Halo: Reach Was Nearly Just Called Reach, But Microsoft Objected

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Halo: Reach has just released on PC for the first time as part of the Master Chief Collection, bringing the beloved game to the system nine years after it released for Xbox 360. The game, which was brought to Xbox One as well and is available on both systems through Xbox Game Pass, was the final Halo game made by original developer Bungie before they moved onto Destiny. Many of the folks who worked on the game are reminiscing about it on Twitter using the hashtag #reachmemory, and some interesting information has come out about the game's name.

David Candland, who designed much of the game's user interface, says that the original intention was to just call the game "Reach", without a "Halo" attached to it. Microsoft objected, insisting that the game be called Halo: Reach, for "brand recognition." As Halo was and remains a major flagship of the Xbox brand, this makes sense--but as Candland's tweet points out, they retained their simpler name on the game's title screen.

We’d been calling the game “Reach” for a while before MS insisted we call it “Halo Reach” for brand recognition. I remember discussing the title screen with @game_fabricator. We concurred, let’s call it what we want. They’ve bought the game at this point. #REACHmemory pic.twitter.com/msCKV5IIR4

Birds of Prey Opening Scene Debuts At Brazil Comic Con

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The first scene from Warner Bros.' upcoming Harley Quinn movie--full title Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)--has made its official debut, according to reports out of Comic Con Experience in Brazil. Beyond the Birds of Prey trailer that debuted back in October, and the short teaser that preceded it, this is the first public footage that's been seen of the movie--and unfortunately, it doesn't look like WB will be releasing it online right away, so we'll have to rely on the accounts of Brazil Comic Con attendees to find out what happened in it.

The scene features Harley Quinn explaining the status of her relationship with the Joker, The Wrap reports. “We broke up,” Quinn says. “Mr. J was super broke up about it.” She adds that she has a new place that's all her own, where she can reflect on her past mistakes--presumably indicating she regrets shacking up with "Mr. J" in the first place. The title of the movie has the word "emancipation" in it, after all, which is not a term you'd generally use for an amicable breakup.

During the panel, star Margot Robbie reportedly revealed that she initially pitched the idea for Birds of Prey while filming Suicide Squad because she "wanted to see more female ensembles onscreen."

Venom 2 Adds Excellent Character Actor Stephen Graham

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The upcoming Venom sequel has added to its cast. Collider reports that English actor Stephen Graham, who most recently appeared in Martin Scorsese's The Irishman, has been tapped for a role in the upcoming action movie starring Tom Hardy.

This won't be the first time Graham and Hardy have worked together, as they both star in the FX TV series Taboo.

Graham plays the character Anthony "Tony Pro" Provenzano in The Irishman. Some of his other notable credits included portraying Al Capone in Boardwalk Empire and a role in the Oscar-nominated movie Gangs of New York.

Concrete Genie's New Patch Adds Free Holiday Brushes To The PlayStation 4 Exclusive

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Concrete Genie's New Patch Adds Free Holiday Brushes To The PlayStation 4 Exclusive

Concrete Genie is getting into the holiday spirit with a free DLC pack that will let you paint the town with Christmas cheer. The game's creative director Dominic Robilliard has announced on the PlayStation Blog that today's new 1.06 update--available to download now--comes with the Holiday Brush Design Pack. When you load up the game after the patch you'll be asked if you want to activate the pack, and if you opt in your in-game painting designs will have a festive touch added to them.

You'll be able to toggle the holiday brushes on or off from the top menu, so once December 26 rolls around you can keep playing without a Christmas theme if you so desire.

According to Robilliard, these brushes have been added to give back to the community after a successful launch, and is inspired by the families who are playing the game together. "We designed the game and its story to appeal to all ages but, in particular, we hoped that families could benefit from the universal themes and creative gameplay," he says. "This has been so rewarding to watch! We hope that many more families over the holiday period (and beyond) continue to enjoy everything that Concrete Genie has to offer."

Concrete Genie received a 7/10 in our review. Reviewer Hope Corrigan wrote that "most of what Concrete Genie has to offer is fun and beautiful in a sort of childlike way."

Last Chance To Subscribe To The Humble Choice Classic Plan

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Last Chance To Subscribe To The Humble Choice Classic Plan

Back in October, Humble announced that it was going to transition its Humble Monthly Bundle from being a mystery bundle of PC games to a selection that you get to choose from each month. However, with the introduction of Humble Choice--the bundle's new name--prices are going up and the number of games you get is going down. The exception here is for current Humble Monthly subscribers, which you can still become until tomorrow, December 6 at 10 AM PT / 1 PM ET.

If you're a Humble Monthly subscriber before the transition to Humble Choice occurs, you'll be locked into the $12/month Classic plan, which gets you 10 games a month, a 20% store discount, and unlimited access to Humble originals and the Humble Trove--a DRM-free collection of games that you can download and keep forever.

For comparison, the Premium plan costs $20/month and grants you access to the same benefits, but you only get to claim nine games a month. The Basic plan costs $15/month and gets you three games, a 10% store discount, and access to Humble originals and the Trove. And lastly, the Lite plan costs $5 a month for access to the Humble Trove, a 10% store discount, and a limited selection of Humble originals. Lite plan subscribers, unfortunately, don't get any games from the monthly, curated selection. You can see a more detailed breakdown below.

Stephen King Tells You What To Watch And Read This Halloween For A Real Scare

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Writer Stephen King knows a thing or two about what's scary. With the spooky holiday Halloween coming up, the author has now shared a list of a movie, TV show, and book that he recommends if you're looking for a fright this Halloween.

Starting with film, King told Entertainment Weekly that he recommends this year's Child's Play remake. He says he missed it in theatres but eventually got around to seeing it. "I just f***ing loved that movie," he said. "I laughed and I cried at the things in there. Everybody who's in the movie does a terrific job. It’s a smart script and it's just a load of fun. It really is. It’s gruesome as hell."

Star Wars actor Mark Hamill voices Chucky, the doll who comes to life and kills people. The movie also stars Aubrey Plaza, Brian Tyree Henry, and Gabriel Bateman.

Conan O'Brien Watches Death Stranding Trailer With Kojima -- "What's Wrong With You?"

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Conan O'Brien Watches Death Stranding Trailer With Kojima --

To hype the upcoming release of Death Stranding, Hideo Kojima invited comedian and late night TV host Conan O'Brien to his office for a behind-the-scenes look at the game.

It went about as well as you would think, as Conan spent his time cracking jokes and ribbing with Kojima through a translator. Upon viewing a Death Stranding trailer and meeting BB for the first time, Conan said to Kojima, "What's wrong with you?"

Also during the silly segment, Kojima reveals that Death Stranding actor Norman Reedus, who plays main character Sam "Porter" Bridges, asked the team to make his muscles bigger.

Persona 5 Scramble New Trailer And Release Date Revealed

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A brand-new trailer for the Persona action game spinoff Persona 5 Scramble: The Phantom Strikers has arrived. The newest trailer shows off more of the project that Atlus is creating alongside Koei Tecmo and Omega Force (the Dynasty Warriors team).

In addition to showcasing new gameplay and more of the setting and characters, the trailer ends by confirming a release date: February 20, 2020. So far, it's only confirmed for Japan, so there is no word on when or if The Phantom Strikers will be released in the US or other parts of the world.

The Phantom Strikers is coming to Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4. It is the first action-RPG in the Persona series.

Why PS Plus, Xbox Game Pass, And Apple Arcade Worry Devolver

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Subscription services in gaming are growing in popularity and prominence. One of the most recent introductions was Apple's Arcade offering, while Xbox Game Pass and PlayStation Plus came before that. These services, and others like them, are worrying in some regards to boutique games publisher Devolver Digital (Hotline Miami, Genital Jousting).

Co-founder Graeme Struthers told GameSpot that the increasing popularity of subscription services is a worry because it could lead to a situation where games get buried. The thinking is that subscription packages are so stuffed with games that subscribers might have difficulty finding something to play (anyone who has used Netflix is aware of this phenomenon).

"The world of subscription is a worry. And we're active in these areas, so we can't stand on the sidelines and just complain about these things. Game Pass, PlayStation Plus, and Apple Arcade, they are things we are participating in," he explained. "You do wonder if it's going to lead to a situation where there is so much content that you kind of fall off the edge. That's the one that keeps us up at night. That and Donald Trump, and Boris Johnson."

Former Xbox Exec Is Joining Blizzard

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Former Xbox executive Mike Ybarra has announced his next job--and it's a big one. Ybarra confirmed on Twitter that he will join World of Warcraft and Overwatch studio Blizzard.

He will be the company's executive vice president and general manager. He starts at the Irvine, California-based company on November 14, which is after BlizzCon (though he will attend the show). "We will work with all our energy to serve gamers with incredible content and experiences," Ybarra said of his new role. "I can't wait to be part of this team."

I'm very happy to announce I'm joining @Blizzard_Ent as Exec. Vice President and GM starting 11/4 (will be at #blizzcon!). We will work with all our energy to serve gamers with incredible content and experiences. I can't wait to be part of this team. #lucky #humble #gamers #serve pic.twitter.com/kZ8dRuF3pe