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Posts tagged “hands on”

Feature: Suspending disbelief for another year

Football Manager 2019 preview: a meaningful step forward for the series

“When you’re working on annual iterative titles, it is difficult,” says Miles Jacobson, Studio Director at Sports Interactive. “You’re always going to get people turning around saying ‘you haven’t added anything.’ And no matter how much you add, you’re still going to get people saying that.” That’s the challenge that the Football Manager series faces every year. It remains, as it always will be, a…

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Feature: One cool customer

HP Omen’s ear-cooling Mindframe headset is actually sort of brilliant

The HP Omen Mindframe headset is quite possibly the most bonkers piece of audio equipment I've ever seen. It's called MINDFRAME for a start, which is both brilliant and ridiculous in equal measure, but what really sets it apart from other headsets is pretty damn cool - as in literally cool thanks to its thermoelectric ear-cooling earcups. I'll admit I was a bit skeptical when…

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Feature: Model behaviour

Trüberbrook looks like a dream and handles like a nightmare

I have never seen Twin Peaks. That’s alright, though, because a lot of people I know really like it. I’ve been around them going on about cherry pie and the red room for long enough that when I am told “And of course there’s some inspiration from Twin Peaks, too!” I know to read it as “This is going to be weird; will probably feature…

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Feature: Another good omen?

The new HP Omen 15 could be the gaming laptop to end all laptops

Out of all the gaming laptops I've tested so far, there have been very few that have justified their often extortionate prices. In fact, the only one I'd consider buying myself right now is Dell's Alienware 13 - and even that's not completely free of flaws. But after seeing the new HP Omen 15 laptop in the flesh, it looks like we might finally have…

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Feature: Devil in the details

It’s the little details that make HP’s new Omen Sequencer keyboard and Reactor mouse so great

I won't lie. When HP announced a string of new Omen peripherals at this year's Computex show in Taiwan, the thing that really caught my eye was its supposed ear-cooling gaming headset. It even had a cool-sounding name and everything. The HP Omen MINDFRAME. Sadly, that was the one thing missing from the HP Omen demo day I went to last week. I did, however,…

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Feature: But is it Artyom

Metro Exodus is a far cry from the tunnel shooter we knew

I didn't realise how much I'd missed Metro's ball bearing rifle till I spent two hours with Metro Exodus, the third in 4A Games' cult series of post-Soviet, post-apocalyptic shooters. Goodness, that rifle. The sheer delight of cranking its Super Soaker handle. The vicious snap of escaping air when you pull the trigger. The rush to make the most of those few seconds of maximum…

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Feature: From deckbuilding to ranked play

Artifact feels like Valve’s solution to post-Hearthstone card games

Collectible card games have been around for decades, but they've really been running hot ever since Blizzard unleashed Hearthstone four years ago. Since then, we've seen Shadowverse, Gwent, The Elder Scrolls: Legends, Duelyst, Faeria - there are a lot of these things, if you haven't heard. They all put their own spin on rectangles with numbers on 'em, but they also universally take cues from…

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Feature: Lane down your cards

Artifact pairs the best ideas of Dota with the best parts of card games

You'll often see characters in sci-fi stories play seemingly incomprehensible games like multi-dimensional space chess, and that's basically what it's like playing Artifact, Valve's upcoming Dota-inspired card game. It's an ambitious hybrid of the studio's MOBA and Magic: The Gathering, and it works shockingly well. So much so that it only took two games for me to understand and get on board with Valve's vision.

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Feature: Croft in transit

Shadow of the Tomb Raider appears to be beautiful but a little vacuous

In the course of 45 minutes with Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Lara Croft gatecrashes a fiesta, scales a cliff, wrestles an eel, levels a temple, steals a magic dagger, murders a bunch of dudes in Mariachi skullpaint and drowns a city after triggering the apocalypse. That's quite the evening's work, especially if you factor in all the times I accidentally impaled her on rebars,…

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Feature: No time to chat

Warhammer 40,000: Gladius – Relics of War killed off all the diplomats

Warhammer 40,000: Gladius - Relics of War is an unconventional 4X game that doubles down on the perpetually gloomy universe’s penchant for conflict by cutting out diplomacy entirely. The Space Marines, Astra Militarum, Orks and Necron are all at each other’s throats, leaving them no time to work things out at the negotiating table. War, then, is Gladius’ raison d'être, with Dreadnoughts, Tankbustas and Necron…

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Feature: Lingo a little longer

Learning the ancient language of Heaven’s Vault

“That’s the Ancient word for ‘writer’,” says Jon Ingold, pointing to some indecipherable symbols on his business card. “What it breaks down to is ‘Person-who-speaks-without-speaking.’” Ingold is the writer for Heaven’s Vault, an upcoming sci-fi adventure from Inkle (the folks behind 80 Days and Sorcery!) You play an archaeologist investigating the remains of an ancient civilisation in an otherworldly “Nebula”. He and some others from…

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Feature: Whose footprints are these?

The battle royale of Mavericks is stalking a big game

A man in black scrambles through the overgrowth, looking lost. So I shoot him. Puffs of bloody air erupt from his body, but he runs on. Behind him something explodes from a stray bullet – my bulet or somebody else’s? I don’t know. But the man in black keeps moving, dodging behind some trees, over a ridge. Behind me, a wall of wobbly energy closes…

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Feature: Eternal tank war, now prettier

Everything is the same but different in World of Tanks 1.0

It was only when someone from Wargaming closed the door between the demo and interview areas that I realised everyone could hear me swearing at tanks. Loudly. World of Tanks, which hits version 1.0 today, is the sort of game that makes you forget what’s going on around you. Taking your eye off the ball for even a second guarantees that someone will put a…

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Feature: 4K fantasy

Hands on with Final Fantasy XV in bonkers 4K

There's a moment about half way through Final Fantasy XV where you have to say goodbye to your stag-do-cum-road-trip adventure and actually start saving the world. It's the same point that sees you swap your ridiculously large car and the sweeping fields of Lucis for a boat, and then a train, that carries you, quite literally, in a non-stop line toward the game's conclusion, where…

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Feature: Stepping out of the shadows

Blade’s tiny Shadow box could be your next gaming PC

Earlier this week, Nvidia's GeForce Now PC beta left me pleasantly surprised. This was cloud gaming done right, I thought. I can play my own games on my own ancient hardware at the highest possible graphics settings and give a cheeky middle finger to all those soaring GPU prices in one fell swoop. It's almost like the PC-equivalent of the Nintendo Switch, as I can…

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Feature: Meet your mecha

Battletech’s campaign mode is a robot Dark Ages

It's odd to think of Mickey Mouse while ordering a giant robot to rip another robot's arms off, but in the words of its creator Jordan Weisman, Battletech is kind of like Walt Disney's Tomorrowland. Opened in 1955, the park was an homage to the march of science that inevitably struggled to keep up. Its present-day incarnations are a bizarre mishmash of the vintage, the…

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Feature: Offing old goth-god

Dishonored 2: I can’t wait to kill The Outsider

I hate The Outsider. Perhaps that’s too strong a word, but I’ve never liked Dishonored’s meddling god. I’ll explain my stance in some detail below, but before I do that I offer an apology to the large chunk of the Dishonored fanbase who will find my opinions here blasphemous and heretical. But I’ve held my silence for long enough and it’s time to admit it:…

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Feature: Divine bullet-y justice

God’s Trigger is cooperative Hotline Miami with a devilish twist

God’s Trigger killed me at least twenty times in five minutes. Announced at Gamescom this week, it’s a new title from Techland that plays out very much like the two-player cooperative take on Hotline Miami that the trailer suggested it might be. You can see that trailer below, followed by my thoughts after fifteen minutes of play and another forty or fifty bloody deaths.

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Feature:

Project Cars 2 is addressing the first game’s flaws

I've taken some flak for how much I like the first Project Cars. No, it's not iRacing, but iRacing also doesn't have AI that is ready to start a race at precisely 1:33 AM on a Tuesday night, pause halfway through because the popcorn started popping and the pan needs to be jiggled, and then resume after a light snack. I'm busy, and often the…

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