Yesterday, Microsoft held their highly anticipated Xbox Series X Games Showcase, and well...after its conclusion I was left with the weird feeling of being less excited about its arrival. I was underwhelmed and highly critical of Microsoft's first showing back in May hoping that they were simply holding back for this showcase to blow us away, but honestly, it just felt flat. Here are the reasons why I was left disappointed by the Xbox Series X Games Showcase:
To say 2020 has been an eventful year would be the greatest understatement of all time. We are currently still weaving our way through a global pandemic which greatly disturbed the socio-economic balance of everyday life. In the Caribbean, we also had to deal with numerous (albeit varying in magnitude) earthquakes throughout the region as well as the unwanted arrival of a Saharan Dust storm that caused the temperature to sore. And then there is the current Black Lives Movement that sees thousands line the streets in protest of police brutality against people of colour and systemic racial injustice. The likes of which that saw spotlight being placed on black people in all industries, including animation. A spotlight that intensified this past week after 3 beloved black characters in 3 popular animated shows will be changing voice actors after their white VAs decided to step down to clear the path for a black colleague. A noble gesture, but should it matter who voices a character regardless of race?
Xbox die-hards will be tired of me referencing that horrible Xbox Series X event, but yesterday, PlayStation showed the world how's it's done. After a much understandable week delay, Sony finally unveiled its next-generation console, the PS5. Its design is debatable (it looks like your ISP router), but my attention was more fixated on the games. Speaking of, Sony revealed 26 games in a 1 hour+ period ranging from spirally open-world titles to smaller games where you hunt food bugs. It was a lot to process, but after sleeping on it here are the games that got me itching for the PS5's arrival:
As I put fingers to each key, I pause...I am feeling a wide array of different emotions ranging from rage to fear as the events of the George Floyd protests and the struggles of the Black Live Matters movement play out before my eyes. Being black myself but born and raised in a predominantly black nation, I still can't to this day fully relate to what most people of colour who experienced prejudice purely as a result of their skin colour. I was largely ignorant to such issues growing up and was way more concerned about defeating Bowser in Mario 64 and Goku fight against Freeza. Luckily for me, I was also a huge fan of the Kids WB Saturday cartoon block and the Static Shock series in particular. The episode 'Sons of Father' first aired on December 8 and successfully opened my eyes to the world of racism and the continuous fight against it.
Yikes! Since last week's announcement from Microsoft about their unveiling of first-ever Xbox Series X gameplay, the gaming world was thrown in a whirlwind of excitement and anticipation. With all the unfortunate hoopla of COVID-19 and its effects on our daily lives, 2020 being the year of the Next-Gen understandable got overshadowed. But, here comes Microsft at the right time to have us briefly forget about such terrors, and have us hyped for a much better end to the year than the beginning. Their Inside Xbox event just wrapped up, and....we saw a bit of next-gen, but, it was a bit underwhelming.
From Disney's Mulan to One Piece and One Punch Man of the Anime universe, we currently live in the era of live-action remakes. It's as if Tinsel town has finally hit the proverbial wall and ran out of original ideas, spawning all kind of film adaptions from other mediums such as comics, books, games and yes, even animation. I don't usually have an issue with the world of cinema looking elsewhere for inspiration, however, when it comes to live-action remakes of animated titles, it leaves a sour taste in my mouth. While there has been some success with these adaptations -looking at you The Jungle Book- there have been far too many missteps -looking at you Dumbo. But, it seems this will be the norm going forward so, I will be a good sport and at least give Hollywood/Netflix my recommended animated titles that deserve a live-action adaptation.
Hey I am Marlon Mcfarlane the writer here at Blue Crescent Studio & a longtime lover of all things Animation & Gaming.