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Monday, November 24, 2014

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare deploy fix for Xbox 360 and PS3 as fans report new freezes

SLEDGEHAMMER GAMES have revealed they have deployed a new patch to fix a variety of problems affecting fans on the Xbox 360 and PS3, although some are reporting fresh issues.



Players on Xbox 360 and PS3 received an update this week including fixes for marksman and camo challenges resetting when you Prestige, and issues attached to the Ping Bar not updating correctly.

Fans will also notice adjustments to challenges to unlock camos for weapons, while the problems with spawning in spectator mode have now been fixed.

Sledgehammer confirmed there would be new updates coming soon but fans will have to wait for them to be tried and tested on the PS4 and Xbox One first.

An official statement read: "Our game update development process is to submit and verify changes on current gen systems first, and then apply those changes to prior generation as quickly as possible.

"Console players on Xbox 360 received an update this week with the changes marked below.

"Another update will be coming soon."

A new patch may be needed soon rather then later however, as fans on the Xbox 360 and PS3 have been reporting fresh problems over the weekend.

Problems with multiplayer have been pointed out on the forums, with one fan writing: "Every time I've stopped playing it has been because of the game freezing, it's Full system lock-up.


"I've never had a game that freezes this often. I honestly don't know how much longer I can put up with this. The game is great, and the Bal finally got nerfed, but this freezing is going to ruin PS3s and 360s."

Source:- http://goo.gl/DQJLFf
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Sunday, November 23, 2014

Photoshop Plugins

Photoshop is an amazing tool for producing the attractive images, high definition video and even creative 3D effect.




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Friday, November 21, 2014

Call of Duty: Heroes Released

Free-to-play strategy game available now for iOS devices; coming to Android later.


Though the third-person Call of Duty game may have been canceled, publisher Activision is not giving up on extending the blockbuster shooter series to new categories. The company today released Call of Duty: Heroes, a free-to-play 3D strategy game for iOS, Android, and Windows.

Heroes--which was originally announced in August--features characters from the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Black Ops franchises, including Captain Price, Soap MacTavish, and Mike Harper, among others. The game lets players customize their bases and face off against friends though online battles.

You'll start with a small outpost and must construct and upgrade it with new weapons and equipment, including sentry guns, SAM turrets, mines, and more than 30 upgradeable structures. Since it's a Call of Duty game, you can also level up your characters and utilize killstreaks such as UAVs and drone strikes to help you along the way.

Heroes was developed by Chinese studio Faceroll. It's available now as a free download for iOS and Windows 8 tablets, while the Android version is "coming soon." For an optimal experience, Activision recommends playing Heroes on an iPhone 5 or newer and iPad Air 2 or Mini 2 or newer devices.

Since it's a free-to-play game, Activision makes its money by offering microtransactions. We tested the game today and found a maximum single purchase option of $100. Microtransactions, of course, are standard practice for mobile games, and Heroes also offers add-ons for less.

Source:- http://goo.gl/tCM2b9
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Thursday, November 20, 2014

'Fire is catching,' so catch up with Katniss



From left, Commander Paylor (Patina Miller), Gale Hawthorne (Liam Hemsworth), Boggs (Mahershala Ali), Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and Pollux (Elden Henson) in “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1.”
Murray Close, Lionsgate


Fans of The Hunger Games series will be jumping back into the world of Panem with the Nov. 21 theatrical release of “Mockingjay — Part 1."

The first movie of the series, “The Hunger Games,” hit theaters in March 2012 and made $152 million on opening weekend, according to imdb.com. Its sequel, “Catching Fire,” debuted in November 2013 at $158 million.

“Mockingjay — Part 1” is expected to perform similarly. "Part 2" is scheduled for November 2015.

For those who may not be as familiar with Suzanne Collins' book trilogy, here's what you need to know heading into the first leg of the two-part finale.

Katniss Everdeen, who just escaped the Quarter Quell (her second time in the arena where "tributes" are forced to fight to the death) at the end of the film “Catching Fire,” discovers the mystery behind District 13, which was long thought destroyed, and suits up as the symbol of rebellion against the oppressive Capitol. Fellow tribute and (somewhat) love interest Peeta Mellark is now being held captive by the Capitol. New characters such as President Coin, Boggs and members of Squad 451 are introduced in "Mockingjay — Part 1."

Background:

In the post-apocalyptic nation of Panem, the citizens are divided among 12 districts and controlled by a central Capitol. The Capitol is home to superficial, futuristic citizens who live extravagant lifestyles, made possible by the labors of the districts’ citizens. Each district is in charge of a specific industry, such as textile, technology or agriculture. President Snow runs the Capitol and controls the districts.

In the past, the districts’ citizens revolted against the Capitol and the annual Hunger Games was created as punishment. In the Games, 24 tributes — one boy and one girl from each district — are “reaped” from the 12 districts and sent to an arena created by gamemakers to fight to the death. The Games are aired on television as sport for the Capitol citizens. District citizens are also forced to watch as a reminder to be obedient. Only one victor comes out alive.





Book 1: ‘The Hunger Games’

Katniss Everdeen volunteers as tribute for the 74th annual Hunger Games when her younger sister, Primrose, has her name drawn from the reaping pool in District 12. Katniss goes to the Capitol with fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark, where she prepares and trains for the Games. Her years spent hunting in the woods — critical for her family’s survival — gives her the advantage with a bow and arrow.

Upon entering the arena, Katniss fights alone, but soon teams up with Rue, a young tribute from District 11 who is eventually killed. Meanwhile, the rules of the Games are changed: tributes can now team up with their fellow district tribute. Katniss finds Peeta and the two fake a romance to win favor with the viewers.

When Katniss and Peeta are the only two tributes left, the rules change again: there will only be one victor. Rather than killing each other, the “star-crossed lovers” spontaneously decide to both eat poisoned berries, threatening to upstage the Capitol. Gamemakers decided to let the two survive because they must have a victor. This act of defiance marks Katniss as a symbol of rebellion.

Book 2: ‘Catching Fire’

Katniss and Peeta must go on a Victory Tour following the 74th annual Hunger Games. From the Capitol, President Snow warns Katniss that he is watching her. In order to protect herself, she must continue to fake her love affair with Peeta, and the two become engaged. However, Peeta’s romantic feelings towards Katniss are genuine.

Source:- http://goo.gl/SEUvkj
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WWE 2K15 Now on PS4, Xbox One


Get ready to rumble with WWE 2K15, the latest addition to 2K's WWE video game franchise, available now for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

"The most authentic WWE game to date," the title boasts gameplay updates, a library of WWE Superstars, Divas, and Legends, the story-driven 2K Showcase, and the new MyCareer experience.

This also marks the first collaborative release from Visual Concepts and Yuke's.

"WWE 2K15 … takes the franchise to a whole new level," Visual Concepts President Greg Thomas said in a statement. "The next-generation of consoles let us create and deliver gameplay, authenticity, and realism previously unseen in a WWE video game, as well as build the foundation for an exciting future."

Just pick up the controller and step into the realistic ring, where new animations aim to accurately depict what players experience on WWE's TV programs and during live events.

The game comes with a new chain wrestling integration, strategic strike attacks, and a new stamina mechanic, as well as an updated on-screen display of the player's health, momentum, and stamina as they change throughout the match.


Studio 2K also used facial- and body-scanning technology to present super-realistic characters, including Hall of Famer Jerry "The King" Lawler and commentator Michael Cole, who call the action with five times more recorded lines than in previous games.

And while fan-favorite modes like Creation Suite, Universe Mode, and the single-player 2K Showcase remain intact, the latest title comes with something a little different: MyCareer.

In the career-driven mode, players start at the bottom, being mentored by the WWE Performance Center's head trainer, Bill DeMott. Moving up the ranks, you compete on NXT, alongside WWE Superstars like Rusev, Bo Dallas, Adrian Neville, Sami Zayn, and Corey Graves.

Then it's off to the main roster to compete for the ultimate goal of winning the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. All the fun, none of the broken bones.

"Major gameplay improvements, the historic rivalry experience in 2K Showcase, and our first foray into a comprehensive career mode with MyCareer make us pleased to offer fans an impressive WWE video game experience," Thomas said.
Fans will also find familiar faces like John Cena, Dwayne Johnson, Undertaker, Randy Orton, Triple H, and Stone Cold Steve Austin.

WWE 2K15 comes with a number of launch-day patches to fix online matches, community creations, gameplay and user interface, creation suite, and audio.

The game arrived for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 last month, but the next-gen console versions were delayed until this week.

Take a behind-the-scenes look at WWE 2K15 in the launch trailer above, and check out the full review of WWE 2K15 from PCMag's sister site, IGN.

The launch comes shortly after the WWE dropped a plan for its WWE Network streaming service that required subscribers to sign up for a six-month commitment if they wanted to enjoy lower monthly pricing. Now, the WWE is offering a simple $9.99 monthly service to everyone.

WWE first announced the network at CES in January at what PCMag's Sascha Segan dubbed the show's "most bombastic press conference." The network first launched in February on WWE.com, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Android, iOS, Apple TV, Roku, and Kindle Fire, and landed on Xbox One in April.

Source:- http://goo.gl/2dv3Na
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Is Bob Marley about to become the Starbucks of cannabis?

The reggae superstar's family team up with a private equity firm to launch Marley Natural, selling his favourite strain of weed (where it's legal in the US), plus skin creams and accessories.


Marley, who died in 1981, is perhaps an obvious choice to launch the world's first international marijuana brand. Marley Natural says it will offer "premium cannabis products that honour the life and legacy of Bob Marley as well as his belief in the benefits of cannabis".

As well as offering cannabis-infused skin lotions and balm, the firm will also be selling what it describes as Bob's favourite Jamaican strains of heirloom cannabis in countries and US states where it is legal.

"My dad would be so happy to see people understanding the healing power of the herb," said Cedella Marley, Bob's daughter and CEO of his record label, Tuff Gong International. 

"He viewed the herb as something spiritual that could awaken our well-being, deepen our reflection, connect us to nature and liberate our creativity. Marley Natural is an authentic way to honour his legacy by adding his voice to the conversation about cannabis and helping end the social harms caused by prohibition."

The firm says it expects to start shipping its products by the end of next year. To avoid the web of differing regulations across the US, it will grow cannabis in each area where it is legal, but sell it under one worldwide brand. At the moment differing amounts of cannabis are legal for recreational use in the US states of Alaska, Colorado, Oregon and Washington, and the capital Washington DC. It is legal for medicinal use in many other states.



Privateer Holdings, the private equity firm backing the product, says it is committed to ending the social harms caused by the prohibition of marijuana. It recently raised $50m to plough into the increasingly profitable industry.

My dad would be so happy to see people understanding the healing power of the herbCedella Marley

Bob Marley's image has long been associated with marijuana, so it is perhaps surprising that it has taken this long to put his name to an official brand. The reggae superstar was a Rastafarian and believed smoking the herb was a sacrament sanctioned by the Bible. He reportedly smoked a pound of weed a week.

"My husband believed 'the herb' was a natural and positive part of life," said Rita Marley, Bob's widow, "and he felt it was important to the world. He looked forward to this day."

The singer's personal brand is hugely valuable and his family has licensed his image for a number of products including headphones, coffee and clothing. In 2011, it was estimated that the trade in unauthorised Marley merchandise could exceed $600m a year, in spite of the family's extensive legal efforts to protect his image.

As the appetite for legalisation in the US shows no signs of slowing, Marley Natural thinks it could one day become the Starbucks of marijuana. In a legal market in the US worth an estimated $2.5bn, where Bob leads, others will surely follow.


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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Netflix confirms Australia launch for March 2015

Netflix has already secured exclusive SVOD rights to Batman prequel series Gotham

After months of speculation, Netflix has confirmed that it will launch in Australia and New Zealand in March.

The US-based subscription video on-demand (SVOD) service announced its intentions overnight and touted its own financed series Marco Polo and BoJack Horseman as well as Dreamworks' All Hail King Julien as titles that will be available upon launch.


As first revealed by Fairfax Media in September, Netflix has also secured exclusive SVOD rights to Batman prequel series Gotham. Nine Entertainment holds the broadcast, first-run, and in-season catch up rights to Gotham. Netflix will not be able to offer Gotham until one-year after the linear broadcast on Nine.

Netflix said that it will continue to expand its content in Australia and New Zealand in 2015 to include series such as Bloodline, Marvel's Daredevil, from Matrix creators's Sense8 and from Friends creator Grace and Frankie.

"Australia and New Zealand have been a long time coming for us," Netflix director of corporate communications and technology Cliff Edwards told Fairfax Media.

"Both countries are great locations for us, we know that people have been very enthusiastic with us not in country and we hope that enthusiasm will grow when we launch in March."

Mr Edwards said Australians could expect a lot more announcements on content, as well as pricing, in the coming months.

In the US, Netflix costs $US8.99 per month.

"We've been talking to content providers for quite some time in Australia and New Zealand as we always do before we launch in a country, we don't just parachute in," Mr Edwards said.

What Netflix will be able to offer in Australia will depend on deals signed with content providers. It will not necessarily have the same offering in Australia as it does in the US or Europe.

Netflix's launch in Australia comes as Nine Entertainment and Fairfax Media plan their move into streaming with joint-venture Stan. It is understood that Seven West Media is in advanced talks with Foxtel about a possible venture. Last week, Seven chairman Kerry Stokes said the broadcaster will announce its streaming plans in the coming months.

On September 4, cable subscription service Foxtel slashed its basic cable package by half to $25 a month in what was seen by many analysts as a pre-emptive strike ahead of a launch for Netflix in Australia. Earlier this year, Foxtel also cut the price of its movie-streaming service Presto from $19.99 to $9.99.

The pay TV company is also getting ready to relaunch Presto to include television programs. Foxtel chief executive Richard Freudenstein confirmed that the renewed product would be offered to customers before the arrival of Netflix.

"It would be a good business decision to be out before Netflix," he said, while not revealing an exact date.

Mr Freudenstein said the new service would have HBO content, albeit not first-run material, so it will not include the latest series of Game of Thrones.

But it would also have shows that are exclusive to Presto and Foxtel, he said.

"In the SVOD world you can afford to have some things exclusively and you have to have a bunch of non-exclusive stuff," said Mr Freudenstein, adding that he believed no company offering SVOD would make any money out of the service in the "short-term, including Netflix".

Mr Freudenstein said Foxtel wasn't being dragged into the SVOD space, despite predicting the move would offer no immediate returns and saying the area is "going to be very competitive" and "noisy".

"If you look at our strategy, our philosophy, it's about getting our service into as many homes as possible," Mr Freudenstein said.

"We see absolutely huge growth in our core cable and satellite business. But we are realistic enough to know that that business is not going to be in 100 per cent of homes.

"There are people out there who currently go to a DVD store, they know that's closing down. They want to watch a movie every now and then, or a TV show now and then. So it's absolutely something that we're not doing reluctantly. We see it as an opportunity."

It is believed that Netflix already has a number of users in Australia who sidestep the US-based company's geoblock by using a virtual private network (VPN) to hide their location. However, using a VPN to access Netflix is a violation of the company's terms of services and it result in the cancellation of a users subscription.

Goldman Sachs analyst Christian Guerra said he expected the growing proliferation of over-the-top (OTT) viewing options in the US to be replicated in Australia.

Netflix, Hulu and Amazon are now being joined by Verizon, DirecTV, Sony and now Time Warner, owner of HBO, who are exploring OTT options.
"We expect to see competitive responses from Australia's TV broadcasters. StreamCo and Foxtel's decision to lower pricing are two relevant, recent examples," Mr Guerra said.

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Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Sony Says Streaming Music Is the Future, With or Without Taylor Swift


Taylor Swift's withdrawal of her song catalogue from Spotify over royalty payments made some people question the future of streaming music. Not Sony.

The shift from ownership to access is a foregone conclusion for the company. In four years, streaming and subscriptions will account for 60 percent of the music industry's $8.2 billion in revenue, Sony forecasted today. That's more than triple the 18 percent now.

Where Sony and Swift agree is that people should pay for music. The popularity of free songs on services like Spotify and Pandora is the reason why streaming revenues so far have failed to offset the declines in CD sales and downloads. Sony estimates one paid subscription is worth as many as seven free music streams. For every one of Spotify's 12.5 million paid customers, four pay nothing.

Getting people to pay up is the music industry's major challenge, Michael Lynton told investors at a briefing in Tokyo. He heads Sony's entertainment business. It’s a no-brainer from the business perspective: subscriptions mean recurring, predictable revenues. It may offer a profit margin that beats those companies used to get at traditional brick-and-mortar stores, Lynton said.

“What it all really comes down to is how much value is the music company and the artist getting from the different consumption methods,” Kevin Kelleher, the chief financial officer at Sony Music, said at the briefing. “Taylor's reaction was on the advertising-supported streaming models.”

Swift, who has criticized streaming as a cause of declining album sales, didn't comment on the reason for leaving Spotify. She had already declined to give the service her new album, “1989,” the biggest release in the past two years, topping heavy hitters such as Beyonce, Coldplay and Lady Gaga.

To be sure, Swift's beef with Spotify is more than just an argument over the economics of ad-supported services. The 24-year-old musician has questioned the very practice of giving away music for free.

“Music is art, and art is important and rare,” she wrote in an op-ed on Wall Street Journal's website in July. “Important, rare things are valuable. Valuable things should be paid for.”

Spotify's Chief Executive Officer Daniel Ek defended the company, saying enticing people with free offerings is the foundation of the business model that made possible a $2 billion payout to content creators since its inception. An artist like Swift could earn more than $6 million this year, he added.

But when all is said and done, Sony has yet to start its own streaming service. It does have a stake in Vevo, a video-hosting service which offers music videos from Sony Music and Universal Music Group. Vevo’s revenue is advertisement based.

Source:- http://goo.gl/M3eZEx
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Monday, November 17, 2014

Ford’s Shelby GT350 Mustang is ready to strike at Chevy and Dodge


Capping off a year of 50th anniversary celebrations, Ford unveiled the first high-performance version of the all-new sixth-generation Mustang today ahead of the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show.

Surprising no one after months of speculation, that car is the Shelby GT350, and it seeks to be a more well-rounded performance car than the outgoing GT500.

Starting under the hood, the GT350 features a new 5.2-liter V8 that produces “more than” 500 hp and at least 400 pound-feet of torque and is mated to a six-speed manual transmission.



That’s a little less than the 600 hp originally predicted, but Ford says the 5.2-liter is the most powerful naturally-aspirated production engine it’s ever built.

It’s still not as powerful as the 2014 GT500’s 662-hp 5.8-liter supercharged V8, but sometimes how that power is applied is more important.

Ford says the new engine’s broad torque curve and free-revving nature will make it more usable.

Ford seems to be going for a more balanced approach here, combining aspects of the previous-generation GT500 and the more handling-focused Boss 302.

That’s also apparent in the choice of suspension. The GT350 is the first Ford product to get magnetic dampers, which use fluid filled with iron particles to precisely control stiffness.

Running an electrical current through the fluid changes its characteristics, making a switch from soft to firm damping near instantaneous. Similar systems have featured on Corvettes and Ferraris for years.

Naturally, the styling also gets an attitude adjustment, as seen in these initial CGI images.

Changes include an aluminum hood designed to maximize engine cooling, a more aggressive front fascia, and widened fenders to accommodate model-specific 19-inch wheels. At the back, there’s a rear diffuser and lip spoiler, two items no self-respecting performance car can do without these days.

Like the base Mustang, the GT350 looks very modern, but there are still plenty of styling cues to tie it to its predecessors – especially if you order the racing stripes.

The interior gets a similar reworking, with GT350-specific Recaro sport seats and a flat-bottom steering wheel. The chrome and other brightwork were even toned down to reduce sun glare.

There’s still plenty of tech. A driver control system includes five modes for a variety of vehicle parameters, including throttle mapping, suspension, and stability and traction control thresholds. There’s also a Tech Package that adds MyFord Touch infotainment and a Shaker audio system.

The Ford Shelby GT350 Mustang will slither into dealers next year, where it will face some tough competition.

From the 707-hp Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat to the track-focused Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, we’re in the midst of a muscle-car renaissance, and we can’t wait to see how Ford’s latest effort stacks up.

Source:- http://goo.gl/K3HiGC
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Google testing Project Loon in Australia

Google’s first Project Loon tests occurred last year in New Zealand. Source: AFP

GOOGLE is bringing its audacious internet-transmitting balloons to Australia.

The company will test-fly 20 balloons in western Queensland in December in partnership with Telstra.

It’s the latest step in Project Loon, Google’s plan to beam internet to remote parts of the world via helium balloons that circle the globe on stratospheric winds.

The balloons carry antennas that can beam 4G-like signals to homes and phones 20km below.

For the trial, Telstra will supply base stations to communicate with the balloons and access to space on the radio spectrum. It follows initial trials above Christchurch in New Zealand in June last year. Google said at the time it was drawn to the area’s favourable stratospheric conditions.

The company’s ultimate goal is to have a ring of balloons circling the Earth, bringing internet to the estimated two-thirds of people who are presently unwired.

It’s also hoped the balloons could one day provide coverage to areas struck by natural disasters.

Project Loon has been in development since mid-2011 by scientists at Google X, the secretive lab also working on Google Glass and driverless cars.

The technology is especially attractive for developing countries because it might let them avoid having to lay costly underground fibre cabling.

How Project Loon works:

1. Web-connected base stations bounce signals up to the balloons, which float at about twice the altitude of passenger jets.

2. The signals hop forward from one balloon to the next.

3. Each balloon transmits internet signals down to an area more than twice the size of Canberra.

4. Card table-sized solar panel powers on-board gadgetry.

Balloons can stay airborne for about 100 days.

5. Plan is for a ring of balloons to circle the Earth on westerly stratospheric winds.

Source:- http://goo.gl/8UPUEB
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