content to be announced at a later date.
Meet the characters and all-star voice actors behind the all-new franchise “Marvel Rising” here:
The content features an all-star line-up of voice talent including Dove Cameron, Chloe Bennet, Tyler Posey, BooBoo Stewart, Kathreen Khavari, Milana Vayntrub, Cierra Ramirez, Kamil McFadden, Skai Jackson, Kim Raver, Ming-Na Wen, Steven Weber, and Dee Bradley Baker among others. Future stories and content are also being developed across Marvel’s digital and publishing platforms and will be announced at a later date.
“Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors” is a long-anticipated event, bringing together Marvel’s newest and beloved characters that have garnered major fan excitement over the last few years. Powered teens Ms. Marvel, Squirrel Girl, Quake, Patriot, America Chavez, and Inferno join forces as an unlikely, but formidable crew of aspiring heroes. When a threat no one could have expected bears down on the Marvel Universe, this ragtag, untrained band of teens have no choice but to rise together and prove to the world that sometimes the difference between a “hero” and “misfit” is just in the name.
“Marvel characters are so relatable because they live in our world and face the same challenges we do. So I’m very excited that our Marvel Rising team of heroes is so inclusive, reflecting characters with different backgrounds, particularly a set of strong female leads that our young audience can connect with,” said Cort Lane, Marvel’s Senior Vice President of Animation & Family Entertainment.
Sana Amanat, Marvel’s Director of Content & Character Development, added, “This project is unlike anything we’ve done before—from featuring the rising and fan-favorite stars of the Marvel Universe, to a visually distinct animation style, this is a groundbreaking animated event. It’s an action-packed adventure, full of comedy, heart and powerful messages for every kind of Marvel fan.”
Meet the characters behind “Marvel Rising”:
Gwen Stacy aka Ghost-Spider (formerly Spider Gwen) voiced by Dove Cameron (“Descendants,” “Hairspray Live”) – a free spirited teen who found her calling to be a super hero after being bitten by a radioactive spider and gaining spider-like powers. As Ghost-Spider, she aids those in need, but has to keep her alter-ego a secret from her father, Captain George Stacy, who sees Ghost-Spider as more of a menace than a hero.
Daisy Johnson aka Quake voiced by Chloe Bennet (“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” “Nashville”) – a leading agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. whose tendency for rule-breaking gets her into trouble now and then. Daisy befriends the young group of heroes and through them discovers how to become a better leader. She can generate powerful vibrational waves, which produce effects similar to earthquakes.
Dante Pertuz aka Inferno voiced by Tyler Posey (“Teen Wolf,” “Lincoln Heights”) – a brooding, dark loner on the run. Dante has the power of pyrokinesis, which makes him capable of generating flames – however, he is not fully in control of his fiery abilities. It’s a thin line between good guy and villain for the unpredictable Inferno.
Victor Kohl aka Exile voiced by BooBoo Stewart (“Descendants,” “The Twilight Saga”) – a charming, handsome, and troublesome young Inhuman whose quest for superiority places him into the wrong crowd. He can use Darkforce energy to create weapons and portals that allow him to teleport.
Kamala Khan aka Ms. Marvel voiced by Kathreen Khavari (“Marvel’s Avengers Assemble,” “Big Little Lies”) – a devoted fan of Super Heroes, especially of her mentor Captain Marvel; she is determined that she too can be a great hero! If only she’d be taken seriously. Kamala is equipped with metamorphic powers that allow her to stretch, enlarge, or shrink her overall size, parts of her body, or alter her physical appearance. She is especially fond of “embiggening” her fists.
Doreen Green aka Squirrel Girl voiced by Milana Vayntrub (“Marvel’s New Warriors,” “This Is Us”) – the uber-positive, hilarious best friend and teammate of Ms. Marvel. With advanced computer skills, enhanced strength, agility, durability, and senses of a squirrel, Doreen (along with her squirrel partner, Tippy Toe!), is primed and ready to become a successful hero.
America Chavez voiced by Cierra Ramirez (“The Fosters,” “The Secret Life of an America Teenager”) – a strong, independent young hero whose painful past drives her to reject leadership and remain a loner. America’s powers include superhuman strength, speed, and durability, plus the ability to fly.
Rayshaun Lucas aka Patriot voiced by Kamil McFadden (“K.C. Undercover,” “Grown Ups 2”) – a natural born leader who is quick to leap into action to impress his colleagues at S.H.I.E.L.D. Rayshaun strives to live up to Captain America’s legacy with integrity, honesty, and order above all. His skills include heightened strength, speed, stamina, and durability.
Gloria “Glory” Grant voiced by Skai JacksFron (“Bunk’d,” “Jessie”) – Gloria, or ‘Glory,’ is Gwen Stacy’s friend and member of their garage band “The Emm-Jays.” Gloria is a smart, hard-working girl that genuinely cares for Gwen, but has felt a distance growing between them ever since their friend, Kevin, was murdered. When being casual, Gloria’s known to be funny, sarcastic and sassy.
Carol Danvers aka Captain Marvel voiced by Kim Raver (“Grey’s Anatomy,” “24”) – a bold leader who doesn’t sugar-coat and is guided by a strong sense of duty and honor. She’s the ultimate inspiration for our band of misfit heroes. She is equipped with superhuman strength, can fly at high speeds, and can project intense energy blasts.
Hala voiced by Ming-Na Wen (“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” “Mulan”) – Hala is a Kree Accuser bent on galactic domination. She’ll go to any length or treacherous means to achieve what she, and the entire Kree race, wants: Power. Hala is cold, cryptic and nefarious, often challenging those who try to oppose her.
Captain George Stacy voiced by Steven Weber (“13 Reasons Why,” “NCIS: New Orleans”) – Chief of the NYPD and Gwen Stacy’s loving, but fiercely protective father. Captain Stacy is a very disciplined, hard-working man that will stop at nothing to obtain justice – who unfortunately sees Ghost-Spider as a menace and a threat to society.
Lockjaw and Tippy Toe are voiced by Dee Bradley Baker (“Star Wars Rebels,” “Gravity Falls”). Two lovable and heroic sidekicks: Lockjaw is Kamala’s trusty, teleporting mutt and Tippy Toe is Doreen’s partner in crime and best squirrel friend.
“Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors” is executive produced by Joe Quesada, Dan Buckley, Cort Lane, and Eric Radomski; co-executive produced by Stan Lee, Sana Amanat, and Marsha Griffin. The film and shorts were written by Mairghread Scott. Alfred Gimeno served as supervising director.
STOCKHOLM — Dec. 7, 2017 — Paradox Interactive, a publisher and developer of games that tell human interest stories, today released a new Species Pack for Stellaris, the sci-fi grand strategy game from Paradox Development Studio. “Humanoids Species Pack,” available today for a suggested retail price of $7.99 on Windows, Mac, and Linux PCs, includes a wealth of new cosmetic content for ambitious galactic rulers. With new species portraits, ship models, music tracks, and voice sets for VIR, The Humanoids Species Pack provides more variety and character to Stellaris’ most-played phenotype, inspired by the classics of Western science fiction.
Follow the ambition of the latest species to explore the stars in a new trailer for Humanoids Species Pack:
Stellaris: Humanoids Species Pack adds new options to Paradox’s empire-building sci-fi strategy title, giving players additional choices for their species that are closer to home – or at least closer to our home galaxy. The pack includes:
Ten New Portraits of Humanoids
New Ship Models Inspired by Humanity’s Imagination
Three New Voiceover Sets for VIR
Three Remixed Music Tracks to Add to the Stellaris Soundtrack
Prague, Czech Republic, December 6, 2017—Bohemia Interactive, today, announced the official release of its new sandbox adventure game, Ylands, on Steam Early Access. The beautiful open-polyworld of Ylands completely unleashes players’ creativity to craft, explore, and create anything they have ever imagined. Bohemia’s hardcore titles, Arma and DayZ, are known for their huge open terrains, lots of gameplay freedom, many opportunities for content creation, and their involved community. While this family-friendly title might look like a very unusual addition at first sight, Ylands aims to bring exactly those elements that made Bohemia successful to a brand new group of gamers.
Ylands is a unique sandbox game that lets players explore their creativity. Players can seamlessly switch between single and multiplayer modes while exploring uncharted ylands, laying siege to castles, engaging in naval battles, taking part in car races, crafting monumental structures or quirky things like crab armor, cheese walls and much more. Ylands lets you live your childhood fantasies and create your own new adventures.
Another powerful feature of the game is the Ylands Editor. With interactive scripting and thousands of objects to play with, it makes Ylands much more than yet another sandbox game. It’s a platform where players can create their own games and share them with others through the custom-made Workshop.
“You don’t need any special skills or knowledge to become a creator in Ylands – if you have an idea, that one creative spark, you’re all set,” said Aleš Ulm, the Creative Director of Ylands. “We can’t wait to see what players think about our game and hope that together we’ll shape it into something unique” he added.
Ylands is now available for purchase and play, and as a special bonus early birds will get a 20% discount from now on until December 11 (normal price: €15 / $15 / £13). With the core features already implemented, the developers are planning to spend roughly six months in Early Access, mostly polishing gameplay and multiplayer aspects so it can be released later in 2018.
Your favorite holiday takes a demonic turn in this Christmas themed interactive haunted house! Expect this year’s Christmas edition to be scary, creepy, nasty yet fun and freakin’ hilarious!… Not your average holiday activity. (Not recommended for kids or young teens)
Paula has a new cellmate and he wants to watch you be bad or good. Visit Santa and his seedy elves this holiday season at Perpetuum Penitentiary where Santa serves his sentence while his elves continue to ‘serve him’. Santa is making his list and you do NOT want to be on his naughty side. Journey through what will be an unforgettable treasure hunt in search of gifts that will help you make the nice list. Santa may be locked up, but Christmas must go on.
The Treasure Hunt
As a group, you will collect or earn gifts as you proceed through our 17 rooms of terrifyingly intense holiday absurdity. To earn gifts your group will be performing tasks, solving riddles, consuming “treats”, exchanging items with twisted characters, or just surviving something horrible. Each person will be given a stocking that they carry to hold these gifts in their travels. You will win or lose as a group. The more gifts you earn the better your chance at making the “Nice List” and receiving a free prize!
For Honor was recently updated with Season Four: Order & Havoc, which introduced two new heroes, two new maps, a new 4v4 Tribute mode, ranked Dominion mode, new customization items and several gameplay updates. This update is now available across all platforms.
Developed by Ubisoft Montreal in collaboration with other Ubisoft studios,* For Honor offers an engaging campaign and thrilling multiplayer modes. Players embody warriors of the three Great Factions – the bold Knights, the brutal Vikings and the deadly Samurai – fighting to the death on intense and believable melee battlefields. The Art of Battle, the game’s innovative combat system that puts players in total control of their warriors, allows them to utilize the unique skills and combat style of each hero to vanquish all enemies who stand in their way.
Plantronics has been making headsets for a long while, and . The Plantronics RIG 800 series is made up of two models: The 800LX is for PC and Xbox One gamers while the 800LS is for PlayStation 4 gamers. Recently, we got the chance to take a look at the Plantronics RIG 800LX and we were very impressed by its performance. In terms of design, the Plantronics RIG 800LX features dark black, silver, and gray colors and a mostly-plastic frame which lightens up the unit considerably. It features a lot of angular cuts making for a very futuristic look – one that will certainly illicit conversation in your LAN parties or tournaments.
Installing the Plantronics RIG 800LX is very simple. You just plug the wireless dongle into your available USB port – it works this way on both the Xbox One and Windows PC platform. While you don’t need to do so, at that point you should go to your Xbox or Windows store apps and redeem your code for Dolby Atmos. The code is only redeemable once but works on BOTH platforms once redeemed (it’s tied to your Microsoft account)! So that’s a nice bonus for those of you who game on both your Xbox One and PC rigs.
One of the most interesting things about the Plantronics RIG 800LX is that it features an activation code to unlock Dolby Atmos. What is Dolby Atmos? Well, Dolby Atmos is an object-based multi-dimensional surround sound algorithm that not only simulates sound on the horizontal plane, but also sound above and below you. This might sound too good to be true, but I am excited to say it is indeed the case – with games and films that support the technology… Gears of War 4, Battlefield 1, Crackdown 3, Mass Effect: Andromeda, and Overwatch are some of the games which support the tech and you won’t be disappointed in them. As I understand it, Star Wars: Battlefront 2 also supports the tech, but I have yet to test it with that game. Playing Overwatch on the PC is incredible and the sense of sound above and below you is pretty darn cool to say the least. Even if you don’t use the Dolby Atmos code (which I don’t know why that would be the case) the Plantronics RIG 800LX has some nice, crisp sound that makes for great game and music playing.
With Plantronics advertising a 24 hour battery (more on that later), it is clear that they mean for the gamer to wear the RIG 800LX for a long period of time. Comfort goes, the Plantronics RIG 800LX has numerous features built into the unit to make sure it rests comfortably on your head. First, it has an auto-adjusting fabric headband which conforms to the shape of your head. This is far more comfortable than the hard headband that most headsets subject gamers to. Also, the height of each ear cup can be adjusted to accommodate the gamer’s face. Everyone has different facial measurements and there is a very good chance that you will be able to make the RIG 800LX conform to yours.
As far as controls go, the Plantronics RIG 800LX allows you to adjust both game and chat volume via two dials on the left ear cup. On the left ear cup you will also find the swivel down boom mic, which features noise cancellation and makes for some very clear audio pickup. Your fellow squad mates will be able to hear you, loud and clear. On the bottom of the right ear cup you will find a push button which toggles between the four different equalizer settings: Pure is your basic, balanced sound curve. Seismic increases your bass a lot and can end up making your sound somewhat “muddy”. Intensify was a great way to pump up the lower end sound without the drawbacks of the Seismic mode. Vocal is, as it would seem, be all about the vocals and boosts up the higher end of the spectrum for chat purposes. You can tell what mode you are in as the headset will chime a certain number of “beeps” to indicate each one.
If I could change anything about the Plantronics RIG 800LX it would be to replace the swiveling boom microphone with a plug-in boom micrphone. Even though the mic can swivel up when not in use, you can’t just remove it. It is permanently fixed to the headset. I prefer having the option to remove my boom microphones – however, your mileage may vary on that, it’s my own pet peeve.
Internally, the Plantronics RIG 800LX features a battery capable of a company-rated 24 hours of use. Now, did I stay up for 24 hours straight to test this? NO! I need to get sleep like everyone else. I can say, however, that it did last for four days of evening use before needing to be recharged, so I have no doubt that it can live up to their rated 24 hours. This is very refreshing, as I hate having to plug my wireless peripherals in all the time.
Overall, the Plantronics RIG 800LX is an excellent set of wireless gaming headphones for $149.99 dollars. It is available now at various online retailers and would make for a great holiday present for the gamer in your family.
Some weeks ago, KWA unveiled a new line of airsoft guns called the Ronin series. This series is made up of both their generation 2.5 and generation 3 AEGs, albeit with a cool-looking M-LOK rail system and some updated features. I picked up the Ronin 10 inch SBR from Evike for $339 so that I could take a closer look at it and see how it stacks up compared to the rest of the KWA family as well as some of the newer AEGs on the market.
KWA’s generation 2.5 airsoft guns feature a rotary hop up which won’t lose its adjustment easily during heated gameplay, a radiused and reinforced gearbox for stability and strength, variable performance system, magazine cut-off system, and a switch life extender unit that prevents trigger contact burnout. The additions to the Ronin line up when compared to KWA’s basic gen 2.5 rifle, the VM4A1, are cosmetic: You’ll find a solid M-LOK rail system, PTS grip, PTS flip up sights, and a PTS Enhanced Polymer Stock. Additionally, this rifle came with one of the new K120c 30/120 magazines equipped with the special follower that interacts with the rifles’s cut-off system. Additionally, the Ronin 10 features an ambidextrous fire select lever for you left-handed shooters out there.
If you have yet to see KWA’s variable performance system in action, it is pretty intriguing. Basically, the airsoft rifle was engineered with a way to mechanically adjust the pressure on the spring. This is accomplished via a screw where the buffer tube attaches to the receiver. KWA is smart and include the long hex driver to accomplish these adjustments right in the box. Each twist of the screw adjusts your velocity by +/- 2.5 FPS. The Ronin 10 is rated at adjustments from 380 all the way to 430 FPS, so it is very flexible if you need to go from, say, many local fields’ rule of a 400 FPS limit to various milsim events’ 450 FPS limit. Sure, you can’t get to the 450 limit, but 430 is a whole lot better than 400, allowing you to shoot heavier BBs and increasing your joule rating. What I like best about the variable performance system is that it is mechanically-driven. It doesn’t need a computer chip to calculate velocity and draw that much more power from your battery.
Speaking of batteries, you can easily run a decent-sized 11.1v LiPo battery in the Ronin 10 thanks to its PTS stock with crazy amounts of storage space and the rifle’s switch life extender feature. Putting that extra voltage through the rifle will not burnout your trigger contacts like it can do on airsoft rifles without electronic switches or MOSFET units.
KWA Ronin 10 with Lucid Optics Scope and PTS Foregrip
In play, the KWA Ronin 10 SBR handles beautifully thanks to its shorter length and lighter weight. The outer barrel flash hider sticks out of the 10 inch rail system a tiny bit, making the gun easy to maneuver around corners. It should be noted that if you need a Ronin specifically-built for CQB or indoor purposes, KWA has you covered. You can always pick up the Ronin 6 PDW airsoft gun, or, simply swap out the upper receiver and barrel from your Ronin 10 with the shorter length one! This modularity is one of the hallmarks of the Ronin line, and I can’t wait to pick up extra upper receivers of various lengths whenever they end up selling them. KWA’s tried and true rotary hop up is very accurate and the sheer amount of performance one gets right out of the box with this AEG is remarkable.
If instead of CQB use, you would like to have a DMR platform, KWA is releasing a Ronin 3 RECON RM4 airsoft rifle a bit later this year. That rifle will feature a longer handguard and barrel assembly while also featuring KWA’s generation 3 ERG (Electric Recoil Gun) system. Additionally, the new Ronin rifles of the generation 3 variety will ALSO feature the variable performance system.
Overall, the KWA Ronin 10 inch SBR airsoft gun is an excellent airsoft purchase for field play. With its variable performance system, you can adjust it from local field limits to milsim limits with ease and its excellent build quality coupled with light weight make it a breeze to carry around and operate. The KWA Ronin series is available now for $339 dollars from most airsoft retailers!