The Roundup: The Circle, Gamescom & Beyond

By Jonathan G. Lee

Hello friends! Jon here with another week of The Circle Round Up. Am I the only person that’s been enjoying this rain? I love rain. In fact, when I’m writing, I don’t play background music, I play background rain. When it’s pouring, I’ll even open my window a crack so I can hear the rainfall roaring down and the thunder rumbling. I probably watched too many samurai movies as a kid.

And with that, the Round Up:

Russ Frushtick discussed the history of CLUE with Justin McElroy! Russ was skeptical that anyone would watch a video about the history of CLUE, but so far, 13,979 people are proving him wrong. Watch on as they discuss CLUE’s development as a board game, Colonel Yellow being renamed Colonel Mustard (a prudent move), and Tim Curry. Did you know there’s a Seinfeld-branded version of CLUE? Watch here.

Last week, I alluded to an upcoming battle between the Xbox One S and Sony’s upcoming PlayStation Neo. But is that really what’s going to happen? With Microsoft releasing Scorpio next year, maybe that’s not the case. Jeff Bakalar gives his thoughts here.

Allegra Frank is at Gamescom 2016 and providing live updates on the latest breaking news! The article is being constantly updated with timestamps so be sure to check in regularly. You can follow everything here.

Dan Ackerman checked out the Omen X recently, a high-end gaming PC from HP. The Omen X’s most striking feature is the case, a cube-shaped chassis which sits on a diagonal. It’s a well-known fact among PC gaming enthusiasts that keeping your case on the desk rather than the floor improves airflow since dust tends to settle downwards, but the Omen X takes it a step further by perching the case on a plastic stand. The whole rig costs $1,799, but if you’re only interested in the case, HP sells it for $599. See the whole review here.

And last, but definitely the most important post of this Circle Round up, Michelle Ehrhardt writes about Genji Shimada of Overwatch and her own personal journey of transitioning. One of the beautiful things about videogames is that we can play as the inspirations we find in the medium, and the world could always use more heroes. Please read the whole thing here.

And now for news outside of the Circle. . .

Which for this week is basically Gamescom announcements.

In the latest Overwatch short, “The Last Bastion”, Blizzard’s marketing (AKA propaganda) department wants us to believe that Bastion is a cute, misunderstood robot. Much like an omnic Jackie Chan, he’s just a nice robot that doesn’t want any trouble. But I know that he’s actually a soulless killing machine led by a genocidal chirping puppet master. Watch Blizzard’s “filthy lies” here.

Metal Gear Survive was announced yesterday, sans Kojima. The game takes place in an alternate universe where Big Boss and Miller abandon Mother Base after the catastrophic attack following Ground Zeroes. The soldiers that are left behind must fend for themselves on a post-apocalyptic landscape filled with monsters, mutated creatures, and (of course) zombies. It’s pretty much Left 4 Dead x Metal Gear with all the typical zombie-killing equipment you’d expect: pump action shotguns, make-shift spears, and grenade arrows. Watch the trailer here.

With World of Warcraft: Legion, Blizzard was tapping into nostalgia by making Gul’dan the principal antagonist again and resurrecting Illidan Stormrage. Now they’ve grabbed the hammer and full-on smashed the “break in case of emergencies” glass with Return to Karazhan. In Patch 7.1, adventurers will get to return to the classic 10-man raid from Burning Crusade in a new instance and storyline. I’ve been a WoW raider since vanilla and Karazhan, along with Zul’Gurub (ZG20) and Ruins of Ahn’Qiraj (AQ20), still remain my favorite raids. Watch the trailer here.
Halo is weird to me. I didn’t like the first Halo because I found it repetitive. I haven’t played any other Halo titles since ’cause I hate FPS games on consoles. And yet, I’ve read every single Halo novel since Halo: Fall of Reach all the way to Halo: Silentium. Eric Nylund tapped into something really special when he characterized all the Spartan-II in his first trilogy, and ever since, I’ve been hooked on Halo lore despite having played only the first game and found it wanting. Someone on Imgur made an extensive album detailing the members of the Covenant here.

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