Halo 2 gets a facelift

While Halo: The Master Chief Collection combines the first edition of Halo with the following editions up through Halo 4, the game receiving the biggest overhaul among them is Halo 2, which celebrates its 10th anniversary on Nov. 9. The game has been given a complete visual facelift courtesy of Halo developers 343 Industries, and to complement their work, the studio brought in an industry stalwart to redo the game’s cinematic cutscenes.

Watch the exclusive debut of a Halo 2 trailer highlighting some of the work done for the game by visual effects outfit Blur Studios. The studio, which has done similar work on just about every major series in gaming, from Star Wars to Far Cry to the Batman: Arkham games, completely upgraded every memorable scene from the original Halo 2.

From environments to characters to camerawork, Blur has delivered some of their most gorgeous work to date, and the trailer is just a tease of what’s to come in the full game’s cinematics.

Destiny gets into the Halloween spirit

You can become a pumpkin-headed legend in Destiny, thanks to the game’s latest update, which adds a handful of Halloween-themed items. The most important of those, at least from a visual standpoint, is the new Jackolyte item.

Players can score some Jackolyte by visiting the Postmaster, who should have three of the consumable item waiting for them in an All Hallow’s Eve package. Yes, the headwear is consumable and limited, but you’ll be able to sport a spooky three-eyed jack-o’-lantern for as long as it lasts. If you need more, the Hive reportedly drops Jackolyte and another consumable called Flight of Shadows, which changes the appearance of your respawn.

The update also adds four new Sparrows which are decorated with some flame graphics that may or may not enhance the sensation of it being Halloween this week.

Nintendo makes surprise return to profit

Nintendo achieved a surprise return to profit in its second quarter following four years of annual losses. The Japanese firm credits new games and a weaker yen for an improved performance in its second quarter.

The corporation has made $132 million in profit for the six months ending in September, marking a significant upward swing from the $91 million loss it announced during the first three months of the period.

Analysts were far off the mark in their projections, with many expecting Nintendo would announce a multi-billion-yen loss for the quarter. The strong performance could be instrumental by April, with Nintendo hoping to bring an end to its four-year run of annual losses.

Responsible for the success in particular was the “extremely strong initial sales” of Super Smash Bros for 3DS, which has shipped 3.2 million units globally already since its mid-September release. In addition, the eccentric life sim Tomodachi Life has sold about 1.3 million units worldwide since its release.

Meanwhile, Wii U hardware sales have more than doubled in the past six months, though that’s in comparison to the system’s dismal performance during the same period last year.

During the six months to September, Nintendo has sold 1.1 million Wii U consoles worldwide. During the same period last year, it had only sold about 460,000 units.

In terms of software, Nintendo shipped 9.4 million Wii U games. The corporation did not specify further, only adding that Mario Kart 8 and Hyrule Warriors performed “steadily”.

However, 3DS hardware sales are down significantly. During the April-September quarter, Nintendo sold about 2 million 3DS systems, compared to the 3.9 million units it sold during the same period last year. In terms of software, Nintendo sold about 233 million 3DS games during the six months, which again represents a decrease from the 273 million it sold during the same half-year period in 2013.

Wii hardware sales sunk further as Nintendo discontinues the console across many territories.

Destiny Update 1.0.2.3.

Bungie has released an update for Destiny that fixes some connectivity issues with players. Along with this, some boss exploits in the Vault of Glass have been fixed. To learn more about these fixes, please visit Bungie’s official site.

Bungie has hinted at some future changes as well. Expect to see improvements for the exotic weapons Bad Juju and Thorn, Voice chat between matchmade teammates, and larger inventory space for Bounties.

GENERAL

  • Fixed an issue in which multiple errors reported with “Zebra” error codes
  • Errors previously reporting as “Zebra” will now display as their own separate codes
  • Fixed a rare issue related to being Kicked To Login repeatedly
  • Fixed a rare issue that resulted in a Kick To Orbit reported with the “Cockatoo” error code

SERVERS

  • Fixed an issue where some players would occasionally be erroneously kicked at the beginning of an activity due to a server error
  • Increased protection against account corruption

VAULT OF GLASS

  • Atheon no longer chooses the three Guardians furthest away from him when teleporting players through the timestream. Three random Guardians will now be chosen, regardless of location. This removes defined roles from the final boss encounter and means that all players must understand all elements and responsibilities of the fight.
  • Atheon can no longer be forced off the edge of the platform via Warlock Sunsinger grenades. Bungie has patched the edges of cliffs to prevent Atheon from falling off entirely.

Minecraft Halloween Texture Pack Goes Live For Free Today

A free Halloween texture pack is going live today for both the Xbox 360 and Xbox One editions of Minecraft, with PlayStation versions on the way.

Celebrate the Halloween season by letting Slender Man roam your Minecraft world as your avatar dons his creepiest clown suit, all thanks to the free Halloween texture pack. These new textures can either be used to start building a new world or applied to an old one to give it a fresh look in time for the holiday.

The Halloween texture pack goes live for Xbox consoles today. Minecraft console developer 4J Studios also says that the free pack will make its way to the PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 and PS Vita editions of the game sometime next week.

Minecraft Steampunk Texture Pack

Also going live today for Xbox owners is a Steampunk texture pack, available for a dollar. For everyone who has ever wished that their Minecraft world contained 100 percent more Jules Verne and airships, this Victorian-inspired texture pack has you covered. The Steampunk texture pack is planned to hit all three PlayStation systems in November.

Minecraft has been out on next-gen consoles for a little more than a month at this point. Most recently, the game came to the PS Vita. As of now, at least one more port is in the works as the team behind Minecraft: Pocket Edition works to get the game on Windows Phones.

LeVar Burton goes the fuck to sleep!

Samuel Jackson did it for the audiobook, but Reading Rainbow’s LeVar Burton’s reading of the book “Go the F–k to Sleep” might just be the best.

During a recent Rooster Teeth 24-hour livestream to raise money for the Children’s Miracle Network, Burton read the hilarious spoof bedtime story with all the flair one would expect from the children’s television star. The reading is pretty fucking great, and the fact that the livestream raised about $240,000 is pretty cool, too.

Interesting facts about the human body

Each of our bodies are amazing. If you thought what our bodies could do before was amazing, once you read this list of insane facts about the human body, you’ll be in awe. Never take your own body for granted, because some of the things it can do are mind-blowing!

1.) The average person produces enough saliva in their lifetime to fill 2 swimming pools.
2.) Every 60 seconds, your red blood cells do a complete circuit of your body.
3.) Sometimes, when you have to pee, you can visibly see that your bladder is bigger.
4.) Most babies are born with blue eyes; exposure to UV light brings out their true color.
5.) Most westerners consume 50 tons of food and 50,000 liters of liquid in their lifetime.
6.) It can take your finger and toenails 1/2 a year to grow an entirely new nail (from base to tip).
7.) The muscles that control your eyes contract about 100,000 times a day (that equals giving your legs a workout by walking 50 miles).
8.) Over the course of your lifetime, you’ll shed about 40lbs of skin.
9.) Your brain uses about 20% of your oxygen and caloric intake.
10.) In each kidney, there are 1 million filters that clean around 1.3 liters of blood every minute and push out close to 1.5 liters of urine every day.
11.) Ovaries contain over 500,000 eggs, but only about 400 get the opportunity to create life.
12.) Everyone has a completely unique smell (except for twins).
13.) Why doesn’t your stomach digest itself? That’s because your stomach cells are created faster than they can be destroyed.
14.) You have about half-a-million sweat glands that produce about a pint of sweat daily.
15.) Humans are extremely visual; 90% of the information we gather from our surroundings is from our eyesight.
16.) It’s nearly impossible to tickle yourself.
17.) Baby foreskin is often used as a skin graft for burn victims.
18.) Your femur (thigh bone) is 4x’s stronger than concrete.
19.) Your skin is the largest organ in your body; if an adult male’s skin were to be stretched out, it would cover 20 square feet.
20.) In order to taste something, our saliva needs to dissolve it (try drying off your tongue and tasting something).
21.) Men produce about 10 million new sperm daily (approximately enough to repopulate the entire planet in 6 months).
22.) In just 30 minutes, your body can produce enough heat to boil half a gallon of water.
23.) There are more than 300,000,000 capillaries in your lungs and if they were stretched out tip to tip they would reach approximately the distance between Atlanta and LA.
24.) Frequent dreams are correlated with having a higher IQ.
25.) You’ll be about 1cm shorter when you go to bed at night compared to when you wake up in the morning. Your cartilage in your spine slowly compresses throughout the day.

Some of the best dollar bill art

I found these on a group I belong to on Facebook. I believe James Charles and Akira Beard do most of the artwork on $1, $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100 dollar bills, but a couple of them are from other unknown artists. If you happen to know who did them, or you did them yourself, let me know so I can give you the credit you most definitely deserve!

DARK CLAW

DAVY JONES

FREDDY KREUGER

GOKU

BOBA FETT

CAPTAIN JACK SPARROW

RANDOM CLOWN

DAFT PUNK

GROOT

HANNIBAL

KABAL FROM MK

LOKI

ROBOCOP

$100 SKULLS

SNAKE

SPIDERMAN

THE  JOKER AND ANONYMOUS

BANE

DIMEBAG DARRYL

52 Reasons to be excited for Super Smash Bros for Wii U

1. Starting Fighter Line-up: More fighters from the get-go
2. Resolution: 400 x 240 on the 3DS versus 1920 x 1080 on the Wii U
3. 8-player Smash: Only available offline, but 8 people on screen battling it out!
4. Bigger Stages: Specially made for the 8 player smash battles
5. Danger Zones: A stage where there are zones that hurt players. Smack your opponent into them!
6. Dual-Plane Battling: A new stage which has a foreground and background for battles to take place.
7. Number of Stages: More stages on Wii U compared to 3DS. Stages are more detailed too.
8. Miiverse STAGE: A stage filled with posts from each fighter, appearing in battle.
9. Palutena’s Guidance: Advice and commentary from Pit and other characters.
10. Metal Face: A special appearance and commentary from Metal Face on his level
11. Ridley: Archenemies of Samus, Ridley, can be fought and swayed to a players’ side
12. Coin Battles: Coin battles are casual. Collect coins from fallen enemies instead of worrying about stock
13. Stamina Battle: Instead of a damage percentage, players have an HP bar.
14. Special Smash: Tailor make your own crazy battles.
15. Item Frequency: Adjust the frequency in which items appear
16. My Music: All the songs from various stages and series, set how frequently they play
17. Menu Music: Change the menu music with whatever song you like from the game.
18. Loads of Music: 3DS has loads of tracks, but Wii U version has loads more.
19. Composers: With more songs comes more composers.
20. CDs: Songs can be found in-game during battles or as rewards. Collect them all!
21. Challenges: The Wii U challenges are all on one screen. Achieve them to unlock even more.
22. Classic Mode: Wii U version lets you advance based on how well you have survived. Can be played 2-player
23. Clear Movies: Finishing classic mode or all-star mode unlocks a short movie on the character used.
24. All-Star Mode: You battle all fighters in the game. Unlike the 3DS version, you fight from newest to oldest chronologically.
25. Event Mode: You take on set themed battles. Clearing stages unlocks the path forward.
26. Smash Tour: Like a board game where you spin a wheel to advance around the map. As you advance, you collect more fighters and get stronger. Arriving on the same space results in a battle.
27. Target Blast: Differs to the 3DS version slightly. Bigger second bomb and extra stages.
28. Group Stadium: Play the stadium mini-games with up to four people.
29. Special Orders: Master Hand has challenges for the player. Greater risk results in greater rewards.
30. Master Fortress: Fortress only appears on higher intensity battles
31. Controllers: So many controller options. Connect anything from your Wiimote and your 3DS to the Wii U console.
32. GameCube Controller Adapter for Wii U: Connect your GameCube controller to your console. There will also be a Super Smash Bros themed controller released sometime in the future.
33. Use Nintendo 3DS as a controller: Pretty self explanatory, you need a copy of the game on the 3DS though for this to work.
34. Connecting to Nintendo 3DS: Import your 3DS created characters over to the Wii U
35. Loads of Trophies: More trophies than EVER BEFORE. I don’t even know how that is possible.
36. Final Smash Trophies: Even better trophies acquired by finishing all-star mode with each character.
37. Trophy Exhibition: Display your collection on trophy boxes according to themes.
38. Photo Studio: Setup your own scene however you want and snap away.
39. Trophy Rush: You can play with two players in the Wii U version.
40. Masterpieces: Take a look at the origin of each character. You can even play a short snippet of their game! If you like a game enough, you can buy the full version in the Nintendo eShop.
41. Amiibo: We want them all. Need I say more?
42. Internet Connection: Wifi signal low? Use the Wii LAN Adapter.
43. Automatic Notices: When logged on, you can see news scrolling at the top of the main menu.
44. Friends & Tags: You can team up with an offline buddy to play online.
45. Tourneys: Host your own tournament. Will take a while before available in-game, but should be awesome once implemented.
46.Official Tourneys: 64 players fighting for survival, hosted by Nintendo.
47. Wii U GamePad: The GamePad can be setup to show what is on the TV, or how much damage has been taken by each player
48. Paint: Compose your shot, take a picture, then use the GamePad to decorate the photo.
49. Voice Chat: You can chat with your friends online. Unavailable during battle though, only before and after.
50. Stage Builder: Oh my goodness, a stage builder! Design a stage, add obstacles, let your imagination run wild!.
51. Sharing: Only added when ready. Will allow players to share all their content to friends and online.
52. Other Modes: Other modes on the 3DS will be available on the Wii U version too.

So what stands out for you with Super Smash Brothers?  I want a Wii U just for this game, and Mario Maker. My kids are a HUGE fan of Mario and Luigi and are really looking forward to Super Smash Bros just as much as I’m looking forward to Mario Maker!

Dragon Age: Inquisition – “Fellatio is implied”

The Dragon Age series loves a bit of sex; BioWare loves a bit of sex. These are emotional adventures: they’re bound to get a bit soap opera like… But how steamy will Dragon Age: Inquisition get? Let’s the let love god of age-ratings, the ESRB, explain.

“A female character briefly depicted in front of a man’s torso,” it rasps, “(fellatio is implied)… Characters depicted topless,” it breathes, “or with exposed buttocks,” it breathes again, “while lying in bed or after sex.”

Oh there’s dirty talk between characters. “I will bring myself sexual pleasure later,” one politely points out, “while thinking about this with great respect. The way your tits bounce,” another vividly imagines, “when I pin your arms and take you on the side of the bed…”

Oh, it gets steeeeamy. And it’s for those reasons, plus silly old violence – slit throats, impaled bodies, gurgles, cries of pain – and a bit of bad language (fuck, shit, asshole) that Dragon Age: Inquisition has been rated M for Mature in the US.

The game’s out here on five platforms – PC, PS4 & Xbox One, PS3 & Xbox 360 – on 21st November.