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    After the deployment of the Spartan-IIs in 2525, the UNSC began to effectively destroy the Insurrection in the Outer Colonies. However, a devastating alien empire would arrive at the colony Harvest — one that would threaten our entire existence. In the last article, we covered the rise of humanity in the galaxy, the outbreak of the Insurrection in the Outer Colonies, and the origins of the Spartan-IIs who were created to fight them. Halo timeline part one: Precursors, Forerunner betrayal, and the era that followed Halo timeline part two: Forerunner-Flood War and the firing of the Halo arrays Halo timeline part three: War of Beginnings and formation of the Covenant Halo timeline part four: Growth and expansion of the Covenant empire Halo timeline part five: Rise of humanity and the Spartan program In this article, we're going to take a look at humanity's first contact with the mighty Covenant, what caused the beginning of the war to come, and how the colony world of Harvest became...

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    Like the Project Scorpio edition before it, the Xbox One X standard edition seems to be off to a flying start. The Xbox One X is Microsoft's next console. It's not only the smallest Xbox console ever made, but it's the most powerful, rocking 6 TF of computational power designed to facilitate 4K gaming and VR. We've been hands on a few times at this point, and it really does seem to be the real deal. Many high-profile commentators have decried the Xbox One X's $499 price point, claiming Microsoft was making the same mistakes that it did with the original Xbox One back in 2013. We live in a world of $1000 iPhones now, however, and it seems that people are willing to splash the cash if they think the product is right. The Xbox One X is selling out across the globe, with major retailers like Amazon US now listing as "Currently Unavailable" on their respective preorder pages. It's still available to preorder on the Microsoft Store in the US, however, so get in quickly if you're on...

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    Everyone's favorite Exotic-wielding vendor, Xûr, Agent of the Nine, has made his return in Destiny 2. Here's how to find him. Xûr, Agent of the Nine, was one of the most mysterious characters in the first Destiny game, and despite little information surfacing on his background, he's emerged as one of the most iconic in the franchise history. This elusive vendor served as the one-stop shop for guaranteed Exotic items, however, he had an enigmatic twist to his whereabouts. In Destiny 2, Xûr has made a return, delivering a new wave of gear to eager guardians. Furthermore, information on how the merchant will function in Destiny 2 has surfaced, with some notable changes for returning players. See at Amazon See at Xbox Store Who is Xûr, Agent of the Nine? Xûr is a mysterious vendor is Destiny 2, providing access to Exotic weapons, armor, and various consumable items, in exchange for a specific currency. While Exotic engrams are a way of securing random drops of high-value lo...

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    Xbox One X preorders are now live across the world, but what if you want something more? The Xbox One X is Microsoft's beastly new console, sporting six teraflops (TF) of computational power to produce 4K HDR visuals across more than 130 games (with many more on the way). The preorders for the standard 1TB edition went live earlier this week ahead of its November 7, 2017, launch target. If you're jumping into the Xbox ecosystem for the first time (and have cash to burn), there are more than a few accessories and other hardware you need to complete your setup. Here are some of our recommendations for Xbox accessories, 4K TVs, and other products to improve the overall "Xperience" (sorry). Xbox One X First, you need an Xbox One X, of course! The Xbox One X clocks in at $499.99, and powers 4K gaming in the smallest Xbox console ever built. Using advanced cooling techniques, and other tricks, the Xbox One X sports all the features of the Xbox One S, complete with superior firepowe...

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    Rockstar is gearing up to break its silence about Red Dead Redemption 2 with an announcement next week. News around Red Dead Redemption 2 has been fairly bare ever since it was first announced, but Rockstar is now teasing an announcement is on the horizon. If you've been eagerly awaiting new bits of information around the highly anticipated game, you'll only have to wait until next week. Aside from the actual teaser, there's no indication as to what we can actually expect, unfortunately. All Rockstar has released is an image decked out in Read Dead flair that reveals the date of the announcement: Thursday, September 28 at 11 a.m. ET. pic.twitter.com/7iUdR4pE41— Rockstar Games (@RockstarGames) September 22, 2017 Red Dead Redemption 2 was originally pegged for an autumn 2017 release date, but that was delayed through spring 2018. Other than an announcement trailer and a batch of screenshots shared earlier in 2017, Rockstar has remained relatively mum on the next entry in the pop...

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    PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds has taken the world by storm, breaking records on Steam for concurrent players. In PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (affectionately known as PUBG), solo players or teams of up to four friends must parachute into a large map, filled with procedurally placed weapons and armor, and hunt up to 100 other players until there's only one player, or one team left. The playable area of the map gets perpetually smaller, and strategic use of weapons, vehicles, and stealth all come into play, making PUBG as tense to play as it is to watch on streaming sites. PUBG is built on the Unreal Engine, owned by Epic Games, who also own Fortnite, an upcoming free-to-play base defence game, revolving around zombie-like husk creatures. Or at least, it used to revolve around that. Epic Games recently announced Fortnite's "Battle Royale" mode, which is almost identical to PUBG. No gamers are strangers to titles being cloned, particularly on mobile, but for a large studio like ...

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    Microsoft is letting Apple and Amazon get away with a premium media experience in the living room. There's no reason for that, thanks to Cortana and Xbox, but the company needs a modern media remote. Microsoft is seemingly doing a bang-up job with its Xbox division, especially when it comes to console hardware like the Xbox One S and now Xbox One X with 4K abilities. What the company has not done well with is home media functionality in its Xbox One Media Remote ($25). I get the focus on gaming and the downplaying of TV – a 180-degree shift from the original Xbox One wave that resulted in Microsoft getting decimated by Sony. However, that does not mean Microsoft can't handle two (or even three) things at once. Xbox One Media Remote is just bad The Xbox One Media Remote is not a new accessory. Announced in early 2014, I have been using one since it came out. After all, I'm one of those people who bought an Xbox for media consumption like Netflix, Hulu, and Sling, and I only ...

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    With support for USB webcams on Xbox One now live, here's how to take advantage of the feature through Skype. Microsoft recently added support for USB cameras on Xbox One, opening the console to a range of new accessories. While previously, the only camera compatible with the console was the Xbox One's ill-fated Kinect sensor, practically any third-party webcam can now be used on Xbox One after the update. One of the best uses of this functionality is the Skype application for Xbox One, which now supports cameras over USB. Video calls have been a main pillar for the service for some time now and provided you have a compatible camera, this can now be used on your console. These are the steps to enable webcam support on your console for use with Skype. Note: For now, USB webcam support is still in testing, with the functionality restricted solely to those in the Alpha ring of the Xbox Insider Program. How to use a USB webcam with your Xbox One A clear effort has been made to strea...

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    Add a personal edge to Mixer streams with any USB webcam on Xbox One. Support for webcams recently rolled out to a subset of Xbox One users, allowing nearly any USB-based camera to be used on the console. While up until now, the console has relied on the Kinect sensor as the sole compatible camera, today's update significantly widens the range of devices that can be used. Kicking off its arrival, Microsoft is pushing webcam support for streamers – specifically through the company's own live streaming service, Mixer. With the service now built directly into the "Broadcasting" tab of Guide menu, setting up a webcam to stream proves to be relatively simple and integrates into the existing streaming tools of the console. Here are the steps to configure your webcam for live streaming use. Note: For now, USB webcam support is still in testing, with the functionality restricted solely to those in the Alpha ring of the Xbox Insider Program. How to use a USB webcam with your Xbox One A...

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    Now you can jam out to Halo Wars 2's stellar soundtrack as part of a gorgeous vinyl set. In a world now dominated by digital music, vinyl has seen a bit of a resurgence among in recent years — not only because of its particular acoustic aesthetics, but also its physicality. That popularity has bled over into the realm of video games as well, with the latest release being a special vinyl edition of the Halo Wars 2 soundtrack. The set includes all 28 tracks of the RTS soundtrack spread out over two vinyl records. Aside from the excellent scores composed by Gordy Haab, Brian Trifon and Brian Lee White, the looks of the set are a draw as well. The sleeve is covered in some pretty epic art from the game, but the records themselves are pressed in a crimson marble that looks gorgeous. Halo Wars 2 composers share the inside story of the game's spectacular soundtrack If you're a big fan of the music in Halo Wars 2 and want to add an attractive physical release to your collection, you c...

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    In a recent interview, Rare studio boss Craig Duncan discussed the legendary developer's history, and more specifically, its library of classic IP. Rare, owned by Microsoft, has overseen some of the industry's most noteworthy franchises, from Banjo-Kazooie to Perfect Dark. The studio is currently working on Sea of Thieves, which is a connected-world adventure game full of pirates, swashbuckling, and some of the most gorgeous ocean physics ever seen. While Sea of Thieves looks very promising, many Rare fans would like to see the studio revisit some of those classic franchises. IP such as Battletoads, Viva Piñata, and Kameo would be prime candidates for a modern refresh, but Duncan says that innovation must come first. Talking to DK Vine (via IGN), Duncan said that taking existing franchises and giving them "up-to-date graphics" isn't the right way to go about things. Further clarifying on Twitter, Duncan emphasized that he didn't mean Rare would never revisit old franchises, ...

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    Microsoft is issuing an update to the Xbox's Alpha Ring (and part of the Delta ring) to fix a few bugs. As we head towards the public launch of the 1710 Xbox One update, Microsoft is working hard to polish the new dashboard and its features on the Xbox Insider Program. This latest build fixes issues with the new USB camera functionality, Games & Apps, and much more. DETAILS OS version released: rs3_release_xbox_dev_1710.170920-1900 Available: 6:00PM PDT 9/22 (1:00AM GMT 23/9) FOR PREVIEW DELTA: This update will be available to a select subset of Preview Delta participants (not all of Preview Delta will receive the update). This update may become available and mandatory to selected Preview Delta participants at different times than those listed above. Not all selected Preview Delta participants will receive the update at the same time. FIXES: Games & Apps Fixed an issue which sometimes caused games to crash or fail to launch. Fi...

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    Long in development, we're finally going live with our separate gaming experience on Windows Central! We've been covering Xbox and gaming on Windows Central for a few years now, but our previous linear blog system didn't really support separate audiences for who might be interested in different things. Someone who's interested in the latest gaming trailer perhaps isn't that interested in Windows apps or business laptops, and we always felt there were better ways to serve you guys (and of course, you can always access the old format using www.windowscentral.com/blog.) In any case, this is why we've been working long and hard on a new front page for the site, and also a separate entity for our gaming coverage entirely, which can be found right here on WindowsCentral.com/gaming. We're still finding our feet when it comes to gaming coverage, but we're kick starting our efforts with a few key aims. First, we want to provide rapid, up-to-date news coverage across both Windows PC an...

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    Join us for this week's Saturday Game School and you could win an exclusive Neverwinter mount! Saturday Game School is our weekly Windows Central livestream in which we play an Xbox One game and give out free games and prizes to our live viewers. It's like a live podcast, only you also get to watch a game while chatting with our awesome readers and viewers! Tonight at 9pm Eastern (8pm CT, 6pm PT, 2am GMT) on Mixer, we'll be playing Neverwinter: Tomb of Annihilation, the latest expansion to the free Dungeons & Dragons-themed MMO, and giving out more than 50 contest exclusive mounts! Read on for quick impressions and contest details. Just follow us at Mixer.com/WindowsCentral, enable email notifications, watch along, and participate in chat for your chance to win. Watch and follow us at Mixer.com/WindowsCentral! Neverwinter: Tomb of Annihilation Neverwinter is a free-to-play Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (MMORPG) based on the Advanced Dungeons & Drago...

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  • 09/24/17--08:00: Best Xbox One Accessories
  • Looking for some new accessories to spruce up the ol' Xbox One? We definitely have you covered. Whether you just picked up an original Xbox One or a brand-spanking new Xbox One S, all of the accessories listed here are fully compatible. Additionally, all existing Xbox One accessories will work with the Xbox One X when it launches in 2017. Here are our picks for the best accessories you can buy to enhance your gaming experience. E-Win Racing 'Calling' Gaming Chair There are dozens, maybe hundreds of gaming chairs on the market, but E-Win's "Calling" series gaming chair is the most comfortable I've used. Every aspect of this chair is fully adjustable, from the wrist rests, to the amazing lumbar lower back cushion, to the angle of the back rest, and the tilt of the seat. It's coated in comfortable synthetic leather and is ergonomically designed to fit the human body for maximum comfort. I switched from a cheap no-brand chair to E-Win's, and my back has never been happier. This ...