Zander Mahaffey scheduled his suicide note to be published via his Tumblr account. Now users are creating posts with #hisnamewaszander to honor his memory.

1. Trans teen Zander Mahaffey, a freshman at South Cobb High School in Austell, GA, died after posting a suicide note on his Tumblr on Sunday, Feb. 15.

2. The note read: “I am a boy, even if the [world] doesn’t see me as one. But I know in my heart I am a boy. I’m 15 years old, I love the internet, I’m an anime weeb, I love video games too.”

In his writing he discussed problems with his mother, experiences with sexual assault, and emotional bullying. The note concludes, “I know there’s going to be people hurt and devastated by this. And I’m so, so, sorry about that. I don’t know what else to say. I’m just so tired, I’m so tired and I just want to go to sleep.”

3. The funeral proceedings and obituary used only Zander’s birth name and female pronouns, prompting a massive response on Tumblr and other social media outlets with people using #hisnamewaszander:

4. Artwork and messages of support are being shared on a memorial blog with the statement: “Rest In Power.”

7. Many messages connect Zander’s death with the recent, and widely publicized, suicide of trans teen Leelah Alcorn.

8. Tumblr users are also reblogging posts from Zander’s original Tumblr blog on which he stated: “My name’s zander. I’m trans and here to win.”

9. The hashtag has been used over 8,000 times on Twitter as well:

If u aren’t prepared to accept your child unconditionally, you don’t deserve that child #HisNameWasZander

— metaIpuppy (@røbin)

#HisNameWasZander another young person lost to transphobia, another person with the wrong name on their headstone. rest in peace.

— cinefck (@audrey)

reading Zander’s suicide note is heartbreaking, i’m trying not to give up on the world, transphobia NEEDS to be recognised #HisNameWasZander

— trashboyjeanbo (@im gay)

how often does transgender suicide has to happen before people acknowledge how bad and big this problem is #HisNameWasZander

— williamspizza (@nick)

Another trans teen suicide. Rest In Power, brother #HisNameWasZander

— J_Manasa (@Josh Lee)

If you are struggling with suicidal thoughts or depression there are resources for help:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (USA): 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

Transgender Lifeline (USA): +187 756 588 60

Samaritans (UK): 08457 90 90 90

Suicide Prevention (Aus): 13 11 14

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/skarlan/tumblr-users-honor-the-memory-of-transgender-teen-who-commit

There are a number of weird things about this video, in a which a guy with a thick Appalachian accent proclaims, “This is why you don’t buy an iPad from Wal-Mart.” He and another guy then toss what looks like an iPad box back and forth inside of a stockroom before dropping one on the floor, with a resounding clack. It’s the sole video uploaded by this anonymous account; it almost seems fake. But when I called the Wal-Mart in Pikeville, Kentucky (population 6,903 as of 2010), where the video was allegedly shot, and asked about it, a woman on the other end of the phone simply said, “That’s already been taken care of,” and promptly hung up before I could reply. (One of the commenters on the video, xreturnwthhonorx, said, at approximately 12:05 p.m., “All 3 men have been fired, and must pay for all damaged products.”)

Here’s the thing: Your iPad, your cell phone, your Xbox — your anything — has been treated almost this exact way, no matter where you bought it. Whether it was the UPS guy, or a reckless stockroom employee, your precious has probably been shaken, rattled, rolled, punted, slammed, or all of the above. And it’s fine. That’s precisely what the packaging has been designed to withstand.

For all of the increasingly precise manufacturing that goes into our electronics and the sophistication of the supply chain that delivers them in precise, targeted quantities to Best Buys and Wal-Marts and Amazon, humans are still a fundamental part of getting them into your hands. They get tired and drop things. Or careless, and throw things. That hasn’t changed — and it won’t — and the people designing the carefully molded plastic and recycled paper coffins for your iPad know that. It’s built into the design. It’s why your device is suspended in the middle of a box, comfortably cradled in a plastic tray. Which makes the shrinking packages over the last few years all the more remarkable achievements of engineering and design.

Amazon is perhaps the most functionally brilliant packaging designer around — no surprise, since it’s in the shipping business, and broken wares could cost it a ton of money (given that it just lost money for the quarter, that would be bad). The new Kindle Paperwhite box is a testament to just how good Amazon’s gotten at packaging. When this slim, black geometric shape arrives in the mail, there is no separate box inside, just your new Kindle. Amazon’s built a single box that holds the Kindle and withstands all the brutalities of the postal system.

So throw your iPad box down when you get it. Hurl it at your wall. Play the drums on it. Your iPad is fine, no matter where you bought it.

Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/mattbuchanan/guys-throwing-ipads-in-the-back-of-a-walmart

1. When a Guy mentions something about how much he loves his crazy World of Warcraft life or some other virtual universe, and asks if you play.

Nope, sorry I have human friends thanks.

2. When they mention that their favorite bands are Nickelback and Creed

UGH Vomit

3. Or if he plays in a truly terrible band himself, and forces you to listen.

You play the TRIANGLE. Calm down.

4. When a guys is “dipping” and asks if you want to join.

Yeahhhh nooo I’m ok. Do that when I’m not around.

5. When a guy says he doesn’t think Kristen Wiig is funny

LOL Bye

6. When he is too aggressive and sappy via social media

You know who you are #repost #sharethelove #oneworld #YOLO

#illkillyou

7. When a guy appears to get a different personality when watching sports

Ok, who are you? You realize YOU aren’t on the team… right?

8. When a guy thinks it’s funny to talk like a girl

That ish is NOT CUTE

9. When a guy’s wardrobe consists of lots of Ed Hardy and cargo shorts

WHO told you that was a good idea tho

10. When a guy thinks Harry Potter is stupid

and refuses to quote it/ accept it’s brilliance with you

11. When a guy’s pants are tighter than yours

How did you fit everythingggg in there?

12. They use stupid pick up lines instead of just talking to you.

Seriously some would prefer this.

And you know what, I don’t know if my milkshake brings all the boys to the yard so WHY WOULD YOU ASK ME THAT.

13. If for some reason a guy talks in third person.

Literally punch yourself in the face.

14. If he immediately starts spouting off about his super devout religious beliefs or political views.

It’s totally cool to have those views, but DO NOT shove them down my throat please.

15. When a guy thinks he’s funny, but he’s really just an asshole.

Some assholes are funny, some definitely are not. Especially the ones who THINK they’re funny and ALWAYS go too far.

16. When a guy gets mad when I’m texting guys that aren’t him.

“Who the hell is Johnny?”
“Johnny is my brother you asshole. Sit down.”

17. If a guy is super possessive and creepy.

Protective, YES. (to a degree)
Possessive? HELL NAH.

18. If a guy smells bad… all the time.

If you smell bad after the gym or a long day, fine. If you smell bad every day… nope nope no thank you.

19. When a guy spends more time looking at his phone than me when we’re together.

At least pretend to be interested in me for like an hour?

20. Lastly, if a guy takes and posts selfies that ARE NOT via Snapchat.

Snapchat selfie? Be my guest. Real selfie? See you never.

Guys: Memorize this list
Girls: Don’t worry ladies, your selfie-less dream guy is out there.

Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/katieciabotti/20-dating-deal-breakers-held-by-20-something-girls-b9qr

This headline is a play on words. Enjoy it.

1. Come along with me…

as I play the new levels in the Call of Duty: Ghosts Devastation map pack!

2. PREDATOR ATTACK!!!!!

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=pYHFrMTLNtQ.

The Predator shows up for this one but no signs of Arnold Schwarzenegger or any choppers…

3. I’M ON A BOAT in a video game…

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=wScAN51bxes.

Boatastic! Oh, there’s also a bridge. The boat ran into a bridge and now people are killing each other on it for whatever reason.

4. I’m like the Indiana Jones of video games!

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=vq3DEb71u64.

Let’s stop all this fighting and start doing some archeology!

5. Behemothish

Video available at: http://youtube.com/watch?v=U5bYc3eKSbY.

Look! More digging! This time with a giant machine thing because why not?

Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/stephengutowski/call-of-duty-is-devastating-now-5k8e

1. Read a book, seriously Game of Thrones is really long and there’s like 7 books or something….

Edu In Review / Via eduinreview.com

2. You could clean up….. you haven’t washed up in…. a while

Pat is Dead / Via patisdead.wordpress.com

Uggh later maybe

3. You could learn that instrument you always wanted to

Giphy / Via giphy.com

Nah too hard.

4. Learn that language you always wanted to be able to speak

Reginaa Phalange Tumblr / Via reginaa-phalange.tumblr.com

Nailed it!

5. Alcohol!

Summer TIme Shots Tumblr / Via summertimeshots.tumblr.com

6. Try to hook up with someone

Paradie Ciircue Tumblr / Via p-aradiseciircus.tumblr.com

7. Learn to Dance….. Saucily….

8. Get outside! Take the dog for a walk or something!

The Telegraph / Via telegraph.co.uk

Maybe later Fido.

9. You could….. oh sod it, just keep hitting F5!

Klei Entertainment Forums / Via forums.kleientertainment.com

Have faith, new LOL will appear. Eventually.

Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/davethecat/10-things-to-do-when-buzzfeeds-lol-section-isnt-j84t

We’ve all had that pivotal moment in life: A friend introduces you to THE book/movie/band/comic book,and it hits like a ton of pop culture bricks andalters the course of your life forever. For some of you, its the first time someone played youthe Clash, or the first time youread (*cough cough* pretended to read)“Infinite Jest.”

For me, it was the moment a few weeks ago when a friend told me about the dinosaur erotica genre on Amazon.

We were walking past a White Castle in Brooklyn, which seems like as appropriate a spot as any to discuss passionately-penned dino porn. (Most appropriate spot? Well let history decide.)

I dont remember how it came up, and honestly, its not important. The important thing is, now I know. And when I got home, I wondered: Is it possible that dinosaur erotica is just the tip of the bizarrely sensual Amazonian iceberg?

Spoiler alert: I was right. Like, super right.

So now for your reading and stimulatory pleasure, here is a list of some of the weirdest erotica titles on Amazon, along with descriptions, summaries, and my own reviews based on the summaries. (Im on a deadline, so I didnt have time to read all of these. Plus I dont mix business with … pleasure.)

1.“Taken by the T-Rex”by Christie Sims

Apparently, Ms. Christie Sims is an extremely popular and prolific author of “Stegasaurus” and other Triceratops-filled sexual tales — this aint her first T. rex gang bang. Sims has 330 titles on Amazon. 330!!! Who knew there were even that many types of dinosaurs to write about, right?!

No shade — the woman is an inspiration. Do you know how difficult it is not only to identify your calling, but to pursue it successfully? Good for her, I say.

Average customer review: 3.5 stars

The summary: “Drin is her tribes chief huntress; she lives for the thrill of the hunt. Men and sex hold no allure for her, as Drin has never found a partner to satisfy her. When a T-Rex descends upon her village, destroying it, Drin demands that the tribes hunters go in search of the beast and slaughter it. Opting for safety instead of revenge, the tribe moves to a new location, hoping that the big beast wont follow them.

My review based on the summary: 2.5 stars

I know, I know. Alison, you started writing this whole article because of dinosaur erotica. A T. rex running around with a boner is your spirit animal, and youve been telling total strangers that youre going to name your theoretical first-born child Christie Sims, regardless of gender. So why are you giving this book such a low rating?

Well, while I do applaud the attempt at empowered female character development and the extremely tasteful cover art, I have to take away points because its all just a bit too tasteful. The pivotal question — Does she f*ck that dinosaur? — is left completely unanswered.

I mean, yeah, of course she does. But Im a busy lady with busy businessI have to busy at — I dont have time to make inferences when Im trying to pick my dinosaur sex fantasy novels!


2. “Unbearable: Russet Falls Series” by W.H. Vega

Oooooh, an author who only goes by initials! Important! Fancy! Literary! Let’s dive in.

Average customer review: 3.5 stars

The summary:“Whats a girl to do when she finds herself face-to-face with a ferocious bear in the middle of the forest? Gabby never shouldve stumbled off the beaten path but hindsight iswell. And not to mention — She. Hates. Bears. Thank God for Zane, a super sexy park ranger who just happens to be on patrol and comes to Gabbys rescue.

The two immediately butt heads but Gabby cant control the overwhelming urge to let him take what he wants — and he cant deny she is everything he wants. What Zane doesnt tell Gabby is that hes a werebear shifter and second in command of the ruthless Virtus clanbut shes got a few surprises of her own and she wont be easy prey.

When rival bear clans discover Gabby has royal blood running through her veins the hunt is on. She has no choice but to seek Zanes protection. The incredibly sexy, super cocky man who also happens to be a bear What Zane doesnt tell Gabby is that hes the reason she hates bears in the first place — hes the one who killed her father 20 years ago.

My review based on the summary: 1,000,000,000,000.5 stars

Oh. My. God. She. Hates. Bears. I. Love. This. Book. I mean, Im so impressed I wont even take away points for the pun in the title. This description had me on the edge of my seat the whole time. Twists, turns, and twists again! At first I was like, Oh, dang, this isnt a book about a chick who f*cks a bear; its just a book about a chick who f*cks a dude. Womp-womp.

But then, HOLY SH*T, THE DUDE IS A BEAR! A BEAR WHO KILLED HER DAD!!! If you want drama, this bear-sex books got it in loads (of bear jizz).


3.“Sex with My Husbands [sic] Anatomically Correct Robot: The Complete Sex with Robots Collection” by KJ Burkhardt

Another author with just initials for the first name? Ugh. The novelty has already worn off. And between the panic attack that missing apostrophe is giving me and the general lack of imagination of this premise (cmon — sex robots are totally a normal thing in lots of places already, probably), my expectations are pretty low here overall. I will say, however, that the title is hilarious and only gets funnier as it gets longer.

I cant imagine this one will do much for me, but lets see what weve got.

Average customer review:0reviews

The summary:“Angie is an everyday housewife whose loving husband is left paralyzed from the waist down after a horrifying accident. After months of sexual frustration following the terrible accident, she can’t help but seduce a muscular workman while her husband is away at work.

When he finds out, he builds a mechanical man to keep his wife satiated and faithful to him. But the Robot may have a mind of its own as it seeks to please her every fantasy and desire. Will Angie learn to control her urges, or will she succumb to the pleasures of the robot every time she has a dirty thought? Find out in Volume 1 of the Sex With Robot’s [sic] series.”

My review based onthe summary: Blerrrghhhh stars

Man. Zero reviews on Amazon? No one could even be bothered to give it a measly one-star rating! Though, to be fair, that might have something to do with the fact that Amazon currently lists this title as “out of print.”

But I suspect thats just a ploy by the author to offer an initial limited run, making it seem more in-demand, so that it will sell out completely the next time they print new editions. Its a page right out of the Kylie Jenner lip kit playbook (which I assume is a playbook every savvy marketer has read and studied thoroughly, twice).

As for the description itself: Her husband finds out shes having an affair, so he builds her a sex robot with a mind of its own that she can have sex with instead? Isnt that still an affair? Were not talking about a giant, non-sentient dildo here — this is the singularity!

And Angie shouldnt have to learn to control her urges — dump that loser and find somebody who makes you feel alive, Ang! Android or otherwise! Its time to wake up from the Matrix — you deserve better, and so do we readers.


4.“My Woolly Mammoth Boyfriend” by Whitney Fox

A book about a sexy woolly mammoth? How creative and inspired! This one definitely seems promising, but lets take a closer look.

Average customer review: Not yet reviewed

The summary:Nicole, a brilliant and eccentric scientist hasn’t been on a date in over five years, losing [sic] interest in men long ago. It’s not until her best friend Shelly sets her up with a mini Wholly [sic] Mammoth, that Nicole’s heart thaws from it’s [sic] Ice Age, finally feeling love again for the first time in what feels like centuries.

My review based onthe summary: Negative 50 stars

I now realize that I was a bit hasty in basing my review of the summaryof “Sex with My Husbands Anatomically Correct Robot: The Complete Sex with Robots Collection,” largely because the fact that no one else had bothered to rate it. It seems like a lot of these books are in the same situation, so going forward, I wont hold it against any of the others. I appreciate your patience as I continue to learn and grow.

That being said, Im still giving “My Woolly Mammoth Boyfriend” negative 50 stars. For one thing, Im starting to notice theres a gross pattern among these books where the female characters are set up as strong, powerful women, yet theyre somehow incomplete until some man(slash dinosaur slash bear slash robot slash wooly mammoth) comes along. Yuck.
These are strong, independent women! They dont need some man (slash dinosaur slash bear slash robot slash wooly mammoth)!

Also: There are a lot of typos in this review — I mean, they got the woolly in wooly mammoth wrong. Seriously? Its right there in the title! Come on!

Also also: I have a friend named Shelly as well, which could have made me more inclined to understand the mindset of the main character, but instead just made me think about how the Shelly in my life has never bothered to set me up with a creature from the Pleistocene epoch. I guess were not as close as I thought.


5.“Cum for Bigfoot” by Virginia Wade

Im a little confused by this title. Is it a command? Is it about cum thats being madefor Bigfoot? Is it a weird play on “Flowers for Algernon”? Whatever it is, I find it a little crass, to be honest. Lets see if the summarycan change my mind.

Average customer review: 3.3 stars

The summary:“On a weeklong outing in Mt. Hood National Forest, what begins as a flirty, fun-filled trip soon turns into a nightmare, when an ape-like creature kidnaps a group of teen girls with the purpose of procreating with them. Thus begins the erotic adventure of a lifetime, and an inconceivable love story between a young woman and her horny Sasquatch.

My review based on the summary: Uncertain stars

OK, at first I was ready to dismiss this book completely, because I was a little skeeved out by what basically sounds like underage teen Sasquatch torture porn, but then I thought: Is it possible that “Cum for Bigfoot” is actually an allegory about how difficult it is for women, especially young women, to be taken seriously when reporting a sexual assault? Stay with me on this.

Maybe Bigfoot represents rape — because too many people dont believe its real. And if thats the message that “Cum for Bigfoot” is trying to get across, then well done, Ms. Wade.

If not, then this book sucks and I give it *armpit fart noise* stars.

Read more: http://elitedaily.com/humor/dinosaur-sex-erotica-fetishes-on-amazon/1377150/

Via marvel.wikia.com

Todd McFarlane / Marvel Comics

Via forums.comicbookresources.com

Billy Tan / Marvel Comics

 

Venom (left); The Sinister Six, at least, one iteration of the group (right).

It seems Beyoncé wasn’t the only superhero to drop big news Thursday night.

In a stealth release via a marketing website for next summer’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Sony Pictures announced that the studio has hired five screenwriters to expand the Spider-Man movie universe with at least two spin-off movies focusing on other characters from the Spider-Man comic books — specifically, several Spider-Man villains.

Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci (Star Trek Into Darkness) will partner with screenwriter Ed Solomon (Now You See Me, Men in Black) to write the screenplay for Venom, based on the fan-favorite character who is transformed via an alien symbiote into a hulking, sharp-toothed brute. (Venom was first played on screen by Topher Grace in 2007’s Spider-Man 3, to virtually no one’s satisfaction.) Kurtzman will direct the film, his second feature after 2012’s little-seen family drama People Like Us.

Filmmaker Drew Goddard (The Cabin in the Woods, Cloverfield), meanwhile, has been tapped to write a screenplay for The Sinister Six, with “an eye to direct” the film, Hollywood-speak for “the deal isn’t close to final yet.” (Sony’s hesitation is likely because Goddard is already committed to write and direct the pilot episode and serve as the showrunner for Marvel Television’s 13-episode Daredevil series for Netflix, which is set to premiere in 2015.) In the Marvel comics, there have been several iterations of the Sinister Six, which was first founded by Doctor Octopus, and also consisted of Kraven the Hunter, Mysterio, Sandman, Vulture, and Electro. The last villain in that group, of course, will already be played by Jamie Foxx in next May’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2, but Sony’s announcement did not specify which villains within Spider-Man’s rogues gallery would make up this particular version of the Sinister Six.

Finally, Sony also announced that The Amazing Spider-Man 2 screenwriters Kurtzman, Orci, and Jeff Pinkner (Fox’s Fringe) would return to write the screenplay for The Amazing Spider-Man 3, which already has a release date set for June 10, 2016. Marc Webb, who has directed the first two Amazing Spider-Man movies, has not yet signed on to direct the third film, but, as the release wryly puts it, “the studio hopes Webb will return to direct [The Amazing Spider-Man 3].”

All together, the announcement makes plain Sony’s ambition to marshall its own Spider-Man mega-franchise, like the one first pioneered by Marvel Studios. According to the announcement, Webb, Kurtzman, Orci, Pinkner, Solomon, and Goddard, along with producers Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach, are forming “a franchise brain trust to expand the universe for the brand and to develop a continuous tone and thread throughout the films.” (Sony’s announcement also comes on the heels of Warner Bros.’ announcement last week that the as-yet-untitled Superman-Batman movie will also feature Wonder Woman, as played by Fast & Furious 6 actress Gal Gadot — another clear attempt at a comic-book driven mega-franchise, this time in the DC Comics universe.)

Unlike Marvel Studios’ films, however, Sony — whose film licensing agreement with Marvel Entertainment is limited to characters from the Spider-Man comics — is focusing on Spider-Man’s enemies as the subjects of its expanded cinematic universe. Those characters are likely more familiar to a general audience than the smaller collection of more genuinely heroic figures in the Spidey comics who aren’t Spider-Man. But creating a series of spin-off films about characters who are inherently up to no good could pose something of a marketing challenge for the studio.

Another major question mark: whether star Andrew Garfield will stick around for any Spidey spin-off movies. His contract only lasts through The Amazing Spider-Man 3, and the actor recently told Yahoo! UK that he doesn’t know anything about a fourth Amazing Spider-Man film, which Sony has already scheduled for May 4, 2018. “I’m under contract for another one,” he said. “As far as a fourth one? That’s not anything to do with me.”

No firm release dates for Venom or The Sinister Six were announced, but reps for Sony did not immediately respond to inquiries about whether either film would take over the May 2018 release date for The Amazing Spider-Man 4.

Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/adambvary/spider-man-movie-universe-expanding-with-venom-sinister-six

1. The Sonic Ring Noise

2. The Mario Jump Noise

3. The Tetris Game Over Noise

4. The Zelda Secret Noise

5. The Street Fighter 2 Hadouken Noise

6. The Half Life Headcrab Noise

7. The Pacman Waka Waka Noise

8. The Contra First Gun Noise

9. The Diablo Drinking a Potion Noise

10. The Doom Monster Groan Noise

11. The Goldeneye PP7 Noise

12. The Final Fantasy VI Running Away Noise

13. The Metal Gear Solid Alarm Noise

14. The Castlevania Whip Crack Noise

15. The Angry Birds Every Noise Noise

16. The Paperboy Paper-on-the-Doorstep Noise

17. The Moral Kombat Get Over Here Noise

18. The NBA Jam He’s on Fire Noise

19. The Gears of War Chainsaw Noise

20. The Wii Tennis Racket Hits Ball Noise

21. The PlayStation Startup Noise

22. The Final Fantasy VII Equip Noise

23. The Silent Hill Radio Static Noise

24. The Super Mario Tube Noise

25. The Mega Man Death Noise

26. The Mario Kart 64 IMMA GONNA WIN Noise

27. The Ocarina of Time Hey Listen! Noise

Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/josephbernstein/27-video-game-noises-that-you-will-never-be-able-to-forget

If you pay attention at all to the gaming or the gadget media, you’ve been subjected, over the past few months, to competing mass lubrications of the global consumer appetite by Microsoft and Sony, two of the planet’s bigger corporations. Just what are they preparing us for? Two starkly different versions of our entertainment future, or so we’re told.

In the first, the Xbox One, Microsoft’s cloud-computing, voice-reacting, all-seeing big rig, will filter all of your leisure media — games, TV shows, streaming video — through a single, uncannily responsive interface that does what you want when you ask it, or gesture at it, much of the time, like a butler who is surly because he knows better than you do.

In the second, gamers, or some Reddit-approved notion of that baggy word, rule the living room, and the PlayStation 4 is a testament to their sovereignty. It is a pure parallelogram of play, sacrificing not a single quark of brute computational testosterone to media functionality or gesture control or any of the other sundry concessions to the rest of the household that might dilute the purity of the device.

Now, just in time for the Month of Ritual Commerce, the consoles are here. And though the Xbox One does not come out until Friday, the battle of these diametrically opposed, world-historically conflicted entertainment futures has already been joined. How? By rival games that express these totally diverging philosophies? One a hard diamond of pure gaming, the other, a gesture-controlled, voice-activated, game/TV futurething?

Well, err, no. The first skirmish of the war for our gaming future was actually over 360 pixels.

Dubbed the “Xbox One Resolutiongate,” the biggest “difference” debated between the two consoles thus far is that Microsoft’s machine runs Battlefield 4 and Call of Duty: Ghosts (two basically not-good games) at a lower resolution than Sony’s does. Hardly definitive or big-picture stuff, or even “stuff” at all. (And today, another “point scored” for Sony: Xbox One won’t support Twitch, the streaming service, when it launches on Friday.)

That the first flap of the release window came over something totally insignificant to the majority of people who will buy these systems is proof of just how little of substance we actually have to grasp with regards to the Xbox One and PS4. Here at BuzzFeed, we’ve been playing with both of them for the past week, and yet a weird sense persists that we hardly know anything about them, except for the messaging.

Right now, these two consoles are, literally and figuratively, black boxes, lists of specifications and fine-difference features that promise a lot and reveal very little. So, I could tell you that the PlayStation 4 is a major aesthetic upgrade from its predecessor (it is); that the controller feels significantly more substantial (it does); that the system UI rarely lags (it doesn’t); that the games, taken as a whole, look a little nicer (they do); and that it lacks a single feature that I found memorable, apart from more horsepower. And I could tell you that the Xbox One features a voice-activation system that veers between incredible and unresponsive (it does); gesture controls that seem far from ready (it does); cable and television integration that was easy to set up and easy to use (they were); and neato-peato vibrating motors in the controller triggers. Now ask yourself a question: Do any of these things actually matter to you?

We know a few things for sure: Like the last generation, not a single one of the launch games by itself justifies the purchase of a PlayStation 4 or an Xbox One. A couple of titles (Killzone: Shadowfall and Ryse) look the part, but they are, as games and not demonstrations of visual power, jejune.

Graphics are obvious, and it’s not surprising that game and gadget writers would seize on this small difference and turn it into a larger story — there’s just not that much to talk about yet. Of course, that’s exactly how the discussion of the last generation started, too. We saw article after article comparing PS3 and Xbox 360 graphics side by side, and endless explanations of why Microsoft’s system looked ever-so-slightly better than Sony’s.

Of course, that didn’t end up mattering. Despite a terrible slate of launch games and a disastrous hardware bug, 360 became incredibly popular because of a handful of terrific exclusive series, a great matchmaking service, and excellent streaming media capabilities. The PlayStation 3, despite a foolishly high launch price, a near total hardware redesign, and a terrible slate of launch games, became incredibly popular because of a handful of terrific exclusive series, free multiplayer, Blu-Ray, and a pretty great subscription game service. Both systems peaked in sales and quality releases around the same time, and they have sold basically the same number of units.

And 360 and PS3 were vastly different pieces of computing hardware that arrived at more or less the same point. Xbox One and PS4, on the other hand, have similar PC-based guts and offer many of the same social and media bells and whistles. Even the controllers and the systems themselves look more alike than ever. My point is this: These two boxes are going to play most of the same huge games — from Call of Duty to Madden to Watch Dogs to GTA 6 — and each will have a smattering of must-play exclusive games from developers like Naughty Dog and Epic.

Everything right now is simply speculation. In 2006, Naughty Dog was best known for games about anthropomorphized animals; no one could have predicted that they would make games as transcendent as Uncharted 2 and The Last of Us. And Epic, now famous for the 360-defining Gears of War, was essentially known in 2005, when that console launched, as a company that made computer graphics engines. In other words, if you buy one of these systems now you’re probably doing so for psychological reasons (loyalty to a brand, preference for one of the handful of exclusive studios that still exist, desire to be first). Basing a major purchasing decision off of the available facts about a console at launch (unless it is substantially defined by its hardware, like the Wii) makes very little sense.

Take this mixed review of the PlayStation 3 from 2006, written by Ben Kuchera, then at Ars Technica:

I think my main problem with the PS3 is that philosophically, it’s a confused system. It doesn’t really know what it wants to do. The 360 wants to be a social system; it wants to get you online, talking to people, playing these fun little minigames, and going for the high score and bragging rights. It wants to bring you together and make you remember what you love about gaming.

None of this is wrong, at all. It’s a normal reaction to a new console, to the available data. But it gets at just how little we know when we “review” new console hardware. The 360 didn’t succeed because it was a “social system” dedicated to “gaming” with “fun little minigames.” The PS3 didn’t fail — and then succeed — because it was “confused” and then not confused. The whole idea is that we don’t know exactly what is going to make these consoles succeed or fail, and we may not know for quite some time.

All of the living room functionality included in the Xbox One is a good case in point. Ordering your console to switch from TV to a game, or to sign in, or to turn off, is certainly a cool thing. Integrating your cable box with the rest of your entertainment is certainly a cool thing. And yet, will anyone really pay $500 just to make the “input” button on their remote obsolete? Will a low-cost, more polished competitor from a major technology company join the market? We don’t know. No one does.

Last week I attended a demonstration of the Xbox One user interface in a Manhattan loft space rented by Microsoft and gussied up to look like a living room. I watched an Xbox rep actually surprise himself by using gesture controls to swipe through photos shared to SkyDrive, the Microsoft cloud storage service. “I didn’t know it could do that,” he said.

The Xbox One and PS4 are exciting — I get that; it’s been a long time since there were new consoles. But we’re all discovering what they can do, and what will make them rise or fall, together, as we go.

Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/josephbernstein/no-one-knows-which-console-you-should-buy

The Avengers Trailer

Hollywood has been waiting forever for a franchise like the Marvel superheroes. After making a separate multi million dollar movie for each superhero, Marvel is now coming out with The Avengers. All your favorite superheros and actors team up in this epic super hero movie coming out May 2012. 

 

Read more: http://www.viralviralvideos.com/2011/10/12/the-avengers-trailer/