MS Flight Simulator, Xbox Series X

MS Flight Simulator, it’s here, finally here. Eleven months have literally ‘flown’ by since the amazing PC version hit the skies. Console gamers have had to wait patiently like Air New Zealand flights landing in Sydney, (behind Qantas arrivals).

Not only that, it’s also on bloody Gamepass, which is turning into the must have service on the planet.

Everybody with any itch to travel needs to experience this game at some level. If you haven’t got a kickass PC, get an Xbox, get Gamepass and get flying.

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Xbox Wireless Headset

Yes, I got influenced, the Xbox Wireless Headset was not something I really needed, but seeing it flaunted on Socials and flying off the shelves. I decided I’d better shell out for a set before they were gone. So after seeing my local EB Games run out, I hit a quick ‘Click and Collect’ on the JB hiFi website and turned to my flexible friend.

I had an email from them by 6:30pm, and was dashing into late night shopping to pick it up by 7:30pm. No supply issues there.

Fortunately we’ve had a few Headsets run through the team in recent times. Wired, wireless and both first or third party.

At the end of the day, it’s about how they enhance your game time. The Xbox Wireless Headset is no exception, the first reveals promised a quality unit and they didn’t mislead.

Fresh out of the minimalistic packaging and box, which is more PS5 than Series X the new Headset smell is unmistakable.

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The Medium, Xbox S|X Review

I think most would accept, Xbox’s Gamepass is the revelation of this generation. Over one hundred games to choose from and xbox exclusives are released straight to Gampass at launch. It is a brilliant, brilliant subscription service.  And, excuse my glibness, it saves gamers from mistakenly spending money on titles that are probably not destined for greatness, (*cough) like The Medium.

The Medium is the latest game from Blooper Team who made the brilliant “Observer”, a Sci-fi Detective adventure released in 2017. This time round, they have ditched the cyber-punky aesthetic and are channeling some silent hill-esque tension set in an abandoned Kraków resort in Poland. Its moody, inspired by the greats of the genre and has a fresh take on puzzle mechanics.

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2020 Roundup, the year that was.

How do you have a 2020 Roundup? A year that has put the Annus in Annus Horribulus. The ongoing pandemic notwithstanding its been a year where everybody seems to have shared tragedy on some level. Having lost close friends, dear pets and suffered a weather event catastrophe I’m just glad COVID has not yet reached my door.

Here we at the dawn of a New Year, and just like twelve short months ago. Everybody is wishing that when that calendar clicks over the trend gets better. We should take a quick spin around the highlights of what we managed under such adversity.

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Xbox Series X – The First 14 Days

I am one of the lucky ones. Despite constant doubt and rumours of supply shortages my Xbox Series X Pre Order was waiting for me instore on November 10th. I was working, it was a long day. This isn’t a deep dive into the hardware, or even the next gen games. This is a overarching opinion piece from someone who has been Xboxing since day one, almost 19 years ago.

I have be enveloped by the Xbox ecosystem, met great people online, suffered RROD, tried to dance and sing, been a rock god, and most importantly, loved the games.

Gaming is in my blood. At almost 50 years old there isn’t a day go by that I don’t play a game or at least do something related to gaming. And to my wife’s dismay, our teenager is following in my footsteps. I have owned countless consoles, PC’s, handhelds, all-in-one’s, and devices. From C64’s to Gizmondos. 386 PC’s to 3DS.

I love all gaming and am definitely not one caught up in fanboy, PC master race, console war rubbish. I want to play games. Nothing more, nothing less.

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XBOX SERIES S, Impressions

Oh the excitement! Oh the Hype! We are entering a new generation of Consoles and I have been lucky enough to have an Xbox Series S for the last couple of weeks to play with.

Richard has put the Big Brother Series X through its paces, so check out his impressions in that post.

But for now, here is my Review of the lil Xbox Series S.

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XBOX SERIES X, Impressions

I’ll come straight out with this, Microsoft and Xbox ANZ very kindly supplied us with an XBOX SERIES X in their review window. That means we’ve had it for about a week and a half. What follows are my thoughts after unboxing and those first steps with the next generation of gaming.

Don’t judge an Xbox Series X by its cover.

At least until you’ve read a bit.

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Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020: Come fly with me, let’s fly, let’s fly away

I didn’t expect to love Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 as much as I did when I first started playing it but I do. I love it.

There’s just something therapeutic and relaxing about taking to the skies in a Cessna or a Daher TBM930 single-engine and just flying from point A to point B. Heck, often there is no point B involved at all. I often just found myself taking off from an airport, be it Christchurch, in New Zealand, or Tekapo or Brisbane or Melbourne and just flying around, looking at houses and seeing how close I can get to the ground before the plane’s warning klaxon does my head in.

I’ll be completely honest: I’m a hopeless pilot. My first few take-offs were sketchy af. They still are sometimes, actually.

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Minecraft Dungeons, Review

Minecraft Dungeons is an exciting addition to the Minecraft family. We’ve been playing the Mojang block builder for over a decade on a multitude of platforms. Since the Microsoft acquisition in 2014 Minecraft Earth, Stories and Minecraft Dungeons have been the diverse additions, on top of regular world updates. 

Personally I love a good Dungeon Crawl, because nothing beats the smell of loot in  dank tunnel.

The ingredients were already there after ten years of creativity and the story probably wrote itself. Surely it was easy to put together the landscape and inhabitants. The Minecraft palette and world are so familiar now and the engine breathes life into well lit scenes. This isn’t an RTX shaded version of the game, it’s pure and simple and full of joy.

Thanks to Microsoft / Xbox ANZ for providing the review copy.

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Halo Reach (PC): Finishing the fight on a new platform

There’s no denying that Gregorian chants are a cornerstone of the Halo series. They’re unmistakable identifiers for the Master Chief and the fight against the alien covenant. Halo Reach is no exception.

So when the Gregorian chants fired up on the menu screen of the PC version, it brought a smile to both my face – and my ears (if my ears could smile, that is).

I’m not the world’s greatest Halo fan but I’ve played them all. Reach was always at the top of my list as my favourite of the series. Maybe it was because the story told of the close-knit camaraderie between the six members of Noble team. Cat, Emile, Jorge, Jun, Carter and Spartan B-312 (that’s you, by the way). As they take the fight to the covenant on the planet Reach, or maybe it was because Reach wasn’t about Master Chief. Whatever it was, Reach just resonated with me.

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