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Game

NVIDIA looks set to reveal its next-gen GeForce RTX GPUs on September 20th

NVIDIA’s GPU Technology Conference goes down this month and the company has revealed when CEO Jensen Huang’s keynote will take place. You’ll be able to watch it at 11AM ET on September 20th. The keynote will kick off with a GeForce Beyond special broadcast, which will also stream on and .

The company says the event will include “the latest breakthroughs in gaming, creating and graphics technology.” NVIDIA is expected to reveal its RTX 40-series graphics cards during the broadcast — an image the company shared to promote the event includes the GeForce RTX Logo. NVIDIA previously said it would release its this year. Those will supplant graphics cards with the current Ampere architecture.

It remains to be seen just how well the RTX 40-series cards will perform. In the meantime, the 30-series GPUs after the cryptocurrency market cratered.

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Game

‘Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II’ multiplayer reveal set for September 15th

Activision and Infinity Ward are set to reveal Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II‘s multiplayer mode along with other details at the Next showcase event on September 15th. They also announced that the early access beta will start rolling out on September 16 and 17 on PlayStation consoles and arrive in an open crossplay beta to all consoles and PCs starting September 24th.

As shown below, you’ll need to pre-order to get the open and early access beta releases, with PlayStation owners getting first dibs. After the early access, PlayStation 4 and 5 users will get the open beta from September 18-20, and then Xbox and PC will get early access (crossplay beta) from September 22-23, with PlayStation getting the open crossplay beta on the same dates. Finally, the open beta (crossplay) will be available on all platforms from September 24-26.

'Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II' multiplayer reveal set for September 15th

Infinity Ward

Along with the multiplayer mode, Infinity Ward said it would show “the imminent future of [what] Call of Duty will look like, including many more details regarding Modern Warfare II, information on the next Call of Duty: Warzone, and more on the mobile version of Call of Duty: Warzone (also known as Project Aurora).” It also promised you’d see YouTubers streamers playing the games in real time, along with surprise information. 

If you haven’t pre-ordered, you may still be able to get a beta code for early access from various streamers and YouTubers. Modern Warfare II is the successor to 2019’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, based on the original Modern Warfare subseries launched in 2007. The new title is set to arrive on October 28th and cost $70 across all platforms. 

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Game

Ubisoft will reveal updated ‘Skull and Bones’ gameplay this week

After years of delays, Ubisoft is finally ready to offer a fresh look at Skull and Bones. The publisher on Tuesday it plans to host a showcase dedicated to the open-world multiplayer pirate game on July 7th at 2PM ET. Ubisoft will livestream the event on and .

The company is widely expected to announce a new release date then. If you haven’t kept track of Skull and Bones’ troubled development, we don’t blame you. Ubisoft first announced the title at , with an original release window planned for 2018. It then pushed the game back to , , 2021 and then finally its fiscal .

In 2020, Elisabeth Pellen, the game’s creative director, the delays to a change of vision. The original premise of Skull and Bones was simple. It was supposed to adapt the sailing mechanics from 2013’s Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag and strip all the narrative threads and stealth mechanics that made that game unapproachable for some.

“The answer is that we simply needed more time. We dreamt something bigger for Skull and Bones, and these ambitions naturally came with bigger challenges,” Pellen said at the time. “As Skull and Bones evolved from its original idea to what it is now, it was also necessary to have some fresh eyes join the team.” Ubisoft also announced today it plans to hold a separate event on September 10th that will feature multiple games and projects from the company’s teams.

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Game

Ubisoft will reveal ‘the future of Assassin’s Creed’ this September

Ubisoft will reveal what’s next for its long-running Assassin’s Creed franchise later this year. The publisher announced today it will host a special event in September to discuss the future of the series. While we didn’t get many hints from the company during its recent AC 15th Anniversary Celebration livestream, we have a good idea of what to expect. We know from reporting by Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier that Ubisoft is working on two new Assassin’s Creed projects.

The first is a live service experience codenamed Infinity that will encompass multiple time periods and settings and allow fans to play together. After confirming it was working on the game in July 2021, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot said this past October that Infinity wouldn’t be a free-to-play game. The company is also working on a new standalone title codenamed Rift. According to Schreier, Rift began life as an Assassin’s Creed Valhalla expansion, but was later repurposed by Ubisoft into a standalone game to bolster its near-term release schedule. The new game will reportedly steer the series back to its stealth roots and star Valhalla’s Basim Ibn Ishaq.

Of the two projects, we’re more likely to see Ubisoft share information about Rift given its more limited scope and the fact Schreier said the company plans to release it before Infinity. Of course, Ubisoft could also surprise us, and we’ll have to wait until September to find out what the company has in store for fans.

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Game

Activision will reveal its ‘Modern Warfare II’ remake on June 8th

Just a couple of weeks after divulging the release date for , Activision Blizzard is set to show off much more about the next game in the long-running series. A “worldwide reveal” will take place on June 8th at 1PM ET. 

The teased the reveal when it announced the October 28th release date last month. Activision previously confirmed some of the characters who will appear in Modern Warfare II, including John “Soap” MacTavish and Simon “Ghost” Riley. The reveal will surely offer a lot more info, probably including a first look at gameplay.

Infinity Ward is on deck for this year’s Call of Duty game, which is a sequel to 2019’s . That itself was a reboot of the Modern Warfare sub-series, which started in 2007 with Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. Confused yet? Don’t blame you.

Infinity Ward is also working on of the battle royale, which will arrive at the same time as Modern Warfare II. Among the updates will be a new engine for both games.

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Game

It sure looks like a new Sonic the Hedgehog game reveal is coming soon

Sonic the Hedgehog fans might have reason to tune into The Game Awards later this week because it looks like a new Sonic game will be revealed during the show. Sega has been dropping hints that a new Sonic the Hedgehog game will be revealed during The Game Awards, which host Geoff Keighley has been building up to be a big event even outside of the award announcements.

Image: Nintendo

Leaks and teases suggest new Sonic soon

If you follow either Sonic the Hedgehog or Geoff Keighley on Twitter, then you probably saw an interesting exchange between the two recently, with the Sonic account asking Geoff if he had any extra tickets to The Game Awards. After some banter about how the official Sonic account doesn’t follow Keighley on Twitter, we get confirmation that Sonic and Sega will be at the show later this week, implying a new game will be revealed during it (via Twitter).

While that would usually be enough for us, that’s not where the hints and leaks end. As spotted by Reddit user JamKingVAC in a post to the GamingLeaksAndRumors subreddit, the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise page on Steam has been updated to show that the series consists of 35 games instead of 34. Of course, there’s no new game to go along with that updated number, so it seems that Sega is preparing the Sonic franchise page ahead of time for a new announcement.

Reddit users also point to a freshly-discovered frontiers.sonicthehedgehog.com domain as evidence that a new game is coming. At the moment, visiting that domain returns a 403 error, but it’s possible that Sega is readying the official Sonic website for whatever this new game is.

What could this new Sonic game be?

Obviously, that domain suggests that this new Sonic game could be called Sonic Frontiers. It’s been a while since the last new 3D Sonic game, which was 2017’s Sonic Forces if we aren’t counting the remaster of Sonic Colors that launched earlier this year. The fact that Sega has trademarked the phrase Sonic Frontiers lends a little more credibility to this particular rumor (via Video Game Chronicles).

It could also be a new 2D Sonic game. While those are a rare sight in the 21st century, 2017’s Sonic Mania was quite possibly the best Sonic game since the original Genesis title. Given the positive reception to Sonic Mania, you’d think that Sega would want to follow up on it with a sequel, but we haven’t heard anything about that in the years since.

For now, the evidence points to a new 3D Sonic game called Sonic Frontiers, but we’re still a long way away from being sure about it. Assuming this new game is revealed at The Game Awards, we thankfully don’t have to wait long before we find out what it is because the show is happening Thursday, December 9th, at 7 PM EST.



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Game

Fortnite x Naruto crossover leaks reveal Creative Hub and free rewards

Last week, Epic Games dropped a teaser on its Fortnite Twitter account revealing a Naruto crossover that’ll arrive on Tuesday, November 16. The company pinned the teaser on the account, indicating this may be more than a simple Item Shop drop with a couple of skins. Here to reinforce that speculation are Fortnite data miners with some tantalizing leaks.

Crossovers have become a common activity in Fortnite, and though some of them have been huge multi-week events, many are more limited in nature. Some fans have been asking Epic for a Fortnite x Naruto crossover and that, the company revealed in its teaser image, is finally happening.

Epic doesn’t have much to say about the crossover aside from the November 16 release date. However, game data-miner and known reliable Fortnite leaker HYPEX has published some alleged details about the Naruto crossover, claiming it’ll be more than a skin in the battle royale game’s Item Shop.

According to the account, the crossover will include a Creative Hub featuring the Hidden Leaf Village. As well, HYPEX claims multiple cosmetics will be available in the Item Shop, noting that fans should “prepare” their wallets. Not everything will cost money, however, at least according to the leaks.

HYPEX goes on to claim that a couple of free Naruto-themed rewards will be made available as part of this collaboration, one featuring a Ninja Scroll and the other a bowl of ramen. Players will, the account claims, collect coins in Creative mode to unlock the rewards.

Assuming this is true, it would essentially be the same as the recent Balenciaga collaboration, which had players run around in a themed Creative Hub to find and claim a certain number of sneakers. Whether the Naruto crossover will also include new challenges related to the anime is unclear at this time.

The account also dropped an alleged promo image featuring artwork for the crossover. In it, we see Naruto eating pizza in front of the Fortnite POI Pizza Pit. The artwork has the same look and feel as loading screens offered for other characters — the same loading screens that are often given as rewards for completing challenges. We’ll have to wait until next week’s official crossover launch to see whether players will be able to unlock the artwork as a loading screen, however.



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Security

Screenshots reveal what extra information the Robinhood hackers accessed

Screenshots obtained by Motherboard reportedly show the internal Robinhood tools that a hacker used to access “more extensive account details” for some of the trading platform’s accounts. The heavily redacted screenshots show that hackers had access to buttons labeled “Disable MFA” (multi-factor authentication) and “Add to Trusted Device Email Code Whitelist,” along with information about what devices were logged into the account, and the ACH bank transfers the user had done.

Motherboard says it got the screenshots from someone claiming to be affiliated with the hackers. Robinhood told The Verge that its investigation didn’t reveal evidence that the hacker made any changes to accounts.

One of the screenshots reportedly provided by the Robinhood hackers. Redactions were made by Motherboard.
Image: Motherboard

Although data was accessed for around 7 million people, Robinhood said in its announcement that most of them only had their email addresses or full names obtained. Ten people, however, had “more extensive account details revealed.” Robinhood confirmed the account included in one screenshot Motherboard received showing a customer support conversation was one of those 10. Another screenshot also shows a customer’s account balance, portfolio value, and verified phone number.

Robinhood announced the hack on Monday, saying that someone was able to socially engineer one of its support employees and gain access to some of the company’s customer support tools. These tools gave them access to some user information, though not Social Security, bank, or debit card numbers, according to Robinhood. The company won’t say if the users who had more data accessed than others were specifically targeted, but it has said that it’s reaching out to those affected. Robinhood also said that the hacker tried to extort it for money, but that it didn’t pay.

Update November 10th, 5:16PM ET: Added information from Robinhood stating the hackers did not alter account information.

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Security

The Israeli army is using facial recognition to track Palestinians, former soldiers reveal

The Israeli military has deployed an extensive facial recognition program to track Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, according to a new report by The Washington Post.

Former Israeli soldiers told the Post about a smartphone technology called “Blue Wolf,” which takes photos of Palestinians and stores them in a large-scale database. Once an image is captured, Blue Wolf matches that picture to a person in its database, and as the Post describes, soldiers’ phones will then flash a specific color that signifies if that individual should be arrested, detained, or left undisturbed.

The Post notes that the Israeli army has been filling up the database with thousands of images of Palestinians over the past two years, and it even held “competitions” that rewarded soldiers for taking the most photos of people. The database is essentially a “Facebook for Palestinians,” a former soldier told the Post.

The Israeli military has also set up cameras throughout the city of Hebron that scan Palestinians’ faces and identify them for soldiers at checkpoints. Meanwhile, a series of CCTV cameras, some of which point into people’s homes, provide live monitoring 24/7.

According to the Post, the former soldiers were told by the military that the surveillance system was put in place to prevent terrorism. Either way, Israel’s system takes facial recognition to a dystopian extreme.

The largest city in the West Bank, Hebron has seen bitter and long-standing conflict between Israeli and Palestinian populations. A large portion of the city is administered directly by the Israeli military, which enforces curfews and other movement restrictions on the local population. But even in the context of the extreme security measures, the former soldiers who spoke to the Post found the facial recognition system alarming.

“I wouldn’t feel comfortable if they used it in the mall in [my hometown], let’s put it that way,” a former soldier told the Post. “People worry about fingerprinting, but this is that several times over.”

There have been a number of similar systems implemented in other countries, and all have been controversial. China developed a similar facial recognition system to monitor the Uyghur minority population, although it’s unclear how widely the system was put into use. Moscow recently added facial recognition payment systems to hundreds of metro stations, while the UK launched a similar face-scanning payment system for schoolchildren at lunchtime.

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Computing

First Teardowns Reveal New MacBook Pro’s Repairability

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The first MacBook Pros are slowly making their way out into the wild, and one teardown is revealing some details on the internals of these new laptops.

The photo comes from a Reddit user posting in the r/Apple subreddit, who was eager to pull apart their shiny new 14-inch MacBook Pro. As reported by MacRumors, these photos give us our first unofficial look at what is different internally this time around.

In addition to the photos, the Reddit user provided some insight into what they were seeing. They stated that opening up the back lid to get inside is identical to on previous MacBook Pros released from 2016-2021. It uses the same “pentalobe” screws and clips that need to be manually popped before you pull the lid toward the front of the machine.

Once you have the lid off, you’ll see a familiar sight. However, there are some subtle changes that should drastically improve repairability and long-term sustainability for the MacBook Pro. The biggest difference is the battery, which is no longer glued to the frame. They now use pull tabs as used on the iPhone, which allows for easy access to swapping it out.

The Reddit user notes how big of an impact this could have on the overall sustainability of the product as it pertains to e-waste. No more throwing out the entire laptop to service a dead battery!

A top down view of the internal layout of the new MacBook Pro.

Another improvement is that the ports (including MagSafe) seem to be “modular and easy to place,” as the user notes. Again, the more features of the laptop that can be replaced the better.

The Reddit user also confirmed that the black keyboard deck “is still part of the unibody,” meaning that it can’t be easily replaced. While Apple made an improvement in this regard when switching from its butterfly switches back to the more conventional Magic Keyboard, it could be better.

We’ll have to wait for the inevitable full breakdown by iFixit to learn more, but it certainly seems like Apple made some small but meaningful changes to improve the repairability of this device.

Laptops that let you replace components like storage and memory do far better, and a fully modular device like the Framework Laptop takes it even further. MacBook Pros have long since been known for poor upgradability and repairability, especially in the generation of designs from 2016 until now.

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