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NVIDIA shows off amazing new PhysX effects in Batman: Arkham Origins

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Gaming | Posted: Sep 17, 2013 12:38 am

Today, a demo video that showcases some of the special effects that NVIDIA's PhysX API powers in the upcoming Batman: Arkham Origins video game popped up online. The video covers the PhysX used to animate Batman's cape, but honestly the soft shadows and particle-based weather are much more interesting to me.



Unfortunately, the video features pretty poor quality even when set to 720p resolution and does little to show the minute effects that NVIDIA's PhysX will bring to the game. Honestly, this video actually makes me feel little let down as I was looking forward to some killer graphics and a massive new level of real-time rendering. The textures appear to lack detail and I really cannot tell that much difference in the hand-to-hand combat between Arkham Origins and Arkham Asylum.

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Amazon mistakenly launches GTA V days early in the UK

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Gaming | Posted: Sep 17, 2013 12:17 am

It appears that Amazon UK has accidentally shipped out copies of Grand Theft Auto V days earlier than the official launch date of September 17. A new report from the BBC suggests that not all Amazon pre-order customers got a copy of GTA V early, but more than a few did.




This release has caused some problems for Rockstar as videos and spoilers have already began popping up online. This mistake marks the third strike for GTA V in content leaks over the last month. Earlier in the month, Sony offered pre-order customers a link that led to the game's soundtrack online as well as some gameplay secrets. Additionally, last week we saw the game's map leaked onto the web from yet another industry insider.


GTA V will be available for in-store purchases and online ordering tomorrow, September 17. Rockstar has disclosed that GTA V was the most expensive video game ever made, costing a whopping $265 million. Many of us here at TweakTown expect this to be one of the greatest games released in the history of gaming, but are still a little miffed by the title not been released on PC.

Garmin launches new Forerunner 220 and 620 GPS running watches

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Wearable Computing | Posted: Sep 17, 2013 12:03 am

Today, Garmin announced the launch of two new items to its Forerunner line of GPS smartwatches. The new Forerunner GPS 220 and GPS 610 running watches take Garmin's involvement in wearable technology to an entirely new level.




Both of these wearable GPS's act as a personal coach by alerting you of your distance traveled, lap times, and even recovery times needed before attempting another strenuous run. Both models feature color screens, with the 620 being touch-enabled. The 620 also predicts your race time and gives you personalized oxygen consumption estimates. When combined with Garmin's HRM-Run technology, the 620 is able to measure how long your foot is on the ground rather than in-flight, which lets you compare your time per step to previous events.


"Whether running indoors or out, Forerunner 620 and 220 will change the way runners look at training," said Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of worldwide sales. "Advanced features in the 620 such as recovery advisor, VO2 max estimate, race predictor and stats on running economy, combined with connected features and training plan options found in both the 620 and 220, make these watches must haves for runners of all levels. To keep runners motivated the watches also notice if runners hit any personal records on that run, like their fastest mile, 5k, 10k, half or full marathon or their longest run to date."

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Beam Down Into Darkness with our latest Blu-ray competition!

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Contests & Giveaways | Posted: Sep 16, 2013 11:43 pm

In our latest Blu-ray promo, we have an awesome pool of Star Trek: Into Darkness prizes to give away. Where ten lucky readers will each take home a Triple Play edition of Star Trek: Into Darkness on Blu-ray disc, valued at $49.95 each and filled to the brim with extra features.


The first sequel from J.J. Abrams 2009 reboot of the Star Trek franchise, Into Darkness finds Captain James T. Kirk and the crew of the Starship Enterprise pitted against a genetically enhanced and wholly superior adversary.




To go into the running, correctly answer the following question:


Name the Star Trek: Into Darkness actor who also appeared as the titular character in RoboCop

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Rockstar releases "iFruit" companion app for GTA V, iOS only for now

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Gaming | Posted: Sep 16, 2013 11:42 pm

Today, Rockstar Games released a new companion app for Grand Theft Auto 5 ahead of tomorrow's launch. The aptly named Grand Theft Auto: iFruit app is an apparent jab at Apple's iDevices, but it does actually serve a purpose within GTA V.




The new iFruit app allows users to create and customize vehicles that can be used in game, with the ability to make changes to almost every aspect of the vehicles in the game. Vehicle appearance as well as performance is upgradable via the app and users can even customize license plates that can be used in the online portion of the game.


"The Los Santos Customs app offers players the freedom to create their ultimate vehicle in Grand Theft Auto V from anywhere. At the bar, on the beach, on the toilet. This is the future, we're almost sure of it." Said Rockstar. "Depth of content, high production values, defecation. It's the app that has it all. Because who doesn't love tending to a virtual pet? Chop is Franklin's canine sidekick in Grand Theft Auto V. Look after him well in the "Chop the Dog" app and you will reap the benefits when playing as Franklin in Grand Theft Auto V. Pet him, feed and water him, play fetch and tug-of-war, teach him tricks."


Additionally, the app features options for caring for Chop the Dog, the player's in-game sidekick in GTA V. This virtual pet system reminds me somewhat of the Tamagotchi's of the mid 90s, but by taking good care of Chop, he can perform tricks and locate hidden items within GTA V. Additionally, the app provides access to the Rockstar Games Social Club. For the moment, the Grand Theft Auto: iFruit App is only available on iOS, but Rockstar says that Android support is coming soon.

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HIS accidentally leaks SKUs for AMD R-200 series graphics cards

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Video Cards | Posted: Sep 16, 2013 9:49 pm

Early this morning, video card manufacturer HIS accidentally leaked the SKUs and details on seven new GPUs the company will be offering from AMD's upcoming R-200 series. It appears that with the pending 4K refresh happening in the video resolution world AMD is looking to dump the Radeon HD name for its video cards and replace it with a new system that makes it easier to identify which cards are which.




The new simplified naming scheme works something like this. R9-280X stands for Radeon Generation 9 Model 280 Variant X. AMD says that this new naming scheme will make it easier to classify future generation cards and will enable consumers to quickly chose the right card for their needs.


Now that we have the naming scheme covered, let's move on to the leaked cards. It appears that the HIS R9-280X iPower IceQ X2 will be at the top of the list and will sport 3GB of GDDR5 Memory. The HIS R7-240 iCooler will round out the list with 1GB of GDDR5. Not much is else is known about the new R-200 series, but the complete leaked list can be seen after the jump.

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Rockstar is advising customers not to install GTA V Xbox Play Disc

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Gaming Consoles | Posted: Sep 16, 2013 8:33 pm

Earlier today, Rockstar Games issued an advisory to Xbox 360 owners that warned them not to install the Grand Theft Auto V Play Disc as it could adversely affect in-game performance. The advisory came via the company's Twitter page and said, "For optimal performance, we recommend not installing that disc. We will have more info on our support site at launch."




For those not familiar with what a "play" disc is, GTA V for the Xbox 360 comes on two 8GB discs, with the first being an "install" disc and the second being a "play" disc. The install disk is mandatory, while the play disc can be used to play the game or install the full game on the console. No information has been given on if or when this issue will be fixed, so for now do not install the "play" disc and just run the game from the disc instead.

Mark Zuckerberg now worth $19 billion, now the 20th richest American

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 16, 2013 7:15 pm

Mark Zuckerberg has once again reclaimed the number 20 spot on Forbes 400 Richest Americans list. He previously held the spot back in 2011 but fell to number 36 in 2012 after Facebook's IPO flopped. Zuckerberg is the founder and CEO of Facebook, the world's largest social network.




Last year, Zuckerberg's net worth was reported at $9.4 billion, but in the last year this figure has more than doubled with a newly reported net worth of $19 billion, which landed the number 20 spot on the Forbes list. This new wealth comes after Facebook stock has risen from an all time low of $17.55 in 2012 to an all time high of more than $45 per share last week.


Zuckerberg is among good company with Bill Gates taking the top spot at $72 billion, Jeff Bezos who is ranked number 12 with $27.1 million, and he pushes out Steve Ballmer who is now rated number 21 with a net worth of $18 billion. Other notables on the list include: Google's Larry page at $24.9 billion and his colleague Sergey Brin who is worth a mere $24.4 billion.

Sprint to take on AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile with new One Up program

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Sep 16, 2013 6:16 pm

Today, Sprint announced that it would be following in the footsteps of its competition by launching its new "One Up" program that will allow its customers to upgrade their phone on a yearly basis with little upfront cost. The new program works much in the same way that T-Mobile's "Jump," AT&T's "Next," and Verizon's "Edge" initiatives work.




Sprint's new One Up program allows customers to pick up a phone with no money down and pay for the device over 24 monthly installments. An average smartphone costing around $650 will cost customers about $27 a month and the remaining balance paid in full on the 24th month. Sprint will allow existing customers still on contract to participate in the service, but they must trade in their existing phones unless they have a two-year upgrade available on their account.




The new One Up program is very similar to T-Mobile's Jump plan in that it allows customers a discount on their service plan if they opt for the monthly hardware payment. AT&T and Verizon were criticized for their versions as they require customers to pay full price for their handset but did not offer any discounts on service. With the new iPhone 5C and iPhone 5S, I think this Sprint waited until just the right time to launch this new program. With thousands of customers wanting to upgrade to the latest iPhone, the new One Up program should see lots of use in the coming weeks.

LeakedTT: 45W AMD Richland APUs revealed in leaked pre-order listing

By: Charles Gantt | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: Sep 16, 2013 5:10 pm

Today we got a glimpse of AMD's new 45W TDP Richland APUs thanks to a Connecticut retailer accidentally listing SKUs, specifications, and prices for two of the upcoming low-power devices. The listing detailed the new A8-6500T and A10-6700T APUs, which are both FM2 socket APUs that are clocked at 3.1GHz and 3.5GHz, respectively.




Both the A8-6500T and the A10-7600T feature a 4MB cache and a TDP of just 45 Watts. Pricing for the new chips appears to be set at $108.59 for the retail boxed version of the A8-6500T, while a systems builder tray would run customers $114.58 per APU. The A10-6700T is a bit more expensive with the tray version running $166.97, while the retail version would run $155.91. With all of the information released last week on Ivy Bridge-E from Intel, does AMD still stand a chance, or will AMD return to the throne once again with these new APUs? Let us know in the comments.

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