Nov 21, 2012

My Nexus and Google Play bad experience

Lately I have been reading much criticism about how Google managed their Nexus 4 release and I want to add up to this movement. Many are criticizing how they managed their over purchases delaying the deliveries and the orders in limbo, my case is just one of the many more who could not order a Nexus 4, I put in the position of the ones who could place an order and you may be frustrated but, and I think I can speak for many of us, we are desperate.

As a Spain resident, our Google Play is much less taken account for, in comparison to the US store, as many said the Nexus 4 was unavailable to buy at much 15 minutes later, as I was working I could not even try to order it. For two big companies like Google and LG this is pathetic, we know the hype was high but this situation is ridiculous. I am starting to get mad at Google, and to add it all up, there’s the new version of the Nexus 7, in a couple of months later, remember that the Nexus was not available in Spain until the end of August, but the customers who got these first version, like me, can not be refunded, why? For just 1 month of use? Remember that the late orders of the 16GB version got a refund of the price difference. The Google Store is getting overwhelmed, I thought Google was more careful with their customers, Apple style, but these days I am seeing that they are like the others, no difference here.

If you are a big company and you are not ready for massive entry on physical selling you should not do it, the only thing you will get is worst image and mad clients. And I really like the Nexus 4 but my pride got hurt badly.
This post was published first at Put in your basket, 6:53 PM

Oct 10, 2012

Funda Belkin Folio Basic para Kindle (BEF8N670/F8N670CWC00)

Después de un tiempo tras comprar un Kindle, necesitaba una funda decente para llevarlo de aquí para allá. Las fundas de amazon son las más chulas pero el precio que tienen echan para atrás, tanto que por ejemplo una amiga se fabricó una funda con un plástico protector de embalaje, que bueno qué os voy a contar, ya os podéis imaginar que quedaba un poco cutre la verdad.

Para no llegar a dicho nivel de bricolaje, estuve mirando que opciones más baratas había. Tenemos por una parte las fundas de otras marcas, principalmente de origen asiático que podemos encontrar en diferentes webs, que no encontraba especialmente atractivas, imitaciones bastante conseguidas en ebay a buenos precios, pero por ser en ebay no me inspiró especial confianza; y fundas de marcas más o menos conocidas que hacen complementos de diferentes rangos, como puede ser Belkin.

Vi esta funda, la Belkin Folio, en una web a unos 10€, era sencilla y no estaba hecha en esa típica imitación de piel, por lo que me gustó y la empecé a buscar. Siguiendo estas recomendaciones para comprar desde España en amazon y buscando fundas para Kindle de Belkin, la encontré por un precio más que interesante, menos de 7€.

grafico del precio del belkin folioActualización: Veo que el precio ha subido desde que la compré en, seguramente mucha gente encontró el chollo y amazon en sus compensaciones de precio lo ha ido subiendo poco a poco, aquí tenéis un gráfico con la evolución del precio en estos pasados meses. Una buena opción es que uséis nuestra nueva aplicación para windows (Wishlist Manager) para hacer un seguimiento del precio y ver su evolución.

Actualización (11/01/2013): Buscando en veo por casualidad que está a un precio más que bueno (£2,5), mejor que el que encontré yo, aunque sea de un vendedor tercero, veo que está incluido en el Free Super Saver Delivery, recordad que si llenáis el pedido hasta unas £25 el envío es gratuito a España.

Actualización (28/04/2013): Repasando alguno de los posts para completar algo de información veo que no había incluido ninguna foto, aquí tenéis un par hechas hace un rato.

Si seguís buscando fundas para vuestro Kindle os recomendamos que utilicéis #WhereToBuy, una herramienta que os permite ahorrar tiempo y dinero en vuestras compras online, simplemente encontrando las mejores ofertas en las mejores tiendas online.

Si este post os ha sido útil, compartidlo en las redes socialesMuchas gracias!

This post was published first at Put in your basket, 6:40 PM

Sep 13, 2012

[Closed] Get a rebate or indirect discount buying at amazon, just buying with my associate links

Update 03/13/2013: I closed this promotion as not many people wanted to use this, the users that I contacted will receive their "rebate" when amazon pays me, in a couple of months tops, thanks to all participants.


So you want a discount or rebate buying at amazon, if you have arrived to my blog probably you have already tried other options like coupons, special offers, etc. and as I already tried I know that the vast majority of the coupons found on forums or specialized websites do not work. Only the ones offered by amazon will work.

What can I offer you?

As an amazon affiliate I get around a 5% of every purchase done through my links, my blog does not get many visits and less many purchases, but with some friends been doing a share of the revenue, they buy through my links and I give them a part of the revenue generated by their purchases. I thought that this method can be interesting to many people wanting to buy something at amazon so I want to use it in my blog, so anyone can get benefit from it. For a detailed affiliate program detail of payments or share you can check it on this website.

What’s in it for me?

Of course, a share of every purchase, I will give you a 3.5% rebate on your buying made through my links. The other 1.5% would be a small payment for my time on managing the payments, check orders, etc.

What should you do to get your rebate?

Step 1. Add the item to your basket my links

Just add the item to your basket through these links, depending on the country:
Right now, we will try to use it with these countries, if anyone asks I may add other countries.

If you look at the links, they have a tag on them that tells amazon that you are buying through my website, if you access through other sites you may see them too, you can also add the tag manually to your address bar when you are checking the item to buy, just add “&tag=tcx-20”, if you are buying at and they will know you are coming from my site, remember to add the item to your basket when you are accessing with the tag, else if amazon will not count your order as made through my site.

Step 2. Place the order of the items on your basket

Place the order and pay, remember that there is a limit of time between adding the items to buy in your basket and placing the order to count the order as made through my links, so you should remove the items from the basket and add them again if many days have passed.

Step 3. Reclaim your payment

Once your order has been received and you are sure of not returning anything, you can contact me through my Google plus profile, there's an option to send me an email. Please, send me your order number with the list of items, or any information where I can check the veracity of the order, and a Paypal account, so I can transfer the payment. At the end of month when amazon pays me I will transfer the 70% of the revenue that amazon pays me of your order to your Paypal account.


What guarantees? None. If amazon does not pay me you will not get the rebate or if the order does not appear in my sell list, of course, you will not get anything and also if you return your item. I will be wary of any suspicious behavior so I don’t get scammed. Remember, these is just a way to share the benefit of buying through associate by my good will, if you can not trust me, you will not get your rebate. Sorry.

And most important, if amazon warns me about being illegal I will stop ASAP, so be fast.
This post was published first at Put in your basket, 8:41 PM

Sep 9, 2012

Nokia smartphones with Windows Phone 8: It will really be a change or a step close to the edge?

The presentation
nokia presentation

Stephen Elop, CEO of Nokia, stated that a change was coming, this last Wednesday 5 of September on the presentation of their new generation of smartphones. The word “switch”, long associated with Apple, announce its latest phone star, the Lumia 920, the flagship of the new phone operating system of Microsoft, the Windows Phone 8. So attached are the Finnish manufacturer and the U.S. software giant in the bid for a way to open a small gap for a third player, between iOS (Apple) and Android (Google), the two dominant systems between smartphones.

In informal clothing, Steve Jobs style, Elop introduced the Lumia 920 as the first in a range of smartphones with Pure View technology, which provides a very sharp pictures with an amazing ability to get quality snapshots in poor light. According to Nokia, the Lumia 920 is capable of processing up to five times more light than the competition smartphones without using flash and this camera of 8.7 megapixels will be its main asset. For now, no pricing or release dates, but it will be this fall.

Photography, different operating system, intuitive and fluid operating system, and phone charging by induction technology (just release the phone on the surface of the charger) are some of the main features of the Lumia. The 920 has a screen of 4.5 inches with a resolution of 1,280 x 768 pixels and a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor dual core. With 32 GB memory, Microsoft will give away extra 7GB cloud storage from Skydrive.

Nokia has added to its phone much commonly used software applications, such as mapping and navigation. Among the new features is the ability to delete an intruder in a photograph, or City Lens, an augmented reality application that lets you view the display information on establishments such as restaurants and shops pointing towards the camera. Nokia ’s new phone will be available in yellow, red, gray, black and white. With this phone also was presented a smaller in size and performance phone, the Lumia 820.

For Nokia and Microsoft, the Lumia 920 represents a great opportunity to gain a foothold in a market that both lost by reacting late to the arrival of the iPhone in 2007, so both emphasize that their applications are growing and already are 100,000 available, less than one-sixth of what are available for the two major platforms.

The controversy: The fake video

During the press event Nokia made available some promotional materials wherein there was a video showcasing PureView’s main feature, optical image stabilization (OIS), but, it turns out these demos were faked. In the video was a reflection that revealed the footage wasn’t shot on a Lumia 920, but a regular camera inside a white van. After the controversy Nokia has issued an official apology.

Conclusions and Comparison with other phones dillute the product

Investors do not seem too excited, the new range of phones has continued to doubt the capacity of markets about Nokia, showing no groundbreaking gadgets, the stock price went down a 15%, we’ll see if it happens the same with the presentation of the iPhone.

We can agree that this phone is a big step ahead compared to the last Nokia Windows Phone 7 generation, but if we compare it with the new Samsung Windows Phone 8 phone we see that the Nokia flagship it’s nothing special, none of its new specs are really useful to a smartphone user, and probably a smartphone power user would get the Samsung one, as a some of its specs are better and those are really important for portability, like battery or weight. Of course, there is no point in compare it with a beast like the Samsung Galaxy S3, we should wait a few days for the iPhone presentation and we will see if the Nokia-Microsoft alliance has been a great error and will sink them even deeper in their join venture.

Thanks for reading!
This post was published first at Put in your basket, 10:20 AM

Aug 4, 2012

Summer of sports: something is moving on the sports department at amazon, should I get the Camelbak Octane?

I'm tracking many items at the amazon sites, and today there are many items getting lowering prices on the sports department in all of the amazon locales, mostly uk, probably due to their summer sport campaign. More than 100 have dropped price lower than my best track price.

Remember that if you are from europe you will get a free delivery for amazon items if you spend at least 25 pounds, here you can check for your country, maybe not the best time due to the exchange pound-euro is high, but if the offer is good enough is always a good time. I reckon that you should always check for a free delivery buying online, it gets you the oportunity to buy in small amounts, as you tend to group as many items as possible to minimize the delivery expenses for item. So,'s free delivery is your best bet here.

I am searching for some equipment for my mountain bike routes, I want a new helmet and a Camelbak hydration pack, with a waist strap or the other option is a good backpack and a Camelbak reservoir, as it seems those are the best. I have yet to decide on the helment, the ones I like I found them a little expensive, but for good security it pays. For the hydration pack I found those a little expensive too, but in other sites those are even more expensive and if you add it the delivery cost it raises too much. I love the Camelbak Octane, what you think?

Here you can check some interesting items that got my attention due to their price drop, but yet has to decide what to buy because of the great number of items

Woww! So many items to check, when I get any of them I post a review, there are many on the way, but the lack of time as always....sorry guys
This post was published first at Put in your basket, 3:00 AM

Aug 2, 2012

Ofertas en hogar: cubo de la basura Hailo, tostadora Bosch y regleta Belkin Surgemaster

Os dejo unas cuantas cosas interesantes para mejorar vuestra casa, primero, un cubo de la basura, qué mejor que poner un poco de orden en casa y qué mejor que empezar por los residuos, 2 comparimentos, residuos y orgánica.
Como me gustan las tostadoras, ésta la quiero regalar a mis padres, siempre se quejan que tienen que tostar el pan de "payés" 2 veces, primero por un lado y luego por el otro, nada mejor que una tostadora para rebanadas grandes y con un calentador de bollos, ideal para calentar los croissants.
Una pila de petaca para el despertador, maldito, estoy harto de ponerlo en hora cada vez que se va la luz... esto de vivir en un pueblo a veces también tiene sus cosas malas.
Una regleta nueva, me encantan los productos Belkin, tienen algo especial, a ver si así consigo poner un poco de orden detrás del ordenador.

Recordad que a parte de comprar a partir de nuestros enlaces de o utilizar Wishlist Manager.

This post was published first at Put in your basket, 8:06 PM

Best all-time movies. 2012 edition

Vertigo by Alfred Hitchcock has been named "best all-time film" beating Citizen Kane by Orson Welles, according to the latest survey by the magazine Sight and Sound Festival of British Film (BFI). This specialized publication conducts such surveys every ten years and the film directed by Welles had occupied the top spot on the list of the top 50 films over the past five decades. In the last survey, the experts placed in first position Vertigo, the thriller directed by the British director in 1958, surpassing by 34 votes to Citizen Kane, and not included in the list any film shot in the last decade. Those experts in films, a total of 846 distributors, critics, academics and writers, were asked to rate the work according to their importance in film history, their findings aesthetic or the impact it had every film on a personal level in based on their own vision of cinema.

With a cast that includes actors like James Stewart and Kim Novak, Vertigo is about a retired police officer, Scotty Ferguson, who is afraid of heights. In the latest survey the magazine conducted a decade ago, the Hitchcock movie, the British director himself referred to as his "most personal film," had been only five votes to Citizen Kane (1941). Of these two movies

I loved Vertigo and I love that it got the title of the best movie. As with Welles's film, Vertigo received mixed reviews when it opened but has gained prestige over time. In the classification of BFI, Yasujiro Ozu's film Tokyo Story (1953) went from fifth to third place, while La Regie du Jeu (1939) by Jean Renoir lost a position until the fourth.

Among the top ten films were two new entries: Man With a Movie Camera (1929) by Dziga Vertov, at number eight, and The Passion Of Joan Of Arc (1927) by Carl Theodor Dreyer, in ninth position. Is surprising how many movies of before the 30' are in the top ten, and not even one of beyond the 70'. Probably many of us have not seen many of these movies even many of us see a lot of movies, in my case at least one for very 3-4 days, but today's mindset probably is not prepared for this kind of old good movies, maybe all these critics are stuck in time. Of the selected works, the most recent was 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) by Stanley Kubrick, in sixth place.

Thanks for reading!
This post was published first at Put in your basket, 10:19 AM

Jul 30, 2012

Garmin Edge 500 vs Garmin Forerunner 310XT: Cuál debo escoger?

Para mis salidas en bicicleta hace tiempo que tenía pensado comprar un GPS y después de semanas informándome sobre las posibles opciones, preguntando en foros y buscando información, me decidí por coger uno específico para bicicleta, ya que es mi deporte principal, el elegido fue el Garmin Edge 500 Bundle, a un precio que rondaba los 200€, el pack completo, con sensor de cadencia y un monitor cardíaco.

La mejor utilidad de tener un GPS es qu puedes guardar tus rutas por la montaña sin tener que gastar la batería del móvil. Otra opción interesante es el nuevo modelo Edge 510, que incorpora novedades principalmente en sus capacidades de conectividad. Si no lo tenéis claro aquí tenéis una comparativa entre entre el Edge 500 y el Edge 510. Ahora que el nuevo modelo ya ha salido si podéis conseguir el Edge 500 por menos de 180€ os lo recomiendo, los cambios que han realizado en el Edge 510 para mí no son demasiado importantes como comento en este post y sobretodo el incremento de precio es significativo.

Me planteé la opción del Garmin Forerunner 310XT que lleva un monitor de ritmo cardíaco pero la falta del sensor de cadencia y que sea un poco más caro me ha hecho decantarme por el Garmin Edge 500 (modelo 010-00829-01), pero si vuestro deporte es el triatlón o os gusta practicar un poco de todo, sobretodo correr y preferís el formato reloj es vuestra mejor opción.

Y por último y no menos importante un producto importante para el cuidado de vuestra bicicleta, si queréis mantenerla limpia y evitar el polvo y barro usad un poco de "cera dura" para mantenerla como el primer día, así evitaremos que la suciedad quede pegada. Aquí tenéis un bote de cera que compré hace un tiempo, aunque comprado en Inglaterra, debido al envío gratuito a España tenemos un buen producto sin movernos de casa.

Recordad que a parte de comprar a partir de nuestros enlaces de o utilizar Wishlist Manager.

This post was published first at Put in your basket, 10:47 PM

Jul 15, 2012

My favourite bought items at

  • Rucksack Gelert Nebula 25lt.A modest brand but a really good product, professional and comfortable, perfect for mountain biking or hiking.
    • Dimensions: W28 x D14 x H44 cm
    • Features: Padded Cool Air Design back system
    • Lightweight padded shoulder straps
    • Sliding chest strap
    • Full winged hip belt with zippered pockets
    • Side mesh pockets
    • Front map pocket
    • Ice axe / walking pole holders
    • Side compression straps
    • Hydration compatible
    • Material: 600D Polyester & 600D Diamond Polyester Ripstop
    • Weight: 0.73kg

  • Hair Clipper Remington HC5030 PerformerProfessional clipper, good performance, with cord but does not get hot with use like many other that use rechargeable batteries. It also can be used with europe plugs.
    • Advanced Steel, self-sharpening blades with pro-groove blade with comfort tips
    • Lube for Life, 0.5 mm precision blade and taper level for cutter length adjustment
    • Corded for constant use with rubber grip panel
    • Nine attachment combs (3-30 mm)
    • Comes with sectioning clips, left and right ear guides, scissors, neck brush, comb, cord holder, cleaning brush and three year guarantee


This post was published first at Put in your basket, 8:11 PM

Las mejores ofertas de la semana en

Productos de primera a unos precios imbatibles, estos són los productos que he pedido esta semana:
Recordad que a parte de comprar a partir de nuestros enlaces de o utilizar Wishlist Manager, también podéis sacar provecho de #WhereToBuy, una web en la que hemos colaborado en su desarrollo, y con ella podremos buscar los mejores precios online.

This post was published first at Put in your basket, 12:35 PM

Jul 10, 2012

Take advantage of the price drop of SSD and upgrade your computer today!

Want to upgrade your computer but can't afford a new one? Or just simply don't want to have working computer getting dusty in a corner? You probably have already heard about SSD on high end laptops like macbooks, but you probably have also heard that they are pricey or at least until now.
First let's introduce the concept of SSD and later talk about its prices.


SSD is an acronym for Solid State Drive, you may have some USB pen drive, you can imagine that SSDs are something like a bigger version. SSDs do not have moving parts, data is stored in microchips, in the other hand, a conventional hard drive uses a mechanical arm that moves and reads or writes the information in the disk. This difference is what makes SSD much faster and more reliable, SSD use NAND-based flash memory, a type of permanent memory that has a data storage integrity for over 200 years and more power efficient and also one of the best features is that SSD consume relatively less power than traditional storage disks, this makes them ideal for laptops.

Additionally SSD have the same format as hard drives so they can be replaced easily with an SSD, normally their size is 2.5", if you have a desktop computer will need a bracket to convert it to 3.5".
However, one of the downside is the short lifetime of the SSD drive in comparison to traditional HDD. One of the ways to increase the lifetime of your SSD drive is to disable unnecessary write access. There are many applications that will do this process easier, such as SSD Fresh.

And one more warning, SSDs don't make noise, it will not give you a warning of something wrong, they just die. Then, you should always have complete image backups of your systems so you should be able to get back in no time, your important data should be replicated, and if you can not have all your data replicated you should select your sensitive data and system images.

Prices of SSDs

After this small introduction it shouldn't be a surprise that an SSD is the best upgrade you can get for your computer and now is a great time to buy one, because the formerly-expensive drives have dropped dramatically in price over the past months this would be the perfect time to buy one. After last year's Thailand floods, prices got stuck for some time, but SSD prices have continued dropping dramatically, many models being 65% cheaper than they were only a few months ago, SSDs have never been more affordable and they can make breathe new life into your computer. If you've been waiting to do a step forward, now is a great time to make the change.

Here you have a graph showing the price evolution of the Crucial CT128M4SSD2 128GB M4 SSD on

My recommendation is to buy a relatively small SSD for your OS and programs that depend much on disk reading, and have a traditional hard disk for store data, then you will not need much space, 128GB will be enough, and your pocket will not hurt much.
This post was published first at Put in your basket, 10:29 PM

Jun 1, 2012

Try the Ubuntu OS on a Galaxy Nexus (GT-I9250) at best price

I received the Samsung Galaxy Nexus about an hour ago. These are my first impressions & I will add to the review as I become more accustomed to the phone.


I've upgraded from another Android phone (the HTC/Google Nexus). All I needed to do was take the SIM out of the old phone, snap the back off the Galaxy Nexus, install the SIM and battery and refit the back cover (a little bit fiddly on first attempt).

Then I plugged it in using the supplied plug adaptor and micro-USB connector and powered it up. After entering wifi network details and the username and password for my Google Apps account, the phone was ready to use.

It immediately began installing the various apps that I had set to AutoUpdate on the old phone and, after a few minutes of that, it told me that there was a firmware update. This took about 3 mins to perform, including a reboot of the phone.


The screen is gorgeous - large, vibrant, and really easy to read. It's much larger than the Nexus One, but it's lighter too. The phone is much faster than my old Google Nexus - apps spring open, and flipping screens / navigating menus is near instantaneous.

One niggle is that the Ice Cream Sandwich version of Android works differently to the previous versions. The app tray is swiped sideways rather than up/down - muscle memory/force of habit means that I've found myself performing the old gestures in this first hour or so. I guess that will fade pretty quickly.

I've taken some stills and video. Both are straightforward to perform, and the picture quality seems good (need to check it on a PC screen) but I seem to have put my finger over the microphone a few times while filming - need to work out the best way to hold it to avoid this in future. I have uploaded some photos to the product page. You can find them under the main product image.

The Gmail app is much nicer than on my old phone. Clearer, faster to use, and the menu options seem to be in a better place than the previous one. Calendar seems to have synched up correctly too, with multiple calendars from my Google apps account showing.

UPDATE: About 2 hours in

I tried out the Portable WiFi Hotspot. It works perfectly - managed to get my iPad 2 connected and accessing the outside world. Also, I've got an integrated Bluetooth hands free system in my car and the Nexus paired perfectly with it.

'Contacts' seems to have been replaced by a 'People' app that pulls together contact info from Gmail, Google+, Twitter & WhatsApp and attempts to consolidate each person's Connections under their contact info. It's possible to tweak this so that you don't end up with everyone you follow in Twitter clogging up your contacts. Noticeably, it doesn't offer to integrate information from your Facebook friends. I'm not sure how useful this is, or indeed if I am correctly understanding what info it is pulling together, but I can see a real danger of your genuine contacts being swamped by the profiles of online acquaintances. Consequently, I've chosen not to view any of my Twitter contacts in the People app.

The auto dimming screen brightness seems too low to me - I'll have to poke around to see if I can tweak it.

Call me a Siri Iriot, but I thought I'd try using the microphone icon to tell the phone to 'Call XXX YYY at home' and the speech recognition worked very quickly to find the correct contact details.

I made a call and the quality was perfect. No volume problems. If you have a picture associated with a contact then it takes up the whole screen background when you're talking. The in=call options (keypad, loudspeaker, hold..) appear at the foot of the screen.

UPDATE: 6 hours in.

I noticed that some of my photos and videos were crystal clear in the background, but not on the subject. The trick is to tap the screen over the item you want to be in focus. [Correction: tapping the screen focuses on a subject in camera mode. Doing the same in camcorder mode captures a still whilst the video is still being recorded. ]

Seek time for autofocus in low light is slow.

UPDATE: 3 days in.

I've got used to the different gestures in Android 4, which is great.

Tinkering around in the settings I found one that disconnects the WiFi connection when the phone is not being actively used - I've selected that as I think it might extend battery life.

Speaking of which, with normal use (more data access than calls for me) the phone has been running for 20h 14m since the last charge and is still showing 34% battery.

UPDATE: 5 days in

Generally I am delighted with the phone but there are some more niggles that are worth knowing about.

1. The phone has crashed twice and frozen once. The crashes were while opening a contact and while using the Facebook app. The freeze was when opening the app tray. I'm not so worried as I'm sure subsequent updates to the FB app and/or system updates will address such instability.

2. [This now fixed, as Flash for ICS is available from Android Market] There is no Flash support as Adobe has yet to compile a version for Android 4. This means that apps like BBC iPlayer, that depend on Flash, don't work. This is frustrating, but Adobe & Google recently announced that Flash and Adobe Air support will be rolled out soon.

3. Some apps are not yet Android 4 compatible. Again - this is something that should be addressed by publishers of popular apps.

UPDATE: 13 Jan 2012

There was an Over The Air update waiting to be installed this morning. It is a bug fix release of the phone operating system. Now running Android 4.0.2

If you have any specific questions, add them as comments to this review and I'll see if I can answer them.

UPDATE: 10 Jan 2013

After reading that Ubuntu is planning to release a smartphone OS, Ubuntu OS, and a few days ago I read that they released a beta version for our Galaxy Nexus. Now, is a good time to get it a low price just to try it. I will check it out soon.

If you have anything to buy at amazon consider doing it through our links. Big Thanks!
This post was published first at Put in your basket, 9:29 PM

Apr 26, 2012

Don't buy DLC, buy GOTY or nothing

This is a message for video games companies, "don’t expect me buying any DLC", I am not a big fan of the hype of new releases, generally in all circumstances, but in video games world we know that companies release games with a very adjusted development dates, so we often see that some new releases lack some stability, or if you prefer they are plagued with bugs due to low testing time.
In this console generation, with the help of online marketplaces, has appeared the, so hated by some, DLC (Downloadable Content), some are free and some of payment, which adds an extra profit for these companies and distributors (owners of marketplaces).

A decade ago there were expansion packs that added extra content, some were even developed by other companies, so the original developers only may get some income by royalties.
There has been much controversy with those DLCs, much of them are unnecessary but some, even being of low quality put a real ending to a game or saga, like Mass Effect. You can say these are "evil" practices and it’s probably true, the real problem is that those DLCs are probably developed at the same time as the game and probably could be in the final release.

We know that companies center their efforts in new releases and not in maintaining released projects as those, even the effort you put in it, will not generate much income. So what’s the main problem? In the end it's the cost associated to customer support.

In the side picture you can see how the DLC would be if it were applied to culture, for example the Mona Lisa, we should have to pay some more to see it completely.

What is a GOTY Edition?

With the DLC boom and also the boom of market segmentation, giving us a variety of editions of game release, from the standard to a collector's edition with some extras, has started appearing the so called GOTY (Game of the year) editions.

These editions are late re-releases of games where they take the original game plus all the patches and all the DLCs that has been released, and, sometimes, and probably this game will have a reduced cost in comparison with new releases. In major games, you could expect a GOTY version for sure, unless the game was not successful enough.

So why not wait for the GOTY edition of this major releases? The answer is simple: the release hype. This hype that Apple executes with mastery, and Google may be trying with its Nexus 4, means that a lot of players will be online for games with online game, but if you wait a year or two for the GOTY version the game probably won't even be able to be played online.

Below we can see a survey of gamers of the reasons why they did not buy DLCs, it surprises me that the main reason is privacy, I would say that my main reasons are that they are expensive due to the low quality of most of them, and most of all that they are trick to juice a few extra bucks from us.

DLC Quest: A parody of how games could end being

Recently I played the indie game DLC Quest, the game parodies to the limit the DLC abuse, it's a simple 2D platformer with a good doses of humor, fun enough for someone critic with this DLC problematic.

The game starts with limited options you can not even go left until you buy an "ingame DLC" to be able to move left, at least you don't have to spend an extra penny, it works with the coins you found on the game.

The game is short as I always defend that they should be, even shorter than I expected, but a nice game to spend a small time, if I remember correctly I even not spend more than an hour playing it, but it was a good time, remember that time is money so we should know beforehand were are we investing our time.

If you think about it, there are more free-to-play games out there and many of them yet do not abuse the playing techniques but we will see how it ends in the incoming years and the next generation of consoles where free-to-play games seem to be a tendency.

In this video you can see a playthrough of the game, if you want to play you better not see it!

Do you feel the same about DLC and GOTY? Did you buy any DLC in the last year? Please leave your opinion in the comments section, thanks!
This post was published first at Put in your basket, 7:04 PM

Apr 12, 2012

Fallout 4: The problems to overcome and what should we expect

[Updated on 2015-07-23]
The last E3 Fallout 4 was announced and with the demo videos won back all the Fallout fan base and emerged as 2015's E3 winner. All the conferences gave us enough material to speculate and even write the first Fallout 4 pre-release review, we are expecting for the 10th of November when Fallout 4 will be released and it can be reserved already.

[Updated on 2014-09-15]
Recently I started playing Fallout New Vegas Ultimate Edition, as a fan of GOTY Editions, and also saw information about Obsidian in problems due to a contract clause with Bethesda that depended on Metacritic score to get an important cash bonus.

I am sorry to hear a company, that was responsible for great games, being in problems for such a nimble decision as to depend on a subjective measure as it is a review. This hub can be seen as a measure of support Obsidian but also I want to be critic with the new Fallout games and also give some ideas to improve the new chapters in the saga.

As I was playing New Vegas I got a sensation similar to when as a teenager was playing Fallout 2, I thought back then that it was the same game as Fallout but the detail was much improved it was a mature game with much more to do than the original Fallout. The problem with Fallout New Vegas is the lack of possibilities to change the Fallout 3 original game-play, as many of the problems that I will expose can be also applied to Fallout 3.

Problems in the last chapters of the saga

Today as a fan of the series I want to enumerate some of the problems I found on the last two episodes, some of them are problems in all RPG, but I will try to center on these two games: Fallout 3 and New Vegas.

1.- Full world: My first impression was it was a great idea, but as the time passed playing found out that these decision involved many problems. The most important is there's a sensation of emptiness of people in the cities and towns. We can compare GTA games which also has an open world and we can see that there is a lot of population. Of course, wastelands should not have much population, but settlements should have a high population density. Also, as we may see in games like GTA, there is a low attention to detail as most of it feels the same as it's impossible to not repeat anything in a large game space, so after playing for some hours you feel the sensation of seeing the same models for people, for buildings, trees or rocks.

2.- NPC: With the people you found on the game I found a major problem, is that it seems that they're expecting only to interact with the player, how can be that in a town store only the player goes in. There's some interaction between NPC but it doesn't feel real at all, the bar at night should be full of people and empty at day, at least some shops close at night. In the previous Fallout games it seemed that NPC had a more elaborated pattern of behavior.

3.- Gameplay: Too centered in combat, sometimes it's inevitable, if I wanted to have a character with low combat skills I will probably be dead really soon.

4.- Gameplay: Also too centered in exploration, addictive at first but insubstantial, you spend most of the time walking through the wasteland exploring areas that are marked on your radar, many of them does not have any quest associated, just are a simple amusement, to made the game more lengthy with more areas to explore but as stated on point 1 the lack of variety makes it repetitive.

5.- Inventory: There is a low realism in inventory even in hardcore mode, where are the items stored? You don't even have a backpack, I am just asking for some realism at least in the game models, at least for weapons, how can a rifle be hanged on your back without anything to hold it. Probably the game engine was not able to support such level of detail.

Ideas for Bethesda

How can Bethesda can solve this problems or at least what I'd like to see:
- Weapon construction and modding to the extreme: We should be able to repair, disassemble and build weapons from scratch, also build melee weapons or use almost anything at hands.

- Detailed zones: Focus in important zones and add fast traveling with random encounters at the style of Fallout 1 & 2, some of you may think that this is a big step back but developers could center their efforts in building a much more detailed areas. Also for fast traveling we should be able to recover our vehicle from Fallout 2 and add motorbikes or other vehicles.

- NPC actions and living cities: This is the easiest to solve, add more NPC which can't be interacted to the cities, also they should add more routines to make those settlements more realistic. This could be easily done if they use the last idea of detailed zone.


I am mostly critic with Fallout 3 and New Vegas, probably because I am a big fan of Fallout 1 & 2, maybe the fact of playing them when I was a teenager made me idolize them as they made me change my perception of a computer role-playing game.

First of all I expect that they build a better engine, that can be expanded with new modules or modify current one, that way if Obsidian has to make another spin-off they can can change mostly as they please. Also they should have in mind that a new generation of consoles is on the way so they may be having in mind to do a game that can use all the capabilities of these new consoles or even to juice at maximum, as some games are already doing, the current generation.

We also should be checking the Project V13 game, a game from the re-founded Black Isle Studios, creator of the original Fallout games and Baldur's Gate, that after a legal dispute with Bethesda, are crowdfunding to re-implement the game without Fallout references and converting what should have been an online RPG in a strategy RPG, in a movement similar to X-COM made last year, which by the way is a great game.

As a final line, It seems that some rumours about a Fallout 4 are starting to rise, like they may be set in the Boston area and that Three Dog may appear again. We should be listening about news this year as the next E3 is approaching.
This post was published first at Put in your basket, 7:01 AM