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SYFY WIRE Final Fantasy XIV

Gaming: Tom Holland sweats for Final Fantasy XIV; Fallout Shelter vaults to Teslas; more

By Benjamin Bullard
Tom Holland in Final Fantasy XIV Shadowbringers ad

Hey, we’re as excited as anyone about dallying with the dark side when the mammoth Shadowbringers expansion arrives for Final Fantasy XIV next month. But in Square Enix’s funny new tease for the game’s next big chapter, a certain Avenger’s Spidey senses are positively tingling.

Tom Holland transforms into a one-man boot camp to ready himself for the release of the Shadowbringers update for the popular MMORPG, bench-pressing a comfortably couch-seated (and thoroughly unimpressed) Hannibal Buress — who laconically reminds his Spider-Man: Homecoming co-star that all this sweat equity’s a total waste, because man, all you have to do is push some buttons:

Pairing off two hilarious dudes with polar-opposite comedic instincts makes for tons of fun, even if we don’t glimpse any actual game footage. Not that we’re starved for it, mind you: Square Enix already has shown off plenty of epic foreshadowing for Shadowbringers, like the cinematic preview below:

With the expansion’s release is just around the corner, there’s a near-constant barrage of new details dropping about how Square Enix is keeping the online Final Fantasy experience fresh, including the announcement of new classes, new worlds, and a just-revealed road map for what the Warrior of Darkness can expect once Shadowbringers is out in the wild.

Start doing your push-ups now (or at least make sure your fingers are in button-mashing shape): Shadowbringers arrives for Final Fantasy XIV July 2.

Elon Musk hung out with Bethesda’s Todd Howard for a lengthy stage chat at E3 last week, and one of the cool gaming tidbits that emerged from that meeting of great minds was the reveal of the next game to join Tesla’s ever-expanding slate of dashboard-playable titles.

Fallout Shelter, Bethesda’s vault-dwelling resource-management mobile sim that helped get players ready for 2015’s Fallout 4, will appear in an upcoming software update for Tesla owners, adding to the growing list of games (like Asteroids, Centipede, Missile Command, and even Cuphead) that can take your mind off the wait while your all-electric ride charges up.

Howard and Musk share plenty of mutual admiration. Musk, once an avid gamer, said SpaceX and his other ventures have kept him away from gaming since the release of Fallout 4; and Howard said the Bethesda team visited SpaceX as part of its development research for Starfield, its next-gen space game (an experience Howard described as “like The Avengers meets NASA,” according to Variety).

Finally, some new details are starting to trickle out about BD-1, the cute yet totally high-functioning little droid that, as of this month’s E3 trailer reveal for Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, is officially on track to join the Star Wars lore-verse.

Thanks to new insights from Game Informer’s in-depth chat with the EA Games art team, we’re starting to think of this shoulder-perching fella as your own personal two-legged droid dog — with a handful of cool visual callbacks to the older Star Wars films. In addition to being conceived as a companion for explorers who spend tons of time away from human contact, BD-1 (the “BD” stands for “buddy droid”) also sports some knowing visual throwbacks to the original movie trilogy.

“… [S]ome of the lines you see on BD will evoke things like a snow speeder, like the way there are diagonal lines on the visor,” explained lead concept artist Jordan Lamarre-Wan. “The graphic patterns, even the heat sinks on the back. It also evokes the binoculars that Luke uses.”

Add to that the neat bit of trivia that the creative team had Charles Schulz’ Woodstock in mind when they first set out to make BD-1, as well as that BD originally stood for “bird dog,” and you start to get an idea of how your relationship with your tactical support pal is meant to unfold. Voiced by Star Wars sound effects guru Ben Burtt, BD-1 joins the cause starting Nov. 15, when Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order arrives for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.