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Dr. Dinosaur "Oof."

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Original Machines
Original Machines
Price: £24.60

4.0 out of 5 stars Great art book!!, 12 Nov. 2016
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Original Machines (Audio CD)
Bought this for artwork, so my rating includes that. The music is mixed, some of it excellent, some forgettable. But it's a nice thing to have!

F1 2016 (PS4)
F1 2016 (PS4)

4 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor effort, Codemasters., 12 Nov. 2016
This review is from: F1 2016 (PS4) (Video Game)
A very disappointing effort once again from codemasters. The last one I tried prior to this was 2011 so I thought I'd give the new one a go.

It doesn't really function as a racing simulation. The handling is very unrealistic, I was playing on PS4 and the handling compared to Project Cars for example is awful and laughable compared to PC based games like rFactor. It understeers by default and its almost impossible to set consistent lap times.

The presentation is clunky and illogical. You are returned to the full pit options window just to change a front wing. There should be a way to turn these ridiculous animated sequences off.

Cars entering and leaving the pit feel like they're on a very fast, juddering Scalextric track. There is no real replay system. When you crash, the damage model is poor and the cameras dull out and restart before the accident has even finished. Where's the realism in that?

I do have high standards when it comes to racing sims but Codemasters really should have had a better grip on this by now. Give the licence to someone else?

To cap it off, the engineer voice is so patronising!

And £54 on PSN? No chance.

It really is embarassing that after fifteen years, Grand Prix 4 really is still the best official F1 racing game.

Ellipsis (Deluxe) [Explicit]
Ellipsis (Deluxe) [Explicit]
Price: £11.99

6 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Sterilised beyond recognition or salvation, 20 Aug. 2016
Biffy have become a sad parody of themselves, lost in the glitzy high they created on the back of previous success.

The band's ethos has always been to be their own favourite band but the Biffy of old would be repulsed by what they have become.

This is over-simplified, over-produced music which has lost much of the charm that once raised the hairs on the back of your neck. They're now pandering to the masses rather than leading by example.

The best tracks on here are Wee Man and Don't, Won't, Can't. And they're bonus tracks. Or are they? It's not clear.

Their interesting titles are replaced by banal one-liners like Flammable, Medicine, Howl and People. Their gigs, once full of actual fans are now trolled by Kanye West followers pissing in bottles and hurling them in idiotic arcs behind them, the real mongs among mingers.

Thank God for the back catalogue, I'm just glad I got to see them numerous times before they died up their own arse. You've had your day, boys. Such a shame.

Snuff: (Discworld Novel 39) (Discworld Novels)
Snuff: (Discworld Novel 39) (Discworld Novels)
by Terry Pratchett
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading but not Terry's best, 21 Aug. 2012
Commander(his Grace) Vimes reluctantly goes on holiday only to uncover a drug smuggling empire ran by enslaved goblins. The story primarily deals with issues like racism, discrimination, prejustice and ignorance (rather like the rise of the golems in Going Postal and Making Money).

Along the way it's occasionally sharp and humorous but Snuff is not up there with Pratchett's classics like The Truth and Mort.

It's still very worth reading, though.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 21, 2013 11:50 AM BST

Misspent Youth
Misspent Youth
by Peter F. Hamilton
Edition: Paperback

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Why all the hate?, 21 Aug. 2012
This review is from: Misspent Youth (Paperback)
I'm baffled at the hate being directed at this novel.

It's loads different to the rest of the things Hamilton has written but that is by no means a bad thing. It's certainly not sci-fi as we have come to understand it but rather a decadent, heartless story about a futuristic humanity. I really enjoyed it.

Hamilton himself described it as "an unpleasant story about unpleasant people". I personally found it interesting and compelling and a showcase of the darker, less classy side of human nature.

It is definitely worth reading if you have enjoyed other books by the same author, although this one is written in a completely different tune.

Foundation: 1/3 (The Foundation Series)
Foundation: 1/3 (The Foundation Series)
by Isaac Asimov
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars Really impressed, 17 Aug. 2012
I was advised to read this as Asimov is the godfather of one of my favourite types of fiction. I was dubious about the book's age and thought it would be a dated affair with old language and cheesy sci-fi stereotypes.

What I found was a well written, massively far-sighted creation which is not that different to many sci-fi novels being written today. Now I know where George Lucas nicked Coruscant from!

The detail concerning politics and trade is fairly amazing to read and I was never left wanting for interesting events to happen. What I found interesting was that whilst I think it has stood up to the test of time fairly well there are some glaring things which remind of you of the era in which it was written. Everyone writes on paper, microfilm still exists, women don't have any important jobs (there are not many women in the book as far as I can remember and the main one is a spoilt socialite) and people still smoke cigars and take snuff.

Great read though, and as a short undertaking it'll be well worth your time.

SSX (Xbox 360)
SSX (Xbox 360)
Offered by Ace Goods Co. Ltd
Price: £12.03

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Awful, 5 Aug. 2012
This review is from: SSX (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
OK so I played the older games and they were alright, skip forward a few years and I thought I'd try this.

The first few runs are alright but basically I got stuck for hours and hours on the first Siberia level and it's just impossible to amass a high enough score to pass unless you're some kind of freak. I don't have time for this and there aren't even any decent multiplayer options.

The races are OK but targets and expectations for the "trick it" runs are just way too high for the casual gamer. I won't be playing it again - not for me.

The Temporal Void (Void Trilogy)
The Temporal Void (Void Trilogy)
by Peter F. Hamilton
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sensational, 25 April 2009
I never reviewed the first part of this trilogy but after just finishing part two I feel compelled to play a part in the spreading of the joy.

This trilogy is a marriage of sci-fi and fantasy in the truest sense. The chapters work by providing you with a sci-fi chapter (set in the Commonwealth) followed by an Inigo Dream which is set in the Void many years ago in a fantasy setting. Blending genres like this is not easy. However, this trilogy is simply fantastic.

One of Hamilton's strengths, which I first noticed in Night's Dawn, is his ability to truly build and develop characters, resulting in wholly separate and independent people who can really relate to and feel for. When one of these characters dies, it hurts. Given that violent and sudden death is commonplace in Hamilton's works, the story is never far away from tugging the heartstrings and the twisting, treacherous plot really does "make the pages turn effortlessly"...

Another thing is that Hamilton's books are not just parts of a trilogy, irrelevant and incomplete on their own, they're fully readable and enjoyable as they are - and wrap themselves up sufficiently as to not end in frustrating, ridiculous cliff-hangers which readers then have to wait a year to quell.

This is becoming less like something Hamilton wanted to do just to offer something different to his hardcore science fiction I have grown to love and more and more like something which has been meticulously planned and for years in the making. I can't wait for the third instalment and I can't help but thinking that maybe Mr Peter should consider writing some true fantasy on its own - because he would excel at it.

Ringworld Throne
Ringworld Throne
by Larry Niven
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting but unrewarding, 21 Sept. 2008
This review is from: Ringworld Throne (Paperback)
The Ringworld Throne is the third instalment of Larry Niven's Ringworld series, published in 1996.

This is a very strange book, it's a book of two halves which are barely related; and both of them seem to be simply chronicles of events rather than an actual story. Very few new ideas are brought into the picture and the effect is one of bemused disappointment come the end.

The first half follows various species of hominids as they attack and destroy a shadow nest (a vampire den) below a large floating city. In my opinion this is the better half of the book - there is a section where this city is explored by one of the protagonists - and it is found to be ancient and ruined within. It really does provide an enthralling read for a few pages at least.

The second half focuses more on the Pak Protectors of various races and their struggle to save the Ringworld. The main problem is that even towards the end, there is no real single story thread - instead the book seems to take a sort of "wait and see where this goes" approach.

Although I enjoyed reading it, I found the lack of purpose or direction frustrating and disappointing. Hopefully the next instalment will be better. If you enjoyed the first two, read this one, but heed warning that it's not in the same league.

Black & White 2 Collectors Edition (PC CD)
Black & White 2 Collectors Edition (PC CD)

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A disappointing sequel, 24 Aug. 2008
It's taken me three years to review this, but now I feel I must. I've played this on-off since I bought it and during my last attempt at finishing it I had to cheat to get through the tedium in order to see the "sandbox" mode - which isn't really a sandbox mode anyway.

The good points are that the city building is much better - there are many more buildings to choose from although they should have all been available from the start instead of making you play through various boring silver challenges to get the tribute to buy them. Unfortunately there is only one playable race (Greeks) and only three enemy races (Norse, Japanese and Aztec). It would have been nice to see neutral villages of different race which would have made things a bit more interesting. I didn't really see the point in introducing a further resource - ore. As a God game it's miles behind its predecesssor.

The creatures are all great and well animated - especially the alignment characteristics. It's a crying shame that there are only four (or five - depending on which version you bought) to choose from after the previous game had many more.

More problems are that the newly introduced combat doesn't really work because the enemy AI has unlimited numbers of people and can seemingly conjure up armies from nowhere to send marching against you. If the game can cheat, then I feel no shame in doing the same.

I remember being blown away by the original game which was excellent for its time, but I think Black and White 2 really let itself doing by being simply bland and shallow. It's fun enough to play through once but I highly doubt I'll be playing through it again because there is nothing drawing me back to it.

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