Last updateWed, 20 Sep 2017 1pm


No Man’s Sky: Interesting Indie, or Triple-A Flop?

No Mans Sky Indie Or FlopIn the gaming world, there’s a commonly used phrase, “hype-train.” If you are on the hype-train for a game, it basically means you’re excited for it and believe it will be good. Many gamers and critics alike boarded the No Man’s Sky hype-train; this game received numerous best-of-show rewards at the E3 gaming conference, the cover for an issue of GameInformer, as well as air-time on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. This is all rather impressive, especially considering that No Man’s Sky was developed by a small indie team, Hello Games.

So, what is No Man’s Sky? No Man’s Sky is an open-world, exploration-based, sci-fi space-simulation. It’s described on Steam as “a game about exploration and survival in an infinite procedurally generated universe.” Procedural generation means that many elements of No Man’s Sky (planets, animals, plants, starships) are created by an algorithm, designed by Hello Games. So, the universe of No Man’s Sky has, in some ways, near infinite possibilities. That no two planets you visit, or two ships you cross paths with, will be exactly the same (at least in some respects).

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Spanish Guitar Master, Roni Benise, Visits MU

Roni Benise Spanish Guitar MasterGuitar master Roni Benise brings his 10th anniversary tour and an international troupe to Monmouth U’s renovated Theatre, with “Strings of Passion.”

The Center for the Arts at the University has announced that tickets are now on sale for “Strings of Passion,” an Oct. 15 concert event headlined by The Prince of Spanish Guitar, Roni Benise.

Presented inside the Pollak Theatre, the 8 p.m. concert promises to be a spectacular showcase for the recently refurbished flagship auditorium of the Monmouth campus. In addition to boasting improved sight lines and nearly 700 new seats, the Pollak Theatre offers guest artists a newly enlarged stage area — a space that is more than up to the task of accommodating Benise, his touring orchestra, and an international troupe of dancers in their coastal New Jersey area debut.

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Battleborn Has Died, at the Ripe Old Age of Four (Months)

Battleborn Has DiedIn gaming, if a game is dead it is no longer played by a sizable audience. Battleborn is a MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena)/first-person shooter game, developed by Gearbox Software (the renowned developers of the Borderlands series). I first heard of the game prior to its release, in 2015; I like MOBAs and shooters, also I loved playing Borderlands, so the game seemed like a must-buy. I managed to get into a beta-test while Battleborn was in its pre-release, during this test the game impressed me and I preordered it. It released in May, I played it, found it to be a solid MOBA/shooter despite some flaws, and reviewed it as 8/10. Just before this fall semester, when I was planning to run my review, I picked up Battleborn again, and immediately wished I hadn’t, because now I have to rewrite my review.

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The BreakBeat Poets Visit Wilson Hall

BreakBeat Poets WHA dash of cultural poetry, a pinch of eye-opening stories, and a spritz of new generation hip-hop all mixed together will get you The Breakbeat Poets. On Thursday, Sept. 15 authors from this revolutionary anthology performed in front of students at the University’s Wilson Hall.

The anthology featured 78 different poets from all over the country, born between 1961 and 1999. The book claimed to be the first poetry anthology by and for the hip-hop generation and attempted to create a unified statement by poets who have been shaped by the genre’s re-shaping of American prose. Angel Nafis, Nate Marshall, Kevin Coval, and Morgan Parker, four of the ‘Breakbeat Poets,’ performed a few of their most popular pieces, as well as told life stories and answered questions in a Q&A after the performance.

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“American Horror Story” is Back For a Sixth Season

AHS Season 6 1From a haunted house to a disturbed asylum and a freak show, FX’s American Horror Story (AHS) has captivated viewers time after time. Each season has a new theme and we slowly piece together one big mystery as the plot un-ravels. Now, AHS is back for its sixth season, “My Roanoke Nightmare;” a season that is already very different than the others.

The first episode began with the words, “The following story is inspired by true events.” This is already some-thing new for the show. In previous seasons, there have been characters based on real people, such as in season five, “Hotel,” when Lily Rabe played the role of Aileen Wuornos, a real person who was convicted of multiple murders in the early 1990s; however, this season, the true events stem from the Roanoke colony of the late 1500s; a colony whose people left to relocate but went missing. The definite whereabouts of those people were never resolved.

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NBC’s “This is Us” is a Success

NBC This Is Us 1When the previews for NBC’s latest drama This is Us aired, the premise looked pretty simple - four people who all share the same birthday. Those four people are Jack (Milo Ventimiglia), Randall (Sterling K. Brown), Kate (Chrissy Metz), and Kevin (Justin Hartley). They are all drastically different and are somehow all connected, which is what will be revealed later.

Jack is married to Rebecca (Mandy Moore); they are an adorable young couple who, when we meet them, are expecting triplets, or as they like to call them, “The Big Three.” The two of them are madly in love and have their world turned upside down when it is revealed that there are complications with her pregnancy.

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Mac Miller Releases “The Divine Feminine”

Mac Miller The Divine FeminineMac Miller is a 24-year-old rapper who has been putting out solo records since 2009. One of his first big songs, “Donald Trump,” generated some buzz about him and his music – including attention from Donald Trump himself. Now he’s out with his fourth studio album, The Divine Feminine, which was released on Sept. 16.

The first thing that caught my attention was the title itself. In an interview with Zane Lowe on Beats 1 Radio, Mac said that this album title was, “A concept that was told to me about just the energy of the world being a female energy, the energy of the planet… and just kind of like how that mirrors the soul of a woman, and you know, like Mother Earth and falling in love with the universe.”

There are ten songs on the album – many of which talk a lot about love and desire as he had mentioned. Of the ten songs, several big name artists were featured such as Kendrick Lamar, Ariana Grande, Cee Lo Green, Ty Dolla $ign, and more, which gives a variety to the types of songs on the album from all of the different collaborating artists.

The most popular song on the iTunes charts from The Divine Feminine is “Daang!” which features Anderson .Paak. It’s a slower-paced song and the first time I listened to it, it reminded me of a remix to a song that you’d hear in an elevator.

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New Season of Dancing With the Stars

New Season DWSThe 23rd season of ABC’s Dancing with the Stars, which premiered on Monday September 12, began with new celebrities, elaborate dances and a little bit of chaos. The four judges, Julianne Hough, Carrie Ann Inaba, Len Goodman, and Bruno Tonioli, give their advice and critiques as 13 celebrities and 13 professional dancers compete to win the coveted Mirror Ball trophy. Celebrities and their partners must dance 10 of the different ballroom style dances, which includes the salsa, Argentine tango, Viennese waltz, samba, paso doble, rumba, foxtrot, jive, cha-cha and quickstep. While the judge’s input is important, the fate of the celebrities ultimately lies in the hands of fans that vote through text messages. Each week, a celebrity is eliminated. The judges are there solely to give the celebrities constructive criticism so that they can improve and hopefully make it to the end of the competition.

On this season of Dancing with the Stars, there is a wide range of competitors, from country singers and actresses to Olympic medalists and politicians. Prior to seeing the season premiere, I was familiar with a few of the competitors. There is 60-year-old Maureen McCormick, formerly known as Marcia Brady on The Brady Bunch. After McCormick’s waltz to Aretha Franklin’s “You Make Me Feel,” she was surprised when her on-screen mother, Florence Henderson, paid her a visit - it was a very heartfelt moment amidst all the chaos.

Next, there is 32-year-old female country artist and actress Jana Kramer, known for her singles “Why Ya Wanna” and “I Got the Boy.” The last competitor I knew of was 32-year-old Ryan Lochte, the reason for all the chaos. The twelve-time Olympic medalist, over-exaggerated about an altercation that happened in Rio while he was intoxicated and claimed that he and three others were robbed at gunpoint and therefore filed a false police report. As a result of his actions, he has been suspended for 10 months and cannot participate in the world championship meet which will be held in Budapest next July.

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Is tlc’s “Love at First Kiss” Practical?

Love At First Kiss 1A first kiss can be a strange experience; you may go on a date and wonder, “Will it happen? What will it be like?” In many romance films, the post-first-date-kiss question is solved at the end of the evening, after the two lovers get to know each other a little better. But what if they had skipped that step? What if the kiss happened while they were still total strangers? Would it feel different, awkward or equally as comfortable if the chemistry was right? TLC’s new show Love at First Kiss attempts to answer these questions.

Love at First Kiss premiered on Aug. 3; since then, there have been seven episodes. It seems to get a rise out of most people who watch it, as they cringe but also can’t turn it off, myself included. Over the course of the hour-long episode, a complete stranger is placed in an all-white room and awaits a stranger to walk in. Once the person enters, the person must walk up to the other and kiss. If the kiss goes well, the two can choose to go on a two-minute speed date. If this goes well, the couple meets up for a regular date on a different day. Sometimes it works and sometimes people get stood up, which is part of the drama that keeps the audience guessing.

Certain people get paired up on the show and seem as though they could really be a couple outside of the production. These people seem to hit it off and engage in genuine and smooth conversation afterwards; other pairs seem to have been placed together for the audience’s entertainment. For instance, in the first two episodes of the show the audience was introduced to Josh, a 27-year-old who had never kissed a girl before; he was then sent Annalisa, a young woman who had plenty of kissing experience. The scene was uncomfortable as the young man stuttered and trembled, keeping his eyes open wide the entire time; he returns three more times and assures the audience that he’s more prepared because he has been watching videos online, but what’s to follow may show the audience otherwise.

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Nick Viall is the New Bachelor

The Bachelor 1Millions of people tune in to ABC on Monday nights from 8-10 p.m. to watch The Bachelor or The Bachelorette. It’s an addiction, really, and it’s hard to escape the never-ending cycle of watching “true love” unfold. Each season after the final proposal, one of America’s favorite rejected contestants becomes the newest bachelor/bachelorette for the next season, and that trend continues; that is, until now.

is a reality TV show where about 25 female contestants fight for the love of one bachelor. The season continues as the bachelor takes the contestants on multiple dates across the world, slowly eliminating contestants through “rose ceremonies” until the finale. Then, the bachelor will choose his “one true love” and have a grand proposal for the world to see. Once the season is over a new bachelor/bachelorette is chosen, and this upcoming season has taken a new twist by breaking tradition.

Nick Viall was chosen as the next bachelor even though he was not on the latest season, something that hasn’t happened in a long time.

Nick was the runner-up on both Andi Dorfman’s and Kaitlyn Bristowe’s seasons of The Bachelorette and was also on the latest season of Bachelor in Paradise, where former contestants from various seasons meet and live in a house for the summer to try and find “true love.” Unfortunately for Nick, he proposed twice on national television – both proposals ending in rejection – and had a messy breakup at the end of paradise. But, after the latest season of The Bachelorette, JoJo Fletcher’s season, America was shocked to find out that he would be returning for a fourth shot at love.

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Lady Gaga Puts Out New Album

Lady Gaga New AlbumFrom “Poker Face” to “Bad Romance” and “Applause,” Lady Gaga has put out numerous hits over the past few years that reached the top of the charts. Her last album Artpop was released almost three years ago on Nov. 6, 2013. Now she’s back and ready to put down new music.

Gaga’s new album Joanne will officially be released on Oct. 21. Her latest single from the album, “Perfect Illusion” was released on Sept. 9; so far the song seems to be a hit. When asked what “Perfect Illusion” is about, Lady Gaga said in a video on her Twitter page, “Well, this song has a lot of meanings for me. I think the most obvious meaning when you first listen to it… was to create a song about how love is the most intoxicating and powerful drug in the world. It can make you feel so high that you don’t even realize that you’re in a relationship that’s not even real; it’s just a perfect illusion.”

“I didn’t really love it at first,” said senior Marketing student Cassie Stiansen, “but once I gave it a few listens it started to catch on. Now I really like the beat of it.”

Alexandra O’Connor, a senior and Education student, seemed hopeful about the upcoming album. “I’m not a big Lady Gaga fan. I think she’s a weird person but I don’t mind her music. Her new single wasn’t that bad so hopefully her new album will be just as good.”

According to Victoria Day, a recent graduate of the University, this is one of her favorite songs by Lady Gaga. “When I first heard the song I loved it and had no idea it was her song. Her voice sounds amazing and the song is so catchy. It does have the usual Gaga feel but I think this is a stand-out amongst her other singles she has released. The lyrics seemed to have matured from her past songs as well.”

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The Outlook
Jules L. Plangere Jr. Center for Communication 
and Instructional Technology (CCIT) Room 260, 2nd floor

The Outlook
Monmouth University
400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, New Jersey 07764

Phone:(732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151