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Become humanity’s last hope on Wii U

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The last of Earth’s survivors after an alien annihilation need to wonder the mysterious Mira planet while fighting the hostile wildlife. Players need to team up and develop strategies to watch out for each other.

When the Earth is destroyed by a mysterious alien race, the last of humanity escapes and crash-lands on the mysterious planet Mira. Facing the threat of extinction, players must survive the perils of their new home in Xenoblade Chronicles X, an RPG set in a massive open world just waiting to be explored in-depth, releasing exclusively on the Wii U on 4 December.

In this new RPG from the creators of Xenoblade Chronicles, players can create their own character and explore a planet five times bigger than the world in Xenoblade Chronicles. A rich variety of hostile wildlife makes Mira an inhospitable place, and players will need to master a deeply strategic real-time battle system to survive.

During combat, your avatar can switch between different battle classes that allow them to become more adept at long-range or close-quarters combat, as well as issue tactical orders to up to three AI partners. Party members will also advise players on when to use special skills, known as Arts, to boost their allies or blast away foes. Each class has access to different Arts, and strategic use of these can be instrumental in turning the tide of the battle.

Outside of combat, players can focus on the necessities of exploration and survival by taking jobs in eight different divisions. Those who want to focus on discovering the massive, open environments and scavenge for new materials can take a job as a Curator, while joining the Harriers will allow players to concentrate primarily on defeating the dangerous monsters that roam the landscape. Another choice, Outfitters, spend the bulk of their time helping to develop the giant weaponised mechs known as Skells. Eventually, players will be able to pilot the Skell themselves, allowing access to places they couldn’t find before, providing even more possibilities for exploration.

By using the Wii U GamePad, players can access the navigation system, which displays a hexagonal map grid to plot the course ahead to avoid ambushes from giant monsters, uncover new resources, and fast-travel between previously discovered locations. The game can also be played on the GamePad screen alone.

Xenoblade Chronicles X brings the series online for the first time, making it possible to team up and take on co-operative missions as a party of four. Players can also join a party of up to 32 asynchronous characters with whom they can trade items and weapons, even if they are not battling together. In addition, avatars created by other players can be recruited into your team as AI party members, providing you with even more avenues for strategy in the midst of battle.

Explore humanity’s final frontier in Xenoblade Chronicles X for the Wii U, as it launches across Europe and South Africa on 4th December. The game will also be available as a bundle with a Wii U Premium Pack console and as a Limited Edition. Users who purchase Xenoblade Chronicles on Nintendo eShop on Wii U will be eligible for a R130 discount on Xenoblade Chronicles X if they buy it on Nintendo eShop on the same Wii U console before 18th December 2015.

Arts and Entertainment

Deezer to host Hotstix’s Mandela tribute playlist

Deezer is celebrating Nelson Mandela on the centenary of his birthday by hosting a tribute playlist created by music legend Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse.  

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Mabuse, a legendary figure in African music, first rose to prominence in the 1970s with his band Harari and later developed a name for himself as a solo artist. One of his best known songs was the global hit BurnOut in the 1980s.

The playlist takes the listener on a captivating musical journey through the life of Nelson Mandela.  It was compiled by Mabuse, who consulted with Mandela’s family and friends to ensure that the music would be relevant and accurate. The playlist also features commentary by Mabuse, which was recorded in his Soweto home.  

“I have tried to tell the story of the music that Madiba loved,” says Mabuse. “The Playlist excludes the time in prison obviously, as Madiba would not have had exposure to music in that time.  We have focused on the music we know he loved before and after that period. This recording was really an emotional journey for me, but an incredible opportunity to document these memories.”

The playlist features the music the young Mandela loved, such as The Manhattan Brothers, Solomon Linda, Brenda Fassie and Miriam Makeba.  It includes struggle songs from Chicco, Johnny Clegg, Hugh Masekela and Yvonne Chaka Chaka.  The playlist also includes Mandela by Zahara, one of the younger artists who caught Madiba’s ear.

Mabuse also offers stories of his own songs, such as Shikisha, a song greatly beloved by the former President.

“I was delighted to share my thoughts and hope the listeners enjoyed the musical journey,” says Mabuse. “Madiba did enjoy music immensely and we all have a purpose wherever we are in the world to celebrate culture and to learn from different cultures and music forms and styles.”

This playlist was inspired by the Nelson Mandela 100 campaign, calling on corporates and individuals to act as sources of inspiration and engage in conversation and action.

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Arts and Entertainment

Avengers’ all-time accolade

This past weekend Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Infinity War became the second highest grossing film of all time at the South African Box Office.

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This means that Marvel Studios now holds the number 2 and number 1 film of all time positions at the local Box Office, following Black Panther’s unprecedented record-shattering run since it’s 16 February 2018 release.

In South Africa, audiences continued to assemble in cinemas to witness the cinematic journey ten years in the making, earning Avengers: Infinity War a current total box office tally of just under R73 million with over 874 000 attendances.

Black Panther’s historic box office journey ended in June and now boasts a final box office total just shy of R107.5 million and over 1.43 million attendances, making it the biggest film of all time at the South African box office and the first to cross the R100m mark. This record builds on Black Panther’s list of achievements on the African continent and is the biggest grossing film of all time not only in South Africa, but also East and West Africa. Black Panther is now available to enjoy on DVD and Blu-ray, as well as to digitally rent or buy from retailers and providers across the continent.

Elsewhere in Africa, Avengers: Infinity War has also raked in a total of Kes 66.9m in East Africa, making it the 2nd highest grossing film of all time behind Black Panther. Similarly, in West Africa, the film hit N450m at the box office, making it the 2nd highest grossing international film of all time, also behind Black Panther.

For Marvel Studios fans, the action and adventure continues as the 20th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Ant-Man and The Wasp, hit cinemas this past weekend and created enough buzz to fly into the number one position at the South African Box Office.

“We are thrilled at the response that Marvel Studios’ titles have continued to receive from cinema-goers across the continent,” says Christine Service, Senior Vice President of The Walt Disney Company Africa. “With Ant-Man and The Wasp in cinemas, and both Captain Marvel and the next Avengers film in 2019, we are eagerly anticipating the continuing expansion of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and look forward to celebrating with fans.”

On the animated front and with its own super hero theme, Disney•Pixar’s Incredibles 2, continues to entertain families across the country and is already Disney’s second-highest grossing animated film of all time behind Finding Dory, after only 3 weeks in release.

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