Miscellaneous Rambling Blog:

Diablo 3 Preview ( First look)

Diablo 3 Preview

In the middle of the opening ceremony for Blizzard's 2008 Worldwide Invitational, an unmistakable refrain of guitar-and-flute notes began to play. A few string plucks were enough to send the entire audience into a frenzy. It was the aural confirmation of what everyone was hoping for: Blizzard is, indeed, working on Diablo III. And while it still looks the same in many ways (it's still isometric, and it's still mouse-driven), Diablo III also showed off some new features. In lead designer Jay Wilson's gameplay demonstration, the first playable class shown was the returning Barbarian. Pretty much everything you remember from the Barbarian remains: a lightly clothed melee badass who can wield two weapons at once. He still spins around with his weapons for the Whirlwind attack, and he can still jump up and land with the mighty Ground Stomp. He remains the most immediately accessible character class. Blizzard senior vice president of game design Rob Pardo admits that the Barbarian is their way of showing the newness of Diablo III through the familiar lens of a Diablo II character class.

For instance, the Barbarian serves as the perfect example of the tweaks made to Diablo II's health system -- adjustments that encourage the player to engage in conflict instead of just running away or repeatedly pressing the health-potion button. "A lot of battles in Diablo II were ones of attrition. Sometimes you can beat a boss simply by repeatedly drinking potions during battle," says Wilson. Many types of health systems were tested (in fact, even Halo's regenerative shields and WOW's "sit down and eat 'n' drink" system came up), but they almost all had a degree of nonaggression. The new system adds red orbs that heal you on contact as common drops from slain enemies. "With the red orbs, players are encouraged to fight, because now the best way to heal is to engage in conflict," says Wilson.

Two new gameplay systems -- destructible environments and scripted encounters -- also made their debut through the Barbarian. Since he's such a tough and burly dude, the Barbarian can straight-up smash walls apart. In Wilson's demonstration, the Barbarian smacked a wall hard enough to collapse it onto a hapless group of zombies. Environmental destruction can also be used against you, though, since monsters can grab you through a wall or you can accidentally trigger a trap with your cave-ins. Scripted events where walls are knocked down raised the concern that this might mean the end of randomized dungeons. Not so. Wilson says that much of the game, from dungeons and monster types to loot drops, is still random. Pardo adds that in general, the dungeons remain randomly generated while the outdoor areas have a bit more of a "sculpted feel." In fact, not only are dungeons, loot, and items still randomized -- but with this new system, even quests and events can be randomized as well.

After a few minutes of the Barbarian smashing up zombies and ghouls, Wilson debuted a new class for Diablo III: the Witch Doctor. If you like to use the language of previous games, he seems to resemble the Necromancer but has some additional skills. There even was a bit of the Sorceress' flavor. Like the Necromancer, the Witch Doctor specializes in pets and disease-based spells. Locust Swarm is one early spell that Wilson demonstrated. It basically conjures up little plague pockets that tear apart whatever enemies they encounter. Then he summoned the mongrel, a beast that performs the pretty typical "go claw at things and also be my meat shield on occasion" task. The Witch Doctor can also combine these two disciplines by casting Locust Swarm on his mongrels for a nasty effect -- instead of being torn apart, his mongrels gain additional disease-based damage for their attacks.

Besides his use of disease and pets, the Witch Doctor also has some nice crowd-control spells. Horrify conjures up an ooky-spooky ghost above his head that will scare the bejesus out of most enemies, and Mass Confusion creates a spirit that drives the baddies crazy enough to attack each other. Firebomb brings a heavy-damage option to the Witch Doctor's arsenal with a straightforward fire-based ranged-attack spell that seems to be influenced by Diablo II's Sorceress. Finally, the Witch Doctor's ability to create a wall of zombies is easily one of his most impressive skills; there's nothing like propping up a mass of flailing zombies as a defensive obstacle.
Diablo III looks to have the same visual philosophy of
StarCraft II (it looks modern and better but not radically different) when down in the dungeon, but when the two players step outside, the look changes more significantly. Once out of the cave and into the jungle, the outdoors suddenly look much brighter and more vibrant than we remember. Pardo says, "We're aiming for the art to be somewhere between WOW and Diablo, where there's color but still that dark edge. We actually went through two art passes with the original look of the previous Diablos, but it just didn't work for us. Adding the colors, like you see in the outdoor environment, was a big decision that I think will pay off."
One color that that frequently shows up during gameplay is red. From the way zombies get torn apart to how virgins (well, I'm assuming they're virgins, because don't all demonic sacrifices call for virgins?) are sacrificed to form a boss monster, there is quite a lot of blood and guts. "We want it to feel more visceral. We actually took a lot of influence from
God of War in having intense, visceral, action-heavy combat," says Pardo. Hence, you get moments such as when the Siegebreaker Assault Beast picks up one of the barbarian players and takes a big bloody (and crunchy) bite out of him à la the rancor eating the Gamorrean Guard in Return of the Jedi.

In fact, the two bosses shown not only demonstrated the abundance of blood and gore but also the larger-than-life battles that you'd expect from God of War. The dungeon boss, a grotesque, dual-mace-wielding fatty, is simply called the Thousand Pounder (with the descriptor "Gluttony Incarnate"). He somewhat echoes the Butcher from the first Diablo in that he's a big intimidating dude that chases you around a dungeon. The second boss (the aforementioned Siegebreaker) reinforces the epic-combat feel by virtue of being freakin' huge. Taking up most of the screen, he charges around or attempts to grab and maim the party (Wilson conjured two additional party members for this bout), killing one party member before finally being put down. Even his death is an epic moment -- the hulking corpse sizzles, bubbles, and then splits open to ooze heated, glowing blood before disintegrating into a nice pile of loot. One nice touch: The loot will be somewhat individualized; each party member sees a pile of loot that only they can take -- no more putting up with one player who clicks fast enough to grab everything before the rest of the party.
Even with all the visceral combat, the new/tweaked classes, and the spiffy looking graphics, there was one moment that instantly made me want to play through the previous Diablos as preparation: a cut-scene where Deckard Cain attempts to say "stay awhile, and listen?" before being cut off by the player, who quips that there's no time to listen to idle tales. Little nostalgia-based jokes like that, along with modern aesthetics and combat, make me want Diablo a whole damn lot -- and leaves me even more bummed out because, knowing Blizzard, it could take a while before Diablo III actually gets released.

Source: www.1up.com

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posted by admin @ 23:16, ,

Killzone 2 Multiplayer Hands-On Review

Killzone 2 Multiplayer Hands-On

Killzone 2 was one of Sony's key titles at E3 2008, and at the show details on the multiplayer mode were revealed by the game's senior online designer, Eric Boltjes. Killzone 2 has some interesting options available for multiplayer, including customisable character classes, match settings, squads, and community integration with the game's official Web site at killzone.com.

In addition to being able to tweak match settings, you'll have the choice of five different mission types: assassination, bodycount, capture and hold, search and destroy, and search and retrieve. You can also combine mission types when playing; for example, you might play one round of assassination, followed by search and destroy, culminating in a tiebreaking round of search and retrieve. Boltjes revealed a new multiplayer feature at Leipzig including AI bots. They'll look like and mimic the behaviour of regular competitors and will be available in offline and online matches. In addition to standard run and gun duties, bots will also be able to complete mission objectives, and have access to the same abilities and weapons as regular players. We got some hands-on time with the game but unfortunately didn't get a chance to see any AI participants in action.

Killzone 2 supports up to 32 players, and has eight maps that are designed for between either 2 to 16 players, or 16 to 32 players. You'll be able to have any combination of players on any map, but be prepared for some fast-paced, close-quarters battles if playing on smaller maps with large teams. There are several spawn points available in each map, depending on the size and once you've captured them they'll be available for your team to spawn to. You'll also be able to spawn directly to your leader's position and straight into the heart of battle (if he's doing his job properly). The first map we tried was one of the smaller ones, and we joined one of the two five-man sides. The level fit the look and feel of what we've already seen of Killzone 2 with the action taking place in a battle-scarred warehouse. There were several levels in the stage with gantries above us and staircases leading down to several underground basements. We started off as a standard ISA soldier, equipped with an assault rifle and sidearm. The rifle worked effectively at short range and we were able to snipe a few enemies across the way using the gun's sights.

We then moved on to a much larger map, designed for up to 32 players, and the level featured a prominent, central outdoor courtyard. This time around we chose a Helghast engineer but combined his abilities with another class to be able to deploy sentry guns and call in AI-controlled air support. Depending on your class you'll have access to other abilities such as being able to heal others (medics) or repair equipment (engineers). Throwing a beacon directs air support in, and the airship will hover over the beacon's coordinates for a short time, attacking any enemies in the immediate vicinity. Because it needs line of sight it's only useful in maps with outdoor areas. Sentry guns, on the other hand, can be deployed in any part of the map and will keep watch until being destroyed by enemy troops. The objective in this map was to assassinate an enemy soldier, chosen seemingly at random by the game. The target's name and health will be displayed on every player's HUD, which makes the pace of each round a bit more hectic. After each round, the game will randomly select another assassination victim. There were a further six maps that we didn't get a chance to look at but expect those to offer a healthy range of variety and size. If eight maps doesn't sound like a whole lot to you, Guerrilla told us that more are being planned for distribution over the PlayStation Network postlaunch. If you can't wait that long to get your hands on Sony's upcoming off-world shooter, a public beta program is also planned before launch.

By Luke Anderson, GameSpot

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posted by admin @ 23:05, ,

The Departed Limited Edition Steelbook Review

The Departed Limited Edition Steelbook

Director Martin Scorsese has made a good living reminding us that the human body is a fragile thing. A small, inanimate object such as a blade or a slug of lead can shatter the delicate human envelope and spill out its life-sustaining contents onto dirty city sidewalks. One moment you're here, the next you're a heap of flesh lying in a widening crimson pool. Violent and sudden death is no respecter of persons -- a 9mm slug takes down the good and the bad with equal ferocity. Scorsese's Academy Award winning film, The Departed, is his latest reminder of these facts. This is a dark story set in the seamy South Boston city innards where a decent gesture or simple honest ideal is nowhere to be found, not with the crooks, not with the police. Suspicion and duplicity reign. Trust no one. Likeable or familiar and neighborly characters do not exist. This is a story about begetting - bad begets bad, there is no escaping it. And yet an inexorable reckoning waits just around the corner, probably in the form of a gunshot to the head. Even good intentions, if initiated with evil machinations, will eventually return in the form of a silencer. Simple goodness is an unattainable ideal, unrealistic even. Foul language and even fouler attitudes on both sides of the moral line suggest that the line has become so blurred that cop and crook seem interchangeable, with a further implication that this is the real world. Mob boss Frank Costello (Jack Nicholson) nurtures and plants a mole, an informer (Matt Damon), into the Boston City Police detective squad. For their part the police, headed up by Captains Queenan and Ellerby and Sergeant Dignam, (Martin Sheen, Alec Baldwin and Mark Whalberg), are fiercely determined to bust Costello and his organization. They imbed Billy Costigan (Leonardo DiCaprio) as an undercover agent in Costello's mob. The two moles are unaware of the existence of the other, and each is dogged in carrying out his assignment. And so follows round after round of second-guessing, suspense, blackmail, intrigue and brutality. As Costello, Nicholson turns in a perfect performance of the consummate, sleazy and depraved animal, a human predator ready to swallow anyone he can use to sustain his life and his lordship. As with many of this actor's roles, there is a deliciously seductive facet to his shady characters --- the toothy smile, the soft-spoken casual manner, the serpent holding forth the irresistible apple. Any small truths uttered from his mouth are designed to slowly trap you in an imperceptible yet closing dark web of lies. As mob boss there is nothing of the grand and prim Don Corleone here. Nicholson's Costello is shabby, unshaven, polluted, yet sharp - nobody's fool. Character portrayals led by the ensemble of Damon, Whalberg, Baldwin and Sheen, reel with tremendous power and conviction along with some nuance, but are more or less standard fare, especially in a Scorsese film. There is one exception, however. DiCaprio's role as Billy Costigan, in part due to William Monahan's excellent Oscar-winning script that allows this character a broader unveiling, delves deep into the subtleties, tensions and grinding internal conflicts of a real three-dimensional character. All the other roles, either in solo or ensemble, though riveting, seem to exist as the canvas for DiCaprio's portrait to unfold. If there is a hero in this film it is Billy Costigan. His is the character of deep internal struggle. He needs a mentor, a loyal friend, someone to help him come to terms with his shady Boston "southy" family background, his personal longings, and the soul-crushing and astonishingly cynical police team who cruelly berate him and then put him to work. Costigan's painful oscillation between brutality, rage, vulnerability and tenderness is an unheeded plea for someone to help him come to grips with his dark, vicious existence and his higher instincts of compassion and light. In his affair with a police psychologist Madolyn (Vera Farminga) we see a vulnerable and pathetic young man, one searching for gentleness and meaning in a wretched world. This relationship works for Billy to a point, but mostly it works for us as we witness more of Costigan's unfolding, multifaceted character. In the end what he wants so terribly much is a personal identity, he wants his life, he wants to start over. DiCaprio's brilliant portrayal captures it all, and with an absolute honesty that is so rare these days. The trap for the average actor is to play the role with a flat linear rage, followed by sentimentality, then with maudlin self indulgence and self consciousness. The demands of this role are vast - from rage that is invested with a hint of fear and confusion, to a churning visceral boil kept scarcely under control, to the softness of a lost little boy who just found his mother. Where Nicholson's fine performance unveils two lines converging on a point, DiCaprio's drips with fullness of perspective - Oscar-worthy to be sure, but overlooked in 2006 by the Academy. The actor did, however, walk away with the Austin Film Critics 2006 for Best Actor and was nominated by the British Academy Awards and The Chicago Film Critics Circle. Scorsese's mastery of this type of material is legendary. Desolate characters and circumstances are mirrored and supported by the natural backdrop of south Boston. Lighting, settings (even the police station seems dark and scary), shooting angles and camera motion all conspire to stir up a constant sense of uneasiness along with an ever present and palpable purpose of dark destiny. A bright, humorous and ironic shot placed in juxtaposition to the overpowering force of the film would have made for a nice touch of relief. The Departed will go down in cinematic history as a powerful and important film. DiCaprio's presence as an actor will continue to rise to new heights. With this film he cements his cross over from mere stardom to accomplished actor.


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posted by admin @ 22:27, ,

Friends - The One with All Ten Seasons (Limited Edition) Review

Friends One with all ten seasons reviews

A sitcom behemoth of the last 10 years, Friends shot out of the gate in 1994 with snappy writing and an attractive cast. The exploits of sensitive paleontologist Ross Geller (David Schwimmer), his obsessive-compulsive sister Monica Geller (Courteney Cox); Monica's roommate Rachel Green (Jennifer Aniston), a spoiled rich girl trying to live on her own; earthy aromatherapist/masseuse Phoebe Buffay (Lisa Kudrow); and Monica's neighbors across the hall-- sarcastic Chandler Bing (Matthew Perry) and his dim-bulb roommate Joey Tribbiani (Matt LeBlanc) became a nationwide obsession, a pop-culture icon (remember "The Rachel" haircut?) and a top Nielsen hit for its entire run. The first two seasons were mostly centered on the on-off saga of Ross and Rachel, and while their relationship remained a strong presence through romantic rivals and even a baby, the other characters eventually moved from sideshow players into a shared comedic lead. But Friends was not without its heart. Most of the cast had dysfunctional relationships with their parents and went through loss, divorce, marriage, parenthood, and love triangles. The emotional pregnancies of Rachel (by Ross) and Phoebe (surrogate to her half-brother's triplets) won the actresses Emmy Awards, and Joey's tender feelings for Rachel in Season 8 won LeBlanc, the most improved actor in the series, a nomination.

Most sitcoms run out of ideas by the fifth season, but Friends gave itself a refreshing jolt the minute Monica and Chandler wound up in bed together. Their budding romance was not only the one of the funniest arcs of the series, but one of the most sentimental, as they planned a wedding, struggled to have a child and eventually turned to adoption. By seasons seven and on, the characters had each "grown up" from young singletons to thirtysomethings finding permanence in their careers and love lives but never losing the laughs. Friends featured a parade of celebrity guests, but unlike Will & Grace, it actually utilized most of the stars as more than cameos: The sextet's parents were all brilliantly cast, particularly Kathleen Turner as Chandler's drag-queen father and Teri Garr as Phoebe's dizzy mom. Everyone from George Clooney to Sean Penn to Julia Roberts to Bruce Willis has appeared on the sitcom, and Tom Selleck certainly enjoyed a career resuscitation after his recurring role as Monica's older man.
But no star power ever penetrated the bond between the six stars, and their unmatchable chemistry worked for 10 seasons. Even if the show is on reruns daily, this boxed set of Friends remains watchable over and over again--even if that theme song grates on your nerves.
Standout episodes include The One With All The Poker (Season 1), The One With The Birth (1), The One With the Prom Video (2), The One With the Flashback (3), The One Where Monica and Richard are Just Friends (3), The One Where Ross and Rachel Take a Break (3), The One With the Embryos (4), The One With All the Wedding Dresses (4), The One With the Thanksgiving Flashbacks (5), The One Where Everybody Finds Out (5), The One Where Ross Got High (6), The One With the Videotape (8), The One With the Rumor (8), The One With the Male Nanny (9), The One With Rachel's Other Sister (9), The One With Ross' Tan (10), and The One Where the Stripper Cries (10). --Ellen A. Kim

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posted by admin @ 22:42, ,

The Sims 2 Apartment Life PC First look

The Sims 2 Apartment Life PC First Look

Your Sims are moving into a brand-new
apartment, and their lives will never be the same! Adventure, fun, and drama await them as they meet new people and explore their new neighborhood. Will they take their kids to the local playground, mingle in coffee shops, or hit the park to learn from the breakdancers? Close quarters mean new opportunities-move in with compatible roomies for a thriving social life, advance your career with the right social network, or find true love just down the hall. Whether they live in artsy converted lofts, the ultimate studio bachelor pads, or luxury apartments with their own butler, your Sims will experience all of the excitement of apartment life!

This expansion pack for The Sims 2 takes your Sims out of the suburbs and into a brand new busy apartment building! Adventure, fun, and drama await them as they explore their new neighborhood, mingle in coffee shops, visit a playground, meet new friends, and much more. Because there is now the ability to control multiple households in The Sims 2 Apartment Life, your Sims can live in happy harmony, or comical conflict.New social networks and character types, including artsy bohemians, sports fans, gadget-loving techies,spice up your Sims life. And, with a new reputation meter, your Sims can build up the respect they deserve from other Sims to be the most admired – or least-desired -Sim in the neighborhood. The better the reputation, the easier for your Sims to find the right friends to help them achieve their goals.Make your Sims’ space look great in The Sims 2 Apartment Life! Five new building types that range from converted lofts to roomy and posh studios or luxury apartments with their own butler add to the creative and customized adventure. Enjoy a myriad of new decor options, including spiral staircases and lofty, high ceilings. Your Sims will get a whole new kind of experience through the drama of close quarters living!

At a Glance:

Your life will never be the same once you move into a new apartment. With The Sims 2 Apartment Life, you will meet new people as you explore your new neighborhood. Adventure, fun, and drama await you. Will you take your kids to the local playground, mingle in coffee shops, or hit the park to learn from the breakdancers? Close quarters mean new opportunities. Move in with compatible roomies for a thriving social life, advance your career with the right social network, or find true love just down the hall. Whether you live in an artsy converted loft, the ultimate studio bachelor pad, or a luxury apartment with your own butler, you will experience all of the excitement of apartment life


  • Move into the perfect apartment: a spacious loft, a cozy place for a young couple, or a multi-bedroom flat-share with friends.
  • Mingle with Sims from all-new social groups: stylish socialites, artsy bohemians, sports jocks, gadget-collecting techies, or edgy gearheads.
  • Take advantage of apartment life: form social networks to make new friends, advance their careers, or look for love.
  • Build your Sim's new reputation meter: with a good reputation, your Sim can find the right friends to help them achieve their goals!
  • Control multiple households: will you make your Sims live in happy harmony or comical conflict?


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posted by admin @ 22:53, ,

Far Cry 2 Exclusive Impressions

Far Cry 2 Exclusive Impressions - Dynamic Environments and Savannah Battles

The original Far Cry was a first-person shooter that started off on a vast tropical island, and it offered a remarkable open-ended experience as you fought squadrons of soldiers in sprawling outdoor environments. Then, you discovered a claustrophobic military complex and spent the rest of the game fighting mutant monsters in tight corridors--though that part of the game isn't remembered as fondly. The sequel will embrace the strengths of the first game by pushing even harder on the open-ended nature of the original game. In fact, the game will be built entirely around the concept of open exploration, offering a world that's about 50 square kilometers in virtual size. We had a chance to take a look at the powerful and impressive tech that will power the sequel, as well as to see several of the gun battles in motion.

Far Cry 2 won't take place on a beach with palm trees, but rather, in the heart of a war-torn Africa, meaning you'll fight your way through deserts, savannahs, jungles, and border towns rather than sunning yourself on the beach. In addition, the sequel won't be in as developed a setting as in the original game--your character will carry a paper map and a compass to guide him. And, you'll be using mostly conventional weapons and vehicles (rather than experimental, sci-fi stuff). The level of technology available shouldn't hurt the game experience one bit because the vehicle handling we saw seemed realistic enough while still seeming easy enough to handle, and the guns we saw in action were hefty weapons that discharged with loud, sharp reports. Interestingly, weapons and vehicles will experience progressive damage over time. Damaged guns will actually rattle disturbingly while becoming scratched up, and damaged vehicles will suffer progressive damage to specific areas until they stop running, or until you can repair them.
In fact, the entire world will show off this sort of attention to detail because much of the game's environments can be deformed. Grassy fields can be burnt to the ground with a flamethrower, and trees can be blasted out of the ground with grenades. This damage is all rendered procedurally on the fly and will remain in the world until it actually gradually grows back. The team at Ubisoft hasn't quite determined exactly how quickly in-game time will pass with respect to real time, but the game will have full day-and-night cycles, which will affect the behavior of your enemies (who will have general schedules themselves). You'll even be able to find sleeping areas to sleep for the evening, or until the morning, and toggle the world from day to night. This can come in handy in some cases because darkness provides additional cover, and some areas may be more lightly guarded at night.

After seeing some of the impressive world technology in action, we had a chance to see more of the impressive artificial intelligence
we'd covered previously. In addition to fighting your way through various mercenary encampments throughout Africa, along with the occasional help of mercenary companions who will join you, you'll find yourself exploring larger towns where the game's two warring mercenary factions hold sway. In these larger areas, an uneasy peace exists where patrolling mercs openly carry weapons, but prefer not to use them to avoid drawing the ire of enemy factions. You'll actually be able to raise or lower your standing with one or more of the game's mercenary groups, depending on which camps you raid and which missions you choose to take. But unless you've made a very powerful enemy extremely angry, you may be able to walk right into one of these larger towns.

The town areas we saw were highly detailed and looked a lot like the kind of larger settlements you'd expect to see in a war-torn nation. There was a mix of older masonry and hastily thrown-together shacks, with chain-link fences, as well as barbed wire to keep nosy wanderers out of priority areas. You'll at least be able to walk up to patrolling mercenaries and press a general "use" key to interact with them, though they may react poorly if you're walking around with weapons drawn. You can also make them extremely uneasy if you decide to be a jerk and shove them by repeatedly bumping into them. However, they probably won't open fire on you unless you commit an open act of hostility, such as opening fire or stealing a key object, like the town's only jeep. We watched a demonstration of this very sort of theft, which caused all nearby mercs to immediately open fire while calling for help, though fortunately for us, there were no other vehicles around to give chase. Some of Far Cry 2's characters will use a "leash system" for their artificial intelligence; they'll be assigned to guard certain areas and will give chase for a certain distance. But if they don't have a good chance of catching you (such as if they're on foot and you've got a set of wheels), they'll eventually return to base.

We then watched full-on firefight in a different village build of adobe bricks in which we simply opened fire on the nearby soldiers. They immediately sprung into action, making smart use of cover by ducking behind doorways and continually trying to flank us. You'll often find tougher installations of mercenaries where different enemies will carry different equipment and jockey for the best position. Shock troopers will come at you with combat shotguns and assault rifles, while snipers will hole up in the high ground to take potshots at you. They'll actually shift their positions if you can toss up a few good grenades or wing them with your own rifle

The battle we watched was fast-paced and brutal, involving a number of severe wounds, which, in the early version of the game we saw, were indicated by a bright red flash on the screen. In the current version of the game, smaller wounds can be recovered from in time, but being severely wounded will require you to get to safety so that you can perform a medical treatment on yourself. Currently, these are random animations that may consist of anything from strapping yourself with a bandage to searing your own thigh with a lit cigar to digging out a bullet with a bayonet blade. The last enemy--the village's sniper--was holed up at the top of the village and was the last enemy to be flushed out. For good measure, we turned around and burnt the rope bridge we'd used to climb to the village's highest point to make sure we weren't pursued. After clearing out the village, we departed it in true Far Cry fashion by commandeering a nearby hang glider and launching ourselves off of the roofs back into the vast African savannah.

It's hard to say which aspect of Far Cry 2 is most impressive--the game's powerful tech and excellent audiovisual effects help create a beautiful-looking, constantly changing world full of clever enemies, as well as weapons and vehicles with realistic damage models. However, its fast-paced gameplay looks extremely challenging and should offer plenty of opportunities to use very different strategies in how you want to approach your missions--whether using brute force, sniping enemies from a distance, or even using hit-and-run tactics by keeping a fast vehicle nearby. One thing's for sure: Far Cry 2 is one of the most impressive games we've seen in a long time. The game is scheduled for release later this year on the PC and was recently confirmed for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 as well. We're told that the console versions are being developed with the PC version and will feature all the content of the PC versions. The console versions will ship some time after the PC version hits store shelves.

Source: Andrew Park, GameSpot

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posted by admin @ 23:21, ,

Fallout 3 unbanned in Australia (Gamespot)

Fallout 3 unbanned in Australia

Australia is becoming well known for its strict stance on video game classification, with three games banned so far in 2008: Dark Sector, Shellshock 2: Blood Trails, and Fallout 3. The banning of the latter has caused much anger in the local gaming community. Bethesda's anticipated postapocalyptic action RPG was initially refused classification due to in-game drug use, and consequently the game would have been illegal to sell down under. But it looks as if there's finally some good news for Australian fans of the revered series.
Australia's ratings body, the Classification Board, has now reclassified Fallout 3 as MA 15+, with consumer advice that the game has strong violence, drug references, and coarse language. This means that the game will definitely be on sale in Australia, and several local retailers are pegging mid-October 2008 as the release window.

Unlike films or DVDs, the highest rating allowable for a game in Australia is MA 15+, which means that any game that has content deemed unsuitable for a 15-year-old is illegal to sell or promote in this country. In the past, for a game to be reclassified after initially being refused classification, publishers or distributors have had to resubmit an amended version of the game to the Classification Board with the original offending material taken out. This was the case with shooter Dark Sector. After being refused classification at the start of 2008, the game's local distributors resubmitted a version with toned-down violence for the Australian market. This version passed, and Dark Sector is now set for release in September.

Red Ant, the local distributors of Fallout 3, responded with a terse "no comment" when contacted by GameSpot AU about what changes the Australian version of the game would have. Stay tuned to GameSpot for more updates on this story as it develops.

UPDATE: GameSpot AU has contacted the Classification Board, with a spokeswoman saying Fallout 3's resubmitted version was passed by the board because "the reward and incentive" for in-game drug use had been significantly toned down. No further detail was available, however, on what exactly had been changed in the game.

In the Classification Board's original ruling on Fallout 3, the board stated that "the game contains the option to take a variety of drugs known as chems using a device which is connected to the character's arm. These chems have postive and some negative effects (lowering of intelligence, or the character may become addicted to the chem). The positive effects include increase in strength, stamina, resistance to damage, agility, and hit points. Corresponding with the list of various chems are small visual representations of the drugs; these include syringes, tablets, pill bottles, a crack-type pipe, and blister packs. In the Board's view, these realistic visual representation of drugs and their delivery method bring the 'science-fiction' drugs in line with 'real-world' drugs. The player can also select and use Morphine (a proscribed drug) which has the positive effect of enabling the character to ignore limb pain when the character's extremities are targeted by the enemy."

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posted by admin @ 01:22, ,

Fay’s track shifts yet again Projected landfall site moved south

Projected landfall site moved south

PINELLAS COUNTY – For days, the projected path of Tropical Storm Fay has repeatedly shifted back and forth from east to west, making it difficult to predict where it might make landfall in Florida.National Hurricane Center computer-generated tracking models continue to show disagreement on where Fay may go after crossing Cuba and the possible intensity of the storm.At 11 p.m. Sunday, the forecast tracking map showed Fay making landfall as a hurricane near Tampa Bay on Tuesday night. By 5 a.m. Monday, the track had again shifted and showed Fay most likely to come ashore near Captiva Island where Hurricane Charley made landfall in 2004.Sally Bishop, director of Pinellas County Emergency Management, said the shifts in the forecast track have been making it difficult to plan. Any deviation in the track can make a big difference to where the storm might come ashore, she said.Bishop talked about Hurricane Charley, which had been forecast to make landfall in Tampa Bay in August of 2004 before suddenly veering off to come ashore near Captiva Island in Lee County as a Category 4.Fay is not forecast to strengthen into a major storm.Fay has been forecast to make landfall with an intensity of anywhere from “just barely a tropical storm to a Category 2 hurricane,” according to the National Hurricane Center updates.As of 5 a.m., the intensity forecast was back down to a marginal Category 1 hurricane with winds of 74.8. A Category 1 storm has winds of 74 to 95 mph.A hurricane watch remained in effect for Pinellas County and for the Florida Keys from south of Ocean Reef to Key West, including the Dry Tortugas and Florida Bay, and along the mainland from Card Sound Bridge Westward to Tarpon Springs.The center of the storm was about 400 miles south-southeast of Tampa. Fay was moving at 12 mph toward the north-northwest. The NHC said Fay was expected to continue moving toward the north-northwest for the next 24 hours before making a turn to the north sometime on Tuesday.Meteorologists predicted that the center would be emerging into the Florida Straits on Monday morning and be “very near” the Florida Keys on Monday night.Maximum sustained winds were near 50 mph with higher gusts. Some strengthening was forecast and Fay was forecast to be near hurricane strength in the Florida Keys and to become a hurricane before reaching the mainland.According to the National Weather Service in Ruskin, on the current forecast track, residents in Pinellas County can expect storm surge of 2 to 4 feet over high tide if Fay stays offshore Tuesday evening and night.Winds of 60 to 80 mph with some higher gusts may be felt in the area on Tuesday and Tuesday night. The probability of hurricane conditions, based on the current forecast track, is 5 to 10 percent, according to the NWS. Probability of tropical storm conditions in the area is 40 to 60 percent.Rainfall amounts of 4 to 8 inches are expected from Monday night through Wednesday morning with higher amounts possible depending on the exact storm track.The NWS said the primary area for tornado development will be in the right front quadrant of the storm. As Fay moves northward across the area, the tornado threat will be moderate to high.County officials kept a close eye on the storm over the weekend and partially activated the Emergency Operations Center on Sunday. The EOC will go to full activation on Monday morning. Bishop said the plan was to be ready to make a firm recommendation to the Board of Pinellas County Commissioners about the need to evacuate during the day on Monday.Until then the official word was “preparations, preparations, preparations,” Bishop said.She urged county residents to not wait until when and if an evacuation order was issued, but to get ready now.The county’s Disaster Advisory Committee met Sunday afternoon and agreed on three possible courses of action, dependent upon the track of the storm.- Mandatory evacuations of mobile homes and low-lying areas- Level A, Category 1 evacuation- Level B, Category 2 evacuationResidents who do not know their evacuation level can call 727-453-3150 and key in their home phone number without the area code or call Pinellas County Emergency Management at 727-464-3800. Regular business hours are from 7:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.Evacuation zones are printed on Pinellas County Utility bills and the Truth in Millage (TRIM) Notices sent by the Property Appraiser. Evacuation zones also can be looked up at www.pinellascounty.org/emergency.Bishop said a decision about evacuations would most likely be made after the 11 a.m. Monday advisory from the National Hurricane Center.

Season forecast update

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Aug. 7 an increased possibility of an above-normal hurricane season.Philip J. Klotzbach and William M. Gray, professors at the Department of Atmospheric Science at Colorado State University, released undated predictions for 2008 on Aug. 5, which also forecast increased activity in the Atlantic basin for the remainder of the season.NOAA now predicts as many as 14 to 18 named storms could form in 2008, of which seven to 10 are expected to become hurricanes, with three to six becoming major hurricanes.Gray and Klotzbach’s latest estimates call for 17 named storms, nine hurricanes and five intense (major) hurricanes.A major hurricane is a Category 3 or above.Six named storms have formed so far this season. Tropical Storm Arthur impacted the Yucatan Peninsula in late May and early June. Bertha was a major hurricane and the longest-lived July storm on record, lasting from July 3-20. Tropical Storm Cristobal hugged the North Carolina coastline but did not come ashore.Dolly made landfall as a Category 2 hurricane at South Padre Island, Texas on July 25. And on August 5, Tropical Storm Edouard struck the upper Texas coast.Fay is the sixth named storm of the season.The Atlantic hurricane season, June 1-Nov. 30, includes activity over the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico. The peak months of the season are August through October.

By SUZETTE PORTER (Tampa Bay Newspapers)

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posted by admin @ 22:25, ,

Command & Conquer Red Alert 3 from Electronic Arts

Command & Conquer Red Alert 3 First Impression

It's been quite a while since we last checked on the Command & Conquer: Red Alert games, but maybe the time is right for a new chapter. The classic formula of real-time strategy games is built on harvesting resources, constructing a base, and churning out armies to crush your opponents before they can do the same, but this unusual strategy series was built around an alternate history. This is a world in which the so-called Cold War between the Soviet Union and the United States never ended, and in which all the potential of experimental technology from that era, from the Manhattan Project to Tesla coils, was actually realized as devastating (and in some cases, fantastical) weapons on the battlefield. The series is set to return with Red Alert 3, a new game built on the modern Command & Conquer 3 Tiberium Wars engine, but with all the over-the-top enthusiasm of a summer blockbuster popcorn movie. We recently had a chance to take a look at the game in motion. For full review click here

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posted by admin @ 00:41, ,

In depth review of NFL Madden 09 on XBox 360 Reviews.

In depth review of NFL Madden 09 on XBox 360 Reviews.
Product Description

Madden NFL 09 delivers the most complete NFL football package ever. Whether you're a seasoned veteran or picking up the game for the first time, you will enjoy a unique yet challenging experience, thanks to the innovative Adaptive Difficulty Engine, which tailors the game to match your playing style. Instantly improve your game with the all-new virtual Training Center or incorporate feedback with EA SPORTS BackTrack, allowing you to learn from your mistakes on the fly. With a new broadcast presentation and online leagues, plus more than 85 new features and enhancements, Madden NFL 09 is the most authentic and adaptable game in sports video game history. An all-new Adaptive Difficulty Engine assesses your proficiency in the core skills areas of football. An innovative, Virtual Training Center allows you to fine-tune your game in a holographic environment, while EA SPORTS BackTrack provides customized feedback, giving you a chance to learn from your mistakes. Take what you've learned and run the play again with EA SPORTS Rewind. Set your sights on the Vince Lombardi Trophy in an all-new network television-style broadcast as Cris Collinsworth and Tom Hammond call the action from the booth. A more immersive and visually stunning presentation package also includes a new Options OnDemand Picture-in-Picture playcall window giving you access to a wealth of stats, customized tips, and in-game options--all at your fingertips without having to pause the game. Make a run for the postseason for the first time online. Featuring trades and statistical tracking for Online Leagues, up to 32 teams can battle it out using all-new flex scheduling. With an enhanced graphics engine and new player models, linemen battle in the trenches with more bulky physiques while backs and receivers fly around the field with a more sleek and slimmer look. Featuring the most realistic-looking grass and field turf ever in a sports game, new weather.

Review by Game Daily by by Chris Buffa

Football season conjures up familiar memories of watching games on Thanksgiving, throwing the football in the backyard and for video gamers, a new Madden NFL. This year marks the 20th anniversary of Electronic Arts' celebrated pigskin franchise, and the company has something special in store for the 2009 installment, especially on Xbox 360. Madden NFL 2009 stumbles, but manages to regain its composure long enough to stiff arm critics and dive into the endzone.

Whereas previous Xbox 360 Madden games lack features found in their PlayStation 2 counterparts, 2009 comes loaded with all sorts of great stuff, beginning with the Madden Test. When you first start the game, you'll see a futuristic and Tron-inspired football field and a digital John Madden that'll test you in rushing, passing, rush and pass defense. Completing these mini-games awards you a Madden IQ (which rises and falls depending on future tests and games) as well as My Skill, a personal difficulty level. Although it's not a perfect system (getting lucky may land you on All-Pro, the hardest setting), you have the option of ditching it in favor of four difficulties as well as a customizable setting where you determine how tough the computer is. Depending on how much you love Madden, however, you're likely to return to this cool looking feature (accessible after every completed game and in the main menu) to see how well you can do. Besides, playing Tron football is great. Unfortunately, you can only play this way against the computer, and you cannot run through a full game.

After testing your football prowess, you can hit the gridiron as one of the NFL's 32 teams, and EA did a great job enhancing an already enjoyable sports game. The core mechanics remain unchanged, as you cycle through plays (or ask Madden's advice) and sling the football, but you'll need to be more aware of your surroundings. Unlike previous football games, where defensemen drop balls, Madden NFL 09's artificial intelligence double and sometimes triple teams your receivers and easily picks them off. At first, we hated all of the interceptions, but then grew to appreciate the difficulty because it made us better quarterbacks. The same also holds true for rushing, as the game provides helpful tips by placing a button over your selected player that lets you know how to beat the other team. So, for example, if you have the ball and need to bust through two opposing players, the game will suggest you press the Highlight Stick (right analog) in order to perform a juke. This also works on the other side of the ball, as the game instructs you to tilt the Hit Stick (also right analog) to plow through the offensive line.

In addition, the game features all sorts of graphical upgrades that help mirror the NFL experience. Field goal nets rise and fall whenever you attempt an extra point, rain creates mud that changes white jerseys brown, numerous flash bulbs erupt from the crowd, you can perform touchdown celebrations by wandering into specified areas in the endzone and pressing Y and players leave footprints in the snow, although falling onto it does nothing.
Madden NFL 09 also features commentary from NFL announcers Tom Hammond and Cris Collinsworth, though it's not a significant improvement from the previous games' radio announcer. Hammond delivers his lines like a boring robot, while Collinsworth's goofball comments have us shaking our heads. Our biggest gripe, though, is their lack of chemistry. Most of the time, they deliver their lines independent of each other and this kills the presentation. It's better than hearing one guy call the game, but we miss the arguing and the jokes heard in real football broadcasts.

Collinsworth does moderately well, however, in EA Sports Backtrack, a replay feature in which he points out your successes and failures by offering advice and drawing on the screen using his telestrator. It's helpful, but for whatever reason, ours doesn't work; the Backtrack logo pops up and immediately disappears. Other writers haven't had this problem, so it's possible we received a damaged copy of the game.

Another addition is EA Rewind, a feature seemingly inspired from the Burnout series. It lets you rewind a play for a do over, a great option for getting revenge against the computer, but practically useless against human competition. Several times, we threatened our friends if they erased one of our recently scored touchdowns.

Playing exhibition is fun, but Madden NFL 09 has tons more to experience. Franchise Mode lets you create a dynasty and experience a hopefully illustrious 30-year career. Superstar Mode lets you create a player or import him from NCAA Football 09 and go from a rookie to a Hall of Fame legend. Fantasy Football lets you keep track of your season after registering at fantasy.easports.com, and Practice lets you improve your player by bench pressing to become stronger and hitting the 40 yard dash for best times, among other activities

posted by admin @ 01:05, ,

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posted by admin @ 00:30, ,

Acer Aspire One Mini-Notebook Review from PC World

Acer Aspire One Mini-Notebook
A great keyboard in an affordable portable makes the Aspire One a must-have for quick and easy mobility.
Darren Gladstone, PC World

Asus, watch your back. Oh, sure, the Eee PCs are cheap and tiny, but they've got serious competition waiting in the wings. Acer's Aspire One is priced as low as $400 for the Linux version, but it weighs in with enough features to make me consider leaving my high-end portable on the sidelines.

Why the conversion? For starters, it's fairly light and lean (weighing 2 pounds and measuring 9.8 by 6.7 by 1.14 inches). That's in no small part thanks to Intel's 1.6-GHz Atom processor. Of course, Acer isn't alone in that department. MSI's Wind, Asus's new Eee 1000, and plenty of others are on their way to market with Intel's bargain-priced CPU.
(See PC World's video:
Atomic Mini-Notebooks for a comparison of the Acer Aspire One and the MSI Wind.)

The Aspire One is also fairly well constructed. The hard, candy-colored exterior (it comes in a number of hues; my favorite: Sapphire Blue) is fairly polished and feels solid to the touch--certainly tough enough to withstand being tossed in your bag. And a huge, well-secured bezel keeps the 8.9-inch, 1024-by-600-pixel display in place. The screen itself, though, is a little too glossy. Even with the brightness cranked up, you might find it tough to see outside. Then again, many full-priced, full-featured notebooks stumble with the same problem.

Now, when I think of the average netbook (as some people call this class of mini-notebook)--certainly ones in the $400 price range--the word that comes to mind is "compromise." You get Linpus Linux Lite, not Windows XP. You get OpenOffice.org instead of Microsoft Office. You get an 8GB hard drive and 512MB of RAM. It just doesn't sound like a great deal.

Then I used it. I was genuinely surprised at the relatively smooth sailing that comes with the OpenOffice.org suite (after the 10-second load time for OOO 2.3). I didn't mind the locked-down launch page for the Aspire One. All the basic tasks I'd likely throw at the machine were all right in front of me, on screen. Firefox 2 is the default browser--no surprise there. The built-in messenger client supports AIM, MSN Messenger, Yahoo Messenger, and Google Talk accounts. A serviceable RSS reader is built in as well. Wi-Fi connectivity isn't an issue on this little laptop, either. A quick toggle flick, and it's connecting without a hitch.

Unfortunately, we can't run WorldBench on the Aspire One's tiny 8GB NAND hard drive, but I can tell you that it'll boot in 25 seconds flat. I had no problems streaming video from Youtube over an 802.11g connection. I copied over a 77MB Weezer album in just under 8 seconds (and then proceeded to play MP3s through the tiny, tinny speakers; pro tip: get headphones!). Next up, a 213MB WMV episode of Best Week Ever. It took about 11 seconds for the Aspire One's Media Master to fire up, but once it did, the show ran sans stutter. Granted, this episode was recorded at 320-by-240-pixel resolution and 29 frames per second, but go up much higher, and you'll start seeing some video slowdowns.

Another test I had to improvise, since WorldBench won't work here: battery testing. Sitting in your garden-variety coffee shop doing sporadic Web browsing and document typing, this notebook should last you roughly 2.5 hours. Or two iced coffees with skim milk.
Performance aside, you'll need some more room to grow. Aside from the standard-issue USB ports, ethernet jack, and VGA out, the Aspire One comes with two storage card slots. Why two? One is tasked for "storage expansion"--pop in an SD card, and the mini-note will format the flash storage to serve as extra internal hard-drive space. The other slot serves the usual purpose: for files you want to transfer from a digital camera or other device you have on hand.

If you're not sold on the storage space--or on Linux, for that matter--Acer will also offer a slightly pricier, XP-loaded flavor of the Aspire One (though the company hasn't revealed exact pricing, expect this version to cost around $600 sometime this fall). It'll have an 80GB hard disk and 1GB of RAM.

Now another surprise is how much I like the keyboard. It's a great size and doesn't feel crunched up in order to hit a form factor. In fact, because it provides solid key response and a wide gap between buttons, I proclaim this one of the few netbooks to be fully adult-hand friendly. Wish I could say the same about the mouse pad. Like HP's 2133, the left and right mouse buttons sit on either side of the touchpad. That makes it a little less convenient when you need to deftly manipulate documents.

OK, so the machine isn't perfect. The important part is that Acer gets more than enough right to hit the mark for basic use. And, considering the low costs to own this li'l laptop, you could get a lot of mileage out of the Aspire One. If you have simple needs, this is your notebook.
--Darren Gladstone

More Mini-Notebook

Acer One 8 GB ++ Acer One 120 GB ++ Asus EEE PC 900 ++ Asus EEE PC 1000H ++ Asus EEE PC 901 12 GB

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posted by admin @ 23:09, ,

ASUS Eee PC 900 16G (8.9" Display, Intel Mobile CPU, 1 GB RAM, 16 GB Solid State Drive, Linux) Pearl White Review

Product Description

The new Eee PC 900 offers you more options for your mobile computing needs. Incorporating a shockproof design and weighing 2.18 pounds, you will find it "Easy to learn, work and play" - making it your best outdoor companion anywhere, anytime. The large 8.9? screen size allows for more screen space - making it more comfortable on the eyes reading and editing documents when viewing a single A4 page without the need to scroll left or right. On the top of this screen is the 1.3 Megapixel Webcamera that works synchronously with the 802.11b/g wireless to provide web conferencing anywhere, anytime for easier web communications and increased work efficiency. Another great feature is the built-in 16GB Solid State Disk (SSD) which offers 15 seconds boot times that makes for a quiet, energy saving, shock proof design, which is ideal for reporters, wildlife photographers and other like-minded outdoor enthusiasts. Preinstalled on the Eee PC is the Linux operating system, and Open Office for numerous office applications. Lastly the special FingerGlide makes operating the Eee PC easy and convenient through simple finger movements on the touch pad that allows for scrolling horizontally and vertically through documents by swiping two fingers up or down across the surface of the trackpad, or zoom in or zoom out of pictures by making pinching or stretching movement with your fingers. With all of these features the Asus Eee PC makes for a fantastic purchase as a well-equipped second PC or a Web access tool so beat the crowds, and get yours today before they sell out! Intel UMA Graphics Card 1.3 Megapixel Webcamera WiFi 802.11b/g Wireless 10/100Mbps LAN Hi-Definition Audio Speakers and Microphone Memory Card Slot - MultiMedia Card (MMC), Secure Digital (SD) Card, SDHC Connections - 3 x USB, VGA, Headphone, Microphone, RJ-45 (LAN) Approximate Unit Dimensions - 8.85? (W) x 6.69? (D) x 0.78? ~ 1.33? (H) Approximate

Product Details
  • Amazon Sales Rank: #8 in Personal Computers
  • Size: 8.9" screen
  • Color: Pearl White
  • Brand: Asus
  • Model: EEEPC900-W047
  • Dimensions: .79" h x 8.86" w x 6.69" l, 4.35 pounds
  • CPU: Intel Celeron 1000 MHz
  • Memory: 1000MB DDR2 SDRAM
  • Hard Disk: 16GB
  • Processors: 1
  • Display size: 8.9
  • Easy to learn, work and play
  • Excellent mobile Internet device
  • Exciting multimedia enjoyment
  • shock proof
  • Excellent on the go
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posted by admin @ 00:47, ,

Skate (XBox 360) Review

Product Description

It's the closest thing to skateboarding without actually putting your feet on a board. With innovative controls that take advantage of the dual analog sticks, the power of the next gen hardware, and the ability to sculpt tricks to define your style, skate delivers authentic boarding like no other videogame. Individual style mixed with physics-driven animations promise that no two tricks will ever be the same, and there's plenty of room to pull off those trick. San Vanelona challenges you to explore, find, and own the best spots. You can even capture footage to create and show off your style with friends across the world. Roll with the Pros?skate features professional legends and upcoming pros including Danny Way, Mark Gonzales, Rob Dyrdek, Mike Carroll, P.J. Ladd, Chris Cole, Jason Dill, Pat Duffy, Jerry Hsu, Paul Rodriguez, Dennis Busenitz, Alex Chalmers, Chris Haslam, Colin McKay, John Rattray, Ryan Gallant, Ryan Smith and Terry Kennedy. Online Gameplay: skate features extensive online gameplay including multiple online multiplayer modes.

Gamespot Review

Plenty of skateboarding games have come and gone in the years since the long-running Tony Hawk franchise reinvented the skateboarding game. Most failed because they simply attempted to duplicate the arcadelike fast-moving gameplay of Activision's series. After running unopposed for years, Activision's got some new competition in the form of Skate from Electronic Arts. At times, this simulation-styled skating game feels like it was built from the ground up to be the anti-Tony Hawk, and aside from both games taking place on skateboards, the two don't have a whole lot in common. This is largely thanks to Skate's very cool control system, which puts all of the meaningful controls on the controller's two analog sticks and triggers. It's an awesome system that makes tricks feel more involved and entertaining. Unfortunately, you'll be applying this control scheme to a series of challenges and goals that aren't quite as good

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posted by admin @ 22:59, ,

Texas Instruments Voyage 200 Calculator Review

Product Description

Texas Instruments Voyage 200 Calculator

Texas Instruments Voyage 200 Scientific Calculator with Graphing - Get the best TI tool for College Calculus, Engineering, and beyond! This latest in the line of TI handhelds is a must-have for College Math and Engineering. The Voyage 200 handheld has a huge 2.7 Mb of Flash ROM, lots of pre-loaded Handheld Software Applications (Apps), and a real-time clock. Not to mention the fact that it comes with the TI Connectivity USB cable for Windows and Macintosh computers. It still contains all of the inherent functionality of the TI-92 Plus, including 3-D rotations and contour plots, symbolic manipulation, systems of equations, syntax listings, and much, much more. The QWERTY keyboard on the Voyage 200 keeps programming and note-taking as easy as ever! Allows Mathematical expressions to appear on the display the same way as they are written on the board or in texts Uses 4 AAA alkaline batteries and a back-up lithium battery (CR1616 or CR1620). Backup battery pre-installed, and AAA batteries are included

Product Details
  • QWERTY keyboard for typing
  • Large easy-to-ready 128 x 240 pixel LCD
  • Preloaded with popular applications, including The Geometer's Sketchpad
  • Accepts StudyCards for history, foreign language, English, and more
  • Numeric and symbolic equations; factor, solve, differentiate, integrate

Editorial Reviews
From the Manufacturer

The Voyage 200 let you easily customize your handheld by adding new functions through software applications. The Computer Algebra System (CAS) enables you to manipulate mathematical expressions and functions (factor, solve, differentiate, integrate) and easily evaluate mathematical expressions symbolically or numerically.
Differential-equation features let you compute exact symbolic solutions to many 1st- and 2nd-order ordinary differential equations. Solve single differential equations or systems of them using Euler or Runga Kutta methods, and graph slope fields and direction fields. Pretty Print allows mathematical expressions to appear on the display the same way they look on a blackboard or in a textbook.
With the StudyCards App your TI-89 or Voyage 200 can be used for almost all classes: history, foreign languages, English, math, and others. The easy-to-use PC software allows you to create StudyCards for specific subjects and topics. Review topics between classes, on the bus, and at home, with the press of a button.

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posted by admin @ 23:23, ,

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