Components Platform RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Components RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Nvidia Geforce RTX 3070 Review: Power to Game https://www.gameskinny.com/67ugf/nvidia-geforce-rtx-3070-review-power-to-game https://www.gameskinny.com/67ugf/nvidia-geforce-rtx-3070-review-power-to-game Fri, 08 Jan 2021 13:21:10 -0500 Jason D'Aprile

Nvidia’s new superpowered graphics cards have arrived, as they do, with no small fanfare in the gaming community, especially the company's flagship RTX 3080 and 3090 cards. These high-end GPUs do magical things for an ultimate 4K gaming rig, but they also cost a ton. $700 for the 3080 and a whopping $1500 for the 3090. /p>

If you’re at the new console price point of $500, however, and tired of trying to buy one of those —  or just love PC gaming — the RTX 3070 is a much more comfortable bet with little in the way of meaningful compromise.

There’s a lot to like about the 3070. The card is using the same Ampere GA104 GPU as the RTX 3080 and RTX 3090, if not quite as beefy for obvious reasons. This ensures the card offers the various new and impressive bells and whistles of the RTX line. Specifically, the highlights are ray-tracing and Nvidia’s impressive DLSS AI technology for improving frame-rates (in some cases quite dramatically). 

Nvidia Geforce RTX 3070 Review: Power to Game

 

To put things into a more direct perspective, for $200 less than the RTX 3080, the 3070 frequently proves to be a notably better performer over last year’s $1,000 RTX 2080 Ti. The 3070 lets you rocket past 1080P to extreme details at 1440P and, at the moment anyway, offers exceedingly good 4K performance.

Admittedly, while 4K HDTVs are certainly common enough, PC monitors hitting that level aren’t quite as ubiquitous. 

For games like Fortnite, Call of Duty: Warzone, and Gears of War 5, framerates at 1440p are well over 100fps in our testing. Fortnite with DLSS performance mode turned on hits over 200fps and in quality mode, it was close behind that number.

Other games with notoriously trying engines like Control and Metro Exodus benefit immensely from Nvidia’s DLSS tech. Control in 4K with full details and ray-tracing, for instance, is a slideshow without it (tanking at times as low as 12+/- fps). With DLSS on, the game holds at just around a reasonable 60fps. At 1440p, however, that same high-detail DLSS with ray-tracing goes up to nearly 100fps for Control.  

Another surprising perk comes with Minecraft. Nvidia has worked diligently on creating a truly amazing showcase for the powers of ray-tracing in the sandbox game. Right now, even though the feature is officially supported and out of beta, it's still only available on specific RTX-labeled maps. The effects, however, are gorgeous. Lighting and liquid effects look ethereal, adding an intense level of atmosphere to the maps. 

Nvidia has proven themselves to be reliably adept at updating their drivers to accommodate new releases. As a result, we expect the 3070 to hold an exceptional level of performance in most upcoming games, even if the gains aren’t quite as high as those seen in the 3080.

Testing the 3070 with 3D Mark led to impressive results. We installed the card into an Acer Predator Orion 5000, which sports an Intel i7-8700K CPU and 16GB RAM. Results for 3D Mark's Time Spy benchmark ranked as "Great" with a score of 11,153 (or better than 91% of all results according to 3DMark’s statistics). So, from a pure benchmarking standpoint, the 3070 is no slouch.

Honestly, stress-testing framerates isn’t necessarily the best way to express the performance of a video card. Even at a devoted 4K resolution, it proved unlikely to find any game unplayable on the 3070 after a few minor tweaks to some of the game’s graphics settings. For players who are still good with 1080P, the 3070 is definitely the new card to get, offering intensely high performance at the HD resolution with no compromises.

There are a couple of other reasons to consider the 3070 over the 3080.

It uses around 100 watts less than the 3080, for one thing, so cooling is a bit easier (and quieter). Nvidia recommends a 650-watt power supply at minimum to handle the card. 

The 3070 also has a smaller footprint, coming in at just over 9 inches long (as opposed to the 3080, which is just under 12 inches). This means it fits more comfortably in a wide range of cases, so those with more compact rigs will find this a better choice. The RTX 3070 also sports three DisplayPort 1.4a outputs and an HDMI 2.1 port, so it can handle up to four monitors if needed. 

Nvidia Geforce RTX 3070 Review — The Bottom Line

 

Pros

  • $200 cheaper than the next card in the line
  • Better than last year’s high-end RTX 2080
  • DLSS tech makes ray-tracing and extreme graphic effects smooth and gorgeous
  • Smaller footprint, less power drain, plenty of monitor ports make it fit in a variety of cases

Cons

  • $500 is still a lot of money
  • 8GB of RAM might be an issue for future games at 4K
  • If you only game at 4K, probably go the extra $200 or so for at least the 3080

The general rule of thumb for building and upgrading a gaming PC is getting as much power as you can afford. No matter how you look at it, though, spending between $500 to more than $1,000 for a single component is still painful. So, for those looking for the middle ground between price and super high-end performance, Nvidia’s RTX 3070 is a remarkable video card.  

As it stands, the Nvidia RTX 3070 is the best mid-range card on the market. It easily surpasses anything AMD currently has in this price range and comes close enough to the higher-end cards to not feel like a painful compromise.

For 1440p and 1080p, this card smokes anything we threw at it, with full details and ray-tracing thanks in part, at times, to Nvidia’s DLSS. For 4K, it still proved to be an exceptional card and our primary caveat might be that with only 8GB of onboard RAM, it’s conceivable newer games in the next year or so might need some visual downgrades.

Granted, even the RTX 3080 for $200 more might have this problem as it only has 10 GB. But it’s hard to say if that will matter at all in the next few years.

[Note: Nvidia provided the RTX 3070 GPU used for this review.]

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PlayStation 5 Games Reveal Event Date Set https://www.gameskinny.com/6em5m/playstation-5-games-reveal-event-date-set https://www.gameskinny.com/6em5m/playstation-5-games-reveal-event-date-set Fri, 29 May 2020 13:40:07 -0400 Josh Broadwell

After weeks of rumors about a June PlayStation 5 event, Sony finally announced a solid date. The PlayStation 5 event will air June 4 at 1 p.m. PST/4 p.m. EST on YouTube and Twitch, and it'll last for "a bit more than an hour."

Following the Road to PlayStation deep dive into the PS5's hardware and the DualSense controller reveal, this PS5 event is all about the games. Sony President and CEO Jim Ryan said in a PlayStation Blog post that it'll show off first- and third-party games, from studios "larger and smaller, those newer and those more established."

And all the PlayStation 5 games shown during the event are planned for launch, according to Ryan.

Don't expect anything more about the console itself or the PlayStation 5 price, which experts believe won't come until later (potentially after Microsoft announces the Xbox Series X price).

The original post is over on the PlayStation Blog. We'll be keeping a very close eye on this indeed, so stay tuned to GameSkinny for more PlayStation 5 news as it develops.

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New Kickstarter Seeks Funding For The The World's First Portable Gaming Desk https://www.gameskinny.com/omiki/new-kickstarter-seeks-funding-for-the-the-worlds-first-portable-gaming-desk https://www.gameskinny.com/omiki/new-kickstarter-seeks-funding-for-the-the-worlds-first-portable-gaming-desk Tue, 12 Mar 2019 17:13:03 -0400 QuintLyn

Gaming on the go can be a bit of a pain for PC gamers, who effectively have two choices. Dedicated desktop gamers pack up the entire rig: monitor, case, keyboard, mouse, and anything else they might need, lugging it along with them from place to place.

Other gamers prefer another, more portable and convenient choice: the gaming laptop. Of course, the cost-to-quality ratio is typically a bit lower than desktops, and laptops are harder to upgrade, making them even more expensive over time, but sometimes convenience rules the day. 

Now, however, there's a third option: the unEvn ONE. 

If the Kickstarter for the unEvn ONE does well, PC gamers will have a portable desk on their hands. The project launched on the crowdfunding platform recently, already clearing $11,310 of its $40,000 goal.

The cool thing about the unEvn ONE is that it's not just a portable PC, but also a desk. The top of the desk contains the working parts of the computer, such as motherboard, processor, power supply, and graphics card, as well as an arm for the monitor.

When folded up, the desk has storage space for the monitor, cables, a keyboard, a mouse, and anything else you might need to carry.

Of course, it won't be as small as a laptop, measuring in at 32" x 24" x 8". It also weighs about 55 to 60lbs.

The desk also comes with a carrying case complete with handles and straps, making it easier to carry.

When the desk goes to market, it's expected to retail at $2,499. However, over the next month, donators can purchase it at a deep discount, going as high as 50% off. This deduction is based on the pledge tier, but, of course, each tier has a limited amount and as of this writing, the coveted 50% discount tier only has one spot left.

Those looking to get a new portable rig can hit up the unEvn ONE's Kickstarter page

If you're simply looking for a regular gaming desk for your next build or because your old one's gotten all rickety, be sure to head over to our list of best gaming desks

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HyperX Adds Two Colorful, Potent SSDs To Its Lineup https://www.gameskinny.com/go71h/hyperx-adds-two-colorful-potent-ssds-to-its-lineup https://www.gameskinny.com/go71h/hyperx-adds-two-colorful-potent-ssds-to-its-lineup Mon, 24 Sep 2018 15:12:22 -0400 QuintLyn

Two new gamer-centric SSDs are now available from HyperX, the gaming division of Kingston Technology.

The first drive, the FURY RGB SSD, is an internal drive designed to provide gamers with a smooth experience and faster load times, all while making their cases look even cooler with colorful LED lighting.

The second drive, named the SAVAGE EXO SSD, offers players an external drive option that will run applications quickly and directly. Both drives utilize  3D NAND technology, which offers power efficiency and high read/write speeds. 

HyperX promises that both SSDs will meet the needs of a wide range of gamers.

Overclockers and system builders might want to look at the FURY RGB, which not only offers enhanced visual options for case building, but is a solid option for those into DIY systems and really tweaking things.

For those looking for something to use for game backups, video editing, and any other storage requirements that take speed into account, the SAVAGE EXO would be the way to go. It's also very portable.

Capacity-wise, both drives come in 480GB and 960GB options. The FURY RGB also offers a 240GB option.

FURY RGB prices start at $128 for the basic 240GB and go as high as $400 for the 960GB upgraded drive. The upgraded version includes additional features such as USB 3.0 enclosure, a SATA Drive cable, mounting, and a USB 3.1 Type A to Mini-USB cable. The SAVAGE EXO runs $219 for the 480GB option and $419 for the 960GB.

A full rundown on both drives' specs can be found on the HyperX site. You can also order directly from HyperX as well.

 

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Best PC Cooling Fans of 2017 for Your New or Current Build https://www.gameskinny.com/q31lf/best-pc-cooling-fans-of-2017-for-your-new-or-current-build https://www.gameskinny.com/q31lf/best-pc-cooling-fans-of-2017-for-your-new-or-current-build Tue, 28 Nov 2017 10:55:09 -0500 Sergey_3847

[{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/9/1/i/91icrybzn-sl1500-1921f.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/9/1/i/91icrybzn-sl1500-1921f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173429","description":"

Corsair HD Series HD120 RGB LED PC Fan

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Price: $55.49
Buy it on: Amazon

\n

The HD series of Corsair RGB LED computer fans, unlike the LL series, has only 12 independent LEDs and seven lighting schemes, but it moves a lot more air. It also has a slightly different design, allowing more light and transparency to extend to its outer frame.

\n

This cooler's higher airflow rate is possible due to its thinner fanblade design, which also ensures less vibration and noise as a result. If the price doesn't scare you, then this is definitely the best choice in the RGB LED computer fan niche.

\n

Corsair HD Series HD120 RGB LED Specs: 

\n
    \n
  • Air Flow: 54.4 CFM
  • \n
  • Noise: 30 dBA (at 1725 RPM)
  • \n
  • Size: 120 mm
  • \n
  • Voltage; 7-13.2V
  • \n
\n

---

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Have you found the right kind of PC fan for your next computer build? Make sure to leave your feedback in the comments below. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/1/r/51r4zzffdll-c653d.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/1/r/51r4zzffdll-c653d.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173830","description":"

Asiahorse Wireless RGB LED PC Fan

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Price: $36.99
Buy it on: Amazon

\n

Don't let the no-name manufacturer make you pass on this great computer fan. It has a decent airflow to noise ratio and includes a remote control for changing the color scheme of the 256 color RGB LED system, hence the "wireless" label in the title.

\n

Sure, this cooler doesn't have fancy PWM technology like the most of the previous models, but it is based on hydraulic bearing technology, which will make it last for 20,000 hours at the very least.

\n

Asiahorse Wireless RGB LED Specs: 

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    \n
  • Air Flow: 38 CFM
  • \n
  • Noise: 32 dBA (at 1500 RPM)
  • \n
  • Size: 120 mm
  • \n
  • Connection: 4.6-pin
  • \n
"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/9/1/c/91cupwce1ul-sl1500-dd8ac.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/9/1/c/91cupwce1ul-sl1500-dd8ac.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173425","description":"

Corsair LL Series LL120 RGB PC Fan

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Price: $34.99
Buy it on: Amazon

\n

This Corsair model offers 16 Independent RGB LEDs split between two separate light loops that allow for nearly endless manual lighting customization. The RGB effect on this computer fan is super soft and will not irritate your eyes -- even in complete darkness.

\n

It also comes with the PWM system that allows you to control the intensity of the airflow, but even at its maximum speed, it is as quiet as it gets.

\n

Corsair LL Series LL120 RGB Specs: 

\n
    \n
  • Air Flow: 43.25 CFM
  • \n
  • Noise: 24.8 dBA (at 1500 RPM)
  • \n
  • Size: 120 mm
  • \n
  • Connection: 4-pin
  • \n
"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/1/u/51uuulrjlhl-3eb3e.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/1/u/51uuulrjlhl-3eb3e.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173423","description":"

NZXT Aer RGB120 PC Fan

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Price: $29.99
Buy it on: Amazon

\n

Now let's enter the territory of RGB LED PC fans! Here is one of the most balanced solutions in terms of price and quality from NZXT. The Aer computer fan models allow you to select and modify more than 10 lighting effects with ease using CAM’s software interface, which means you can connect several of these bad boys and make your PC case light up like a Christmas tree.

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In addition to the bright color effects, you get a decent airflow to noise ratio, which would already be a good deal on its own.

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NZXT Aer RGB120 Specs:

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    \n
  • Air Flow: 52.44 CFM
  • \n
  • Noise: 33 dBA (at 1500 RPM)
  • \n
  • Size: 120 mm
  • \n
  • Connection: 4-pin PWM
  • \n
  • Voltage: 12V
  • \n
"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/7/1/5/715j0nes6ll-sl1200-49a09.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/7/1/5/715j0nes6ll-sl1200-49a09.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173422","description":"

Antec TrueQuiet 120 PC Fan

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Price: $9.19
Buy it on: Amazon

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This fan may run at a low RPM, but if you don't want to hear a hint of noise from your coolers, then the Antec TrueQuiet is the best choice for you. It comes with a special connector that allows you to manually adjust its speed, which may result in as little as 8.9 dBA at 600 RPM, which is virtually the quietest computer fan you will find on the market today.

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This has become possible due to a very special fanblade design that creates as little friction with the air as possible.

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Antec TrueQuiet 120 Specs:

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    \n
  • Air Flow: 35.8 CFM
  • \n
  • Noise: 19.9 dBA (at 1000 RPM)
  • \n
  • Size: 120 mm
  • \n
  • Power consumption: 1.4W (high), 0.7W (low)
  • \n
"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/1/k/51kyxtpq3ml-d40f6.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/1/k/51kyxtpq3ml-d40f6.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173329","description":"

Corsair Air Series SP120 PC Fan

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Price: $15.39
Buy it on: Amazon

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Corsair offers several types of PC fans for their customers, such as this SP model. It is designed for restricted airflow, unlike non-restricted exhaust fans that are used at the back of the case. This means that this specific type of cooler is installed on drive bays or radiators for more effective air dissipation.

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Also, this computer fan is almost noiseless, which makes it a special case in the niche of fans designed for restricted airflow.

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Corsair Air Series SP120 Specs: 

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    \n
  • Air Flow: 62.74 CFM
  • \n
  • Noise: 35 dBA (at 2350 RPM)
  • \n
  • Size: 120 mm
  • \n
  • Operating voltage: 7-12V
  • \n
"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/1/k/51krhyvbkml-607c7.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/1/k/51krhyvbkml-607c7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173328","description":"

Cooler Master MegaFlow 200 PC Fan

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Price: $22.60
Buy it on: Amazon

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This low-RPM cooling fan is huge! It was designed as an additional cooler for a graphics card, and it has to be installed on the side panel of your ATX case. Despite working at 700 RPM max, it moves a lot of air in an absolutely noiseless fashion.

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It also has a soft red glow that makes it look extra-cool inside a transparent PC case. If you need to add extra cooling to your gaming machine with a nice design, then be sure to check out this offering from Cooler Master.

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Cooler Master MegaFlow Specs: 

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    \n
  • Air Flow: 110 CFM
  • \n
  • Noise: 19 dBA (at 700 RPM)
  • \n
  • Size: 200 mm
  • \n
  • Power consumption: 3.36W
  • \n
  • Connection: 3-pin
  • \n
"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/6/1/e/61eoju7xqwl-sl1000-34a11.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/6/1/e/61eoju7xqwl-sl1000-34a11.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173327","description":"

AC Infinity HS1238A PC Fan

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Price: $14.99
Buy it on: Amazon

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Now here's something completely different. If you don't care about noise, but do need to move as much air as possible, then consider getting an AC Infinity computer fan. This fan is much louder than the previous two models, but it will cool down even the most overclocked machines.

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This hard-working fella is quite durable as well, even with all the power it invests into cooling. It is based on long-life dual-ball bearings, which guarantee continuous use for up to 67,000 hours.

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AC Infinity HS1238A Specs:

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    \n
  • Air Flow: 110 CFM
  • \n
  • Noise: 47 dBA (at 2,600 RPM)
  • \n
  • Size: 120 mm
  • \n
  • Power consumption: 18W
  • \n
"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/7/1/e/71ejp4xv4kl-sl1400-bd490.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/7/1/e/71ejp4xv4kl-sl1400-bd490.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173326","description":"

Noctua NF-A8 PWM PC Fan

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Price: $15.95
Buy it on: Amazon

\n

This little fan is a masterpiece of Advanced Acoustic Optimisation technology, which makes it one of the quietest PC cooling fans on the market right now. The SSO2 anti-vibration bearing system combines the oil-based hydrodynamic bearings with an additional magnet, which makes it super stable.

\n

SSO is a patented Noctua technology that you will not find from any other computer fan manufacturer. If this sounds right to you, then be sure to grab a few for your mini-ITX case.

\n

Noctua NF-A8 PWM Specs:

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    \n
  • Air Flow: 32.4 CFM
  • \n
  • Noise: 17,7 dBA (at 2,200 RPM)
  • \n
  • Size: 80 mm
  • \n
  • Power consumption: 1W
  • \n
  • Connectoion: 4-pin PWM
  • \n
"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/1/m/51mqbuwuyul-eb185.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/1/m/51mqbuwuyul-eb185.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173204","description":"

ARCTIC F12 PWM PC Fan

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Price: $8.02
Buy it on: Amazon 

\n

Here is a cheap yet smart PC cooling fan that is quiet and effective enough to cool down even the most hard-working machines. Its PWM feature is designed to help motherboards use the fan only to a necessary degree so it doesn't consume extra energy and resources.

\n

ARCTIC will serve you well for a long time due to its use of the Fluid Dynamic Bearing, which comes with an oil capsule that avoids lubricant leakage. Together with the PWM technology, the F12 PWM will serve longer than any other fan of similar design.

\n

ARCTIC F12 PWM Specs: 

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    \n
  • Air Flow: 53 CFM
  • \n
  • Noise: 22.5 dBA (at 1,350 RPM)
  • \n
  • Size: 120 mm
  • \n
  • Start-up Voltage: 6.0V DC
  • \n
  • Connection: 4-pin socket
  • \n
"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/u/n/t/untitled-281fd.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/u/n/t/untitled-281fd.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173200","description":"

When choosing a single PC cooling fan or a set of computer fans for your next build, you need to make sure that you're looking for the most balanced airflow-to-noise ratio (CFM/dBa @ RPM). CFM stands for Cubic Feet per Minute, which is used by PC fan manufacturers to showcase how much air their products can move per minute -- and here, moving air is important.

\n

The best PC fans will have high CFM and low dBa, meaning that they can move lots of air without producing too much noise. These numbers should help you identify the best airflow-to-noise ratio, and make a decision on which fan(s) to purchase.

\n

If you'd like to spice up your PC case with some RGB LED lighting, then there are a few interesting options, too. From cheap PC fans to expensive PC coolers and RGB options, this list of 10 computer fans is sure to have something to suit your fancy. 

"}]]]>
Best Xbox One X Compatible External Hard Drives for Holiday 2017 https://www.gameskinny.com/62uln/best-xbox-one-x-compatible-external-hard-drives-for-holiday-2017 https://www.gameskinny.com/62uln/best-xbox-one-x-compatible-external-hard-drives-for-holiday-2017 Tue, 14 Nov 2017 09:00:01 -0500 Ty Arthur

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There are more games taking advantage of the improved graphical capabilities of the Xbox One X than you may realize, so all that storage space will be warranted. Of course, the big names like Gears Of War 4, Halo 5, and Forza 7 are in on the action, but there's plenty of other games you might not expect.

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From Minecraft (yep, somehow we can make the pixel blocks look more HD!) to Quantum Break to Zoo Tycoon, many titles are going to take up a whole lot of extra space on the X version of Microsoft's flagship console.

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Have you picked up an Xbox One X yet, and what size external hard drive do you plan on grabbing to increase your stage space?

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With the holiday season quickly approaching, expect to see many of these drives or their equivalents from other brands to go on deep discount. Be sure to let us know in the comments if you've found a better deal!

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Vecrotech 1TB SSD

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Price: $309.00
Buy it on: Amazon

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While we've focused on the traditional external HDDs, it's worth noting that external solid state drives are also compatible with the Xbox One X for those who prefer to stay on the cutting edge.

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The cost goes up significantly for less storage space, so what's the upside of an SSD over an HDD? Most notably is that these solid state drives are totally silent, adding absolutely no extra sound to your gaming area.

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They also offer much faster transfer speeds, but that's less relevant since you probably won't be frequently transferring data to and from different devices when using the drive as an Xbox storage location.

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While this 1TB option will set you back a pretty penny, the 512GB versions lower the price substantially, although obviously at the cost of reduced storage space.

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Seagate 8TB

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Price: $189.99
Buy it on: Amazon

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When money is no option and storage space is all you care about, the 8TB HDD options are where you should be looking. Although bulky and requiring an extra spot on your surge protector for its own power supply, its unlikely you will ever run of space with this much room, even if you have a massive Xbox One X game library. Be sure to jump on the Games With Gold program for two free games every month to fill up this massive drive!

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Seagate 4TB External Hard Drive

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Price: $97.00
Buy it on: Amazon

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These Seagate HDD options provide a vertical, elegant design to set next to your Xbox One X. The upside here is that the drive doesn't take up as much horizontal space as the oddly shaped, rectangular external HDDs with smaller storage capacities.

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For less than a hundred bucks, this is an excellent mid-range external option that ensures you won't be deleting games, while not hitting the bank as hard as with those 8TB behemoths. Of course, all the usual standbys like Toshiba and Western Digital have their own versions of these as well at differing price points, so you've got other options if you're considering this style of external hard drive. 

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Toshiba Canvio Basics 2TB

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Price: $74.00
Buy it on: Amazon

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Going for a sleek rounded, palm-of-the-hand look, Toshiba's offerings are a different form factor than the boxy rectangular Western Digital hard drives -- but they don't usually come in all the nifty color options.

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At slightly more than your 1TB drive, this external HDD may be the best "bang for your buck" option available right now for expanding your Xbox One X storage space.

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Between the 1TB onboard HDD of the console and the extra 2TB from the external drive, space won't be nearly as cramped. And it's unlikely you are going to hit capacity unless you are consistently buying the newest and biggest games every month.

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Western Digital 1TB External Hard Drive

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Price: $59.00
Buy it on: Amazon

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This is your basic starting point for adding extra storage space to your Xbox One X, and keeping you from deleting old games to make room for new ones. And while there are plenty of manufacturers out there with competing 1TB versions in different sizes, what's appealing about this particular line is that there's no external power required, and they come in cool colors.

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If that striking orange isn't your thing and doesn't match your decor, go ahead and pick dark red, blue, white, or the standard black to match the Xbox One X.

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These are also super affordable. They aren't much more expensive than your typical thumb drive but offer vastly increased storage capacity, effectively doubling the size of your Xbox One X storage space immediately. For less than $60, it's a worthwhile investment.

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The most powerful console in the world is here, finally providing true 4K gaming experiences to console players around the world -- well, if you've got a 4K TV, anyway. Unfortunately, for all that power packed under the hood, the Xbox One X only comes bundled with one hard drive option: 1TB. 

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While that might cut it for the casual gamer on a lesser system, it's a good bet you are going to burn through that terabyte before long if you plan on taking advantage of the HD updates for Xbox One X enhanced games. When required updates are taking up 80 gigs of space, a 1TB internal drive is going to fill to capacity in no time flat.

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Only having one hard drive option feels like an oversight on Microsoft's part, since all the previous Xbox One editions come with multiple drive configurations. Just like the original Xbox One and the updated Xbox One S, the revamped X still features two USB ports, though, so it's simple to add on an external hard drive for extra room.

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Any USB-enabled external hard drive will work, although you have to format the drive to work with the Xbox operating system and will lose any data that was previously stored on the HDD.

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Here, we're going to round up all the best external hard drives currently available to use with your Xbox One X, focusing on different models for budget-friendly options, as well as hard drives that offer the most storage space possible -- but at a premium price.

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How Video Games Teach Us Life Lessons https://www.gameskinny.com/5ycic/how-video-games-teach-us-life-lessons https://www.gameskinny.com/5ycic/how-video-games-teach-us-life-lessons Thu, 06 Apr 2017 08:00:01 -0400 Karthik Krishnan

The title of this article has you utterly bemused right? “Video games, teaching you life lessons how?” That must be one of the questions running through your mind now. Like most folks, you probably view video games as just another pass time when bored.

You will be shocked to learn the number of life lessons to be gained from them. Whether your game is a purchase or a download here is some of the life lessons to be garnered from it:

Not giving up

battlefield 4, poster

In a nutshell, this is the most important lesson you’ll learn. How many times have you tried passing a mission on a video game but failed? The answer to that is maybe in the thousands. Despite the setbacks, you faced from time to time, you did not relent and still went on like a mad person. Similarly to video games, life is full of numerous of setbacks. How you handle them is critical to how your life will turn out. Instead of giving up you should strive to soldier on through all the hardships life presents. Practice a bit of Edisonian thinking, and your bulb may just work the hundredth time around.

Using different tactics

 How many times have you failed a mission in a game and had to look for a different way of tackling it? A conservative guess is in the hundreds. The same way a game provides a challenge for you to solve is the same way life is. You will have to figure out a way of solving the problem if your solutions keep on failing. Different tactics to ones used before will have to be employed to solve the problem. From this information, you learn video games make us devise new tactics. The use of new tactics when previous ones fail is how we should handle challenges in life.

Look for shortcuts

cs:go, counter strike

When playing a game, some missions will have shortcuts to achieving the set objective. As a smart gamer, you will be required to identify the shortcuts and use them to your advantages. Life is similar to video games in that some challenges will have an easier way of solving them. However, the trick lies in identifying this easier path. The shortcut will save time and money thereby making your gamble on it a worthwhile investment.

Help eye-hand coordination

Games require you to stare at the screen while your hands are on the controller. This greatly improves your eye-hand coordination. Your eyes are able to track the movement of the hand by sending signals to the brain of your hand movement. The importance of eye-hand coordination cannot be stressed enough.

People with poor eye-hand coordination find it hard to do easy tasks such as writing. You may also find tasks such as exercising hard since there is a breakdown in communication between your brain and your hand. In extreme cases, reading may also be affected.

Conclusion

From the point listed above it is clear as day that games are not only a great way to pass time, they also improve our quality of life. It’s time you started viewing video games in a different light.

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Reproduction Video Games: The Fakers, Makers and Takers https://www.gameskinny.com/1k9hk/reproduction-video-games-the-fakers-makers-and-takers https://www.gameskinny.com/1k9hk/reproduction-video-games-the-fakers-makers-and-takers Tue, 28 Mar 2017 08:00:02 -0400 GeorgieBoysAXE

Even though the medium of film is over a hundred years old, preservation efforts didn’t start until 29 years ago with the National Film Registry -- you’d be surprised how much we’ve risked losing in video games. Unlike film however, the attention for conserving games within the video game industry is still in its infancy, and as a result, there are a lot of titles out there that are afflicted with scarcity in their numbers -- as a result they have ballooned their value in the market.

Enthusiasts struggle with the grim reality that your wallets are going have to be pretty deep if you’re looking to be a purist, so the alternatives are limited to either official re-releases of the classics, or emulation. The “e” word has gotten less dirty over the years (thanks largely in part to the efforts of Frank Cifaldi) but that doesn’t stop it from being any less salacious -- at least to the people who want to boast about a $75 price tag they got away with on the Twisted Tales of Spike McFang on Instagram.

As the fever pitch for authentic software gets closer to the tipping point, a loophole of artificial software in the form of reproduction titles have recently surfaced, and I find it ironic that this method isn’t subjected to the ethical scrutiny that emulation is.

Why is that? Think about it; when you boot up an emulator and load a ROM on it, you know exactly what you’re getting into there, but when you finally get that copy of Twisted Tales of Spike McFang delivered to you, you’re risking the chance of receiving a costumed donor-cartridge in disguise.

It’s a valid concern, but not one that warrants damnation from the public -- reproductions can exist if we have some more accountability about it.

The Fakers

Generally, when the subject of retro video games comes up, even for the people who are in the know, the topic of identifying what games are real and what’s fake doesn’t garner a whole lot of focus. The perception around the idea is that bootlegs are majorly conspicuous as all hell the moment you encounter one, so there’s no need for a discussion on the analysis on a game’s legitimacy. That’s just not the case anymore.

You can visit just about any retro video game centric convention or swap market throughout the year, spotting more fakes behind glass cases that you can count on your hands, and these phonies are being peddled for the same asking prices that the real McCoy’s are. As such, the Reseller market is flooded with these carbon copies, and the principles used to justify the existence of reproduction commercial titles are blurred by the hardship of accessibility to some particular pieces of software.

More often than I would like to admit, I have to make recurring peace with the fact that I will never be able to defend a purchase of Legend of Hero Tomna for the Turbo-Grafx 16 -- as a reasonable middle-class adult. The IREM-developed side-scroller is currently fetching a cost of $1,300 or more on all secondhand marketplaces, and the PC Engine import valuing over a couple hundred dollars isn’t much better. Sure I can go download the game right now on an emulator, or buy it for $10 on Nintendo’s Virtual Console while the shop channel is still accessible on my Wii U, but I’ll never be able to play the game the way I was MEANT to be played -- unless I succumb to a really irresponsible financial decision.

Enter tg16pcemods.com, a site ran by a group of enthusiasts who share that same sentiment, and want to do something about it without any sort of delusion around the service they’re trying to provide. For the price of $40, your space bucks will earn you a painstakingly detailed imitation of the original HUCard, it’s meant to represent with a finish that’s evidently handcrafted with love. Some of the key differences here in what the people at TG16PCEMods do and the aforementioned resellers is the degree of transparency.

The recreation of the HuCards only extend so far as you’re given the game on a Turbo Chip that’s a wildly different color than what the original was sold on, and then there’s the disclaimer on the back that clearly labels it as a reproduction game in case the point needed to be any clearer.

Pellucidity aside, the argument is still a tricky one to make within the sub-culture around the Turbo Grafx/PC Engine considering that a large scope of their devotion stems out of their pure love for the nuance and design for the original hardware, software, and peripherals of that brand. Selling the idea that anyone can get it on the fandom by means of a facsimile can be a bit insulting to outspoken aficionados. Just imagine an exchange between a married couple who pooled together $5,000 to buy Magical Chase with the dude who casually dropped forty bucks to play it on the Retro Freak they picked up from Play Asia. The suggested elitism that permeated that last sentence alone is pretty intense, and a real life scenario would just be another sad representation of the video game community as a whole.

It’s a really awkward line to draw when you want to advocate for both schools of thought, but I think the tempers from both camps are pared when it comes to reproduction releases that offer a second chance to vaporware, or modifications that reinvent the experience altogether.

The Makers

I personally endorse that one of the most exciting things about retro gaming is getting to expose someone to a game that they have never seen or heard of before; a game that has completely escaped their childhood and introduced to them for the first time as if it were a time capsule. While those moments have led to some really heartfelt moments between friends and family, there have also been some moments where my attempt to bond with someone else over an old game has been less than stellar.

I mean, those moments will happen, and that’s ok, but the reproduction movement has led to some really inspiring creations that have the potential to close some of those gaps.

Let’s remember back to that story about a father named Mike Mika who introduced video games, both old and new, to his younger daughter, and one game they shared a love for in particular was Donkey Kong. It only took one question out a 3-year-old girl for Mike to work on reinventing the conceit of Nintendo’s arcade hit because his little girl challenged the roles of Mario and Pauline played in the fight against the ape. Now, “reinvent” may seem like a really hyperbolic statement considering that it’s ostensibly the exact same game, but it also isn’t; it’s a game where the concept of “damsel in distress”
and all of the archaic implications surrounding it are thrown out in favor of epic born out of the simple human condition known as heroism. Reconfiguring some lines of code, and slapping it onto a new EPROM chip allowed a little girl to celebrate Pauline as a hero, not a victim, and that’s all it takes at times for someone to connect with a game the way people around you did on the same machine.

Another instance is much closer to home, when I recently watched the trailer for Disney Afternoon Collection with my girlfriend. After explaining my love for the games included in that bundle to her, I sat her down and plugged in the original NES version of Ducktales for her to play. She saw the appeal of it, but wished it had some kind of mode that let me play it with her because she enjoys video games more that way. I thought about what she said, and decided to do some digging on the web, and that’s when I came across Ducktales 2 Player: a ROM hack of Ducktales 2 that adds in a cooperative two-player mode where second person can join in as Darkwing Duck.

Someone out there, took simultaneously their fandom of the Disney classic and the NES to a new level (pun intended) by ingeniously ripping the sprite of the Caped Canard from his respective NES game, and adding into the framework of Ducktales with Scrooge and gang in a way that could almost be presented like a DLC add-on.

Needless to say, it’s really fun, and I don’t know if I can go back to playing my original copy of Ducktales 2 now that I have this new way to play it that I never had before.

I can imagine a number of you saying that an emulator could have easily done what I did with a cartridge, and to that I’d say that you’re wrong.

The art of reproduction game is in the very name of it; it’s a super emulator in a sense as it not only emulates the software aspect of the game, but the experience of holding it in your hand on cartridge with its own artwork, that’s capable of running on a console just like any other game in your collection. Reproduction video games can essentially synthesize the same kind of feelings you would get out buying and holding a “real” game.

There are gamers who’re divided on that fact, with some actively celebrating the avenue, and others loudly condemning it, and I personally find myself in the middle. For every bootleg Little Samson, there’s a tribute to Bio-Force Ape—there’s going to be a counterfeit or fake in any hobby you participate in, but not many of them can claim that those same methods genuinely help the accessibility or preservation of that medium as well, just something to chew on.

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11 Awesome Video Game Bromances https://www.gameskinny.com/1g5yb/11-awesome-video-game-bromances https://www.gameskinny.com/1g5yb/11-awesome-video-game-bromances Sat, 18 Mar 2017 21:59:59 -0400 Ricardo melfi

Since the conception of the term "bromance," we've seen more and more examples of this type of friendship in all forms of pop-culture. To those who still don't know, a bromance is the relationship between two male friends that breaks the walls of mere friendship; they become "brothers." If there's one thing women hate the most, it's their man in a bromance.

We've had movies (mostly comedies) portraying this inseparable bond between buddies but (all alliteration aside), video games have used many bromances in their own stories, Here are STG's 11 Best Video game Bromances, bro... 

Mass Effect Trilogy

Commander Shepard & Garrus Vakarian

Garrus:"Nobody would give me a mirror. How bad is it?" 

Shepard:"Hell, Garrus, you were always ugly. Slap some face-paint on there, and no one will even notice." 

Garrus:"Ha-ah! Don't make me laugh, damn it. My face is barely holding together as it is. Ah, probably for the best. Everyone was always ignoring you and hitting on me. Time for you to get a fair shot at it."

Throughout their adventures in the Mass Effect series, Shepard and Garrus form a strong bond while trying to save the galaxy. If you played as fem-Shep, then you could have formed an even tighter relationship... Ahem.

But this is about the bros, so it stands to reason that sharing multiple near-death experiences would have only strengthened their friendship. Having similar personalities and a sense of humor helps, at least in our play-through.

Gears of War Trilogy

Marcus Fenix & Dom Santiago

Marcus: "What are you doing here?"

Dom: "Getting you out. Here, put this on." 

Marcus: "You could get into a lot of trouble for doing this."

Dom: "Not anymore. Things have changed. C'mon."

Another tale of friendships strengthened through battle and near-death experiences -- all while trying to save the world -- Marcus and Dom shoot their way through multiple alien species, as their mission is to eradicate all and save humanity. Two muscle-bound bad-asses carving their way through tough-as-nails aliens, all while spouting one-liners? This would definitely solidify a bromance.

Assassin's Creed II, Brotherhood, & Revelations

Leonardo Da Vinci & Ezio Auditore Da Firenze

Leo: "The blade is finished, though it will require the removal of your ring finger. It is the way the blade has been constructed."

Ezio: "Bene (fine). Do it, quickly."

Leo: "I'm just joking with you Ezio. In the past such a sacrifice was required but I have found a way to modify the blade."

This was always going to be a good combination. A master craftsman, painter, engineer, and all-around genius working with a sneaky, efficient master assassin. Ezio and Leo are the prime example of a great bromance, willing to risk their lives for one another and achieve their goals together. A bromance spanning across decades and countless Templar conspiracies sees this relationship to the list. 

Jak & Daxter Series

Jak & Daxter

Daxter: "Please, Jak, you're such a wimp. I could have taken them myself! Maybe you should sit on MY shoulder for a while."

This mischievous duo requires no introduction to many gamers. The Jak & Daxter series scored a massive following due to the captivating platforming, dialogue, and beautiful graphics. Naughty Dog definitely know how to create their characters/worlds and these two are no exception.

Daxter is usually riding Jak, pushing him forward and showing a somewhat false, yet still inspiring, sense of bravado from atop Jak's shoulders. However, when the time comes, Daxter has proven to be the ultimate ally as they go on a quest to not only change the furry friend back to his original form, but also to save their world as they know it.

Ratchet & Clank Series

Ratchet & Clank

Ratchet: "If I can get that, I can get past those robot guards."

Clank: "Robots are not so easily fooled."

Ratchet: [trying to trick Clank by pointing at something] "Ahh! What's that?"

Clank: [falling for the trick, Clank turns his head] "What?"

Ratchet: "Uh-huh..."

The only other duo that seemed to pick up hot on the tails of Jak & Daxter, this ingenious little robot and his marsupial accomplice span their known galaxies going on bounty hunts, stopping villainous henchmen and bosses along the way.

Ratchet & Clank are right up there with the Jak & Daxter games (though they have released a few more installments than the former).They have amassed their own cult following, even managing to take part in one of the most dangerous combat sports arenas in the universe and survive!

Street Fighter Series

Ryu & Ken

Ryu: "Let's leave the talking to our fists!"

Ken: "Can these things even talk?"

Everybody's favorite fighting duo from the Street Fighter series undoubtedly belong in this list. With a bromance spanning decades now (how do they stay so damn young?) and more than a few ways that it could have ended very, very badly, these two show us what true brotherhood and friendship can be. 

Hadouken! 

Contra Series

Bill Rizer & Lance Beam

Considered one of the hardest game series ever made, Contra puts games like Dark Souls and Battletoads to shame with its insane difficulty system (a true SNES staple). Many controllers have been broken against walls via fits of rage and epic moments of completion in this game, which solidified its place in history.

Contra brought forth two bad-ass bros, Rizer & Beam. Shwarzenneger and Stallone got nothing on these two. Side scrolling, shooter action at its finest.

BRING IT!

Army of Two

Tyson Rios & Elliot Salem

Phillip: "No problem, fuck-o."

Rios:  "Fuck-o? Who says that?"

Phillip: "I'm gonna kill you both, slice you open and go to an aerobics class wearing your intestines for leg warmers!"

Salem: "I mean... does that even make sense?"

Elliot Salem & Tyson Rios, two bad-ass dudes who clearly live through hundreds of death-defying moments together, covering each other's hides. Their job? Being a complete 'Army of Two', with Salem & Rios, flanking, tactics, firefights and one-liners are literally their life.

Playing as these two mercenaries really pulls everything together if you have your very own bromance buddy sitting next to you playing co-op, even if things get a little weird.

Telltale's The Walking Dead -- Season 1

Lee & Kenny

Kenny: "Hey. Lee. You know how to pick a lock, right?"

Lee: "No, why would you say that?"

Kenny: "Well. You're... you know... urban?"

Lee: "Oh, you are NOT saying what I think you're saying."

Kenny: "Jesus, man! I'm from Florida! Crazy shit comes out of my mouth sometimes. Sorry."

Lee first meets Kenny at Herschel's farm after saving Clementine from a couple of zombies and bringing her along with him. Kenny has his wife Katja and his son 'Duck' there with him and things seem to be going kind of well.

As this is Telltale's TWD, this peace and serenity is short-lived. After a chaotic and surprising zombie attack, Herschel's son is killed and the gang are banished from the farm.

Lee and Kenny continue to do what they can with the ragtag group of survivors they meet up with but Kenny starts to lose his wits. This forces Lee to make some seriously hard decisions for all of them. A bromance that stands the test of time (or at least until the last episode of Season 1), Lee & Kenny are the perfect example of a true bromance, looking out for each other (and their subsequent 'families') no matter what happens; arguments, punch-ups, and all. 

Uncharted Series

Nathan Drake & 'Sully' Sullivan

Sully: "I'm sweating like a hooker in church!"

Drake: "You took a hooker to church?"

Sully: "Nate, let's just pretend for a minute that I don't really care about any of that and cut to the chase will ya?"

Drake: "Man only interested in the climax. You must be a real hit with the ladies."

Sully: "Never had any complaints."

Now there can be the argument made here where Sully isn't really a 'bro' and more of a father figure, however as they are not related by blood, this still counts as a great bromance. 

Throughout the Uncharted series, Sully is Drake's mentor and partner, keeping him focused and getting him to continue using his head and not his, erm, other head. Regardless of how you personally view their relationship, Sully is bonafidede bro in all aspects of the term and continues to be there for Drake no matter what.

Now Nathan's real brother, on the other hand.

Sonic the Hedgehog Series

Sonic & Tails

Sonic: "We good to go or what, Tails?"

Tails: "I've built a TV out of paper clips..."

Sonic: "Yeah..."

Tails: "...and reprogrammed a super computer using dish washing detergent and a toothpick..."

Sonic: "I know..."

Tails: "...So look, fixing a propeller on a biplane? That's about as difficult as taking a nap."

Sonic: "Kay, I did not need your whole life story. A simple "good to go" would have been cool."

Tails: "Alright. Good to go!"

These two heroes need absolutely no introduction to the gaming world (unless you've been living under a rock you're entire life). Sonic & Tails are the ultimate bros, taking part in adventures throughout the entire Sonic the Hedgehog franchise.

Once thought to be a female, Tails' first name is actually Miles, so show us one woman with that name, but I digress. Tails can fly and Sonic can run really, really fast. Put these two together and you have a bromance that spans across decades and still moves strong to this day.

 ---

So there you have it. The 11 Best Video Game Bromances that STG thought deserved some attention. Next time you pick up any of these games, see how much you notice.

So what did you think about the list? Any that should have been mentioned or that we seemed to forget? What did you think of the bromances listed? Leave a comment below and look out for our next article!

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The 9 Best Hilarious Video Game Deaths https://www.gameskinny.com/8uzp2/the-9-best-hilarious-video-game-deaths https://www.gameskinny.com/8uzp2/the-9-best-hilarious-video-game-deaths Sat, 11 Mar 2017 09:00:01 -0500 Ricardo melfi

Sometimes it's just not enough to see a certain villain or comrade die in (mostly violent) different ways. You may feel the need to see them die in hilarious and outlandish ways because of, you know, entertainment and stuff. There have even been moments where the situation is supposed to be sad or upsetting, yet the way the character dies is just too good not to laugh.

We decided to compile the very best deaths that we considered hilarious (which means they have physically and literally made us LOL). Here are our 9 Best Hilarious Video Game Deaths!

Johnny Cage - Fatality

Mortal Kombat X

Yes, it is a surprise that Mortal Kombat features on list of hilarious video game deaths. But the crew over at MK have never really taken fatalities that seriously, which is perfect for scoring unlimited laughs.

The series veteran, Johnny Cage, is still here carving out fatalities against his unfortunate opponents. His latest one sees Johnny go up behind his beaten foe and literally open them up from the back, peering through the gaping hole in their torso. This isn't what makes it great though, as Johnny pays homage to one of my favorite movies, The Shining, by saying, "heeeeeerrreeee's Johnny!"

Gold... just pure gold.

Spider-Man - QTE Sequence

The Amazing Spider-Man

There's a sequence in The Amazing Spider-Man, by Activision, in which Spider-Man (Peter Parker) has to execute a string of QTEs in order to pass the scene. Not an ultimately difficult sequence to keep up with, as Spider-Man is ever graceful. However, miss just one button and Spider-Man ends up flat on his face, extremities spread out as if he was squashed like a bug.

The above video shows off all of the hilarious death animations, but the first sequence is the most funny, with another having him spread out flat after hitting a wall. Cheap laughs? Absolutely, but still hilarious...

Daedalus & Sons- Hang Glider Plummet

Red Dead Redemption

Everyone loves Red Dead Redemption, as Rockstar absolutely nailed the harsh and untamed world of the Wild West. There are a few zany missions in this gem (that is still played today by the way) but the best one in our opinion is the Daedalus & Sons, hang glider mission. You see, Daedalus is determined to be the first man to fly using a hang glider, and is even willing to risk himself in order to prove it works... by jumping off a very high cliff.

After John has finished amassing the items that Daedalus needs and progressing to the end of the mission, we see him finally take the jump. Unfortunately, his hang glider isn't quite what he expected and he plummets to his impending doom, all the while screaming in true Rockstar fashion.

Horrifying? Maybe. Hilarious? Definitely. Rest in peace friend, the world will never know of your exploits.

Face McShooty - Embracing Euthanasia

Borderlands 2

Usually when someone asks you to shoot them in the face, you consider what that could mean? The person's obviously crazy, right? So what do you do? Well, if you're playing Borderlands 2, you happen to come across Mr. McShooty who basically begs and screams for you to, erm, shoot him in the face. No sooner does he say it that a mission automatically appears instructing you to actually go through with it.

It's got to be a trick, so you wait... and wait. Once he starts to repeat himself, you think, "Why the hell not?" Now the hilarity doesn't actually stem from this moment but with the immediate, "THANK YOU!" he shouts, milliseconds AFTER being shot.... in the face.

Leon Kennedy - Big Fish in a Small Pond

Resident Evil 4

Leon Kennedy has seen some weird shit in his life when it comes to bioweapons (ahem, zombies and mutated monsters). He works hard and barely gets time off. Entering into Resident Evil 4, Leon has his work cut out for him as he has to save the president's daughter. Still, all work and no play makes Leon a dull boy, right?

Thus, we all decided to go lake fishing and started taking pot shots at the fish swimming around. It was kind of relaxing, if we're being honest. However, after taking too many pot shots at the defenseless, small fish in the lake -- found midway through RE4 -- will not end well for Leon. He thinks he can just push those fish around? Well not today!

After too many pot shots, a massive bio-weapon fish launches out and swallows Leon in one go. Yeah, that's what you get for picking on creatures smaller than you.

Carmine - Keep Your Head Down, Stupid             

Gears of War

Carmine, you poor, poor rookie. We understand that you're still working out the kinks in your soldiering but just a little piece of advice for you. When it comes to being in battle zones, don't keep your head up. Stay down, at almost every opportunity, as Carmine finds out the hard way. Kneeling to fix a jam in his gun, he cops a round to the head after not staying behind cover. Tough break, man. Maybe you'll do better next play-through... oh, it's scripted.

Rag-doll Physics - "I'm Faaaaabulouuusss"

Almost every game, ever

Rag doll physics are reason enough for spontaneous laughs almost every time. I'm not sure how these kinds of physics are supposed to make the game seem more realistic, but due to some of the rags we've seen over the decades, rag doll physics still haunt our darkest nightmares. Other times we lose our (collective) shit. You know what we're talking about.

Chained, Whipped, Beaten & Killed

Crash Bandicoot Series

That brilliant bandicoot was the epicenter of my young, gaming life, collecting every damn box, gem, relic and crystal this series had to offer. The first installment became insanely hard the further you progressed, with punishing saves and checkpoints. This meant that you would die, a lot.

Even as a professional Crash player honing my skills over the decades, I still manage to lose a lot of damn lives towards the later half of the game. As one would expect, every one of Crash's hilarious deaths are burned into our memories. Every, single, one.

Pop Culture Resurrections

Sunset Overdrive

Everyone loves pop culture classics like Dracula, The Ring, Back to the Future, all of the Superheroes, Portal, and even Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, so it goes without saying that the (very versatile) re-spawn animations in Sunset Overdrive are a real treat.

The nods to many great films and pop culture appear and yes, we know they aren't technically 'deaths' but you do have to die in order to see them. Check mate?

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Proving that not all deaths in video games have to be such serious circumstances and that laughter is good for the soul, even if it is at someone else's expense -- but they aren't real, so it's fine. But for now, that was my 9 Most Hilarious Video Game Deaths!

Did we miss anything obvious or did you find some hilarious game deaths of your own? Leave a comment below and get involved!

 

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NVIDIA Announces Geforce Now Game Streaming Service https://www.gameskinny.com/52wsf/nvidia-announces-geforce-now-game-streaming-service https://www.gameskinny.com/52wsf/nvidia-announces-geforce-now-game-streaming-service Thu, 05 Jan 2017 00:50:55 -0500 Ainyan

At CES, NVIDIA announced the upcoming launch of its video game streaming service Geforce Now.

This service will connect users with non-game ready PCs to powerful PASCAL-powered computers via the cloud, allowing gamers whose computers are unable to handle modern AAA games (such as PCs with integrated graphics, Apple computers, or note/netbook computers) to access a variety of games and apps, including Netflix and their full Steam library. Previously available on the Nvidia SHIELD, Geforce Now will be available to all PC and Mac users.

Users will be able to use virtually any device to access and play the available library -- but instead of having to have their own gaming rig to connect to as with Steam's Big Picture streaming service, they would connect to a series of gaming-ready computers managed by NVIDIA.

This would open up PC gaming to a large number of people -- estimated at one billion by NVIDIA -- who currently lack the necessary hardware. It will even allow Mac users to access their entire Steam libraries -- including the plethora of PC games that are unavailable on Mac OS.

Geforce Now heads into Early Access in March 2017, with initial pricing set at $25 per 20 hours of gameplay. Other plans with increased features will also be available.

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The Ultimate Guide For Buying Gaming Headsets: What Features to Look For https://www.gameskinny.com/sgqhs/the-ultimate-guide-for-buying-gaming-headsets-what-features-to-look-for https://www.gameskinny.com/sgqhs/the-ultimate-guide-for-buying-gaming-headsets-what-features-to-look-for Sat, 17 Dec 2016 06:00:01 -0500 Akshay Hallur

Are you looking forward to buy a good headset for your gaming needs? Then you are in the right place. This guide will help you choose the best gaming headset that suits your requirements and won’t break your bank.

At first, when you start researching online, you may be overwhelmed by the variety of different gaming headsets available. The gaming headset industry is saturated. Being a hardcore gamer, one day or the other you may feel the need for good headset so you can gain a competitive advantage in your gameplay.

The quality of sound matters a lot in gaming -- often you need to be able to differentiate the direction of the sounds, or pay attention to the subtle details and audio cues of your game.

Let’s get started. I will show you how to choose good headset for your gaming needs. There are a variety of gaming headsets like surround sound, wireless, and much more. I will be addressing all these types of headsets to help you make a decision.

Stay tuned.

Wireless or wired

This is the most common dilemma that people face when choosing a good gaming headset for gaming. Both have their own pros and cons.

If you are a PC gamer, wired headsets would be the best bet for you. Wired ones don’t need to be charged. Unless you are also playing with a console there’s no solid reason for you to go wireless.

I can say that if you are looking for more affordable gaming headsets, go for wired headphones like the HyperX Cloud II. You can find very good wired gaming headsets with lots of features. Quality wireless headphones cost you a lot due to the additional technology involved.

Wireless headsets need to be charged. This can be problematic if you game for hours. Typically, most of good wireless headsets take around an hour to charge fully and offer around 7-8 hours of battery life. When choosing wireless headsets, if you are conscious about the quality of the sound in the gameplay, consider getting a headset that has AptX encoding. This enables the sound to be played without any quality loss while transmitting wirelessly via Bluetooth.

Your best buying options:

  • Best wired gaming headset: HyperX Cloud II
  • Best wireless gaming headset:  ASTRO Gaming A50 and Logitech G930
Surround sound or not

In the case of true surround sound gaming headsets, multiple drivers are kept in each side of the earpad for different audio channels. This enables the sound to be heard at different angles. With this, the sound appears very direction sensitive. You can easily make out the direction from which the sound is coming. This is a boon for FPS gamers.

In the case of FPS games like Call Of Duty, knowing the direction of the gun fire and the enemy footsteps are very important -- so surround sound may be a good way to go since offers positional audio.

Most surround sound headphones are made with gamers in mind. The best gamer-centric surround sound headphones in the market are Sennheiser's PC 373D and Razer's Kraken Chroma 7.1. They both are excellent in terms of producing positional audio suitable for great gameplay.

A word about mics

Most gaming headsets come with a boom mic attached to them -- on that's either omnidirectional or unidirectional.

Most gaming companies have no reason to include an omnidirectional mic, because they tend to pick up sounds from all the directions. On the other hand, headsets that come with unidirectional mics are better at rejecting off-axis sounds and tend to produce more crisp and clear audio.

Some gamers prefer not to have a boom mic, and find it obtrusive while playin. In those cases, you can get decent gaming headphones and buy a clip-on or lavalier mic that is less obtrusive andsilently rests on your shirt.

Bottom line: if you want crisp-clear voice chat, the unidirectional boom mic is the way to go.

Comfort

This is the feature you only realize you need after using the headset for a prolonged period. And you can’t just wear a headset for hours before buying it, so judging a set on this aspect is a little difficult.

The major advantage headsets are that they offer more comfort than something like gaming earbuds. You can wear them on for extended hours of time without getting fatigued. But that doesn't mean that all headsets labelled "gaming headsets" will be comfortable. 

To get a decent idea of how comfortable you can expect a set to be, you need to look at the materials used in the headband and the earcups. Leather earcups feel a bit more luxurious, but can develop sweat over long periods of time. Something spongier won't have that issue, though it may not feel quite as nice to wear.

The headband should not be so tight that crushes your skull. It should just gently rest on your head so that you can play games with your headset for hours. Padded headbands are common and tend to provide a fair amount of comfort, as do headsets that use other materials (like ski mask bands) for their headbands. Headsets that offer no padding and only have metal or plastic bands probably won't stay comfortable for very long. 

Gaming headsets come with big drivers to make you feel the bass and positional sound. In this regard, you should always look for headsets which are lightweight and won’t compromise the comfort of the headset for sound quality. Comfort matters a lot more when it comes to gaming.

Look at the online reviews of the users of the headphones and research the comfort of the gaming headset you are looking to buy. Your ears will thank you for it. 

Price

Most of good headsets can be purchased for below $200. Don’t pay anything more than $200 unless you're really shooting for that ultra high-end experience.

If your budget is under $100, don’t go for wireless headsets unnecessarily -- because as I said earlier quality wireless headsets costs you above $100. For casual gamers, headsets below $100 are more than essential. The best gaming headset in this range is the HyperX Cloud II.

If you are looking for something above $100 and below $200, then you may consider HyperX Cloud Revolver Gaming Headset or ASTRO Gaming A40 headset. Both are the best gaming headsets in the market today.

If you are looking for anything under $50, Turtle Beach headsets are the best value for money -- especially the Turtle Beach Ear Force XO. If you are looking for HyperX headsets in this range, go for HyperX Stinger.

The brands like HyperX, Astro, and Turtle Beach are great at producing great gaming headsets.

Wrapping up

I hope this guide on how to choose a good gaming headset has helped you. Just remember: while buying any headset, always buy something which suits your needs.

If you have any thoughts about headphones suggestions, or anything you feel needs to be explained, share your questions and opinions in the comments.

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Yes, You Can Build Your Own Gaming PC -- Even if You're a N00b https://www.gameskinny.com/xaga9/yes-you-can-build-your-own-gaming-pc-even-if-youre-a-n00b https://www.gameskinny.com/xaga9/yes-you-can-build-your-own-gaming-pc-even-if-youre-a-n00b Sun, 04 Dec 2016 06:35:39 -0500 Lampstradamus

So you want to be a be a PC Gamer. You've heard all of the amazing things about the world of PC Gaming, and you want to join -- but you're scared. Building a PC from the ground up can seem like the most complicated thing in the world. There are many parts and pieces to worry about, and it seems like a very complicated and intricate process.

Despite what most people may think: building a computer isn't rocket science. In fact, building a PC is actually way easier than you believe.

First of all, if you're on this article that means you have two advantages when it comes to building your PC.

#1. You Can Read

Anything and everything you buy for your PC has a manual. If you're wondering what goes where the manuals will tell you what goes in what hole and where to mount it. Many parts and cables will only go in certain places; square pegs will only go in square holes.

If the manual isn't good enough to explain what to do, then you have a second advantage.

#2. You Have the Internet

Troubleshooting and finding instructions is easy as pie when Google is everyone's friend.

There are many websites and forums where you can look up instructions, manuals or troubleshoot your most difficult issues. You are never left without an avenue for information. The Build a PC Reddit is a great place to start. There are many people in there who are willing to answer questions.

The biggest benefit of being in an online society is the power of video. Making a PC from scratch with no prior knowledge back in the day probably would've been the worst thing, but nowadays, we have videos for everything, including building a PC.

There are many guides and videos by people in the PC community about how to build a PC. There is a playlist on Youtube called 'My First PC Build,' which is a nice, easy-to-follow guide for beginners.

 

Advice on Preparing to Build Your PC

If you're actually looking into building your own PC, there are a few things that a beginner would love to have.

PCPartPicker is a great website to use for beginners. You can list out what parts you have or what parts you want, and the site will note any potential incompatibilities. The website will also tell you where the cheapest place to get the parts is, as well as list out the price history of certain parts, all super awesome information for the beginner.

Newegg is a good place to buy components. They have sales on components very frequently (much like Steam does for PC games) and sometimes they have bundle deals, where you can pick out several PC parts and buy them as a package, saving, even more, money.

Advice on Actually Building Your PC

When you're actually at the step of building your PC, grounding yourself on some metal (just touching any metal) before working on the parts is always needed. Some people suggest getting anti-static bands, but not everyone wants to get one. Regardless, you want to do this because it will discharge any potentially dangerous (for your parts) static electricity. 

If you're installing the motherboard, make sure there are standoffs (basically little platforms, so that the motherboard isn't touching the case -- or else you might have an electrical short, which obviously isn't good. 

One of the more stress-inducing processes of building a PC is installing the CPU into the motherboard. Make sure you're grounded before touching the CPU.  Also, when you're lowering the handle on the CPU after installing it, there will be some resistance, but make sure the CPU is in properly.

And of course, you'll have cables everywhere at this point.

Cable management is something that many seasoned builders prefer, and cases that provide spaces for this are nice, but unless your entire case is full of junk, cooling shouldn't be affected too badly. Essentially, cable manage if you can and if you want; however, it isn't a necessity.

Bonus: A Simplified Process: Step by Step (If You Need It)

When you have all of your parts and tools for your first build, one of the most important things to have is space. You want to know where everything is and you don't want to lose any parts. 

The next thing builders do when they're first building a PC is they install the CPU into the motherboard. Remember: Discharge any static electricity before touching the CPU! 

Most people build the motherboard on top of the box it comes with just so that it isn't touching anything that may short it out or damage it. There will probably be a plastic cover over where your CPU will go, but this will come off when you install the CPU.

You'll be lifting up the arm on the motherboard's CPU slot to install the CPU. After this, match the notches on the CPU to the slot and make sure it fits correctly. As you lower the arm to lock the CPU in place, you will feel some resistance but if you put the CPU in correctly, it should lock in place.

After installing the CPU, you should install whatever cooling system you are using for the build, which varies depending on if you're going with a stock fan or something special.

Then you can install the RAM. Most motherboards come with 4 RAM slots, and if you have dual sticks, you want to install them in matching pair slots (slots 1 and 3 or 2 and 4). Make sure the sticks line up with the slots, and everything should just click into place when you press down.

After this, you'll move onto your case. Install the I/O Shield before you install the motherboard. Find out the orientation of the board and how the I/O Shield needs to be placed by reading any manuals beforehand.

Figure out where the standoffs for the motherboard need to be installed into the case, and then screw them in. Install the motherboard on top of the standoffs.

After this, you'll be installing things such as hard drives, video cards, power supplies, etc. Note: Video cards will require you to remove some shielding in the back of the case and will click in place like RAM.

Cases usually have dedicated places to put hard drives and SSDs. Usually, installing drives is simply a matter of using the right cables and installing everything in the right slots.

What's more, some cases have dedicated places to put the power supplies as well as holes where you can route the cables to power the motherboard, drives and video cards. Some cables are marked with what they are for, and you simply need to install them where they're needed.

You Can Build Your Own PC

Even if you know nothing about building a PC, you can build a PC. It isn't impossible. If other people can build a PC, then you know it's possible.You can always learn. No one knows how to build a PC out of nowhere.

You can always ask for help, too. No one is going to judge you for not knowing what to do In fact, many people in the PC building community encourage people to ask for help. So what are you waiting for? Get out their a build the PC of your dreams!

Have any other advice for beginners just starting their PC-building journey? Leave them in the comments below! 

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Like Building Your Gaming Rig? You Should Upgrade These Parts in 2017 https://www.gameskinny.com/ldp4e/like-building-your-gaming-rig-you-should-upgrade-these-parts-in-2017 https://www.gameskinny.com/ldp4e/like-building-your-gaming-rig-you-should-upgrade-these-parts-in-2017 Mon, 28 Nov 2016 06:00:01 -0500 Lampstradamus

If you're a PC gamer, you're always looking to upgrade your rig even if it might be working perfectly fine. There is always something to upgrade or replace and sometimes you might not know what you might want to change out. Here is some advice about what you could upgrade.

Upgrade Your Graphics Card

Ah, the basics of the basics when it comes to upgrades for a gaming rig. The two main companies that you will probably be looking at will be AMD and Nvidia.

With Nvidia's release of the Geforce 1000 series, the prices of older generation graphics cards have fallen. The Geforce 1000 series itself is also very affordable when it comes to performance, compared to the previous top of the line Titan X card.

AMD has also been releasing their own cards to compete on the price to performance aspect of cards.

If you're looking to game on higher settings or if you're looking to pick up a VR headset, upgrading to a new graphics card is definitely a major consideration.

Upgrade Your CPU/Motherboard

If you're gaming on an older CPU, now might be the time to switch, especially if you're planning on upgrading the other components in your rig.

You might not need a top of the line CPU and a workstation-grade motherboard, but anything more recent than whatever you had in that pre-made Dell in high school would be good.

A top of the line graphics card upgrade with an underpowered, five-year-old CPU means that you won't be getting the biggest bang for your buck. In fact, you're leaving some pixels on the floor when it comes to your games.

So definitely look to upgrade your CPU/Motherboard if you're going for a large overhaul of your system.

Upgrade Your RAM

RAM sticks are actually one of the things that you don't really have to upgrade or update too often since they'll typically last you for years. The only reason that you should think about upgrading your RAM is if a stick is dead, you're moving to a new motherboard that can use top-of-the-line RAM or if you want more RAM.

Normally, 8GB of RAM is enough for most casual/non-power gamers. 16GB of RAM should be enough if you just want some breathing room -- or want to crank your graphics settings to maximum.

Upgrade Your HardDrives

If your drives are starting to run out of space, you can either delete some things or you can buy some more drives. 

Most gamers have traditional hard-drives because they're inexpensive and they sometimes massive in terms of storage space, however, solid state hard drives have been increasingly adopted by gamers.

SSDs improve load times. Traditional hard drives have a needle that needs to move on a disc to read data. SSDs, however, have no moving parts, so they don't have to constantly move to access games data.

SSDs do have a downside, however: They are pricey but smaller in terms of storage space, so keeping a traditional hard-drive for general storage is a good idea.

So, Do You Need to Upgrade?

Not everyone needs to upgrade.

If you're not looking to improve your gaming experience, then upgrading isn't something you need to worry about. PC gaming is great in the idea that you have a choice. You choose to upgrade when you want and you get to choose your upgrades. 

Figure out your budget, do your research, find your parts and upgrade as you please.

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Nine Coolest Things That Happened in Gaming 2016 https://www.gameskinny.com/kgjea/nine-coolest-things-that-happened-in-gaming-2016 https://www.gameskinny.com/kgjea/nine-coolest-things-that-happened-in-gaming-2016 Sun, 27 Nov 2016 16:30:24 -0500 Lampstradamus

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In 2016, many new things appeared and excited gamers, while many old things popped up out of their graves and surprised us. Some of these trends might continue into 2017 and some might not. Let's hope a majority do. 

\n

We can't predict everything that is going to happen, so we can just wait and enjoy what is to come. 

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Second Lives for Old Games
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There are many games that try to make a mark on the field of gaming and sometimes, it just doesn't happen. Games fail to make a mark and simply disappear and die off. The fan bases for those games are often left without much else and have to move on. However, we saw something different happen this year: Evolve got a second life.

\n

Released back in 2015, Evolve was a highly hyped game but left many disappointed. The game had a big player base that died off a few weeks after its release, and the game was proclaimed dead by the gaming community. 

\n

But Evolve went free to play in 2016, giving it new life. Turtle Rock Studios opened the floodgates and tried to resurrect their dead game -- and it actually worked. There was a massive influx of new players wanting to try out Evolve as well as an influx of returning players wanting to see what was new.

\n

Though 2k is stopping production of the game even after the resurgence of interest, this little experiment shows us that dead games don't have to stay dead. Maybe developers could resurrect other old gems, too.

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"Development Hell" Games Releasing
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The only wait that seems as long as waiting for VR to become a thing is the eventual release of a "development hell" game. Several games that many gamers have been waiting years for are finally releasing (or have a release date).

The world will finally get their hands on games like Final Fantasy XV, The Last Guardian and Persona 5. Many gamers have been waiting for these games since the last generation of consoles and though Persona 5 is releasing in 2017, we have do (finally) a release date for it.

\n

The wait will finally be over.

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Nvidia Geforce 1000 Series
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Though this is more relevant for the PC gamer, the fact that Nvidia managed to develop and release an entirely new line of graphics cards is great. The Geforce 900 series released back in 2014, so the release of the 1000 series is a nice upgrade for those of us looking for new tech.

With the 1000 series being more affordable than Nvidia's Titan Xs, gamers can look forward to cards that won't completely break the bank. And even if you don't want to buy a 1000 series card, the 900 series of cards will obviously go down in price, since they are no longer the latest tech on the market.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-6bd76.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-6bd76.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142485","description":"
Cross-Platform Play
\n

Cross-platform play is something that many gamers have wanted for quite some time. From some wanting to crush players on other platforms to prove console superiority, to others just wanting to play with friends who own other platforms, cross-platform play is something that many gamers thought may never actually happen.

\n

But in 2016, it did. 

With Microsoft pushing integration between Windows 10 and Xbox One and with Rocket League opening up cross-platform play with PCs and consoles, the barriers between platforms are slowly but surely crumbling.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/b/b/f/bbf7ef9d6083d44dae11928cb11f2ea0-3206c.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/b/b/f/bbf7ef9d6083d44dae11928cb11f2ea0-3206c.png","type":"slide","id":"142484","description":"
Class Based Team Shooters
\n

From Overwatch to Paladins and Battleborn to Paragon, any gamer can see the interest in team shooters increased in 2016. After the release of the last really memorable team shooter, Team Fortress 2, there had been a drought of class-based team shooters. 

Though a couple of these games haven't been fully released (some are still in beta) and Battleborn having basically died, it can be seen that there's an emergence of interest in team shooters from gamers and developers alike.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-53ab1.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-53ab1.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142481","description":"
FPS Resurgence
\n

The first-person-shooter genre had been in sort of a rut for a while. With many gamers swapping genres, sticking to staples such as Counter-strike, or just downright bemoaning about the lack of innovation, the FPS genre was thought to be in decline.

So when several excellent FPS games released in 2016, everyone was surprised. DOOM surprised many gamers with its excellent single player campaign. Battlefield 1 excited players with its World War One setting. And TItanfall 2 gave gamers an interesting campaign, which built upon the polished gameplay from the first title.

\n

In a nutshell: 2016 has been a good year for the FPS genre.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/o/c/u/oculus-rift-matt-set-right-800x533-779c7.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/o/c/u/oculus-rift-matt-set-right-800x533-779c7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142480","description":"
Virtual Reality Gaming
\n

Virtual reality is finally here. After decades of dreaming and waiting, virtual reality is finally in the hands of people. Though it may be more for enthusiasts at the moment, virtual reality and virtual reality gaming exists, and it isn't completely terrible.

\n

Of course, there are issues with virtual reality, but it is still young. From the pricier headsets and setups on the PC with the Vive and Rift, to the the first console headset in the PSVR and the affordable Gear VR and Google Cardboard, VR is here to stay -- and we can look back on 2016 as the year it really took off.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-8370c.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-8370c.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142479","description":"
Japan Embraces the PC
\n

For the longest time, if you wanted to play an English port of a Japanese game, you'd have to get it on a console. But since 2015 Japan has been porting more and more games to the PC.

With games such as Zero Time Dilemma, the Danganronpa series and God Eater making their way to the PC, some Japanese developers have showed that they understand that there is a market for their games on the PC and hopefully, other developers and publishers will see the same.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/p/o/k/pokemon-logo-778dd.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/p/o/k/pokemon-logo-778dd.png","type":"slide","id":"142478","description":"
Pokemon Go
\n

Arguably one of the most talked about games during the summer months, Pokemon Go released and took the world by storm. Anyone and everyone was talking about it. Everyone was writing about it. And everyone was playing Pokemon Go. Old players and new players all picked up their phones and installed the app, wandering the world to catch pokemon. Even if the fad has died down since, Pokemon Go left its mark.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/0/2/8/028237b02be91eed112d10d434fe9972-2a9d6.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/0/2/8/028237b02be91eed112d10d434fe9972-2a9d6.png","type":"slide","id":"142477","description":"

The gaming industry is always evolving and changing as the years go on. Trends always change and technology is always being invented. And despite how some people may say that the gaming industry hasn't changed or that it is in a rut, there are clear signs that great things have been happening and that the industry is trending up.

\n

Here are 9 of the coolest things that happened in gaming in 2016.

"}]]]>
Gift Guide: PlayStation 4-Compatible Hard Drives to Grab Up This Holiday Season https://www.gameskinny.com/kje3q/gift-guide-playstation-4-compatible-hard-drives-to-grab-up-this-holiday-season https://www.gameskinny.com/kje3q/gift-guide-playstation-4-compatible-hard-drives-to-grab-up-this-holiday-season Tue, 15 Nov 2016 15:00:01 -0500 Aaron Grincewicz

[{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/b/u/y/buying-guide-best-c87f0.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/b/u/y/buying-guide-best-c87f0.png","type":"slide","id":"140258","description":"

For Those Who Want The Best...

\n

Option 1:

\n
Crucial MX300 1TB SSD
\n

Rating: 4.6 out of 5 Stars

\n

Price: $244.99

\n

Buy it: Amazon.com

\n

Crucial is another brand well known to PC enthusiasts. There are higher-end drives out there, but the cost would be equal to buying at least two Playstation 4 consoles. With this sort of tech only getting less expensive every year, this drive is a great option. Solid state drives are as fast as you can get when upgrading a PS4, and this model is one of the best versions on the market right now.

\n

Option 2: 

\n
Samsung 850 EVO 2TB SSD
\n

Rating: 4.8 out of 5 Stars

\n

Price: $624.99

\n

Buy it: Amazon.com

\n

Samsung products have some of the best engineering available to the average consumer and this SSD is no exception. If you want the absolute best, go with this.

The price is a little on the high end, but the quality of the product is worth the price. You'll get quadruple the storage space, with speed to spare.  It's also made for gaming and although more and more products make that claim, not all can handle the loads a gaming console puts on them. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/b/u/y/buying-guide-better-3ebbc.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/b/u/y/buying-guide-better-3ebbc.png","type":"slide","id":"140259","description":"
For Those Who Want Even More Storage....
\n

Option 1:

\n
Seagate Barracuda 2TB HDD
\n

Rating: 4.3 out of 5

\n

Price: $99.99

\n

Buy it: Amazon.com

\n

Just like it's 1TB counterpart, this HDD from Seagate will provide a reliable storage upgrade at a very good price. The Barracuda is also slimmer than the PS4's stock requirements, so this is a good one to hang on to for a laptop when larger capacity drives are produced with smaller dimensions.

\n
Or Maybe You Want More Storage and Speed...
\n

Option 2:

\n
Seagate 1TB Gaming SSHD
\n

Rating: 4.4 out of 5

\n

Price: $84.99

\n

Buy it: Amazon.com

\n

With a solid state hybrid drive, you get the speed of flash memory combined with the storage capacity of a standard HDD. This drive is a great choice if you don't really need 4x the storage space but want faster load times. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/b/u/y/buying-guide-good-d106f.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/b/u/y/buying-guide-good-d106f.png","type":"slide","id":"140260","description":"

For 2x The Storage Capacity 

\n

Option 1:

\n
Seagate Barracuda 1TB HDD
\n

Rating: 4.3 out of 5

\n

Price: $57.99

\n

Buy it: Amazon.com

\n

Seagate is a well-reviewed brand among  PC enthusiasts. This hard disk drive will double the storage space of a PS4 for a very affordable price. 

\n

Option 2: 

\n
WD Black Performance 1TB HDD
\n

Rating: 4.6 out of 5

\n

Price: $64.99

\n

Buy it: Amazon.com

\n

Another well-known brand, WD has a history of making reliable hard disk drives. This one will double the PS4 storage space and provide a bit of a speed boost to load times, as it is capable of 7,200rpm, instead of the 5,400rpm provided by the PS4's stock HDD. 

\n

 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/g/i/f/gift-guide-47522.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/g/i/f/gift-guide-47522.png","type":"slide","id":"140149","description":"

A PlayStation 4 is a thrilling gift to receive at any time of the year. Sony's console has some amazing exclusive titles like The Last of Us: Remastered, Bloodborne, Ratchet and Clank, the Uncharted series and more.

\n

Out of the box, the PS4 Slim has a 500GB Hard Disk Drive. Not bad, but with the average game needing about 40GB per install, you could run out of storage space real quick. Then there’s the DLC and patches, of course. A game like GTA V initially needs around 40GB of space, but with all the updates it ends up being around 60GB.  

\n

And you want the gamers on your shopping list to be happy, right? Well, a simple hard drive upgrade can go a long way. It may not seem like a big deal to some, but when you start the storage-space-shuffle, you’ll find out that doubling -- or even quadrupling -- that space can provide some much-needed relief.

\n

One of the great things about the Playstation 4 is that changing the HDD is pretty easy. PC enthusiasts will be right at home, and for the person who isn’t tech-savvy there are a ton of tutorials online.

Any internal hard drive with a 2.5” form factor is a good candidate. The only restriction is that the thickness must be 9mm -- max. With those dimensions, you’re limited to 2TB hard drives as your largest storage device. Then you’ve got to decide on if you want a standard hard disk drive (with the moving parts), a solid state drive (same stuff as a USB stick) or a hybrid of the two. Solid state hard drives are usually higher in price, but faster and less susceptible to errors.

\n

Luckily for you, I’ve shopped around to find six hard drive options that could make great gifts for the PS4 owner in your life.

Note: This guide will showcase hard drives with SATA III technology because while the Playstation 4 uses SATA II technology, the PS4 Pro uses SATA III and SATA III is backward compatible with other PlayStation 4 models. 

"}]]]>
Gift Guide: 4k Monitors that Won't Break the Bank https://www.gameskinny.com/guaze/gift-guide-4k-monitors-that-wont-break-the-bank https://www.gameskinny.com/guaze/gift-guide-4k-monitors-that-wont-break-the-bank Tue, 15 Nov 2016 11:04:28 -0500 Unclepulky

[{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/5/0/7/5071403-sdjpgmaxheight550maxwidth642-38e77.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/5/0/7/5071403-sdjpgmaxheight550maxwidth642-38e77.jpg","type":"slide","id":"140275","description":"

Dell - 28" LED 4K UHD Monitor - Black

\n
 For gamers and video editors alike
\n

Specs: 3840x2160 resolution; 60hz refresh rate; HDMI; 2x USB 3.0 ports; 16:9 aspect ratio; 8,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio. 

\n

Rating: 10/10

\n

Price: $470.99

\n

Buy this 4K monitor

\n

To cap off this guide, we have the perfect monitor for those who want to make videos about video games. Everything is presented clearly, there's no streaking or blurring during fast paced gameplay and it has a very nicely sized 28-inch screen.

\n

My top recommendation is still Samsung's "UD590 Series 28" LED 4K UHD", but if you're willing to shell out just a little more, this 4K monitor will make a great gift as well.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/5/4/8/5484022-sajpgmaxheight550maxwidth642-496e9.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/5/4/8/5484022-sajpgmaxheight550maxwidth642-496e9.jpg","type":"slide","id":"140273","description":"

Samsung - UD590 Series 28" LED 4K UHD Monitor - Black

\n
A monitor for everyone
\n

Specs: 3840x2160 resolution; 60hz refresh rate; 1x HDMI, display port; 100,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio; 16:9 aspect ratio; VESA mountable

\n

Rating: 10/10

\n

Price: $369.99

\n

Buy this 4K monitor

\n

This is one of the best 4K monitors on the market right now. With its large 28-inch screen, crisp resolution and unique features like eye-saver mode, it's an incredible monitor with few issues to speak of. Of course, it isn't the absolute best monitor on the market, but you'd struggle to find a better monitor in its price range.

\n

Full disclosure: The author currently uses this monitor for his gaming escapades

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/a/s/u/asus-b2300.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/a/s/u/asus-b2300.jpg","type":"slide","id":"140269","description":"

Asus - 23.6" IPS LED 4K UHD Monitor - Black

\n
For PC gamers -- not for people who want a monitor for their consoles.
\n

Specs: 3840x2160 resolution; 60hz refresh rate; 2x HDMI, display port; 100,000,000:1 contrast ratio; built-in speakers

\n

Rating: 7/10

\n

Price: $363.99

\n

Buy this 4K monitor

\n

This 4K monitor, especially for its low price, is worth every penny: This monitor keeps up with some of its best-in-class competitors just fine. That is when hooked up to a computer. There have been many reports of this monitor failing to properly run games and producing severe lag when hooked up to consoles like the Xbox One and the Playstation 4. 

\n

So while it's not the best monitor for all-purpose gaming, this is an affordable and solid 4K monitor, especially for the rabid PC gamer. 

\n

 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/7/8/6/7867103-sajpgmaxheight550maxwidth642-9f25b.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/7/8/6/7867103-sajpgmaxheight550maxwidth642-9f25b.jpg","type":"slide","id":"140261","description":"

ViewSonic - 23.6" 4K UHD Monitor - Black

\n
For gamers and non-gamers alike
\n

Specs: 3840x2160 resolution; 60hz refresh rate; 1x HDMI, display port, HML input; 16:9 aspect ratio; 120,000,000:1 contrast ratio. 

\n

Rating: 7/10

\n

Price: $399.99

\n

Buy this 4K monitor

\n

This 4K monitor from Viewsonic is a solid all-purpose monitor for all consumers. Its primary use isn't gaming, but it still presents games in a crisp resolution. Its 23.6-inch screen doesn't need much room, so it'll fit nicely on a desk, while still providing a wide-angle view for both games and movies.

\n

Just be aware: FPS players HAVE reported that this monitor is not very well suited for them. A deduction in this monitor's rating has been made on that account.

\n

 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/2/3/5/23582656d56814f.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/2/3/5/23582656d56814f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"140249","description":"

ViewSonic XG2700-4K 27" Ultra HD IPS Free Sync Gaming 4K Monitor

\n
For gamers who don't play the most graphically-intensive games
\n

Specs: 3840x2160 resolution; 5ms GTG; 1000:1 contrast ratio; 300cd/m2 USB; 1x HDMI; display port; built-in speakers; height, pivot, title and swivel adjustable; VESA mountable. 

\n

Rating: 9/10

\n

Price: $539.99

\n

Buy this 4K monitor

\n

This monitor's nowhere near as expensive as most high-end 4K monitors, and yet it's close to being perfect. The colors are beautiful, there isn't any lag to speak of and there are three USB ports. Although it doesn't hit 144 hz as advertised, this monitor can handle most games flawlessly and provides a good bang for your holiday buck. 

\n

 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/0/2/5/025-374-6136a.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/0/2/5/025-374-6136a.jpg","type":"slide","id":"140245","description":"

LG 27UD68P-B 27" FreeSync IPS LED Monitor 4K 

\n
For newcomers to PC gaming
\n

Specs: UHD 3840x2160 resolution; 16:9 aspect ratio; widescreen; 60hz refresh rate; 5ms GTG; 2x HDMI; on-screen control, with screen-split game mode & black stabilizer.

\n

Rating: 8/10

\n

Price: $439.99

\n

Buy this 4K monitor 

\n

To begin, we have the most affordable 4K monitor from LG Electronics. For its modest price, this monitor has fantastic quality and great resolution. It looks sharp, has no dead pixels, and comes with a handy-dandy stand.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/g/a/m/gam-786f4.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/g/a/m/gam-786f4.png","type":"slide","id":"139711","description":"

It's that time of year again: Black Friday and Cyber Monday are fast approaching. That means now's the best possible time to buy your friends and loved ones killer gifts for the holidays.

\n

Getting your fellow gamers a game will always be appreciated, but for those of you who want to go the extra mile, this Gift Guide will help you get that special gamer something rad and affordable this holiday: a 4k monitor.

\n

Note: This guide is mainly for dedicated PC gamers and those shopping for them. However, if you're interested in learning more about PC gaming, here's a great guide on how to build a PC on a budget. After reading that, come back here, you might find just what you're looking for. 

\n

 

\n

 

"}]]]>
Corsair Harpoon RGB Gaming Mouse Review - How Does it Stack Up? https://www.gameskinny.com/yy6vc/corsair-harpoon-rgb-gaming-mouse-review-how-does-it-stack-up https://www.gameskinny.com/yy6vc/corsair-harpoon-rgb-gaming-mouse-review-how-does-it-stack-up Fri, 11 Nov 2016 06:50:48 -0500 AwesumPawsum

I've been playing with the Corsair Harpoon RGB gaming mouse for a few days now. And I've got to say -- I like it quite a lot.

It's not the most complex gaming mouse in the world, and that's a good thing. It offers enough customization to give you the controls you need without making you feel like you're programming a rocket for NASA.

Anyways -- let's get into the review.

Unboxing the Corsair Harpoon

Unlike when I reviewed the G.Skill Ripjaws MX780, this unboxing was a bit simpler. The box was smaller for one thing, which was a good sign (to me.)

As I pulled out the casing, I was surprised how few things were in there. There was simply the mouse itself and some quick start/warranty guides for troubleshooting. That's it.

I loved this. I didn't want to be dealing with little bits and pieces that my dog or toddler would eat. I didn't want to screw around in an instruction manual the size of my accounting textbook just to start using the mouse.

So -- we're off to a good start.

Functionality

This mouse comes with six buttons:

  1. Left click
  2. Right click
  3. Middle click
  4. DPI switch
  5. Forward
  6. Backward

Again, that's enough to give me some options, but not overwhelming.

The DPI switch may be the coolest button on here, depending on what games you play. It allows you to quickly adjust the mouse sensitivity without having to log out of the game, load up software, etc. 

One great example of where this would be useful is in first person shooters (FPS.) When you're sniping, you'll probably want a different DPI setting than when you run-and-gun. This button will let you quickly switch back and forth as you run around the map. 

Corsair Harpoon Mouse Software

The customization software for this mouse can be found at Corsair's support site. It's the first download option, even though (at the time I'm writing this) the Harpoon isn't listed.

The software breaks everything down into just 4 options -- actions, lighting, DPI, and performance. Let's take a look at how each of those areas functioned and what options they offered. 

 

Actions

If you want to reprogram the mouse, there's a number of things you can do. The software allows you to change the settings so the mouse buttons can do multiple things like:

  • Initiate macros
  • Enter preloaded text
  • Re-map keys
  • Timers (that play a sound, have a light flash, etc. after the timer runs out
  • Control media (Play, Stop, etc.)

Pretty cool. I think most gamers can appreciate at least one of these -- especially preloading the text "WHAT THE *@&! ARE YOU DOING, NOOB?!" if you play multiplayer games like League of Legends or Battlefield 1.

There's also a more advanced feature, which Corsair calls the Double Macro. The idea is just what it sounds like -- one click of a button initiates two macros at the same time. 

I'll be honest...I don't use macros very much. They just aren't necessary for the types of games I tend to play. But if you are a Macro Monster, I'm sure you'll love the Double Macro feature.

 Lighting

I can't have a mouse with a red light like most gaming mice come preloaded with. I went to Georgia Tech, so anything with Red and Black (UGA's colors) are a no-go for me.

Luckily, changing the lighting scheme on the Harpoon mouse was pretty easy. The software is very easy to understand and only took me a minute or two of clicking around to figure out. It gives you five basic options:

  • Rainbow
  • Color shift
  • Color pulse
  • Static color
  • Lighting link

So you know, that's good. 

The downside? The only light on the mouse is right where your hand is sitting. So you won't even see the light when you're playing! I suppose you will when you take your hand off the mouse to write a taunting message to the enemy, though.

Where the light really may come in handy is if you'll be switching back and forth between DPI settings. You can reprogram the light to show as a different color for each setting. So just by looking at the light showing on the Corsair logo, you'll know which DPI setting you have on.

DPI

This is where you actually do what I just talked about. You can have up to 6 DPI settings, and assign a different color to each. It comes with all 6 settings already loaded, including a 250 DPI setting for sniping.

Boom!

...get it?

Performance

This is an extremely simple menu, this just gives you two options -- enhance pointer precision and adjust pointer speed. And if you haven't figured it out already, simple is good for me. 

Final Note

The Harpoon mouse comes loaded with an on-board memory. So after you program it, the settings will stay on there until you change it again in the software -- even if the mouse is plugged in somewhere else.

That means you can even take it someplace else and use it on a different computer, and the settings will still be the same. Pretty cool if you have two gaming PCs, like a desktop and a laptop.

Corsair Harpoon RGB Mouse Cable

I won't lie -- I prefer wireless mice. My desk is always a mess, so having one more cord hanging around doesn't help anything.

But considering the higher response rate necessary to be a competitive gamer, I understand why Corsair has the 6 foot cable instead of a wireless option. This mouse has a response rate of 1ms/1000Hz. In other words, it talks to the computer 1,000 times a second!

No more blaming your horrible Overwatch score on your mouse...

Comfort

Unfortunately I have somewhat large hands. This makes holding everything from my Dual Shock 4 to most gaming mice less comfortable than I'd prefer. This mouse isn't bad, though -- especially since I use a mousepad with a gel pad for my wrist to sit on while I play. 

The grips on the side are nice and comfortable. The Forward and Backward buttons are in a perfect place for my thumb, making all 6 buttons easily accessible. There are little rubber pads on the bottom of the mouse to help it slide very easily, which is always nice. 

The top part is made out of a plastic that isn't quite smooth. I think that's a good thing though, because it helps you keep a better grip on the mouse as you slide it around in anger after watching your teammate feed the enemy in League of Legends.

Verdict

This is a nice mouse -- especially for a $30 price tag.

The six, fully-customizable buttons should be enough to satisfy most gamers. The only ones I can think of that may want more are hardcore MMORPG players. Having multiple lighting schemes is nice too, although you won't see the lighting as soon as you put your hand on the mouse.

I like that you can program different light colors for your DPI settings. Certain games like Call of Duty or Battlefield will probably require switching back and forth more than others, but it never hurts to play around with it in your favorite non-FPS game, either.

The software is fantastic. Some software I've used for gaming hardware in the past was pretty complicated. Corsair's is much cleaner and simpler to use. It still took me a few minutes to figure out all of the lighting functions, but it was easier than I expected.

My biggest complaint is the size. After more than an hour of gaming with it, my hand needs a break. 

If you're in the market for a low-cost gaming mouse, I recommend the Corsair Harpoon RGB mouse. It offers functionality and simplicity without breaking the bank. Though it's not yet available for purchase, you'll be able to pick up the mouse on Amazon soon.

Note: Corsair provided the writer with a review unit for this article. 

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Why You Should Build Your Own Gaming PC https://www.gameskinny.com/rxqrj/why-you-should-build-your-own-gaming-pc https://www.gameskinny.com/rxqrj/why-you-should-build-your-own-gaming-pc Mon, 07 Nov 2016 02:00:02 -0500 Lampstradamus

As newer and better PC components come out, the prices for older components go down. With the holiday season fast approaching this might be the best time to build your own PC.

Switching from Consoles

A majority of gamers start as console gamers. It's easy, it's fast and there are advantages to playing on the console as opposed to a PC. However, many of these advantages seemed to have dwindled in recent years.

Consoles used to have the advantage when it came to the sit and play aspect, being able to just pop in the disc and play, but with the current generation consoles that advantage has disappeared. Like the PC, you have to put in the game disk, and then have it install the game, on top of any patches which will be downloaded after. With many gamers switching to digital download only, the physical media factor of the console has dwindled.

Consoles still have an advantage when it comes to first-party titles/exclusives and the native ability for couch play (but if you really wanted to you could play on a TV with a PC). If you don't mind playing on a monitor, and there aren't any killer console exclusives that you want -- then you probably already have a PC.

Longevity

Depending on how much you spend on your PC, or how often you might choose to upgrade parts, a good PC will last you longer than a console. The last generation of consoles lasted many years, a good 8 years for the Xbox 360, but the current one already seems to be getting updates to their hardware with the Xbox Scorpio and the PS4 Pro. Both being announced only 3 years into the current generation.

Why Should I Invest So Much Money Into a PC?

It's a known fact that PC gaming is expensive depending on the machine you build, but a PC is an investment. Though you are spending money to build a gaming machine, a PC is more than that; it is a computer. If you aren't playing a game you could be using it for school or work.

Where there are places where you can spend money, there are places where you can save money. There aren't any mandatory services where you have to pay monthly for multiplayer -- outside of select MMOs. There are always plenty of sales for video games, whether it be on Steam, a Humble Bundle, or on GOG.com. Parts are always getting cheaper and you can always find a sale, especially with Black Friday approaching.

If you don't want to spend too much money at once you can buy lower-end components and upgrade them when you feel like it. The benefit of building a PC is choice. You don't need all of the top-of-the-line components but you can if you want to.

But I Don't Know How to Build a PC?

Ah, the biggest road block that everyone comes across when it comes to building their own PC. Contrary to popular belief, assembling a PC isn't rocket science, barring some troubleshooting issues. With the age of information and the internet being a thing, being able to look up instructions or ask for help is easier than ever. The BuildAPC Reddit has a really nice beginner's guide for anyone looking to get started. And even if there are some bad eggs in the PC community, many people are always willing to help newcomers out -- there are several websites dedicated to PC Gaming as well.

And if you're still overwhelmed about the idea of building a machine from scratch, there are companies that offer services where they'll build a PC based on what parts you want. A simple custom part picking service, coupled with professional builds, also comes with warranties and full testing of the whole system -- companies like OriginPC or Dell/Alienware offer these services.

"I'm still on the fence"

If you're still undecided about building your own PC don't worry. As I said in the beginning, PC parts are always getting cheaper and you don't have to build one if you don't want to. Even if it's after Black Friday, you can always find a deal somewhere. The point of building your own PC is choice, you can choose to build it now or you can choose to build it later. There are always ways to play games that you might've missed, or even improve the ones that you're already playing with mods. PCs have been around for a long time and will probably still be around for a long time, so there is never a bad time to get into PC gaming.

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Why Aren't Game Studios and Companies Sponsoring More Esports Teams? https://www.gameskinny.com/eqhe9/why-arent-game-studios-and-companies-sponsoring-more-esports-teams https://www.gameskinny.com/eqhe9/why-arent-game-studios-and-companies-sponsoring-more-esports-teams Thu, 03 Nov 2016 06:00:01 -0400 Aaron Grincewicz

To the casual gamer/fan, eSports can seem like nothing more than playing games for money. That may have been the case a few years ago, with limited league play available. Now, eSports and competitive gaming have grown to rival some professional sports.

With growth often comes complexity. The world of eSports is beginning to emulate pro sports leagues in many ways. The most important similarity could be the way eSports teams and players are sponsored, and exactly who is sponsoring them. To understand the situation a bit better, I'm going to dive into a few sports management topics.

The League/Franchise Model also applies to eSports

Let's use the NFL as an example; all 32 teams are franchises. The owners are the franchisees. In short, each team is like its own business, and as long as they meet certain guidelines they can participate in the National Football League. The same thing applies to other companies like McDonald’s; Not every restaurant is owned directly by McDonald’s. A lot of them are owned by entrepreneurs called franchisees. The NBA, MLB, NHL, and NFL follow this business model (Major League Soccer follows a different structure with many similarities). Now, the pro sports league conversation has grown to include eSports.

Completely Different Structure 

The current landscape of eSports is chaotic at first glance. There are several leagues around the world, some focusing on one game franchise, others on several games.  Along with those leagues, there are dozens upon dozens of eSports organizations.  Some groups stick with one league, like Major League Gaming, while others participate in several leagues simultaneously. This is mostly because the concept of a franchise differs significantly compared to a typical sports team.  One eSports franchise can have several teams with each focused on one game.

Let’s say my organization, ASG Gaming has a Team CoD, Team LoL, and Team GoW.  Team CoD just finished a season in MLG, and now wants to start a season in another league. Once qualified, nothing is stopping them from doing so.  While Team GoW has never competed in the MLG. This is because eSports does not have one ‘Super Bowl', or a mutual agreement between leagues to determine a world champion.  Major League Baseball technically has two separate leagues, each with some minor rules differences (National and American), who have reached an agreement to have their best teams play in a World Series. Right now there is an open competition between leagues to see who will become the NBA of eSports. 

Neutrality: The Golden Rule 

The relatively unorganized system for eSports has managed to keep one major similarity to pro sports, and that’s the independently owned teams. The reason that leagues like the NFL don't own teams is that it creates a conflict of interest. They might occasionally take financial control of a team if it’s current owners violate league terms (default on loans, severe capital loss) but they often sell it to a new owner as quickly as possible. This has happened in the NBA with the New Orleans Hornets. The Hornets were eventually sold and rebranded as the Pelicans. Was the NBA to maintain control of the team, how would it look if the team started winning a lot of games, or getting referee calls in their favor? Rather than even think about the problems and scandals that could cause, it’s in the league's’ best interest to remain neutral.

The rule of neutrality applies to eSports teams, too. Activision Blizzard might own Major League Gaming, but it’s really nothing more than that. MLG allows players to compete in games from some of Activision’s publisher rivals like EA, Microsoft, and Take-Two. Now, that’s a smart business move on their part. MLG has a credit system where you pay real money to access tournaments for various games, no matter the publisher. This will most likely continue until publishers decide to institute a contract system. EA could easily limit it’s eSports participation to its own league, with a set number of teams that have agreed to a league franchise contract. Should that happen, and be successful for EA, others will follow. Some publishers could allow their games to be played in multiple leagues with the stipulation being they send their best teams to a mutual championship match at the end of the season.

Should a league organization or publisher take sides with one, or several teams by funding them, the notion that they're being favored comes into play. There is a similar comparison in pro sports leagues with a salary cap. Basically, salary caps exist so one team cannot be unfairly stacked with the best players. With no system of checks and balances in place for eSports, one league could lure every notable team to it’s stable by supplying them with gear and paying them. As it stands, the prize pools are what attract the best teams.

Maintaining Integrity

If eSports is to continue its success, the leagues and publishers must preserve their credibility by remaining a neutral authority.  Offering the same prizes and opportunities to all qualifying teams without directly sponsoring them will reinforce this integrity. Not only is this beneficial to the leagues and companies directly involved in making the games, but also the businesses that sponsor teams. 

A company like Microsoft could easily fund a team and be the only sponsor on all their gear (like the Seattle Sounders). Without direct sponsorship, other companies are given the opportunity to display their logos on team jerseys, and just about anything associated with the team. As any business owner will tell you, that can be the difference between success and failure. It’s because of this that I realized just how many companies are creating products aimed at gamers. All those brands would have a much harder time fighting through obscurity were the big companies taking up space.

Maybe someday soon there will be courses and degree programs offered in eSports Management. Until that day arrives, I can only hope that everyone involved in eSports takes a page from those textbooks to make it at least as successful an entity as the NFL or NBA. The responsibility also falls to the teams and the owners of those teams. As enticing as it sounds, if a developer or publisher tries to sponsor one team over many, it’s in the best interest of the team to decline. Many, many companies will jump at the chance to put their logo next to your teams.

Do you agree that the game companies should remain a neutral authority? Would you major in eSports Management if it were offered? Does the idea of an ‘NFL of eSports’ appeal to you? Let us know in the comments below.

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