Gaming

PlayStation Takes Spotlight at TGS 2015

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There were plenty of announcements at the Tokyo Game Show (TGS 2015) and more will come as the four-day event wraps up over the weekend. Here’s a quick round-up of what’s been released so far.
PlayStation VR
Formerly known as Project Morpheus, Sony announces the new name for its virtual reality headset the PlayStation VR. It’s still under development but we’re getting closer to a commercial release. Sony said earlier this year that the headset should be available some time in the first half of 2016.
PlayStation VR headsetAtsushi Morita, Sony Computer Entertainment Japan, also announced a handful of games that will immediately get PlayStation VR support – all of which are playable at TGS 2015. The titles are: Final Fantasy 14 Online, Dynasty Warriors 7 VR demo,  Summer Lesson, Kitchen, and others.
More on PS hardware
During its live event at TGS 2015, PlayStation announced that it’s cutting down the price of the PlayStation 4 in Japan and Southeast Asia. The price drop will take effect on October 1st. In the Philippines PS4 prices are slashes from Php 24,999 to 18,900.
While there’s no news if the rest of the world will follow suite, it makes sense that they will as Sony wants more people to experience playing with their next generation console specially with the upcoming release of the PlayStation VR.
New color options for DualShock 4 Controllers, faceplates for PS4
PlayStation 4’s DualShock 4 controllers will soon be available in 4 new colorways. There’s gold, silver, steel black, and crystal. But some people asked… where’s rose gold? No, not really.
DualShock 4 controllers new colors
The gold, silver, and steel black will be available in Japan starting November 6th while the crystal one will come on December 3rd.
If you like styling your PS4, Sony also announced 9 colored face plates for the hard drive bay cover of the console. The colors, all available on November 3rd (still just in Japan), include gold, silver, red, yellow, purple, and pink.

All about them games
Of course, it’s not called a ‘Game Show’ for no reason. Avid PlayStation gamers have plenty of titles and expansions to look forward to. Here are some we’re excited about.
1) Attack On Titan

If you’ve long dreamed of slashing down human-eating titans then this is the game you’ve been waiting for. Fans of the manga and anime Attack on Titan should be plenty excited about this game by Koei Tecmo. The game will be available for the PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita some time in 2016.

2) BloodBorne: The Old Hunters

One of the better PlayStation 4 exclusive games released earlier this year is about to get its first expansion. Bloodborne: The Old Hunters will feature lots of new content including new weapons like a spiked wheel, a curved sword and a bow and arrow as seen on the trailer. The action-RPG’s expansion will be available as a downloadable content (DLC) on November 24th while a physical release will come on December 3rd.
3) Kingdom Hearts 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue

Instead of getting Kingdom Hearts 3, Square Enix appeases fans of the Kingdom Hearts series by releasing the three-game package Kingdom Hearts 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue. The three games areKingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance HD (a remake of the Nintendo 3DS game), Kingdom Hearts χ Back Cover and Kingdom Hearts 0.2: Birth By Sleep – A Fragmentary Passage. The set is coming to PS4 in 2016.
4) Gravity Rush (Remastered)/Gravity Daze

A well-loved title on the PS Vita is coming to the PS4. The remastered version of the cel-shaded action-adventure game will be available later this year while its sequel, Gravity Daze 2, will hit the market some time in 2016.

Other Notable titles
Assassin’s Creed Syndicate: Jack the Ripper

Umbrella Corps

The King of Fighters 14

World of Final Fantasy

[irp posts=”4592″ name=”Sony PlayStation 4 Pro and Slim hands-on”]

Features

What does the GPU Turbo do to your phone?

Is it more than just a marketing gimmick?

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It’s been two months since Huawei rolled out the GPU Turbo update to its smartphones. Promised with a 60 percent increase in performance and reducing 30 percent on power consumption, a lot of fans and users were excited after the announcement.

Back then, everyone (including me) was hyped about lag-free games and longer battery life while playing. However, upon receiving the update, I began to wonder: Has GPU Turbo delivered what it promised?

What’s inside the update?

GPU Turbo was originally marketed as an improved gameplay experience, available only to PUBG and Mobile Legends: Bang Bang.

The Game Suite app, which comes with the update, offers an uninterrupted gaming feature, hiding all notifications when enabled (except for calls, alarms, and low-battery alerts).

Mistouch prevention is another feature to avert users from clicking the back and home button while playing — perfect for when you want to focus on your game.

Screenshots by Miguel Pineda, Huawei Mate 10 user

To some older smartphones like the Huawei Mate 10, the Game Suite App offers three performance modes: Gaming mode, which improves game performance but increases power consumption; Smart mode, which balances performance and power consumption; and Power saving mode, which saves power but reduces game performance.

For the newer Huawei P20 Pro (which I’ve been using) and Honor Play, it only has a gaming acceleration mode to toggle on or off.

Thoughts on the reduced power consumption

Because I used the Mate 10 before and recently transitioned to the P20 Pro, I’ve experienced the GPU Turbo update in both phones and I can guarantee that they’ve delivered on lowered power consumption.

With Game Suite, I can put my phone on power saving mode to further save battery. For instance, I was only able to drain the Mate 10 down to 15 percent during a 12-hour road trip despite switching between the games I play and other apps, such as Messenger, Netflix, Spotify, and taking photos and videos every once in a while. The same goes for the P20 Pro.

As a power user, I already get a lot of things done with these highly efficient smartphones and GPU Turbo; these allowed me to do more on a single charge. However, it’s a different case for gaming.

Improved gaming experience, but there’s a catch…

When I started playing games on gaming mode (or game acceleration mode on the P20 Pro), I could run Mobile Legends: Bang Bang on a high frame rate with the highest graphics setting available. Compared to how the game stuttered and lagged during 5v5 clashes, with GPU Turbo, it now runs smoothly, as if I have a smartphone made for gaming.

System notice when enabling the high frame rate on Mobile Legends: Bang Bang and the effects it may have on your gameplay

As shown above, most mobile games will notify their users about the possible repercussions of higher frame rates and using the best settings available. To prove that a smartphone with GPU Turbo can handle this, I sought out to confirm my suspicions.

After asking fellow Huawei users, I found out that after installing GPU Turbo, energy consumption is a lot faster than before. Their smartphones also heat up more easily, especially when playing games with the game acceleration mode on. This isn’t part of what was promised, and it’s pretty disappointing.

It’s not yet perfect

In my experience, GPU Turbo tries to boost performance above a smartphone’s limit hoping that users can experience better gameplay.

GPU Turbo can’t choose when to perform its best. It’s an update that is constantly running in our smartphones without any way to switch it off. We can only hope that Huawei will address these issues for the next batch of updates.

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ASUS ROG Phone receives US pricing

Last piece of the puzzle

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ASUS is certainly taking its time with the release of its one and only gaming phone. First announced at Computex 2018, the ROG Phone finally has an official price to go with its US release.

For the model with 128GB of storage, you’d have to shell out US$ 899. For the larger 512GB storage variant, the cost goes up to US$ 1,099. Both come with a high-end Snapdragon 845 processor and 8GB of memory.

Of course, there are accessories to go with it. First is the ROG Mobile Desktop Dock, which costs US$ 229; the ROG Phone Case retails for US$ 59; the ROG Professional Dock is valued at US$ 119; you can buy the ROG TwinView Dock for US$ 399; the ROG Gamevice Controller is at US$ 89; and lastly, the ROG WiGig Dock goes for US$ 329.

Those are a lot of accessories for one phone, but that’s what makes the ROG Phone a truly gamer-centric device.

As stated last week, the ROG Phone will hit US shores starting October 18, with other regions to follow soon after.

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Gaming

PlayStation’s PSN Online ID change coming soon

Full rollout coming early 2019!

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You’ll soon be able to retire your DarkWarrior1214 PlayStation ID. In a blog post, Sony PlayStation said they will soon begin testing the PSN Online ID change feature as part of their preview program.

Beta testers part of the preview program will be able to change their PSN ID as much as they want. However, once the feature rolls out to everyone, only the first name change will be free. Succeeding name changes will cost US$ 9.99 for regular users.

PS Plus users will be charged a smaller fee of US$ 4.99. The online ID can be changed through the profile page on your PS4 or at the Settings menu. There’s also an option to display your old PSN ID alongside your new one so your friends can recognize you right away.

Not for all games

The feature isn’t available for all games, though. Only PS4 games published after April 1, 2018 along with other most-played titles that were published before that date will have the feature. PlayStation also warns that changing the ID might cause some issues with some games that can be fixed by reverting to the old ID. Here’s to hoping PlayStation finds a way to address those issues some time down the line.

The planned full rollout of the feature is in early 2019. What will be your new PSN Online ID?

SEE ALSO: Sony unveils PlayStation Classic, comes pre-loaded with 20 games

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