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hands on

  • ‘Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2′ preview: What is a Man?

    “…A miserable little pile of secrets.” barks Dracula (played by Robert Carlyle of Trainspotting, Once Upon a Time) as the colossal hand of a steampunk god robot smashes into him, ruining his monologue but beautifully setting the stage for Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2. The 750MB demo launched for PS3 and Xbox 360 earlier this week (13 February), and I, being an immense fan of the series played it thoroughly. Those who played Castlevania: Lords of Shadow way back in 2010 should have played the demo already, but for those who haven’t been so lucky, bear in mind the spoilers aplenty...

  • Dark Souls II preview: beyond death, we discover a sequel that delivers

    Having played the original Dark Souls, I was pretty prepared for the game’s infamous and often frustrating difficulty level as well as having fairly high expectations for its compelling story and unforgettable boss fights. I have to tell you though, that Bandai really isn’t kidding when it states “Prepare To Die… Again.” in the about section of the game’s website. Having snuck into the rather impressive (and suitably dark and brooding) display stand for Dark Souls II before opening time for South Africa’s biggest gaming expo rAge over the past weekend, I had ample time to give the demo a...

  • PS4 first impressions: amazing tech in a handsome package

    Everywhere you looked at mega gaming expo rAge this year, PlayStation had a hefty presence. A massive Playstation stand, adorned by the much-loved PS symbols, and filled with excited gamers, contained not only the PS3 and PSVITA, but also the much-anticipated (and as yet unreleased) PS4. Gamers could marvel over the sleek design through a glass display case at the front of the stand (and it is incredibly pretty), but more importantly, they could play on a (limited) number of machines. The queues to get hands-on time were, to put it mildly, insane. And with good reason. Not only were...

  • Google Glass eyes on preview: looking to the future

    I was fortunate to spend some time in Silicon Valley last month, rubbing shoulders with the greatest minds in tech as part of the Blackbox.vc programme sponsored by Google for entrepreneurs. In the Valley, they talk about disruptive technology, coming up with ideas that change the way people interact with the world, and Google Glass certainly ticks that box especially in the new category of “wearable computing”. Renowned tech blogger Robert Scoble popped into the Blackbox Mansion and let me try on the pair of Google Glass that he is reviewing. So here then, is a “layman’s” view of the experience...

  • Leap Motion preview: two days of fun and frustration

    Leap Motion is onto something different, innit? Leap is a 3D motion-controller the size of an electric slug that works on PC or Mac. And yeah, the operative word is “works” because as incredible as Leap is (crowds gathered around my PC), it’s just a gimmick… for now. Allow me to explain. The box is gorgeous and echoes Apple’s design ethos. Minimal, clean, fuss-free Why do I say that it’s a gimmick? Because this US$80 (R800) device right now cannot replace the mouse as a Minority Report-style interface. I bet you all thought that when the Leap first came out,...

  • Xperia Tablet Z hands on: 10.1″, waterproof, desirable

    I was handed Sony’s Xperia Z Tablet yesterday. It’s a great-looking, 10.1-inch tablet that’s waterproof, lightening fast and pretty costly. In this hands on review, I’ll attempt to convince you that despite a very short amount of time spent with the Z Tablet, it’s most likely going to be a contender for tablet of the year. When I’m fully convinced that I’ve spent enough time with the Xperia X Tablet, I’ll post the full review. The look and feel Sony’s Xperia Z smartphone was the template for the tablet version and the rubberized slate of glass I loved as a...

  • Resident Evil Revelations HD preview: ported fun

    Seeing a handheld game ported in “HD” to the console is becoming more and more common and, on the whole, it indicates an attempt by the developers on one hand to extend the life of the franchise (because often these are indeed franchise games) as well as to a lesser degree bring the somewhat neglected story element to the broader market. Resident Evil Revelations HD is exactly this. The game is set between Resident Evil 4 and 5. For those critical of Resident Evil 6‘s departure from the traditional survival horror genre that it has become known for, this will...

  • Lost Planet 3 preview: generic third-person shooting ahoy

    By the time you reach the third game in a franchise, you think you’ve seen it all, and to a certain extent you wouldn’t be wrong with Lost Planet 3. The story doesn’t take place consecutively however, so in this case you’ll actually be playing a prequel. Lost Planet 3 is set long before the events in the first game, and E.D.N III is still in an ice age as opposed to the tropical environment you’re used to from Lost Planet 2. You play as Jim Peyton, a colonist separated from his wife and child as he explores the icy planet...

  • ‘Remember Me’ preview: an unforgettable inception

    It’s not often that you come across a game that offers such a unique mix of combat, exploration, stealth and I kid you not, a really interesting storyline. I was fortunate enough to be able to play through a pre-release segment of Remember Me, the newest title by Capcom and Dontnod Entertainment, due for release in June 2013 on PS3, Xbox 360 and PC. You control Nilin, a “memory hunter” without any memories of her own as she runs rampant through the streets of dystopian Paris, 2084. Everything you do is under constant surveillance, and since Nilin has escaped from Memorize...

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 hands on review: 5 inches of win

    I had very little time to play with Samsung’s Galaxy S4, a phone that is as much a media center as it is a social/mobile/life management tool. Samsung calls the S4 a “life companion” (what was the SIII then, a weekend fling?) and outside of this silly moniker, it’s a great 5-inch smartphone with some clever features that makes it stand out from the crowd. Here’s what I think of Samsung’s S4, which launches globally 27 April. The screen The 5-inch screen is a work of master-class. It’s a 441PPI display. 4,4,1. That’s one of the highest resolution per inch ratios...

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