How to Play an RPG Anywhere, Any Time


I used to play in the same Dungeons & Dragons campaign every week. Now my friends and I struggle to arrange a play session every few months. At one point I tried to make it work with another group. We made a six-month Doodle calendar to find one date we could meet. We got together, discussed character creation, and…

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Ong’s Hat: The Early Internet Conspiracy Game That Got Too Real


On a sunny morning in early 2000, Joseph Matheny woke up to find conspiracy theorists camped out on his lawn again. He was making coffee when he noticed a face peering in a ground-floor window of the small, three-story building he rented in Santa Cruz. Past the peeper, there were three other men in their early 20s…

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Giant Eyes, Giant Heads, and 20 Years of Lego Star Wars Are the Biggest Toys of the Week


Welcome back to Toy Aisle, io9's regular round up of the best toys and merchandise we want to start collecting dust on our shelves. This week: Lego celebrates 20 years of Star Wars sets, Alita: Battle Angel gets its very own Hot Toy, and we check out a Doctor Who coffee press that is, unfortunately, not bigger on the…

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Save on Classic Star Wars Games During Steam’s Winter Sale!

Want to get yourself — or the gamer in your life — a gift for the holidays? Now’s your chance: the entire catalogue of classic Star Wars games on Steam are currently on sale for up to 65% off, making for some amazing Star Wars deals that would even impress Lando Calrissian. You can save on critically-acclaimed hits like Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (65% off), Star Wars Episode I: Racer (25% off), Star Wars: Empire at War — Gold Pack (60% off), and many, many more — as well as some other Lucasfilm-produced gems of yesteryear. The sale ends January 3, so punch it and check out the full list below!

Star Wars: Empire at War key art.

Star Wars: Empire at War – Gold Pack

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic key art.

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

Star Wars The Force Unleashed II key art.

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II

Star Wars Battlefront II (Classic, 2005) key art.

Star Wars: Battlefront II (Classic, 2005)

Plus these other amazing titles:

  • LEGO Star Wars III: The Clone Wars
  • LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga
  • Star Wars : The Clone Wars – Republic Heroes
  • Star Wars: Dark Forces
  • Star Wars Episode I: Racer
  • Star Wars: The Force Unleashed: Ultimate Sith Edition
  • Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds Saga
  • Star Wars Jedi Knight: Dark Forces II
  • Star Wars: Jedi Knight – Jedi Academy
  • Star Wars: Jedi Knight: Mysteries of the Sith
  • Star Wars: Jedi Knight II – Jedi Outcast
  • Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords
  • Star Wars: Rebel Assault I  
  • Star Wars: Rebel Assault II
  • Star Wars: Rebellion
  • Star Wars: Republic Commando
  • Star Wars: Rogue Squadron 3D
  • Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire
  • Star Wars: Starfighter
  • Star Wars: TIE Fighter Special Edition
  • Star Wars: X-Wing 
  • Star Wars: X-Wing Alliance
  • Star Wars: X-Wing Special Edition
  • Star Wars : X-Wing vs TIE Fighter – Balance of Power Campaigns

  • Afterlife
  • Armed and Dangerous
  • The Curse of Monkey Island
  • The Dig
  • Escape from Monkey Island
  • Indiana Jones and the Emperor’s Tomb
  • Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis
  • Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine
  • Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
  • LEGO Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures
  • LEGO Indiana Jones 2: The Adventure Continues
  • LOOM
  • Lucidity
  • Maniac Mansion
  • Monkey Island 2 Special Edition: LeChuck’s Revenge
  • Outlaws + A Handful of Missions
  • Sam & Max Hit the Road
  • The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition
  • Thrillville: Off the Rails
  • Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders All Star Wars, all the time.

Save on Classic Star Wars Games During Steam’s Winter Sale!

Battlefront II and More Classic Star Wars Games Arrive on EA Access, Origin Access, and Origin

For Star Wars gamers, the holidays have come early.

Modern favorite Star Wars Battlefront II and several classic Star Wars games, including Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, are now available on EA Access, Origin Access, and Origin. Subscribers to EA Access and Origin Access, all-you-can-play membership services, can enjoy these titles at no additional cost; in addition, games arriving for individual purchase on Origin are currently discounted at 60% in celebration of their release. Check out the complete list of games below!

EA Access

Star Wars Battlefront II (2017)

Origin Access

Star Wars Battlefront II (2017)
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords
Star Wars: Rebel Assault 1 + 2

Origin (titles are currently offered at a 60% discount)

Star Wars: Battlefront II (2005) – $3.99 (reg. $9.99)
Star Wars: Empire at War – $7.99 (reg. $19.99)
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic – $3.99 (reg. $9.99)
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords – $3.99 (reg. $9.99)
Star Wars: Rebel Assault 1 + 2 – $3.99 (reg. $9.99)
Star Wars: X-Wing vs TIE Fighter – Balance of Power Campaigns – $3.99 (reg. $9.99) All Star Wars, all the time.

Battlefront II and More Classic Star Wars Games Arrive on EA Access, Origin Access, and Origin

Captain Marvel Gets an Awesome Action Figure, and More of the Most Kickass Toys of the Week


Welcome back to Toy Aisle, io9's regular roundup of the coolest collectibles and merchandise we’ve seen floating around on the internet. This week, Figuarts gets Captain Marvel fever, Lego reveals another grand addition to its modular building series…and Mr. T is strong with the force!? Check it out!

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Darth Vader, Luke, and Leia Come to Disney Emoji Blitz

Some of Star Wars‘ greatest icons have arrived in Disney Emoji Blitz, the popular match-3 mobile game: Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia emojis make their debut, available via the Diamond Box, and the Darth Vader emoji is now unlockable thanks to a new Villain Event, running from November 29 to December 3. caught up with Ariana Crane, associate producer of Disney Emoji Blitz, to talk about adapting Vader into the game’s cute art style, how Leia’s ability reflects her character, and reflections on one year of Star Wars in Disney Emoji Blitz. Thanks to the Darth Vader Villain Event, players will have the chance to win and use Darth Vader. From a gameplay perspective, why would you say he’s an emoji you’ll want in your collection?

Ariana Crane: Darth Vader will be an awesome emoji to have in your collection because he uses the Force to grab emojis and throw them off the board. Plus, he always gives you a rainbow star, which is the best power up in the game.

Darth Vader in Disney Emoji Blitz. What can you tell us about designing Darth Vader for Disney Emoji Blitz? I’m always impressed how the game adapts these iconic characters into its art style, and Vader is no exception — he’s so expressive!

Ariana Crane: We are so glad you like it! With such an iconic character as Darth Vader, the team worked really hard to get all of the details just right. We spent a lot of time making sure the highlights were in the right places, and that there was enough contrast so that you can actually see his expressions. We wanted the Darth Vader emoji to embody the look and feel of the original character, even as an emoji. Luke and Leia are also making their Disney Emoji Blitz debuts. How did you go about coming up with their abilities?

Ariana Crane: We wanted Leia’s power to demonstrate an aspirational part of her persona, and being a strong commander was top of mind for our team. A tap-to-clear ability where she orders X-wings to destroy TIE fighters was the perfect abstraction of commanding in our game.

Since Leia’s power focuses on the rebel fleet, and Darth Vader’s power focuses on using the Force to hold and throw emojis, it felt like the right mix of overlap and variety to have Luke’s power focus on using the Force, like his father, but with a lightsaber concept. The training remote scene where Luke first learns to use his lightsaber was the perfect fit, and we thought it would be super cool if the player got to feel like they were using the Force by tapping in advance of where the training remote would fire. This was also an opportunity to show Luke’s character arc over time as he deflects stormtrooper blaster shots in later levels.

Leia in Disney Emoji Blitz. Star Wars has now been part of Disney Emoji Blitz for just over a year. As game creators, what have you enjoyed most about being able to incorporate the galaxy far, far away into Disney Emoji Blitz?

Ariana Crane: The Star Wars universe offers us so much to work with, it’s hard to pick just one. From epic character moments to the iconic music, it’s been so much fun to give these elements an emoji twist. We love bringing in characters that are nostalgic for some of our existing players and brand new to others. An exciting challenge that we have is abstracting the rich back stories from the characters, into super-fast power up abilities that resonate with Star Wars fans. Seeing our Blitzers’ positive reactions to Star Wars emojis in the game is the best! They were so excited when we first introduced Rey, Finn, BB-8, and Kylo Ren, and the team can’t wait to see how everyone reacts to Luke, Leia and Darth Vader. We’ve really enjoyed making the Darth Vader Villain Event come to life and are so excited for our fans to play with these beloved classic characters.

Disney Emoji Blitz is available now.

Dan Brooks is Lucasfilm’s senior content strategist of online, the editor of, and a writer. He loves Star Wars, ELO, and the New York Rangers, Jets, and Yankees. Follow him on Twitter @dan_brooks where he rants about all these things.

Darth Vader, Luke, and Leia Come to Disney Emoji Blitz

The Newest and Purist Version of Monopoly Is Just a Gun That Shoots Money


No game on Earth better represents the American dream than Monopoly. But at its heart, the classic board game isn’t about buying properties, going to jail, or running the local utilities; it’s about amassing wealth. So with Monopoly Cash Grab, Hasbro has distilled the game down to its purest form, replacing the board,…

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