Arcade Block is a monthly subscription box that is run by Nerd Block costing $19.95 (US) a month (plus shipping) which delivers assorted geekery and fandom goodies to its subscribers. From Nerd Block you can also subscribe to many other themed boxes, including Horror Block and Comic Block. I actually wasn’t expecting to receive anything. Having signed up for their Welcome Box and being disappointed (items from the welcome box are currently for sale on my Ebay, linked to the left) I had cancelled, but I guess it didn’t take in time. Thankfully, because the first item I reveal below the cut, blew my mind!
Sometimes we see things on the internet. Sometimes we want to try those things out. This segment chronicles the journey of one incredibly undextrous woman’s attempts to make beautiful things, often to disastrous results. Sometimes against all odds, those results are good.
If you read a lot of DIY (Do it yourself) articles, you might have already seen a number of usefulsuggestions for contactpaper. For people from different countries, contact paper is a vinyl type plasticky paper that is sticky on one side and patterned on the other, a little like self sticking wallpaper. If you’re in Canada you can get nice patterns of contact paper at Dollarama for only $2.50 a roll.
Sometimes we see things on the internet. Sometimes we want to try those things out. This segment chronicles the journey of one incredibly non-dexterous woman’s attempts to make beautiful things, often to disastrous results.
Loot Crate is a monthly subscription box costing $19.95 (US) a month which delivers assorted geekery and fandom goodies to its subscribers. It comes with an optional add-on of Lvl Up; giving further accessories for a separate payment. I’m currently not subscribed to Level Up, but that could change at any moment! Each month Loot Crate comes with a different theme. October’s theme is Time. I was reasonably interested in the Time theme, though I suspected there would be nothing that would be a must have item for me. Loot Crate heavily hinted at items from Back to the Future, Doctor Who and Bill and Ted; none of which are my ‘fandom’ though I know of all of them quite well. So what exactly was contained in October’s crate?
Now at this point you probably have some questions, like who exactly is Matt Hughes and why is this lipstick named after him or why is this strange lady telling me about this stuff? Well if you’re on my blog I can presume you already know the answer to question two, but just for kicks and giggles, here it is. Lorna Loves is going to be an ongoing segment for me to rant about products that I adore. They must be rated four or five Lornas to qualify. Every review and article featured on my website will be my own, honest, unforced opinion and if the product was sent to me for free in exchange for a review I will always mention it in the article. Furthermore, I’ll never mislead you, even if I was given a complimentary product, all opinions are my own and will remain so; ain’t nobody got time to be a corporate puppet, foo’.
Pro Tip: If you prefer to skip straight to the rating and a handy list of pros and cons of the product, go to the bottom of the article!
Let me start by saying that I have heard NOTHING but glorious praise for the Steam Link. The description of the Steam Link is like your wildest dream come true (if you’re a tame dreamer like me). The ability to play all your amazing games right from the sofa on a big TV screen in High Def with no lag! What the Steam link allows is for you to use it to stream the image from your computer and in conjunction with the new Steam controllers, play Steam games directly from the comfort of your living room. All the shiny graphics of your amazing PC rig (mine was built to play Dragon Age Inqusition on Highest settings, but had to be lowered for The Witcher 3) with the comfort of your sofa with your cat in your lap.
My experience with Steam Link was more like an irritating nightmare come true. We tried playing around with the settings as recomended by a quick googling, but to no avail. No matter what we change, the Steam Link was too laggy to allow any kind of action game to be played. Tostada fell to her death in Guacamelee again and again as the delays increased and decreased in time with my defeated roars. Some more quick googling told me that the Steam link would run lag free with a connection speed of 30mbps or more. Now listen here, Valve, I doubt Canada is getting Google Fiber anytime soon, so if you just wanna go ahead and release a device that actually works for the normal human gamer, that’d be great.Continue reading Steam Link Review
When it works, the Steam controller is a marvel. The box and packaging are beautiful, easily feeling as special and exciting as any new Apple product. A cute cardboard wraparound showed the details of the inside of the controllers, something I can only enjoy visually but that might actually prove useful to the more tech-savvy amongst us. The setup was quick and painless and each game had settings to customise the experience and make everything how you want it. With any new technology there’s going to be a learning curve and as someone with no dexterity and bad memory I experience this even switching from one console to another. The Steam controller was no exception.
One issue I noticed was that the gamepad’s B button was closer to where the Xbox 360 controller’s A button was, making me constantly press the B button under the assumption that it was in fact the A button. In time, I’m sure I’ll adjust to that however and it’s hardly Valve’s fault. I might prefer the haptic gamepad and the buttons switch places, but I’m sure many configurations were tested and this was found to be the smartest. The haptic pad itself gave feedback as intended and was just as smooth and easy to use as described by early reviewers. I absolutely loved the addition of the easily clickable buttons on the underside of the hand grips and the positioning and ease of use of the triggers. As someone who’d experienced finger strain from PS3 controller triggers in the past, I felt Steam’s version to be a lot more gentle on the old digits.Continue reading Steam Controller Review