Everything GTA:V Since 2009

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The Top 5 Worst Console Names Of All Time

From the daft to downright stupid, venture with us as we explore the worst console names ever.

GTA:V A Parent's Guide - Just How Explicit Is It?

Violence, Sex And Gore Like Never Before?

The Playstation Vita's Much Needed Push?

Is It In The Hands Of The Gamers Or Sony?

Gibson Les Paul 60s Tribute 2016 Satin Ebony Model Review

The Gibson Les Paul 1960s Tribute was one of the many models released under Gibson's 2016 range of guitars. The Tribute series aims to recreate the classic feel of a Gibson guitar in three stylish finished: Satin Ebony, Satin Honeyburst and Satin Vintage Sunburst. The 1960s Tribute comes in a choice of three classic colours (I went for the elusive Satin Black finish) with Alnico V P-90 pickups installed. With the intention of offering the undeniable quality of a Gibson guitar at an affordable price, many initially rolled suspicious eyes at the 2016 tribute range. Obviously this is a budget range when compared to Gibson's flagship ranges (RRP: $899), so many questioned whether it was worth producing considering Gibson's sister company, Epiphone, specialise in the more wallet friendly ranges.

Official Specification

  • Tuners: Traditional tuners
  • Neck width: Historic original 1 11/16" neck width
  • Nut: TekToid nut
  • Neck heel: Classic Les Paul neck heel
  • Carrying case: Padded gigbag
  • Modern weight relief: Maple and mahogany body with modern weight relief
  • Pickups: Two vintage-style P-90s
  • Fingerboard: Thicker one-piece rosewood fingerboard
  • Setup: Comprehensive hand-finished setup
  • Neck profile: Slim '60s-style neck profile

  • From the get-go this guitar amazed me. From the moment I unzipped the free high quality Gibson gig-bag included with every model, I was ablaze with sweet caramely tones that were excreted from the woodgrain. When I held my model in my hands for the first time I was in awe at how luscious this beast felt in my hands. This is how it must feel for mothers when they hold their fresh firstborn for the first time. I had previously tested this model in a nearby store, but the feeling of holding your own model was something to savour. Straight out of the box this guitar was perfectly playable. The action was finely tuned to be super low, the paint job looked utterly fantastic and the pickups screamed. Oh how did the pickups scream. If you have not played P-90 pickups before I would compare them to a rambunctious Telecaster. P-90s are single coil pickups with a hell of a lot of bite. Although they were first produced in 1946 by Gibson, P-90 pickups made a name for themselves in rock and roll due to their feisty characteristics and trebly, nasally tone that makes the high end notes really screech. Do not for a second think that the pickups can't do bassy tones well either, P-90s are perfectly capable of delivering a heavy, thumpy low end too. In fact, P-90s can be used in a variety of genres from rock, to blues, to folk, to indie rock and even metal. These are very unique pickups. Pair this guitar with a Marshall valve amp and dial the volume up loud for the full experience. The guitar is exceptionally light due to the modern weight relief even though it is a maplewood body and mahogany fretboard. Despite being a budget model, the tuners really impressed me. Not only do they keep the guitar in tune for long periods of time after semi aggressive playing, but the green tuning keys really catch the eye on stages. The Grover tuning machines really do offer maximum bang for your buck.

    For the price this model was a steal. I have bought Epiphones in this price range and although they were great, fantastic guitars, the feeling of owning a Gibson with that iconic headstock is like nothing else. The feel of the satin finish paint is quite wonderful too. After a good few years of gigging this guitar will age to give you the elusive 'worn' look as the paint wears thin in certain high friction areas. As the photos show, the matte black finish is really quite the respectable aesthetic.

     Overall, the guitar looks incredible and sounds incredible, however there are some issues that need to be addressed here.

    Robot Tuners
    2016 was an iconic year for Gibson as they began experimenting in robotics on most of their instruments. The Tribute series was not immune to this decision. The robotics have been widely hailed as an addition that was mostly pointless as they cut very little time from the tuning process and sometimes went catastrophically wrong which caused huge delay. In spite of this, the Tribute series comes in two models: the T series and the HP series. While the T series is kitted out with traditional specs and slightly cheaper (non-robotic tuners, fast heel neck), the HP models come with all of the glitz and glamour of the 2016 Gibson experimentation. While it must be said that the HP model robotic tuners were a gimmick, the fast heel neck was not. After my first play of the Traditional series in my nearby Dawson's shop I was amazed at how easy the fast heel neck made it to hit higher frets. When my guitar arrived, having ordered the T series, I was disappointed Gibson did not extend the fast heel neck to this product too. Not only is it more ergonomic for the player, but it is fast becoming the industry standard to round out the heel neck joint on guitars.

    This is not an issue for me as I admire this design, but many people claim to dislike non-minded guitars. The Tribute series does not have binding on any of the models. Although it lacks the binding, the rustic satin finish paint job finishes the guitar off and completes the look. If this guitar did not have a Nitrocellulose paint job it would not look as good without the binding, but you really have to see in real life how good this guitar looks. In fact, when I first saw it in the shop but jumped out at me so I gave it a play. A month later I took the plunge and bought it online. Best impulse buy ever?
    Most likely.

    Overall thoughts
    For what I paid (£500) this guitar was an absolute steal. A high quality Gibson guitar with pickups (the P-90s) that none of my other guitars have. The neck is nice and thin but wide, providing ample space to comfortably play chords but not too much where stretches are hard (I have tiny hands). The paint on the neck is comfortable and smooth, almost as if it moulds to your hands. The guitar looks utterly phenomenal in pictures and even better in person, nailing that classic tuxedo styling of guitar. Hanging this baby on a wall in your music space is bound to turn the heads of guests. What is an added bonus is the high quality gig bag. I've spent money on gig bags worse than this one (I assume the RRP is around £59.99 for the quality received). It makes transport easy and keeps my pride and joy safe from the elements. I will say that in terms of improvement Gibson could add a better truss cover ie: one that is not blank. Furthermore, they could make the rounded neck heel to all models instead of it being locked to the HP models. I understand this is a budget Gibson, but a Bigsby tailpiece would really finalise the model and add the sophisticated icing this model deserves. This however can be done on a DIY basis so it is definitely something I will consider in the future. If you are on the market for a new toy to play with that sounds different to your other guitars and looks a treat, this is your go-to model. Although the 2016 1950s Tribute has the same specs but with humbucker pickups, I opted for this model due to being P-90 equipped. If you pass by a shop with one of these bad boys on display, I implore you to try it out for yourself hooked up to an amp. This guitar absolutely offers the classic Gibson experience at a bargain price. What are you waiting for?

    For more information on this model please visit Gibson's official product listing.

    Christmas Ad Hype Is Going The Way Of The Dinosaurs

    Christmas. That time of year we all love, unless you're called Scrooge.
    What is not to love about meeting up with the family, having bucks fizz, getting bubbly and eating enough food to last a week in a day and of course... THE PRESENTS?!

    Because new stuff is always good right?
    That's what I thought.

    So when it comes to the decisions that lead us to buy new stuff, what could it be?
    Personal taste?
    Actual need?
    Your friends have it?
    A recommendation?
    Or because an advert had some whacky but almost cute bug-eyed fuzzy creature telling you to buy it?

    Definitely the latter.
    Ever since my youth I've always viewed the Christmas advert hype train as a ploy.
    A big fat ploy by millionaire company owners to ease you into their brick and mortar boundaries so you can part with your hard-earned pennies.

    Or in technical terms, marketing genius.

    And this is why they bug me. They get under my skin.

    Everyone generally overlooks them and appraises them for their creative genius, knowing they're adverts for shops that they won't even visit until they're married with a mortage and three kids, yet they continue to talk about them..

    It's become part of our culure to anticipate companies producing Christmas adverts.

    Ever heard of a movie?

    This is why it irritates me, because ADVERTS get so much attention.
    An advert.
    An attempt to make you buy something.

    But it's become so ingrained in our culture.

    Please, if you really wish to celebrate Christmas, don't hype up some corporate ploy, instead engage in more cultural practices.

    Watch a movie, listen to music, go to Christmas markets...

    The list goes on.

    Stop letting corporations have so much attention because they dress themselves up in Christmas to get inside your head.

    See beyond it, be clear.

    They're just adverts.

    "Call of Duty Will Be Good This Year, Trust Me"

    Ever since the Call of Duty franchise started being released on a yearly basis back in 2007 people have constantly sought reasons to continue paying $60 on a yearly basis for the same package in a different skin.

    However, this year will be different.

    15-year-old Bryan Gibbs, who has frantically exhausted the series with his xFaz3Sk0p3x clan since Modern Warfare 3 released in 2011, has claimed big things about the multi-billion franchise's 2016 entry.

    "Things will be different this year, Call of Duty will be good this year, trust me"

    He then went on to claim:

    "I like a good game of CoD as much as any other player, but I feel people complain too much."

    "I only started playing in 2011 when we played Mw3 at Sam's birthday party, but the series is the best thing in gaming, and to say this year's release will be boring is simply silly"

    Although currently unconfirmed and unannounced, the expected game to release in November 2016 will bring big things according to Bryan. His hopes include:

    "I really can't wait to play with the lads and shoot things with new guns. People say they're just skins but you can really feel it in the guns, they feel different! Oh I also hope they bring more perks to make the game easier because I sometimes get really wound up, but not as much as the squeakers with noobtubes! I am a real skilled player, I mean I'm probably good enough to play in a world tournament. I don't leave the house much so I get plenty of time to hone my skills, and my mum complains but she just doesn't understand. Bring on more CoD!"

    He then added more after CGUK urged him to give us more detail:

    "I just love CoD and guns and I know them really well! I'm probably going to get an M4 when I'm old enough, they're just so fun! One problem is that if Infinity Ward do it then it probably won't have zombies and I really like zombies and stuff, but then Infinity Ward make them better so I can't wait to see the new modern guns!"

    Nintendo Reveal Dress-Up "Wear-it Controller"

    Following months of teasing their next-generation system, Nintendo President Tatsumi Kimishima today confirmed the very first piece of information regarding the new system's user interface and how the games are played. He said:

    "With this system we wanted to bring something entirely new [to] the table. We want to deliver the true Nintendo experience through a revolutionary controller design which offers ease and comfort to the player enjoying the many classics we will release on this system. In addition, we'd like to announce a breakthrough development in controller design. Here at Nintendo we think for the future. Like the Wii-mote's intuitive, unique design, the upcoming Nintendo NX costume controller will offer an extra level of immersion to the player within specific titles. Ladies and gentlemen, I'd like to introduce you to the future. The 'Wear-It' controller!"

    ... he continued:

    "This concept is quite exciting if I dare say so myself. Unlike our competitors we allow a firsthand experience within our games through this groundbreaking new controller."

    He continued, stating the features of the new controller and how it will work:

    "In order to operate this controller you must have the default controller to play the game, however if you dress up in say, a specialised controller Mario outfit, you will acquire specific bonuses within the Mario game you're playing! It's really inventive. These bonuses include double points and free Mario DLC costumes!"

    When asked if he's being serious, and if he considered the social implications of dressing up as a fictional character to play a game, he responded with:

    "...it's all a bit of fun really isn't it? At Nintendo, we're all about fun. You may be dressed up as Donkey Kong when the window cleaner decides to clean your windows, and he might just laugh at you, but really, who's the winner here? You're having a great time, fully immersed in the game while he's cleaning windows! It's a no-brainer to buy this controller!"

    Although he didn't mention a release date for the new 'Wear-it' controller, he did give a broad timeframe:

    "we don't know when it'll be out because the guys in R&D are having too much fun with it, but when it is out you'll know because we'll plaster it all over bus stops in Derbyshire so you don't miss it!"

    There you have it folks! What an exciting time to be alive! In the past decade we've seen the advancement of graphics beyond our wildest dreams, the original Wii, the Oculus Rift and the latest innovation, the Wear-it controller!

    Post thoughts below on this truly remarkable piece of gaming gear!

    Mafia III At Gamescom 2015?

    Since 2002, the Mafia series has generated a sizeable amount of publicity within the gaming world. Ranging from controversies to all-out praise, the Mafia series has had an interesting life to say the least. following an 8-year hiatus since the original game, the series resurfaced in 2010 under the follow-up, Mafia:II which was developed by 2K Czech, yet the ending of the game left much to be desired from the perspective of the gamer. Since the follow-up to the original Mafia's launch, the series has remained dormant for half a decade, opening up room for speculation as to where the open-world sandbox series would go next.

    Fortunately, the latest development will leave the series-aficionados relieved. During a Q&A session on Twitter, Rick Pasqualone, voice actor for protagonist Vito Scaletta from Mafia:II, posted this very interesting tweet following the E3 2015 event...
    Although this arguably confirms the development of Mafia:III, which rumours state began development in 2012, this latest insight into the game's status somewhat implies a sense of immediacy. The wording of the tweet shows disappointment, so perhaps the game was in a presentable state when this tweet was published, indicating we could be on the brink of a Mafia:III unveiling. Therefore, could Mafia:III be revealed at the next large gaming event of 2015: Gamecom 2015? Only time will tell, however with news like this becoming more frequent Mafia:III is definitely happening, and we're most certainly coming ever-closer to seeing it in reality. If a 2015 Gamescom reveal happened, then a mid-2016 release is very likely.

    The game is likely to be released on PC, PS4 and Xbox One.

    Whatever your thoughts are on this development feel free to comment below.

    The PS3, Two Decades On: How Will It Be Remembered?

    The end of an era has come upon us and with the release of Sony's Playstation 3 successor in 2013, the aptly named Playstation 4, the Playstation 3 is increasingly coming of age, but the question is, how will it be remembered?

    To this day the inceptive Playstation 1 and succeeding Playstation 2 are remembered fondly. Add to that the Playstation Portable of 2005 and you'll find yourself an awful lot of hindsight to use up. Regardless of the blocky graphics, arguably, in some instances, tank-like controls and voice acting so cheesy your gran would think she's gone back forty years ('Jill Sandwich' anybody?), all of the aforementioned systems are still played, enjoyed and loved by the younger generations of the modern age. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see past the squarish visuals of the original Crash Bandicoot into a world of fun, or equally, a seasoned explorer to see how ambitious the original Tomb Raider games were for their time, most of which still stand strong today, be it in remakes/remasters or through Youtubers devoted to reincarnate the past. If games with little resemblance to reality in terms of functionality, graphics and audio quality are still remembered positively for the fun experiences they delivered, then how about games with high quality graphics, lifelike functionality and crisp, 1080p audio tracks?

    One of the defining factors of the Playstation 3, for which it will be loved for generations, are undeniably its games. Forget the 23-day PSN outage of 2011, or the hickups many games faced around time of launch regarding patching, glitches and functionality issues, because in a decade none of these things will matter.

    Despite having a colossal library of games under its belt a key element of the Playstation 3 will be missing: the online functionality. Nobody expects online game servers to go on forever. It's financially absurd as players inevitably stray away from games once loved over time. This is why certain games such as Call of Duty: 4 Modern Warfare, Gran Turismo: 5, Battlefield: 3, LittleBigPlanet and Grand Theft Auto IV/V will lose their value with time, never to be enjoyed in the same way again. Games have even had online functionality discontinued as early as 2013. However, although some games won't be able to be enjoyed with friends, we must concentrate on the core experience of the system: the exact same element that people remember the Playstation 1, 2 and Portable so fondly for.

    The legacy of the Playstation 3 will undeniably be a deliverance of a greater degree of realism in mainstream games. For the first time we were allowed to appreciate the minute details of games on a console. Although this was doable on PC, high definition was a first for Sony's system, bar a handful of later Playstation 2 games. For the first time games from a Sony system looked real, voice acting was consistently lifelike and gamers were presented with more in-game functions than ever before. Weapons could be tweaked to the minute details, cars could be customised in a way that would appease even the greatest OCD, and football teams could be crafted with all the latest winners. Yet this wasn't the only factor that was new for Playstation, for the largest development was arguably the playstation network - a digital marketplace in which gamers could buy digital games, expansion packs, avatars to customise their profile, themes to customise their system and classic games they thought they'd forgotten. The real advancement was dynamic games. Games that could be expanded upon beyond what was purchased in the store. Games that, a first for Playstation, could grow with age.

    Key classics that will go down in history come in abundance on the Playstation 3. It doesn't take a genius to see how revolutionary LittleBigPlanet was in DIY game design, or a masters-degree game designer to see the true beauty of every Grand Theft Auto game on the Playstation 3. During the system's tenure of being Sony's primary system, every genre saw development beyond what the Playstation 2 could handle. Stories became richer as the 50GB blu-ray discs allowed for more content than ever before. The system provided a portal for enacting the vision gamers had had since gaming's inception: the prospect of fully interactive movies. Heavy Rain, the Uncharted trilogy, the Assassin's Creed series, the Fallout duet, Sniper Elite, The Last of Us, Call of Duty... the system had taken Sony into the future of video games. 3D development was the former 'great leap', and believability within this was the succeeding 'giant leap' in the gaming world. The Playstation 3 is home to many games that were created during a gaming revolution, and for that it will be remembered. The true legacy of the Playstation 3 was a more dynamic gaming experience, a first for Sony in terms of the inner-workings of games and online functionality which extended and advanced games.

    Five of Gaming's Biggest Recent Racing Hits

    The adrenaline rush and thrills derived from driving flat out at scorching speeds, the crafty overtaking manoeuvres performed on those tight corners and the sheer joy of winning a hard fought race are some of the experiences that are no longer exclusive to F1 and other real world racing drivers. By making stunning racing games that are graphically close to reality, gaming console makers Xbox and Play Station are making every one of us a Michael Schumacher in our own right. These companies are constantly pushing the limits of console racing and are coming up with games that not only look and sound great but are also engaging and enthralling. They give racer the feeling of being immersed in a real race. Every year these companies come up with a host of new racing games that makes the older ones look like a thing of past. We take a look at some of the best racing games that you can enjoy these days.

    Need for Speed:  - Coming from the Electronic Arts stable, need for speed has become a name synonymous with high quality racing, and the most wanted and hot pursuit series is no exception. It’s a game series that can be played without putting a foot on the brakes and if some car comes in the way, you may feel free to bang right through it and watch the carnage flying all across. This game series is spectacular to play both from the cops or criminal street racers perspective.

    Grid 2 - Introduced around 5 years back, the original Grid racing game wooed both casual and intense games alike. Grid 2 takes the legacy forward by sporting stunning visuals, breath-taking environments and a range of immensely powerful cars. From the moment you grab the console, you're behind the car without an unwanted storyline getting in the way. All in all it’s a slick racing game that has a lot to offer to the gamers.

    Dirt 3 - It may not be the newest kid on the block but dirt 3 still remains one of the best off-road arcade racing games of all time. A definite improvement over dirt 2, the game brings a lot to the table with split-screen multiplayer, large number of vehicle classes to choose from and a wide array of customisable difficulty settings options. The game handles like a charm irrespective of the difficulty level you opt for and whether or not you take advantage of stability and braking assists.

    Gran Turismo 6 – A game so pleasantly intriguing that it’s bound to give you some sleepless nights. Top notch handling, meticulous attention to detail and its unwavering dedication to simulation make this game an absolute treat for gamers.

    Asphalt: Airborne – Available on all major mobile platforms, this game has jaw dropping graphics and smooth controls that can match any console quality game. Asphalt airborne is all about fast paced driving on good looking locations and smashing asunder the cars ahead. It also offers a competitive multiplayer option wherein you can test your mettle against racers from all over the world.

    Author Bio – Dehlia is a technology and internet marketing blogger. Her blog, introsweb.net shares posts on latest technology and gadgets news. Visit her blog to learn great things from knowledgeable write-ups.