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Call Of Duty: Black Ops II
5 New from
Gameplay is rather predictable... story is quite unintelligible (even with flashbacks)...
Borrows a lot of ideas from other titles like MoH, but executes them badly...
Cut scenes are nicely done though, with great textures on characters faces.
Pseudo 'x-ray' sights are tad tacky too in 2025 mode.
Nice to see 1080 upscale
Why does he put his sunglasses on on load screen?
Overall, this game is only the second game I've owned that COMPLETELY crashes my PS3 - requiring a system rebuild / diagnostic...
Time to get some decent scriptwriters in, and come up with something original.
8 New from
Andrew Grant's debut, 'Even' is a cracker!
It features an interesting lead character, embroiled in a great plot that has both depth, creativity and nice supporting cast.
Throughly enjoyed reading it, as will any reader who likes dark humour, femme fatales and bad guys (deserving of a beating).
Male readers may very well 'cringe' at some plot developments though! Enjoy, as I did - a great 'holiday' read.
After the cracking story in Andrew Grant's debut 'Even' I looked forward tp this second instalment with relish...
Alas, the plot was thin (compared to 'Even') and too transparent (predictable).
'Even's' novel mechanism of using Trevellayan's 'training day flashbacks' to develop the character and his skillset are actually quite 'formulistic' and monotonous, acting more like page fillers in this second instalment (as are references to our hero's former love interest, Tanya). Nor is there any follow-up explaining what happened to Tanya to indiucate why she does not feature in 'Die Twice...'
The book is also only 291 pages in length and poorly bound (my copy started to fall apart after one week of reading, with the spine splitting...)
In conclusion, I hope that this weaker instalment is more to do with agent pressure to release a follow-up to 'Even', and not an indication that Andrew Grant is running out of ideas...
8 New from
Great story, with nice transition from cut-scenes to actual play. Visually very nice, with great audio (had to mute amp, as I thought it was raining outside...) Gameplay is pretty seamless, with good control setup. A lot of thought has gone into the sets, character design and props... enjoy them. Thank-you postal service for delivering early too. If you enjoy dark corridors, eerie sets and a good mix of 'nasties' then you will not be disappointed. Maybe too much ammo littering levels on normal mode though...
Terminator: Salvation (Terminator 4)
6 New from
To be fair, the game's graphics are pretty good - enviroments are well considered, although they have the occassional flickering texture map.
Lighting is good / very good, only criticism being poor volumetric effects at start - however, some nice sunset lighting mid game - which does make that stage look softer / more blurred overall (but controls sight lines)
Animation of characters could have been better; as Connor seems to do a very odd 'hip rotation' when controlling (always like he's dancing) - possible due to looking and moving synchronisation issues
Biggest flaw would be not sticking to the original Terminator concept that the Endoskeletons were extremely hard to take out, even continuing their hunt when cut in half - that would have been nice to include. Not seen film, so maybe that's deviated off that path too (presumeably because it would be almost impossible to defeat an army of them...)
'Friendly Fire' also impossible to achieve too - having accidental targetted the school bus, my shells appeared to have had no effect at all (not even any verbal abuse from the driver).
Cover system is nice though, with good animation sequences for Connor slidding / running between cover. But, like Gears of War, it does get a little tedious / formulaic - as do the 'flanking' moves - larger playable set areas would make it more interesting eg Ghost Recon style or Full Spectrum Warrior (allowing wider / more challenging flanking moves to occur).
Still entertaining though - which is the point.
Hopefully the games will mature more with the new movies. Better scripts / dialogue for characters too - female assistants in game have very lame dialogue (almost as if they are being plagued by mosquitos - rather than vicious robotic hunter killers...)
Sex And The City: The Movie
20 New from
My partner (who was a HUGE fan of TV Series) was also very, very disappointed...
Takes about 60 mins to even suggest there may be a story
Provides SJP an excuse to indulge even more
Cast look tired (probably drag of shooting such a lemon)
Kodak Easyshare Z1285 12 Megapixel Digital Camera (Black)
Bought this camera as an alternative to taking my Canon 5D to South America (and probably losing it - to the muggers!).
For the money, I'm amazed.
Yes, it eats batteries - but a set of 2700MAh rechargeable AA's soon tamed it.
Metering can be fooled sometimes, so check your shots / re-meter elsewhere (to avoid bleached out backgrounds).
Focus can be a tad 'soft' in places too (dependant upon lighting / contrast in scene).
On-board 'stitching' is very nice - and generally works VERY well - occasionally it 'botches' it though.
Other 'scene' modes also very good / useful
Video quality is also Very Good.
In hindsight, for comparitively little outlay, you get:
Great shotsGreat 'stitched' panoramas (although shame it does not save individual frames for 'home' corrective work).Great video
and it fits fairly well in your pocket!
I took about 900 photos and about 80 videos over 2 weeks using this camera - and 90% satisfied with those results.
Pirates Of The Caribbean 3: At World's End - Special Edition (2 Discs)
9 New from
50% for superlative visual effects, 10% for very weak storyline, over long and disappointing score (compared to 1 and 2). This third episode offered nothing new... (no 1 had the skeletal crew, no 2 had the crustacean crew (DJ's crew)... where was the third 'innovative' touch? Overall, a disappointment - shame they didn't finish on a high note, than searching for ways to extend the franchise.