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In February 2010 I bought my current gaming computer. It works great up to this day but with newer games the demand for performance rises and so I will build a new one. ;) I got the DedSec Edition of Watch_Dogs from my girlfriend as christmas present last year ( :smile: ) and it really challenges my current setup even without anti-aliasing. By the way: Have you seen this funny Watch_Dogs PR stunt that went wrong? :D Another reason to buy a new computer is GTA V which will be very likely released this autumn (I hope the rumors are not true about a delay). Patient PC gamers are finally rewarded with better graphics than the console versions! ;)

So, what is the new configuration? I usually stick to the recommendations by the PC Games Hardware magazine but their last update was in May 2014 which is a lot in my-new-computer-is-already-old-tomorrow time. :D Luckily they also publish single articles with up to date recommendations. It might seem a bit strange to buy a computer now when the new Intel Haswell CPU generation along with the X99 chipset and DDR4 memory will make their debut in the next months. But as far as I know the difference in performance between DDR3 and DDR4 is very small due to the fact that the technology is pretty new. With the new CPU and chipset generation I'm generally a bit cautious because usually it takes some time until there are stable and reliable configurations available. So I decided to not wait for the next generation and started to plan the shopping list. ;) Now for the configuration I ended up with:

With this configuration I should be prepared for the latest games and the several others coming in the next years. :eek3:

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Every generation of videogames strives to be more realistic than the previous one. Therefore reaching photorealism is one of the future trends of videogame development. The steadily increasing performance of modern hardware paves the way for such a progress and is accompanied by the software innovations of gaming engines. Take for example the rain and water effects of the Unreal Engine 4.

A tech demo is one side of the coin. The other side is to put the potential of the gaming engines to use by creating videogames.

Get Even employs a 3D scanning technique to create a virtual and photorealistic replica of an existing environment. Their "What Is Real" teaser video impressively demonstrates the capabilities of their system. Unfortunately the release is planned not before the end of 2015.

Another great example for photorealism in videogames is The Vanishing of Ethan Carter. In contrast to the indoor footage of Get Even this games shows how to bring outdoor scenery to a new level. The authors use a technique called photogrammetry and explain in their blog how it works. Just take a look at the stunning 3D models that you can play around with in their blog post. Both the technique and its application in videogames look very promising. The game will be released on 25th September 2014 and can already be pre-ordered. :eek3:

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Many months ago Markus found an interesting tutorial on how to give letters a vintage and worn-out look. His first project was this awesome Letter from Vault-Tec he made for me because I'm a huge fan of Fallout. Thank you very much! ;)

Look, some news from Vault-Tec:

Letter from Vault-Tec envelope

Uh oh, that doesn't sound good:

Letter from Vault-Tec full

But hey, there is a waiting list!

Letter from Vault-Tec close-up

Confidentiality of correspondence seems to be no issue.

Letter from Vault-Tec envelope close-up

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I've found an interesting review of GTA V which doesn't celebrate the game as other reviews do. It is really worth reading because the author tries to maintain an objective view on the game and explains his opinion very precisely. He criticises the missions for being too linear in this huge open-world gameplay and underlines the balancing act the game does regarding the general mood of misanthropy and satire it conveys. The reviewer also thinks that the dialogues are often unnecessarily crammed with swearwords and explains this circumstance as follows:

"Sam Houser claimed that Rockstar North wanted to make a game about masculinity. What they've actually done is made a game about testosterone, which is a different thing."

Regardless of what positive or negative aspects some people might have found I'm really looking forward to the release of the PC version to review it myself. ;) I hope Rockstar won't let us wait for eight months as it happened with GTA IV and it would be great if they come up with a nice Christmas surprise for us. :D

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This is brilliant. Download Joypad Legacy and start using your iPhone as a gamepad for your Mac or Windows computer.

In comparison to a real gamepad I miss the physical feedback of the buttons. Sometimes your fingers even move slightly off of the touchscreen buttons so you cannot hit them properly. But after a few minutes you get used to it and it works great for playing some games now and then. :smile:

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I found a great article about the differences and commonalities between the science-fiction, fantasy, steampunk and post-apocalyptic genre: Postapocalyptia and Genre Bending in Nerd Fiction

"Post apocalyptic worlds give you an environment where it feels totally organic that elements of both sci fi and fantasy would exist coherently side by side." – Greg Simon

I guess this is one of the reasons why I love the post-apocalyptic world of Fallout. I never got to like the fantasy genre of videogames because I always look for an immersive gaming experience where I can dive into the story and put myself into the shoes of the protagonist. I found it very difficult to get this experience from fantasy or sci-fi games whereas the remains of a destroyed Washington D.C. always seemed more pleasant and appealing to me. ;)

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I know Mary Elizabeth McGlynn for being the voice of the Silent Hill soundtracks but I was a bit surprised to hear her also on the Dishonored Soundtrack!

By the way, a few months ago several soundtracks of Bethesda videogames were release on iTunes. Next to The Elder Scrolls it is possible to buy the sound of Fallout 3, Fallout: New Vegas, Dishonored and Rage.

Please note that the Fallout soundtracks don't cover the wonderful and relaxing songs of the 40s which really define the mood of the game if you ask me. What you get instead are the ambient sounds and the theme music of the game which were created by Inon Zur.

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When there is a new survival-horror or post-apocalyptic game to be released I am always excited to see trailers and how it develops.

A few weeks ago I saw the first impressions of The Last of Us. You can also find a trailer on the official website.

It seems to be an interesting mixture of survival-horror, post-zombie-apocalypse, sneaking and thoughtful used fight elements. The visuals shown in the trailer were stunning and the broken and collapsed buildings almost begged to be discovered. :D

Unfortunately the release will be PS3 exclusive and I have to wait many months for the PC release as I did for GTA IV. But I am sure it will be worth the waiting. :rolleyes:

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I'm looking forward to the next real Metal Gear Solid videogame since last year.

Konami now released a video with 11 minutes of "Metal Gear Solid - Ground Zeroes" gameplay. I could not believe that this was actual gameplay footage until the cutscene changed without any transition to the well-known third-person perspective the player is controlling Snake from.

The game is currently under development for PS3 and Xbox360 but could also be released for next-generation consoles such as PS4 and the next Xbox. :eek3:

I hope this game will bring back the good old Metal Gear Solid charm. "Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance" did not blow my mind but I already expected that. :rolleyes:

EDIT: Hideo Kojima presented an awesome new trailer at GDC 2013. :eek3:

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