The fallout of Spider-Man’s recasting on PS5 has been swift and ugly

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The fallout of Spider-Man’s recasting on PS5 has been swift and ugly

Upgrading visuals for a new version of a video game on a next-generation console is a standard practice, but changing the way your protagonist looks? That’s not something you see very often. And so, when Insomniac Games announced Wednesday that its upcoming Marvel’s Spider-Man Remastered will have a new Peter Parker, some fans felt shocked and baffled.

After all, there was nothing wrong with the original depiction of Peter Parker in the PlayStation 4 version of the game, which was based on actor John Bubniak. But Ben Jordan, the new face model for Spidey, does look a lot more like Tom Holland, who plays the character on the big screen. This, everyone assumes, must be the reason why Insomniac made the change: to align its video game version of Spider-Man with the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The change has inspired a cavalcade of comparisons, many mean-spirited, as folks joke around about an actual human being looking like some kind of knock-off of a different human being.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s next fighter is Minecraft

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Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s next fighter is Minecraft

The cast of Minecraft — namely Steve, Alex, Enderman, and Zombie — is coming to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Game director Masahiro Sakurai confirmed the fighting game’s next add-on character during a video presentation on Thursday.

Smash Bros.’ Minecraft DLC will include many of the abilities seen in Mojang’s popular sandbox games, like building, explosives, mine carts, and flying wings. Sakurai promised to reveal more about the Minecraft DLC for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate during a presentation on Oct. 3.

Halo 3 fans spent 13 years trying to break into a skybox

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Halo 3 fans spent 13 years trying to break into a skybox

By now it should be clear that Termacious Trickocity are a tenacious bunch: The Halo group has made a name for itself by achieving elaborate exploits that the wider community often regards as impossible. But usually, when a challenge stands in its way, Trickocity have objects to play with, like weapons or cover, which can then be manipulated to clip through solid space. The Picture Room is different.

The level appears in Halo 3, and it contains massive graphics that display in the background during the final cutscene in the game. After Master Chief activates the Halo, which causes it to self-destruct, he escapes to a ship. But the ride is turbulent enough that it nearly sends him flying out into open space. Getting to the area where the scenery is held in place — the skybox, as it’s known in game development — became somewhat of a white whale for Halo stunters back in 2007. At the time, players found a glitch that allowed the camera to get up close to the skybox, but they couldn’t physically place their characters there. Seeing and being there are two very different things, especially in video games, a medium that prides itself in giving fans interactivity.

Overwatch is free on PC

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Overwatch is free on PC

If you’ve waited this long to get into Overwatch — or are looking to move to the Windows PC version of Blizzard’s team-based hero shooter — your patience has been rewarded. Blizzard is giving away Overwatch for free on PC, thanks to the Overwatch League.

This particular free copy is different from Overwatch’s previous free weekends, apparently. You get to keep it.

Charmander is the featured Pokémon for October’s Pokémon Go Community Day

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Charmander is the featured Pokémon for October’s Pokémon Go Community Day

Charmander will be the star of 2020’s October Pokémon Go Community Day.

The event will take place on Oct. 17 from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. in your local time. It’ll feature tripled Stardust from catching Pokémon, as well as an increased spawn rate for Charmander. The event will also increase the odds of finding a Shiny Charmander, so if you don’t have one, this will be your chance.

The Spider-Man Remaster changes a lot — including Peter Parker’s face

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The Spider-Man Remaster changes a lot — including Peter Parker’s face

On Wednesday, Sony announced new details on Marvel’s Spider-Man Remastered, an update of Marvel’s Spider-Man for Sony’s next-generation console, the PlayStation 5. The game will feature a few expected upgrades, like better graphics, a higher frame rate, and a few new Spider-Man suits. It will also feature some unexpected changes ... like a brand-new face for Peter Parker.

According to a new post on Sony’s PlayStation Blog, Peter Parker’s facial model has been changed in the remastered version of the game, from John Bubniak’s face to Ben Jordan’s. The blog post explains that in order to bring out the best possible visuals for the remastered version of the game, the development team needed a better match for the facial capture done by Yuri Lowenthal.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War’s Zombies mode heads to the ’80s for a new chapter

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Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War’s Zombies mode heads to the ’80s for a new chapter

Developer Treyarch will usher in a new chapter of the franchise’s Zombies mode with Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War, while retaining the four-player co-op play that makes the enduring mode so popular. This time around, Zombies fans will wield Cold War-era weapons to fend off a zombie invasion set during the 1980s — but the undead threat is still rooted in World War II.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies will feature a story mode set in Die Maschine, a graffiti-laden, boarded-up bunker with nods to Nacht der Untoten, the original Zombies map featured in Call of Duty: World at War. Players will explore Die Maschine as a member of the CIA-backed group known as Requiem, which has also piqued the interest of the rival Soviet-led group known as Omega Group. Intrigue, and swarms of angry zombies, will presumably follow.

Need for Speed: Payback and Vampyr are October’s free PlayStation Plus games

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Need for Speed: Payback and Vampyr are October’s free PlayStation Plus games

On Wednesday, Sony announced that Need for Speed: Payback and Vampyr will be the free PlayStation Plus games for October.

Need for Speed: Payback was developed by Ghost Games and originally released in 2017. This entry in the famed racing series lets players take control of three playable characters as they race around the open world of Fortune Valley, the game’s stand-in for Las Vegas. The game features dozens of cars that players can use to pull off complicated and increasingly daring driving-based heists while dodging the cops.

No Man’s Sky rare dino goes extinct on capital planet

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No Man’s Sky rare dino goes extinct on capital planet

See this dinosaur-looking thing? That, my friend, is what No Man’s Sky players call a Diplo. It is one of the rarest type of creatures you can find in the game, with a reported encounter chance of only 0.25% on any given planet.

Some people visit hundreds of planets and never see a Diplo. Others go on Diplo-specific hunts across the galaxy, in the hopes of spotting the long-necked mega fauna. There is a player-run repository collecting known sightings as well, which gives players the glyphs necessary to visit Diplo planets. The Diplo is popular enough that, over time, it became the de facto emblem of the player-run Galactic Hub community, a group of explorers who colonize planets and build elaborate cities. Even Hello Games, the developer of No Man’s Sky, added a player emblem for the Galactic Hub that showcases the Diplo.

Nintendo’s Jump Rope Challenge will stay on the eShop

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Nintendo’s Jump Rope Challenge will stay on the eShop

After a summer of 2.5 billion jumps, Nintendo has reconsidered its decision to pull Jump Rope Challenge from the eShop. The free game is sticking around past today.

Intended as a timed release, Nintendo had planned to pull the game after Sept. 30 (today). Jump Rope Challenge was offered beginning in mid-June as a way to help folks shut in by the coronavirus pandemic get some exercise and have fun doing it.