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L. Thompson "Thommo" (United Kingdom)

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Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection
Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection
Offered by Fox Electric
Price: £41.35

11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Uncharted Trilogy 1080p 60 Frames Per Second? The Pinnacle Of Modern Day Gaming!, 12 Oct. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is the remaster collection that most PlayStation gamers have been waiting for! Three games which with the exception of Metal Gear Solid Guns Of Patriots and possibly MotorStorm was the absolute pinnacle of the PS3 era for a great many, wall to wall 10/10 reviews at the time and still holds up extremely well to this day and at the time was simply ground breaking, now running at 1080p resolution at 60 frames per second and I have to tell you as any PC gamer will tell you that 1080p 60 frames per second is the gold standard of gaming for a reason. And it really is.

Truth be told I cannot say much about this remaster or these games that countless others have not also said - but I'll give it a go anyhow and in saying that for me these Uncharted games as awesome as they are running at 1080p 60 frames it just doesn't get any better than this! I'll not make a better purchase all year and maybe not for as long as I own a PS4. Uncharted The Nathan Drake Collection is to me the definition and symbol of single player gaming utopia.

Strong praise? Absolutely. Too strong? Not for me to decide. Biased opinion? Probably. I won't lie, I love the Uncharted games and 60 fps gameplay as well what with being a PC gamer as well so the combination here is basically game porn to me!

If there are any blots on this trilogy collection though it is that more could have been done in terms of bonus material like behind the scenes interviews and concept art etc, and of course no multiplayer but you have to also consider that the original never had multiplayer to begin with and this is 3 awesome games on 1 disc. That's pretty impressive to fit all of these on the one disc. Not to mention all the upgrades and three games for the price of one. But for those who game for multiplayer (I'm not one of those) that could well be a deal breaker. And has been for some, but others don't give a hoot about it and that's just the way of the world....

Regarding technical aspects, it's not just the increase in resolution and frame rate - which alone make an absolute world of difference believe me! But they've also improved the lighting, shadows, textures and the controls....gone are the finicky sixaxis sections, they've improved the shooting in Uncharted 1 to be more in line with the sequels, they've added tessellation so that circular objects have a natural curve and appear circular not hexagonal, and they have also added Vsync to Uncharted Drake's Fortune too so that the tearing which plagued only the first game originally is nowhere to be found here.

I strongly doubt that this will even qualify for GOTY due to it being a remaster collection and not a brand new PS4 game, but that doesn't mean to say that it won't be by far the best game that people will pick up this year. And with that this gets my highest recommendation, if you have a PlayStation 4 and you don't pick this up then sorry but you're doing it wrong.

Until Uncharted 4 and Rise Of The Tomb Raider hit the PS4 next year this trilogy sets the standard as far as I'm concerned.

If you play games for escapism and immersion not to mention movie-like experiences then it just doesn't get any better than this!

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain - Day 1 Edition (PS4)
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain - Day 1 Edition (PS4)
Offered by Gadget Heaven
Price: £43.96

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's Got Something About It, But Old School MGS Fans Might Not Like It, 30 Sept. 2015
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
Okay so this game looks amazing, sounds amazing, plays amazing for an open world stealth game....and yet....for as much as I love pre planning my stealth raid with the binocs and tagging enemies and placements of information, I just don't like the game as much as previous Metal Gear Solid games.

I think the reason why is that this feels completely alien to the other MGS games. It's basically Peace Walker 2. But gone are the long cut scenes, gone are the linear yet focused level designs, I really do not like the Fulton air recovery thing and mother base it's just silly! And having your horse take a crap which can cause vehicles to wheel out I mean really?

I also don't like how all the missions feel the same because they're done in the same area, I think this is MGS V PP's biggest problem besides the Fulton/Mother base stuff. Because this game is open world you spend a lot of time on horseback seeing the same old things, raiding yet another outpost and Fulton yet another person of interest - ironically it just doesn't have the dynamism of the linear story driven previous entries in the MGS series.

In my opinion if you are going to do an open world game then you have to get it right, and for me you need visual variation. Elder Scrolls games get this absolutely right. Fallout games are tied to their subject matter somewhat. MGS V I can appreciate the change of pace but I don't think it works.

I like the pre planning aspect, the stealth has more in common with Splinter Cell these days but it's better than it used to be, the Fulton stuff is silly, the open world doesn't work for me, and the bosses are meh.

So in closing, I like the game for what it is. It's surely a fun game and one that can potentially on any given day hook you in for hours at a time - I just don't rate it at all above any of the previous MGS games and honestly I don't view MGS V as a proper MGS game. Because it is so different from the others.

Kojima's last Metal Gear and he played around with the formula somewhat, some things worked but a lot didn't, you expect a certain level of quality from his games which he does deliver on - but this guy didn't want to make Metal Gear any more way before this one got made and it shows because it's basically a different game with the MGS name(s). It is good though. Just nowhere near the greatness of the previous games.

If you never played Metal Gear Solid games before then you'll probably love this, if you hated the previous MGS games for the long cut scenes etc then you'll probably prefer this, but if you loved Metal Gear Solid 1,2,3 and 4 then you'll probably not like this one. As much.

Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 Day 1 Edition (PS4)
Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 Day 1 Edition (PS4)
Offered by Bonisell
Price: £39.00

7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Mixed Bag Overall - Yet Utterly Glorious Gameplay!, 28 Sept. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The game this year is very much a mixed bag, and yet I cannot stop playing!

The issues with this game are that the game content wise is incomplete - the latest transfers won't be taken care of until late October, 2 months after the game initially released and that is not only unacceptable but it's a mickey take. Also the keepers are broken online in MyClub especially, same as the matchmaking filters in that mode and yeah basically MyClub isn't a patch on FUT and it's a very frustrating mode to play on right now.

But offline against the AI or friend the game is simply epic! So fluid and free flowing. Sliding tackles are brilliant, passing as ever is amazing, crossing can whip some right balls into the box and shot wise can score some belters!

Players are more true to life regarding stats and play styles. The game is not all about pace and wing play or ball over the top which let's be honest is what Fifa ends up being all about. There's a ton of depth to PES. And things you wouldn't think would make a big difference make a huge difference to how a match plays out, for example Player Emotions if you choose high for both sides on this value in the pre match options page you'll have a cracker of a football match on your hands. Leave it to random and it might be a scrappy affair.

Another thing with PES is the difficulty, you put it on say Top Player or Superstar difficulty which is the hardest difficulty in the game - you play a friendly match and you'll probably win your fair share and think this needs more challenge...but then you play a competitive match on the same difficulty against the same AI say a Champions League tie or a league fixture with 3 points at stake and it's a whole different story! You'll have to earn the right to play....and every single point you claim!

Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 is worth a serious look by anybody, whether you fall in or out of love with it though is on the individual. One thing is for sure though this game this year will convert many in either direction. It is a mixed bag overall, but I will say this on pure gameplay alone this thing gives you that 1 more match compulsion and it's a beast when it comes to offline game modes and a responsive, refined, thrilling game of football!

I for one can not stop playing it and I'll be honest I rate PES 2016 far and away over FIFA 16 in terms of offline gameplay in terms of fun, thrills and true to life and that was from when I'd played both demos!

Alien: Isolation - Nostromo Edition (PS4)
Alien: Isolation - Nostromo Edition (PS4)
Offered by Exclusive Inc
Price: £17.35

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tense, Immersive, Challenging, Old School Game!, 23 Mar. 2015
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This game is an extremely tense stealth based game built on complete immersion. It's old school, it's challenging, there is no auto save or manual saving when ever you wish - you must make use of save points wherever they crop up - and I don't consider myself an Alien fan but man do I love this game!

I love it because it's the complete antithesis of CoD type games and modern day gaming. It has much more in common with PlayStation games like the original Resident Evil regarding save points and level of challenge. But it's very much a modern day game when it comes to graphics and the audio and the immersion.

It's clearly a love letter to the Alien fans you can tell this even as a complete outsider like I am. But it's a damn fine game in and of itself. It shares the exploration/immersion elements of the Metroid Prime series, it shares the first person stealth of the Outlast series, it shares the old Resident Evil save points, and it has a Dark Souls-esque difficulty curve - you will die often, usually through impatience, but through repetition you'll try different approaches and get better and you'll eventually get through it on to the next section.

As a gamer who is frankly jaded with the current gen and the state of the gaming industry today at least at the mainstream end I must say that Alien Isolation stands as a timely reminder of what games today with all the technological horsepower can and could be.

They could be immersive. Alien Isolation is.

They could be challenging. Alien Isolation is.

They could not hold your hand at all. Alien Isolation doesn't.

They could not blatantly insult your intelligence. Alien Isolation doesn't.

I'll finish this review by saying that as far as I'm concerned Alien Isolation is a near perfect blend (or as good as we're likely to get anyway) of old school gaming challenge and expectations of the gamer vs today's immersion and graphical wizardry. And I love this game for that.

If you've ever played the original Resident Evil or the original Syphon Filter games and liked them for their challenge and lack of hand holding yet their ability to still remain fun and fresh then you'll love Alien Isolation.

The only time I would not recommend this game is if you hate stealth games or tense games as this game has it in spades.

But this game is any but paint by numbers and it stands out amongst the pack today and if it sounds like your type of game or something you're looking for you should definitely give it a try. You don't need to be an Alien fan to love this game. Perhaps though an old school gamer.

PES 2015 - Day One Edition (PS4)
PES 2015 - Day One Edition (PS4)
Price: £13.22

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars PES 2015 Is The One!, 18 Nov. 2014
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Konami had 1 last chance at relevancy with the PS4 debut of PES 2015 after a quite severe fall from grace after the PS2 era due to a number of things partly because of a lack of quality in basic gameplay and partly because of Fifa finally sorting their basic gameplay out. But when the pressure was on Konami nailed it.

This is Pro Evo back to it's best. And when PES is at it's best on the pitch not only does Fifa not touch it but no football game ever in existence even comes close!

One of the best compliments you can pay PES 2015 is that it's 'PES 5 with modern graphics'. Another compliment one should pay it is that the AI is so good it will mostly go unnoticed - what do I mean by that? Full backs make overlapping runs, midfielders drop back when you lose possession, defenders push up to play the offside trap if that's how you're set up, goalkeepers don't suck, and there's no glaring mistakes from the AI.

The passing feels immense, even though the ball gets given away a little bit too much for my liking it's still head and shoulders above Fifa in that regard. Shooting is good can let fly with some real rockets and score some belters - you know that old PES magic where grown men parade around the room bellowing in their glorious goal - something you just never get with EA's game. You score a good goal in Fifa it barely raises a comment, but you score a good goal in PES and you might as well be on the pitch yourself as you find yourself physically celebrating clenched fist the whole 9 yards!

There are some cons though:

Some ground pass free kicks go completely the opposite direction to where you pointed sometimes costing you goals. Not a new issue to this game but it still exists.

Premier League is unlicensed so Man City are called Man Blue and don't have their proper kits.

Edit mode is weak sauce this year, partly Konami's fault and partly Sony's fault.

There are currently only something like 15 stadiums in the game. Not good enough.

Game modes are still behind Fifa in terms of content.

Ultimately though is this game better than Fifa ? On the pitch yes. Is this game good ? It's brilliant. And is this game Pro Evo really back to it's best ? Read the reviews and play the game it's a resounding yes!

If you don't try this game based on the PS3 era of what you assume PES to be you are doing yourself a great disservice! This is the dawn of a new day. The heat is on now.

PES vs FIFA - let the game finally begin!
Comment Comments (6) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 4, 2015 9:11 PM GMT

The Last Of Us Remastered - Day 1 Edition (PS4)
The Last Of Us Remastered - Day 1 Edition (PS4)

5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Last Of Us Becomes The First Of Us!, 1 Aug. 2014
The Last Of Us was the last 10/10 universally lauded PS3 game which was released in the summer of last year - The Last Of Us Remastered on PS4 is also the first 10/10 universally lauded PS4 game!

The difference ? Resolution and frame rate mostly. The Last Of Us Remastered runs in native 1080p at 60 frames per second, with the option to frame lock it at 30 frames if you so desire (all PS4 games should be this way!) which is just simply brilliant.

Naughty Dog are the masters of splicing together tried and tested mechanics together and turning it into a whole that feels fresh and unique. They did it with Uncharted with combat and platform mechanics we'd seen in other games in the years previous but that game felt incredibly fresh because the end result was just that good and a breath of fresh air at the time. And Naughty Dog have done it again with The Last Of Us - except this time they've spliced stealth with *survival* horror and chose to keep the focus on the characters and the world/environment rather than actual jump scares....the results speak for themselves....

This game may not suit everyone's taste but no game ever will. The Last Of Us was truly the last of us when it came to wall to wall critical acclaim some even go so far as to say it's PS3's best game - and now the Remastered version for PS4 is the first of us when it comes to wall to wall critical acclaim and is now the PS4's best game at the moment.

If you have a PS4 you can't not pick this up.

Sony PlayStation 4 500GB Console (Black)
Sony PlayStation 4 500GB Console (Black)
Offered by UKGameSource
Price: £307.50

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars PlayStation 4 - Now Is The Time!, 30 Mar. 2014
Let me start by saying the PS4 is amazing technology. There is a reason why it's cleaning up in sales the likes of which we've not seen since the PS2 days. Although hype has a lot to do with it as well.

As for the PS4 itself there's now things like voice chat, auto updates while in standby, and what I consider to be the best most next gen feature is an absolute god send is the ability to exit out of a game and into an application and back again and pick up in game right where you left off instantly. So if you get tired of a game you can back out and head to Netflix watch something and then exit that and head back into your game where you left it without having to sit through any loading screens. Amazing!

You can also check out other gamers playing their games on Twitch live stream on your PS4. And now thanks to updates there's system level button remapping - potentially useful for those conditioned to shoot using R1 at this point for those games which don't have the ability to swap.

Another ability is the application suspend on shutdown, but it doesn't work on everything, what this does with certain games is you can shut your PS4 down and when you come to switch it back on it'll boot directly in to the game where you left off!

They've recently added a media player too so now you can playback video and music files from an external hard drive, even have a music file as your background system music which is awesome.

As for the games well The Last Guardian is now coming to PS4, as is Final Fantasy 7 Remake, and Shenmue 3. Other games on the way include Uncharted Trilogy Remastered, Uncharted 4, completely new franchises like Horizon: Until Dawn, Batman Arkham Knight out in a few days, and from now on all Call Of Duty games will have maps and what not available first on the PS4.

So yeah it's clear to me that Sony are slowly but surely adding features to the PS4 which should have been there to begin with as the PS3 had them and also as well features that are innovative making full use of the system memory. Also the floodgates are starting to crack now regarding the games.

2014 was a painful year for PS4 gaming, coasting by on pretty much hype alone, but the corner has been well and truly turned now and it's all good from here on in. Now is the time to own a PlayStation 4 if you haven't got one already - or be glad you have one if you do own one!

BioShock Infinite (PC DVD)
BioShock Infinite (PC DVD)
Offered by Primoepic
Price: £20.30

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Shooter That Will Go Down In History, 18 Feb. 2014
Okay I'm going to start this review off by saying that I thought the original BioShock was merely okay, tempted to say overrated, I didn't play BioShock 2 at all, and I didn't pay any attention at all to BioShock Infinite pre release and I kind of wrote it off initially - city in the sky, mechanical hawk called a songbird, relatively simple graphics or so I thought at first from internet videos, and also the fact that I'm not a shooter genre fanatic at all.

But then I got around to actually playing BioShock Infinite...

The first thing that struck me was wow this game is one of the most artistically atmospheric games I've ever played! I got to playing some more and quickly became aware of holy hell this is one of the most gorgeous games I've ever seen! The opening couple of hours of BioShock Infinite I can honestly say is some of the best experiences I've had in gaming - and it's why I play video games. For the experience, immersion, and escapism.

BioShock Infinite has the complete opposite tone and art direction than the original BioShock. But for me it's a much better game. Not that I don't like horror slanted games but BioShock Infinite is equal part an exploration game and equal part shooter.

The setting is just beautiful, no other word to describe it. People bring up the whole games as art debate well you can add this game to Exhibit A. Seeing this game in 1080p max settings running at 60 frames per second is a real treat. And doable on modest hardware too.

The voice acting and storyline is brilliant, the way it's cobbled together and presented it keeps you guessing all the time. From new areas with new stories to be told, to the whole religion/racial oppression aspect, to the weird but brilliant vignettes from the oddball couple who turn up throughout the game crossing your path.

I can honestly say this is one of the best shooters I've ever played, I love shooters which have a point to them that's why I don't play the vast majority of FPS games out there as they tend to be low grade pointless run and gun in my opinion. And they've been done to death. My favourite FPS games are Goldeneye, Perfect Dark, Half-Life, Deus EX, the original Medal Of Honour and now BioShock Infinite so that should tell you something about the shooters I like.

So yeah this game is terrific, one of the games of the year last year without question!

I cannot recommend this game highly enough, it simply must be tried. But I can almost guarantee that when you do play it you will not put the controller down for a very long time!

Simply brilliant. No other word describes this game.

PES 2014 (PS3)
PES 2014 (PS3)
Offered by bid2win-ltd
Price: £4.87

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Can Be Awesome, Mostly Annoying!, 14 Feb. 2014
This review is from: PES 2014 (PS3) (Video Game)
Okay so I'm a dyed in the wool PES fan, I like FIFA games too but I have always preferred Pro Evo gameplay from the PS1 days right through the PS2 and on to even today. Now when I played the early demo for PES 2014 I had such high hopes - the new animations were terrific, the ball to player movement felt a lot less on rails (which meant players would mistime runs or ball too fast and goes out of play - I loved it) and it looked terrific with the new lighting effects.

However, as ever, the very promising demo leads to a lacklustre final game where just almost everything great in the demo has been nullified for retail. In the full game you realize that the players and ball are a lot more on rails, you realise that the 1 arena with terrific lighting was the 1 featured in the demo and that's it, a lot of the performance issues are still there. And you realise that the goalkeepers are improved but still crap!

Also realise in the full game that the game modes suck. Master League is nowhere near the quality career mode that it used to be, Become A Legend (or Fantasista to give it's origin name) is still boring, modes and features included in previous year taken out for no reason, and online is still a big steaming pile of freezing poo. And that is my biggest annoyance with the game - it's practically unplayable online due to the lag!

Offline play isn't exactly a boat of gravy either as stutters exist there too as well as general performance issues even on a high end PC.

And to top it all off Konami PR this year has been awful, and people think EA are bad...

Simply put this year's effort has been piss poor all around, and nowhere near good enough.

Konami have 1 last chance to show something with PES on their next gen PS4/Xbox One debuts, and if no major change then PES is dead. I don't think PES fans will tolerate another 8 years of average at best football gaming, I for one definitely won't.

So I can't recommend PES 2014 unfortunately. It's just not the game I was hoping for or led to believe it was based from the demo. Which is a big problem in and of itself.

Maybe next year, hopefully. But skip PES 2014, wait a while for the next iteration and save your money.

XFX Radeon HD 7970 DD Edition 3GB GDDR5 Graphics Card
XFX Radeon HD 7970 DD Edition 3GB GDDR5 Graphics Card

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gaming Utopia At A Fair Price!, 28 Nov. 2013
This card is a looker. Aluminium build. And it does get loud.

Getting on with the run down of this card it's got 3GB of video memory and it's a card in the upper echelon thereabouts - used to be the out and out flagship of AMD no so long ago.

Before I give my experience of this card I just want to say I don't use AA by choice where possible as I prefer a detailed image and better performance over slight edge jaggies. But here are my experiences with this 7970, all the games listed here I run at 1080p and would be the highest settings except I run without AA where possible as I mentioned a minute ago and I have dialled back certain settings as mentioned but otherwise it's as high as it'll go - and I get 60 frames per second either all of the time all the way through OR 95% of the time regardless. So then:

Far Cry 3 - (Shadows knocked down to High, can't see the difference)

BioShock Infinite - Fully maxed out.

The Witcher 2 - (Ubersampling, AA, SSAO all off, allow sharpen in the ini to keep proper detail)

Alan Wake - Minimal AA otherwise fully maxed out

Tomb Raider (TressFX off, AA off)

Splinter Cell Blacklist (Tesselation off)

This card even makes Crysis 3 and Metro 2033 extremely playable at 1080p Highest preset settings!

I could in fact probably max out all my games and still maintain a playable frame rate in all honesty, all be it say 30 frames per second, which is what most console games run at. But when ever I've a choice now I want to game at 60 frames per second as it's a night and day experience. Much more fluid and seamless in motion and animation plus tighter controls.

60 fps is where it's at and the same can be said of the 7970! Especially if you can pick it up on sale for a good price.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 6, 2014 3:37 PM BST

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