5 Movie Remakes Better than the Original

The film world is full of rehashing old ideas with remakes and reboots of older ideas. Usually, this ends up in a disaster which upsets fans of the original movie. Whether it is not having the right cast, bad directing, weak script, or substituting CGI over practical effects. A million things can go wrong that can make any movie go from greatness to a dumpster fire. Not every single remake is terrible, sometimes they exceed their predecessor. Just like how a million things can go wrong, a lot can go right too. These are five remakes that are better than the original.

#5: The Crazies (2010/1973)

 

Out of every movie on this list, this is the one that is the worst. The 2010 remake with Timothy Olyphant is not a bad movie, it is a solid B movie to watch one time. The original by George A. Romero is terribly cheesy and has aged horribly. Full of overdramatic acting and poor violence that cannot satisfy someone going in for the violence, it is not one of George’s better films. While the remake feels lacking in its execution of the overall premise, there is plenty to go around that is well done up until the final act. A building of tension when people start acting a little off then turning into bloodthirsty lunatics. By the end, it feels like a bad action thriller, but enough is done right to make it better than its predecessor. Besides, Timothy Olyphant is almost always great.

 

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Image via Overture Films

 

 

 

#4: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011/2009)

If you have read some of my other articles such as my list of great anti-heroes or list of powerful female characters, then you would know I love the novels and Lisbeth Salander as a character. Her being brought to life on film has not been perfect, but the story as a whole is done better in the 2011 version. David Fincher is a mastermind in the director’s chair, especially with his adaptions from beloved novels. From Fight Club to Gone Girl, he knows how to make beautiful and compelling films that pay respect to the source material. The Swedish version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is styleless and has a different overall execution of scenes that are done almost exactly the same in the American version. David brings in a new flair to both the characters and cinematography. With Jeff Cronenweth, who has worked with David Fincher on several projects, captures every moment in a beautiful and haunting fashion. The emotions are much more present in both Mikael (Daniel Craig) and Lisbeth (Rooney Mara) whether they are scared, curious, or freezing cold. The novels are full of misery, and that pain is put to good use in the American adaption. Comparing any director to Fincher is going to be difficult because he has a track record that is difficult to beat.

 

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Image via Columbia Pictures

 

 

#3: IT (2017/1990)

Tim Curry’s performance as Pennywise is beloved by many fans. Besides his excellent portrayal, the tv series does not hold much value. Full of poor 90s CGI, bad acting from both child and adult actors, along with other issues make the miniseries not age well. The 2017 remake blew my mind. Bill Skarsgard was brilliant along with every other actor. A coming of age horror film that brings Stephen King’s classic to life to modern audiences. The focus on the characters was compelling throughout to make the audience care for these children. With sympathetic characters who were brought to life by talented kids made the whole movie a blast. The horror elements felt generic with typical jump scares, the overall quality is still there. With a sequel coming next year, I hope that we can continue to grow these characters and not go downhill like so many sequels tend to do.

 

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Image via Warner Bros.

 

 

#2: Dawn of the Dead (2004/1978)

Out of every mention on this list, the Dawn of the Dead remake will be the most divisive. With all of the respect to George A. Romero for the 1978 classic, I found myself enjoying Zach Snyder’s version so much more. That is a shock to me because I am so much more of a fan of the slow shambling corpses rather than the sprinting flesh-eaters. With the human element being executed better with a solid cast, the 2004 remake takes the cake. While maintaining everything great from the original while putting a new stylistic spin, Zach Snyder not only made a great remake but the only film he has directed that I have enjoyed. With the tension between humans vs. humans along with the threat of being eaten alive, I found this to be more engrossing of a story. I hated the final act of the original because the bikers felt tacked on, needless, and the tone fell apart for me. The stakes rise as the survivors pull together in the remake that makes for a more compelling narrative. On top of the characters and direction the film takes in the story, I cannot hate on a movie that has a Johnny Cash intro along with Disturbed being played at the ending credits.

 

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Image via Universal Pictures

 

 

#1: The Thing (1982/1951)

If you ask someone, “What is the best remake of all time?” then most people will say John Carpenter’s The Thing. I can say that this is my favorite horror movie of all time. Made back in 1982, it holds up like a gem. Practical effects at their best to bring a horrific and gruesome horror film that holds up to this day. While the original The Thing from Outer Space has a less memorable cast since each person is pretty similar. A wider range of characters is set in the 1982 masterpiece along with more mystery. The audience is left on the edge of their seats waiting for the alien to reveal itself. Along with some excellent brutality, the overall tone is more engaging and slower paced. The tension is always present even when the protagonists are happy and think all is well. Not only is the 1982 remake one of the best remakes of all time, but it is also one of the greatest horror films too.

 

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Image via Universal Pictures

 

 

There you have it, those are just five remakes that are able to be better than the originals. While the quality of some of these movies is questionable, they are able to do something different than their predecessor in a more enjoyable way. Comment below some of your favorite remakes and what you thought of this list. I can already feel some excitement from some of you, while I feel some rage coming from others.

Header image via Universal Pictures

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10 Incredible Lyricists in Rock and Metal

Great music has a lot of elements to it. The instrumentation, vocals, lyrics, production value, and so much more can go into making an excellent album for the band’s fans. One quality that gets the most recognition are the lyrics. For the casual listeners, lyrics are the most accessible aspect of a song to pick up. Having good lyrics gets the song stuck in people’s heads to sing along to all day. The lyricists of the band, usually the singer, can bring out emotion for anyone listening since so much of music is based on emotion. They can express their past experiences, thoughts on significant issues around the world, or tell an entertaining story for fun. The people in this list are not ranked from worst to best along with anyone missing from the list are not to be dismissed. In this list, I will go over just ten incredibly lyricists in the rock and metal world, which is full of immensely talented individuals.

#10: King Fowley (Deceased)

The drummer and singer of Deceased, King Fowley, is one of the most underrated musicians in heavy metal. He might not have the best vocals in the world, but it works for the music. The band’s best quality is the lyrics. Fowley writes in-depth stories that are inspired by horror movies or whatever dark tales pop up in his mind. Fearless Undead Machines is one of the best concept albums ever made. A brutal eleven-track album tells an intricate story about a zombie apocalypse. The opening track, The Silent Creature, shows the beginning of this horrific apocalypse with lyrics like, “The deadly dose of chemicals have changed the course of man.” The band show more range in themes with the gruesome record, Supernatural Addiction, which details a different horror tale in each song. With inspirations from The Twilight Zone and Edgar Allan Poe, this is one dark journey to take when listening to Supernatural Addiction. With tracks like A Very Familiar Stranger which details a man’s car ride turning into a dark journey when he picks up a girl to discover she has been dead the entire time. The man’s story is full of great detail such as, “When a woman out of nowhere appeared to be in need/So I stopped to reach a helpful, friendly hand/But something wasn’t right!” If story-driven songs are for you then Deceased has to be on top of your list of bands that you need to hear.

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Image via Flickr (Metal Chris)

#9: Trevor Strnad (The Black Dahlia Murder)

The Black Dahlia Murder are one of the top death metal bands who have arrived in the 21st century. The melodic death metallers have given the world plenty of albums that are full of fast, melodic, horrific music to enjoy. Like many death metal bands, one of their biggest influences is horror movies. Trevor has stated in many interviews that he got into heavy metal because of the album artwork. Being a fan of horror movies then seeing terrifying album art from bands like Megadeth, Cannibal Corpse, and Carcass got Trevor into the metal scene. Now he is not only one of the best vocalists in death metal, but one of the best lyricists too. With songs like Nightbringers that discusses death metal as the antagonist to Christianity that has offensive lyrics like, “Onward we fight yank the deadened Christ-pig right off of that cross.” One of Trevor’s favorite and first horror movies he has ever seen is Evil Dead. On the band’s 2013 record Everblack, they released a song about the cult classic titled Raped in Hatred by Vines of Thorn. The song takes a gruesome take on the films. With brutal lyrics such as, “Pierced from within her child is skewered unborn,” this is one song that will please fans of Evil Dead and make outsiders of death metal run for their lives. Fans of death metal probably know The Black Dahlia Murder by now. If you have never given the band, a listen then you need to check their music out right away.

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Image via Flickr (Corey Andersen)

 

#8: Benjamin Burnley (Breaking Benjamin)

One of the most prominent rock bands of the 2000s has been Breaking Benjamin. The band took an extended hiatus to come back in 2015 with the release of Dark Before Dawn; the group is on top of their game. Benjamin Burnley is a phenomenal vocalist who can sing the most beautiful verses, bring out a harmonic chorus, or scream his guts out in a breakdown. With the inspiration of Nirvana, Benjamin takes his lyrics with the same outlook as the late Kurt Cobain by giving the music a lot of emotion with open-ended lyrics. The audience is left to interpret the meaning and take in whatever message they feel. The lyrics range from the emotional Dear Agony that features some of the most direct and powerful lyrics such as, “Somewhere far beyond this world. I feel nothing anymore.” The band has some of the most beloved tracks in recent rock history such as Diary of Jane that has a sing-along choruses in the band’s catalog, “Something’s getting in the way/Something’s just about to break/I will try to find my place/In the diary of Jane So, tell me/How it should be?” One of the best aspects of the band is their choruses. Everything comes together to bring a melodic and often harmonic chorus for a whole stadium of fans can sing their hearts out. It is hard to resist to not sing along to songs such as Diary of JaneI Will Not Bow, and Angels Fall. With the success of the band’s last two albums Dark Before Dawn and Emberit will be hard to stop Breaking Benjamin from dominating the rock world.

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Image via Maro Hagopian

 

#7: Serj Tankian and Daron Malakian (System of a Down)

System of a Down is one of rock and metal’s most popular bands, but they have some of the most obscure and eccentric lyrics in the scene. Serj and Daron are geniuses when it comes to commentary about politics and other issues such as the power of the media in their music. Some songs can be straightforward to bash their message over the head of the listener or deliver odd lyrics that the audience needs to decipher. Prison Song is one of the band’s most blunt songs in their catalog. The song discusses the problems of the war on drugs and the prison system in the United States. Lyrics in the song include, “Following the rights movements you clamped on with your iron fists/Drugs became conveniently available for all the kids/Minor drug offenders fill your prisons, you don’t even flinch.” The group often has lyrics that are harder to decipher while maintaining a strong message. The band’s most beloved song is their hit single Chop Suey. The mix of striking fast singing in the verse to a melodic chorus along with the obscure title and lyrics, the world has been delivered a beloved and odd hit. From lyrics like, “Why’d you leave the keys upon the table,” and “Grab a brush and put a little makeup,” this is System’s most well-known song that most audience members have no idea what the message is. Sadly, the band has not released an album since the 2005 Mezmerize and released later that same year, Hypnotize, there are no signs of the group releasing another album. With a lot of back and forth news from the members, we will have to keep our expectations low for another record from System of a Down.

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Image via Kevin Winter, Getty Images

 

#6: Randy Blythe (Lamb of God)

The Virginia based metal band, Lamb of God, have had quite the career. The group has delivered some fantastic albums along with spectacular shows. Randy Blythe is one of the best vocalists in modern heavy metal. Besides his animalistic screams that bring joy to the ears of metalheads, he is a great writer. Besides writing a memoir detailing his life in prison and his addictions, the lyrics he has written are of the highest caliber. The beloved track Omerta leads for the perfect opening to any Lamb of God show. The first words spoken, “Whoever appeals to the law against his fellow man is either a fool or a coward/Whoever cannot take care of himself without that law is both/For a wounded man will shall say to his assailant/”If I live, I will kill you. If I die, you are forgiven”/Such is the rule of honor.” Fans who instantly hear the intro starting repeating every word as they gain the hype to see Lamb of God come up on stage. The band’s latest album VII: Sturm und Drang has several songs that detail the wrongful imprisonment of Randy Blythe back in 2012 when he was arrested in the Czech Republic. The single 512 paints a grim picture of Randy’s experiences. “Schizophrenic amnesia/Bid goodbye to all you knew and loved/Forget the only life that you knew outside/They bought the ticket, now you take the ride,” those lyrics alone are thought-provoking for fans who followed what was happening to Randy during that time or have read his memoir, Dark Days. Randy along with the rest of Lamb of God will go down in history for the wild success they have achieved in this heavy metal monster.

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Image via  Annie Atlasman/Press Line/Splash News/Corbis

 

#5: Adam Nergal Darski (Behemoth)

The Polish black metal outfit has become one of the most popular black metal groups in the past 20 years. With the mix of death metal and black metal, the band has made their own identity in the extreme metal scene. Nergal plays guitar and screams for the group. Besides having those jobs, he is excellent at expressing himself with his words. He continues to spread the word of Satan to the world after releasing ten LPs and seven EPs. Besides writing “of” as “ov” which gets under the skin of some critics and metalheads, Nergal has a consistent quality to deliver to the world. “The offspring ov the stellar race/My halo fallen and crushed upon the earth/That I may bring balance to this world,” those are just some of the crushing lyrics from the first verse in the track Ov Fire and the Void from the band’s album titled Evangelion. Nergal explains the track by saying, “Whilst listening to the first demo versions of this track I had an irresistible feeling that every single tone is filled with overwhelming spirit of Dionysus; god of ecstatic chaos, source of pure joy which reaches far beyond false boundaries between good and evil, life and death, love and hate. Dionysian rave focuses entirely on Here and Now, experiential knowledge, intuition, and passion. All of these are essential factors or components of any form of Art.” For readers wanting a song to worship Satan to then O Father O Satan O Sun is the ultimate track from Behemoth. Over seven minutes of an intense, raw, and atmospheric song that takes a slow, but heavy approach. Nergal worships Satan by singing, “O Lion-Serpent Sun, the beast that whirlest forth/A thunder-bolt, begetter of life/Thou that flowest, thou that goest/Thou Satan-Sun, Hadith, that goest without will/Thou air, breath, spirit, thou without bound or bond/Thou essence, air swift-streaming, elasticity/Thou wanderer, father of all/Thou wanderer, spirit of all.” With the band writing their eleventh album, it would be wise for anyone reading to go out and start catching up on Behemoth’s extensive catalog.

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Image via Johnny Perilla, Loudwire

 

#4: David Draiman (Disturbed)

It is hard to be into modern rock and metal without ever hearing Disturbed. The group has sold millions of albums around the globe and are still growing strong, especially after their cover of the classic Sound of Silence. David Draiman has one of the unique voices and styles in modern rock. Along with his talents with creating melodies and animalistic sounds, he writes some of the most empowering lyrics in modern hard rock. With the aggressive chorus to Down with the Sickness, “Get up, come on get down with the sickness/Open up your hate, and let it flow into me/Get up, come on get down with the sickness/You mother get up come on get down with the sickness/You fucker get up come on get down with the sickness/Madness is the gift, that has been given to me,” to the first pumping Indestructible, “Indestructible/Determination that is incorruptible/From the other side/A terror to behold/Annihilation will be unavoidable/Every broken enemy will know/That their opponent had to be invincible/Take a last look around while you’re alive/I’m an indestructible master of war.” David has a wide range of topics that he expresses his thoughts towards from both experience or his thinking. Indestructible and The Warrior serve as tributes to the men and women fighting for the United States military. Inside the Fire expresses David’s feelings and experience when an ex-girlfriend committed suicide when he was sixteen years old. Like many rock bands, there are plenty of songs about heartbreak and the struggle everyone faces in relationships such as StrickenHell, and Crucified. David’s range in topics to tackle is never ending and manages to express himself in different styles. The last few albums have leaned more towards storytelling while his early work in the band ranges with a mix of obscurity and directness. The group have wrapped their new work and will be releasing an acoustic EP and their next full-length album sometime in the next year.

 

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Image via Chelsea Lauren/WireImage

 

#3: Caleb Shomo (Beartooth)

Beartooth is a band that is quickly rising in the rock and metal world. Caleb Shomo started the group after exiting Attack Attack. His blend of hardcore, metalcore, and traditional rock has come together in an excellent package for all of the headbangers around the world. Each album has been a different insight into Caleb’s battle with depression. With lyrics like, “So I jacked up, blacked out, wasted all those memories,” from Sick of Me to “Remember the time I said god I’m ready to die,” from Sick and Disgusting are powerful representations of what it is like to struggle with depression. Caleb does branch out with songs like Hated by singing, “There’s a bullseye painted on our chests/In the crosshairs of the ignorant.” Caleb’s singing and lyrics are some of the most emotion-provoking in the scene. Out of any recent band, Beartooth is a prime example of using music as an outlet for negativity.

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Image via Geoffrey Ketler, Aces High Photography

 

#2: Jonathan Vigil (The Ghost Inside)

The Ghost Inside is heavy as can be, but manage to put out some of the most positive music in the scene. With skull crushing breakdowns and the heavy screams from Jonathan Vigil, you would think the band is quite aggressive. Turning things around to play music with more uplifting lyrics creates a perfect contrast. Having a powerful, positive lyric before a massive breakdown is hard to beat. Hearing, “I’d like to think I’d never cave in/A vicious battle I may never win/And I’d like to think I’ll come out stronger/Life’s swinging hard but I’m swinging harder,” before a heavy breakdown is satisfying and empowering. Like many hardcore musicians, Jonathan is straight edge. The band has the perfect straight edge tune with Engine 45. Jonathan singing, “If it’s a war you came to see you will never see a waved white flag in front of me/I can’t end up dead, I won’t be misled/I’ll keep singing this song inside my head,” sends a powerful message to avoid addiction of any kind. Sadly, after a horrible accident, it is unknown when the band will finally return to make more music. Be patient for their return and be sure to blast The Ghost Inside whenever you have the chance.

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Image via Flickr (Ninabeephotos)

 

#1: Johann Hegg (Amon Amarth)

When your band focuses on Vikings and Norse mythology, you are set up perfectly with material to create some of the best music in metal. Johann Hegg takes Viking metal to a different level with his knowledge of Viking history and Norse mythology. Their latest album Jomsviking is the first full concept album developed by the Swedish headbangers. In an interview with Blabbermouth, Johann explains the record by saying, “The Jomsvikings were a shadowy and legendary sect of Viking mercenaries, as shrouded in myth now as they were when they fought across Europe and the Middle East. Ruthless and deadly warriors who fought for the highest bidder, their code was simple: Show no fear. Never retreat. Defend your brothers, and when called upon, avenge their deaths.” The album kicks off viciously with the track First Kill. The protagonist’s journey begins bloody with lyrics like, “The first blood I spilled was the blood of a bard/I had to wipe the smile away/I was not yet a man, nor was I a boy,” which brings him down a dark road full of death. When it comes to Norse mythology, Johann shows his knowledge across the band’s large catalog. In Twilight of the Thunder God, Johann pays tribute to Thor, the God of Thunder. Detailing one of the most well-known gods in any mythology, Johann screams, “Jormundgandr twists and turns/Mighty in his wrath/The eyes are full of primal hate.” When it comes to this subgenre, Amon Amarth is one of the most beloved. They can prove themselves, and this is only one of the many great aspects of the band.

 

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Image via Sven-Sebastian Sajak (Common.Wikimedia.org)

 

 

That is just ten of the many incredible musicians in the rock and metal world. Everyone has their unique style and delivery, but all bring the highest quality of lyrics to the music. The amount of musicians I have missed is astounding, so there is plenty of room to return to talk about ten more lyricists. What did you think of these artists? Who do you think are some of the best lyricists in rock and metal? Comment your thoughts below.

 

 

 

 

10 of the Many Great Anti-Heroes in Film and TV

A good hero is a joy to watch. You cheer them on their adventures whether it is to slay the dragon, solve the crime, or merely get the courage to ask that girl out. Sometimes as an audience a feeling occurs something different. You want to see someone a bit more complicated. A character who might do some overall good, but their methods are controversial or unethical. With this said we would be looking at ten of the many great anti-heroes in film and television.

SPOILER WARNING FOR SOME ENTRIES MARKED IN BOLD 

#10: Dexter (Dexter)

 

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Image via Showtime

 

Besides the inconsistent quality of the show, when Dexter was at its best, it was one of the best shows in the crime drama genre. Dexter Morgan, excellently portrayed by Michael C. Hall, comes off as an introverted, polite man who works for the police. However, Dexter is a serial killer. That sounds monstrous, but he kills murderers. People who killed innocent people are his primary targets. He devotedly follows a moral code from his father that keeps him in check. It is hard not to love this charming serial killer who gives donuts to his colleagues. Just don’t commit murder in Miami.

 

#9: Walter White (Breaking Bad)

 

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Image via AMC

 

Walter White (Bryan Cranston) develops a lot throughout the events in Breaking Bad. From family man and high school teacher who everyone loves. He is the typical American man living the American dream. When diagnosed with cancer, he goes down a dark path. He is a drug lord and murderer but still tries his best for his family and his humanity. By the end, he confesses that this was for him. Walter loved the power and money. His final act that shows the kind man inside of him is still alive is saving Jesse (Aaron Paul). Bryan Cranston’s performance as Walter will always be his best, and one of the best characters of all time.

 

#8: Captain Jack Sparrow (Pirates of the Caribbean)

 

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Image via Walt Disney Pictures

Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) is a pirate, so making him a hero is a bit hard. When his whole purpose is to drink and plunder, it is unlikely that Jack will be the hero. He must act as a hero since mystical villains such as Davy Jones (Bill Nighy) keep cropping up in his life. Our heroic pirate always manages a way to defeat monsters and other evils that comes his way on the high seas. While doing this in his favor by stealing any gold that comes his way and continues to get wasted off of some rum or any other alcohol he finds. Johnny Depp has struck gold with his most beloved and iconic role here. With a few more movies on the way despite the massive decline in quality, we will eventually see how Jack’s story ends.

 

 

#7: Ash Williams (Ash vs. Evil Dead/Evil Dead/Evil Dead 2/Army of Darkness)

 

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Image via Starz 

If people start getting possessed by evil and other horrific monsters come to your door, then you need Ashley Williams (Bruce Campbell). If you knew the man as a person and not a demon killer, then he would be the last person you want. A man with a drinking problem, a weed problem, and cannot keep his pants on when a woman gives him the smallest smile. The selfish womanizer is humanity’s best bet against the evil that rises from the Book of the Dead. With his one-liners, charming smile, and incredible skills with a chainsaw, it is hard not to love this despicable character. You know writers and the actor have it perfectly nailed when they can take a character who in real life would be cast away by any sane person, makes them one of the most loveable characters in horror. Bruce Campbell brings out one of the funniest and charismatic performances of his career in the franchise, especially in the tv show, Ash vs. Evil Dead. Sadly, the show got the ax, and Bruce says he is done playing Ash forever. With multiple movies and a tv show with three seasons, there is plenty to watch to enjoy Ashley Williams kill deadites.

 

 

#6: Jamie Lannister (Game of Thrones)

 

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Image via HBO

 

Game of Thrones is full of some of the most complex characters we have ever seen on TV. It greatly helps that the source material is so strong along with brilliant minds to turn pages onto the screen. Jamie (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) is one of the many characters whose character arc becomes increasingly complex as the series goes on. From someone we see as a villain to someone who turns his back on his sister to fight along the same side, he called the enemy to defeat the White Walkers. By season 8 we might see Jamie as a full-on hero. However, his ultimate flaw that keeps him from that line as of now is his sister. He stood by her side as she commits atrocities. Jamies seldom stands against her until season 7. The turn is happening which will decide the King Slayer’s fate for the final season. Will we be able to call Jamie the Queen Slayer too?

 

#5:  Walt Kowalski (Gran Torino)

 

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Image via Warner Bros. Pictures

 

Walt (Clint Eastwood) might be the hero at the end of the story, but his racist feelings never truly left. Due to his time in the war, Walt Kowalski grew a hatred for Asians. For unspecified reasons, he hates other people of color too. With some of the ridiculous dialog that is more comedic than anything, Walt is a man full of hate. His heart sparks a light as he sees the gangs harassing his new neighbors. The end shows Walt sacrifice himself to send the gang members to prison ultimately. When his lawyer describes Walt’s will to his family and his new friend and neighbor, Thao, we still get a glimpse at the man he became and was. The Gran Torino going to Thao continues to show how much of a better man Walt became. However, the instructions on not what to do with the car shows Walt’s racist feelings never died.

 

#4: Alejandro (Sicario)

 

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Image via Lionsgate

 

The mysterious Alejandro (Benicio Del Toro) is shown mostly to be a supporting character who helps interrogate for Matt Graver (Josh Brolin). The end reveals he is the sicario, meaning a hitman. He does whatever is necessary to avenge the death of his wife and daughter who were brutally killed at the hands of Alarcon, a Mexican drug dealer, and his men. Nobly avenging the death of his family is the hero thing to do. The methods that Alejandro takes shows a darker side to the man that crosses into anti-hero territory. In the film, he guns down Alarcon’s wife and children before executing his primary target. When Kate (Emily Blunt) finds out what is happening and that everything they are doing is illegal, she threatens to tell the truth. The end shows Alejandro take a gun to her head and forces Kate to sign a paper that will confirm that their mission was done by the book. We will see more of Alejandro on June 29 in Sicario: Day of the Soldado.

 

#3: Lisbeth Salander (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo)

 

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Image via Columbia Pictures

If you have read my 10 Awesome Female Characters then you know I love Lisbeth’s character. A mysterious, unique, introvert whom possesses extreme knowledge of computers to use to her advantage. As a character who has been wronged in every possible way in life from emotional, physical and sexual abuse, she makes sure nobody abuses her again. A powerful female lead who manages to crush everyone who crosses her the wrong way. Her methods are ethically questionable, but her targets always deserve it. If you have a skeleton in your closet, she will find every bone in there.

 

 

#2: Sandor Clegane AKA The Hound (Game of Thrones)

 

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Image via HBO

 

Yes, another character from Game of Thrones, is that a problem? It should not be because the show is fantastic and is full of complex characters. Sandor (Rory McCann) is one of the many skilled fighters in the show and books. With a world full of trained killers, Sandor is up there. Besides his massive size and can kill just about anyone in his path, he grows to be much more. At first, he comes off as a brooding character who only does things for himself. Defending Arya showed there was some humanity in him. When he reemerges later in the series, after thinking he had died for so long, he avenges the camp that had saved his life. Now we see Sandor standing with an army to fight White Walkers. The fire vision changes him for good which makes his decision to fight against the evilest force in the world.

 

#1: John Luther (Luther)

 

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Image via BBC

Idris Elba is at his best with this gritty crime drama. His character Luther is an emotionally invested detective. The emotional investment is a gift and a curse. As he gets more invested, more time and resources get put to catch the criminal he is chasing. However, his methods cross a moral line. Physically hurting suspects to flat out almost killing some. The show opens with him letting a serial killer fall which puts him in a coma. Luther takes the emotionally connected police drama to the next level with its gritty stories and unique protagonist.

 

 

Those are just ten great anti-heroes. Of course, there are many from all sorts of genres. Be sure to comment below some of your favorites in the comments.

 

Header image via Showtime

 

 

20 Best Games of E3 2018

E3 2018 had many fantastic games to announce or to show games we already knew. Microsoft, Bethesda, and Sony, in particular, had the best conferences to me. Everyone had something interesting to show. Sure, there were bumps in the road. Some conferences had technical issues. Sony had some problems regarding their pacing which was awkward and boring at times. When they got to the games, it was terrific. In this list of the twenty best game of E3 2018, keep in mind this is my list. Nothing is in particular order, and these are games I am looking forward to. You may not see games that you are looking forward to, and that is okay. So, let’s not lift up pitchforks and civilly enjoy some amazing games.

#1: Anthem (Release date: 2019)

Bioware’s new game looks quite impressive. Players have these different suits that seem like you are Iron Man to fight off monsters. You can switch between suits for different tactical reasons. The game is supposed to be online in the same way that games like Destiny are set up. I am worried because of that. Games similar to Destiny and The Division I did not like. I felt that the online world did not work that well and overall, I did not have fun. Despite my worries, the game’s world looks interesting, beautiful, and dangerous. The gameplay shown looks tight with various ways to go about any scenario. The ambitious title could lean either way to greatness or a complete embarrassment. I hope for the best since Bioware’s last endeavor with the latest Mass Effect was not great, to say the least.

 

#2: Battlefield V (Release date: October 19, 2018)

The new Battlefield is taking place during World War 2. That should not be a surprise after the massive success of Battlefield 1. The game is taking destruction to a whole new level, which I feel like every game in the franchise says. I hope they are right about that since it has been a while for the games to show off the destruction in an exciting way. The gameplay was shown looks just as to expect from a Battlefield game. The visuals are stunning, and the gunplay is some of the best in modern FPSs. The storytelling from the last entry is making a return along with other modes for online. They say there are no loot boxes, microtransactions, or a season pass. People are skeptical because of these airlifts so we will see. It is hard for gamers to trust EA, especially after Battlefront II. I have high hopes, but I will try to keep them tempered in case something disappoints me.

 

#3: Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice (Release date: 2019)

FromSoftware has announced what the mysterious trailer that had the infamous words “Shadows Die Twice” means. It is Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. From the trailer, it appears to be their similar formula that fans of Dark Souls are familiar with. The spin on the formula is how much maneuverability is in the game, and the thematics are set in a samurai world styled world. The trailer was full of stunning visuals and ferocious gameplay. The fresh take with the formula that they have placed in some of their games is one of the best surprises to come out of E3. I am blown away by the game. I had guessed they would announce a new game in my predictions, but I did not see this coming. I cannot wait to dive into this new world and die a million times due to the extreme difficulty.

 

#4: Metro: Exodus (Release date: February 22, 2019)

Why is every game release in February, more specifically the 22nd? Either way, it adds onto a day full of fantastic games. The third installment of the Metro franchise has me excited. The first game was a solid effort. The sequel Metro: Last Light being a masterpiece. This next game continues the adventure in a new way. One of the prominent features is how open areas are. Not that the game is an open world, but each level is bigger with more freedom for the player to explore.  The little bit of gameplay and the trailers we have seen so far shows how beautiful the game looks. The gameplay expands from what we already know. New weapons and creatures are demonstrated fashionably. I feel confident that this will be the best game in the series yet.

 

#5: Days Gone (Release date: February 22, 2018)

I told you, a lot is coming on this day. There are more games than Days Gone and Metro, which is insane. Anyways, this open world, survival, zombie, biker game looks fantastic. I know the developers call them “freakers,” but let’s be honest that they are their version of a zombie. The game looks unique from all of the hundreds of other zombie games. The fresh take gives survival a whole new meaning. Weather, hostile humans, and freakers are all a threat to you. The huge hordes of enemies remind me of that terrible World War Z movie, but in a good way. If the open world has enough activities and variety along with a good story, then this will be another addition to PlayStation’s already massive catalog of incredible single player experiences.

 

#6: Dying Light 2 (Release date: TBA)

What a surprise this is. I liked the first Dying Light. A lot of improvements from Dead Island along with a fun parkour system. The game fell flat in many areas, but the gameplay was excellent. Crafting to make a machete into a fierce blade that will light zombies on fire or making a baseball bat with nails coming through. The open world gameplay was a ton of fun, but the story was a mess. The new game opens the doors to a big open world where consequences matter. Choices are made that will change up the world around you in either positive or negative ways. I love being given options in games; it is one of my favorite mechanics. Sadly, too many games give an illusion of choice. In reality, a lot of games are too set up where choices will not make a difference. I hope that is not the case here. Also, I hope cooperative play stays. Playing with friends in the first game was a ton of fun. I hope improvements from the first game are made to make this a great experience.

 

#7: Cyberpunk 2077 (Release date: TBA)

CD Projekt Red’s new game is quite ambitious. Nobody knows how so, but with their work in games such as The Witcher, we know it will be huge. They have been working on the game for years. Previously our only look was a teaser to show they were working on something. Now we got a fantastic trailer that shows snippets of gameplay. We see the world that they have built, and it looks unbelievable. The trailer might be the greatest trailer I have ever seen. The level of detail along with the stunning visuals is breathtaking. All that is needed to sell me on this game is to see gameplay. I am partially sold based on what we see of the world, but I need an in-depth look at the game. If CD Projekt Red nail their vision, then we might have one of the biggest and most innovative games that the world has ever seen.

 

#8: Doom Eternal (Release date: TBA)

I called it in my predictions. We are getting a sequel to 2016’s DOOM. The trailer is a short teaser that is everything to expect from the franchise. Nobody knows that much about the game, but it appears the story is set on Earth. Buildings are in ruins, and hell has taken over. If they can evolve some of their mechanics and introduce new ones, then it should be just as great as the first in their reboot. Give me graphic violence, heavy metal, and awesome weapons for my killing then I will be happy. More will be announced in August during Quake Con.

 

#9: Fallout 76 (Release date: November 14, 2018)

If I had to make a list of games I am most excited for that consisted of three games, then it would be The Last of Us Part 2Spider-Man, and Fallout 76. Out of major franchises, Fallout is my favorite. I love the world with all of its lore. The games are full of heart with its horror, sci-fi, and comedy. My dream was to have an online game set in this world. Now that dream has come true. All I have ever wanted is to play in the world of Fallout with my friends. Now we get to set up a home and kill other players set in West Virginia. I could not be more excited to play this game. Bethesda always knocks it out of the park with their games and this will be just like everything else they have done on a grander scale. Four times bigger than the already colossal Fallout 4 will give you and friends so many hours to explore this vast world. With a release date set this close, I could not be happier.

 

#10: Rage 2 (Release date: TBC Spring 2019)

I have never played the original Rage. After I saw the first trailer, and now the gameplay from E3, I am sold on this game. If you have not seen it, then imagine Mad MaxDOOM, and Borderlands coming together into one glorious game. The first game did okay with critics by getting 79% on Metacritic. What is surprising is that the game was so long ago, back in 2010. The big gap seems like this will be partially a sequel, but half of a reboot to let newcomers in. The gameplay is all about maneuverability, crazy weapons, and a lot of killing in this massive open world. It is unclear as of writing as to what you will be able to do in this open world besides kill and destroy. Either way, the gameplay looks fluid and satisfying with some gorgeous graphics. Id Software brought us games like DOOM, so I have high hopes for this one.

 

#11: Wolfenstein Youngblood (Release date: TBA 2019)

Wolfenstein Youngblood is a standalone taking place in 80’s after the events of the last Wolfenstein game. I have never been a fan of the series until these latest games. They are brutal with fluid gameplay. Also, how could I not play a game that is about brutally killing Nazis to take back America? The new standalone has you play as one of BJ’s twin daughters. A first to not be being as BJ in a Wolfenstein title. The game will be cooperative with each player playing as one of the daughters. I already knew I would play, but now I get to kill Nazis with a friend makes me want this game even more. With some added features along with the fluid gameplay and excellent gunplay then this will be a highlight in FPSs for 2019.

 

#12: Shadow of the Tomb Raider (Release date: September 14, 2018)

I love the latest trilogy of Tomb Raider games. Now that we get to complete the trilogy this September has me ecstatic. The brutal take on Lara Croft’s adventures is fantastic. She is a brutal warrior who is quite sympathetic. Each game has insane obstacles that are satisfying to conquer. Along with upgrades that make you feel more powerful to take on new enemies gives the games a great sense of progression. The new game is expected to give bigger areas to explore and more tombs that will be deadlier. September is a stacked month already and with this release date for Lara, the month looks even better.

 

#13: Just Cause 4 (Release date: December 4, 2018)

The latest entry in the ridiculous sandbox that feels like Michael Bay’s dream game, Just Cause, is back for more explosions. The game is one of many on this list that was leaked by Walmart Canada. Then Steam leaked the game a few days ago which made it all seem true. The game follows our protagonist Rico on a new adventure. Just like all of the games, the story is fairly similar. A powerful group has taken over a country or region and you must stop them. This time Rico is facing a female antagonist who runs a militia group. The two new features shown at E3 were the new grappling hook and weather system. The grappling hook has new features to give the player more freedom to play around. They also made it so the grappling hook is more intuitive for new players. The weather is deadly from sandstorms to giant tornados. From what we can see in the video presentation, the game looks just as absurd as ever in the best possible way. If you are a fan of open world sandboxes then this is the game just for you. I hope the game does not suffer from the same issues as Just Cause 3.

 

#14: Marvel’s Spider-Man (Release date: September 7, 2018)

Like I said before, this is one of my top games. While The Last of Us 2 is my number one game I am waiting for in general, out of games coming in 2018, Spider-Man is my number one. The fact that Insomniac is making this game is perfect. The company is known for the animations, beautifully stylized graphics, fluid gameplay, and all of their crazy weapons. If you have played Ratchet and Clank or Sunset Overdrive, then you know that there is not a single company better than Insomniac to make a game based on one of the best superheroes around. The open world game will take you on both a Spider-Man and Peter Parker adventure. With the latest E3 presentation we got to see gameplay of the open world along with a story mission which reveals several villains. It appears that they are taking a Sinister Six approach, which beats the movies to it since Sony attempted this before. The game is stunning along with what we see in the gameplay, it looks like it has fluid movement all around. I have been waiting for a game like this to come along with Spider-Man 2. Now that it is almost here, I just have to wait a few more months.

 

#15: The Last of Us Part II (Release date: TBA)

After all this time, we finally got to see some gameplay at E3. Along with incredibly realistic animations, beautiful graphics, and gruesome gameplay, The Last of Us Part II looks like a technological achievement in gaming. Especially the animations, the work on that is to a quality never before seen in video games. A kiss looks like a real kiss. Kills look on a different level of brutality and realism. The game has some UI changes that make that game look better. The way you aim with a bow is more of a traditional cursor which is easier to aim and see. Crafting is back which looks about the same for the most part, just easier to navigate. The stealth is improved greatly when it was already excellent. We did not see any zombie killing action, but Ellie taking down cultists was good enough. I have high hopes that this will be better than the first game. The Last of Us is my favorite game, so if this is better than it will be a dream come true.

 

#16: Ghost of Tsushima (Release date: TBA)

Sucker Punch, the minds behind Infamous and Sly Cooper are coming out with an alternative take on the Mongolian era. This open world game looks beautiful and seems to have wonderful combat. We see various sword fights along with various ways to traverse the area such as horseback and climbing. Out of every surprise, there was in terms of gameplay demos, Ghost of Tsushima takes the cake. PlayStation’s big four games they are pushing are The Last of Us Part IISpider-ManDays Gone, and Ghost of Tsushima. Not much else is known about the game though. Sucker Punch has a great catalog of games so we can expect a certain level of quality. The company knows how to make an open world game with excellent maneuverability from Infamous, so their new title is in good hands.

 

#17: Resident Evil 2 (Release date: January 25, 2019)

Yes, I am putting a remake on this list. From the trailer, we can see the game looks stunning. This is not just a remaster, but a remake from the ground up. As someone who has never touched the older Resident Evil games, I am quite excited. The trailer shows off zombies tearing people apart, Raccoon City is in ruins, and Leon looks young in beautiful new animations. Some more zombie killing might be too much more most people since all I hear are complaints about the abundance of zombie games. I am excited and will take all of the zombie games in the world if they are good. Starting off the year with Resident Evil will be perfect.

 

#18: Jump Force (Release date: TBA 2019)

Bandai Namco’s new fighting game looks like an anime epic. Having characters from NarutoOne PieceDragon Ball Z and more fighting one another. The cinematic trailer looks chaotic and beautiful with these iconic anime characters fighting. Not much is known about the game yet since all we have seen is an announcement trailer to show off an explosive cinematic. Hopefully, we see more soon.

 

#19: Death Stranding (Release date: TBA)

Kojima’s new collaboration with Mads Mikkelsen, Norman Reedus, and Guillermo Del Toro looks weird, to say the least. The latest trailer shows some gameplay, that is almost all walking around. The cinematics is beautiful and give no hint as to what the game is about. Mads has even said that the story has been explained to him many times and he is still confused. This is to be expected from Kojima, but we can expect that the game will be to a certain standard of quality. Elements of the game have been described, but those are also cryptic to a degree. We won’t know what we are getting until we play the game somewhere in the future.

 

#20: Beyond Good and Evil 2 (Release date: TBA)

I have never played the first game, so I am worried. It appears the that Beyond Good and Evil 2 will heavily follow the first game to a degree. Despite not understanding anything I am seeing, I am blown away by the trailers that we keep seeing. The latest trailer at E3 is phenomenal. Alongside the cinematic trailer for CyberpunkBeyond Good and Evil 2 showed off the next best trailer. These two games might have the best trailers in video game history. My big worry is that the game will have too much involved with the first game that will make the story too confusing for me. I might have to find where I can play the first…

 

That is my list of my favorite games that we got to see at E3 2018. I know there are some major games missing, but there are some that I am not looking forward to. That is okay because you might be. Be sure to comment below what you liked the most at this E3!

Header Image via CD Projekt Red

E3 Predictions: What Might Happen During E3 2018

E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, where all of the biggest companies in video games come to announce new games or give some additional information on games we already know. The event is starting up on June 12-14. A lot has previously been announced such as Bethesda’s surprising reveals of Rage 2 and Fallout 76. Despite knowing so much, there is a lot to predict. Some of these I feel entirely confident in, while in others it is mere speculation. I will go over ten things that might happen during E3 2018.

#10: Superman from Rocksteady Studios

Rumors have been circulating that Rocksteady Studios, the people behind the Batman: Arkham games, are making a new superhero game. This time they are leaving the Dark Knight to go towards Superman. These are just rumors, but the company has not released a title since 2015’s Batman: Arkham Knight. A recent leak on 4chan claims that the game will be at E3 and this week Game Informer will feature the game on the cover of their July issue. With a few days away, we will know whether this is just some rumor or a real treat for the Superman fans who have been clamoring for Rocksteady to make this Superman game. I am not a fan of the character, but if it is done well like the other games that Rocksteady have done, then I am already sold.

 

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Image via NetherRealm Studios

 

 

#9: DOOM 2 Revealed

The reboot of DOOM back in 2016 from id Software was beautiful and gruesome return in the best way. The fast-paced action that the series was always known for with a facelift to make it up to the standards of moderns FPSs made this game brilliant. With the added heavy metal soundtrack to the mass killing and brutal violence, this was a highlight of 2016 for me. Since the game was such a huge hit by selling 2million copies on PC alone, along with praise from fans and critics, it would make sense for a sequel. Whether or not we see the next installment this year is questionable. I think Bethesda will come out with some games this year, but seeing DOOM is not too likely. My prediction is that we will get a reveal with a trailer and maybe some additional information.

 

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Image via Bethesda and id Software

 

 

#8: Trailer and Possibly More for Avengers Game by Square Enix

Nobody knows a lot about the Avengers game that Square Enix is making. The game had a teaser trailer a few years ago, but nothing has come out since. After taking a break from E3, maybe we can get a trailer for the upcoming game. To say that we will get a lot is hard to say, but unlikely. Most likely we will get a trailer, and maybe someone will come out to briefly talk about the game. Marvel wants to start going into video games just like how the company has dominated movies and had a hand in TV. With their upcoming Spider-Man PS4 exclusive that is being developed by Insomniac, this is the beginning of Marvel pairing up with developers to get their hands into this industry. With their deal with Square Enix, it is not far-fetched to assume that Marvel wants to get these games into the hands of gamers as soon as possible. I hope to finally get a better look at what is known to be The Avengers Project from Square, but I am not too confident in this prediction.

 

 

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Image via Marvel Studios

 

 

#7: Fallout 76 Release Date and Gameplay

So, the release date aspect might be far-fetched, but I feel entirely confident in the reveal of some gameplay. Bethesda’s conference will be their longest they have ever done. With Fallout being present, a lot of time will be on one of their biggest IPs. They have said we will see what this game truly is about during their conference. A lot of speculation has gone around about this being an online survival game similar to Rust. That speculation started since it has been confirmed that this will not be the typical Fallout game we have seen in recent years. Whatever it is, I know it in my heart that Bethesda will show off gameplay. I do believe the possibility of a release date being announced. Bethesda loves to make a splash at E3 just like they did a few years ago when announcing Fallout 4. Sure, their conference last year was underwhelming, but this year is going to be their comeback. Rumors have come about that the game is coming out sooner than we think. Amazon has accidentally posted the game with a release date of July 31. Now that has been taken down onto a generic Dember 31 release window, but this gives an intriguing hint especially to anyone who loves to speculate.

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Image via Bethesda

 

 

#6: Crackdown 3 Release Date

After a long time of development hell and scrutiny from fans after their last reveal of the gameplay, Crackdown 3 has had some issues, to say the least. Microsoft has struggled with this with console generation. Their struggle partially stems from the lackluster of exclusives. They don’t have that many and the ones they do have are underwhelming. Crackdown 3 has lost most of its hype due to all of the game’s issues such as fans critiquing the game’s graphics and gameplay that looks out of date. After such a long development, I feel during Microsoft’s E3 conference, they will announce the game’s release date and not delay it any longer. The company needs a significant push with some big exclusives, and this could be the game to do it. If fixing those issues are present during the conference, then Crackdown 3 could help Microsoft win some brownie points with their fans.

UPDATE: Various sites are reporting that sources in Microsoft are going to delay the long-awaited Crackdown 3 to 2019. Looks like I was wrong before E3 even happened.

 

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Image via Microsoft Studios

 

 

#5: The Last of Us Part II Shows Gameplay

It has been confirmed that Naughty Dog will show more of their most anticipated game The Last of Us Part II. PlayStation has a lot to show, and this is one of their biggest titles to show off to the world. Since we have been given trailers at any presentation at E3 or PlayStation Experience, I bet that Naughty Dog will finally show the gameplay. If this is true, then, expect Ellie to kill some humans or clickers brutally. Some new features will be shown off along with some enhanced features from the first game. We might get some more information on the story, but that will be it. I doubt they will reveal the release date. If they do, it will be far away and used in broad terms such as “releasing in 2019”. Either way, this is my number one game I am looking forward to besides Spider-Man. 

 

The last of us 2
Image via Naughty Dog

 

 

#4: Red Dead Redemption II Shows Gameplay

Rockstar Games has given us several trailers that hint at the story of their highly anticipated game Red Dead Redemption II. The latest trailer shows off some potential gameplay, but not a direct gameplay trailer. With only a few months left until the game is released, the company has to start marketing the game more. However, this is Rockstar who have always done this unconventionally. That makes it difficult to predict their moves, but I believe we will see gameplay soon whether it is as E3 or not.

 

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Image via Rockstar Games

 

 

#3: FromSoftware’s New Game

The developers of Bloodborne and Dark Souls have a few projects in the making. One of which was teased with a trailer that had the words “Shadows Die Twice.” Fans have gone crazy with what this could mean. Many have speculated that this will be a sequel to Bloodborne. The game was well received by fans of the Dark Souls games and by newcomers. The game was a lot smaller in scope, but with a sequel, we can expect a lot more from it. Even then these words could lead to an entirely different game. It has been confirmed that Dark Souls 3 is the last of that series, so our best bet is getting a Bloodborne 2.

 

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Image via FromSoftware

 

 

#2: Spider-Man Shows the Open World in Detail

Insomniac’s upcoming Spider-Man is a dream come true for me. With this being the next massive exclusive for PlayStation, expect the show for this game to be huge. Game Informer did a whole month showing off the game, but with E3 we can expect some more details that we have not seen before. The game released this September, so it is hard to guess how much they will show. I believe we will get a better look at the game’s open world along with some more gameplay to show off some extra features. A part of me does think this could be a smaller presentation due to the game’s release date being so soon, but this could be their way of grabbing people who were skeptical.

 

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Image via Insomniac Games

 

 

#1: Cyberpunk 2077 Trailer

CD Projekt Red, the company behind The Witcher game,s have been working on their upcoming game Cyberpunk 2077 for a while now. The game could be the year for the company to make a huge splash that could take over all of the chatter during E3. Everyone will talk about whatever they show, and if we see enough, then it will be the game that gets talked about the most. The highly anticipated game does not have much information on it, and the CD Projekt Red have been quiet about the game. Back in January, the Twitter the game came alive. The last post before was back in 2013, then on January 10 we received a little tweet that said, “beep.” The tweet could mean that this will be the year for Cyberpunk 2077 to give details, but how much will we see? The game has been under development for years, but to show up and announce a release date like this is unlikely. The game probably needs more time than that to market itself, but they could be bold enough to give a release date for this year. That mic drop moment could be useful. Nothing is certain about whether we will finally see a new trailer, gameplay, or even a release date, but we can cross our fingers and hope.

 

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Image via CD Projekt Red

 

 

Those are my biggest predictions for E3. The expo is right around the corner which will either make my predictions look brilliant or completely useless. We will see how much of a waste of time this article is. Comment below what you think of my predictions and put out some of your predictions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Header image via Rockstar Games

 

10 Games That Could Have Been Amazing, but Were Not

Developing games is incredibly difficult. The process continues to get harder as technology advances, industry changes, and the community of gamers change too. People have different standards regarding what makes a good game compared to twenty years ago. A game can succeed for a variety of reasons, same with reasons for a game to fail.  Here are ten games that could have been amazing, but were not.

#10: Friday the 13th 

A game taking the iconic killer from the cult classic Friday the 13th series is a brilliant idea. Most of the ideas in this game are excellent and well executed. What makes this game fall short of greatness is its clunky gameplay, glitches, lag, and other technical issues. Playing a good match with some friends is some of the most fun that I have ever had in a multiplayer game. Sadly, the game’s bugs and team killing from random players (which got patched thankfully) killed it. While the developers are constantly fixing the game and adding new content, maybe this will be gold in the future. Maybe with a sequel, the developers can start completely fresh and learn from their mistakes. None-the-less I hope them the best because of the positive experiences I have had, despite a lot of negatives aspects.

 

friday
Image via IllFonic and Gun Media

 

 

#9: Destiny 2

I should lump the first game in here too, but I am going to focus on Destiny 2. The first game was rough at first. I fell off, but the people who stayed ended up with a solid game after many updates. That should not be the case for a game. A game should come out as close as possible to 100%, but that is not the world we live in anymore. Destiny 2 promised so much more including a better story and more content. However, it felt like the beginning of the first game regarding its quality. Players were given a better story, but the campaign ended up being terrible and short. Players are in a constant state of fury over the decisions that Bungie has made. Every few weeks there is a news article about how something new in the game that is causing the players to be furious. Recently the latest DLC is getting reports of reusing assets and overall unoriginal. The multiplayer sci-fi FPS was supposed to be Bungie’s big franchise after they had left Halo, but that does not look like the case. With the series having its whole history so far is in a constant state of tension, the future of Destiny does not look bright.

 

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Image via Bungie

 

 

#8: No Man’s Sky

With all of the hype and the fantastic E3 presentations, No Man’s Sky seemed like it could have been the most ambitious game ever made. If it succeeded, then we could see the game as one of gaming’s biggest achievements. However, we did not get nearly the content that was promised. Questions about whether or not Hello Games were flat out lying or had some internal issue we did not know about. The company had its fair share of problems such as a major flood. They kept pushing forward and looked to be the underdog. Instead, the game killed their credibility as a developer and have embarrassed so many people. The game ended up being less beautiful, almost no content, and the center of the universe mystery ended up being a huge disappointment. After a lot of updating, the game is supposed to be at a solid state of quality. Some fans still play and remain loyal. However, it feels like the damage is done for good. We will have to wait and see how far the damage from No Man’s Sky will last when Hello Games release another game.

 

no mans sky
Image via Hello Games

 

 

#7: Call of Duty: WWII

Before going into World War 2, the Call of Duty franchise was dead to me. I had not touched the games in a while, but I decided to go back into the series with this one. While I had fun and liked a lot of what they had done, there were many issues. I will cut it short because I do have a review of the game, I need to discuss it here. The gameplay is solid, and the war game mode is incredibly fun. Sadly, not much is different compared to other entries in the series. A lot of new mechanics are just ripped off of other games such as the Destiny like hub world for players to hang out at. The campaign was not the worst we have seen, but it fell flat and lacked much depth. This might be the best game in years for the FPS juggernaut, but that does not mean we have an excellent WW2 shooter.

 

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Image via Sledgehammer Games

 

 

#6: Star Wars Battlefront II

I don’t think there are any games on this list that are this damaging. EA was being talked about by major media outlets that never cover video games. Social media exploded with a fury that took over any site you went on. Microtransactions and past mistakes from the first game are what made Star Wars Battlefront II a complete disaster. The game had its positives and fixed issues from the disappointing first game, they were not able to be free of criticism. If we got a modern version of the classic Battlefront II with extra content, then people would have been happy. Somehow a game that is over a decade old is somehow better than its modern counterpart.

 

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Image via DICE

 

 

#5: The Order: 1886

PlayStation has been on a spree of excellent exclusives. Especially exclusives that are story based on the ability to tell a compelling story while delivering great gameplay. They have had a couple of games fall flat, such as The Order: 1886. A weak story, with weak characters, and a generic third-person shooter style that made this one a forgotten title in the ever-growing catalog on the PS4. The main attraction the game did have that even the haters agreed upon were the game’s stunning graphics. Other than a test to show how beautiful a game can look on the PS4, there is nothing here. A typical shooter that is full of QTE and bland writing.

 

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Image via Ready at Dawn

 

 

#4: Sea of Thieves

Xbox has been criticized for not having good exclusives. Sea of Thieves seemed like a potential console seller to get everyone onboard. What could go wrong with the legendary developer Rare working on an open world pirate game that is mainly online? You get to be a pirate with friends to hunt for treasure, fight monsters, and fight other players. Sadly, the game lacks any content or satisfying rewards. I listed everything to do in the game more or less. Players do not have a lot to look around at when it comes to activities or other players to fight. A common complaint from many people is that they have a ton of fun for a few minutes when finding a treasure chest or fighting another player’s ship, but then it is a long time of sailing around doing nothing. If you have friends, then it might be worth it. Maybe with several updates and added content then perhaps this can come out to be a real gem. We all know Microsoft needs a gem to come up in their catalog.

 

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Image via Rare

 

 

#3: Outlast 2

I don’t think any game on this list makes me angrier. I love the first Outlast. It has its obvious flaws, but it is one of the best horror games around. The terrifying atmosphere, a great story with many hidden elements to discover and learn about, and the game took some basic mechanics to make for a fun game. The sequel builds on nothing new regarding gameplay. The story is incoherent and does not tie in well to the original at all. Most of all, it is boring and uncreative. Besides looking pretty, for the most part, there is nothing positive to say really. The enemies are less impressive, unlike the first title’s antagonists such as Chris Walker. The violence was over-the-top in the least complimentary way, and I will emphasize again how the story makes no sense what so ever. Little is done to explain itself and does not do itself any justice when the story starts to give answers. This game is an insult to fans of the original.

 

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Image via Red Barrels

 

 

#2: Mafia III

Let’s go into another game that broke my heart. The previous entry, Mafia II, was an empty open world game but had its positive qualities. The game had terrific driving and shooting mechanics. Everything had a weight to it that felt great. Sure some of it was clunky, but the game felt good overall. Plus there was such a great story that was told. When the new entry was announced, I was so excited. The gameplay looked more polished and fluid, with an exciting story. The only good thing I can say about Mafia III is it was pretty fun to shoot, driving was not as good but remained fun, and the story was quite good. Sadly, the gameplay felt not as satisfying, and the missions were dull. Every task felt recycled with only a variety of a handful of different missions. With extra content, none of it was creative. The developers made a few things to do then spread them all out across the map to make it feel like there were things to do. It felt cheap and lazy. I have no idea what could have gone wrong to make this such a disappointing sequel. If any game on this list should have been great, it is this one. If they built upon the last game by taking the best parts of it and expanding on those while improving the problems, then this would have been one of the best games of 2016.

 

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Image via Hangar 13

 

 

#1: Dead Rising 4

I don’t know why I expected anything from this game. I love the first Dead Rising even with all of its flaws. If the series kept the positive qualities of that game and improved the weaknesses, then maybe this could be a great franchise. However, the series forgot how to mix drama and comedy with weak gameplay. The gameplay continued to expand on what they had done in the third title. The same old issues from that game are in the fourth entry. The main problem I have is how we were told that they were going back to the roots of Dead Rising. Besides having Frank West in Willamette, there is nothing that will make you feel like you are back in the origins of the series. Even more ridiculous scenarios with laughing “serious” moments. Not only that, but this is a straight up insult to fans. Not just by the gameplay, but the story. SPOILER: Frank dies at the end, and there is even a DLC of him being a zombie. The way he is killed off does not feel right. Once we get to be in his shoes again, he is killed at the end. I have been burned so many times by the Dead Rising games, but this was the final straw.

 

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Image via Capcom Vancouver

 

 

That is it for this list. These were games that I or others had hoped would be good but ended up not being good. Whether they fell flat because of past mistakes, glitches, or microtransactions, they had all failed in the hearts of gamers. Even if you like any game here, it is hard to argue that the game does not need improvements. Be sure to comment what you think of my list here and what games disappointed you.

 

10 Heavy Metal Bands with Consistently Awesome Album Artwork

Making a great album is one thing, but having a great album cover is another. I feel like sometimes album art goes underappreciated, especially in a time where music is mostly digital. Buying a vinyl that has the enlarged album artwork is a beautiful thing to own. Sadly, many people don’t buy vinyl or CDs. Even then, the artwork goes usually ignored with people not necessarily talking about how the cover looks like. Here we will be celebrating bands that do it right. Some of these bands may have an album or two that does not have the best artwork, but their overall catalog is full of beautiful, intriguing, and even brutal album covers that need to be given some love. A few of these bands have nothing but high-quality album covers that are all amazing to look at. The groups on the list are not in any order, so I am not saying anyone is better than the other. I am just looking at bands who get the right artist to create such beautiful pieces of art to go along with great music. Here are ten bands with consistently excellent album artwork.

#10: The Black Dahlia Murder (Metal Blade Records)

The Black Dahlia Murder has been one of the best death metal bands that have formed in the 2000’s. Not only do they make phenomenal music, but their album art is beautifully crafted. The first two albums were great, but the album art was not very interesting. Their album Ritual and Deflorate have a different style than their latest albums, but still beautifully crafted. What puts the band on this list for me is the fact that records such as Nocturnal, Abysmal, Into the Everblack, and Nightbringers all have one to two colors with some black for that added detail. The pure blue from Nocturnal, for example, is beautiful. The albums all have a high level of detail that makes you want to look at it to absorb all of the little details. This holds especially true to Abysmal which is full of details of people getting ripped apart from hellish monsters. The Black Dahlia Murder is one of those bands who will have trouble disappointing their fans with excellent music and album artwork.

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#9: Amon Amarth (Metal Blade Records)

The thematics of a Viking metal band like Amon Amarth, it is hard not to have fantastic album covers. With the history of Vikings and Norse mythology at your disposal will make having the right album cover to go with the music should be a piece of cake. With albums such as Surur Rising, JomsvikingDeceiver of the Gods, and Twilight of the Thunder God to be the prime examples of some of the best album art in heavy metal. Whether it is a firey battle from Surtur Rising or an image of Thor from Twilight of the Thunder God, there is something to look at in astonishment. Having an eye-catching cover will always draw in that curious metalhead who is looking for a new band to dive into. Almost every album in Amon Amarth’s catalog is full of extensive detail such as these albums.

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#8: A Day to Remember (Victory Records and Epitaph Records)

A Day to Remember is unique in many ways. Mixing a pop-punk style with metalcore is really interesting and works out in a great way. Another aspect that is quite unusual is their album art theme. Every album features a man who is always facing away, so all you see is his back. The art is always stylized and as of lately, features a lot of detail. The best example being Bad Vibrations that opens up (if you have the CD or vinyl) to a whole lot more than meets the eye. References to previous material in this subway station are littered throughout. The biggest fans of the band would have to look at the album for hours to pick out every little detail. The band’s Sophomore album For Those Who Have Heart is much more simplistic with the man facing away as usual with a bat behind is back. The tan color with the silhouetted man is simple as can be but intriguing. Each album takes you on a different experience with the mysterious man to make for an iconic look to every album by A Day to Remember. Once you glance at a record, then you will automatically know who that it is ADTR.

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#7: Cannibal Corpse (Metal Blade Records)

It would be insulting to not have one of the most iconic and influential death metal bands on this list. Not only has Cannibal Corpse been arguably the most influential band in the genre, but they have some of the most iconic album covers in heavy metal. With albums such as Tomb of the Mutilated. Butchered at Birth, and Eaten Back to Life that has brought people so much terror throughout the world. Zombies, disfigured corpses, and deranged killers are all featured throughout the band’s catalog. My personal favorite is Tomb of the Mutilated which shows a man ripped in half eating out a woman who is bound and been butchered. Now that is true metal right there!

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#6: Cattle Decapitation (Metal Blade Records)

Cattle Decapitation uses its gruesome and brutal music to provide an important message about how humans abuse animals and the environment. With this, they depict animals in rather positive ways and show humans suffering in the most horrific ways. The Anthropocene Extinction and Monolith of Inhumanity might be in my top favorite album artworks of all time. They are some of the most horrendous and brutal covers that I have seen in recent years. Besides the flashy gruesome bodies depicted in the images below, everything is incredibly well done. Full of detail and beautifully drawn out, well as beautifully as rotting corpses can get. Karma Bloody Karma shows a different side to their artwork by showing something magical of a part man and bull with many arms holding cleavers and knives. The symbolism and message are quite compelling. Not only that, but it is quite different from their other albums that usually show some guy getting ripped to pieces in some fashion.

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#5: Job for a Cowboy (Metal Blade Records)

Job for a Cowboy might be a band who have gone quiet for a while, and questions are raised about whether we will get another album from the deathcore group. Despite these questions, what we do have are some stunning albums. Sun Eater can be looked at for hours by how beautifully crafted it is. A ritualistic image showing a woman who looks like she is performing some spell upon a burning city. Every album features a goat skull that has given an image to the band throughout the years. The skull might be slightly shown in records like Sun Eater, but their EPs and other LPs do display the head more prominently. Demoncracy and Ruination are dark and disturbing images that feature the infamous skull. The two albums are much more political by their imagery with the American flag being shown in Ruination or seeing lady justice with the skull on her head. She has an army of police with riot shield behind her as she holds up her scale that holds up some meat. Job for a Cowboy was one of the first deathcore bands that kickstarted the genre and will have some memorable albums to always look back on.

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#4: Iron Maiden (EMI and Capitol Records)

Iron Maiden is one of the most prominent and most influential heavy metal bands ever. Not only is their music changed the world of rock and metal forever, but they also have one of the most iconic mascots in the genre. Eddie the Head is featured consistently throughout their catalog. Eddie goes from using a hammer to smash someone to pieces in Killers, to an Egyptian theme in Powerslave, or even in some futuristic world in Somewhere in Time. The possibilities are endless and have always been incredible with each new album. It is impossible not to love the iconic character.

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#3: Skeletonwitch (Prosthetic Records)

Skeletonwitch feels to be quite an underrated band in the metal community. They mix quite a bit of different genres but mostly lean into the black metal world. Not only do they have incredible music, but some disturbing album art to go with it. Skulls and death plague each record just like any extreme band would have. The group lives up to their name by having skeletons and plenty of death to be featured on each cover. Breathing the Fire is one of their most brutal looking albums. Burned bodies and skeletons scattered throughout a firey field. At One with the Shadows is the band’s first album and it might be simple, but effective at being disturbing. The gruesome album features a Grim Reaper looking monster with a pentagram on his chest while holding several severed heads. The band has a theme, and they are sticking to it. A new album called Devouring Radiant Light is scheduled to release on July 20 of this year which will be the band’s first album in five years.

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#2: The Acacia Strain (Prosthetic Records and Rise Records)

The Acacia Strain is one of those bands who may not be that well known, but they have had continued influence among many groups in heavy metal in the 2000’s. Something I have always loved, especially in recent albums, is their wonderful colors displayed in their artwork that are vibrant and beautiful. Often albums such as Coma Witch and Wormwood feature birds with some other symbols and objects. Or the utter chaos that explodes in your face from Continent. Whether they are going for simple or complete destruction, their albums are always beautifully stylized and well crafted. Almost every record in the band’s catalog is full of color despite being a group that is full of hate and not-so-colorful lyrics.

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#1: Rings of Saturn (Unique Leader Records and Nuclear Blast Records)

The deathcore band Rings of Saturn have some stunning looking albums. Each one is full of vibrant colors that are impossible not to look at. With sci-fi horror themes featuring creatures and bizarre planets that are full of detail, you can look at any of their albums for some time and continue to pick out new details. With each album centered on a particular color, they manage to blend other colors to balance everything out to create a beautiful piece of art. Ultu Ulla has beautiful purple and green with a hint of blue in the mix. Another highlight in the band’s catalog is Dingir that is horrifying and at the same time beautiful. The album is full of various shades of blue and green to create something that is pretty to look at while managing to be quite disgusting at the same time. That is quite a remarkable thing to accomplish.

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That makes it for this list. What did you think of the albums featured here? Who do you think has some of the best album art in heavy metal? Be sure to comment your thoughts below!