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Untitled Goose Game The Review

In the last few weeks & months we’ve been reviewing some of the biggest and slickest gaming titles on the market. From Ghost Recon to Crash Nitro Fueled, everything about games is getting better. So why on Earth is one of the most fun titles we’ve played in recent years the beautifully simple Untitled Goose Game. You might describe it as some form of puzzle action game where you must accomplish small tasks while remaining undetected but it’s much less than that…simply you are a merely a little annoying goose. Your goal…steal random objects and terrify locals! What more could you want? This new effort from the makers of Fortnite takes the modern hyper realistic game and says “Na” as it lowers the stakes in favour of comedy.

The Basics

The game has a plot, but not really. You’re a goose and your job is to be a pain and cause mischief around a little English village by completing a to-do list of vaguely defined tasks, gradually unlocking access to more and more of the town as you go. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to build up a trophy stash of basically anything that’s owned by a human. So you’re the bad guy and that’s part of the fun.

Where the puzzle side of the game comes from is figuring out how to do these “tasks” and steal the villagers stuff. You can crane your neck, spread your wings, and honk your bill, anything to ruin the good villagers day. That’s really it.

Gameplay

The Untitled Goose Game has no tutorial, no guide, there’s nothing to unlock it’s a really stripped back simple game. But that doesn’t make it stupid. At it’s core the game is a puzzle game and trust me they are not exactly easy. While running your goose (I called ours Gé) you will bump into villagers starting with a local gardener. You will get a series of missions to complete throughout the game from stealing carrots, making someone hammer his own thumb, pushing tools into a pond or destroying lawn signs that explicitly prohibit geese. Not joking dropping a bucket of water on someone’s head is a right chuckle.

Remember you’re a goose and that means you’re about as subtle as a sledgehammer, my favourite trick was honk until someone notices, before jumping out of my hidey hole to steal their stuff. You don’t die in this game, if people catch you, they will simply take back their stuff or give you a belt of a broom. But that’s OK that just means you can spend more time figuring out the best way to ruin their day. Genuinely, this game is simple to play, with little thinking, and it’s bloody great craic.

Graphics & Audio

It’s a long time since we’ve seen a game so visually simplistic and just so delicate. Sure a big blockbuster title wouldn’t get away with pulling a fast one by using graphics like this but when you look at the Untitled Goose Game the graphics just suits the game. You could almost say it’s a honking success.

Image result for untitled goose game

The game just seems like it’s been built for smiles, the way the stupid goosed waddles around the place, the reactions to your honk or just the sound effects to match a move, it’s brings back memories of Saturday morning Looney Tunes and other similar cartoons. Interfaces are big and chunky with a minimalist UI that works with the serene village setting and it all sets the scene for your goose to cause chaos. The music as well is retro, amping up the ridiculousness of the whole game as each task is accompanied by a piano that feels like it in itself is a character that’s nudging you to do your worst…not that we needed much encouragement!

Longevity

Image result for untitled goose game meme

The Untitled Goose Game is already considered an indy hit with meme’s taking over small corners of the internet. The fact is these developers did good keeping this game short and sweet, everybody wants more. Maybe we’re biased because they share love of the goose but damn we want some of that little tricky bird in our lives. Maybe release an office or city based DLC to keep us occupied while we wait on a full title.

Either way, the game is only a few hours long, about three or four hours in total. After the credits you get an expanded list of minor mischiefs but by keeping it short they have managed to ensure the game not only doesn’t overstay it’s welcome but has us all honking for more.

Goosed Verdict

The concept is mad, it really is, but that’s what makes it so much fun. That’s why we play video games at the end of the day. Sometimes we don’t need the sleek detail of Call of Duty or the glitz and glamour of FIFA 20, sometimes we just need a little happiness and respite from reality. This game offers just that. I dare you to play without a smile on your face as you chase a kid up the road, honking all the way.
The Untitled Goose Game is both brilliant and brain dead, ironic and absurd, complicated and simple all at the same time. The Goose Game is just down right joyous and a wonderful change of pace. Really who doesn’t want to be a village terrorizing goose. Well

worth the €15.

Insomnia Gaming Festival is coming to Dublin

Welcoming over 100,000 visitors each year, Insomnia Gaming Festival is the biggest and longest running games festival in the UK, Insomnia is now coming to the Republic of Ireland this November as part of a multi-year agreement with Irish based company SWD Events! Insomnia Gaming Festival will be coming to the RDS on 9 and 10 November, for a weekend of non-stop gaming action. Goosed.ie have got hold of 2 VIP passes to give away, you want them? Get all the way to end and enter the competition to be in with a chance of winning.

Image result for insomnia-gaming-festival-coming-dublin

 

Insomnia Gaming Festival Dublin is brought to you by the same teams behind the recent Dublin Comic Con, GamerFest and Games Expo Ireland so seasoned gamers will find plenty of entertainment at the show including the latest video games, Youtuber meet and greets, competitive eSports, Cosplay, Indie Dev Zones, main stage demos and panel discussions.

Sarah Whittaker, Head of Sales, Marketing and Content at GAME commented:

“Insomnia UK has been instrumental in driving consumer engagement in gaming events for over 20 years and we are continuing to take the Insomnia brand to new territories.We can’t wait to head over to Ireland and bring all the elements of the event to an engaged Irish gaming community at Insomnia Dublin this November.”

Insomnia Gaming Festival events in the UK tend to get over 70,000 attendees, so they are expecting big things out in the RDS. If you decide to go to Insomnia Dublin, you will be able to experience the brand new Vive Cosmos, the latest premium PC-based virtual reality (VR) system from HTC.

The Republic of Players will be hosting the Insomnia Live Studio featuring interviews with special guests and live gaming action throughout the show.

The Esports roster will be jam packed and includes Overwatch, FIFA 20, Rocket League, Super Smash Bros. and the eagerly awaited Fortnite Challenge featuring a prize pool of over €1,000 worth of cash prizes and gaming goodies.

Youtubers currently scheduled to attend Insomnia Gaming Festival Dublin are:

  • Ireland’s No.1 Fortnite Player – Dublin native Joshua Juliano
  • UK YouTuber Pyrocynical who has an audience of 3.5m and it will be his first time attending a Dublin Festival.
  • Call me Kevin
  • RTGame
  • NerdOut! Music
  • AntiTinkerbell
  • Impact Game Station
  • Little Mar Man
  • All Cast Irish Gamers
  • Discreet

John Romero will also be in attendance and will be discussing game development and design. Also, Jigsaw is the official charity of Insomnia Dublin and will be at the festival promoting awareness of the work they do in supporting young people’s mental health in Ireland. A number of joint initiatives will take place over the course of the festival, including a live stage panel discussion regarding gaming and mental health.

For more information and to purchase tickets see www.insomniagamingdublin.ie

We’ve teamed up with Insomnia to give one lucky person the two VIP tickets to the show, as long as you’re over 18, just fill in the form below and we will announce the winner on November 1st.

DTS Women In Tech Award Winners 2019

Last year DTS hosted its inaugural Women In Tech Awards, which became Ireland’s foremost event dedicated to recognizing the innovation, leadership and achievements of women in Ireland’s tech landscape. It was a huge success so it should come as no surprise that this year was always going to be bigger and better. Last week the 2nd annual Women In Tech Awards out of the RDS with the aim to highlight the diversity in the workplace, narrowing the gender gap and recognise the achievements of the amazing women who work tireless to drive innovation, leadership and success in the tech industry! This year the audience consisted of 400 high-level execs, VIP’s, government officials and of course us.

DTS Women In Tech Awards are working towards bridging the gender gap, something which is evident in the tech industry. Luckily society has been striving to bright this gap and events like the DTS Women In Tech Awards that prove just how imbalances the industry is. Women are statistically in the minority but despite this, there are achievements that need to be celebrated. Just have a look at some of the amazing 2018 Winners.

This year there were 14 women and companies honored at the ceremony, but that doesn’t tell the whole story. There was 368 women from over 270 organisations nominated across the diverse range of awards, tough job for the judges if you ask me.

Some of the winners included The Grace Hopper Lifetime Achievement Award being presented to Barbara McCarthy, CTO of Ding, the world’s number one international mobile top-up platform, Caroline Dunlea winner of the Entrepreneur Award (full disclosure she’s my day job boss) while Dr Fiona Edwards Murphy, co-founder and CEO, ApisProtect, which uses IoT to protect the honeybee population took home the LEO Dublin Rising Star Award.

Obviously I had to ask Caroline what it was like to win the award in a tough category beating some of Ireland’s biggest female entrepreneurs to take home the award, here’s what she had to say about this achievement:

“I am very honoured to have received the Entrepreneur Award and it means so much to me as a business owner and also represents the dedication and commitment of an entire team’s drive for success. What an incredible event with so many amazing and inspirational women across so many sectors. Thank you to Dublin Tech Summit for organizing such a memorable evening”

Companies were also recognized for their work with Facebook Ireland taking home the HR Diversity Award, Accenture was named as the Diverse Company of the Year and Connecting Women in Technology (CWIT) won the coveted Women in Tech Initiative Award.

2019 Women In Tech Award Winners

Image result for Women in tech awards 2019

IT Business Leader sponsored by Magnet Networks

Lorna McAdoo – Version 1

Trailblazer sponsored by Oracle

Patricia Scanlon – SoapBox Labs

Security Leader sponsored by TalentHub

Ines Rubio – BSI

Digital Transformation sponsored Travelport Digital

Yemi Oluseun – Barclays

Fintech Leader sponsored by Fineos

Kenlyn Klamper – Fiserv (Nenagh)

Blockchain Leader sponsored by Business & Finance

Teana Baker-Taylor – Global Digital Finance

Entrepreneur sponsored by Enterprise Ireland

Caroline Dunlea – Core Optimisation

Disruptor sponsored by Wrike

Niamh Sterling – Recipe Guru

Rising Star sponsored by Dublin City Council/LEO Dublin

Dr Fiona Edwards Murphy – ApisProtect

Data Scientist sponsored by Kantar Media

Michaela Blott – Xilinx

Mentorship sponsored by Fiserv

Jacinta Walker – Qualtrics

Diversity Role Model Award sponsored by Sysnet Global Solutions

Mary Browne – Citi

HR Diversity Initiative sponsored by PwC

Facebook HR Team

Diverse Company Of The Year sponsored by Permanent TSB

Accenture Ireland

Women in Tech Initiative sponsored by Version 1

Connecting Women in Technology

Grace Hopper sponsored by SFI Ireland

Barbara McCarthy – Ding

GoMo: What’s The Catch With Eir’s New Network?

gomo whats the catch

I love a bargain. Like, I really love a bargain. So when a new network launches in Ireland offering unlimited calls, texts and data for €9.99 per month, my ears pricked up. Before I knew it, I had two sims ordered. Not a single term or condition had been read. Now, in the safety net of my 14-day distance selling period which means I can cancel these seems for the next two weeks, I’ve read through the terms. Have I found any snags? Just what is the catch with Eir’s new network GoMo?

With GoMo, Is Unlimited Really Unlimited?

GoMo promises to give you “all you need” to stay connected. Their offering is deliberately vague to keep you focused on that €9.99 per month price tag. But, let’s take a step back and look at what unlimited means with GoMo.

Unlimited Calls

For your unlimited calls, there is a fair usage policy which caps your plan at 45,000 minutes. That means you’d need to be on your phone for longer than a month. Which isn’t really possible because by the time a month rolls around your plan will be rolling over into the following month’s allowance.

Technically, as unlikely as it is to happen it’s possible and if you manage it, calls over the 45,000 minutes will be charged at 30c per minute.

Unlimited SMS

I’d say I sent about five text messages per month these days. Everything is in WhatsApp so the reliance on SMS is at an all time low. Till GoMo gives you 10,000 SMS messages to send every month. Again, a ludicrous allowance. We can split hairs over the wording being inaccurate because it’s not really unlimited, but 10,000 messages are too many for one person to get through. That’s an amount to stop automated systems abusing the service.

If you do manage to go over the 10,000 messages, your excess messages will be charged at 15c per message.

Unlimited Data

We live in an age where data is king. Noone really cares about calls or texts. Actually, just last week I thought about removing the phone from the app tray on my phone. I use everything else like music and email than I do phone calls. This is the big play by GoMo. Focus on the data.

Again, unlimited data is not unlimited data on GoMo. But any time you see “unlimited data” or “All You Can Eat Data”, I can tell you that it’s not completely without limits. Like calls and texts above, there’s a fair usage policy there somewhere. The difference with data is that it’s much easier for you to surpass your data allowance.

With GoMo, you’re given a very generous 80GB of data. However, it wouldn’t be unheard of to download more than 80GB of data in a month. That would be over twenty thousand Spotify tracks. To make things even more real, it’s about 80 hours of Netflix. If you get stuck into a binge, you could really go over that.

For the price, I could see plenty of students thinking they could just buy one of these sims and slap it into a modem to run a house. For sure, it’ll work but 80GB of data will evaporate quickly this way. So what will GoMo do when this happens?

It’s very simple. GoMo reserves the right to throttle users who exceed the fair usage policy and, as a result, impact other users in the same area. In theory, you might never be impacted by exceeding your fair usage policy, but GoMo claims they will be keeping an eye out for this.

Roaming

Roaming is one of the areas you need to be careful with GoMo. If you’re in the European Union, things are pretty good. Over the past few years, roaming in Europe has become a dream and, legally, GoMo needs to honour the rules of Europe and let people access the internet.

Roaming Inside the EU

The new network from Eir will give you 10GB of data to roam in the EU. Unlike using data back home, if you go over the 10GB of roaming data, you’ll need to start paying for excess data. The going rate for this is €5.54 per GB and the network will notify you to say you’ve gone over your limit.

You can still use your calls and texts from back home while roaming in Europe too. This works for calling people back home and not numbers in the country your visiting.

Roaming Outside the EU

To be honest, it might be best you steer clear of roaming outside the EU with GoMo. This is a no-frills network and roaming outside the EU is certainly a frill for them. If you want to use data in the United States, it’s charged at €4.99 per MB. That’s over five thousand euro for one GB of data in the States.

Steer clear of this.

GoMo: Full Roaming Charges

RegionMake CallReceive CallSend SMSVoicemail RatesData Charging
Africa€2.99/min€2.99/min€0.39€2.99/min€4.99/MB (€5,109.76 / GB)
Americas€1.99/min€1.99/min€0.39€1.99/min€4.99/MB (€5,109.76 / GB)
Asia€2.99/min€2.99/min€0.39€2.99/min€4.99/MB (€5,109.76 / GB)
EEA€0.30/minFree€0.15Free€5.54/GB
Rest of Europe€1.99/min€1.99/min€0.39€1.99/min€4.99/MB (€5,109.76 / GB)
USA€1.99/min€1.99/min€0.39€1.99/min€4.99/MB (€5,109.76 / GB)

 

I know that’s all pretty heavy, but for the vast majority of users, there’s very little risk or impact here when it comes to using your GoMo sim in Ireland. So what else do you need to look out for?

There’s an Activation Fee

Straight of the bat, GoMo will require you to pay €9.99 to get your sim up and running. Actually, this isn’t unheard of in Eir who still sometimes charge this fee. To be totally honest, for €9.99 per month, that activation fee didn’t even make me bat an eyelid.

What Phones Will Work on GoMo?

To get a phone to work on GoMo it’ll need to either be unlocked or locked to Eir. I’d imagine an old Meteor phone would also work if you find yourself in that kind of strange situation.

Will the Network Be Slow?

Interestingly, Eir decided to make GoMo a 4G network. I say interestingly because Three’s similar network, 48 Months is limited to 3G. Ultimately, this means that GoMo should be just as fast as any of the major networks in Ireland. The exception being Vodafone who now offers 5G internet in some select locations.

On the surface, it would appear that speed should not be a problem at all. However, the eagle-eyed Cillian Sherlock from RTÉ spotted an interesting line of GoMo’s terms and conditions.

GoMo outlined some theoretical speeds you might expect to get on their network and they were slow. 10Mb/s would drive most modern streamers fairly mad. I don’t expect the network to be that slow at all and would imagine that this is a blended average of speeds from across the country.

After doing some digging, tech journalist Adrian Weckler came to the conclusion that these speeds wont be caps at all but instead conservative estimates.

I’ve done some tests myself and speed certainly doesn’t seem to be an issue. Download speeds are as fast if not faster than other major networks. Upload speed, however, is a quite a bit slower which may be an issue for the posting stories generation. It’s also worth a thought that GoMo doesn’t have that many people on the network right now, so maybe contention will grow in the coming months and slow everyone down.

Can I Move My Number To GoMo Later?

Yep! If you’re in a contract and don’t want to miss out on this launch offer, you can sign up then swap your own number onto the network when it suits you. You’ll be paying two bills, but if you see the value go for it. It’s what I’m doing myself. I’m going to check out the network and continue to read the terms and conditions to make sure there’s no catch before moving my own number onto the network.

That’s covering off the biggest fears I had, but have I missed something? Let me know in the comments below if there’s another question mark you have over this almost too good to be true offer and I’ll find out for you.

For now, it does largely seem to be a great offer from GoMo once you know the limitations like non-EU roaming. I’ll have a sim in the next few days and will be checking out speeds around Dublin, so I’ll update this article once I know more.

Update: Network Quality

After a couple of weeks on the Gomo network, I noticed that I was getting more 3G than 4G. Maybe it’s perception, but for me the network just didn’t seem to be as fast as the likes of Three or Vodafone which I’m also using simultaneously.

Update: Don’t Miss a Payment

Initially, after a quick look at the terms and conditions, I thought that a missed payment with GoMo meant your number was gone. That’s not the case. If you miss a payment, it rolls over to the following month. Once your account goes into arrears of €30 or more, your account will be suspended. To regain access, you need to contact GoMo and make a payment. Then your account is back up and running.

Looks like a catch that simply isn’t.

Update: Customer Care

Gomo has widely been hailed as the Ryanair of phone networks. Cheap as chips to the point where you know there’s a few frills you’re not going to be allowed enjoy. Unfortunately for Gomo, it looks like people’s patience is a lot shorter when it comes to their phone than their flights.

Trustpilot is one of the biggest online repositories of consumer reviews and as such it can give you a really good idea of what kind of experience you’ll have with a brand. Gomo’s Trustpilot page doesn’t make for easy reading!

Gomo customer Paula outlines how she’s been waiting for calls and texts to be activated despite payments being taken from her account.

Declan and Shay are also having coverage issues on the network while John has lost his number of over ten years. At time of writing there’s nearly 300 reviews on Trustpilot with 69% of them being negative. The Trustpilot account is also unclaimed which suggest Gomo really isn’t too bothered by all of these negative reviews. It’s no frills so just be conscious of what you’re getting yourself into.

This has been the biggest issue faced by Gomo customers.

 

Google Pixel 4 is Coming To Ireland: Here’s What We Know

pixel 4

I remember a time where you couldn’t get a Google Pixel phone in Ireland for love nor money. Then there was the time we helped you with workarounds which meant you could buy Pixel phones in the UK and ship them to Ireland. Then last year, it finally happened and Google started selling the Pixel range in Ireland with the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3XL. With the rumours in the rearview mirror, Google has announced the Pixel 4. So without further ado, here’s everything you need to know about Google’s new flagship smartphone.

What Phones Did Google Launch?

Last year, Google launched the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3XL together with the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL following earlier this year. Today, Google announced their new flagships but nothing for the midrange. That means this article will be looking at the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4XL announcement.

Notch to Notchless

Pixel 3XL had the biggest notches I’ve ever seen. It was unsightly, but at the same time, it made me realise you can become blind to notches over time. I really didn’t mind it. But it was ridiculously big.

pixel 4 forehead

It a complete swing, Google has decided to kill off the notch altogether with the Pixel 4 range. This means Google can squeeze in lots of new tech atop their new Pixel. You get the usual selfie camera as you’d expect, but then things get interesting. Google has added a near-infrared flood emitter and dot projector which promises better face-unlocking. They’ve said their tech will allow for improved unlocking in the dark which should make this even better than what Apple brings to the table.

It’s important that face-unlock works well too because the new Pixel phones will have no fingerprint scanners at all.

Also, there’s some real innovation on show here. The front-facing array of the Pixel 4 also houses the first radar chip in a mobile phone. It’s called the Soli sensor and it lets you control your phone with gestures. I’ve seen similar controls on the Huawei Mate 30 Pro and I think this has genuine potential to go beyond being a gimmick.

Two Cameras

These days, smartphones have a seemingly ever-increasing number of cameras on them. Yet, this is the first Pixel smartphone to have more than one primary lens. For many phone manufacturers that would be a concern, but Google’s software combined with some decent hardware brings best-in-market results.

On the rear, you get a 12MP lens and a new 16MP telephoto lens. Combined with Google’s software smarts, the Pixel 4 range promises to have improved zoom, better low-light shots and enhanced portrait (bokeh) shots. I can’t wait to see what the zoom is like on the new Pixel phones. I don’t think it’ll stand up to the likes of the Huawei P30 Pro’s zoom, but Google’s digital zoom blew my mind last year.

There’s also a mode designed for star gazing and you know what? I’m thinking I might actually grab the Pixel 4 and head out of the city with a tripod to give this a real test.

Power

This is a slight area of concern when looking at the Pixel 4 on paper. 2800 mAh of battery, in this day and age, is tiny. It’s even smaller than last year’s Pixel 3. Google assures us that it will give you enough power for a day, but transitioning from Huawei battery power to Google could be the biggest challenge of being switching up to the Pixel 4. Time will tell.

Elsewhere, in terms of power, processing power should be no problem at all as the new Pixel is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor. On top of that, I’m going to slightly shoehorn in one of the top features that people are taking notice of – a 90 Hz screen. OnePlus boast that this is one of the best features of their new phones so again, I’m looking forward to seeing the full day to day use impact of this.

Excited?

The Pixel 4 might not bring as much x-factor to the scene that other uber-flagships but there are plenty of other things which piqued my interest. Stock Android 10 and improved Google Assistant are just two of the things I’m looking forward to checking out so be sure to keep an eye as I’ll be popping my sim into the Pixel 4 tomorrow and giving it a right good test.

When is the Pixel 4 Available in Ireland?

You can pre-order the Google Pixel 4 in Ireland thorugh the Google store. Currently, it says your new phone will ship in two to three weeks, so I’d expect this to land by the end of the month. There’s no sign of an official announcement from Vodafone again this year to stock the Pixel 4, but watch this space.

New Irish Mobile Network GoMo Unveiled

Earlier today Eir announced a brand new mobile network on our shores. GoMo operating off of Eir’s current mobile network promises customers will have 99% population coverage and over 97% 4G coverage!

They launch with an offer that is sure to have some of the bigger providers shaking in their boots, but of course there’s a catch. GoMo are offering the first 100,000 customers a €10 per month for life deal with unlimited calls and texts coupled with 80gb of data with 10gb roaming. Not bad but if you want to sign up to GoMO then you will be bringing our own phone because this Ryanair of the telecommunications industry is as no frills they come, offering only 30 day sim-only plans at the moment.

Image result for gomo ireland

Eir has recently invested over €150 million to upgrade their masts in preparation to launch their 5G networks. Now we don’t think GoMo will be getting 5G anytime soon but if Eir have put in the work they claim, reception shouldn’t be an issue. Eir will continue to operate as their own brand and GoMo will have nothing to do with them, kind of like Meteor & Eir in the past.

When we said no frills earlier we meant it, GoMo has been pitches as the first “truly digital mobile brand” and that means, no bricks and mortar shops, no phone stock and no messing around with plans. Its the old “what you see is what you get mantra”.

GoMo isn’t Eir, it’s what’s known as an MVNO, a company who offers a mobile service using someones infrastructure. However, what is different about this new Irish network is the fact its owned by Eir so you would think that should avoid the problems of some of Ireland’s other MVNO’s such as Virgin, Tesco, 48 and the forgotten child of years gone past..iD.

Outside of the first 100,000 customers being able to get a deal of €10 per month for life deal with unlimited calls and texts coupled with 80gb of data, users will also be able to roam like home throughout the EU (and of course post Brexit UK). The only charge upfront is €10 to move your existing number and for delivery of your sim.

Only time will tell if GoMo will be able to compete with the big boys and if their service is any good. Both myself and Martin have already ordered our sims so expect a follow up article in the near future. In the meantime if the offer looks to good to miss then head over to their site and grab it while you can.

PS5 Announcement – What We Think We Know

It’s happening, the next-gen PlayStation has been announced! It’s due to land in time for Christmas 2020 and will be dubbed the PS5. Since Mark Cerny, Sony’s chief architect announced the company were working on the new console we’ve seen a steady release of information circulating such as an official PS5 release window, name and a few details about features. Alongside this, there was the surprising leak of a Sony patent which seems to hint at the console’s new shape and general design. So what’s the craic with the PS5? well here’s everything we think we know about the new PlayStation 5.

PS5 Release Date

Image result for mark cerny

Probably the best place to start and thankfully the little ones won’t be on the hunt for a new console this Christmas. After the recent announcement of Xbox’s Project Scarlett due for release for Christmas 2020, it looks like Sony are following suit. We’d be surprised if this wasn’t the case, to be honest, and the latest instalment of the console wars could be the best yet.

However, let’s not be surprised if Sony throw a curveball. There has been a rumour floating about in recent days that we could see the PS5 release in February/March to get a jump on the competition. I reckon Black Friday is going to be a pretty decent indicator of Sony’s tactic and if we see the PS4 get crazier discounts than usual this year, don’t be surprised if we see the PS5 by April 2020.

Is 8K video on the menu?

To get technical for a moment the answer is a bit yes and no. The PS4 is by all accounts set to ship with the AMD Ryzen chip and a GPU from Radeon Navi family. Couple this with the SSD Storage and this combination promises great graphics ability, fast as fuck load times and good bandwidth capabilities. However, that on first glance looks like 8k gaming could be possible for simpler titles while the bigger games will employ a new version of upscaling used on the PS4 Pro to make games look slick on 4K.

One idea floating about and I personally don’t like it is that at launch we’ll get a PS5 and PS5 Pro. The Pro version will be a higher spec with much more powerful features including a higher frame rate and 8K video.

What about a 4K Blu-ray drive?

Mark Cerny confirmed that the PS5 will have a 4K Blu-ray player. To be honest the PS4 should have included this feature as both the Xbox One X & S come with the 4K drive. What that means is that if your the home cinema type the Xbox would have been the better choice however with this news the PS5 is ready to bring the Ultra HD Blu-ray fight to Xbox.

The Audio Setup

Image result for xbox project scarlett

Dobly Atmos – we really hope we get it. Right now the Xbox One baits the PS4 in the audio department. The Xbox is already rocking both Dolby Atmos and DTS:X audio for gaming and 4K Blu-ray playback but Cerny has promised that the PS5 will be the “Gold Standard” in audio. Early reports are stating that we will see a redesigned 3D audio engine to deliver a more immersive experience and better again you won’t require any new hardware.

We hope there will be Dolby Atmos support for movie and gaming content from the offset, sure you will need a proper speaker setup and AV receiver to really maximise this but if you’re a gamer or a movie lover then this small outlay will be worth your time.

PSVR compatibility

So the comments from Mark Cerny points towards VR being apart of the console from the get-go. Now he hasn’t mentioned whether that will mean we will get a PlayStation VR 2, if the current VR will work or will the kit be built in as a standard. In my humble opinion, I reckon it will be a PSVR2 kit as the current version has a weaker resolution than any of the comparable systems on the market, namely the Vive and Oculus Rift.

Another rumour in the mill is that Sony may be looking at some 3D hologram accessory for multiplayer games. This would work by using an eye tracker with a light emitter to project an image giving the impression of a hologram floating in mid-air. Honestly, I reckon that’s a rumour but would love to be proved wrong.

The PS5 Console

I know we’ve gotten this far and still haven’t mentioned the most important part – the actual console. Anyway back in August a patent was registered as a Sony electronic device by the companies technical director. This little piece of paper was leaked to the internet and the rendered images we have been seeing thus far are very similar to the sketch that accompanied said patent. While the console will probably be tweaked a fair bit between now and then it’s definitely interesting to see what’s potentially in store:

Image result for sony playstation 5

It’s a big change that’s for sure and if I was to bet that U shape on the top (if it stays of course) will become the docking station for the controls instead of an area for fans. But that’s just me guessing. Interestingly we can see what looks to be five USB ports at the front for headphones, controllers, hard drives and other accessories. Other than that we have very little else to go off but it’s a funky shape if nothing else. Hit us up if you have ideas of your own.

There will be a more environmentally friendly element to the PS5 with a new energy saving mode which will go through less power than the PS4, what they are saying is if this feature was used by 1million users it would reduce electricity consumption equal to that of 1000 houses.

Updated Dualshock 5 Controllers

Image result for ps5 controller

A new console can’t come to market without a brand new controller. The PS5 is no different and Sony has already confirmed that the Dualshock 5’s will come with some nice new features. Haptic feedback is gone in favour of a new “rumble” system that is set to give more realistic feedback and we will be getting something else called adaptive triggers that will be driven by programmable resistance within the trigger buttons.

Some rumours have suggested that the new controller will contain a touchscreen…for what I don’t know. Some are saying could be in place of the central pad and would be used for controlling bits and pieces while others say it could be used for your smartphone notifications (which I hope is a lie)

Automatic charging over Wi-Fi has been discussed by fans as a way of powering such a controller and, while that sounds interesting, that’s going to cost cash moneys.

PS5 Pricing

Speaking of pricing, we haven’t a notion right now but if any of the other consoles are anything to go buy then €500 will be the maximum price. Sony in the past have stated that they will always try to make their consoles as accessible as possible, so over pricing could be a problem. If we look back on previous models the PS1 & 2 launched for about €300, the PS3 & 4 rocked up about €400 at launch. With this in mind, it would be a surprise to see Sony charging any more, after all, they are in a volume game.

That’s all for now, we will have more information in the coming months but for now, all we can do is piece together what we know, what’s rumoured and a few of our own guesses. What do you think we are going to get from the new PS5? Hit us up.

FIFA 20 Review: Is it really as bad as the early reports?

Every year we play it and every year people say the same thing, FIFA 2020 is just FIFA 19 with a new hat. We love smartphones and often they might be quite similar but its the subtle nuances that set them apart. The same can be said for FIFA 20. Sure it’s a bit pricey and As you might expect, FIFA 20 doesn’t rewrite the rules but the addition of a completely new mode adds some much-needed excitement to the series.

Back to the Streets

We loved The Journey from games gone by but this year we get the renaissance of FIFA Street in the form of Volta. Volta is the biggest change to the game this year hence why we are starting our review here. If you’ve ever played FIFA Street, Volta is like a grown up version of the same game. Gone are the mad tricks and flicks, power boosts and other mad shite to be replaced with over-the-top celebrations, outrageous flicks and tricks, and quick matches. To be fair playing a 3 on 3 game on top of a car park in Tokyo is a wonderful change of direction to your typical 11 a side game of FIFA.

I liked the environments as I said they are different and boy do they pop. Volta isn’t just nice locations, it can be played in a few different game modes from kick-off to the Volta Season Mode. The season mode lets you create your own player and go through their preset story full of cut scenes. What i’ll say about it is simple, the story is ridiculous, the cut scenes go on way too long and it’s a bit meh but get through all that and the game play itself is some craic.

Speaking of the game play, tricks are difficult to get to grips with but once you figure it out you’ll enjoy making either the computer or friends look stupid. Especially when you can be that guy to play a wall pass just to wind them up. You won’t spend the majority of your time on FIFA 20 playing Volta. It’s a super flashy add on this year but realistically FIFA 20 is all about the actual football.

Overall Gameplay

First things first, when you login to FIFA 20 for the first time you’ll be forgiven for thinking you leeft your FIFA 19 CD in the drive the interface looks that similar. Everything on the face of the game feels like a copy and paste job with opening game scenes and commentary almost a carbon copy from last year, it’s not until a ball is kicked you get to feel the subtle changes.

Image result for fifa 20 gameplay

Remember in previous years when you’d be darting down the wing with lets say Mpabbe but suddenly the slowest full back in the world would be able to catch you? yeah that’s gone for good. The lads in EA took feedback to hear and you need to be aware of slower defends and manavouer yourself accordingly to defend. Players like Salah and Adama Traore (seriously wow) feel every bit as fast as they should be and if you’re unlucky enough to be playing a mate with one of these speed demons without the appropriate defensive tweaks, prepare for smashed controllers. Actually the same can be said for the bigger more powerful players like Zlatan, Maguire or Akinfenwa really feel like big strong units.

Overall FIFA 20 made a few tweaks and changes that really make small difference without completely overhauling the game. The speed is the first one, picking the top teams feels like you’ve ramped the speed settings to the max while a one star team can feel like a watching boys playing in custard. EA also claim to have upgraded ball physics but from what I can tell so far, I’m not buying it so maybe it’s so subtle I don’t notice it or their talking out their hoop. We’ll let you decide on that one.

Another change you can feel though is the ball weighting and by that I mean when you sweep that delicious cross field ball to your pacey winger in games gone past would have just gone out of play whereas now it feels more realistic. For now anyway. I reckon this is one feature they will tone down in the future because perfecting that pass can literally be unstoppable. Plus we all know FIFA comes unfinished at this stage so the game we play on release is normally different by the new year.

Apart from that everything else is FIFA 19 with a new hat…until you look at set pieces.

Set Piece Dynamics

Image result for fifa 20 gameplay

Honestly while I still can’t take a free or peno I’m delighted they finally did something about their god awful set piece system. In FIFA 20 free-kicks are very different and they almost feel like a mini-game in-game in their own right. Looking at the image above you’d think right picked the spot and the shot type I want and that’s that right? Wrong. There’s a few variables that actually differ from player to player and free to free. Take into account things like wind, curl and who is the taker and it really does make a difference. After a bit of practise I reckon hitting the target will be more manageable than last year but those who find that sweet spot can become an online Juninho….For those of you too young to remember that glorious deadball specialist just watch the below.

 

Career & Ultimate Team Modes

Glorious stuff, anyway back to business, Ultimate Team & Career Mode. Does FIFA 20 actually care about the career mode players or have they doubled down on the daily profits on Ultimate Team. Well put it like this we’ve all seen the videos on social media with players receiving their Ultimate Team Card and with that kind of marketing career mode just feels like a a week old banana. Like it’s there, you can have it but the love isn’t there.

Maybe that’s a harsh description but all the good stuff is the same as last year:

  • Big Leagues are licensed and branded
  • European competitions from the start
  • Nice commentary
  • Simple navigation

You can play in a selection of pre-season tournaments to get your team up to scratch, plus there’s a couple of training options if you want to try to boost the stats of some of your players. Player and Team Morale becomes a little more important this year signified by a red sad face shows a player’s morale is poor, while a smiley green face represents they’re happy. This is a simple dynamic that doesn’t really add anything to the game because those that won’t be happy are exactly the players you want to sell in the next window.

Image result for fifa 20 manager cutscene

You manage the morale in things like post match interviews where you answer questions with an obvious right answer to improve or decrease player moral. Honestly these cut scenes that play out when you’re negotiating either to buy a player or give them a new contract are pointless. Your avatar has no voice, he sits and nods while the game slowly reels of your responses. Pointless and shouldn’t have been included, get rid of these and give us something like if this then that tactics or creating my own set piece routines any day.

Of course, Ultimate Team is back for another season. The biggest improvements here appears to be many more iconic players to build into your team, season objectives and deeper customization options. If you’re a FUT veteran then you’ll likely dive straight in here without even taking a second glance at the other modes. There’s not much here for those who weren’t convinced before, though because EA are happy to sit back and watch the money roll in.

FIFA 20 The Goosed Verdict

I may have had a moment on our recent podcast with The Sun’s Gaming/Technology Journo Vinny Fanneran.

Having taken a step back for a week or so to delve into the depths of the game I have slightly changed my tune. I still feel like this game doesn’t feel fully finished with updates waiting on lineups, bugs in the Career Mode and a general feel that it’s FIFA 19 with a new hat. Buuuuut FIFA 20 does have an awful lot going for it. The slight changes to player movement and ball physics are a welcome addition and the sheer volume of gaming option in Kick-Off Mode means that it’s still the absolute best game to play when you’ve a few mates over.

While we may have been disappointed to see the end of the enjoyable Journey Mode, the new street football ball game Volta offers enough light-hearted fun for couch co-op and some clever, nuanced game play tweaks that coax out a more fair and rewarding game of soccer. Probably enough to warrant a full game in it’s own right ah la FIFA Street from back in the day. Look it’s not perfect but FIFA 20 picks up right where FIFA 19 left off as a glossy, slick title ideal for playing with the lads for a few pick up games.

Google Launches Website With Data to Support Dublin Climate Action Plan

google dublin city council

The environment is a bit of a hot topic right now. If it wasn’t so serious, I’d smugly reflect on that pun for another few minutes. It’s hard to know if any government-led plan will help tip the scales towards us all doing this planet some good for a change, but the most important thing we need to hold them to account is data. We need to know what the score is so we can know who’s winning. Today, Google launched its Environmental Insights Explorer (EIE) website after partnering with Dublin City Council’s Smart City program and UCD.

How Bad is the Air in Dublin?

Dublin City Council is aiming to be a leader when it comes to climate action and is seeking to improve air quality within the nation’s capital. I’m sure that raises the eyebrows of many, including at least one eyebrow myself, considering the hardship cyclists and electric scooters go through with little support, but you could argue that’s a problem higher up the chain.

Anyway, as I said, if change is to happen, we need to know the score. Google’s new website lets us check in on that.

Google’s EIE website for Dublin shows us that the city is generating a total of 2,130,000 tCO2e per year. That stands for metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent per year. That figure is arrived at by looking at the buildings which generate greenhouse gas emissions from direct combustion of fossil fuels (like for heating, and indirectly by the electricity the residents and equipment consume.

When it comes to transport, the city generates 1,310,000 tCO2e per year. This figure not only includes the likes of petrol and diesel engines but the electricity required to charge electric cars.

Recommendations: Going A Step Further

In the hope that common sense can be achieved by Google telling Dublin City Council what is needed, they’ve done just that. The EIE website also outlines suggestions which will directly impact the big air quality numbers. For example, if we want to reduce transportation emissions, Dublin City Council should look to promote electric vehicles, in particular, expanding the city’s charging infrastructure. I can’t help but feel it’s a shame this comes a day after the budget which announced a paltry €3 million for electric vehicle infrastructure in transport while also abolishing the electric car grant.

Google’s suggestions also include a car-free downtown. I’m not sure where that would be, but College Green would surely make sense? The plan here would be to eliminate cars from high-density districts while also creating car-free pedestrian zones, limiting vehicles on certain days of the week and implementing congestion pricing. This are rules applied in many big German cities.

Dublin, I’m sorry, but we’ve all got to stop worshipping the car.

Solar Panel Potential

Why wouldn’t we just do this? It’s not like it’s the White House solar panel debacle!

Google is spelling out what we need to do to help improve the air in Dublin, so now you can start asking what’s actually been done about it. It’s kind of like when you’re wondering why you’re never losing weight but then you realise it’s because you finally wear a FitBit and realise it’s down to the fact you do 2,000 steps per day! The data matters.

If you want to gain a better understanding of what’s going on here with the data, get on over to Google’s EIE website and have a play yourself. It’s publically available and is crammed with interesting bits of data. According to Google, Dublin City roofs can help us avoid generating 206,000 tCO2e per year. Empty space that just needs a few panels lads. Couldn’t be simpler. 

 

Meater: Possibly the World’s Best Smart Meat Thermometer

meater best smart thermometer

I enjoy cooking. I enjoy eating even more. I also love tech, as you could probably guess by the fact I created Goosed.ie all those years ago. When all of these things come together, I get really excited. At IFA Berlin this year, I met the guys from Meater and I’ve just had a chance to get into the kitchen and test out what could be the world’s best smart thermometer.

What is Meater?

Meater is a wireless temperature probe which takes the guesswork out of cooking meat. I tested out the Meater+ model which promises improved connectivity when monitoring your meat while cooking. For this test, I cooked a lovely spatchcock Piri-Piri chicken.

Why have a cooking probe?

I’m fairly confident in my cooking abilities, but even so, I sometimes overcook food because I’m being overly cautious. For others, cooking can be a nightmare because they’re afraid of undercooking. Cooking with a temperature probe removes the guesswork and ensures that your meat is not just cooked thoroughly and safely, but also cooked to perfection.

How does Meater work?

The Meater is a has a surprisingly sharp pointed end which you can push into the meat before you cook it. The pointed end measures the internal temperature of the meat that you’re cooking. The exposed part of the probe measures ambient temperature.

Because I was testing the Meater+, the prob actually speaks to the stylish charging dock. The benefit here is that extended range you get versus the original Meater which needs the phone to be closer to the probe itself. I was roasting a chicken which meant I could take a seat and let the oven do the work, monitoring the Meater+ probe from afar.

Monitoring like this was made possible by the Meater app. The Meater app and my Amazon Alexa too would you believe. More on that later.

Cooking with Meater

First of all, you open the Meater app, available for iOS and Google Play. Once you’re up and running, you tell the app what you’re cooking and how you like it. Typically, this is handier for steaks as you really shouldn’t be cooking a chicken or many other types of meat medium-rare.

With my spatchcock chicken placed onto a roasting dish, the next step was to push the Meater probe into the meat. It’s important you push it in right up to the line on the probe, as this ensures the probe doesn’t get damaged in the heat.

I will admit that popping a gadget into the oven feels totally weird, but trust the process.

With your Meater in place, it’s time to put your bird in the oven. Now, you can sit back and let your oven do the work. Through the app, you can check the internal temperature of the meat you’re cooking, the ambient temperature (in this case the heat in the oven) and the target temperature for your cook.

When the meat is ready, the app will send you a notification. One thing I always forget about is letting the meat rest. I’m usually too hungry for that to be honest. Again, I trusted the process. The data coming from the probe was enlightening. With the chicken out, resting on the counter, the internal temperature continued to rise. The chicken continued to cook for a few minutes after it left the oven. This is why meat is so easy to overcook and ruin.

Once the resting period is complete, you’ll receive a notification that it’s time to tuck in;.

Can you trust Meater enough to cook with it?

This is a resounding yes. Meater might event take the mantel of my favourite kitchen gadget, slipping in ahead of Drop. Setting the system up really couldn’t be easier. Considering there’s a fair chance you’re not cooking with a smart thermometer at all, I would fully recommend the Meater. From my own test, I could see, by comparing the oven and ambient temperatures, that the probe was accurately measuring the heat in the oven.

Meater also totally changed my understanding of how the meat cooks. Seeing the internal temperature slowly rise, reaching a peak just in time for the app to tell me the chicken was ready kind of blew my mind. Maybe everyone knows some of this stuff, but it was just something I’d never really thought about before. I had a fair idea that meat continued to cook when leaving the oven, but seeing the temperature continue to rise emphasised how important that resting phase is.

Other bits

That would have been enough to sell me on this smart meat thermometer, but there’s more. If you have a spare smartphone lying around, you can connect this to your Meater and monitor the temperature from anywhere in the world. Hardly handy for an Irish BBQ while you sit in Oz, but if you did have to pop to the shop while there’s a roast on, you’d find out if you had to hurry home fairly quick.

The Meater team has also developed an Alexa Skill. This means you can simply ask your smart assistant to check your cook and it will read out the key stats for your dinner.

Meater: The Verdict

When I saw Meater, I just knew it was a great idea. In fact, days before I met the team at IFA I had wondered why this didn’t exist. Not only does it exist, the guys at Meater have created a truly brilliant kitchen gadget. It’s not just about safety either. It’s about making sure that meat you invested in is cooked to perfection so you can really enjoy it.

Meater comes in a couple of models. The base model Meater will do pretty much everything I’ve mentioned here. What you lose out on is a little range. If I had to pull the Meater+ up on anything it’s that the range still isn’t great as it cut out a few times and needed me to move the charging base into a better position a few times. With that in mind, I can only imagine that the base Meater really is best for frying where you have the phone very close to the probe.

Check out the Goosed.ie Instagram story for Meater.

Buy Meater

Meater is available from their website, starting at €89 for the base Meater. I would recommend stretching a small bit and picking up the Meater+ with extended range for €109. If you prefer, you can also buy Meater on Amazon.co.uk.

 

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