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No Mans Sky is Game of the Year

written by owen, Fri, 19th Aug at 5:28 pm

When all is said and done NMS is the only new game released this year. People have already started making lists of games that you should try out if you did not like NMS. Hype aside all these lists are bullshit.

If someone came up to me and said "Street Fighter's story sucks here is a game called Mass Effect which totally does it better and has some fighting in it too!". I would laugh in her face. "What nonsense talk!?". These games are not even in the same genre! You want to compare NMS to a turn-based top down strategy game? And recommend people play it after they have experienced the wonder that is NMS? Lol. No one will ever be the same.

This type of thinking is nonsensical. NMS is not just about its story or its pointless collect-a-ton game play or its lore or post effects. No Mans Sky is the sum of its parts - it is about bringing these odd/tedious game play mechanics together in a way which has never been done before. Of course your mileage may vary but no one lives forever and no game appeals to every player. Some are gonna be left crying for multiplayer - poor lonely souls.

To die in a place that does not know your name. God knows you lonely souls

NMS has literally changed how we look at game art. It may not be obvious now but at some point in the future all games will have procedural art or procedural assets. Variety is the spice of life. No longer will we be plagued with NPC clones in every town or predictable sidequests.

Of course Mass Effect's story is better than the story in Street fighter but the people playing street fighter are not totally invested in the story - they would "like" to have story - but in the end all they want to do is throw fire balls and dragon punchs all day long! Sitting down and making dialog choices is not what fighting games are about.

Another person said that Uncharted 4 should be game of the year but seriously its the 4th game in a series of almost identical games. If I were to choose one I would say the collecter's editions are a better game than any one title in the series. Each game has been done, updated and redone - it is time we can try something new now.

What NMS brings to the table is a new take on the old rinse and repeat games that have been released over the years - the constant polishing and up-rez-ing of tired genres of open-world games with skill trees that have been stale since Grand Theft Auto: Sandreas. NMS sky is a big experiment in bridging the gap between hardcore space sims and reading sci-fi novels. It brings enough dumb stuff together and bakes a little pie that might not full your belly but you certainly will remember eating it.

And thats why NMS should be game of the year - It is the sum of these little dumb things that makes it great.

A new final fantasy might be released soon and we all know what it is going to be, we all know that its going to be an RPG with healing potions and pheonix downs. Nothing is a suprise anymore. We will look at the gaint monsters like we were seeing Shadow of the Collossi for the first time and be in awe of its 30fps glowry. A new Call of duty is going to drop and its probably going to have better space combat than NMS and even better gun play and online multiplayer but who cares? Team death match - capture the flag. Its all the same stuff with more polygons. Give us new stuff. Sci-book covers!

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Got me some PS2 component cables

written by owen, Sun, 09th Aug 2015 at 9:00 am

I bought a component cable (6 plug Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr) for my PS2 slim today at Royal PC (after watching a video about it online ) for the price of a movie ticket. It makes a world of a difference on the current HDTVs which are much cheaper now than when the PS2 originally came out in 2000. Make sure you use the composite cable to setup the ps2 colour mode before you attach the new cables because I spent almost an hour trying to figure out why they weren't working on my television and was wondering if I had bought defective cables. Leave the PS2 disk cover open and then go into the settings with the old A/V cables. Thank god for the internet, I found this review that helped me figure out that the setting was the problem.

I can finally enjoy Gran Turismo 4 in crisp 1080p HD. I still have the super license tests to complete. I think the license tests may actually be the only reason to play GT games. GT does get daunting at times but it has the best graphics of all the games I own and is probably the easiest to jump back into after I have been on a long hiatus. There is not much to playing a racing game, just takes lots of practice, fortitude and failed driving tests.

A setup like this would have probably cost 2000 USD back in the day (2002). I might be able to finally tackle my PS2 backlog of games I had been hording for a couple years now. I still have Persona 3 to finish and also to find a copy of Persona 4. Even with though Persona 4: Golden was released on the PS Vita I would much rather drop the money on the original version than invest in the abomination that is the PS Vita. Fcuk a remake/reboot/re-release!

The new cables do not do much to improve Hitman: Blood Money but I had already finished all 3 hitman games so not much of a loss there. Blood money is by far the best Hitman game. Tekken 5 benefits from the cables a little but that was already a pretty nice looking game. Newer PS2 games that were made after the year 2004 seem to benefit the most from the cables. Make sure you check the display settings in-game to see what can be changed. The mini-map and timer in GTA: San Andreas and basically all the text in games are crisper.

I think I am lost somewhere in Silent Hill 2. Doubt I will ever restart that game. Some games seem to be impossible to get back into once your have reached a point and stopped playing. Its like I forgot what exactly I was doing or where I was going. Almost the same problem with God Of War. God Of war got boring really fast like a gigantic pizza that you want to eat but cannot because you are full. GOW even has "progressive scan" on the back of the box but no other game seems to have that label. I have God of war 2 as well but if I never finish the first one, I will not be able to start the second - I live by rules.

My black label copy of ICO showed up as "Invalid Formate" on my tv, I'm not sure why. Shadow of Colossi worked fine. ICO was released in 2001 while SOC was a 2005 game so it proves my earlier point of newer games working better. Final Fantasy 10 works fine as awful a game as it is - doubt I will be getting back into that mess of a game.

The colours are more vibrant in We Heart Katamari. This Game in particular seems to benefit the most from the component cables. Everything is less washed out and less blurry with less jaggies. You can certainly tell the difference in both the 2d and the 3d scenes.

Conclusion

If you are going to be kicking it old school on the PS2 (or the Wii). And you have a new Flat Screen HD TV then you definately should spend the extra money to get the 5 plug component cables. The only problem you will have is figuring out what system you are gonna connect to the back of the tv next.

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New Point and Shoot

written by owen, Tue, 26th Aug 2014 at 3:29 pm

So I jumped on the opportunity to upgrade my trusty point and shoot to a newer version before I went on vacation. Friends will say "dude that is so old school! Everybody takes pictures with their smartphones‎! Its the future get with the times! Stop being so stubborn!".

To which I reply in writing with a list of reasons why I poo-poo smartphone cameras;

Smartphone cameras are not good at any particular thing. Except for maybe instagraming and facebooking pictures.‎ Smartphones are small but the pictures are soulless.

Smartphones are less efficient; After six months using a smartphone as my main camera it turns out that I take less pictures. I am not sure if it's the clunky touch screen interface of launching the camera application then waiting for it to focus. Eitherway I seem to be taking less photos as time goes buy.

Point and shoot cameras are better for organizing photos. ‎ When I take photos on my smartphone all the pictures get dumped into the camera/photo folder. On a camera you get a big neatly organised daily/monthly folder structure.

Smartphone cameras lack all sorts of simple functionality. Yes you can pinch to do a digital zoom but who wants digital zoom? I like to tinker with my picture settings, aperture, focal point, ISO etc. I would rather take a good picture the first time that have to be adding filters after every shot I take. (might be why I haven't taken many pics lately)

Battery life; not matter how many services I turn of on my smartphone the battery still runs down by 5 pm. On less I plan to walk around with my phone charger, smartphones can't hold up to extended picture taking.

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Tami commented: What did you upgrade to? ... read 5 more

BlackBerry OS10 Review

written by owen, Mon, 09th Jun 2014 at 7:27 pm

‎After using the Q10 for the past 3 weeks I can safely say that this is the best cellphone operating system that I have ever used. Once you get accustomed to swiping up and not having a answer call and hang up hard key.

Recommendations

On the Q10 remove the phone app from the bottom left edge of the screen or allow the user to customize the icon.    Also the quick dial numbers are too close to the edge of the screen. It is very easy to accidentally call phone numbers while putting the phone into you pocket. Gripping the phone at the edges or when the phone app is open often results in the last number being dialed. Suggest having an option for confirmation before dialing a number.

BlackBerry hub
No filter for draft emails(fixed in 10.2 with pinch). I ended up having to prefix all my draft emails with "draft" so that I could use the subject search to find them.  

File manager
When selecting photo files the sort order always resets to sort by name descending. It should remember the last sorting selection. Also the facebook app doesn't allow me to select a png file for my profile picture but the UI doesn't show that I am looking at a filtered list so I spend 10 minutes wondering why I can't see the png file I just recently saved in my folder.

Offer an option to create folders based on the day the photo was taken (instead of having a month long list) .

Facebook app
Can't write on a person's wall directly from the hub on thier birthday.   This was a feature is the old BlackBerry os.

‎Quick settings
There should be a quick setting for mobile data on/off. Sometimes I might be using wifi for an extended period and the wifi access might drop unexpectedly and the phone will start using the mobile data. Not good.

Music player
I don't see the need to spend the whole time looking at the cover art. Especially when you are playing and entire album. Show the list of songs or give an option to keep the album art minimized.‎ So far this is the most inefficient interface.

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Old Dreamcast

written by owen, Tue, 21st Jan 2014 at 2:19 pm

I bought this like 8 years ago and played tons of 4 player Virtua Tennis on it. Not even to mention a burnt copy of Metropolis Street Racer which had the best sound track I've ever heard in a racing game except for Vice City and Tony Hawk ProS2. Eventually it stopped reading in compact disks. I really need to give this to some body who wants one and is able to fix it. It should be too hard to get it working again.

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