Share This!Interactivity is an important part of guest exploration of Galaxy’s Edge. To facilitate interactivity, many aspects of Galaxy’s Edge work through the Play Disney Parks app. From the app, you can tune into secret transmissions, translate Aurebesh words and phrases, scan encrypted cargo and discover hidden items, and hack into droids. How does the experience work? Here’s what we discovered.First things first, you’ll need to make sure that you’ve got the Play Disney Parks app installed on your smartphone and that you’re willing to let the app have camera access (for scanning crates) and Bluetooth access. Because of this, you may want to bring some sort of battery backup if you plan to do a lot of playing in Galaxy’s Edge or plan to use your phone later in the day. Without a doubt, the app eats battery life.Once the app is launched, you can scroll around the map to find a variety of games. If you want to play the Galaxy’s Edge ones, you do have to be in Galaxy’s Edge to play, however you can still access your lists of achievements outside of Galaxy’s Edge.There are two games available in the app–Star Wars: Datapad and the Smuggler’s Run game. During our “reservations required” visit to Galaxy’s Edge, we never waited in line long enough for Smuggler’s Run to be able to do much with that game, and so this article will just cover the Datapad game. By far, that’s the real immersive experience in Galaxy’s Edge, however. It may be the breakout hit for this new land, to the point where my family (who are moderate Star Wars fans) was thinking of not doing a lot with Galaxy’s Edge when it comes to Florida, but after playing the game, we’re counting down the days until it opens here.You can set up to have multiple players on a single account (for instance, if you have a family where not everyone has their own phone), or you can have each person work on their own phone and be able to interact with each other to complete trades of equipment and such.If you attempt to access the game outside of Galaxy’s Edge, you’ll get a polite notification about what you can and can’t do with the app.From your profile, you can see items that you have collected during your quests.This includes weapons, cargo, schematics, data, clothing, transmissions, titles, and more.What we found most impressive when working with the game is how extensive it is. Completing this game will take hours upon hours. Based on the progress we made in a couple hours of gameplay, you *might* be able to finish everything within a day–but that’s not a guarantee. (And seeing how much was put into this experience, we’ve now started saving our credits for a stay at the new Star Wars hotel.)Now that everything’s set up, time to get to work. From the Jobs tab on your datapad (aka smartphone with Play app), you can see a variety of jobs to select. Jobs come in four categories: Resistance (blue), First Order (red), Outpost (yellow), and Scoundrel (purple).Select a job, and you’ll be contacted with a briefing about what you need to do and where you need to go. Once you find the objects you’re looking for, go to the Tools menu and initiate a scan of the label. Depending on the location of the code to scan, younger members of your party may need help to hold the datapad high enough to get a clear scan of the code.Once the code has been scanned, you’ll get a confirmation screen. Now it’s time to analyze the code.In some cases, you may need to decrypt the code by constructing a key. Thankfully, your datapad can get you set up to do that. In this case, the code was obtained by performing a simple drag-and-drop tangram puzzle. The more you play the game, the more complex the codes may become.Once you have successfully completed the puzzle, you can collect the item.You will also earn one of many achievement titles within the game.Go back into the jobs screen to report back in….…and collect your credits!Your profile will be updated with your credits and showing where your allegiance is ranked.The tools section of your datapad includes other functions, such as an Aurebesh translator. Unfortunately, it isn’t as simple as scan and translate–you do have to type in the letters. That said, it is worth taking the time to translate the signs. There’s a lot of hilarious text scattered throughout Galaxy’s Edge.Performing translations also unlocks achievements.Even if you don’t accept jobs, you can still scan cargo or hack panels from the tools menu, and assist the Resistance or First Order.Throughout the day, the balance of power is likely to shift between these two forces.The mini games to complete tasks vary depending on what actions you are preforming. In this panel hacking objective, you simply have to draw a line to connect the green dots. Games start off simple, but get more difficult the more you play. (In this case, you would end up with multiple dots to connect, and you cannot cross over any lines you’ve drawn, plus there’s a time limit.)Items that you unlock without having accepted a job are available to trade to other players.As more people play in the game, I would love to see Disney rotate the items available so that you’d have to meet up with people to obtain different items through trade. (As big Pokemon GO fans, we’re used to that type of game mechanic.)And yes, you still earn credits even if it isn’t related to a job.Also within the Tools menu is the ability to intercept transmissions. Select the Tune option on your datapad under the Tools menu, and then move your datapad around to lock onto the signal.Once you find the antenna, you can tune into it.Some messages will appear on your screen already translated and able to be read. This gives some unique insights into what exactly is going on in Black Spire. Other messages may be garbled and will need to be unscrambled. Thankfully, you have a datapad for that.First, you’ll need to move the wavelength indicators around to get at the right frequency.Then, you’ll need to tap out a rhythm in sync with the wavelength to unlock the message.Some messages may contain information vital to the survival of the Resistance. Others…well, it may just sound like a day on your work Slack channel.There are a variety of mini games to explore as you interact with different parts of Black Spire, like this game to hack into a droid before the time runs out. The games are intuitive, the instructions are clear, and the variety keeps gameplay fun.One concern I had about Galaxy’s Edge was that, from the discussions of the rides that were going to be included, there wouldn’t be anything for my family to do together, as we’re not thrill ride people. (Thankfully, Smuggler’s Run was surprisingly mild so that we could enjoy it as a family, but we do think Rise of the Resistance is out based on descriptions so far.) I had wondered at the time what there would be for families to do while they waited for other members of their party who did want to ride the rides. With no obvious “play area” for younger kids, Disney has hit it out of the park by making this game option available. I can easily see my family asking to go to Galaxy’s Edge just to spend a few hours playing this game on a Saturday afternoon. It’s fun for the whole family, great for competition-driven people, and adds to the authentic feeling of being on another planet and part of the whole experience. Well done, Disney app developers–the Force is strong with this game! As promised, your map is updated to give you information on the locations that you need to access for your quest. Even if you are playing “solo” (sorry, Star Wars pun), you can see how much influence has happened with the Resistance and First Order in accomplishing tasks at certain locations–in this case, who has hacked certain panels for which side. Although you can only hack a panel once, I’m wondering if in the future you would be able to hack a panel multiple times throughout the day if the panel falls out of your team’s hands.You can take multiple jobs at once, so you don’t have to choose between hacking panels and droids, scanning cargo, listening to transmissions, or translating text.Although it may be tempting to try and accept every job at once, it’s easier to work on a handful of tasks at a time to keep your map from getting too cluttered. First up, off to scan crates.The map will show you what you’re looking for and where to find it. Head over to that location and look for the physical items with the special code to scan. In some cases, we found the items very obvious. In other cases, you may have to do a bit of looking.
Green Scorpions are out to ensure major construction projects comply with environmental regulations. Rejoice Mabudafhasi is the deputy ministerof Environmental Affairs.(Images: Bongani Nkosi)MEDIA CONTACTS • Moses RanditsheniSpokespersonEMI+27 82 448 2450 RELATED ARTICLES • SA marks Year of Biodiversity• Going green for 2010• Greening it up in Cape Town• Clean-up drive along SA bordersBongani NkosiSouth Africa’s Green Scorpions, also called the Environmental Management Inspectorate (EMI), are out in full force to ensure major construction projects comply with environmental regulations.After taking their campaign to the Eastern Cape, they hit Limpopo province on 6 December 2010 for a week-long inspection of Eskom projects. They are examining compliance at Medupi power station and the Spitskop substation.Medupi power station is one of the biggest construction projects currently on the go in the country. Power utility Eskom is building a coal-fired power plant there that must be operational by 2012 to boost much-needed national electricity supply.The inspections are part of the National Environmental Law Compliance Campaign of the Department of Environmental Affairs. The Green Scorpions have already inspected sites in Free State and KwaZulu-Natal as part of the drive.KwaZulu-Natal’s operation took place in October and included an inspection of Transnet’s 555km-long multi-product pipeline that runs from Durban to Jameson Park in Gauteng. The Green Scorpions found the construction to be progressing well in terms of environmental compliance.“The main objectives of the campaign are to monitor adherence to conditions stipulated in environmental authorisations, environmental management plans and waste management licences, as well as to improve the general status of compliance within the regulated community …” said spokesperson Moses Randitsheni in a statement.The Department of Environmental Affairs will take “appropriate enforcement actions in the event of non-compliance”, he said.The installation of Neotel’s fibre-optic cable that runs from Germiston in Gauteng to Cato Ridge in KwaZulu-Natal will also be examined during the week of 6 December. The cable, which runs via Mpumalanga and the Free State provinces, is one of the initiatives to improve broadband coverage in South Africa.Non-compliance bustedThe Eastern Cape leg of the campaign in October and November uncovered environment violations in some projects, although most were found to be compliant.Waste management company EnviroServ was found to have constructed and subsequently operated a storm water dam and a leachate treatment plant at a landfill site without obtaining a required environmental permit. It has also failed to implement recommendations made in an external audit report, according to the department.“All non-compliances detected during the inspections are currently being reviewed and will be met with appropriate enforcement action where necessary,” said Randitsheni.Overall compliance is satisfactory at the deepening of the car terminal berth at Transnet’s East London Port – a project that was completed in November.The Green Scorpions noted, however, that the required water-quality comparison data for the estuary was still outstanding and the management of the dredged materials stockpile on site was inadequate, the department said.No major non-compliances were uncovered at Transnet’s projects at the 11 000ha Coega Industrial Development Zone in Port Elizabeth. The projects include the construction of a port control building, two additional berths at the container terminals and an administrative craft basin.Likewise, there were no major violations at the South African National Biodiversity Institute Working for Wetlands projects in the Eastern Cape, which involve the rehabilitation of degraded wetlands in the Hogsback and Tsitsikamma regions. The projects began recently.“Inspections at other sites found that construction had been completed or is proceeding at generally acceptable standards which are in compliance with the environmental legislations,” Randitsheni said.
As reported recently in LPM Insider’s Breaking News, a widely circulated online video has fueled debate over whether a loss prevention associate used excessive force in an encounter with a 16-year-old girl accused of shoplifting.According to police, the loss prevention representative approached two female teenagers as they attempted to leave the store with “miscellaneous items” they allegedly tried to take from the store without payment. When they were approached, one of the teenagers began kicking and punching the loss prevention representative, later biting him on the chest, before being taken to the ground as the loss prevention representative attempted to subdue the alleged shoplifter. The other teenager fled the scene.Roughly 10 – 12 other customers gathered around the area and shouted at the loss prevention representative throughout the incident. Much of the altercation was captured on video, which can be viewed here.- Sponsor – Many have taken issue with the video’s depiction of how the loss prevention representative handled the situation, accusing him of being too rough with the juvenile. Others have criticized those seen watching the altercation, while still others are defending the loss prevention representative’s actions as warranted given the circumstances.What do you think? Was the loss prevention representative justified in his actions, or was excessive force used as he tried to subdue the shoplifter?Survey ResultsThe nature of the apprehension process always has the potential to lead to volatile situations, which is why it’s critically important to follow your training and abide by company policies.Approximately 63% of those surveyed believe the LP representative’s actions were justified based on the situation. By the same respect, 15 percent believe that the LP representative should have allowed the shoplifter to leave when she resisted.Contrarily, just 2 percent believe that while the LP representative has the right to defend himself, excessive force was used. Another 4 percent feel that the actions of the LP representative were inappropriate and excessive force was used.Others feel that they still need more information, with 16 percent indicating that they are not sure based on what was seen in the video.Here is a sampling of your comments:“Since the entire video, from the approach to apprehension isn’t seen it’s hard to say with absolute certainty. What I do find disturbingly normal in today’s society is that not one of the bystanders yells at the shoplifting subject to stop fighting. they just seem to focus on the LP agent and yell at him to let her go. I have been in similar situations and it boggles my mind that society’s initial reaction is to blame the agent, or police and never the wrong-doer.”“When a suspect begins punching, kicking and ultimately biting you it becomes a matter of self-defense. Without knowing medical issues or diseases the subject could have infected the officer with after biting him, they should be detained for examination and identification.”“The best course of action probably would have been to let her go as someone, whether the shoplifter, the LP person, or a customer could have been hurt. However, this was absolutely not an excessive use of force.”“If the LP Rep had tried to let her leave and she continued to try to fight him, then these actions were completely justified.”“Store management needed to have helped more. The shoplifter could have been removed to a back area of the store to wait for police.”“Looks to me more like the two of them stumbled to the ground rather than the LP guy “taking her to the ground”. While no one will agree that aggressive action is the best action. I would by no means call this excessive force, especially in light of the teenager’s aggression.”“First off, the video is inconclusive. It only shows what happened in the middle of the whole ordeal. Should the LP just let her go? Yes, he should have, but we also have the right to defend ourselves. To have a shoplifter come out kicking and swinging after simply being approached is going to set a ton of emotions into play that many people might not be prepared to handle.” “Where do we draw the line on self-defense vs. excessive force? Once again, this is the issue with our society today—if you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime. Stop making excuses for punks that break the law!”“The video is misleading. It does not show the initial contact between the LP representative and the shoplifter. There isn’t enough information from this video to make an informed observation. Anyone who says otherwise is incorrect.”“Good Work!” “The actions of some the “bystanders” in the video should also be questioned.”“Defending oneself is one thing but the minute things became combative and with all the attention due to shoppers and employees—and especially with the scene being caused—he should have immediately disengaged and allowed her to leave.”“This is why I left the industry. No matter what wisdom this LP agent used to address this threat, he will be patronized by the media and disciplined by his management—all for doing his job!”Do you have any additional thoughts? Let us know what’s on your mind in the comments below. Stay UpdatedGet critical information for loss prevention professionals, security and retail management delivered right to your inbox. Sign up now