Ahead of “Space Jam: A New Legacy” releasing in theaters and on HBO Max in the U.S. on July 16, I’m thrilled to share an unprecedented collaboration from Xbox, Republic Records, and Warner Bros. on the music video for “Gametime” by Lil Tecca and Aminé from the Space Jam: A New Legacy Official Soundtrack. Featuring a rap superstar, an iconic film franchise, and the greatest athlete of this generation — we have never done anything of this magnitude between sports, music, film, and video games.
Lil Tecca started his rap career while on Xbox Live and now he finds himself as the newest member of the Tune Squad in the video — fully animated and playing alongside LeBron James, Bugs Bunny, and Lola Bunny as a character in Space Jam: A New Legacy – The Game. Lil Tecca, with the help of the Tune Squad, goes head-to-head in a classic, beat ‘em up fashion against the Goon Squad. Look closely in the video and you can even see the recently released, exclusive Tune Squad Xbox Wireless Controller and a very special Xbox Series S console featuring Bugs Bunny.
We’re honored to be a part of this exciting collaboration and hope you enjoy the video, now available to watch on YouTube. You can listen to the full Space Jam: A New Legacy Soundtrack here.
Be sure to check out what Lil Tecca had to say about the collab in the official press release from Republic Records, and test your skills in Space Jam: A New Legacy – The Game available free-to-play for all fans through the Microsoft Store on Xbox starting July 15 and available now in Xbox Game Pass Ultimate Perks.
This post originally posted here Xbox Wire
Recently, I set out on a quest to track down a copy of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings: Volume 1 for the Super Nintendo – a game that I awarded a paltry 3/10 to some time ago. I didn’t seek out a copy as a strange kind of punishment, or to be ironic – I wanted to re-own it because, despite being pretty terrible, I’ve got a genuine, heartfelt connection with it.
Back in 1994, when Lord of the Rings originally hit the SNES, I was already a seasoned fan of the acclaimed fantasy series. My introduction to Tolkien’s world wasn’t the book trilogy – or even the child-friendly prequel novel, The Hobbit – but Ralph Bakshi’s 1978 animated version of the first two Lord of the Rings books – The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers – and, following this rather uneven (but still beloved) primer to Middle-earth, I read the original books a few years later. By the time I’d hit my teenage years, I was hungry to consume as much media relating to the series as possible – which, back in the early ’90s, wasn’t as easy as you might assume (Peter Jackson’s blockbuster movies were still some way off).
As you can imagine, I was keen to get my hands on Lord of the Rings for the SNES, despite the only other game based on the series that I’d played – War in Middle-earth on my Atari ST – being something of a disappointment. Interplay, the company behind the SNES outing, had already created two Lord of the Rings games for personal computers, but I’d only seen screenshots in magazines and had never actually played them. Therefore, I was entering into the SNES version with a degree of optimism – optimism which only increased the more I read about the grand scope of the game in magazine previews of the period.
The release of Lord of the Rings: Volume 1 was delayed somewhat, and by the time it eventually arrived in 1994, excitement was building for the next generation of gaming, with the 3DO and Atari Jaguar already available and the Sony PlayStation and Sega Saturn both looming on the horizon. Still, I was a committed fan and the fact that Interplay’s SNES game borrowed heavily from the 1978 animated film only cemented my desire to actually play it.
However, removing my rose-tinted specs just for a moment, I was aware even then that this was not a good video game. The controls were stiff, the environments dull and the gameplay painfully repetitive. There wasn’t even a battery backup option, so you had to input an annoyingly laid-out password every time you wanted to continue your adventure. And, as the ‘Volume 1’ in the title suggests, this wasn’t even the full story – it ended the moment you reached Rivendell, which meant that a whole host of other amazing moments in the books were missing. Still, at least the music was good – in fact, I’d argue that it’s one of the best soundtracks on the SNES.
Despite its obvious, crippling failings, I persevered. This might have been because, back in the mid-’90s, I had little in the way of disposable income (I was still at school) so I had to make sure I got the maximum amount of enjoyment and entertainment from every game I purchased – even if it was terrible. However, I still feel that my longstanding connection to the world of Middle-earth is what really convinced me to keep on going; I still love Tolkien’s works (even after two decades over what could charitably be described as over-exposure in the wake of Jackson’s movies) but Lord of the Rings: Volume 1 came at a time when Frodo, Samwise and Gandalf were merely fringe players in the world of popular culture, and the fact that they starred in a game on my SNES somehow made the whole venture feel a lot more appealing than it actually was.
And here we are, in 2021. Many years after selling my original game when I jettisoned my SNES collection to purchase a PlayStation (forgive me, Miyamoto!), I’ve gotten around to picking up another copy – not to play, but to merely have in the collection to remind me that not all games have to be stone-cold classics in order for you to love them unconditionally.
What ‘bad’ game do you love beyond all reason? And what’s the story behind that relationship? Let us know with a comment below.
Enter the octagon as UFC 4 comes to EA Play today. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members, you get EA Play at no additional cost so you can shape your own UFC legacy based on your fight style, your achievements, and your personality.
No matter how or where you play, UFC 4 puts “you” at the center of every fight. Bang it out in the backyard or surround yourself in the storied tradition of the Kumite with all new, immersive environments. Then take on round-based, rapid-fire tournaments against other fighters online in Blitz Battles. And experience Real Player Motion Technology (RPM Tech) that creates a fluid experience driven by positioning and physical context. Utilizing this technology, the clinch is integrated as part of the striking system, with clinches triggered by moving towards or away from the opposing fighter and striking, allowing for more fluid and frequent clinch and break moments.
Or check out career mode where your fighter will grow and improve based on the decisions you make in the gym and in the octagon. Interact with fans, fighters and promoters to shape your reputation and career. Train with UFC champions to pick up their habits, styles, and techniques on your way to the top.
You always get more from your game with EA Play – like member-only rewards and content, play early trials of select new titles, and instant access to a collection of our best-loved series and top games, plus savings on purchases of EA digital content with a 10% discount.
What makes this copy so valuable is the condition, with Super Mario 64 originally sold in cardboard boxes.
It makes finding one in mint condition all that harder, and a grading system exists for working out just how pristine a retro video game is.
As an example, the video game grading company Wata listed the $ 1.56 million-selling copy of Super Mario 64 at a 9.8 A++, which is almost a perfect score.
And the official Super Mario Auction page describes the unique lot number in the highest terms, telling potential bidders:
“Well — we’re a bit speechless on this one. What can we even say that would do this copy the justice it deserves?
“The cultural significance of this title and its importance to the history of video games is paramount, and the condition of this copy is just so breathtaking that we’re really at a loss here.
“If you have had your heart set on obtaining the highest graded copy of the single best-selling video game on the Nintendo 64 — the first 3D adventure of Nintendo’s mascot, Mario — we only have one piece of advice: this is not an opportunity to waste.”
The findings revealed by Many Spins revealed that across Europe, Super Mario 64 ranked as a firm favourite among 15 countries on the continent, including but not limited to Norway and Sweden, which both had an average monthly search volume of 1,600 for the game, followed by Austria (1,300), and Germany (9,900).
Duke Nukem was yet another popular choice among European countries, ranking as the most searched for retro video game in six, including Bulgaria, Estonia, Finland, Lithuania, Slovakia, and Slovenia.
Of those countries, the highest average monthly search volume came from Finland, with residents making 1,000 searches on average each month for the retro title. Bulgaria makes 210 searches per month on average, Slovakia makes 480, and Estonia, Lithuania, and Slovenia each make 140 each.
Sonic 3D Blast, Metal Slug and Devil May Cry also ranked as the favourite retro video games in numerous European countries, showing widespread popularity for the titles right across the region.
After its cancellation last year, the PGA Tour’s Jim McCabe welcomes the return of The Open Championship at Royal St George’s this week; watch all four days of The 149th Open exclusively live on Sky Sports The Open
By PGA Tour’s Jim McCabe
Last Updated: 12/07/21 4:27pm
After its cancellation last year, the PGA Tour’s Jim McCabe welcomes the return of The Open Championship at Royal St George’s this week – “the game as it was meant to be played”.
For all the gallant efforts and judicious decisions made to stage most of the marquee golf championships during the pandemic world of 2020, a massive piece remained missing.
The Open Championship.
Unlike the Masters, which moved its tournament from April to November; or the US Golf Association, which pushed the US Open back from June to September; or the PGA of America, which changed its PGA from May to August, the R&A was handcuffed with far stricter lockdown rules set by the British government. In the end, the only prudent decision was to cancel.
It was the first time since the days of WWII (1940-45, to be exact) that we went without an Open Championship. And in all due respect to the Masters, US Open, PGA, Players Championship and a host of other tournaments, the golf world was lesser for missing the venerable Open.
Its history is that revered, the respect for it universally spread.
Not that it was always like that, of course. In fact, given the nature of transportation in the 1930s, ’40s, and ’50s, players were not exactly hopping on steamships to sail the ocean blue. Ben Hogan famously played just once in The Open – an epic victory, of course.
Byron Nelson played in 1937, but never again until 1955, long after he had pretty much retired from the weekly grind of the PGA Tour.
Sam Snead never endeared himself to British fans. Not on his first visit (1937, T-11), nor on his second, when he won at St Andrews in 1946 and disparaged the course to any reporter who would quote him. In 1960, Snead and Arnold Palmer won the Canada Cup in Ireland, but ol’ Sammy could not help himself. When asked if he would play The Open Championship, he said no.
“Look, man, I can win $ 3,500 if I take the British Open,” he said. “But there’s $ 9,000 to the winner at the Buick. So, what would you do?”
Truthfully, who cares what the reporters would have done, but Snead played the Buick Open, finished ninth and earned $ 1,550. Palmer, who got nipped by Kel Nagle, earned $ 2,520 for second place in the British.
The Open Live
July 15, 2021, 6:30am
Speaking of Palmer, his is another name that represents the peculiarities of that era. When he won the first of his four Masters in 1958, Palmer was a hot commodity, but not a chance he was going to play The Open. Instead, in late June and early July he was second in the Buick Open, won Long Island Open, then played well in the Rubber City Open and Insurance City Open.
All were played six time zones from Royal Lytham St Anne’s.
Not that Palmer was criticised. It was the way of the golf world back then. Even the defending champion had to qualify for the Open Championship, so your tournament began with a fight just to outplay the 350 to 400 who teed it up in qualifying rounds.
To his credit, Palmer in 1960 deemed it his rightful duty to play in The Open, given that he had won the Masters and US Open and had a chance to win the vaunted grand slam.
He did not in ’60, of course, but he won the Open in 1961 and ’62 and pretty much established it as a mandatory challenge to any global golfer. Jack Nicklaus went even further when he said: “Any golfer worth his salt has to cross the sea and try to win the British Open.”
Using that as a measuring stick, one could suggest that American golfers amount to a massive pile of salt; 21 of them have accounted for more than half (31, to be exact) of the 60 Open Championships since 1960.
Tom Watson (five), Jack Nicklaus (three), and Tiger Woods (three) account for a good chunk of those, but the roster of American winners includes some notable names – Lee Trevino, Johnny Miller, Tom Weiskopf, David Duval, Phil Mickelson and Jordan Spieth.
You want a decade to ignite your Open Championship fever? Nothing beats the 1970s, when Nicklaus, Trevino, and Watson each won twice, and Weiskopf and Miller made it eight of 10 wins for Americans. The only two they didn’t win? Gary Player and Seve Ballesteros prevailed.
You want a reason to embrace this championship? Consider how Peter Thomson and Bobby Locke, iconic champions from Australia and South Africa, respectively, would travel outrageous distances for weeks, just to be part of a competition that is considered by most parts of the globe to be the true “world championship”.
Golfers from Japan and South America have been competing here for years; so, too, the Spaniards and Swedes, and Koreans and Canadians, and golfers from virtually every port in the world.
So rich in history, so flavourful in a style of play that is seen far too infrequently in pro golf. Links. It is easy to romanticise about the firm turf, the pot bunkers, the wind-swept land, large and flag greens, and the tantalising way in which the ball bounces – sometimes into brutal unplayable heather and gorse – because this is how the game was introduced.
But because there is not much prime links land in the world – Scotland, England, Ireland and Australia dominate – most of the world’s golf courses that host tournaments are inland and built in a parkland style: Trees, plush green grass, much of it left to grow high to stymie golfers, putting surfaces with slopes and speeds.
Mid-July offers a break from the mundane stretch of parkland courses, so here is a heartfelt thank you to the return of The Open Championship, to links, and to the pleasing vision of brown grass. Royal St George’s, this year’s host, might be the least attractive venue in the Open Championship line-up, but do not dismiss it.
To say you are only the ninth or 10th best course in the Open Championship rota is akin to saying you are only the ninth or 10th richest person in the world. Who would turn away such an honour?
No one, of course. So, after being rudely interrupted in 2020, The Open Championship is back. The game as it was meant to be played. Let the passion flow forth.
Get the best prices and book a round at one of 1,700 courses across the UK & Ireland
Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 41 points with 13 rebounds and the Milwaukee Bucks claimed Game 3 of the NBA Finals in dominant fashion with a 120-100 victory over the Phoenix Suns on Sunday night.
Coming home also appeared to bring Antetokounmpo sidekick Khris Middleton and point guard Jrue Holiday new life. Middleton had 15 first-half points and Holiday connected for four 3-pointers in an explosive third quarter as the Bucks pushed their 15-point half-time lead to 22.
Holiday had 21 points and Middleton added 18.
Phoenix fell behind in the second quarter and never recovered with top scorer Devin Booker unable to find his stroke in a 3-of-14 shooting night that shifts the momentum of the best-of-seven series. Game 4 is Wednesday night in Milwaukee.
Milwaukee ate in the paint, shredding the Suns’ small-ball lineup as Deandre Ayton sat idle due to foul trouble. The Bucks, who had 54 points in the paint in Game 2, matched that number in Game 3.
Threes started to fall for the Suns in the third after Phoenix missed 12 of 14 treys in the first half, but Booker never found a rhythm.
The Suns scored 118 points in each of the first two games to build a 2-0 series lead but shot 29 per cent from deep in Game 3 thanks largely to Jae Crowder’s 6-of-7 night.
Cam Johnson came off the bench to help keep Phoenix in the game in the third before Antetokounmpo completed a three-point play and found Pat Connaughton for a three to end the third. Johnson’s emphatic, and-one poster dunk over P.J.
Tucker had cut the lead to 10, and his reverse layup on the next possession made it an eight-point game just four minutes earlier.
Booker did not play in the fourth quarter. Paul left the game for good with the Suns down 23 with 5:02 left in the game. He had a team-high 19 points and nine assists, scooting past Scottie Pippen on the all-time playoffs assist list.
The Bucks led 60-45 at half-time on the legs of a 21-7 run closing out the second quarter, largely with Ayton on the bench. He went back to the pine with 10:24 left in the third after his fourth foul.
Ayton started the game on fire with 16 points in the first 14 minutes but finished with 18. Antetokounmpo had 18 points and eight boards at halftime. Booker missed nine of his 11 shot attempts in the first half with the Bucks keeping bodies nearby.
Sony has dropped a surprise bombshell on PlayStation Plus subscribers, as one of the August free games is revealed early.
Just days after the launch of the July 2021 free games, Sony has announced next month’s PS5 offering.
Replacing A Plague Tale Innocence on August 3, Hunter’s Arena will be free to PS Plus subscribers until September 7.
The news was announced during Sony’s recent State of Play event, alongside a preview about what fans can expect.
According to a new post on the PlayStation Blog, Hunter’s Arena is a Battle Royale game set in an ancient East Asian world.
Players take control of a Hunter tasked with defeating deadly demons across a huge map.
Using a combination of hand-to-hand melee fighting and swordplay, Hunters will also be forced to battle each other.
Each battle features 30 player characters, as well as an untold number of computer-controlled demons.
Killing demons will reward players with new loot, which is how you’ll become strong enough to defeat other player characters.
“Your ultimate goal in Hunter’s Arena is to fight your way through 30 other players and prove yourself as the deadliest Hunter,” Sony explains.
“You must always plan out strategies before diving straight into the action – stay cautious, as at any moment you could become the hunted in this unyielding world.”
Demons reportedly have unique fighting styles that require different strategies to best. Fortunately, the hunters all have their own special abilities and fighting styles.
“Each time you enter the arena, you will be able to choose from 17 different Hunters. I recommend that you try out different Hunters as they range from close range to long range.
“Close range Hunters can deal great amount of damage if you manage to close the gap between you and the enemy. Few of them even have abilities to pull enemies towards them or create shockwaves that will draw enemies to a spot.
“Long range Hunters are perfect for kiting enemies from a distance. However, even though projectiles deal large damage, it will require practice to perfectly land them in fast paced fights.”
If Hunter’s Arena looks like your thing, then you should check out the latest ShopTo discount on PlayStation Plus subscriptions.
The UK retailer is currently selling 12-month PlayStation Plus subscriptions for just £39.85, compared to £49.99 on PSN.
As a digital membership, the PS Plus subscription will be delivered immediately, which means you can use it to bag the latest batch of free PlayStation Plus games.
This includes A Plague Tale Innocence, Call of Duty Black Ops 4 and WWE 2K Battlegrounds.
If you’re looking for something similar but different to the old-school Pokémon games, perhaps Nexomon might be of interest.
Publisher PQube and VEWO Interactive have announced the original entry will be “coming soon” to all consoles including the Nintendo Switch. No date has been confirmed just yet.
“The original Nexomon is coming to Console! Get ready to explore a world where you can catch, evolve and collect over 300 unique Nexomon. Embark on an epic journey and build your ultimate team to take on powerful Tamers and fearsome Nexomon.”
We just wrapped up our biggest event of the year with the Nacon Connect livestream, featuring a huge line-up of games for 2021 and beyond. We even got to premiere our officially licensed Revolution X controller, designed for competitive players! To give you a better idea of what’s coming to Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S, we have prepared a selection of our biggest announcements right here.
Hong Kong is your playground inTest Drive Unlimited Solar Crown
While we’re keeping a few things under wraps for now, there is already a lot to uncover from this cinematic trailer. First, the location. After Oahu and Ibiza, TDU Solar Crown takes place in Hong Kong, with the team at KT Racing recreating the full island at a 1:1 scale. Second, we are sticking to the core of TDU with open-world racing, luxury cars, living the high life, and more. Third, we have had a first glimpse at the Streets and Sharps, rival clans which will be at the heart of our story. And finally, a release date: Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown is planned for September 22, 2022 on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One.
Session: Skateboarding Sim Game gets a free update
It’s been a year already since Session, a skateboarding simulation, arrived on Xbox One through Game Preview. Today, the team at crea-ture studios is proud to deliver a major update, adding a new skateshop in Philadelphia, the famous Black Hubba in New York, but also new game modes such as “Skate or Dice” and a more complete replay editor to create your clips and share your gnarly sessions with the world. There still is a lot we want to add for the game’s full release, but until then, you can continue to play Session in Game Preview and even try it for free for two hours!
Meet the heroes of Vampire: The Masquerade – Swansong
Vampire: The Masquerade – Swansong is a narrative RPG from Big Bad Wolf Studio, where you play as 3 Vampires from different Camarilla clans. After introducing Leysha last month, today the spotlight shines on Galeb, one of the oldest and most feared Vampires in Boston. Power, wealth, immortality, at one point or another, Galeb has had it all, yet he’s left wanting, grasping for something he’s lost. Or perhaps it was never there to begin with. Discover how our 3 playable characters’ stories intertwine and decide the fate of Boston when Vampire: The Masquerade – Swansong releases in February 2022 on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One.
Free Paris from Louis XVI’s madness -and deadly robots- in SteelRising
SteelRising is an action game from Spiders Studio, set during the French Revolution. You will play as Aegis, a state-of-the-art automaton working under Marie-Antoinette’s service. King Louis XVI has gone mad and unleashed his army of robots on the people of Paris, and you are the best chance the Revolution has. Aegis was not designed for war, so keep in mind every encounter can be deadly, and only patience, observation, and reflexes will help you defeat the odds. SteelRising will release in 2022 on Xbox Series X|S.
The Nacon Connect celebrations don’t end here: you can learn more about these games and many others on our Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube channels, and for a limited time you can also head over to the Microsoft Store for discounts on a wide selection of our titles!
Author: David Talmat, Marketing Manager, Nacon
Read more here >>> Xbox Wire
I’ve been working away on my very first game, Omno, for nearly 5 years now, and I’m delighted, relieved, and terrified to finally be able to announce the game will be launching July 29 (that’s only 3 weeks from now) for Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S.
For those of you who don’t know the game, Omno is a single-player adventure full of creatures to befriend, secrets to discover, and puzzles to solve. I had the idea for the game originally way back when I was working as an animator, mostly in T.V. and movies, and as time went on I developed the idea more and more until I finally took the leap and dedicated myself to the project full time.
When the team from [email protected] got in touch with me about Omno, that was a real moment where I thought, “Wow, things are getting kinda serious now!” The support the Xbox team have shown me in helping to get my solo dev project out there to the wider gaming audience has been amazing, and I’m so happy that Omno will be available with Xbox Game Pass, for both console and PC, from day one, so I can share it with as many people as possible. Seeing my game in the Xbox Game Pass library alongside so many incredible games is going to be a surreal experience!
If you’re a fan of smaller, carefully crafted adventure games with a lot of heart, I really hope you’ll join me on the journey when Omno launches July 29 for Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and with Xbox Game Pass. I can’t wait to share it with the world!
Author: Jonas Manke, Creator, Omno
Read more here >>> Xbox Wire