Entertainment

Travis Scott’s Astronomical Concert in Fortnite: An unprecedented visual experience

The best in-game concert you will ever witness while at home

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With the world in an uncertain point in time, we’re all forced indoors. That meant going out only for necessities, most people advised to work from home, and no mass public gatherings. We said goodbye to live events, basketball games, and music concerts that give us the break we need from the stress of the world.

At least, that’s how things are turning out. Fortunately, it hasn’t stopped the gaming world from giving the people just a little taste of experiencing these things from the comfort of your own home. In particular, Epic Games’ most popular (for the good and the bad) battle royale title, Fortnite introduced these special events to their players. And with their latest collaboration with Travis Scott himself, here’s what you got:

 

The event had five different show times, and I was lucky and early enough to get into one without crashing mid-game. It’s one of those ordinary limited-time modes the game has, where there are 50 people basically fighting to the death. Except, well the event takes place on an isolated stage area in the middle of vast waters. With about 2 minutes before the event, people in-game couldn’t deal damage to others and you had no access to your weapons at all. At about 12:05 PM PST, it was show time.

Fortnite went full SICKO MODE with the visuals

The event starts off with a meteor made up of speaker sets, carnivals, and a cluster of stars making its way towards the earth. On stage, Travis Scott’s logo appears, which is soon followed by an illustration of that same meteor. By the time that silhouette fades out, SICKO MODE starts playing and the sky turns dark real fast. As the beat of the intro was coming down, a pink comet shoots out of the sky and wouldn’t you know it: Travis Scott himself, in Fortnite!

From start to finish, the entire event just looked like one visual masterpiece. You got Travis Scott walking around the entire island, collecting stars and merging them together. You even have him in his Cactus Jack and Astro Jack persona in the event, with apocalyptic backdrops and underwater scenes.

Getting goosebumps

Swimming underwater with Astro Jack

My initial reaction to everything was a mix of awe, appreciation, and saying “oh my god” and “woah” a lot more than normal. From the animations to the vibrant colors, this in-game event kept my eyes glued to the screen in pure excitement. It honestly felt like I was actually in a real-life concert, even if it was just 10 minutes long.

I even found myself vibing (and straight up singing and dancing) to the five songs they picked for the entire event. SICKO MODE, STARGAZING, HIGHEST IN THE ROOM, goosebumps, and topping it all off with THE SCOTTS; I couldn’t get enough of it.

Nothing else they did could compare

This wasn’t even the first time Fortnite even did special events like these. Back in the game’s first season, they had this entire collaboration with Marshmello that had people flying and bouncing everywhere. Just a few months ago, they even hosted an in-game Star Wars event for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. That event even had an entire fight scene complete with TIE fighters and Stormtroopers, which led to players having lightsabers afterwards.

Travis Scott himself in the game

But the Astronomical live event was basically what the name suggests. It brings fantastic visuals with heart-pumping songs that almost feels like a real concert built from the ground up. And honestly, here’s to hoping that we could get more of these soon, or open up possibilities to incorporate virtual reality.

If you missed witnessing this other-worldly event in-game, you can watch a full version of it below:

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Why you should get iQiyi

We got it so you don’t have to

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iQiyi

Pan-Asian content, duh

There’s a ton of streaming services out there. But, none embrace that Asian representation like iQiyi. They’ve got films, variety shows, and series from China, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia, and more. If you’re having a tough time finding shows and films you grew up seeing or just want somewhere you feel represented, check iQiyi out. It’ll surprise you.

Classic Hong Kong movies

If you’re a cinephile or know someone who is, this might just be the streaming service for you. Most classic Hong Kong films are a tough find. From Infernal Affairs to A Chinese Ghost Story, you’re sure to find the good, the bad, and obscure classics. iQiyi, no joke, lays out a ton of these Hong Kong classics on their platform and you’d be remiss to skip out on watching them.

Find the good-good

There’s a number of really good Asian series and films on iQiyi. Shows like Youth with You, Chuang, The Penthouse: War in Life 3, and Tokyo Revengers are just a few on the platform on most people’s must-watch and favorites. iQiyi is never short of surprises.

The absolute absurd finds

There’s no lack of decent, obscure, and downright bizarre tv series, films, and variety shows on here. Just note that most shows don’t age well and are a great watch in irony. Just keep an eye out on the obscure ones, they sometimes don’t have subtitles. And remember, these silly finds don’t take away from the unapologetically good shows on the platform.

Free shows you’d pay to watch elsewhere

iQiyi is a free streaming app with paid VIP access to a ton of exclusives. But, not everything is behind that paywall making this a huge game-changer. There’s a long list of free-to-access shows, K-dramas, and anime you’d normally find behind a paywall so, do yourself a favor. Get it.

It’s got interactive features

The platform showed off its new features with Game of Shark, a reality show where celebrities form teams and participate in murder mystery role-playing games. If you pick Rhythm Mode, your phone vibrates in time to events in the show. On top of that, Shark Mode allows users to directly take on the identity of characters. With it, you get to join your favorite celebrities in collecting hidden clues and identifying the murderer.

Having launched the world’s first Interactive Video Guideline (IVG) and IVP, iQiyi have pioneered a one-stop platform of assisted production tools that helps content creators produce and publish interactive videos efficiently and conveniently!

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I’m missing the Olympics because I don’t have cable

And it sucks

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It’s 2021. The Tokyo 2020 Olympics, which was delayed due to the Coronavirus pandemic, is in full swing as of writing. However, as someone whose primary source of media entertainment all comes from streaming, there’s no easy and convenient way for me to watch the games. Major bummer.

I like to enjoy my media a certain way; I prefer to stream them on my TV. Which is why majority of the content I consume come from YouTube, Netflix, and the occasional Amazon Prime, HBO Go (Yep, not even HBO Max), and Apple TV.

I find it incredibly baffling that the stakeholders involved in bringing the games to the people failed to come to an agreement to make it easily accessible on the aforementioned platforms. It’s 2021. Why on earth am I not able to watch the greatest sporting event on the planet the way I want to?

Believe me, I hear the privilege in my words. Regardless, I still feel marginalized.

So how can you watch the Olympics right now?

I asked a friend who’s been covering the games. He watches through cable and had to pay a PhP 150 fee (around US$ 3/ SG$ 4) to avail of the Tokyo 2020 Premium from a particular cable provider.

Thing is, the whole Olympic coverage in the Philippines is locked to the MVP group of companies. You wanna follow the games, you’re gonna have to do it on one of their platforms.

Here’s an excerpt from their press release on the Tokyo 2020 Olympic coverage:

“Sports fans will have comprehensive access to the Olympic Games — from the Opening Ceremonies all the way to when the games conclude — on free to air via TV5 and One Sports. One Sports+ on Cignal TV will also dedicate a significant amount of their daily hours to broadcast the events, with Cignal also opening up two exclusive channels dedicated to broadcast the games 24/7. Cignal Play, in addition to live channels TV5, One Sports & One Sports+, will be offering exclusive channels broadcasting live updates to its subscribers, along with exclusive content not available on the TV broadcast. Cignal TV’s One News leads the group’s round-the-clock news coverage, featuring results, updates, and highlights.”

Comprehensive? Maybe. For platforms within the MVP group of companies. If you’re not subscribed to any of these, well, that’s just too bad. It’s good for business and I completely understand how the whole thing works. Doesn’t mean I have to like it.

The coverage also missed to televise or showcase Hidilyn Diaz’s historic gold medal win in the Weightlifting competition. If you’ve been following sports news, the Philippines was expected to get a medal in this event. Sadly, the moment was only known following updates from reporters on the ground.

How I wish it was handled

I’m sure there’s a lot more that goes into it in terms of TV and broadcasting rights, but we’re literally at an age where plenty of folks have decided to cut the cord and rely on streaming for content.

On YouTube, you can buy and/or rent movies and shows. The platform and structure exists for pay-to-watch content. They could have even made tiers or packages like charge a certain amount to gain access to all the games, a different and lower amount if you just want to follow a certain sport and/or a certain event.

Maybe the potential earnings to do so didn’t justify the costs to implement it. Whatever the case, it’s still incredibly frustrating.

Sure, I can go through the hoopla of setting up a VPN and look for streaming sites. But that’s more even more cumbersome. I don’t mind paying a convenience fee if it means that after a long day of work I can kick back, relax, and watch some damn sports.

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Entertainment

Netflix is reportedly producing a live-action Pokémon series

With Lucifer showrunner Joe Henderson

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Pokémon remains one of the most popular franchises today. From the ever-popular video game series to the still-ongoing anime series, the creature collector franchise still going strong. Even then, the franchise is reportedly working on another addition to its repertoire: a live-action Netflix series.

According to Variety, Netflix is in the early stages of an upcoming Pokémon series on the platform. Much like the widely successful film Detective Pikachu starring Ryan Reynolds, the series will star actual humans in a live-action format. Beyond that, the report does not go into detail into how the creatures will look like for the series.

Likewise, the report does not indicate when the series will launch.

Lucifer’s Joe Henderson is reportedly helming the series. He is also known for adapting Stephen King’s 11.22.63 for Hulu.

Over the past few years, Pokémon has tapped various segments besides gaming and anime fans. The company has tapped lifestyle with branded accessories and lifestyle-oriented apps. Adding a live-action series will tap into the thriving Netflix market.

For Netflix’s part, the popular streaming platform has considerably increased the variety of genres it is producing. Besides the live-action Pokémon series, Netflix is also releasing an anime version of its popular original, The Witcher.

SEE ALSO: Pokémon Legends: Arceus is the first open-world Pokémon game

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