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March 19, 2010

Predators

And I thought I was getting another Christmas in December with TRON Legacy. Turns out I'm also getting one hell of a birthday present two days before my birthday!

Teaser Trailer

Lots of great actors: Adrien Brody, Laurence Fishburne, Alice Braga, Topher Grace, Walton Goggins, Danny Trejo, Mahershalalhashbaz Ali.

Lots of Predators.

Official Site

March 10, 2010

Rez Up for Pursuit

TRON Legacy trailer.

Looks... gloriously weird. Especially that guy with the cane. Does he remind anyone else of Luke Steel from Empire of the Sun?

I'm not sure whether I'm down with the idea of Recognizers with thrusters, though. Still, that's a quibble.

Bring on December!

March 09, 2010

New Networks Keep LAN Alive in Cairns

That's the title of my second op-ed piece in The Cairns Post's Tuesday Digital Life section. There's a first here, though; Angelo "DJ A.N.G" Saliba is my first ever interview subject!

And as the article mentions it, I'd be remiss if I didn't link to CairnsLAN.com, the forum through which Angelo hopes to organise the re-ignition of Far North Queensland's LAN party scene.

Download and have a read!

The Cairns Post 6 Mar 10, Page 13

March 07, 2010

Air (Head) Gap

Whoops! Sorry, folks, false alarm. Turns out the cause of the screen-not-displaying problem wasn't my video card or anything else in the CPU case; it was an air gap between the DVI video cable and the screen. I noticed after I dragged Vickie's old PC down from the lot and tried running it, only to have it do the same thing.

So I'm currently re-installing everything under Windows, including Steam and Left 4 Dead, and will get to Ubuntu a little later.

Phew! Talk about an exhausting error-check, though. Getting the old PC down from the loft is a pain...

March 04, 2010

I think my PC just bit the dust.

As you may already know, a few weeks ago my personal PC started behaving oddly. Both my Ubuntu and Windows XP installs began misbehaving in a very similar fashion; windows wouldn't come to the front when clicked on and web links wouldn't go active when moused over. I figured it might've been a virus, but when I tried to reformat and reinstall the problem persisted, so I started thinking hardware fault.

Switching keyboards didn't fix it and it'd been a while since I'd opened up my case and cleaned the components; I began to suspect a short somewhere. The amount of dust and dog-hair I discovered when I removed the side panel was scary, so last weekend I donned a static strap, pulled everything apart, cleaned it off and reassembled. By the time I was done I was pretty tired and not particularly surprised when the PC didn't power on; I figured I'd connected the front panel to the motherboard wrong.

Last night I pulled my PC out and fixed the front panel connections, then tried again, but the PC still didn't power on. I then remembered I'd unplugged the power board during one of the nasty storms of recent, plugged it back in and hit the power button. My PC began emitting a high-pitched squeal, the likes of which I'd never heard before. It took me a few minutes of trial and error to realise that the noise was coming from the last place I expected: My video card. I hadn't plugged it back into the power supply.

I did so, but now, while my PC gives every other indication of booting up, my screen flickers back and forth from standby to online but never displays a picture.

So it seems I've somehow buggered at least a couple of hundred dollars worth of graphics card, if not the whole damned PC. I still have computing options; I can pull Vickie's old PC, which we gave to young Chookie at one point, out of the loft and reformat it, which will give me back web function and, probably most important at the moment, word processing. But no matter what, I can forget Dawn of War II, Team Fortress 2 and Left 4 Dead, not to mention any PC games that get sent to work for review purposes, for the time being.

Fuck.

MX Vs. ATV: Reflex

Here is my latest game review for The Cairns Post, my second of a game provided by a publisher: THQ's motorcross simulator, MX Vs. ATV Reflex.

This one was definitely out of my comfort zone. The first game I reviewed that I hadn't actually bought was Speed Racer, way back in '07, so I didn't have the anticipation and enthusiasm that kept me playing though Halo 3: ODST, Bayonetta and Mass Effect 2. It's also a strictly real world game, right down to the licensed bike parts and rider gear, so it can't afford to go all arcade-y like Burnout Paradise. Still, all that made for a refreshing, challenging change.

As always, the review is a PDF file, so you'll need Adobe Reader.

Next up: Back to familiar territory with Capcom's pulp-SF jetpack shooter, Dark Void.

March 03, 2010

Piracy Numbers

Continuing on from my link to Tycho's summation of the issue of computer game piracy, here's another well-reasoned article that tries to shine some light on the actual extent of PC game piracy and the effectiveness of measures, such as Digital Rights Management (DRM) software, in stopping it.