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The Guardian
‘I have always felt the world was a harsh place’: Elden Ring’s Hidetaka Miyazaki on why he may never stop making games
10 minuti fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 08:00

As Elden Ring’s much-anticipated final expansion is released, its designer gives a glimpse into how he crafts his harsh, beautiful, rewarding gameworlds Much has changed for Hidetaka Miyazaki in the past 10 years. In May 2014, he was made president of FromSoftware – the Japanese game developer known for its breakout dark fantasy hits Demon’s Souls (2009), Dark Souls (2011) and Bloodborne (2015), all games he himself directed. Back then, FromSoftware’s games were critical darlings with devoted followings, but they were not enormous bestsellers, shifting a few million copies each. But in 2022, the company released the splendid, imperious Elden Ring, a collaboration with fantasy writer George RR Martin that is not only Miyazaki’s masterpiece but also by far his most popular work: to date it has sold 25m copies. FromSoftware is no longer a niche maker of cult hits. It is now the home of a genuine blockbuster. Has this changed Miyazaki’s outlook? Perhaps unsurprisingly, given how unforgiving and cold his games’ worlds are, he is not the most optimistic person you’ll ever meet. “Elden Ring was in a league of its own in terms of the success and critical acclaim that it has seen, but what we try to do as a company is never assume that will happen again with our future games,” he tells me in an interview in Los Angeles. “No decision is based on any assumption that, hey, we did it once, it’s going to happen again. Allowing for this rather conservative forecast gives us room to fail – and that in turn results in better games and better decisions. In a roundabout way, I think that assumption of not making another hit, that conservative outlook, is fuelling and aiding our game design.” Continue reading...

Fancy Dance to Black Barbie: the seven best films to watch on TV this week
10 minuti fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 08:00

Lily Gladstone stars in a poignant and arresting road movie, plus Shondaland’s fascinating look at Mattel’s first Black doll Erica Tremblay’s poignant debut drama adds to the valuable but still small body of films bringing the present-day Native American experience to wider attention. Killers of the Flower Moon breakout star Lily Gladstone bolsters her reputation as petty criminal Jax, who has been looking after her 13-year-old niece, Roki (Isabel Deroy-Olsen), since her sister Tawi vanished. As she searches for Tawi, Jax drags the trusting Roki away from their Seneca–Cayuga reservation into her own murky world of shoplifting and car theft, barely realising what a bad influence she is on the girl. Questions of identity and belonging – tribal and familial – swirl under an arresting road movie mystery. Friday, Apple TV+ Continue reading...

QOA: Sauco review | John Lewis's contemporary album of the month
10 minuti fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 08:00

(Leaving) From the meditative serenity of waterfalls, birdsong and pulsing animal heartbeats to galloping tribal drums and rave-like samples, this is a pleasingly random collage Musicians have long tried to incorporate the sounds of nature into their compositions. Think of Olivier Messiaen or Ottorino Respighi transcribing birdsong and arranging it for orchestra, George Crumb’s whale music, the percussionists of the Congo basin, making complex polyrhythms from splashing river surfaces, or Trilok Gurtu immersing his drums and cymbals into buckets of water. Composer Nina Corti, AKA QOA, is the latest musician to work in this area. Now based in Los Angeles, she makes electro-acoustic music inspired by the flora and fauna of her native Argentina – the album takes its name from the Spanish word for elderberries, and there are tracks named after breeds of butterfly, native herbs, marsh deer, lichen, fungi and a variety of honey from the Misiones region. Continue reading...

I never thought I’d abstain from voting, but many young people will – and can you blame us? | Shaniya Odulawa
11 minuti fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 08:00

This election my generation has felt actively vilified. Leaders should fear putting us off mainstream politics for ever I’ve had this sinking feeling in my stomach about the direction of British politics since I was 15. Silence overtook our geography classroom, in a multicultural school in south-east London, as we watched the results of the Brexit referendum. Before then, I believed everyone thought as I did: sure, there were a few racists in the country, but immigrants were needed in this country, right? Brexit shook that. Overt racism and abuse grew, and for the first time I felt unsafe in my own country. I’m part of the generation whose first vote happened after Brexit. It’s no secret that people my age vote less than others – a growing trend since the 1990s. A few of my friends don’t know who to vote for, or will begrudgingly vote Labour simply to get the Tories out this election. One proudly proclaimed she hadn’t voted since Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership and is planning to abstain. I would like to berate her, but I can’t. What options do we have? With Rishi Sunak threatening national service and Keir Starmer having a go in the Express about “yobs terrorising our town centres”, it feels as if my age group is not just forgotten but actively vilified. And it’s not just young people: this election is set to be the most unequal in 60 years, with those in the poorest areas, ethnic minorities and people who don’t own their homes forecast to turn out in the lowest numbers. Continue reading...

Tories facing ‘punishment election’ and vote betting allegations making it worse, says former minister – live
19 minuti fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:51

Paul Scully says things have gone ‘from bad to worse’ for the party since the election was called • Sign up to our Election Edition daily newsletter Speaking of Nigel Farage: the Reform UK leader has praised the misogynist influencer Andrew Tate for being an “important voice” for the emasculated and giving boys “perhaps a bit of confidence at school” in online interviews that appear to be aimed at young men over the past year. The Guardian’s Rowena Mason and Ben Quinn report: Continue reading...

Hacked London NHS hospitals data allegedly published online
47 minuti fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:23

Cyber-attack earlier this month led to cancellation of almost 1,600 operations and outpatient appointments in capital Data from a ransomware attack has been allegedly published online weeks after the attack halted operations and tests in major London NHS hospitals, NHS England has said. Synnovis, a private pathology firm that analyses blood tests for Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS foundation trust (GSTT) and King’s College trust, on 3 June, fell victim to a cyber-attack believed to have been carried out by a Russian group, forcing hospitals in the capital to cancel almost 1,600 operations and outpatient appointments. Continue reading...

You be the judge: should I stop covering for my brother’s lack of effort with our grandparents?
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:00

Ololade is sick of doing all the family duties, but Babatunde argues she’s just better at it. You decide which sibling has the right family values Find out how to get a disagreement settled or become a juror Just because I’m the eldest doesn’t mean I should always be the one to send them gifts and cards I’m the baby of the family – that’s just how it is Continue reading...

How to see off the threat of Reform? I found one answer on the streets of Boston and Skegness | Gaby Hinsliff
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:00

At hustings in the leave-voting Lincolnshire towns, I witnessed a rare sight: a Tory unafraid to stand up to Farage’s party On Skegness pier, the rain was coming down hard. Perfect Tory launch weather, someone joked, as three candidates assembled for the shivery second hustings of the day: the Conservatives’ Matt Warman, his LibDem opponent, Richard Lloyd, and the Reform chairman, Richard Tice, who hastily declared his candidacy here only after the election had been called. Though a curious tourist in a mobility scooter trundled up for a brief look, most barely glanced up from playing the seafront slot machines as the politicians traipsed past. Earlier, at the BBC Radio Lincolnshire hustings, Tice had hammered home lines designed to jolt the apathetic into paying attention: that the Tories haven’t stopped the boats, that you can’t believe a word Westminster politicians say, that net zero kills jobs, and immigrants put too much pressure on public services (as opposed to, say, keeping them afloat by working in them). But if Reform is the party of horribly easy answers, then Warman, a remain-voting one nation Tory who has represented the normally safe (and heavily leave-voting) Boston and Skegness seat since 2015, is the candidate for “actually it’s a bit more complicated than that”. Gaby Hinsliff is a Guardian columnist Continue reading...

Millions of mosquitoes released in Hawaii to save rare bird from extinction
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:00

Conservationists hope insects carrying ‘birth control’ bacteria can save honeycreeper being wiped out by malaria Millions of mosquitoes are being released from helicopters in Hawaii in a last-ditch attempt to save rare birds slipping into extinction. The archipelago’s endemic, brightly coloured honeycreeper birds are dying of malaria carried by mosquitoes first introduced by European and American ships in the 1800s. Having evolved with no immunity to the disease, the birds can die after just a single bite. Continue reading...

Chess: national solving championship 2024 open to entries from Britain
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:00

Entry is free, the prize fund is expected to be £2,500, and the winner qualifies for the world solving championship This week’s puzzle is a chance to enter an annual national contest in which Guardian readers traditionally perform strongly and in considerable numbers. White in the diagram, ­playing as usual up the board, is to play and checkmate in two moves, against any black defence. The puzzle is the first stage of the annual Winton British Solving Championship, organised by the British Chess Problem Society. This competition is open only to British residents, and entry is free. Continue reading...

Week in wildlife – in pictures: bears’ dinner party, a Kentish wildcat kitten and racing marmots
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:00

The best of this week’s wildlife photographs from around the world Continue reading...

Restore Nature Now: thousands to march in London calling for urgent action
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:00

Mainstream groups including National Trust and RSPB will join hunt saboteurs and direct action activists for first time Crabs, badgers and scores of dragonfly wings will be among the fancy dress worn by thousands of people joining more than 350 environmental groups marching through London on Saturday to demand the next government does not “recklessly” ignore the nature crisis. For the first time, mainstream organisations including the National Trust and the RSPB will stand beside hunt saboteurs and direct action activists in the Restore Nature Now march, as campaigners call on the next government to take “bold” steps to tackle the biodiversity crisis. Continue reading...

‘My heart does not have any other job’: Lhakpa Sherpa, the record-breaking Nepalese climber who cleans houses in Connecticut
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:00

Lucy Walker’s critically acclaimed documentary, Mountain Queen, follows the remarkable woman who had to pretend to be a boy to secure her first job in the Himalayas – and hasn’t stopped fighting since When Lhakpa Sherpa was a small child growing up in a tiny village in the Himalayas, her mother warned her that if she didn’t behave herself, the yetis would come and snatch her away. It was a hollow threat – or so she thought. Then, one day as she played outside with her friends, she saw them: very tall, with blond hair and blue eyes, climbing up the hill in her direction. The children screamed in panic and scattered. When Sherpa’s mother heard the commotion and saw the figures reaching the village, she too screamed and ran from the yetis. It was her community’s first encounter with western tourists. Continue reading...

Bronzing gel: the easiest route to a subtle, skin-boosting sunny glow | Sali Hughes on beauty
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:00

This is a winner even for people who don’t like putting on makeup – it goes on with fingers and washes off at the end of the day If you have no interest in makeup but occasionally feel you might need it, try a gel bronzer. I barely consider bronzing gel to be makeup at all. Makeup requires thoughtful colour selection, brushes and some aptitude for application. Bronzing gel needs none of that, so it’s the fastest, easiest way for someone of any gender to bring sunny, natural-looking colour to a dull, indoorsy or peaky complexion. The gel can be applied with fingers like face cream (although if you’d prefer to buff it on with a fat, fluffy brush, be my guest) and instantly adds a golden-brown tint. It’s almost clear, so won’t cake or go ashy, and at the end of the day it washes off, so has none of the commitment of self-tan. Men love it. Continue reading...

Kate Nash: 9 Sad Symphonies review – from first dates to crying in a car park
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 07:00

(Kill Rock Stars) Pivoting from riot grrrl to baroque ruffles, Nash nonetheless retains her trademark unvarnished lyricism on her fifth LP Kate Nash is no stranger to pivots, as a kitchen-sink songwriter who later found success as an actor and with a new riot grrrl-tinged musical direction. Her fifth album is another about-face: with lush string arrangements inspired by old Hollywood and musical theatre, it feels more of a piece with Bridgerton than the boisterous wrestling ring of her Netflix show Glow. Some songs successfully unite her conversational lyricism with this new sound. Kitsch and baroque, Horsie has a twinkly piano melody that could map on to Taylor Swift’s Enchanted – albeit one brought crashing down to earth by lyrics about crying in the car park of a DIY store. Ray and Millions of Heartbeats are similarly upfront about bouts of poor mental health, the former stripping back Nash’s frills to reveal simple acoustic guitar. Promising herself to battle depression and anxiety “with music”, Nash talks herself through a low spell by recalling the support of her friends. Continue reading...

Thousands flock to Stonehenge to celebrate summer solstice
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 06:37

Event takes place days after ancient monument in Wiltshire targeted by Just Stop Oil protesters Thousands of people have greeted the sun with cheers as it rose over Stonehenge for the summer solstice, days after the ancient monument was sprayed with orange paint. Those who observed the spectacle at the neolithic structure in Wiltshire encountered a chilly morning accompanied by misty fields as the sun glinted over the horizon at 4.52am on Friday. Continue reading...

UK retail sales rebound in warm May as consumer confidence improves – business live
1 ora fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 06:26

Rolling coverage of the latest economic and financial news, including the latest retail sales and public finances data British consumer sentiment has risen to a two-and-a-half year high this month, market research company GfK reports this morning. The GfK consumer confidence survey has risen to -14 in June, up from from May’s -17, the highest reading since November 2021. Those measures on the economy registered sharp increases of seven points and six points respectively, and there was a welcome three-point boost in intentions to make major purchases. While June’s reading of -14 is the third month in a row that confidence has increased, the headline score remains negative owing to the difficulties so many have experienced as the unrelenting cost-of-living crisis batters household budgets. Continue reading...

Bagging Munros, wild camping and mysterious lochs: readers’ favourite wilderness trips in Scotland
2 ore fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 06:00

From ferry rides to remote islands to stunning empty beaches, our tipsters are fired up by Scottish adventures We live in the north-west Highlands of Scotland and frequently spend our free time having micro-adventures. We tend to avoid the busiest times of year. One February half-term, my sister and I loaded our ageing campervans with mattress and children and headed north to Inchnadamph. Our destination was the Bone Caves of Assynt. The wild camping was free, we were cosy tucked up in the van and awoke to a sprinkling of snow, blue sky and a glorious sunrise. We made the walk up to the caves and back through an uninhabited glen following the limestone river that bubbled over ground and occasionally underground too. The weather held for a chilly paddle in the sea at Clachtoll followed by a camping dinner cooked in the bitter cold at the car park at Knockan Crag with its incredible sculptures and geological timeline that the children deeply connected with. A memorable trip that we may never be able to recreate fully, but I will never forget. Marion Continue reading...

Plusnet mobile customers told to switch within weeks or lose number
2 ore fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 06:00

BT Group-owned provider has already ditched its TV service and will become a broadband-only supplier Plusnet customers who use the broadband firm’s mobile phone service have just weeks left to either switch to another provider, or face losing their mobile number. In May, Plusnet, which is part of BT, confirmed it was closing its mobile phone division, as EE takes over as BT’s main mobile brand. Continue reading...

The Bear to Supacell: the seven best shows to stream this week
2 ore fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 06:00

The smash hit restaurant drama starring Jeremy Allen White and Ayo Edebiri returns for a third helping – and Rapman’s south London superhero show lands at last The fast, funny and furious restaurant drama returns for third helpings. With Carmy closer than ever to getting a Michelin-starred establishment up and running, self-sabotage must be on the cards for the volatile chef. Cue some magnificently quixotic tantrums over various “non-negotiables”, including a constantly evolving menu and tiny discrepancies in crockery sizes. It’s clear that nothing is ever going to be enough for Carmy, whom Jeremy Allen White continues to invest with nervy intensity. The Bear has always been a brilliant ensemble piece, though, and permanently exasperated sous chef Sydney (the superb Ayo Edebiri) has problems of her own to deal with. Disney+, from Thursday 27 June Continue reading...

‘I fear when we stop, no one will replace us’: Madagascar’s forest guardians – in pictures
2 ore fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 06:00

Community conservation groups are fighting to protect woodlands from illegal logging, farming and fires, but limited resources are a constant challenge and the task is getting ever more difficult Safidy Andrianantenaina is a Madagascan photographer and recipient of the revolutionary storyteller grant, a Photographers Without Borders and On the Edge joint project Continue reading...

Skinny homes for sale in England – in pictures
2 ore fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 06:00

From an elegant Kent property with views over fields and sea to a Norfolk bolthole with a deceptively small facade Continue reading...

TV tonight: it’s festival time with the Streets, the Prodigy and the Pretenders
2 ore fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 05:20

Get comfy for an all-night run of the Isle of Wight Festival. Plus: will love bloom for the Nevermets? Here’s what to watch this evening 7pm, Sky Arts Festival season is here – but with the likelihood of it being a washout year for many events, it might be best to stay at home and watch the highlights on TV. The Isle of Wight’s all-night run has a (very male-heavy) lineup including the Streets, the Darkness, the Prodigy, Pet Shop Boys, Green Day and the Pretenders. Hollie Richardson Continue reading...

Pat Cummins hat-trick sets up Australia for soggy T20 World Cup win over Bangladesh
3 ore fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 05:02

Bangladesh 140-8; Australia 100-2 | Australia win by 28 runs (DLS) Bowler takes just seventh hat-trick in men’s T20 World Cups Australia are knocking on the door of the Twenty20 World Cup semi-finals after beginning the Super Eight stage with a convincing 28-run win over Bangladesh in rainy Antigua. Pat Cummins (3-29) became only the fourth Australian to record a T20I hat-trick, joining forces with the in-form Adam Zampa (2-24) to restrict Bangladesh to 140-8 with the bat. Continue reading...

How a disastrous Tory policy blew up the housing market
3 ore fa | Ven 21 Giu 2024 05:00

In the second instalment of a special series on the emblems of Tory Britain, Oliver Wainwright looks at help to buy, a scheme that cost billions, pushed up prices, did almost nothing for new buyers – but made house builders a lot of money With a penthouse in Santa Monica, a rambling Georgian manor in North Yorkshire and a five-bedroom mews house in Kensington, Rishi Sunak knows a thing or two about the joys of home ownership. “I want everyone to feel what I felt when I got the keys to my first flat,” Sunak said in his recent televised debate with Keir Starmer, recalling the moment he stepped into his South Ken pied-à-terre for the first time. Launching his election manifesto, Sunak reiterated the Tory party’s eternal commitment to estate agents, house builders and the transformational power of bricks and mortar. “From Macmillan to Thatcher to today,” he declared, “it is we Conservatives who are the party of the property-owning democracy in this country.” Continue reading...