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Samsung Odyssey 2020 VR Headset leaked images back up bug-like design

By Jak Connor | Virtual & Augmented Reality | Feb 18, 2020 06:10 pm CST

It wasn't too long ago that we saw some renders of Samsung's new 2020 Odyssey mixed reality headset that is planned for 2020. Now, leaked images have surfaced that back up that rumored design.

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The first renders we saw of Samsung's 2020 model of their Odyssey headset was back in late January. Let'sGoDigital found some patents from Samsung for their new model, and created some render images based on those patents. What we saw from those renders was a new bug-like design that came with a larger head-strap, no rotary wheel, and a complete lack of wires.

The new leaked images have been sourced from UpdaterNews, who claim that they have received this leak from a source they have worked closely with for a while now. While that isn't an official confirmation of the design, these new images do back up the rendered design that was created from the patents. All of the images are located in the entirety of this article.

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Nintendo ends drought with Animal Crossing Direct showcase

By Derek Strickland | Gaming | Feb 18, 2020 05:25 pm CST

Nintendo finally ends the drought with a new Animal Crossing: New Horizons Direct showcase planned for February 20.

The latest Nintendo Direct will star the furry islanders of Animal Crossing: New Horizons in a sizable 25 minute livestream. The Direct, which goes live on Thursday, February 20 at 6am PST / 9am EST (those times though), will cover a myriad of topics about Tom Nook's famous vacation package. We should expect to see more details on characters, building and crafting options, interactions with other players via co-op and online play, and the biggest of all, cloud saves.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons looks to be the ultimate relaxing palate cleanser with it's ultra-cute style and laid-back tone, but don't let that fool you: You're still in debt to Tom Nook and you've got to work your tail off to repay those bells. We should get a closer look at major gameplay mechanics--exploration, customization, etc.--and a tour through the charming tropical isle.

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Halo: Infinite to have weapon skins that're likely monetized

By Derek Strickland | Gaming | Feb 18, 2020 04:37 pm CST

Halo: Infinite-themed NERF guns are coming, and purchases will unlock special in-game skins, confirming the existence of weapon cosmetics in the upcoming Halo game.

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In today's Halo NERF gun reveal, 343 Industries inadvertently confirmed Halo: Infinite will have weapon skins, and we fully expect them to be monetized in some form. "Select products will also include an exclusive Halo Infinite code for unlockable game add-on content." A new Gamespot article confirms this add-on content is additional NERF weapon skins for the game.

While it's not been explicitly confirmed that buyable skins are included, it's not hard to see where Microsoft is going here. We actually saw this coming a mile away, originally predicting Halo: Infinite could have piecemeal cosmetic purchases combined with a seasonal battle pass scheme. Now that REQ packs--Halo 5's massively lucrative version of lootboxes--aren't coming back for Infinite, I expect to see layered monetization that could culminate in both cosmetic armor and weapon skins, along with the aforementioned battle pass system.

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Switch cross-save is a prime mover for third-party re-releases

By Derek Strickland | Gaming | Feb 18, 2020 03:56 pm CST

Cross-save opens up a new dimension of play for the Switch, and could help catalyze game sales while increasing play time on the handheld console.

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According to NPD Group data, the Nintendo Switch is an additive system. Most Switch owners also have a PS4, Xbox One, or PC for gaming, making Nintendo's portable handheld a complementary device that lives alongside other hardware. Users simply switch (pun intended) to the handheld for on-the-go play and then jump back to other systems on a lark. Now thanks to cross-save support and cloud syncing, gamers don't have to restart their sessions every time they Switch over. Wherever they go with the Switch, their saves follow too.

Along with cross-play, the industry's most transformative feature for online play, cross-saves break down the platform barriers and alleviate one of the main frustrations with third-party re-releases on the Switch. Today's announcement of Witcher 3's PC-to-Switch cross-save support really drove this point home; before now, anyone who bought the Switcher would have to start over from scratch regardless if they had a 200-hour save on PC. After today's update, gamers can import their Witcher 3 files from GOG or Steam and seamlessly continue their progress.

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Witcher 3 PC saves loadable on Switch port, new graphics options added

By Derek Strickland | Gaming | Feb 18, 2020 12:13 pm CST

The Witcher 3 on Switch now has cross-save with PC, allowing gamers to freely import their master files from GoG or Steam and play them on-the-go.

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Today CD Projekt RED brought one of the most important features to the Switcher: cross-save. The new v3.6 game update lets Switcher gamers link up their GoG or Steam account and import their saves and continue Geralt's epic adventure. This was one of the biggest points of frustration for gamers who double-dipped and had to restart completely from scratch. Now that's not the case, now you can bring your hundreds-hours long game with you wherever you go (Switcher is perfect for long flights and commutes).

There's some potential issues, though. If you use a save file with mods, any issues, glitches, or bugs will transfer over to the Switch version. Also don't rename your master PC file or else the Switch Online cloud save can't access it--assuming you have an active Switch Online membership.

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Jeff Bezos slides $10 billion across the table to fight Climate Change

By Jak Connor | Business, Financial & Legal | Feb 18, 2020 03:47 am CST

Amazon founder and CEO, Jeff Bezos has announced via his personal Instagram account the is launching a new fund to battle climate change - the Bezos Earth Fund.

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Bezos took to his Instagram to announce what is called the Bezos Earth Fund, and this fund will be dedicated to fighting the effects of climate change. Bezos says that he wants to work alongside others that are fighting climate change, and to kick things off for the Bezos Earth Fund, he will be donating $10 billion that will go towards grants that will be issued out this summer.

Bezos says that the Bezos Earth Fund will fund scientists "scientists, activists, NGOs - any effort that offers a real possibility to help preserve and protect the natural world". He also says that to save the Earth it will require collective action from "big companies, small companies, nation states, global organizations, and individuals." It should also be noted that the Bezos Earth Fund is separate from Amazon's own initiatives and that the $10 billion came from Bezos' personal account.

Ubisoft is developing a 'AAA VR Game' on one of its 'greatest IPs'

By Jak Connor | Gaming | Feb 18, 2020 03:11 am CST

A new job listing by Ubisoft has highlighted that its game development studio is currently building a team for a new unannounced VR project situated around one of Ubisoft's greatest IP's.

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According to the new job listing, Ubisoft is currently looking for applications for a "Narrative Designer - VR [Unannounced Project]". This person would be working on cutting-edge VR technology on what is described as "one of Ubisoft's greatest IP's." The listing also states that this new title will be developed across multiple studios and that the Narrative Designer will have to create a consistent and believable narrative structure throughout all of the dynamics of the game.

It has been known for quite some time that Ubisoft is slowly moving towards VR titles, but this is the first bit of news we have gotten in regards to those titles being on "one of Ubisoft's greatest IP's". According to The Information, Facebook has signed deals for exclusive VR games with Ubisoft on their IP's; Assassin's Creed and Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell. While this hasn't been confirmed officially yet, this job listing could be for either of those titles. Until Ubisoft officially announces something, it's all speculation, all we know for sure is that their VR titles will be on "one of Ubisoft's greatest IP's".

Clean electricity can be generated 'out of thin air' with this device

By Jak Connor | Energy | Feb 18, 2020 02:35 am CST

Researchers and scientists have managed to create a new device that can generate electricity straight out of thin air.

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Nature has reported that scientists from the University of Massachusetts Amherst (UMass) have developed a new device that uses a natural protein to generate electricity from moisture in the air. Jun Yao, the electrical engineer, and mircobiologist who created the device has called it "Air-gen", or more specifically, an air-powered generator.

The new device connects electrodes to protein nanowires in a specific way that an electrical current is created from the water vapor that is naturally occurring the atmosphere. Yao says, "We are literally making electricity out of thin air. The Air-gen generates clean energy 24/7." The current model of the air-gen is able to generate power in environments that have low water vapor present in them, such as the Sahara Desert. It also is non-polluting, renewable and low-cost. If you are interested in learning more about this new invention, check out this link here.

Amazon LOTR TV show writer asks public to stop sending audition tapes

By Jak Connor | TV, Movies & Home Theatre | Feb 18, 2020 02:08 am CST

Amazon is working hard of their Lord of the Rings TV show, and with writing and production getting fully underway, the public are asking for roles in the massive show.

A writer for Amazon's Lord of the Rings TV show, Glenise Mullins, has taken to her personal Twitter account to ask the public to stop sending in audition videos. She says, "I have nothing to do with the casting of Lord of the Rings on Prime." She also states, "Please stop sending me audition tapes. I'm sure they're great and I trust you're super talented. And I really do understand your passion, but again... I'm not involved in the casting."

It also doesn't seem Mullins is alone in receiving a lot of the public audition videos. Fellow Lord of the Rings writer, Gennifer Hutchison posted onto Mullins' thread saying, "Yeeeaaaahhhhhh", suggesting she was also experiencing the same thing. Just yesterday, I reported about a stunt actress that got injured will filming the Lord of the Rings TV show, check out that story here. The cast has been revealed for Amazon's show, and if you haven't seen it check it out here.

Tesla owner who died in horrific car crash was playing mobile games

By Jak Connor | Technology in Vehicles | Feb 18, 2020 01:38 am CST

There has recently been quite a lot of controversy surrounding Tesla's Autopilot feature, and a new level of hostility and division arose after Walter Huang's death on March 23rd, 2018.

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Huang's vehicle experienced an Autopilot glitch that caused it to get lanes mixed up as it approached a left exit on US Highway 101. The vehicle was traveling at 70 miles per hour, but since then, new information has surfaced in multiple new documents released by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The documents confirm that Huang experienced this same glitch in this very same spot, multiple times before his death. What isn't confirmed is that if Huang told Tesla about this issue.

The documents state that on the last two times Huang drove over the same spot on highway 101 he noticed the glitch and grabbed the wheel to correct it. This evidence was gathered from the SD card that is inside every Model X (Huang's vehicle). A friend of Huang, Hans Ting, also asked Huang in a private message on March 19th how his vehicle was doing, a screenshot has been provided below. Huang's family claims that Huang notified Tesla of this Autopilot issue and said that Huang visited Tesla in regard to it.

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