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    by Published on March 16th, 2021 00:43
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    In today’s increasingly cybercentric world, people are spending more and more of their leisure time online. While video streaming platforms like YouTube or subscriptions services like Netflix and Spotify might occupy much of that free time, online gaming is another incredibly popular pastime, as well.
    The traditional view of video games, casinos and quizzes is that they’re entertaining but ultimately pointless distractions which are nothing more than a waste of time. However, there are plenty of reasons to believe that practising such hobbies is not only good for relaxing the mind and body, but can also help to actively educate those who pursue them. Here are four reasons why gaming online is time well spent.

    Enhanced English

    It might sound like an unlikely link, but a study from the University of Helsinki in Finland found that students who spent much of their free time playing video games had markedly improved test results when it came to the English language. 89% of those who played games for 15 hours or more per week said they believed doing so had improved their English very much, while even those played for five hours or less per week said that it had helped their performance in English to some extent. That’s a huge boon to non-native speakers of the language.

    Maths whizz

    Brushing up on mathematical skills can seem like a challenging and tiresome task for many people. However, dry equations and mind-numbingly boring sums can be replaced by engaging activities where maths still plays an important role – but a background one to the entertainment. For example, visiting a casino online and playing slots or table games encourages gamers to calculate probabilities, work the odds and perform quick mental arithmetic. Although the practice comes disguised as play, it can still have a beneficial effect on overall mathematical acumen and stand you in good stead for any number of other practical purposes in your daily life.

    Memory boost

    A poor memory can be a significant disadvantage for people in all walks of life. For that reason, any method of improving your hippocampal capabilities is to be welcomed with open arms. A 2015 study from the University of California, Irvine drew correlations between the number of hours spent playing video games and improved memory recall. Again, the link might seem an unlikely one, but the ability to explore and contextualise new environments in an online setting is thought to be instrumental in enhancing an individual’s ability to remember key facts, figures and events.

    General knowledge

    “There is no knowledge that is not power.” Gaming aficionados might recognise that mantra from the popular video game franchise Mortal Kombat and it’s certainly true that the data you subconsciously amass while playing games, gambling or answering quiz questions online can help to expand your knowledge and fine-tune your brain’s performance. After all, you never know when a nugget of information you picked up during an online gaming session might come in handy at a later date.

    by Published on March 5th, 2021 15:20

    It wont be long before Covid-19 will be put to bed in the UK, we are looking at a June 21st date for the long awaited jump back to normality, being able to see friends, go to the Cinema, Got to the Pub, to eat out and see our friends. Until then we will have to do our best and stay indoors and maybe play games, i have posted about the top games to look out for in 2021 the year we finally put this once in a hundred years pandemic to sleep or we actually hope it will. So heres 4 trending games to look forward to in the year of covid.

    Halo Infinite

    The Halo franchise has been one of the best things about Microsofts Xbox consoles from the original Xbox to the Xb0x 360 then to the Xbox 1 and now for the Xbox Series X/S, it was supposed to be a launch game but trailers released show it still needs a little work, but one thing for sure is that Halo Infinite will be a major release of the year.

    Its now due for release in autumn of this year and the need for it to be the triple AAA game that Microsoft need to stop the Sony PS5 ruling the roost, Halo 5 was it has to be say a bit of a letdown, so Halo infinite really needs to kick start the series and be a killer release. time will tell for sure.

    The Legend of Zelda Skyward Sword HD

    Zelda the game that made the Nes, Snes, Nintendo 64, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo WiiU, Gameboy, Gameboy advance, Nintendo DS and Nintendo 3ds and if my memory serves me correct it was also on the Virtual Boy, the Nintendo Switch in my personal opinion is the best console ever made, the ability to play as a standard game console or as a handheld is the perfect dream combination.

    So this isnt the Breath of the Wild 2 game that all true Zelda fans are craving for its the upgraded version of the Nintendo Wii Game and with the controls on the Nintendo Switch and updated graphics this will be like playing a new game, the idea of upscaling the graphics and tweaking older games where needed is a great idea because some of the best games of all time still play awesome today they just need the updated graphics, thankfully being able to skip say the motion control swordplay should make this a killer release and remember Nintendo dont usually drop the ball.

    New Pokemon Snap

    The Pokemon have been around since the earl days of Nintendo and spawned Movies Cartoons and a lot of games, always big releases they are surely one of the reasons Nintendo consoles are still here today, the last time we seen Pokemon Snap was on the N64 and its a great move to bring back a game that will work awesome on the Nintendo Switch, the game is going to closely follow the original but with the graphics update and a few tweaks this is going to be awesome.

    Mario Golf Super Rush

    The last time i remember playing a Mario Golf game was on the Nintendo Gamecube and for me the best ever Mario Golf game was Nes Open Tournament on the NES, that was an amazing game, this version of Mario Golf adds things like powerups and not to mention the graphics upgrade and also a story mode, its sure to be an awesome game

    So thats just a few games trending whats your faves coming soon. ...
    by Published on March 1st, 2021 16:51
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    4 Trending Games We Can't Wait to Play in 2021

    Get Your Game Face On!

    2020 has been a slow year. Even for the gaming world. Extension and delayed dates of release of many games were not welcomed very well. The silver lining was the two major consoles that were launched in 2020. We did see the release of some of the most anticipated games too, even if some ended up being disasters.

    Cooped in our houses, video games provided the medium as a creative and fun unifier. With music, arts and films blended together, gaming welcomed all types of people under its tent. Millions of people turned to a new pastime of Gaming! Mobile gamers, Console players, and gamers on PC rose all over the world.

    And now 2021 adds to the glory of gamers as more and more games are getting ready to be released. Take a look at our top four favorites:

    The Axiom Verge 2

    Release Date: Exact date not confirmed but definitely in 2021
    We definitely had to start with our favorite. Probably the best Metroidvania game made by only one person. Developed by Thomas Happ in 2015, it takes the player on a quest as a scientist, Trace. The task is to save an alien world from a mad man. Mentioned as the top 4 games to look forward to by the online game magazine, Gramno, this one has really got us excited. We hope it lives up to the hype.

    New Pokemon Snap

    Release Date: 30th April 2021
    Pokemon has been a favorite classic since 1999. This brings Pokemon to its 25 anniversary this year thereby marketing 2021 as a very important year for Pokemon. The release of Pokemon Snap this April 2021 is much awaited to see the Pokemons in new avatars. You will be photographing more than 200 pokemon on beaches, jungles, deserts, and many more places. Adding to the fun trip will be the task of investigating the mysterious Illumina phenomenon.
    P.S: And it gets better! There have been rumors of sequels of Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Pokemon Shining pearl in the latter half of this year.

    Resident Evil Village

    Release Date: 7th May 2021
    The zombie-like enemies attacking the player and a terrifying female antagonist? Resident Evil Village, also known as Resident Evil 8, is a sequel to Resident Evil 7. It is set a few years after where Ethan goes in search of an answer after a visit from Chris Redfield. It leads him to a mansion occupied by a monster in a creepy village in Europe where he will unearth the answers he seeks.

    Hitman 3

    Released Already: 20th January 2021
    We know it has already been out and chances are you are already playing it. Agent 47, the shiny Assassin with a plethora of disguises and limitless ways of murdering you your target, is coming back up. Hitman 3 is the conclusion to the World of Assassins trilogy. Agent 47 returns to the most ruthless and deadly contract of his career. Diana Burnwood 47 and Lucas Grey join hands with him. The mission is to eliminate the partners of the Province.

    Take A Break And Have Some Fun!

    Gaming provides a great escape from our monotonous life. It gives you a chance to be on an adventure right from the comfort of your house! Nothing also beats the sense of accomplishment you get at the end of a long game. Go on, enjoy gaming this 2021!

    by Published on February 16th, 2021 22:04
    1. Categories:
    2. PC News

    Major tech firms are protesting against Nvidia's $40 billion acquisition of UK semiconductor firm Arm.
    The deal was announced back in September and is currently under review by antitrust regulators in the US, UK, European Union and China.
    Bloomberg reports several companies -- including Google, Microsoft and Qualcomm -- are asking for these regulators to intervene.
    According to the site's sources, at least one of these companies wants the deal to be stopped altogether.
    The concern centres around Arm's work providing semiconductors and essential chips to companies such as Apple, Amazon, Samsung, Huawei and Intel.
    The firm currently provides its services to all clients across the tech industry, but the likes of Microsoft and Google are concerned that the acquisition would allow Nvidia to limit supply to rivals or increase prices.

    Nvidia acquisition of Arm under fire from Microsoft and Google | GamesIndustry.biz
    by Published on February 16th, 2021 22:03
    1. Categories:
    2. PC News

    Consumer spending in the US for PC gaming hardware and accessories reached $4.5 billion in 2020.
    That's a 62% increase compared to 2019, and more than double the total sales of 2017, NPD said in its latest report.
    Digital PC games content also grew 19% in 2020, reaching $7.5 billion in revenue. PC gaming accessories overall grew 81% year-on-year, while hardware grew 57%.
    All categories of gaming hardware and accessories encountered double-digital growth, NPD continued, with a particular boom for headsets, monitors and keyboards, likely driven by the working-from-home shift due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    PC gaming hardware and accessories spending grew 62% in the US in 2020 | GamesIndustry.biz
    by Published on January 25th, 2021 22:47
    1. Categories:
    2. PC News

    OpenTTD v1.11.0 beta1 is released. OpenTTD is an open source simulation game based upon the popular Microprose game "Transport Tycoon Deluxe", written by Chris Sawyer. It attempts to mimic the original game as closely as possible while extending it with new features.

    OpenTTD is modelled after the original Transport Tycoon game by Chris Sawyer and enhances the game experience dramatically. Many features were inspired by TTDPatch while others are original.

    Significant enhancements from the original game include:
    bigger maps (up to 64 times in size)
    stable multiplayer mode for up to 255 players in 15 companies, or as spectators
    dedicated server mode and an in-game console for administration
    IPv6 and IPv4 support for all communication of the client and server
    in game downloading of AIs, NewGRFs, scenarios and heightmaps
    new pathfinding algorithms that makes vehicles go where you want them to
    autorail/-road build tool, improved terraforming
    canals, shiplifts, aqueducts
    larger, non-uniform stations and the ability to join them together
    mammoth and multi-headed trains
    different configurable models for acceleration of vehicles
    clone, autoreplace and autoupdate vehicles
    the possibility to build on slopes and coasts
    advanced/conditional orders, share and copy orders
    longer and higher bridges including several new designs, plus fully flexible tracks/roads under bridges
    reworked airport system with many more airports/heliports (e.g. international and metropolitan)
    presignals, semaphores, path based signalling
    support for TTDPatch NewGRF features offering many options for graphics and behaviour configuration/modification
    drive-through road stops for articulated road vehicles and trams
    multiple trees on one tile
    bribe the town authority
    many configuration settings to tune the game to your liking
    save games using zlib compression for smaller sizes, while not interrupting gameplay
    significant internationalisation support. OpenTTD has already been translated into over 50 languages
    dynamically created town names in 18 languages, plus NewGRF support for additional languages
    freely distributable graphics, sounds and music
    framework for custom (user) written AIs
    zooming further out in the normal view and zooming out in the small map
    Lots of effort has been put into making OpenTTD easy to use. These include:

    convert rail tool (to electrified rail, monorail, and maglev)
    drag&drop support for almost all tools (demolition, road/rail building/removing, stations, scenario editor, etc)
    sorting of most lists based on various criteria (vehicle, station, town, industries, etc.)
    mouse wheel support (scroll menus, zoom in/out)
    autoscroll when the mouse is near the edge of the screen/window
    sell whole train by dragging it to the dynamite trashcan
    cost estimation with the 'shift' key
    advanced options configuration window, change settings from within the game
    Graphical/interface features:

    screenshots can be in BMP, PNG or PCX format (select in game options menu)
    more currencies (including Euro introduction in 2002)
    extra viewports to view more parts of the game world at the same time
    resolution and refresh rate selection for fullscreen mode
    colourful newspaper after a certain date
    colour coded vehicle profits
    game speed increase (through fast forward button or by pressing the TAB key)
    snappy and sticky windows that always stay on top and neatly align themselves to other windows
    more hotkeys for even less mouse-clicking
    support for 32 bit graphics
    support for right-to-left languages
    support for other (sized) fonts where the user interface scales based on the font and translation

    OpenTTD Changelog:
    Feature: [GS] Ability to set some extra text in the industry window (#8576)
    Feature: Show rainforest under vegetation on smallmap (#8562)
    Feature: Automatically determine window size on new install (#8536)
    Feature: Towns can build tunnels (#8473)
    Feature: Make maximum length of town bridges depend on population (with a minimum limit of 4) (#8439)
    Feature: New icons for renaming and go-to-location on GUI windows, and improve consistency of usage (#8455)
    Feature: Support for ARM64 on Apple Silicon and Windows (#8340, #8577, #8583)
    Feature: Add an option to disable tree growth completely (#8415)
    Feature: Support for Emscripten (play-OpenTTD-in-the-browser!) (#8355)
    Feature: Show group name as part of the default vehicle name (#8307)
    Feature: "Frozen" economy setting that stops production changes and industry closures (#8282)
    Feature: New velocity unit "tiles/day" (#8278)
    Feature: Option to automatically remove signals when placing rail (#8274)
    Feature: Increase max possible distance from border for oil refineries and rigs (#8237)
    Feature: Improve tree planting window, and allow planting 'clumps' of trees by dragging in the scenario editor (#8234)
    Feature: Indian Rupee (INR) currency (#8136)
    Feature: [GS] Ability to give a company exclusive access to an industry (#8115)
    Feature: Hotkeys for Land Info window, News window & close error window (#8053, #8266)
    Feature: Improve rendering of large viewports (#7962)
    Feature: [GS] Influence industry production changes from GameScript (#7912)
    Feature: [GS] Push-buttons on storybook pages (#7896)
    Feature: Option to group vehicle lists by shared orders (#7028)
    Feature: Drag-and-drop vehicles in group GUI for shared order groups (#7028)
    Add: [GS] A tile parameter to GSCompany::ChangeBankBalance for showing changes more visually (#8573)
    Add: [NewGRF] Allow NewGRF vehicles to query the current rail/road/tram ...
    by Published on January 25th, 2021 22:34
    1. Categories:
    2. Retro Consoles/Translation News

    Gopher2600 v0.8.1 is released. Gopher2600 is an emulator for the Atari 2600. Whilst the performance is not as efficient as some other emulators it is none-the-less suitable for playing games, on a reasonably modern computer, at the required 60fps. (The development machine for Gopher2600 has been an i3-3225, dating from around 2012.)

    Gopher2600 v0.8.1 changelog:
    Performance improvements
    - significant speed increase for ARM emulation
    - particularly noticeble for large ARM programs
    - small TIA speed improvements
    Screen resizing improved
    MNetwork (E7) fingerprinting improved. Now catches more ROMs
    created in the modern era (ie. Congo Bongo Demo)


    http://www.emucr.com/2021/01/gopher2600-v081.html ...
    by Published on January 25th, 2021 22:31
    1. Categories:
    2. Retro Consoles/Translation News

    Steem SSE Steem SSE v4.0.2 R30 is released. Steem is an emulator for the Atari STE computer created many years ago by Anthony and Russell Hayward. Steem SSE is a new version of Steem based on this release. 'SSE' stands for 'Steven Seagal Edition'. Steven Seagal is a well known Aikido grandmaster, action movie star, musician and playboy.


    http://www.emucr.com/2021/01/steem-sse-v402-r30.html ...
    by Published on January 25th, 2021 22:29

    This week New York Magazine featured a new article by journalist David Wallace-Wells about the state of the fight against global warming.

    He warns that "Already, the planet is warmer, at just 1.2 degrees, than it has ever been..." But there's also some good news:Just a half-decade ago, it was widely believed that a "business as usual" emissions path would bring the planet four or five degrees of warming — enough to make large parts of Earth effectively uninhabitable. Now, thanks to the rapid death of coal, the revolution in the price of renewable energy, and a global climate politics forged by a generational awakening, the expectation is for about three degrees. Recent pledges could bring us closer to two. All of these projections sketch a hazardous and unequal future, and all are clouded with uncertainties — about the climate system, about technology, about the dexterity and intensity of human response, about how inequitably the most punishing impacts will be distributed. Yet if each half-degree of warming marks an entirely different level of suffering, we appear to have shaved a few of them off our likeliest end stage in not much time at all.

    The next half-degrees will be harder to shave off, and the most crucial increment — getting from two degrees to 1.5 — perhaps impossible, dashing the dream of avoiding what was long described as "catastrophic" change. But for a climate alarmist like me, seeing clearly the state of the planet's future now requires a conspicuous kind of double vision, in which a guarded optimism seems perhaps as reasonable as panic. Given how long we've waited to move, what counts now as a best-case outcome remains grim. It also appears, miraculously, within reach....

    The price of solar energy has fallen ninefold over the past decade, as has the price of lithium batteries, critical to the growth of electric cars. The costs of utility-scale batteries, which could solve the "intermittency" (i.e., cloudy day) problem of renewables and help power whole cities in relatively short order, have fallen 70 percent since just 2015. Wind power is 40 percent cheaper than it was a decade ago, with offshore wind experiencing an even steeper decline. Overall, renewable energy is less expensive than dirty energy almost everywhere on the planet, and in many places it is simply cheaper to build new renewable capacity than to continue running the old fossil-fuel infrastructure. Oil demand and carbon emissions may both have peaked this year. Eighty percent of coal plants planned in Asia's developing countries have been shelved... [I]n the fall, the U.K. pledged to ban nonelectrics by 2030 — a once-unthinkable law coming both too slow and much more quickly than seemed possible not very long ago. Similar plans are now in place in 16 other countries, plus Massachusetts and California. Canada recently raised its tax on carbon sixfold. Italy cut its power-sector emissions 65 percent between 2012 and 2019, and Denmark is now aiming to reduce its overall emissions 70 percent by 2030...

    [F]or all their momentum, renewables still only make up 10 percent of global electricity production. But alarmists have to take the good news where they find it....

    The author also spoke to Pulitzer Prize-winner environmentalist author Elizabeth Kolbert about her new book Under a White Sky:In her book, Kolbert sketches a spectrum of interventions, from electrifying rivers to using CRISPR to save endangered species to solar geoengineering, often called "solar-radiation management," by which aerosol particles are suspended in the stratosphere to deflect some sunlight back into outer space and artificially cool the planet. "There is a slippery slope here, you know?" she says. "And where does that end?

    "But there are not a lot of great choices. We're not returning to a preindustrial climate — not in my lifetime, not in your lifetime."

    by Published on January 25th, 2021 22:27

    Twitter unveiled a feature Monday meant to bolster its efforts to combat misinformation and disinformation by tapping users in a fashion similar to Wikipedia to flag potentially misleading tweets. From a report:The new system allows users to discuss and provide context to tweets they believe are misleading or false. The project, titled Birdwatch, is a standalone section of Twitter that will at first only be available to a small set of users, largely on a first-come, first-served basis. Priority will not be provided to high-profile people or traditional fact-checkers, but users will have to use an account tied to a real phone number and email address.

    "Birdwatch allows people to identify information in Tweets they believe is misleading or false, and write notes that provide informative context," Twitter Vice President of Product Keith Coleman wrote in a press release. "We believe this approach has the potential to respond quickly when misleading information spreads, adding context that people trust and find valuable." While Birdwatch will initially be cordoned off to a separate section of Twitter, the company said "eventually we aim to make notes visible directly on Tweets for the global Twitter audience, when there is consensus from a broad and diverse set of contributors."


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