Big news for Genshin Impact fans: developer miHoYo has released a full trailer for a new collectible card game (TCG) feature for the much-loved RPG.
Set to arrive in Patch 3.3, Genius Invokation will allow players to get stuck in an all-new TCG experience. While the trailer doesn’t tell us much about the game’s mechanics, it is full of the distinctive art style and familiar character designs you’d expect from a Genshin Impact card game.
Originally unveiled at the end of October, Genius Invokation TCG was touted by miHoYo as “a casual, lighthearted game mode with PvE at its core”, where “all” cards can be “obtainable in-game” (via twitter (opens in new tab)🇧🇷 This is a breath of fresh air given how difficult it can be to get characters in Genshin Impact. While PvP is possible, the announcement made it clear that “no reward system” is “linked to PvP”. However, this new trailer gives us a much better indication of what the game will look like than last month’s sneaky announcement.
Once version 3.3 launches on December 7th, whether you’re playing on PC, Xbox Series X or PS5, just head over to The Cat’s Tail tavern in Mondstadt and talk to Diona.
Is this your card?
While the trailer only hints at the TCG mechanics, live streams from the developers have already revealed a lot about what the game has to offer.
Both the streams and the trailer suggest that this game will be much more than just a clone of any existing TCG title. Rather than using a more static resource system like lands in Magic: Arena or mana in Hearthstone, Genius Invokation opts for an Elemental Dice system, adding a degree of variation to the resource management aspects of the game (via IGN (opens in new tab)🇧🇷
Livestreams also triggered Elemental Reactions in the TCG, allowing for powerful synergy reminiscent of mechanics in the broader Genshin Impact RPG. As you might expect, players will build custom decks made up of character cards, equipment cards, event cards, and support cards. While we still don’t know much about the cards’ specific mechanics, it seems likely that Genius Invokation has more than enough depth to keep players satisfied.
As a fan of the TCG for many years, it’s certainly interesting to see miHoYo enter this new space. Given that Genius Invokation is nested within Genshin Impact itself, rather than any kind of standalone client, it seems unlikely that the game will be set up to directly compete with the likes of Magic: Arena, Hearthstone, and Gwent.
However, both previous materials have shown that the game will be much more sophisticated than the typical RPG minigame. If Genius Invokation does well, it will be fascinating to see if miHoYo decides to delve deeper into the TCG world, perhaps with more card sets or potentially even a standalone game, much like we saw with Gwent taking on a life of its own after success. in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt before him.
While miHoYo hasn’t made any announcements to that effect so far, it will certainly be interesting to see if the release of Genius Invokation is capable of shaking up the TCG gaming space.
Apple’s M2 Max chip, which will succeed the current M1 Max, has been spotted in leaked benchmarks, giving us an idea of just how much faster the next-gen variant could be.
As wccftech (opens in new tab) reports, this comes in the form of Geekbench results collected by Benchleaks on Twitter, which, as always with leaks, we should be wary of.
On Geekbench, the M2 Max amassed a single-core score of 1,889 points, and on multi-core it advanced to 14,586.
Comparing this to the current M1 Max which reaches around 1,750 and 12,200 respectively, which means that the M2 Max is becoming around 8% faster for single-core and 20% faster in terms of multi-core performance.
Analysis: A good potential performance boost
It should come as no surprise that the M2 Max makes apparent strides with multi-core performance, as this chip runs on 12 cores (as shown in the Geekbench spec details here, and widely publicized earlier), rather than the 10-cores the sports M1 Max. Two more cores should obviously make a good difference in multi-core tasks, of course.
Indeed, some people might argue that they expect a little more from the next-gen chip than a 20% multi-core boost, but to us, that seems like a solid enough generational leap. Also, keep in mind that it’s still relatively early to test the M2 Max, and when the SoC is actually available in Apple’s laptops, it will no doubt be a bit more improved in terms of performance.
We shouldn’t get carried away by our expectations, however, based on a previously leaked benchmark. As always, a single metric is far from the full picture of performance, and the M2 Max will require a broader series of tests before any conclusions can be drawn when it actually shows up.
When can that be? The rumor has it that Apple’s new laptops with M2 Max and M2 Pro chips are expected to debut in the first quarter of 2023, and those will be the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, according to a source respected in all things Apple.
If you want to know why Corning created the Gorilla Glass Victus 2, the new cover glass the company released today, you can thank (or blame) its big, fat phone.
When Corning started making shatterproof glass 15 years ago and started testing on mobile devices, the benchmark was 160g, which surpassed the original iPhone, which weighed 135g. Compare that to the iPhone 14 Pro, which weighs 206g, the iPhone 14 Pro Max, which weighs 240 grams, or the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra, which weighs 228 grams.
Gorilla Glass Vice President and General Manager David R. Velasquez of Corning told me this week that modern smartphones now have a lot more technology (better cameras, more sensors, bigger batteries) and are heavier and denser than the phones Corning was originally testing.
Now the reference is 200g. That’s still shy of the weight of newer phones, but weight isn’t the only part of Corning’s testing methodology that’s changed, and more importantly, this Gorilla Glass isn’t the same either.
Victus 2 is a new Gorilla Glass formulation. When we asked for details, Velasquez confirmed that it’s different from the original Victus, released two years ago, but added, “It’s better, it’s as much detail as I can give.”
The result is thinner glass that can resist scratches just as well, but offers better breakage performance.
Corning, however, has changed its testing methodology. After years of dropping thousands of 1M and 2M high phones onto simulated asphalt surfaces (sandpaper representing the roughness of the surface with metal underneath), Corning added simulated concrete. I think they finally realized that we dropped as many phones on the sidewalk as we did on the street.
With “concrete”, Corning is testing Gorilla Glass Victus 2 at 1M and still using “asphalt” for 2M tests. The difference is not so much the hardness, but rather the unevenness of the surfaces. To demonstrate, Corning sent me a sheet embedded with two squares of sandpaper designed to simulate both surfaces. The “concrete” is noticeably rougher to the touch.
It’s not just bigger phones that are making Corning’s job difficult. Velasquez reminded me that there was a time when protecting glass screens was comparatively easier.
“In the old days, before there were molded glass pieces, most of the design work revolved around the frame that phones would have. The iPhone 4 was the first time the glass was raised, a big change and much more likely to break,” he said.
These days, phones like the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra, Google Pixel 7 Pro, and iPhone 14 Pro seem to be made almost entirely of glass. I think Corning knows how to make a phone that may never break, but the collaboration between the glass cover company and the phone manufacturer doesn’t exactly work that way.
“OEMs come to us frequently [and say], ‘Here’s what we’ll release 3.5 years from now. Can you do this in glass, if so what are the design considerations?’” explained Velasquez.
What follows are conversations and even some tweaks of molecules and how they are designed to strengthen glass.
Velasquez was quick to add that phone makers don’t get bespoke glass products. However, understanding the direction phone makers are heading could affect the types of glass (perhaps even Victus 2) that Corning makes now and in the future.
While the Gorilla Glass Victus 2 is stronger than the Victus 1, Corning has no control over how phone makers use it.
“Most phone companies use this much better glass and make it thinner. Phones can never be thin enough or have a more aggressive design,” said Velasquez.
Can you fold it?
Speaking of aggressive designs, I had to ask about folding glass. Corning doesn’t have a foldable product right now, but the future will be a different story.
Velasquez confirmed that Corning is in “deep discussions with all the big customers about where they’re going. Some are further along than others.”
The company hopes to launch within the next couple of years, but little else could share about its plans. Still, Velasquez says Corning is very excited about the folding glass.
“What’s really great about partnering with customers to enable bendable designs is that it’s really, really difficult to have the glass bend and touch each other. It’s one of the hardest problems you can imagine. Corning tends to excel where the problem is really hard. Our scientists love to sink their teeth into it.”
For now, though, Corning and its partners are grinding their teeth against the nearly unbreakable, hard-to-scratch Gorilla Glass Victus 2. The OEMs have the glass samples and there are already some design-ins happening. Valesquez expects “announcements from some of our partners in the next three months”
In the meantime, we are waiting for the truly shatterproof smartphone glass. Corning is working on it, but Velasquez told me, “Not yet, but I will continue to fight this fight.”
If you’re looking for some phones that feature Corning’s current version of Gorilla Glass Victus, there’s no better place to start than our best phones of 2022.
Microsoft has officially revealed its Xbox Games with Gold lineup for December, and while I’ve never heard of any of the games on offer, they’ve certainly piqued my interest.
Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Live Gold subscribers can pick up two free Xbox games in December: Colt Canyon and Bladed Fury. Like me, you might not have heard of these indie titles before, but they certainly sound (and look) amazing, with unique art styles and plenty of action.
Colt Canyon is a violent action roguelike that has you gunning your way through a hostile canyon filled with treasure to find, weapons to wield, and, of course, hordes of enemies who want nothing more than to take you down. Expect some bloody, pixelated fun with this one.
The second free Xbox Live with Gold game available is Bladed Fury. Set in ancient China, this hack n’ slash adventure sees you battling it out in a world inspired by Chinese history and mythology. Its traditional Chinese art style is simply stunning from what I’ve seen so far.
A standout in the indies
It’s a welcome sight to see Xbox Games with Gold light up two exclusive indie games this December. While we’d love to see the service deliver the blockbusters that free PS Plus games provide, rosters like this allow Xbox Live Gold members to check out hidden gems that otherwise wouldn’t be on our radar.
Even if you try these games out and they aren’t for you, you’re missing nothing and it’s well worth adding to your Xbox library on a rainy day.
Next year could be even bigger than the past twelve months for new Canon cameras, with new rumors predicting five new launches in 2023. But as exciting as these new releases are, there’s one notable absentee from the list – a full-size camera. frame cheap.
canon rumors‘ list of Canon cameras expected for next year contains three APS-C cameras and two full-frame models. On the more affordable end are the Canon EOS R50 (a budget model that will apparently sit below the Canon EOS R10) and another APS-C camera that will (somehow) fit between the latter and the Canon EOS R7. A video-focused Canon EOS R7 C could also be on the way, but that’s less certain.
Less comprehensive, however, are the anticipated full-frame offerings. Anyone hoping for a successor to the Canon EOS RP – a camera that arrived in 2019 with the slogan ‘full-frame for the mass’ – might be particularly disappointed. The two models on the Canon Rumors list are the Canon EOS R5 S (probably a high-megapixel beast) and the Canon EOS R5 Mark II, which will be one of the most anticipated cameras of the year.
However, this excitement will mostly be felt by well-heeled professionals or amateurs with big budgets. The current Canon EOS R5 arrived with a price tag of $3,899 / £4,199 / AU$6,899. And if the rumors about its successor are true – a new 61MP BSI sensor, 9.44M-dot EVF and 8K/60p video are all in the predicted specs – then the Mark II could be even more expensive than that.
A successor to the Canon EOS RP could be wildly popular in today’s financial climate, so where does it stand? There are a few possible answers. The first, and hopefully the most likely, is that it’s on the way, but it just hasn’t leaked yet. Canon Rumors has not stated that its 2023 camera list is exhaustive or complete. However, the site’s historical reliability suggests that, at the very least, a new Canon EOS RP is well below Canon’s pecking order. Which makes some explanations less attractive.
start of harvest
The first explanation is that Canon simply wants to maximize the potential of its new lineup of APS-C cameras – and a cheap full-frame body would compromise that plan.
To be fair to Canon, our main complaint about its early 2022 mirrorless camera lineup was the lack of affordable models. That was answered very well this year with the Canon EOS R7 and Canon EOS R10, which we currently rank as the best camera for beginners.
What hasn’t been done yet is treating these new cameras with a variety of native APS-C lenses. There are currently only two RF-S lenses available for these cameras, an 18-45mm kit lens and an 18-150mm zoom. The launch of three more APS-C cameras in 2023 suggests that Canon plans to address this situation in the coming year. But all that would take the time and resources of a potential successor to the Canon EOS RP.
The last few years have been a perfect storm of dwindling demand, supply chain issues and a cost of living crisis for camera brands, and Canon doesn’t have endless resources for product development. As the rumors suggest, next year he may concentrate those resources on the ends of his lineup – with the useful knock-on effect of avoiding cannibalization in the middle.
But the other possibility is simply that the Canon EOS R8 has a full-frame sensor instead of an APS-C one. Canon Rumors’ most recent post stated that the EOS R8 (or EOS R9) “will likely be APS-C”, but their previous rumors suggested otherwise – and that’s what those dreaming of a successor to the Canon EOS RP hope for.
Just last month a separate Canon rumor post (opens in new tab), based on an incomplete post on the Chinese social network Weibo, suggested that there would soon be “a full-frame camera below the Canon EOS R6”. And that model would probably be the Canon EOS R8.
The leaked specs – which included a 30.3MP full-frame sensor, Digic X processor and dual card slots – actually hinted at a camera that was more like a successor to the Canon EOS R than a new Canon EOS RP. And it’s possible that they were simply an incorrect prediction of what turned out to be the Canon EOS R6 Mark II, which arrived last month.
Either way, significant questions remain about exactly what kind of camera the Canon EOS R8 (or EOS R9) will be. Those looking for a full-frame bargain can still pick up the Canon EOS RP for £989 / $999 / AU$1,299, but as it approaches its fourth anniversary, there are now better options.
The Nikon Z5, for example, recently dropped to just $997 / £999 / AU$1,696 on Black Friday sales. Even the Sony A7 III, which is still a fantastic full-frame camera, is fast approaching this price range, recently dropping to £1,276 (about US$1,580 / AU$2,275) in the UK, with the help of an Amazon promotional voucher.
Will Canon give its fans a full-frame bargain to rival these offerings in 2023? At the moment, rumors suggest not, but we hope it still has some surprises up its sleeve for next year.
Amazon Prime members can pick up five free PC games in December, including a true first-person shooter masterpiece.
As part of Prime Gaming’s free games offer, Prime members can purchase Quake, Rose Riddle 2: Werewolf Shadow, The Amazing American Circus, Banners of Ruin, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, Spinch, Desert Child and Doors: Paradox in December 2022.
There are two specific highlights in this lineup: Quake and Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons.
Even if you’ve never played the classic first-person shooter Quake, you’ve probably heard of it. id Software’s gothic shooter rocked the genre when it first released in 1996, cementing itself as an FPS icon that remains popular today. Thanks to visual enhancements, Quake looks better than it did in 1996, so you can experience the classic at its peak.
If you’re looking for something a little less gory, I also recommend picking up Brothers while it’s free. This charming co-op game, from the developer behind It Takes Two, is quite short but super cute, and is sure to fill an afternoon with a loved one over the holiday period. However, playing solo is also an option if that’s more your style.
even more freebies
If you’re already an Amazon Prime member, it’s worth checking out Prime Gaming’s free content deals. In addition to a handful of free PC games every month, the service offers exclusive content for the likes of Apex Legends and FIFA 23, all for the price of your regular Prime membership.
If this month’s deals don’t cut it, it’s worth checking back in the future to see what’s on offer, as you can get exclusive in-game content for your favorite game.
– Not expected to release until 2023 – Launch date might be announced at CCXP 2022 – Filming wrapped in May – Key cast all set to return – New cast members’ characters announced – First footage revealed at New York Comic-Con 2022 – Showrunner teases season 2 storylines – Third season greenlit by Amazon Studios
Are we about to get a release date for The Wheel of Time season 2? With the show set to feature at Brazil Comic-Con (aka CCXP), one of the world’s biggest entertainment events, it’s certainly a possibility.
It would be about time if one was forthcoming, too. The high fantasy series – one of the best Prime Video shows, in our view – was last on our screens in December 2021, so its return is long overdue. Still, we’ve had The Rings of Power, aka Amazon’s Lord of the Rings TV adaptation, to tide us over until The Wheel of Time’s second season is released.
Anyway, you’re here to learn more about The Wheel of Time season. Below, we’ve rounded up everything worth knowing about the Prime Video series’ sophomore season, including its cast, plot details, possible release date, and brief teaser trailer. We also explore whether the show will return after its recently greenlit third season.
Full spoilers for The Wheel of Time season 1 follow. Additionally, potential cast and story spoilers for its follow-up season are incoming, so use the navigation bar to your left to skip a section if you’re avoiding spoilerific content.
The Wheel of Time season release date
There’s no release date for The Wheel of Time season 2 yet. However, filming wrapped in mid May, so the wait for an official announcement should be coming soon.
That’s a wrap for season 2! #TheWheelOfTime #WOTWednesday pic.twitter.com/sROnpKFzftMay 18, 2022
Some fans hoped that season 2 would arrive before 2022 is over. But, as Amazon Studios’ Head of Global TV Vernon Sanders told TVLine (opens in new tab), that wasn’t never a possibility. Why? Because Amazon didn’t want The Wheel of Time season 2 and The Rings of Power season 1 to launch simultaneously.
With a bunch of VFX, music, and editing work to undertake – not to mention possible reshoots or pick ups – it’s likely we won’t see The Wheel of Time season 2 arrive on Amazon’s streaming service until mid-2023. However, key Wheel of Time cast members are set to appear at CCXP 2022 on December 3 (opens in new tab), so we could finally get a release date announcement in the very near future.
The Wheel of Time season 2 trailer
An official trailer hasn’t been released, but a first teaser for The Wheel of Time season 2 was released online in October.
The teaser opens with a fast-paced, still image-based montage of all of the first season’s key moments. It’s not until the 0:25 mark that the season 2 footage begins, but it looks suitably foreboding, action-packed, thrilling, and fantastical all the same.
We get good looks at where all of our heroes are at the beginning of season 2 – more on this in our plot section – as well as the antagonists who are set to make their debuts. It all seems like it’s become a bit too much for Moiraine, too, who’s seen verbally lashing out at Lan. We’re also introduced to the new Mat Cauthon, who’ll be played by Dónal Finn from now on after Barney Harris’ departure.
There’s only 30 seconds’ worth of footage to take in here, but it gives us a good indication of what’s at stake and what’ll play out in the show’s next entry. Color us excited.
The teaser comes three months after a behind-the-scenes look at the show’s next installment was posted online:
Their journeys are far from over. Get a behind the scenes look at #TheWheelOfTime season 2. pic.twitter.com/K3IVCyMOw3July 21, 2022
The Wheel of Time season 2 cast
We expect season 1’s main cast to return, although there is one notable exception:
Rosamund Pike as Moiraine Damodred
Daniel Henney as Lan Mandragoran
Josha Stradowski as Rand al’Thor
Zoë Robins as Nynaeve al’Meara
Madeleine Madden as Egwene al’Vere
Marcus Rutherford as Perrin Aybara
Dónal Finn as Mat Cauthon
Fares Fares as The Dark One
Johann Myers as Padan Fain
Sophie Okonedo as Siuan Sanche
The biggest casting news concerns the character of Mat Cauthon. Barney Harris won’t reprise his role from season 1, with Dónal Finn (The Witcher, Cursed) taking over. In September 2021, we reported that Harris was no longer part of the cast. No reason was given for his departure and showrunner Rafe Judkins has declined to comment on the situation (per Deadline (opens in new tab) ).
The Wheel of Time’s other main actors are all returning. That includes Fares Fares’ primary antagonist The Dark One and Sophie Okoendo’s Siuan Sanche, who are both shown in The Wheel of Time season 2’s sneak peek. Meanwhile, WOTseries.com (opens in new tab) suggests Sandy McDade’s Maigan will feature at some point.
As for who else could return, this is harder to predict. We suspect characters including Kate Fleetword’s Liandrin and Kae Alexander’s Min Farshaw will reappear. The first season’s plot, however, was pulled from multiple books in Jordan’s series. Meanwhile, Judkins took some creative liberties that led to its plot diverging from the story in the novels.
It’s unclear if The Wheel of Time season 2’s plot will differ from its source material. If it does, we may not see Liandrin or Min return, even though they have roles in the series’ second and third books, aka The Great Hunt and The Dragon Reborn.
What we do know is that new characters will be introduced – and we already know who some of those individuals will be.
Ceara Coveney has been revealed as our Elayne Trakand! What characters do you think Natasha O’Keeffe and Meera Syal are playing? (Hint: Rafe said they were “two of the most important characters”) #TheWheelofTime pic.twitter.com/zJgtVci3HhOctober 8, 2021
Ceara Coveney – in her first major acting role – will portray a hugely significant character in Elayne Trakand. In the novels, Elayne is not only Queen of Andor and Cairhien, but she’s also one of the most powerful Aes Sedai in Robert Jordan’s fictional universe. Expect her to play a major role in proceedings in The Wheel of Time season 2.
Natasha O’Keeffe (Misfits, Filth) and Meera Syal (Paddington 2, Doctor Who) have also been cast in undisclosed roles. Rafe Judkins has teased that they’ll portray “two of the most important characters”, so place your bets now on who they’ll play.
Potential season 2 cast spoilers follow, so skip ahead if you don’t want to know which actors have reportedly joined the series.
Here’s a rundown of other confirmed and rumored characters, and the actors portraying them, as announced on The Wheel of Time’s official social channels (where Aviendha is concerned anyway) and The Wheel of Time’s Instagram fan page:
Meanwhile, Deadline (opens in new tab) claims Guy Roberts (Hanna), Arnas Fedaravicius (The Last Kingdom), and Gregg Chillingirian (A Discovery of Witches) feature in supporting roles. Roberts will reportedly play Uno Nomesta, a one-eyed soldier who served Lord Agelmar before the latter’s death in the season 1 finale. Fedaravicius will play Masema, another of Agelmar’s former charges. Finally, Chillingirian portrays Ingtar Shinowa, who Deadline describes as a warrior from war-torn lands.
In a separate (but no less speculative) WoTseries.com (opens in new tab) article, Marie-France Alvarez (Paddington 2) will portray another Aes Sedai called Celestin. Melissa James (Coronation Street) and Jessica Boone (Das Boot) have also apparently been hired (per WoTseries.com (opens in new tab)), though their roles aren’t currently known. WoTseries.com (opens in new tab) has also suggested British-born New Zealand actor Rima Te Wiata (Hunt for the Wilderpeople) is part of the cast after supposedly being spotted in The Wheel of Time season 2 production wrap video. Additionally, WoTseries.com (opens in new tab) suggests Ken Bradshaw (Eastenders, Wire in the Blood) will play Asan Sandair, a city guard who crosses paths with Rand.
In an interview with The Press and Journal (opens in new tab), Stewart Kenneth Moore (Blood Red Sky, Carnival Row) also confirmed that he has a bit-part role. Moore refused to reveal his character’s identity, but hinted that he’ll turn up in episode 5 for a “fairly memorable scene”.
Finally, The Witcher fansite Redandian Intelligence (opens in new tab) claims that four other actors have been joined the party. Laura Crowhurst (The Last Bus) has reportedly been cast in an undisclosed role, as has Natasha J. Murley in her first major acting role. Game of Thrones’ Will Tudor will also allegedly play Barthanes Damodred, a relative of Moiraine’s, while Haruka Kuroda (Killing Eve) is set to portray one of Min Farshaw’s aunts.
The Wheel of Time season 2 plot
Spoilers follow for The Wheel of Time season 1.
Little is officially known about The Wheel of Time season 2’s story, but we’ve been given some indications about its central themes and narratives.
There are also lots of plot threads that need to be picked up or resolved.
First, we need to be reunited with Rand – aka the Dragon Reborn – who, after temporarily defeating The Dark One, is continuing his journey alone. The Dragon Reborn is a prophesied, all-powerful channeler of the One Power fated to save or destroy the world, so Rand considers himself to be a danger to Moiraine, Lan, and his friends. He asks Moiraine to tell everyone he perished in battle against The Dark One so they don’t come looking for him. Josha Stradowski, who plays Rand, says the character’s season 2 arc will be built around redefining his identity (via The Wrap (opens in new tab)).
As for Moiraine, The Dark One destroys her connection to the Source, which is where Aes Sedai draw the One Power from. Unable to channel her powers anymore, the dynamic in Moiraine and Lan’s relationship is sure to shift in season 2. The two hardly feature in The Wheel of Time’s second book, but Judkins told CBR.com (opens in new tab) that their upcoming arcs will comprise wholly original content created specifically for the TV adaptation, as “you can’t sideline Rosamund Pike and Daniel Henney in a season of television”. Pike revealed at New York Comic-Con (per Entertainment Weekly (opens in new tab)) that Moiraine will return to her home city of Cairhien inThe Wheel of Time season 2.
We’ve been waiting. Ceara Coveney is Elayne Trakand #TheWheelOfTime #WoTNYCC pic.twitter.com/yiW0iAFS0oOctober 7, 2022
The season 1 finale also teased the arrival of the Seanchan – a villainous, seafaring empire that has ambitions on conquering The Wheel of Time’s main continent. Asked by Collider (opens in new tab) how they’ll make a splash (pun intended), Judkins said: “Everything’s following this traditional fantasy format coming out of the first book. In the second book, the Seanchan come out of nowhere and slap our characters, so we really wanted to have them function the same way in the show. We get this nod to them at the end of season 1 but, in season 2, the Seanchan arrive and they affect the story.”
Elaborating on the role the Seanchan will have, Judkins told New York Comic-Con attendees (via SyFy.com (opens in new tab)): “The Seanchan come in and sideswipe every story in the show. They sideswipe the show as much as they do the books and it’s a really cool storytelling device that Robert Jordan built and I think it’s so special and I’ve been so excited to bring it to the screen.”
There are many other branching narratives and subplots that the show’s second season will need to circle back to. Judkins confirmed to Nerdist (opens in new tab) that “we’ll certainly see” more of the backstory of Lews Therin, aka the first Dragon, as the season and overall series progresses. Judkins also teased the potential introduction of Gawyn and Faile, who are important characters in Egwene and Perrin’s story arcs, and the possibility of Rand and Min interacting more down the road (per CBR (opens in new tab)). As for Mat, Judkins revealed that he was heading for the White Tower – the Aes Sedai’s stronghold – and not Shadar Logoth in the season 1 finale.
We’re also expecting to learn more about Perrin’s wolfbrother powers and we hope that our heroes will get the Horn of Valere – a key item in the final battle with The Dark One – back after Padan Fain stole it in the season 1 finale. The love triangle between Moiraine, Lan, and Nynaeve is also set to be explored in more detail, too. Daniel Henney and Zoë Robins, who play Lan and Nynaeve, teased their season 2 storylines in a chat with Inverse (opens in new tab).
Speaking about The Wheel of Time season 2’s overall theme, Judkins told EW that the show’s next entry will “peel back the surface and try to understand what balance between dark and light they’re trying to find within themselves.” So we should settle in for more internal character battles, as well as those fights that are bound to be part of season 2’s makeup.
Much like the first season, The Wheel of Time’s next entry will also cover plot elements from multiple novels, Judkins telling EW: “[Audiences] will see that some characters are diving more into their book two story in season 2, and some of them are diving more into their book three story. We have a big round-up point at the end of season 2 that reconnects everything and pushes us off in a new direction where we’ve completed all the stories we need to get through.”
Additionally, we can expect blood – and lots of it. Daniel Henney told ContentMode (opens in new tab): “It’s really hard for me to not give too much away, but I will say this: two swords, multiple Fades, blood….lots of blood.” Meanwhile, Rafe Judkins told TVLine (opens in new tab): “More characters will die in the show than in the books, because we cannot carry a cast of 2,000 actors for seven seasons!” You should prepare for your favorite characters to potentially perish at some point in the show, then.
Finally, Judkins took to Twitter to answer fans’ season 2 questions (opens in new tab) during some post-production downtime. Key details to take away from those exchanges include the introduction of the Forsaken – channelers who serve the side of Shadow in the War of Power – and that season 2 will pull from the first, second, and third books in Jordan’s beloved fantasy novel series. Fans can expect to see new locations, such as Cairhien, Tear, and Falme in The Wheel of Time season 2 as well.
“I’m so thrilled that we’ll be making a third season of The Wheel of Time,” Judkins, said in a press release. “The Shadow Risinghas always been my favorite book in the series, so being able to bring it to television and introduce new audiences to the stories that made me fall in love with these books in the first place is such an honor, and something I’ve been working toward since I first pitched the show years and years ago.”
Interestingly, The Shadow Rising is the fourth book in Jordan’s epic fantasy book series. Given that season 2 will adapt books one through three, it makes sense that the series’ third season will pick things up with book four.
It’s unclear when principal photography will begin on season 3, but we suspect it won’t be until late 2023 at the very earliest. If The Wheel of Time season 2 launches in mid-2023 as we’ve predicted, the cast and crew will complete their press tour by summer 2023 ahead of filming beginning on the show’s next installment.
As for future seasons, much will depend on whether seasons 2 and 3 resonate with audiences, and if Amazon feels it can fund its two big fantasy properties in The Wheel of Time and The Rings of Power. The latter’s premiere was the biggest Prime Video launch of all-time so, if only one show is continually greenlit, it’s likely to be its Lord of the Rings show, which is already returning for The Rings of Power season 2.
That said, we’d still expect Amazon to renew The Wheel of Time for more seasons. Judkins has eight seasons mapped out for the show, so it would be silly for Amazon to cancel the series midway through its run (if a fourth season is also greenlit). Here’s hoping, then, that The Wheel of Time can keep rolling on until it reaches its end point.
The Acolyte will take Star Wars fans on a journey that “has never been done before,” according to one of its stars.
Speaking exclusively to during a party for the third season of His Dark Materials, Dafne Keen teased that the upcoming TV show – one of many new Star Wars TV shows and movies in development – will be unlike anything fans have seen before. in Lucasfilm’s legendary sci-fi franchise. 🇧🇷
Given the secrecy surrounding the Disney Plus show, Keen, who was recently revealed to be part of The Acolyte’s all-star cast, was hesitant to reveal too much. However, the former Logan actor did drop a few hints about what fans can expect from The Acolyte, including a small but important piece of information about its plot.
“I can tease that it’s a prequel!” Keen joked when asked what she could say about The Acolyte. “No, I mean, as you know, it’s set 100 years before the previous movies, and it’s sort of an explanation of how the Sith infiltrated the Jedi. It’s a Sith-led story that’s never been done before.
“It was so much fun to shoot – the cast is incredible, and the director and crew are just lovely. The whole experience is wonderful and I’m already looking forward to people seeing it.”
Production has begun on “The Acolyte,” an upcoming Lucasfilm original Star Wars series coming to @DisneyPlus. pic.twitter.com/g6apnGXSmrNovember 7, 2022
As Keen says, Star Wars: The Acolyte is set a century before the events of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. The series, which began filming in late October, is set during the High Republic era, a time when the Galactic Republic and the Jedi order were at the height of their powers.
However, not everything is what it seems. The show’s plot synopsis – as revealed in StarWars.com (opens in new tab) – confirms that evil forces are stirring somewhere in the galaxy, and it is these events, taking place in The Acolyte, that eventually lead to the downfall of the Jedi and the Galactic Republic in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. As such, The Acolyte will be fully canon in the Star Wars universe when it launches on Disney Plus.
“The Acolyte is a mystery thriller that will take viewers into a galaxy of dark secrets and powers emerging from the dark side in the waning days of the High Republic era,” reads the story’s synopsis. “A former Padawan teams up with her Jedi Master to investigate a series of crimes, but the forces they face are more sinister than they ever imagined.”
Amandla Stenberg (Bodies Bodies Bodies) will be the series’ lead protagonist, with the former Hunger Games star being cast as the show’s lead actress in December 2021. There’s no word on who Stenberg is playing, but it’s likely to be. the former Padawan that the plot synopsis mentions.
Stenberg is joined by a number of recognizable stars on the show. As well as Keen, Lee Jung-Jae (Squid Game season 2), Carrie-Anne Moss (The Matrix Resurrections), Dean-Charles Chapman (1917), Jodie Turner-Smith (Without Remorse) and Manny Jacinto (Top Gun: Maverick) were cast in supporting roles. Leslye Headland (Russian Doll) is writing, directing and executive producing, while Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy is among the show’s other executive producers.
Star Wars: The Acolyte will include eight episodes upon release, though it’s unclear when it will hit Disney Plus – and there’s a good chance it will find its way to our list of the best Disney Plus shows when it launches.
For more Star Wars content, find out how to watch the Star Wars movies in order. Alternatively, read our spoiler-free Andor review, check out our hub on The Mandalorian season 3, or learn how Obi-Wan’s solo TV series rescues the previous Star Wars film trilogy.
There probably isn’t much time to wait until the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S23 series, with these phones slated to arrive in early 2023, and more specifically could arrive in February.
That’s according to “a Samsung Electronics executive with knowledge of the matter,” speaking to the Korea from JoongAng Daily (opens in new tab)in a report uncovered by The Verge (opens in new tab)🇧🇷
They claimed that “the S23 series will be shown off during our own Unpacked event in the US which will be held in February” and while they didn’t get more specific than that, the site quoted local media saying that the Galaxy S23 lineup will be unveiled. in San Francisco the first week of February.
So the Samsung Galaxy S23 – along with the Galaxy S23 Plus and Galaxy S23 Ultra – might just be two months away at the time of writing if that’s accurate, but it could also be very expensive.
These are high-end handsets, so they’re never cheap, but Korea JoongAng Daily also claims that the Galaxy S23 line will likely be more expensive than the Galaxy S22 or Samsung Galaxy S21 lines, thanks to inflation.
The website doesn’t specify the price, but for reference the Samsung Galaxy S22 starts at $799 / £769 / AU$1,249, so the Galaxy S23 could cost more than that – with the S23 Plus and S23 Ultra having even higher prices. .
Analysis: A February release seems highly likely
This isn’t the first time a February release has been rumored. In fact, this isn’t the first time we’ve heard that the Samsung Galaxy S23 launch date could be in the first week of February, so the timing seems pretty likely.
We also have more than rumors to back this momentum up, as with the exception of the Samsung Galaxy S21 series – which was announced in January 2021 – we’ve been seeing new Galaxy S models come February each year for quite some time.
So even without leaks and rumours, a February announcement would have been our best guess. That said, we’re still not sure about anything, so a different timing remains a possibility. But either way, we think these best phone competitors are coming soon.
Nvidia’s RTX 4080 is now the focus of overclocking experts, with very fast clock speeds being achieved by the GPU (after seeing huge overclocks achieved by the RTX 4090, as you may recall).
Tom’s hardware (opens in new tab) noticed that the Galax OC team was using the company’s own RTX 4080 SG 1-Click OC graphics card (the SG stands for ‘Serious Gamer’) and managed to boost it to 3.615 GHz for a new record as the fastest 4080 ever seen .
That’s over 1 GHz more than the factory default boost for the SG, which is 2.565 GHz, by the way, with 1-click overclocking mode, the graphics card takes the notch name up to 2.58 GHz to give an idea of a more typical slight overclock.
Another new record unlocked🥳! The OC team was able to increase the clock speed of the GeForce RTX™ 4080 16GB SG 1-Click OC up to 3615MHz, beating the original 1-Click OC clock by 40%⚡! #GALAX #PC #GeForceRTX4080SG #GeForceRTX40series #Overclocking pic.twitter.com/8IVBNG4d9hNovember 29, 2022
As Galax notes, the 3.615GHz overclock is actually 40% faster than the 1-click overclock, and it’s an impressive achievement.
Unfortunately, no further information is shared about the overclock, though we can safely assume it used liquid nitrogen cooling (or some other exotic method), as these types of speeds cannot be achieved using any conventional cooler.
Review: A truly impressive feat, but unlikely to move consumers
The RTX 4080 was released to criticism from critics and gamers alike, due to its shaky overall value proposition – Nvidia has certainly raised the price as much as it can with this GPU. The reality is, with the price of the RTX 4080, in some cases third-party custom cards cost almost as much as the RTX 4090 – which is a considerably faster graphics card (and a ridiculous situation, to be sure).
Given that, you might not want to hear about the RTX 4080 hitting record speeds, or care too much about it, and we understand where you’re coming from. But it’s still interesting to see how far these Lovelace GPUs can be pushed to overclock, given so much headroom.
The RTX 4090 had already reached a boost speed of 3.825GHz, but keep in mind that this was the ‘HOF’ (Hall Of Fame) edition of the Galax 4090, a card specially designed to work well with overclocking (a proposed edition Limited pricey for experienced overclockers, basically).
The RTX 4080 card used here is just a simple Galax card aimed at consumers, so seeing it hit just 200MHz ahead of the seriously customized HOF version of the 4090 is pretty impressive indeed. That points to the GPU having some hefty overclocking cutbacks, but it’s unlikely to convince potential RTX 4080 buyers to take the plunge, mind – instead, we think a price drop might help address the issue.
If Galax made a HOF version of the RTX 4080 it would obviously be able to go a lot faster, but if that happens, who knows? While the HOF variants of the RTX 3080 and 2080 (Super) were produced by Galax, given the situation with the 4080 and its current popularity – or lack thereof – we don’t anticipate it arriving in the near future, let’s just put it around here.
The best recent news we’ve heard about the RTX 4080, frankly, is the way the graphics card is teaching scalpers a well-deserved lesson.