Blizzard Entertainment Celebrates 30 Years With Its Global Community—And New Adventures Soon to Come—at…

first_imgFor World of Warcraft, Blizzard announced Chains of Domination, the first major content update coming later this year for the recently released Shadowlands expansion, as well as an all-new charity pet program that will yield two separate pets—Bananas the monkey and Daisy the sloth—for all modern WoW ® players once donation goals are met. Blizzard also revealed Burning Crusade Classic ™, an authentic recreation of the acclaimed first World of Warcraft expansion—also coming later this year, and included in players’ existing World of Warcraft subscription at no additional cost. Pinterest By Digital AIM Web Support – February 19, 2021 Facebook TAGS  Blizzard also unveiled the Rogue for Diablo ® IV, with a dark cinematic trailer and gameplay footage of the new player class in action. The Rogue is a swift, deadly, mobile class with unparalleled versatility. Rogue players can choose from a variety of ways to attack and trap their enemies and can enhance their combat through poisons, shadow magic, and specialized techniques. Facebook WhatsApp Also coinciding with the Year of the Gryphon is the first Hearthstone expansion of 2021, Forged in the Barrens ™, inspired by the iconic World of Warcraft ® locale where millions of adventurers began forging their legends—available for prepurchase now at www.playhearthstone.com. Blizzard is set to kick off another jam-packed year of content—the Year of the Gryphon —for Hearthstone ®, its popular free-to-play digital card game, in the coming weeks. The new Hearthstone year will feature a new Core set of cards designed to shake up the game, and the introduction of the Classic format, which will let players craft decks and compete using the original Hearthstone cards as they were when the game launched in 2014. Pinterestcenter_img Previous articleEverbridge annuncia di essersi aggiudicata cinque contratti relativi alle soluzioni Public Warning con società di trasmissioni wireless, governi e Stati finalizzati alla protezione delle persone e delle aziende in Europa e in AsiaNext articleWilliams career-high 32 sparks WSU to romp over Cal 82-51 Digital AIM Web Support IRVINE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Feb 19, 2021– Blizzard Entertainment today kicked off BlizzConline ™, a fully virtual version of its perennial community and gaming celebration, with a slew of news and game announcements for a global online audience of fans and enthusiasts tuning in FREE via www.blizzcon.com. This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210219005513/en/ During the event’s just-concluded opening ceremony, company president J. Allen Brack and development leaders for Blizzard’s franchises reflected on the past and shared an exciting look at the future, revealing the following games and game updates—much of which will be explored in more detail during the show:One of the most acclaimed titles in PC gaming history returns with Diablo ® II: Resurrected ™, a faithful remaster of Blizzard’s classic action-RPG and its award-winning expansion, Lord of Destruction ®, coming later this year to Windows PC and, for the first time, consoles. PC players can sign up now at www.diablo2.com for a chance to participate in upcoming public testing. Blizzard Entertainment Celebrates 30 Years With Its Global Community—And New Adventures Soon to Come—at BlizzConline™ Later in the year, Blizzard will roll out Hearthstone Mercenaries, a single-player and competitive game mode in which players collect mighty characters from the Warcraft ® universe and level them up in tactical battles. Local NewsBusiness Twitter WhatsApp Now included as part of Blizzard’s anniversary-themed Celebration Collection on Windows ® PC (via Battle.net ® ), as part of The Blizzard ® 30-Year Celebration Collection on consoles, or as a standalone game on consoles, the Blizzard ® Arcade Collection is a digital set of Blizzard’s original console hits, The Lost Vikings ®, Rock N Roll Racing ®, and Blackthorne ®, enhanced for modern platforms. Over the next few hours today and starting again at 12 p.m. PST tomorrow, six channels of programming will feature deeper dives on Blizzard’s franchises, including a behind-the-scenes look at ongoing development of Overwatch ® 2, the company’s highly anticipated sequel to its blockbuster team-based shooter, and Diablo ® Immortal ™, its upcoming mobile massively multiplayer online action-RPG. (Of note, Blizzard recently completed its first stage of regional testing on Diablo Immortal, receiving an enthusiastic response from testers, and will be rolling out further tests in the coming months. The game has also recently received publishing approval for release in China.) Viewers will also be treated to one-of-a-kind esports showmatches—with legendary StarCraft ® and StarCraft II pros facing off, as well as a battle between reigning Overwatch League™ champions, the San Francisco Shock, and a dream team comprising pros, community figures, and more. Channeling the spirit of the live show, BlizzConline will also put a huge spotlight on the creativity and skill of the people who help bring Blizzard’s games to life. There will be multiple segments featuring artists, musicians, voice actors, content creators, and streamers, as well as an epic showcase highlighting some of the talented cosplayers, storytellers, and other artists inhabiting the Blizzard community. To learn more about BlizzConline and for a full schedule of events, visit www.blizzcon.com. For game screenshots and other assets, visit https://blizzard.gamespress.com. About Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. Best known for blockbuster hits including World of WarcraftHearthstoneOverwatchHeroes of the Storm ®, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. ( www.blizzard.com ), a division of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI), is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry’s most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard Entertainment’s track record includes twenty-three #1 games * and numerous Game of the Year awards. The company’s online gaming service, Battle.net, is one of the largest in the world, with millions of active players. * Sales and/or downloads, based on internal company records and reports from key distributors. Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements: Information in this press release that involves Blizzard Entertainment’s expectations, plans, intentions or strategies regarding the future, including statements about the plans, schedule, and content of BlizzConline, Diablo II: Resurrected, Diablo IV, Diablo Immortal, Hearthstone, and World of Warcraft, are forward-looking statements that are not facts and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause Blizzard Entertainment’s actual future results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements set forth in this release include unanticipated product delays and other factors identified in the risk factors sections of Activision Blizzard’s most recent annual report on Form 10-K and any subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. The forward-looking statements in this release are based upon information available to Blizzard Entertainment and Activision Blizzard as of the date of this release, and neither Blizzard Entertainment nor Activision Blizzard assumes any obligation to update any such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements believed to be true when made may ultimately prove to be incorrect. These statements are not guarantees of the future performance of Blizzard Entertainment or Activision Blizzard and are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, some of which are beyond its control and may cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations. View source version on businesswire.com:https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210219005513/en/ CONTACT: Christy Um Global PR Director 949.955.1380 x61251 [email protected] KEYWORD: CALIFORNIA UNITED STATES NORTH AMERICA INDUSTRY KEYWORD: ENTERTAINMENT TECHNOLOGY ONLINE MOBILE ENTERTAINMENT SOFTWARE INTERNET ELECTRONIC GAMES SOURCE: Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. Copyright Business Wire 2021. PUB: 02/19/2021 05:57 PM/DISC: 02/19/2021 05:56 PM http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210219005513/en Twitterlast_img read more

Press release: Foreign Secretary flies into Kabul to support signs of progress in Afghanistan

first_imgFor journalists On the back of the ceasefires over Eid, which saw government and Taliban forces talking rather than fighting in cities across the country, the Foreign Secretary held talks in Kabul with Afghanistan’s President, Chief Executive, and Deputy Foreign Minister.The Foreign Secretary underlined that Britain was fully committed to helping build a stable, peaceful, and prosperous Afghanistan. He welcomed the National Unity Government’s determination to achieve a peaceful political settlement to the conflict with the Taliban, including through holding timely and credible Parliamentary and Presidential elections.He also highlighted the UK’s strong support for girls’ education in Afghanistan by meeting Afghan girls who are getting access to sports education through UK funding.The Foreign Secretary also met General Nicholson, the Commander of Resolute Support, NATO’s training and assistance mission in Afghanistan, and had a chance to talk to and ride in an armoured vehicle with some of the Welsh Guards helping to mentor the Afghan National Security and Defence Forces.The Foreign Secretary said: During his visit the Foreign Secretary met President Dr Ashraf Ghani, Chief Executive Dr Abdullah Abdullah, and Deputy Foreign Minister Hekmat Karzai.This is the Foreign Secretary’s second visit to Afghanistan, where the UK is currently investing more than £750 million in development assistance to support the Afghan people.Notes to editors The UK is contributing £750 million in development spend between 2016 and 2020. UK Aid is helping improve access to education, services and justice for the Afghan people, offering humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable and supporting good governance and anti-corruption efforts. The UK has also committed £70 million per year until 2020 in non-military support to help sustain the Afghan National Security and Defence Forces. Over 650 UK troops are currently serving in Afghanistan in non-combat roles as part of NATO’s Resolute Support Mission to help train, assist and advise the Afghan Security Forces. At this important moment when Afghan-led efforts towards peace and a political settlement have gained considerable impetus, I was proud and inspired to be in Kabul to see how the UK is working in support of the Afghan government to achieve this goal. In my meetings with President Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah, I welcomed their historic offer of unconditional talks earlier this year, and their determined recent efforts towards a political process with the Taliban. I urge all countries with influence in Afghanistan, especially in the neighbourhood, to use it constructively at this crucial moment. My visit comes just as the UK is considering the request from the US and NATO to give additional assistance to Resolute Support. I was hugely impressed by the work done by British troops as a part of this NATO mission and I believe there is still a lot the UK could contribute to this vital operation. The government will be taking a decision very soon. I was also delighted to meet a talented group of Afghan girls to see how excited they were about their prospects, thanks to British funding and the Afghan government’s determination to do more in this area. A good education for them will help Afghanistan’s development and is a big part of the UK’s commitment towards a brighter future for Afghanistan. I am proud that UK Aid has helped 300,000 marginalised Afghan girls into education and trained over 10,000 teachers over the last six years. Follow the Foreign Secretary on Twitter @BorisJohnson and Facebookcenter_img Follow the Foreign Office on Twitter @foreignoffice and Facebook Media enquiries Further information Follow the Foreign Office on Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn Email [email protected]last_img read more

Carillion: Trustee chair quizzed over pension contribution deferrals

first_imgRobin Ellison appearing before MPs yesterdayThis episode occurred during Carillion’s final days as a going concern. Ellison said that even then the trustees were led to believe by Carillion executives that if immediate cash could be raised, the business would survive long enough to be restructured.Contribution schedule questionedBut MPs questioned why the trustees had ever allowed the sponsor to pause contributions in August last year, given the scheme was still in deficit. They referred to a 2012 report by one of the trustees’ advisers, Gazelle, recommending that they demand more from the sponsor, including influence over new securities issued by Carillion.Gazelle said at the time: “Carillion has historically prioritised other demands on capital ahead of deficit reduction in order to grow earnings and support the share price.”Ellison emphasised that the trustees had pursued means of greater security “with inadequate results”. He added that the board had asked for more contributions after nearly every valuation. “We did not just roll over and get our tummies tickled when the company paused contributions.”Robin Ellison“You will see [from correspondence] that negotiations went on in a pretty tough fashion: for the first two valuations we didn’t come to formal agreement and we had to take what the company would pay,” Ellison explained. “The powers of pension fund trustees are limited – we can’t enforce a demand for money.”The trustee chair also emphasised that “there wasn’t much in the company that could be pledged” as security against the deferred contributions.“We did not just roll over and get our tummies tickled when the company paused contributions,” Ellison said. “There were heavy interest payments for the delay and the promise of a bullet repayment seven months later.”Asked whether he’d thought about resigning, Ellison replied that resigning would not have solved anything.TPR – which will appear before the committee at a later date – can compel greater contributions. When pressed by Frank Field MP, co-chair of the committee, Ellison said he had not asked the regulator to make this specific demand, instead asking the regulator to use its judgement as to the best course of action. TPR will have to explain why it sat in on board meetings of the Carillion trustees for years without taking further action against the sponsor.MPs pointed to the £376m paid to shareholders in dividends by Carillion between 2012 and 2016. When asked why the money didn’t go to the pension fund, Ellison pointed out that The Pensions Regulator generally accepted pension contributions worth 16%-18% of dividends. In Carillion’s case, pension contributions had been in the order of 60% of dividends.Carillion’s annual report for 2016 detailed that it had paid £393.7m to shareholders since 2012, while making deficit contributions to the DB schemes of £209.4m in total. Since last year, TPR has increased its emphasis on companies striking a balance between dividend payments and pension scheme deficit reduction payments.Members of the Work and Pensions Select Committee and the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Select Committee are conducting a joint inquiry into the collapse of Carillion.A number of the engineering conglomerate’s DB pension funds are now being assessed for entry into the Pension Protection Fund.Robin Ellison spoke to IPE in March 2017 about the Carillion schemes’ investment strategy. He added that The Pensions Regulator (TPR) had also stood up to potential creditors of the company who had demanded all loans go into the business rather than the pension fund. The chairman of Carillion Pension Trustees has rebutted claims by politicians that the trustee board let the failed contractor “wriggle out” of pension contributions.Carillion went into compulsory liquidation on 15 January with a pensions deficit in excess of £800m (€910m) but just £29m in cash.Robin Ellison, chair of the trustees, yesterday told a parliamentary committee investigating Carillion’s collapse that the trustee board had pushed the construction and engineering contractor as hard as it could.“We did our best with the information at our disposal,” he said, adding that it was a balancing act between getting as much money for the pension scheme as possible without driving the sponsor out of business. “I don’t think there is anything more we could have done to pursue higher contributions.”last_img read more

Varsity Blues parent gets early dismissal amid fears of coronavirus spread

first_imgHuneeus paid scheme organizer William “Rick” Singer $50,000 in April 2018 to arrange for his daughter to get extended time on the SAT and for her answers to be corrected at the testing center. He paid senior associate athletic director Donna Heinel $50,000 in fall 2018 for creating an athletic recruitment profile for his daughter that listed fabricated water polo awards and used a photo of a different water polo player.  Napa Valley winemaker Agustin Huneeus Jr. was sentenced to five months in prison, two years of supervised release, 500 hours of community service and fined $100,000 last October for pledging to pay $300,000 to rig his daughter’s SAT and falsely designate her as a water polo recruit on her USC application. Los Angeles business executive Devin Sloane, who was sentenced to four months in prison in September for arranging for his son’s 2018 admission to USC as a water polo recruit, also requested an early dismissal but was denied by the same judge who granted Huneeus his release. According to Talwani, Sloane did not seek alternative methods of gaining release before appealing to the court.  Vintner Huneeus Jr. pledged to pay $300,000 to correct his daughter’s SAT scores and ensure her admission to the USC Class of 2023 as a water polo recruit. He pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud in May. (Daily Trojan file photo) A parent in the college admissions scandal was released from prison two weeks before the end of his sentence due to concerns over the spread of the coronavirus after an inmate in California State Prison, Los Angeles County became the first California prisoner to test positive for the virus Sunday.center_img Heinel presented Huneeus’ daughter to an admissions subcommittee for approval, and she was granted conditional acceptance to the University in November 2018 to matriculate in Fall 2019. Huneeus pledged to pay Singer an additional $200,000 but was charged in the case before the transaction could be finalized.  Huneeus and Sloane are among 20 parents who have pleaded guilty in the college admissions case. Fifteen parents, including 11 with ties to USC, pleaded not guilty and will stand trial beginning in October. Huneeus submitted a request in court to shorten his sentence and was granted early release last week. Federal judge Indira Talwani, the judge who oversaw the hearing requesting Huneeus’ release, cited his “extraordinary and compelling” circumstances, which included a publicly undisclosed health condition. last_img read more

Three changes on Tipp team for Waterford match

first_imgSubs:16.        Darragh Mooney – Éire Óg Annacarty17.        Kieran Bergin – Killenaule18.        Andrew Coffey -Nenagh Éire Óg19.        Conor Kenny – Borris-Ileigh20.        Liam McGrath – Loughmore-Castleiney21.        Conor O’Brien – Éire Óg Annacarty22.        Niall O’Meara -Kilruane MacDonaghs23.        Daire Quinn – Nenagh Éire Óg24.        Adrian Ryan – Templederry Kenyons25.        Liam Ryan – Drom & Inch26.        Willie Ryan – Clonakenny Throw-in at Semple Stadium on Sunday is at 3 o’clock.  Tipp FM’s live coverage of the match will be brought to you in association with Alliance Medical, South Tipperary General Hospital, Clonmel. Seamus Callinan of Drom & Inch makes his anticipated return to the side and will line out at full-forward, Nenagh Éire Óg’s Barry Heffernan makes his league debut at right-half back and Ronan Maher of Thurles Sarsfields makes his first start in the NHL at centre back.The match-day 26 is as follows:1.        Darren Gleeson – Portroe2.        Cathal Barrett – Holycross-Ballycahill3.        Tomás Hamill – Moyne-Templetuohy4.        Michael Cahill – Thurles Sarsfields5.        Barry Heffernan – Nenagh Éire Óg6.        Ronan Maher -Thurles Sarsfields7.        Padraic Maher – Thurles Sarsfields8.        Brendan Maher (Capt.) – Borris-Ileigh9.        Michael Breen – Ballina10.        Noel McGrath – Loughmore-Castleiney11.        Dan McCormack -Borris-Ileigh12.        Patrick Maher – Lorrha-Dorrha13.        John O’Dwyer – Killenaule14.        Seamus Callanan -Drom & Inch15.        John McGrath – Loughmore-Castleineylast_img read more

Van Gaal: What I’m predicting from Crystal Palace in the FA Cup final

first_imgLouis van Gaal believes Crystal Palace will play a defensive style in the FA Cup final, knowing full well that Manchester United are favourites for the clash.The two teams face off at Wembley on Saturday looking to win their only silverware of the season, and you can listen to all the action live on talkSPORT.The final is a repeat of the 1990 edition, which the Red Devils won after a replay, and this time, as it was then, Van Gaal’s team are favourites.They have been the best defensive team in the Premier League this season, whilst Palace have struggled for goals – netting just 39 in their 38 league games this season.Neutral fans are just hoping for an entertaining game of football, but Van Gaal cannot see such a situation, as he believes the Eagles will set-up defensively against their stronger opponents.“You always need two attacking sides, then you always get a fantastic match,” the Dutchman explained.“I think they shall defend very small spaces and then counter because they have a lot of speed in attack.“It shall be very difficult, but you cannot always predict a final.”Given Van Gaal’s preference for defensive football, it is slightly ironic that he suggests Palace will be the reason for a poor final.The Red Devils have built a reputation as one of the most boring English teams to watch this season, and although the Dutchman claims he would love his team to ‘win beautiful’, he still believes winning is more important than the style of a performance.He continued: “Of course the starting point is to perform well, to win beautiful…to score beautiful goals.“But a 1-0 win, for me, is also enough because winning is the most important thing in a final.“When you lose you have nothing.” 1 Louis van Gaal’s men take on Crystal Palace on Saturday last_img read more