BOFH_UK Comments

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  • Digital Foundry vs. inFamous: Second Son

  • BOFH_UK 27/03/2014

    Hmm, not sure I agree with this 'next gen looks, last gen game play so lower score' approach. In theory, yes, that's a fine way to review games as new games should (IMO) build on what's come before and offer something, well, new.

    Except I can't help but wonder why it's being treated as a next gen thing? Surely this should be applied across the board? There's no reason why new hardware is required to deliver new game play experiences after all so why do franchises (or, indeed, genres) that constantly churn out the same old tired mechanics year after year get a free pass?

    I know this is a tricky subject and I'm not intending to suggest that any of these games are bad but just from EG's games of 2013 we've got GTA5, Diablo 3 and Gran Turismo 6. All great titles in their own way but do they offer any massive changes over similar titles (or, indeed, games in their own franchise)? How about the 10/10 Bioshock Infinite which really doesn't offer anything new bar, perhaps, the skyhook system? Actually maybe a better example is Titanfall. 8/10 and undeniably a fun game but there's nothing next gen about it. Heck, we're even getting a 360 version. All the One version has really is prettier graphics so if we're going off the same criteria why not ping it for not having Kinect integration? Uh... not that I'm saying it should, that's probably a really bad idea, but it's the obvious stand-out hardware feature of the one compared to the 360.

    For that matter is it reasonable to expect next gen game play so early in a console's life cycle? If that's what you're looking for the Indie games are probably the best place to start, AAA titles won't have had time to figure out the possibilities yet and first gen stuff is always focused on graphics improvements.

    Again, none of this is to say I *don't* like this approach of wanting more than shiny graphics but if you're going to go that route please do it for everything.
    Reply +15
  • Rocksteady reveals Batman: Arkham Knight in detail

  • BOFH_UK 05/03/2014

    @TheSensationalSean Fully agree, the lack of Kevin Conroy was a major part of why I haven't picked up Origins and delighted to have The One True Bat back! For that matter the entire voice cast is ridiculously strong and looks pretty consistent with City as well. Would be wonderful if they had Dini working on the script but I've got a nasty feeling that's not the case. Fingers crossed I'm wrong on that one! Reply 0
  • GameStop selling Xbox One Titanfall bundle for 370

  • BOFH_UK 25/02/2014

    So a 60 reduction from launch price plus a 45 game that's likely to have been a big reason a lot of customers bought the console. Ouch. While I'll admit I'm mostly of the opinion that early adopters really should know they're going to pay a fair chunk for the privilege of being, well, an early adopter that's painful. Can't help but think that Microsoft really should have thrown something their way, hell chuck a year of Xbox Live Gold to everyone that bought in early. Doesn't cost MS much in the grand scheme of things and might encourage those that don't normally use the service to keep subscribing after the year is up.

    On the console itself it's starting to get to the price point it probably should have been from day one. Base price of around 330 isn't bad considering it includes the Kinect though I can't help thinking they need to get down under 300 ASAP. It's going to be very interesting indeed to see how Titanfall affects console sales. Seems a reasonable assumption that those excited for it on XB1 may have already picked up their console in anticipation but coupled with the price drop, who knows... Personally I hope this works for MS, they're in a transition period right now, if the XB1 struggles it's very easy to see them deciding it's not a fight worth having and getting out of the console industry all together.
    Reply +14
  • Microsoft's PC gaming chief leaves after just six months

  • BOFH_UK 13/02/2014

    I've never been able to figure out Microsoft's seeming lack of interest in PC gaming. You'd think it'd be a slam dunk for them if done right! Not only is there a big, big market out there to exploit but it's a market that (more or less) keeps up with the consoles in terms of hardware. Launch your exclusive Xbox games on PC and enable cross-platform saves, stats, profiles, achievements etc. Congratulations, you've just turned the Surface Pro into the best portable games machine on the planet. Or one of a number of other laptops / tablets for that matter.

    Then again their attitude to gaming in general seems to be pretty poor these days. The XB1 seems to have lost its way compared to the PS4 and only time will tell if they got the hardware compromises right. Their full price retail titles are a little too keen to embrace micro-transactions and they're being eclipsed on the PC by... well, everyone actually. Heck, Origin provides better game support than MS does on Windows! And then there's the shiny potential of mobile phones as gaming platforms and they're just nowhere there either.

    All of which strikes me as odd because, let's be honest, without gaming what exactly is holding non-business related users to Microsoft? It's a cornerstone of the consumer market, something they could easily bake into the OS and do remarkable things with if they wanted to, yet they seem happy to ignore it. Bizarre.
    Reply +7
  • PS4 vs Xbox One: which is the better media player?

  • BOFH_UK 02/02/2014

    I'm sure that the majority of these issues will get resolved over the next year. But that in no way excuses them being present in the first place!

    Let's be absolutely honest, if you're an early adopter you sort of expect to get a slightly raw deal, especially in the game console market. Hardware that maybe runs a bit hotter and louder than you'd like, a relative lack of games for the first year or two and almost certainly a price drop sometime in the first 18 months. This is the first time I can remember (and I've been a gamer since the C64!) that early adopters were effectively paid alpha testers!

    Come on gaming press, we need you to make some noise on this. Surely launching consoles in such a rough and ready state while charging top dollar for them is unacceptable? Huge day one patches (yes, Nintendo is included there as well), big chunks of functionality simply missing and headline features that don't work (the 50hz judder on XB1 being a prime example)... I know there's a risk of biting the hand that feeds you here but isn't there a responsibility to your readers / audience as well?
    Reply +8
  • Mario Kart 8 now pegged for a May release

  • BOFH_UK 30/01/2014

    @FenderMaster Having picked up a Wii U on the weekend I'm not sure I agree with that. Lego City Undercover made me realise just how well the pad can integrate with a game. It just shows a static display... right until you get your tablet in the game. Then it springs to life and really *is* that tablet. It's a lovely moment when you start getting video calls on the pad with the audio split so the caller is through the pad and your character on the TV.

    To be honest at this point emphasizing what makes it Unique (sorry) is probably a good idea. They're going to struggle in the next couple of years as focus shifts to the more powerful PS4 and XB1 so setting themselves apart at least gets them out of that comparison.
    Reply +3
  • Iwata isn't Nintendo's problem. It's Miyamoto

  • BOFH_UK 25/01/2014

    Wow... might just be me but this seems a tad hypocritical. Oh there's some truth to it - Nintendo is indeed relying on its franchises right now - but at least they're producing very high quality games and it seems like they're genuinely bringing new ideas and concepts to those titles. The rest of the AAA industry, on t'other hand, seems content to churn out the same game with incredibly minor variations on an annual basis and yet it's Nintendo that gets the editorial drubbing? Really?

    As for their current problems I really don't think you can pin it on software. Sure they haven't got a Wii Sports but that's more indicative of the hardware. Sports was (relatively) easy - build an interface that let people see how the waggle stick could offer something genuinely different from anything else. Which, let's face it, it was. While the tablet has some interesting possibilities it's a tech that everyone is very familiar with at this point and just isn't the big jump away from the norm that the Wii controller was.

    Fundamentally Nintendo just went the wrong way with the Wii U and got caught as the mass market went t'other way to smartphones and tablets with an increasing focus on on-line services. Thankfully they have more than enough money in the bank to get through it so there's no need to panic just yet and I suspect the Wii U is going to have the same sort of rep as the Dreamcast when all is said and done - an underrated console with some great games, albeit hopefully with a longer life! The important bit is to really nail whatever comes next and hit the ground running. They've certainly got the talent to do so which is going to make the next few years very interesting indeed.
    Reply +21
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 Ti review

  • BOFH_UK 16/12/2013

    @Darkwaknight You've answered your own question here but haven't noticed that you've done it... This card, and the R290 series for that matter, are high end luxury products for those with disposable income looking to build the best possible gaming rig and/or use functionality like 3D vision. They're more-or-less irrelevant to the bigger discussion on PC.

    What IS important though is the lower end cards - the 760's of this world - and the story there is rosy indeed with all of them more than up to the job of churning out 1080p graphics. Heck, even integrated graphics these days can usually manage that without too many compromises. That's going to be more than enough to keep any PC bought now going for years to come.

    In other words, gaming on PC no longer needs expensive upgrades every year or two. In truth it hasn't for a while but now it really does apply to the mainstream products. PC Gaming doesn't *need* to push itself apart on graphics, the consoles have come to PC Gaming! If products like Valve's steam box really can deliver 1080p gaming while retaining the advantages of the PC (cheaper prices chief amongst them) then suddenly there's genuine competition for the TV.
    Reply +1
  • Apple snaps up Kinect sensor company for $360m

  • BOFH_UK 25/11/2013

    @blarty Except they're not the publisher or the developer so how on earth can you say that? Apple simply provide the market place and a platform that - for whatever reason - has users who are willing to spend money. Yes, there's a lot of games that have IAP in one form or another but plenty more don't. Multiple business models all of which have proven to be a success, shame the console world isn't a bit more like that quite frankly. Reply +2
  • Batman: Arkham Origins launches with half the sales of Arkham City

  • BOFH_UK 28/10/2013

    Don't know about anyone else but this is the first Arkham game I've got no interest in playing. Few reasons why: feels too much like an expansion pack, I've already spent upwards of forty hours in arkham city, the storyline doesn't exactly feel compelling and - as silly as this may sound - the absence of Kevin Conroy and Paul Dini. Big part of the appeal of both Asylum and City was that feel of a modernised Batman Animated Series and without them a lot of the thrill is gone. Reply +6
  • Xbox One's launch line-up: what's left without Watch Dogs?

  • BOFH_UK 26/10/2013

    @the_sas_man While I agree with you... why is this considered an acceptable state of affairs in 2013? Lead times on hardware are measured in years and the consoles themselves previewed almost a year ahead of launch. Surely the likes of MS and Sony ought to be capable of getting a decent line-up of first and third party games ready for launch?

    My big problem though is the same thing we've seen for years now - where's the innovation? A new generation of hardware is about to hit and other than graphical improvements there doesn't seem to be a single thing on offer that couldn't (and, indeed, hasn't) been done years ago. While it remains to be seen if it delivers at least the concept of Watch Dogs had potential.
    Reply 0
  • Argos offering PlayStation Vita 3G, two games, memory card for 140

  • BOFH_UK 19/10/2013

    Just picked one of these up but gotta say I'm not sure the 140 deal is the best one... 169 for the Vita 3G, the 8GB memory card with ten games mega bundle and a year of PS Plus is just ridiculous value especially if you have a PS3. Put the 10 voucher towards an additional 16Gb memory card to keep you going until the 64Gb ones make it over here and for 184 that's heading into Steam Sale value for money! Reply +1
  • Beyond live TV - what the Xbox One user interface means for gamers

  • BOFH_UK 01/09/2013

    Oh, and one other thought that MS won't care about but gaming families might. Let's say you have a Xbox One hooked up as MS want, on HDMI 1, and everything else runs through the amp. You also have a Wii connected. If the Kinnect is on and flooding the room with IR what's that going to do to the Wii sensor bar? For that matter I wonder if this is going to cause issues with IR remotes...

    Hopefully I'm very, very wrong on this and it won't be an issue.
    Reply +6
  • BOFH_UK 01/09/2013

    Hmm, I can't help but feel that Digital Foundry have kinda missed the point here.

    Forget little LEDs attached to wires you dangle in front of your set-top box
    Yes, forget something unobtrusive that you've at least got a vague chance of hiding somewhere, now you've got a huge camera rig sitting underneath your TV. That's much better!

    As someone who has a fairly complicated rig in the living room I do appreciate what MS are trying to do here and the though of an IR system actually working is, frankly, exciting. But this just feels like too big a tradeoff, especially as you'll still have to have traditional remotes around anyway. I'm also curious as to how easy the setup will be and how well it'll handle potentially tricky combinations. Silly example but my Denon amp that currently acts as my HDMI switcher had my PS3 and 360 setup on two inputs that shared the 4 key on the remote. There's no distinct IR code so if, for any reason, it gets out of sync Xbox One wouldn't have a hope in hell at recovering without help.

    I'm also still not convinced about this snapping stuff either. It's not a bad idea but I wonder how many really want to use their TV in that way. Haven't the likes of tablets, smartphones and laptops rendered the concept of the TV as a computer kinda irrelevant at this point?
    Reply +10
  • Sony details final PlayStation 4 tech spec

  • BOFH_UK 11/06/2013

    @HeroJez If you're going to do tax calculations do at least try to get it right. VAT is currently 20% in the UK so $399 would be $479 after VAT. Add on another $39 to cover the increased cost of doing business - rent, fuel, wages, regulatory compliance etc - in the UK (hard to estimate but most figures I've seen are around 10% of the unit cost) and you're on $518. Current exchange rate brings that in at 332.33, hardly a rip off from the 349 they're setting as RRP. Reply +3
  • PlayStation 4: the story so far

  • BOFH_UK 10/06/2013

    @Crea Y'know I've been thinking about this and it might not be so clear cut as we all assume. Yes, publishers may want DRM but can they afford to go Xbone only if the PS4 doesn't deliver that mechanism? It's hard enough to meet sales targets now with three consoles and large user bases (plus PC of course). Nintendo is already out of the next gen race for the AAA games as the WiiU just doesn't have the power to compete. Put simply, are they going to make enough money off Xbone and PC in the first couple of years to cover the cost of creating big AAA games? Even once the user base is there is that enough to make a non-franchise title a viable risk? Maybe Sony have a few big cards of their own to play here... Reply +2
  • Microsoft cautious on Windows 8 success: "we realise that change takes time"

  • BOFH_UK 07/05/2013

    @SwedBear While I agree it's an odd decision to ignore the vast amount of feedback on the removal of the 'traditional' start menu that's not the problem MS are addressing here. One of the biggest problems with W8 is it's an absolute sod to learn by trial and error. There's too many features hidden away with no visible clue as to how to use them. By putting the start button back they're giving a big visual hint as to how to get back to the Start Screen.

    As for Windows 8 success I suspect MS internally are placing a lot of weight on how well it does on tablets. That's the big threat with both iOS and Android gobbling up sales that would otherwise go to a windows-powered laptop or desktop. If they can't get a player in that fight they're staring at a repeat of the smartphone stats only this time in their core market as tablets continue to gain in popularity. The big bulk licence sales are good for the bottom line but as far as the future goes MS need to get this one right and, right now, they've got to be a bit worried on that one...
    Reply +5
  • Intel unveils Iris - its next-gen graphics tech

  • BOFH_UK 02/05/2013

    @Bagpuss Umm, sorry, disagree. If you're interested in overclocking the odds are you're an enthusiast and will be using a dedicated graphics card. The locked chips are intended to put reasonable graphics in small, quiet, relatively cheap systems where power and, more importantly, heat are key factors in the design. If PC gaming is ever really going to crack the living room it'll be systems like that which do it not enthusiast rigs. Reply +1
  • Windows 8.1 will revive the Start button, reports suggest

  • BOFH_UK 23/04/2013

    @midnight_walker IT Professional who used Windows 8 for five months and despised every minute of it. I'm sorry but it's a really poor, frustrating design. Poor because the new start screen is a horrible substitute for the old menu structure on any PC with more than a basic software install. Poor because basic interface elements such as shutting the PC down have been hidden layers deep in the interface. Poor because there's a tendency to throw you from desktop to metro when doing certain tasks. Poor because there are very few cues to aid in the discovery of the new features and ways of working with the OS. Poor because, well, the list of bad design decisions in W8 is sadly much longer than I'd want to go into here.

    Frustrating though because underneath it is a really good OS. It's fast and pretty damn stable while retaining most of the good points of Windows 7. However the decision to bolt all the Metro cruft on top without any clear separation between the two was a poor one. I'm not alone in this either, every IT Pro I work with hates it, every 'normal' computer user I've spoken to that's used it either wants to go back to W7 or is holding off on a purchase as they don't want W8. While I'm sure that there are those like yourself that like it there's a significant number - possibly a majority possibly not there's no real way to tell - who have big, big problems.

    As for MS, their big issue here is that this time round there's alternatives. Most modern PC's aren't at the point where upgrading is required and in the consumer space tablets and even smartphones are providing a real alternative. OS X is there as a desktop alternative and is looking more attractive as the cheaper end of the PC market is struggling to provide hardware that takes advantage of Windows 8 touch capabilities. Businesses really don't want W8 as the amount of retraining required is considerable and a cost in both money and lost productivity many simply can't afford right now. How this plays out over the next year or two will be fascinating to watch and I can't help but feel MS need to get this one right...
    Reply +20
  • After children rack up huge bills, UK government announces investigation into "aggressive" in-app purchases

  • BOFH_UK 12/04/2013

    @Mr.Spo My worry is... no, wait, my absolute certain conviction is that the media will take the easy way out of this and blame Apple, Google etc for not doing enough. That gets us precisely nowhere in this discussion as the tools are already in place. Hell Apple even has a few hundred stores scattered around the planet that would be quite happy to talk anyone through using the parental controls, what good practice is and so on.

    The debate on regulation should, and again this is just my opinion, be a separate one as it's going to be a great deal more complicated. For example: you tell the owner of the app store to block any IAP that falls within a certain definition of taking the proverbial. What happens when, say, EA launch Origin for mobile devices, sell their titles through that and charge a lot for IAP? Who's responsible for blocking that? What about websites that provide games with IAP? This is why I'd like to see the debate made... uh, shall we say platform agnostic?

    Not that it's a simple debate of course. Yes, you can limit the top end purchases but what about making multiple purchases of smaller amounts? How about the way the games (and IAP) are marketed? Do the same rules apply to games targeted at adults? Do, well, you get the idea. This is a really deep subject with a lot of money (and, let's not forget, jobs) riding on it as well as morality and needs to be tackled carefully.

    I'm also not entirely sure how big a problem it really is. Sure there's the occasional story of someone spending hundreds or thousands but far less than you'd imagine. I think there's a danger of a lot of people racing in and demanding changes "for the children!!!" and making things worse in the long run.
    Reply -2
  • BOFH_UK 12/04/2013

    @JedEvangelion Umm... because they put their credit card details in in the first place? Sorry, but this is the sticking point for me. They KNOW they've got a payment method attached to this account, they've almost certainly used that account to obtain content so... why doesn't it occur that this is a fairly simple process and unsupervised use could result in purchases? Not saying they should immediately know the solution but that line of thinking should surely result in at asking questions about how to stop that?

    Ultimately we live in a connected world and it's up to parents to decide when, how and to what extent their kids are going to interact with it. Most modern OS's make it relatively simple to control access, the tools are there and there's a ton of help available if it's needed. In the same way you go around the house to make it kid-friendly or make sure the TV has unsuitable channels blocked or that there's nothing unsuitable on the book shelves mobile tech needs to be considered before letting kids use it.
    Reply -3
  • BOFH_UK 12/04/2013

    @Mr.Spo Not sure about other mobile OS's but iOS has parental controls at the OS level including blocking in-app purchases and preventing new apps being installed. Frankly if parents aren't taking the time to block these and have a credit card linked to their iTunes account they're going to get charged for something sooner or later.

    I dunno, does this really need regulation? Can't help but think that parents need to be more actively involved and stop treating digital media (ALL digital media including on-line and gaming) as a way to distract the kids without being more involved. If you're going to hand a child an iPad, f'instance, disable access to any way to obtain new content, turn off in-app purchases and maybe consider giving them an iTunes account without a credit card attached just to be sure. When they get old enough to be trusted with money load a small amount on the account on a regular basis but keep the card away from them.

    And I know people are saying that it's not right to expect everyone to be tech savvy, fair enough. But surely if you're going to give something to a kid to use unsupervised you do some research on what it can do. Even forgetting for a moment about paid content if you hand over a modern smartphone you're also handing over a full web browser, wouldn't that give you pause for thought? Same goes for anything you let them do on their own, IMO surely you should be aware of the limits of that experience and make sure you're comfortable with those limits?
    Reply +2
  • Saturday Soapbox: The high cost of high standards

  • BOFH_UK 06/04/2013

    Fantastic article, thank you. Raises some great points and this is definitely an issue that the industry needs to face up to pretty damn quickly if it wants to avoid an, uh, involuntary restructure so to speak. I do, however, have some doubts about this:

    "They'll bring in new players, yes, if only because the game market is always growing."

    Now yes, this is a fair statement but that's the overall games market not necessarily the current big hitters on consoles and PC. Look at the Playstation brand for example. The PS2 sold 100 million units 5 years and 9 months after launch. It's taken 6 years and 3 months for PS3 to sell 77 million. Now granted that's not directly comparable as the 360 was much stronger competition than the original Xbox was and then you've got the Wii on top as well as a weak economy but it still makes for sobering reading.

    I used the PS2 for a reason here, that to me was the golden age for AAA gaming as the.. sorry, I hate using these terms but for lack of an alternative... casual and core gamers were, by and large, playing the same titles. During the PS3 era we saw a split as casual gamers either went with the big names titles only and ignored the rest or started to move to the Wii and, in later years, mobile platforms like iOS and Android. Now we're standing at the start of the PS4 and mobile gaming is exploding while the PC sees a resurgence in popularity (and much cheaper games than consoles), both platforms bringing a wave of new independent games with them. The Vita - the portable console for 'real' gamers - is struggling to find a market and we're seeing titles like Tomb Raider fail to hit expectations despite selling huge numbers.

    I can't help but look at that (and a lot more besides) and wonder just how large the market is for core titles. While new gamers will, inevitably, come in to the hobby every year there's a lot of people (and I'm one of them) who are finding the AAA stuff a tad boring these days and are putting our gaming budgets elsewhere. Then there's the increasing trend to release buggy software and patch, hardly something that encourages purchasing a title on the launch date.

    Anyway, this is getting ridiculous so to sum up: it's going to be very interesting to see how software sales go on the new platforms and I wouldn't be at all surprised to see some very big, and very public, failures. Hope not, no-one wants to see that after all, but there's a lot to be concerned about right now.
    Reply +8
  • Star Wars Pinball: The Empire Strikes Back review

  • BOFH_UK 05/04/2013

    @LLJaf True? No, not in the least.

    Sorry but I'm really sick and tired of this view that iOS, Android, Facebook etc aren't gaming platforms. If people play games on it, it's a gaming platform, period. The last set of data I saw (granted from analysts so take with very large pinch of salt) had customers spending more on gaming for iOS and Android than on games for dedicated handhelds. Something like 20 BILLION games were downloaded to smartphones & tablets in 2012. No matter how you slice it these are gaming platforms for a vast number of people and both need and deserve to be considered as such.

    For that matter those "non-gaming" platforms might just be essential to supporting triple-A titles. Not in money terms (though that's possible) but as a conduit into the hobby. With development and marketing costs heading upwards the industry needs to grow and (ugh, hate using these labels) converting 'casual' gamers to 'core' is vital if that's to happen.
    Reply +11
  • Star Wars 1313 was about Boba Fett after all

  • BOFH_UK 04/04/2013

    Hmm, don't know if this is just me but cancelling both projects would seem to suggest that a) they were still a long way from release, b) the quality maybe wasn't where it should be and c) there's a chance that with whatever direction they want to take the episodes 7,8 and 9 the stories of these titles wouldn't have fit in very well anymore.

    I guess related to all those would be the release date. If they weren't going to be ready until, say, 2014 then they'd be launched right into a weird deadzone where the hype for Episode 7 is just starting to build so there's little momentum there and, as a double whammy, the material is related to the past rather than the new stuff. By the same token cancelling them now, and *sniff* shutting Lucasfilm would give them a solid two years to go build the Episode 7 titles so I guess it does make some sense.
    Reply +3
  • Step inside the arcade of the future

  • BOFH_UK 01/04/2013

    @Alterego-X I'm not so sure about that. Arcades as they used to be, sure, they're probably dead and buried but some of the games highlighted here have real potential IMO. Couple of reasons:

    1) You have multiple generations who have grown up with gaming, who would be more than happy to spend time playing them and, most importantly, at least some are now old enough to have families. At the same time gaming is now seen as a general hobby not just a niche for the hardcore.

    2) As more retail shifts on-line and the high street (and retail parks) suffer suddenly a fair bit of space becomes available in high traffic areas. If other retailers aren't willing or able to take up that space the idea of forming specialised entertainment spaces is a viable alternative. We're already seeing that in some places where cinemas, bowling alleys and restaurants all sit under one roof.

    Add in games that offer experiences (and that's the key word here) you can't get anywhere else AND that can be experienced as a family or other group. I can see that being a very popular attraction for a big enough slice of the population to make it sustainable. Go out on a Sunday to bowl, fly a jet in a full motion simulator, have lunch then watch the latest movie...

    Speaking for myself I know I'd love to see that. Gaming has, frankly, become rather boring with minor updates, incremental graphics upgrades and a real lack of innovation sadly becoming standard fare. The idea of the arcade reborn the way it SHOULD be, the way it was back in the day with games that are more like rides and offer something unique and flat out fun... yeah, that's something I'd pay money for.
    Reply +11
  • Next Xbox games run from hard drive, discs not supported post-install - report

  • BOFH_UK 20/03/2013

    @Zombie-Hamster Umm... Don't be so sure Sony aren't still going that route. They've said they're 'supporting' used games but as far as I know they haven't confirmed there isn't a charge attached to that support... Reply 0
  • Saturday Soapbox: No Consolation

  • BOFH_UK 09/03/2013

    @Lunastra78 Sorry but I really disagree with this. PC gaming no longer needs almost annual updates, frankly a high end gaming rig built 4 years ago will still run most games just fine at settings at least equivalent to consoles. Now that's not the 6 years you specified, granted, but how many consoles from 2007 are still working? Both the 360 and PS3 have had their fair share of hardware issues and reliability so most early adaptors have had to fork out cash to replace those units by now.

    As for the 2007 target... as it happens I know someone with an 8800GT and a Core 2 Duo rig from 2007 that still does sterling duty as a games PC. No it doesn't have the bells and whistles PC gaming can deliver but it's just about capable of running new releases at console levels providing you run at 720p-ish levels (i.e. just like the consoles do).

    Yes, PC gaming is still more expensive for hardware and I'd expect there to be a bit more of a bumpy road in the next couple of years as the consoles jump forward and move the baseline. If you want to keep getting the best from PC titles then upgrades every two to three years are needed but if you're happy to drop settings down a bit (and still be above console levels) that's not the case. Of course there are other benefits: the games themselves are often far cheaper, the range of indie titles are superb and if you're not after every last ounce of performance the configuration issues of old are (more or less) gone.
    Reply -2
  • Apple patents digital trading techniques

  • BOFH_UK 07/03/2013

    @skunkfish Or, alternatively, Apple put in the work to figure out how to do this stuff properly and then others can *license* that patent for a fair price. If they don't want to do that they can use a different system if they believe they have a better idea, this doesn't patent the concept just the implementation. Reply +3
  • Don't panic about The Hut's 70 PS4 game pricing because Sony hasn't set prices yet

  • BOFH_UK 01/03/2013

    @Fallout True but a) cost of development is far, far higher than it was a decade ago and b) there are suggestions the console market may be shrinking. Just look at the sales performance of the WiiU. Dozens of reasons why that may happen (and its yet to be seen if it is) but if it does games may have to go up to compensate. Reply +1
  • EA putting micro-transactions "into all of our games"

  • BOFH_UK 27/02/2013

    @Stardusted May I suggest that buying cheats really only affects multiplayer games. Buying, say, a ton of XP in CoD to get better gear earlier would be a problem. Singleplayer who cares, it's up to the individual and if it means they can get past a bit of the game that they'd otherwise be stuck on forever and get an extra x hours of gameplay then I really don't see the problem. Provided, of course, the game hasn't been designed to force that decision on the gamer, this only applies to places where they'd struggle even without the payment system. Reply +1
  • Windows 8 sales break 60 million in 10 weeks

  • BOFH_UK 09/01/2013

    While I'm (almost) sure that figure is accurate... it's also very misleading. The bulk of W8 licenses will be sold to manufacturers, not end users, so many of them will currently be sitting on the proverbial shelf. As others have mentioned there were some ridiculous special offers for early adopters and those who had just bought a Windows 7 machine. Also the market has changed, that "matching Windows 7" line might well be accurate but let's not forget the Windows market now includes tablets such as the Surface so they really ought to be selling more.

    I really think Microsoft may have a problem brewing with Windows 8 and it's going to be very interesting to see how they react. If they don't start making serious inroads to the tablet and mobile markets in 2013 they could be facing a very serious threat to their position.
    Reply 0
  • PlayStation 3 hits 70 million units shipped worldwide mark six years after launch

  • BOFH_UK 16/11/2012

    @Malek86 maybe because, more than any other generation, they all have different focus? Wii took the casual market and those looking for something different, Xbox the more traditional gamer and, especially, multiplayer focused users and ps3 is still one of the best BluRay decks around for the money. They've all got good libraries and very few real exclusives for the 360 & ps3 compared to previous generations. Reply -11
  • iPhone 5 pre-orders top 2 million in just 24 hours

  • BOFH_UK 17/09/2012

    @Darren The phrase you're looking for is "something different" rather than "something better". To you the features you mentioned are preferable to the iPhone. To me they are pretty much useless. I have never once run out of charge on a phone, iTunes is fine (and rarely used these days after the initial load) and the screen is so big I can't live with it. My choice, therefore, is an iPhone because it's the best device for me and how I use a smartphone. Your choice is an S3 because it's the best choice for you. Reply +3
  • EA pulls Medal of Honor tomahawk promotion

  • BOFH_UK 16/08/2012

    @PearOfAnguish Thanks for the list, it's been a few years since I looked into this and the details had become a bit fuzzy... Never have understood the lack of registration in the USA, just doesn't make sense to me at all. Reply 0
  • BOFH_UK 16/08/2012

    @Xboxfanuk That'd sound a lot better if America hadn't just suffered three public shootings in as many weeks.

    See here's the thing, I'm not against gun ownership. If I had a bit more time (and could find a landlord sympathetic to me attaching a safe to a wall) I'd love to own a shotgun and go shooting clays at the weekend. But at least in the UK you MUST apply for a licence to own a gun and as part of that the police have the right to, for instance, approach your GP for any details of your medical history. I believe I'm right in saying you also need to prove you have suitable storage facilities etc as well and there are restrictions on how you transport and store both weapons and ammo.

    Compare to the US and the limitations seem to be 'are you over 18/21' and 'have you got a criminal history'. Let's not even get into the types of weaponry you're allowed to own (I'm sorry but I can see no legitimate reason for owning a full auto anything or assault weapons). Oh yes, and you can't play the 'minority spoiling it for the rest' when you're talking about guns, primarily because every-time that minority spoils it there's usually a trail of bodies behind them.

    As to EA... what on earth were they thinking? Tasteless promotion hidden behind a veneer of charity in the first place then trying to guilt people with a 'well now we don't know if the charity will get their money, HAPPY NOW INTERNET???' response. You're EA, you made a profit of $76 Million last year, you can afford to make a donation if you feel strongly about it.
    Reply +31
  • Ouya Kickstarter ends at over $8.5 million

  • BOFH_UK 09/08/2012

    @Lolatron Uh, because as lovely as the dream of an open source console is there are a huge number of practical problems in the way of 'brilliant exclusive experiences' ever arriving? Chief amongst them that this is a device more-or-less designed to be rooted running an OS that already has a massive piracy problem and marketed to the geeks?

    Look I hope this works, I really do, but good lord are the odds against it. Even if everything goes well it's coming to market packing what will, by then, be an older chipset barely three months before MS at the least is likely to announce its next big thing. For that matter Tegra3 is going to be made to look pretty poor when A15-based packages with next gen GPU's start to hit next year. The initial releases are likely to be android ports which may be okay, even good, but again are almost certainly going to be existing titles that have already been played on other devices. 140 is a LOT for a console with no history or big name backing when it comes to publishers when you can pick up a 360 NOW for that much (albeit you get three extra pads with Ouya).

    Basically, anyone that thinks this is going to succeed based on the facts right now might want to rethink. It has a chance to do well, yes, but there are WAY too many unknowns to be more than cautiously optimistic at best right now IMO.
    Reply +4
  • Microsoft's new iPad rival Surface for Windows RT release date

  • BOFH_UK 30/07/2012

    @sherpa1984 You're aware that WinRT is just as much a closed system as iOS right? No flash, apps only through the app store, no access to the desktop, no ability to run desktop apps etc?

    My worry with the Pro version hasn't changed in the last couple of years - I just don't see how desktop apps with interfaces designed for mouse input are going to work on a touch device. At best it'll be badly compromised, at worst unusable. Heck even Office 2013 seems to suffer this problem despite having a 'touch interface' (i.e. bigger landing areas).
    Reply -3
  • Nintendo promises "reasonable" Wii U price

  • BOFH_UK 26/06/2012

    Nice double speak from Reggie there. Pay very close attention to the slight of hand when he talks about 'value'. It's put in a way that's designed to make you think Nintendo set and held a $250 price to benefit the customer. What's actually being said however is MS and Sony launched high out of necessity thanks to the high cost of systems and dropped the price ASAP. Nintendo launched cheaper but at a level that made a profit and didn't drop it even when they could have. The 'Value' Reggie talks about is value to Nintendo, not customers. They only got a lower entry point as the Wii was so much cheaper to make in the first place!

    So I'd really read this as 'We will launch at a price point that makes money for us and ideally not change that for a long time to maximise value for Nintendo." Nothing wrong with that, companies have to make profit, but don't be fooled into thinking he means they're looking to maximise value for the customer.
    Reply +20
  • E3 Reaction: Nintendo Blows Its E3 Conference Opportunity

  • BOFH_UK 06/06/2012

    "Wii U, which is a potentially magical and wondrous piece of technology" - I'm sorry but I really don't see this at all. I did with the Wii, the concepts and potential of the Wiimote were clear from day one, but the Wii U just seems like a gimmick. Sure it can offer some interesting ideas but nothing that I've seen so far suggests that anyone, even Nintendo themselves, has a handle on how to deliver something radically different.

    Which, I suppose, was the main problem with their E3 presentation. There was just no 'wow' factor, no single game that stood out and went 'THIS is why you need to buy this system'. Instead we saw a swathe of titles using the gamepad to do minor tasks that in some cases (inventory management the prime example) threaten to make a game worse rather than better as your attention switches between TV and pad.

    I know I'm likely to get downvoted for this but after the big E3 conferences I honestly believe the big gaming news for 2012 may come next week at WWDC. Speculation of course but if Apple were to announce an App Store for Apple TV that may end up being a more significant development in the long term than anything we saw this week.
    Reply +5
  • Nintendo's E3 2012 Conference

  • BOFH_UK 05/06/2012

    This feels like a console that's been out for years. So far no new titles at all from Nintendo, just sequels, and nothing that really sells the gamepad as a game changer. Really hope I'm wrong but haven't been this disappointed at a presentation for a long time, hope they've got something big lined up we haven't seen yet. Reply 0
  • Nintendo to begin making money on each 3DS sold by September 2012

  • BOFH_UK 26/04/2012

    @simsini Not so sure about that, most of the negative press at launch and for the first few months was entirely accurate. Too expensive, not enough games, REALLY badly marketed and relatively poor sales, especially after the early adopters were done. Ultimately Nintendo turned it round by slashing the price and selling at a loss, something they haven't done in recent years. Right decision and all credit to Ninty for making it but that shouldn't change the fact they really did make a hash of the launch. Reply +6
  • Reality Crumbles: Whatever happened to VR?

  • BOFH_UK 12/04/2012

    @Lucodeath That sucks, it was going downhill last time I was there sometime in the early 2000's but back in the 90's (especially when it was Sega World) there was nothing else quite like it, especialy for a 14 year old geek. The one thing I really miss from the arcade era was coming across those ridiculous cabinets like G-lock or a full size Ferrari simulator. Reply +2
  • BOFH_UK 12/04/2012

    I once had a chance to try Virtuality's tech at the Trocadero in London and to this day it remains one of the most impactful gaming experiences I've ever had. Sure the graphics were barely ahead of the old Star Wars vector arcade game and it was horribly expensive but so what? Four of us, in a world that you interacted with on a level nobody had come close to at that point, all piloting big Mecha's around (Exorex I believe the game was) was just stunning. Always wished someone would have combined a VR rig with the 360 G-lock cabinet some lunatic at Sega came up with... Reply +16
  • Blizzard hasn't given up getting WOW running on iPhone

  • BOFH_UK 19/03/2012

    Two things:

    1) With regards hardware requirements bear in mind the next gen CPU and GPU options coming to mobile later this year are going to see a pretty major performance boost. Just look at how far we've come in the three year gap between the iPhone 3G and 4S for a good example of how quickly things are moving.

    2) Could the "no button" brigade maybe give it a rest? Bluetooth already enables you to connect a controller to mobile devices, if there's a suitable demand for it such devices will become common (and fairly cheap to boot).
    Reply -6
  • Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime Review

  • BOFH_UK 15/03/2012

    This boast has been made without any solid evidence or reliable benchmarking and is therefore impossible to substantiate at the moment
    Umm, while that's technically true analysis of Tegra 3 up against the A5 SOC has shown that when it comes to graphics the year old chip actually beats Nvidia's device: http://www.anandtech.com/show/5663/analysis-of-the-new-apple-ipad

    Is it going to be a 2x difference for the A5X? Nah, very unlikely IMO, but Apple have consistently churned out graphics powerhouses when it comes to their iDevices and that's likely to continue for the foreseale future.

    Anyway, the Transformer is certainly a nice device and probably the best Android tablet out there right now. Nice to see a company doing something different too and getting it mostly right. Problem is, sadly, the software. Android on tablets remains, again IMO, pretty poor. Some good ideas but the execution isn't fantastic and the third party software isn't there. They've probably got the remainder of this year but then Windows 8 hits and it could get VERY difficult for Android tablets to gain traction. Be interesting to see which way this goes.
    Reply +2
  • Imminent Apple announcement for iPad HD, which isn't iPad 3 - report

  • BOFH_UK 07/03/2012

    I'm sorry but I don't understand how the rumoured spec is an 'incremental upgrade'.

    Just about the only thing that isn't significantly changing (again, if rumours are right) is the case and even then it is supposed to be slightly different. The display goes to a retina device, the SOC gets an upgrade, a new camera, probably a bigger battery... what else is there? What more would Apple need to do to qualify it as a major upgrade? Or are we now just focused on the exterior shell of a device to determine if it's a 'major' update?

    Oh yes and the iPad 4 in October rumour comes from Digitimes, well known practitioners of the 'throw everything at the wall and see what sticks' approach to reporting. Sorry folks but really poor reporting here IMO that just serves to confuse people.
    Reply +10
  • New evidence of Valve's Steam Box console/PC

  • BOFH_UK 05/03/2012

    As cool as this sounds... I just don't see the commercial appeal. At all.

    This thing is going to be expensive. Core i7, 8GB, high end GPU... all high end components and that's before you add the MB, case, PSU, HDD etc. This is, for all practicaly intents and purposes, a gaming PC with a few add-ons that will need to turn a profit for the hardware makers unlike traditional subsidised consoles.

    Core gamers will oooh and ahh then go build their own rigs as they can get more performance for their money and virtually all the same features. Console gamers aren't going to shift unless there's a LOT of high quality titles they can't get on their existing (or next gen) machines for a heck of a lot less outlay. Even if software costs are cheaper you need to buy a fair few games for the diffence to be worthwhile. So where is the audience for a unit like this, especially if it has to support multiple hardware vendors?

    Don't get me wrong, I want to see this exist and do well, I just don't see what angle will allow that to happen and make it a profitable venture for everyone involved.
    Reply +10
  • PlayStation Vita worldwide sales hit 1.2 million

  • BOFH_UK 28/02/2012

    Surely the big question mark hanging over the Vita is more about its long term viability? This is a machine built to appeal to the 'hardcore' gamer and they have a tendency to be first adopters anyway. What's going to be interesting is how well it maintains its momentum in the coming months and if software sales continue to hold up... Reply +1
  • GAME: "we can't stock absolutely everything"

  • BOFH_UK 22/02/2012

    Very telling that despite being asked very specific questions there isn't one specific answer given. Even that 'added value' nonsense in the last answer doesn't have a single concrete example of what such value might be. Of course that's likely because it doesn't exist in the context she's using it here and actually refers to 'benefits' such as insurance, trade-in and other extra cost items.

    Depressing to see, certainly suggests that they really don't have a creative way out of the situation and intend to keep doing what they're doing and pray something changes.
    Reply +7