Top 10 Natural Wonders of the World to See

The Earth is an incredible planet that holds many spectacular places to see. From snowy mountains to the heated air of the desert, this world pulsates with life and never ceases to amaze us.

8 Autombiles That are Forbidden Fruit in America

Whether safety restrictions, marketing plans, or distribution issues stand in the way, American auto consumers can’t get some of the hottest cars drivers around the world enjoy. It doesn’t mean they aren’t worth a look (or a little lusting after). Here are eight automobiles U.S. consumers would love to have but don’t even have the chance.

The Most Anticipated Geek-Friendly Movies of 2015

Looking at this year's calendar of premieres, here's what I'm most excited about over the next 12 months:

10 Best Xbox Games of 2014 That Nobody Can Forget

2014 was a bizarre year. It was a year of HD premasters and “Conclusive Editions” on Xbox One, or more heaps of cross-gen games discharged on both Xbox 360 and Xbox 1. Few games genuinely emerged – especially on 360 – so making our yearly Game of the Year list in the not so distant future was troublesome. So here is the list of 10 best Xbox games of 2014 that no buddy can forget.

Problems Only 90s Gamers Could Understand

With the PS1 turned 20 last December it’s got us thinking about gaming in the 90s. We complain a lot these days, but there were a lot of problems with gaming back then that we all seemed to ignore. If you were a gamer in the 90s you’d know all about these particular problems…

Sunday, February 28, 2016

When Video Game Screenshots Look More Like Photos

Andy Cull and Berduu, who are photographers and screenshotters, have made a gallery called the “Reality Bytes”. The purpose of the exhibit is to present stunning images captured in video games; images that break the line between real and virtual worlds.

You can see the example of their amazing work bellow. Some images were taken using screen capture software, while others were taken by game’s custom photo mode. It is important to note that not a single image was manipulated by photo editing software.

Hardly anybody suspected that the images were not the real photography but computer screenshots. When you take a look at the shot of F-14, it looks astonishing, but when you take a closer look, you can see some blocky textures in the details. The gallery’s biggest accent is on the fact that the depth of field effects, HD textures and lightening in majority of todays games is highly developed and the game’s screenshots can be as much seriously taken as professional photography is.

Battlefield 3, by N1ghtwalker.
Grand Theft Auto V, by Egor Travin.
Grand Theft Auto V, by Berduu.
Kingdom Come: Deliverance, by Andy Cull.
Need For Speed Rivals, by Berduu.

Top 7 Xbox One Games That’ll Rock 2016!

The future is bright for video games. Especially if you have an Xbox One, which is one of the most popular consoles out there. 2016 is going to be a stellar year for this system, thanks to the games you'll only find on either the Xbox One or Xbox One and PC. Sure, Scalebound ended up getting bumped to 2017, but that's a minor hiccup. There are quite a few games you'll only see on the Xbox One, and all of them seem are looking very promising. These are games that will help you make memories.

Sea of Thieves
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Sea of Thieves
is one of those Xbox One games both Rare and Microsoft swear is coming in 2016, so let's give them the benefit of the doubt. In this game, you're a pirate going on multiplayer adventures online with friends. Part of the experience will revolve around user-generated content, which will help people make their own stories to share with other players.
But really, the little information we have so far makes it difficult to get truly excited. Hopefully, it'll have a grand showing at E3 2016 that will get us hyped up about yo-ho-hoing on the high seas. If handled properly, this could be a rare opportunity to make gaming memories.

ReCore
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Like Sea of Thieves, ReCore is one of those "2016" games. (I hope you did the air quotes thing as you read that.) Armature Studio can be trusted, but Keiji Inafune and Comcept have burned us with Mighty No. 9. Still, ReCore seems so promising; you can't help but get hyped. It's set in a world where humans are an endangered species and robots are in charge of everything. That includes possibly hunting humans down.

Joule is one of the last remaining humans, and she's managed to befriend and work with some robots. Her interactions with creatures and cores could help humans find a place and peace in this dangerous world.

Cuphead
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Every console needs that quirky hit. It's an odd duck of a game that you never see coming, but fall in love with once it comes around. Cuphead is going to be that for the Xbox One. It's a run-and-gun side-scroller based on classic Disney and Looney Tunes cartoons. You know, those super-violent ones we grew up with?

Cuphead made a deal with the devil, and has to go through multiple levels as either Cuphead or Mugman, depending on whether or not a friend is joining you, as you attempt to make good on the deal and survive. Come for the unique look, stay for the power-ups and challenge.

Killer Instinct: Season 3
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With all the work Rare puts into keeping Killer Instinct relevant, each year's season is a pretty big deal. The balancing and rebalancing, as well as additional modes and features always make it worth coming back to the fighter.

Even more important, however, are the new characters each season brings to Killer Instinct. The third season is a big one. Kim Wu and Tusk are both rejoining the cast. Also, it's becoming even more of a cross-over fighter, thanks to Battletoads' Rash and Halo's Arbiter coming into the game. Maybe we'll get lucky and eventually see Eyedol this season. Even if we don't, the new faces will make the game feel fresh again.

Gears of War 4
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Gears of War is one of those amazing series that just sticks with you. While we don't know much about Gears of War 4, aside from the fact that it should probably be coming in 2016, it's one of those games you have to get hyped about. After all, Rod Fergusson, the game's producer, has said The Coalition Studio is making a point of ensuring the fourth game does for the Xbox One what the original games did for the Xbox 360. Plus, we already have confirmation it'll run at 60 fps.

Quantum Break
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Think of Quantum Break as an intriguing experiment. With this adventure, Microsoft is going to do something new. We'll be enjoying an adventure series and a show tied to it at the same time, with decisions in one influencing the other. It's a whole new experience.
Fortunately, the core gameplay mechanics of Quantum Break seem solid enough to keep people engaged, even if the digital show and its branching decisions fall short. People get to help Jack Joyce play with time to manipulate people, bullets, or things in the environment, resulting in dangerous situations to solve and tumultuous environments to traverse due to playing with time. Maybe this will be the Xbox One's Alan Wake!

Crackdown 3
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We want to play with things and wreck them all. Crackdown 3 will let us do that. It's going to be a huge, open world sandbox where anything can be destroyed. We get to essentially be superhero super soldiers, with abilities to "help" the populace. Which means sometimes destroying the very things we're trying to protect. Mmm... chaotic, collateral damage.
With Crackdown 3, we're going to get cloud-based worlds we can enjoy and tear apart with friends. The multiplayer portion of the game will supposedly be available ahead of the campaign, meaning we could be enjoying mayhem this summer. As great as saving a city will be when the full game is released, enjoying a modern version of Rampage online is one of the most exciting things ever.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Ten Perfect Cars for City Driving


Honda Fit

Chevrolet Sonic RS
Ford Fiesta SThttp://roa.h-cdn.co/assets/16/07/ford-fiesta_st_2014_1600x1200_wallpaper_08.jpg

Because the Fiesta ST only weighs 2742 pounds and makes 197 hp, it has the same power-to-weight ratio as a first-gen BMW M3. That's a great start. Add in that it's surprisingly roomy on the inside for how small it is on the outside, and you have a perfect little hot hatch.

Mazda Miatahttp://roa.h-cdn.co/assets/16/07/mazda-mx-5_2016_1600x1200_wallpaper_09.jpg

Though the new Miata makes less power than the outgoing one, it weighs just 2313 pounds. That makes it faster and more engaging than the old car. So, smaller, faster, and just as fun as ever? That makes it a winner in our book.

Mini JCW Hardtop
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Whenever you mention a city car, a Mini will undoubtedly come to mind. And the JCW Hardtop is among the most fun. It might be expensive, but it's fast and funky. Isn't that what counts?

BMW i3
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The i3 is BMW's vision for the future of urban transportation. It has 170 hp from its electric motors and has lightweight carbon fiber construction to help maximize the range. It also looks like a sci-fi film come to life.


Tuesday, February 16, 2016

7 Celebrities Who Shockingly Lied About Their Past

The majority of celebrities may be mostly honest people, or at the very least, understand how difficult it is to keep the truth under wraps when millions of people are paying attention. For those famous folk who decide to play fast and loose with reality, there is something of a sliding scale. Sure, we expect most actors to speak highly of their co-stars, at least while the film is still in theaters, and age is just a number that can easily be fudged.

We’re going to be looking at those stars that chose to fib in far more grandiose fashion. When Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie chose to deny they’d become romantically involved on the set of Mr. and Mrs. Smith, it was pretty silly, considering they would go on to have children and get married. That is the caliber of obvious and silly dishonesty we were looking for to make our list.

7. Lady Gaga Wasn’t Unpopular

The heir apparent to Madonna’s Queen of Pop throne, Lady Gaga is a unique entity in pop culture. Fully embracing anyone who has felt ostracized or has struggled with accepting their true selves, the “Born this Way” singer has spoken about being bullied as a youngster. Stating she “didn’t even want to go to school sometimes” because she was “being teased for being ugly, having a big nose, being annoying”, her empathy for fellow outcasts made perfect sense.

Some of her peers have come forward to tell the tale of her teens in a different fashion, however. One commenter said, “I like her music and shtick, but lately, she’s been relying a lot on being a victim of bullying—which just does not jive with any of my experiences, or with anyone I know who went to school with her”. Another fellow student was quoted as saying “She was always popular,” “I don’t remember her experiencing any social problems or awkwardness”. Although we weren’t there, so we can’t possibly know how she was treated, the consensus amongst those who knew her seems to indicate she is being less than forthright.

6. The White Stripes’ True Relationshiphttp://static3.therichestimages.com/cdn/1000/753/90/cw/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/opi.wiki_-1.jpg

One of the most respected rock bands in decades, this duo out of Detroit, seemed to come out of nowhere. Everything about their image was carefully crafted, from their sound and wardrobe to their supposed past as siblings. As you may predict, the other shoe eventually dropped and the façade they created was torn asunder when a newspaper uncovered that they were, in fact, husband and wife in 2002.

Finally admitting the true nature of their past, during a Rolling Stone interview in 2005, Jack White revealed they’d deceived the public simply because they wanted to be taken seriously. Reasoning “When you see a band that is two pieces, husband and wife, boyfriend and girlfriend, you think. “Oh, I see . . .” When they’re brother and sister, you go, “Oh, that’s interesting”. Makes sense to us, if only, it weren’t for those damned reporters ferreting out the truth.

5. Beyoncé “Songwriter”

One of the most discussed and revered musicians alive today; Beyoncé has a hell of a lot to brag about. A member of one the most successful girl groups ever, she broke out on her own and somehow became even more successful. Having sold more than 118 million albums as a solo act, she has also far too many awards for us to list here, to brag about.

So we’re stuck here, scratching our heads in confusion as to why she might feel the need to take credit for work she didn’t actually complete. Credited as a songwriter on many, many songs, her actual contributions are highly questionable. Called out by the likes of Linda Perry, Renee ‘Shi’ Wisdom and many others, it has been claimed that she might change a word here or there, add background harmonies or nothing at all. That doesn’t sound like a songwriter to us.

4. Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinskyhttp://static2.therichestimages.com/cdn/1000/667/90/cw/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/nypost.com_-1.jpg

It goes without saying that, The President of the United States is a position of immense power that takes a special kind of person to attain. Bill Clinton, the 42nd man to hold the office, has had several women come forward over the years, to claim that he used his charisma and career to solicit sexual favors from them. Unlike the others, Monica Lewinsky, a former White House intern, had revealed to her supposed friend that she had fooled around with the man and it was leaked to the press.

A story that captivated the world, Clinton eventually stated in an official deposition that “I have never had sexual relations with Monica Lewinsky”. Unfortunately, his former conquest for some reason had held onto a blue dress she’d worn during one of their more intimate interactions and his dried semen made the truth indisputable. A dalliance that resulted in extensive legal maneuverings, and a president being impeached for perjury and obstruction of justice, it headlines news broadcasts for months. After everything was said and done, Clinton remained in office and the public mostly moved on.

3. Rick Ross, Correctional Officer

In some music genres, reputation means a hell of a lot more than others. Nobody cares if Taylor Swift or Miley Cyrus grew up in wealth but 50 Cent’s persona was incredibly wrapped up in the fact that he’d survived being shot at point-blank range nine times. Rick Ross, like other performers in his genre, largely based his persona around boasts of how much of a gangsta he is.

Employed as a corrections officer for eighteen months in the mid-1990s, the rapper was so dead set on maintaining the illusion he’d created that when a photo of him in uniform came out he still denied it. Stating “online hackers” put “my face when I was a teenager in high school on other peoples’ body”, the claim was downright silly. After details like his salary, duration of his employment and place of training were released, it still took months for him to admit his law enforcement past.

2. Lance Armstrong and Doping

The most famous cyclist of all time, Lance’s story of extreme commitment to his sport, overcoming of a deadly decease and founding a charity made him a beloved celebrity. Winning the Tour de France, an astounding seven times in a row, few athletes have reigned on top of their sport for so long. Retiring in 2005, he likely could have remained a beloved figure if he hadn’t mounted a comeback that would result in a protracted doping investigation.

Forced to come clean after years of increasing evidence and allegations from more and more former competitors, he admitted using performance-enhancing drugs and receiving blood transfusions. Choosing Oprah Winfrey to tell the truth to, he came off as egotistical and far from contrite. His image was forever tarnished, he was stripped of his Tour de France wins and even his charity distanced itself from him.

1. Milli Vanilli’s Music Career
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The Wizard of Oz story brought to life, the two men the world was introduced to as Grammy Award winning, Billboard-topping and six times platinum-selling singers weren’t what they seemed to be. A couple of pretty boys who lip-synched and danced while a recording of other people singing played, it seems impossible to believe that anyone thought the ruse would hold up.

During a live MTV performance in 1989, the first cracks appeared, when the group’s recording jammed and began to skip, which resulted in the two men running off stage, but nobody batted an eye. All it took was one of the actual singers, becoming sick of someone else getting all the glory, choosing to come forward and tell the truth. Though he was paid to retract his statements, the genie was out of the bottle and before long, they were stripped of their Grammy, publicly ridiculed and drummed out of the business.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

10 Sega classics you’ve never heard of

With every year that goes by, it gets harder and harder to believe that Sega used to be a cornerstone of the gaming industry. The arrival of the Master System in 1985 signalled the beginning of Sega’s golden age, and a ferocious hardware war with Nintendo where the likes of the Mega Drive (Sega Genesis in North America) and the Sega Saturn, and ended with the much-maligned Dreamcast – a console we can all agree deserved far more than it got.

But what about the games? Sure, we know about the Sonics, the Virtua Fighters, the Shenmues, and of late, the Football Managers, but there’s a whole world of quality Sega games you’ve probably never played, some of which, we’d venture, you may not even have heard of. These days, even some of Sega’s most popular franchises never make it to western gamers – we’re looking at you Phantasy Star Online 2 – and we’ve missed out on plenty of hidden gems in the past too. Take a look at our rundown of the 10 classic Sega games you might have missed...

Seaman


So, Seaman. If you don’t already know this game, well, get ready for something weird. Essentially, Seaman is a virtual pet – mainly fish, but with the face of the game’s producer Yoot Saito – that you have to look after by feeding him, cleaning out his tank and talking to him using the Dreamcast mic accessory, until he eventually evolves and leaves in his final form. As you interacted with Seaman, he would learn from you, and grow to like or dislike you depending on how regularly you checked in on him, and whether you were nice to him or not. And that conversation and interaction was actually pretty vital, because if you ignored Seaman for too long he’d die, though not before getting incredibly cranky and hurling insults at you. Obvious comedy value aside, Seaman actually attempted some pretty ground-breaking and unique stuff back in 1999. And here’s a bit of added trivia for you, the English version of the game was narrated by none other than Leonard Nimoy – surely the great man’s seminal performance.

Gunstar Heroes


Another one of Treasure’s wonderful Sega releases, Gunstar arrived on Sega Mega Drive in 1993, and was considered to be very technically impressive at the time, both graphically and in gameplay terms. The plot is almost undecipherable – another hallmark of a good Treasure game – but essentially, someone evil is trying to take over the earth and you have to stop him by blowing up absolutely everything in sight. Gunstar Heroes revels in the blowing up of things. It’s fast-paced, intense, explosive gameplay – alongside a clever weapons system that allows you to mix and match a variety of weapon properties – have made it a retro classic now, but it was actually rather underappreciated when it first came out, and met with mediocre sales. There have since been ports made for Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network and the Nintendo 3DS, so it’s easy enough to pick up a copy for yourself.

Samba de Amigo


Another off-the-wall Dreamcast creation, Samba de Amigo grabbed the music game baton from Sony’s PaRappa the Rapper and took things one step further, with maracas! These weren’t just your bog-standard plastic maracas, though – these came complete with a sensor bar that sat just in-front of your feet, and triangulated the position of the maracas via ultrasonic waves. That all sounds very complex for such a simple music and rhythm game, but it worked, and Samba de Amigo was undoubtedly an important influence for later music games like Guitar Hero and Nintendo’s Donkey Konga. The game featured 53 classic tunes, including Lou Bega’s ‘Mambo No. 5’ and Ricky Martin’s ‘Livin’ la Vida Loca’ – at least, until Sony pulled Ricky from the game due to rights issues. You could even unlock extra songs by visiting the Samba de Amigo homepage through the Dreamcast’s internet browser – not bad for 1999.

Galactic Attack


Sega’s time in the limelight overlapped heavily with the golden age of the shoot-em-up, and that doesn’t just mean side-scrollers – we’re also talking vertical shmups. The likes of Ikaruga, Radiant Silvergun and M.U.S.H.A. Aleste were all relative hits, but there’s a long list of quality vertical shooters that didn’t get the same recognition. Right near the top of that list is Galactic Attack (also known as RayForce, GunLock and Layer Section, depending where in the world you were playing it). It was the quintessential experience of the genre in many ways, fast, intense and tough as nails, but with an extra level of dimensionality provided by the slick transitions and variety of ground and aerial targets. It took a bashing on release for not pushing the limits of the Saturn’s hardware capabilities, but it’s well worth a play for fans of the genre.

Enemy Zero


Love it or hate it, Enemy Zero is a woefully underappreciated and forgotten landmark of survival horror gaming. Released in 1996 on the Sega Saturn, Enemy Zero treaded new ground for video games, blending interactive FMV and real-time exploration to create an experience that is hauntingly similar to that of Alien Isolation, but nearly 20 years earlier. As you sneak around your space ship searching for help and a way of escape, you’re armed only with a proximity sensor – which tells you when the alien is near, but helpfully, not where it’s coming from – and a gun, which may as well be firing witty retorts for all the good it’ll do you. The ping of that proximity sensor, as well as the aggressive opening and closing of doors is all you’ll ever hear, except for the gargled screaming of the alien when it’s nearby. Sadly, Enemy Zero is tough to get hold of these days, and rather expensive, but it’s still worth every penny for survival horror fans, especially if you managed to make it all the way through the recent Alien Isolation (another Sega game) without triggering premature hair loss from stress and fright.

Space Channel 5


Dance Dance Revolution took the Japanese arcade scene by storm the same year as Sega’s Dreamcast arrived in stores, so it’s no surprise that the likes of Samba de Amigo and Space Channel 5 tried to bring the trend onto home consoles. The plot revolves around ‘Ulala’, Space Channel 5’s funkiest reporter, who is sent in to report on a set of hostages who have been kidnapped by a strange alien race (called the ‘Morolians) and are being forced to dance against their will. Well, turns out these Morolians have messed with the wrong reporter, as Ulala has all the funky moves to dance battle them straight out of town. The gameplay was pretty straight forward, and just involved matching combinations of directional and button inputs to the right rhythm, but Space Channel 5’s charm was really in the kooky plot and cutesy graphics. Plus, there’s even a Michael Jackson cameo near the end – you can’t get better dance credentials than that. Ulala still appears in the odd Sega game as a playable character, but we're still waiting on a true sequel, 15 years on.

Alien Soldier


Check out the video above and you’ll see some immediate similarities with run-and-gun games like Gunstar Heroes and Contra – Alien Soldier was very fast, and very hard, which is no surprise when you consider that this was another side-scroller from legendary developers Treasure. The differences that make Alien Soldier so revered among fans though are subtle, and not limited to the fact that the game was produced in very low quantities. Alien Soldier’s original Mega Drive incarnation featured outstanding graphics and animation that really wouldn’t look out of place on the Sega Saturn, and very different pacing to many genre-counterparts. Whilst most similar games were level based, Alien Soldier was built around its boss fights – 31 in total – ranging from Metal Gear-style mechs to giant katana-wielding monster Shoguns. Fancy a go? An original Mega Drive copy will cost you a couple hundred quid, but there’s a perfectly good PC port available for just £2 on Steam.

Pulseman

Ok, sure, Pulseman is very clearly a ‘reimagining’ of Capcom’s Mega Man who, when Pulseman arrived on Mega Drive in 1994, was already a household name. That doesn’t detract from the quality of this game though. Pulseman is absolutely gorgeous, with vistas that spanned the rooftops of Blade Runner-esque future-cities as the protagonist – also called Pulseman, funnily enough – jumped, zapped and tackled his way through the evil Dr Waruyama’s Galaxy Gang. Pulseman is sadly dismissed these days as a simple Mega Man clone, when it’s actually far more respectable than that, mixing traditional platform gameplay with the frenetic pace of something like Sonic the Hedgehog. And who’s responsible for Pulseman, you ask? Only a little-known Japanese dev studio called Game Freak, who two years later would making gaming history when they released Pokemon Red and Green to the world.

Shadowrun


Shadowrun’s cult status was solidified when developers Harebrained Schemes used Kickstarter to bring the franchise back to life in 2012, raising $1.5 million from backers to create Shadowrun Returns, and then follow up with Shadowrun Dragonfall and Shadowrun Hong Kong. The original version on Mega Drive wasn’t without its issues – after all, it was an incredibly complex and detailed top-down RPG on a 16-bit console – but Shadowrun’s deep RPG mechanics, fast-paced real-time battles and beautiful dystopian setting made it an underground hit with western RPG fans, and far superior to the original SNES version too.

Herzog Zwei


Herzog Zwei is notable for being one of the very first attempts at creating a real-time strategy game, a genre so reliant on precise mouse clicks, on console. Naturally, in a sea of side-scrolling shooters, action and fighting games, Herzog Zwei was received with a lot of confusion back in 1989 (or 1990 in North America and Europe), and its sales suffered accordingly, which is a shame given the excellent game that hid under the surface. The controls were simple and easy to get the hang of, battles were complex to win but easy to understand, and in hindsight, Herzog Zwei is rightly seen as a huge landmark for the RTS genre, and a key influence for the likes of Dune II, Command & Conquer, and even modern day MOBAs like Dota 2 and League of Legends. Sadly, no other version was ever made, but there are enough second hand cartridges around that you can pick one up fairly easily.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

6 Actors Who Actually Got Drunk on Set While Filming Their Movies

For most of us, the end-of-the-day cocktail serves as a reward for surviving another workday. For others, drinking on the job not after is the norm. (Hello, bartenders.) Actors spend a lot of time hanging out, waiting for scenes to get shot and sometimes look to the sauce to alleviate boredom. Similarly, some actors pour themselves into their roles and imbibe in the name of keeping it Method. Whatever the reason be it boredom or realism or addiction these half-dozen celebrities may have hit the bottle a little too hard on the job.

Daniel Radcliffe