So, thanks to the lovely people at LoveFilm I was lucky enough to be at the European premiere of Vikings. I’ll simply say this: Having seen the first episode, you should take the first opportunity you get to watch it.
Watch_Dogs is an upcoming open world action adventure game due for release this November on PC, as well as current and next-generation consoles. I’m very much liking the concept and feel of the game so far, and it looks pretty stunning to boot. You can check out the new trailer below, as well as this gameplay footage from last year.
Ah, it’s been a while since my last music pick, and this track forms a fairly relaxing beginning of an end to a stressful week: Salvation, by Gabrielle Aplin. Enjoy.
Now, I generally follow the Battlefield series pretty closely, and became borderline addicted to the multiplayer gameplay the third game offered. With that in mind, today saw the release of in-game footage and trailers for the next instalment in the franchise. Due out this Autumn, Battlefield 4 is to make use of the new Frostbite 3 engine, and will be released on PC, Xbox 360 and PS3. Pretty excited by this so far.
60 Second TV Spot
“Fishing in Baku” Single Player Gameplay Reveal
I’m actually quite looking forward to this album. English Rain is the debut album from Gabrielle Aplin (you probably remember her cover of Power of Love), and is out May 13th.
Skyfall is out on dvd and blu-ray, and just the other day the Oscars gave their own nod to 50 years of Bond. Here, however, is an alternative and brilliantly edited tribute to the last half century courtesy of Kees van Dijkhuizen jr (via @lukedobson).
Tommy Caldwell’s dad introduced him to rock climbing at the age of three and by 16, Tommy was a world champion. For the last five years, Tommy has been attempting to climb a shear 3000-foot rock face that many consider the most difficult free climb ever attempted.
This is just a great story (via Facebook Stories).
A special occasion for Matt and I means one thing – eating out. Last year for our anniversary we went to local Michelin Star restaurant Chapter One and spent £150 of our saved money on some very fine dining with even better cocktails. For my birthday last year we went with my sister (and my dog) to Whitstable in Kent and ate a late lunch in The Continental Hotel, where Matt tried lobster and oysters for the first time. Unfortunately he did in fact turn out to like the latter. Gross.
This year Matt booked a table for us at Hawksmoor. I had only been introduced to Hawksmoor via Tom and his “Hawksmoor At Home” cookery book that he brought along on our week away in Devon. It seemed Hawksmoor isn’t the place you want to take a vegetarian along to – and that’s I think why Matt chose it for my birthday meal.
We left the house at about 4pm as we had decided to stop somewhere for a few drinks before the meal and make a bit of an evening of it. Naturally we ended up at the Oxo Tower, where despite the fact it is still surprisingly hidden, it was packed. Not only was it packed, but it was so with every sort of person you hate. It ranged from young professionals flashing cash to an uninterested piece of “arm candy”, to groups of middle aged women posing at the bar taking photos of themselves with cocktails, to a bunch of loud obnoxious “manc”s who had come down for some audition or other. I knew all this because they pretty much shouted this to everyone. Despite all this, we ordered our drinks and figured out the standing space outside was the best place to be.
Everything taken into consideration, we figured the best thing to do was move on after our drink – except we had no idea where to. It was still a few hours until our table booking so we couldn’t just turn up. TFL told us that from that point, getting public transport to Hawksmoor would take in the region of 35 minutes, yet walking would take 45 minutes. So of course we walked, thinking we’d stop off some places along the way.
If you’ve ever been to The City at the weekend, you’ll notice it is a ghost town. It is all office blocks and banks, so nothing goes on at the weekend. L’Occitane’s Threadneedle St store doesn’t even bother opening at the weekend. After finding Liverpool Street Station (which in all honesty I had only seen on a Monopoly board before) we ended up at the restaurant itself without a single bar on the way that grabbed our interest. It was still shut. We found a lively packed pub airing the Manchester United/Fulham match and had a drink before deciding to have a wander. I had no idea that Brick Lane was in that area and it was only after we had followed a crowd that we discovered this. We turned the wrong way up the street and after realising it was curry house after curry house asked a guy who told us to turn back.
We ended up having a drink in The Big Chill Bar which quite frankly was full of hipsters, but it didn’t really matter. Matt described the place as “studenty” which hit the nail on the head, but it didn’t mean it was in any way terrible. We had an admittedly over-priced cocktail (but hey, it’s Brick Lane), perched on a bar stool looking at flyers for art exhibitions and DJ nights and passed the time.
It was at that point that we figured it was late enough to be classed as early for our table at Hawksmoor, and sat at the bar before being showed to our table. The restaurant itself is not pretentious in any way – inevitable exposed brick walls, dim lighting, dark wood furniture and chalk boards on the walls displaying cuts and weights of meat. Now I have no frame of reference for steak. They advised that the ones marked on the board were big, but is that a normal persons big, or a fucking huge piece of meat? Is 600g to much? Too small? How big is 1.3kg of steak?
We ordered a few starters to share (including a lobster cocktail) and our mains. Matt went for a fillet and I went for a rib-eye. And it turned out 600g was indeed too much, especially once you start adding on sides. By the end of the evening I had felt sickness like no other. I had a serious case of the “meat sweats” and sincerely regretted everything. I felt like curling up in a heap in the corner disgusted at myself – that’s how much meat I ate. This meant that the cocktails at the Oxo Tower, pub, Brick Lane AND Hawksmoor on top of the bottle of wine were not sitting well, and in honesty it would have done me better to go to the toilet and just have a tactical vomit. On top of that, the meal cost a fair amount more than Chapter One.
I can say I loved the experience, but if I were to ever go back, I would not order half the stuff we ordered this time. Because even though I felt so sick from eating all that meat, the 600g steak was one of the smallest ones. The amount we ate was obscene – almost enough for a standard eating challenge in mid-west USA – the problem was it tasted far too good to leave at the side of your plate. On the way back, I was feeling so ill, I could barely walk.
Ladies and gentlemen, at the age of 23 (almost) I have found my limit.
Fan films are generally pretty hit and miss, more often than not turning into something altogether a little too cheesy for comfort. Brian Curtin (of Beyond Black Mesa fame), however, has gone and created this absolute gem set in the Killzone series of games. Have a watch below, and afterwards check out the making of feature to see how they did it. Seriously impressive.
You may have noticed this track on a pretty cool promotional video for the new GoPro HERO3 camera, but nonetheless, it’s a fairly awesome track to kickstart a snowy January weekend. ‘Daybreak’ by Overwerk is available to download now.