Let’s get serious for a moment. There are always the sickest deals right around Thanksgiving time / Black Friday, and this year there happens to be even more going on Thanksgiving day. Let’s take a dive into some madness.

Update:

Gaming Laptop with VR deals:

Dell Inspiron 15.6″ Laptop Intel Core i5 8GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti – 256GB SSD with HP VR headset $699 + tax at Bestbuy.com

Nintendo Switch deals:

The Switch is too in demand to find for less than the normal $300 asking price, but if you have Chase Pay or a Chase Freedom / Sapphire card you can get a Switch for $300 + 10% back. Also, it looks like you get 10% on everything at Walmart.com with you Chase Pay or Chase Freedom / Sapphire card. Nintendo Switch Chase Deal

Playstation 4 Pro deals:

Best Buy has the (Black) PS4 Pro for $349

BEST DEAL is Amazon (White) PS4 Pro with Destiny 2 for $349

Xbox One X deals (The new more powerful Xbox)

Costco.com xbox one x for $485 ($499 everywhere else)

Xbox One S deals:

Ebay Xbox One S 500gb for $170 with free shipping

Newegg XB1 S 500gb with 6 months of xbox live and 2 controllers for $205 using Master Pass checkout (which is just a paypal type account that is free to have)

Nintendo 2DS deals:

Nintendo 2DS Link Edition with Ocarina of Time $79 at gamestop

Gaming Monitor deals:

ASUS 144hz 24″ 1080p open-box like new $159 at Amazon

 

So the Last of Us Part 2 trailer dropped. I honestly didn’t know it was coming and I got super excitebike to wake up to Twitter friends gushing about it. Last of Us is in my top 10 favorite video games. It left me emotional after playing the main story because frankly I didn’t want to kill the doctors. I stumbled around for 15ish minutes trying to come to terms that the game was forcing me to kill the doctors because I was not me, I was the main character and that’s what he would do in that situation.

Back to Last of Us Part 2. I’m guessing that the woman being hung is Ellie. Where is Joel? Dead? Playing chess because he retired?

The graphics look stunning and I believe it will look danktober fest on the PS4 Pro. The scene is very gory, and I believe this trailer eclipses the gore of the first chapter. Other people that have been hung are gutted and another woman is dragged over to have her “wings clipped”. When that first arrow pierces one of the wing clipper’s cheek I knew this was going to be a treat. How cool would a Netflix season of this be?

Here is the previous trailer from 2016

the upsidedown stranger things bar

This has nothing to do with games, but since most of the EPG peeps are 80’s kids and nerds we really loved Stranger Things on Netflix. We are also huge fans of the Emporium video game bar in Chicago.

I’m hoping Starship gets over to check out the Emporium bar before the shutdown in Logan Square. Check out this amazing cease & desist letter the coolest lawyer ever sent to the proprietors.

All press is good press right?!

Netflix Letter 'Stranger Things' Pop-Up Bar by Mina Bloom on Scribd

My Nintendo Switch was getting barely any love from me or my waifu. It’s not from lack of content because there has been a steady stream of content lately. The Switch hurts my darn hands and wrists!

this is pretty much me, full of ouch

I thought about 3D printing something that would give the joycons some depth, something to grasp onto but I am a busy person without time to make it worthwhile. Lucky for me Skull & Co. (sweet name for a company) had the same issue and decided to not be lazy like myself. They created a silicon wrap that has areas to allow hands to have something to grip to.

The grips are colored in a range of Nintendo Switch-esque palettes. I ordered the neon yellow because I like to party. It comes with 2 types of grips that you can change out depending on what you feel is most comfortable. Also included is a case that has room for the Switch with the GripCase, battery charger, games, and cables.

The price is a little high, starting at $46 but does include free shipping. I was concerned when I saw that Skull & Co. are based in Australia because shipping can be quite high but since it is included there are less worries.

The GripCase is scheduled to ship in October 2017. I look forward to playing games as an adult and not worrying about cramping carpal tunnel! Let us know if you order one!

This is utterly amazing. The voice of Cartman says, “Don’t worry this doesn’t affect combat, just every other aspect of your whole life.” It is really the most South Park thing they could do.

I talked to my friend Lee @malic3tv about this and he said:

It should affect combat. It should make your hit harder and jump higher.
That’s why I love him.

Can't wait for this game

Twitter on August 7 tweeted that they are now live streaming Esports events. This is big news as the hype around Esports and the capital behind it continues to swirl around in a pool of aspirations and new job opportunities for game players.

From that clip I learned they got Lloyd Christmas to be in their promotional video.

Watching Esports on Twitter feels quite a bit different than Twitch. There is a way to talk to other viewers by tweeting with a hashtag automatically applied to the message. You can see, like, retweet, or reply to other tweets on the side timeline.

Full screen mode removes the twitter feed and shows the video at full size. It decent quality, but how does it compare to Twitch quality? Twitch allows a viewer to switch their resolution. I was able to stream the Dreamhack CSGO Masters on both platforms simultaneously and from the human Jared eye they look very very similar. Both had artifacting at full screen on my 4k Dell 27 inch monitor.

Twitter Esports Full Screen

Twitch Esports Full Screen

I experienced video ads while watching both Twitter and Twitch, so there is really no escaping them without ad blocking software on Twitter. Twitch gives you the option to Subscribe to the stream and remove the advertisements. The starting price is $4.99.

The experience is fairly similar on mobile. Both platforms have an app that allows the best viewing experience. The video quality of the streams seems better due to the smaller screen size. It is not as easy for the eye to scrutinize the artifacting from the compression.

All in all, it is exciting to see Esports get more outlets for viewership. The entire genre of gaming and sports will be more accessible to new audiences and hopefully continue to grow into mainstream water cooler talk.

Seriously why wouldn’t a staple of gaming and millenials not be hosting an event of some sort at the giant PAX West? I came across the event on Facebook and started chuckling to myself as I clicked on the image for the party.
Taco Bell The Arcade Pax West

Honestly it’s a great idea. So it works like this: It is free, you get a Steak Quesarito box for free, and you get to try out the Xbox One X Scorpion Tail burrito?

I made that last part up, but you do get to try the Xbox One X. If my body could handle Taco Bell and I didn’t have plans for Friday evening I may have called the number.

If anyone reading this ends up going at Pax West 2018 , please let us know on our twitter @epicpowergaming

Earlier this month, the Aegis of Champions was claimed by European team, Team Liquid.

‘The International’ is so much more than who wins the Grand Final. It’s a festival and celebration of all things Dota 2.

During the event Valve teased the new Dota 2 themed card game that they’ve been working on, Artifact. They also revealed the appearances of 2 new heroes, who have yet to be named.

Did someone say Production Value?

Over the course of the week the production value maintained a constant high quality. With community personalities providing insight and statistics to the introduction videos that played before the players entered their booths.

The insane production quality is what by far stole the show. This year’s theme was ‘Aquatic’ and the visual theme of being underwater could be felt everywhere. From the aquatic themed map that came equipped with reefs instead of trees and a whale call that could be heard sporadically throughout the battle. The lights above were layered in a way to evoke the feeling of waves crashing above, and the AR (Augmented Reality) assets on stage were those of reefs and coral branches reaching up towards the ceiling.

So what is it?

The International 7 is a pinnacle, not only in prize pool, which reached $24.7 Million, but in skill level as well. The teams that play in this tournament were either invited by Valve, the developers of the game, or they qualified in the open qualifiers held online.

For those that have never been to an esports event, this is like none other. This is the Super Bowl of Dota and it’s the only event that matters for the players who take part. The tournament lasts a week and takes over the Key Arena in Seattle and the area around it. For the 16 teams involved the event begins with the online group stage. The outcomes of the group stage determines what placement a team receives in the main stage, either upper or lower bracket. If a team is in lower bracket they’re on the knife’s edge, one series loss and they’re out.

What’d you think?

Overall I’d say the international was an amazing event to attend and I plan on attending again next year. Dota isn’t going away any time soon and with all of the updates and new content. I hope to see you all on the battlefield!

 

 

Night Trap Sells Out In Minutes. What can Limited Run Games do to ease frustration?

 

Limited Run Games is run by 2 people who create Limited Runs of previously digital exclusive games for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita. I wrote an article on them last year.

Since then they’ve garnered more and more attention and as such, obtained the rights of popular games that are popular even outside of the traditional collecting circle. This has caused some woes for collectors now that they have to compete with an ever growing following of casual buyers looking to snag a physical copy of their favorite game.

The last meltdown occurred when the Wonderboy collectors edition sold out within minutes of Go-Live and that had caught collectors by surprise. Up until that point, the games that Limited Run Games had sold would sell out, but not as quick as Wonderboy did. This resulted in some buyers being able to add the game to their cart, but learn that the game was sold out before completing the checkout process.

Limited Run Gaming has since explained in detail how their checkout system actually works: When you add an item to the cart, it does not hold the item. Amazon, Modcloth and Ticketmaster are some of the few retailers that actually hold the item in your cart until you complete check out. While this isn’t that big of a deal for regular purchases, it does cause some problems when a limited run of a popular game goes live on their site.

So you would think that this would resolve any future frustration. Wrong.

Of course Night Trap would be a repeat of Wonderboy except 10 fold. Night Trap is a notorious FMV game that triggered a debate about violent video games in the 1990s. The game was remastered for the PlayStation 4 and PC digitally with Limited Run Gaming producing physical copies. The day before release, Limited Run Games again reminded buyers of hurdles that they might face given the popularity of Night Trap. (This game has been hyped for months)

As predicted, 10am EST came, Night Trap went live and immediately sold out.

One of the hiccups was that the Limited Run Game crew noticed that people were able to add the Collector’s Edition to their cart prior to Go-Live so they created a brand new SKU to give everyone an equal chance. Those not on Twitter at the time were unaware of these change and were met with error 404.

When I added Night Trap collector’s edition to my cart, I was sent into a waiting room for about a minute then taken to my PayPal account. Luckily I had all my information updated and was able to successfully place an order.

Others weren’t so lucky. Jared Epicpower missed his Collector’s Edition but was able to snag the PC version. Which is STILL available at the time of this article (4:11pm EST)

What can Limited Run Games do to ease frustrations?

Well not a whole lot. I suppose they can make a little more, but given the Limited nature of their business model, they might not want to change it. Their shopping model might seem archaic but I feel it’s just that too many people are now interested in Limited Run Games and want to snatch up a copy for themselves. Scalpers will always be around, but you need to make sure your PayPal is already signed in and Limited Run Games information is up to date. Be prepared for these releases.  It’s really on you.