New Phone Time

xperia-Z1-hero-black-1240x840-3c449514e1daf8b0652a5dc235530ebcI bought a new phone the other day, it was time as my last one was just bout hanging in there. There was a part of me which was tempted with an iPhone however I ignored the devil on my shoulder (my wife) and opted for a Sony Xperia Z1. I wasn’t 100% sure about sticking with Android devices, but as there is little else out there I thought I would prevail. It was quite pricey though, so I bought some insurance through for it which was pretty affordable.

It’s quite a large handset, (144.4 x 73.9 x 8.5 mm) but it does feel surprisingly light and in my man hands pretty easy to use. The screen size is an impressive 5in which is full HD TRILUMINOS™ Display and 1920x1080p. Its main features are the fact it has the world’s best camera and it is waterproof. It comes in three colour black, white and purple, the wife wanted me to get purple (what, do I look gay?) however I opted for black.

Despite the fact I have a DSLR camera, I actually really like the one on my phone, and it is very good. I bought a Smartphone Attachable Lens-style Camera which has high magnification and 3.6x optical zoom as well as advance sensor technology. It is a pretty fun toy, works well and importantly takes great photos’. I think it will be most useful when I don’t want to be lugging my DSLR around.

I’ve found that it is pretty quick as well, compare to my last phone it works like lightning. The OS is also seamless on it, but that is more to do with the fact that the phone is up to date, I think once a year or so has passed and we have had multiple updates it will slow like my last phone. It comes with a number of entertainment features installed, including 3D motion gaming, a Walkman application, Social Media, Google Wallet and it is PlayStation Certified.

It also comes with a number of inbuilt Google applications, including Chrome which is handy as it’s my preferred browser and what I use on my laptop. I’ve also downloaded a number of apps from Google Play, which was easy and quick.

There aren’t too many bad points I have come across yet with this new phone, I would like a case for it though to protect it, however I am struggling to find any. The market is saturated with iPhone cases and Samsung cases however something decent looking for the Sony Xperia Z1 is pretty hard to come across.


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FIFA 14 Review

FIFA 14I have spent most of my time playing GTA V like many others, I have pretty much completed it, barring some of the smaller games, no spoilers here I won’t ruin the ending. So for a change of pace I picked up a copy of  FIFA 14, I got some money off as I traded in a number of older issues (they really weren’t worth that much). I kept FIFA 13 just to compare gameplay.

For those who are upgrading to the new Xbox One, you probably haven’t got the new FIFA, due to the fact that the Xbox one comes with a copy. As I am unsure yet whether I will be getting a new Xbox I thought I’d get a copy, I can always sell it.

Anyway I have to say this isn’t my favourite FIFA edition. It seems like EA are not improving, yes I know they bring out a new game every year, but it does seem like they are going backwards in terms of quality and control. Unless this game has been designed with the new Xbox in mind, then they have really gone downhill. It’s slow and sluggish, not smooth and consistent that we have had in the past.

It also seems like they have become real sticklers for the rules, more so than actual FA officials in the real game. I found with tackling, ones which should have seen a yellow card sees nothing. It may seem like I’m complaining at that like I do with real games but it just seems ridiculous at the moment. Plus shots seem to too easily blocked for the other team/ they seem to move much better than my players. Perhaps I need to play more and gameplay may improve with ability, but currently it’s bloody frustrating. As the players you build your team from no matter their ability in real life it doesn’t transfer to this game, they are all poor, even Messi.

I generally don’t play online because I am pretty antisocial and generally get kicked from servers a lot. However I tried to hop online and it took bloody ages, was laggy and after a while the connection went. I checked by broad band which was fine, running its pretty fast speeds and the wife had, had no problems so no idea what was wrong there.

It does seem like FIFA struggles to improve each year, until they bring out a patch which is hugely frustrating for those who buy the game when it comes out. It also won’t help them boost sales with plenty of negative reviews for the first few months. Not encouraging any one to buy till they get themselves sorted out.

For those who have not yet got this game, I would wait a while and buy it when it drops in price which I would think it would. Or wait till you upgrade to the Xbox one if you are and get it for free, maybe it might be better on that or they may have fixed some bugs.


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Playing GTA V and using Cheats

It still is the game of the year (only FIFA has come out since) and I have spent many an hour playing it. I haven’t even bought FIFA yet (it should be coming with the new Xbox). I’ve got back into the game after a few years out and although some of the smaller missions are a bit boring overall it’s been quite fun. I have also been messing around just doing silly things, including visiting strip clubs, finding prostitutes, visiting the gun range and a golf range.

I was just scanning the internet yesterday when I came across a number of videos showing cheat for GTA V cheats. I’m not normally one for cheats, but I thought I would watch the video:

I was tempted to try the cheats after watching the video, not to get ahead in the game (which you can’t do), but for some fun. I wasn’t too bothered about cheating with cars as I have those, but getting a helicopter or plane when you need it is handy. Plus it looked fun trying out the invisibility cheat too! Anyway this is what I found:

It was extremely difficult, to do all the motions to get the cheats, whilst reading them off a screen and not trying to kill anyone whilst pressing the buttons. I found a couple of times I shot two people which drew the attention of police which screwed up my cheat plans and put me off a bit. I ended up trying them in quiet secluded areas to avoid killing anyone inadvertently.

After memorising a couple of cheats, I found them quite fun, especially invincibility cheat. I spawned a number of different vehicles which was handy saved running around looking for a car when I needed one. I spawned a helicopter, but this cheat only worked when there was enough space for it and nothing in its way which was fun!

There are still a number of different cheats I am yet to try, however it takes me so long to get them right I found I was messing around trying to get them to work for three hours last night! The wife nagged that I was spending too much time on the Xbox playing that game, so I will have to keep an eye on how long I spend using cheats as I’m not really getting on with any missions.


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Crysis 3

A couple of weeks ago I took order of Crysis 3, the third instalment of the series. I have played the two previous titles, and this outing follows up nicely. You return to fight as Prophet who is on a quest to rediscover humanity (see my previous post).

As expected the graphics are pretty good, both in single player and multiplayer modes, there doesn’t seem to be any graphical glitches which is good. In single player mode game play is standard, it hasn’t taken me that long to get through the majority of the game, and I still have a few things left to do. However I don’t think the story is as long as Crysis 2 nor is it as in depth. I get the feeling now many games designers spend more time developing multiplayer games so that when it comes to single player, there seems to be something missing.

I have had a few goes on multiplayer although like a lot of other games the servers can be laggy and we always seem to be at a disadvantage to American players. The plus points to multiplayer mode is that it is multi-faceted, there are several new game play options including Hunter mode, where it is last man standing. Also during game play winning sees XP and weapon unlocks like other games, this I think is the general format for most multiplayer games anyway.

This is a great mid-season game, something which comes out in-between the big tittles, although to be fair Crysis is pretty big in its own right, however I find it makes a change from COD and Battlefield so if you’re getting a bit tired of those games you should check this out.
Still gotta wait for the Walking Dead game, but at least I have the TV show which is starting to crank up its pace.

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Black Ops 2

I am a creature of habit when it comes to video games; I tend to stick to the same series and generally jump to buy the latest versions. So again this year I have got the latest Call of Duty title. Out of all the games I have pre ordered this autumn, Black Ops 2 is the last one. Good really because this game takes the time and determination to play well.

You can tell the difference between those who practically play the game 24/7 and those who like to go on for a couple of hours for fun. Those who play mainly for fun tend to die quickly at the hands of those who play a lot of hours. They know every inch of the maps and where best to set up to snipe the lost lambs. I am somewhere in between, so although I am not easy pickings I still die fairly often, not as much as some of my mates though who I play online with.

This latest title does feature better graphics than previous outings, but not brilliant, however there is plenty of detail with the maps and equipment. I have been finding myself recently playing the offline version, just because unless my mates are online, getting a somewhat interesting game is impossible. I always seem to be stuck playing American kids who obviously must have more time to play and sit for players to become sitting ducks. No one really plays as a team basically it is all men for themselves, despite multiplayer being a team game.

The only good point about multiplayer is the new pick system. This time you are allowed to choose a selection of perks and weapons, so you do have more choice when out in the field. The choice does make it a bit easier I have to say, and I have also found it handy that you now have a points system rather than a kill system so you can collect points in missions without having to actually kill someone. It makes it easier especially for newbies.

I really do enjoy this game, despite some of my misgivings on multiplayer, but when my mates are online it is much better and the banter you have is funny, does actually beat a night at the pub and that’s saying something. If you are a fan I would give it a go, like many games in a range of titles, it’s better than previous versions, not perfect though, but when does that ever happen?

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Halo 4

I have the snuffles at the moment, the wife past it onto me so I thought the best course of action would be to wrap myself up in my duvet and settle down to play Halo 4 to feel better. I had a total of six hours on the game yesterday, my postie delivered it bang on 9am (nice) so after the wife prepared my breakfast I cracked on with it.

So to start, without spoiling anything thing for those not yet played, this latest instalment could have been another mediocre instalment like many other ‘story’ type games out there. However it’s not. Why you may ask? Well instead of just adding another chapter and making a tweak the developers have actually made marked improvements, to graphics plus they improved the online mode. They story is also great, it hasn’t been padded out with crap but follows well from the previous games and I think will go on for a long time to come.

It’s one first person shooter game that I can really get into, even in my cold induced state, the hours playing yesterday flew by. It is still a challenging game, can’t say I have mastered much, which is good, I need to improve, it’s one of those games where you really can’t jump in and be awesome. I would also say that although the makers stated you needn’t have played previous instalments, it could be quite challenging if you don’t know the game play. But you should persevere as its worth it, even for the technology/graphics alone.

I had a quick play of the online mode, however because my cold had slowed down my reactions, I thought it best to leave that for another day.

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