Amy Ratcliffe

league of legends

League of Legends is a popular video game with what seems like a million different characters. The New York Times took a look at the game and how it’s developed as it heads into its fourth world championship competition. The finals will take place in a stadium constructed for the World Cup in Seoul on October 19th. Riot Games expects 40,000 fans to attend. My mind is blown. I didn’t realize League of Legends was on that level.

As part of their fascinating look at the game, the Times created a 30 second video showing the patterns of 100,000 players in 10,000 games and it looks like a piece of moving art.

Watch the video after the break.

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pikachu bed 1

Cuddling up with a Pikachu plush is great and all, but what if you could sleep on a giant version of the adorable Pokémon? This bed lets you do just that. I’m not sure if it’s the biggest Pikachu ever, but since it weighs 33 pounds, it’s got to be close. The Pikachu bed comfortably fits one adult and would look great set up next to the Snorlax bean bag chair.

See a couple more pics of the cute bed after the break.

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dark arts header

The Dark Arts will soon be part of the Harry Potter Studio Tour in London. We first heard the news last month, and now the studio has shared photos of what visitors will see in the Dark Arts section. The permanent addition opens on October 14th, and guests will be able to experience extra special Dark Arts activities from October 17th through November 3rd. A section of the Halloween feast will be on display in the Hogwarts’ Great Hall, Death Eaters will roam Diagon Alley, and more.

As far as the Dark Arts section, it includes some beautiful and creepy sets and props including: an expanded Malfoy Manor set, Dolores Umbridge’s office complete with kitten plates, items from Borgins and Burkes, and a model of Nagini. I need to visit this place!.

See more photos after the break.

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GotG animated series

The popular Guardians of the Galaxy is coming to Disney XD as an animated series in 2015. Yeah, I’m excited. Marvel brought a teaser to New York Comic Con in the form of test footage, and it features lots of Rocket Raccoon shooting things. It’s only a few seconds of animation, but I’m already looking forward to seeing more.

Watch the tease after the break.

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indy cat bridge 1

If you have a cat that likes romping around the house or sleeping in unusual places, then you might need this Indiana Jones-inspired cat bridge. Made by Etsy seller Catastrophi Creations, the adventurous bridge is made from solid pine and the ends are reinforced with metal brackets. You can order a custom length, and then hang the rope bridge in a doorway and watch your cats run across it (and maybe even sleep on it). Bonus points if you make a tiny brown fedora for your kitty.

See more photos and a video of the bridge in use after the break.

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Dancing Groot toy

We’ve seen a few different official dancing baby Groot toys from Guardians of the Galaxy, but the catch? None of them actually danced until now. Thankfully, Marvel has teamed up with KIDdesigns to make a little Groot that moves and grooves to a version of Jackson 5’s “I Want You Back.” The price is set at a very reasonable $14.99, and yes, dancing baby Groot will be available in December. Just in time for Christmas.

See dancing Groot in action after the break.

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umbrella 1

Rainy days are usually dull and grey, but you can brighten them up by carrying this Pokémon Eeveelution umbrella. Designed by Etsy seller Rosewine, the sublimated print features adorable pocket monsters all the way around. Carry it and you can stay dry and express love for one of your fandoms. That’s called winning.

Take a closer look after the break.

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Ghostbusters

Paul Feig is directing a new Ghostbusters film that will star women. Isn’t it glorious? The director of Bridesmaids has been rumored to be involved with the film for a couple of months, and he’s helming a complete reboot. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Feig revealed he’s resetting the franchise with women fighting the ghosts. He said:

Yeah. I love origin stories. That’s my favorite thing. I love the first one so much I don’t want to do anything to ruin the memory of that. So it just felt like, let’s just restart it because then we can have new dynamics. I want the technology to be even cooler. I want it to be really scary, and I want it to happen in our world today that hasn’t gone through it so it’s like, oh my God what’s going on?

He mentioned he’d be open to having previous cast members come back in different roles for cameos, and that he doesn’t know all the specifics yet but has a general plan:

We have a very rough, rough outline that we’re working with, but definitely know the basic story, know what we want the basic characters to do, know what we want the world to do and what the rules of our world are, but nothing I want to discuss obviously. It’s cool. I think it’s a really strong origin story that feels real—as real as a ghost story is. It’s going to be really fun and real. We’ll make it scary and funny.

I am a fan of funny and silly scary, and I can’t wait to see some funny women at the helm. This particular statement from Feig made me feel reassured:

Everything’s got to live on it’s own merits. It would be terrible if we just go, oh we’re just doing an update where we use the same dynamic and scripts. If we just flop four women into the exact same personalities and roles as original, then that’s lazy filmmaking on my behalf, and who wants to see that? I don’t want to do a shot by shot update of a movie that existed. It’s the difficult thing about remaking a great movie. So that’s why we’re not remaking a great movie. We’re doing our take on it.

(via io9)

Gaiman Doctor Who Tumblr

Doctor Who has at least one major flaw: it hasn’t had a female writer since 2008. It’s hard to wrap my head around, and the omission doesn’t go unnoticed. Writer Neil Gaiman recently touched on the gender imbalance when he answered a question on his Tumblr about which Who writer he’d like to hug:

guyplayfair asked: If you could hug any Doctor Who writer, which one would you hug? I think personally I would go for Robert Shearman, he looks cuddly and that beard would probably feel nice rubbing on your head. Russell T Davies also looks quite huggable but his propensity towards suits and lack of facial hair might not make it as pleasurable as Mr Shearman.

Gaiman answered:

I would like to hug all the women who have written for Doctor Who since 2008. All of them! I would start with…

What, nobody? That can’t be right…. (goes off, puzzled).

We agree, Mr. Gaiman, we agree.

(via Super Punch)

calvin and hobbes damage

Calvin of Bill Watterson’s Calvin and Hobbes spent a fair amount of his time wrecking things. You’re going to break a few lamps when you’re running around the house being chased by a tiger – it happens. Matt J. Michel, editor of the the parody science journal Proceedings of the Natural Institute of Science, put his free time to good use and estimated just how much it would cost to cover damages when raising a kid like Calvin.

He went through every published comic and noted every instance where Calvin did damage on the page or when someone referenced damage Calvin caused. Michel then went to Amazon.com to look for the costs of comparable items. In the end, it was over $15,000. His results:

In total, Calvin caused an estimated $15,955.50 worth of damage over the duration of the comic strip (Figure 1). Damage ranged from a broken glass jar[6] ($2 from amazon.com) to a flooded house[7] ($4,798.83 from homewyse.com). Taking into account Watterson’s sabbaticals (see Figure 1) and the November start to the comics, Calvin caused $1,850.55 of damage per year. For context, the USDA estimates that middle-income families spend an estimated $1,750 per year on child care and education for 6 year-olds. In fact, the amount of damage caused by Calvin would rank 4th out of the USDA’s categories in annual expenditures, behind Housing, Food, and Transportation, and ahead of Education, Miscellaneous, Health Care, and Clothing.

Read the full report at PNIS. By the way, read that acronym slowly. Then skip around their site and note the sections called “HARD” and “SOFD.” Other articles on the site include “Assessment of the frequency with which men think of things: chicken wings” and “A Shakespearean translation of the last rap battle in 8 Mile, with a subsequent analysis of its quality.”

(22 Words via Neatorama)