Codeacademy Beginners Insight !

16 08 2012

As I’ve stated before on this Blog, I love Tech, but I am a complete Novice when it comes to developing and coding.

http://www.codecademy.com/

Today I came across this website whilst having a look at some Kickstarter pages.

I am a complete coding beginner, absolutely no knowledge whatsoever so this website was the exact kind of thing I’ve been looking for to help myself out !

I’ve seen websites similar to this before but none that have lessons and a community quite like codeacademy. I registered today and completed some of the lessons, these are great and you work on a command prompt built into the web page with hints and tips and thorough guides showing you how to build and create your own code as you progress.

Each individual excercise doesn’t need to be completed before moving on and you can jump right into the more difficult stuff if you please but with each lesson when the correct code is enterred the website will tell you and let you know if it isn’t completely correct to allow you to edit it and correct it before progressing.

Codeacademy can also be linked into Twitter and Facebook, this was an easy way to me to make an account and took literally a minute maximum to do, this can also be used to keep tabs on any friends that use the website and ensures you are one step ahead of them with any lessons!

As you can see, I’ve completed a few lessons today and I’m very impressed.
As well as having numerous lessons, there is also a forum where questions can be asked if you are having any specific issues with a lesson in particular or can’t seem to find the problem with any of the code you have created, this was unbelievably helpful on a few circumstances as you can find yourself stuck for quite some time as the ‘hints’ section on the lesson can only get you so far.

Having completed 9% of the lessons, I’m not in a position to say how the rest of the lessons are but as a complete beginner I have been impressed with the depth of each lesson and the hands-on experience gained by writing your own code as well as editing and fixing pre-made snippets of code.

If your as much of a beginner as me, this is a great place to start !

 

 





Wii U Preview

30 07 2012

Ok, with the announcement having been made over a year ago.. we are slowly creeping into the release date for the Wii U, anticipated for the 4th Quarter of 2012.

The Wii U is the newer version of the Wii as you might have guessed. The console will be backwards compatible with Wii games, and is trying to create another entirely new form of gaming, just as the Wii did on its release date.

The biggest talking point, is shown in the image above, the Wii U GamePad. This has a screen on the front and allows you to view the entire game on this screen, or supplementary information such as maps, just like the bottom screen on a DS and also acts as a touchscreen. The interesting thing is that this can be used with, or without a TV.. The first mainstream console that could also double up as a handheld. The GamePad also has a front facing camera, a built in accelerometer and Near Field Communication (NFC) built in. This, like many smartphones means that you will be able to make payments using the Wii U and also use this with interactive figurines within a game.

 

As well as the GamePad the Wii U will also have the option of a more mainstream Wii U Pro Controller, which is an attempt by Nintendo to attract more console gamers away from the Xbox and Playstation and bring them to the Wii. Nintendo are also attempting to make porting of games to the Wii U far more easy and streamlined meaning that some of our other console favourites could be making their way to this device. This could be a massive benefit in my eyes as when I had my Wii, it was more of a child friendly gaming device that occasionally was a good laugh at parties.. but I would never sit down for hours on end and play like I would an Xbox or Playstation.

It will be good news to existing Wii owners that all peripherals such as the Nunchuk and Wii Balance board are all thought to be compatible with the Wii U.

The following games have been confirmed for the Wii U:
Nintendo Land, New Super Mario Bros U, Pikmin 3, Wii Fit U, Wii U Panorama  View, SiNG, LEGO City: Undercover, Project P-100, Game & Wario, Aliens:  Colonial Marines, NINJA GAIDEN 3: Razor’s Edge, Darksiders II, Assassin’s Creed  III, Batman Arkham City Armored Edition, Mass Effect 3, Rayman Legends,  Scribblenauts Unlimited, TANK! TANK! TANK! , Tekken Tag Tournament 2 and  ZombiU.

It will be interesting to see how it performs at its release date. The Wii did well, but like the DS, it flourished to an unusually high level at Christmas. This is a time console sales usually shoot through the roof but even taking this into account, Wii’s have been like golddust for the past few years at Christmas with stores selling out for weeks and possibly months on end.

The Wii U is thought to be arriving shortly, and with rumoured prices of upwards of £200, equivalent to 2 Ouya’s it might be an easy choice for some, but a tough sell for most.





Dinosaur War IOS Android Free App Review !

23 07 2012

Dinosaur War is free on Android and IOS

This game involves building up a Village, a Dinosaur army, and using each of these for domination!

I play a lot of these kind of games ! Usually I get a lot of game play out of them before getting the gaps between levels getting too lengthy, becoming bored and losing interest.

Usually the basis of all these games are the same, build a village and troops, whilst using up resources and having to wait a set amount of time for troops and builds to be completed (unless using premium paid for items such as crystals to eliminate the wait)

There are a few differences in this game that have kept me involved for a lot longer than the usual ones. Usually during the wait for resources to recupperate, or to be able to battle again there is little to do in these sorts of games.. effectively most close them down and re-open in 30mins/ an hour/ etc. In Dinosaur War there are a few additional options such as Card games and ‘wheel of fortune’ type activities that can keep you amused during this wait to make it pass a little quicker, which although are fairly small things, they make a massive difference and keep you coming back.

All of these games, as mentioned usually involve premium add ons, either removing the wait for buildings to complete or to buy special items usable in the game. This is the reason a lot of these games are free, with rumoured that the Ouya will probably adopt the same approach with a lot of its games, its obvious to see why this is popular with these premium crystals starting at $1.99 and ranging up to $29.99 . This isn’t as steep as some games with these sorts of items reaching over $100 in some instances.

There are a lot of games similar to this one, possibly not having Dinosaurs as there focal point, but using something else ! This is one of the better ones i’ve played and its been keeping me going for over a week now, definately give it a go if this is your thing, after all.. its free !





Playstation , Xbox , Nintendo .. Now Ouya !!

18 07 2012

Ohhhhh yaaaaaaaaah! No, not a Randy Savage wannabe but a new console completely !

With the introduction of the Internet and then Social media, the preverbial rumour mill is on full speed constantly, new games, new apps, new this, new that. Ouya started out and has been making the rounds mostly thought of as a rumour, but has since been confirmed as official.

Streaming games has become largely more popular recently with devices such as Onlive and Gaikai, but in my opinion still hasn’t made it completely main stream as of yet.

The Ouya is going to come in at $99 and via http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/ouya/ouya-a-new-kind-of-video-game-console you can donate to the project starting from as little as $10 to $10,000. These clearly range in what you get, with $10 reserving your Username for the service and $10,000 getting you an invite to the launch, a console and clearly a massive handshake from the developers ! The aim as you can see was to raise just under $1million. As 5 times this has been raised, it hopefully shouldn’t be too long away.

The first of these donation packages to include the actual device is $99 with additional shipping costs outside the US and additional costs for an extra controller etc as you would expect.

The device is made to be open running Android 4.0, meaning that Ouya effectively welcomes hackers with your warranty still being valid even after hacking. This means that games can be tweaked and made from scratch as well as the actual box its self giving budding developers a chance to show their stuff. All of the screws on the device are normal ordinary run of the mill screws giving easy access to mod till your hearts content with new peripherals and accessories possible with the help of your screwdriver!

The specs are thought to be pretty impressive also boasting a Quad-Core Tegra 3 Processor, 1GB of RAM and 8GB of storage initially, with the obvious choice of changing and altering these due to its open source nature.

One of the best points of this new device is that at least some of every single game developed for it must be free.
Whether this means getting a free demo or getting an entirely free game with additional paid content available is completely up to the developer but should hopefully be a lot easier on the pocket than £40/£50 per game with £200/300 consoles.

For $99, it seems a bit of a bargain thus far. I’m in the UK so I’d have to pay $119 ( £75 roughly). For that sort of money its surely worth an investment, considering its difficult to even get some pre-owned consoles for a similar price, still paying £40 a game.

The estimated delivery of the devices is March 2013, 9 months till hopefully a  new world of gaming begins !!








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