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Pikmin 3 (Nintendo Wii U)
Pikmin 3 (Nintendo Wii U)
Offered by Game Trade Online
Price: £33.44

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sweet, but short, 24 Feb. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I really love Pikmin and have both games for the Gamecube. Pikmin 3 was one of the games that I was most excited about getting for my Wii U.

The charm is definitely still there. It oozes it, and draws people in. I had friends staying over and they were all entranced by the game. I'm excited to get another wiimote and nunchuck to play multiplayer.

I played the game with the gamepad and thought it adequate but clunky at times, particularly when fighting flying enemies. I'm going to give the wiimote a go soon and I expect it to be a much better way of controlling the game; at least for accuracy in throwing and selecting pikmin. The game is essentially an RTS after all, getting closer to a mouse and keyboard control method is likely to make things much easier.

My biggest complaint is with the length of the game. While the others were more about exploring and had little in the way of plot, Pikmin 3 is very linear with new areas only opening up after plot points have occurred. This isn't a bad thing; I lost interest in Pikmin 2 once I had access to all the Pikmin types because there wasn't much to keep me playing but the puzzles.

Unfortunately Pikmin 3 swings in the opposite direction; there is a lot less to see. I was impressed by how expansive the maps were at first, and I liked that there were no load times (I feel like there may have been waits for the various caves in Pikmin 2). Still, there are only four real areas to explore, and while there is reason to go back once you find new pikmin types there isn't a huge amount of extra space to unlock; just more of this games collectible items, fruit (as opposed to junk and ship parts in the second and first installments).

While there is a definite purpose to what you are doing the puzzles are few and mostly repetitive whilst being very simple. For instance, yellow pikmin can handle electricity. A situation is presented that requires them to be used (and how they should be used is highly telegraphed) and there isn't much further exploration of this mechanic.

The positive is that the game has a focus on cooperative play, both in a battle mode and in standalone missions that provide a scenario and limitations. I haven't played the battles so I'll mention the missions. You start off with pikmin of a few types and have to do various things; gather treasure, eliminate enemies etc. I have only played one but it seemed fun and was set up for cooperative play.

My second major disappointment is with regards to these missions; at the time of writing there have been three DLC packs that must be bought in addition to the base game cost; two for £1.50 and one for £4.50. The first two unlock eight new missions (for a total of 15 enemy-fighting missions and 15 treasure gathering missions) as well as some other settings (I'm not sure how many missions they represent).

I have never been a huge fan of DLC but in this case I do feel ripped off. The first pikmin was short and sweet and I appreciated it. I really expect more since then though, and to find that this game has a very short campaign and a significant amount of extra content, but which requires even more money to be spent really winds me up. The first two DLC packs add very little (from what I can tell) other than some more level design. There isn't a huge amount of that in the base game so I'm disappointed that I need to pay another £3; not a lot I know, but if I want the complete game it is almost £10 more than the base.

In conclusion, the lack of content is the biggest issue I have with the game. There seems to be an emphasis on replaying the campaign to better your score (finish more quickly with fewer dead pikmin and more fruit collected) but really, that isn't enough for me. I finished the game in 2 days, and that was whilst entertaining guests and going out in the evenings. The game is very charming but also very easy. The challenge and longevity seem to be expected to come as a result of trying to beat your high score (which doesn't interest me) and coop play, which I am excited to explore.

As a single played game it only gets three stars though. Were all the DLC missions included in the base game it would likely be a four/five. There isn't enough to the base game for that score though.


Sanyo MQN04 HR-3UTGA Battery Pack
Sanyo MQN04 HR-3UTGA Battery Pack

4.0 out of 5 stars Newer model than advertised, 1 Feb. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I did some research and discovered that the batteries being advertised (HR-3UTGA) were first developed in 2010. The batteries I received were actually the slightly newer HR-3UTGB (2011) that are supposed to have a greater number of recharge cycles. No idea yet whether they will achieve those numbers, I will probably come back to this review in the future.


Inheritance (The Inheritance cycle)
Inheritance (The Inheritance cycle)
by Christopher Paolini
Edition: Hardcover

2.0 out of 5 stars A poor finale, 20 Jan. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
When I first read Eragon, the first book in the Inheritance (then trilogy) Cycle I was blown away. Others have since pointed out its similarities to Star Wars but that doesn't destroy the pleasure I remember when I first read it. There was something about the history of the world, the magic system, the way that life was portrayed (especially in the early chapters) that resonated with me.

Somewhere down the line the magic was lost for me. Reading the second book the dialogue felt stilted; it felt like someone that had been home schooled and not exposed to normal people had written it! The third book began to introduce absurd plot elements without moving the main story forward at all. When the fourth book arrived I felt cynical, and that proved to be the correct feeling. Paolini had created characters too powerful to be dealt with, and the resolution was hollow. Note that the expected finale comes far earlier than might have been expected, and the final ~fifth of the book involves wrapping up plot points in a way that feels rushed and detached. Ultimately I put the book down before the end and have not finished it, nor do I intend to. A poor end to the series.


Genius KB-06XE PS2 Keyboard- Black
Genius KB-06XE PS2 Keyboard- Black

4.0 out of 5 stars Cheap but functional, 20 Jan. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
i originally bought this when I realised my USB keyboard would not let me interact with BIOS. Plug it into the PS/2 port and it is instantly recognised.
I have actually been using it as my primary keyboard since the mentioned USB keyboard died and it has been perfectly fine for playing games and typing documents. I have my eyes on an expensive Cherry keyboard now, but this has served its job very well and I will definitely hold onto it. it is only the design and lack of media keys that make me want to move onto something new.


The Massage Deck
The Massage Deck
by Katy Dreyfuss
Edition: Cards

4.0 out of 5 stars Nicely laid out to quickly start massaging, 20 Jan. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Massage Deck (Cards)
The set comes in a cardboard box with the cards loose inside. One issue I had was that the fact they were cards meant that they went all over the places and were fiddly to flip with oily hands.
Having different massage schemes prepared makes it easy to dive into a session and have more confidence with what you are doing. The cards have nice diagrams and the instructions are generally clear.
A good starting point for massage!


Men of War - The Ultimate Collection (PC DVD)
Men of War - The Ultimate Collection (PC DVD)

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Multiplayer was inaccessible!, 20 Jan. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I had seen the Men of War series in numerous Let's Plays and thought it reminiscent of Company of Heroes, one of my all time favourite series. Men of War is CoH set to 11 in terms of scale, difficulty, mechanics and depth. This is a game where every soldier and vehicle has its ammunition and fuel modelled, where explosions and bullets will rip soldiers apart mercilessly and where positioning and tactics mean everything.

Saying that, what I really wanted when I bought the game was to play against other human players. Men of War has a realism that CoH does not and I wanted to see how well I could do against other players under those circumstances. Unfortunately, despite being available on Steam the games use gamespy and I could not access their servers at all, not even to sign up.
While interesting, the majority of the single player missions were disappointing to me as there were few that utilised the scale that Men of War can reach and often had quirks in their scripting or frustrating sneak elements. The Assault Squad campaigns meanwhile are all clones of each other; you start off with a small number of troops, capture a few flags and receive new units for doing so. There is no variation though and most maps end up playing very similarly.

i would purchase but be aware that these are not fully polished games.


Transcend 16GB JetFlash 300 USB Drive [Frustration-Free Packaging]
Transcend 16GB JetFlash 300 USB Drive [Frustration-Free Packaging]
Price: £7.18

3.0 out of 5 stars Poor transfer rate, 20 Jan. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I thought I had selected a USB with one of the better read/write speeds (for the price at least) but I can't say that I am very impressed. Saying that, it continues to work and stores files admirably. If you're only writing small files or needing portable storage then this is will be as good as most I would imagine.
If you're looking for speed, go elsewhere.


Poetic Slimbook Case for Google Nexus 4
Poetic Slimbook Case for Google Nexus 4

4.0 out of 5 stars Acceptable quality for the price., 20 Jan. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I chose the product for the design and based on the views of others. After four months of ownership I thought I would write a review.

The case is faux leather with white stitching along most of the edges. On the right side is a magnetic clasp that attaches to the back of the case and does prevent the case sitting flat on a surface. On the left side is a soft material that presumably makes the cover easier to fold back.
Inside the case and on the left hand side are the three card slots which can be pulled forward to reveal a note sheaf. On the right is the cage which holds the phone. The phone can be easily removed without causing damage to the case but is held firmly and will not fall out when dangled or shaken.

As to the build quality; I have accidentally dropped the phone numerous times and on a variety of surfaces (including my tiled kitchen floor). So far there has been no damage to the phone, though chips have been taken out of the case; notably the sections above the buttons on either side of the phone. Definitely preferred to a chip out of the phone itself! Actually, the damage is a positive for me as I found that access to the power button on the right was restricted by the plastic cage that completely surrounded it. Having the top fifth of the right-side cage broken off makes the button easier to press and hasn't affected the protection (yet).
The phone is generally in my pocket and is taken out frequently to be used. As such the stitching is already beginning to wear,especially at the top and bottom and on the clasp. It has yet to have any effect on the integrity of the case though.

All in all, some fraying more than makes up for the protection that the case has provided me with. A good buy!


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