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Reviews Written by
Ben "Tillekaratne" (West Midlands, England)

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Price: £6.99

1.0 out of 5 stars Major case of "WTF DID I JUST WATCH?!", 18 Nov. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Splice (Amazon Instant Video)
For the first half of the film, it's okay. Of course, it's absurd and ridiculous, but it's moderately entertaining. Unfortunately, the story tails off (sorry for the pun) after a point and things go from absurd to the point where you're shouting "WHAT THE ****?!" at the TV. Wrap all this up with an ending that's probably just about as ridiculous as the rest of the film put together, and you've got yourself Splice.

The Varangian Way - Director's Cut
The Varangian Way - Director's Cut
Price: £8.59

5.0 out of 5 stars Battle Metal at its best, 22 Oct. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I bought my first Turisas album about a year ago. I recall Amazon recommending it to me whilst searching Alestorm's store page. The album I bought was Stand Up and Fight, and I have to admit, at first I wasn't sure what to make of it. However, pretty soon I'd gotten really into it. Lately, I'd been listening to it again on repeat, and I decided I'd try another album.

This album had a totally different effect to the first one - I loved it immediately. Very rarely do I listen to an album and struggle to find faults with it on the first run-through, but that was the case with The Varangian Way. Epic lyrics that tell an epic story, accompanied by epic music, along with epic vocal work. There's more aggression in this album than I heard in Stand Up and Fight, which really hammers home the idea of "battle metal".

All in all - sensational album.

LUPO Waterproof Bag for Apple iPad 1, 2, 3, 4, Air and 10 inch Tablets
LUPO Waterproof Bag for Apple iPad 1, 2, 3, 4, Air and 10 inch Tablets
Offered by LUPO STORE
Price: £6.99

1.0 out of 5 stars Awful. Absolutely awful., 15 Oct. 2015
Only reason I can imagine people reviewed this item as five stars is that they received a different one from the one I got. Mine had a piece of string as a strap, and there was about an inch and a half either side of an iPad Air when placed inside the case. Despite the case being big enough for a small laptop, the blue plastic around the edge actually covered part of the camera lens, meaning every photo you'd try to take would result in a blue line across the upper third of the image.

A truly dreadful product. Returned for a refund.

Silence In The Snow [Special Edition]
Silence In The Snow [Special Edition]
Offered by Amore DVD
Price: £11.39

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing. A Big Step Towards a Generic Metal Genre., 5 Oct. 2015
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On the whole, a deeply disappointing album. I wasn't a fan of Vengeance Falls, and this album takes another step in the same direction that one did. It now sounds like most of the rock/metal I used to listen to when I was younger. Back then though, the one band that made me think twice and realise that metal could be so much more emotive was Trivium. Unfortunately, if you strip away the anger and aggression (two things that do not feature on Silence in the Snow) from the music, you're left with something really quite boring.

Andoer® USB Game Foot Control Keyboard Action Switch Pedal HID
Andoer® USB Game Foot Control Keyboard Action Switch Pedal HID
Offered by TOMTOP-UK
Price: £9.78

2.0 out of 5 stars Broken after nine months, 27 Dec. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Honestly, the foot switch has been good when I've used it. I used it as a push-to-talk button chiefly when gaming, but it's been useful to bind to other functions too. I've not had loads of use out of it until recently, when, unfortunately, the plastic inside the switch snapped, rendering it utterly useless. I've had a go at fixing it with superglue which held it in place for an extra day, but it's useless now.

However, cheap is cheerful. I'm just gonna order another one, and if that one breaks, I won't get a third.

Cooler Master NEPTON 140XL 14038mm RADIATOR 2x 140 Jetflo Fan Liquid CPU Cooler
Cooler Master NEPTON 140XL 14038mm RADIATOR 2x 140 Jetflo Fan Liquid CPU Cooler

5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic cooling power, 10 May 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I've been cooling my i5 2500k on air for the two and a bit years I've had it, and only recently decided I wanted to try to keep it a little cooler so I could push it that extra bit further.

My air cooler was nothing special - an Arctic Freezer 13 Pro. Before swapping it out for the Nepton, I ran the processor at 4.5 GHz at 1.4 V (my motherboard is rubbish and has no manual voltage control). After an hour of Prime 95, the maximum temperature it reached was a somewhat frightening 89 degrees (according to HWMonitor). With the same settings, the Nepton kept the CPU at no higher than 61 degrees after two hours.

I've tested a 4.7 GHz clock too which hit a maximum of 71 degrees, though only for about 20 minutes. The motherboard set the voltage at over 1.52 V which I wasn't too happy about, so bottled out of the test and set the clock back to 4.5 GHz, which I'm more than happy with. I have no doubt that when I upgrade my board (and CPU) the cooler will help to achieve some great speeds.

I should say that the two radiator fans are VERY loud when spinning at their maximum 2400 RPM (I recall reading somewhere that they hit around 39 dB). Though it is the sacrifice you make for good temperatures.

Putting the unit together was a piece of cake - thumb screws are present almost entirely through the unit so the only need for a screwdriver is tightening. Good, clear pictured instructions throughout. The included thermal paste was a little 'gloopy' and thick for my liking, but since I couldn't find any other I used it regardless. Mounting it in the back of my Corsair 750D proved impossible due to the close position of my ATX motherboard's CPU socket to the rear exhaust mount. Instead, I mounted the unit in the front in the drive bays. It fits perfectly here, and leaves the rest of the case open and clear.

And finally, it's only a small thing, but the white LED ring around the Cooler Master logo really sets the cooler off in the case.

The Choice
The Choice
Price: £1.89

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic TV Series, 27 April 2014
Best thing I've seen on TV in ages. Absorbing, really well made and a solid story based loosely on facts.

Not sure why people moan about Amazon "drip feeding" Series 2. As far as I'm aware they release an episode as soon as it's broadcast in the US. Can't ask for more than that.

A Dotted Line
A Dotted Line
Price: £11.03

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic return to the bluegrass scene after nine years, 7 April 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: A Dotted Line (Audio CD)
I had the pleasure of seeing Nickel Creek perform before they disbanded. I've been a huge fan for years, and Chris Thile's playing inspired me to go out and buy a mandolin. I've always thought they have so much about them as a band, and create a really great modern-sounding bluegrass sound.

A large part of me still thinks that their first album "Nickel Creek" from back in 2000 is their best, which features a more traditional sound. At first I wasn't sure what to think of "This Side", though after several listens it was a joy to listen to. They definitely made a move away from the traditional with This Side, and I felt that they maybe headed back in that direction again with "Why Should the Fire Die"? (which I thought was a brilliant album).

In the lull of nine years between Why Should the Fire Die and Dotted Line, I've also got listening to some Punch Brothers, Chris Thile's post-Nickel Creek band. These guys are absolutely fantastic, and their music seemed like a real showcase of Chris's song-writing ingenuity. There was a lot of weird stuff in there that sounded quite odd in bluegrass, and indeed at times it didn't seem right to call it bluegrass at all, but it was fantastic music nonetheless - catchy tunes, with interesting bits that you don't expect but just add to the overall memorability of the song.

"A Dotted Line" to me takes some degree of that Punch Brothers edginess, strips away the banjo but introduces Sara's wonderful voice. However, that isn't the tone for the entire album. Chris obviously has a lot of influence on writing material, but you can tell he's not completely dominated the writing process.

The opening track, "Rest of My Life" sets the album up nicely. Simple guitar intro, good clean vocals, working up to introduce the rest of the band. I love the whole start-stop feel to the song, as it seems to increase the complexity of the instruments, or introduce new ones, or add extra vocals with every short break. "Destination" (which I first heard when the band previewed the track a couple of months ago) begins with that similar feeling but within the first twenty seconds of the song, the pace picks right up. The song is so incredibly catchy - I've caught myself singing it so many times over the past week. I'd go as far as to say that it's the strongest track on the album - probably my favourite at least.

Things slow right down and take a turn towards the traditional with the instrumental track "Elsie". As with every instrumental Nickel Creek track I can think of, it's a beautiful showcase of playing talent that more than makes up for a lack of vocals. Continuing slowly, the fourth track "Christmas Eve" is the weakest on the album for me. However, it has definitely grown on me the more I've listened to it, and the slow and dreary chorus does become quite catchy.

"Hayloft" is definitely the edgiest song on offer here. It's really going to be the "Marmite track" of the album - you'll love it or hate it. It honestly sounds like it could be a hip hop or RnB song in some respects - the percussive nature of the instruments and somewhat pounding bass line would fool a lot of listeners into thinking they weren't listening to a bluegrass band. I absolutely love the repetitive vocals and catchy beat though, but I can easily see how this song might be the one that the more traditional-only fans skip!

The second half of the album is very strong too, and on the whole is more relaxed. "21st of May" features some great guitar playing in the introduction (and indeed throughout) and once again a ridiculously catchy chorus. "Love of Mine" is very slow throughout with a relatively up-beat chorus. There's a bit of a weird key change half way through, but this is another of those features that has grown on me the more I listen to it. "Elephant in the Corn" is the second instrument song on the album. It's just as good as the first, if not better. It's over five minutes long and features so many interesting changes throughout the song and you really get a feeling of music telling a story. The penultimate song "You Don't Know What's Going On" picks up the pace once before ending the album, and we finish up with "Where Is Love Now" which is a song featuring vocals from Sara, and another catchy chorus.

It definitely took a few listens to get into. There were some songs that immediately struck me as being good, but after a week and hearing each song at least 20 times, I'm hooked. My one complaint is that the whole thing is less than 40 minutes long. I could easily do with another half an hour of music!

Titanfall (PC DVD)
Titanfall (PC DVD)
Offered by Game Trade Online
Price: £8.94

60 of 69 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "Believe the hype"(!), 16 Mar. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Titanfall (PC DVD) (DVD-ROM)
I must confess: I hadn't done any research into Titanfall when I pre-ordered it. Some friends had talked about it, and I'd seen one gameplay trailer which looked pretty nice. Upon opening the packaging when the install discs (of which there are three) arrived, the back of the box had two quotes. One reads "A brave new vision of the future of multiplayer gaming." The second says "Believe the hype." Reading these, I think "well, I can't wait to get started then."

The install took a very long time. As many people have mentioned, the game requires nearly 50GB of storage space to be installed. After the whole process was finished, I booted up the game, watched the opening cutscene (which very briefly - and I mean VERY briefly - explains where the game is set and who is fighting), ran through the training session and started a "Campaign Mode" game.

It has been some years since I abandoned the Call of Duty franchise. I lost interest after Modern Warfare 2, then went on to enjoy a whole new breath of fresh air in the FPS genre from the Battlefield series. Call of Duty had been fun, but after a while the fast-paced games, the repetitive progression system and constant sense of obligation to unlock new customisations had become monotonous and boring. After my first game of Titanfall, I felt a lot of Call of Duty come flooding back.

Don't get me wrong, it is fun. The first game I played was a territorial control match, with three objectives to hold - the same "Domination" style game mode that features in almost any FPS game. The only twist I could notice was the constant radio chatter from some AI command unit announcing events in the game. An interesting way to get updates to the player perhaps? Maybe. I've seen plenty of games do similar things, so I didn't consider this to be much of a new feature. The UI also didn't appear to feature anything special. Just the standard minimap, ammo and ability cooldown timers.

The game flowed quite nicely. You'd run about at the same sort of pace as CoD, except for the ability to run up walls and jump twice. I killed a few players and bots, spawned a Titan, ran rampant in it for a while, then eventually our team lost the game. The "epilogue" kicked in, where we had 30 seconds to reach an evac chopper. This seemed like a newish feature I'd not seen before, but again it was nothing groundbreaking.

The class customisations seem to work exactly as I remember them in CoD. Primary and secondary weapon, perks, and a heavy weapon to throw into the mix. Later in the progression system I unlocked the "Burn Cards" which were gave a consumable bonus for a game. Each weapon could also have some limited customisation (exactly as most FPS games).

A part of me feels that three stars is being generous. And doubtless there will be many fans who would already stand by the game and shoot this review down as "a load of rubbish". Though I feel that my average rating is brought on by what the game promised to bring, which was some sort of FPS game revolution. Another quote on the box is that the game will "set the new bar for online multiplayer gaming." Well, to me CoD 4 set that bar years ago, and Titanfall is building on that same model that has proved successful time and time again in the past. Yes, the game allows you to call in a giant robot every five minutes, but Battlefield (for example) has loads of super-powerful vehicles that create a similar amount of destruction. Titans and wall running seem to be the only original content this game offers, and that really doesn't feel enough to claim that this is "the future of multiplayer games."

I'll keep playing the game for some time no doubt, but I don't expect my interest to be maintained indefinitely. If you're still a die-hard Call of Duty fan, you'll love it, but if you are genuinely looking for a groundbreaking new multiplayer experience, you may have to wait to see what games the future brings.
Comment Comments (7) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 16, 2014 9:32 PM BST

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1.0 out of 5 stars Utterly useless. A complete waste of money., 13 Mar. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I opened the packet containing the microscope, fitted it to my iPad, then switched the light on. The light switch instantly broke off. The microscope itself is completely appalling, and produces an utterly unintelligible image. I've uploaded a sample image taken using the iPad's camera below.

[...]'ve asked for a refund, or else this will be a waste of £9.50. Now it's just a case of waiting for the seller to respond.

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