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CONTENT
FEATURED NEWS FEEDS


NEWS (LAST 200)
Actor Kal Penn launches scathing attack ...
Here’s what to do if you miss Monday...
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Footballers Lee Tomlin and Billy Kee fac...
Majority of Britons want to protect immi...
Barcelona attack: Terror cell 'comp...
Barcelona attack: Government says terror...
Liverpool 1-0 Crystal Palace
Boston free speech rally near boiling po...
Nasa plans to make oxygen from atmospher...
Giants will have Eli Manning in the line...
Jeremy Hunt launches fresh attack on Ste...
UPDATED: South Africa blocks Air Zimbabw...
Charlottesville mayor says Robert E. Lee...
Lanao del Norte mayor, 4 escorts held fo...
Joakim Noah breaks silence with fiery vo...
Md. man confesses to killing 6-year-old...
Fatally stabbed NYC man was killed durin...
Zumas astute leadership will take SADC f...
Why Whitney’s downfall was imminent ...
3 teachers ordered arrested
43 OFWs to be hired in C. Luzon schools...
Basilan mayor dismissed over unfinished ...
5 drug suspects slain
Bostons Free Speech Rally Organizers Den...
Kanlaon alert level raised
Steve Bannon basically admits Donald Tru...
All Blacks No 6 Liam Squire shows true p...
Nigeria’s ailing president returns aft...
Back to school: 3 reasons clubs and team...
2 Maute militants killed in clash with N...
Buhari returns after lengthy UK medical ...
Counter-protestors flood free speech ral...
News24.com | SACP welcomes Manana resign...
Finnish police investigating fatal stabb...
The Yankees’ most expensive ‘mystery...
Boston free speech protests: Far-right d...
Father jumps car over open drawbridge in...
At least one dead, five burned in easter...
UK weather: Britain to enjoy mini-heatwa...
Neo-Nazis march in Berlin to commemorate...
Venezuelas pro-government constitutional...
Finlands interior minister says security...
'At least 10 killed' in train ...
'This is Nazi f****** America'...
Berlin neo-Nazi march monitored by heavi...
Sport24.co.za | LIVE: Springboks 37-15 A...
Liverpool 1 - Crystal Palace 0: Sadio Ma...
Trump, first lady will not attend Kenned...
Gotze returns as Borussia Dortmund begin...
New law on virtual currency, online tran...
Sony Headphone Brand New (Midtown West) ...
Liverpool avoid Groundhog Day after Sadi...
Premier League live: Latest scores as Sa...
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Aston Villa earn first Championship win ...
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Cheetahs snatch win against Bulls
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Leeds Transfer News: Jordan Rhodes among...
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I let the horses run free - Mourinho aft...
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Madden NFL 18 Video Review
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Cubs claim C Rivera off waivers from New...
DVD/CD Players
ASUS PB278Q Professional Graphics Monito...
Markets Right Now: US stock indexes eras...
Late Austin penalty sinks 10-man Hammers...
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Big Nintendo Switch games update promise...
Cardiff extend 100% record to end Wolves...
Juventus v Cagliari - live updates...
DNA privacy protection tackled by new en...
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Watford win scrappy match at Bournemouth...
Dynamic symmetry: The genius of Henri Ca...
Galloping Man United make Mourinho happy...
Should the US ban Confederate monuments?...
After Charlottesville, Republicans remai...
Amazulu open league season with a win...
Christian Pulisic is pretty darn good at...
Canon EOS 60D 18 MP and two lenses (Midt...
Aussie defence not up to scratch says Ch...
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Mane strikes as Liverpool defeat Crystal...
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Shinji Okazaki and Harry Maguire fire Le...
Burnley 0-1 West Bromwich Albion
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Liverpool 1-0 Crystal Palace: Sadio Mane...
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Liberal MP Peter Dowling announces retur...
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Richarlison, Capoue lead Watford to win ...
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REVIEWS & PREVIEWS (LAST 60)
Madden NFL 18 Review
Undertale Review
Bang & Olufsens Beosound Shape Speakers ...
The murder of a beloved anti-poaching cr...
Apparently all the great secrets of West...
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Hot Property: Hits and misses
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How Your Phone Number Became the Only Us...
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Nikon D7500 Review
2017 Roundup: Interchangeable Lens Camer...
Nikon D5600 Review
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Photographing The European Roller
Canon EF 35mm F1.4L II USM Review
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Time spent with even an imperfect The La...
2017 Roundup: Compact Enthusiast Zoom Ca...
Canon EOS Rebel T7i / EOS 800D / Kiss X9...
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What do white nationalists want, anyway?...
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Bannon exits the White House
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To eliminate mistakes, USC acts like a s...
Quarterback Dan Orlovsky assumes role of...
The Pillars Of The Earth Review
Rez Infinite Review
Huawei P10 Review
Pentax KP Review
Fujifilm GFX 50S Review
Foursquare May Have Grown Up, But the Ch...
Taking the Perfect Instagram Photo Has N...
Anker’s Genie Is Just Like the Echo Do...
Canon EOS M6 Review
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Noise curfew rules proposed at Long Beac...
Trump dirty tricks man and Clinton mega-...
Trump denounces Barcelona attack
Thousand Oaks, Westlake win Southern Sec...
In defense of Confederate memorials, Tru...
Trump repeats claim about Gen. Pershings...
Aretha Franklin says she is moving back ...
Pebble Beach 2017: BMW brings new Z4, M8...
How to make the best brownies ever, plus...
Van crashes into Barcelona crowd, report...
Thumper Review


After almost 30 years, the Madden NFL series is rarely surprising. Fans think they know what to expect each year: a handful of small but meaningful mechanical tweaks, roster updates, and slight graphical bumps. Madden NFL 18, however, is highlighted by one of the most significant additions in series history--a full story mode--and a new, much more graphically capable engine. And due in large part to the Longshot story, it is a marked improvement over the last several entries in the series.

Madden has rarely tackled the personal side of football, choosing instead to present it as a chess-like competition: you are the coach and master, the players are your instruments to score. Of course, that's not how football is treated in the real world, so to see that change in Madden is intriguing in theory, and gratifying in practice. For the first time in Madden, Longshot actually references how much so many people invest in the sport, and how high the stakes are for them. For instance, main character Devin Wade, the star football player from his small Texas town, quit his college team after a family tragedy. You navigate through Wade's attempt to return to football, traveling to the NFL Combine in order to impress scouts.

Longshot is unexpectedly deep--it's a fully fledged, Telltale-style adventure game with multiple endings, broken up by short moments of playing football. It presents you with decisions that affect both the people around you and the scouts' perception of you. As with Telltale games, there's an illusion of greater choice that isn't necessarily there, but Longshot succeeds because it makes minor choices feel important. Do you reach for celebrity at the expense of Wade's best friend, Colt Cruise? Or do you carry him along at the risk of running afoul of your coach and scouts who think Wade depends on him too much?

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For every moment that conveys Wade's commitment, his inner demons, and his friendship with Cruise, there are corresponding moments of absurd spectacle. Wade's journey from obscurity to superstardom unfortunately doesn't take place entirely in intimate, personal story beats a la Friday Night Lights, but rather in the spotlights of a ridiculously excessive reality show. During these sequences and the challenges it presents him with, Wade evokes annoyance, confusion, and anger at the gaminess of the reality show. The executive producer hits every trope of an over-the-top, ratings-obsessed showrunner, and Wade grows disillusioned with the entire process. He was thrust into an absurd situation that was built to manufacture drama, so it makes sense that he would be upset.

These story sequences and their associated mini-games and challenges don't fit well with the core narrative of two small-town football players trying to break into the NFL. Wade and Cruise don't need extra drama to make them care about the sport, so why does the story give us a reality show, as if to suggest that the stakes aren't high enough already?

Longshot is saved, however, by the quiet moments of introspection and camaraderie. It soars when its characters speak honestly about their love of the sport, and it nails the sense that football offers something bigger--a connection to a community, and a way to achieve greatness. Longshot's numerous flashbacks to Wade's time in high school and college show a relatable and deeply troubled character; the commentators for Wade's high school games banter about the players that they, of course, know personally; and Wade, Cruise, and the whole state championship-winning team are treated as heroes in their town for years afterwards.

In spite of its issues, this first attempt at a story mode creates an excellent foundation for future iterations. Further, when you've finished Longshot, you can dive into Madden Ultimate Team to play through some of Devin Wade's most memorable football scenarios.

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Madden Ultimate Team is undoubtedly Madden's deepest mode, which has received a suite of updates to make it even more appealing to players. MUT tasks you with building a fantasy team from player cards (and yes, you can still buy packs of more powerful cards for real money). In Madden 18, you'll get player cards representing Devin Wade, Colt Cruise, and other characters from Longshot, and forming a Longshot-focused MUT team will let you participate in around 30 challenges. Although these challenges are generally not much more than normal Madden scenarios with Longshot player models, they're still entertaining enough to be worth playing.

But the main draw of MUT is multiplayer--and this year, you can team up with friends to take on others. Since Madden 25 launched in 2013, the series has conspicuously lacked any online cooperative team play. Madden 18's MUT Squads finally reintroduces it. In the mode, one person plays as the offensive captain, one plays as the defensive captain, and one plays as the coach. It's a welcome addition that gives players more options if they're not interested in the solo competitive MUT modes.

On the field, Madden 18 looks beautiful. The game is the first in the series to use EA's Frostbite engine, and as a result certain moments look nearly photorealistic. Stadiums feature minute details, while player models show everything from arm tattoos to jersey wrinkles. Stadium lighting is a particular high point; for example, afternoon sunlight--partly blocked by the stadium edges--filters down onto parts of the field and realistically illuminates players as they run into the light. The developer also comes closer than ever to finally eliminating the trademark dead eyes of Madden players. Eyes still look inhumanly glossy, but at least they move and are more detailed, and faces are more expressive.

The transition to Frostbite isn't perfect, though. Outside of stadiums, environments generally look bland and featureless, especially during certain segments of Longshot. Additionally, with more human-like player movement comes some bizarre graphical bugs, such as a player's leg clipping through his tackler's chest, or two players getting hung up on each other as they try to stand up.

As with past Maddens, EA is trying to make sure that the game reflects real NFL events as much as possible, which means weekly roster and player stat updates. If a player is traded in real life, you can expect that to be represented in the game quickly. This year, EA has also added the "Play Now Live" mode, which has quickly become my favorite new feature in the game. This allows you to jump quickly into any of the week's matchups, and both teams will reflect the actual lineups set to play. As a result, I was able to select last week's preseason game between the Jaguars and Patriots, and it had already been set up with the correct time of day, stadium, and rosters. EA Tiburon has also introduced the ability to turn any Play Now Live game into a franchise, letting you jump into a full season immediately after completing a game. I was able to build upon my performance in that Jaguars-Patriots game without having to set it up in the Franchise mode menus. Even though Franchise Mode hasn't received many updates from last year's version, these starting points make it a whole lot easier and more enticing to play through an entire season.

As I progressed through my season with the Patriots, accruing both successes and failures, I noticed that the commentators started referring to events that had happened in past games--more so than in previous installments in the series. Brandon Gaudin and Charles Davis debuted as Madden commentators last year, and their rapport was already great then. They have returned in Madden 18 with even more back-and-forth dialogue, covering an impressive range of situations. Most notably, though, their commentary is full of context for both the game and the season. So, when my Patriots met the Dolphins in the Wildcard round of the playoffs, both teams with a 9-7 record, Davis and Gaudin discussed how the AFC East was a particularly weak division. They referenced the other teams in the playoffs and how they got there, and they called out events from earlier in the game. Further, EA promises it will continually update the Play Now Live commentary so that Gaudin and Davis refer to what is happening in the NFL.

Overall, Madden 18 marks an unusually large shakeup in a series that, due to its annualized releases, rarely features much more than small, iterative changes. The Frostbite engine allows the game to reach new levels of realism in its visuals, and EA has put a lot of effort into constantly evolving the game to keep it in line with real-world events. But it is the Longshot story mode that defines Madden 18. Some of Longshot is unnecessary spectacle, but its lasting value comes from the humanity that it brings to the game. The moments of vulnerability and sincerity between Devin Wade and Colt Cruise during the story are worthy of celebration and give the overall game a weight that Madden hasn't had before. And if that's not enough to entice you, it's also simply a terrific football game.

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Source: GameSpot - Reviews (Sat, 19 Aug 2017 09:00:00 -0700)

Update: We've now tested the PlayStation 4 version of Undertale, and have updated the score to reflect the new port.

Undertale's opening cinematic hints at a cliche RPG where you awake in a mysterious world and embark on a journey in hopes of returning to your normal life. Despite the familiar premise, you quickly discover that looks can be deceiving. While many games can take a heavy-handed approach to teaching you the basics, Undertale does so in a way that not only introduces you to the tone of the game, but teaches you not to accept anything at face value. The first character you meet compels you to play nice, but as the cheerful music turns to sinister laughter and your new "friend" declares you an idiot, you get it: expect the unexpected. Undertale makes a name for itself with unusual storytelling techniques and combat mechanics, setting itself apart from the games it seems to imitate. It's also cleverly written and constantly subverts your expectations. There are so many wonderful experiences in store that are tempting to spoil, but to go into too much detail would ruin the element of surprise: one of Undertale's best assets.

While it seems to be a game that's designed for RPG fans first and foremost, a lot of Undertale's jokes have universal appeal. A pair of comically incompetent skeletons regularly spout puns and jokes while attempting--and failing--to halt your progress, and the social ineptitude exhibited by one character when they try to express their feelings for another is a regular source of laughter. With clever characterization and unexpected responses to actions we've been conditioned to view as predictable, Undertale elicits laughter and delight with ease.

"Take the ferry for 3 gold."

You're encouraged to stop and engage with NPCs rather than charge through the story, and you should, because the varied and entertaining cast of monsters reveal valuable information about the wider world. This quality isn't unique, but here, it leads to unusual exchanges that are filled with great quips, simultaneously poking fun at games and human nature alike. The script tip-toes into parody, but an air of earnest thought lifts it above mere mockery. Silly as it can be, Undertale delivers poignant observations that challenge the status-quo.

It's also the sort of experience that encourages you to come back for a second or third round. This is especially true because, over the course of roughly five hours, you make a lot of decisions that impact the world around you. The importance of choice is often felt during combat, which lets you pick between fighting or talking your way out of conflict.

Sometimes the secret to winning is a little bit of love.
Sometimes the secret to winning is a little bit of love.

Trying to pacify opponents is a far more rewarding experience than simply fighting, and its a process that's unique to each type of enemy. To earn their favor, you have to analyse an enemy's behavior and figure out the right course of action. In one scenario, you can attempt to befriend a violent dog, in another, you might want to cheer up a ghost with low self-esteem; your success will depend on your ability to empathize and react. Navigating social puzzles is a refreshing change of pace for what seems like traditional combat, and the variety of distinct, entertaining enemies you engage with helps stave off a problem that's all-too-common in other RPGs: repetitive random encounters.

Because not all enemies are easily wooed, you eventually need to defend yourself regardless if you intend to fight or not. Undertale handles this with a quirky mechanic that feels out of place at first, but it eventually grows on you because it makes combat engaging and unpredictable in a good way. Enemy attacks appear as waves of projectiles that fly within a square pen, and as they fly by, you have to steer a small heart icon out of their flightpath to avoid taking damage. It's an unusual mechanic, but it's simple to understand and rewarding in the sense that it lets your reflexes-rather than statistics or dice rolls--dictate the outcome of a fight.

The variety of distinct, entertaining enemies you engage with helps stave off a problem that's all-too-common in other RPGs: repetitive random encounters.

Even within combat, Undertale layers on the humor. Sometimes you're dodging bullets, but you also need to watch out for frogs, arms with flexing biceps, and even the tears of a depressed opponent. Linking the shape, size, and behavior of projectiles with enemies' personalities keeps things challenging, and opens the door for even more laughs as you fend off absurd attacks.

Hey, what are friends for?
Hey, what are friends for?

It would be a crime not to mention Undertale's soundtrack, which is loaded with beautiful bit-based melodies that blend perfectly with the action on-screen. Each boss gets its own theme song, which do a great job of enhancing their particular personality. These tracks in particular bring energy and vigor, putting you on the edge of your seat as you try to fight or befriend your opponent. Outside of battle, tracks set the appropriate mood, too, from the quirky jingle in Temmie Village, to somber melodies that build tension near the end of the game. Regardless of its retro style, Undertale's soundtrack has timeless appeal and is great at evoking emotions.

Without spoiling the many ways it will screw with your expectations, it isn't possible to truly capture how wonderful Undertale is. You wouldn't know it with a passing glance, but it's one of the most progressive and innovative RPGs to come in a long time, breaking down tradition for the sake of invention, with great success.

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Source: GameSpot - Reviews (Sat, 19 Aug 2017 08:00:00 -0700)
The BeoSound Shape is assembled from three flavors of hexagonal tiles, all of them covered in pretty fabric. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Sat, 19 Aug 2017 12:00:00 +0000)

Over the course of seven seasons on “Game of Thrones,” the people (and frozen undead armies) of Westeros have gone to extraordinary lengths to vanquish their opponents. They’ve brutally murdered pregnant women, burned innocent young girls at the stake, poisoned pubescent psychopath grooms and fed...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Sat, 19 Aug 2017 03:00:00 PDT )

Wayne Lotter, a prominent elephant conservationist murdered this week in Tanzania, for years had faced death threats related to his anti-poaching work, according to friends and colleagues.

The 51-year-old South African was shot dead Wednesday in the East African nation’s port city of Dar es Salaam.

... Read More

Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Sat, 19 Aug 2017 03:00:00 PDT )
Here's our roundup of the best photography news, reviews, features and techniques this week.
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Source: ePHOTOzine - Photography News (Sat, 19 Aug 2017 09:00:07 GMT )

Not everyone blasts it out of the park when it comes to making a profit on a home sale. The cyclical nature of the housing market and having overpaid in the first place are among factors that can leave some sellers upside-down on a property.

This week’s offerings include a rapper who has had plenty...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Sat, 19 Aug 2017 00:05:00 PDT )

Prager concert: In the Aug. 18 Calendar section, an article about a Santa Monica Symphony concert with guest conductor Dennis Prager misidentified two cellists who fumbled with the score and stopped playing. The article cited Andrea Comsky and Niall Ferguson based on concert program notes, but...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 23:05:00 PDT )
This week's podcast is all about the Essential Android phone. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 23:21:00 +0000)
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Source: Depreview - All Reviews & Previews (Wed, 05 Jul 2017 17:11:00 Z)
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Source: Depreview - All Reviews & Previews (Wed, 01 Mar 2017 14:00:00 Z)
The European roller is a very special bird and here you can find out how to photograph it.
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Source: ePHOTOzine - Equipment Reviews (Sat, 19 Aug 2017 00:00:01 GMT )
Want a challenge? Well pick just one colour, pick up your zoom lens and create a photography project.
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Source: ePHOTOzine - Photography Techniques (Sat, 19 Aug 2017 00:10:08 GMT )
All you need is that .edu email address to save cash on everything from laptops to train tickets. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Thu, 10 Aug 2017 14:00:00 +0000)
Guard it with your life, because it is your life. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Thu, 10 Aug 2017 11:00:00 +0000)

There’s a lot to be said for really digging your subject, and in his documentary “The Last Dalai Lama?” Mickey Lemle gently captures something charming and warmly thoughtful about the exiled Tibetan leader. Now an octogenarian, the 14th Dalai Lama remains animatedly curious about how humanity can...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Movie Reviews (Thu, 10 Aug 2017 12:50:00 PDT )

Serving as something of an overstuffed sampler platter, the documentary “The Pulitzer at 100,” marking the centenary of newspaper publisher Joseph Pulitzer’s effort to place journalism on equal footing with arts and letters, is big on variety but comes up frustratingly short on substance.

While...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Movie Reviews (Thu, 10 Aug 2017 13:25:00 PDT )

The title of “Good Time,” a nerve-jangling new thriller from New York-based directors Josh and Benny Safdie, is uttered briefly in the movie’s final moments by a character of little consequence. In that rather forlorn context, the words come off as despairing and more than a little ironic, the...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Movie Reviews (Thu, 10 Aug 2017 11:40:00 PDT )

The first Mega Man Legacy Collection was a fine if somewhat threadbare greatest hits set, assembling the first six NES Mega Man titles together in a tidy package. If that first collection was side A, showcasing the series' early, rough-and-tumble work (the original Mega Man, specifically) Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 is the weird, obscure side B full of deep cuts: Mega Man 7, 8, 9, and 10. None of these manage to hit the soaring heights of the series at its best, but years after their original releases and unshackled from initial expectations, all four games are capable of a few pleasant surprises.

Mega Man 7 in particular is a strange case, as the first numbered Mega Man game to hit after the X series took off. What it does, to be specific, is make 8-bit Mega Man game of our dreams in 16-bit fashion; a delightful fusion of old and new. The boss concepts aren't the strongest--not really this specific game's fault, as those standards started to slip somewhere around Mega Man 5--but they get the job done and keep you on your toes, especially when they fire alternative attacks after you've exploited their primary weaknesses. By and large, however, it’s the most accessible of the four titles in the Collection--a softer and playfully inviting game full of big, bright characters, and a far more forgiving set of levels than the rest of the series.

The same cannot be said for the Collection's one sour note, the port of the PlayStation version of Mega Man 8. The series' uptick to 32-bit consoles shows through in the game's bright colors and expressive animations, which at least compare favorably to more modern examples of the “playable cartoon." Of course, Mega Man 8 is also notorious for its actual cartoon cutscenes, which feature some of the worst voice acting this side of “Jill sandwich”. As exciting as the prospect of a Mega Man game with full voice acting and anime interstitials sounds, Mega Man 8 doesn’t do that idea justice.

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By and large, Mega Man 8 is serviceable when it sticks to the series' run-n-gun basics, but the game tries (and fails) to push the envelope on a few stages, introducing Battletoads-like hoverboard challenges, and a Moebius strip labyrinth puzzle, both of which create profound aggravation. Equally annoying is the fact that items you can purchase to augment Mega Man's abilities--which cost a lot of the rare Bolt currency--aren't properly described, leading experimental and ultimately regrettable purchases. Mega Man 8 proves to be frustrating in ways that are unique for the typically straightforward series.

Mega Man 9 and 10 are, of course, the nostalgia tour, bringing the series back to its 8-bit roots. Capcom leaned into the retro wave hard back in 2008 and 2010, going as far to lampoon their own terrible NES game covers, but mostly dragging players kicking and screaming back to series' hard-as-nails roots. Gone are the Mega Buster (charge shot) and slide maneuver.

Mega Man 9 is often brutally unforgiving, with a perplexing over-reliance on spike obstacles and cramped corners full of constantly respawning enemies. It’s a game of “gotcha!” traps, a style of level design that doesn’t necessarily ask for expert platforming or aiming so much as it presents multiple ongoing trial and error scenarios. Forcing yourself into harm's way to discover what will kill you and how to avoid it isn't as rewarding as simply using the tools you have to overcome clearly presented challenges.

Mega Man 10 is somewhat better in that sense. There’s an easy mode, which provides safety nets for many of the game’s greatest hazards. There’s also added variety, in the form of being able to play as Proto Man--Mega Man's older brother--right from the start, which at least makes the second time around in a stage feel fresh. However, Mega Man 10 is the first and loudest example of the bottom of the barrel being scraped, creatively. While some ideas are being repeated, there are others that are unusually odd, even for Mega Man. There's no greater example than Sheep Man, a sheep robot who fights by building up static electricity that he fires through his wool in a stage set in cyberspace.

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Compared to their immediate predecessor, however, there are far more stretches of Mega Man 9 and 10 that flow with the old familiar magic, beckoning you to mind your surroundings, hone your reflexes, and hold your breath while taking the risks. The two deliver on their back-to-basics promises, just with the occasional off-kilter moment.

Beyond these four games, Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 is left with a slew of mini challenges, remixed stages, artwork, and the ability to practice against bosses anytime you wish. These are valuable additions, but like the first Legacy Collection, these extras fall short of previous Mega Man compilations. It's hard not to look rather wistfully back on the abundance of riches Capcom bestowed on players with the Anniversary Collection on PS2 and Gamecube, which included Mega Man 1-8, in-game hints for the first six, a remixed soundtrack for the NES titles in the PS2 version, plus the two obscure Mega Man arcade titles and interviews with developers.

What is present in this collection ends up feeling like a disjointed ride through the latter half of Mega Man's history, an area with plenty of lessons to learn, but not always ones you're meant to enjoy. Seen as half of a whole, with the first Mega Man Legacy Collection, however, and you do have something resembling a fascinating compendium of games, albeit with a lot more to skip out on in its second half.


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Source: GameSpot - Reviews (Thu, 10 Aug 2017 09:00:00 -0700)

A settlement in a landmark lawsuit against two psychologists who helped design the CIA's harsh interrogation methods used in the war on terror marked the first time the agency or its private contractors have been held accountable for the program, legal experts said.

The deal in the lawsuit from...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 11:15:00 PDT )
A writer who has known President Trump for three decades thinks his time in the White House is almost up.Tony Schwartz spent 18 months ghostwriting Trump's bestselling 1987 memoir "The Art of the Deal," which was based on Schwartz's interviews with the brash New York developer who dominated the... Read More

Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 10:12:00 PDT )
A writer finds commercial success in Scott Spencer’s novel “River Under the Road,” but at what cost to his self-esteem and his marriage? Read More

Source: The New York Times - Sunday Review (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 14:40:06 GMT )
In which we consult the Book Review’s past to shed light on the books of the present. This week: the legacy of Roland Barthes. Read More

Source: The New York Times - Sunday Review (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 14:50:56 GMT )
Robert Wright, whose book “Why Buddhism Is True” is a best seller, has been a spiritual seeker for a long time. Read More

Source: The New York Times - Sunday Review (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 14:44:02 GMT )
Think of Essential's flagship phone as the anti iPhone. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 13:00:00 +0000)
This add-on for the Essential phone shoots spherical photos, and demonstrates the company's magnetic accessory dock. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 13:00:00 +0000)
Snapperstuff have announced a range of new bags are now available from MindShift gear and Think Tank
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Source: ePHOTOzine - Photography News (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 11:01:09 GMT )
Google has been researching watermarks and they have some tips on how you can make them harder to remove.
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Source: ePHOTOzine - Equipment Reviews (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 10:49:46 GMT )
Save on NEW PaintShop Pro 2018 Ultimate from Corel!
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Source: ePHOTOzine - Photography News (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 11:00:01 GMT )

Like an entrepreneur entering a venture capitalist’s boardroom, USC offensive coordinator Tee Martin walked into a recent receivers meeting with an announcement.

"He said, ‘Uh, I came up with this new app,’" receiver Deontay Burnett recalled.

As of Wednesday, the receivers had it downloaded onto...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 20:30:00 PDT )

In seven of his 12 seasons as an NFL quarterback, Dan Orlovsky did not throw a regular-season pass.

He did not play a single snap in five of those seasons, most recently in 2016 when he backed up Matt Stafford with the Detroit Lions.

Orlovsky could experience a similar fate this season.

And that...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 17:55:00 PDT )

For those with patience, there's a wonderful story of political corruption, self-discovery, and religious reliance to be found in The Pillars of the Earth. However, for anyone with a short attention span, it'd be hard to recommend this game as its slow pace and often drip-feed-style storytelling can make it tough to get through. Stick it out, however, and you find that this first episode (of three) hints at a larger, more meaningful story to come.

Based on Ken Follet's 1989 novel of the same name, this adventure game gives you control of two characters with intertwining stories. The first of which is Philip, an abbey Prior who's more or less responsible for a war between two English settlements. Philip, while sometimes unsure of himself, is portrayed as a considerate, mindful character. His counterpart is Jack, a child who's grown up off the grid, living in a cave with only his mother. Jack is far less sure of himself and, at the encouragement of his mother, hardly trusts the world around him.

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Following these two characters is a highlight of The Pillars of the Earth, seeing the way their stories eventually come together and influence one another. But it's the story at large and its cast of secondary characters that make this world worth inhabiting. Each environment, scene, and character also has their own unique, hand-painted look to them, often with grand senses of scale and depth.

Set in the 12th century, The Pillars Of The Earth tackles plot points both grandiose and granular. After King Henry I of England dies without a set heir, his nephew and daughter feud over which of them should take his place. This clash causes turmoil in England, leading to eventual wars. And while political strife makes up a lot of the overarching story, The Pillars Of The Earth isn't afraid to dive deeper into its characters, showing quiet, intimate moments where, for example, Jack learns about his upbringing or Philip writes letters to his brother. The dichotomy between these two layers keeps you--for the most part--intrigued along the way.

A large cast of unique characters fleshes out this tale, adding secondary layers of motivation to the game's story. Within the first few minutes, you meet all of the the monks at Kingsbridge cathedral, where Philip has been named Prior. Each of them has a unique relationship with Philip, and it's your job to navigate their conversations and form alliances whenever possible. Furthermore, Jack's uncertainty about the world combines with his childhood curiosity. These moments are helped along with strong voice acting and a wonderful script that's packed with emotion.

And yet despite the interesting characters and stories that await, it's still difficult to wholeheartedly recommend Pillars of the Earth. While it's certainly not uncommon for adventure games to forego action for narrative, The Pillars of the Earth moves at a snail's pace. There is drama, but little in the way of tangible tension.

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And unfortunately, there are a slew of technical issues to contend with along the way. Loading new environments often slows the framerate down to a chug (on Xbox One), and characters would sometimes talk over one another, making it difficult to follow either line of dialogue. The game also enters a load screen nearly every time it plays a new scene, which is a lot. For a game with an already slow pace, this can really hinder a lot of interest as you're forced to sit through extra screens and endure poor framerates just to get to the next story beat.

It'll be interesting to see how The Pillars of the Earth evolves over its next two episodes. As of right now, it's crafted a fascinating story full of great characters. It might not be a game for everyone as it deliberately chooses to take its time getting to the point. However, if you enjoy gripping dramas, and don't mind sitting still for a bit, The Pillars of the Earth will reward your patience with the beginning of what appears to be a fascinating tale.

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Source: GameSpot - Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 17:00:00 -0700)
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Source: Depreview - All Reviews & Previews (Sun, 23 Apr 2017 10:00:00 Z)
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Source: Depreview - All Reviews & Previews (Mon, 27 Mar 2017 14:00:00 Z)

Some games are timeless. Rez is one of them. Set in a cyberspace landscape riddled with bugs, you guide your tiny figure on a quest to awaken the mysterious being lying dormant within in. To get to her, you must shoot through hordes of technicolor, swirling viruses that lob projectiles and try to block your path. But it's not the narrative that makes this game incomparable; Rez is a rail shooter on paper and a heart-pounding synesthesia joyride in practice.

Rez Infinite, the updated remake designed for the PlayStation 4 and PSVR, is still the same game as the original Dreamcast and PlayStation 2 version, albeit with a little more visual flourish. Backgrounds that were once hazy have been replaced with updated, crystal clear pieces of the cyberworld. Colors are brighter, lines sharper. Enemies drift in and out of your field of view with a new smoothness. And in VR, Rez Infinite allows you to dive deeper into its world in ways previously impossible.

To navigate Rez, you need only concern yourself with aiming and shooting, as you remain on rails moving at a set speed at all times. While holding down the X button you use the left stick--or in VR, the headset's motion tracking--to highlight the enemy or enemies with a targeting reticle, then release the button to fire your shot. Rez encourages you to chain hits together by cluttering your field of view with opponents, making picking them off one by one not an option. And this isn't as simple as it sounds, given enemies come flying at you from every direction at all once, and that's not even counting the additional projectiles they toss your way. Shooting sounds are replaced with claps or beats, and successfully destroying enemies results in a flood of musical tones. You can pick off your opponents in time with the beat, or create your own discordant melodies--it's entirely up to your own rhythm.

Still looking good after all these years.
Still looking good after all these years.

Occasionally you'll collect clusters of bright white and blue pixels that allow you to charge up. Collect enough of these and you level up, taking on a new form--for example, at one stage you evolve from a floating silver figure to a red and black figure seated cross-legged within a sphere. Additionally, collecting these white pixels and rare red ones charges up your Overdrive, a powerful attack that can clear the screen of enemies in seconds and comes especially handy during a boss encounter.

When rushing bosses, you must locate and target the core object of an undulating, vibrating cluster of tiles and lights to dismantle one area of the cyberspace prison. These are the most complex and challenging sections of Rez, and often include multiple stages. One boss collects squares around its core and takes on the form of a running figure that chases you through hallways. Another is a swirling sphere, with tentacle-like arms that break up and try to whip you as you fly by. These boss battles are also a visual treat, and with Rez Infinite's upgraded graphics it feels more like attending a rave in Tron than a fight.

Area X.
Area X.

And then there's Area X. Rez isn't about shooting and conquering, it's about creating music. And nowhere is this concept stronger than in a new mode unlocked after completing all five main campaign areas. Area X removes the rails and sets you off into space, allowing you to fly in any direction you wish. In doing this, Rez Infinite grants you more power in manipulating your space; you can fly closer to or away from enemies, skirt around giant structures shimmering in the surrounding darkness, or simply fly around in circles and let the beat play out around you. You can maneuver around the space in a way that lines up enemies and objects exactly how you want them, then unleash a torrent of tones following your own rhythm. I played through Area X several times and never found the same rhythm twice--going after the pink, squid-like enemies and leaving a giant flying dragon-like creature alone for a while produced a different sound that when I went directly for the dragon and followed it around the space, a tiny silvery shadow in its starry wake.

But playing the game in VR places Rez in what feels like its final form. In the original areas one through five, as you glide through these cyberspaces, you can look up, down, and behind you for a greater view of the world you inhabit. This new freedom of movement for your field of vision also allows you a second chance at enemies that have floated out of your path; in several cases being able to look directly behind me assisted in my takedown of a boss. This wider field of movement lets you more quickly dispatch enemies, and in this way it makes the game a bit easier (especially that pesky running boss).

The party don't start til I hack in.
The party don't start til I hack in.

But Area X in VR is the perfect coupling. I spent time flying off in the stars and gazing down on the musical chaos below me, before rocketing down and zipping between shiny pink projectiles as I moved in to pick off a particularly large enemy that dropped the beat as it dissipated into nothing. This feels like the natural evolution of Rez, and I have to imagine this could be how creator Tetsuya Mizuguchi saw his creation from the beginning. The full sensory immersion elicits a sensation beyond the simple toe-tapping and head-bobbing that comes from playing the original Rez. Rez Infinite's Area X in VR engages your entire body, thumping your synapses in time with the music and forcing you to move. I felt connected to my tiny being on screen, doling out a symphony with fireworks in my wake.

Despite it's short campaign--you can complete everything in a little more than an hour, if you're skilled--Rez Infinite is the game to buy a PSVR for. It's hypnotic and enveloping. And it's transformative, both within itself and in the wider scheme of the experiences made possible by VR. You don't want to sleep on Rez Infinite, because with the addition of more polished visual flair and the dreamy Area X, we have a new classic for the new generation on our hands.

Editor's note: We've now had a chance to test the PC version of Rez Infinite, including tests using both Oculus Rift and HTC Vive VR headsets. Rez Infinite continues to be a magical experience, and the PC version proves to be the best version of the game yet thanks to new control schemes and native support for 4K capable monitors. We have updated the score on this review to reflect this version of the game. - Peter Brown, Aug. 9, 8:00am PDT

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Source: GameSpot - Reviews (Wed, 09 Aug 2017 08:00:00 -0700)
With updates to the Swarm app, Foursquare hopes to gather even more data about where people spend their time and money. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Wed, 09 Aug 2017 15:00:00 +0000)
The Chinese company is launching a $35 version of the Echo Dot smart speaker, powered by Amazon's Alexa. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Wed, 09 Aug 2017 14:00:00 +0000)
Snap a photo and the neural network can identify exactly how to make it look better in under 20 milliseconds. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Mon, 07 Aug 2017 12:00:00 +0000)
Here's a few quick tips on why balancing landscapes is important.
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Source: ePHOTOzine - All Photography Articles (Fri, 18 Aug 2017 00:10:08 GMT )

JetBlue Airways, the busiest carrier at Long Beach Airport, has violated the city’s noise curfew so often this year that if a proposed noise crackdown is adopted, the New York-based carrier could face being shut out of the airport.

Violations of the city’s noise curfew have increased so much in...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 15:05:00 PDT )

“Who has the right to tell history? Who has the right to occupy public space?” asks Erin M. Curtis, a co-author of the new book “¡Murales Rebeldes! L.A. Chicana/o Murals Under Siege” in which she explains, “Chicana/o muralists have long explored similar questions.”

Published by Angel City Press,...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 10:00:00 PDT )
Art openings around Los Angeles: including Universal History of Infamy at LACMA, Cuban film posters at the PMCA and a space show at C. Nichols Project. Read More

Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 10:00:00 PDT )
Los Angeles is about 700 miles away from the path of totality, and we'll see only about 50% of the Great American Eclipse. But you can still enjoy the event. We show you where and how. Read More

Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 10:20:00 PDT )

A white van jumped the sidewalk in this city's historic Las Ramblas district and crashed into a summer crowd of residents and tourists Thursday, killing at least 13, according to Spanish media.

Police said 32 people were seriously injured in the incident, which authorities are treating as a terror...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 10:15:00 PDT )
How to make great brownies, plus a recipe Read More

Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 10:00:00 PDT )

German car company BMW is taking advantage of a captive audience of auto fans and journalists assembled for the annual Monterey Car Week to unveil a pair of concept vehicles on the lawn at Pebble Beach.

The two concept cars, which the company says precede production cars that will be revealed some...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 10:00:00 PDT )

Update: The score now reflects the Xbox One version of Thumper, and the review text has been amended to reflect our experience with the Switch version. Please scroll to the bottom to find the updated content.

Despite recent efforts to revive brands like Rock Band and Amplitude, there's a general sense that we've been there and done that when it comes to rhythm games. The staleness of the genre was a concern going into Thumper. It's a game that runs on rails, where you have to time button presses to match a beat that grows increasingly fast and complex over time, with the primary gimmick being that it's layered with trippy visuals. But those details don't tell the whole story. Thumper is like most rhythm games you've played before, but it's also a powerful, moving experience--especially in VR--that stands out as something completely different from its forebears.

Imagine for a second that you're a chrome-plated beetle participating in a life-or-death luge race set in a tangled web of undulating cables, iridescent halos, and laser beams. In one ear, the menacing sound of taiko drums bang away, while the other is fed oppressive industrial riffs and beats. The tracks are dangerously slick and fast, and the only way to survive is to give yourself up to the beat--allow it to command your instincts to lean into sudden turns and hit markers at the right time. Anything short of a total bond between yourself and the track will lead to dimmed reflexes resulting in life-ending collisions. Success is surviving long enough to meet the the boss--a disembodied flaming head with piercing eyes and spiked florets emerging from all sides. He beckons, you respond, and you pray your muscles can react fast enough beat him senseless at his own game, matching every beat he sends your way.

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Granted, that may sound like a creative way to interpret what amounts to a simple rhythm game, but just because it sounds fantastical and flowery doesn't mean it's purely imaginative. You aren't challenged to create music in Thumper as much as you are to keep up with the obstacles it dictates; what amounts to beats or notes in other games is treated differently here.

Most of the time, you're forced to act in other ways--at an incredible rate of speed. When taking a steep curve, you have to press a button and move the analog stick to grind the wall. Fail to hold the turn long enough or hit the correct button, and you crash. Spiked sections require you to jump, while a series of barriers can only be passed when you hold down the "beat" button. You may also find your track expand to multiple lanes while a phalanx of technopedes float into your path, forcing you to shift from side to side without hesitation.

The big difference here is that you aren't forced to fill in a song to succeed. For example, you aren't always required to hit a button when a beat icon--for lack of a better term--appears on a track. The two exceptions are during the boss battle at the end of each stage and when a ring floats around the track waiting to punish you with an unavoidable attack for missing your mark under its watch. But these moments arise infrequently.

Thumper is about survival under the guidance of music--and less about actually creating music. Beats and notes telegraph incoming obstacles, planting a seed in your subconscious only fractions of a second before you have to react. Tuning into this is critical during later levels where unavoidable obstacles fly by a mile a minute, and the process is thrilling to see in action as you frantically react, somehow survive, and ultimately inform the depth of the song at hand.

If you hesitate to take action even in the slightest, Thumper will make short work of you. It's dangerously fast. In the span of a single second, you may have to take three turns, jump over a pit, and slam down from midair on top of an incoming beat marker. There are optional opportunities to improve your score or rating--such as jumping to hit floating rings--but making unnecessary moves is like tempting fate. Fail to input the correct button combinations at the precise moments that actually matter, and you're liable to hit a barrier, lose your sense of the beat and the track, and careen into a wall. That said, when you take the chance and come out unscathed, it's thoroughly rewarding to know that you went above and beyond Thumper's already challenging demands.

Immersion is a tall claim, but it’s one that Thumper realizes. As a game that's playable both on a TV and in VR, this really only holds true for the latter, but again, it's a step above most "immersive" experiences we've seen before. Thumper thumps, bangs, and pummels you with intense percussion. It's as if you're facing the front lines of an army that intimidates their enemies with massive drums, and when things are at their most intense, it lays into you with high-pitched, droning sounds that rake at your psyche.

Enveloped in corridors of light or swimming in a sea of darkness where faint, mechanical devils perform an intimidating dance, Thumper is truly captivating to behold, moving at commanding rate of speed that's difficult to shake. During a moment of solace, you may realize that you don't remember exactly what happened in the preceding moments. Yet there you are, speeding down the track to your next death-defying performance.

Thumper's only hang-up is the repeated use of musical measures or track designs. Each level, which is divided into a few dozen segments on average, occasionally bears too strong of a resemblance to past stages. This issue is softened due to the effective nature of the game at large, but when it happens, you can't help but wonder what could have been given a little more musical variety.

It sounds odd to claim that a lack of consistently original music wouldn't be a major problem for a rhythm game, but music isn't the point. Thumper thrives due to the way it marries speed, simple controls, and mesmerizing atmosphere. It's far more convincing in VR, where you're enveloped in the game's space and free of distractions from the outside world, but it shouldn't be ignored by those without the appropriate hardware. Thumper, no matter how you play it, is too good to miss.

Thumper has now made its way to Nintendo Switch, where it remains every bit as enjoyable to play on a monitor (at 1080p 60fps) as it is on PS4 and PC. Surprisingly little has been sacrificed in the transition to the portable console, and in some ways the fact that you can now hold it close by undocking the Switch makes it a slightly more immersive experience than sitting feet away from your TV. If VR isn't something you have access to or want to invest in, the Switch version of Thumper is arguably the second best route to experience everything this impressive and brutal rhythm game has to offer.

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Source: GameSpot - Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 10:11:00 -0700)

One of Iran’s leading opposition politicians called off a hunger strike from his hospital bed on Thursday after intelligence officials agreed to withdraw agents from his house, where he has been under arrest for six years.

Mehdi Karroubi, a 79-year-old who suffers from heart disease and was recently...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 08:50:00 PDT )

The Encino home of actress Kate Walsh proved to be a hit on the open market.

The one-acre estate in the Royal Oaks neighborhood hit the market a month ago for $4.25 million and sold this week for $350,000 above the asking price — $4.6 million.

The traditional-style house, built in 1950 and recently...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 08:55:00 PDT )

If you have kids and appreciate cooking, cookbooks and the idea that your offspring might creditably cook their own meals someday, their bookshelves will likely include some cookbook juvenilia. Alice Waters’ “Fanny at Chez Panisse: A Child’s Restaurant Adventures With 46 Recipes,” say, or Mollie...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 09:00:00 PDT )

Some parents carve out a space in their home where it’s no-kids-allowed.

Not so for Andrew Dice Clay.

“If my boys aren’t here, I’m not in this room,” the comedian and actor said of the den in his 4,700-square-foot Sherman Oaks house. It’s his favorite place to spend time because it’s where his...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 09:00:00 PDT )

While some stylists focus their work on the flashbulb-fueled moments of the red carpet, costume designer and personal stylist Leesa Evans is just fine delving into the contents of a client’s suitcase or the psychology behind sweatpants.

Not that Evans, a Laguna Beach native with 30 private styling...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 09:00:00 PDT )

A white van jumped the sidewalk in this city's historic Las Ramblas district and crashed into a summer crowd of residents and tourists, injuring several people, police said Thursday.

The Spanish newspaper El Pais quoted unnamed police sources as saying that armed perpetrators of the crash were...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 09:10:00 PDT )
Actress and model Cara Delevingne co-wrote the novel "Mirror, Mirror," which will be published by Harper. Read More

Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 08:00:00 PDT )
Fifth Harmony is at a crossroads. Having lost a member in a public fallout right after the group brokeout, the girls are in full control of their sound and brand. Will they finally make it big? Read More

Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews ( Thu, 17 Aug 2017 08:00:00 PDT )

So far this year in Building Type we’ve interviewed the outgoing heads of the architecture programs at UCLA (Hitoshi Abe) and USC (Qinyun Ma) and the incoming dean at USC (Milton Curry). This week we sit down with Ingalill Wahlroos-Ritter, an architect who was named dean of the School of Architecture...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 08:00:00 PDT )

Television host Brad Goreski and director/producer Gary Janetti have made a fashionable exit in Westwood, selling their home overlooking the Los Angeles Country Club for $3.25 million.

The couple, who recently decamped to Beverly Hills, bought the property five years ago for about $2.33 million,...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 08:10:00 PDT )

Turner is kicking off a new sports streaming video service next year that will carry its coverage of UEFA Champions League soccer.

The service announced Thursday is Turner’s first endeavor in streaming sports coverage — the new frontier in “over-the-top” distribution of programming, in which shows...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews ( Thu, 17 Aug 2017 08:15:00 PDT )

South Korea’s new president came to office in May after an unprecedented political corruption scandal, promising a clean administration and a fresh approach to dealing with North Korea.

The president, Moon Jae-in, might well avoid the ethical pitfalls that haunted previous South Korean leaders,...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 06:55:00 PDT )

Stocks are opening slightly lower on Wall Street, led by declines in technology companies, retailers and banks.

Victoria's Secret owner L Brands plunged 5.8% in early trading Thursday after cutting its full-year earnings forecast.

Network equipment maker Cisco Systems sank 3.1% after issuing a disappointing...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 06:55:00 PDT )

Peak TV is a boon for audiences. But Peak TV is a trial for those who hand out television awards each year: The dizzying array of choices means there's no way many worthwhile performances and series will even get talked about, much less a nomination or an Emmy Award. So we're here to help. By looking...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 07:00:00 PDT )

Time is money, people. San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Matt Cain didn’t catch a buyer last year with his 11,021-square-foot home in Paradise Valley, Ariz., so he’s upped the asking price from $5.85 million to $5.995 million.

That should help cover commissions and closing costs, as he bought...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 07:00:00 PDT )

I had no idea how difficult it would be to breastfeed my newborn son. As a first-time mom, nursing was so hard I started taking notes on my iPhone for a story I wanted to write about how none of the products marketed to make the practice easier were actually practical. It would be a screed on the...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 07:00:00 PDT )

At the height of their love affair, Bridget Henry visited online clothing store ModCloth’s app every day. It wasn’t just the clothes with a vintage and quirky vibe that the 26-year-old liked, it was the story.

Founded by high school sweethearts in a college dorm room, the San Francisco company...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 07:12:00 PDT )

The Southland's top high school running backs for 2017

Khoury Bethley; Don Lugo; 5-11; 195; Sr.; Hawaii commit rushed for 2,089 yards, 25 touchdowns last season.

Justin Cauley; Venice; 5-11; 205; Sr.; Rushed for 1,344 yards, 10 touchdowns.

Travis Dye; Norco; 5-9; 170; Sr.; Oregon commit rushed...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 06:00:00 PDT )

In the era of high school students choosing schools specifically for athletic reasons, running back Tiquan Gilmore of Los Angeles Torres has a confession to make.

“I came here to act and dance,” he said. “I didn’t come to play football.”

Yet Gilmore, 18, led the City Section in rushing as a junior,...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 06:00:00 PDT )
With 'Logan Lucky,' Steven Soderbergh has come out of retirement for a comeback movie. He's also trying to shake up the film business with an unusual distribution model. Read More

Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 06:00:00 PDT )

Ferrari is celebrating its 70th anniversary by bringing 70 classic cars to Pebble Beach — one Ferrari for each year in the Italian sports car company’s history.

The cars, owned by the company, private owners and museums, are valued at a total of $500 million.

Highlights from the collection, which...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 06:00:00 PDT )

Carlsbad struck it rich with, of all things, water. The city got a boost when pioneer John Frazier tapped a mineral spring in the 1880s and its “miraculous curative powers” were a hit. You can still buy this magic elixir today at the Carlsbad Mineral Water Spa (once Frazier’s Well) in Carlsbad...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 06:00:00 PDT )

Don’t blame the nation’s surgeons for an opiate-abuse crisis that now claims 142 lives daily in the United States. New research suggests that patients leaving the hospital after surgeries or inpatient procedures are rarely the ones whose long-term opioid use started with a doctor’s prescription.

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 06:00:00 PDT )
President Trump, facing another tough patch in his presidency, will hold his first campaign rally in the West next week, announcing Wednesday that he will travel to Arizona.The rally could provide a place for Trump to announce a pardon for Joe Arpaio, the former Arizona county sheriff and Trump... Read More

Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 05:52:00 PDT )
A $100 accessory that aims to improve your iPhoneography. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 13:00:00 +0000)

Before Jessica Lange played Joan Crawford in Ryan Murphy’s critically acclaimed FX limited series “Feud: Bette and Joan,” she knew as much about the MGM star as you did, and it all came from “Mommie Dearest,” the 1981 Crawford takedown by her daughter Christina. But once Lange pulled back the curtain...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 06:00:00 PDT )
Upgrade your dorm with a Roku Express, Aeropress, smart light bulbs, and more without going broke. Read More

Source: WIRED - Product Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 12:00:00 +0000)

To the editor: We were disappointed to read a column last week that unfairly implied our platform is negatively impacting the housing market in Venice. (“Venice has become an epicenter of Los Angeles’ struggle over short-term rentals. Call it the Airbnb problem,” Aug. 9)

While some boutique hotels...

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Source: Los Angeles Times - Restaurant Reviews (Thu, 17 Aug 2017 05:00:00 PDT )


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