Sunday, March 8, 2015

Geekly Roundup, March 8th

We're back with a new (meaning our second ever) Geekly Roundup!

If you haven't already seen it, check out our new companion Geekly Roundup podcast!  This week, Mark, Mike, and Ben take on some of the news found in the Roundup, as well as the upcoming Marvel Netflix series, and some thoughts on how indie game development is changing the way games come to market.

This week we've got news about everything from No Man's Sky to Pitch Perfect to the recent news about Maxis Emeryville -- and yes, there's even more Wil Wheaton.  No Roundup is apparently complete without Wil Wheaton.

 Hang with Robert Downey Jr. at the Age of Ultron Premiere!

Want to walk down the red carpet with RDJ himself?  Buy a set of entries via Omaze and get not only a chance for a once-in-a-lifetime experience, but some pretty nifty swag -- and better yet, help out children's hospice charity Julia's House.

 World of Warcraft Lets You Buy Game Time With Gold

Your in-game World of Warcraft gold now may even contribute to your subscription; Blizzard has announced that in-game "WoW Tokens" can now be purchased using real-world money.  The article above, by Kotaku, includes a great graphic supplied by explaining the process -- buy a token for real money, sell it for gold if you need it; buy a token for gold, redeem it for game time if you need it.

 Michael Biehn May Reprise Corporal Hicks in Blomkamp's Alien

Nothing concrete here; Blomkamp has expressed a desire to involve Sigourney Weaver and Biehn via his previously released unofficial concept art, and Biehn has stated aloud that he is interested in (even suggesting confirmed for) playing Hicks in Blomkamp's upcoming entry in the Alien saga.  Again, nothing's confirmed, but the Screenrant article makes some good points.

 EA Shuts Down Maxis Emeryville

Maxis, creators of the famous Sim line of computer games -- ranging from the well-known SimCity and Sims franchises to the lesser-known cult classics SimAnt, SimLife, and many other formative parts of our childhood, has been shut down by EA after being acquired several years ago.  Development will shift to other parts of EA's studios, but it sounds like not every Maxis employee will be continuing on with the company.

 Vincent D'Onofrio is Daredevil's Kingpin

USA Today brings us news about D'Onofrio's role in the forthcoming Netflix series Daredevil, including a still of D'Onofrio as Wilson Fisk.  The similarity -- within reason given comic book physics -- is astounding, and the article offers some fun insight into how D'Onofrio has gone about playing such a ruthless character.

 Unreal Engine 4 Now Free For Everyone

In a startling twist of news, the folks behind Unreal Engine 4 have made the engine free to any and everyone who wants to use it, instead employing a royalty method of payment and giving access to hundreds of thousands of potential developers who can now develop games with the same engine that was used to create Eve: Valkyrie, among others.

 No Man's Sky So Big, Developers Created Space Probes

In this week's Geekly Roundup podcast, we're really excited about the news that No Man's Sky has so many procedurally-generated systems and planets that the developers had to implement code just to ensure it all was present and accounted for correctly.  If the game plays out with as epic of a scope as it sounds, this could be, as Mike says, one of his favorite games of all time.

 There's No Morality In Exercise

One of the creators of the popular fitness and story-based game Zombies, Run! brings us a poignant piece about body positivity and the effort she and others put in to ensure the app felt inclusive to everyone interested in working on their own fitness.  The author, Naomi Alderman, describes some of her own journey towards body positivity through exercise and teaches us a little bit about the kind of inclusivity we love here at the site.

Other Things We Found On The Internet:

Sense8, from JMS and the Wachowskis, will premiere in June on Netflix (

Ed Greenwood has a lot of Forgotten Realms to talk about, and it isn't a campaign setting (Enworld)

A First Look at the upcoming two-part Luther special (BBC America)

Sarah Michelle Gellar joins the cast of Star Wars: Rebels (The Nerdist)

Dragonriders of Pern lands Sarah Cornwell as writer (Hollywood Reporter)

Independence Day 2 casts Jeff Goldblum, Jessie Usher, Liam Hemsworth (Screenrant)

Lessons Learned, a short puppet film from Toby Froud (of Labyrinth) and the Hensons (Vimeo)

Swarm Simulator, a fascinating take on incremental gaming (Github)

Why Your Children's Video Game Sucks: Minecraft (Deadspin)

Bitcoin: The Worst Investment of 2014 (Quartz)

Watch a gameplay video of monster hunting from The Witcher 3 (Polygon)

Star Trek Online creates in-game Leonard Nimoy memorials (Star Trek)

And, in the inevitable Wil Wheaton section of our roundup:

International Table Top Day 2015 is coming... (Geek and Sundry via YouTube)

...and Wil is playing Abraham Lincoln in Nintendo's Code Name S.T.E.A.M.! (Nintendo via Twitter)

Don't forget to check out our new Geekly Roundup podcast -- if you have any feedback about the show or our roundups, let us know!  (No, we're not renaming it the Wheatonly Roundup.)

The Geekly Roundup is a weekly Ace of Geeks feature that brings together all the interesting things we've encountered across the Internet this week.  Beginning this week, the Roundup will now feature a companion podcast, this week featuring Mike Fatum, Ben Fried-Lee, and Mark Foo.

Contributions for this week's Roundup were submitted by Stephanie, Mike, MalKontent, Jarys, Ben, Sam, and Raven.

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