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Talking Point: Everyone Has A Bad Game They Love, So What’s Yours?

Lord of the Rings SNES© Nintendo Life

Recently, I set out on a quest to track down a copy of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings: Volume 1 for the Super Nintendo – a game that I awarded a paltry 3/10 to some time ago. I didn’t seek out a copy as a strange kind of punishment, or to be ironic – I wanted to re-own it because, despite being pretty terrible, I’ve got a genuine, heartfelt connection with it.

Back in 1994, when Lord of the Rings originally hit the SNES, I was already a seasoned fan of the acclaimed fantasy series. My introduction to Tolkien’s world wasn’t the book trilogy – or even the child-friendly prequel novel, The Hobbit – but Ralph Bakshi’s 1978 animated version of the first two Lord of the Rings books – The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers – and, following this rather uneven (but still beloved) primer to Middle-earth, I read the original books a few years later. By the time I’d hit my teenage years, I was hungry to consume as much media relating to the series as possible – which, back in the early ’90s, wasn’t as easy as you might assume (Peter Jackson’s blockbuster movies were still some way off).

As you can imagine, I was keen to get my hands on Lord of the Rings for the SNES, despite the only other game based on the series that I’d played – War in Middle-earth on my Atari ST – being something of a disappointment. Interplay, the company behind the SNES outing, had already created two Lord of the Rings games for personal computers, but I’d only seen screenshots in magazines and had never actually played them. Therefore, I was entering into the SNES version with a degree of optimism – optimism which only increased the more I read about the grand scope of the game in magazine previews of the period.

The release of Lord of the Rings: Volume 1 was delayed somewhat, and by the time it eventually arrived in 1994, excitement was building for the next generation of gaming, with the 3DO and Atari Jaguar already available and the Sony PlayStation and Sega Saturn both looming on the horizon. Still, I was a committed fan and the fact that Interplay’s SNES game borrowed heavily from the 1978 animated film only cemented my desire to actually play it.

However, removing my rose-tinted specs just for a moment, I was aware even then that this was not a good video game. The controls were stiff, the environments dull and the gameplay painfully repetitive. There wasn’t even a battery backup option, so you had to input an annoyingly laid-out password every time you wanted to continue your adventure. And, as the ‘Volume 1’ in the title suggests, this wasn’t even the full story – it ended the moment you reached Rivendell, which meant that a whole host of other amazing moments in the books were missing. Still, at least the music was good – in fact, I’d argue that it’s one of the best soundtracks on the SNES.

Despite its obvious, crippling failings, I persevered. This might have been because, back in the mid-’90s, I had little in the way of disposable income (I was still at school) so I had to make sure I got the maximum amount of enjoyment and entertainment from every game I purchased – even if it was terrible. However, I still feel that my longstanding connection to the world of Middle-earth is what really convinced me to keep on going; I still love Tolkien’s works (even after two decades over what could charitably be described as over-exposure in the wake of Jackson’s movies) but Lord of the Rings: Volume 1 came at a time when Frodo, Samwise and Gandalf were merely fringe players in the world of popular culture, and the fact that they starred in a game on my SNES somehow made the whole venture feel a lot more appealing than it actually was.

And here we are, in 2021. Many years after selling my original game when I jettisoned my SNES collection to purchase a PlayStation (forgive me, Miyamoto!), I’ve gotten around to picking up another copy – not to play, but to merely have in the collection to remind me that not all games have to be stone-cold classics in order for you to love them unconditionally.

What ‘bad’ game do you love beyond all reason? And what’s the story behind that relationship? Let us know with a comment below.

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This post originally posted here Nintendo Life | Latest News

Xbox Design Lab is Back! Personalize Your Next-Gen Controller and Make It Yours

Xbox Design Lab is Back

At Xbox, we believe that providing our fans with choice and opportunities to express themselves is a core part of our mission, empowering players to more closely connect with their gaming experience, express their personalities and individualism, and put their own unique stamp on their Xbox identity. Five years ago, we introduced Xbox Design Lab as a way for our community to design their very own official Xbox Wireless Controllers.  Since then, we have seen hundreds of thousands of unique designs that allow users to express their creativity and bring their inspirations to life. Xbox Design Lab has been there to celebrate milestones, such as birthdays, sports team championships and even marriage proposals, with engraved controllers! Last October, we paused Xbox Design Lab as we prepared for the launch of Xbox Series X|S and our new Xbox Wireless Controller. Today, we are thrilled to announce that Xbox Design Lab is back to help you to once again create a controller that’s unmistakably yours.

What is Xbox Design Lab?

Xbox Design Lab is a customization program that offers different ways to create your own personalized Xbox Wireless Controller. Fans can color-customize nearly all the external parts of the controller including the body, back case, D-pad, bumpers, triggers, thumbsticks, ABXY, View, Menu and Share buttons. With Xbox Design Lab, you can customize a controller to match your creative style, tell a story, or celebrate a special moment. From there, you can further personalize your design with laser engraving to add your name, Gamertag or custom 16-character message. We’ll then hand-make your controller and ship it to your doorstep with free shipping.

What is new with this latest update?

Starting today, our new Xbox Wireless Controllers are now available in Xbox Design Lab. Players will receive all the benefits that come with the newest generation of Xbox Wireless Controllers, including improved ergonomics for a wider range of hand sizes, better cross-device connectivity, easier sharing, and reduced latency.

Players can choose from 18 different available colors for most controller parts and we are introducing new colors like Shock Blue, Pulse Red, and Electric Volt. Most of our color options are made with plastics containing 30% post-consumer recycled (PCR) materials by weight.* These color options will reduce the amount of waste plastic that ends up in landfills and ensure we are all doing our part to take care of the planet. We believe this work is critical and will continue to increase the amount of PCR that we use in our products.  We are also adding a new black-on-color ABXY button option, as well as a new black-on-white color option for the View, Menu and Share buttons.

We have a bold vision for customization through Xbox Design Lab, and this update is just the beginning. Our team is hard at work developing new processes, testing new materials, and innovating so that we can continue to evolve the Xbox Design Lab experience. Over the coming months, we will share more information about new customization opportunities and new ways to personalize your gaming experience.

Now anyone can get a Blue Tick on Twitter, here’s how to get yours

Now anyone can get a Blue Tick on Twitter, here’s how to get yours

The social networking giant had said: “Verification has long been perceived as an endorsement. This perception became worse when we opened up verification for public submissions and verified people who we in no way endorse.” And now, after a lengthy hiatus during which the Blue Tick system has been retooled, Twitter’s new verification process is re-launching for all.

Beginning from Thursday May 20, the new Twitter verification process will start rolling out. Accounts that fall into six different categories will be able to apply for a coveted Twitter Blue Tick. Here are the different categories for Twitter verification…

• Government • Companies, brands and organisations • News organisations and journalists • Entertainment • Sports and gaming • Activists, organisers, and other influential individuals

Those looking to apply for Twitter verification will be able to do so directly in their account settings. If you don’t see an option in the Account Settings tab to apply for a Blue Tick – don’t worry, Twitter is in the process of rolling this out.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Tech Feed

Krispy Kreme to give away a million free doughnuts next week – how to get yours

Krispy Kreme to give away a million free doughnuts next week - how to get yours

The Krispy Kreme offer is valid from 10 to 16 May during store opening hours, and anyone can claim the deal in any UK store.

The doughnut company said that the offer does not include the Krispy Kremes that are sold in supermarkets, service stations, or elsewhere.

Customer cannot either claim the offer through a delivery service, such as Deliveroo, Just Eat, or Uber Eats.

However, shoppers can still purchase a Krispy Kreme doughnut via these apps, but they won’t be able to get it for free.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Life and Style Feed
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Statins side effects: Has yours walking changed? How the drug can affect your mobility

Statins side effects: Has yours walking changed? How the drug can affect your mobility

Generally speaking, most medicines are designed to make you feel better. However, drugs taken orally can come with a risk of side effects, and hundreds of drugs are known to cause oral problems. Could your statins affect your walking?

In a study published in the US National Library of Medicine, statin induced myopathic weakness causing disability was investigated. 

Over the course of assessing patients in a weekly outpatient neurologic rehabilitation clinic, then re-examining those subjects suspected of having a statin-associated myopathy, a likely causal relationship between disabling myopathy and the use of statins was found, said the study.

It continued: “Patients often do not have insight into slowly progressive walking and balance related functional decline, especially when already being treated for a medical problem that can affect gait.

“Changes in mobility may be discounted as part of normal ageing, rather than due to weakness.

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“Muscle biopsies revealed the accumulation of lipid in type I fibres, and one had ragged red fibres that are typical of a mitochondrial myopathy.

“Symptoms and pathology resolved by three months after stopping the statin.”

The study concluded that unsteadiness in walking, especially on uneven surfaces or on changing direction, was the most common complaint in patients on statins.

“They usually could not pinpoint the onset, but their history of daily activities suggested functional changes by six months after the first use of a statin,” the study added.

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“Muscle aches are common, but often are just due to factors other than statins,” says Dr Christopher Cannon, a cardiologist at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

He continued: “Severe muscle damage is rare, occurring in about one in 10,000 people.

“Statin users report sore or aching muscles in the legs, trunk, or arms, or muscle weakness, burning, tenderness, stiffness, or cramping.”

The Yellow Card Scheme allows you to report suspected side effects from any type of medicine you’re taking.

This is run by a medicines safety watchdog called the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

Statins shouldn’t be taken if you have severe liver disease or if blood tests suggest your liver may not be working properly.

This is because statins can affect your liver, and this is more likely to cause serious problems if you already have a severely damaged liver.