Apps & Games

By June 9, 2014 Read More →

ZX-Uno bringing the Spectrum back

1905-zx-uno-zx-spectrum-hardware-fgpa-cloneWhat is the ZX-Uno?  Essentially it is a fan-made clone of the ZX Spectrum hardware, set to offer retro gamers an alternative to getting their 8-bit game-on.

The ZX-Uno has no release date just yet, the official website shows the hardware is already at quite an advanced stage of development . The FPGA based board not only behaves exactly like a ZX Spectrum, but also offers several new features the micro-computer could only dream of having.

Coming equipped with an SD Card slot, gamers will be able to load .TAP files directly into memory for use on the system – allowing easy access to the likes of Jet-Pac, Manic Miner and just about everything else. Designed to fit inside a Raspberry Pi case, the ZX-Uno also offers a rather snazzy audio-in 3.5mm jack port, allowing those who really want to stay true to the hardware the ability to boot up original cassette tapes.

According to the team behind this device, the ZX-Uno is estimated to cost a mere 30 Euros. So should you be a fan of the British micro-computer or need a good alternative to the dated hardware, keep a close eye on the ZX-Uno.

By May 27, 2014 Read More →

4 Technological Advances to Influence the Gaming Industry

Gaming innovation articleNintendo revolutionised the gaming market in 2006 when they introduced their motion sensing Wii console. Their innovative controller brought about a host of new ways for the whole family to play and made their Wii the bestselling console of the last generation.

Microsoft then went one step further and followed up with their Kinect technology, making motion detection without the need for a controller the next gaming success.  Nintendo attempted to match this success with their new Wii U device, but the impact was far less impressive than expected.

Now there is innovative new gaming technology in development. Here are four technological developments that are set to change the future of gaming success:

 

Super-sensitive motion tracking

Motion gaming is set to escape the living room and be introduced to our portable devices.  Technology such as the Leap Motion device will be controlling games on laptops and PCs. The controller masters super-sensitive tracking of hand and finger actions, accurately detecting movements as small as 1/100th of a millimetre.

What’s more, motion gaming of the future won’t even require players to move their bodies to control the game. Eye tracking sensors will integrate into smartphone and gaming devices to allow control of games with eye movements alone.

 

Motion gaming for smartphones

The 2014 Silver Edison Award for the most innovative new product of the year was awarded to Rolocule Games for their Rolomotion technology. Their product turns your smartphone into your gaming controller so you can control games on your television. The Rolomotion app links to a smart TV and utilises the in-built sensors to control the game with the players’ natural movements.

 

Immersive gaming

Headsets that allow complete immersion into the game are already in the pipeline, with the Oculus Rift being highly anticipated. The headset will allow the gamer to experience the game with a 100˚ field of vision and head tracking abilities that let you look around as in real life.

Combine the headgear with a 360˚ treadmill and you have total immersion into the gaming reality. Virtuix are set to release their treadmill that allows players to walk and run in any direction within their virtual realities.

 

EEG headsets

EEG headsets in gaming are bringing the ability to monitor players’ emotions and focus and translate that into gaming commands. Throw Trucks With Your Mind is one example in which an EEG headset measures electrical impulses in the scalp to gauge the players focus. Normal directional gaming controls are used, but the level of focus of the gamer determines the power at which objects are thrown in the game.

 

This article was provided by The IT Job Board, who are currently advertising over 150 game developer jobs on their site.

Posted in: Apps & Games, Editorial
By April 21, 2014 Read More →

Baldur’s Gate casts itself onto the Play Store

Screenshot 2014-04-20 21.21.44The Classic RPG Baldur’s Gate from Black Isle Studios has come to Android. Baldur’s Gate Enhanced Edition is now available for Android and can be found on the Google Play Store for £6.99. The RPG is one of the most beloved on the PC, many will have played it and shall rejoice at the news.

Here’s a quote from the Google Play Store with a full game description:

The dawn is especially cruel this morning…

For as long as you can remember, your view of the world has been limited to the heavily fortified walls of Candlekeep. Your foster father, Gorion, has done everything in his power to protect you and keep you out of harm’s way.

All of that is about to change. Forced to leave your home under mysterious circumstances, you find yourself drawn into a conflict that has the Sword Coast on the brink of war. An iron shortage of unknown origin threatens to plunge the city of Baldur’s Gate into conflict with Amn. Meanwhile, there is something else at work, far more sinister than you can even begin to fathom…

Since its release in 1998, this classic saga of mystery, intrigue, and adventure has set the standard for Dungeons & Dragons™ computer roleplaying games. Customize your hero’s traits and abilities, recruit a party of brave allies, and explore the far corners of the Sword Coast in your search for adventure, profit… and the truth.

Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition contains the original 60-hour epic, as well as the following expansions:

* Tales of the Sword Coast: Explore the fabled Durlag’s Tower and more locations from the original Baldur’s Gate expansion.
* The Black Pits: You have been captured and forced to fight in Baeloth’s marvelous arena. A myriad of monsters await, as well as countless other adventurers who face the same fate. Maim, murder, and maul your way to freedom… if you can!
* Discover countless improvements we’ve made to the original game, including high-resolution fonts, an improved interface, dynamic zooming, and more!

Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition also offers the following premium content available for purchase:

* Brothers Lost: Lend your aid to Rasaad yn Bashir, the Sun Soul monk, as he scours the Cloud Peaks in search of his lost brother.
* Neera and the Red Wizards: Save the wild mage Neera from the cruel machinations of Thay’s dreaded Red Wizards.
* Path of the Bloodied: Join the blackguard Dorn Il-Khan in taking revenge against those who betrayed him in Luskan.
* Gallery of Heroes: Reimagine your character with eleven never-before-seen character portraits from acclaimed Icewind Dale artist Jason Manley!
* New professionally recorded voice sets to choose from to further customize your character.

 

Posted in: Apps & Games, Retro Tech
By April 17, 2014 Read More →

Google release Chrome Remote Desktop app for Android

chromeGreat news, Google today released the official Chrome Remote Desktop app for Android. This has a short run as an invite only beta however here is the free full version. Chrome Remote Desktop allows users to remotely access another computer through Chrome browser, a Chromebook and now Android.  Computers can be made available on an short-term basis for scenarios such as ad hoc remote support, or on a more long-term basis for remote access to your applications and files.  All connections are fully secure. Once installed and configured, This app can connect to your Windows, Linux or OSX computers from Android. 

Posted in: Apps & Games
By March 30, 2014 Read More →

The Armiga – part Android, part Commodore, all awesome

1820-armiga-project-prototypeThere is a new IndieGoGo campaign is hoping to provide Commodore enthusiasts with an authentic as possible experience to the original Amiga with an all-in-one enclosed package. Running on a Raspberry Pi is an Amiga emulator configured as an Amiga 500 with 1MB of RAM, equipped with an on-board 3.5″ floppy disk drive .

There have been a wave of machines that emulate various pieces of old hardware recently. From Bluetooth Spectrum 48k for an iPad to the Retron 5 taking all manner of cartridge based games. Whilst the argument that you are better off using the original hardware these newer alternatives appealingly offer HDMI outputs, a more reliable method of enjoying pixel perfect gameplay on modern displays.

The system features a dual booting setup. Equipped with the latest build of Android users will have tools at the ready to create disk images of original floppies. Emulation fans can look forward to screenshot functionality and the addition of save states too, while the techies amongst us can revel in the possibilities the ethernet port may bring.

The Armiga Project is hoping $140,000 in the next two months, with pledges of $139 securing one of the first systems.

Armiga Specification:

  • Powerful Dual Core ARM CPU.
  • 2 USB host: Joystick, mouse and keyboard support, as well as pendrives/hdds.
  • SD card slot: Save your ADFs or bring new ones!
  • Ethernet connection: Connect to your network for easy ADF management.
  • HDMI: Digital AV quality on the big screen!.

Features:

  • Full Amiga 500 emulation: The target machine is the iconic Amiga 500 and right now 90% of the disks are running!
  • Boot to Android: Armiga supports Dual Boot and comes loaded with Android 4.2.2, so when you’re not playing you can have all the power of Android!.
  • Automatic disk load: Like in the original Amiga; insert the disk and off you go!.
  • Disk dump: Create ADF images of your favorite games and keep them safe on the SD.
  • ADF support: Bring your own ADF images on a pendrive or SD card and enjoy!
  • Disk swap: Just insert the disk and it will be dumped. When time comes to change disks, just select the right ADF. Ain’t it easy?.
  • FTP server: No need to take the SD off to manage the ADFs; just do it from your computer!.
  • Graphical menu: Simple and elegant, with usability as main focus.
  • Game save: Save your game and resume later.
  • Autosave: Forgot to save?. We do it for you!
  • Screenshot: Wanna share your joy?. Give our screenshot feature a try.

By March 24, 2014 Read More →

Microsoft update their Store search function

BjezPNdIAAA0So-Store fronts have been become increasingly controversial lately. From Google Play failing to differentiate between phone and tablet apps up until recently to Steam’s deluge of old titles from big studios pushing newly release indie software into oblivion software and app stores just haven’t managed to find that fine line between give what you want and being able to take a quick payment to push something you don’t really need.

One of the worst offenders was Microsoft with the Windows Phone Store. Recently Microsoft have spent some time with their mobile store and has finally updated its Windows Phone Store search algorithm. Less finding spam apps, more finding what it is you are actually looking for.

Both Google and now Microsoft are known for their search techniques, Google and Microsoft’s Bing search are at the forefront of their related operating system and the World Wide Web. It’s a bit of a shame that their cutting edge search technology cannot yield the same results in something as simple as an application store as those for the entirety of the internet.

Posted in: Apps & Games, News
By February 22, 2014 Read More →

Magnavox Odyssey² Emulator on Android

magnavox_odyssey2_1If you’re looking for a new retro-gamer-friendly application to add to your mobile phone then look no further. A licensed Philips Videopac / Magnavox Odyssey² Emulator has hit the Google Play Store coming pre-loaded with over 40 classics, everything you could possibly need to rekindle yourself with the 35 year old console.

Whilst the likes of Sega Mega Drive, Nintendo NES and Sony PlayStation emulators are going to be much more popular, this trip down memory lane for a select few is something you really don’t want to miss out on. Not only does VpacApp come pre-loaded with just about every iconic Videopac title to date, but the original box art is also present along with scans of the game manuals too.

Although this game packed app sounds like a lucrative download, VpacApp is actually available for free on the Google Play Store. The games might be tricky to control on a touchscreen, but nevertheless it’s great seeing these vintage titles once more on modern devices.

The Videopac G7000 was actually Matt’s first games console as a kid so I’m sure he’ll be downloading this one!

Google Play link: VpacApp

Posted in: Apps & Games, News
By February 14, 2014 Read More →

The wake of Flappy Bird

flappy-bird-ebay-iphoneApparently the hysteria around is Flappy Bird reaching new levels as someone put an iPhone 5 up on eBay for sale with the game installed on it. Now that in itself isn’t a big deal, however the fact that it sold for $94,000 is. Sure there have been crazier things that have happened on eBay but $94,000 for an iPhone with a free game on it is pretty insane.

This obviously reeks of rubbish, perhaps it has been targeted by a community to drive up the price and create a headline. This is further fueled by speculation that eBay took it down due to the listing broke some of the rules eBay has for posting listings. This isn’t confirmed at all though, only a rumour.

A quick search has yielded even weirder auctions going on related to Flappy Bird including Iphone 4s with the Flapster installed for a Buy It Now price of £1,000,000.00. A rare piece of paper with flappy bird written on it for £20,000.00. An Apple iPad Air 16GB for £1,350.00 with that Bird game installed and an another auction currently sitting at £6100.00. I would have linked these auctions however they probably won’t be there for much longer and I wouldn’t want to tempt you away from you hard earned cash as you know you couldn’t resist a slightly beaten up iPhone with a copy of a free game that people really only got annoyed at.

Posted in: Apps & Games, News
By January 29, 2014 Read More →

Some New Mini-Games for Glass

Google-Glass-Mini-Games-MatcherWhile Google still works on getting Google Glass ready for official public consumption, the company has been to building five simple games for the wearable technology in the hopes that it will encourage developers to make more games for it. There are already a couple of games out from third parties however on a whole things are pretty sparse.

These new games are all current available on Glassware to try out for those few people who were approved and managed for fork out $1500 for an early version of Google Glass. If you’re looking for some seriously advanced gaming to be found with these five titles, you won’t find it. These games are pretty simple but do illustrate different things you can do with Google Glass in conjunction with games.

Interested in seeing what these games are like? Well lucky for you Google has released a short video showing each one which you can watch above. It will be interesting to see if this does spur on some additional developer interest for Google Glass when it comes to games.

 

By January 21, 2014 Read More →

LogMeIn discontinues free version

inUsers of LogMeIn Free will be getting emails today letting them know that the free version of the remote access product is to be discontinued. If  you already have the email, no it’s not a hoax or phishing scam, the free service really is going away from today!

Users are being told that they must now sign up for the paid-for Pro account in order to keep using LogMeIn.

I’m sure that most of us can understand why the free service would be withdrawn, after all, it’s a very good product that was not drastically different from the Pro version, which will be staying. However, the worrying and irritating thing here is that there’s very little notice being given, it’s not from from TODAY and there’s only a 7-day grace period to get yourself sorted out!

After ten years, LogMeIn’s free remote access product, LogMeIn Free, is going away.  We will be unifying our portfolio of free and premium remote access products into a single offering.  This product will be a paid-only offering, and it will offer what we believe to be the best premium desktop, cloud and mobile access experience available on the market today. We will be notifying those impacted by the change in the coming days and weeks.  In the meantime, we wanted to take a minute to explain the change and help users of LogMeIn’s access products better understand what this means for them.

Notification period

Impacted users will be notified via email and in-product messages.  While messaging started today, users will be given 7 days to make a purchase decision about LogMeIn Pro.  To be clear, the 7-day grace period starts when you next login to the LogMeIn service.

Posted in: Apps & Games, News