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Jamie John

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  1. Jamie John

    NieR: Automata

    I bought this yesterday on a whim for about £14. Bargain! Any beginner tips?
  2. Jamie John

    Celeste

    Has anyone played both this and Slime San? If so, how does it compare? I eventually finished Slime San but it nearly killed me and I can't say I especially enjoyed it.
  3. Jamie John

    Rise of the Tomb Raider

    I'm struggling a bit to muster the enthusiasm to keep plodding on with this. There's no challenge and too much collectathon guff: relics, satchels, maps, coins, documents, murals, posters, supply caches, bullseyes, monoliths, mushrooms, gemstones, blah blah blah. Last night I spent 15 minutes looking for chickens to throw in a pen before I realised what I was doing. You don't actually "explore", in any meaningful sense of the term, to find all this stuff; you just follow the markers, or ignore everything else and hone in on anything that glows yellow. I'm scared I'm going to break my R3 stick from having to press it in all the time to activate survival instinct mode. I tried playing for a bit with the glowiness off in the menus, but doing so then makes it too difficult to see anything as one box which is apparently openable looks exactly the same as those which aren't. When you do actually get to a bit where it's necessary to engage your brain, albeit ever so slightly, like in the challenge tombs (which are an "optional" part of the game by the way - raiding tombs is the optional part of Tomb Raider), after spending more than 30 seconds figuring out what to do, Lara bloody tells you what to do anyway! I had this last night, couldn't believe it - just arrived in a promising little puzzle room involving levers and pulleys and thought to myself, "Ok, this looks a bit more promising", then spent a few brief moments poking about, only for Lara to open her big gob and shout out, "I MUST HAVE TO FIND A WAY TO TIE A ROPE TO THAT LEVER. MAYBE I CAN USE MY ROPE ARROWS." Thanks a fucking lot, Lara. So, immediately, any sense of enigma or figuring things out for myself was shattered and I begrudgingly completed the puzzle, collected my experience points, or whatever other forgettable reward I received, and left. And Lara herself is just irritating in general. She breathes too loudly and never shuts up and doesn't stop fiddling with her hair. And she pronounces "lever" like "leather", despite apparently being from an English aristocratic family. Anyway. I've got up to the Geothermal Valley area. Am I near the end?
  4. Jamie John

    Reading Challenge 2018

    I haven't updated in a while. I've been stuck into non-fiction recently. 8. The Expectant Dad's Survival Guide, Rob Kemp. Not much to say about this, except that it doesn't really go into much detail and was a bit patronising in places. Still, a good overview to the subject, I guess. 9. How to Photograph Absolutely Everything, Tom Ang. I got this as a gift for my birthday with my DSLR. I read it from cover to cover but it's more of a reference book, with pages devoted to particular photographic situations. I'm not sure there's anything in here especially revelatory that I won't learn with experience, and it's not like I'm going to lug it around with my to consult in different situations, so I can't really see how useful it will be. 10. The Rub of Time, Martin Amis. Another gift, this time a collection of Amis' essays and reportage from the last twenty-five years. Predictably, some essays were more interesting than others, purely based on the subject matter. I skimmed through some of the literary articles on authors I hadn't read, but a long essay on the LA porn industry in the 90s stayed in the mind, especially the title: "Pussies are Bullshit". 11. Understanding Exposure, Bryan Peterson. This was a much better introduction to the technical side of photography than the Ang book above. In a nutshell, Peterson includes pages and pages of his best shots, explaining the exposure he chose and why. These bits are useful. Less useful are some of the stretched analogies he uses to explain certain aspects of exposure. He also uses exclamation marks far too much . I want to get a book on composition now. 12. The Good Birth Companion, Nicole Croft. My wife gave me this to help me support her throughout her pregnancy. It's aimed at women and is much more detailed than the "For Dad's" book I posted above. Lots of juicy information that I was able to reel off to the missus. I think she's impressed.
  5. Jamie John

    Arctic Monkeys New Album

    I've listened to this about half a dozen times over the last week, but, as @MrPogo describes, nothing really sticks. I'm not averse to the crooning, lilting sound of it at all (in fact it reminds me a lot of the first Last Shadow Puppets Album, which I think is brilliant), and I admire them for not just releasing another "indie" album. The problem for me is that there just aren't any hooks here - nothing to hang onto, to the point where it becomes difficult to differentiate one song from the next and everything just becomes a haze of smugly clever lyrics and pseudo-60s lounge music. I want to love it, but I can't.
  6. How do you guys say "remaster"? I say "reemaster", like you would say "reeturn" or "reeplace". The guy in that video keeps on saying "rehmaster" and it's upsetting me.
  7. Jamie John

    The Rllmuk Photography Thread

    Thanks both. I think the pictures, as well as being overexposed, were just dull anyway, and the ones that weren't were overblown to the point where they would have taken hours to fiddle with. I'd have posted some of them in here of I hadn't already deleted them. I'd left the ISO on auto as well for most of them, without realising, so there were quite a few artifacts on some of them where the camera had taken the ISO up to about 6000 or something stupid. Re. Editing shots in a computer program after taking them, I've read that, as much as possible, it's best to get the image correct 'in camera' first by taking reference shots, checking the histogram and so on, to save editing time. Would you guys agree or do you just take shots and then fiddle later?
  8. Jamie John

    PS4 Pro

    I just did this and there was hardly any dust in it at all. Hmm. I think some games just make it whirr up more than others. Horizon, Doom and Tomb Raider seem to be the most demanding at the moment, but I suppose I did play all of those games in 4K, so it's the cost you have to pay for a higher rez.
  9. Jamie John

    The Rllmuk Photography Thread

    I went for a walk in the woods on Monday evening. Took 55 pictures in total. All of them overexposed and shit, apart from this one, which I think is OK: I've since bought Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson and plan to study it diligently.
  10. Jamie John

    PS4 Pro

    There's a load of vids on YT showing how to opening it. Looks pretty simple so I'll have a go later.
  11. Jamie John

    PS4 Pro

    I read a few things about the Pro venting from its sides and having it vertical without a stand prevents it from doing this on one side. Just ordered this for £3.50 so I'll see if it makes a difference: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01N1UKW0Q/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_HxM.AbBCJ7138 They've got a few on there with extra cooling fans and so on, but that'll make it even more noisy.
  12. Jamie John

    PS4 Pro

    I noticed recently that my Pro was sounding like a hair dryer playing Doom so I moved it from my TV cabinet where it was a bit hemmed in and now stand it vertically behind the TV where it's got lots of space all around it, but I haven't got a vertical stand for it. Playing Rise of the Tomb Raider more recently, however, it still goes like the clappers and moreover makes my gaming room (which is pretty small) really warm, to the point where my wife just asked me if I had the heating on. Do I need to get the stand for it?
  13. Jamie John

    Rise of the Tomb Raider

    Also, what's with all these Siberian "villagers" sounding exactly the same as everyone else? They're supposed to be these indigenous people living in one of the remotest regions on Earth, yet they all have American accents, speak English perfectly and look entirely European. The big baddie, too, despite being called "Konstantin" as supposedly coming from an eastern European country, sounds American. They could at least give them stupid Russian accents, like in the Bond films, or better yet have them speak in Russian with subtitles, seeing as Lara spends time in the game translating the language anyway.
  14. Jamie John

    Rise of the Tomb Raider

    I'm currently a few hours into Rise as well after picking it up in the sale. It's ok so far. I'm enjoying the exploration aspects and the level design is satisfying. The storyline is pretty pants, though - far too po-faced and entirely humourless. All the characters are entirely two dimensional so far, and Lara never seems to shut up. Uncharted does a much better job of making you believe you're playing an interactive adventure movie. It's been mentioned before, but the ludonarrative dissonance, or whatever wanky phrase you want to use, is really quite pronounced as well. I must have murdered fifty nameless soldiers by now, some of whom I've burnt alive, others I've brained with my climbing axe, yet none of this seems to have any impact on Lara's physiological well-being whatsoever. The game seems to linger on Lara's deaths in quite a tasteless way as well. One death in particular, towards the start, when I fell down a hole and the camera zoomed in on the light dying in Lara's eyes as she was impaled through the side of the face with a sharpened stick, was really quite horrible and made me physically recoil. I'm not sure why, as I've recently been playing Doom, where you spend a large amount of time ripping demons in half with your bare hands, literally, but for some reason the violence in this game seems almost voyeuristic at times, as if it's relishing in making you watch a young woman die. Maybe I'm just sexist. Additionally, I think it's quite telling that the optional tombs are the best parts of the game so far, just like they were in the original reboot. I could gladly do without all the combat and pseudo-RPG elements for more actual Tomb Raiding and puzzles. Unlike @sprite, I'd like the game to be focused more on surviving in the wilderness then battling your way through it. But still, it's quite easy to lose yourself in and isn't especially challenging, so it's a good game to settle down to at the end of long day.
  15. Jamie John

    Nintendo Switch eShop

    Little Nightmares would be a great game, but it's a level or two too short. There are some great moments in I, but I wouldn't pay more than £12 for it.
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