Hasbro Unveils New Trypticon Action Figure

Hasbro continues to expand on the universe of Transformers Generation Titans Return with a new Titan Class action figure. Voted to be the next toy in the line by fans in 2015, Trypticon will join the Decepticon forces sometime this year.

Making his first appearance at New York Toy Fair 2017, the Titan will be the largest of the Titans Return collection and the biggest Decepticon figure ever. Trypticon will also be able to transform between three different modes: city mode, dino mode, and spaceship mode.

Though Hasbro hasn’t yet detailed features of spaceship mode, city mode Trypticon will be able to connect to Leader Class figures and form Nemesis Command. Meanwhile, dino mode can eat other Titan Master figures, which can then be retrieved from his stomach.

The action figure is expected in late 2017. If you’re looking to build up your collection before then, check out the Metroplex figure from Fall of Cybertron here.

The Witness, Stardew Valley Headline Charity-Focused Humble Freedom Bundle

Humble Bundle, an online video game and book retailer that allows consumers to name their own price for bundles of games and books, just announced a new Freedom Bundle. Available until 12 a.m. on February 20, all proceeds from the bundle will go to the American Civil Liberties Union, International Rescue Committee, and Doctors Without Borders (MSF). Humble Bundle further promised to match contributions up to $300,000.

Jonathan Blow tweeted about the bundle, which includes his latest title, The Witness.

Beyond The Witness, the $30 bundle features more than 30 other games, including well-known indies such as Stardew Valley, The Stanley Parable, and Super Meat Boy. Digital books by Cory Doctorow and Nate Powell are also included. You can see the full list here.

[Source: Jonathan Blow on Twitter]

EA Punishes Madden NFL Champion For ‘Inappropriate’ Social Media Conduct

After defeating all comers at the recent Madden Bowl 2017 tournament finals, Chris “Dubby” McFarland had a $75,000 paycheck under his belt. But after a string of “inappropriate” conduct on social media, EA has docked McFarland’s payout and lowered his competitive ranking.

As Polygon reports, McFarland made a series of objectionable tweets (which have since been removed) on his personal account following his victory. EA met with McFarland and warned him about making more inappropriate tweets – a warning McFarland did not heed. After McFarland made additional offensive tweets, the Madden publisher decided to take action, cutting $3,000 from McFarland’s winnings and removing 100 Madden NFL Championship Points from online ranking (according to EA Sports’ website, the current highest-ranked player in Madden as of December has 1000 points). “These posts violated our Code of Conduct and don’t represent the values of our organization,” Matt Marcou, Madden’s Competitive Gaming Commissioner, said in a statement.

McFarland’s reaction to his punishment has since been mixed. Though he’s deleted the offending tweets, promised his tweets from now on would be “dry as a dessert,” and that, as champioin his tweets reflected poorly on him and EA by association, he’s also made a point that it’s not something he’s happy about. “Today is the day the real Dubby dies. Feel free to unfollow.” he posted.

[Source: Polygon]


Our Take
$3,000 and a some ranking points feel like a slap on the wrist, but hey, that’s still $3,000. Still, it’s a matter of principle, and I agree with EA’s decision here. Some may cry foul about the role someone’s social media should or should not play in competitions like this, but EA warned him, which makes it hard to empathize with McFarland. I wonder if second place is hoping for a $3,000 windfall now?

The Analogue Nt Mini Is A High-End, $450 NES

There have been lots of “faux-retro” consoles of over the last few years. The Retron series, the NES Classic, The Super Retro Boy. But few of them have been exactly what we’ve wanted, always leaving something to be desired. Analogue is hoping to change that, for a price.

Compared to something like the Retron five (which costs $160) The Nt Mini’s $450 price tag might sound unjustified (Analogue previously created the limited-quantity Analogue Nt, which sold for $500). But Analogue promises this is the best recreation of the NES ever made, and then some. Compatible with all NES, Famicom, Famicom Disk System games (as well as all accessories such as the Zapper) and featuring an aluminum shell, the unit outputs to both HDMI and RGB, meaning you can play on a modern TVs or classic CRTs. As with the original Nt, Analogue promises audio and video “free of any compromises.”

It also features several additional settings as well, such as the capacity to modify scanline depth, the size of the screen, altering the color palette, use different sound chips, inputting cheat codes without the need for an extra device, and modifying button assignments.  You can watch a full rundown of all the system’s features below.

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The system also comes bundled with a wireless NES30 controller from 8bitdo, letting you play from the comfortably on the couch. It’s also compatible with PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Wii Remote, and Wii U Pro controllers. You can look at all the technical details and think long and hard about how to reconfigure your monthly budget on the Nt Mini’s website.

Microsoft Replacing Xbox One’s Snap Feature In Next Update

Snap, an interesting, but admittedly rarely used by most, feature of the Xbox One is getting replaced in the next update in order to improve overall speed.

Xbox platform head Mike Ybarra revealed the upcoming change in a tweet writing, “We replaced Snap to improve multitasking, reduce memory use, improve overall speed, and free up resources going forward for bigger things.” Multi-tasking will still be available, as Microsoft details in this blog for the upcoming update, but no mention of Snap is made. The blog offers some additional teases of what’s to come for the Xbox One dashboard, including visual changes, and the plans to speed up the console’s performance.

Microsoft is currently testing the update and it should be available to Xbox One owners in April.

[Source: @XboxQwik, Xbox via The Verge]


Our Take
I was very optimistic about this feature when the Xbox One launched, and fully expected myself to use it. I even wrote a whole feature about it. Ultimately, though, I never really snapped anything but Achievements. It’s a neat feature, but I can’t say I will miss it. It’s too bad I won’t be able watch The Great Mouse Detective and The Great Mouse Detective simultaneously anymore, though.