About Ethan Hardy

Ethan Hardy is an avid gamer, beat composer, artist, and writer. He was also a backwoods guide and part of the Conservation Corps in Minnesota. Ethan is currently an editor and author for outdoorskillz.com and twoverbs.com

Review of Diablo II Resurrected – Early Play of Beta Version

Diablo 2 gets a complete remake. The overhead dark fantasy hack and slash looter finally gets a new and improved graphics remake, with smooth gameplay. But how does the beta play? Well, my review of Diablo II Resurrected Beta is very positive. Aside from an occasional technical issue it played pretty well and looked great. I’ll break it down by graphics/sound, gameplay, character build/level up, and technical issues.

Graphics and Sound

Marius – Courtesy Blizzard Entertainment

The biggest thing about Diablo II Resurrected is the graphics. They are gorgeous. Before the beginning of the game, you watch a cinematic cutscene that looks very realistic. It sets the tone for the rest of the game. It tells you that they weren’t messing around with this remake. They did it right. The way everything looks just feels right. They sit well with the source material. The same style, just greatly improved. The lighting is absolutely beautiful. The color scheme is fitting and emits a mystic glow. The shadows are sharp and are as realistic as a Diablo game can be. The fire effects are on point and definitely set the mood for a hellish dungeon. Even the rain looks great. The sound takes the old original, but it sounds very much improved. This is the main reason to get the game in my opinion. If you don’t care about graphics then there really isn’t much reason to get this. Unless you want to enjoy the improved gameplay. 



Gameplay

Dark Wanderer Skeltons – Courtesy Blizzard Entertainment

Now the gameplay takes on from the original mostly. I mainly played as just the barbarian. It’s slower-paced and more deliberate, at least at first. You must plan out each move you make. You can’t just go hacking away or you’ll end up swinging away at the air. Now I played on the Xbox One but the controller works pretty well. Instead of walking by 8 axis points using the N, S, E, W, keys, you get a full range of motion. However, if you want more of a nostalgic feel, try the game on the PC. Everything you can do is mapped to a button of your choice. You can completely change the controls if you want. Now one complaint I have is that I wish they brought back the red outline that appears around the target when it’s in range to attack. In this version, you must be close enough to do the damage. The range is still long at times but can be limited compared to the original. The different heroes you can pick changes the gameplay and helps add to the replayability.

Character Build / Level up

Jailer – Courtesy Blizzard Entertainment

Now once you kill enough enemies you level up. This gives you the choice to choose from stats and abilities. Each character has different abilities and use stats affect them differently. The stats you can raise are strength, dexterity, Vitality, and Energy. Not much has changed from the original in this regard. 

Technical Issues 

Dark Wanderer – Courtesy Blizzard Entertainment

Because this was an online-only Beta, lag issues were occasionally present. Mostly because I was using mediocre WiFi. The game also has some sound delays. Other than those two things I didn’t encounter many other problems. 

Conclusion & Review of Diablo II Resurrected

Rating: 4 out of 5.

All and all I’m very happy about this remake. It captures what makes the original great. But it also adds a modern look to it that helps with what makes the original look dated. I highly recommend anyone who loved the original Diablo II to consider getting this game. To anyone who’s never played Diablo you should give this one a try if you like dungeon crawlers and or fantasy RPGs. This version made my list of the most anticipated video games of 2021. Diablo II Resurrected comes out on September 23rd. 

*Featured Images and Video Clip from Blizzard Entertainment

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My 15 Most Anticipated Games of 2021 and Beyond

While 2020 was a horrible year for almost everything and everyone, many of us sought refuge in video games. During the pandemic, we have enjoyed some really old, and classic video games. The video game industry had a terrific year. We foresee a flurry of new developments throughout the following year, with high hopes for the rest of 2021. Here are the topmost anticipated games of 2021 we are keeping an eye on.

 Elder Scrolls 6

I have been waiting ever since 2011 for the new elder scrolls game. It has to break barriers and be different but also do all the things that make elder scrolls great. Elder Scrolls has always been very dear to my heart. Originally starting with Oblivion and then ending with Skyrim, and again with Skyrim. Hopefully, they can make this area as diverse and as beautiful as the original elder scrolls games. I’m excited to hopefully see some gameplay footage this coming Christmas most likely. Maybe another November release in 2022. Well, it might be far out but I can wait if it’s going to be worth it.

Diablo 4

This game is the reason to have a good pc. The long-awaited sequel in the Diablo series. This top-down perspective dungeon crawler varies based on your character and what you have. The graphics look amazing, and the gameplay flows very well and rewards you for making combos. even if it is prerelease gameplay it looks great. I can’t wait to be able to play this game.

Mass Effect 

Mass effect is personally my favorite sci-fi third-person shooter. Mostly because of the characters and story. After seeing the reveal trailer I was ecstatic. Commander Shepard is back?! The return to the old characters and universe has me excited. Also thinking about what the possibilities are. I am very much on the radar for this upcoming game.

Battlefield 2042

Battlefield has always been about multiplayer with massive maps. This time it’s in the future, and weather can play a part randomly. The trailer shows how epic it can be. Getting out of your jet and shooting down someone else’s, and being able to get back in yours is just something that can be done in the game. I am very excited to see more of this game.

Halo Infinite 

Halo was a cultural phenomenon when I was a kid. I was intrigued with the violence, yes, but also the Sci-Fi aspects. The interesting story of master chef. This game has a lot of potential. Time will tell if this timeless series has what it takes to last forever.

Dead Space

This game is going to be scary, really scary. I remember playing the original for the Xbox 360 on my small standard box TV down in the dark basement. Headset in. Almost too scary to play at times. Bringing that level of fear back into the modern age is definitely something that has been a long time coming. I can’t wait for this remake of the classic sci-fi survival horror to come out. 

Age of Empires 4

Age of Empires was the first game I ever played that I got really into. My dad and my brother would play LAN matches and taunt each other while battling it out. That same type of Age of Empires 2 age of kings style is coming back and looking better than ever. This game is going to break new grounds. Having next-gen graphics in a real-time strategy game should be a very cool look. Personally, I am looking forward to giant naval battles. 

Farcry 6

Ever since Farcry 3 came out I’ve been always paying attention to the sequels. I only got into 4, and only playing a bit of Primal. But hopefully, this new edition will pique my interest. If it brings back the assassin type of the first-person shooter that I remember then I’ll be very happy to return to the far cry series.

Diablo 2: Resurrected 

This remake of a classic definitely has me excited. Mostly because it’s kinda a mix of played a lot, yet never finished. I feel like I would have to beat this multiple times with different characters. One of the most anticipated remakes of all time for sure.

 Deathloop

This game looks very unique and entertaining. Definitely a change up to sequels and remakes. This original concept hasn’t been done yet to my knowledge. It’s like groundhog day but a shooter. Has me interested in where they go with it hard to say if it will be truly 0n the list as one of the most anticipated games of 2021.

Lord of the Rings: Gollum

Lord of the Rings is one of my favorite series of all time. I’m intrigued by the choice of the character. I’m wondering what kind of game it would look like. Considering Gollum never really being much of a fighter. Especially against orcs. I’m assuming it’s going to be primarily story-based. Hopefully, it does live up to the Lord of the Rings name.

Crysis Trilogy Remastered

I remember seeing Crysis growing up. It was the pinnacle of gaming. Specifically for powerful PCs at the time. I can’t wait to see how beautiful and destructive this game is going to look.

Warioware: Get it Together 

Warioware has been a very weird but fun game series. It’s nice to see it finally coming to the switch. I don’t know if they are implementing the switch touchscreen or gyro controls for the joy cons. But I am assuming that they are going to try and be as innovative and crude as they can be. I’m looking forward to this as one of the most anticipated games of 2021 to this minigame-based switch game.

Fable 4

I have a very mixed relationship with the Fable series. I like what it tries to do, but then it doesn’t do certain things well. If they just stick with what makes Fable good then I have great hopes for the series.

Call of Duty (TBA)

I’m not sure what the next game is going to be but it’s got to be good. Call of Duty has been pushing the envelope for its series ever since the most recent Modern Warfare game. Where is the mode Warzone going and what are their plans are for the full game. Whatever it is will be epic and hopefully worth the price as one of the most anticipated games of 2021.

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Age of Empires IV at Xbox Games Showcase 2021

So it’s been a while since I have touched on Age of Empires IV. This series has always been very special to me. I remember it being one of my first video gaming experiences. Starting with the first Age of Empires. which made my list of being in the Top 15 Multiplayer Video Games of the Last Decade. With this new addition, it plans to deliver a game with beautiful graphics, smooth animations, and effects. Entertaining gameplay, and a new story campaign, and ways to play. Since my last article on the subject, a lot of gameplay and information has been released.   An official gameplay trailer came out about two months ago.

 But recently at the Xbox Games Showcase this year they released more information on their new real-time strategy game. There is a lot more than what I am showing. If you really want to dive into this game, including the Age of Empires IV release date look up their Age of Empires IV website.

And also subscribe to their AOE IV YouTube Channel.

Here is the most recent trailer out for Age of Empires 4. It mixes real life cinematics with actual gameplay. This is just going to be the first of many trailers. The game is still in development and still needs work before it is released. But based on what is shown, it’s a fairly complete working game. I am excited to see more of the game in the coming future. 

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6 Months of Pain – A Covid Long-Hauler Medical Journey

Editors Note It’s been reported that those who contracted Covid-19 have a 98% survival rate. However, what is lost in that conversation is the extremely high rate of lingering symptoms weeks if not months after recovery. A study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control from March thru September of 2020 found 35% had not fully recovered even after 2–3 weeks after positive outpatient test results. Among persons aged 18–34 years with no chronic medical conditions, one in five had not returned to their usual state of health. The following is a story of the experience of a 27-year-old man who had been in otherwise perfect health until taken with a mild case of Covid-19.


I was tested positive for Covid-19 at the end of October 2020. I am now at a point where doctors are actually trying to figure out the solution to my chronic chest pain and shortness of breath. In the beginning, I sat at my apartment for 14 days, slowly getting worse pains in my chest. I wasn’t well enough to go back to work, and I wanted to see a doctor.

Because I did not return right back to work, Amazon fired me. So now unemployed I needed to figure out my physical health. Meanwhile, my mental health was falling. I was afraid, I was irritated by the pain, I thought Covid-19 was going to kill me. I stopped caring about my diet and physical fitness as I was constantly in pain and had zero motivation.

I made an appointment with my Doctor. She did an x-ray of my lungs. They saw no pneumonia in my lungs. They told me I’ll start feeling better within a week if not to make a pulmonary appointment. A week passed and my chest pain didn’t leave. I made an appointment for a pulmonary that was weeks away. They tested my breathing and listened to my lungs. Again they saw nothing alerting them. So I was told again, within a month that I should start feeling better. Instead of getting better, it got worse.
My chest hurt so much, I couldn’t sleep due to shortness of breath. I went into the emergency room close by. They checked my heart, lungs, urine, and blood. All came back negative of anything concerning. They gave me a shot for pain and after 30 minutes or more they told me I was probably just experiencing inflammation and that it should get better in time.

The Covid Long-Hauler Feelings of Dread

I kept around the same amount of pain until I dog-sat for a family friend. I had terrible pains that were also due to acid reflux. I had thoughts of dread that I had to ignore. A voice in my head was telling me that I was laying on my death bed. I was so afraid. I ended up seeing the pulmonary again to which they scheduled me a CT scan of my lungs and also gave me another inhaler.

It’s hard to gauge when I had appointments and when everything happened. I remember after playing games with my friends online and the pain in my chest was so intense that putting pressure on my chest gave me pain. I sat up and my heart pulsed hard. I thought that it could be my heart that’s the issue.

I was so concerned that I went to the emergency room again. They checked my heart and told me what I was experiencing was musculoskeletal inflammation. Basically, my muscles were so inflamed that they would push against my cartilage and bones in my chest. After thinking that they were right and being given Naproxen, I started getting stomach pains too. I saw my primary care doctor which after doing the usual check-up, she referred me to a post-Covid-19 specialist. That doctor told me that I could get or have an ulcer that could be causing the chest pains.

The specialist told me to stop taking Naproxen because it could be hurting my stomach. He also told me to make an appointment with a gastroenterologist. After getting my upper GI scope check, I was told my stomach and esophagus were inflamed. The physician told me to avoid certain things in my diet, such as coffee or tomato-based sauces, for four weeks.

Things felt better until my shortness of breath came back. I saw a doctor who did a normal check-up, to which she found nothing. She told me to talk to my pulmonologist. I finally, while seeing another pulmonology doctor, I was told of a possible solution. I told him about still having chest pain for six months. After some questions, he left to talk to a doctor, to which they both came in. They pulled up my old CT scan that was done. They told me something no one told me about for six months. They told me that the white streaks in my lungs could potentially be an infection or fungus growing in my lungs. I had to get another CT scan of my lungs. Depending on if they find anything, I’ll have to get my lungs examined. They’ll collect a sample of the gunk in my lungs. Analyze it, and if it’s an infection, I’ll get antibiotics. If it’s just inflammation, then I’ll be prescribed a steroid.

The End of My Time As Covid Long-Hauler May Be In Sight

I thanked them for finally telling me a solution instead of saying, “It’ll be better with time.” after seeing doctors time and time again. I was able to feel a bit better about my situation. There’s seemingly an end in sight. I hope I get a proper diagnosis and the right medicine soon and start feeling better ASAP. Because I wouldn’t wish this on anyone. The chronic pain and discomfort were unbearable and crippling at times.

To finally hear these two possible solutions gave me great relief and restored my faith in doctors. Some come out of nowhere that can actually help you instead of listing you off. Especially after having Covid-19 and still feeling symptoms.

To any Covid long-hauler people out there. DON’T STOP! If you are in pain, get answers. Doctors don’t know as much as they should about Covid-19. So much is unknown about this disease. But with perseverance, you too can hopefully get answers to your problems; if you need to tell someone this, then does it. People need to have hope more than anything these days.

Thank you for reading this story. It’s been one of the biggest struggles in my life. But I am not alone in this fight. If this article can even help one person who is having a tough time, then I’d be thrilled. I’m sorry you are not feeling like your normal self, and you may have thoughts like, “Will I ever feel better again?” Don’t ever quit. Never stop fighting. Don’t lose hope, and always look forward!

Ed Note: If you experiencing long term symptoms after recovering from Covid-19 there are support groups available. One is group is Michiganders Surviving Covid-19 Together

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I Managed Surviving Covid 19, But It’s Still Affecting Me Six Months Later

Editors Note It’s been reported that those who contracted Covid-19 have a 98% survival rate. However, what is lost in that conversation is the extremely high rate of lingering symptoms weeks if not months after recovery. A study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control from March thru September of 2020 found 35% had not fully recovered even after 2–3 weeks after positive outpatient test results. Among persons aged 18–34 years with no chronic medical conditions, one in five had not returned to their usual state of health. The following is a story of the experience of a 27-year-old man who had been in otherwise perfect health until taken with a mild case of Covid-19.

Working Delivery During The Pandemic

I was one of the many delivery drivers who was contracted to deliver packages for Amazon. Since the pandemic started in March, I was continuously working and drove all over Southeast Michigan. I did little else. The crisis shut down restaurants, and other than an occasional family visit, I only worked. I was off for a few days because of a twisted ankle and returned to my delivery route. I worked for about two days when my world started to change in a way I never thought would happen. I felt off. More tired than usual. What threw me off was the taste of my water. It tasted salty and almost metallic, like drinking water from aluminum. The Gatorade tasted funny too. I had shortness of breath and was coughing a lot. After telling the dispatch about my symptoms, I was instructed to take back the packages I had yet to deliver and leave. That was it. No interaction with the people and I went home. 

The Covid-19 Test

The next day I drove half an hour away to get a rapid results text. It was a hundred dollars for that test. After getting my nose probed, they told me I was positive and to go home and take it easy. A wave of shock and panic hit me hard. I was already feeling sick, and it must have just started. I went home and tried not to have a breakdown.

That day feels so long ago, yet it’s only been six months since I tested positive for Covid-19. The first thing I remember experiencing was shortness of breath. It was as if I had something sitting on my chest, just making it a little harder to breathe. Then it was the body pains. I felt a mixed arrangement of pain, radiating from my back to my neck to my stomach and chest. As time went on, I noticed more chest pain. It felt like my insides were ripping or tearing. Sometimes it pinched; sometimes, it felt like a bruise. 

So, After 14 Days I Should Be OK, Right?

I waited for the 14th day to feel better, but I didn’t. The symptoms, in some regards, were getting worse. I notified my boss where I was working that I was still experiencing symptoms. I indicated that I wanted to see my doctor before I would return to work. As a result, they fired me. Only because I haven’t been working long enough to be put on medical leave, and they couldn’t have me on the financial books. They told me I could try to get rehired, but I know that’s just a way to cover their tracks. I was still feeling bad from Covid, which I’m sure resulted from my job, then I’m fired for not getting better within this arbitrary 14-day window. It was a perfect storm of terrible misfortune. 

The Real Aftermath of Surviving Covid-19

I was unemployed and still suffering both physically and mentally. Then I started losing my hair. Every day I would find a large clump of hair that would partially block the drain in my shower. I was exhausted. I would sleep multiple times a day. I would take numerous showers and baths to feel a little bit of relief. The amount of stress I was dealing with was crippling. I thought if I didn’t get better now that I wouldn’t be getting better at all. I thought I was over. A gloom descended over me, and I began eating and doing whatever I wanted. I stopped caring and lived for the now. 

My chest pain was so concerning that I went to the emergency room thought I would keel over any minute. The ER doctors ordered some tests and X-rays. I was told my lungs were satisfactory and sent back home. But it was not over, and I kept feeling worse. My mental health was at an all-time low. I kept having an inside voice telling me that I was going to die. I had thoughts of dread that I wouldn’t make it to the New Year or see my older brother’s baby. I considered the idea that I wasn’t going to make it to the age of 28. That it was over, and there was nothing I could do about it.

More Doctors, More Tests, No Clues

I had to push aside these thoughts and kept going. I had a lot of downs and another trip to the emergency room. Again only to find out that my heart and lung function was fine. But what I was experiencing was significant chest inflammation.

I had visions of dread and felt tortured by my subconscious. I saw many doctors until one told me that I could check something else out. The doctor ordered an examination esophagus and stomach with a test procedure called a UGI. It turned out the post-Covid pain I was experiencing resulted from inflammation of the lungs, stomach, and esophagus. I was given instructions for a new diet and was told not to consume chocolate, coffee, or drink alcohol. Since that procedure and change of diet, I’ve been doing much better and feeling better. I try to eat right, drink tea and water, try to get outside, and exercise whenever possible. I think I’m starting to get closer to recovery. It’s been six months, and I still have lasting symptoms from Covid. Hopefully, I can start feeling like usual soon and can have a day without pain. I know there are others out there that feel the same.

We are Long-Haul Covid-19 Survivers

If you are reading this and feel the same or know someone who is a long hauler, know this. It can get better, and it’s easier when you have a good positive mental attitude. But it also really helps to have support. To all that didn’t know about long haulers or don’t believe that covid is a severe disease, think again. I survived, but I’m still battling every day. Also, if you had covid and hardly got any symptoms, you should consider yourself lucky.

How To Reach Out For Help

The things I went through I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemies. It’s that crippling and disheartening. If this article helps someone in any way, then I’ve done my job. Everyone is going through something on their own, but that doesn’t mean they’re doing it alone. There are support groups for Covid-19 survivors. If you have never talked to a therapist or need help with mental health issues, never feel ashamed to ask for help. Never feel helpless and alone. If you do feel like life is over, stop. Call the crisis hotline. It’s never too late. You matter. Life can and will get better.

Survivor Corps: https://www.survivorcorps.com/

Crisis hotline: Call (855) 968-0965

To those who helped me get through the most challenging time of my life, thank you. I don’t know how I could have done it without you! I love my family and friends so much and will never forget the love I’ve been given. Thank you!

More to Come with Surviving Covid-19

Ethan is considered a Long Haul Survivor of Covid-19 Infection. While he beat the virus, the illness has affected him for more than six months later. He will be posting future articles with hints and tips on mitigating the symptoms and retaining a positive mental outlook. 

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Top 10 Most Disturbing Movies Never To Let Kids See

( Disclaimer! This article talks about the morbid, scary, and just plain disturbing. Even traumatic for some people. Descriptive language is used. You have been warned. This is not for anyone under the age of 18 )

The fascination with the macabre has not been a new thing. People for centuries have been experimenting with the darkest material they can. Most of these movies go so far into the disturbing that I wouldn’t recommend seeing them, especially if you are faint at heart. This list of the most disturbing horror movies I personally have seen. I’ve viewed them, so you don’t have to. Here we go, brace yourself. This is a count down to the most disturbing movies I’ve ever been exposed to

#10 The Fly

This 80s remake of the original movie adds more detail and better practical effects to really kick up the gross-out factor. People watching this in the theaters reportedly were fainting, throwing up, and leaving in disgust. I wouldn’t blame them, as watching this body horror nightmare beginning to end left you disgusted and disturbed.

#9 Eyes Without a Face

If you hate body horror, this will haunt you even though it’s one of the older movies on this list. A little girl with a face like a rotten corpse wants a face. Her father, trying to help his daughter, finds a pretty woman so that he can remove her face and attach it to his daughter. Yes, that concept alone is disturbing; shot in black and white, it is downright terrifying and wrong.

#8 Alien

Now the whole movie itself isn’t that disturbing, scarier than anything. But take it like this, you are 6 or 7 years old walking downstairs to talk to your parents. When you turn the corner, you see a man with something bulging out of his chest on TV. Blood starts filling the shirt until a terrifying alien pops out and shoots blood everywhere. Needless to say, I had nightmares for weeks and developed a phobia of parasites and other things living inside of me. It might not be that disturbing than the other movies, but I felt the need to put this movie on here anyways.

#7 Pink Floyd’s The Wall

I love Pink Floyd, but I was exposed to one part of this movie very young. The scene in observation is with the song, “Comfortably Numb” at some point the main character becomes a worm man who rips out his own eyes violently while the guitar solo rages. That part seriously freaked me out as a child. The rest of this movie is no easy watch either. With scenes of war, violence, death, kids being put in a grinder, and amazing animations that capture the darkness of the subject matter. This movie is amazing yet still contains some of the most disturbing imagery I’ve ever seen.

#6 Teeth

Another gross-out movie that labels men as evil sex addicts. The movie is about a woman’s private parts that have teeth that mutilate men. Whoever wrote this movie needs serious help and anyone that likes this movie or thinks it’s funny needs help too. Don’t watch this trash. Like the human centipede, it leaves you asking, who would make such a movie, and who in their right mind would watch it?

#5 Un Chien Andalou

A 1929 film made by Salvidor Dali is just as weird as you would think. Only it has one scene, particularly that was so real and revolting that many theaters refused to show it. Using practical effects, you see a man take a razor blade and cut open the woman’s eye. Even by today’s standards, it looks real. That one scene is too much for me to watch as I have a phobia of eyes being messed with. This twisted artist never shied away from the uneasy imagery. This movie proves that as a fact.

#4 Human Centipede

I ask why, why would anyone make such a disturbing and vile movie. The top three at least tried to be an actual watchable movie instead of a gross-out flick. It’s about a mad scientist that sews his victims together from mouth to rectum. Yes, it’s as bad as it sounds. I wouldn’t recommend anyone to see this movie unless you gravitate towards movies centered around a disgusting concept.

#3 Clockwork Orange

I can’t even think of the song, “singin’ in the rain.” Without also thinking about one of the most disturbing scenes put on the big screen. I can’t watch the scene anymore, and it’s too real and terrible. Rape scenes are never good, but this movie doesn’t shy away from the sheer evil. Some people can’t even listen to “singin’ in the rain” ever again because of this one scene. However, in the movie, you follow a despicable psychotic, so the dark imagery never ends. Some consider this the most popular disturbing movie of all time, and I would have to agree.

#2 Eraserhead

This movie is a fever dream from hell. Nonstop disturbing shows that leave you feeling ill by the end of it. A hissing radiator, a mutated baby, horrifying imagery, and unnerving behavior. You know something is terribly wrong, yet the movie keeps going. What got me was the crying of the mutated baby as it lies neglected. It’s disconcerting and fills you with such dread. You’ll be asking questions and won’t be able to shake those images from your brain for a while.

#1 Enter The Void

It’s the single most traumatic experience I’ve ever had when watching a movie. This trippy and incredibly dark movie is all shot in a first-person view. It starts with flashing texts that really instill a feeling of something psychedelic and eerie. About a quarter of the way through, you see the main character’s view of his childhood. Watching his parents arguing while driving. They enter a tunnel, darkness; then a blinding light suddenly images with the sound of a truck’s horn blaring. The screen goes black. Then when the film returns, you see, in the eyes of this child, the bodies of their parents mangled. The children’s realistic screaming sells the scene. It was too real. Later in the movie, a flashback happens that puts you right back at the scene. After that, I couldn’t continue watching as it was too much for me. Even though I was around 18 at the time.

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Top 15 Multiplayer Video Games of the Last Decade

While single player games are all the rage, the popularity of multiplayer gaming is not to be overlooked. For this list the qualifiers are simple. It has to have a multiplayer matchmaking mode or cooperative play. It also has to be games I’ve played like my last list of top games of the last decade. Without further adieu, here’s the list! 

Call of Duty Modern Warfare / Warzone (2019)

If I’m only going to put one Call of Duty game on this list for best multiplayer game of the last decade It would be Modern Warfare. Especially when Warzone came out on it. It went back to what made Call of Duty so good since the first original Call of Duty Modern Warfare back in 2007. It’s gritty fps realism and over the top fast paced action are all there. It also includes more modes, maps, guns, and operators. Warzone, a new added battle royale mode, crushed fortnite as the superior battle royale when it first came to be. As a multiplayer game you can’t get much better.

Overwatch (2016)

This multiplayer only game is worth it. This FPS Class based team battle game is better than any of its kind. Yes, that means it’s better than Team Fortress 2. Choose from a huge list of heroes ranging from tank, damage dealer, and support. This addictive shooter keeps things interesting as the combination of heroes can really diversify the game. Each hero plays different so you will have to find a few that work for you. It’s one of the most original and unique gaming experiences i’ve ever had.

Halo The Master Chief collection (2014)

This collection brings all the previous halo games and combines them into one.In this sci fi fps, you are able to play different multiplayer modes on all the different halo games. Pick and choose what you want to play for matchmaking or do a custom map. Custom maps can be made by the in-game forge mode which adds a level of complexity that few other multiplayer games accomplish. I mean it’s Halo. It’s easily one of the most recognizable multiplayer games ever made. This collection is only reinstating the fact that Halo is timeless.   

 Minecraft (2011)

Yes you can play it solo, but with all the creative content on servers and realms it’s way better in a group. With the help of some players you can build anything at your heart’s content. From whole villages to the most grand and complex builds. This game might seem simple but after some how to make videos on youtube will easily show you that this game is anything but. A working computer was made in game. All through online. Exploring and building with friends has never been this good. 

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (2018)

All your favorite nintendo characters and then some, battling it out. It’s a new era of Super Smash Bros. Beautiful graphics and smooth controls that vary from simple to very complex. Play with friends locally, online, or in physical competitions like esports. The amount of competitions for this game are huge. This is easily the best of the series.  

Grand Theft Auto Online (2013)

The amount of content in this multiplayer mode is ridiculous. The number of DLC is mind numbing. Everything from grand heists, to racing to sports mini games. There is just so much to do. It can be difficult at times but the communities can help you out. Roleplay, group up, or take on other online players by yourself.

Diablo 3 (2012)

Another co-op game that had to make the list. The amount of replayability is great. Play the standard campaign online, brawling, adventure or rift. Or even season play where you can unlock content for your character. This game is good solo, but playing with friends is far more enjoyable and gives you the ability to share experience, which means faster level ups. Diablo 3 is undoubtedly one of the best dungeon crawler smash and hack games to date.

Borderlands Handsome Collection (2015)

This rather attractive collection contains both Borderlands 2 and Borderlands the presequel. Both uniquely stylized first person shooters. This also Includes all of the downloadable content for the two games. Co-op is how to play these games. Unlock better loot and faster experience points. Plus your fellow players can help support you with their many abilities.  

TitanFall 2 (2016)

Jet packs, and giant battle mechs, what’s not to love. This sequel to the online only Titainfall is how to make a fun online sci-fi first person shooter. Beautiful graphics, fast and sharp gameplay. It also includes bots in the multiplayer mode making you fight both player vs player and player vs bots. Tons of guns and abilities, not to mention all the different robotic mechs you can control. Fight for domination and kill all that stand in your way. 

PUBG: Player Unknown Battle Ground (2017) 

Just like Warzone or Fortnite, battle in this shooter for top dog. This battle royale mode has all the correct gameplay and a massive, and pretty map. Lots to loot and shoot. The amount of tactics needed to play this game keeps you on your toes. 

Mario Kart 8 (2014)

The best kart games ever made have got to be Mario Kart. This one takes the cake for most players, most carts and other vehicles. Battle and drive as fast as you can to become #1. Simple yet has the ability to be very competitive.

Rainbow Six: Siege (2015)

It’s terrorists vs. anti-terrorist forces. Save hostages, plant bombs, and kill or be killed in this tactical first person shooter. Everything is destructible which adds a different dynamic than most other shooters. Play as class based characters that give you different guns and abilities. This game is very tense and very entertaining. 

Red Dead Redemption 2 Online (2018)

It’s the cowboy version of Grand Theft Auto but feels like it’s very own type of game. Play on a huge map based on the campaign but with random players roaming around. Team up or gun down other players and see who can be most wanted as long as possible. Other modes are thrown in that keep things interesting and fresh. If you loved Red Dead Redemption 2 you’ll love its multiplayer mode.

Fortnite (2017)

I give credit to games when it is due and Fortnite is still one of the most popular multiplayer games of the last decade easily. It has multiple modes including the world renowned battle royale mode. Fight to be the last man standing, either alone, or in a group of 2, 3 or 4. The graphics are nice even if a bit simple and cartoonish but that doesn’t take away the solid gun play. Pull of trick shots and special moves for the street cred. Play special limited time modes that come around often. You can’t hate on it until you try it. It’s fun and has a very good replay value.  

Rocket League (2015)

This is a soccer game played by RC cars. As silly of a concept as it might seem, it’s very entertaining. Making trick goals and blocks are super fun and make you feel like one more game. It can be difficult, but the challenge keeps things from going tired. Play with strangers or in your friend group to make the most scores of the game. 

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Top 15 Single-Player Video Games of the Last Decade

This is my personal list of my favorite games that span from 2010 to 2020. The criteria are that it must be a story-driven game that has a focused campaign. Games like Minecraft don’t count. These games were also mainly for the Xbox 360 and Xbox One, as those are the consoles I had at the time. So enjoy my list of the top 15 best single-player games of the last decade.

#1 Red Dead Redemption 2 (2018)

This game is huge. Both size and reputation. This is an old-time western open-world shooter that you can play in multiple view modes. The story alone is something to experience. Characters as real as the dirt. Shooting and movement that feels as real as possible. Be prepared, though. This wester outlaw game has a few tear-jerking moments.

#2 Fallout New Vegas (2010)

Arguably the best Fallout game in the series. This sequel to a retro post-apocalyptic open-world RPG shooter that made a big impact, Fallout 3. The main story is fun enough. Put a whole world full of mystery in the mix, and you get a massive game. A game with a lot to do and say, you won’t just be sitting at the blackjack table. 


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#3 Mass Effect 2 (2010)

My favorite of the trilogy is getting geared up for a suicide mission in this sci-fi third-person shooter. Meet new characters and gain new crew members as you prepare for the biggest fight of your life. Your actions have consequences, and they can cost you dearly. This is a science fiction nerds’ biggest fantasy, and if you haven’t played, you are truly missing out. 

#4 Bioshock Infinite (2012)

 A post-civil war Confederacy succeeds into the skies. This prequel brings a unique approach to the series. It plays very well for an fps and has a very immersive narrative. Play this mysterious game to find out about all its hidden secrets. Just know that this completely connects to the original Bioshock, so be patient.   

#5 Grand Theft Auto V (2011)

One of the most hyped games of all time, and it delivers! Some of the best satire in any video game to date. Laugh and cringe at this open-world crime shooter. This game has a hilarious story but can still throw in some somber moments. Don’t judge this game until you get to know it.

#6 Portal 2 (2011)

A sequel we never thought we needed. A puzzle fps with lots of wits. This adds a story at a level that is not found in Portal 1. It adds characters and a backstory that fully connects at the end. Trust me. This game will blow your mind.

#7 Far Cry 3 (2012)

Easily the best Far Cry game of all time. This game is an open-world fps. The characters, the plot, the style, the gameplay are all fantastic. This game brought us Vaas. A character that is still being used as an example of how to make a great villain. This compelling fps has a story that will bend reality.

#8 Tell Tale’s The Walking Dead: Season One (2012)

This game has so much heart it’s silly not to complete it. The characters, the choices. All so satisfying and really personalizes the story to you. Choices never felt more important. Warning, the ending is heartbreaking yet leaves a complete experience.  

#9 Dead Space 2 (2011)

This demented TPS (Third-person shooter) sci-fi horror is the scariest, most badass story of all time. Battle with real and imaginary demons as you strive for freedom from the horror.

#10 The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (2011)

This epic fantasy open-world RPG brings so much to play. Use magic, melee or ranged weapons, or even your fists! The main quest brings a lot of great characters and plot. But what really shines is the whole map, which is filled with story-driven quests. You don’t know what you’ll find just around the corner. Fantasy lovers, this game is a must. 

#11 Fallout 4 (2015)

War never changes. But Fallout does! Take the old Fallout 3 and give it better graphics, better gameplay, and more to do. This story has a lot of twists and is sure to tickle your fancy. Play the main quest to the end for an explosive finale.

#12 Batman: Arkham City (2011)

Batman done right. Fly around Arkham city and feel like batman. From the feeling of your fists clocking a bad guy to seeing his most rivaled villains. You can’t help but become the dark knight. With one of the best batman stories ever told you’ll need to play this one. 

#13 Halo Reach (2010)

One of the most emotionally charged of the Halo games, this fps lands on its feet after all that was teased about the game. Fun and unique shooting with a full cast of Spartans. The campaign leaves you satisfied but also a little sad. 

#14 Gears of War 3 (2011)

What I still consider the last Gears of War game, has to be on this list. It perfectly wrapped up the trilogy and left a satisfying conclusion to the infamous Delta squad. Play as Marcus in this ominous action sci-fi tps.

#15 Assassins Creed IV: Black Flag (2013)

It’s a pirate’s life for me, at least in the world of Assassins Creed. Meet famous pirates in this somewhat historically accurate tale based in the world of assassins. The navel fighting is the best part. I still haven’t come across a game that does better naval warfare than this game. Explore and fight in this third-person open-world action-adventure.    

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Top 10 Most Popular Video Games of 2021

Trying to find and rank the most popular video game is like nailing Jello to the wall. Almost impossible. With the Covid-19 pandemic, people have been shut in and playing a lot of video games. The industry is looking to have one of their best years ever and some fine games have been released. We threw caution to the wind and drafted this list of the top 10 video games currently being played in 2021. These are in no particular order.

Call of Duty: Black Ops: Cold War

Call of Duty has been undoubtedly the most popular gaming franchise for many years. However, it’s been more significant than ever. The game contains a campaign, multiplayer, and zombies. The setting goes back to original black ops characters and puts them at the cold war between America and Soviet Russia. Marketing, discounts, and other incentives made Call of Duty the top seller. One which continues selling after more updates become included in the game for free. That means new modes, maps, weapons, and characters for Multiplayer and whole new modes for Zombies. All without having to pay a fee like you would for DLC.

Call of Duty: Warzone

Yes, Call of Duty is that popular. This free-to-play mode started with Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and became its own separate anomaly. Bringing multiple modes, including the incredibly popular “Battle Royale” and other modes like “plunder,” over 100 players looking to be the last man standing. Work alone or in groups of two, three, or four. Now that battle pass (a season-based subscription) is cross games, and you can now earn XP (experience) for Modern Warfare, Warzone, and Cold War and have it count for one account. Giving you more characters, blueprints, and aesthetics to choose from. Since this mode is free to play, anyone can play together to be the top players.   

Fortnite

Love it or hate it, Fortnite is a top-rated game that continues to grow every year. Being another free-to-play game that delivers quality gameplay, its popularity continues, and its content changes and grows. They gain free new content every season and try to pull from today’s pop culture, including Travis Scott. They release new content to purchase every once in a while, like Ripley and the Xenomorph from the Alien movies. Even if you don’t understand the appeal, know that this game isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.  

Minecraft 

Minecraft is still an extremely popular game, and with its many updates, it stays fresh and full of exciting new things to do and see. To mine and craft if you will. With multiplayer modes and servers called “Realms,” gamers flock to play and build with all that Minecraft offers. The long-awaited Caves and Cliffs update has been keeping players on their toes, waiting for the update to drop finally.  

Animal Crossing New Horizons

This casual island builder game gained a great following, especially given the time of its release. Many players had to stay indoors to buy this game to explore their own island. Your island starts inhabited by animal-human hybrids whom you befriend and interact with. This game appeals to the very young to those who are older too. Its cute and colorful style brings a whimsical touch to the game. Improve your island or venture off to other gamer’s islands. Trade and share designs. The possibilities are endless. With more people looking to escape into their own little world, it’s no wonder why this game is so popular these days.  

Among Us

This couple-year-old game blew up in popularity during 2020 and remained one of the most popular online games you can buy or get for free mobile. Play in a group of players; one or two may become the Intruders. The rest are crew members. The crew member’s job is to do all the objectives to continue their space flight. The job for the Intruders? Kill all the crew members. Simple as that. This game is popular because it’s a fun and funny game to play online. The false accusations, the betrayals. All are a part of this quirky party game. 

Last of Us: Part 2

This sony Playstation exclusive title won Game of the Year for 2020, and many can see why. With the amazing graphics, gameplay, characters, and plot, it’s no secret. Last of Us: Part 2 was a sequel that excelled in performance and took many awards due to that fact. Not much else to say except that you need to play this game if you have a PlayStation 4 or 5.

Madden NFL 21

You can’t argue that EA Sports isn’t doing something right after all these sales. Improving on NFL 20, this game brings the hype and hard-hitting action sports fans have been craving forever since contact sports was put on hiatus in 2020. The sports gamers are very abundant and loyal customers, buying up the newest titles every year to get the most modern sporting experiences. I’ve got to give it to EA, and this game looks beautiful and as close to the real thing most people will get these days.

Pokemon Sword/Shield

Pokemon has always been a big deal since its 90s birth to its most modern generation of pokemon. Play with a new set of pokemon on top of all previous generations of pokemon. Of course, you can catch your very own Pikachu but in a modern style of gameplay and graphics.  

Cyberpunk 2077

This controversial retro-SciFi open-world FPS (first-person shooter) made a lot of sales. Unfortunately, the performances of the game varied from player to player. Technical issues seem to be a bigger problem for Xbox One and PS4 players as it wasn’t even able to play. Refunds were issued to those with these issues, yet this game still became one of the most important games to come out this decade. Customize your character and play how you want in this interesting futuristic setting.  

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When Will We See Age of Empires IV Released?

When the game was initially announced, the game was still in its very early development stages, as it says pre-alpha footage. In developing video games, they have different levels of completion. Alpha means when the game is beginning to take shape and playable. Many changes still need to be made, but the game starts looking more like a game at this stage. Beta is when the game is basically done and is tested to get rid of any “bugs” or “glitches.” Many video game developers release their games on a trial basis during the beta, so they get free playtests and iron out the game before the official release. Unfortunately, they might have been too eager to release anything on the game as it is still ongoing.

AOE IV Testing and Continued Development

On the Age of Empires website, they talk about playtesting the game and further progress made on the game. Not much else is said, but rest assured that this game is still in development and is still being tinkered with as they get closer to a beta game. More information is on other games like the recently released Age of Empires 3 Definitive Edition.

Other Age of Empires Games

With the game Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition coming October 15th, 2020, they still will be making updates for it and other games. They have also been making downloadable content for Age of Empires 1,2, & 3. They will continue making dlc for these games as they have been well received.

So When Is the AOE IV Release Date?

So far there hasn’t been any official release date for Age of Empires 4; however, speculation says they might be making for a late 2021 to 2022 release. With everything going on with the pandemic and other games that they are working on I have some speculations. My guess is an early to mid-2022 release, even though they would shoot for the December holiday season 2021.

More to come in 2021

This year I am sure to hear some more news on our favorite multi-era-themed RTS game franchise. As less attention is put on other games Age of Empire 4 will start to become a better priority and will become developed even more. Hopefully, we can see some actual Alpha gameplay footage this year, if not a full-blown beta that we can eventually get our hands on for PC. Although this game will eventually release for the Xbox One and Series X as well. 

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