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New Saints Row 2 Video Reminds us of it’s CO-OP Mode

Fri, Sep 12, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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And what better way to do that then to use the candidates from the upcoming presidential election? While they don’t exactly look like their real-life counterparts I still think it’s very interesting that the Character Customization is as deep as it was hyped to be.

The trailer also shows off other potential co-op pairings such as Cops and Robbers or Pirates and Ninjas. The latter of the two has me very excited (also note the Samurai sword the ninja is carrying in the video) that they aren’t trying to be all serious with the game like Grand Theft Auto IV and provide us with some actual fun.

You can check out the new trailer below and the full game when it launches on October 14th.

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Quantum of Solace Using Call of Duty 4 Engine

Thu, Sep 11, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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Thank the gods, a developer that is smart enough to reuse an existing engine and add enhancements to it instead of re-writing their own in a 2-year dev cycle and having the game suffer all sorts of hickups because of it.

Treyarch, the badasses behind Call of Duty 5, are working together with Activision and bringing the movie tie-in Quantum of Solace to gamers of the work this November. Normally a movie tie-in game means some sort of bullshit attempt at a jump/run-n-gun game, fortunately it looks like Treyarch re-used the Call of Duty 4 engine (The one they were already enhancing for Call of Duty 5) to do the new Bond game, getting them off the ground almost immediately with the title and explains why the screenshots we’ve seen for the game so far look abnormally good given it’s a movie tie-in game, which normally looks like garbage.

I’d suggest giving the dev diary video a quick peak, there is a lot of gameplay in there showing off some high fidelity work by both Treyarch and Activision as well as some new tweaks to the Call of Duty 4 engine like better AI and a cover system (I also noticed some kick ass water effects in there to towards the end):

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Project Original Get’s It’s Original Sequel Name Back: FEAR 2

Thu, Sep 11, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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After the Monolith team broke from the Vivendi group and began work on FEAR 2, there was talk of Vivendi having the rights to the “FEAR” name, so the real sequel of FEAR was always intended to be Project Origin, with “FEAR 2″ being some retarded knock-off that Vivendi shot out using all the FEAR 1 assets just to cash in on the name.

Fortunately it looks like things have been cleared up and Project Original will be released with it’s always-intended title: FEAR 2: Project Origin.

To set things off, check out the creepy-ass trailer… basically if you liked the suspense, gore and action from FEAR 1, FEAR 2 basically looks like a must-have (especially given Monolith’s solid track record with games):

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Brothers in Arms: Hell’s Highway Looking Awesome

Thu, Sep 11, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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Back in June we covered our excitment about the upcoming Brothers in Arms: Hell’s Highway title after seeing the destructible environments in action and being pretty impressed. It looks like EA has released 4 new gameplay videos of the title in action on both the 360 and the PS3 and both are looking just beautiful.

The cover system looks lockable from a few scenes I saw and party management looks to be very similar to Rainbow Six (a good thing), basically point and activate for your party to respond to whatever the context sensitive action is.

Graphics, voice work, models and the finish on the gameplay looks really highly polished. Also notice the bullet-time sequence with the headshot… that is a badass touch. Also note how detailed and “finished” the environments feel and look, sound graphics and texture work:

Another thing I was surprised to see was how moody and detailed the environments were, showing off some darker/nightime/nail-biting gameplay:

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Red Faction 3 Getting a Collector’s Edition

Thu, Sep 11, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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With any High Profile game, you can normally expect a Collector’s Edition of some sort. Red Faction: Guerrilla is no exception to this trend as THQ has announced that for the somewhat high price of $89.99, you can own yours today! Maybe not today per-se, but you can pre-order it so that’s something.

So what will you get for $89.99?

  • A copy of Red Faction: Guerrilla
  • A 5 inch-tall mining walker figurine made by Gentle Giant Ltd. Each poly-resin figurine is hand-painted and features real pewter hand railings
  • A bonus DVD (Xbox 360) / bonus Blu-ray disc (PS3)
  • Official art book

As a huge fan of the Red Faction series, I’d really like to own the collectors edition. I can’t however justify the $90 price tag, considering for an extra $30 I can own 2 full games. For those that don’t mind dropping the 90 bucks, you can pre-order now at Gamestop.com and at all participating retail locations.

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Kelty Redwing 2650 Traveling Backpack Review

Wed, Sep 10, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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My wife and I are preparing to leave on a 2-week excursion to New Zealand (the North Island) as well as Bora Bora and after hitting up London with friends blow-out-style in a 36hrs crazy trip, we got addicted to travelling light.

The amount of stress that melts off your back when you only have 1 bag to worry about that you have with you at all times is just awesome. We did London with duffle bags (basically gym bags) but the only down side there was organizational control (not too many pockets on the duffle) and your shoulder gets a bit sore after a while.

During our preparation for this 2-week New Zealand/Bora Bora trip, we did a lot of research online about how to travel light, how to do one-bag-travel, travel effectively, etc.

Editor’s Note: By “we” I mean “my wife” and by “research” I mean “I nodded my head a lot when she told me how we were going to do this trip”.

We noticed quite a few people in forums, reviews, blogs, etc. mention the Kelty bags over and over again, specifically the “Redwing” series and specifically purchased from REI Outlet, so we started digging deeper. One of the things we liked right off the bat with these packs were the padded shoulder straps and both waist and chest clasps for keeping the weight of the pack evenly distributed across your upper body and not just dragging off your shoulders.

It seems that the Kelty Redwing come in 2 flavors, a 2650 sq/in size and a 3100 sq/in size. Both sizes have their own set of 3 or so colors that they can be had in. The difference between the two backpacks boiled down to the 2650 being a “big” backpack that is a safe carry-on item for an airplane assuming it’s not stuffed to the gills, and the 3100 being a “huge” backpack that would like need to get gate-checked if it was full to the brim (if it wasn’t stuffed to the gills and you had the compression straps on the side pulled tight, the 3100 could probably be a carry-on without much hassle).

After a lot of humming and hawing about which backpack to get and how to not spend $130 apiece on them, we found REI Outlet was offering a sale on the Kelty 2650’s for $54 apiece (at the time of this writing the sale is still going). We ordered two of the backpacks right away.

The breakdown of what we decided to pack was:

  • 2 pants
  • 2 shorts
  • 2 T-shirts
  • 2 long shirts
  • 4 socks
  • 4 underwear
  • toiletries
  • 1 extra pair of shoes

That’s the gist of what we packed, and it all fit into the bags perfectly with room to spare. If you decided to outfit the backpacks with a camel pack (which they have built-in support for) you would have room for that, or if you had an ultra-light laptop to include on the trip (which I intend to remedy when I get back) you could fit that in the back pocket (inside the pack) as well.

Overall we love the backpacks, but having not used them just yet, this is just a preliminary review, we’ll keep you posted during the trip and after with regard to how they are holding up and how we like them.

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Finding More Hornworms by the Day (Time for Wormicide!)

Wed, Sep 10, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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As is typcial for any decent tech blog, we started touching on gardening tips, like finding Hornworms on your Tomato plants.

To give you a quick update on this situation, one that I’m sure you were riveted to, we continue to find bigger and bigger shitfuckers hornworms on our tomato plants. Signs that you want to look for are their little cocoons that form inside the curled up leaves like so:

and if you look closely you can see the little bastards right inside. If you leave them along long enough they eventually grow the “horn” that makes them look like a tomato blossum and start roaming around your plants, kicking their asses.

These are all actual pictures from our tomato plants unfortunately and it looks like daily hunting for these things just isn’t going to give the plant enough of a break to be able to product good-sized/healthy fruit without them destroying the plant, new growth, or fruit right away.

Fortunately in our last post about hornworms and tomatos, user tdod pointed out that you can make use of Insecticidal Soap like that from Garden Safe which is environmentally friendly. If you want to blanket your yard with chemical death you can take a look at Sevin Insecticide introduced by Bayer CropScience in the 1950s.

No, I’m not associated with either of those products, nor have I tried them… if you have other suggestions that would work for killing these stupid things, I’m all ears. All I know is that once they started hatching (a few months after the plants got mature) our tomato production went from “awesome” to “rediculously nonexistent” as the plant contended with damage and new growth instead of tomatoes.

Hope this helps someone else out there facing similar problems.

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Large Hadron Collider (Black Hole Machine) Successfully Launched

Wed, Sep 10, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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Well if you haven’t seen the news already, the Large Hadron Collider AKA “The Black Hole Machine” was turned on, some protons shot through the thing, and the world didn’t implode on itself as some thought it might.

The amount of fear and general internet-superstar-comments surrounding this construction and eventual activation showed me one thing: The Media can go fuck itself.

Instead of trying to educate people about how the device worked, why a good portion of the world’s leading experts on the technology were excited about it instead of fearful, why France and Switzerland footed the $500 million project (which they obviously had their own science teams review) and what benefits will come out of it’s research, all we got from the mainstream was: “Black Hole Machine” a lot of hand waving and “Might Destroy the Earth”… so that’s super-helpful.

Because of that type of hyper-simplifaction, you end up with replies like these to the announcement that LHC would get turned on:

This machine should not be activated. The people who want to activate this project of theirs must only care for their research if they are willing to risk the lives of every human being on earth, including this earth!

Nature is a beautiful thing, and so are human beings. Nothing should harm any of it, not even the Big Bang theory should make any of us want to. It’s terrifying, knowing you could die because of some people wanting to find out something! Say they did find it out and they were amazed by what they found, but then the Black Holes consumed our wonderful planet, and we all died? Then their research would have been for nothing. It’s ridiculous and needs to be stopped. I for one, am against this project. I may only be young, but I understand it all, and even though I would like to know about the Big Bang, I’m not the type who’s up for killing mankind!

Awesome… so you are young, you “understand it all”, researchers are selfish, and it shouldn’t be turned on. That sounds like a pretty well thought out, detailed explanation. Maybe we should go back to the invention of antibiotics and discovery of germs and just throw that under the bus too because we didn’t understand that one.

What about space travel and bringing back space germs and destroying the planet with those? We should probably go back to the 1940s and 50s and put the kibosh on that too.

Oh shit, don’t forget about electricity and AC/DC power concerns that it would kill us all, we need to just get rid of that invention as well. God knows that research and ingenuinty has never been a good thing for our planet, so let’s just fill the LHC in with dirt and make a 17-mile flower bed.

Yes I’m really annoyed… one of the most amazing world-wide efforts started up today and most people were scared shitless about it instead of informed and excited because that doesn’t catch headlines and advertisement revenue like “Black Hole Machine to Destroy Earth, Get Ready for Doomsday!” does…. bah.

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Rock Band 2 Street Date OK to Break

Tue, Sep 9, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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Apparently MTV Games/Harmonix are cool with you getting your hands on Rock Band 2 early (breaking the September 14th street date), giving the player lucky enough to get their hands on it early a little “props” at the bottom of their main menu (See screenshot above).

Pretty cool actually… it’s always nice to see a company that doesn’t respond to enthusiasm by suing their fans.

Thanks Kotaku!

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DeviceAnywhere Brings the iPhone(tm) 3G To Life for Mobile Application

Tue, Sep 9, 2008    (No Ratings, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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For the developers out there, DeviceAnywhere has launched mobile device support in it’s DeviceAnywhere Studio product for the iPhone 3G, full announcement after the jump.

(more…)

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New Releases for The Week of 9/7 - 9/13

Mon, Sep 8, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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Xbox 360

PC

Nintendo Wii

NintendoDS

Playstation 3

Playstation 2

Mac

Spore is clearly the highlight of the week, though The Price is Right is in a very close second. It’s also a great week for Hockey and Wrestleing fans. Still, I’m super hyped for The Price is Right. It’s game of the month material, folks.

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Alone in the Dark for PS3 Getting All Fixed Up

Mon, Sep 8, 2008    (Rating: 5 stars, Click to rate this article!) Loading ... Loading ...

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After what was a pretty harsh review of the somewhat unfinished version of Alone in the Dark for the Xbox 360 (and subsequent patch from Atari to help fix some of the issues) it looks like the development team behind Alone in the Dark, with Atari’s money-blessing, was able to take the extra months of development and tighten up the PS3 version of the game to be everything the Xbox 360 version wasn’t.

The complete changelog for the PS3 version is so far:

  • Full 360° camera control: enhanced camera controls allows complete freedom of the camera and better handling of first person view camera movement for even more immersive gameplay
  • Fine-tuned controls: quicker and smoother reactivity of the hero’s movements in third person view make for more rapid movements in nail-biting situations
  • Inventory system more accessible: more logical jacket inventory system with the ability to combine objects using only the D-pad, and more fluid hero movement makes item selection a breeze.
  • More tips: players will get all the help they need to get through every situation and get the most out of the game
  • Spectral Vision tuning: a tutorial explains the need to burn roots in order to gain spectral vision and difficulty tuning means less spectral vision is required to reach the end of the game
  • Improved car dynamics and handling: car handling has been tuned to make driving a car a walk in the park in every situation, including increased suspension and reduced drift
  • 59th Street level tuning: one of the game’s most exciting sequences just got better. 59th Street has been tweaked for a more satisfying race against the fissure with difficulty tuning, an added checkpoint at Columbus Circle and clear voice directions given by Sarah
  • Brand new thrilling action sequence: an exclusive new sequence has been added in Episode 6 for even more pace and variety of gameplay in the episode.

Overall I’d have to say that while sections of the game already looked excellent were teasers for us to play the game on the PS3, seeing that all the control issues (and driving issues) that made it a chore to play getting fixed up has us down right excited. Nice to see a developer OK’ing that developing time and budget to go back and fix up a title, they deserve some credit for that (most would just cut their losses and spend the money on a new title).

Thanks Kotaku!

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