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Humpback Whale Nearly Eats a Lobsterman, Then Thinks Better of It

It was sunny and clear on Friday morning and the water was calm off the coast of Provincetown, Mass., where Michael Packard was diving for lobsters.

His longtime fishing partner, Josiah Mayo, was following him in their fishing vessel, the J&J, tracking him through the bubbles that rose from Mr. Packard’s breathing gear to the surface of the water.

The men had already caught 100 pounds of lobster, and Mr. Packard was about 40 feet underwater, looking for more.

Suddenly, the bubbles stopped, Mr. Mayo said. Then, the water began to churn violently. A creature breached the surface and for an agonizing split second, Mr. Mayo thought it was a white shark.

“I immediately thought it was the shark encounter that we’d unfortunately been preparing for for years,” he said in an interview on Saturday.

Then, he saw the fluke and the head of a whale. Moments later, he saw Mr. Packard fly out of the water.

“‘It tried to eat me,’” Mr. Packard sputtered, according to Mr. Mayo. The whale, a humpback, swam away as Mr. Mayo and another fisherman helped Mr. Packard back into the boat.

Such terrifying encounters are virtually unheard-of, according to Charles Mayo, Josiah Mayo’s father and a senior scientist at the Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown, a town of about 3,000 people on the tip of Cape Cod. There is an account of a woman who was pulled down by a pilot whale. There are reports of sperm whales that went on the offensive after being harpooned. And in 1896, The New York Times reported the implausible tale of a whaler who was found in the belly of a whale in October 1891 and rescued alive.

“I’ve never heard of that ever happening,” Dr. Mayo said of Mr. Packard’s ordeal. Still, the encounter is explainable, he said.

The whale, possibly a 32- to 35-foot juvenile that had previously been seen swimming in the area, was most likely diving for food when it inadvertently caught Mr. Packard in its enormous mouth.

Humpback whales spend much of their time in that part of New England, searching for and engulfing small schooling fish, said Jooke Robbins, director of the humpback whale studies program at the Center for Coastal Studies.

They lunge fast, open their mouths and use baleen plates to “filter” the water out before swallowing the fish, Dr. Robbins said in a statement.

When the whale realized it had caught something that was not its typical prey — in this case, an unsuspecting lobsterman — it responded the way a human who accidentally ingested a fly would, Dr. Mayo said.

“We certainly don’t eat any more,” he said. “We spit the food out, and some of us would leave the restaurant.”

Accounts of Mr. Packard’s ordeal captivated Twitter on Friday. That afternoon, Mr. Packard told reporters that he was on his second dive, going toward the bottom of sea when he felt “this truck hit me.”

His first thought was that a white shark had attacked him, but when he did not feel teeth piercing into him, he realized he was inside a whale.

“I was completely inside; it was completely black,” Mr. Packard told The Cape Cod Times. “I thought to myself: There’s no way I’m getting out of here — I’m done, I’m dead. All I could think of was my boys — they’re 12 and 15 years old.”

Mr. Packard said he was in the mouth for at least 30 seconds, wondering whether he would run out of air or be swallowed. He said he struggled against the mouth of the whale and could feel its powerful muscles squeezing against him. Then, he saw light and felt the whale’s head shaking and his body being thrown into the water.

Mr. Mayo said he called 911 and an ambulance met them at the dock. He then called Mr. Packard’s wife.

“‘Hi, Mike is OK,’” Mr. Mayo recalled telling her. “You’ve got to lead with that.”

Mr. Packard, who was released from the hospital on Friday, had extensive bruises, but no broken bones.

On Friday afternoon, he wrote a cheerful note on a Provincetown community Facebook page, thanking the Provincetown rescue squad for helping him.

“I was lobster diving and a humpback whale tried to eat me,” he wrote. “I was in his closed mouth for about 30 to 40 seconds before he rose to the surface and spit me out. I am very bruised up but have no broken bones.”

Mr. Mayo said he initially thought Mr. Packard had broken his leg. As scared as he was for his friend, he said he felt a little relief that the season might be over.

But once he learned that Mr. Packard had not sustained any broken bones, Mr. Mayo said he knew the two of them would head out again soon.

Mr. Packard promised the same to reporters.

He said, “As soon as I heal up, I’ll be back in the water.”

Jack Begg contributed research.

Author: Maria Cramer
This post originally appeared on NYT > U.S. News

DEAL OF THE DAY: Save £110 on the cordless Shark Vacuum that’s ‘better than Dyson’

Shark vacuum cleaners were some of the top-selling products in last year’s Prime Day sale, with shoppers always keen to snatch up one of the best selling devices while they’re on sale – and right now, they are.

Usually retailing for £349.99, you can now pick up the Shark Anti Hair Wrap Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner for just £239.01 – that’s a massive £110.98 discount.

Many of the reviews compared this Shark vacuum to its competitors, such as Dyson – and usually, the Shark won out. One reviewer said: “I have had a Dyson for many years and then decided to try a cordless shark. Well, I am delighted with the results and amazed at how much dust and hair it is still sucking up. I would advise anyone to buy a shark ASAP”.

This innovative vacuum has amassed over 6,800 glowing 5-star reviews, with thousands of reviewers impressed with the device. This reviewer said: “ I love this cordless vacuum, more powerful than my last one. Love the fact that, when used as a handheld, it’s just as powerful. Also, I like the boost trigger and the folding for easy storage. And yes, the hair wrap function really works brilliantly”.

Although the vacuum is cordless, the 40-minute run time helps you get the best of both worlds: the freedom of moving through the house without worrying about cords, and the battery power to get you through your clean without having to stop and charge.

When you have pets, you know the struggle of getting rid of their hair. Not only does it find its way into every corner of the home, but it can also get tangled up in your vacuum and make vacuuming more of a chore than it already is. This vacuum from Shark comes with anti-hair wrap technology that removes hair from the brush roll as you clean, so you don’t have to stop and remove hair build-up, so you can get the job done faster.

Another aspect of pet ownership is vacuuming their hair from the car and furniture, which can be hard to do with a big device. This shark vacuum can convert into a handheld, making this kind of vacuuming quick and easy.

If you have limited mobility, a bad back, or you’re elderly, bending over to get under furniture and into the nooks and crannies of your home just isn’t possible. This vacuum comes with reflexology bends so that it can bend and reach under low-lying furniture.

As we head into hay fever season, it’s best to ensure we’re keeping our homes allergen-free so as to not aggravate allergy-sufferers symptoms. The anti-allergen complete seal in this Shark vacuum traps dust and allergens inside the vacuum, so you can help your home remain allergy-free. This vacuum also gives you the ability to switch from carpets to hard floors with ease, with the two brush-rolls working together in one floor head – no adjustments necessary.

If this gadget seems like just the vacuum you’re looking for, you can pick it up on Amazon while it’s still on sale here.

Author:
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Life and Style Feed
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Review: Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection – Ryu Hayabusa Deserves Better Than This

Whether you prefer Ninja Gaiden Sigma over Ninja Gaiden Black, or ‘vanilla’ part two over its enhanced edition, or don’t really care either way and just wanna get on with slicing and dicing everything in your path, the prospect of enjoying Team Ninja’s legendary action series on Switch is a pretty tantalising one. Here is a trilogy of games that, for all their many idiosyncrasies and ageing elements, still possess the power to provide some seriously satisfying combat. All that these three old stalwarts really needed was a decent port job with a nice smooth frame rate and crisp, clear resolution, and they would have likely earned an instant recommendation from us. Unfortunately, at least on Nintendo’s hybrid console, Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection just ain’t what we were hoping for.

With pre-release press touting a Switch port that aims for 720p and 60fps — and Platinum Games’ similarly madcap Bayonetta and Bayonetta 2 managing to pull this feat off on Nintendo’s console — we had high hopes that the adventures of Ryu Hayabusa would arrive on Switch in fine form. However, outside of the older first entry in the series, what we’ve actually got here is a disappointing offering that can neither stick to its target resolution or its intended frame rate for large chunks of time. This is a surprisingly messy conversion, a “master” collection that does these golden oldies absolutely zero favours.

Let’s try to remain positive for as long as possible, though. Getting stuck into the classic Ninja Gaiden Sigma, things do get off to a promising start with Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection and we had zero issues blasting through what is undoubtedly the finest entry in the series. Whether playing in docked or handheld modes, Ryu’s virgin adventure is a smooth ride on Switch – as it really should be given its age – and it’s still an absolute riot to return to all this time later. This really is Ninja Gaiden at its very best; a brutally tough but always fair challenge that demands you take the time to learn, approach every enemy with caution and utilise each and every one of your combos, special moves, items and Ninpo in order to survive.

At fourteen years of age, there are certainly aspects of this one that are well past their best, most notably a camera that can be a right old pain in the backside when jammed into a small area with multiple opponents. Beyond these expected issues, though, it’s amazing just how well this first outing holds up in 2021, and it’s a real joy of a thing to get to grips with in portable mode on Switch. Sigma may not be everyone’s preferred version — and we fully understand why — but the underlying quality of the original game still manages to shine through and anyone who has yet to sample its delights is sure to be blown away by just how well it all still holds together.

Moving on to Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 and, well, in terms of gameplay there’s still plenty to enjoy with this more bombastic take on the franchise. It may not be anywhere near as difficult, as thoughtful or refined as its predecessor, it may drop the original’s maze-y, secret-strewn levels in favour of pushing you through corridors full of rinse-and-repeat bad guys, but this sequel still absolutely manages to deliver when it comes to action and spectacle. Want to face off against a possessed Statue of Liberty, kick twenty shades out of a lycanthrope army or make the canals of Venice run red with your enemy’s blood? Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 has got your back and, for all the complaints about how it’s been watered down in this Sigma version, it’s still a bloody tough game on anything higher than normal difficulty.

The added decapitations and overcharged finishing moves that punctuate the action in this sequel give combat a totally different rhythm. This is a fundamentally easier game that allows you to take a moment as you pull off an obliteration technique or use a super-charged Ninpo to make some space in a crowd of enemies. There are far more opportunities to heal and save your progress, too and as a result this is an action game that’s got replayability in spades; a completely OTT, boss-packed affair that wants you to come back again and again, improving your rankings and upping that difficulty as you go. This Master Collection also returns all the lovely blood and violence to proceedings via a Day One patch, so gore hounds can rejoice as they literally paint the town red instead of purple and green.

Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 is also packed full of modes, with chapter challenges, ninja races and tag missions to keep players busy once they’re done with the roughly ten-hour-long campaign. In short, there’s plenty of lovely violent fun to be had here, or at least there would be if the whole thing wasn’t marred by incessant technical issues that drag the entire experience down.

Right from the get-go these issues rear their head with this Switch port of Sigma 2 and, in both docked and handheld modes, some pretty harsh dynamic resolution scaling sees the image quality drop seriously low as it attempts to keep the frame rate at an acceptable level – something it completely fails to achieve for the most part. We reckon for the vast majority of our time with Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 on Switch we were looking at a frame rate that was absolutely nowhere near the touted 60fps. We’re no Digital Foundry, so we can’t provide an exact figure, but the game just wasn’t managing to hit its target at all in combat, or indeed when just strolling around environments.

This technical inconsistency on Switch is a real shame, a messy experience that is perhaps the worst playthrough of this game we’ve had on any system we can remember. Its struggles don’t seem to have any rhyme or reason, either, with reasonably quiet stretches stuttering terribly as the resolution drops right down to a full-on pixelated mess, while busy areas — such as the infamous stair fight scene — perform surprisingly well in contrast.

What you’re left with as you play through this old classic is constant stuttering and, even in docked mode, a resolution that varies wildly and very noticeably from moment to moment. It’s headache-inducing stuff and not the way you really want to experience a game of this ilk, struggling to decipher enemies in a furious mob as you get your Ninja head absolutely kicked in.

Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge doesn’t fare much better here, either. The London-based opening to this rather disappointing third entry in the series immediately set our alarm bells ringing, especially in handheld mode where it’s a dark mess of pixels that chugs along, making it a chore to successfully time anything you’re attempting to hit your opponents with. Switching to docked mode does see Razor’s Edge performing reasonably well in comparison to its portable counterpart — and even much better than Sigma 2, bizarrely enough — but it still suffers ceaselessly in terms of overall image quality and frame rate. It looks and feels unpolished at all times and you end up waiting uneasily for the next frame rate drop or jarring image blur. These just aren’t the types of games you want to be having constant issues with, and jumping back into the likes Bayonetta 2, as we did for comparison here, it’s quite remarkable just how big the gulf in quality is in terms of how this port has been handled. It’s just nowhere near smooth or clear enough.

In the end, what Switch owners are getting with this one is anything but a Master Collection, really. The original Ninja Gaiden Sigma may run well enough, but otherwise what’s here has served only to whet our appetites for versions of this collection on other platforms that are promising 4K resolutions and a rock solid 60fps. If your only viable option is to play on Switch, you’ll at least still get to experience the joy of the original Ninja Gaiden, albeit in its slightly watered down Sigma incarnation. Otherwise, this is a thoroughly disappointing experience that delivers stuttery, pixelated and rather unpleasant versions of Sigma 2 and Razor’s Edge.

Note: A Day One patch for Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection is adding gore and decapitations from the PS3 versions of Sigma and Sigma 2, plus minor bug fixes. Performance isn’t specifically mentioned in the notes, but it’s not impossible things might improve. Should that be the case, we’ll update this review to reflect the changes.

Conclusion

Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection gets off to a promising start on Switch with a decent port of Ninja Gaiden Sigma that performs well in both docked and handheld modes. However, as soon as you boot up parts two and three it’s all downhill, with dynamic resolution resulting in a pixelated mess in places as the frame rate consistently struggles to keep up with the action. All we needed here was a solid, no-frills port and this collection would have been an instant recommendation. As things stand, it’s a disappointing experience that needs patching ASAP and should be the last version you opt for if you’ve got the choice to play elsewhere.

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This post originally appeared on Nintendo Life | Reviews

Chelsea may be about to get even better after Manchester City Champions League win

Haaland recently insisted he would ‘respect’ his Dortmund contract, but didn’t entirely rule out a move.

“Well I have a contract for a couple of years, so I am respectful towards my contract,” he told Viaplay.

“I am a simple guy. When I like something I just want to have more – when I score a goal, I always chase the next goal.”

Chelsea, as Champions League winners, now have a new ace up their sleeve when it comes to potential negotiations with the striker.

And he isn’t the only player in their sights, either.

Romelu Lukaku has been left gutted by Conte’s departure from Inter Milan, with the duo striking up a strong bond during their two years together at the San Siro.

Author:
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

Feature: A Perfect Metascore? We Play The Switch Game “Better Than Zelda: Breath Of The Wild”

House In Fata Morgana

This is going to take a little bit of explaining.

There is a game called “The House In Fata Morgana” that first came out in Japan in 2012. It eventually trickled its way onto more platforms, including iOS, PS4, and 3DS, but it wasn’t until 2016 that Western audiences were able to play it. And then, just last month, it finally came to the Nintendo Switch, where it was received extremely well.

So well, in fact, that it’s the first game to ever score a perfect 100 on Metacritic. And that’s precisely why I’m here.

A perfect score?

I spent a lot of time in the first chapter hoping that Nellie would die. Sorry
I spent a lot of time in the first chapter hoping that Nellie would die. Sorry

For the past month and a half, every now and again, I’d notice that people were prodding us about a House In Fata Morgana review. We don’t review every game, because there’s not that many of us, and we have to sleep sometimes, but the combined pitch of “people really like this game” and “ROLL UP, ROLL UP, COME SEE THE GAME THAT’S HIGHER-RATED THAN BREATH OF THE WILD” naturally piqued my interest. I pitched a review to the editors, they said yes, and a code was acquired.

After playing for a few hours, and realising that this game would probably require a bit more explaining than a simple 1000-word review, I asked the editors if I could also write a diary, of sorts, to get all my feelings across. Again, they said yes, for some reason. I think they trust me too much.

It was then, and only then, that I looked up how long the game was. THIRTY TO FIFTY HOURS, the estimates read. Do you people think that I am made of time? I am not made of time! However, The House In Fata Morgana is. What a good segue.

Anyone who’s reading this probably already knows about The House In Fata Morgana, because the fanbase for this game really, really loves The House In Fata Morgana, and you’re probably extremely excited to see someone writing about it. Nevertheless, it is my journalistic duty to tell you about it.

Three gasps, one swear

I'm a beeeeeast!!!!!
I’m a beeeeeast!!!!!

The House In Fata Morgana is a game that I knew nothing about, prior to booting it up. Perhaps that is the best way to play it. My cursory research — because I don’t want spoilers — told me that it was a visual novel, set in a spooky cursed mansion. The key art told me that it starred a pale lady with black hair, a pale lady with white hair, and a… hand. Of some kind. A quick, spoiler-free scroll down the gigantic Wikipedia page told me that whoever made the Wikipedia page had too much time on their hands.

So, I entered the world of The House In Fata Morgana expecting… I don’t know, really. Romance? Spooky stories? Pale women? Hands? I’ve been playing for somewhere between five and ten hours so far, and I’m still not really sure what the game is about — or, to be honest, what makes it a 10/10 game.

But I’m not disappointed. Not even slightly. I don’t think I’ve been this intrigued, excited, and utterly confused in a long time. So far, I’ve had at least three moments that made me gasp out loud, and at least one that made me loudly swear. For those in the know: the gasp was wig-related; the other three moments involved blood, a curse, and a painting. For those not in the know: doesn’t that sound exciting?!

Living up to the legend

The art is rather lovely, and there sure is a lot of it
The art is rather lovely, and there sure is a lot of it

I really don’t want to oversell this game, because part of the joy I’m getting from it right now is from the fact that I have no idea where this is going. There’s an element of time travel, which means the plot keeps changing, and my main character is an amnesiac, so I have no idea who I am, where I came from, or what’s happening, even in the game.

part of the joy I’m getting from it right now is from the fact that I have no idea where this is going

I am almost sure that there will be some incredible twist, because there have already been at least four twists in the two different stories that I’ve been playing, but I’m hoping that the twist will be a mechanical one, not just a narrative one.

Here’s the thing, though: I’ve been playing this for hours, and I have made one choice. It was right at the beginning, and I was asked to decide whether or not to say good morning to the Maid. I did say good morning, for the record, but I don’t think it made much of a difference. The rest of the game so far has been on auto-play, like a book that’s reading itself, plus nice pictures.

I want The House In Fata Morgana to live up to the feeling I currently have, that this game will miraculously turn out to be so brilliant that it changes my life. I’ve only ever given out one 10/10, and that was for Kalimba, an Xbox One-exclusive game from a now-defunct studio (and I stand by it, that game is fabulous), so it’s going to take a lot for me to be won over. But I want to be won over, so it’s also going to take a lot to convince me that this isn’t a brilliant game.

Spoiler time…

Oh noooo it's a beeeeeast!!!!
Oh noooo it’s a beeeeeast!!!!

If you’ve read this far down in my first Fata Morgana diary entry, then you perhaps are prepared for spoilers. I’ve steered clear so far — but it’s going to be hard to write further entries (yes, I forced my editors to let me do multiple diary entries AS WELL AS a review) without telling you the story.

Let me tell you what’s happened so far.

I woke up, with no memory of who, or what, I was. I seemingly have no name, and I haven’t seen myself, despite at one point walking past a mirror. A strange, kinda-creepy Maid is my only companion, and she’s currently showing me around my house, a large, dilapidated mansion. But there’s a twist: the mansion’s doors can occasionally also work as glimpses into the past.

The first door took us into a story set in 1603, about Mell, the eldest son of a noble family, and his irritating sister, Nellie. When a mysterious-but-super-hot girl turns up one night, Mell falls in love, and so, you can forgive me for thinking that perhaps the story of Fata Morgana would be about Mell and The White-Haired Girl’s relationship.

NOPE! That story went on for a while with not much happening and then QUICKLY took a detour into straight-up incest. I wish I was joking, or being hyperbolic! I’m not! There’s a lot of incest! I spent a full fifteen minutes yelling “WHAT THE FUNK” except I obviously wasn’t saying “funk”.

I hope you like 'wistful', because this game turns the wist knob up to 11
I hope you like ‘wistful’, because this game turns the wist knob up to 11

Eventually, after around, I would guess, four hours of that story (of which only the last 30 minutes were incest-y), the Maid took me to another room, and another chapter. This one is the one I’m currently halfway through, and so far, there hasn’t been any incest, touch wood.

It’s like talking to an adorable-yet-coy toddler who doesn’t want to reveal where she hid mummy’s passport.

This story is about a “beast” called Bestia, who wants to learn how to love, but also really loves eating people, which is a problem we can all relate to. But guess who turns up in the middle of one of his cannibal banquets? THE WHITE-HAIRED GIRL from earlier!! But how can that be? Is she over 100 years old?

…I don’t know. I spend a lot of this game with my brow furrowed, fielding questions from my confused partner (who’s only seen parts of it, and thus assumes he’s missing some of the context) by patiently explaining that I don’t know the answers, either. The Maid who’s been narrating all of these stories just says things like “teehee, I guess you’ll find out” and “hehehe, maybe you’ll remember.” It’s like talking to an adorable-yet-coy toddler who doesn’t want to reveal where she hid mummy’s passport.

The verdict so far

I'll be honest, I took this screenshot because the art made me laugh. Why are his eyes so BIG?
I’ll be honest, I took this screenshot because the art made me laugh. Why are his eyes so BIG?

But that’s as far as I’ve got. It feels, up to this point, like someone who’s just read me the entirety of Game of Thrones, and then followed it up with recounting the story of Resident Evil, except one of the characters is Jon Snow. I don’t know what it means. I don’t know anything. And I love it.

Is The House In Fata Morgana better than Breath of the Wild, though? Well, that seems like an apples-to-oranges comparison, and also, again, I don’t know. This is just Part One of the diary, after all, but I’m not sure if I’ll ever have an answer. The game changes what it is, and what it’s about, every couple of hours, and while it’s presumably building up to A Point, I couldn’t even begin to guess what it is. Breath of the Wild is full of delightful, surprising, and unexpected moments; House In Fata Morgana is an ever-shifting, diaphanous blob of WTF. I haven’t felt this thrilled to dive back into a game since… well, since Breath of the Wild.

I guess we’ll find out the answer together. Tune in next week.

Author:
This post originally appeared on Nintendo Life | Latest News

Review: Maneater – You're Gonna Need A Better Combat System

Tripwire Interactive’s Maneater really does have itself a pretty killer premise. Letting players loose on its open world setting of Port Clovis as a deeply scarred bull shark in search of revenge, it’s an unashamedly silly, hyper violent and completely throwaway experience that should make for a pretty great videogame. It delivers in giving you the motivation, the tools and the playground with which to exact your bloody retribution, gets the tone and the setting of its shark vendetta just right, but then fumbles its execution, delivering a procession of dull missions, janky combat and an ever-increasing laundry list of the very worst kind of open world busywork. In the end, what should have been a riotous revenge fantasy ends up feeling rather toothless.

Kicking off with the murder of your mother at the hands of celebrity shark hunter Scaly Pete (who’s hand you bite off in the opening scenes) Maneater wastes no time in flinging you into the fins of a newly orphaned baby shark (please don’t sing it) [Sing what? – Ed] who you must now commandeer through the eight regions that make up the game’s open world map. Here you’ll eat everything you see, be it man, woman or seal, in order to evolve into a flipping mega-shark — an apex killer with the skills and abilities to face off against your hook-handed nemesis and avenge your momma once and for all.

It’s the framing of the narrative here that’s really Maneater’s strongest element, with Scaly Pete the star of a wonderfully grotty reality TV show that follows him and his rebellious son, Kyle, as they search the waterways of Port Clovis for the bull shark that chomped his hand off. This allows for a constant narration of not just every plot point and ludicrous cutscene, but pretty much every action you take as you swim around the lakes, beaches and bayous of Port Clovis. With Chris Parnell (of Rick and Morty and SNL fame) on narration duties here, the game is instantly lifted out of the mire that is its actual gameplay, with plenty of laughs to be had, movie and TV references to knowingly jab your finger at and a playful B-movie feel to the whole thing that it’s really quite hard to dislike.

If only the gameplay wasn’t quite so lacking though, eh. As much as evolving your shark here is fun enough in and of itself (adding tiger skin, advanced sonar, electric teeth, shadow fins, armoured plating and so on to a body which continues to grow as you move from childhood into adult shark life), the actual threats you take on and missions you’re tasked with are just very disappointing overall. Besides the boring filler side quests that never mix things up even once across the entire duration of the game — constantly tasking you with eating ten of a certain type of fish or killing a fixed number of super dumb humans — the apex predator fights, hunter boss battles and various face-offs that further the story along also suffer on account of the game’s rather weak and janky combat.

In terms of abilities during a battle, your bull shark can whip its tail, bite, jump out of the water and dodge incoming attacks… and that’s about it. While peaceful traversal throughout Maneater’s world is always pretty satisfying and just swimming around and gobbling up fish for their nutrients is almost therapeutic at times, once a proper scrap starts — once you’ve got the attention of a worthy adversary — the frustration starts to kick in. As there’s no lock-on during fights here, with a press of the right stick only recentring your focus on an enemy momentarily, you’re constantly in a struggle with the game’s camera when things get hectic, especially in small areas where you’ll likely be tempted to smash your controller.

Dodging is almost impossible to time well, too, especially when you can rarely get a good sight of your foe due to those camera issues, and in the end most face-offs very quickly degenerate into unsatisfying button-mashing, getting a few bites in then swimming away to regenerate health by munching some nearby fishies before getting back to slowly whittling your enemy down. It’s all a bit tiresome and disappointing.

Human foes aren’t much better, either. As much fun as it is to tear them from their jet-skis and yachts, ripping them to bloody shreds as they scream out in terror, when you’re up against hunters it’s a similarly disappointing story of janky controls ruining the party. Escaping the red line that indicates a hunter’s incoming gunshots is a real hit or miss affair here, destroying their boats a button-mashing chore, and no matter who they are — the game features a host of celebrity hunter bosses to take out — they all die in exactly the same manner; so much so that we didn’t realise we’d even killed the big name hunters most of the time.

Maneater also has a very weird, and very bad, habit of making you go on dry land in order to attack human enemies; one upgrade path actually increases the time you can spend out of the water. It’s such a terrible activity from a gameplay point of view, flopping miserably around as you attempt to chow down on some golfers or Hampton types. We get that it’s meant to be funny, perhaps it was the first dozen times, but it grows so tiresome and exacerbates everything we dislike about the combat here, it seems like keeping the shark in the water at all times really would have been a better way to go.

Even with a rather short running time of around about ten hours, by game’s end we were well and truly done with most of what Maneater has to offer. We’d collected enough car licence plates, eaten our fill of fish and humans alike and chomped through more than our fair share of secret caches and points of interest – although at least Chris Parnell makes those points of interest pretty amusing.

Not everything here is bad, of course. Indeed, when left to your own devices there’s a decent amount of fun to be had in just evolving your shark and role-playing the classic beach terror, emerging from the depths to swallow swimmers whole or flying out of the water to snatch some toff from the bow of his super yacht. We even developed a worrying habit of lurking around beneath groups of unaware swimmers, taking our time and deliberating over which one of them was going to get dragged screaming to the depths. It’s just a shame the actual combat is so dull and open world mission structure so dated.

On a much more positive note, for those who are interested in taking this one for a swim regardless of its weaknesses, this Switch port is surprisingly solid stuff. Maneater originally launched back in 2020 with its fair share of bugs and problems — most notably a bug that wiped entire save files from existence — but here we’ve been treated to a smooth and visually impressive experience. Whether you’re sharking it up in docked or portable mode, beyond the now expected graphical downgrade on Nintendo’s hybrid console, this one performs pretty much perfectly, with a single instance of a glitchy Mako shark the only bug we encountered during our playthrough.

Maneater is such a good idea for an open world RPG. Evolving your shark from fragile orphan to mega-death bringer is a solid backbone for the game’s action, tearing humans to shreds is never not hilarious and Chris Parnell knocks it out of the park as the ever-present narrator. It’s just a real shame, then, that the core gameplay here isn’t up to scratch. With a few tweaks to the janky, repetitive combat and the addition of side missions that actually provided a little variety once in a while, this one could have been a real good time. As it stands, it’s a pretty average action-RPG that’s a little closer to Jersey Shore: Shark Attack than Jaws.

Conclusion

Maneater is a great idea for a video game, a ridiculous shark revenge fantasy in an open world setting with plenty of humour injected through its unique narrative framing and the vocal talents of Chris Parnell. However, as much as terrorising beach goers and snatching hunters from the bows of their fishing boats is a pretty good time, and as much as we enjoyed watching our orphaned bull shark grow from helpless pup to apex predator, the whole thing is let down by poor combat and the very worst kind of busywork side quests. With a little more variety in missions and a few refinements made to combat, this could have been a killer action-RPG. As things stand, however, it’s all a little toothless.

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This post originally appeared on Nintendo Life | Reviews

Samsung brings bigger and better TV features to your desk, just don't tell the boss

So that’s the new hardware but there are also some updates to the software with Samsung boasting that is unveiling a range of new features including TV Plus.

This free service brings access to a swathe of shows and content from platforms including Vivo, CNN, SuperToons TV, Action Movies, Rakuten TV and the Comedy Channel.

Samsung is also launching its Universal Guide as well which offers content recommendations based on an analysis of the user’s preferences and viewing patterns, ensuring fully personalised suggestions on popular apps such as Netflix, Prime Video and more.

Along with these new features owners will also continue to get access to Apple AirPlay, Microsoft 365 applications and Samsung DeX.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Tech Feed

Prague OHCA: Hyperinvasive Care, Better Cardiac Arrest Outcomes?

Patients with refractory out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) receiving “hyperinvasive” rather than standard care had better overall outcomes, researchers in the randomized Prague OHCA trial conclude.

The primary endpoint, survival at 180 days with a favorable neurologic outcome, defined as a cerebral performance category (CPC) score of 1 or 2, was numerically higher with the hyperinvasive strategy vs standard care, but this difference did not reach statistical significance (32% vs 22%, P = .09).

Although the primary efficacy endpoint was not met overall, it was attained in the subgroup of patients who received CPR for 45 minutes or longer, leading to early stopping of the trial, Jan Bělohlávek, MD, PhD, reported, in a Late-Breaking Clinical Trials session at the virtual American College of Cardiology 2021 Scientific Session.

Dr Jan Bělohlávekk

“This study, the largest randomized controlled trial that has been conducted to address this question, shows that the hyperinvasive approach is a feasible and effective treatment strategy in refractory OHCA,” Bělohlávek, professor of medicine at Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic, concluded.

“We know that we do not harm patients by implementing a hyperinvasive approach and we probably improve outcome of those who are truly refractory,” he elaborated to theheart.org | Medscape Cardiology in an email. “And the results are also well in line with the results of the recently published ARREST trial,” that appeared last year in The Lancet.

Moreover, this was “a very hard primary endpoint (180 days favorable survival),” even though the study was designed 10 years ago, Bělohlávek noted, adding that “many similar studies use just 30 days.”

Despite not reaching a significant difference in the primary endpoint, based on secondary endpoints and subgroups (patients resuscitated over 45 minutes and crossovers), the trial’s Data and Safety Monitoring Board deemed it unethical to continue randomization, he reported, and the trial was stopped after randomly assigning 256 of a planned 570 patients.

It is important to put these findings into context, Bělohlávek emphasized. “In our study, over 98% of patients had bystander CPR, over 75% had telephone-assisted CPR, and the whole protocol enrolled only 6% from all cardiac arrest cases attended. ”

Patients in the standard care group received guideline-recommended continued advanced cardiovascular support (ACLS), including manual CPR, defibrillation, medical therapy, and transport to hospital if return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) was attained.

Patients in the hyperinvasive care group, on the other hand, were placed on a mechanical chest compression device and immediately transported to the cardiac center cath lab where they were placed on an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) machine to receive extracorporeal CPR (ECPR) if their heartbeat had not been restarted en route.

Panelist Julia H. Indik, MD, PhD, congratulated the researchers on this “critically important trial on resuscitation.”

“While the primary outcome at 6 months did not quite reach statistical significance, there’s clearly a very important trend,” said Indik, a professor of medicine in the cardiology division at the University of Arizona in Tucson.

High Rate of Bystander CPR

Importantly, the study also showed that “highly effective prehospital care, a high percentage of bystander CPR, dispatch center-directed CPR, and close cooperation with an experienced cardiac arrest center” contribute to better outcomes after OHCA, Bělohlávek stressed.

The 99% bystander CPR was “absolutely phenomenal,” Indik commented. This was the rate in the study, Bělohlávek noted, “but our average bystander CPR percentage in Prague is over 80% for all cardiac arrests,” which is very high.

However, “this approach has to be done by an extremely experienced center,” he stressed. “I would like to point out that we had a so-called simulation phase before we started the trial,” he said, where EMS personnel and others received training in the new protocol.

Based on historical data available when the study design was study design was published in 2012, the researchers expected that only 10% of patients being resuscitated for 45 minutes or more would survive. However, among patients receiving this lengthy CPR, 22% of patients in the standard arm survived.

This shows that the “hyperinvasive protocol training actually improved outcomes in the standard arm, and I consider this the most beneficial byproduct of the study,” Bělohlávek stated.

The training was designed to maximize speed and efficiency from witnessed cardiac arrest to arrival at the hospital, he clarified in a press briefing.

“We had to train the teams from EMS for intensive resuscitation, meaning high-quality cardiac massage,” he said. In the hyperinvasive protocol, the coordinator receives a text message from the dispatch center when telephone-assisted CPR is stopped. “This alert and the communication between the EMS teams on the scene, the hospital, and the dispatch center is very important,” Bělohlávek emphasized.

Asked whether prehospital intra-arrest cooling was part of the hyperinvasive procedure, as described in the protocol paper, he said that in the hyperinvasive care group, they used the RhinoChill device to provide intranasal cooling for patients en route to the hospital, but the device was not available after 2016, so this intra-arrest cooling was only performed on the first 35 or 40 patients in that group.

Indik asked if venoarterial ECMO, which is associated with potential bleeding (vascular access ischemia), “balanced, of course by potential benefit on survival,” could have contributed to worse outcomes.

Bělohlávek said that they expected more bleeding in the hyperinvasive care group than in the standard care group, which they did see (31% vs 15%, P = .014).

However, the patients being resuscitated for 46 to 58 minutes were a “really very desperate population,” he noted. Many patients in the standard care group were declared dead on the scene, whereas all patients in the hyperinvasive group except one were admitted to the hospital.

Witnessed OHCA

The researchers enrolled eligible adults who had an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in Prague between March 1, 2013 and October 25, 2020.

From 4345 cases of OHCA, 264 patients (6%) had witnessed OHCA which was from cardiac causes, and they had survived at the scene, but they had no return of spontaneous circulation. Of these, 256 patients with consent were randomly assigned to receive hyperinvasive care (n = 124) or standard care (n = 132).

Patient and OHCA characteristics were similar in both groups. On average, patients were 58 years old and 83% were men. Two thirds of the cardiac arrests occurred in a public place (36%) or at home (34%). The cardiac arrest was caused by acute coronary syndrome in half of the patients, and 60% of the patients had ventricular fibrillation.

The rates of bystander CPR and telephone-assisted CPR were very high, (99% and 79%, respectively). The average time from collapse to randomization was 25 minutes, and a third of the patients had intermittent ROSC.

On average, CPR was given for a longer time in the hyperinvasive care group than in the standard care group (58 minutes vs 46 minutes, respectively, P = .037), and more patients in the hyperinvasive care group received CPR lasting 45 minutes or longer (73% vs 55%, P = .01).

In secondary outcomes, more patients in the hyperinvasive group than in the standard care group had 30-day neurologic recovery (31% vs 18%, P = .02), but there was no significant between-group difference in percentage of patients with 30-day cardiac recovery.

Strikingly, in the subgroup of patients who received CPR for 45 minutes or longer, more patients in the hyperinvasive group had 6-month survival with favorable neurologic outcomes (20 patients vs 6 patients, P = .018). Notably, 4 of those 6 patients in the standard care group had crossed over from the hyperinvasive group.

Although the study protocol allowed between-group crossover, this was low; 11 patients (8.3%) crossed over from standard care to hyperinvasive care, and 9 patients (7.2%) were switched to hyperinvasive care from standard care when hyperinvasive care was deemed likely to be futile.

The study was funded by the Ministry of Health of the Czech Republic. Bělohlávek and Indik have disclosed no relevant financial relationships.

American College of Cardiology (ACC) 2021 Annual Scientific Session: Session 410-10. Presented May 17, 2021.

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This post originally appeared on Medscape Medical News Headlines

Mobile Dev DeNA Wants To Make Its “Relationship” With Nintendo “Even Better” Going Forward

Nintendo Dena

Nintendo’s mobile partner DeNA – known for past releases such as Miitomo, Super Mario Run and Fire Emblem Heroes – has been quizzed about the future plans for the “Nintendo Alliance” during a Q&A session of its fourth-quarter earnings results.

At the moment, it apparently doesn’t have any information to share right now but says it maintains a good relationship with its fellow Japanese company. Additionally, it wants to make its already “good relationship” with Nintendo “even better” going forth. Here are the full questions and answers:

Question 10. What are the plans for the future, such as new titles, in the Nintendo alliance?

A10. We do not have any additional information to share at this time, but we continue to have a good relationship.

Question 13. Please share the significance behind the capital & business alliance with Nintendo.

A13. There has been no change to this important relationship. We will continue to make use of our strengths and make the good relationship with Nintendo even better going forward.

Although there’s not been much from Nintendo in recent times on the mobile front (that’s excluding an onslaught of Fire Emblem Heroes and Mario Kart Tour updates), earlier this year in March it announced a new partnership with the Pokémon GO creator Niantic to develop a “series of apps” together.

The first one will be based on the Pikmin franchise and will combine Niantic’s AR-tech with Nintendo’s beloved characters. It’s currently scheduled to launch globally later this year.

How would you feel about more Nintendo-themed mobile games and even apps? What series would you like to see adapted? Leave your thoughts down below.

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This post originally appeared on Nintendo Life | Latest News

Donald Trump made a better president than Joe Biden and Barack Obama – ‘Gets no credit’

Donald Trump says he is ‘looking at’ a 2024 presidential run

In his latest book, ‘Trump: The Hidden Halo’, Simon Dolan, has separated the man from his actions and has outlined Mr Trump’s surprising list of accomplishments. Writing the book, Mr Dolan set out to examine why the New York tycoon turned president appealed to millions of American voters.
He suggested: “On a lot of metrics he did do a better job than for example Obama, who was obviously a career politician and certainly is doing a better job than Biden or Kamala Harris or whoever is running the country.

“For example, the peace deals in the Middle East – that gets barely a mention and yet this is something fundamental to western politics for the last 70 years – and yet he has managed to broker those peace deals.

“He has no credit for it whatsoever.”

In January 2020, Mr Trump launched the “Peace to Prosperity” plan, set to resolve the Israeli Palestinian conflict which has been raging on various levels for over 100 years.

Mr Dolan added that the Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement was one of Mr Trump’s biggest achievements as it had the ability to save lives.

Donald Trump better than Joe Biden and Barack Obama

Donald Trump made a better president than most politicians, Mr Dolan said (Image: Getty Images)

Donald Trump did better on a a lot of metrics

Donald Trump did better on a lot of metrics than Obama says Mr Dolan (Image: Getty Images)

Speaking further on Mr Trump’s achievements, the British businessman indicated that another of the former president’s accomplishments was that “he didn’t start any new wars”.

According to Mr Dolan, Mr Trump successfully withdrew troops from Syria, pacified North Korea, negotiated peace deals across the Middle East and was nominated for a Nobel Peace prize on four separate occasions.

It is true that Donald Trump did not start any new wars in foreign countries, although conflicts did continue under his administration in Yemen, Somalia and Niger.

In addition, Mr Trump received severe backlash after the killing of Iranian General, Qasem Soleimani.

Donald Trump further made history as the first sitting president to step foot in North Korea, which has been particularly hostile towards the US since the Korean war ended in 1953.

Mr Dolan also spoke on why he was so popular with American voters.

READ MORE: Joe Biden’s ‘suitable’ employment plan rubbished by social media

Donald Trump thumbs up pose

Donald Trump didn’t start any new wars (Image: Getty Images)

Joe Biden's cabinet

Joe Biden’s cabinet (Image: Express)

He said: “I think what he managed to do was to engage with a section of the population that possibly had not voted before and possibly had not voted Republican before.

“And the way he managed to do it was that he spoke in their language.

“His policies were basically common sense, for example building the border wall – you’ve got a wall around your house – if you don’t have borders you no longer have a country.

“Same with the economy. We just want to create jobs and get rid of regulations.

“It’s a simple thing he came up with – if you want to introduce a new regulation you’ve got to get rid of two old ones.

“These are really simple things that people understood and they said ‘yeah I can vote for that’, as opposed to the politics of old.”

The divisive 45th President of the United States who, according to his own website, launched “the most extraordinary political movement in history”, left office in January after an unsuccessful campaign against Democratic rival Joe Biden.

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Donald Trump rally

Donald Trump amassed thousands of voters (Image: Getty Images)

Donald Trump meets Kim Jong-un

Donald Trump was the first sitting president to enter North Korea (Image: Getty images)

Mr Trump’s administration exited on a particularly sour note after Capitol riots saw a mob of the Republican supporters attempt to overturn the 2020 US election defeat.

Discussing his legacy, Mr Dolan suggested that, in the short term, Mr Trump will be remembered unfavourably.

He opined: “I think his legacy in my mind was that he is actually a very successful president.

“What he’ll probably end up being remembered for is the president who was impeached twice and led an insurrection, which is not true.

“If that was an insurrection, that was the lamest insurrection you’ve ever seen in your life.

“Then when you look at Biden who was inaugurated behind closed doors with 50,000 troops in front of him and never made a state of the Union address until just recently – one looks like an insurrection and the other one was called an instruction.”

Mr Dolan added that if we could fast forward 30 years then the public might see a different side of Donald Trump.

Donald Trump political rally

Donald Trump political rally draws thousands of voters (Image: Getty Images)

He said: “He did things differently and he’ll always be remembered as eccentric and all the other things but when a period of time has gone that you’ve forgotten the personality or become numb to the personality, then I think his achievements will be remembered in a respectful way.”

Last week, Mr Trump announced that he was “beyond seriously” considering another run for the presidency in 2024 which he insisted would make his supporters “very happy”.

In an excerpt from an interview with Candace Owens at The Hill, Mr Trump said: “I look forward to doing an announcement at the right time.”

He added: “As you know, it’s very early. But I think people are going to be very, very happy when I make a certain announcement.”

Recent reports suggest that Florida governor Ron DeSantis is being considered as a running mate for Mr Trump.

Donald Trump and Joe Biden

Donald Trump made a better president than Joe Biden says Simon Dolan (Image: Getty Images)

Speaking just before Mr Trump’s remarks were announced, Mr Dolan thought that another run would be unlikely.

He said: “I think at that stage [2024] he’ll be 78 and I don’t think he could stand losing either, I really don’t.

“I think that would kill him, possibly literally.

“I think he’s probably going to have more fun being kingmaker and I think he’ll probably put his weight behind DeSantis.”

He added: “I predict that the Republicans will take back the house and the Senate and then DeSantis will run in 24 and win.

“If he’s running against Kamala Harris then he’s certainly going to win.

“It’s difficult to see who else would run on the Democrat side assuming Biden is not still president by then but I don’t think anyone still seriously believes that.

“He’s [Biden’s] obviously on the decline, he’s obviously got something wrong with him.”

Simon Dolan is worth more than £200m according to the Sunday Times Rich list and has a vast business empire spanning areas such as accountancy, aviation and motorsport.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: World Feed