Shazam! Movie Review…

This is the first DC movie that I have been genuinely excited about for about a decade now, and I have to say it wasn’t what i was expecting. The reviews for this film were through the rough 90%+ on Rotten Tomatoes, and that was really surprising me because the lead up to the movie was low expectations because of the very cheesy trailers that we received. This movie really surpassed a lot of expectations for many, and for myself it was much more focused on the character development of Shazam and the theme of family much more than action and CGI pieces.

SPOILERS AHEAD!!!

I did enjoy Shazam for the most part. We sill start with the bad before the good because there was not much to dislike with the film. My main issue with Shazam was the CGI of the seven deadly sins. The main villain of the film Doctor Sivana had demons that he could summon on command to help him in battle, and I must say… the CGI for those characters was hideous. It felt like a 2005 Nickelodeon movie CGI job. The monsters from Scooby-Doo Skull Island looked better. That being said Doctor Sivana as a villain had some good development that started the movie off with him as a young child given the chance to become the all powerful Shazam, and he showed he had too much darkness in his heart to take the mantle. This drives him mad with revenge to take the power of Shazam which gives a very solid plot point for the villain. Then the only other negative I had with the movie was some of the jokes were very lame and didn’t land at all. Which was a little cringy, but not terrible by any means.

This movie really replicated what Marvel did with Ant Man. A much more light hearted film that revolved more around the theme of family and the development of the main character rather then big budget action scenes. Shazam does an amazing show with the coming of age story of Billy Batson to mature over such a short period of time so he can become the hero the world needs at this given time. Growing up Billy had no interest in family running from foster home after foster home, but after meeting Freddie and becoming Shazam he starts to realize how important family can be. Which was a really nice change of pace of a lot of current superhero films being love interest/power development. The movie also did a very good job in the marketing by not spoiling a very huge plot twist at the end with the whole Shazam family getting abilities. This is something I knew we would see eventually in the movie arch, but I did not expect it in the first film of Shazam which was a very pleasant surprise to say the least.

All in all Shazam was a very enjoyable superhero film that did a very good job at breaking the current mold of introduction superhero films. It definitely is getting the DCEU in the right direction after Wonder Woman and Aquaman’s success. Hopefully DC will continue on this track. I will give Shazam an 84%. It is very fun, family oriented superhero movie, with some very rough CGI at moments, but after that it is a great coming of age story for Billy Batson.

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-Brandon Maj

Apex Legends Season 1 is Here!

You read that right ladies and gents, just one week after Respawn took to Reddit to call out dataminers giving out misinformation about their hit battle royale game… they announced everything those dataminers leaked previously. But hey, Season 1 of Apex Legends is almost here! As announced on the games official Twitter account, tomorrow will mark the beginning of Wild Frontier, and the release of the first battle pass for the game.

In their full press release on the games website, they lay out the entire battle pass for fans to drool over until its released. Throughout the 100 levels of the battle pass players will be able to unlock rewards ranging from weapon skins, themed stat trackers for each character, intro quips for each character and more. The announcement of the battle pass also confirmed the release of the next legend in the game Octane. There will be rewards to unlock for the new legend in the battle pass as well and many players are anxiously waiting to see what Octane brings to King’s Canyon.

The battle pass will cost just 950 Apex Coins (roughly 10 USD) similar to the Fortnite battle pass. If you are young, dumb, and broke high school kids (do I get points for a dated pop culture reference?) or just dont feel like the battle pass is for you, there will be Apex Packs and stat trackers for you to earn for free.

Check out the battle pass for yourself at the link above and let us know what you guys are looking forward to most in the comments below or on Twitter. Don’t forget to follow our Twitch channel to keep up with us, and even join us in Kings Canyon.

Let’s Talk Fallout 76

As of recently, Bethesda has been making more of an effort to create more content for their game. The first of these updates has already  partially arrived which is “Wild Appalachia”. The second update to come will be known as “Nuclear Winter”. Throughout this article I’m going to touch on what’s to come of the “Wild Appalachia” update as well as some of my personal opinions about the update as well.

Let’s begin with the first portion of the “Wild Appalachia” update which has recently come out. Though it is a bit odd that the update is coming out in segments, it wasn’t unexpected since Bethesda had announced that the new content will be released over the next several weeks. The first bit of this update brought a new crafting system to the game called “Brewing”, and after looking a little bit into the brewing system, there isn’t much to it. You can craft some wimes, spirits, and beers. The thing that honestly disappoints me is that there doesn’t seem to be much of a reason to do this. In previous fallout games alcohol would affect yours S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stats such as increasing strength and charisma while decreasing your intelligence. By what I have seen so far there is no stat changes from consuming alcohol in the game, but it will provide hydration. In all honesty, the community could have done without this portion of the update.

The next portion of this update will begin March 19th and you will be able to participate in the “Fasnacht” parade. There isn’t too much known about this portion of the update except that it will be a limited time event that will reward players with unique items. Following that will be a “Survival” PvP experience coming out March 26th. Bethesda mentioned this as a new gamemode which leads me to wonder how this will be implemented. There will be fewer restrictions and increased rewards while participating in this PvP gamemode. Further into this update comes player vending, a new series of quests, as well as a new item on April 9th. Player vending will consist of players building a vending machine on their C.A.M.P. and puts their own gear into it to be sold to other players who access it. The new item that will be coming out is a physical camera that you can carry around and take photos with. The quest series just mentions that you will uncover the “encryptid” secrets of Appalachia. The next portion of the update arrives May 7th which seems to be a new faction of sorts. Bethesda states that there will be new stories where you can earn merits, climb ranks, and create a new item, the backpack for increased on-player storage. The final section of this update will be the legendary vendor which will be released on May 23rd. This new vendor will allow you to trade in your legendary gear that you no longer want for new legendary gear.

After all of that information, I want to dive more into how I feel about these upcoming updates. I feel like the “Fasnacht” parade is a good idea since it will provide players with limited time items. I assume that these items will only be cosmetic, but because they will only be able to be acquired during this limited time event, that means they will have some sense of rarity which when player vending comes out it may be a good source of caps for those who were able to take advantage of the event while others could not. The PvP mode holds my interest, but there really isn’t enough information for me to truly care about it. It has potential to be quite fun pending what the rewards are and how it is played. Player vending is an intriguing addition to the game that could be beneficial. I personally can’t think of anything I would truly want to buy from another player besides blueprints because the weapons and armor in the game are all fairly common to find anyways. The new camera item seems even more useless than brewing. There is already a photo system within the game why do we need a physical camera to also take photos. The thing I am most excited for is the new series of quests that will be arriving to the game. The game has been bone dry for so long with nothing to do after the main quest line. This will finally gives players a reason to pick the game back up. My excitement also lies in the new faction portion of the update. Bethesda doesn’t actually claim that it is a faction, but with them claiming that you can earn merits and climb the ranks, the idea of a faction comes to mind. Finally there is the legendary vendor which sounds cool, but what actually matters is how that system will work. Bethesda claims you can trade in your legendary items for other legendary items and that the higher star rating the one you trade in, you will increase the chance of getting the “item of your dreams”. This sounds to me like it will be randomized loot from the vendor. For example, maybe you will trade in a two star pipe pistol and the vendor will possibly give you a two or three star weapon or armor piece. I personally want it to be random loot from trading in your old legendaries so that not every player is running the best legendaries in the game. If that is not how the system works and you get to choose which legendary you receive then I hope that that will be a currency system for it. A form of this could be that if you trade in a one star item then you will receive 10 legendary scrap. The vendor may potentially sell a three star legendary item for 150 scrap. That is how I would like the system to work if the players are going to be allowed to choose their own loot.