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Jacked: The unauthorized behind-the-scenes story of Grand Theft Auto
Jacked: The unauthorized behind-the-scenes story of Grand Theft Auto
by David Kushner
Edition: Paperback
Price: 10.39

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great story on the rise and fall of video game gangland, 22 May 2012
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I bought this book after reading Master of Doom by the same author and found it to be just as good! I'd played a lot of Dave Jones games growing up from Bloody Money on the ATARI ST to Lemmings on the PC and when GTA 1 came out in 1997 it was a fun little game I enjoyed. I stopped gaming as much so didnt get GTA 3/4 and all the add on and side projects but knew of the mark it was making on the entertainment industry. This book takes the reader from the humble beginnings in Dundee, Scotland to the high roller times in America when the guys making these games told Burt Reynolds to sit down and shut up because the last game they produced made more money than all of his movies combined. Even if you arent a hardcore gamer or really played GTA in any of its guises this is a page turner that explains how the video game industry came from nowhere to take the entertainment crown. Highly recommended.


Masters Of Doom: How two guys created an empire and transformed pop culture
Masters Of Doom: How two guys created an empire and transformed pop culture
by David Kushner
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic story telling of the dawn of 3D and PC gaming, 14 May 2012
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It was 1992 and I was using a 2400 baud modem in my fathers office to log on to BBSs around the country when wolf3d first appeared for download. I gave in to temptation and spent the download credit and call charge time to snag a copy and when completed and unzipped I don't think anything could prepare me for what was a about to happen n screen! From that moment on I was hooked on pretty much everything id software would release. Doom and Quake took that forward and each time I thought "surely this is as good as it gets". This book gives a fantastic understanding and insight into how these landmark releases in gaming history came to be and what became of these coding and designing gods. My only tiny criticism of the book is that the second half doesn't have as much about the actual tech discoveries (like the scrolling EGA trick of Commander Keen or texture mapping n Wolf) and is more about the nit picking and hate between the Johns. That said up to the 80% mark on my Kindle I was hooked and the last 20% was very good. If you were hooked on Keen, Wolfenstien, Doom or Quake then you owe it to yourself to read the history and learn how two geeks took the games industry by storm and caught the attention of Bill Gates along the way.


Lenovo A1 7 inch Multi Touch Tablet (Cortex A8 1GHz, 16Gb Storage, 512Mb RAM, Dual Camera (0.3MP front/3MP rear), Android 2.3.4) - Black
Lenovo A1 7 inch Multi Touch Tablet (Cortex A8 1GHz, 16Gb Storage, 512Mb RAM, Dual Camera (0.3MP front/3MP rear), Android 2.3.4) - Black

6 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Much promised, little delivered :(, 17 Jan 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I've held off getting a tablet as I found my phone did pretty much all I needed but recently Ive wanted a larger area to type on when doing email and of course a larger screen doesnt go amiss when watching video.

I decided to try out the Lenovo as it was getting some good reviews and its a brand I knew of having bought IBMs ThinkPad line a while back while putting out good quality gear. The 7" form factor was a must as I dont want to cart around a 9/10" tablet - Ive got a netbook so could drag that around instead.

My problems with the A1 are really that it doesnt quite hit the mark. I tried to playback a simple 350mb AVI file encoded in DIVX/XVID of a TV show which is at less than DVD resolution and it choked up. I downloaded other, optimised players and they didnt fair much better.

The touchscreen lag is also pretty awful and sometimes it just doesnt even register that Ive swiped or pressed the screen.

Yes its very inexpensive and running 2 generations behind OS wise but when I used it then switched back after 30 mins to my iPhone 4 I was floored at how amazingly quick and responsive my 1.5 year old phone is.

When 18 months down the line newer tech with similar specs (1GHz CPU, 512mb RAM, similar screen res) feels lethargic and forced I knew it wasnt for me. The random crashing, rebooting, lack of solid video playback and sluggish touchscreen means I can only really recommend people avoid and look elsewhere if they are looking for something fit for purpose that doesnt feel like a beta product.

Even the cheapest car on the market will generally turn left when you turn the steering wheel in that direction so being a cheap tablet shouldnt excuse the way the product functions (or fails to).

Here's hoping the next batch of quad core tablets will deliver on the promise and give the iPad a run for its money.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 28, 2012 1:53 AM GMT


Ready Player One
Ready Player One
by Ernest Cline
Edition: Paperback

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Tugs your nostalgic heartstrings, 7 Oct 2011
This review is from: Ready Player One (Paperback)
I heard about this book by way of a retro computing podcast and thought, why not!

I ended up listening to the audio version read by Will Wheaton where he does a fantastic job with the content making it fun and engaging throughout.

The story itself is really good, I'm not a fiction reader for the most part (or listener) but I did enjoy the work as it featured lots of things from my own 80s lead childhood.

My only real criticisms of the book were that when the pace faltered some 80s pop culture references were quickly injected into the mix to tug at the heart strings and pump the serotonin levels up. If it's bland lets mention War Games etc.

I think the over use of 80s placements was the thing that pulled me out of the story in parts but putting that to the side it really is a worthy read.

Drawing more than slight inspiration from recent flicks like Gamer and Surrogates and with a mixed in storyline similar to Willy Wonka it will entertain and throw a fair number of Gotchas in there to catch you off guard.

I'm a self confessed geek, raised in the 80s with Ghostbusters and Back To The Future and now surrounded by all manner of tech gadgets and high tech wizardry. If you're the same then buy this book!


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