PC http://www.stuff.tv/pc/reviews en-GB Dark Souls II http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-3/dark-souls-ii/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> It’s unquestionably the toughest RPG of this, or any other, generation – so what is it that makes Dark Souls II so damn essential? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Dark Souls II review" alt="Dark Souls II review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/Dark_Souls_2_21.jpg?1394942954" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/benjiwilson" title="View user profile.">Ben Wilson</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>How do you follow up an adventure often described as the hardest game ever made? Why, by dropping you, a cursed hero, into the mystical land of Drangleic and letting you figure <em>everything</em> out for yourself, of course.</p> <p>Dark Souls II in an unapologetically old school action-RPG by acclaimed Japanese developer From Software, which offers little in the way of prompts or tutorials. The only way to learn is to die, then die again. In short: you&rsquo;re on your own. In detail: you&rsquo;re on your own, and completely screwed.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £40.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-price-notes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tested on PS3 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">10 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> ‘What in the LORD is that?’ enemy design </div> <div class="field-item even"> Packing your inventory is an obsessive compulsive’s dream </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Incredibly realised, immersive RPG world </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> As tough as tough can be </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Hero quest </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><em>Knightmare</em>, <em>Dungeons &amp; Dragons</em>, Ian Livingstone choose-your-own-adventure books: <em>Dark Souls II</em> is the modern embodiment of these classic role-playing favourites. With one vital twist: you need to be a borderline sadomasochist to enjoy it. This is Livingstone without numbers, <em>D&amp;D</em> without dice, <em>Knightmare</em> without falsetto guides screeching spells and doing their best blind-leading-the-blind impressions.</p> <p>You choose a character class, and can amass an array of items and spells to help you along the way. But even when kitted out with the best armour, sharpest sword, or most powerful magic, combat remains merciless. I died 11 times in my first 90 minutes with the game, too many to count thereafter. &nbsp;Sounds fun, right?</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/5-best-most-infuriatingly-difficult-games-ever/feature" target="_blank">The 5 best, most infuriatingly difficult games ever</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Dark Souls II review" alt="Dark Souls II review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Dark_Souls_2_01.jpg?1394942954" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> To die for </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The weird thing is, death <em>is</em> kind of fun. Partly because it&rsquo;s the only way to improve - by learning enemy locations and behaviour patterns in a manner that hasn&rsquo;t been necessary since the heyday of Spectrums and C64s. But also because you lose &lsquo;souls&rsquo; (the game&rsquo;s currency, basically) on every death, and can only retrieve them by retracing your steps to where you last perished.</p> <p>Get there and touch your bloodstain, and all is restored. Fail, and said lost &lsquo;souls&rsquo; are gone forever. This mechanic lends an intensity to every step you take (pipe down, Sting), and also makes every victory &ndash; from successfully hunting down a bloodstain to seeing off a variety of preposterously-OTT bosses &ndash; all the more rewarding.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Dark Souls II review" alt="Dark Souls II review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Dark_Souls_2_06.jpg?1394942954" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Psychiatric horde </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Exploration and conversation take up a huge portion of the game and aren&rsquo;t nearly as soul-destroying (literally or metaphorically) as combat. Some NPC discussions lead to puzzles such as tracking down keys to locked doors, others are left to your own interpretation, yet in both cases they provide a welcome relief from the coffin-nail-tough monster mashing.</p> <p>And searching the almost countless number of wonderfully atmospheric environments &ndash; barren woodland, monumental palaces, dimly-lit lairs, sun-kissed cliff tops, so many more &ndash; only becomes more enchanting as you flesh out your inventory. OCD completionists will be in their element. I should know &ndash; I am one, and seeking out meaningless (but so pretty!) trinkets in gloomy caverns became one of my favourite elements of the game.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Dark Souls II review" alt="Dark Souls II review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Dark_Souls_2_10.jpg?1394942954" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Dark Souls II review" alt="Dark Souls II review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Dark_Souls_2_03.jpg?1394942954" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Dodgy jewellery </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The appeal to noobs with emo alter-egos should be clear, but returning players who&rsquo;ve beaten <em>Dark Souls 1</em> and want a greater challenge are catered for, too. The more you die, the more your life bar shrinks (note to those noobs: carry a Human Effigy from the outset to restore health). Plus there are items you can purchase to make the game even more difficult.</p> <p>For instance, it&rsquo;s fitting that the Redeye Ring sounds like street slang for haemorrhoids: it makes your character even more easily detectable to enemies, so is guaranteed to repeatedly leave his backside raw. A brilliant find &ndash; if you&rsquo;re the type of person who enjoys plunging sewing needles into voodoo dolls. Of yourself.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Dark Souls II review" alt="Dark Souls II review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Dark_Souls_2_02.jpg?1394942954" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Eye spy </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><em>Dark Souls II</em> looks magnificent throughout, to the point that I sometimes forgot I was playing on PS3 rather than next-gen. Mo-capped animations eliminate the rigidity often found in the original, light and darkness are manipulated in ways that startle with wonder at times and unsettle through fear at others, and even deaths look weirdly satisfying.</p> <p>One of my personal highlights is being catapulted off a cliff by a pack of wild dogs, like something out of a Will Ferrell movie. Comic moments are few, but they&rsquo;re critical in preventing you from just giving up when a scythe-wielding bag of bones slices through you for the umpteenth time.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Dark Souls II review" alt="Dark Souls II review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Dark_Souls_2_07.jpg?1394942954" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Dark Souls II review" alt="Dark Souls II review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Dark_Souls_2_19.jpg?1394942954" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Dark Souls II verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>As good as adventuring gets on current-gen, in terms of exploring a fantasy world packed with unconventional enemies and comic-book-inspired locations &ndash; but one for only the most patient of minds.</p> <p>From Software has created unquestionably the most challenging game around; but the few dedicated enough to survive it will also find it one of, if not the, most rewarding.</p> <p>Review by Ben Wilson - <a href="https://twitter.com/BenjiWilson" target="_blank">@BenjiWilson</a></p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/stuffs-200-greatest-games-all-time/feature" target="_blank">The 200 Best Games Ever</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Dark Souls II review" alt="Dark Souls II review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Dark_Souls_2_13.jpg?1394942954" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Graphics </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 9 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> design </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 9 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> depth </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 10 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> addictiveness </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The new yardstick in trial-and-error adventuring, you haven&rsquo;t lived until <em>Dark Souls II</em> has killed you a hundred times. Twisted, unrelenting genius</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-3/dark-souls-ii/review#comments Apps and Games Console games Gaming PC PlayStation 3 Xbox 360 Fri, 14 Mar 2014 16:25:50 +0000 Tom Parsons 1433726 at http://www.stuff.tv Thief http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-4/thief/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> In 1998, hooded kleptomaniac Garrett basically created the stealth &#039;em up, but in this reboot he&#039;s more pilferer of past glories than pioneering prowler </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/Thief_game_review_1.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/benjiwilson" title="View user profile.">Ben Wilson</a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-3/splinter-cell-blacklist/review" target="_blank">Splinter Cell</a></em>, <em><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/hitman-absolution/review" target="_blank">Hitman</a></em>, <em><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/deus-ex-human-revolution/review" target="_blank">Deus Ex</a></em>: if you&rsquo;ve ever enjoyed any games in those esteemed series, you owe a debt of gratitude to Thief &ndash; the 1998 stealth-&lsquo;em-up that spawned a hundred copycats.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £40.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-price-notes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tested on PS3 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">6 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Deep, if sometimes linear, world </div> <div class="field-item even"> Some smart new weapon concepts </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Story retains intrigue throughout </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Voice acting is all over the shop </div> <div class="field-item even"> Lead character tough to connect with </div> <div class="field-item odd"> You&#039;ve played it all before </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Easy entry </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Stealth games are often considered the hardcore gamer&rsquo;s exclusive property, so it&rsquo;s to <em>Thief&rsquo;s</em> credit that anyone can pick this up and have fun. An idiotproof control scheme means there&rsquo;s no need for tutorials (although the Epilogue acts as one anyway), and some shrewd inclusions on the HUD ensure you&rsquo;re aware of what&rsquo;s going on around you at all times.</p> <p>Examples? The &quot;light orb&quot; on the bottom-left of the screen informs you exactly how protected by shade you are, and alerted enemies are shown with an eye symbol and an arrow pointing to their whereabouts. Both are astute concessions to modern, casual gamers.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_2.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_5.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Flame grilled </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>For those who&rsquo;ve stuck with the series since its inception, there are welcome features, too. Innovative weapons and upgrades abound &ndash; I found myself becoming obsessed with firing gas-based choke arrows in order to incapacitate guards before scarpering, while embarsage oil (which reduces the damage caused by burning) became a godsend given my accidental addiction to toasting Garrett&rsquo;s limbs.</p> <p>The city of, er, The City (what&rsquo;s in a name anyway?) also nails the steampunk theme, with Victorian churches and clock towers and shops proving a joy to nose around. Under ground, at street level or over rooftops, this is a smartly crafted, easily navigable world.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_4.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_16.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_12.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Erin aid </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>While <em>Thief</em> recycles plenty of tropes from other games &ndash; more on which shortly &ndash; the story here is pleasingly original, centring on lead man Garrett&rsquo;s attempt to decipher partner-in-crime Erin&rsquo;s apparent death &ndash; and find out why he can&rsquo;t remember a single thing that&rsquo;s occured in the 12 months since that &ldquo;accident&rdquo;.</p> <p>&ldquo;There are worse things than you in the shadows&rdquo;, warns the mysterious Queen Of Beggars at one point, and inevitably she&rsquo;s right, with the game&rsquo;s supernatural undertones carrying the story and placing you in contact with some very unique &ndash; if sometimes overly cartoony &ndash; enemies.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_6.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_13.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Give and take </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Unfortunately, not everything about the experience is positive. <em>Thief</em> is certainly a fun game to play, but not always a fresh one &ndash; the stealth feels very <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/dishonored/review" target="_blank"><em>Dishonored</em></a>-like, exploration apes the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-3/bioshock-infinite/review" target="_blank"><em>Bioshock</em></a> series, and Garrett&rsquo;s &ldquo;focus&rdquo; abilities are ripped straight out of <em>Batman: Arkham Asylum</em> and a dozen games since.</p> <p>Recycling is prominent everywhere these days, but the trouble here is that none of these elements improve upon the original mechanics. My overwhelming urge after tiptoeing through a foundry to recover an expensive ring wasn&rsquo;t to try the next level, but switch off and replay <em>Dishonored</em>.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/dishonored/review" target="_blank">Check out our full Dishonored review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_11.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_3.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_7.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don’t speak </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>There are also inconsistencies with Garrett&rsquo;s character which, even with the hints of some supernatural hoo-ha at play, are never fully explained. Initially he makes a big deal about not wanting to kill innocents &ndash; yet he&rsquo;s happy to rob them blind instead? This is a real buzzkill.</p> <p>As, it must be said, is the inconsistent voice acting. The portrayals of Garrett and Erin are perfectly believable; in contrast, NPCs are more wooden than a mahogany Keira Knightley. It&rsquo;s like the devs spent the entire budget on the main characters, then recorded all remaining dialogue themselves. Inside a broom cupboard.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_14.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_15.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Thief Verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Truly a mixed bag. <em>Thief</em> binds elements of many other great games into a coherent whole, yet never surpasses any of those it borrows from. It&rsquo;s like a band recording a album of covers that, while decent, are neither better than the original, or even a particularly interesting twist.</p> <p>It&#39;s certainly solid enough for a sneak peek - especially if you&#39;re lingering in the next-gen release schedule lul - but this is nowhere near as groundbreaking as the series&rsquo; debut.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apps-and-games/console-games/top-ten" target="_blank">check out the Top 10 Best Games in the World right now</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Thief Game Review" alt="Thief Game Review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Thief_game_review_8.jpg?1393301083" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Graphics </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 6 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> design </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 7 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> depth </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 7 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> addictiveness </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 5 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Not all bad, but too many recycled ideas make Thief less master criminal, more wisened-up Hamburglar</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-4/thief/review" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-4/thief/review#comments Apps and Games Gaming PC PlayStation 4 PS3 Xbox 360 Xbox One Mon, 24 Feb 2014 14:39:47 +0000 Tom Parsons 1432796 at http://www.stuff.tv Broken Age: Act 1 http://www.stuff.tv/broken-age/broken-age-act-1/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Broken Age is the adventure game that kickstarted Kickstarter, but is it really a victory for player power? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Broken Age review" alt="Broken Age review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/BrokenAge.jpg?1390968896" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/tristan-donovan" title="View user profile.">Tristan Donovan</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>In the &lsquo;90s, Tim Schafer was a hero - one of the brains behind point-and-click adventures such as <em>The Secret of Monkey Island</em>. But then adventures went out of fashion and life moved on.</p> <p>But in 2012, after 16 years away from the genre that made his name, Schafer made his fans an offer: fund me on this new-fangled Kickstarter thingy and I&rsquo;ll make another adventure. Two years and $3.3m later we get <em>Broken Age</em>, but has Schafer&rsquo;s experiment paid dividends?</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £18.99 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-price-notes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Price includes Act 2 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">6 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Clever, amusing story </div> <div class="field-item even"> Lovely visuals and top-notch sonics </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Pushover puzzles </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Sticking to tradition </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Schafer promised an old-school adventure and that&rsquo;s exactly what he&rsquo;s delivered.</p> <p><em>Broken Age</em> harks back to the days when LucasArts meant top-notch point-and-click adventures, rather than second-rate <em>Star Wars</em> cash-ins. That means we get a proper story to experience and some puzzles to solve... but little else besides.</p> <p>That may sound a little threadbare in an era of multi-faceted blockbusters such as <em>Mass Effect</em>, but as Telltale&rsquo;s superb take on <em>The Walking Dead</em> proves, when it&rsquo;s done well story plus puzzles can equal greatness.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="video-wrapper youtube-player-wrapper"> <iframe width="640" height="385" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/kuCErygUS_g" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Broken Age review" alt="Broken Age review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/SpaceWeaverAndBoy.jpg?1390968896" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Shay and Vella </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><em>Broken Age</em> introduces us to Shay and Vella, two teenagers who live separate lives but are equally keen to escape adult authority.</p> <p>Shay lives on a spaceship where a doting computer mum keeps him trapped in a childish routine of ice-cream avalanches and early learning space missions. So when a chance for real adventure appears, he quickly signs up.</p> <p>Vella, meanwhile, lives in Sugar Bunting - a bakers&rsquo; town threatened by Mog Chothra, a monster that will only leave if fed young women. Vella&rsquo;s on the menu but defies the town elders by deciding it&rsquo;s better to fight than become monster munch.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Broken Age review" alt="Broken Age review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/BoyGalley.png?1390968896" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Broken Age review" alt="Broken Age review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/GirlDialogTree.png?1390968896" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Hitting the funny bone </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Shay and Vella&rsquo;s parallel stories, which players can flip between at will, are strong reminders of why Schafer was able to convince people to hand him $3.3m of their cash.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: for every Broken Age-style Kickstarter success there are plenty of disasters. Here are the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/crowdfunding/8-worst-crowdfunding-ideas-so-far/feature" target="_blank">8 Worst Crowdfunding Ideas So Far</a>.</strong></p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/save-game-how-kickstarters-resurrecting-your-favourite-games/feature" target="_blank">How game developers are using Kickstarter to resurrect your favourite genres</a></strong></p> <p><em>Broken Age&rsquo;s</em> charming and imaginative world is backed by fine dialogue and characters that imprint themselves in your mind. It&rsquo;s genuinely funny, too, boasting a witty sense of humour that&rsquo;s only marred by a spate of laboured double entendres about poo. On top of that Act 1 ends with an ingenious twist that will leave you gagging for Act 2&rsquo;s conclusion - you&#39;ll have to wait until the end of the year for that, though.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Broken Age review" alt="Broken Age review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/GirlShellmound.png?1390968896" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Pushover puzzles </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>When not being charmed by the story, <em>Broken Age</em> boils down to cracking puzzles by using the right object, in the right way, at the right time - classic point-and-click stuff.</p> <p>There&rsquo;s no way to fail, only ways to get stuck, but since <em>Broken Age</em> constantly drops hints about every solution that practically never happens. And that&rsquo;s a problem. Of course no-one wants to return to the bad old days of having to restart because you ate a custard pie that turns out to be the only way to kill an impassable yeti, but the lack of challenge means that there&rsquo;s little sense of achievement.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Broken Age review" alt="Broken Age review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/BoyMainBridge.png?1390968896" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Sound and vision </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>With its easy puzzles and linear story <em>Broken Age</em> feels more ride than game, but at least it&rsquo;s a beautiful ride. The distinctive artwork feels like a stylish children&rsquo;s book brought to life and is so good that it feels near criminal to use the retro mode that makes the game look like it came out in 1992.</p> <p>The audio hasn&rsquo;t been neglected either. There&rsquo;s a memorable score performed by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and in-game dialogue from stars such as Jack Black and Elijah Wood. In short, it&rsquo;s an audio-visual treat.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Broken Age review" alt="Broken Age review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/GirlFeast.png?1390968896" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>But neither the lovely presentation or witty writing is enough to entirely make up for the lack of challenge - <em>Broken Age</em> is simply too shallow and short.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s a backwards-looking game, decked out in rose-tinted specs and hoping to revive past glories. Perhaps that&#39;s all the Kickstarter backers were after, but we can&#39;t help but feel a little underwhelmed when the likes of <em>The Walking Dead</em> have done such a marvellous job of modernising the traditional adventure game. Beautiful though it is, Broken Age just isn&#39;t in the same league.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apps-and-games/console-games/top-ten" target="_blank">The 10 Best Games in the World right now</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Broken Age review" alt="Broken Age review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Bedroom_WakeUp.jpg?1390968896" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Graphics </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> design </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 6 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> depth </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 3 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> addictiveness </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 6 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Funny but far from revolutionary, Broken Age is a pleasant stroll down gaming&rsquo;s memory lane</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><legend>Carousel Extras</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Broken Age: Act 1 review </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/broken-age/broken-age-act-1/review#comments Broken Age Double Fine Gaming Linux Mac OSX PC Mon, 27 Jan 2014 09:51:21 +0000 Tom Parsons 1431707 at http://www.stuff.tv The Banner Saga http://www.stuff.tv/stoic/banner-saga/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> An epic Norse-flavoured RPG funded by Kickstarter, The Banner Saga paints a bright future for crowdfunded games </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/banner-saga-dredge.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Crowdfunded by Kickstarter and created by Stoic, a tiny indie studio founded by a group of ex-Bioware developers, <em>The Banner Saga</em> is an RPG set during a time of turmoil in a Norse-inspired world. Boasting a beautiful Disney-esque art style and old-school turn-based combat, it&rsquo;s one of the most eagerly-awaited indie titles of the year.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £18.99 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-price-notes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Available on PC and Mac from Steam </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">8 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Beautiful Disney-esque graphics </div> <div class="field-item even"> Fun, challenging, tactical combat </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Epic score </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Abrupt ending </div> <div class="field-item even"> Story feels unfinished </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Gameplay: The Long and Linear Road </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>For the most part, <em>The Banner Saga</em> sees you travelling the world with your caravan (no, not the sort that bogs down the A30 on Bank Holidays), trying to maintain enough supplies to prevent people dying off from starvation and occasionally encountering enemies (see the Combat section below) or stopping in towns where you can visit the market to buy supplies and items to help in battle.</p> <p>While there&rsquo;s a detailed map of the game&rsquo;s world, movement and plot is linear &ndash; you don&rsquo;t have any choice about where you&rsquo;re going next. In fact, the map feels like a largely pointless (albeit rather beautiful) addition to the game: it adds background colour, but hints at the possibility of open-world choice where there is none.</p> <p>At points on your journey you&rsquo;ll be given choices to make, and these are weighty. Forget the flashing &ldquo;Paragon&rdquo; and &ldquo;Renegade&rdquo; poles of <em>Mass Effect</em> - here you can make a series of what seem like perfectly valid choices yet still end up losing supplies, morale and even important characters. It may sound unfair, but it&rsquo;s also more real, and is perhaps Stoic&rsquo;s way of drumming into you the bleakness and hopelessness of trying to lead in the most dire of situations. You certainly get the feeling that nobody is safe.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/banner-saga-map.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/banner-saga-caravan.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/banner-saga-decision.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> An epic story? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The game&rsquo;s very name suggests a tale of epic proportions, but <em>The Banner Saga</em> feels like only the first part of a trilogy rather than a self-contained story. One story arc is completed by the end of the game, but other aspects (which we don&rsquo;t want to spoil for you) are never resolved and some characters are built up in the early game only to head-scratchingly fade into the background later on. The ending comes off as abrupt and more than a little unsatisfying, almost as if Stoic had grander plans in mind but abandoned them due to budgetary or time constraints.</p> <p>That said, the plot serves as more than just a backdrop to the combat, levelling up and choice-making that form the game mechanics. The world&rsquo;s history and mythology is smartly unfolded as you progress, and the fact that major characters can die off paints everything with a grim brush.</p> <p>The studio has said that, should <em>The Banner Saga</em> prove a success, a second and possibly third instalment will follow. We hope that transpires, because this is a world that deserves to be explored further &ndash; and story that needs finishing properly.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/crowdfunding" target="_blank">all the latest crowdfunding and Kickstarter news</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/banner-saga-dialogue.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Combat: Viking Fantasy Tactics </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>When you encounter enemies, the game shifts to a square arena full of square tiles. You can choose placement for your party, and then face off against your foes in turn-based tactical style until one side has been completely wiped out. It harks back to a simpler time of action RPGs such as <em>Vandal Hearts</em> and <em>Final Fantasy Tactics</em> - games that make us misty-eyed at their very mention.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/16-classic-game-remakes-you-have-play/feature" target="_blank">16 classic game remakes you have to play</a></strong></p> <p>Each character can move, attack or use special abilities, with their stats determining how much damage is dealt and taken in each case. It&rsquo;s a simple system but elegant in its own way, as it forces you to balance hurting the enemy with keeping your own party members alive for another round.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s tough, too: we found ourselves having to shift the difficulty from normal to easy during several late-game battles, as our characters were simply too weak and demoralised in comparison to the enemies. Hard mode? One for masochists only, as losing most fights will mean game over and a return to the last checkpoint.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/banner-saga-battle-1.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/banner-saga-battle-2.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/banner-saga-battle-3.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Character building </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Battles and certain choices you make reward you with Renown points, which can be spent on improving character stats as well as supplies and equipment. Characters are capped at level 5, but the short supply of Renown available means it&rsquo;s unlikely you&rsquo;ll be able to get everyone in your party fully levelled up &ndash; even if that person survives the whole adventure.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/banner-saga-character-screen.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Masterful visuals </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><em>The Banner Saga&rsquo;s</em> art style is heavily influenced by the late American artist Eyvind Earle (Stoic has even named a character after him). Earle was involved with 1950s Disney films such as <em>Peter Pan</em> and <em>Lady and the Tramp</em>, and there are obvious echoes of those movies in the game&rsquo;s hand-painted characters and backgrounds.</p> <p>And that decision pays off: this is a beautiful game, eschewing showy 3D graphics for something a little more traditional &ndash; and dare we say it, more tasteful. Cutscene animation is fairly basic, but works well in context, while the combat sections are a little more developed. Particularly striking are the (unskippable) parts of the game in which your caravan rolls slowly across the parallax-scrolling landscape.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/banner-saga-camp-screen.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Music and sound </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Audio-wise, the stirring musical score adds to the general grandeur of proceedings. We&rsquo;d have liked more voiceover work during dialogue scenes &ndash; this is another area where budget or time issues seem to have hamstrung Stoic&rsquo;s vision, because there are fully animated and acted scenes early on and these quickly drop off in favour of written dialogue and basic animation.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-6"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Despite a handful of criticisms, we wouldn&rsquo;t hesitate to recommend <em>The Banner Saga</em> to anyone with an interest in tactical RPGs, or even those who appreciate a game with a unique and beautiful presentational style.</p> <p>The story, music, characters and world are effortlessly engrossing, while the old-school turn-based combat is challenging and enjoyable. Hopefully enough people buy the finished game for the mooted sequels to get off the ground - we want to see how our various (frequently poor) decisions really pan out.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apps-and-games/console-games/top-ten" target="_blank">the 10 best games in the world right now</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Banner Saga review" alt="The Banner Saga review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/banner-saga-title-screen.jpg?1390389804" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Graphics </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> design </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 7 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> depth </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 6 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> addictiveness </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 7 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Who says small developers can&rsquo;t do epic games? A riveting adventure with gorgeous presentation</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><legend>Carousel Extras</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The Banner Saga review </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/stoic/banner-saga/review#comments Crowdfunding Gaming Mac OSX PC Stoic The Banner Saga Mon, 20 Jan 2014 11:34:15 +0000 Tom Parsons 1431478 at http://www.stuff.tv Intel's RealSense camera: gesture control and 3D scanning built into your next PC http://www.stuff.tv/intel/intel-reveals-realsense-tiny-kinect-camera-thatll-be-built-your-next-tablet-laptop-and-all-one <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tablets, all-in-ones, laptops and tabtops of all shapes and sizes will gain depth perception and 3D scanning capabilities this year [updated with hands-on impressions] </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Intel RealSense camera" alt="Intel RealSense camera" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/Intel-RealSense.jpg?1389923154" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>Intel&#39;s CES 2014 press conference was all about the potentially revolutionary future of &#39;perceptual computing&#39;.&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/will-findlater" title="View user profile.">Will Findlater</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Like Kinect, but wafer-thin </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Most of RealSense&#39;s capabilities aren&#39;t exactly new - tinkerers have been plugging in and toying with Kinect on their Windows PCs for a few years now. But the quality of the first-gen RealSense appears considerably better than Kinect, despite its proportions, and there&#39;s a trick that Kinect can&#39;t replicate: RealSense is a 3D scanner.</p> <p>At the CES keynote, Intel CEO Bryan Krzanich showed off how that works. You simply move the camera around the object to be scanned, capturing it from every relevant angle, and thanks to built-in movement sensors the RealSense maps out the entire environment in impressive detail.</p> <p>Intel also demoed RealSense&#39;s augmented reality prowess, showing off a game where a table in front of the computer became a grass-covered field with sheep grazing on it, and objects placed within it became a part of the playing surface. The young girl playing the game put her hand on the table, and the shepherd character climbed up her arm. Impressive stuff.</p> <p>Also demoed was a real-time 3D video capture program that could differentiate between objects in the foreground and background, and apply filters to each accordingly. It&#39;s also capable of real-time green screen effects, so you can pretend you&#39;re in Vegas while Skyping your mum.</p> <p>Much of the functionality was described by Eden Mooly as being &#39;pre-alpha&#39;, but it&#39;s clear that Intel is fully invested in making RealSense happen this year. It&#39;s also pledged to launch more RealSense hardware in future, including devices with enhanced natural language voice recognition capabilities.</p> <p>Get ready to meet a computer more charismatic that you are.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Intel RealSense camera jury rigged" alt="Intel RealSense camera" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Intel-RealSense-2.jpg?1389923154" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Intel RealSense camera module" alt="Intel RealSense camera" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/realsense-3.jpg?1389923154" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Intel RealSense camera demo" alt="Intel RealSense camera" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/realsesnse-demo.jpg?1389923154" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Hands-off with Intel RealSense </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>First things first: RealSense isn&#39;t quite fully baked yet. We don&#39;t just say that because most of the test machines on Intel&#39;s CES stand had &#39;RealSense&#39; cameras with Creative Labs logos all over them perched atop the test machines, nor because the gadgets with integrated RealSense cameras had clearly been hacked at with scalpels, but because, for now, it works in a hit-and-miss way.</p> <p>Although on paper capable of recognising 10 digits simultaneously, the test machines sometimes struggled to discern our fingers from our hands, or to recognise the way in which we were moving. This resulted in unpredictable on-screen behaviour and some frustrating gesture gaming experiences. Anyone who has tried to play Kinect from too close in or in poor light will be familiar with the problems we encountered.</p> <p>But when RealSense works, it&#39;s hugely impressive. We tried out a realtime synthesizer that allowed us to constract elaborate tunes with gestures and prods. The camera could discern how close our fingers were to the screen: when we &#39;reached in&#39; through the on-screen water, we could move and set up new instruments around the UI and change the tempo by pointing up and down; when our hands were back out of the water we could just get down to playing.</p> <p>Elsewhere on the Intel stand, there was a RealSense-equipped 3D workstation that allowed us to manipulate an Intel doll in midair with our fingertips, and a brilliant pinball game where you bash the ball with a real paddle held in your hands.</p> <p>It&#39;s mind-blowing that any camera can achieve this in the poor lighting conditions of the CES show floor, let alone a slim sliver that will soon be integrated into consumer tablets, all-in-ones and laptops. It&#39;s going to be very interesting to see how the finish product performs later this year.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/ces-2014/2014-ces-hot-stuff-awards/feature" target="_blank">2014 CES Hot Stuff Awards winners</a></strong></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/ces-2013/ces-2014-biggest-stories-so-far/feature" target="_blank">CES 2014 - all the big news, live from Las Vegas</a></strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Intel RealSense hands-on" alt="Intel RealSense hands-on" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/realsense-music-play.jpg?1389877587" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Intel RealSense hands-on" alt="Intel RealSense hands-on" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/realsense-3d-workstation.jpg?1389877587" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Intel RealSense hands-on" alt="Intel RealSense hands-on" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/realsense-gaming.jpg?1389877587" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/intel/intel-reveals-realsense-tiny-kinect-camera-thatll-be-built-your-next-tablet-laptop-and-all-one" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/intel/intel-reveals-realsense-tiny-kinect-camera-thatll-be-built-your-next-tablet-laptop-and-all-one#comments CES 2014 Intel Laptops PC Tablets Thu, 16 Jan 2014 13:05:01 +0000 Will Findlater 1430833 at http://www.stuff.tv Intel's incredible Edison PC is the size of an SD card http://www.stuff.tv/intel/ces-2014/sd-card-your-pocket-no-its-intels-tiny-edison-pc/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Our minds are blown at the sheer possibilities of Intel’s nano-PC, which brings the Internet of Things closer to reality than ever </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Intel&#039;s incredible Edison PC is the size of an SD card" alt="Intel&#039;s incredible Edison PC is the size of an SD card" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/intel-edison-hot-stuff.jpg?1389628607" /> </div> </div> </div> <p dir="ltr">Look closely. That&#39;s not an SD card. Rather, it&#39;s the Intel Edison - a full x86 PC with Pentium-class specs.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/tein-hee-seow" title="View user profile.">Tein Hee Seow</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p dir="ltr">That&#39;s what Edison brings to the table - a PC with full-fledged features, without the associated bulk that&rsquo;ll make smart gadgets big and clunky.</p> <p dir="ltr">The functionality was demonstrated by Intel with a US$200 Edison-equipped baby onesie from Rest Devices loaded with sensors, tracking the infant&#39;s temperature and pressure. </p> <p dir="ltr">An Edison-eqipped mug with an LED screen collects the data from the outfit and changes the mug&rsquo;s &#39;face&#39; from a smiley green to an angry red when the toddler turns cranky. Intel also showed off&nbsp;an Edison-equipped bottle warmer that activates when the baby stirs from his slumber.</p> <p dir="ltr">In short, Intel&rsquo;s Edison is hitting the right notes with the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/sg/how-internet-things-will-change-world/feature" target="_blank">Internet of Things</a>, in a future where just about any device or object - appliances, chairs, wearables - could be equipped with processing capabilities.&nbsp;</p> <p dir="ltr">In order to spur the imaginations of developers exploring wearable tech, Intel is also offering US$1.3million in &#39;Make It Wearable&#39; prizes for gadgets that use Edison to enhance their capabilities. So if you think you can beat the smart onesie, it&#39;s time to get making.</p> <p dir="ltr">Edison will be out &#39;in the middle&#39; of 2014 for an as-yet unspecified price. </p> <p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/sg/ces-2013/ces-2014-biggest-stories-so-far/feature" target="_blank">CES 2014 - all of the biggest news so far</a></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="567" height="425" title="Intel&#039;s incredible Edison PC is the size of an SD card" alt="Intel&#039;s incredible Edison PC is the size of an SD card" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Intel%20Edison%2001.jpg?1389628607" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Intel&#039;s incredible Edison PC is the size of an SD card" alt="Intel&#039;s incredible Edison PC is the size of an SD card" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/smart-mug.jpg?1389628607" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Intel&#039;s incredible Edison PC is the size of an SD card" alt="Intel&#039;s incredible Edison PC is the size of an SD card" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/onesie.jpg?1389628607" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 2014 CES Hot Stuff Award winner </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/ces-2014/2014-ces-hot-stuff-awards/feature" target="_blank">The Intel Edison is one of our 2014 CES Hot Stuff Awards winners &ndash; click here to read about the rest</a></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/intel/ces-2014/sd-card-your-pocket-no-its-intels-tiny-edison-pc/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/intel/ces-2014/sd-card-your-pocket-no-its-intels-tiny-edison-pc/news#comments CES 2014 Intel PC Tue, 07 Jan 2014 15:47:16 +0000 Will Findlater 1430872 at http://www.stuff.tv Hands-on with Valve's Steam Controller http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/ces-2014/hands-valves-steam-controller/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> We rub our thumbs across the touchpads of the controller that Valve reckons will replace the keyboard and mouse </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" alt="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/steam-controller-hands-on-01.jpg?1389085477" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>PC gamers are, it&#39;s fair to say, very attached to the old keyboard and mouse combo.</p> <p>But with Valve planning to put gaming PCs in our living rooms with its <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/valves-steam-machines-revealed/news" target="_blank">Steam Machines</a> project, it&#39;s looking to augment the traditional PC gaming setup with an altogether more console-esque controller.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/stephen-graves" title="View user profile.">Stephen Graves</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> You got the touch(pads) </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>On its front face, the Steam Controller features a pair of touchpads in place of thumbsticks, with a touchscreen occupying the centre of the controller. Around the back, the standard triggers are joined by a pair of large buttons that run along the length of the grips.</p> <p>The prototype versions that Valve brought along to its <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/ces-2013/ces-2014-biggest-stories-so-far/feature" target="_blank">CES 2014</a>&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/valves-steam-machines-revealed/news" target="_blank">Steam Machines launch event</a> feel a bit lightweight and flimsy &ndash; hopefully that will be fixed in the final model &ndash; and don&#39;t feature the central touchpad, offering four physical buttons in its place.</p> <p>But what&#39;s the Steam Controller actually like to use? It has quite a steep learning curve. We tried it out with an FPS game, and although you can see exactly why Valve has placed the controls where they are, so that you can use the grip buttons to jump and crouch without taking your thumbs off the touchpads, those of us who are used to standard game controllers will struggle initially.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" alt="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/steam-controller-hands-on-04.jpg?1389085477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" alt="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/steam-controller-hands-on-03.jpg?1389085477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Touch too Much </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The touchpads are pleasingly responsive, and deliver little bursts of haptic feedback as you run your thumbs across them. Again, it takes a while to get the hang of these controls &ndash; you&#39;re supposed to tap on the left pad to move, while swiping on the right pad to turn.</p> <p>In practice, it feels a lot like trying to pat your head and rub your tummy. We also noticed that you have to adjust your aim slightly after a rapid turn &ndash; not something that troubles the mouse-and-keyboard brigade.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" alt="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/steam-controller-hands-on-08.jpg?1389085477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" alt="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/steam-controller-hands-on-06.jpg?1389085477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" alt="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/steam-controller-hands-on-02.jpg?1389085477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The Limits of Control </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Only time will tell if the Steam Controller will displace the joypad and mouse/keyboard control setups in gamers&#39; affections.</p> <p>Our first impressions suggest that while it&#39;s certainly an accurate control device, it takes some getting used to &ndash; and you have to be prepared to put in the time to learn a whole new control scheme.</p> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/ces-2013/ces-2014-biggest-stories-so-far/feature" target="_blank">CES 2014 - the biggest news so far, live from Las Vegas</a></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" alt="Valve Steam Controller hands-on" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/steam-controller-hands-on-07.jpg?1389085477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/ces-2014/hands-valves-steam-controller/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/ces-2014/hands-valves-steam-controller/news#comments CES 2014 PC Steam Box Valve Tue, 07 Jan 2014 05:00:47 +0000 Stephen Graves 1430832 at http://www.stuff.tv Valve's Steam Machines finally revealed http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/valves-steam-machines-revealed/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Huzzah! Valve&#039;s taken the wraps off the gaming PCs readying their living room assault </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Valve Steam Machines" alt="Valve Steam Machines" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/steam-machines_0.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>The Valve has been opened &ndash; the PC gaming gurus behind Steam have revealed their first batch of <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/valve-steam-machine-preview/review">Steam Machine</a> gaming PCs.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/stephen-graves" title="View user profile.">Stephen Graves</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Building up Steam </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>A range of partners have developed the Steam Machines &ndash; PCs that follow guidelines and meet standards laid down by Valve, and run its SteamOS operating system.</p> <p>They range from the dinky to the bulky, and take in everything from heavily designed machines that wouldn&#39;t look out of place next to an Xbox One or PS4 under your telly, to black boxes that look like servers.</p> <p>Of course, it&#39;s what&#39;s inside that counts.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Alternate, Alienware and CyberPowerPC </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Alternate&#39;s Steam Machine packs in an Intel Core i5 4570, 4GB of RAM, a Gigabyte GTX 760 GPU and a 1TB SSD, with a retail price of US$1340.</p> <p>Alienware is keeping its cards close to its chest as far as specs and price are concerned, but design-wise it&#39;s the standout success of the line-up &ndash; a gorgeous, angular box with subtle glowing details.</p> <p>CyberpowerPC&#39;s device starts at US$500, with an AMD/Intel Core i5 CPU, 8GB RAM and either an AMD Radeon R9 270 or Nvidia GTX 760 graphics card, and 500GB of storage.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="CyberpowerPC Steam Machine" alt="CyberpowerPC Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/cyberpowerpc-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Alienware Steam Machine" alt="Alienware Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/alienware-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Alternate Steam Machine" alt="Alternate Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/alternate-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Digital Storm, Falcon Northwest and Gigabyte </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Digital Storm Bolt II crams in a Core i7 4770K processor, 16GB RAM and a GTX 780 TI GPU, with a whopping 1TB HDD and 120GB SSD. Unsurprisingly, it&#39;s pricey, at US$2585.</p> <p>Falcon Northwest&#39;s Tiki comes in a perfectly hideous airbrushed case, and is the most expensive of the lot &ndash; starting at US$1800 and going all the way up to US$6000, depending on how you configure it. The spec list includes a Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan graphics card, up to 6TB storage and between 8 and 16GB RAM.</p> <p>Gigabyte&#39;s adorably tiny Brix Pro features a Core i7 4770K, 16GB RAM, Intel Iris Pro 5200 graphics&nbsp;and a 1TB SATA HDD.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Digital Storm Bolt II Steam Machine" alt="Digital Storm Bolt II Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/digital-storm-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Falcon Northwest Steam Machine" alt="Falcon Northwest Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/falcon-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Gigabyte Brix Pro Steam Machine" alt="Gigabyte Brix Pro Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/gigabyte-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> iBuypower, Materiel.net and Next </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>iBuypower has conjured up an Xbox One-style case that sells for an Xbox One-style price &ndash; US$500 and up. Inside, you get an Intel or AMD quad-core processor, 8GB RAM, Radeon GCN Graphics and 500GB storage.</p> <p>Materiel.net&#39;s US$1100 black cube doesn&#39;t bother with the fripperies of design; it&#39;s all business, with a Core i5 4440 processor, 8GB RAM, a MSI GeForce GTX 760 OC graphics card and a 8GB + 1TB SSHD.</p> <p>The Next SPA is a similar black box, with a Core i5, 8GB RAM, Nvidia GT 760 graphics and 1TB storage.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="567" height="425" title="iBuyPower Steam Machine" alt="iBuyPower Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/ibuypower-steam-machine-hot-stuff.jpg?1389621037" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Materiel.net Steam Machine" alt="Materiel.net Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/materialnet-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Next Steam Machine" alt="Next Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/next-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 2014 CES Hot Stuff Award winner </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/ces-2014/2014-ces-hot-stuff-awards/feature" target="_blank">The iBuypower Steam Machine&nbsp;is one of our 2014 CES Hot Stuff Awards winners &ndash; click here to read about the rest</a></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Origin PC, Scan, Webhallen and Zotac </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Origin PC&#39;s Chronos comes in a variety of different configurations, starting with a Core i7 4770K, up to 32GB RAM, 2 6GB Nvidia Geforce GTX Titans and up to 14TB storage. The price has yet to be confirmed, but expect it to be astronomical.</p> <p>Scan&#39;s NC10 is one of the most interesting designs of the launch lineup, with an unusual stretched-out configuration wrapped in a metal shell. The prototype on display came with some unsightly &nbsp;Inside, you get a Core i3 processor, 8GB RAM, Nvidia GeForce GTX 765M graphics and 500GB storage, with a price tag of US$1090.</p> <p>Webhallen&#39;s big and bulky US$1500 beast has specs to match its size &ndash; and price. You get a Core i7 CPU, 16GB RAM, GTX 780 graphics and a 1TB SSHD.</p> <p>Finally, there&#39;s the Zotac Steam Box &ndash; which loses points for design, being a rebadged Z Box. Specs have yet to be confirmed, but expect it to clock in at US$600.</p> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/ces-2013/ces-2014-biggest-stories-so-far/feature" target="_blank">CES 2014 - the biggest news so far, live from Las Vegas</a></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Scan Steam Machine" alt="Scan Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/scan-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Origin PC Steam Machine" alt="Origin PC Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/origin-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Webhallen Steam Machine" alt="Webhallen Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/webhallen-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-4"> <div class="field-label">Image #4:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_4" width="1200" height="900" title="Zotac Steam Machine" alt="Zotac Steam Machine" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/zotac-steam-machine.jpg?1389692463" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><legend>Carousel Extras</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Valve Steam Machines revealed </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-standfirst"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item standfirst:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The SteamOS-powered PCs that will conquer your living room </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/valves-steam-machines-revealed/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/valves-steam-machines-revealed/news#comments CES 2014 PC Steam Box Valve Tue, 07 Jan 2014 04:04:11 +0000 Stephen Graves 1430810 at http://www.stuff.tv Piixl's mighty Steam Machine gaming PC will hug the back of your TV http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/pixxls-steam-machine-pc-will-hug-back-your-tv/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> This British-designed SteamOS PC is a master of stealth and power </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="605" height="454" title="Piixl&#039;s Steam Machine PC will hug the back of your TV" alt="Piixl&#039;s Steam Machine PC will hug the back of your TV" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/jetpack-tv.jpg?1386619585" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>British PC manufacturer Piixl has revealed the Jetpack, a PC that&#39;s designed to attach to the back of your telly to hide it from view.</p> <p>Designed to run Valve&#39;s upcoming <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/valve-steam-machine-preview/review" target="_blank">SteamOS</a> (though it can run Windows and Linux too), the Jetpack provides enough space for some serious gaming firepower including Intel&#39;s latest i7 processors and Nvidia&#39;s beastly top-of-the-range Titan, along with 1TB of SSD storage.</p> <p>Out of sight then, but definitely not out of mind.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/esat-dedezade" title="View user profile.">Esat Dedezade</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/pixxls-steam-machine-pc-will-hug-back-your-tv/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/steam-box/pixxls-steam-machine-pc-will-hug-back-your-tv/news#comments Desktops Gaming PC Steam Box Thu, 05 Dec 2013 11:59:29 +0000 Esat Dedezade 1429800 at http://www.stuff.tv Fully Charged: Bake your own Raspberry Pi PC, Virgin shows Android some love, and MIT shows off the 'Kinect on steroids' nano camera http://www.stuff.tv/fully-charged-bake-your-own-raspbery-pi-pc-virgin-shows-android-some-love-and-mit-shows-kinect-stero <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Build a computer in 107 seconds, and see the future of cameras - all in the early morning tech treat that is Fully Charged </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="620" height="426" title="Kano" alt="Kano" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/f499a6aca34cbd2565bb5bd7d7135fac_large.png?1385721385" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/mark-prigg" title="View user profile.">Mark Prigg</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Baking a Pi </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Kickstarter project Kano is hoping to get children into coding with its neat Raspberry Pi powered kit.&nbsp;</p> <p>It gives you a complete setup including keyboard, speaker, case and the Pi itself - all with simple to follow instructions.</p> <p>For the speedy, it means a build your own computer in around 107 seconds (as you can see in the video above), and the firm has even included some handy projects to get you up and running.</p> <p>It&#39;s been a huge success, aiming to raise $100,000 in 30 days - but already approaching $850,000 after just ten days. Time to get on board.</p> <p>Source: <a href="http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/alexklein/kano-a-computer-anyone-can-make">Kickstarter</a></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="video-wrapper youtube-player-wrapper"> <iframe width="640" height="385" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/iNc6NRX2JG4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Android loses its Virginity with new TV app </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Virgin Media&#39;s TV Anywhere apps has finally come to Android, bringing nine of its best TV channels with it to join the party.</p> <p>Overall, it boasts 90 channels available online and 67 to watch on mobile and tablets, and the new channels are Alibi, Dave, Drama, Good Food, Home, Really, Watch, Yesterday and CBS Reality.</p> <p>The app is free to all Virgin Media TiVo customers, and lets them manage their box as well as watch wherever they are, and&nbsp;also helps customers rate shows and see recommendations.&nbsp;</p> <p>The new Android app is compatible with the Samsung Galaxy S4, HTC One, Sony Xperia Tablet Z, Google Nexus tablets and Samsung Galaxy Note, and an iOS version is already available.</p> <p>Download the Android app right&nbsp;<a href="https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.virginmedia.tvanywhere">here</a>.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="528" height="310" title="Virgin TV Anywhere Android" alt="Virgin TV Anywhere Android" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/android1.gif?1385721385" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The nanocam </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>MIT students have revealed a radical new type of camera that could help self-driving cars find their way around - and make them affordable.</p> <p>The US$500 &ldquo;nano-camera&rdquo; that can operate &#39;at the speed of light&#39; (in frames per second terms) has been developed by researchers in the MIT Media Lab.</p> <p>The three-dimensional camera could used in medical imaging and collision-avoidance detectors for cars, and to improve the accuracy of motion tracking and gesture-recognition devices used in interactive gaming.</p> <p>Similar to the technology found in the Xbox One&#39;s Kinect camera, it&#39;s far cheaper to produce that competing products - and could soon be eyeing you up, according to its makers.</p> <p>Crucially, it&#39;s also much better at spotting transluscent objects, making it far more useful for real world applications living driving sensors.</p> <p>&ldquo;Using the current state of the art, such as the new Kinect, you cannot capture translucent objects in 3-D,&quot; says co-author Achuta Kadambi, a graduate student at MIT.&ldquo;That is because the light that bounces off the transparent object and the background smear into one pixel on the camera. Using our technique you can generate 3-D models of translucent or near-transparent objects.&rdquo; </p><p>Source: <a href="http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2013/inexpensive-nano-camera-1126.html#">MIT</a></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="video-wrapper youtube-player-wrapper"> <iframe width="640" height="385" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/IU8c6AIscPY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Guns N&#039; Roses rock out to Rocksmith </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>To show even Guns N&#39; Roses guitarists need to play now and again, Ubisoft has shown off this video of Ron &quot;Bumblefoot&quot; Thal, lead guitarist for the band , playing with its all-new Rocksmith 2014 Edition. Brilliantly, he even brought his own double guitar to plug into the game, which aims to teach people how to play.</p> <p>Want to know more? <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/xbox-360/first-play-rocksmith-2014-edition/feature" target="_blank">Here&#39;s our own hands-on of Rocksmith 2014</a>.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="video-wrapper youtube-player-wrapper"> <iframe width="640" height="385" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/M3GNuV-dFKc" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/fully-charged-bake-your-own-raspbery-pi-pc-virgin-shows-android-some-love-and-mit-shows-kinect-stero#comments Android apps Film and TV PC Thu, 28 Nov 2013 22:25:29 +0000 Mark Prigg 1429559 at http://www.stuff.tv Call of Duty: Ghosts http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-3/call-duty-ghosts/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Is there life after Modern Warfare? We carry out reconnaissance on Call of Duty: Ghosts to find out </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" alt="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/Skyscraper.jpg?1384355529" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/tristan-donovan" title="View user profile.">Tristan Donovan</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>With the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/call-duty-modern-warfare-3/review" target="_blank">Modern Warfare</a> trilogy laid to rest, Call of Duty: Ghosts marks a new chapter for the world’s favourite first-person shooter. It certainly talks a good game - promising further refinements to the series’ winning multiplayer action, including maps with destructible environments, whizzy new game modes and more customisation options for your virtual soldiers. But are these promises mere apparitions?</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £40.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-price-notes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tested on Xbox 360 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">8 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Larger, more interesting maps </div> <div class="field-item even"> More customisation options </div> <div class="field-item odd"> The multiplayer action&#039;s still great </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Squads and Extinction modes disappoint </div> <div class="field-item even"> Too reliant on past glories </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Old favourites </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Let’s cut to the chase. Regardless of the rhetoric, Call of Duty is not about pushing back the frontiers of game design. It’s the Status Quo of games - unadventurous and predictable yet entertaining all the same. So it’s no surprise that Ghosts’ multiplayer relies on the familiar favourites, with the Team Deathmatch, Kill Confirmed, Free-for-All and Infected modes all making (welcome) returns.</p> <p>There is more freedom to personalise soldiers, though, including the long-overdue option to play as a woman. There’s enhanced movement, too, so you can now leap over obstacles like a Parkour master and lean out of cover. These are minor upgrades in the grand scheme of things, but they're welcome all the same.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" alt="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/4371COD_Ghosts_Chili_and_Donuts.jpg?1384355529" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> New modes </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Alongside the classics, Ghosts has four new competitive multiplayer modes. Hunted has ill-equipped players fighting for control of zones to win better weapons. Search &amp; Rescue is a Search &amp; Destroy remix in which you respawn fallen allies by collecting their dog tags.</p> <p>Things step up a gear with the Kamikaze action of Cranked, where players explode if they don’t follow up a kill with another within 30 seconds. Blitz is another goodie - a contest to score by entering the enemy team’s zone. It’s like rugby. With guns. And it's pretty awesome.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" alt="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/4369COD_Ghosts_Arctic_Lumber.jpg?1384355529" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Squads and Extinction </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Beyond the competitive arena are two more new multiplayer modes, the first of which - Squads - is baffling. It lets you create squads of automaton soldiers that you then lead into battle against teams created by other players. There’s some good A.I. on show but we can’t see the point when matches with real people are just a couple of button presses away.</p> <p>The other mode is Extinction, a co-operative campaign that takes Left 4 Dead, swaps the zombies for alien hordes and then strips out all the personality. It’s serviceable but very forgettable.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" alt="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/COD_GhostsSomethings_Burning.jpg?1384355529" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Bigger maps </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Ghosts introduces the concept of ‘dynamic maps’ to the series. These allow players to lay traps, shoot open gates, destroy walls and interact with the environment. But alas, it’s more liberating on paper than in practice. What can and can’t be done is tightly controlled so the novelty quickly fades as you get to know the maps.</p> <p>On the plus side the maps are larger and less constricted than in previous Call of Dutys - a shift that favours team work over lone mavericks and makes for slightly slower battles. We like it, but more frenetic Call of Duty fans might be disappointed.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" alt="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/4370COD_Ghosts_Chasm_Ambush.jpg?1384355529" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Action movies </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Finally, there’s the solo campaign. It’s a tale of orbital death rays, a remote-controlled dog and a Venezuela-led invasion of the USA - an improbable feat for a country currently struggling with a national toilet roll shortage.</p> <p>It’s very silly but makes up for it with loud bangs, big explosions and outlandish moments ripped out of the 1980s action movie playbook - think space station gun battles and escapes from collapsing skyscrapers. While it re-treads well-worn ground, it rattles along at such a pace that it’s easy to get sucked in, even if none of it will stay with you for longer than a few minutes.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" alt="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/COD_Ghosts_Deep_Dive.jpg?1384355529" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>By the skin of its teeth Ghosts is another enjoyable dose of Call of Duty. The new competitive multiplayer modes, the refreshed movement and larger maps are welcome developments but the Squads and Extinction modes fail to impress and, as ever, it’s the tried and tested Team Deathmatch and Kill Confirmed options that really thrill. It’s good enough, but there’s little here to make Ghosts an essential purchase.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" alt="Call of Duty: Ghosts review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/4372COD_Ghosts_Maniac_Blindside.jpg?1384355529" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Graphics </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 6 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> design </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 7 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> depth </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 5 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> addictiveness </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Call of Duty: Ghosts ticks all the usual boxes but can’t shift the feeling that we’ve seen it all before</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><legend>Carousel Extras</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Call of Duty: Ghosts review </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-3/call-duty-ghosts/review#comments Gaming PC PlayStation 3 PlayStation 4 Wii U Xbox 360 Xbox One Mon, 11 Nov 2013 11:43:28 +0000 Tom Parsons 1428964 at http://www.stuff.tv PC Specialist Nvidia GTX Titan Battlebox http://www.stuff.tv/nvidia/pc-specialist-nvidia-battlebox/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Forget the Xbox One and PS4&#039;s paltry efforts, we get our 4K game on with one of the most powerful - and expensive - gaming PCs on the planet </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="PC Specialist Nvidia Battlebox " alt="PC Specialist Nvidia Battlebox " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/main%20%28product%20sheet%29.jpg?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/henrywinchester" title="View user profile.">henrywinchester</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There's a pretty major omission from Sony and Microsoft's new consoles: proper 4K gaming. Both the <a data-cke-saved-href="http://www.stuff.tv/microsoft/microsoft-xbox-one/review" href="http://www.stuff.tv/microsoft/microsoft-xbox-one/review">Xbox One</a> and the <a data-cke-saved-href="http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-4/review" href="http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-4/review">Playstation 4</a> will include support for ultra-HD media files, but with even 1080p gaming appearing to be a struggle, playing in 4K is a big no-no.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £3,900.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-price-notes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> pcspecialist.com </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">8 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Games look absurdly good </div> <div class="field-item even"> Media playback is jaw-dropping </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Well-built and specced </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Unfeasibly expensive </div> <div class="field-item even"> Some software is confused by 4K </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Rather large and heavy </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> In That Case </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Cooler Master Cosmos 2 case PC Specialist's build arrived in is a whopper, approximately the same size and shape as the U.S.S. Sulaco. It's so heavy that we needed to employ three burly men to get it on our scales - so you won't be taking this to any LAN parties unless you're of herculean build. It's incredibly well-built, though, with sliding panels over the power button and USB ports, and another that covers the Blu-ray drive and hard drive hot ports.</p> <p>It's easy to access the innards, too - a latch secures the side panels, and on pressing this they swing open like the doors of a BMW. Inside PC Specialist has equipped the processor with a Corsair liquid CPU cooler, which links to fans at the top of the case with a pair of rubber hoses. It's one of the best cases we've come across, and despite its imposing size, it looks the part plus it's packed with cool and useful features.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Cooler Master Cosmos 2 case " alt="Cooler Master Cosmos 2 case " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/1_0.jpg?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Swinging side panels on the Cooler Master Cosmos 2 case " alt="Swinging side panels on the Cooler Master Cosmos 2 case " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/swinging%20side%20panels.jpg?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Nvidia GeForce GTX Graphics in PC Specialist Battlebox " alt="Nvidia GeForce GTX Graphics in PC Specialist Battlebox " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/DSCF9638.JPG?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-4"> <div class="field-label">Image #4:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_4" width="1200" height="900" title="PC Specialist Battlebox - Cooler Master Cosmos 2 case " alt="PC Specialist Battlebox - Cooler Master Cosmos 2 case " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/DSCF9635.JPG?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Screening Room </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>We also blagged an <a data-cke-saved-href="http://www.stuff.tv/stuff-cool-list-2013-4k-now-ready-conquer-your-living-room/feature" href="http://www.stuff.tv/stuff-cool-list-2013-4k-now-ready-conquer-your-living-room/feature">Asus PQ321 monitor</a> to test with the system. Like the case it's absolutely gargantuan, with its 31.5-inch size putting it in the same league as your average TV. It's also 4K, so it packs more pixels than there are atoms in the universe. Or something.</p> <p>As expected the picture quality is incredible, viewing angles are great and it's as bright as a thousand suns. It's an additional £3,000, although the price will drop as other manufacturers start pumping out 4K panels.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="4K content on the Asus PQ321 monitor " alt="4K content on the Asus PQ321 monitor " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/7_0.JPG?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Asus PQ321 4K monitor " alt="Asus PQ321 4K monitor " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/PQ321Q_Front.jpg?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="Asus PQ321 4K monitor " alt="Asus PQ321 4K monitor " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/8.jpg?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Batman Begins </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Batman's latest adventure, <a data-cke-saved-href="http://www.stuff.tv/batman-arkham-origins/review" href="http://www.stuff.tv/batman-arkham-origins/review">Arkham Origins</a>, provided the perfect test for our new uber-PC. It comes complete with Battlebox endorsement, and by golly it looks all kinds of wonderful. With all the settings maxed-out Batman really comes to life in a way that's actually better than 3D.</p> <p>Everything looks so clean, and neat little touches from Nvidia's PhysX, such as billowing flags and cloths, add a lovely little does of detail and realism. One exception is Nvidia's own Temporal Anti-Aliasing, which bizarrely resulted in a drop in frame rates. However, it's arguable that anti-aliasing isn't even needed with such incredibly high resolutions.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Batman: Arkham Origins on PC Specialist Battlebox " alt="Batman: Arkham Origins on PC Specialist Battlebox " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/3_0.png?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Grid 2 and Skyrim in 4K </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Grid 2 could be similarly maxed-out, with the instant replays mocking our appalling driving in full 4K glory. Skyrim's pseudo-Scandinavian world looks amazing, too - despite being almost two years old, upping Tamriel's draw distances so you can see the lie of the land is still breathtaking.</p> <p>It's an astonishing way to see the game worlds you know and love, and it's reassuring if you've forked out such a huge amount of money to know that the consoles are never going to reach this sheer level of fidelity.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Grid 2 on the PC Specialist Battlebox " alt="Grid 2 on the PC Specialist Battlebox " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/4_1.JPG?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Older games </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Just for the LOLs, we decided to boot up the original Half-Life to see how it looked in absurd resolutions. Somewhat bizarrely, it didn't load up at all, giving us the same error we received a very long time ago when we were running it on Windows 98. Spooky indie game Limbo also failed to run.</p> <p>We're guessing that this is down to the incredible resolution and the inability of various game engines to understand all the pixels and what to do with them. 4K gaming is something of a rarity at the moment (the panel we tested is said to be the only one of its kind in the country), but we're sure developers will retrofit their engines to work with the software.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Creative Block </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>We don't just play games all the time - we also have to do a bit of video editing once every 10 years. Adobe's Premiere Pro was duly installed and fired up on PC Specialist's rig, and on poking about in a 4K media file we experienced absolutely no lag, and thanks to the SSD and 32GB of RAM it rendered in very little time. Photoshop was also able to handle truly huge images without any problems. It' as useful for media work as it is for gaming.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Adobe Premiere Pro on the PC Specialist Battlebox " alt="Adobe Premiere Pro on the PC Specialist Battlebox " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/DSCF9666.JPG?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-6"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Media playback </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>4K Blu-rays aren't really a thing yet (<a data-cke-saved-href="http://www.stuff.tv/sony/sony-kd-55x9005a/review" href="http://www.stuff.tv/sony/sony-kd-55x9005a/review">unless you're mates with Sony</a>) so we had to make do with the handful of ultra-HD movie files currently doing the rounds on YouTube. We chose one about Australia and it looked so absurdly stunning that we were tempted to fire up the barbie right there in our office. Blu-rays upscale rather nicely, although it's a bit annoying that support for the discs isn't built into Windows 8.1.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Sounds good </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Asus panel has got built-in speakers, but seriously, don't ever use them. We've experienced better sound quality from mobile phones. If you're going to be spending this much on a rig we'd hope you've got enough to add a decent set of 7.1 surround speakers, too, and coupled with the screen and the inbuilt Asus Xonar soundcard you'll be in media heaven.</p> <p>Despite the soundproofing of the Cooler Master case it does get a little loud thanks to the sheer number of fans lurking within, especially when you fire up an intense game or benchmark. It's a lot quieter when you're just pottering about in Windows, though, and such a large experience demands the volume turned up to 11 anyway.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-7"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Windows Weirdness </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Somewhat preposterously Microsoft really didn't see 4K coming, and our previous experiences of Windows 8 ultra-HD screens have given us a normal-sized cursor (which is tiny on a 4K screen) and weird menu and dialogue box resizing. Thankfully, Windows 8.1 fixes a lot of this, giving us a cursor so resplendent in pixels that we spent about an hour admiring it. The dialogue boxes are still a bit all over the place, though, with some filling the screen and others being almost uselessly tiny.</p> <p>The biggest let-down in this department is Google's Chrome browser, which, despite its huge popularity, just doesn't understand 4K screens. Text is horribly jagged and aliased, images are packed with artifacts, and tabs and menu systems just don't work. Rebooting it in Windows mode is actually hilarious, with your favourite websites reduced to a slither in the middle of the screen. Thankfully Firefox works a lot better, but it lacks Chrome's wonderful syncing and cloud-based features. Overall the experience is good, though, and the incredible definition makes up for these occasional oddities.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Google Chrome browser on the Asus 4K PQ321 monitor " alt="Google Chrome browser on the Asus 4K PQ321 monitor " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Asus-monitor-chrome.jpg?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Windows 8.1 cursor on the Asus 4K PQ321 monitor " alt="Windows 8.1 cursor on the Asus 4K PQ321 monitor " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/DSCF9674.JPG?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-8"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>PC Specialist's Battlebox is going to be out of the price range of 99 per cent of the population, but as a proof of concept it works wonderfully. We already knew 4K movies were brilliant, but gaming in 4K is a revelation, and one that finally consigns 3D to the digital scrapheap.</p> <p>For pricing reasons one of the next-gen consoles and its 1080p (or lower) graphics are going to have to do for now, but in a year or two 4K PC gaming could be a viable proposition for plenty of gamers. It may be best not to rush though, once you've had a taste of the 4K gaming cake you're really not going to want to go back to Full HD.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Nvidia Battlebox by PC Specialist verdict " alt="Nvidia Battlebox by PC Specialist verdict " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/DSCF9631.JPG?1392837276" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> power </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 10 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> screen </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 10 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> design </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 9 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>A taste of the future which has left us hungry for more. And while it's hugely expensive, a mere glimpse of modern games in high-definition is mind-blowing.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/nvidia/pc-specialist-nvidia-battlebox/review" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/nvidia/pc-specialist-nvidia-battlebox/review#comments Games Machines Gaming GeForce GTX Battlebox Nvidia PC PC Specialist Mon, 04 Nov 2013 16:48:37 +0000 Sophie Charara 1428719 at http://www.stuff.tv FIFA 14 http://www.stuff.tv/ps3/fifa-14/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Depending on the kind of player you are FIFA 14 either takes things too far into the furniture-smashing frustration of real football or is the ultimate soccer sim </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="FIFA 14" alt="FIFA 14" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/fifa14_x360_save.jpg?1383728460" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/tom-wiggins" title="View user profile.">Tom Wiggins</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>To a cynic each new version of <em>FIFA</em> is just a database update: a few new kits, the latest line-ups and you’ve got a brand new game.</p> <p>To those people <em>FIFA 14</em> will come as a bit of a shock, because it introduces the most fundamental change to the way <em>FIFA</em> plays since 360-degree control in <em>FIFA 10</em> – namely realistic momentum. For some players that could be a frustration-adding step too far, but for others it wil be the feature that lifts the series into a higher echelon of awesome.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £40.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-price-notes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tested on Xbox 360 and PS3 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">10 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> More accurate physics than ever before </div> <div class="field-item even"> Less emphasis on pace </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Very satisfying when it all comes together </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Emphasis on realism won&#039;t be for everyone </div> <div class="field-item even"> Player switching can be stubborn </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Could do with more international teams </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Slow and tactical </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Players now take time to shift direction, especially at speed, meaning there’s more emphasis on anticipation and reading what your opponent is going to do next. Commit a defender too early and a sudden change of pace or direction from a more nimble forward will leave you chasing shadows.</p> <p>At first the game feels slow and unresponsive – and reaction times have been noticeably reduced – but it results in more scope to change the pace and requires you to react intelligently to what’s going on around you: Where’s the space? Do I have support? Do I need to hold the ball up? And that’s when the new Protect the Ball function allows stronger players to get their own back on those nippy little tika-taka soccer ferrets. With the right player it really works, even just to buy yourself a few seconds until support arrives.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Protecting the ball" alt="Protecting the ball" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/fifa14_ps3_protecting_the_ball.jpg?1383728460" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="FIFA 14 review" alt="FIFA 14 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/fifa14_x360_header.jpg?1383728460" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Sprint at your peril </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Football is about using all the space available to you – and with the extra restraints added by the new physics, sprinting everywhere uses up the pitch too quickly and gives you less time to exploit it. In previous games the pitch was often treated as a high-speed, one-way system; as soon as you got the ball it was time to sprint as fast as you could towards the opposition’s goal, something that never really made sense when you consider how much time is spent running at full tilt with the ball at your feet over the 90 mins of a real game. That means the days of perma-pulling the sprint trigger are gone.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Strength plays a much bigger part in FIFA 14" alt="Strength plays a much bigger part in FIFA 14" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/fifa14_pc_jostle.jpg?1383728460" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Patience is heavily rewarded </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The new emphasis on momentum, combined with the improved ability to protect the ball when in possession, means <em>FIFA 14</em> offers more ways to approach each game. Pace is still a valuable commodity in attack, but it’s no longer the only way to score goals.</p> <p>This emphasis on build-up play doesn’t mean you have to keep passing back to your keeper. Fluidity and control of the game are still encouraged, and playing the way you’re facing is often the most sensible approach. Keep the ball moving and you’ll reap the rewards, although play a pass slightly behind the receiver and the move is liable to break down. Get it all spot-on and it’s more rewarding than ever.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="He&#039;ll have someone&#039;s eye out" alt="He&#039;ll have someone&#039;s eye out" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/fifa14_ps3_jostle_for_ball.jpg?1383728460" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="This isn&#039;t going to end well" alt="This isn&#039;t going to end well" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/fifa14_pc_header.jpg?1383728460" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The art of the tackle </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Momentum also makes the sliding tackle an essential part of the game for the first time, well, pretty much ever. Say you have an opposition winger running down the touchline and you bring a defender across to block him, now you can slide in, safe in the knowledge that the player on the ball won't just stop dead and thwart your last-ditch challenge. Equally, the variable dribble (where the ball isn’t always a constant distance away from the player’s feet) means the challenge might miss.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Doing a Ronaldo </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Tweaks have also been made to attacking headers and free-kicks. The latter are now much more dangerous, with a flatter, more pacey delivery allowing you to cause problems in the box, while the former now feel more like shots, with a longer button press required to get the necessary power behind it.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="On yer bonce" alt="On yer bonce" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/fifa14_ps3_header.jpg?1383728460" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Now with added Jeff </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Career and Ultimate Team modes are as engrossing as ever, while presentation obviously has the usual EA Sports sheen, with Sky Sports’ Jeff Stelling now introducing matches before handing over to the commentators. That said, pre-match rituals and off-the-pitch activity could do with a bit more life, something we expect to come in the next-gen version.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Subtle EA branding there" alt="Subtle EA branding there" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/fifa14_xbox360_ps3_pc_labombonera.jpg?1383728460" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-6"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Clumsy AI </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Our only gripes are minor. Throw-ins are still too easy to get wrong and sometimes it’ll refuse to switch the player under your control when chasing down through-balls, causing potential chances to break down through no fault of your own. Off-the-ball movement can also be little bit dumb, with players sometimes colliding rather than skipping around each other.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="FIFA 14 review" alt="FIFA 14 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/fifa14_xbox360_jostle.jpg?1383728460" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-7"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>If a lot of this sounds more like a post-match discussion of tactics than a game review, that’s because it pretty much is. <em>FIFA 14</em> is more of a simulation than ever before and it won’t suit everyone, but to mark it down for its realism would be wrong. It is, after all, what EA has been striving for from the very beginning.&nbsp;</p> <p>However, if your <em>FIFA</em> habit doesn't extend beyond post-pub kickabouts, you might want to stick with last year's game. For football fans aiming to recreate real-life moments of glory and drama, it’s never been better. That's why it's just given FIFA 13 the boot from <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apps-and-games/console-games/top-ten">our list of the best games you can play</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>Review by <a href="https://plus.google.com/111456618859932224779/about" target="_blank">Tom Wiggins</a></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="FIFA 14 review" alt="FIFA 14 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/fifa14_pc_clearance.jpg?1383728460" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Graphics </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> design </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> depth </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 10 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> addictiveness </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 9 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Ibrahimovic of football games: plenty will love it, but less committed FIFA fans might find it infuriating</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><legend>Carousel Extras</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> &quot;The ultimate soccer sim&quot; – Stuff reviews FIFA 14 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-standfirst"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item standfirst:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> We take on the latest incarnation of FIFA in our full review </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/ps3/fifa-14/review#comments Console games Gaming PC PS3 Xbox 360 Mon, 23 Sep 2013 13:50:48 +0000 Tom Parsons 1426975 at http://www.stuff.tv HP Envy Recline PCs bring touchscreen desktops into your lap http://www.stuff.tv/hp/hp-envy-recline-pcs-bring-touchscreen-desktops-your-lap/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Serious hingery let HP&#039;s latest Windows 8 machines morph into the world&#039;s first lap-desktops </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="HP Envy Recline" alt="HP Envy Recline" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/hp-envy-recline.jpg?1378523147" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>Humans already have a multipoint hinge called a 'neck', but we'd rather our PCs did the contortions necessary to give us a good view of the internet.</p> <p>Which is why we're looking forward to HP's new Recline range - a trio of touchscreen PCs that can pivot anywhere in a vertical plane, even down into your lap.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/mark-wilson" title="View user profile.">Mark Wilson</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/hp/hp-envy-recline-pcs-bring-touchscreen-desktops-your-lap/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/hp/hp-envy-recline-pcs-bring-touchscreen-desktops-your-lap/news#comments HP PC Fri, 06 Sep 2013 11:52:25 +0000 Stephen Graves 1426298 at http://www.stuff.tv Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-3/far-cry-3-blood-dragon/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> A glorious, ass-kickingly unashamed celebration of 80s action movie tropes – and a pretty brilliant game to boot </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/far-cry-3-blood-dragon-6.jpg?1372121749" /> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/far-cry-3-blood-dragon-2.jpg?1372121749" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>Originally assumed to be an April Fool’s joke, Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon turned out to be very real. This inexpensive DLC (which doesn’t require that you own the original <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/review/far-cry-3">Far Cry 3</a>) taps pretty much every 80s action movie touchstone: cyborgs, mutants, getting the girl, kicking butt for Uncle Sam – heck, it even features Aliens and Terminator star Michael Biehn in the role of its wisecracking hero, Mark IV Cyber Commando Sergeant Rex “Power” Colt.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £12.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">10 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon – story </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>While the original Far Cry 3 used (or at least intended to use) its storyline as a way to cleverly satirise the action FPS genre, Blood Dragon’s plot is an unashamed mish-mash of a hundred 80s VHS movies. The year is 2007 and Earth has largely been turned into a nuclear wasteland following a huge war between the USA and “the Reds”. You are Rex Colt, a cybernetically-enhanced American soldier dropped onto an island with your buddy Spider to take down Omega Force, a cyborg terrorist organisation headed by your former mentor and commander. Ubisoft’s tongue is lodged firmly in its cheek.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/far-cry-3-blood-dragon-3.jpg?1372121749" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon – gameplay </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The game plays much like Far Cry 3 – not a great shock given that it’s an expansion. It’s an FPS in a large, open world (albeit one smaller than either of Far Cry 3’s islands) filled with things to do and people to shoot. But in a break from its parent game, in which you have to unlock skills and weapons over time, Blood Dragon gives you the majority from the very beginning. You can unlock further abilities by levelling up and earn mods to improve weapons by completing hunting and hostage rescue side quests. Aside from the main quest, there are also a number of garrisons to take out – each one opens up more side quests.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/far-cry-3-blood-dragon-4.jpg?1372121749" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon – enemies </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Omega Force is your main adversary in the game, and the foot soldiers come in the same varieties as those in Far Cry 3: regular troops, snipers, shotgun wielders, tougher “heavies” etc. There are also a few species of wild animals roaming the landscape, with the most fearsome being blood dragons: giant glowing dinosaurs able to shoot laser blasts out of their maws. While these are a threat to you, they’re also an opportunity, as you can turn them against Omega Force by luring them into garrisons, then sitting back and watching as the beasts tear through the enemy for you.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/far-cry-3-blood-dragon-1.jpg?1372121749" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon – longevity </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>There’s no getting around it: this is a fairly short game. The main quest can be powered through in a few hours and the island’s small size means you’ll have explored it all fairly quickly. A number of collectibles add to the longevity, but realistically once you’ve liberated the last garrison you’ll probably have had enough. That said, this costs about a tenner and provides more entertainment than many full price titles. Also, the game’s briefness means the cheesiness of its 80s theme never outstays its welcome.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/far-cry-3-blood-dragon-5.jpg?1372121749" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon – presentation </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Blood Dragon’s look and feel is arguably the most memorable part of the game. Biehn’s gruff-voiced quips about “firemen, ambulance drivers and policemen” being the real heroes, his Bond-esque one-liners as he dispatches his foes, the 16-bit style cut scenes, the virtual box art (complete with “desert chrome” title) and Australian band Power Glove’s evocative synth-and-squealing-guitar soundtrack – all serve to take gamers of a certain age on a welcome trip back into the mid-80s.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/far-cry-3-blood-dragon-review.jpg?1372121749" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon – verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Blood Dragon delivers more Far Cry 3-style action but with an arguably more interesting flavour: that of a 1980s action sci-fi film. Its friendly mocking of the genre’s tropes and recreation of its characteristic looks are brilliantly pulled off, and it’s all available for less than the price of a round of drinks. Yes, we like it a lot.</p> <p><em>Tested on Xbox 360.</em></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/far-cry-3-blood-dragon-6.jpg?1372121749" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon doesn’t offer much over the original’s gameplay, but its presentation and price can’t be beaten</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-legacy-url"> <div class="field-label">Legacy URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> /review/far-cry-3-blood-dragon </div> </div> </div> http://www.stuff.tv/playstation-3/far-cry-3-blood-dragon/review#comments Apps and Games Console games PC PlayStation 3 Xbox 360 Tue, 07 May 2013 11:37:27 +0000 424818 at http://www.stuff.tv