Select Page
Ian’s top ten best PSVR games of 2018

Ian’s top ten best PSVR games of 2018

Welcome one and all to a very special Christmas episode of Ian’s VR Corner where I’ll be going over my top ten best PSVR games of 2018 . The following list is completely my opinion and it only features games I’ve played, so if I’ve missed out on one of your favourites it may just be that I’ve not had a chance to give it a go. Well, it’s either that or I did play it and I just thought it was a bit poo. Either way, please do share the love for your favourite PSVR games in the comments below and hopefully you can inspire others to try them out too. Check out the video below to watch the video version of this list can see footage of each game featured. If reading is more your thing though, you’ll find my entire top ten list just under that. Subscribe to our YouTube channel 10 – Pixel Ripped 1989 Transporting you back to the years of my youth, Pixel Ripped 1989 puts you in the shiny black school shoes of Nicola – a 9-year-old gaming fanatic from London whose handheld Gear Kid console might as well be surgically attached to her palms. Played from a purely seated position, the movement of your DualShock is mirrored in the virtual world where it becomes a GameBoy-like monochrome handheld. On this cute console you control Dot as she jumps and shoots her way through a series of levels in order to recover the Pixel Stone from the clutches of the evil Cyblin Lord. However, only part of the action takes place on this tiny, monochrome screen and it’s the way the handheld game and Nicola’s VR version of 1989 collide that makes the experience so interesting. Taking you from a busy school room where you must avoid an angry teacher’s glare to furious battles in a retro inspired virtual world, the whole game is jam packed with humour and nostalgic easter eggs. At times the gameplay can be rather basic and the presentation often leaves something to be desired, but the nostalgia factor, the creativity on show and the almost tangible amount of love poured into the project means you can easily forgive the rough edges. Subscribe to our YouTube channel 9 – Déraciné Déraciné, has proven to be a truly marmite game for fans of the Playstation VR. Maybe it’s the slow pacing or the teleport only control scheme that winds people up, or maybe it’s because it’s from the makers of Bloodborne and it’s not really anything like Bloodborne at all. Truth be told I don’t really know because, regardless of all of these criticisms, I really enjoyed it. Despite its slow start there’s a strange, haunting atmosphere to Déraciné that sticks with you long after you’ve completed it. It creeps up on you during the first few chapters, as whimsy gradually gives way to a weird sense of unease. This feeling gently builds in the back of your mind […]

Top 10 albums of 2018 in hip hop and R&B

Top 10 albums of 2018 in hip hop and R&B

Picking the top ten albums of 2018 was a particularly difficult task, even after focusing only on releases that fall under the very broad umbrellas of hip hop and R&B. From Drake to Beyoncé and Jay-Z to Kanye West to Eminem, nearly every major artist released an album this year. (We’re still waiting, Rihanna!) Luckily for me and this assignment at hand, not all of them were good. But here are the ten 2018 albums that were exceptional. 10. “Everything Is Love,” The Carters We always knew that Jay-Z and Beyoncé would eventually release a joint album — or at least we hoped they would — and after Beyoncé’s “Lemonade,” where she aired Jay-Z’s infidelity and forgave him, it seemed like only a matter of time until a collaborative album would emerge. But as epic as “Everything Is Love” was from its conception, the music doesn’t rest on the hype brought by its creators. Jay-Z continues to push writing that is rooted in reflection and vulnerability; Beyoncé’s lush vocals are bolstered by a resilient strength. The album is hardly one note, too — it’s part couple’s therapy session, part anthem, and all-around iconic. 9. “Victory Lap,” Nipsey Hussle If you’re familiar with hip hop outside of the mainstream, then Nipsey Hussle has been on your radar for a long time. But for a wider audience — Grammy voters included — Nipsey’s “Victory Lap” was one hell of an introduction. Bringing his very specific neo-G-funk LA sound to the rest of the country — perhaps even the world — Nipsey expertly blends crisp, narrative-driven raps over a soundscape that is as inventive as it is Californian. The roster of featured artists on “Victory Lap,” illustrative of the album’s range, includes Kendrick Lamar, Marsha Ambrosius and CeeLo Green. The Grammy nomination for Best Rap Album shocked the hip hop world — not because Nipsey Hussle’s not worthy, but because the Recording Academy finally noticed. 8. “Negro Swan,” Blood Orange British singer/songwriter/producer Dev Hynes delivered something extraordinary with his fourth studio album “Negro Swan,” which holds nothing back in the depths of its exploration of mental health for marginalized people. Hynes once described the album as “an honest look at the corners of black existence, and the ongoing anxieties of queer/people of color.” “Negro Swan” brings together an unlikely but powerful list of collaborators: a very vulnerable Puff Daddy, trans writer and activist Janet Mock, and Southern rap legend Project Pat. Demonstrating his ability not just to stretch genres and complicate neat binaries, but also pull unfiltered artistry from the album’s guest stars, Hynes finds his magic inside the in-between. 7. “Astroworld,” Travis Scott “Astroworld” was one of the most anticipated albums to drop this year for rap fans. Travis Scott’s fame and recognition is firmly rooted in his talent, both in making ambitious music and performing what’s widely considered to be the best live rap show. On “Astroworld,” an homage to his hometown Houston, he does not disappoint, delivering imaginative soundscapes […]

Poll: Who Will Be The Next Top-10 Free Agent To Sign?

Poll: Who Will Be The Next Top-10 Free Agent To Sign?

A year ago on this date, only one of the top ten names on MLBTR’s list of the top 50 free agents of the 2017-18 offseason had decided on their team for the upcoming season. That player, in fact, wasn’t technically even a free agent at all — Masahiro Tanaka decided against opting out of his contract with the Yankees, thus avoiding the open market altogether. So, at least in comparison to the uniquely slow pace of last year’s offseason, we’ve already seen quite a bit of action on the free agent front this winter. After today’s news of Wilson Ramos ’ deal with the Mets, seven of the top 25 players in this year’s top 50 ranking have already reached agreements, including three members of the top ten — Patrick Corbin (#3) signed with the Nationals, Nathan Eovaldi (#7) re-signed with the Red Sox, and J.A. Happ (#9) has reportedly agreed to rejoin the Yankees. There have been a lot of rumors swirling around the remaining seven players in our top ten, and it’s anyone guess as to which will be the next to sign. Let’s take a look at where things reportedly stand with each member of this septet…. Bryce Harper : With Harper and agent Scott Boras reportedly looking for nothing less than the biggest contract in baseball history, it would admittedly be surprising to see the former Nationals outfielder come off the board next. Harper, his wife Kayla, and Boras has reportedly held court with multiple teams in private meetings in Las Vegas, though the specific identities of these teams isn’t yet clear . Teams like the Dodgers, White Sox, Phillies, and Cardinals are known to have some level of interest in Harper’s services, while we’ve also heard some teams (like the Nationals and Yankees ) seemingly count themselves out of “Harper’s Bazaar,” as Boras calls it. Speculative fits like the Cubs or Giants could also be out due to budget constraints. Boras has a penchant for waiting until deep into the offseason to find a satisfactory contract for his clients, so I’d guess that we won’t know the identity of Harper’s next team before 2018 is over. Manny Machado : The star infielder is set for in-person meetings with the White Sox, Yankees, Phillies, and at least one more team this week. It’s impossible to mention Machado’s free agency without also mentioning Harper, as the two share many of the same suitors and it seems highly unlikely that one team would be willing to spend big enough to add both to the same roster. Machado’s controversial history of overly-aggressive (or, as some might say, outright dirty) play has been a factor in his market, as was his October interview with The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal about his admitted lack of maximum effort on some plays, and his admission that “ I’m not the type of player that’s going to be ‘Johnny Hustle.’ ” While questions about Machado’s personality are legitimate, especially as he is looking […]

Top 10 stories of 2018: Facebook in freefall, the Khashoggi affair and Brett Kavanaugh

Top 10 stories of 2018: Facebook in freefall, the Khashoggi affair and Brett Kavanaugh

From left to right: Murdered Saudi dissident Jamal Khashoggi, the Yellow Vests protests and Prince Harry and Meghan Markle FACEBOOK AND CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA Whistleblower Christopher Wylie, former director of research at political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica, revealed in March that the firm had harvested personal data from millions of Facebook profiles without consent and used it for political targeting. Facebook then revealed earlier this year that a third-party personality quiz distributed on Facebook gathered profile information on 87 million users worldwide and then sold the data to Cambridge Analytica. The revelations sparked outrage internationally and forced Facebook to announce a series of changes it would be making to restrict access to client data. Many now allege that the actions of Cambridge Analytica and Facebook may have been key to both the election of US President Donald Trump and the Brexit vote in 2016. In the first significant move to punish the company for its actions, the attorney general for Washington, DC, said in December the US capital city had sued Facebook for allegedly misleading users about how it safeguarded their personal data. THE BENALLA AFFAIR French President Emmanuel Macron became engulfed in a PR scandal when his then deputy chief of staff, Alexandre Benalla , 26, was found to have impersonated a policeman and roughed up protesters at a May Day rally. Footage of Benalla beating a young man on the ground and pulling a woman by the hair caused widespread shock, compounded when it was revealed that Macron had known about the incident and did not report Benalla to the authorities. The controversy continued to spiral with Macron’s high-handed handling of the case. The É lysée Palace took weeks to officially fire Benalla, he was suspended without pay for two weeks – but was later found to have been paid – and the case never went to court. AFP file photo | A May Day incident involving Alexandre Benalla (pictured right) has triggered the biggest political scandal of Emmanuel Macron’s presidency. Macron, who critics have compared to the “Sun King” and who has acquired a reputation for arrogant aloofness, took six days to speak out over the affair. He shrugged off the case as “a storm in a teacup” and dared those who criticised his handling of the case to “come and get him” . Meanwhile, the French media continued to reveal details of Benalla’s extensive access to the Élysée, the French parliament and the police. A more serious threat to Macron’s presidency’s came later in the year in the form of the “Yellow Vest” movement. PRINCE HARRY AND MEGHAN MARKLE WEDDING Prince Harry married American actress Meghan Markle at St George’s Chapel in Windsor in a service noted for its modernity and diversity on May 19. Markleentered the chapel alone and was walked partway down the aisle by Prince Charles. American Reverend Michael Curry gave a rousing sermon , referencing Martin Luther King Jr. and African-American spirituals on the power of love, and a Gospel choir sang […]

Top ten visual art shows to see in Paris in 2019

Top ten visual art shows to see in Paris in 2019

Wikimedia | La Belle Ferronier by Leonardo da Vinci, on display in the Louvre in October 2019. 1. Nara’s Buddhas, Paris Musée Guimet , January 23 – March 18, 2019 This exhibition offers a very rare opportunity to see inside the world famous Nara temples from southern Japan and experience the intrinsic spirituality of their Buddhist statues. Nara was the country’s capital from 710 – 784 and is the location of some of Japan’s oldest temples. This will feature a number of statues that have never left Japan before. It will showcase a standing wooden Jizo Bosatsu statue and standing wooden statues of Kongo Rikishi from a collection that has been protected and passed down by Kofukuji Temple. It will also include a dramatic wooden statue of Bodhisattva Kshitigarbha, the luminous guardian of deceased children. 2. Vasarely – The Sharing of Forms, Centre Pompidou , February 6 – May 6, 2019 You will be rubbing your eyes as the paintings move and change shape in front of you at the Centre Pompidou’s first major French retrospective dedicated to Hungarian optical art master Victor Vasarely. Through three hundred works, objects and documents, this exhibition shows how to look at and understand the world of Vasarely. In 1930, a 24-year-old Vasarely moved to Paris and it was here that his progression into abstraction began. But it was in the 1950s that he laid the foundations for what would become Op Art and his own opticokinetic art. This show is a long overdue opportunity to see how Vasarely’s vision developed. 3. Julien Creuzet, Palais de Tokyo , February 20 – May 12, 2019 Carry with you a pocketful of irony when approaching Julien Creuzet’s latest show. “It’s the strangeness, I had to leave for too long, the far away, my home is in my black dreams. It’s the strange, strangled words, in the drowning. I screamed alone in the water, my fever (…) will be the title of Julien Creuzet’s exhibition or not” will apparently be the title of Creuzet’s solo show at the Palais de Tokyo. Or not. Creuzet grew up in Martinique and the tidal movement of the seas, the coming and going, has always played a part in his work. It will be fascinating to see how he fills Palais de Tokyo’s huge halls. 4. “The Courtauld Collection: A Vision for Impressionism”, Fondation Louis Vuitton, February 20 – June 17, 2019 The ephemeral beauty of impressionist art will be celebrated at this landmark exhibition in the Fondation Louis Vuitton. Samuel Courtauld was not just one of the greatest art collectors of the twentieth century, his passion helped to actively pioneer the impressionist movement, encouraging others to engage with it. This exhibition brings together over 100 works that all belonged to Courthald, who was himself of Huguenot origin. Highlights include works by Manet, Cézanne, Gauguin, Renoir, Degas, Modigliani and Van Gogh’s Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear. There will also be ten J.M.W. Turner watercolors that belonged to Samuel Courtauld’s brother Stephen. […]