Star Wars Actress Carrie Fisher Dies at 60

Carrie Fisher Dies at 60 1

Carrie Fisher has passed away on Tuesday 27 December 2016, following a heart attack this holiday weekend. She was 60.

Fisher initially suffered from this emergency while flying into LAX airport on dec 23, 2016, and remained in a Los Angeles hospital for four days. The most recent update on her condition came on Christmas Day when her mother, Hollywood legacy Debbie Reynolds reported her to be in stable condition.

Fisher is a notable name for numerous reasons. She appeared on the Broadway stage with her mother after dropping out of high school, she delighted audiences chasing after John Belushi in The Blues Brothers, and has written satire and autobiographies about her life as a cultural icon and her personal problems.

Of course, Fisher is best known for her role as Princess Leia starting in George Lucas’ 1977 Star Wars: A New Hope along with it’s sequels, returning to the galaxy far, far away in last year’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens. In that role, Fisher not only took part is creating one of the most enduring and beloved fictional universes ever, but she accomplished so much more in the process. Princess Leia told the world that not all princesses were wilting flowers, and femininity did not preclude anyone from being interesting or important beyond simply being an object to be saved. Furthermore, there are few characters that simultaneously can embody the strength and sexuality as Leia did while still be taken seriously. It’s no wonder that she is such a common sight at cosplay conventions for both women and men.

Carrie Fisher embodied a lot of progressive ideas before they were widely accepted. Being born to old Hollywood royalty, she embodied the spirit and freedom of the new Hollywood to come. When people say she was a culture icon, it goes beyond the cinnamon bun hair and the blaster, to her word and her deeds. Fisher has left a lasting mark on the world and she did so with grace and dignity. It is a small consolation that we will be able to see her in next year’s upcoming release Star Wars: Episode VIII, even if it will be for the last time. She leaves the world better for having been here, though darker because she left.

Frog Fractions 2 Found Hidden inside Adult Swim Game

Frog Fractions 2 Found Hidden in Adult Swim Game

At long last, Frog Fractions 2 has been found, and it was right in front of us the whole time. The group Game Detectives uncovered the surreal sequel hidden within Glittermitten Grove, a quiet little simulation game released on Dec 13, 2016 by Adult Swim Games.

It seemed like an odd release for Adult Swim Games, a studio that has put out some high quality insanity recently, but using Glittermitten Grove (which is more straightlaced compared to the studio’s previous work) as a Trojan horse for a hotly anticipated descent into absolute madness makes a lot more sense. Still, you could be forgiven for not knowing about the original game since Frog Fractions could definitely be considered a cult hit.

For those of you unfamiliar with this game (spoilers), Frog Fractions is a free browser game that initially gives players a frog on a lily pad and asks you to help said frog eat the bugs that fly above you. It’s all simple enough, and good performances rewards players with fruit which can be used to purchase upgrades. Follow the upgrade path, and soon enough that little amphibian will have “Like a billion,” fruit and ride a dragon into space. What follows is space flight segments akin to Star Fox, a legal battle on Bug Mars, and numerous other insane episodes, all culminating in a business simulation after you are elected president. You should play it.

Two years ago Twinbeard launched a Kickstarter for Frog Fractions 2. It was funded fairly quickly, because the internet is a strange place, and the Alternate Reality Game (or ARG) began. ARGs combine the joys of research and very well hidden and cryptic riddles to build anticipation while drip feeding information to the world at large. Their association with reality unites users from around the world and reward persistent players with short lived internet fame and a massive sense of accomplishment. This one certainly lived up to its strange legacy, with memorable moments dealing with the developer being kidnapped by time travelers and a completely different ARG couched within the main ARG. Eventually the internet had baked bread, shaved a political leader, and received an actual, physical button to launch what was already a viral sensation. The button was pressed and here we are now.

I won’t tell you how to get to this madness other than it lies within the sparkling depths of Glittermitten Grove, and I can’t tell you what will happen when you get there. Just buckle up and get ready, because things are going to get a little weird.

Absolver: A Solitary RPG Experience

Absolver: A Solitary RPG Experience

Sloclap’s Absolver is the kind of game I can’t wait for the public to get their hands on because I want to see what people can do with it when they have all its tools at their disposal.

While Absolver is an RPG, one with a story for those looking for a more solitary experience, the part of it I was most fascinated by when I got hands-on time with the game was when I went head-to-head against an opponent with each of us using our own, customized movesets.

absolver a solitary rpg experience 3 - Absolver: A Solitary RPG ExperienceThe game focuses on hand-to-hand combat, but rather than define a character’s playstyle for the player, the game gives players the option to customize their own moveset, one that’s made up of several stances and potential combinations. While in any single stance players use a personalized moveset—one that transitions into another fluidly, opening up another set of attacks. The key to really taking advantage of Absolver is understanding how these moves flow into other stances and how to best tailor them to a playstyle that is most effective for gaining the upper hand in a fight.

These customization features are why Absolver‘s future is one that I’m excited to see unfold. YouTube and Twitter are filled with videos of impressive plays and tutorials in the fighting game community, but with the options players have with Absolver these can be taken a step further with fans creating new attacks and stance combinations that they’ll share online. With the right enthusiastic community of players behind it, Absolver is the kind of game I would love to see its player base really experiment with.

Even beyond seeing these original movesets shared, the competitive possibilities are also incredibly enticing. In a game like Street Fighter or Tekken, seasoned players tend to have an idea of what to expect each time they play against a certain character because they’re pre-defined and established. This isn’t the case for Absolver, and it means that a competitive player is going to have to be far more adaptable because they’re not going to have an idea of what’s coming.

This was something I experienced first hand when, at the end of the demo, I was set up against an opponent and we got to pit our individual loadouts and strategies against one another. I may have lost the fight, but I saw the fruits of my labour when my attacks caught him off guard and learning how to best use them on the fly won me a round.

Whether Absolver can live up to all my wildest dreams is yet to be seen, but when I played it I could only imagine the many possibilities a game with modifiable movesets had to offer. The RPG may have a single player campaign that lays the foundation for its multiplayer, but I want to see what the public can do when the tools of its customization options are laid out before them.

Absolver is coming to PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Mac in 2017.