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Nathan James Flannery "n0signal" (UK)

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Deus Ex: Mankind Divided - Limited Edition Guide
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided - Limited Edition Guide
by Prima Games
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £19.99

16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Prima p**s poor production... again!!, 29 Aug. 2016
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
It's becoming a pattern now, and suggests that Prima is really letting it's quality control slide in order to print high numbers and make $$$, but this guide is quite poorly made. My cover shows faults (feint horizontal scratches across thr back) where it has obviously been quickly churned through a machine and despite describing the freebie as a "high quality lithograph" what you actually get is a slightly dog-eared large glorified postcard with poor print quality. The pages aren't wafer thin like some of their other cheap nasty 'collectors edition' guides (Final Fantasy Type 0 HD... ugh!) but the production quality feels a bit lackluster compared with guides from Piggyback or Future Press. I really wish Prima would stop getting the rights to these games!! They deserve better.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 6, 2016 12:07 PM BST

Dark Souls III Collector's Edition: Prima Official Game Guide
Dark Souls III Collector's Edition: Prima Official Game Guide
by Prima Games
Edition: Hardcover

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A definite downgrade from previous 'Souls guides by Future Press, 15 April 2016
(This review is for the Hardcover 'Collector's Edition' Dark Souls III Guide)

As someone who purchases quite a few game guides, mostly for open world games and RPGs, I've got a broad spectrum from Piggyback, Future Press and Prima - the publisher of this particular guide. Now you might be wondering "why on earth would you want a guide for a 'Souls game!?", because obviously a huge part of the joy in playing is going in blind and having that sense of discovery. You'd be absolutely 100% right! I've so far bought all of the guides available for 'Souls games (Dark Souls, Dark Souls II, Bloodborne, The Old Hunters) and use them initially for building my character; the guides by Future Press have *massive* and detailed sections on weapons, armour, and statistics including how they change and level up during the game as you put souls and upgrade materials into them. Later, when I'm on a second playthrough or a New Game+, I use the guides for their in-depth item locations and NPC questline walkthroughs. To make sure I don't miss anything and access alternative endings, etc.

When it was announced that Future Press weren't being given the guide book job for Dark Souls III, and in fact that it has been passed over to Prima, alarm bells started ringing. I'm not saying that Prima guides are necessarily bad (the Zelda ones for instance are wonderful) but they are definitely inconsistent, and recently they've been trying to save money by printing on REALLY thin paper stock, which warps after printing and isn't bound properly at the spine. Well, unfortunately my fears have been someone justified. Initially I was mostly relieved because the cover design, especially the spine, has been designed to match the Future Press guides (even though the finish on the cover is different) and so it doesn't look out of place on the shelf nestled in with the rest of the books. However, upon opening the guide up and attempting to use it, the usual quality control issues raised their ugly head - this is a *much* cheaper book than the Future Press guides - with thin warped pages, poor binding, and criminally poor artwork/screen captures.

Within the pages Prima have again tried to use similar iconography to the Future Press guides, and so the maps have the same symbols used for bosses, souls, treasure, bonfires, etc. But they've missed the point of what made the previous guides so great, it's missing:
- a "path through the game" section with just raw maps and no spoilers
- detailed enemy guides with movesets, tactics, etc.
- upgrade paths for weapons (how does the scaling change at higher levels!? No idea)
- any sort of lore/artwork/interview sections.
- lots of other little sections and parts that were useful.

It really is a downgrade from the previous guides and Prima haven't done themselves any favours here. In recompense, the Future Press guides didn't come with any physical extras, but this guide comes with a free notebook - which is actually very well made and feels like better paper stock than the main guide!? However, it seems to me like Prima are saying "we know we've messed up a left a lot of stuff out, but you can read wikis online and write the extra information in this handy notebook!". No. Also, there are *loads* of typos in the guide. *sigh*

Dixit Expansion 2
Dixit Expansion 2
Offered by Zatu Games
Price: £18.73

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "The best party game in the world" - got to be Dixit!, 24 Aug. 2010
This review is from: Dixit Expansion 2 (Toy)
If you've not heard of Dixit then briefly this is how it works: You each have a hand of 6 cards, of which there are 84 in the deck, and each contains a unique piece of beautiful surrealist/quirky art. The player who's turn it is has to select one of their cards and "say something about it", which could be a single word, a phrase or sentence, a quotation from a book or film or a line of poetry... almost anything really. Other players then select a card from their hand that they think fits the description. All cards go face down and are shuffled and then laid face up on the table so that everyone can see them and secretly vote which one they think is the original card. If the player has been too obvious (so everyone guesses correctly) or too ambiguous (so noone guesses correctly) then everyone else gets the points - if he's done an intelligently thought out clue that some people have guessed and others are left in the dark, then the player and those who voted correctly, will get mega-points. AND THAT'S IT!! ^_^

It really is so simple that anyone can play, regardless of age or disposition towards board games, and it is something that everyone can, and WILL, enjoy. I'm constantly taking this game around with me to people's house and I've introduced it to all my friends; so far it has a 100% awesome response. Everyone loves this game!!

Now, Dixit 2 (this product) is almost a stand-alone expansion, but not quite. Basically, the scoring board, voting tiles and little wooden bunnies (to keep track of the score) are included in the base game along with the original 84 card deck. This expansion is simply another 84 card deck to give you more variety. However, I picked up Dixit 2 first before I purchased the base game, and many people do this to see if they will enjoy the game or not. This is because the expansion pack is cheaper than the base game by about £10/15 and Libellud (the makers of the game) provide downloadable scoring tracks, rules and voting tiles on their website - in fact many people buy this set and use it as a sort of "travel Dixit" to take on holiday.

I thoroughly recommend this product, whether you're looking to expand you base game of Dixit with more amazingly wonderful cards, or if you're interested in this game and want to take a less-expensive plunge and give it a go with your friends. It is comfortably for 4-6 players, but can be played with 3 (with a bit of jiggery pokery) and 8 by downloading the alternative rules from Libellud's website. *RECOMMENDED*

The Great Dune Trilogy: Dune, Dune Messiah, Children of Dune (GOLLANCZ S.F.)
The Great Dune Trilogy: Dune, Dune Messiah, Children of Dune (GOLLANCZ S.F.)
by Frank Herbert
Edition: Paperback
Price: £19.98

31 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolute classic of Science Fiction!!, 10 Jun. 2010
DUNE: If you like Sci-Fi/Fantasy but haven't read Dune, well it's almost as criminal as not having read The Lord of the Rings, you owe it to yourself to pick this up and read it immediately!! Dune is, in my humble opinion, probably the greatest Sci-Fi book ever written - it is a heavy mix of political machinations, planet-hopping war and diplomacy, and a deep philosophical look at religion and the role of a messianic figure upon shaping human history. Frank Herbert's prose is extraordinary and really gets you inside character's heads, especially that of the 'protagonist' Paul Atreides; the chapters are also broken up with little quips and quotes that further embellish and enhance the complex universe that he has created. I won't go into plot details, because there are numerous reviews of this story all over the internet. 5/5

DUNE MESSIAH: For some reason this short sequel to Dune, which really just acts a bridge to get the reader to Children of Dune, has attracted some negative comments in the past but I still can not fathom why!? Dune is a very self-contained story and you can stop right there and not continue if you wish, but if you do choose to read Messiah then you get a turn-around of the relatively optimistic(?) ending of the first book and in my opinion a very exciting launch of a greater universe for the Dune novels. Dune Messiah is actually a very tight and well paced book, with great characterisation and an excellent plot that comes together nicely at the end - the short length is actually ideal in my opinion and the book doesn't overstay it's welcome; it also leads very nicely into the next book. 4.5/5

CHILDREN OF DUNE: This third part of the trilogy, which essentially finishes the tale of Paul Atreides, is the weakest of the three in my opinion; that is in no way saying that it is a weak book, far from it!! This book heads much more into the realm of political drama, and for such a large book, it doesn't feel like a lot happens really, but the insights we get into the characters, the concepts and plot-lines are fascinating and the resolution to this story arc is very left-field and brave. It is actually quite sad at the end of the book to be saying goodbye to these wonderful characters that so much time has been invested into, as the next novel God Emperor of Dune (not included in this collection) takes place thousands of years into the future. All-in-all, a satisfying end to the first Great Trilogy of Dune. 4/5


GREAT DUNE TRILOGY: I'd just like to review the book itself. It is great to have all three stories in one volume, and good value for money in my opinion. However, the book itself is extremely cumbersome and quite difficult to read when out and about; this is not something you can take on the tube!! This lead me eventually to pick up Children of Dune as a separate book, as I just got fed up of having to make room for a gigantic tome in my bag - ideally I would suggest picking up the three books separately, but for some reason Gollancz only publish Children of Dune in the same cover design, which I like a lot, which I think is an extremely odd decision!?

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