New Cinematic Trailer for Fan-Made Halo PC Game

 

The world of video game fan projects never ceases to amaze, as gamers everywhere continue to show-off their creativity and imagination by developing the kind of experiences that many of us wish would get an official release.

The latest in this long line of “I can’t believe someone is doing that” projects is called Installation 01, and it intends to give PC players everywhere a proper modern-day Halo multiplayer experience to call their own. You can check out this project’s progress in the developer diary video below:

Installation 01 is currently being developed by a group of 30 fans with various talents that intend for their game to be a largely unique experience in the style of previous Halo titles rather than a direct port of those games.

As part of their compliance with the content usage rules set forth by Microsoft, the Installation 01 team is developing nearly everything in the game (including assets that were previously included in Halo games) from scratch. That means that every character, every animation, every level, and every weapon has been hand-designed by the team. While much of the game is still made to resemble elements of the Halo franchise, the developers are also working on unique levels and weapons that will be exclusive to this release.

By going to such lengths to create everything themselves, the hope is that Microsoft will not shut down the game such as how Nintendo has shut down a few recent fan projects based on their properties. Given the sheer amount of work that appears to have gone into the project (it’s even set to feature its own level creation toolset), it certainly would be disappointing if this was ruled to be a license violation, especially since there have been no talks of porting the Halo franchise to PC since the release of Halo 2 for Windows in 2007.

The group behind this project have made some incredible progress since we last checked in. It’s clear that there’s still a ways to go before its completed, but the Installation 01 developers certainly prove their resolve in this Q&A video about the project:

If that’s not enough to convince you that the team behind this project is dedicated to bringing a complete Halo experience to PC users everywhere, then perhaps this impressive homemade cinematic trailer for Installation 01 may just get the job done with its look at how visceral classic Halobattles can get.

Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus Gameplay Trailer Confirms Release Date: Bethesda at E3 2017

Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus Gameplay Trailer Confirms Release Date: Bethesda at E3 2017

Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus is the next entry in the Wolfenstein franchise, Bethesda revealed the game with a bombastic trailer that showed off generous amounts of gameplay including dual weapon wielding and a Nazi-occupied America as previous leaks have suggested.

Speaking of leaks, the release date for Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus was also as previously made public. You can play it on October 27 this year on the PS4, PS4 Pro, Xbox One, Xbox One X, and Windows PC.

“An exhilarating adventure brought to life by the industry-leading id Tech 6, Wolfenstein II sends players to Nazi-controlled America on a mission to recruit the boldest resistance leaders left. Fight the Nazis in iconic locations such as small-town Roswell, New Mexico, the flooded streets of New Orleans, and a post-nuclear Manhattan. Equip an arsenal of badass guns, and unleash new abilities to blast your way through legions of advanced Nazi soldiers, cyborgs, and uber soldiers in this definitive first-person shooter,” reads the trailer’s description.
In the run up to Bethesda’s E3 2017 event, Amazon Germany had put up a listing for the game which was then removed. Spotted by members of popular gaming forum NeoGAF, it suggests that Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus has a release date of October 27 this year.

Cleverly disguised at Bethesda’s E3 2016 conference, Wolfenstein 2 : New Colossus takes place in Nazi-occupied America. Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus is developed by Machine Games – the studio behind the excellent Wolfenstein: The New Order and Wolfenstein: The Old Blood.

 

Google Play Music’s New Feature for Samsung Galaxy S8 Isn’t That Exclusive

 

HIGHLIGHTS
New Google Play Music feature now rolling out
Samsung Galaxy S8 users getting the New Release Radio station
Some users able to use the new feature on non-Samsung devices
For Samsung Galaxy S8 users, Google Play Music is the default music player and streaming service. Now, Galaxy S8 users are receiving a brand new feature dubbed New Release Radio, which is a personalised radio station with new music releases and updates on a daily basis.

The latest New Release Radio feature has steadily been popping up on Galaxy S8 devices with “Samsung Exclusive” tagline. The pop-up describes the new feature, “Listen to brand new music, personalised to your tastes and listening history – with new recommendations every day.” The feature was first spotted by a Reddit user, and was reported by Sammobile.Google Play Music's New Feature for Samsung Galaxy S8 Isn't That Exclusive

Engadget, however, points out that the feature may not be limited to Samsung Galaxy S8 users as some users have been able to add the “New Release Radio” station to their libraries. Some Reddit users also claim that they were able to add the new feature to their libraries while using Google Play Music Web interface as well as on non-Samsung devices. Unfortunately, there’s no word whether the feature will be kept as an exclusive for Samsung Galaxy S8 (and Galaxy S8+) devices or to be made available to all users in the long run.
We can expect an update on the status of availability of the “New Release Radio” station for non-Samsung devices.

Samsung and Google jointly announced their new partnership back in April, and it gave some benefits to Samsung users. They were allowed to upload 100,000 of their own songs to Google Play Music for free, which is almost double the limit for owners of non-Samsung devices.

 

New update hitting Samsung Galaxy S6/S6 edge

Samsung has started rolling out a new update to its Galaxy S6 and S6 edge smartphones. Arriving as build number G920FXXS5EQF9 and G925FXXS5EQF9, respectively, it’s a security update that brings along Android fixes for the month of June.

While a detailed changelog isn’t available, the update is also said to include some system-related enhancements as well as some bug fixes. Recently, the Samsung Galaxy S7 flagship duo also got the June security patch.

 

The 6 Best New Android Apps And Games

 

The phone you have now might be more powerful than a supercomputer from the early 90s, but that won’t do you any good unless you have cool software for it to run. You need good apps and games. The problem, though, is figuring out which of the many new titles in the Play Store are worth your time. Well, here they are. After many hours of toil and testing, these are the best new apps and games you can get on Android right now.

Firefox Focus (Free)

The trend lately has been for browsers to do as many things as possible, but that’s not what Firefox Focus is about. This browser runs on the same engine as other versions of Firefox, but it eschews things like extensions, tabs, and even bookmarks in the name of privacy.

Firefox Focus

Ryan Whitwam

Firefox Focus

When you open Firefox Focus, all you have is a search/address bar. That opens a single tab, and that’s all you get. You can use the floating action button at any time while browsing to close the page and clear data. There’s also a notification that does the same.

Focus defaults to blocking all ads and most trackers. You can shut this feature off in the menu if that breaks a page, but most of the time it just makes pages load faster and use less data. And of course, there’s the privacy aspect. Firefox Focus is free to download.

Neon Chrome ($9.99)

There have been plenty of top-down shooters on Android, but I think Neon Chrome is the best one yet. This comes from the developers of the fantastic Crimsonland, and it takes the twin-stick shooter genre to a new place with randomly generated levels, amazing replayability, and deep customization.

Neon Chrome

Ryan Whitwam

Neon Chrome

Your goal in Neon Chrome is to fight your way through 20-something levels to take out the Overseer. This is a tough game, so expect to die a lot at first. Each time you die, it’s game over. However, you can use the credits earned to improve your character for the next run. The game doesn’t get stale, either. All the levels are randomly generated, and various character classes and perks encourage you to try different approaches to victory.

Neon Chrome has a rad cyberpunk style with lots of neon colors (duh), lighting effects, and cool character design. It’s an expensive game at $10, but it’s so worth the price.

Adobe Scan (Free)

You don’t need a scanner anymore, you have a phone. Well, you need an app to make your camera act like a scanner, too. There are several good apps that do that, but the new Adobe Scan might be the best one yet. To scan a document, just set it down and point your camera at it. Adobe Scan automatically finds the edges and captures the image.

Adobe Scan

Ryan Whitwam

Adobe Scan

You can add as many pages as you want to a document, and the app is very good about flattening, sharpening, and transforming the images into something vaguely page-shaped. You can manually re-adjust the crop if you want, but Adobe Scan is extremely good at doing it all automatically.

The documents you create with Adobe Scan can be instantly exported as a PDF, or you can upload them to the Adobe Creative Cloud. The app also runs text recognition on the documents you scan, making them searchable via the Acrobat app. Not bad for a free app.

Spaceplan ($2.99)

Clicker games are usually good for a few minutes of mindless fun, but Spaceplan manages to make a clicker game fun by dressing it up in a sci-fi package and tossing in some excellent writing. So what is the strange animal? As the description says, it’s  “based partly on a total misunderstanding of Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time.”

Spaceplan

Ryan Whitwam

Spaceplan

Spaceplan follows the exploits of a lone human (you) and the AI of the spaceship you find yourself stranded on. You’re orbiting an odd planet, and the only way to get home is to generate enough power to scan the surface, investigate your surroundings, and maybe travel through time a little. Amusingly, all the power comes from various forms of potatoes and tapping on the “kinetigen.” That’s the clicker aspect.

Spaceplan has simple geometric graphics, but the game feels very well-crafted. The dialog is witty and you’ll actually care about the story, wacky though it may be. This is the perfect game to play for a few minutes while you’re waiting in line someplace. The $2.99 price tag is a real bargain.

Audvel (Free)

Interested in some auditory entertainment? Podcasts are a good, free way to pass the time. The apps for listening to them often cost a few bucks. The new podcast app Audvel is completely free, though.

Audvel

Ryan Whitwam

Audvel

You need to log into Audvel with either your Google account or another email, but it automatically syncs your subscriptions between devices. That’s one of the essential features of a podcast app for me. No one wants to lose all their subscriptions when they switch phones. You can add new subs from the app’s discovery section, or search for your favorites.

You can stream new episodes or download them for offline playback. When listening, Audvel includes built-in support for increasing playback speed. It also compensates for the increase speed by lowering the pitch. It’s not the most full-featured app, but it’s still very new and completely free. There are supposed to be ads in Audvel, but I haven’t see any yet. A future in-app purchase to remove such ads seems likely.

Card Thief (Free, $1.99 upgrade)

As the name implied, Card Thief is a card game. However, it’s also addictive and hugely intense. That’s not usually something you’d say about a card game. In Card Thief, you play the role of a thief on a heist, and the only way to make off with the loot is to knock the other cards off the board until you reach the end of the deck.

Card Thief

Ryan Whitwam

Card Thief

Card Thief comes with a lengthy tutorial, which a good thing as the rules are somewhat esoteric. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to move your thief around the board, taking out guards, disarming traps, and eventually snagging the treasure chest before beating a hasty retreat. You remain alive as long as you have stealth points, but each actions like extinguishing lights and taking out guards use some of them. The key to success is understanding how to move strategically to maximize your stealth points and avoid the light.

Card Thief has a distinctive hand drawn “gothic” art style, and the animations are more elaborate than you’d expect from a card game. For example, the guard cards emote and change based on their alert status. Card Thief is an extremely well-made game, and you can try it free. If you like it, the ads can be removed for $1.99.

 

New Pink Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus variant launched in Taiwan

 

We even saw some alleged renders of a Pink colored Galaxy S8 Plus appearing online. Now, Samsung has finally launched a Pink color variant of the device in its home country. To be more specific, the color is Rose Pink (it seems so). However, this new version will be available only in Taiwan or at least for now. If it will be launched in other regions is not known as Samsung is yet to make an announcement.

There is another catch, this Pink Galaxy S8 Plus will be sold only for a limited period of time. Presumably, Samsung wants to keep its customers interested until the launch of Galaxy Note 8. Image result for New Pink Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus variant launched in Taiwan Read more at: http://www.gizbot.com/mobile/news/new-pink-samsung-galaxy-s8-plus-variant-launched-in-taiwan-042059.htmlYou should also keep in mind that the color may not be called Rose Pink in every market. As you know, the company has renamed Coral Blue, Orchid Grey, Midnight Black, and Maple Gold to Ice Lake Blue, Smoked Purple Grey, Crystal Black, and Quicksand Gold in Taiwan.

Other than the new hue, internal specs remain the same. It comes with a 6.2-inch bezel-less Infinity display, Exynos 8895/Snapdragon 835 processor, 4GB of RAM and 64 GB of expandable default storage. Optics-wise, the smartphone features a 12MP rear-facing camera as well an 8MP camera on the front. The device draws is energy from a 3500mAh battery and runs on Android 7.0 Nougat. It is also worth pointing out that it is the first smartphone to offer Bluetooth 5.0.

 

For those who made it in previous years, a shot at a new life

 

“Kismat achhi thi, isiliye itna achha college mil gaya, nahin toh mein kaha padh paati.” Ashu, a third-year BA programme student at JMC College, is fully aware of the arduous journey she’s had to undertake. “But apart from luck, had I not played handball or other sports at school, I would have never known about JMC,” said Ashu, who got 80 per cent in her Class XII board examination, and got into the college through sports quota for softball. “At the Vikaspuri centre where I used to play, my seniors were already in college. They filled my admission form for me. I just went for the trials,” she said.

Ashu, who comes from Najafgarh, has three siblings — a sister who is disabled, a brother who dropped out of school after Class IX and now works in a factory, and another sister who is currently in school.

Ashu’s father died of a heart attack when she was 15. Her mother works as a guard at a girls’ hostel in Palam. “I performed very well during trials and the tournaments, so I study free of cost. My mother is a Class XII pass, so she helps me study. In the college, as lectures were delivered in English, I used to face problems, but my friends and teachers supported me,” she said.

While Ashu wants to pursue a career in sports, her mother wants her to do a BEd and become a teacher.du admission 2017, sports quota, du sports students, jmc college, st stephens college, du,ac,in, delhi uni, indian express

For the time being, she has another aim: “This much I know, I will be able to guide my sister well and make sure she gets to pursue what she is interested in.”

For Ruchi Singh, who graduated from St Stephen’s College this year, the path to sports was very different. Singh, who comes from a Rajput family in Amethi, Uttar Pradesh, never thought her father’s wish — that she learn shooting for self defence — would become a ticket to DU.

“In 2005, there was a shooting camp in my village. My father took me there after school. The coach there gave me five shots to hit. It was my first time holding a pistol, though I had seen many at home, locked in cupboards. I hit the five targets; I don’t know how. The coach told me I should practise more. Only after I came home did my dad tell me I had done well,” said Singh.

Nokia Feature Phone Lineup to Get a New Addition Soon, Certification Site Tips

 

HIGHLIGHTS

  • A new leak points to another Nokia feature phone
  • Images of the phone were spotted by TENAA
  • The feature phone goes by the model number TA-1017

The reincarnation of the Nokia 3310 was met with adulation and nostalgia across the globe. The feature phone launch reignited hopes for the dying category in the market, and now as per new reports, Nokia-licensee HMD Global is looking to launch a new feature phone in the coming months.

A Nokia-branded feature phone going by the model number TA-1017 was spotted on the Chinese regulatory site TENAA. By the design of it, it’s a rather ordinary looking feature phone, probably looking to be admired for its durability. At the back sits the speaker grille and camera lens, however there is no flash support seen. At the front is the small display with the physical keyboard taking up much of the space.Nokia Feature Phone Lineup to Get a New Addition Soon, Certification Site Tips

The listing claims that the feature phone does not support 3G connectivity, but there might be another more expensive variant that will offer support. It is expected to run the S30+UI and dual-SIM support is not yet sure. There’s no word on availability or price of the feature phone yet. To recall, HMD Global launched the Nokia 150 and Nokia 150 Dual SIM feature phones back in December, ahead of the launch of its first Nokia Android smartphone – the Nokia 6 – in January.

Nokia is expected to launch several other smartphones this year. So far, the company has launched the Nokia 6, Nokia 5, Nokia 3, and Nokia 3310 (2017) in many countries. At the start of this month, Nokia launched the Nokia 3, 5 and 6 in India, and made the cheapest variant available offline as well as online in the country. Consumers will have to wait till July to get their hands on Nokia 6 and Nokia 5. The Nokia 5 will be available offline, while the Nokia 6 will be exclusively available via Amazon India.

 

Android Circuit: New Galaxy Note 8 Leaks, Massive Pixel 2 Screens, Microsoft’s Android Advances

Taking a look back at seven days of news and headlines across the world of Android, this week’s Android Circuit includes the latest details on the Galaxy Note hardware and pricing, new details on the Google Pixel 2 screens, the Nokia 6’s potential worldwide release, the OnePlus 5 being compared to its predecessor, the EU’s anti trust cast and the implications for Android, Microsoft’s latest Android advances, and why ten years of iPhone is still beaten by Android.

Android Circuit is here to remind you of a few of the many things that have happened around Android in the last week (and you can find the weekly Apple news digest here).

Galaxy Note 8’s Massive Price Tag

Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8 looks set to be one of the most advanced smartphones on the planet when it is announced in August, But the technology is not going to come cheap and an unlocked version of the phablet is going to comfortably cost a four figure sum. Forbes’ Gordon Kelly reports:

Posting on VentureBeat, famed leaker Evan Blass (aka @evleaks) states that Samsung is currently informing partners that the model will be “its most expensive cellphone yet” and retail for €999 (over $1,100).

Blass claims says the pricing comes via “an individual briefed on the company’s plans” and his long (and highly accurate) track record means we should take this information seriously. The flipside to this huge price tag is Galaxy Note 8 owners look set to get a lot for their money.

 

More on the pricing here.

Note 8 Fingerprint Features On The Rear

Thanks to the various leaks of schematics and rendered images we have a very good idea on the design of the Note 8. That means the question over the fingerprint scanner has been quietly answered, because it can be seen on the rear of the design. Samsung’s shot at innovating with a screen-based fingerprint reader looks unlikely to happen this year:

As previously discussed here on Forbes, Samsung is having to back down from placing the fingerprint sensor under the screen of the upcoming phablet. If this had been achieved it would have given Samsung an impressive technological ‘first’. Unfortunately it has been reported that the part of the screen with the sensor was not able to be color-matched to the rest of the screen.

The Galaxy Note 8 will retain the expansive and dominant screen, but the requirements in the Android specifications for a fingerprint scanner mean that it has to go somewhere else. And Samsung’s answer appears to be ‘put it next to the camera on the rear of the device’.

My thoughts on the issue are here.

Pixel 2 Screens Revealed

As well as backing up the claims of an OLED screen, details from the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL supply lines confirm the physical screen of Google’s own 2017 handsets. I’ve taken a closer look at what this means for the smartphones:

The smaller Pixel 2 is expected to support a 4.97-inch screen, broadly similar to the 5-inch FHD panel used in 2016’s model. The larger Pixel 2 trumps the 5.5 inches of the Pixel XL with a 5.99-inch QHD screen. These screens are expected to be supplied by LG (reports Mario Tomás Serrafero for XDA Developers), while the handsets will again be manufactured for Google by HTC.

…Although three models were initially discussed, the Pixel 2 family looks to have settled on a ‘regular’ smartphone and a ‘phablet’ device to meet market expectations. It also allows the Pixel 2 line to draw a direct comparison to families such as the Android powered Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus, and presumably Apple’s update to the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus which should be announced in the weeks before the Pixel 2.

More details here on Forbes.

Nokia 6 Set For Worldwide Release

Launched into the Chinese market at the end of CES 2017, HMD Global’s first Nokia-branded smartphone appears set for a worldwide release next month. The mid-range handset could be ready to show up on Amazon, reports Paul Sawers:

The Nokia 6 will be made available exclusively through Amazon for $229 in “early July,” with only two color variants available at first — black and silver. It will also be made available in blue and copper later in the year.

There is nothing particularly standout about the device: It ships with Android Nougat and sports a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 chipset, dual-SIM, 3GB of RAM, and 32GB of storage — expandable up to 128GB via the MicroSD slot. It also has a 5.5″ IPS LCD screen (full HD at 1920 x 1080), a 16MP rear-facing camera, 8MP front-shooter, and a 3,000 mAh battery.

OnePlus 5 Versus The OnePlus 3T

The recent launch of the OnePlus 5 (reviewed here) brings the Shenzhen-based manufacturer’s flagship handset into line with the current ‘top’ specs. That said, six months ago it refreshed its line-up with the launch of the OnePlus 3T. How much as changed since then? Gordon Kelly makes the comparisons, including the new dual camera at the rear:

With the relatively subtle changes to the OnePlus 5 display and design, it is up to the camera to provide the biggest upgrade from the OnePlus 3T and OnePlus 3:

* OnePlus 5 – Rear: 16 MP, f/1.7 aperture, 1.12 µm, EIS (gyro) and 20 MP, f/2.6, 1.0 µm 2x optical zoom, no OIS and dual-LED flash.
* OnePlus 3T – Rear: 16 MP, f/2.0, OIS, LED flash. Front: 16 MP, f/2.0, 1.0 µm pixel size, 1080p

Yes that’s a lot specifications. The upshot however is the OnePlus 5 can deliver 2x optical zoom (via a slight cheat) and combine both its rear camera to deliver a Portrait Mode (think heavy background bokeh to mimic the effect of a DSLR) similar to the iPhone 7 Plus.

Read more on the two devices here.

OnePlus 5 (image: Ewan Spence)

Ewan Spence

OnePlus 5 (image: Ewan Spence)

The Impact On Android Of The EU Antitrust Case

While this week’s ruling from the European Union’s Antitrust Regulators does not have a direct impact on Android, the EU is in the process of looking at AdSense and Android.  The ruling points towards the EU’s attitudes to the Mountain View dominance.

The EU ruling is a warning shot for two on-going EU probes into Google’s Android mobile operating system and AdSense ad system, said Richard Windsor, an independent financial analyst who tracks competition among the biggest U.S. and Asian Internet and mobile players, including Google.

“If the European Union turns around and says Google can no longer bundle its Google Play app store as a default feature on many Android smartphones, this opens up the market to other handset makers to put their own software and services front and center on their phones,” he said.

Fortune has more details.

Microsoft Improves OneNote For Android

Microsoft continues to build up and improve its offerings for Android. This week saw a major update to its note-taking and digital scrapbooking application OneNote. As Sean Chan reports, the Android app has caught up with the other clients, as well as bringing in a web snipping tool:

Today, the company has started rolling out the enhanced design for the OneNote app to Android smartphones as well. The new and improved OneNote design offers a simplified navigation system and improves accessibility for users with assistive technology across all platforms, and that includes Android phones, too.

In addition to the improved design, Microsoft is also bringing the OneNote Web Clipper to Android. The app now integrates into the share system for browsers, which means you can now save entire web pages to OneNote just like you can on the desktop thanks to the OneNote Web Clipper.

More at MS Power User.

Microsoft advertises OneNote's cloud capability (image: Microsoft.com)

Microsoft PR

Microsoft advertises OneNote’s cloud capability (image: Microsoft.com)

And Finally…

In the week where every publication is remembering that it has been ten years since the first iPhone went on sale, Seth Fiegerman highlights that in terms of dominance, Android is far and ahead the more successful platform.

Apple created the modern smartphone as we know it, but Android went on to dominate the market through numerous partnerships with carriers and lower prices. In the first quarter of this year, a staggering 86% of smartphones sold worldwide ran on Android, according to data from Gartner.

What happened next? Read on at CNN.

Android Circuit rounds up the news from the Android world every weekend here on Forbes. Don’t forget to follow me so you don’t miss any coverage in the future, and of course read the sister column in Apple Loop! Last week’s Android Circuit can be found here, and if you have any news and links you’d like to see featured in Android Circuit, get in touch!

Follow me on Facebook. Find more of my work at ewanspence.co.uk, on Twitter, and Linked In. You should subscribe to my weekly newsletter of ‘Trivial Posts’.

 

Nokia 3310 gets new retail box with see-through cover

Nokia 3310 (2017) is seemingly enjoying a warm reception to the market and HMD is keen to keep the hype train going. To let people feast their eyes on the colorful body of the new phone, the 3310 got a see-through cover of its retail box.

Until now, the Nokia 3310 (2017) came in a regular box, lined right next to the headphones and charging cable.

The Nokia 3310 (2017) is sold in Europe for €59, while in India it costs INR3,310.