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Kick-Ass Men's No Power T-Shirt (Grey)
I've only worn and washed this t-shirt five or six times, and it's already falling apart. It's shrunk, lost shape, and the stitching around the neck is dissolving and coming apart. Yes, it's cheap, and yes, it has a cool design on it, but I'd have to advise people against buying this t-shirt unless you can afford to throw it away a few months later.
The Wire: Complete Season 3 Box Set (5 Discs) (HBO)
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The Wire is extraordinary in the amount of interesting, sympathetic (good or bad) characters it contains, this season most of all (so far) for me.
Season 1 was brilliant, season 2 felt a little slow to me, but season 3 has left me almost breathless all the way through. I can't believe that seasons 4 and 5 are going to top it, but I'm looking forward to finding out!
Geometry Wars: Galaxies
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If you grew up on games like Asteroids, Galaxians, and Galaga, you will absolutely love this game. It takes all the playability of 80s arcade games and adds the shininess of modern console hardware into the mix.
The game is played roughly in the style of Asteroids, with you moving around in a confined space while enemies appear from the edges of the play area, but the rest of the gameplay feels more like a vertical scrolling shooter, with lots of shiny weapons power-ups, a configurable and upgradable drone that can help you attack or defend, and really frantic amounts of enemy action incoming at some points.
The main graphics are all simple vector-style coloured shapes, but the weapons/explosions/general mayhem on the screen once you get going has to be seen to be believed. Even when you're having a bad night and keep dying 90 seconds into a level, the game is still an immensely satisfying aesthetic experience :)
The gameplay is incredibly well put together... you might not want to play it for hours on end, but you will almost certainly come back to it for half an hour here and there, time and time again.
If you still need convincing, google for the official website ("geometry wars galaxies" should find it) and click through to Movies, Gameplay. Yes, it really is that shiny, and yes, it really is that much fun. If that hasn't persuaded you to buy it, nothing will.
Looney Tunes: ACME Arsenal
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I borrowed this game (my gf works in a games stores) fully expecting to really enjoy it. Cartoon characters with cartoon weapons! What could go wrong?! Well, I'll tell you :)
For a start, this game has Warner Bros and Looney Tunes logos all over it. It's a genuine Looney Tunes product, not some cheap rip-off. So why do none of the voices sound even slightly like the characters from the cartoons? I've heard better Bugs Bunny impressions from random drunks in pubs.
This flaw is made all the more irritating by the fact that half the time, what Bugs is saying has nothing to do with what is actually happening in the game ("Hello my tin-suited friend", when the screen is completely empty of opponents, for instance).
The second problem I had with this game was the gameplay itself. The wandering around, jumping up and down, breaking things and triggering drawbridges etc, is all fairly standard... but the fighting? You just wave the Wii-mote around like you're having some kind of fit, and in theory, waggle the joystick and hit various buttons in certain orders to do combo moves. It was sooooooooooo boring that I gave up quite early in.
So... bad points: ANNOYINGLY bad character voices, uninteresting combat sequences.
Good points? It looks good - for all that the characters sound wrong, they look right. Some of the puzzles are interesting, while you're finding your way around the levels. The weapons are good for a laugh, just as I hoped they would be.
Now to be fair, the voices and the fight controls annoyed me so much that I didn't play it for very long (an hour or so), so maybe I just didn't get the hang of it, or didn't get to the good bits... but I don't think I could have put up with those voices for long even if the rest of the game had been fantastic.
If you can get the chance, I'd recommend trying this game before you buy it.
4Gamers Wii Remote Charging Stand
In the other reviews, there seems to be some confusion about whether the thing will charge in standby or not (it will) and why it keeps flashing the red lights after you leave it on charge overnight (it usually means your batteries have charged).
The only thing I found disappointing about this charger is that the blue light on it is not controlled by the Wii - it doesn't come on when the Wii's blue light does, or when the Wii is switched on, as I'd expected (and as other reviews seemed to say it would do). Actually, it turns out that the blue light on the charger (and the built-in Wii stand) is just controlled by an on/off switch on the back of it. It doesn't come on unless you turn it on by hand, and it stays on when the Wii is put into standby unless you turn it off by hand.
Other than that, for ten quid I'm pretty happy with this charger - I'll update if I have any problems with it, but for now it seems to be working just fine.
Nokia N810 Internet Tablet
I've had the tablet about a week now, and so far it's proving to be a nice little geek toy.
My main uses for it are:* listening to music when I'm on my way to/from work (I had to upgrade it to play .ogg files, but it was pretty easy);* playing silly little games when I'm stuck on a bus (Tetris is built-in (called Blocks), the downloadable Galaxians clone is entertainingly retro, and the built-in Marbles puzzle thing is driving me crazy);* email and web when I'm at friends' houses or in bed ("Hi, my name is Denny, and I'm an Internet addict");* keeping an eye on Jaiku during the day using the Mauku client, with the tablet standing just under my monitors at work;* syncing with my Google Calendar via the GPE suite and the Erminig middleware.
1. The other review here says to buy an 8GB MicroSD card. The device takes MINI SD, not micro. If you buy a MicroSD card (not a bad idea, they seem to be higher capacity than the MiniSD cards for some reason) then make sure you also get a Micro-to-Mini adaptor. Speaking of which, there have been a lot of problems experienced by people using the Sandisk adaptors - check out the threads about this on the "Internet Tablet Talk" forums, and if you have trouble with a high-capacity MicroSD card, replace the adaptor (which costs about £3) before you get too worried.
2. Also on those forums, make sure you check out the threads about the memory corruption problem. As shipped, many of the tablets (including mine) have a problem with the internal flash memory configuration, which will eventually lead to data loss if not dealt with. It's easily fixed, you just need to reformat that internal flash disk, which is a point and click job using the built-in file manager.
The amount of software for the tablet is quite impressive - check out maemo .org for lots of free software to install - both from Nokia and from the open-source community. Everything from the Xchat IRC client to LCARS themes. :)
The screen is very nice - even very small fonts on websites are surprisingly readable, due to the sharpness of the screen. I'm a bit worried about how well it will stand up to months of stylus use on it, but we'll see... I understand that it's possible to buy screen-protectors if you want to play safe.
I dropped the tablet on the first day I took it out of the house - from a few feet high, onto a tarmac path, hard enough to bounce when it landed. I'm happy to say it survived this experience with only minor scarring to the corner of the housing, but I don't intend to do any more destruction testing.
I haven't used the N800, but I suspect that unless you really need the keyboard then the N800 is a better deal at current prices. You can upgrade the N800 to the same OS version as the N810, so the only differences are the keyboard and the built-in GPS.
Speaking of the GPS... it's not very good. It takes a VERY long time to get a signal. I've seen it take anything up to 6 or 7 minutes to get a lock when I'm outside in relatively open surroundings, and I've never seen it get a lock while inside. I haven't tried it in the car yet, but I'm not optimistic given its performance in a field.
There's an annoying bug where the tablet will refuse to connect to some secured wifi networks, claiming that the password you have entered is the wrong length (when you know it's not). I'm hoping that this will be fixed soon!
Bluetooth works fine (using my N70 as a modem) but it flattens the battery VERY quickly.
So, a few niggles. Still, even bearing those in mind, I'm very happy with the tablet, and don't regret the purchase. I'd recommend either the N800 or the N810 to any migratory geek who'd like to stay connected while they roam.