My Little Blacksmith Shop – Early Access

Published on Thursday, March 23rd, 2017

Working the forge all day for people with no manners, so, like a job? It’s My Little Blacksmith Shop! I found this little gem over on itch.io some time ago, to say I have high hopes for it is an understatement. Currently being developed by Dasius of Noble Games Studio; My Little Blacksmith Shop has some serious… Read more »

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OMEN X by HP 4k Gaming Desktop

Published on Thursday, March 9th, 2017

Designed for gaming from the ground up, this revolutionary tower has no equal. Insane power and innovative cooling easily take on the latest AAA games, even at their highest settings. And with an easily upgradable custom case, this PC can evolve to satisfy any future performance demands. Technical details Supported Operating Systems Operating system Windows… Read more »

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Conan Exiles – Early Access

Published on Sunday, March 5th, 2017

Conan Exiles – Nudity and death. Only the nudity is optional. Don’t get me wrong, that’s not what Conan Exiles is all about, with the exception of death. You will die, more than you might think. Developed and published by Funcom: Conan Exiles sets you on the path of a customisable exile in an unforgiving land…. Read more »

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The World’s Smallest Smartphone

Published on Wednesday, March 1st, 2017
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Avorion – Early Access Space Sandbox

Published on Friday, February 17th, 2017

Avorion: 2017 – A Space Opera What would happen if X2 had a love triangle with Space Engineers and Starmade? Avorion, that’s what! Ok, so that first metaphor isn’t an image that everyone will appreciate, but hang in there. Avorion is an ambitious project that uses procedural generation to great effect. Developed by Boxelware, currently… Read more »

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Written by Dave Bagnall on Thursday, March 9th, 2017

Designed for gaming from the ground up, this revolutionary tower has no equal. Insane power and innovative cooling easily take on the latest AAA games, even at their highest settings. And with an easily upgradable custom case, this PC can evolve to satisfy any future performance demands.

Technical details

Supported Operating Systems
Operating system Windows 10 Home 64
Processor
Chipset Intel Z170
Processor speed 4 GHz
Processor family 6th Generation Intel® Core™ i7 processor
Processor Intel® Core™ i7-6700K (4 GHz, up to 4.2 GHz, 8 MB cache, 4 cores)
Appearance
Product color Jet black
Storage Specifications
Special features Liquid cooling solution for processor
Drives
Hard drive description 2 TB 7200 rpm SATA
Hard drive (2nd) 256 GB PCIe® NVMe™ M.2 SSD
Optical drive Ultra Slim-tray SuperMulti DVD burner
Cloud service Dropbox
External drive bays One occupied
Internal drive bays One occupied
Three available
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Written by Dave Bagnall on Thursday, January 26th, 2017

ROG Strix RX 480 is the next-generation graphics card, featuring the new Polaris 10 from AMD at the core based on a new 14nm FinFET fabrication node (previously 28nm) to bring you a new level of performance with less heat. You’ll be hard-pressed to find another card with such performance to run VR (virtual reality) games at this price point.

The GPU (grahics processing unit) comes factory-overclocked to 1330MHz in OC mode with headroom for further tweaking (1310MHz boost clock in gaming mode) and is paired with 8GB of GDDR5 video memory operating at 8GHz on the 256-bit memory bus. This translates to a performance boost of 15% in 3DMark Fire Strike and 19% in the latest games such as DOOM and Hitman compared to reference.

Auto-Extreme and Super Alloy Power II Technology
Just as other ROG Strix graphics cards, only the best components and manufacturing process is acceptable. Auto-Extreme technology employs a 100% automated manufacturing process which requires premium Super Alloy Power II components to be used. The graphics cards produced are consistently higher quality, run quieter, more efficient and cooler which in turn makes them overclock better, be more stable and last longer. The process is also environmentally friendly, eliminating harsh chemicals and reducing power consumption by 50% during production.

Redesigned Power Allocation
Power allocation has been redesigned compared to reference. ROG Strix RX 480 with the use of a custom VRM (voltage regulator module) and PCB (printed circuit board) draws 100% of the GPU power from the 8-pin PCIe power connector (rather than splitting the load between the connector and the PCIe slot). Such a design ensures that the PCIe slot specifications for power consumption is not breached (the card may throttle otherwise).
Exclusive ASUS Features and Technologies
The new GPU together with the DirectCU III cooling solution with triple wing-blade fans results in a graphics card that is three times quieter and 30% cooler than reference, only by having this level of thermal performance can this card incorporate 0dB technology which makes the card completely silent during casual gaming. The matte black shroud and backplate with new Aura RGB lighting which comes with six lighting effects can surely match almost any system. FanConnect technology incorporates two 4-pin GPU-controlled headers, allowing you to control dedicated case fans to cooling the area around the graphics card specifically. GPU Tweak II will provide easy one-click overclocking while a professional mode is still available for advanced users, XSplit Gamecaster is also included to stream or record gameplay.

The ROG Strix series of graphics cards are the only ones with a dedicated HDMI port for VR, rest assured you won’t be having any problems connecting up a VR set if you already have an HDMI monitor connected. There are two DisplayPort 1.4, two HDMI 2.0 and a DVI-D port. AMD FreeSync will make sure you’re getting smooth gameplay when using supported gaming monitors such as MG248Q, MG28UQ or MG24UQ.
ROG Strix RX 480 will be available worldwide from mid-August 2016

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Written by Dave Bagnall on Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

CORSAIR®, a world leader in enthusiast memory, high-performance gaming hardware and PC components, today announced the immediate availability of CORSAIR VENGEANCE RGB DDR4 memory. VENGEANCE RGB brings vibrant RGB lighting to the DIMM slot, with high luminosity RGB LEDs integrated into every module, all controlled by CORSAIR LINK. CORSAIR VENGEANCE RGB’s wire-free integration enables software RGB lighting control without additional wires (patent pending) for a sharp, clean look and providing an instant visual upgrade to any system build.

Equipped with a precision-engineered light bar and an all-new perforated CORSAIR logo, each LED generates vibrant and rich RGB lighting. With four customizable lighting modes; static, rainbow, breathing and color shift, it’s simple to color match your system’s build or put on a dazzling light show, and with specifically designed lighting circuitry, there’s zero impact on DDR4 performance. With CORSAIR LINK, users can set up a temperature alert that automatically changes each memory module’s LED color based on system temperatures, as well as monitor and control a wide variety of CORSAIR components, from case fans, lighting, DRAM and compatible CORSAIR power supplies to Hydro Series liquid CPU coolers, providing a complete PC monitoring experience.

VENGEANCE RGB’s built-in heat spreader doesn’t just look great, it keeps each memory module cool to maintain performance and stability under high load operations. Using a custom performance PCB and carefully hand-screened ICs, VENGEANCE RGB guarantees better signalling and superior overlocking potential. VENGEANCE RGB’s XMP 2.0 support makes overclocking simple and easy for novices or seasoned PC builders, allowing users to safely switch between pre-configured tested Intel® XMP profiles and get the guaranteed performance out of their DRAM kit.

VENGEANCE RGB’s CORSAIR LINK software control is compatible with a wide range of Intel® DDR4 platforms, from dual-channel Z270 and Z170 to quad-channel X99*, with more boards adding compatibility every week and AMD Ryzen™ support planned soon. What’s more, VENGEANCE RGB is also compatible with third-party motherboard software RGB control, allowing users to synchronize DRAM and motherboard RGB lighting. Gigabyte is the first to offer VENGEANCE RGB support through its RGB Fusion App, with other motherboard partners coming soon.

Please refer to www.corsair.com/vengeancergb for a complete list of VENGEANCE RGB compatible motherboards and software.

CORSAIR’s first ever RGB DDR4 kits are available immediately in 16GB (2 x 8GB) and 32GB (4 x 8GB) 3000MHz kits, with additional capacity and frequency kits coming soon.

Availability, Warranty and Pricing

VENGEANCE RGB DDR4 is available immediately from the CORSAIR worldwide network of authorized retailers, and distributors and is backed by a lifetime limited warranty and the CORSAIR worldwide customer support network.

About CORSAIR

Founded in 1994, CORSAIR supplies high-performance products purchased primarily by PC gaming enthusiasts who build their own PCs or buy pre-assembled customized systems. The company’s award-winning products include DDR3 and DDR4 memory upgrades, computer cases, PC cooling products, gaming headsets, gaming keyboards, gaming mice, power supply units, USB flash drives, solid-state drives and system monitoring and control devices.

Copyright © 2017 CORSAIR Components, Inc. All rights reserved. CORSAIR, the sails logo, and Vengeance are registered trademarks of CORSAIR in the United States and/or other countries. All other company and/or product names may be trade names, trademarks, and/or registered trademarks of the respective owners with which they are associated. Features, pricing, availability, and specifications are subject to change without notice.

*via CORSAIR BETA program

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Written by Dave Bagnall on Tuesday, February 28th, 2017

CORSAIR,® a world leader in enthusiast memory, high-performance gaming hardware and PC components, today announced its extensive compatibility for the groundbreaking new range of AMD Ryzen™ processors and the AM4 platform. With a completely new CPU architecture, chipset and CPU socket, AMD Ryzen demands the latest in performance PC hardware. With a wide range of compatible DDR4 memory, liquid CPU coolers and PSUs, CORSAIR has everything enthusiasts need to make AMD Ryzen CPUs run to the full extent of their abilities.

“CORSAIR is uniquely positioned for the launch of AMD Ryzen, with an outstanding range of not just high-performance DDR4 memory, but liquid CPU cooling and power supplies as well,” said Travis Kirsch Director, Product Management, Client at AMD. “CORSAIR offers everything system builders need to get the absolute best performance from AMD Ryzen and the new AM4 platform.”

AMD Ryzen CPUs require the latest DDR4 memory and CORSAIR has a growing range of AMD Ryzen qualified high-performance DDR4 memory, with more kits being certified for Ryzen processors every day. Launching with Vengeance LPX 16GB, 32GB and 64GB kits running at 2,133MHz and 2,400MHz, and Dominator Platinum 16GB running at 3,000MHz, CORSAIR has the DDR4 memory to match your choice of AMD Ryzen™ build. Check http://www.corsair.com/ryzen for a full up-to-date list.

AMD Ryzen processors dynamically adjust and optimize performance based on power and temperature conditions; lower temperatures mean higher clock speeds and better benchmarks. With the addition of a CORSAIR Hydro Series liquid CPU cooler, you’re able to cool Ryzen processors to temperatures substantially lower than when using standard air cooling, allowing for higher clock speeds, better performance and easier overclocking.

AMD Ryzen processors also bring an entirely new CPU socket, AM4, and the CORSAIR Hydro Series H60, H110i and H100i are ready right out of the box to deliver superior liquid CPU cooling to socket AM4 Ryzen CPUs. The rest of the CORSAIR Hydro Series range of coolers are also fully compatible with AMD Ryzen and AM4 via an additional mounting bracket. CORSAIR is proud to announce that, for a limited time, an AM4 bracket will be supplied, upon request, to all qualifying Hydro Series owners free of charge, including shipping to EU, USA and select other countries. Brackets start shipping on March 2nd, so check http://www.corsair.com/ryzen for full details.

What’s the use of performance without the power to supply it? CORSAIR PSUs have been trusted by PC enthusiasts for over a decade, winning hundreds of industry and reviewer awards thanks to a complete commitment to quality, reliable and performance. Now that legacy comes to AMD Ryzen, with every CORSAIR PSU fully compatible with all new AMD X370, B350 and X320 chipset motherboards. Equip the legendary 80-PLUS Titanium AX1500i, the low-noise 80-PLUS GOLD RMx series, or the dependable 80-PLUS Bronze CX series to complete your Ryzen system.

“We’re extremely excited about the new AMD Ryzen processors and the new AMD platform” said Aaron Neal, Senior Manager of DIY product Marketing at CORSAIR. “With extensive DDR4, Hydro Cooler and PSU support across our entire range, enthusiasts can be sure that CORSAIR has everything they need to build the perfect Ryzen system”.

Web Pages:

To see how CORSAIR DDR4, Hydro Series Liquid CPU Coolers and CORSAIR power supplies can help build your next PC powered by the AMD Ryzen™ Processors, please visit:

http://www.corsair.com/ryzen

Video:

For a video announcing CORSAIR Ryzen compatibility, please visit:

https://youtu.be/GYfIlTSLXjU

Hydro Series Cooler Compatibility Details

The following CORSAIR Hydro Series liquid CPU coolers are fully compatible with the new AM4 socket out-of-the box.

Hydro Series H60
Hydro Series H110i (Hydro Series H110i GT)
Hydro Series H100i
The following CORSAIR Hydro Series liquid CPU coolers require an additional AM4 bracket for AMD Ryzen compatibility. Check http://www.corsair.com/ryzen for full details

Hydro Series H50
Hydro Series H55
Hydro Series H75
Hydro Series H80i v2 (H80i GT)
Hydro Series H90,
Hydro Series H100i v2 (H100i GTX)
Hydro Series H105
Hydro Series H110i GTX
Hydro Series H115i

DDR4 Compatibility Details

The below-listed CORSAIR DDR4 kits are currently recommended for AMD Ryzen™ CPUs and accompanying chipsets. More kits are being qualified all the time, so check http://www.corsair.com/ryzen for the latest complete list:

CMD16GX4M2B3000C15 Dominator Platinum
CMK32GX4M4A2133C15 Vengeance LPX
CMK32GX4M4A2400C16 Vengeance LPX
CMK64GX4M4A2400C16 Vengeance LPX
CMK16GX4M2A2400C16 Vengeance LPX
CMK32GX4M2A2400C16 Vengeance LPX

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Written by Dave Bagnall on Wednesday, March 1st, 2017
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Written by Dave Bagnall on Friday, February 3rd, 2017

Antlion Audio (www.AntlionAudio.com) is proud to announce the ModMic 5 is now available on their website. The ModMic is an award winning attachable boom mic that can turn any pair of headphones into a headset for gaming, broadcasting, VoIP, and more. The patented base clasp securely adheres to any surface and the super strong neodymium magnets holds the mic in place. The 5th generation improves on the original design across the board, adding dual mic capsules, a fully modular cable system, and premium grade materials to deliver the pinnacle of custom audio.

A key innovation in the ModMic 5 is the addition of a dual capsule microphone. With the flick of a switch the ModMic 5 goes from studio quality to noise canceling. This means that a single ModMic can go from a quiet environment for recording to a noisy one, like a gaming LAN event where noise cancelling is essential. With the included compact carrying case, bringing along high quality sound has never been easier.

The most common customer request has come to life in the form of a fully modular cable system. This allows users to select the perfect cable length for their needs and quickly swap over to different devices, such as PC, consoles, or phones. Included with the modular cables is a detachable mute switch and cable wraps, which keeps the cords from the headphones and the ModMic tightly bound together.

Finally, the materials in the ModMic have been improved across the board. From kevlar reinforced cabling to a thicker steel spine and a stronger magnet, there’s never been a better ModMic than the ModMic 5.

Antlion believes all people should have the option to use the headphones they love and still enjoy the superb quality that a ModMic can bring. Find out more at www.AntlionAudio.com.

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Written by Ex0du5_2169 on Thursday, March 23rd, 2017

Working the forge all day for people with no manners, so, like a job? It’s My Little Blacksmith Shop!

I found this little gem over on itch.io some time ago, to say I have high hopes for it is an understatement. Currently being developed by Dasius of Noble Games Studio; My Little Blacksmith Shop has some serious potential. Please don’t misunderstand, the game is in very early access and is quite some distance from completion. However, what we do have is a labour of love and a dedicated developer, who readily interacts with a growing community. Dasius has taken inspiration from other titles including Skyrim and Blacksmith Simulator by Planet Howard. Work started while feeling the itch for more but not wanting to sit watching progress bars and numbers.

But what is it?

My Little Blacksmith Shop is exactly as it sounds, a fantasy smithing simulation. You play as a blacksmith, you order materials, you make equipment. It might sound simple and boring and it’s true that there isn’t a huge amount of content. There is, however, already limited progression, including a simple levelling system. Add to that a variety of materials and a range of items to forge, it might not seem like much but it works well. The shop environment is set up logically, the forge itself is outside the back door and there is a chest for payments. There are shelves and racks for storage of parts and even finished products. Customers can (and will) purchase items you put out for display which is a refreshing touch.

As the character, you are involved in every step of item production. From heating the ingots in the furnace, hammering them on the anvil and even quenching the forged item. You’re not finished yet, now you need to take it to the work bench to attach the grip and guard. Finally, take it to the customer, who has been waiting the whole time (with a timer ticking down), and you’ll be paid. Payment depends on a number of factors: Is it a blade or a hammer? Did you fit a regular or fancy grip? What material is it made from? There is a fair amount to consider and a whole lot more to come!

Everything just feels right. Nothing is out of place, unless you want it to be.

The future is looking good!

I spoke to Dasius about the future of My Little Blacksmith Shop and there are some big plans! Deeper interactions with a small community, friendships and the ability to buy a bigger shop. Perhaps the most exciting thing for me is the plan to allow you to equip the townspeople, in order to defend against an unknown force. This is before we even mention the crystals, I’m sure we’ll find out what they are used for eventually. Of course this is all long term, a considerable amount of time is being spent fixing bugs before adding new content. This is Dasius’ first major project, during which the aim is to learn a multitude of new skills. The dream is to build a strong team and studio filled with the creative passion that is already evident.

I like it, I like it alot!

It’s safe to say that I already enjoy My Little Blacksmith Shop. If the future plans all come together then I can imagine investing a large amount of time into the game. I shall be keeping an eye on progress and will likely write another article with any significant updates. There is currently no official trailer, though I will update this page if one is released. Have you tried it? What do you think of the future plans? I would love to hear your thoughts.

The graphical choices certainly lend themselves well to the fantasy setting.

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Written by Ex0du5_2169 on Sunday, March 5th, 2017

Conan Exiles – Nudity and death. Only the nudity is optional.

Don’t get me wrong, that’s not what Conan Exiles is all about, with the exception of death. You will die, more than you might think. Developed and published by Funcom: Conan Exiles sets you on the path of a customisable exile in an unforgiving land. Not unlike ARK or Rust, Conan Exiles is a survival based game with emphasis on building and exploring dangerous areas. You can choose PVP or PVE game modes, that’s not all, there is also single and local cooperative play included.

Character creation is a given and fairly easy to use. Choose from all the usual options for customisation, though there is another slider: genitalia. I’m being serious. I’ll let you discover the details yourselves, the results are fairly comical. Leaving that aside, there is one major difference to Conan Exiles: religion. You can choose from a total of 4 Gods to worship (though that number is set to increase as development progresses). There’s one for cannibals (Yog), the snake (Set) and justice (Mitra). There’s also Crom but he doesn’t care. Once your character is created you will be presented with a list of your crimes, some can be rather funny.

Some exiles just aren’t so lucky.

Kill to eat, or die in the process.

Gameplay is as you might expect, 90% of all creatures want you dead and will succeed around 80% of the time. By the time you can kill them easily you’ll be exploring areas with much nastier enemies. It’s a never ending cycle of death. There will eventually be dungeons to fight through, though currently the spawn rate in at least one of them is bugged. There’s an established tech tree, you gain points to unlock recipes as you level up. The tried and tested method for survival games, but it works well. Those who picked a religion (except for Crom, he doesn’t care) will have unique building options as they level up. I almost forgot to mention the Gods’ avatars which can be devastating. All except for Crom.

Crom really doesn’t care.

One feature worth mentioning is the ability to take slaves. Much like taming dinosaurs on ARK, slaves must be broken (tamed) and can then be put to work doing various tasks. Slaves come in the form of NPC exiles you will find in various places on the map. Once you unlock the correct tech you will be able to beat them into submission and take them away, the rest is up to you! Building is fairly intuitive and everything snaps together to make life easier, much like other games of this genre. There are material tiers for extra defence in PVP, though even the first tier of buildings cannot be destroyed by other players until they have steel tools. This is supposed to help new players get started, not that this will stop other players from attacking you, whether you have anything worth taking or not.

Since this is early access there are a huge number of bugs, some more severe than others. There are regular updates though, so don’t let that put you off too much. Overall Conan Exiles is a very playable and enjoyable game though I would suggest playing with friends. When playing alone I found that I would get bored very quickly. Don’t take my word for it, we’re all different after all!