MOVIES: Opening Friday, “3 Days to Kill” (PG-13), “Pompeii” (PG-13); coming Feb. 28, “Non-stop” (PG-13), “Son of God” (PG-13).

“Dark Victory,” 5 p.m. today, Central Library, Lafayette Square.

CONCERTS: Message in a Bottle: Tribute to the Police, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Lancaster Opera House, 21 Central Ave., Lancaster.

Winter Dance Party, 8 p.m. Friday, Riviera Theatre, 67 Webster St., North Tonawanda.

Lettuce with Kraz, 8 p.m. Friday, Tralf, 622 Main St.

Dave LaFame: Tribute to Tom Jones and Bobby Darin, 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Lancaster Opera House, 21 Central Ave., Lancaster.

Justin Timberlake, 8 p.m. Saturday, First Niagara Center, 1 Seymour H. Knox III Plaza.

Noel Nagle, Tommy Byrne and Brian Warfield of Wolfe Tones, 7:30 p.m. Monday, Buffalo Irish Center, 245 Abbott Road.

White Lies with Frankie Rose, 7 p.m. Wednesday, Town Ballroom, 681 Main St.

THEATER: “Charlotte’s Web,” 6:30 p.m. today, Riviera Theatre, 67 Webster St., North Tonawanda.

“Cyrano,” 7:30 p.m. Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday, 710 Main Theatre, 710 Main St.

“The Shape of Things,” 7:30 p.m. Friday, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday, Leary Theatre, Niagara University, Lewiston.

“The Lion in Winter,” 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 3 p.m. Sunday, Ellicott Creek Playhouse, 530 Ellicott Creek Road, Tonawanda.


In the violent cyberpunk dystopian future of 2326, rival gangs have formed a sports league to settle their deadly disputes known as Speedball where the object of the game is to score points either through goals or viciously attacking and hurting the opposing team. Developer Vivid Games sets out to recapture the nostalgia of the Bitmap Brothers’ original Speedball with a modern reincarnation in “Speedball 2 HD.”

Vivid Games has essentially kept all the elements of the original “Speedball,” down to the smallest details like the ice cream vendor shouting in the crowd, but with updated graphics and much more detail. For fans of the original, it’s a welcome trip down memory lane; however, the rose-tinted glasses of nostalgia wear off quickly and you’re left with a 20-year-old game struggling to stay fresh and relevant.

It’s plain to see that Vivid Games had the best of intentions when making “Speedball 2 HD” by trying to revive a classic into modern day, but aside from very few differences, it remains almost exactly the same as it did years ago. Character design is very well detailed, but textures look dated and the animation is not what you’d expect from a game with “HD” in the title, not to mention the game runs at an abysmal 30fps, which does not help for a game as fast-paced as this one.

Although the game itself is fun and a faithful remake of the original classic, the amount of flaws and lack of new improvements make “Speedball 2 HD” a good idea on paper but poorly executed. Unless you’re a major fan of the original it’s hard to recommend the $9.99 price tag on Steam, but potential for online multiplayer in the future would help its case.


“I don’t try to force it or turn it into something else or fabricate this personality … so I totally agree when people say I’m, like, the most awkward person.”

– Kristen Stewart, defending her mistakes and public image, to Marie Claire