🎮 Vintage vibes
A brief history of Crash Bandicoot, lost video game movies, and much more.
Mornin’. I was out shopping with my daughter recently, and at a clothing store—where I was naturally serving as her portable hanger—I looked over to see a row of vinyl records for sale.
To quote the great Arsenio Hall, it made me want to say “hmm.”
Later, we walked into an electronics store, and you guessed it—rows and rows of vinyl records on display.
So I went digging, and guess what? The vinyl record revival is well underway. According to Variety, vinyl record sales are up almost 22% in the first half of 2023 compared to the same time last year.
But that’s not all: Vinyl record sales have been rising for 17 consecutive years. If you can believe it, 43% of all albums sold in the U.S. last year were vinyl LPs, led by Taylor Swift's Midnights.
—Marques Edge, Tim Leong, Eric Alt, Andrew Nusca
P.S. In Friday’s edition, we asked you: What was Pitfall Harry’s niece’s name? The answer is Rhonda. She appears in Pitfall II: Lost Caverns, and in the 1983 cartoon series Saturday Supercade.
What’s up and down in the world rn.
Buffed: “End Call” button: Apple may change the longstanding location of the button for ending a phone call in a new version of its iPhone operating system. Here’s to consumers, um, not getting hung up on it.
Nerfed: Fantasy hockey. Hockey romance books have become popular on TikTok, but the spouse of one NHL player is no fan, citing a rise of “predatory and exploiting” comments about her husband. Cross-check yourself before you wreck yourself, fans.
Nerfed: Caffeinated adult beverages. Ben Affleck’s favorite donut purveyor is preparing to launch a new collection of hard iced coffees and hard iced teas. America still runs on Dunkin’, just…responsibly.
Buffed: American soccer. Da’vian Kimbrough, 13, signed with a United Soccer League (USL) team, making him the youngest pro athlete in U.S. team sports history. And one of the few who needs his parents to drive him to work. —ME
A brief history of Crash Bandicoot
Let’s go back.
Think for a minute about all of the wacky ideas you and your buddies have hatched on long road trips. While we’re sure a lot of them were, uh, “great,” we’re willing to bet none of them ended up becoming iconic video game characters.
Settle in for a wild one as we chart the journey of the game series Crash Bandicoot from its Looney Tunes-inspired creation to its nostalgia-powered comeback.
Shameless plug: Introducing Illari, Overwatch 2's new hero
Overwatch 2: Invasion is here, packed with a new core PvP (player vs. player) game mode, new maps, and a new seasonal Battle Pass.
Plus there’s a new Support Hero named Illari.
What sets the so-called last Child of the Sun apart is her ability to go beyond healing to do damage to the opposition. Illari can light up the battlefield with her solar powered Ability Kit, and players will enjoy using her Solar Rifle and health-regenerating Healing Pylon, too.
Unlock Illari with a Premium Battle Pass or for free when you reach tier 45.
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Extractor: 4 intriguing ‘lost’ video game movies
Investigations of interest
The only thing movie fans love to discuss more than their favorite films are the tantalizing details of films that never were. Those ideas, collaborations, and adaptations that came close to reality but never quite materialized.
Executive editor Eric Alt takes a look at four video game adaptation “what ifs” to spark your imagination about what could have been…and what might still be.
Your moment of meme
Cruise into the work week with today’s playlist, which is easy like Sunday morning.
Here we go:
Lake Street Drive, “Hypotheticals.” The soulful vocals of Rachael Price ease you out of bed, then the beat hits and you find yourself shaking your groove thing. Listen on Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, YouTube. (Recommended by Marcus Moore, Blizzard)
Äl Jawala & Murmusica, "Wake Up." Like a gentle alarm, this tune coaxes you out of slumber. Before long you find your head bobbing, hand tapping, and feet moving. Listen on Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, YouTube. (Recommended by Harout Avakian, Activision)
Beyoncé & Travis Scott, “Delresto (Echoes).” A dream collaboration come true for the rapper, according to an interview with Complex: "I'm from Houston; she's from Houston." We see no problem. Listen on Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, YouTube. (Recommended by Max Levasseur, Activision Blizzard)
Nina Atsuko, "One Way Love.” A lighthearted song to get your week started—unless you are on the other side of unrequited love. Listen on Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, YouTube. (Recommended by Haley Ioppini, Activision)
DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince, "Summertime." The Grammy Award-winning song from the West Philly duo symbolizes warmer weather, cookouts, and days by the pool. Everything we will be wishing for in another month. Listen on Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, YouTube. (Recommended by Daisha McDaniel, Activision Blizzard)
Click the following image and…well, we don’t want to ruin the surprise.
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