Mobile Platform RSS Feed | Mobile RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network Pokemon GO's PvP Is Live, But It's Not Perfect Thu, 13 Dec 2018 14:59:58 -0500 QuintLyn

Niantic has officially begun the process of rolling out Pokemon GO's PvP, known as Trainer Battles. As part of their plan, the company began rolling the system out to level 40 players first, giving them time to assure the new mode works well.

As it turns out, it seems this was probably a good move. As Eurogamer reports, the current iteration of Trainer Battles has some problems -- particularly for player who are trying to challenge other players via their friend lists or using QR codes.

Players are discovering a variety of issues such as not having attack buttons in combat, or combat simply not taking place at all. In some cases players throw out their Pokeballs only to stand in place for the rest of the battle, waiting for it to time out. Other issues include trainers starting battle out of sync, attacks not registering, and battle freezes.

The good news here is that -- as mentioned above -- Niantic is more-or-less running a testing phase on the content with the roll-out system, so hopefully by the time Trainer Battles roll out for everyone these issues will be fixed.

As for what's contained in the PvP battles, the update adds a second Charge Attack slot all Pokemon in the game. It must be purchased for Stardust after which players can use it in Trainer Battle, gyms and Raids. The addition of this new attack slot  also means a change in the game's hud, with the buttons being replaced with meters.

Players can battle AI characters, training against three team leaders and earning sweet rewards. They'll also want to do this in order to earn the Ace Trainer badge.

Eventually, these features will be available to everyone. However, Niantic hasn't stated when lower level players can expect it. In the meantime, if you'd like to keep up with the changes Niantic will be making to the new system, you can follow the Pokemon GO action here on GameSkinny.

Fortnite: How to Complete All the Season 7, Week 2 Challenges Thu, 13 Dec 2018 14:47:07 -0500 William R. Parks

Fortnite's seventh season has been live for a week, and players have been familiarizing themselves with its new wintery biome, the game's first ariel vehicle, and the newly introduced Infinity Blade. Additionally, weekly challenges are keeping fans occupied, as they work to acquire the newest cosmetics, and the Week 2 challenges are now available.

For players that do not own a Fortnite Battle Pass, there are three free challenges:

  1. Search a Chest in different Named Locations [7]
  2. Damage opponents with different types of weapons [5]
  3. Eliminate opponents in Snobby Shores or Fatal Fields (HARD) [3]

All of these challenges are straightforward, and they should be easily completed by slightly modifying play patterns in order to focus on these objectives.

For those that do own a Battle Pass, there are four additional challenges, including one multi-part challenge, and some will require a little more work than the free challenges:

  1. Stage 1: Visit Snobby Shores and Pleasant Park in a single match
    Stage 2: Visit Lonely Lodge and Dusty Divot in a single match
    Stage 3: Visit Frosty Flights and Tomato Temple in a single match
  2. Play the Sheet Music on pianos near Pleasant Park and Lonely Lodge [2]
  3. Compete in a Dance Off at an abandoned mansion [1]
  4. Eliminate an opponent from at least 50m away [1]

As with the free challenges, the first Battle Pass challenge should be easily completed by simply modifying gameplay to make sure that the criteria is met over a few matches. For those that would like to expedite the process, starting a match by landing in the first location and then going directly to the second location is the fastest option.

In the second challenge, players will need to locate two pianos and play the notes indicated on the accompanying sheet music. This can be done by jumping on the corresponding piano keys.

The Lonely Lodge piano is located along the east edge of the island in J5, and the Pleasant Park piano is located on the hill in B3:

The third challenges asks players to dance in an abandoned mansion, which is located in J5 (very near to the Lonely Lodge piano):

After arriving at the mansion, players should make their way to the building's basement, where they will find a dance floor and scoreboard. Those that dance in this location will complete the challenge.

Again, the fourth challenge is straightforward so long as players hone their sniping skills and are intent on executing it.

With a few exception, the Season 7, Week 2 challenges will be easy for most players to complete. As a result, fans should have plenty of time to work on their buildings in Fortnite's new creative mode and also pickup a melee kill or two.

How to Get the Infinity Blade in Fortnite Thu, 13 Dec 2018 10:32:21 -0500 Oscar Gonzalez

Fortnite: Battle Royale Season 7 is underway, and to celebrate the new season, Epic Games added a new weapon to the game this past Tuesday. This weapon, however, is actually from Infinity Blade, another franchise owned and developed by Epic, and it is by far the most powerful object in the game.

The Infinity Blade is now available for any player who is quick and brave enough to pull it from where it rests. Those who survive the mad rush for the sword will have in their hands a power that can't be matched by any other weapons in Fortnite.


The Blade Is Mightier Than the Gun

Since the Infinity Blade is a Mythic melee weapon, it is incredibly overpowered. When a player pulls the weapon from the ground in Polar Peak, they will immediately receive 200 shields and 200 health.

Each swipe of the blade will deal 75 damage to other players, and there's a jumping dash attack that will cause 25 damage. The blade can also destroy buildings and structures like a hot knife cutting through melted butter. 

It doesn't end there, though. Each elimination made with the Infinity Blade will increase the wielder's health or shields by 50. There's also regeneration that comes with the blade that will increase health or shield by one point every three seconds

The Sword in the Stone

To get the Infinity Blade, players will have to head to the new snowy areas on the island that were added in Season 7. More specifically, Polar Peak.

Where the letters for Polar Peak are on the map, there is a mountaintop with a castle half-buried under snow. Players will see a square with several pillars, and in the middle sticking out of the ground is the Infinity Blade.

The exact location is marked on the map below. 

Survive the Bum Rush 

Finding the Infinity Blade is easy, but actually getting it is the hard part.

The first obstacle is the rush of players going for the sword. Numerous players will head to Polar Peak at the start of the game, especially if the Battle Bus passes over it.

The next problem is the lack of weapons and materials in the area. There are a few buildings around the sword, making the decision on whether to battle with pickaxes or run to a building in hopes of finding a weapon before another player gets the Infinity Blade somewhat tough.

Several trees are also in the immediate area, but like the conundrum of finding weapons, getting wood or brick will take time and you may be too late to the blade. 

What could be the biggest problem is the five seconds it takes to claim the Infinity Blade. You can stop while trying to pull the sword from the ground, but that will reset the five-second timer.

But we've got some tips that might make things easier.  

Gimme That Sword!

Since it's currently OP, the Infinity Blade isn't easy to get. While the strategies below aren't foolproof by any means, they should give you a fighter's chance in pulling the sword from the stone. 

Getting the Blade Tip 1

If the Battle Bus travels over Polar Peak, forget about going for the blade. Everyone will take a stab at it since it's right there. 

However, if the route for the Battle Bus is more down the center of the island, jump out and glide your way to the mountaintop.

Going straight for the sword in this configuration is a good tactic because you will most likely only deal with other players with pickaxes. You'll be able to take a few hits from a pickaxe as you try to pull it out.

The key thing is to make a run for it when other players are preoccupied, which is likely to happen since most people will be afraid to go after the blade when there are others around.

If there's one player in the vicinity of the Infinity Blade, then take a shot at claiming it. You will be able to survive multiple pickaxe attacks as long as it's only from one player. 

Getting the Blade Tip 2

Those that want to go the weapon route first should head for the castle buried under snow. There are two chests in the building: one on the ground floor and another on the fourth floor.

Use the weapons in either chest to take other players in the building. If you obtain a sniper, head to the rooftop and take shots at the player who acquired the sword. If not, go to the ground entrance and leave through the door in the direction of the square where the blade is.

Make sure to get some materials in the building as you make your way up and down the floors. If someone has the Infinity Blade, keep your distance and attack from afar. Do not get close or you'll be dead in just two hits.

You can try building a structure for protection, but a player with the sword will quickly demolish it. Stay far away and try to maneuver back to the castle in the snow or any high ground. Build some ramps to get the higher ground and try to do a quick edit to remove parts of the ramp so the sword wielder won't follow you.

Ideally, you being above them will be enough to get some free hits as its unlikely the player with the Infinity Blade has enough materials to build a ramp to chase you.

Getting the Blade Tip 3

If you do get the sword, use the jumping dash attack to close the distance on any player. It'll be easy to take them down up close, but as mentioned, from a long distance, you are a sitting duck, especially if someone has a sniper rifle.

After you've killed all nearby players, start gaining those materials so you can defend yourself from snipers and assault rifles as you try and get close. Since the Infinity Blade can heal you, don't be ashamed to disengage in order to heal up.


Like the Infinity Gauntlet Limited Time Mode from earlier in the year, the Infinity Blade will likely last for a short period of time before Epic removes it from Fortnite. At the very least, it will get nerfed since it's currently OP.

This means you'll need to jump on right away in order to get a taste of its power.

Looking for more Fortnite tips? Head over to our Fortnite guides page for more.

What the FTC's Loot Box Investigation Could Mean in the U.S. Wed, 12 Dec 2018 20:23:12 -0500 Gabriella Graham

On Tuesday, November 27, Sen. Maggie Hassan called for the serious scrutiny of video game loot boxes from the Federal Trade Commission. Hassan said she requested the inquiry as an investigation into loot box marketing and its potential effects on children. 

Hassan also stated that the inquiry would work to educate parents on the potential dangers loot boxes pose as it relates to gambling and virtual chance. 

In response, FTC Chairman Joe Simons and fellow members of the FTC pledged, without hesitation, to investigate the matter of loot boxes.

The pledge, alongside recent developments in countries such as Belgium, could indicate upcoming regulations in the U.S., depending on the FTC's findings.

Gateway Transactions

Loot boxes are virtual items awarded at random in an increasing number of video games. There are two ways to acquire loot boxes in-game: using in-game currency or real-world money. 

Although many games do allow players to purchase some or all loot boxes with in-game money, that in-game money is often very hard to acquire, making the use of real-world money more enticing.  

Loot box "prizes" range from various in-game boosts to weapons to new characters, skins, and/or outfits. More often than not, loot boxes do not grant access to items that help players beat other players.

Although there are pay-to-win structures in place for some games, specifically in the mobile space, players typically buck against pay-to-win structures in most console and PC games, such as those originally found in Star Wars: Battlefront 2.  

When Hassan introduced concerns about loot boxes to the FTC, those concerns were not unique to the United States but rather common in the gaming industry. She reported:

Loot boxes are now endemic in the video game industry and are present in everything from casual smartphone games to the newest, high-budget video game releases. Loot boxes will represent a $50 billion industry by the year 2022, according to the latest research estimates.

So why does this matter to the FTC? Primarily, the children.

The rising correlation between loot boxes and gambling may come as no surprise to seasoned players or anyone paying attention to the gaming industry as a whole.

Hassan reminds us that Belgium, the Netherlands, and Japan have all already made moves to regulate the use of loot boxes. These efforts have been attempts to curtail gambling in younger generations.

To correlate this further, Hassan also cited that earlier in November, the United Kingdom's gambling commission reported that "30% of children have used loot boxes in video games."

To further drive this point home, Sen. Ed Markey cited the rise of manipulative marketing techniques in correlation to loot boxes. Although the game and character were not named, Markey pointed to a virtual character that continually cries if an in-game purchase isn't made, effectively manipulating some players (such as children who are more susceptible to such tactics) to make purchases they otherwise might not have. 

Talk about laying it on thick.

A Point of Contention

Hassan made claims that loot boxes constitute an "integral part" of video games.

Regardless of your personal opinion on chance-based revenue, this precise wording may become part of the debate and could influence FTC investigative findings.

It's true that titles like Star Wars: Battlefront 2 have been criticized for play-to-win structures. But not every game that features loot boxes punishes players' who don't fork over extra cash.

Consider Nintendo's response to digital revenue concerns. Back in June, Reggie Fils-Aimé, President and Chief Operating Officer of Nintendo of America, addressed the nasty reputation of loot boxes in an interview with Bloomberg.

He compared loot boxes to the same sort of chance kids have taken for decades with packs of baseball cards. This example is admittedly outdated, but his point still stands with cards for tabletop games like Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh!, and Magic: The Gathering.

Fils-Aimé further differentiates loot boxes as a necessity versus an engaging option:

What we believe at Nintendo is that a gameplay mechanic that offers the consumer something to buy that they’re not sure what’s inside can be interesting as long as that’s not the only way you can get those items. And that’s where some developers have made some mistakes. For us, its one of many mechanics we can use to drive on-going engagement in the game.

Fils-Aimé isn't alone in his interpretation. The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) released a statement to Variety regarding Senator Hassan's assertions:

Loot boxes are one way that players can enhance the experience that video games offer. Contrary to assertions, loot boxes are not gambling. They have no real-world value, players always receive something that enhances their experience, and they are entirely optional to purchase. They can enhance the experience for those who choose to use them, but have no impact on those who do not.

Why the Definition Matters

Let's back-track for a moment and look at this from a slightly different perspective.

Sen. Hassan cited Belgium as an example of countries that have raised flags on loot box inclusions in games. Interestingly enough, the Belgian Gaming Commission (BGC) has emphasized how loot boxes alter gameplay experiences in their own studies, considering massive titles like FIFA 18 and Overwatch.

The stance it's taken could be bad news for the ESA if America follows suit; according to the BGC, "enhancing" the experience through loot boxes still equates to gambling, where the BGC defines gambling as "a game in which a cost from the player can lead to loss or win for at least one person, and where chance plays a role in the progression of the game, the winner, or worth of the winnings."

The concern then shifts to the possibility of how gained advantages manipulate players into making loot box purchases. Since children aren't known for their impressive impulse control, that temptation becomes more pronounced.

Some suggestions from the BGC for loot box regulation mirror those implemented by other countries, as well as those suggested by a range of psychologists.

They include:

  • player-spending limits
  • age verification methods to avoid targeting children
  • easy access to the odds of winning and the value of the rewards
  • clear indication on any and all titles that contain gambling

Depending on the FTC's findings, the United States could see similar adoptions of these recommendations. 

How do you feel about loot boxes? Are you hoping the FTC pushes regulation in the United States?

Share your thoughts and/or loot-driven horror stories in the comments.

Pokemon GO Adds Three New Boxes Just For The Holidays Wed, 12 Dec 2018 13:27:40 -0500 QuintLyn

Pokemon GO is kicking off its 2018 holiday event later this month, and players will see the return of the Delibird, as well as the introduction of three new holiday boxes.

While the event itself hasn't yet started, the boxes are already available for purchase in the game's shop.

The boxes provide players with a selection of useful consumable items at varying prices, starting at 480 PokeCons for the Winter Box. The most expensive box will cost players 1480 PokeCoins.

Each box contains the following items:

  • Winter Box: 480 PokeCoins
    • 1 incense
    • 2 Egg Incubators
    • 3 Premium Raid Passes
    • 2 Star Pieces
  • Great Box: 780 PokeCoins
    • 2 Incense
    • 4 Super Incubators
    • 5 Premium Raid Passes
    • 2 Lure Modules
  • Ultra Box: 1480 PokeCoins
    • 12 Super Incubators
    • 10 Lucky Eggs
    • 14 Premium Raid Passes
    • 10 Star Pieces

If you're curious as to the actual value of these boxes, dedicated Pokemon GO players have compiled a handy spreadsheet that estimates the percentage of box cost for each item if they were bought separately.

Based on the numbers provided there, these boxes are worth the purchase.

Rumor: Fortnite to Be Banned in China Wed, 12 Dec 2018 13:25:41 -0500 William R. Parks

Last week, it was announced that a Chinese "ethics assessment committee" had reviewed the contents of 20 online games, requiring that 11 of these titles be amended before release in China and banning nine of them outright.

Now, a recent report suggests that the battle royale sensation Fortnite is one of these banned titles.

According to China's state-run press agency Xinhua, the assessment committee is "comprised of online gaming experts and researchers from the government departments, industry institutions and media outlets," and its goal is to be certain that online games, like Fortnite, "meet a certain code of ethics" prior to their release in China.

While Xinhua does confirm that 20 games have been reviewed by the committee, the suggestion that Fortnite is amongst the banned titles comes via a post on NGA, a Chinese gaming forum, which has since been translated on Reddit.

The reason for the ban is cited as "blood and gore, vulgar content," and the post indicates that other battle royale titles, including PlayerUnknown's BattlegroundH1Z1, and Ring of Elysium, are being denied for similar infractions.

In March, China's regulators put a full stop on issuing commercial licenses for online games, effectively preventing the public release of new titles and creating a significant shake-up in the massive market. While the results of this first round of reviews suggest that the newly established committee has strict guidelines for approval, it is, at least, indication that this total freezing of new licenses is coming to an end.

This increased focus on online gaming follows what Xinhua describes as "social concerns" about video game addiction and the negative impact they can have on their players. For instance, in August, China's Ministry of Education suggested a correlation between video game playing and damaged eyesight, and they called for a decrease in the number of online games released in the country as a result. 

At this point, there has not been an official statement confirming the ban of Fortnite in China, however, it is clear that the assessment committee has recommended that a number of titles not be granted official release. While it is difficult to be certain the exact impact this new approval structure will have, China is the world's largest video game market, and these types of bans will, no doubt, be felt the world over.

The post outlining the rumored banned titles can be found on Reddit.

Fortnite 7.01 Patch Notes Rundown Tue, 11 Dec 2018 12:25:17 -0500 Jonathan Moore

We're a week into Season 7 of Fortnite, which means it's time for a new update. This week's 7.01 patch brings a lot to the popular battle royale, including the much-anticipated Creative Mode, a surprise in the new Infinity Blade weapon, and, as we've come to expect, loads of bug fixes. 

The patch went live this morning at 5 a.m. EDT; here's what you can expect when you log in, per the official Fortnite website and release notes. 

Creative Mode

Although it might sound similar, Fortnite's Creative Mode is a slightly different experience than its Playground Mode. 

Whereas Playground Mode allows players to explore the Fortnite map and practice their skills without fear of dying, Creative Mode is a more traditional sandbox mode that allows players to build their own islands using individual assets or prefabricated buildings. These creations can (eventually) be shared with friends or the community at large on Reddit, YouTube, and Twitch

The mode has been out for several days now, but it has only been available to Battle Pass owners. The 7.01 patch makes it available to all Fortnite players. 


Originally, Creative Mode had only four islands on which players could build structures. Patch 7.01 increases that number to five. 

Players will be able to "load creations that have been shared with the Island Code system", but as of this writing, Epic has said that the Island Code system will initially be available to only a select number of Fortnite players.

The company said the feature will be expanded over time, but it did not specify how quickly the feature would roll out to all Fortnite users. 


Epic has added six new prefabs to Creative Mode, all of which are modeled after Lucky Landing. Indestructible parts have also been added to prefabs. 

The obstacle course has been split into floors, walls, roof and stairs, and parts.


The new item spawner allows players to spawn one item per match after dropping it on the device, while the player checkpoint plate creates a respawn checkpoint that lets players "choose" where they respawn after they bite the dust. 

Other changes to devices include letting players use the player checkpoint plate to spawn at Island start instead of game start, and the player spawn device now allows for team spawning. 


Creative Mode now allows for infinite health, players can create a flag that keeps pre-built structures from being damaged during games, and building can now be blocked after games have started. 


Prior to 7.01, players could not switch to flying while their glider was deployed. That's now a thing of the past. Just double tap the jump button: "Space" on PC, "A" on Xbox One, and "X" on PS4. 

Players can also now fly upward by holding jump. 

Infinity Blade

Although Epic has pulled all three Infinity Blade games from the App Store, the developer has added a little Infinity Blade goodness to Fortnite. According to the official patch notes, the new melee weapon doles out some hefty damage and can be found in Polar Peak. 

Primary fire performs a sword slash that deals 75 damage to players, while alternate fire will let you jump "great distances", dealing 25 knockback damage upon landing. 

In addition, health and shield pools will increase to 200 when wielding the blade, and the weapon will provide 1HP regen per second. On top of those health buffs, the Infinity Blade also provides "an instant burst of effective Health upon elimination of an enemy (50 HP)" as well as "increased movement speed (130%)."

Removing the Infinity Blade from its location in Polar Peak instantly heals the first player to do so. 

The weapon appears only once per match. 

Save the World

As per the usual, Fortnite's Save the World mode takes a back seat to the game's battle royale offerings. 

This week, we get a single bug fix ("Storm Shield Defenses no longer grant reduced primary rewards if the 80% health bonus objective is failed"), alongside the return of Ralphie's Revenge, which will be in the weekly store from December 12 at 7 p.m. EDT to December 19 at 7 p.m. EDT. 


Those are the major additions in the new 7.01 update for Fortnite. For the full patch notes, head over here, where you'll find more info on Creative Mode tools and teams, UI, social, and performance tweaks, and changes to Fortnite mobile. 

Best Budget Hearthstone Decks for Rastakhan's Rumble Meta Tue, 11 Dec 2018 12:04:17 -0500 Sergey_3847


Dragon Warrior


One rarely sees the legit Dragon archetype in Warrior, but Rastakhan's Rumble changes everything. Now Warrior has Emberscale Drake, a 5-mana dragon that grants your hero 5 armor. This is the card on par with Shieldmaiden, and it's cheaper.


Warrior has also got Dragon Roar, a 2-mana spell that puts two random dragons in your hand, which could also be legendary. That is an amazing value for such a cheap card.


But that's not it, as there is one more card that is simply great -- Dragonmaw Scorcher, a 5-mana dragon that deals one damage to all other minions. It not only deals with small enemy minions, but also activates your Acolyte of Pain.


This is a truly great Dragon Warrior list, and it costs only 1,580 dust to make.


Deck string:






That is all for the best budget decks for Rastakhan's Rumble meta, and for other Hearthstone guides at GameSkinny, follow the links below:


Zoo Warlock


There have been a decent number of various types of Zoolock decks in the past. Most of them were focused on buffing demons. But this new iteration lets you buff any types of minions.


Consider such new cards like Scarab Egg and Grim Rally. You can play the egg and immediately destroy it on turn three. As a result, you will have three 2/2 Scarabs on board for just three mana. But this is not the only combo you can achieve in this Zoolock variant.


Try to play the Spirit of the Bat early in the game, and don't be afraid to trade and tap at the same time. This will activate the buffing engine of the spirit, which turns out to be really effective.


Deck string:




Elemental Shaman


Here is another Elemental deck, and this time in Shaman class. Rastakhan's Rumble introduced a new elemental card for Shaman -- Bog Slosher, a 3-mana minion that returns to your hand and buffs other friendly minions.


It's not only a great way to both heal and buff a damaged minion, but also re-use its battlecry. That is also the reason why this list includes Murmuring Elemental that triggers battlecries twice.


So you could say that this is a value deck with some very good synergies. For example, you could play Elementary Reaction and Earthern Might and get a ton of new cards in just one turn. This combo alone will supply you with a big hand very early in the match-up.


Deck string:




Pirate Rogue


Is Pirate Rogue as efficient as Pirate Warrior? Probably not! But it's still one heck of a list that should get you pretty far on the ranked ladder. It has all sorts of tools for various situations, and all this is spiced up by a healthy number of pirates.


Try to equip Assassin's Blade as early as possible and buff it up using Cutthroat Buccaneer and Deadly Posion. Then, play Bloodsail Raider, Dread Corsair, and Phantom Freebooter. All of them will synergize perfectly with your 6/4 weapon, which alone can deal 24 points of damage.


Ticket Scalper and Cursed Castaway will provide you with card draw, so you will never be out of threats.


Deck string:




Dragon Priest


This Dragon Priest deck is not your typical midrange deck, but a combo list with such cards like Topsy Turvy, inner Fire and Divine Spirit. All the dragon synergies are here, but you really want to put Nightscale Matriarch and Wyrmguard online as soon as possible.


Then, you can double their health, preferably twice, and use either Topsy Turvy or Inner Fire for a lethal damage. This combo is really easy to execute, as it requires minimal set up. Also, Radiant Elemental should help you get to combo even earlier by making your spells cheaper.


The rest of the deck is also quite capable in supporting the combo with a fair number of removal spells and other strong dragons.


Deck string:




Heal Paladin


It turns out that Paladin can become a Priest, if he wants to with all the healing spells it gets these days. But it's not going to be a Control Paladin, as is the case with Priest most of the time. This Heal Paladin is one aggressive monster.


First, it has a new Bloodclaw weapon that costs only one mana, which can destroy two early minions on the opponent's side. Second, it has Spirit of the Tiger that basically summons minions for free, because there are no extra mana costs involved.


Lastly, it can deploy a 4-mana 8/8 taunt in the form of Zandalari Templar, which is just too OP. That's without mentioning all the healing it gets in the course, which will keep you alive for many turns to come.


Deck string:




Elemental Mage


Blizzard likes to give Mage free stuff like they did with secrets and Kirin Tor Mage. Now you can also cast elementals for free using the new Rastakhan spell -- Elemental Evocation. Cast it, play an elemental, and then cast Scorch that costs only one mana. This is currently the cheapest and the most powerful combo you can do in Elemental Mage.


Another great new card is Arcanosaur, a 6-mana elemental that deals three AoE damage. It has a condition to play elemental last turn, but in this type of deck that is practically guaranteed.


Lastly, Cauldron Elemental can make your other smaller elementals bigger and more dangerous for that final lethal attack.


Deck string:




Beast Hunter


One of the best cards to appear in Rastakhan's Rumble is Revenge of the Wild, a 2-mana spell that resurrects all the beasts that died this turn. This card can create some serious problems for your opponents, especially in the latter parts of the match-up, when you have your entire board filled with beasts.


Hunter also got a fantastic new weapon -- Headhunter's Hatchet. It costs two mana and potentially has 2/3 stats, if you control a beast. This can be easily compared to the pre-nerf Fiery War Axe, which was universally acclaimed to be the best weapon in Hearthstone.


The rest of the deck includes a hefty number of tried'n'tested beasts and a few removal spells in case you get blocked by a taunt.


Deck string:




Egg Druid


Egg Druid has quickly become an equivalent of the Zoolock deck. It's fast, it's aggressive, and in this particular case, it's also extremely hard to get rid off due to the multiple eggs with deathrattles that leave even more minions on board than before.


The new Scarab Egg from Rastakhan's Rumble is a dangerous little egg that summons three 1/1 Scarabs, which can be buffed with Power of the Wild, Evolving Spores, and Fungalmancer.


A few other new cards, such as Pounce and Spirit of the Raptor will allow you to draw more cards, which is a necessity for any aggro deck. In this way you can keep pushing one threat after another until you win.


Deck string:




If you just started playing Hearthstone, and don't have much dust for all the top-tier decks, then you can opt for cheap but good cards that synergize well enough to create some spectacular deck lists.


These budget decks are so good that you can even use them to climb up the ladder and grind for some decent amount of gold. Eventually, you will have enough to craft something more expensive and powerful, but for now you can be sure that these nine decks will be your best friends for no cost.


Most of the decks in our selection for Rastakhan's Rumble meta are of either Aggro or Midrange archetypes. This means that you will be able to win fast and even withstand some of the more expensive control lists on the ladder.

Epic Games Removes Infinity Blade Games From iOS App Store Tue, 11 Dec 2018 11:55:50 -0500 QuintLyn

This week, Epic Games removed the Infinity Blade Trilogy from the iOS App Store. Citing increasing difficulty in supporting the series of games, Epic Games told fans that they -- as well as all in-app purchases -- have been removed from Apple's service. 

There is good news for iOS users who already own any of the games, as they will still be able to play them and even download them again if need be, "for the foreseeable future". They will not, however, be able to make any more in-app purchases while playing.

Infinity Blade III players still have something to look forward to as Epic has promised an update to Clash Mobs as well as "other surprises." The company also suggests fans check in often to receive goodies.

The move has surprised some players since the game has been used in the past to show the possibilities of mobile gaming, particularly on iOS which was the only place it could be obtained by Western audiences. In China, players could snag it on Android and Xbox One.

Perhaps the announcement shouldn't be that surprising, however. Epic did just release its own game distribution platform, so it seems about right that their focus would be shifted there. And, considering the game has been released on a non-mobile platform (although not in the West), it's not entirely unlikely that we might see it crop back up on the Epic Games Store.

China Introduces New Ethics Panel to Review Video Games Tue, 11 Dec 2018 10:29:41 -0500 Gabriella Graham

Via the Xinhua news agency, China has officially revealed an Online Games Ethics Committee.

The committee has already reviewed twenty different games. Meanwhile, the gaming world looks on, waiting to see what this means for evolving Chinese regulations.

What we know

The Chinese ethics committee operates under the ready guidance of the Communist Party’s propaganda department. Panel members include university and industry experts on video games and adolescence, as well as representatives from government research institutions and media outlets. (Participant names and specific contributing institutions have not been publicly released.)

Of the twenty games reviewed thus far, nine have been outright rejected for sale in China due to "improper content." Some of the prohibited games include H1Z1, PUBG, and Fortnite.

Requests for modifications were issued for the remaining eleven. Their respective developers must "eliminate moral hazard" and otherwise controversial material to have any hope for a stamp of approval. League of Legends, Overwatch, Diablo 3, and World of Warcraft are among the games that must make changes.

The new committee will continue to conduct ethical evaluations for games boasting online content.


A backdrop of fear and control

The reveal of this committee marks an important regulatory step following the suspension on licenses for new video games that began in March of 2018. The approval process screeched to a halt when the responsibility of clearing games for sale passed to the (also new) State Administration of Press and Publications (SAPP).

Fears around epidemics of video game addiction and increasing myopia (or nearsightedness) among youths are driving change in China, like the installation of SAPP. 

The online ethics panel naturally sets themselves against these consequences as well while simultaneously removing sexually intimate or violent content from young hands.

A sign of hope or dark foreshadowing?

Speaking of the suspension around new game licenses, consumers and industry developers seem divided on the most recent development of an ethics panel. This committee could indicate that the current licensing freeze will lift in the near future, possibly with a schedule for new game releases before mid-2019. Hopeful evidence for this turnout comes from the quick work the committee made of the first twenty titles assigned to them.

Photo By Nikita Kachanovsky on Unsplash

However, the new panel may also be a sign of more suffocating game regulations to come. There are even those observing China's market that have questioned whether or not this year's license freeze was "a deliberate attempt by the government to hurt the video game industry’s growth rate."

Regardless of the exact nature of future details, they promise to have a heavy effect on the video game industry at large. Granted, western developers like EA, Take-Two, and Ubisoft have been nonplussed by China's snail-paced approval process. But companies both large and small within the nation's borders have suffered considerable financial loss since March. Zacks reported:

The stalled approval process and stringent regulations have negatively impacted gaming companies like Tencent, NetEase and Bilibili [. . .] A number of Japanese game makers like Capcom, Nexon and Konami were also hurt due to their ties with Tencent and NetEase.

Keep in mind that Tencent and NetEase are the biggest game distributors in China, which in itself is the world's largest video game market.There's little doubt that decisions made by China's new ethics committee will be far-reaching.

In fact, Chinese regulations could push their larger video game companies to invest in western developers. Tencent alone lost $200 billion of their market value since January. It pays a company like that move away from an uncertain market at home and into the global market.

In this case, that means taking steps westward, new ethics committee or not.

Pokemon GO Trainer Battles To Be Rolled Out In Stages Mon, 10 Dec 2018 11:24:25 -0500 QuintLyn

Pokemon GO players have been anxiously waiting for the release of a PvP system -- which Niantic recently promised in the form of Trainer Battles.

Based on what we've been told about the new system so far, it will definitely provide an extra bit of depth to the popular mobile game. But some players are going to have to wait longer than others to experience it.

Today, the Pokemon GO team announced plans to roll the feature out "in stages". The announcement went out over the game's official Twitter account and noted that it's to assure Trainer Battles run correctly before offering the mode to everyone.

The feature will first release to Trainers that have hit level 40. Once the devs are certain it's working correctly, they'll roll it out to more players. Essentially, this is a beta for high-level players. 

Although we don't know exactly when this mode will release into beta, hopefully, its release isn't too far off. 

]]> Cheats And Tricks For The Beginner Player Fri, 07 Dec 2018 16:18:16 -0500 Ty Arthur

You know you love those .io time wasters, and there's another one to add to your repertoire when the grocery line just won't budge:

This game is exactly what it sounds like, so to master the mechanics of this iteration of the .io phenomena you need to think of the game as bumper cars, but with fidget spinners.

Rather than avoiding other players like in a normal .io, you can smash into them to knock them out of the game. Once you learn the flow of the movement and master the physics of the edge of the arena, it isn't tough to hit first place in every match.

How To Win Matches Easily In

First and foremost, you win matches of by being the last spinner standing, not by becoming the spinner with the most kills. You don't actually have to knock anyone else out of the arena at all.

Like with that one camper who wins a battle royale match with 0 kills, you can just avoid the other players and make it to the last position. In many matches, this is actually a better strategy than racking up kills, because your spinner's speed is reduced as you grow larger with each kill (although you have more momentum as a larger spinner).

The main advantage to getting kills is in unlock skins, with a full list of unlockables available below.

Knocking Out the Competition

In terms of offense, its better to go in a large circular pattern around the outer edge and try to hit spinners at an angle as they are moving away from you towards the edge so they quickly get knocked out of the arena.

Going into the center at the start of the match isn't worth it, as most spinners will immediately hit each other and get knocked out in a quick frenzy like the cue ball kicking off a game of pool.

In terms of defense, don't crash directly into a spinner going the opposite direction, as you are likely to get thrown out. It's better to follow after other spinners and then dodge out of the way before a collision so they hit another AI player and knock each other out

Whether staying defensive or trying to rack up kills, remember that the area is a bowl, which means the edges curve up so your spinner slow down slightly as you are about to go over. This gives you time to swipe back towards the center of the arena and avoid getting knocked out.

While some skins like the space invader and dragon are limited only to premium members who pay, most of the spinner skins can be unlocked over time either by winning matches, spending gold coins, or getting kills.

Getting skins

These skin unlocks are currently available for the f2p players:

  • Razor Swirl - 25 kills
  • Fire - 75 kills
  • Skull and Bones - 150 kills
  • Nuclear - 250 kills
  • Dollar - 5 wins
  • Euro - 15 wins
  • Fidget - 25 wins
  • Bitcoin - 35 wins
  • Diamond - 50 wins
  • Balloon - 75 wins
  • RGB Circle - reach level 5
  • Shield - reach level 7
  • Atom - reach level 10
  • Medal - reach level 15
  • Moon - reach level 23
  • Blue Circle - play 10 matches
  • Water - play 20 matches
  • Moon - play 25 matches
  • Target - play 30 matches
  • British Pound - play 50 matches
  • Yen - play 70 matches
  • Eye - play 150 matches
  • Heart - 500 gold
  • Black swirl - 750 gold
  • Club - 750 gold
  • Yin and Yang - 1000 gold
  • Pumpkin - 1,500 gold
  • Flags - 2,000 gold
  • Pizza - 2,500 gold
  • Animals - 3,000 gold
  • Web - 3,500 gold
  • Batman - 4,000 gold
  • Cat with eye patch - 10,000 gold

Keep in mind that many of the above skins can be unlocked earlier by voluntarily watching ads.

On that note, while it doesn't have any effect on your strategy or winning the game, there's one final tip we have to mention, as there are some concerning elements to what permissions wants and how the game displays ads.

Deceitful Ads

The game absolutely doesn't need permission to access your camera to function, and some of the ads are deviously setup to look like official terms of service that you have to accept to play. You don't have to agree to them! Just hit "Refuse" instead to skip the ad.

Have any other tips for always winning or racking up kills to unlock new skins? Let us know your best strategy!

Looking for more .io games for standing in line or dealing with unpleasant family dinners? Check out our top 5 .io games here, or see our tips for consistently getting the top score in here.

Fortnite's X-4 Stormwing Plane Locations and Stunts Guide Thu, 06 Dec 2018 21:49:50 -0500 William R. Parks

Today marks the beginning of Fortnite's seventh season, and it has brought a bevy of changes and content, including a wintery biome, new challenges, and the game's first ariel vehicle, the X-4 Stormwing Plane.

While this new vehicle may have a lot of fans excited, some may be wondering where to find one and what they can do with it once located.

The X-4 Stormwing Plane can seat up to five players, a pilot and four passengers, and it spawns in specific locations throughout the battle royale's map. While an X-4 will not always appear at every one of these locations, and there are likely to be more possible spawn points, this map (compiled from confirmed locations provided by Heavy and Eurogamer) can act as a guide for those that are looking to make their first Fortnite flight.

  • D3: On the mountain northeast of Pleasant Park
  • F3: By the river south of Lazy Links
  • B5: In the mountains north of Viking Village
  • F5: On the mountain west of Dusty Divot
  • I5: On the mountain by Loney Lodge
  • A8: In the hangers at Frosty Flights
  • B8: In a camp east of Frosty Flights
  • E8: On the mountain north of Happy Hamlet
  • H8: On a hill between Fatal Fields and Paradise Palms

As some players might expect, the new iceberg biome (at the bottom-left of the map) appears to have a high density of new planes, though there are opportunities to nab one throughout the map.

Once an X-4 has been acquired, and the basic controls have been understood, players can move on to performing stunts in their new plane. This includes flying the vessel upside down, by pressing the roll right and roll left inputs simultaneously, as well as the ability to perform an evasive maneuver by quickly pressing a roll button twice.

With the ability to locate an X-4, and some tips on trick flying, players should now be ready to hop in a plane and conquer their next Battle Royale match. Just remember, for those that are manning the plane's machine gun, this mounted weapon can overheat, and prolonged firing should be avoided when possible.

Multiplayer Battles Arrive In Teen Titans GO Figure! Thu, 06 Dec 2018 13:45:13 -0500 QuintLyn

Cartoon Network has released the latest update for its popular mobile game Teen Titans GO Figure! today. The update, titled "Legion of Doom" introduces multiplayer battles to the game, allowing players to compete against each other using "Teeny Titans figures", including DC fan favorites like Lex Luthor and The Riddler.

The new mode features competitive ranking, and those who climb the highest will be rewarded -- with exclusive Teeny Titans figures.

As the title indicates, this particular Teen Titans GO Figure! update also includes content tied directly to the villainous organization known as the Legion of Doom. Players can now visit the famous Hall of Doom.

Other features included in this update are new tournaments, figure repaints, and missions for players to enjoy.

If you're unfamiliar with Teen Titans GO Figure!, the mobile game is a take on the original Teeny Titans game that features the Justice League. It's described as a Pokemon-esque RPG offering a completely digital version of the Amiibo or Skylanders experience.

Teen Titans GO Figure! is avaialble on iOS and Android smartphones and tablets via the App Store, Google Play, or the Amazon Appstore.

Fortnite: How to Complete All the Season 7, Week 1 Challenges Thu, 06 Dec 2018 10:44:21 -0500 William R. Parks

Fortnite's seventh season is now live, and with it comes a slew of new content for fans to sink their teeth into, including snowy peaks, an ariel vehicle, and a brand new creative mode. As always, a new season also means new challenges, and the Season 7, Week 1 challenges are now available.

For players that do not own a Battle Pass, there are three free challenges:

  1. Pickup an item of each rarity [5]
  2. Dance in different forbidden locations [7]
  3. Play matches with at least one elimination (HARD) [5]

The first and third challenges should be easily completed after playing a few matches, however, dancing in the seven forbidden locations will take a bit more work. This type of challenge was first introduced in Fortnite's third season, and it requires that players bust-a-move in front of signs depicting a crossed out dancer. Forbes has shared this handy map to help players find these locations:

While this is the full extent of this week's free challenges, Battle Pass owners will have access to four additional challenges (two of which consist of multiple parts):

  1. Stage 1: Dance on top of a crown of RV's; Stage 2: Dance on top of a Metal Turtle; Stage 3: Dance on top of a Submarine
  2. Deal Headshot Damage to opponents [500]
  3. Stage 1: Search Ammo Boxes in a single match (HARD) [5]; Stage 2: Search Chests in a single match [3]; Stage 3: Search Supply Drops in a single match [1]
  4. Eliminate opponents in different Named Locations (HARD) [5]

Challenges two, three, and four are easy enough, and should be completed through standard play, but the remaining multi-part challenge will require some additoinal effort.

In this challenge, players will need to find the three specified locations (in the order listed) and dance in them. An easy task, but players may be lost attempting to find these locations. Once again, Forbes has shared maps with them indicated:

There is a lot to explore and experience with today's Fortnite update, and plenty of players are certain to be excited about the newly introduced cosmetics. Completing these first week challenges is a great opportunity to get a jump-start on acquiring them.

Celebrate Christmas Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery Style Thu, 06 Dec 2018 09:30:59 -0500 QuintLyn

Today, mobile game developer Jam City and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment announced the launch of the Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery holiday event. Now player can celebrate Christmas the way only those in the Wizarding World can, by making sure Hogwarts is appropriately festive.

Starting today, players logging into the game will find a themed tree in each of their respective houses: red for Gryffindor, green for Slytherin, blue for Ravenclaw, and Yellow for Hufflepuff. Players can then help add to the decorations by voting on their favorite tree ornament via the Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts before December 12.

On December 13, the winning ornament will be announced and appear on each of the House Christmas trees. But that's not all. A video demonstrating how to make a real world version of the ornament will also be posted for wizards and Muggles alike. The video will also highlight Hogwarts' holiday decor, and tease a time-limited sidequest featuring the Weasleys.

Fortnite's New Creative Mode Launches Tomorrow Wed, 05 Dec 2018 15:12:57 -0500 William R. Parks

While fans have had their eyes on a snowstorm that is making its way to Fortnite, Epic has been hard at work preparing another big addition to launch with Season 7. Beginning tomorrow, Battle Pass owners will have access to Fortnite's newest game mode: Fortnite Creative.

Announced this morning, Fortnite Creative is a sandbox-style experience, a la Minecraft, where players can design and build their own private islands. How exactly players will utilize their constructions is up to them, as Fortnite Creative can function as a map creator, allowing friends to do battle across their custom-built islands, as well as an opportunity to design custom game modes, races, and obstacle courses.

For players that want full building control, Fortnite Creative provides a material gallery that will allow them to build whatever they desire from scratch. However, players that are more interested in quickly building large-scale battlefields and game mode scenarios can simply access Fortnite Creative's prefabricated options to promptly erect full buildings and more.

Everything built in Fortnite Creative will be saved and accessible from session to session, and while the initial features available seem quite robust, Epic has indicated that this is just the beginning:

Fortnite Creative is new and exciting, but not final. We'll be adding many new features and improvements over the next few updates. Like Battle Royale and Save the World, we're committed to making this bigger and better over time.

As mentioned, this new game mode will be available to Battle Pass owners beginning tomorrow, though Epic's announcement indicates that its launch will "be rough." All players will get access to their own private islands on Thursday, December 13.

Only a day after the announcement of Epic's new digital distribution platform, the Epic Games Store, the reveal of Fortnite Creative continues to establish the company as one of the most prolific developers in the industry. With this constant slew of updates and new content, it is understandable that the battle royale juggernaut now has over 200 million registered players, and Epic is showing no signs of slowing down.

For players that are interested to see more of Fortnite Creative prior to launch, Epic has given a number of content creators early access. Videos from these content creators can be found on the company's website.

Fortnite Gets Its First Snowflakes Tue, 04 Dec 2018 14:54:17 -0500 William R. Parks

Over the last month, Fortnite players have been noticing some strange environmental occurrences, and it has lead to much speculation about what the future may hold for the battle royale's map. Specifically, the rumor mill has been turning with the idea that a snowstorm is on its way its way to Fortnite, and today, that speculation has been given legs.

Players that begin a match and load into spawn island, Fortnite's pre-match holding ground, will notice a light snowfall has begun. While it is just a few flakes now, this has the potential to grow into a storm that will overtake the game's map in full — Season 7 is set to begin this Thursday, and more snow is likely to come with it.

This snow-centric speculation began when players discovered what appeared to be a cloud looming south of Flush Factory. Since, it has become apparent that this phenomenon is not, in fact, a cloud, but rather an iceberg floating toward Fortnite's map. On top of the iceberg sits a castle.

What exactly will occur when this mysterious iceberg and castle arrive at the game's main landmass is unknown, however, it appears that it will coincide with the arrival of this brewing snowstorm. It seems that players indeed have a lot to look forward to in Fortnite's next season.

Those that have been playing Epic's shooter sensation for some time will not be strangers to its evolving map. In Season 4, a meteor crashed into the island, leaving craters throughout, and the recent "Fortnitemares" event brought some Halloween-inspired spookiness.

However, the suggestion that a new play area may be added when the iceberg arrives, coupled with the potential for a map-encompassing snowstorm, indicates that Season 7 may bring some of the biggest changes yet.

While players wait for these changes, there is still time to play the recently added Wild West Limited Time Mode. This may not be as exciting as a snow-covered Pleasant Park or Tilted Towers, however, there is still plenty to keep fans engaged until Fortnite is painted white.

Niantic Offers More Details On Pokemon GO's Trainer Battle System Tue, 04 Dec 2018 12:56:54 -0500 QuintLyn

Recently, the Pokemon GO team announced via Twitter that players could look forward to a new PvP system "soon". At the time, it was only revealed that the system was on the way, leaving details on what players could expect from it for later.

As it turns out, today is later.

According to a post on, the PvP system features three different leagues: Great League, Ultra League, and Master League. Each has its own limits on the CP of the Pokemon playing in it. It will include changes to the game's existing battle system. While it will keep the "tap" system, players will now be able to use Stardust and Candy to unlock a second Charged Attack. 

In addition, the system is replacing the ability to dodge with a "Protect Shield" that players can use on their Pokemon. These shields are limited, however, so players will need to be well-versed of when to use them.

The system will provide players with a few options for initiating battle, ranging from challenging nearby players to challenging Ultra and Best Friends long distance. Players participating in battles will earn rewards and even eventually earn an Ace Trainer medal.

Cookie Jam Blast Celebrates National Cookie Day with Season of Cookies Tue, 04 Dec 2018 08:00:02 -0500 William R. Parks

'Tis the season of uncomfortably cold weather, presents, and, of course, cookies, and today, sweet-toothed individuals across the United States will celebrate with National Cookie Day. So too, fans of Cookie Jam Blast can now join in on the festivities, as the first annual "Season of Cookies" comes to the mobile puzzler.

Cookie Jam Blast is a free-to-play, match-3 puzzle game available for iOS and Android, and the "Season of Cookies" will be an opportunity for a select few to share their favorite recipes with the player base. That is, for the entirety of December, five Cookie Jam Blast players will have their favorite cookies "reimagined" and added as game pieces.

These special game pieces will be introduced every Thursday, and players will be able to access the recipes and learn more about the bakers through Cookie Jam Blast's Facebook page. The first seasonal game piece is a peanut butter cookie from New York-based player, Cindy Dutton. 

"I'm so excited to share my family's favorite cookie featured in my go-to game, for all my fellow players to enjoy," Dutton said about her participation in Cookie Jam Blast's first "Season of Cookies."

National Cookie Day was created by the Blue Chip Cookie Company's Matt Nader in 1987, and, considering that seven billion chocolate chip cookies are eaten every year in the United States, there are certain to be many bakers and cookie eaters celebrating today. Cookie Jam Blast's "Season of Cookies" will make sure that the sugar-fueled jubilation need not end before December is through.

Cookie Jam Blast can be downloaded via the iOS App Store and Google Play.