Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Rising to the Buzz! challenge

SWOTS at Loughborough University have swatted their Aston University rivals at a university challenge with a difference.
Students from the two Midlands universities battled it out over the internet using the popular PlayStation 3 quiz game Buzz!, with the town team triumphing over their Birmingham counterparts 3,764 to 3,690.
The winning students received £50 cash each, PSPs handheld consoles and a free bar tab for the evening.
Similar contests are continuing to take place nationwide, with the leaderboard-topping university announced soon.
The overall highest-scoring campus will then have a £25,000 “house party” laid on by the Buzz! team.

New Next Gen console revealed!

READ it here first - details have been leaked on hightechlatest.org that Sony and Microsoft are secretly working together to create the next, Next Generation games console to corner the market.
The console, codenamed PS720, appears to combine the best bits of both consoles and, if it does go ahead, would surely dominate the gaming world by basically giving them everything they want in one package.
The details are sketchy, but it would appear that at the heart of the console would be an upgraded PS3 processor, 300gb detachable hard drive, and it would feature Bluray, wi-fi and bluetooth connectivity, integrated wireless headset, detachable hi-def camera and an adapted dualshock controller based on the Xbox 360 design.
There is also talk of a combined Microsoft/Sony online network, that would be available for a minimal charge, but would obviously allow users to access online gaming, the web, Microsoft and Sony stores and back catalogues.
And the best bit about it? The console would be backwards compatible for PS3 AND Xbox 360!
To see the full posting, including apparent early design artwork, visit hightechlatest.org/forpilsaol.htm

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Virtual reality.... within a virtual world?

SO, THIS could confuse you....
PlayStation Home is launching a new alternate reality game called Xi, which will run within the Home world itself.
Mysterious graffiti has appeared in the main square area, and looking at it gives you access to The Hub, where a new Alternate Reality Game opens up.
From what I've heard, you complete tasks within this which open up further missions or tasks - haven't had a chance to try it yet, but it sounds intriguing.
Let's hope this gives a much-needed boost to PlayStation Home.

Monday, 23 March 2009

Bioshock 2 on PS3 and 360 at same time?

IN A great move for PS3 fans, press reports reveal that BioShock 2 will not be a timed-exclusive like the first game.

Apparently, 2K Games said they were aiming for simultaneous release of BioShock 2 on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. It's about time these daft timed exclusives are dropped - unless its a console-exclusive game, all this does is infuriate dedicated fans by having to wait to see the same game come out on their system.

It looks like this time you can welcome in Big Sister as the main attraction in the sequel!

Thursday, 12 March 2009

A real Buzz! for students in the UK

TO PROMOTE the interactive PlayStation quiz game Buzz! PlayStation have signed up 24 of the UK's biggest unis to take part in a nationwide competition to find the brainiest (very much like University Challenge). It is called Buzz! Clash of the Unis (http://buzzthenation.com/)

On the 24th March, PlayStation will be running a series of on campus events at rival universities Loughborough and Aston. On this day, the cleverest participants will be selected to go head to head with their rival uni’s Buzz! team that night. The two unis will compete against each other by playing Buzz on the online PlayStation network.

The winners of the local rounds will not only win spot prizes on the night, and the pride of hammering their rival campus, but they'll also win a load of points towards their uni's leader-board total in the nationwide competition.

The competition dates are below:

Durham Vs. UEA 15th March
Nottingham Trent Vs. Staffordshire 17th March
Royal Holloway Vs. LSE 19th March
Loughborough Vs. Aston 24th March
Sheffield Hallam Vs. Sheffield 26th March

Once all the heats have taken place, they will announce the winning university at the end of March and they will win a massive 'House Party' for their campus worth £25k.

So, get your Buzzers at the ready!

Friday, 6 March 2009

Prepare to be scared....

PREPARE to get the frights – turn off the lights, crank up the volume and become thoroughly spooked with Silent Hill: Homecoming.
This, the sixth instalment of this classic console series, is not only the first to be programmed for the next-generation PS3 machine, but also adds a new central character into the mix.
Alex Shepherd is a war veteran returning home from an overseas tour of duty, following acceptance of compassionate leave after receiving the news that his younger brother, Joshua, has gone missing. Alex begins his investigations in his small home-town of Shepherd’s Glen, but soon finds himself in the mist-shrouded and seemingly empty streets of Silent Hill.
This incarnation of Silent Hill, By Konami, makes full use of the increased power of the PS3, while the gameplay and control mechanics have also benefited from the upgrade to a next-gen machine.

More items from the scenery can be used as weapons and collecting them is now done on the fly rather than equipping them through an inventory, meaning the tension in hectic battle sequences goes through the roof as players have less time to react.
Alex can also vary the strength of his force during combat, using combinations of light and hard attacks that can be strung together in combinations to fell enemies, or powered up for slower but more intense results. Weaker or harder counter attacks are also included as is a dodge system that lets the player skip an enemy strike and instantly attack the assailant if executed correctly, or one that reduces damages but does not avoid it completely if timing is slightly off.
Some weapons encountered upon during play also have ‘finishing’ style moves for more variety when defeating enemies.
Add to that an all-new soundtrack by acclaimed series composer Akira Yamaoka, and gamers are given a thoroughly chilling and unnerving adventure for the Next Generation.
Silent Hill: Homecoming is also out on the Xbox 360.

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Wish list for the Playstation.....

SO, what do you want to see turn up on the PS3?
What do you think it is missing? What is Microsoft doing better with the Xbox 360 that Sony needs to emulate? I've been having a think about it, and here's my list :
* In-game chat settings, so I can actually join a friend already in a game and chat privately while playing; the 360 has done this from the start, so why can't we?
* Playstation Network demos; again, I hate to refer to Microsoft, but on Xbox Live you can download demos of their games to decide if it is worth buying, but Sony don't offer this with their online game purchases - sort it out!
* Allow PlayStation Home to boot from startup - most people cannot be bothered to boot up their PS3, find Home and then load that up, so why not just give us the option of booting straight in?
* Downloadable movies and TV shows - what more do I need to say? America has it, why hasn't the UK? IT would be great for Sony revenue!
If you have any ideas, feel free to post them here.

Monday, 2 March 2009

A weekend of online battles

YES, it has finally arrived - the PS3 exclusive Killzone 2 is here!
It's been a long time coming, but I can honestly say it was definitely worth the wait. An epic single-player mode, which really does blur the lines between gaming and movies, as you really do feel like you are in a movie. It really has to be seen to be believed.
And add to that some stunning online gameplay, with giant maps and great team play, and it really is THE best first-person shooter you can buy on any console.
I've spent hours on it this weekend, splitting equally between the single-player and online gaming, and know there will be many months of playing ahead.
A keen friend of mine has been playing it like mad this weekend and sent me an email last night to say he had completed the single-player campaign - but is now planning to start again on a higher difficulty.
Yes, it really is that good.