Posts Tagged ‘Gifts for Geeks’

Gifts for Girl Geeks – Asus Eee PC 1008P Netbook

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

In continuing the Gifts for Girl Geeks segment, I present the ASUS Eee PC 1008P Seashell from the Karim Rashid Collection. So why would she want this? Here are the specs:

  • Genuine Windows 7 (Starter, Basic, or Premium editions)
  • 10.1″ LED Backlight WSVGA Screen (1024×600)
  • 1.66 GHz Intel N450 Atom Processor (512KB L2 Cache)
  • DDR2 SO-DIMM 2 GB
  • 250GB/320GB 2.5” SATA2 HDD 5400rpm/ plus 500GB ASUS WebStorage (1 year free trial)
  • Dual OS: Express Gate offers near-instant boot
  • WLAN 802.11b/g/n @2.4GHz
  • BluetoothV2.1 + EDR
  • 1.3MP Camera
  • Connections:
    • 1 x Mini VGA Connector
    • 2 x USB 2.0
    • 1 x LAN RJ-45
    • 2 x Audio Jack (Headphone / Mic-in)
  • Card Reader: MMC/SD(SDHC)
  • Li-polymer battery
  • Elegant Techno-chic Digi-wave design (by Karim Rashid)
  • Innovative soft-to-the-touch finish
  • Easy to carry – 1″ thick, weighs 1.12kg
  • ASUS Super Hybrid Engine provides up to 6 hours of use unplugged

This is a pretty decent feature set and will run roughly $480 from Amazon.com. You can find it in Hot Pink or Coffee Brown. For the price, you will be paying for the customized casing and Karim Rashid’s signature, but it isn’t that high above comparable machines. The dual boot is a nice feature. Booting through Express Gate allows a quick and easy internet connection. Make Skype calls, browse the internet, check email, or play online games without having to go through Windows. You can find additional information from the ASUS products page.

If the girl in your life is looking for an easy-to-carry, fashionable netbook, this should be on your shopping list. Plenty of power and an elegant touch.

Gifts for Girl Geeks – Pink PS3 DualShock 3 Controller

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

The PlayStation 3 is not just for the boys any more. Show your girl how much you care with a new pink DualShock 3 controller. Not a fan of pink? The Dualshock 3 is available in black, silver, blue, and red as well.

So, why give a DualShock 3 controller? According to Sony, “Each hit, crash and explosion is more realistic when you feel the rumble right in the palm of your hands.” Sounds like a pretty good reason to me. Here are the specs:

  • Built-in SIXAXIS motion technology
  • Bluetooth connection for wireless game play
  • USB cable seamlessly charges the controller through the PS3

Ordinarily a $54.99 purchase price, you can find the range of DualShock 3 controllers on Amazon and elsewhere somewhere between $43 and $47. The pink controller can be found here.

Go ahead and pick up this pink controller and watch the girl in your life blow past your player ranking. If she doesn’t have a PS3, maybe you should add that to your shopping list as well.

Review – Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Having recently finished my Platinum trophy for the Force Unleashed 2 on PS3 I thought I’d come back and give a more comprehensive review on the game. I reviewed the demo a while back (see review here), and the demo was fairly true to the game. The game is all about carnage, and it delivers. For those of you that are ready to start your holiday shopping, I’ll start with the bottom line: I really enjoyed this game and recommend it for your favorite Star Wars geek. That being said, let’s get into the finer details.

As in the demo, the game starts in Kamino at the cloning facility. Starkiller learns that he is a clone and suffers from flashbacks from his predecessor. After failing to kill a drone version of Juno, Vader opts to kill him off. Starkiller will have none of that, fries Vader with lightning and jumps out a window for a pretty spectacular free-fall scene. The game continues, bigger and better than the original. See the image below for one of the bosses.

The pros:

  • Great visuals
  • Smooth cutscene transitions
  • Ability to skip cutscenes (albeit after waiting for the next screen to load)
  • Destructible scenery
  • Requires better strategy than first game
  • Challenge modes to make up for short story
  • Less repetition for special kills
  • Easier holocron location

The cons:

  • Short story
  • Must view cut-scene for powers you already have on replay.
  • Limited story

In my opinion, there were more pros than cons. The first game got pretty repetitive with the rancors and droids, and the guided fatalities, for lack of a better word, got pretty old. The sequel continues this approach, but less often and with much easier opponents. You end up being far less frustrated.

The worst part of the game was the replay. I was at level three on all my powers and still had to wait for the cut-scene where I initially gained the power the first time through.

The fighting was improved this time around. You really needed to use more than one power to get through the game, as advertised. Some adversaries were Force-sensitive, so you had to use your lightsabers. Others could block your lightsabers and you had to use the Force. I liked the range of enemies fairly well. The destructible scenery was a nice bonus too. As you gather lightsaber crystals you can focus on the fighting style you’d like. One crystal offers increased disintegration possibilities, while another recovers Force power quickly. Having two lightsabers helps, as you can have one for destruction and one for health.

The transitions between levels were really smooth. The visuals and cinematics bring you into the story. I was fully immersed in the game as I played it. I wish the story explained a little more. Presumably the third installment will answer some of the new questions, if it is released. Early indications are that the third one may not happen.

The first downloadable content is on its way in December. For $1 you get to take on the Ewoks on the Endor moon. For those fans who consider the Ewoks to be as annoying as Jar Jar Binks, this will be a worthy addition to the game. You can take out all your pent-up aggression for their inclusion in Return of the Jedi nearly 30 years ago. The content looks pretty interesting, and for a buck it is a no-brainer for me. The DLC will be available for Xbox Live and PSN.

Overall, I think the game is worth it. The Platinum trophy was a little easier than I expected, but I still had a lot of fun getting there. This game is about having fun, and unleashing the Force in a grandiose way. There are challenges for those who want them, but it is easy for a beginner to pick up and enjoy. If you have a Star Wars fan on your Christmas list, this one should make a great gift.