Sony’s new PlayLink brings mobile and console gaming together

Update: We’ve had a chance to try four of the five games Sony is releasing for PlayLink out for ourselves on the show-floor at this year’s show. Check out our impressions of That’s You!, Hidden Agenda, Frantics, and Knowledge is Power down below. 

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At its E3 conference this year, Sony has announced a new collection of smartphone-controlled games designed to entertain the whole family, including those who might not usually play games.

Under the umbrella PlayLink, these games are played on the PlayStation 4 console, but controlled via an iOS or Android smartphone rather than the DualShock controller. The concept is fairly similar to Jackbox Party games, which allows several players to connect over their smartphones and play short but addictive party games together.

The lineup of games at the moment is fairly small but includes the quiz games That’s You!, and Knowledge is Power. There’s also a Heavy Rain style adventure game called Hidden Agenda.

Meanwhile, Frantics is a multiplayer platform game where you tilt your phone to control a character on screen, and there’s also a new Singstar title called Singstar Celebration.

Mobile madness

We had a chance to try out four of the five games on the show floor.

First up was Hidden Agenda. Along with three other players, we played a mission as a cop investigating a missing person. Initially the demo started by offering us simple choices of how to proceed in the mission which we would each vote on using our phones.

However, before long one player had been secretly shown a ‘hidden agenda’ on their phone screen, which meant that they were trying to influence the story in a certain direction without giving this away to the rest of the group.

Although the game story’s mature themes seemed a little at odds with the group of us using our phones to vote, Hidden Agenda feels like it has a lot of potential for sabotage and intrigue.

Next up was Frantics, a game where you tilt your phone to control a character on screen as they compete with three other players. While the games were fun overall, we didn’t feel as though the control scheme particularly suited the smartphone controller, and there were points where we wished we were using a standard PS4 controller.

Knowledge is Power was a particularly strong game in the lineup. At first glance it appeared to be a fairly simple quiz game were everyone used their phones to pick between four available answers to each question, but after each round players would gain special abilities to disrupt their opponents.

Finally, That’s You! was a quiz game where players were asked subjective questions about each other. Points were gained not for getting the answers right, but for guessing the same answer as everyone else. One standout question was simply, “Who is most likely to taser themself while attempting an arrest?” We could imagine this game being especially fun with friends.

It’s definitely an interesting mobile approach from PlayStation (one that actually seems like something Nintendo should have considered rather than its IP-driven standalone titles).

Many of the games really benefitted from giving each player their own screen, and being able to play with phones rather than controllers should help larger groups play, rather than needing to rely on people having a large number of controllers.

That’s You! will be the first game to be released free to all PlayStation Plus members on July 4. You can see the trailer for yourself below:

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Dell Launches New Inspiron AIOs and Gaming Desktop at Computex 2017

Dell Inspiron 27 7000

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Dell has launched two new Inspiron AIOs
  • It has also launched a new Inspiron Gaming Desktop
  • Dell has also refreshed the XPS 27 AIO

Computex 2017 is underway, and Dell has launched two new AIOs and one new Gaming Desktop updating its Inspiron lineup further. The new line-up includes Inspiron 27 7000 AIO, Inspiron 24 5000 AIO, and a new Inspiron Gaming Desktop. The company has also updated its XPS 27 AIO to make it more VR compatible.

Dell Inspiron 27 7000 and Inspiron 24 5000

AIOs Starting with the new models, the Inspiron 27 7000 and Inspiron 24 5000 both sport edge-to-edge displays with what Dell likes to call the InfinityEdge display technology, and they are VR ready. The Inspiron 27 7000 AIO sports a 27-inch 4K UHD display and offers the latest multi-core Ryzen AMD processors and AMD Polaris RX500 Series graphics. It runs on Windows 10 with Hello support, has a USB Type-C 3.1 port, and comes with Dual Drive options with SSD storage. The Dell Inspiron 27 7000 AIO is available in China on Dell.com and at select retailers starting at $999.99 (roughly Rs. 64,600). The all-in-one will be made available worldwide in the coming weeks.Dell Launches New Inspiron AIOs and Gaming Desktop at Computex 2017

Coming to the Inspiron 24 5000 AIO, the desktop offers a 24-inch Infinity Edge IOS full-HD display. it is powered by the latest seventh generation AMD processor and AMD Radeon R560 graphics. It also brings Windows Hello support, Cortana with far-field speech recognition, USB Type-C 3.1 and Dual Drive options with SSD storage. The device is available in China starting at $699.99 (roughly Rs. 45,200), and will be made available worldwide in the coming weeks. Both the devices are claimed to be VR ready.

Dell Inspiron Gaming Desktop

The Inspiron Gaming desktop runs on Windows 10 and sports the latest AMD multi-core Ryzen processors featuring SenseMI, which is said to optimise power consumption, task routing, and clock speeds to deliver more responsiveness and performance whether it’s gaming, virtual reality, or streaming. For keeping the system cool, Dell has introduced thermally optimised airflow routing. It has Polar Blue LED lightning, and supports HTC and Oculus VR headsets. Discrete graphics card options include Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 and AMD Radeon RX 580, and the desktop offers up to 32GB DDR4 memory. Ports include USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C port and up to six SuperSpeed USB 3.1 Gen one ports. Power supply options are up to 850 watts for supporting dual discrete graphics, and a selection of high-capacity hard drives with responsive SSD and dual-drive options plus up to five bays for future storage upgrades is also provided. The desktop is available in China starting at $599.99 (roughly Rs. 38,700), and will be made available worldwide in the coming weeks.

dellgaming main dell

Dell Inspiron Gaming Desktop

Dell XPS 27 AIO

Lastly, Dell has also refreshed its XPS 27 AIO with new graphics and CPU to make it more VR compatible. The company brings support of up to Intel Core i7-7700 processors, and AMD RX 570 GPUs. The AIO has a 27-inch 4K UHD display and connectivity options include Wi-Fi 802.11ac, a GbE port, five USB 3.0 Type-A headers, one HDMI output, one DisplayPort 1.2, two Thunderbolt 3 ports (USB Type-C), an SD/MMC card reader, a 720p webcam with an IR sensor for facial recognition, and a microphone.

There’s a non-touch model priced at $1,999.99 (roughly Rs. 129,200) and it comes with a 2TB hard drive and 32GB of M.2 SATA SSD cache. The higher-end touchscreen model is priced at $2,649.99 (roughly Rs. 171,300), and it comes with a 512GB, PCIe SSD. Both the AIOs are packed with 16GB RAM that can be configured up to 64GB.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Launched as 'World's Slimmest Gaming Laptop With GeForce GTX 1080' at Computex 2017

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Oppo F3 is priced at 19,990
  • It was launched earlier this month in India
  • The Black Edition will be launched on June 4

Apart from a host of laptops and tablets, Asus has also amped up its Republic of Gamers product lineup at Computex 2017 in Taipei. This includes the “world’s slimmest gaming laptop with a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080”, the Asus ROG Zephyrus (GX501VI), and a new ROG Swift PG35VQ gaming monitor as well. At the ROG Computex event, Asus also unveiled a colourful Strix Fusion headset and a slick USB monitor called ZenScreen as well.

Asus ROG Zephyrus Launched as 'World's Slimmest Gaming Laptop With GeForce GTX 1080' at Computex 2017

Starting with the big news, Asus’s ROG Zephyrus is a laptop built for gamers and is thinner than all the ROG laptops launched before. It boasts of high-end gaming hardware with support for Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 graphics, seventh generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor, an optional 120Hz wide-view display, and it ships with the latest Windows 10 Creators Update. During intensive gaming sessions, Asus claims the ROG Zephyrus maintains its temperature with a new ‘Active Aerodynamic System’ air-flow design crammed into a 16.9 -17.9mm chassis. Asus claims that this new flexible system allows for 20 percent more airflow than before. The laptop weighs only 2.2kgs, and sports of a RGB keyboard as well.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p01VA7qZnfE?ecver=2]

The ROG Zephyrus’ display is at 15.6-inch (1920×1080 pixels) and supports up to 24GB of DDR4 RAM. The laptop offers 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB of M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD storage options. Ports include a Thunderbolt 3 Type-C, four USB 3.1 Type-A, HDMI 2.0 (for VR), and a 3.5mm headset opening. With respect to the keyboard design, the buttons are moved up front for better cooling management and make it feel more like a desktop system. The keyboard, as mentioned, has RGB lightning, and features anti-ghosting keys that can support up to 30 keys pressed at the same time.

 

Asus has launched two variants of the ROG Zephyrus, however, it does not properly specify the differences in the two, though one variant is speculated to downgrade the graphics to a GeForce GTX 1070 card. The ROG Zephyrus GX501VI variant is priced starting at $2699 (roughly Rs. 174,200) and the ROG Zephyrus GX501VS variant is priced starting at $2299 (roughly Rs. 148,400). Both the variants will be available at the end of June in the USA and Canada.

At the ROG event, Asus also launched the ROG Swift PG35VQ gaming monitor that has a quantum dot 3440×1440 pixels LCD display with HDR support. The refresh rate is pegged at an impressive 200Hz and it comes with G-sync support. There’s no word on pricing or availability. Alongside, Asus also launched the Strix Fusion headset with lights that can be configured to blink in sync with your fellow gamer. This is expected to ship sometime in the third quarter.

Lastly, it also launched a 15.6-inch 1080p USB monitor called ZenScreen. It comes with a pen to prop up the monitor, but do note that the ZenScreen does not have a touchscreen display nor does it support stylus. The ZenScreen is priced at $249 (roughly Rs. 16,000), and will launch in Taiwan first, with other markets to follow eventually.

Logitech Introduces World's First Wireless Charging Mousepad, Two New Gaming Mice

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Powerplay mousepad will continually charge your wireless mouse
  • Logitech G903 and G703 wireless gaming mouse also announced
  • Powerplay is will cost around $100 (roughly Rs. 6,433)

While we’ve been distracted by the benefits of wireless charging technology for smartphones, Logitech has found a very practical use for it in the form of a mousepad. The Logitech G Powerplay is the world’s first wireless charging system for gaming mice, which is being launched alongside two new flagship gaming mice Logitech G903 and G703. The Logitech Powerplay is priced around $100 (roughly Rs. 6,433) and will be available some time in August, while the Logitech G903 and G703 wireless gaming mice are priced at $150 (roughly Rs. 9,650) and $100, respectively and will be available in June. India pricing and availability are yet to be known.

Logitech Introduces World's First Wireless Charging Mousepad, Two New Gaming Mice

Logitech G, a brand of Logitech, says that Powerplay is a departure from existing wireless charging standards and is designed to deliver uninterrupted charging over surface of the mousepad, which essentially means your wireless mouse will constantly be charged when in use. The wireless charging system uses an application of electromagnetic resonance that creates an energy field on the surface of the 275x320mm mousepad. Notably, the company also says that this will not hamper or cause any interference with the mouse’s functionality.

“For decades, we’ve pioneered development in wireless gaming, and our new Powerplay and Lightspeed wireless technologies continue this commitment to wireless superiority,” said Ujesh Desai, vice president and general manager of Logitech G. “With Powerplay, Lightspeed and our new G903 and G703 mice, you’ll get unbeatable precision, lag-free performance and infinite power, which gives gamers the highest-quality experience.”

logitech g903 mouse logitech

The new Powerplay mousepad is accompanied with two new wireless gaming mice, Logitech G903 and G703. Logitech says the mice come equipped with PMW3366 optical sensor which has zero smoothing, filtering or acceleration across the entire DPI range (200-12,000 DPI) for accurate tracking and consistent responsiveness, even at speeds over 400 IPS.

In terms of looks, the mice have a pretty intimidating body design with advanced mechanical button tensioning that give the left and right mouse buttons a good feel, response and consistency. The buttons are also more durable with up to 50 million click switches. Despite its solid feel, the mice have been designed to give a perfect grip, with rubber grips on either sides for greater control. Gamers can assign the buttons with custom game commands using Logitech Gaming Software (LGS).

Lastly, at the heart of both the Powerplay mousepad and the gaming mice is Logitech G’s Lightspeed wireless technology that delivers competition-level responsiveness at speeds faster than many competitive wired gaming mice.