Category Archives: Star Wars Report

Everything from your friends at The Star Wars Report; all the written blog content, and all the 2nd Airborne Division Podcasts.

Games & Things- CCC Ep. 049

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This week Nathan Returns and the discussion goes pretty much all over the galaxy of Star Wars table top and Video gaming! Check it out this one is loaded with laughs!

Why Star Wars Rebels is a Must-Watch for any Star Wars Fan

Ever since Lucasfilm and Disney XD unveiled their latest Star Wars television series, Star Wars Rebels sometime last year, I have been enthralled with the latest exploration of the Star Wars universe. Aside from Star Wars: The Force Awakens, there’s no doubt in my mind that Rebels is the absolute best Star Wars production since The Return of the Jedi.

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There’s a lot of debate among Star Wars fans who prefer The Clone Wars to Star Wars Rebels. While The Clone Wars has its many merits and is an absolutely wonderful series, I won’t be making any comparisons between the two shows, because in all honesty they’re both great shows in their own ways and don’t really deserve to be pitted against each other. Instead, I’ll be looking at what makes Rebels such a nearly-perfect show, and I’ll save the Clone Wars vs Rebels discussion for another article.

Anyone that knows that I’m a Star Wars fan should be well aware that I prefer the original trilogy over the prequel trilogy to the franchise, so when Rebels was the first Star Wars production to return to that era last year, it was something worth celebrating, and it felt like a return to something eerily familiar in the most unfamiliar of settings. Though we’re roughly in the same era as A New Hope, we’re being told a completely different story with entirely different, unfamiliar characters, and surprisingly, it works wonders. The series follows an unlikely team of Rebels who rise against the Empire during the dark period set before Luke Skywalker even enters the picture. Surprisingly, that setting of the show works well, and with this original new storytelling, and it makes a nice addition to the vast Star Wars universe.

But what makes Star Wars Rebels a truly impressive entry in the Star Wars canon? The storytelling throughout the show is so rich and engaging, and adds so many unpredictable twists along the way, crafting likable and complex characters. The series does a great job at setting itself between the dark period between The Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, not only does it do a good job at playing itself within that Star Wars period, but it also incorporates characters and set pieces from the original trilogy quite well. The thing that makes it so impressive though is that everything that made the Star Wars originals so spectacular is present in the series, from its superb storytelling right down to its quirky, subtle humor, Rebels has all the markings of a Star Wars classic.

There’s also plenty of bonus surprises for fans of The Clone Wars to be found in Rebels. Several key characters have made integral appearances on the show, and some with major story arcs that carry over from The Clone Wars into the rest of the Star Wars universe. Though it doesn’t quite necessarily need these characters to make Rebels a great show, the show benefits from having many of the same creators as The Clone Wars to throw in a few extra surprises to satisfy fans of the previous series.

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In the end, Star Wars Rebels continues to be an absolutely impressive new addition from Lucasfilm on a weekly basis, and a very welcome and satisfying inclusion to the Star Wars universe that’s bound to impress any Star Wars fan. Thanks to its likable characters and well-crafted storytelling, Rebels is truly a must-see show for the ages.

Mitchell Stein is the founder and operator of the Disney-fan based website The Mickey Mindset which is a leader in delivering Disney news, articles and opinions across the company. He can be contacted by following him on Twitter @MitchellStein1.

A Force For Good – Starlight Foundation

Check out this awesome foundation that gives aid to children in need!

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As four-year-old Bailey colored in an activity room in the Pediatric Unit for Dignity Health-California Hospital Medical Center, he was suddenly taken aback by the Force that walked into the room: Darth Vader, accompanied by a Stormtrooper and Biker Scout.

“Do you like baseball?” Vader asked a stunned Bailey, who was coloring a picture of a baseball glove. Bailey, in the hospital for a respiratory ailment and asthma, nodded yes. And then he just looked up at the strange group that came to brighten up his day and stared, still too shy to speak.

The appearance of Vader and his Troopers was courtesy of Starlight Children’s Foundation and the 501st Legion, Southern California Garrison, part of an international group known as “The World’s Definitive Imperial Star Wars Costuming Organization,” endorsed and preferred by Lucasfilm Ltd.

Starlight teamed up with the 501st to surprise pediatric patients and celebrate May the 4th, a day honoring all things Star Wars. The date is a pun on the phrase, “May the Force be with you.”

http://www.starlight.org/

Visit Real-life Tatooine!

Check out this awesome opportunity in death valley: A must for any Star Wars enthusiast!

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May the 4th be with you! Star Wars fans looking to celebrate the holiday can geek-out in Death Valley National Park, where scenes from Episodes IV and VI were filmed: R2-D2 rolling across the Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes near Stovepipe Wells village; Sand People roaming Desolation Canyon; Jabba the Hutt’s palace in Twenty Mule Team Canyon; Mardji the elephant (aka Bantha) making the Oasis Gardens of Furnace Creek Inn her home during filming (Furnace Creek Resort also provided accommodations for actors and the crew during filming).

Furnace Creek Resort has an exclusive map available for guests, leading them to the filming locations that are easily accessible via car or a short hike.

It’s a Thing – Now You Can Play Star Wars Holochess

Combining the elements of CCG, mobile gaming and augmented reality, check out Hologrid: Monster Battle – the ambitious project from Tippet Studio and Happy Giant:

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VFX Legend Phil Tippett & HappyGiant
Launch Kickstarter for AR Game

HoloGrid: Monster Battle is a hybrid board/CCG/digital gaming experience using Augmented Reality

 

May 4th, 2015, Berkeley, CA – Today, Phil Tippett & HappyGiant announced the launch of a Kickstarter campaign for HoloGrid: Monster Battle, a new hybrid board game, CCG, and digital augmented reality game, recently named “Best Technology of PAXEast 2016” byhttp://www.MMOGames.com

“No other tech on the gaming floor combined so many cool, new ideas at once quite like this game. It managed to put together AR, CCG gaming and mobile gaming into a mixture that engages with its personality and depth of play.”, said MMOGames.com “HoloGrid could have easily leaned on its AR tech to make it simply a neat toy, but it has built a very compelling game in the process. It has managed to toe that difficult line between being accessible while also offering a strong level of strategy. In addition, it has a strong base to build on for more variety of cards. If HoloGrid can secure the right attention and make its game affordable, then Happy Giant has possibly caught lightning in a bottle.

Phil Tippett

Phil Tippett is a 2-time Academy Award winning Visual Effects Supervisor and Director best known for his work on the original Star Wars films, Jurassic Park, Robocop, The Force Awakens, and many more. Tippett also created the “Holo Chess” scene in the original Star Wars, which he recreated for the Force Awakens.

“For years I’ve been making monsters for Directors to play with, and now for the first time, I’m making monsters for YOU to play with,” said Tippett. “We’re excited about the new fields of Augmented and Virtual Reality, and to be working with our friends at HappyGiant to create HoloGrid: Monster Battle.”

HoloGrid: Monster Battle’s gameplay is similar to Collectible Card Games (CCG’s) such as Magic: The Gathering or Hearthstone, but uses physical playing cards to trigger Augmented Reality creatures and a gameboard. Players will be able to play head-to-head, either locally or remotely, and offline, non digital play is possible as well through a physical board that will come with the product. A “Hybrid” Board Game, Collectible Card Game (CCG), and Digital Game in one, it delivers to players a new type of gaming experience.

Creatures battle on your tabletop with AR

HoloGrid: Monster Battle is being built for next gen AR & VR platforms, but will first release for mobile devices, giving players the feeling that the creatures of Phil Tippett are doing battle right in front of them.

“We’re excited to be launching this Kickstarter with Phil Tippett and his studio, and bringing to life a game so many of us have always wanted to play” said Mike Levine, President of HappyGiant. “This is our first step into a new world of AR gaming, and while we are launching it on mobile initially so everyone can play it, our long term vision is to bring it to emerging AR and VR platforms.”

Photogrammetry

Another exciting aspect of the project is the use of Photogrammetry to scan Tippett’s real life physical monsters into 3D digital assets for the game, giving them a level of detail and character unlike any other.

“We’d been doing experiments with Photogrammetry, but more on museum level artifacts,” said Levine. “At the same time we began exploring doing projects with Tippett, we had the idea, ‘What if we tried this on some creatures?’ The results blew us away. That’s really where this idea was born.” “And it’s the exact same technique we used on The Force Awakens,” added Tippett.

About Tippett Studio

Tippett Studio, founded in 1984 by animation pioneer Phil Tippett, is an Academy Award®-winning media production company specializing in CG animation and digital effects for feature films, television, commercials, VR and AR. The Berkeley, CA based company has created visual effects for blockbuster movies including Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Jurassic World, Ted, The Twilight Saga, Cloverfield, Starship Troopers, Jurassic Park and Robocop. Tippett Studio’s commercial work has garnered four Clio awards. Tippett Studio is currently in production on a large format ride for a Chinese Theme Park.

www.tippett.com

About HappyGiant

Founded by veterans of LucasArts, ILM, Hasbro and Pileated Pictures, HappyGiant is an independent developer and publisher of video games and entertainment for PCs, mobile, tablets and emerging platforms.