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How to Get Started Playing Games With Apple Arcade

Gaming on the App Store is often disappointing. While there are some hidden gems, they’re hard to find among the overgrowth of games that are free to download but full of in-app purchases, banner ads, harsh wait times, and other nonsense.

If you’ve played any of those, you know that the large majority have lost something every game should be—fun.

But Apple Arcade wants to change that. The gaming subscription service allows you to access a growing roster games on your iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, and Mac for one monthly charge.

Let’s take a closer look at Apple Arcade and everything you need to get started.

Subscribing to Apple Arcade

The most important step before you install Apple Arcade is making sure you have the latest software installed on all your devices. That means at least iOS 13 for iPhone, iPadOS 13 for iPad, tvOS 13 on Apple TV, and macOS Catalina on a Mac.

On any of those four devices, head to the App Store app and select the Arcade tab.

Apple Arcade Subscribe

You’ll then see a free 30-day trial offer. Sign in with your Apple ID and password to accept. After the trial period, the arcade subscription will automatically renew for $4.99 per month.

If you’re using the Family Sharing option, up to six family members can also access Apple Arcade without needing to purchase their own subscription.

To cancel the Apple Arcade subscription at any time, go to Settings > [Your Name] > Subscriptions on your iPhone or iPad. Select Apple Arcade, then scroll down to the bottom and choose Cancel Subscription.

Downloading Games on Apple Arcade

Once you’re ready to start playing, just head back to the Arcade tab on the App Store.

The design should look familiar to anyone who has browsed the App Store before. Apple features many games in different categories—like Action, Adventure, and Family—to make it easier to find something you’ll want to play.

To see everything that’s available on Apple Arcade, scroll down to the bottom of the section and select See All Games.

On each individual game page, you can read more about the title, see a promo video, check the age rating, and confirm whether you can use a controller. To download a game, select Get.

The game will appear on your device just like any other app and is ready to play. Apple includes all updates to the games as long as you have a subscription. Plus, all Apple Arcade games have no in-app purchases or ads.

Start Apple Arcade With These Three Games

When diving into Apple Arcade, you’ll probably ask the same question as with any new subscription service: “where do I start?”

Here are three high-quality titles, available on each device, that show showcase some of the best that Apple Arcade offers.

1. Oceanhorn 2: Knight of the Lost Realm

You can’t go wrong starting Apple Arcade with Oceanhorn 2: Knight of the Lost Realm. The original RPG, which arrived in 2013, was an instant classic thanks to beautiful graphics, an enchanting soundtrack, and its Legend of Zelda-like gameplay. And the long-awaited sequel delivers all that and more.

Set 1,000 years before the original, the game focuses on a young knight who must help save the world of Gaia. The family-friendly game looks beautiful on any Apple device, and is best played with a controller. It’s truly a high-quality title you’d expect to find on a gaming console.

Download: Oceanhorn 2: Knights of the Lost Realm on Apple Arcade

2. Assemble With Care

Even the most casual gamer knows of the Monument Valley series. And the developer of those two great games, ustwo, is also behind Apple Arcade’s Assemble With Care.

Think of the game as a puzzler with a big focus on a narrative story. You play as Maria, an antique restorer who arrives in the unique town of Bellariva. While helping to put together prized possessions, you’ll also need to help restore relationships that are broken. Even though the game is short, it will stick with you long after fixing the 12 different objects.

Download: Assemble With Care on Apple Arcade

3. Speed Demons

There’s no need to worry; fans of fast-paced gaming action will definitely be at home on Apple Arcade. Speed Demons in more than just your usual trip down the highway. The top-down racing game features more than 25 different cars to drive and eight distinct game modes.

You accelerate automatically, so it’s your job is to avoid all the traffic, which can be up to 100 vehicles on screen at a time. The controller-compatible game will always keep you on your toes as the highways in 19 different environments automatically generate to provide a different experience each time.

Download: Speed Demons on Apple Arcade

Playing Apple Arcade With a Controller

With the wide variety of different games available to play on Apple Arcade, devoted games should definitely consider purchasing a physical controller.

The big advantage is that your controller will work across iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, and Mac, allowing for a more unified gaming experience no matter where you’re playing. In many instances, using a controller gives you better split-second control for fast-paced titles.

A majority of Apple Arcade games support a controller. To confirm this, just look for the Controller Supported tag on the game’s page before downloading.

Starting all OS versions mentioned above, Apple has added support for two popular Bluetooth game controllers:

Xbox One Wireless Controller

The Xbox One Wireless Controller offers a textured grip that makes it easy to hold while gaming. You can also use a compatible headset with the 3.5mm stereo jack.

You’ll need to provide a set of AA batteries to use in the controller. For colors, Microsoft offers everything from the usual black to more unique colors and configurations that celebrate Fortnite, Gears of War 5, and more.

DualShock 4 Wireless Controller for PlayStation 4

Compared to the Xbox controller, the biggest plus of the DualShock 4 wireless controller is the built-in battery that you can recharge with a micro-USB cable. That will definitely save you some money on batteries in the long run.

The controller also features a built-in speaker and a stereo headset jack. Just like the Xbox controller, there are a number of different colors and designs to select from.

Apple Arcade titles also support any MFi controller. To find out more, take to a look at how to connect a game controller to your iPad or iPhone

How to Connect a Game Controller to Your iPad or iPhone

How to Connect a Game Controller to Your iPad or iPhone

Here’s how to connect a PS4 or Xbox One controller to iPhone, plus the best alternative game controllers for iOS.
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Game on With Apple Arcade

Whether you’re a pro or new to gaming on an Apple device, Apple Arcade features something for everyone. And no matter what game you choose to play, you’ll have definitely have fun.

If you’re looking for even more gaming action, make sure to take a look at some of the other great games on Apple Arcade

The 5 Best Games to Play on Apple Arcade

The 5 Best Games to Play on Apple Arcade

Here are the best games on Apple Arcade that make the gaming subscription service worth its price tag.
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How to Get Started With Fortnite Creative: A Beginner’s Guide

While Fortnite Battle Royale is one of the biggest games in the world, Fortnite actually includes other modes as well. One of which is Fortnite Creative.

In this article we seek to explain everything you need to know about Fortnite Creative. Including what Fortnite Creative is and how to play Fortnite Creative.

What Is Fortnite Creative?

fortnite creative game mode select.jpg

Fortnite Creative is a free game mode where players can craft custom maps and matches in a sandbox-game environment. These creations can be shared with friends or the wider Fortnite community.

If you make a high-quality, unique map; there’s a chance that your creation will be featured in the Creative mode lobby for other players to see. Battle Royale also introduces interesting creations to the largest Fortnite audience by rotating them on the public map at a location called The Block.

fortnite creative mode assets

Creative mode gives players access to various game assets in order to create their own unique locations. These include props, building components, landscape features, traps, vehicles, and more.

You can use assets to simply construct an interesting location or create specialized game types such as deathmatches, parkour games, coin collection, or races.

How to Get Started With Fortnite Creative

fortnite creative mode start server

To create your own map, you simply need to go to the Fortnite Creative lobby and start your server. There you’ll find a “personal rift” which, when interacted with, will give you the option to Create New Island. On a platform behind your personal island rift, you will see other featured islands or saved maps.

When you create an island, you can choose different biomes or a layout for The Block. Your island creates a personal instance where you can begin crafting your map.

Your progress saves as you build, but you can only use a certain number of assets. Each asset has a specific memory value and the game allocates you 100,000 memory for your creation.

To access different assets, select the Inventory option. This opens a window with various asset kits to choose from. Add assets to your inventory, select them, and place them. Galleries, for example, will include a series of props and building elements. Simply copy these objects and place them on your map as desired.

fortnite creative mode building

You aren’t bound by normal movement or construction mechanics in this mode. For example, players can enable a flying mode that allows their character to levitate while building. You also place and remove assets by using a special in-game device (resembling a smartphone) that includes a variety of commands such as copy, paste, delete, or rotate.

You can adjust settings for your game using the My Island menu. Here you can adjust the game type, game settings, UI settings, island tools, description, and player permissions.

Since it is a sandbox mode, you’re free to try out different mechanics and set up your own unique locations. The best way to get to know the mode is to play around with it. Experiment!

How to Publish a Map in Fortnite Creative

To publish an island and share it with the community, you first need to apply to the Support-a-Creator Program. This, unfortunately, disqualifies many players since they need to meet certain criteria. You can also apply through an Epic Games Creative form submission to have your island considered for The Block or a featured spot.

If you sign up to the program and receive publishing permissions, you can publish your island under the My Island menu. This gives your map a 12-digit code that you can share with others.

Occasionally, Epic Games contacts players whose videos and pictures of their islands attract attention on platforms like the Fortnite Creative subreddit.

Accessing Fortnite Creative Maps With Codes

fortnite creative mode use island code

Any player can access shared community maps—you don’t need special permissions as is the case with publishing. To load another map, you simply need to enter the island code for the specific map.

To enter a map code, approach one of the featured island windows in the Creative player hub. When you are close enough, you will see the option to Change Destination. Once you do this, you can enter the island code of the map you want to visit. Fortnite provides a list of potential islands to visit if you want to explore other creations.

You can also find island codes on community forums such as the aforementioned Fortnite Creative subreddit. There are also websites that share popular Fortnite Creative maps, such as DropNite, Fortnite Creative HQ, and Fortnite Tracker Network.

Can You Make Money From Fortnite Creative?

Some of the attention paid to Fortnite Creative comes from the possibility of making money through the mode. However, there is no direct way to make money from the mode—even if Epic features your map in Creative, The Block or as a limited-time-mode in Battle Royale.

Basically, anything you submit is subject to the game’s terms, which means that what you publish belongs to Epic and the company doesn’t have to compensate you.

As the terms explain:

“If we pick your Block, we aren’t required to attribute it to you or compensate you. Anything you submit to us is subject to the Epic Games End User License Agreement which means, among other things: Epic has the right to make use of anything you submit to us for any purpose, including for commercial purposes, without any compensation or notification to, or permission from, you. Epic isn’t obligated to use anything you submit to us. Epic isn’t responsible or liable for what others do with your submission.”

However, if you’re part of the Support-a-Creator program, it’s possible to make money from Fortnite Creative indirectly. If players enjoy your content enough to add you as their supported creator, you will make a commission from all of their V-Bucks purchases.

This commission is marginal, though. The exact rate depends on how many players support you. As Epic elaborates, if in-game supporters spend 50,000 V-Bucks in Fortnite, the creator would earn around $25.

Fortnite Creative is one way to attract the attention of players if you are part of the creator program. However, most creators choose streaming, video guides, and written tips as a way to attract player support.

Most people who play Fortnite Creative do it as a way to showcase their creations and make inventive maps, not to make money.

Secure Your Fortnite Creations

If you’ve invested time and effort into your Fortnite account, you should definitely take steps to protect it. Scammers are increasingly targeting Fortnite players, using accounts for financial information or drawing players into V-Buck scams.

If you want to keep your account safe we recommend enabling two-factor authentication. So here’s how to secure Fortnite with 2FA

How to Secure With 2FA (Two Factor Authentication)

How to Secure With 2FA (Two Factor Authentication)

Scammers want to hack your Fortnite account. Here’s how to secure your Fortnite account with two-factor authentication (2FA).
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What Iconic Children’s Toy Started Life In A Military Research Lab?

A black slinky, fanned open, on a white table top
Poof-Slinky, Inc.

Answer: The Slinky

The Slinky has been in production for over seventy years and shows no signs of vanishing from toy store shelves. It’s a classic children’s toy; it’s simple, inexpensive, and the novelty of playing with a wiggly, wobbly, walks-down-the-stairs spring hasn’t waned much over the decades. While most people have a childhood memory or two involving a Slinky and likely even went on to buy one as a gift, very few people know that the toy came to life in a military lab.

In 1943, a young naval mechanical engineer by the name of Richard James was working on designing a system of springs that could support and stabilize sensitive instruments aboard naval ships in rough seas. During the course of his research, James accidentally knocked a coiled spring off of a shelf in his lab at the William Cramp & Sons shipyards in Philadelphia. The spring went tumbling, landed on a pile of books, flipped over itself, and then proceeded to “walk” itself down the books, flop onto a table, onto the floor, and then coil itself back up into a neat stack.

James was so enamored by the antics of the spring that he went home and told his wife how he thought he could tweak the composition of the spring to consistently walk about in the fashion he had witnessed in the lab. He experimented with different steels and spring lengths over the next year, and the couple ultimately formed a small company to market the spring toy. James and Betty had a very difficult time selling the toy until November of 1945 when they were granted permission to set up a ramp in the toy section of Gimbels Department Store in Philadelphia. When children were afforded the opportunity to play with the Slinkys, they proved to be irresistible. The first run of 400 Slinky units sold out in less than two hours.

The Slinky has remained a consistent seller over the years with over 300 million units sold since its introduction in 1945.

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How to Get Started with Creative Writing – LifeSavvy

woman working on a novel in a sunny cafe
Alissa Kumarova/Shutterstock

Creative writing is a great way to express yourself, hone your writing skills, and be more imaginative. Want to start penning some inventive tales and poems? Here are the things that will help you get typing.

What Is Creative Writing?

Creative writing is a lot of things, so it may be easier to focus on what it’s not: writing college term papers, articles, or the like.

Creative writing is often referred to as literature. It’s not always made-up stories, but it is all about telling a story.

While an article might tell you how to do something or what’s happening in the world, creatively written works take you someplace and help you imagine other worlds, whether those worlds are real or made up. It’s an expressive form of writing, rather than a way of presenting facts.

When you want to try creative writing, it helps to know the different types of writing that fall under this umbrella term. You’ll want to start your foray into creative writing with one type, rather than overwhelming yourself with too many.

Here are some genres to start with:

  • Fiction (from vampire horror stories to realistic historical stories)
  • Poetry
  • Scripts for TV shows and movies
  • Plays
  • Songwriting
  • Memoirs (often written in a creative way, even if they are based on real events)

You can see why we’d suggest starting with one as trying to tackle so many different forms out of the gate would get pretty overwhelming pretty quickly.

Getting Started with Creative Writing

Once you choose which type of creative writing you want to delve into, start looking at the techniques needed to write creatively.

While there are no strict rules to adhere to, most creative pieces include at least some of the following:

  • A plot and plot development
  • Characters and character development
  • A setting for the story
  • A point of view (this could be first person, omniscient, or from the perspective of any of your characters)
  • Dialogue
  • An underlying theme
  • Metaphors (these work great in poetry)
  • Anecdotes
  • Emotional appeal
  • Imagination
  • Descriptive words and imagery

For some, the words will pour right out. For others, the writing process needs a little coaxing to get started.

Now that you know some of the stuff your writing needs in order to be creative, here are some tips to help you get started with your short story, poem, or play.

Pick a Place to Write

woman writing on a laptop with a cup of coffee

Finding a place of comfort and solitude for writing is important. Solitude, as a writer, doesn’t always have to mean you’re completely alone—it just means you’re away from distractions.

Many people do their writing at coffee shops and libraries, where plenty of noise is going on around them. The solitude comes from the lack of direct interruptions (like the dog wanting to go outside or a roommate knocking at the door).

If you have a home office, that may be the place you find most comfortable for writing. A screened-in porch can give you the natural light and view of the world you need for inspiration. Each person’s preferred writing space will be different, so experiment to find what works for you.

Make a Ritual out of It

Not all, but most writers have some sort of ritual they do before they start writing.

Rituals can be something as minute as placing your pen and paper on the desk in a certain spot before sitting down, or something as time-consuming as brewing a cup of tea and watching your favorite inspirational film before you get started.

You don’t have to have a ritual, but if one works for you, use it.

Write Every Day

One thing most writers will tell you is that you need to write every day. Even on the days you don’t feel like writing or don’t think you have anything to write, you need to write something.

This is why all writers should keep a journal. It’s a great place to keep prompts, to write when you don’t feel inspired, and to reference for future stories.

Search “writing prompts” online, and you’ll find a plethora of memes and more that will help you when you need a little push. Set aside 20 minutes each day where you write anything you can manage to. Don’t worry about whether it makes any sense or will be useable in the future, just write. You can go back and make edits later, or choose not to do anything with it.

Practice Makes a Better Writer

Spend some time learning creative writing techniques. You can find lessons online that will walk you through learning different types of poetry, how to build a character, or how to create a fictional world.

On the days when the words aren’t coming freely, spend some time learning, which will have you writing in no time.

A great book for beginners (and anyone wanting to brush up on their creative writing skills) is The Daily Writer. Fred White walks you through all sorts of writing lessons, from getting down to the details of the story to writing satire.

You don’t have to go to college for a degree in creative writing, but you may find it useful to take an online class or two in the fields of creative writing you’re most interested in.

Join a Writers Group

The life of the writer might seem like a solitary one, but it doesn’t always have to be.

If you want to get good at writing creatively, it’s important to share your work with others. You can do this by joining a local writers group, or finding one online.

Many writers group do readings and critiques of members’ works, and have exercises to help with inspiration. This gives you a chance to spend time with like-minded individuals who are passionate about creative writing, too.

Why Are You Writing?

Finally, consider your reasons for creative writing.

If you simply like to write, that may be motivation enough. But many people begin their foray into the world of creative writing with the hope of getting published. If this is your goal, make sure you’re finding the publications and contests you want to enter and staying focused on the deadlines they have for entries and reading periods. Deadlines are very motivational.

Perhaps your goal is to write a novel or a poetry book. You have plenty of options when it comes to publishing books, from big-name publishers and small publishing houses to self-publishing. Each writer has their own preference, but you have to start writing if you want to have a story that may turn into the next Fifty Shades of Grey.

Whether it’s for personal benefit, future publication, or something else, there are countless reasons to give creative writing a try. Get started today, and see what your writing hobby blossoms into!

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Which Annual Event Started Out As A Wedding Reception?

An engraving of the first Oktoberfest celebrations
Peter von Hess/Public Domain

Answer: Oktoberfest

Oktoberfest is a folk festival held in the German city of Munich. Although Oktoberfest implies the festivities take place in October, the fun actually starts in mid-to-late September and runs until the first Sunday in October. The fair runs 16-18 days (depending on how the dates fall on any given year) and features live music, games, amusement rides, side stalls, traditional food, and, of course, beer.

While it would be easy to assume that Oktoberfest is a party for the sake of a party, that’s only half the story. The original Oktoberfest (long before it had such a designation) was actually a massive wedding reception thrown by the German royal family to celebrate the marriage of Crown Prince Ludwig (who would later become King Ludwig I) and Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen on October 12, 1810. The reception was held in enormous tents set up in fields outside the city of Munich and lasted for days—some of the festivities were captured in the engraving seen here.

The event was so much fun and so well received by the citizens of Munich that the next year they threw an even bigger party. Once you establish a tradition that involves good food and beer, horse races, and a welcome break from work, it tends to stick. Ever since then, Germans (and many happy tourists) have enjoyed the continuation of a rocking 19th century wedding reception.

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