Reviews
Sound Blaster ZxR
Sound Card

By Jorge Figueiredo - September 2nd, 2014

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Recently, we reviewed the PCI-express-based Soundblaster Audigy Fx. A “budget card”, the Fx is comparable to on-board audio, as the core is a RealTek chip – the same one used in many all-in-one motherboard solutions (and if not the same, then definitely similar). Now, what if you were looking to spend a little extra money on your desktop’s audio solution; what would you choose? Creative Labs sent us the Sound Blaster ZxR in an attempt to help us answer the question. The answer? From its distinctive look to its powerful audio delivery, this card is almost perfect for gamers with some scratch looking to take advantage of audio goodness – both in-game and out-game.

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Events
Fan Expo Canada 2014
Playstation

By Jorge Figueiredo - September 2nd, 2014

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Like Microsoft, Sony’s booth had a number of gaming stations set up for people to try out games. I took the same approach as I did with the Microsoft booth: that of an observer (for the most part) – watching the games being played from the sidelines and noting the reactions of Fan Expo goers who were trying them out. I don’t recall there being any closed door sessions – but this might be because I was distracted by the game demo taking place in the centre of the Sony booth: Drive Club.

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Events
Fan Expo Canada 2014
Xbox

By Jorge Figueiredo - September 1st, 2014

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Fan Expo is a time for gaming giants to flex their muscles and show off what they have coming down the pipe (see what I did there?) – and so I spent a little bit of time at the Microsoft booth, checking out some of their lineup for the upcoming holiday season. There were a lot of gaming stations placed around the booth, and a really great “theater” setup in the middle (which played trailers to upcoming games). As time was limited, I didn’t really get a chance to get in on the action for too many games (I don’t believe in line-jumping) – but I did get a chance to observe the games from the sidelines and gauge peoples’ reactions!

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Events
Fan Expo Canada 2014
Warner Bros

By Jorge Figueiredo - August 31st, 2014

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Adjacent to the Sony booth, the Warner Bros. Booth is hard to miss. In the front corner of the booth sits a full-scale Batmobile – the version from Batman: Arkham Knight. No, you can’t get in – but you can take your picture with it. Towards the back of the booth are a few game displays, showing Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor, Dying Light, and Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham. To the right, a merchandise shop, behind which is a special “screening” room for people that want to try out Mortal Kombat X. As my time was limited, I checked out Mortal Kombat X, and played a little bit of Shadow of Mordor.

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Reviews
Oculus
Blu-Ray

By Jorge Figueiredo - August 30th, 2014

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Throughout the history of horrors and thrillers, reflections have had their fair share of screen time. Sometimes, reflections reveal a monster or murderer sneaking up behind an unsuspecting character, causing the audience to shout out at the screen. At other times, the lack of a character’s reflection in a mirror hints at their supernatural origin. And who can forget those movies that feature horrible creatures that are summoned through the use of a mirror? Yes, reflections have the capacity to add an extra layer of fright to almost any already tense situation. Oculus (WWE Studios, Blumhouse Productions, and Intrepid Pictures), a 2014 horror film written by Mike Flanagan and Jeff Howard, takes a mirror, and places it squarely in the center of a twisted plot. While slow-moving at times, I found that Oculus was a clever film, pushing forth a scary idea and then wrapping around the viewer’s imagination to great effect, making it a somewhat refreshing film from a genre that seems to be filled with boring and tired movies in more recent times.

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Events
Fan Expo Canada 2014
Games to Play

By Jorge Figueiredo - August 30th, 2014

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One of the cool things about Fan Expo is that patrons have the chance to play games that aren’t out yet. Sony, Microsoft, and Warner Brothers have displays there (more on those later). There were two standalone displays that were each dedicated to a single game. They might be of interest to you.

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Events
Fan Expo Canada 2014
Ubi Workshop

By Jorge Figueiredo - August 29th, 2014

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If you ever wondered what Santa’s elves are like, just go to the Ubi Workshop booth. They are located towards the back along the edge of their parent’s (Ubisoft’s) booth footprint. While they may not have pointy ears, or work in the North Pole, they certainly know how to work magic (and frankly, be jolly). While Ubisoft is busy making immersive games, Ubi Workshop brings the games to life by creating great merchandise centered around the worlds featured within those titles.

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