The Wandering Village – Video Game Review

TL;DR – We have a remarkable base with an adorable presentation. It is just missing a hook to make it excel. 

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for this game; the game was in Early Access when reviewed  

The Onbu

The Wandering Village Review –

There is a growing joke in my friend circle that if you want to get me involved in a game, then it better have some kind of farming mode. This stems from my early years growing up on city builders, and to this day, I am always ready to dive into a video game that presents a new twist on the city-building formula. The last one to do so was Surviving Mars, where you built a colony in space, and today we look at a game where you build a city on, checks notes, the back of a giant tortoise.

So to set the scene, you were part of a people that had lived their lives in peace in a small fertile valley full of wonder, but eventually, the same toxic spore that had collapsed the rest of the society found you and you were forced to flee. It was a perilous journey, and just when all seemed lost, you stumbled across a miracle, the last of its kind, a giant Onbu, woken by those same spores. Now you have to build a village on its back, and hopefully, together, you can survive the calamity.

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Humankind Cartographic Educational Database –

TL;DR – Links to every geographical feature mentioned in Humankind so you can explore them if interested

The Mediterranean Map

Database –

Back we I was working on my Civilization VI map, I started to document all the locations I was using as a basis for the maps, and on the whole, I got some great feedback for that Cartographic Educational Database. With hat in mind, when I was starting my Humankind map, I did the smart thing and put all this data together at the same time, rather than going back over it at a later date doubling up my work. It also is part of my sharing that fun that I got as I learned more about the world we live in.

Below you will find links to Cultures and their Cities, Independent People, Cultural Wonders, Natural Wonders, and Landmarks.

Most of these links will be to the relevant Wikipedia page, just because that is probably the most practical option for most people, but there are some links to other sites where it was the best fit. Also, while I have tried to find easily accessible links to every feature, some of them don’t have that access. There is the odd one here and there, as well as the whole Bantu city list, which you can see below. Before we start, I have to thank the Humankind Wiki for collating all the cities for me so I did not have to dive into the code.

You can see the Full Humankind Map HERE. So let’s dive into the geographical world of Humankind.  

To assist with searching, you can jump to

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Humankind – Map-It

TL;DR – We map all of the eras of Humankind all in one map … okay many maps.

The Mediterranean Map

Mapping Humankind

One of the joys I get is mapping out universes, while I have charted out movie universes like the MCU and Grand Designs. However, one of my favourite things has been charting how 4X video games explore the world and its history. Today we are looking at the next entry in this series, charting all of Humankind from Amplitude Studios and Sega.

I had started making this map several times before running into roadblocks, like how do you make a map that shows Russia/Soviet Union or England/Great Britain? The way I previously fixed this issue with my Civilization map didn’t work here, and I started to wonder if I was Wile E. Coyote hitting my head against every ACME invention. However, one day it all clicked together, so I started down this road.

I worked it out by having a separate map for each era, all the cities, cultures, independent peoples, and wonders. Then we smashed it all together at the end in a wild kaleidoscope of overlapping entries. While putting this all together, I was still concerned it would not work. However, it kind of does. Before we start, I have to thank the Humankind Wiki for collating all the cities for me so I did not have to dive into the code. With that in mind, let us dive into the world of Humankind, which includes all the information from the base game and the Cultures of Africa Pack and Cultures of Latin America Pack DLCs. You can also see links to all the information in the map in our Humankind Cartographic Educational Database.

While all attempts have been made to ensure that everything is accurately placed, putting this together meant working from multiple sources, map projections, and sometimes not firm locations. As such, no matter how much you try, there might be slight discrepancies. With that in mind, let us dive into the maps.

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Resident Evil: Season 1 – TV Review

TL;DR – This is a silly, over-the-top, ridiculous show in all the right ways …until its not.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Netflix service that viewed this episode.

Welcome to New Raccoon City.

Resident Evil Review

When the original Resident Evil video game came out, I didn’t have a PlayStation, so I was tangentially aware of it and probably watched someone play it at some point. Still, I would never consider myself a fan at any moment and never had the drive to try and work out the convoluted lore built up over the years. But then the films came out, and at least the first couple were … let’s say engaging, but then they got … well, they got Resident Evil: The Final Chapter. I don’t think it would be hard to say that I was not chopping at the bit for a new Resident Evil TV Series, but then I watched one episode out of interest … and ended up watching them all.

So to set the scene, we opened in a ruined London in 2036, 14 years after the world ended. There are probably only 300 million people left on Earth in small walled communities or the few remaining nations like Fortress Scandinavia or the Umbrella Corporation. But there are 6 billion zombies or zeroes infected by the T-Virus ready to rip anyone’s throat. In a small research camp, Jade Wesker (Ella Balinska) has spent six months researching the Zeroes to see if the virus is mutating and allowing more cognitive control when she accidentally cuts herself and becomes a target for the horde. Back in 2022, three months before the fall, Jade (Tamara Smart), her sister Billie (Siena Agudong), and her father, Albert Wesker (Lance Reddick), have just arrived in their new home in New Raccoon City in South Africa. It has a bland, corporate feeling, but behind the scenes, the new boss of the Umbrella Corporation, Evelyn Marcus (Paola Núñez), is pushing hard to get the new drug Joy delivered to the market. The only issue is just what did happen at their plant in Tijuana? Now from here, we will be looking at the episode and season as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.       

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Fortnite: Or How I Learned to Stop Building and Love the Shenanigans – Video Game Review

TL;DR – After years of frustration with this game, the no-build mode finally coalesces the game for me.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Disclosure – This is a Free-to-Play with microtransactions, and I paid for the Battle Pass.

A crew shot as things explode in the background.

Fortnite Review –

Back in 2017, there was this odd game that exploded onto the video game scene, it was not the first Battle Royale style game on the market, but its free-to-play model and big marketing push made it the example all others wanted to copy. I tried the game when it first came out, and my biggest feeling at the time was that ‘this was not for me’. I just did not have the time in my life to learn how to work the building side of things. However, with the announcement that there would be a build-free mode, I decided to give the game another look and discovered just what people have been talking about for all these years.

So to set the scene, Fortnite is a Third-Person Shooter Battle Royale game. This means that it is a shooter where the perspective is positioned from behind the character, over the shoulder, rather than as if you were peering out of their eyes. As well as this, there is a barrier slowly shrinking the map to a central point forcing all the players together. What this means is at the start of the game, all 100 players jump out of a flying bus landing across the map and have to scavenge weapons and ammo, all trying to be the last one standing while some dude in a banana costume snipes you … banana costumes … raises a fist to the clouds.    

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Sonic the Hedgehog 2 – Movie Review

TL;DR – A film that hits pretty much the same as the first, but I am not sure the first film was good enough to rest on your laurels    

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene

Disclosure – I paid to see this film

Knuckles walks through a coin portal

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Review

The first Sonic the Hedgehog film was one of those moments where you could tell that there was a good movie and idea out there, but that it had been so cluttered that it was hard to find. To let a spoiler out of the bag, I do think the sequel improves in some areas. However, on the whole, what we get here is more of the same than any actual development.

So to set the scene, Sonic (Ben Schwartz) has been living with Tom (James Marsden) and Maddie Wachowski (Tika Sumpter) for a while now, but secretly at night, he goes out to Seattle to try and fight crime. Tom is concerned that he is not mature enough for that, but as a test of faith, he leaves Sonic home alone while they go to Hawaii for the wedding of Maddie’s sister Rachel (Natasha Rothwell) to her new beau Randall (Shemar Moore). It is all going fine, but for the fact that on the Mushroom Planet, Doctor Robotnik (Jim Carrey) found a way to send a pulse into space, which summoned the Echidna with the fists and a feud with Sonic, Knuckles (Idris Elba) to the planet.

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Deep Rock Galactic – Video Game Review

TL;DR – Every part of this game build upon each other to create one of the best four-player co-op games out there at the moment

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Disclosure – I purchased the game

Deep Rock Galactic. Image Credit: Ghost Ship Games.

Deep Rock Galactic Review –

For a while now, me and my friends have been dipping in and out of this odd mining survival game from Ghost Ship Games. But recently, we have been going into a deep dive, exploring everything the game has to offer. Well, as their Season Two event is about to launch, I thought it would be an excellent time to jump in and have a look at the game as a whole. Before we start, I want to thank my friends Johan, Nikola, and Chris for helping to run through the game with me.

So to set the scene, in the far future, the Creus solar system is inhabited by Dwarves thanks to the powerhouse that is the planet Hoxxes IV. The planet is smashed apart, and its surface is a desolate wasteland. However, underneath, it is full of wonders, full of minerals, and full of dangers. Under the surface are great biomes that exist in the planet’s many interconnecting cave systems. These caves are full of life adapted to the rocky and dark world. However, those very lifeforms do not like large sounds reverberating through the rock, for example, the sounds miners make while digging up their booty.     

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Halo: Contact – TV Review

TL;DR – This is a very definition of a mixed bag, with some promise shown, but also many issues.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Disclosure – I paid for the Paramount+ service that viewed this episode.

Halo: Contact. Image Credit: Paramount+.

Halo Review

I am what you would call an agnostic when it comes to the Halo video games. I didn’t grow up with an Xbox (or PlayStation if you are about to go video game console wars in my comments), so Master Chief was someone I had a vague knowledge about but not someone I cared about. Since then, I have watched the first couple of games streamed, and I get the appeal, even if the narrative is now a bit dated with time. I forward this all right from the start, so you know where I am coming from with this review and before I start hacking chunks of this apart.

So to set the scene, it is the year 2552, and the human race has spread across the stars, but it has been fraught with division. On the planet Madrigal, designated a Tier 4 Heavy Water Extraction Planet, the locals have been fighting a war of independence from the United Nations Space Command (UNSC) for an age. However, one day as some kids from a local outpost, including the leader’s daughter Kwan Ha Boo (Yerin Ha), go out into the woods, they stumble across not the UNSC and their feared Spartans, but something so much worse. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.

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Uncharted – Movie Review

TL;DR – Well, Tom Holland’s charisma can only go so far in fixing this dull mess   

Rating: 2 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene

Disclosure – I paid to see this film

Uncharted. Image Credit: Sony.

Uncharted Review

Some memories stick with you as you grow up. For me, one of those memories is the family sitting around the tv watching my brother play Uncharted as we enjoyed the unfolding story and looked out for any hidden items. Given how successful and loved this video game franchise is, I am not alone with having attachments to this game, but I was also a little wary of disappointment walking into this film. The casting was a choice, and nothing around the marketing had imbued any confidence with the film, and I can now see why.

So to set the scene, we open with Nathan Drake (Tom Holland) getting kicked out of a cargo plane and then run over by a car. But fifteen years earlier, a young Nate (Tiernan Jones) and his brother Sam (Rudy Pankow) break into a museum to steal a map but are caught by guards. Sent back to the orphanage, Sam will be sent to jail, but he escapes leaving Nate behind. Currently, Nate is a bartender who pickpockets his clients when a strange man called Sully (Mark Wahlberg) walks into the bar and offers him a link to the past.  

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The Matrix Resurrections – Movie Review

TL;DR – This is a weird yet oddly compelling film that will capture you if it is your mood. If it is not your mood, well, it is going to be a bit of a slog    

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is a post-credit scene

Disclosure – I was invited to a press screening of this film

The Matrix Resurrections. Image Credit: Warner Bros Pictures.

The Matrix Resurrections Review

Of all the films that I have a complicated relationship with, The Matrix series is high on that list. That first film was one of my first entries into the love of cinema, and it still ranks high on my personal Top 10 list. But the sequels also taught me that sometimes lightning doesn’t strike twice. Both are important lessons to learn. However, after all this time, I questioned whether I was ready to enter the Matrix again?

So to set the scene, some years after the end of The Matrix Revolutions, people are still diving into The Matrix. While Bugs (Jessica Henwick) is searching, she discovers a moodle running using old code. Inside, a woman sits talking on the phone, only to discover that the line has been traced and police are on their way. Outside, agents pull up and ask the sergeant why he sent his men in “we can take care of one little girl”, he replies, “no, your agents are already dead”, comes the response. As Bugs follows the program, everything is familiar but wrong. In a way, she can’t put her finger on it. All of this falls apart when one of the Agents notices her and shows a secret portal to a room, the room of one Thomas Anderson, better known as Neo (Keanu Reeves). Okay, so much like Spider-Man: No Way Home, this is a difficult film to talk about because you cannot really discuss it without getting into spoilers at a frighteningly quick pace. So with that in mind, we will give some general impressions and then dive into full spoilers.

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