Author: GGPC

Good Gaming Gear – Logitech G PowerPlay Wireless Mouse Charging Mouse Pad!

UPDATE: PowerPlay is available in NZ now!

Wireless Gaming Mice are good, the only real worry we have is that the charge might run out right at that critical moment when gaming, denying us our glorious Pentakill – which is why GGPC use wired mice in competitive play.

Over the years talented techs have researched and released a bunch of different methods and technologies to improve battery life of our wireless devices, offering up solutions like charging cables rather than docks so you can charge as you use it – but that’s not really the point of wireless now is it 😛 The perfect solution would be never having to plug in at all, and with induction chargers for Smartphones being a common thing now it’s plausible to have your mouse pad charge your mouse – right? The biggest issues apparently are around the requirement for very precise placement, and being unable to deliver charge while the device is moving.

or should we say “were“…

Those incredible engineers at Logitech G have figured it all out, they’ve got something totally new –  and they’re calling it POWERPLAY.

POWERPLAY creates an electromagnetic energy field over a large surface area – so you don’t have to rest your gaming mouse on a tiny charging target. This field is captured and transformed into charging current by the included POWERCORE module, which attaches magnetically to the underside of a compatible gaming mouse in place of the existing weight door. It’s designed to keep charging even through high-speed flick shots or lifting and repositioning, and its base is only 2mm thick – so it’s comfortable to use as a gaming surface, the induction charging works right through both the soft and hard mouse pads as well so whatever surface you want to use it’s going to be savvy 🙂

Logitech has made the setup process super easy, clipping in the POWERCORE battery bit into your mouse is done magnetically and this aligns to the charging points on the battery for you, you can press down on a little circle for quick release and hot-swap between the weightless POWERCORE included with POWERPLAY and the 10G weighted version that comes with the G703.

Currently, the technology is set to work with two of our favourite Logitech G Wireless Gaming Mice – namely the G900, and absolutely epic G403. Both are getting an update as well with the new POWERPLAY ready versions being named the new G903 and G703, in addition to that sweeeeet POWERPLAY compatibility, both of them feature upgraded microswitches rated to 50 million clicks (vs 20 million in the previous version).

Logitech G POWERPLAY is an amazing solution jamm packed with the latest technologies, but the best bit is how simple it is to set up and use, and how easily you’ll forget about the dark times…. when you used to have to charge your mouse 🙂

Keep your eyes on the GGPC PC Gaming Blog and the Logitech G Store for the latest!

 

Good Gaming – Free to Play PC Games

We’ve been playing a fair few games lately (as always :P) and recently we’ve been diving into as many free to play PC games as we can, this blog will be a sticky one that we constantly update with new games as we play them but for now we’ll start things off with a few unique and rather good games for your PC that will cost you nothing but the data to download them 🙂 (the titles for each are download links, videos are short gameplay tests captured by GGPC NZ)

Currently checking out Duelyst and Warhammer: Eternal Crusade \o/

ARGO – A hardcore tactical first-person shooter, jump straight into combat in this official standalone FREE total conversion of Arma 3. This one has us fighting for supremacy in a familiar but new setting – the Mediterranean island of Malden, complete with dense urban areas and wide open plains ideal for snipers you’ll find each location has been built to provide an optimal experience for each game mode 😛 What really makes this one stand out for us here at GGPC so far is the new Combat Patrol CO-OP mode in which you can team up with some friends and fight against AI opponents with both randomized objectives and procedural generation of enemy forces making each session of Combat Patrol unique. Combine this with three competitive game modes and a pretty good looking Scenario Editor with which you can create your own missions with and you’ve got ARGO, it’s a pretty darn impressive free to play war gaming experience 🙂

Dreadnought – This is a medium paced arcade action game which puts you in command of a massive sci-fi battleship, similar in many ways to Fractured Space and Cloud Pirates below but with some really beautiful landscapes to wage war on this is one can be a stunner with settings cranked to high. Customisation for your starship is first class from guns and turrets to coatings and decals and there are a range of configs for each ship class so you’re sure to find one that fits your playstyle perfectly. Massively enjoyable in a group or alone, we’ve been playing this one since early BETA days and it just keeps getting better!

Atlus Reactor – A rather refreshing and unique take on turn-based tactical combat. Engage in 4v4 team battles with a short moment between each round to lock in your players actions after which all eight players will execute their command lists. Each character has a range of moves available to them that will initiate at different times in the action que depending on the type of move selected, this makes playing Altus Reactor a game of predicting what your opponents might do which just keeps getting better the more familiar you become with the growing roster of freelancers available (numbering 25 as I write this). Once you reach level 10 there is also a “Seasons” XP event in which players can complete challenges and receive some extra bonus loot to customise their characters.

Paladins – A team-based shooter set in a vibrant fantasy world and features a diverse cast of Champions ranging from sharpshooting humans to mech-riding goblins, mystical elves, jetpack-clad dragons, and bomb golems. Each Champion brings a unique set of abilities to the battlefield and new Champions are regularly added to Paladins, keeping the game exciting.  With strategy elements and character customisation through a unique collectable card system, players can amplify and augment a character’s core set of abilities to play exactly how they want to play.

Cloud Pirates – Arcade airship based combat awaits you in this science-fiction fantasy battleground game 🙂 Remarkably tactical but also good fun early on for a casual run-and-gun play style, as you progress though you’ll gain access a bunch of unique upgrades for your airships, captain and crew which leads to much more challenging matches and modes as you progress.  There are numerous visual customization options to tinker which as you go and plenty of airships to choose from each with their own unique handling and firing arcs – snipers, tanks, dps, tackle – there really are a lot!

Warframe – A team based hack’n’slash shooter with some pretty action packed moments, heaps of gear and hours of fun 🙂 The “War Within” update recently went live live for this one so it’s a great time to jump into the fray and hack some enemies to pieces. You play as a Tenno, an ancient warrior, a weapon master… You wield the mighty Warframes and command their awesome powers – the Grineer Empire grows stronger as a cryptic adversary surfaces. Underpowered, unprepared and forced out of your comfort, you must find it in yourself to improvise, not just to save yourself but the fate of all Tenno. The Queens’ Fortress awaits, where both Warframe and Operator will be pushed past their limits as they slowly unravel mysteries about the Tenno’s past and their true capabilities.

Blade and Soul – A rather excellent MMO set in a world of martial arts masters and mythology 🙂 A tale of revenge at its core that will have you exploring a beautiful, cinematic world inspired by the distinct visual style of acclaimed artist Hyung Tae Kim. This one’s got detailed character customization tools, offers some brilliant PVP matches and has an excellent action based combat system. The storyline is very good, especially the introduction to the game world and no matter which class you choose the cross server PVE multiplayer instances are quick to find match ups.

Path of Exile – You are an Exile, struggling to survive as you fight to earn power that will allow you to exact your revenge against those who wronged you. Created by NZ game studio Grinding Gear Games, Path of Exile is an isometric online action RPG is set in the dark fantasy world of Wraeclast. It offers excellent co-op gaming with extremely deep character customisation, the best skill tree we’ve seen in a long long time and even a hardcore mode in which staying alive actually matters 😛 The game is completely free and will never be “pay to win”, the community is excellent and graphics are top notch. All in all this is our most recommended game right now, crazy good times to be had playing on your own but in a group with some friends the game really shines.

Planetside 2 – It’s a very different experience from most first person shooters because instead of the usual 24v24 firefights – battles in Planetside 2 can typically involve a few hundred players. This war takes place over several continents each of which has a defined landscape, there are 3 factions to choose from each with there own infantry weapons, ground vehicles and aircraft. The scale of the game can be quite daunting at first but for new players if you go Engineer class and get a Sunderer vehicle you’ll rapidly begin leveling up while being a great addition to the war effort, doing this will allow you to quickly amass enough experience points to buy new weapons, vehicle mods or abilities. The game world is large, but getting around is easy thanks to an instant action button on the map screen that will take you into hot spots, you can also hover over locations to see just how many players from each faction are fighting in that specific sector which is excellent. Community wise (NZ players) we highly recommend jumping into this one on a Sunday afternoon, it’s pretty crazy!

Paragon – Is a multiplayer online battle arena game that feels a bit like SMITE, but with some beautiful graphics 🙂 There are a range of heroes to choose from and a new ones joins the mix every three weeks so it’s going to be great to see just how diverse the range will become. Like most MOBA games the action starts out pretty slow and this escalates as the players level up and unlock more and more abilities leading to some great end game battles, there is also a card powerup system with which you can tweak each character to your play style a bit. It’s hard to say where to start with this one, having played so much League of Legends and DOTA 2 this game just seems to make sense right away.

Mechwarrior Online – A slower paced, tactical online shooter set in the BattleTech Universe. Victory requires a mastery of tactical positioning, teamwork, and firing discipline to prevent overheating and the dreaded shutdown (overload only works so much!). Each battle will reward you with credits depending on performance and these can be spent on new weapons, equipment and mech chassis to full your hangers. For new players there is a rotation of free to play pre-configured mechs to take into battle and these will give you a good taste of how each weight class performs so you can spend your credits wisely. Once you’ve brought a BattleMech of your very own there is a faction warfare system and if you spend a little time in each jumping from faction to faction you can quickly amass a bunch of personal hangers to store more and more of your own mechs in, this becomes more important with multiple variants of the same frame offering different hardpoints to mount weaponry on and new skills to unlock as you progress. It’s not an easy fight and don’t expect to just run in and win, this is a thinking persons shooter for sure.

Fractured Space – Another MOBA at its core but very different from Paragon above, this one has us controlling a large battleship in space based 5v5 combat pushing our way towards a large enemy base that your team can only reach by pushing a spacelane all the way up. Each multiplayer match provides some pretty intense team battles and also some smaller skirmishes with ships able to quickly warp to other locations on the map. The starships themselves look beautiful, there are three factions/manufacturers in the game right now each with their own unique art style for each class of ship available – each class backs some pretty awesome weapons and abilities that you can further tweak to suit your play style as you progress in the game. Fractured space is in early access now and we’ll be excitedly watching this one as it evolves, right now though it’s in pretty excellent shape and certainly a blast to play!

EVE Online – The new free to play mode in EVE will allow you gain a lot of skills with no money down 🙂 Leveling up an EVE Online character has always been a little different from most MMORPG, every player in the game controls a clone which they train in new skills over time (even when you’re not logged in) as opposed to the far more common “kill this and fetch that for XP”. As your clone learns more and more you will be able to fly more ships and kit these out with new modules and equipment. When you die you respawn into another clone but depending on when you last did a clone imprint that new clone may or may not have the skills you previously acquired and it’s this investment in time that makes up one of many factors that gives each life in EVE a real feeling of value – there are of course the in game monetary losses involved with death in EVE, losing your favourite ship certainly hurts! The new alpha clone state will allow you to get some pretty potent ships like the Caracal below, armed with many heavy missile launchers you’ll be a fine addition to fleets around the univese 🙂

DOTA 2  Originating as a fan-made Warcraft 3 modification, Dota was an instant underground hit. After coming to Valve, the original community developers have bridged the gap to a more inclusive audience, so that the rest of the world can experience the same core gameplay, but with a level of polish and depth that’s unmatched. Much like League of Legends, Dota is a competitive game of action and strategy. Players can choose from a roster of over a hundred unique heroes, forming two teams of five players. Radiant heroes then battle their Dire counterparts to control on a beautiful fantasy landscape, battling one another with cunning, stealth, and outright warfare.

League of Legends – A popular take on the multiplayer online battle arena game type that first came about as a mod for Warcraft 3 named DOTA back in 2003… or was it 2002, anyways it was a while ago 🙂 League of Legends released to the public in 2009 and it has since become one of the most played games in the world today with some very cool new heroes to play as and more joining the ranks constantly. It’s quite a wonderful game to play if you’re a gamer that’s short on time with matches lasting from twenty minutes to one hour depending on how well each team performs. The game is both newbie friendly and deep enough to keep a long term player interested, the roster of heroes to play as changes often and there is even a rune loadout enabling you to tweak you heroes slightly using various power-ups you can purchase using currency accrued as you play matches.

Killer Instinct – This one has been made available via the Windows Store so you’ll need a Windows 10 Gaming PC to try it out. It’s the same Killer Instinct we remember playing in movie theatres wayyy back in the 90’s but with some wonderful new graphics to enjoy 🙂 The free version of this one gives players a single character with which you can access all game modes, including online multiplayer!

War Thunder –  This one gives us action packed battles both on the ground and in the skies (also boats are in BETA!), it’s crazy how good this game is with beautiful graphics and a massive line-up of tanks and planes for us to use in the PVP battles + recently the games creators added a new PVE game mode named Assault which is a blast to play. A perfect game to play with friends this one has options from Simulation to Arcade, it’s similar in many ways to World of Tanks and World of Warships but ultimately War Thunder wins the day with it’s seamless combination of modes and unmatched intensity of aerial dogfights. A truly great game that deserves a download 🙂

We’ll continue adding to this list as we test more and more Gaming PC, we’ve got our eyes on Battlerite but if you know a great new free game you think we should test out please drop a comment in via our GGPC YouTube channel – we are on the hunt now for a nice driving game!

GAME ON!

Good Gaming PC – HP Omen X Compact PC VR Backpack

Small form factor gaming performance received a massive boost with the recently released Nvidia 10 series opening new doors to what’s possible performance wise, while keeping things really small – and those talented techs at HP Omen Gaming have taken this into the immersive VR space with the latest version of the virtual reality backpack PC – designing a full kit they call the OMEN X that leaps us ahead of the ones we tried just a few months ago during Computex 2017 – and they were pretty darn good!

Packing (pun intended) a powerful 8GB GTX 1080 graphics paired with the intel i7-7820HK this small gaming PC has the got power to deliver exceptional gaming performance, punching with the same strength as much, much larger systems 🙂

The dock is a very clever addition, it not only adds functionality but also lets you keep your keyboard and mouse connected so you can dock the OMEN X and get jump straight into 4K desktop gaming as well. This convenience works both ways of course, simply take the OMEN X system out of the desktop dock, then clip it onto the super comfy backpack unit and you’re ready to dive straight into VR, making the most out of your HTC Vive with the freedom to move 🙂 They’ve also tackled battery life in a good way with two hip-mounted power packs providing enough power for a good gaming session, the kit includes 4x battery packs which are quick release as well, allowing you to hot swap quickly one by one and stay in game!

The new OMEN X Compact PC VR Backpacks will be available for everyone to try for themselves at the NZ techXpo 2017 which is set for mid-August at the Vodafone Events Centre in Auckland, come along and join the GGPC team as we get hands on with the latest and best in tech!

 

 

GOT BOOST? Rocket League GTX Bonus!

BOOM! Those fine folks at Nvidia have boosted in with a sweet GAME BONUS for those grabbing a new GTX 1050, GTX 1050Ti or GTX 1060 Graphics Card, Gaming PC or Gaming Laptop featuring this awesome hardware 🙂

This is a register to redeem promotion so once you’ve geared up with your new hardware simple visit the website below depending on your chosen flavour 🙂

Gigabyte Redemption Site

Asus Redemption Site

MSi Redemption Site

EVGA Redemption Site

Below is a quick Gameplay FPS Test with the GTX 1050 in Rocket League with very high settings and a resolution of 2560×1440, super smooth even at this higher resolution!

Now if you’re thinking to yourself 1440p is nice but why not 4K you’d be the same as us, sadly for reasons unknown the options with the game only go as high as 2560×1440? Lucky for us though a little tinkering within the config file allows you to set your own resolution 🙂

Here’s a quick 4K game capture with the GTX 1050 – this amazing little graphics card (exact settings shown at the end of the video) still manages to keep above 60FPS when in game and only dipped into the high 50’s during the replays – crazy cool!

If you’re wondering about laptop performance rest assured things are looking just as good 🙂 Though it’s a little harder to find a 1440p screen on a laptop we managed to have a quick go with the new Gigabyte Aero 14 which packs a GTX 1060 inside and performance was excellent as you can see for yourselves below!

This promotion is valid from the 30th May till the 25th of September so get your details in and we’ll see you in the arena!

GAME ON!

Good Gaming – LawBreakers BETA Tests BEGIN!

UPDATE: Just ahead of the full release on August 8th, LAWBREAKERS has entered the open beta testing stage so everyone can jump in now and have a go!

You can download the game right now via Steam – we’ve been happily playing this one right through the closed BETA phase and it’s a very good shooter indeed, extremely fast paced with some excellent classes available that significantly change the way you’ll play.

Ohhh this one is good, really GOOD 🙂

Bring your skills and prepare to deliver death from every angle as you compete in unprecedented gravity-defying competition from legendary game designer Cliff Bleszinski and team.

LawBreakers challenges even the best players to get off the ground, and learn new ways to play in fast-paced, omni-directional multiplayer FPS combat unlike anything you’ve experienced before. Choose from 9 distinct roles represented by 18 unique characters for all FPS play-styles from offensive Battle Medics that can heal and kill, to high-flying Vanguards that can soar in 360 degree movement — all featuring multiple weapons, thrilling ability combos, dynamic movement systems and more!

We’ve jumped into the action with a GTX 1070 Gaming PC to check things out, be ready to stack that RAM up though – this one uses everything it can but WOW is it looking smoooooooth!

 

Good Gaming – DOOM UPDATE 6.66 Multiplayer and Play Free Weekend

Wooohooo! Those fine folks at ID software are making a few key changes to DOOM Multiplayer and this weekend it’s going FREE TO PLAY on PC so we can all check out the changes for ourselves 🙂 Toted as update 6.66 this one completely changes the way DOOM’s multiplayer progression system and some mechanics around power ups. Now, instead of unlocking new content through random loot drops, we’ll race to complete in-game challenges.

You can download DOOM right now via STEAM, the button for this has replaced the usual ‘buy’ button with new ‘play’ button 🙂 This will give you access to the first two levels of the campaign + full access to the mulitplayer modes.

As a part of these massive changes to how it all works, ID will reset everyone’s level back to zero, but the good news is we won’t lose any of the gear and powers we’ve already unlocked and those who managed to get the top-tier Slayer level with the old system will get a special badge to reflect this. Little changes to the UI have been made too with a new HUD and kill cards that shows us detailed of kills, and the weapons used to get them.

Oh yes, and the Multiplayer DLC is going to be FREE!

These introduce nine new multiplayer maps to dominate, three new playable demons to unleash, new weapons to master, a new equipment, and a host of new armour sets, taunts and more!

If you haven’t tried DOOM for yourself yet, you’re in for a treat! It’s a brutally fun and challenging modern-day shooter experience packed full of relentless demons, impossibly destructive guns and has an absolutely killer soundtrack 🙂

GAME ON!

Good Gaming Keyboard – The Logitech G Pro TKL RGB!

The Logitech G Pro TKL RGB is the first to carry the name Pro, a keyboard is designed and built to the exacting standards of some of the world’s top eSports athletes – we’ve used it’s spiritual precursor, the G310 in many gaming tournaments and found it to be excellent!

Featuring Logitech’s own exclusive Romer-G mechanical switches – purpose-built for pro-grade performance, responsiveness and durability these have a very short actuation point at just 1.5mm making them around 25% faster than a standard mechanical switch. A perfect blend of speed, precision and quiet performance, the Romer-G is the stealth assassin of mechanical gaming keyboard switches 🙂

The compact tenkeyless design which frees up tournament table space for low-sens mouse movement, and a detachable cable for easy transportation to the next tournament. Durability is built into every component and reinforced by a super-strong steel backplate that adds stability and rigidity to gameplay.

To improve performance even further, Logitech focused on KSP (Keystroke Signal Processing) which is the sequence of events that translates a switch actuation into a USB signal. To make the Logitech G Pro Gaming Keyboard ultra responsive, they’ve optimised the KSP to be up to 10ms faster response than the competition. Speed isn’t just in the key switch, it’s the entire system starting with the switch actuation, KSP, and then report rate.

Using Logitech Gaming Software you can customise every key manually but there is also a massive range of lighting profiles available for over 300 different games. We highly recommend you enable ‘Automatic Game Detection’ in the Logitech Gaming Software to have them automatically display on the Pro Keyboard when the game launches – when Mass Effect Andromeda launched we were surprised with a very cool custom A logo on our keyboards during loading which was pretty crazy cool and once you get in-game it just gets cooler by lighting up all the keys you’ll need in your gaming session 🙂

Combine all this with smart little touches like a removable USB connection, killer macro management and those oh-so-perfect height adjusting rubber tipped feet and you’ve got the Logitech G Pro TKL RGB Gaming Keyboard!

GAME ON!

Good Gaming PC – The ROG GR8 II Mini Gaming PC!

The Asus Republic of Gamers GR8 II is a Gaming PC that packs excellent gaming performance into a very cool, very small package.

Perfect for those who want all the power of a desktop Gaming PC, but are looking for something really small it’s pretty similar in size to current-generation consoles standing at a short 29cm tall. Unlike many of the little PC we see though, this one actually fits a real desktop i5-7400 CPU inside perfectly paired with a 3GB GTX 1060 which gives us excellent performance in games. Built in 802.11ac Wi-Fi provides a fast, stable connection while playing online games or streaming movies, the GR8 II also sports a handy Bluetooth v4.2 for connecting everything from smartphones to headsets – speaking of headsets, the shape and size of the GR8 II make it a pretty good headset holder too!

On the back of the chassis, you’ll find 2x HDMI outputs making it ideal for a Virtual Reality setup, you can connect both your HTC Vive VR Headset and a TV for really good group gaming session in the lounge 🙂 It’s upgradable too, simple slide-off covers make for easy access to the M.2 SSD and additional 2.5” HDD/SSD storage slots for quick upgrades.

Looking good with a clean matte black finish, the chiseled, sharply-angled side panels and plasma copper-coloured centre come together in an eye-catching way, even though it’s much smaller than most other gaming desktops the perfectly-framed ROG Eye on the side panel along with some sweet Aura effects across the front face make this mini Gaming PC stand out from the rest!

GAME ON!

 

 

Good Gaming Controller – Logitech G Pro X56 RHINO H.O.T.A.S Joystick and Dual Throttle

Perfect for both space games like Star Citizen and gigantic robot sims like Mechwarrior Online the new RHINO X56 flight controller from Logitech G provides budding pilots and space-aces with the many inputs required to achieve true control of our flying vehicles or mechs. Going wayyy beyond the usual pitch, roll, yaw, backwards, forwards, up, down, left and right this X56 Pro Flight System allow you to control things like gimballed weapons and omni directional thrusters so you can nimbly jet yourself into the perfect position in heat of battle!

Using a twin-engine throttle controller is the only suitable method for manipulating a virtual twin-engine aircraft. The X-56 Rhino boasts twin throttles – allowing for some pretty crazy maneuvers – and also provides the option to adjust the friction required to move them. If your aircraft of choice is single-engine, a handy throttle lock effectively converts the twin throttles into a single unit.

Through the included software package you’ve got the ability to completely customise all of the X-56 Rhino’s axes and buttons. On the axis side, you can adjust deadbands and response curves to fine-tune axes to respond just like an aircraft’s real-life counterparts. On the buttons and toggle side, you can assign any number of in-sim commands, such as afterburner, Frame Shift Drive, target lock and weapon group firing. The software also allows programmability for an array of mouse and keyboard commands – from basic single-key inputs to very advanced, timed, and macro commands.

Piloting while using VR is a great experience but can prove difficult because you can’t see your own hands, which can make finding the controls you need problematic. The X-56 places controls perfectly under your fingers where subtle distinctions in button feel and shape help you navigate the control set with ease. Even the switches on the base of the throttle are staggered or separated so telling them apart from feel alone is possible, leaving you free to concentrate on the immersive VR experience 🙂

During virtual flight – just like true flight – the accuracy of an aircraft’s control surfaces is of paramount importance. The X-56 Rhino’s control surfaces are incredibly accurate, courtesy of a 16-bit aileron and elevator axis, developed from the ground up, this 16-bit axis solution enables extremely precise movement!

This new X56 Controller is just a slice from a range of new gear that’s just landed in New Zealand, check out the latest in the Logitech Game Controller Store today!

Good Gaming – Overwatch World Cup 2017 SYNDEY!

The Overwatch World Cup 2017 is underway and the next live event is pretty close to NZ, taking place just over in Syndey 🙂 Running from July 21st through to the 23rd at the Star Events Centre it’s the second of four group stage qualifier events. Australia’s top 100 Overwatch players fought hard to get the 13th position in the pool of 32 qualified nations putting them into Group C where they will be competing against Sweden, Italy, and Portugal. The stage in Sydney will also play host to Group D, which will be a battle between Finland, Japan, Spain, and Vietnam.

Our recently elected NZ World Cup national committee have selected the New Zealand team which is assigned to Group G, with our live event set to take place in Burbank USA! 

Keep your eyes on our PC Gaming Blog and we’ll update with more as the battles continue to rage!