LeaveIt2Beaver
Hey Extra Life Community -
 
We have some exciting news to share! In an effort to help make fundraising more fun, more accessible and ultimately easier, we’ve added two new applications to the Extra Life experience. Now you can fundraise through Facebook or on the go from your phone!
 

Extra Life Facebook App
Fundraising has never been quicker or easier than with the new Extra Life Facebook App. It installs in just a few seconds and allows you to opt-in to automatic status updates, upload Extra Life profile and cover pictures and ask your entire Facebook network for donations in just a few clicks. To start fundraising through the Extra Life Facebook App, login to to your Extra Life account, and click "Fundraise with Facebook" in the participant dashboard.
 

 
Extra Life Mobile App
Manage and share your Extra Life experience on the go with our new Extra Life mobile app. This free app lets you fundraise and connect with others through SMS, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & Email. You can update your Extra Life page and check your fundraising progress all from the palm of your hand.

Download the app here: iPhone | Android
 
We’ve also spent the last couple of months improving the mobile experience on the Extra Life website so give the new apps a try. We want to hear what you think so send any feedback and ideas to community@extra-life.org or comment below and let us know!
For The Kids,

Mike Kinney
Team Extra Life
Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals
Jack Gardner
Many thought the Nintendo-Sega rivalry was long dead, but this holiday season the specter of that old conflict will rise from the ashes. While Nintendo announced a new mini NES that will be hitting store shelves this holiday season, Sega has announced a Genesis mini-console as well as a portable Genesis. 
 
While many welcomed the news of a retro Nintendo box and threw money at their screens, some had a few valid complaints. Nintendo's miniature NES will be a digital only box, limited to 30 pre-installed titles with no slot to play physical copies of retro games. On top of that, it does not include an SD slot, access to the virtual console's digital library, and comes with only one controller.  
 
In comparison, Sega will be pre-installing 80 titles onto both the mini-console and the handheld. The console will even include a slot to play old Genesis titles that might not be included in the 80 game roster. Both the console and the handheld will have SD card slots, too. It will also come with two wireless Genesis controllers and support for the original controllers. However, it is notable that the console lacks an HDMI connection, which could prove frustrating by creating a small degree of input lag, and the wireless controllers rely on infrared technology which hasn't historically been kind to controllers. 
 
Sega's console manufacturing isn't quite what it used to be, so the console and handheld manufacturing are being handled by AtGames. AtGames is best known for dominating the Plug 'n Play niche of the gaming industry and is striving to bring the niche more credibility than it has had in the past. 
 

 
Below you can see the entire line-up of games for Sega's new-old consoles. Half are classics and half are labelled as "Sega Arcade/Puzzle games" and might be lesser known to those who haven't had extensive experience with the Genesis.
 
Classics:
 
Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle
Alien Storm
Altered Beast
Arrow Flash
Bonanza Bros.
Chakan: The Forever Man
Columns
Columns III
ComixZone
Crack Down
DecapAttack
Dr. Robotnik’sMean Bean Machine
ESWAT: City Under Siege
Eternal Champions
Fatal Labyrinth
Flicky
Gain Ground
Golden Axe
Golden Axe II
Golden Axe III
Jewel Master
Kid Chameleon
Mortal Kombat I
Mortal Kombat II
Mortal Kombat III
Phantasy Star 2
Phantasy Star 3
Ristar
Shadow Dancer: The Secret of Shinobi
Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master
Sonic & Knuckles
Sonic Spinball
Sonic the Hedgehog
Sonic the Hedgehog II
Sonic 3D Blast
Sword of Varmilion
The Ooze
Vectorman
Vectorman II
 
Sega Arcade/Puzzle games:
 
Adventure in the Park
Cross the road
Jack’s Pea
Jewel Magic
Curling 2010
Plumbing Contest
Wall-Breaking
Bubble Master
Break a Fireline
Mahjong Solitaire
Warehouse Keeper
Chess
Memory
Snake
Air Hockey
Spider
Naval Power
Mr. Balls
Cannon
Fight or Lose
Bottle Taps Race
Bomber
Checker
Hexagonos
Whack-A-Wolf
Mirror Mirror
Panic Lift
Black Sheep
Flash Memory
Brain Switch
Mega Brain Switch
Hidden Agenda
Dominant Amber
Hide and Seek
Jura Formula
Lost World Sudoku
Meatloaf Rotation
Mya Master Mind
Skeleton Scale
T-Rex Memory Match
Yawning Triceratops
 
Labelled as the Sega MegaDrive/Genesis Ultimate Retro Games Console - 25th Sonic the Hedgehog Anniversary Edition, the console and handheld both retail for about $65 and can currently be pre-ordered from select retailers. There are definite trade-offs between Nintendo and Sega's mini devices. Those looking for a prime nostalgia trip or interesting gift this holiday season now have to relive the old dilemma once again: Nintendo or Sega? 
Jack Gardner
Square Enix seems to be trying to pull off all the tie-ins it can manage with Final Fantasy XV. They prominently touted an ongoing anime mini-series composed of six episodes had a positive reception on the internet (or rather five episodes and a sixth exclusive to the Ultimate Collector's Edition of Final Fantasy XV). Apps that connect to the in-game world of XV like the mobile pinball title Justice Monsters Five are slated for release alongside the full game. Plus, we've had a number of playable demos packaged with other titles. Now the feature film Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV is on the horizon.
 
In the announcement accompanying the release of the global story trailer, director Takeshi Nozue explains that, "Kingsglaive stands on its own and can be enjoyed without knowledge of the previous games. But if you play Final Fantasy XV there are many references in the game that you wouldn’t necessarily understand without watching the film." He goes on to explain that the themes of Kingsglaive relate to leadership and what it means to be a just king. Whereas people working on Final Fantasy XV have stated that the game examines the bond between men and brotherhood, Kingsglaive delves into the bond between father and son.
 
The plot to Kingsglaive follows the events leading up to the events of Final Fantasy XV. Noctis' father, King Regis, and his elite guard fight against the encroaching Empire to save his kingdom and family after a peace deal goes horribly wrong.
 
A star-studded cast has been assembled to tell the animated tale of Kingsglaive. Sean Bean plays King Regis; Lena Headey portrays princess Luna; and Aaron Paul makes sure villains are breaking bad as Nyx, a member of the titular Kingsglaive knights.
 
 
Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV explodes into select theaters on August 19. Those who can't manage to make it to the theater to see it can watch the film on PlayStation Video beginning on August 30. 

Final Fantasy XV itself releases on September 30 for Xbox One and PlayStation 4.
Jack Gardner
Hyper Light Drifter released several months ago on PC to a mostly positive reception. Now the stylish indie darling is coming to consoles. Heart Machine put a lot of effort into crafting a subtle, tight experience that doesn't overstay its welcome and rewards those who can master its combat.
 
Check out our review for a more in-depth look at what makes Hyper Light Drifter so special and check it out on console tomorrow if you haven't had a chance to play it (it really does control well with controllers).
 
 
Jack Gardner
The sequel to 2012's PS Vita title has a confirmed release date for this holiday season. New environments, enemies, abilities, and characters are teased in the new trailer. Along with the trailer and date, pre-order bonuses have been laid out for fans. Those who order Gravity Rush 2 from certain retailers will snag a white DLC costume for protagonist Kat. Pre-ordering from PSN after August 2 will net customers 10 PSN avatars from Gravity Rush 2.
 
Sony Interactive Entertainment Japan Studio, the developer, has put an anime into production. Called Gravity Rush The Animation ~ Overture ~, the anime is being created by Studio Khara. Khara is probably best known for their work adapting Neon Genesis Evangelion to the big screen in Rebuild of Evangalion. The anime will bridge the gap between Gravity Rush 1 and 2. No release date has been announced, but it will be released prior to Gravity Rush 2.
 
 
Gravity Rush 2 will be making its way to PlayStation 4 on December 2.
Jack Gardner
FUS RO DAH! This week the gang tackles Bethesda's sprawling open-world RPG, Skyrim. The 2011 title released in an incredibly buggy state, but became one of the first major cases of post-release patching. Critics heaped acclaim onto Skyrim, praising the Norse designs, revamped gameplay mechanics, and the vast world. It also helped to popularize the Steam Workshop. Does Skyrim hold up after several years later with a revamped release coming in a handful of months?
 
Each week we will be tackling a video game, old or new, that at least one of us believes deserves to stand as one of the greatest games of all time. We'll dive into its history, development, and gameplay, while trying to argue for or against the game of the week. Sometimes we will be in harmonious agreement, other times we might be fighting a bitter battle to the very end. However each episode shakes out, we hope that everyone who listens will find the show entertaining and informative.
 

 
Outro music: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim 'Whiterun' by mellogear (http://ocremix.org/remix/OCR02636)
 
You can download or listen to the podcast over on Soundcloud, our hosting site, and iTunes. A YouTube version is (sometimes) available as well, so you can watch what we are talking about while we talk about it! You can also follow the show on Twitter: @BestGamesPeriod
 
New episodes of The Best Games Period will be released every Monday
Jack Gardner
Have you ever wanted to play a Dark Souls game with all of the textures being a single image? No? Me neither. The modders over on the YouTube channel Limit Break have at least experienced the passing desire to do so and have gone ahead to replace all the textures with various image files. What initially began as a video extolling the virtues and beauty of crabs quickly spiraled out of control. Shrek, Nicholas Cage, trumpet skeleton, Limit Break truly broke the limit of what was thought probable in its modding gone mad.
 
 
There are words to describe this monstrosity and they come straight from Jurassic Park.
 
 
Jack Gardner
The creators of Job Simulator, Owlchemy Games, have revealed their next VR title and it involves some hot, dimension-hopping action. Rick and Morty Simulator: Virtual Rick-ality brings the developer together with Rick and Morty co-creator Justin Roiland to create a VR game that encourages players to experiment and cause catastrophic, potentially earth-shattering accidents. And, of course, there will be an obligatory plumbus or two. 
 
Owlchemy Games explained how much this collaboration meant to them, both as creators and as fans of the show on their blog. "This is truly a dream project for us," they said, "We’ve been huge fans of the franchise since the beginning. Working with Justin Roiland is hilarious, and he gets us. In fact, we first met serendipitously over our mutual love of Job Simulator, got drunk, ate Indian food, and then decided to make a video game together. And now we’re bringing the world of Rick and Morty to virtual life!"
 
The gameplay teaser isn't much, but the developers promise that players will be able to go to other dimensions, cause various apocalypses, and (probably) touch all of Rick's stuff.
 
 
Rick and Morty Simulator: Virtual Rick-ality currently has no release date, but Owlchemy Games promises it will be coming soon.
Jack Gardner
With the massive success of Pokémon Go, the Pokémon news keeps rolling in. In an attempt to cash in on the popularity of the iconic gaming franchise and the hype around the new mobile app, Hollywood deal makers bit the bullet and offered Nintendo and The Pokémon Company a deal too sweet to refuse. The studio in question is reportedly Legendary Pictures, the company behind the recent Warcraft movie.
 
The ink is still wet on the deal, so details on this upcoming Pokémon project are scarce. Legendary did reveal that the film will avoid the traditional conventions of both the animated Pokémon films and the mainline Pokémon games. Instead, Legendary's Pokémon movie will take inspiration from the Japan exclusive 3DS release of Great Detective Pikachu: Birth of a New Duo. The 3DS title centers on a unique, speaking Pikachu with an unusually keen mind and his human companion, Tim Goodman, as they travel around solving mysteries involving Pokémon. There are also some rumors that Hollywood screenwriter Max Landis (Chronicle, American Ultra) will be one of the writers attached to the project. 
 
The untitled Pokémon movie will be going into production late 2017 if all goes as planned.
Jack Gardner
Chances are you are either playing Pokémon Go or can’t seem to find people who aren’t playing Pokémon Go. People can’t seem to get enough Rattatas or Pidgeys. However, did you know that you can catch Pokémon while also helping your kids at the same time? If you’re playing Pokémon Go (which, let’s be real, you are), here are a few ways to play and benefit your local children’s hospital:
 
Become a human billboard and wear your Extra Life t-shirt with pride while out hunting. You could also sport a Miracle Band (which you can snag for free). Use these as an ice breaker. “Why am I wearing this? Let me tell you a thing or two about Extra Life….”
  Drop off lures for the pediatric patients at your local children’s hospital. Kids in hospitals want to play Pokémon Go, too. Wait! Before you do this, ask. Make sure to communicate with the hospital’s security team and your local program director. While your intentions might be good, HIPPA and safety are extremely important factors to consider. If dropping off lures at the hospital isn’t an option, leave them at Dairy Queen locations on Thursday, July 28 for #MiracleTreatDay.
  When you meet new people around a gym or PokéStop, don’t be afraid to bring up Extra Life, invite them to a Guild meeting, or even your marathon event. Chances are Pokémon Go isn’t the only game they enjoy playing!
  Organize a PokéWalk with members of your community to raise awareness of Extra Life. The Albany Guild in New York recently organized a PokéWalk of their own and recruited — drumroll, please — 130 new Extra Lifers! If you are interested in organizing one at a park, be sure to talk with your local parks director to learn more about the rules and regulations of the particular area.
  Reach out to local businesses along your walking route, local PokéStops, or near your gyms. If they are already offering special deals for Pokémon Go players or seeing m more traffic from players, they might be more receptive to joining or supporting Extra Life in some way.  
Pokémon Go has brought people together in new and fascinating ways. What better way to enjoy the game than to bring Extra Life with you when you meet other people who are playing? Let’s get out there, have fun, and fight for the kids.  
Jack Gardner
Konami, keeping with its pursuit of the lucrative pachinko market in Japan, revealed the existence of a Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater pachinko machine. The trailer for the device spans over seven minutes and goes into great detail regarding the mechanics and gampelay pachinko players can expect to see. However, the most intriguing parts of the reveal are the cutscenes. The scenes shown in the trailer appear to be from Metal Gear Solid 3 remade in the Fox Engine on which Metal Gear Solid 5 ran. 
 
The trailer claims that the upcoming pachinko machine houses over 124Gb of data for its gameplay and cutscenes. This would be a huge amount of time and investment for pachinko, but might make more sense as a harbinger of a full-on remake in the engine Konami has barely put to use. The cutscenes themselves seem fairly consistent with the original PlayStation 2 title, though there are a few that appear to be created specifically for pachinko mini-games.   
 
 
Keep in mind, this is all speculation. Looking at Konami's recent moves as a company, I think there is reason to believe a remake of Snake Eater is imminent. Konami has been showing a desire to get more out of its properties while avoiding the bloat of costs that can be associated with AAA development. They also haven't remade Metal Gear Solid 3 yet, which seems remarkable given that the entire industry is remaking pretty much everything. With Hideo Kojima gone, Konami could very well be reluctant to put out more original Metal Gear titles. Konami's impressive Fox Engine has been gathering dust, too. All of these signs point toward a willingness to move forward with a remake of Metal Gear Solid 3 for modern consoles and the pachinko machine's assets confirm that to me. 
 
There is no official word on whether Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater is being remade, but I'd be willing to bet it is in development.
Jack Gardner
After more than a decade, Warhammer 40K returns to the first-person shooter genre. Space Hulk: Deathwing represents the first FPS title since 2003’s Warhammer 40,000: Fire Warrior on PC and PlayStation 2. I had the chance to sit down and see a live demo in action.
 
Over the course of a 15-hour campaign, players will venture into the Space Hulk, a mass of asteroids and abandoned spacecraft. The campaign teams players up with up to three friends or AI companions to explore the dangerous bowels of the Space Hulk known as Olethros. Deathwing puts players in the colossal frame of a Librarian, a space marine uniquely gifted with psychic abilities. On their journey through the various ships and asteroids that compose the hulk, players will discover new weapons and unlock new abilities to use in combat, like a 360-degree force push or the ability to discharge chain lightning.
 
As our Librarian and his crew of AI teammates began exploring a black templar warship inside the Space Hulk, a screech echoed through the halls. “That scream indicates that we're probably about to have our first encounter with the alien Genestealers,” Focus Home Interactive’s representative explained, “You'll notice right away that these alien Genestealers fall pretty quickly under a hail of Storm Bolter fire. Instead of defense, they specialize in swarming in huge groups; surrounding your squad; and attacking with powerful melee attacks. If you catch them alone or force them into a choke point they shouldn't be too difficult to deal with.” As players progress through their encounters with Genestealers, they will begin to notice that the AI that governs their behavior leads to unpredictable behavior. If a Genestealer notices players in the distance it may run to alert its companions or, if it is close enough, it will alert the swarm and attack. Additionally, if players encounter a huge group directly, the swarm might break off into two groups and attempt to pincer the players from various directions.
 

 
Space Hulk: Deathwing obviously derives its series name from the popular Warhammer 40K Space Hulk board game. Streum On Studio has tried to take the spirit of the board game and translate it into video game form. “We've incorporated gameplay elements that made the board game unique,” said the studio’s reps, “The most useful of these is the idea that you have to try and control the flow of the swarm of Genestealers. This is an enemy that's almost unlimited in number. You'll never going to be able to defeat them all. Instead, this is a game of controlling risks. So one of the ways you can do this is sealing entrances. This helps to stop the Genestealer tide.” Occasionally, players might discover shortcuts to their objective locations, but those shortcuts might come with the price of a harder final confrontation as Genestealers swarm through additional openings.
 
Each mission takes place aboard a different ship and will require players to carefully consider their options while they have the opportunity between skirmishes. Exploring off of the main objective path can reveal new items, paths, and secrets, but also proves to be a very dangerous endeavor. The ships the Librarians explore were lost to both time and space for an unfathomably long time, but some ship defense systems might remain online. These can be hazardous to players, but can also prove to be useful if they are preserved and hacked. If reprogrammed to target Genestealers, they could turn the tide in battle at a key moment. Between missions, players will have to properly equip and prepare their team of Dark Angel Terminators to face the hordes of Olethros and solve the mysteries it holds.
 
“The important thing to note in battle,” explained the demonstrator as Genestealers swarmed around, “is that you're going to take damage which is localized to wherever you get hit on your body. Different parts of your power armor have their own hit box. What this means is if you get attacked too much on the right arm, say, you won't be able to effectively use whatever weapon you have equipped there. Another way is if you get attacked too much by a swarm of Genestealers attacking at your legs, you may not be able to move as quickly or sprint.”
 

 
Genestealers tend to be melee opponents, though there are ranged varieties as well. The larger Genestealers are also heavily armored. To that end, melee combat is important in prolonged battles against their kind. Players will have access to weapons like force swords or axes that can more easily penetrate armor and can be used to parry incoming melee attacks.
 
Overall, I quite enjoyed the tactical, measured aspects of Deathwing’s FPS action. The more deliberate approach and pace seems well suited to hulking, armored space marines. The AI lends an aspect of enjoyable unpredictability to combat that I can only imagine increases with the fun chaos of human companions. Many Warhammer 40K games seem to be a bit off-putting to those who aren’t already invested in the franchise, but Deathwing might be the most accessible the franchise has been in a long while.  
 
 
Space Hulk: Deathwing releases later in 2016 for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.
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