Category: Week in Review


A Week(ish) In News #3

Welcome back to another edition of A Week(ish) In News! If all goes according to plan this should be quite the lengthy edition, so to speak. Why such an extended edition you ask? Well this last week has just been fraught with technical issues for our little site, as well as personal issues that dramatically decreased my ability to get any writing done. But, that is the past now and this is the future…or the past I guess since this article is about the past week. Anyways, on with the words:

Shouting at your screen now serves a purpose in Skyrim

So, by this point the topic of Kinect controls coming to Skyrim has been discussed to death. But we here at Constantly Calibrating are in no way above beating a dead horse; especially when the horse is quite alive and enjoying a healthy, relaxing day.

Now the first thing some people might point out is that Skyrim for the PC already has most, if not all or even more of these features via mods. Well in that you are right, but those of us playing it on the 360 don’t have these features yet and don’t have any alternative, so shut up and go play with some string.

Some of the features coming to Skyrim with this free update include:

  • Dragon Shouts: Now you can yell Fus Roh Dah to your heart’s content at your screen and watch as time and again Lydia flies forth from the Throat of the World. What, just I do that? Whatever. Now the one caveat to this is that stating the name of the shout in English will activate it, but to use the dragon language for shouts you will need to hold a button down. This is due to Kinect’s inability to recognize non-English speech. Still a nifty little feature.
  • Command your allies: Have you ever thought to yourself “Why do I have to spend minutes on end in a conversation menu to order my companion to attack something, stand still, or even trade with me?” What, again just me? You bastages. Anyways, now with simple commands like “Ally follow”, “Ally wait”, “Ally attack”, and “Ally trade”. Pretty simple, and seemingly easy to use.
  • Item Hotkeys: Have you ever felt it was incredibly frustrating to equip and switch out items and weapons on the fly, even with the Favorites pull-down? See that one I know you agree with. Obviously we all know that the inventory system leaves a lot to be desired. Now you can pull up your Favorites window, highlight your favorite bow and state “Assign Bow”. From that point on no matter what you have equipped you can state “Equip Bow” and suddenly whip out your Glass Bow of Infinite Face Rape. This works for all weapons, spells, items, and even armor it seems.
  • Better Sorting: With Kinect while in your inventory or a shop’s inventory you can state “Sort by weight” or “Sort by value”. This will help you to find what items to trade to your follower when over-encumbered or what items are best to sell for most profit.
  • Efficient Menu Navigation: A simple announcement of “Quick Map” is all it takes to pull up the full world map now. Stating a location such as “Whiterun” or asking “Where am I?” will bring the map to the proper location. Stating “Quick Skills” will also pull up your skill constellations. Saying a name of a skill like “Archery” or “Sneak” will bring you to that skill. Finally, the phrases “Quick Save” and “Quick Load” also work for all of your saving and loading needs.

To see the Kinect in action check out the below video.

As a person who recently started playing Skyrim again, I find all of these features highly interesting. I look forward to trying out our new Kinect when the Kinect update for Skryim shouts its way into the world sometime this during the week of April 23rd. Continue reading

Advertisements

A Week(ish) In News #2

So, last week I brought to you all a little week in review post. Turns out that I really like the concept of a week in review. It allows me to write short blurbs about stories without devoting full posts, plus it seems to appeal to a large group of people. The plan from this point out is to get out a new Week(ish) in News column every Tuesday or Wednesday. I won’t specify an exact date, because I don’t want to and until I get paid for this nobody is the boss of me. So nyah!

Ok, so without further childish name calling I bring you some news:

BioWare Devs Discuss Conceptual Ideas For Next Dragon Age


So here we go. The lovely gentleman of BioWare’s Dragon Age team held a panel at PAX East this past weekend to discuss what is in no way the unannounced Dragon Age 3. *wink wink* Actually, they make it very clear that they are not talking about the game, because they won’t talk about a game until there is something to show. However, they go into detail about what they have learned from fans and stuff that they might be able to do in the future of the series, should there be one.

On stage Creative Director Mike Laidlaw goes into a lengthy discussion of the three core principles they would fix, if they were to be developing Dragon Age 3:

  • Stop reusing levels
  • Decisions that matter
  • Equipment for followers

Now I’m not going to delve into too much detail since watching the video above will easily remedy most questions you might have. What I will do is comment on the item that excites me the most: Equipment for followers. When it came right down to it I was never that bothered by repeated levels. I also wasn’t as bothered as most were by Dragon Age 2’s storyline. I was bothered though by not being able to customize my versions of Aveline, Isabela, or Anders in the game. Yes, that was my primary team for my RogueHawke and it worked splendidly. All I would have liked was the ability to make them awesome looking by my design just like in Dragon Age: Origins. I love this announced, but not announced idea of characters having specific looks or silhouettes and then armor items changing their look, but in ways that make sense. If you watch any part of the video, then watch where they show what a piece of armor looks like on a theoretical Warden versus what it looks like on a Seeker.

Oh and one more thought on the subject. Orlais?! Damn, was really hoping for Antiva myself.

Bulletstorm 2 is Lost to Time

Right off the bat, I’ve never played the original Bulletstorm. Another case of a game I own and want to play, but just never found the time to. While I will get around to it soon, it appears completely certain that the playtime will not lead me to a sequel. Today Epic Games president Mike Capps announced to Gamespot even though the original was “very critically successful,” it was not good enough in sales to warrant a sequel by EA’s apparent standards.

Bulletstorm 2 had some initial design work done, but the project was ultimately pulled due to other projects gaining favor. The game was said to have been highly pirated on PC which led to significantly lower sales.

Developers People Can Fly are now working on some new project that they haven’t announced, so there is a ray of light in this news. Maybe their next project will be something equally crazy, but maybe more popular amongst the non-thefty masses.

James Bond Sells Out?!

Now onto our WTF are you serious news of the day. Apparently James Bond will no longer be drinking a martini, shaken not stirred in the upcoming movie 007 movie Skyfall. No the suave secret agent is now apparently a Heineken man. This has led to many people crying foul and calling the franchise a sell out. I do not have any overly thought out comments on the subject, but I will leave you with a quote that I posted to a friend on Facebook regarding this decision:

“Yeah I read about this a couple of days ago. And the fact that it is Heineken. I mean, I like Heineken personally, but he’s James Fucking Bond; if he’s switching off martinis then he should be drinking pure, undiluted blood of his enemies mixed with like uranium or something. Yes, I have overthought this and gone in a direction that nobody ever should…”

Those are my personal thoughts on the subject, but if you would like to read more, then head on over to Forbes which has the full story.

 

Well that leaves us at an end for this weeks edition. Most likely it will be back next week, unless I continues coming up with more ideas for columns than I can possibly write myself. In which case I’m sure there will be something shiny to take its place.

A Week(ish) In News

Hello to you all.

So things became increasingly hectic over the last week and as such I fell a bit behind on nerdy news. I just wanted to let you all know (someone is out there reading this, right?) that regular updates will start appearing again in the next day or two. Also, you can expect our next episode of Constantly Calibrating by the beginning of next week. Some scheduling conflicts simply haven’t permitted us the time to record a new episode.

Speaking of the podcast, and also the site as a whole, we could use some feedback. What have you liked? What have you disliked? What has caused a noticeable shrinking of space in your pants? These are the questions we have for you, our theoretically faithful audience. Let us know in the comments on this post or anywhere else you see fit. We would also love some reviews on our podcast, even though it’s still in the early stages of production.

Now, since it has been almost a week since I posted about anything I thought I would discuss a few things that caught my eye in that time:

 

Harry Potter released as an eBook
It has been long awaited that Mr. Potter would make his way over to the Kindle, Nook, and all other eBooks formats. As of this past week that waiting has finally passed. The full library of Harry Potter books has been released; from the Sorcerer’s(Philosopher’s) Stone through the Deathly Hallows. The can be found on your preferred eReader or directly from Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

 

Doctor Who Series 7 Teaser Trailer
Last week also marked the premiere of the series 7 teaser trailer for Doctor Who. The trailer originally premiered at the first official Doctor Who convention, which took place in Cardiff last week. The convention also upsettingly being one in which I was not able to attend; finances, time, and living on the other side of the planet without a working TARDIS being the likely cause. The trailer predominantly focuses on the western themed episode that was announced a few months back. We get to see the first appearance of Ben Browder (Cmdr. John Crichton, astronaut, on Farscape) during this portion. Other Who guest stars featured in the trailer are Harry Potter’s own David Bradley (Argus Filch) and Mark Williams (Arthur Weasley). From the look of the trailer, which only featured the two currently completed episodes, it appears as if another great series for Doctor Who is going to be starting “soon”.

 

The Witcher 2: Enhanced Edition – Story Trailer
Finally I leave you with something that still surprises even me. I have never played The Witcher or The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings. Shocking, I know. I hate myself for it, more-so because I have owned both of them for years. I just never can find the time. I am however a huge fan of everything that I have seen and heard on the games. As such I leave you with a story trailer released earlier today that tells the story of the events in the first game. It is beautifully done and worth watching even if you have played both games before.

 

Well, that doesn’t cover everything of the last week, but those were some of the stories of note to me. Let me know what you think on anything discussed or if there is something you would like to see talked about more.