With all the buzz around Pokémon Go and an upcoming Harry Potter game, it's easy to forget about Niantic's original augmented reality title, Ingress. It's looking old in the tooth, and not just because of its 2012-era visuals -- it's using aging tech that was made long, long before augmented reality hit the mainstream. The pioneering release is about to catch up, though. Niantic has offered a peek at Ingress Prime, a revamp of its hidden-reality sci-fi game due to launch in 2018. It'll sport a more polished, up-to-date design, but the biggest improvements will come from Pokémon Go... and not just the expected under-the-hood elements.
Even computer games have their own world records, and one of the oldest uncontested ones is the fastest time for Atari Dragster, at 5.51 seconds. But how legitimate is this speed? Ben is tasked with using RAM analysis and a microcontroller to check not only whether 5.51 seconds is possible, but whether this record can be broken. Have you broken or set any electronics or gaming world records? Let us know over on the element14 Community.
Google has brought back Santa's Village for another year, and this time it's particularly trendy. Fire up the Santa Tracker app on your Android phone and you can play Santa Snap, a game that has you flying around Google Maps to take "elfies" at famous landmarks around the world. Basically, it's Amélie with Santa's helpers in place of gnomes. Other activities will pop up daily between now and December 24th, including a equally of-the-moment AI drawing game (a festive take on Quick, Draw), an elf dance coding game and a virtual snowball fight.
The Nintendo Switch's controllers shouldn't work as well as they do. That might be why options beyond a Joy-Con in each hand (or the Switch's own Pro controller) are few and far between. 8Bitdo's latest wireless peripheral, the SN30 Pro, might be worth considering for your secondary controller needs. Beside that allure of nostalgia, the SN30 Pro particularly shines with older games and tries to balance a classic design with modern controls. I picked up the (obviously prettier) European / Japanese model, the otherwise identical SF30 Pro, and had a play.
At the end of October, Bungie announced that the first DLC for Destiny 2, Curse of Osiris, would be available starting December 5th. Now, the company has discussed details of how exactly the release will work. Players can start preloading the expansion starting at 8 AM PST on December 5th. Xbox One users will need 44 GB of free space, while PS4 users will require 88 GB. PC users fall somewhere in between at 68 GB. You can follow @BungieHelp on Twitter for updates, including on downtime and the actual release time of Curse of Osiris.
Telltale's original Walking Dead game was special, blending a gut-wrenching storyline with interesting, believable characters. Five years and two seasons later (four if you count 400 Days and Michonne) the adventure has started to show its age. So for The Walking Dead Collection -- a new bundle that launches on December 5th -- the developer has given everything a visual upgrade. To explain the changes, Telltale has released a video comparing the two versions during a pivotal scene -- Lee and Clementine's first meeting. (It includes some mild spoilers, obviously.)
There are three main contenders in the video game console market, and each one has unique advantages and drawbacks. The PlayStation 4, for example, is easy to use: Sony has made a powerful console designed to appeal to as many players as possible, and its gamble has largely paid off. While Microsoft clearly wants just as many people playing Xbox One, it's tackling the market via its ecosystem, which is more open than any of the other consoles. The Xbox One supports cross-play with Windows 10, and its built-in livestreaming architecture, Mixer, is an impressive tool. Meanwhile, the Nintendo Switch is a strange treasure, packing less power than the other two systems but making up for this technical loss with an innovative hybrid design.