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This review is long overdue, I was going through all of my reviews and I realised I had not reviewed either Fallout 3 or New Vegas, I needed to change that! This is THE game of 2008.
Fallout 3 is set in a post nuclear wasteland, it's the year 2277 in the world of fallout it has been 2 centuries since the nuclear apocalypse started. People have been living in vaults under the ground for the years of the war, grown up and died in these vaults, they are safe... most of the time. You are a vault dweller, the game starts with your birth. You know barely anything about outside as you have spent all your time inside the vault, but you're father leaves and you are inclined to find out why. You are thrust into the radioactive wastes of Washington D.C. This is just a little insight to the beginning of this masterpiece, a little insight into the game itself.
Now the most prominent thing of the time would probably have been the combat system and combat itself. You have ammo in Fallout and at first it is very scarce, you can purchase ammo but it does not regenerate as freely or as quickly as you would like. You won't be able to shoot everyone and everything, there are melee weapons that work very well. You just have to conserve ammo if you want to survive, you can wait a few hours for ammo to appear back in shops though this just seems like a waste of time to me, unless of course you are desperate.
On the subject of health you will die within the game, it is inevitable but there are many things to help you regain HP. There is food, drinks, drugs and other things. Food is generally universal, no bad effects just health though it won't be very much the most is 30 HP I think. With drinks it is usually less and if you drink un-purified things they will up your radiation level (you can control this with other drugs, if it gets too high your skills will be affected and you will eventually die.) Now with drugs you can use drugs to get rid radiation, gain health, boost skills and gain AP (Action points, they are used to enter V.A.T.S.) A stimpak is mostly what I would use for regaining health, it leaves no side effects and give you half of your health back, more if your medicine skills is high. One bad point with some drugs is that you can get addicted to them and if you don't get your fix your skills that, that particular drug increased will suffer as a result. Also you can get crippled when in battle, so you will need to either use a stimpak which will hela you and all crippled limbs or visit a doctor if not you will be severely affected.
Now to the main feature that was causing a storm with Fallout 3. The V.A.T.S combat system (Vault-Tec Assisted Targeting System) there was nothing like it at the time of release and it was pretty amazing. You learn to use it with a BB gun your father will give to you. It pauses time when you activate it and you can zoom into any enemies body part and take a shot in slow motion, apart from it being very cool it gives you a percentage chance of actually hitting the shot and a critical chance. It uses up action points which can be regained slowly automatically and through certain drugs quickly, like Jet. I loved this system and it brings a whole new dynamic to the game.
Another great thing about the game is the companions, though you cannot get them straight away. There are companions that will only join you if you are evil or good and ones that will join you either way. You can get 3 companions at one time, which is what I had, there are problems with this as sometimes (in vaults particularly) they would stand in doors and I could not get passed, but in combat they really are a massive help. It can make the game easier though it still will be a challenge
to you. Here are all the companions in fallout 3, excluding expansion pack companions. Jericho: He is human and can be found in Megaton, the first city you will visit, you find him walking around and he will start a conversation with you normally. You will have to have an evil karma level for him to travel with you though. Charon: is a Ghoul, these are radiated creatures. Some feral ghouls have lost their minds and will try to kill you on sight but some exist in a sort of city underground in the museum of history, the Underworld section. There is no karma specific for Charon. Side missions are what lead you to this place, though you can get in without a reason, just have to find it first. Butch: he is human, no specific karma need and he will be in Megaton after the 'Trouble on the Home Front' quest. Dogmeat: is a wild dog you will find just north of where you will go into the simulator machine on the main quest line, he is in a scrapyard. There is no karma requirement.
Clover: she is human you will find her in a slaver area called Paradise Falls, in Eulogy Jones's house. She is an evil karma companion and has to be bought. Sergeant RL-3: is a robot with no specific karma arrangement. Has to be bought from Tinker Joe outside the RobCo factory, though I had to clear the surrounding enemies and had to enter and exit for him to appear at the south end of the factory. Star Paladin Cross: is human and has a good karma requirement. She is found in the citadel after the 'waters of life' quest. Fawkes : is a super mutant, one that wont attack you on sight. He has a good karma requirement. You will find him trapped in Vault 87, if you do not have him as a companion from when you release him he will later be at Raven Rock.
The companions that I chose in the end were Dogmeat, Star Palidin Cross and Fawkes. I did have Sergeant RL-3 earlier in the game but I dismissed him when I found Star Palidin Cross. I found no particular massive problems with the companions apart from the one I have mentioned above, they do not make the game unbalanced which was my main worry.
Now onto the enemies you will come across in the game, there is such a variety of different personalities in the humans to all the radiated creatures you will come across, some normal creatures that have been radiated, some completely new creatures that can be very intimidating and easier to avoid than deal with but that is your choice as the player as to how you conduct combat and ultimately yourself, all your decisions will come back to you in some way or another.
There are bugs like Radroaches that can use their tail to poison and disorient you, sea monsters like Mirelurks that run at you, they look like a human without a face.. if that makes sense. The claws on
their hands cripple you almost instantly. The big monsters such as super mutants are a problem, they are a lot bigger, stronger and generally better at killing things than you. The fat boy missle launcher is what I used to dispatch of them (it is something you have to build that fires mini nukes, though ammo is scarce and yes I did say mini nukes) Also the other most formidable enemy would be the deathclaws, they run at you and I think killed me in 3 swipes, they take off at least a quarter of your health in one swipe, very dangerous and I guarantee they will kill you.
Now thee of course is our lovely human race to talk about with raiders, the talon company, the enclave, the brotherhood and many of factions and smaller groups that you will come across, most you will fight with but some you can choose and some are your allies either way.
-Raiders: There are many small groups of raiders that will attack you on sight, they are usually crazy and will shout all sorts but they do not seem to be very organized, select groups can be but generally they aren't hard to get rid of. When you first step into the world outside the first supermarket you come across will have a group of raiders that will ambush you. Don't underestimate them is my advise, you can never know how many of them there will be and only later in the game will they get weapons that can do serious damage.
-Talon Company: These lovely people have the main purpose of striking fear in the people's hearts and keeping the capital wasteland a dangerous and lawless place. They will only come after characters with good karma, a bounty will be put on your head because of your good actions. They are like a more dangerous, better equipped group of raiders.
-The Brotherhood of Steel: These are the good guys, in the good fight against the enclave. You will meet with them around half way through the game in an encounter in D.C with super mutants, you will get to know them very well as the game progresses.
-The Enclave: They aren't exactly the bad guys, they just are to the brotherhood and they are more 'good' the story is complicated and you'll just have to play through to understand everything. But this is the only organisation that is descended directly from the united states government, the surviving parts. That's why they have a president of the Enclave, they have a radio station that is very patriotic.
These are the main factions and groups, there are others like slavers, Reileys rangers etc. But they are smaller and you don't have to come across them so I will leave it to you to explore the world and discover them.
Now onto the complicated but intelligent system in which you level and gain experience in Fallout 3. First off there's skills, they go up to maximum of 100, think you can only get three to 100 with the level cap of 20 (the level cap can be raised to 30 with the broken steel add on.) Here is a list of all the skills
-Science: Hacking computer terminals, success rate and ease increases as points are added
-Lock Picking: Pretty self explanatory, there are levels of difficulty and the most difficult ones you cannot even try until this skill has a certain number of points.
-Speech: You can persuade people to your way of thinking in conversation, avoids having to trade or do them favours etc.
-Repair: You can repair items such as your weapons when they break
-Medicine: Medicine and drugs can affect you more and it will take longer to become addicted, can also heal your own limbs
-Barter: Better prices with traders and you can haggle for lower prices at certain places
-Melee: You become better with melee weapons, this can be good but later in the game melee becomes almost useless so I wouldn't recommend
-Unarmed: You become better at unarmed combat, this can be good at the points where you have fights with other travellers though that is very specific and isn't worth skill points in my opinion.
-Sneak: You can remain undetected while stealing or going around enemies depending on how many points you have invested
-Big Guns: You can use bigger guns more easily, guns such as the Minigun, Missle Laucher, Fat Boy Launcher etc.
-Small Guns: Better use of smaller guns such as pistols
-Energy Weapons: Easier use of energy weapons, like the laser pistol, laser rifle, plasma rifle etc.
-Explosives: More experience with explosives, can defuse and keep explosives you come across in the capital wasteland
When you level up you also gain a new perk to choose, some are only available once you reach a certain level. I cannot remember exactly what they were but I know many were very circumstantial and not worth the point, though does depend on your play style. I remember strong back gave you more carrying capacity which helped so much. Inventory space is very precious in Fallout.
Now for another tier of perk system that is unique to Fallout 3. Special stats can be added. Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility and Luck. In the game it is known as S.P.E.C.I.A.L. At the start of the game you get a book and you can raise each special stat to a certain point and find out about them. They go up to 10. You can find bobble heads in the fallout world that raise a certain point by 1.
Now actually reaching levels. You gain experience in Fallout 3 by killing enemies, completing quests, picking locks, hacking terminal, finding new locations, persuading people etc. There are many ways to raise experience in the game and as there are so many you would expect the game to be unbalanced but it really isn't.
The sheer size of the map is brilliant, it would take you an hour in real time at least to get from one side to the other and you cannot just go in a straight line and buildings, walls and other structures or people will be in the way ready to stop you. Though this is if you don't encounter any lethal enemies.. like a pack of deathclaws then you are sure to not make it. Though to make it less time consuming once you have discovered a location you can fast travel to that locations at any time. Your pip boy is a brilliant and unique edition to the game. It is like an advanced watch and it basically replaces you menu. You can see the map from it, your skills, quests, switch radio stations, get into your inventory etc. You can craft things with your inventory and repair things if you have the right
resources and skills. Also the radio is brilliant as there are around 5 radio stations, the main ones being the Enclave Radio and the Galaxy News Radio. Enclave Radio is very patriotic and boring, GNR is headed by three dog and he is a very charismatic DJ, he mentions the things that you get up to on main quests which is a nice touch. The music played by the stations gives off a 40's, 50's vibe.
All in all this game is brilliant. I had come across some glitches but they were few and far between, getting stuck and sometimes freezing were the only things I came across. At the moment you can get the GOTY edition for £16.99 on amazon, this is a complete steal and would recommend to anyone. Even if you've already played the base game, you will get all the expansions along with it so either way it's a bargain. One of the best games I've ever played. One of the best games of the current gen systems, a classic.
I bought this game around a year ago, review is slightly late but not everyone would have played this yet. Saints Row: The Third is basically a GTA (Grand Theft Auto) that doesn't take itself seriously at all. This is a great thing!
A little insight into the game. The third street saints are a household name with their own toys, energy drinks and power. No one seemed to match the saints... up until the Syndicate come on the scene and take out their leader Johnny Gat. The first mission that starts all this is a bank heist that the saints carry out, the police seem to be against them now and they've gone too far this time. This seems strange to them as they are kings in this city! The story has many twist and great unusual things that happen long the way, it is so out there and weird that you grow to be so into the story and don't want to put the controller down. This is just the introduction to the game, won't go too far into it.
Gameplay: This game has hours and hours and hours of gameplay value but gives you the option to just do story missions if you so please. I personally chose to do everything the game had to offer while playing co-op with my friend. It kept me interested for so long and I did not feel like I had to do it, I wanted to do it and had fun while doing it. You have the story missions that you activate through your phone, you have assassinations, car jackings, side objectives (such as get 500 kills etc.)
You can do little side activities too for money and respect. You use money to buy gun ammo, upgrades, properties, buying stores to get discounts etc. Respect is used as a level up system you can buy character upgrades once you are at that respect level, for money. It is well balanced and you cannot be too overpowered but you definitely feel it.
The game also is very diverse as what happens in the story will affect you when you are in free roam or doing other missions. At one point a special security force enter the city the name escapes me at the moment but they make things so much harder when you get police notoriety they are a lot more violent and hard to escape and makes car jackings a lot harder.
At another point in the game zombies come onto the scene and take over an island, this is only one island so it doesn't affect too much but I found it a funny and great development.
Some of the side activities I really liked are:
- Professor Genki's Super Ethical Reality Climax: which is styled on a game show where you go through the compound shooting mascots and boards for ethical and unethical reasons, it is a great minigame of sorts.
-Insurance Fraud: You have to go infront of cars and get knocked down and ragdolled around to gain money, insurance fraud. It is very simple but surprisingly fun and quite hard towards the last levels.
-Trail Blazing: You drive on a ATV around a track and have to drive into fire and other objects such as cars to get more time on the clock, it is hard to get used to but very fun once you are.
-Snatch: You go and pick up' ho's' from their pimps and drive back to a location, interesting way of basically doing a snatch and grab activity and the AI aren't stupid either so it can be a challenge.
This is just 4 of the activities there are around 10 just the rest I didn't really find that special, but still enjoyable. Got repetitive after a few though.
Another feature of the game that will be constantly around you and interacting with you is the gangs of the saints row world. They are:
3rd Street Saints: This is obviously where you will come into play, you are the leader of the saints and are warring with the syndicate for control of steelport. The syndicate is made up of three gangs. The syndicate as a whole is run by a french villian, Philippe Loren.
The Morningstar: Their gang colour is red. Which just means their cars and things such as that will be red. This is the gang that Philippe mainly looks after along with the DeWinter sisters. Their specialist is a sniper that is very accurate and very deadly. Can kill in shots, very good idea to take him out as soon as you see him (specialists are in every gang, they are the mini boss of sorts within each gang)
The Deckers: Their gang colour is blue. They are the hacker type gang led by the nerd Matt Miller who is a very .. vibrant character and a funny showdown happens with him later on in the game. Their specialist is a girl that seems to run really fast and can seriously hurt you and knock you over which can get very annoying and got me killed quite a few times.
Luchadors: Their gang colour is green. They are led by killbane, he will ruin a lot of your plans and is a great developed character. Their specialist is someone with a grenade launcher who really isn't that hard to deal with, and you can then pick his gun up after which is pretty fun to use!
STAG: This is the final gang. They come in at a certain point in the game and replace the normal police, they are a lot more dangerous and harder to lose than before so doing activities that get police heat is wise to do before they come in.
I've explained a lot about the game but now I'll get down to the positives and negatives that I generally found throughout the game.
Starting off positive the world is massive and there is so much to do or so little if you don't want to. You aren't pressured into doing anything that you don't want to, if you wanted to just follow the story the whole time then you could, the game is smart with this. The dialogue doesn't get on your nerves like some games it stays fresh and comedic throughout. The character development can be brilliant and you really feel enticed by the game, wanting more. It's not one of those games that you can only play for a while and then get sick of. I would also say the music (radio stations) in the game are good. There are minimal glitches in the game and the missions do not seem repetitive, level design is not lazy. All in all I'm very impressed with the game as a whole.
Now to the negatives I mean the graphics aren't bad but are nothing special, we cant expect anything special though as for how big the game actually is. We also have to remember it was released in November 2011. I have mentioned that at some points the AI is brilliant but generally in random encounters they are very easy to outsmart, could be a glitch but some just stand there, always missing the shots. Then again when there a lot of enemies it can be too challenging as they surround and knock you over, so two sides of the spectrum here, not a big problem just something I noticed with my hours of play. My friends have said that things appeared out of nowhere for them while playing, this never happened to me so maybe it is something to do with the disc? I'm not sure about this particular issue.
All in all this game is a great addition to the series, it is worth of the title given and despite of the out of this world structure it is not unbalanced to a stupid level, may not make sense at the moment when you play it you will understand what I mean by this. I had around 30 hours of gameplay and completed it twice, once single player and the other playing the story through with a friend. Now you can get this game second hand at cex for £8 and new on amazon (the full edition) for £12... this is a bargain and a steal. Completely worth it!
Also sorry for me not posting anything for 2 months, work got on top of me. I won't be as regular as before but I enjoy writing these and hope to post at least weekly or similar to that.
I played the demo for this game way back when, it intrigued me but other games distracted me and I just ended up forgetting about it. But my friend has this and I borrowed it, oh wow this game disappointed me.
I have watched the film and enjoyed it, this game was nothing on the film. Although when I saw that this was a kinda old style beat em up with a story relating to watchmen I was really excited. This genre seems to be lacking apart from games such as the batman series, deadpool etc. Which is why I was looking forward to this game. Also because it was co-op so I can play it when I have friends over. Disappointing it isn't online co-op but it wasn't a massive game changer either way. Just would have been nice.
The game starts with a cinematic and an intro to the game, starting in a prison. You can play as either Rorschach or Night Owl.
The game does have a type of progression added to it, which doesn't seem tacked on. You pick up these symbols of such and get a combo each time you do, but they are hidden in some levels so if you do not go the right way at the right time you will have to replay the level. On that note the lighting in the game is very poor and dark in some areas and you have to squint to see sometimes, which is why you can sometime miss the floating symbols that give you your combos. Though the graphics themselves aren't too bad for the time.
On the subject of the gameplay the combos are pretty easy though you have to do it at a certain pace, not one straight after the other. If found it quite easy to win fights. Your character does not get any weapons to start with though you are skilled in combat and can disarm enemies as you progress, you can however pick up their weapons and use them which increase damage so you can take the enemies down easier. The special takedowns are cool the first few times but can get boring as you have to use them for the bigger enemies all the time, that show up more often as the game progresses.
Progression storywise and gameplay wise it does not impress me in the slightest. The story is quite poor and hard to follow at points because the characters talk while playing the game, which gives you hints about the games progression. Though the audio means that if you have it loud enough to hear them talking it is too loud in every other aspect, so I found myself missing some of the conversation between Night Owl and Rorschach. Gameplay wise it literally is go here beat these guys up, go here beat these guys up, then go here and beat these guys up and watch this cinematic then go to another area and repeat. No innovation and can get very boring and tedious if played for more than about an hour, depending on how you are feeling.
Character individual qualities? There aren't many if I'm honest. Rorschach is the more upfront one and the one I played through all of the game with, Night Owl can open doors and use his grappler to get up on buildings, that's about it for the differences. I was looking forward to being able to play through with both of them with a different experience unfortunately it does not differ by much at all, certainly not enough to play through it again.
I was very disappointed by this game, I do not feel it is worthy of a watchmen title, it has really let down fans I feel. It get so repetitive, there is no variety... many things. If you are a big fan I would suggest playing it just because it is an addition to the series but don't expect anything.
So overall this game can be enjoyable for a short while but gets annoying and repetitive quickly. Cannot play for hours on end which stops the story progression for the player, but worth it if you are a fan. If you want a decent beat em up.. stay clear of this game.
I went to Florida for my 4th trip there on the 1st of July and had not planned to go to Busch Gardens. I had planned to go to Universal and Disney as I always had, but this time I wanted to go there as I had never been there before. Also this time I had my friend with me so the travel wouldn't be awkward. I was living 10 minutes away from Universal so we had to get the coach to Busch Gardens, the driver for my coach was very good and very chatty to everyone, he was amusing in a good way! Good coach service from Mears.
Busch Gardens itself has been open since 1976, it has evolved so much since then. It is now very focused on themed areas with rides to match those, rather than focused on one location as it did before, it focused on Africa as it was called Busch Gardens: Africa from 2006-2008. Even before that it was called Busch Gardens: The Dark Continent. Just a brief history of the park for any interested.
Anyway when we got there after the hour and a half coach ride, we bought our tickets for 79 dollars which sounds steep but for a gate price that is good and you also get the chance to trade your ticket in at the end of the day for a return ticket that can be used at any point in that week. So if you got your ticket on a Friday you can use the other free entry ticket anyday before the next friday or on that friday.
Now when you get in you are going straight into Morocco. There are staff that will take your picture, you can then buy the pictures when you leave at guest services with a pass they will give you.
The big rides don't seem to open until the park has been open for at least an hour, these are the rides I were most interested in. I will list all main rides in all of the areas, may not include some of the small attractions.
This is quite a large area and as I have mentioned the area that you come into once you enter the park, this park does have a lot of walking involved to get from place to place but that is expected.
-Gwazi. This is 32m wooden rollercoaster that travels at a max of 50mph, do not mistake this fact for it being an easy ride though. This is the first ride you will come across if you are walking towards Stanleyville (the 'main' way that everyone seems to go) I will admit I was scared to go on it as it looked dodgy as hell and if I'm honest it was haha. It was the most uncomfortable ride I've ever been on but it is the first ride in a while that has made me scream for my life! I would go on it again though I wouldn't push it. But unfortunately it has been rumored that Gwazi will be closing and being torn down at the end of this year. If I'm honest it looks like it's had its run and I'm glad I got to ride it before it closed its doors. When I went the Tiger side of the ride was closed down for good, it was meant to be a dueling coaster at first and was for a few years, now only one side is running and it looks like it's the end for Gwazi. I am sad to hear that as there are not many wooden rollercoasters left but am excited for what is to come of that space, though it will be a long while before that all depending on if the rumors are true.
-Gwazi Gliders. This is located next to the main entrance of Gwazi and is a kids hang glider ride, it is very small and suitable for small children.
The Bird Gardens:
This is the part of the park you walk past after Gwazi and on the way to Stanleyville. It is mainly to look at all the different birds they have at the park and I believe it was one of the first areas of the park.
-Walkabout way. This is an attraction where the staff there give you the chance to see the birds, parrots up close and feed them. You will also get to hand feed wallabies and kangaroos, we did do this and enjoyed it though it seems to be for the families.
Sesame Street Safari of Fun:
This area is mainly a childrens play area it has a karting section on a fixed track, climbing frame type structures, that look very safe and many other things for young children so it is perfect for families with young children, as I said I cannot explain in detail as I did not go in just walked past as you had to on the way to Stanleyville.
This is the area I have been most excited to tell you about, because of one particular attraction in this area. It isn't a particularly big area.
-SheiKra. This was Florida's first Floorless Vertical Dive Coaster, it is 200ft and goes up to 70mph. It opened in 2005 but did not become floorless until July 2007. The great thing about this ride is that it stops at the top of the drop for five seconds, but stops as you are hanging over the edge. It is purely terrifying and when you do drop the freefalling feeling seems to last forever. Great innovation. First ride in a while to genuinely scare me.
-Stanley Falls Flume. This is a standard log flume water ride, nothing too special. I did go on this and it does not get you very wet but enough to get you cold which is a good thing when the weather is so very hot! I dried off in less than 10 minutes. I liked it but it did not impress me, did not need to if I'm honest.
-Tanganyika Tidal Wave. I saw this ride but did not go on it as we were very pressed for time and needed to get on all the rollercoasters. It is a shoot the chutes ride which is a type of ride that usually holds more than 8 people, is a lengthy ride and only has one big drop. This ride holds 20 people in a boat type vehicle and has one drop though it is not very long.
This area has undergone large renovation since 2006 since its Python coaster was removed, I am sad I did not get to ride it but it. But it made way for a whole new section that seems to be getting a positive reception that I will talk about next.
-Kumba. This ride is a steel sit down coaster, 143ft tall, 7 inversions and goes up to 60mph. I enjoyed it and it reminded me of Colossus at Thorpe Park, though it is no high on my list I would ride again.
-Congo River Rapids. Again we were very pressed for time and did not get on this ride but I have heard good things about it. It has been in the park since 1982.
This is the area that replaced the Python coaster, it seems still in the works as there are only 2 attractions. There is a way to look through a scope at some animals in their habitats though.
-Jungle Fliers. This is a zip line ride, but a kids one so it is not too scary at all, I would say it is suitable for 7 and up. I did not go on it myself though.
-The Wild Surge. I did not actually even see this ride when I was there I am disappointed though reading up about it, it looks good. It is a family launch tower ride. So maybe it will be quite tame but I would have liked to see for myself.
This area has a lot of new things coming to it in the future as I saw when I was there, lots of buildings work in and around the area. Though it has a few good attractions already.
-Sand Serpent. This is a steel wild mouse coaster. A wild mouse coaster is the spinning ones in a the cup type vehicle, hopefully you know what I m on about. It is as violent as it should be, wouldn't recommend for anyone that does not want to be bumped. It does remind me of Primeval Whirl at Disney's Animal Kingdom. I did enjoy it though I would not go on it twice in a row.
-Scorpion. This is a steel sit down rollercoaster, it seems to be squashed into the area though. I think it just adds to the way the ride bumps you around going back on itself multiple times, I liked it but again anyone who has back or shoulder problems should avoid this ride, it isn't careful with you.
-Caravan Carousel. This is a typical carousel I would not say it is anything different though it is good to see a kids ride in the same place as a rollercoaster, encourages families to that area of the park. Though there is not much seating around and in the area.
This is mainly a place to look in at animals in their natural habitats I enjoyed the area as a type of calm down attraction after eating.
-Rhino Valley. This is a safari type adventure ride, except you are in a type of rally car on a track, you do get to see animals but for a short space of time, the ride does not go as fast as I expected though can be fast for some.
-The Animal Care Centre. This is not a ride but an attraction of sorts, you get to walk through some animal enclosures and to see the way that animals are cared for on a daily basis, when they are ill, injured etc. You walk through all of the rooms that are needed for any situation. You do not see anything bad like surgery but for children I think that it could be upsetting at some points. It is very interesting though. A great insight.
Crown Colony Plaza:
This area has two attractions and a museum for busch gardens, which is a nice touch I thought
-Cheetah Hunt. This is the only steel multi launch coaster in the park, it is one of the best rides in the park, I loved it! It opened in 2011 and the theming I thought was imaginative. Once you go through the start launch there is a cheetah growl accompanied with the screams of the riders, the sounds seem to go together. I just liked this ride all round.
-Cheetah Run. Not a ride but a cheetah exhibit located to the left of cheetah hunt. I did not go into this as it was closed on both times I had visited, i have heard people have been happy with it though.
-Skyride. One end of the skyride station is here, leading to stanleyville. The line is located exactly next to the cheetah hunt line. This confused me the first time I went in as I thought the line was massive when it really wasn't the two lines are just in very close proximity.
This area seems to be the smallest with only one ride, the theming is pretty cool but apart from that it is pretty empty, I expect additions in the future though I don't see Montu being torn down, its great and unique.
-Montu. This is the park's steel inverted coaster, to me it is a better version of Nemesis Inferno and Thorpe Park. It has a long train up to the top and the generic drop of this type of rollercoaster, going to the side and dropping. Though Montu is unique as it is nearly 3 minutes long, this is extremely long for a rollercoaster and an aspect I loved about it. It has also had a good reception. It goes up to 60mph and has 7 inversions.
On the subject of food, there wasn't exactly a wide selection. There were the generic kinds of restaurants in the themed places, that offered the same meals across the board, things such as chips and chicken nuggets etc. All seemed pretty standard. Except for one place a pizza buffet that was surprisingly good value and nice. The name I cannot remember and have searched for but cannot seem to find but it is inbetween the bird gardens and Gwazi. It was 12 dollars each and 2 dollars extra for a drink. There was a large selection of pizzas and pastas and a good cake desert. I would recommend it as a place to eat if you are the type to enjoy buffets and be able to function for the day with most of your food in one sitting. I found it hard personally but once I got back to the apartment it was fine. Plus the excitement of the day stopped me noticing I was hungry (most of the time)
I only have a few complaints the main one not being the parks fault but a big problem, I feel you will need to know about. Ok so when lightning is within 5 miles of the area pretty much all the rides are shut down because if lightning strikes the steel it will stop the ride in its tracks which can be dangerous depending on where it is, the brakes may fail, if the lightning hits in the right place riders could be killed etc. So Busch Gardens themselves have sophisticated equipment to detect lightning within 5 miles. I am not sure what the average shut down time is but when I was there both times the shut down time was around 3 hours. I waited for SheiKra for 3 hours and the last day waited for cheetah hunt for 4 hours. I think it was worth it but don't know exactly as I have never been in that situation before and this was my first time on all these rides. Another thing is that I the lockers are in need of a serious upgrade they are very old and the way they work and look shows this, it makes the park look worse and makes putting your stuff away complicated. Otherwise it was great all the staff I came across were nice and helpful apart from one at Gwazi when it was closed but nevertheless all round the park is great. A must for coaster fans!
Thank you for reading my review. Sorry if it was boring, this is my longest review yet I just feel this is something I need to fully get across to you.
I had been waiting for this game for so long ever since the first installment, which I loved and played over and over again. When it was announced at E3 2012 I was really excited, I was wrapped up in exams and had a massive backlog of games to play so I only picked it up around 3 weeks ago, from Cex for £25.
I personally have always loved racing games, loved both burnout and need for speed. It seems that the need for speed name has been bought out by Criteron, the owners of the Burnout series. I have not heard much from the Burnout series maybe they have taken a break to work on the many need for speed titles as late or they have given up on it, I can't say for sure.
Need for speed as a brand are not loyal to any platform. Most of their games are available on Xbox, PlayStation and PC, ever since 1994. Some of their games have been a great success and some such as hot pursuit have been an almighty failure. I let these go as the games that are good are amazing.
The game itself starts off with some cinematics and a robot like female voice explaining the premise of the game and what you will have to do, it seems short and sweet under 5 minutes and then you will be put straight into a race to start the game, I started off with the Porsche 911 but some friends said they had started off with different cars. You find the cars at 'jackspots' and you can switch between any cars you have found at any time, excluding those that need to be purchased. You do this through the Easydrive feature.
Now Easydrive is a new feature added to the need for speed franchise, you press the right button on the D pad (PS3) which will bring up a menu on the left side of the screen with a range of things to choose from, these are:
-Races. You will choose from a range of races that are specific to each car, each car has its own set. Although they are the same type of races there would be a sprint, circuit, average speed race etc. If you do not have the expansion packs to races for each car will be locked, you would need to purchase terminal velocity and one other to unlock these. Before all the races there is a cinematic which is cool to start with but gets annoying after about the 100th time.
-Customise car. Every car has customisation options but only for performance purposes, the only way you can put your stamp on the car is with a custom licence plate. Which is very disappointing as customisation was a massive part of the first need for speed: Most wanted. Though this is more in depth than the performance design in the first instalment. You choose from Tires, Nitrous, Chassis, Body and Transmission. You get the same ones for every car with the same challenges to make them a pro version, which can get very repetitive and annoying for a long period of time, I cannot play this game for too long without getting disinterested. As there is no real 'end' point the story as such in this game is very weak and almost non existent again a big part of the first one, disappointing.
-Change car. Pretty self explanatory, you go to the make of car, choose the model and transport to it. Obviously once you have found the jack spot in the world for that car.
-Most Wanted cars. This is a list of the most wanted drivers you have to beat, you need a certain amount of speed points to race these cars, which if I'm honest are very easy to earn in this game. With the expansion packs there are also 4 more most wanted cars to take down with each pack. This is the story of the game, as I have said pretty non existent, no character development as the first one had a lot of.
-Multiplayer. This transports you to the multiplayer playground, you go to a meet up with other players and race, before all races though there is a challenge to gain some extra speed points. I have played a few some are how many takedowns you can get in a certain area in 5 minutes, how long you can drift in a certain area, how big a jump you can do etc. The other drivers can take you down while you do this though and this will eliminate you from the challenge, which can get frustrating.
The game has many makes of car varying from Ariel to Aston Martin, it is mind blowing the amount of cars that are in this game but if you can find the best one it seems counterproductive to switch to a less powerful one, though if your like me you just like to have an experience with all the cars and do all the races.
Now onto the racing, the point of the races is to earn the upgrades to your car, which are needed to beat the fastest cars, the stock stuff just isn't enough. You get easy, medium and hard races, which can get quite easy with a fully upgraded car, though bare in mind the first time you do these you won't have any upgrades. Though one thing I found is that if the autolog alert tells you that your friend has a faster time you can do that particular race in any car you decide to, which I find a bit stupid. The AI for the police seems rushed and stupid as they seem to just miss you all the time during races and pursuits they cannot corner you, maybe it's because I played the first one so much but I just feel the game in general is too easy for a seasoned player. The multiplayer saved this game for me, gave it endless replay ability and a way to get away from the sometimes dull single player.
Going back to the subject of the multiplayer, the cars are different on multiplayer to the single player, your progress does not carry over, you have to complete multiplayer challenges to unlock the upgrades for the cars online, which I find good as its a separating barrier, though at first it did annoy me. It does seem that the people that have bought the expansions are better but what do you expect really? This is EA we are talking about.
Another slightly new thing is Autolog 2.0, autolog was first introduced in the 2010 hot pursuit, to track progress of yourself and your friends and give you an incentive to beat them at races, it is integrated with Easydrive. As you get extra speed point for beating your friends times.
This game is available for £25 at Cex and even cheaper on amazon but the price keeps changing so I would check it before you buy.
In conclusion this game is great to pass the time and you feel like cruising around the place in any car you could want. It is not suited for long periods of play as it will get boring, though I don't know there are so many bad points about this game I still like it a lot, maybe its the name I don't know but I don't discount this game even with all it's faults. I would recommend this game for around £20 to pass the time, it is good in short bursts.
David Llyod had started buying establishments to start up gym's or buying existing gym's such as the one I went to Amida. David Llyod has changed my gym for the better and the price of membership even went down! A combination of a loyalty bonus and a staff discount as my brother worked in the Café.
Now exercise is what you think of when you hear the word gym right? Well David Llyod is more than just a gym it is a leisure club also. Not all establishment's are the same but the one I am with (David Llyod Hampton) has these features:
-8 Tennis courts though in the evening only 4 are available.
-5 Squash courts
-2 Badminton courts
-Children's play area
-Outdoor relaxation place where you can have your food brought to you and supervise children or just relax as I do after a gym session
-As I have mentioned it has a well equipped café serving all kinds of food although it is quite pricey
- A gym area located upstairs that is spacious, no machines are squashed in
-Multi sports courts
-Spa salon with paid treatments you can schedule
The equipment in the gym area is as follows:
-Cross trainers 2 types (Around 5 for each type)
-Floor work area equipped with medicine balls, mats etc.
-Free weights area
-2 Aerobic studios
-An exercise class in the right hand corner of the gym that is a new edition, I personally think that it gets in the way but the subscription for the class is full so maybe it's just personal preference I like to take control of my own workout.
-Different weight machines to work on all parts of your body Abdominals, Legs, Biceps, Triceps, Chest etc
-It also features a pure strength section which has parts to do proper bench presses (with a bar) pull-ups etc. It is recommended for no one under 18 to use the weights in this section as it can damage inexperienced people.
Now rewinding a bit I had joined after most of my family, that have all been happy with the club ever since the David Llyod takeover. When you join they give you a tour of the whole place and work on your exercise plan with you, at which point you get a Technogym key that stores your workout progress and information. I used this for the first 6 months or so but after I felt I could track my own progress and it was becoming a pain to carry this around all the time. I strongly suggest using it until you are used to the gym then after you are comfortable with your plan you can stop, you can always go back to using it at any time if you feel you need to.
The changing areas are a main point of he gym also, they are always spotless and clean, the cleaners are always around and great at the job. They are large and have many lockers that you can put your stuff in while you go to the gym you just need a £1 coin for the slot that you get back after. The rooms themselves are equipped with sockets for shavers in the bathrooms, 2 bathrooms, places to sit while you change, cubicles, hairdryers and a place to shower before and after the pool, after the gym etc. Also if you are going to the spa or indoor pool just to check on a child or friend you have to wear overshoes to avoid getting any dirt on the floors near these facilities, the whole place is very hygienic.
The staff are friendly and very helpful. There are always staff at the front of club to assist you, at the bar, personal trainers in the gym area, lifeguards at both pools etc. I have always been helped when asked for it and they always are nice and friendly. Excellent service.
On the membership side there are 4 different levels that you can be offered
This is a full membership at every David Llyod club in existence you get 10% off on food and drink in the DL cafe's, free towels and 3 free guest passes every month. This usually goes for £160 a month. I do not see much point in this unless you travel a lot and want to go the gym while doing so.
You get access to any and all club facilities, assuming you are of age. (18) This usually goes for £69 a month
-Off peak membership
You can only go to the specified club at certain times usually from 9-5. Usually goes for £40 a month
I have a full membership and so does my brother and mum who both go there. I have a slight staff discount and loyalty bonus so I pay £52 a month. I should also mention some benefits I have with the full membership that people do not seem to pick up on. With the full membership you get a guest pass every month, you just have to ask. You get free towels, again just ask. You get access to any of the courts and can ask for a racket and ball and this is free of charge. You can do all this at full level at least at my local David Llyod, some people seem to think you only get these benefits with vantage, well to my experience and knowledge that is wrong.
All in all I would definitely recommend David Llyod to anyone that wants to get fit but also have a place to relax and even eat if you wanted to. It is great value for everything that they offer and I go at least 3 times a week without fail, to get in for a day it is £12.50 so I am definitely getting my money's worth and enjoying it at the same time!
Cheap can mean bad with many products such as headphones, computer screens etc. Even with a mouse it can be if the build quality isn't up to par, but this mouse seems to break the rule.
This is my first logitech product and I was not disappointed.
I needed a mouse because my last one decided to not respond after a year and I was very strapped for cash so I just wanted a cheap replacement that would last, I came across this one as my friend recommended it. I don't know a lot about computer mice but I know that this fits for normal use. What I mean by normal use is no one that is using it to professionally play games.
It arrived in a standard box with the warranty inside and instructions, all the normal things. It is black and is the standard design except it gets bigger and has a slightly rounded shape at the bottom, that fits to the hand perfectly. This design works well for someone that has large hands, it glides along the pad well and this does not falter over time. I should also mention that the design on the bottom means that things such as dust will not stick to it and make it harder to move or end up breaking it, my brothers mouse broke this way.
My previous mouse was wireless and I had enjoyed it but it's not exactly needed with my setup, I can have the cord go under the desk to my computer and it works fine, I do not have to pull it. The cord seems to be just the right size. It connects to your computer with a standard USB, mine also came with a 3 year warranty but seeing as you can get this mouse for around 1 pound now I do not think I will be following them up on that if it does break, just order a new one from amazon.
The mouse itself does feel very light, which is a good thing for me but friends have said that they don't like that feel maybe its personal preference. I have had this mouse for 2 years now and it is still working as well as the day I got it, no problems with it so far and I don't expect any to surface.
I cannot remember how much I purchased this mouse for, but I think it was worth it and the price now is a steal! For anyone that wants a mouse for normal use I would suggest this one. If anyone is looking for a mouse for computer gaming then I would suggest something from Razer. This just doesn't have the large movement resolution that is needed for serious gaming. I do game but not seriously so it does not bother me, it is on my wishlist to get something more responsive but it is very low on the list as I don't see the benefit to match the very high prices.
All in all the mouse is designed well, fairly responsive and perfect for the average user. I would definitely recommend it, I still cannot believe the price it is at now. Most get put off by the fact it isn't wireless but that just adds to the cost and depending on your setup, many people do not need a wireless mouse.
It's been 3 years since the last installment in this series, I personally wanted them to take a big break and get to refine this series as I thought the first Bioshock was ground breaking, one of the best horrors I had ever played. Bioshock 2 didn't live up to the standard.. don't get me wrong it was a good game but nothing on the original, the story seemed tacked on and weak and the combat hadn't really changed. Seemed like an expansion pack, guess this is what happens when they set the bar so high. If you have played the previous installments you will be very surprised by this game, complete change in many areas of the game.. the areas that made it Bioshock.
From early looks at this game in development I was slightly worried, the gunplay seemed to take over the horror.. too many FPS elements for what this series was. I was very skeptical but I had loved the first one and second even though I felt a bit cheated with the second being a stand alone game, at least it was Bioshock as we know it!
It's price dropped dramatically quite quickly and I managed to get it for £25 around 2 weeks ago.
Storywise this game is as brilliant as the first one, it sucks you into the story until you don't know what's going on and you are so intrigued it's hard to put the controller down. You are Booker Dewitt, given a picture and a pistol then told bring us the girl, clear the debt. This is all we as the player know so far. You are now introduced to Columbia a massive floating city (set in 1912 years before the first 2 installments) The premise of the place is the same as Rapture set up and advertised as a better world for everyone, now turned into one of the worst places.. but this is mainly shown by racial segregation, the white citizens are treated better and seem to have a good life although they seemed plagued and evil, you see this dark side come out at your first decision, a carnival game you win the game and get to throw a ball at the captives they have, or you can choose to throw it at the carnival master. I won't give any spoilers but just know you will not be able to guess what is next, it's immersive as Bioshock has always been. Don't skip the credits, there is something you will want to see after the credits end.
Gameplay wise the mechanics are very different, they seem to have moved away from the horror as a main selling point and making a much more FPS feel to the game, yes the previous games were FPS's but they had horror as the main selling point, what made people buy it the big daddy's, little sisters, splicers, the way the plasmids are brought across and how the insanity had taken over Rapture. This was what attracted me and many other to the franchise, I am slightly annoyed that they have moved so far from it. One aspect I liked that they added was 1999 mode, a way you can play again with your upgrades on a very hard difficulty, it gives the game that replayability that I say it needs as there is no multiplayer and I finished the game in around 6 hours, this is quite short I found the others to be longer and harder to finish. I found no bugs while playing the game and no frame rate drops it did run smoothly.
Now after all I have said you would think I dislike this game? Very wrong I do like this game I just don't think it should not have been part of the Bioshock world, if they had to change it up this much and move away from the horror aspect so much that it is almost non existent then they needed to finish the series. The game is great but it is not Bioshock as we know it I'm afraid.
Sorry I haven't published a review for a while, college finished and I jetted off to Orlando. I am back now though!
I have bought many pairs of headphones and they kept on breaking to a point where I'd spent hundreds of pounds trying different ones out, I thought it was time to actually buy an expensive product and see how well that works for me. I had to save up and I did not wait until I had broken the previous pair like I usually do, mostly for comparison purposes once I had the headphones. The headphones I have gone through have been brands like Creative, Skullcandy and many others I cannot remember, just trying to save money. Bad idea! Come to think of it the Skullcandy pair I had were the ones that broke first, also the most expensive.. brands aren't always worth the price tag.
A main reason I had wanted to buy these was because I wanted a pair of good headphones as I have started trying to produce EDM as a hobby and need to hear everything that anyone listening can hear. Learning all these things through tips and learning how to use Massive. Maybe it will always just be a hobby but you never know, although I'm not giving up on education juuust yet.
As you know these are expensive, yes it is mainly because they are Beats just like Apple products are more expensive because it will have the Apple logo on it. I have never splashed out on headphones before and I thought why not? I have not regretted it, some friends say I can get the same quality for less money but I made my decision and I am happy with it.
What's in the actual box you get with the product? You get the box itself which looks very nice, the way the headphones are packaged is strange but very cool and safe for the transport of them. You get 7 pairs of ear buds to adjust for your ears as if they are too big this can cause discomfort.
The design is one of the main factors with headphones and usually determines the durability of the headphones and how long they will last. These have a flat cable design which is relatively new, within the last few years. It keeps tangling to a minimum, makes the wires themselves more durable in case they are enclosed or stretched, with this design the effects from being stretched will not show up unless they are actually being tugged on, even then it will take a while.
They are very comfortable in the ear for an extended period which is nice, you can actually listen to for a long time without feeling discomfort which had happened to me all the time with other headphones, though you do have to bear in mind that I have never had my own over ear headphones because I do not see a use myself for them. They are too big and annoying to cart around for me.
The wire has a volume control which can answer calls, turn down the music. This is a nice feature as you will not have to take the device out of your pocket to change the audio volume or to answer a call and of course they have a microphone on this remote control device so you can speak to someone with the phone in your pocket and on the move. I also like the design visually, it looks really good, I have the red and white version of these. Finally they fit really well and do not fall out even when in the gym and doing such activities, they fit perfectly when you have the right buds for your ears, even when they are slightly loose they still fit.
On the subject of taking them around with you they are easier than previous pairs I have had but these type of headphones (in ears) are usually awkward to cart around unless you have lose pockets, the enclosed space can damage them. A design hasn't come up that can completely combat this problem though. They have made the headphones light and durable so that it is easier to do this. I have done this with them and they are fine but wouldn't often with any headphones.
Now on the sound quality it is great as I expected, people seem to say that beats are terrible because of the price and yes a portion of that price is simply because they are beats, a known and very popular brand but this does not mean the headphones themselves are bad, they are one of the best if not the best I have ever had with all factors including sound quality. The bass isn't made so heavy that its hard to listen to but it can handle heavy bass songs, the range of music is can handle is incredible. For example listening to EDM songs it is so different to any other headphones I have ever had. A good song for this is SKisM-Experts, the bass is so much more prominent with the beats.
Now I bought these headphones early May, I know this is not a long time but these are still working the same as the were the day I first got them and they have been through a lot with me I am very impressed, I will update this review when they do break but I anticipate it will be a long time. I say when because no pair of headphones will last forever. I have learnt to treat my headphones better with the many pairs I have been through.
I have talked about the price a lot, but never mentioned how much. Well if you buy direct from the website it is currently £119.95. They are offering a discount on the original beats at the moment, maybe they will on the Tour in the future. If you search around on the internet you can get these for a lot less, I saw amazon selling these from £50-£100 at times.
You also get a one year warranty with the headphones if you buy direct from the Beats By Dre website or an official seller, anywhere else there is no warranty. Be aware of this if you are only saving a small amount of money is it worth it? What if they break within the first year due to manufacturing problems? I would personally be very angry with myself and the saving wouldn't stack up enough for me to buy from a second hand source.
In conclusion all factors that go into headphones such as durability, sound quality and lifespan these beats excel at all and I think will continue to do so.
I had been looking forward to this film as soon as I had seen the trailer, it looked like something very different and a very interesting concept. The day it was released I went to see it. This review is quite late as I have been tied up pretty much 24/7 with college work.
The story for this film can be predictable at times but has some surprise twists and turns, leaves you thinking to yourself you know what will happen and you will be very surprised. Happened to me twice especially to do with who was committing certain acts. Anyway Purge is set around 10 years in the future. America has a problem with violent crime and as a result has introduced Purge day, an annual event where anything goes. It is a day for all Americans to let off steam and let out any frustrations that they have. You can do anything that day, kill anyone you want excluding government officials, as all emergency services are suspended for that night. This is a concept that I think have been given some thought knowing America....
So what does the family we are watching do? They are a relatively wealthy family so they have a home security system that blocks off every window and door with a thick metal wall. All in that suburb are wealthy and just 'lockdown' for the night and watch movies or stay in doing whatever just passing the night blocking out the horrors that are sure to be happening outside. Whilst the others.. maybe the insane go around and satisfy their hunger for murder and carry out killings on whoever they see, some do have specific targets but many seem to just kill homeless people and this is their right to purge the useless from society. They see it as their role on Purge day.
Certain events lead to a Purge group going to the Sandin household, I will not give away anymore spoilers just be sure that you are in for a lot of surprises when you sit down to view this title!
From the trailer The Purge looked like a horror with twists. This is exactly what we got. But I was very surprised at just how creepy the Purge group pursuing the family were portrayed to be, it was a lot more creepy than I anticipated. They all had masks and were giddy and happy, while killing innocents, vey very creepy.
As I said earlier I wouldn't be surprised if a concept similar to this has been discussed in America, obviously it is a very 'out there' idea but I feel that some people would become like that. The way they justify it saying that crime was down to 1% and all that is stupid for a real life scenario as people would not be satisfied with just one day of this unbelievable violence. Something that I liked about the film was because of the timeline they didn't have to have too futuristic tech everything I saw seemed possible even now, they didn't try to hard with the futuristic feel which I liked. I also found that the concept was not done in an unbelievable way which again I found impressive. By the end I really did believe in this storyline and this world.
Something else that impressed me was that they characters were not portrayed the generic way that we see all the time where the 'good guys' always win etc etc. There are a lot of twists involved where sometimes you are even guessing who are the good guys? Are there any? Another note on the characters portrayed was the victim that gets taken in when the little boy in the family opens the door to him as he is crying out for help. He is played by Edwin Hodge and I think he did a fantastic job he did not overplay the role and was very convincing it really tugged on my heartstrings near the end when they catch him. He is an excellent actor that I had not previously seen or heard of now I have I will be looking for titles that include him. The rest of the characters I found slightly generic, I found the mother role didn't really develop past anything we'd seen before until very near the end, the kids where as you expected them to be, again with the father you only really see anything different towards the midpoint in the film.
The Purge is a very hard film to watch if you are the emotional type and tackles some very disturbing issues. It does not hold back on showing the horrors that the Purge day comes coupled with, although it does not overdo it to a saw like interpretation where it is just gore, it does it cleverly and this is why I rate this film so high it makes everything seem just right not holding back not too far. The rating? I think this is right to be a 15 it is a hard 15 though, the violence is so strong, and the clips you see on the CCTV are quite upsetting, the language I didn't really notice and there is no sex just a hint to it at the start and when the boyfriend of the daughter comes back, nothing ends up happening though.
The film's setting does not change it is in the rich suburb that I cannot remember the name of right now and the Sandin family household. The setting maybe is generic but the way it is put across it is far from it. The scenes had quite an emotional impact on me and really the only film that has made me really emotional to date is Boyz in Da Hood (sounds stupid from the title but is an excellent film) One thing that did disappoint me was the soundtrack.. there wasn't much of it if I'm honest, when it was there it was alright nothing special.
All in all I thoroughly enjoyed this film, there are many 'edge of your seat' moments in this film and some dark humour at times. It had quite the impact on me personally. Moral code did come in, with the way some were taking this Purge event but it did make sense. I would definitely recommend this film if you are watching for a new horror/thriller with a fresh start of sorts.
My parents purchased this and if I'm honest I think I use it more than they do! Simply because I don't have a laptop I have a slow 10 year old desktop.
Reviews for just this product can vary as many options are completely optional and the seller can sell the same product with different specifications. The specs for the one I am reviewing are as follows:
-Intel core i5
-Display:17.3 inches, 1920x1080 pixels
-Storage: Drivers: 2 drive size 1000 GB
-It weighs 8.3 pounds
-Default comes with Windows 7 home premium
-Has a Microphone
-Has a Subwoofer
-Has a Webcam
-Battery life is 3 hours
The laptop itself is built very well and it looks good. But seeing as the screen is 17.3 inches also these qualities mean it is very heavy and is not good for anyone that wants to carry it around or use it for work purposes, in my opinion it is just too big and heavy for someone on the move. Now the battery life is quite disappointing I find myself never using it without it being plugged in unless I know I am only using it for a short amount of time.
Now the default operating system was great, at the time it was the latest and I have no complaints about it, I have Windows 7 on my desktop and it has really breathed more life into the thing, although a replacement when I have the funds is needed. A note on the antivirus you don't get one with the laptop I have purchased Kaspersky and put that on it, I would recommend it, the best out of all I have had to try and the most user friendly.
The screen has a nice quality to it and doesn't falter through prolonged use or through time like some. The sound quality it very good especially with the sub woofer, the bass seems boosted though this is my opinion I have no fact to support that.
The speed of the laptop itself is good, not great but I do have some issues I will come onto later. The memory is great and what many will need if you are using just for home use, but it can be upgraded to your specific specifications if you so wish so it can suit your purpose.
I have been giving the good points, neutral points and information so far now let's get onto the bad shall we!
The touchpad itself can be very sensitive and when I am trying to scroll down a webpage or something similar it can zoom out of the page or zoom in which can be very frustrating, the main reason this is a problem for me is because I cannot see a way to disable this or make the touchpad less sensitive, otherwise it does work well and is not run down by time.
The laptop itself comes with a lot of unnecessary apps that you neither asked for nor wanted, they don't take up much space and can be removed it can just be a pain searching through installed programs and having to figure out for yourself whether they are going to be useful to you or not etc. One of the main ones I found was the 'Dell Stage' that is kind of like the windows 8 interface when you load up your laptop it is there with mail, games etc in one place, now this sounds good but for me it really wasn't it was a pain, unresponsive, sometimes didn't even work so I just stopped it opening on start up after a while. Also the internet seems to disconnect a lot it's strange my desktop and PS3 are completely fine with the internet, never had problems. Cannot see why.
Overall it is not the best laptop in the world but for simple home use and limited gaming it is good for the price! The price it was at when my parents purchased it was £160 now this version of it can be bought for around £100 if you are a serious gamer than this laptop will not be for you, don't get me wrong it can run some of the latest games but can lag and be unresponsive a lot with the newer ones. But it is great value for money, well built and can multi task well! Can have multiple tabs and applications open with no worries. I could not before I am very happy with it and can disregard the faults it does have as 99% of the time it works fine.
I was so sceptical about tablets before but I had come into some money and bought one because my friend had one and I used it pretty much constantly so I decided to get one maybe simply because I wanted it and for no other reason.. at the time. But then again at the time I personally never saw a use for tablets. Simply because they weren't better than a desktop, laptop or console. So what is the point? But you really have to try one out to understand at least I did.
Now I have a completely different view I use this all the time, to watch TV, Movies, play games browse the internet etc.
I chose the iPad over any other tablet as I have an Android Phone (HTC Desire C) and I will continue to so. I wanted apps individual to the App Store as I already had apps individual to the Play Store on my phone. The reason I got the 16GB is simply because I wasn't going to use it for that much so I wouldn't need a 32 GB storage. 16GB is more than enough for a wide range of games and man many songs. I'm no where near the full storage of it yet and I have 450 songs and around 15 games 30 apps overall.
The main reason I got the mini is because I want to go around using it, the bigger iPad is not convenient to do so. It is very light and you can do pretty much whatever, listen to music, read books, play games etc. You could also go on the internet and browse Facebook if you got the version that also has mobile internet I unfortunately did not but I didn't feel I needed that functionality. Would be nice though. The only problem I would have with the carrying it around is the worry of it being stolen which is a big possibility. Apple does offer a year warranty with the iPad and after you can get third party insurance for it if you so wanted.
Are there differences from the 'normal' iPad? Yes there is a few nothing massive though, obviously the smaller screen size, it is lighter, it is thinner. The components are slightly scaled down but it is still lightning fast, I will give all the specifications later on in the review.
Here are the specifications and features:
-Wireless and Mobile: It is 2.4GHz and 5GHz this may sound like gibberish to most basically the Wifi works perfectly as does the Mobile internet.
-The display: 7.9 inch LED multi touch, 1024x768 resolution 163 pixels per inch and fingerprint resistant coating. It is very durable and will last.
-Processor: Dual core A5
- HD front facing camera, 720p HD video, 1080p HD video recording
- Facetime is a feature that is intergrated so you can talk to anyone with an Apple device past 4th Gen. You do obviously need WiFi or Mobile Internet for this.
-Face detection software
-Autofocus through the camera
-Built in 16.3 watt-hour rechargeable lithium polymer battery
- Up to 10 hours constant use
-Charges via the lightning cable from main plug power of a computer
-Has a digital compass
-Supports all types of mail and attachments
- Can be connected to external sources like a TV or an Apple TV
-All audio formats are supported (you wont need them all but they are supported)
-Comes in a range of languages already built in I wont list them all
-Siri actually works on the iPad! You can control it by voice most of the time if you so wish
-Full screen zoom magnification, when you zoom in on a webpage text you can easily see it and it loads quickly
- Operates at up to 35° C not that you would need it to get up to that temperature, it also doesn't overheat no matter how much you use it. In the unlikely situation it ever does a warning will come up and it will shut down
- If you don't have an Apple I.D or don't want one you will be disappointed as you need it for any app to be downloaded
- Apple have been environmentally friendly as it is easy to recycle once it reaches the end of its life, and it has these environmentally friendly features (if you are interested)
Mercury-free LCD display
Arsenic-free display glass
Recyclable aluminium enclosure
The iPad mini comes with these Apps already installed (you cannot remove some of them)
-Safari (the web browser)
-Photo Booth (Editing and taking photos)
- Newsstand (All news into one app)
-Game Center (tracks your progress on all games through your apple I.D and any friends are also shown to you, great social app)
-Contacts (Apple I.D for face timing and E-Mail contacts)
Sorry for the dull tide of features but there really is that many and you will need to know before you decide which tablet you would want. Deciding if a particular feature is something you could not live with or if you need a particular feature that this tablet does not offer etc.
Overall I would recommend an iPad to anyone that is looking for an all round entertainment device, you will be very happy with the iPad.
I have not come into any problems so far it has been lightning fast, screen has not faltered or cracked, no app problems or crashes etc. If I do come across any I will update this review.
£270 may seem a bit steep but it really is worth it, anyone who is sceptical about it should seriously research and consider a tablet. The only thing I would say is the Mobile Internet feature is something that anyone who is very integrated with social media will need, if you are out and about a lot. Also for the feature of watching movies, YouTube videos or TV on the go.
I felt that I had to review this as Call Of Duty as a franchise is going down the toilet, already plauged by a whole army of 12 year old kids. This is in my opinion the best Call Of Duty I have ever played and will ever play.
But anwyay enough of that I have been surrounded by the genre of FPS games since I was old enough to play games. I was introuced to the first call of duty by my brother and I enjoyed it thoroughly. Once we got the 2nd installment of CoD I was itching to get back into it. I was not disappointed!
First off you are hit with the story that really sticks with you has it's twists and turns and is great. You wouldn't describe it generally as having replayability as the path is always the same with the story but it is so good you will be tempted to play it again. You start training with the Russian army, you are trained to do the basics of an FPS. Shoot, aim, throw grenades, move etc. Then German troops attack while you are watching an interrigation of a captured soldier. The story is suspense filled and I will leave you to experience it yourself, I cannot praise it enough compared to the recent Call Of Duty storylines it is #1 they seem tacked on now becuase they are working on the Multi-player much more than making the game emmersive and giving it a great story. More a meh story that is forgettable nowadays.
The game is set in the 2nd world war within three storylines (but 4 characters) You will play as a Russian, American and two British Soldiers all stationed at different places that are all unique from each other, nothing feels re-used and it is all fresh and most importantly immersive.
The gameplay itself is great and well thought out. You can change the controls to your liking if you aren't happy with the pre set but it is set out like any other and doesn't take much to get used to, still the option is there. I encountered no bugs while playing, the animation were all different and it had many of them. An example of this is the reload animation when you are out of ammo is different than if you reload with bullets left in the clip. Little things that make a difference. This game was released back in 2005 and the graphics are still not bad compared to the time! Great for the time, the effects made you feel like you were really there, the explosions the suspense when you are pinned down, the stealth aspects etc. Also on the gameplay you cannot run in and kill everything and miraculously survive (which you can do in recent installments) you have to work with your team and get through the mission with lots of teamwork. The AI is also quite intellegent considering the year. Nothing will block your way unexpectadly and annoyingly (this isnt Aliens: Colonial Marines!)
One thing that is usually not talked about is the sound in a game. The sound in this game is very well intergrated. It fully immerses you in the scenario. The explosions make your ears ring if you were anywhere near, and it is very realistic. This just helps the story, sound is a key element that this game uses well. Your character will also say thing at random intervals shouting taunts at the enemy. All involved have taunts in their own accent/language. They can be quite humourous and a nice additon to the game. When you are online you can press V, B or N to use taunts and in some modes such as 'Zombies' it opens a shop menu. I will explain more on this later.
The game also does not feel like it is a point and click and what I mean by this is that you don't feel you are just simply going from A to B, whereas in actual fact you are. It just doesn't feel like it which is hard to do with a game but it has been pulled off perfectly. Nothing feels 'recycled' and the missions aren't repetitive.
Another great feature with this game is that before you are sent off on the missions you are given a briefing on exactly what you are going into and in some cases real footage is used and can really bring across what it was really like, a warning that it can be quite graphic.
Now MultiPlayer is a big part of CoD at the moment, and can be argued the only part! But they had this since the first installment they just spent equal times on the story! But the MultiPlayer in this was great too, well set out you can choose the server, your connection and the game type. Before you get into a game it will say what game mode it is, what map and how many players are on the server/allowed on that server. There were a couple of dedicated servers to start with now it is just run by people that have bought and maintained servers. There is an anti hacking software to the game but now it is hacked to pieces on most game modes which is a shame but I have played some recently (May 2013) which were not hacked, it was a Free For All. Another great thing about the multiplayer was the mods that people created, there are many variations of game modes avaliable that people have created, you will have to download it from their server but you can go to 'All Servers' and see whatever one you want. Downloads aren't that large and don't take too long. My favorite game mode was the zombies mode. Variations of that too but basically one person starts as a zombie and everyone else is a soldier and you get a weapon of your choice and limited ammo. This can play out to be a really tense and fun experience. With the game being out for so long there are countless zombie maps made by the community ready for download that are amazing. I still can't believe people are still playing but they are! Shows how good the game is!
All in all this game was groundbreaking, one of the best of its time and its sad to see call of duty deteriorate into the crap it has but at least we have these old games to save us! Worth what you can get it for now, around £10! There is still all the features it had when it was at its height of popularity, multiplayer still active so get it while it still is! Who knows maybe I'll see you online
I had finally convinced my parents to upgrade to TiVo as being a student with my college a long journey away I can have a lot of free time or very little so when I do I want to be able to do what I want to do swiftly. I could not do this before. Regarding our internet we had a 2 upload and 2 download speed.. needless to say this is terrible! (4G is 10 upload and 10 download.. that's on a mobile phone!) The V+ Box was alright nothing special and no queries on the line rental as it didn't really affect me. We upgraded to the 'VIP Collection'
Anyway enough complaining once I had brought this across I noticed the change straight away, here's a summary of all the great things that came with it and upgraded old features:
- You still have the options to watch on demand, music and films but it has a much better layout
- The V+ box that could only record 2 programmes at the same time (or if a programme finished at 9 and you had 2 set to record at 9 this would count as three and clash. With TiVo you can record 3 programmes at the same time and the end time does not factor into this. Still can record series or single programmes
- It has an internet connection (so did the V+ Box) but with this you can watch videos on YouTube and use other apps pre installed on the box which are great and very innovative. It does not have an internet browser though
- Space for 250 hours of recordings
- Same layout for watching programmes can fastforward or rewind, live TV too. But the one main thing is that with TiVo you can put a programme into a slow mo mode. Which can help to see everything in great detail and being able to do this anytime is great!
The controller is slightly different to the V+ one with the middle slightly curved, takes a while to get used to but is more comfortable and will feel that way straight away to anyone who hasn't had a Virgin media controller before. The buttons are the same apart from the slow mo addition and V+ changed to 'My Shows' When I say the same I mean they all do the same thing but they are in different places. Can't say the layout is worse or better to me it's just different. The box looks well made though I won't be testing its durability anytime soon! The controller has had it's fair drops already and it seems durable the last one definitely was! One thing I have to say is the V+ Box could be very slow and freeze frequently, TiVo does not it is very fast and responsive, may be because its relatively new but have to see as time goes on.
Finally the internet speed is amazing! I have not lagged on the internet once, we have 4 people with smartphones connecting to the WiFi, 2 laptops, 1 desktop computer, the box itself and 2 PS3's all connecting to the internet. Never lagged on any online game, or while browsing since the upgrade whereas before I would be disconnected and slow even when it was working. This is all I thought I would benefit from with the upgrade but the TiVo box itself was a lot better than expected!
The price we got was only £10 more than before ended up as £40 month + £10 line rental. I do not know the price ranges for a new customer but the TV by itself can be got for £20 a month, I am sure this is for a limited time but it is what was advertised, getting a quote from them directly is a better way to find out. Also go around and find out what Sky and the other companies are offering if they offer cheaper tell Virgin Media that and they will 9/10 times match that price.
All in all this is more than just TV now and is an amazing improvement. Would recommend to anyone well worth the money and it is used a lot in the house!
This game was simply part of my childhood as I was obssessed with theme parks and rollercoasters still am to a certain extent. Before this series I had played Theme Park World on Playstation 2.
Starting with game play it is pretty fluid and enjoyable many of the tutorials are common sense such as how to control the camera. But many like how to build, how to manage what does what and the simple game mechanics you will need to know, going straight in you may pick up certain aspects but you will be lost at many points, as it is not always logic that runs the game. There are 3 Career mode 'storylines' which is the mian game and the expansions.
There are all the old features in this game from previous installments but there are many new ones and all of the old features are much improved
-Coaster cam is great and way to immerse youtself in the rides, the graphics are dated now but back when it was released they were great
- Sandbox mode is also great. You are basically given land and an infinite amount of money so you can create the park of your dreams without having to worry about costs
-The missions that you have to do are all at very different scenarios and there is a wide variety of map design which I applaud designers for none look the same as before
- The peeps look better and now have a lot more input you can tap into and change how things are run to keep them happy which is key to completing many missions
-You can create your own family and see them wondering around the park, nice touch!
- You can now create your own firework show! Using mix master incorporating the show and the music to go along with it, takes some getting used to
- Many more coaster, shops and other attractions. There are also at least 2 pre built for every coaster so if you don't feel like building your own the option is there
- Now there is a way to import your own music to put on the rides instead of the pre installed stuff, which to be honest isn't too bad but the option to put your own music on the coaster is cool
- You can go back to any completed scenario and see how your park is doing which is a really nice touch
The only flaws I found were that some may find it too easy to complete. As I have grown older I noticed this it is fairly easy once you get the hang of it previous games have taken hours and hours to complete one level on RCT3 it can sometimes take 1 hour to complete one scenario. And sometimes the height restrictions can be annoying invisible walls everywhere.
This edition came with both the expansion packs within, I paid £40 for this. Which was a generous price at the time. Seeing as the game was around £30 and the expansions £15. Right now you can get this for around £6! This is a steal, yes now the graphics may be out of date but right now this is your only chance at the most updated version of a theme park manager type game.
The falling out between Frontier and Atari has made sure that Rollercoaster Tycoon 4 won't be coming to us which is a shame. If another company acquires the RollerCoaster Tycoon name then maybe we can see a new game but until then there won't be. I would recommend this game highly not many flaws and a truck load of positives.
Theme Park Studio is something that may grab anyone that is waiting for a RCT4. It has a campaign on kickstarter and looks amazing so far. Check it out if you want an updated theme park simulator!