Batman: Arkham Knight – My Favourite DC Easter Eggs

I haven’t done one of these before, but let’s make use of the PS4’s screenshot ability and make a list of my favourite DC Universe easter eggs in the latest game in the Arkham series. How’s that for an intro? Not too long, straight to the point. Okidoki then, in no particular order…

I was sure I also took a screenshot of an IM conversation between Oracle, Black Canary and Huntress, with an eye catching ‘Birds of Prey’ wallpaper. But, it doesn’t seem to be there. Oh well. Do you know of any that I missed? Let me know!

#ShenmuE3 and other things…

Hello again. I apologise for the slight delay. But now I have something to say, so I’m back.

So, where to begin? How about that little announcement of the SHENMUE III Kickstarter? Hmmm?

Oh my. We did it. #SaveShenmue worked. But, we still need to raise a lot of money. There are scaremongering reports out there that Sony have deceived us, and that they are secretly funding Shenmue III. This is not the case; Sony are merely helping with promotion and conversion from PC to PS4. Another falsehood is that Yu Suzuki and YSnet have fully funded Shenmue III already. Again, not true; $2,000,000 was the MINIMUM required to make Shenmue III a reality, but that would be a very basic Shenmue III. To make the Shenmue III that Yu, I, and everyone wants to experience, a minimum of $10,000,000 is required. At the time of writing this, $3,527,439 has been raised so far. So, we have a third of the funding so far… but still a long way to go. We can do this! One more big #SaveShenmue push is coming this Friday, the 3rd of July. Be heard on the third. Spread the word.

What else? Everything else pales in comparison, really. Ummmmm… I’m back on my diet. I’ve lost 6.5lbs so far, in two weeks. I get weighed on Thursday morning, so we’ll see how I’ve done this time.

Another Kickstarter that I backed, Yooka-Laylee, met all its stretch goals. I’m looking forward to that. Look out for my name in the credits. 😛

Ummm… oh, I just got an email. Arkham Knight has just been dispatched. Yay. I’ll be playing that tomorrow. I’ll post my thoughts later.

Splatoon is awesome. There’s that.

Anything else? Let’s see. Shenmue III, back on diet, Yooka-Laylee, we’re having another baby, Arkham Knight is coming tomorrow, Splatoon is awesome… no, I can’t think of anything else. Except that I’m thinking of starting streaming again, and also starting a Facebook page for my gaming exploits. I’ll give the blog another shot before I decide on that last one, though.

I’ll post again soon. See ya.

Custom Game Covers

I’ve been meaning to do this post for aaaaaages, but I just never got around to it. As such, I’ve neglected the site for over a month. Whoops! Anyhoo…

I bought Batman: Arkham Origins without a case.



It just so happened that I had a spare PS3 case, as I was sent one with a PS+ 3 month code in it. So, I searched The Cover Project for a Arkham Origins insert that I could print out. Alas, there was none to be found. And searching Google returned results I wasn’t very happy with. I was going to have to make my own.

I managed to find a good looking PS3 cover template for Photoshop, so I had a good starting point. I then started looking for Batman: Arkham Origins wallpapers and logos, but realised I wanted to try something else.

I had one PS3 case that had a swing tray in it; the Uncharted 3 that came bundled with my PS3 had a blu-ray of Faster in it, for some reason. So, I threw the blu-ray out and swapped Uncharted 3 into the spare case, so that Arkham Origins could go in the case with the swing tray. I then bought a double swing tray from eBay to replace the single one. Now I had a 3 disc PS3 case. My plan had changed; now I would make a case for all three Arkham games.

I found a high-res logo for Batman: Arkham Collection, which combines the three logo styles and colour schemes.

Batman: Arkham Collection logo

Batman: Arkham Collection logo

I couldn’t find the font for the “Arkham ****” title, but it looks a lot like Times New Roman. So, I added the three game titles below the logo… but it didn’t look quite right. I ended up erasing the “Arkham Collection” from the cover.

As for the background art, I really liked the Arkham City artwork style. It also suited me better as it would use less ink, with everything being dark on light. I had two wallpapers I liked already; Batman and Joker. I did originally want to add Harley Quinn and The Riddler too, but it just looked too cluttered.

So, I put it all together, added some drop shadows, and…

Batman: Arkham Collection cover

My finished Batman: Arkham Collection cover

I was pretty pleased with this cover. But then I realised something else; I really hated the old-style PS3 covers. It was especially apparent when seeing Uncharted 2 and 3 together on my rack.

Ugh. Just... ugh...

Ugh. Just… ugh…

So, I decided I’d make a similar Uncharted trilogy case. I scoured eBay for PS3 cases with the swing tray clips, and I found one listing that had such a case as its preview image. I fired off a few questions, and the seller told me he’d never realised. Once he checked his stock and confirmed all his cases had such clips, I ordered one. I also ordered another of those double swing trays.

I started the cover by looking for a suitable background. I’d already attempted making new Uncharted covers in the past (I had been inspired by a minimalistic approach), so I thought about reusing them and merging all three into one.

But no… I wanted them to match the rest of the covers, and at least look like a retail one. Instead, I found a wallpaper I liked.

Uncharted wallpaper

Uncharted wallpaper

I already had the Uncharted font from the previous covers I made, so I created the title. I then used another font to add ‘Trilogy’. Once it was put together, it looked a bit bland. I added some little descriptions of the games on the back, along with the original logos. I also had to darken the wallpaper for contrast. And again, I was pleased with the end result.

My finished Uncharted Trilogy cover

My finished Uncharted Trilogy cover

I found that, not only were my games looking better, but also that I was saving space on my media rack for more games… which is always a good thing.

I won’t go into detail with the rest of them, so here they are.

And that’s that. There are others that I wouldn’t mind doing; perhaps the Pikmin trilogy for Wii/Wii U, or LittleBigPlanet 1, 2 and Karting on PS3. We’ll see what the future holds.

Went for a walk, lost weight, and thought about writing again… (not at the same time)

We did it. Naomi and I took part in the St. John’s Hospice 14km Moonlight Walk this morning, with myself as a marshal, setting off from the hospice at midnight. And now I’m knackered. But we did it, and I’m proud to be able to say that we didn’t stop until we got back to the hospice.

The route for the 14km walk. It looks bigger on a map, for some reason.

The route for the 14km walk. It looks bigger on a map, for some reason.

Naomi was sponsored for the event, and has raised £190 so far, with at least £50 yet to be collected. I’m really pleased that we did it, and am hoping that I’ll have lost sufficient weight by next year to make the next one a bit easier.

A bit of an update on the weight loss; we’ve quit the Slimming World group. But we are continuing to do it online instead. I have lost around 20lbs so far, and that’s too big a result to give up on. We did have fish & chips yesterday as a treat… but I think we burned off the calories.

And finally, I’ve been thinking of writing again. A couple of years ago, I started writing opinion pieces and game reviews for Push Start… such as this one, and that one. It didn’t work out too well for me, as I was finding myself unable to deliver content regularly, and I didn’t have time to play games long enough to be able to review them. I’ve toyed with asking Plum of Zombies Ate My Games (who have covered my 1up Beads superhero competition) if she would appreciate me writing new opinion pieces, but I don’t want to get myself that same position I was in with Push Start. So, I’ve decided I’m going to write them as and when I feel like it and just publish them here. That way, the only people I can disappoint are my readers.

Then again, if you’re actually reading this, you probably don’t expect much from me anyway.

E3 2014 – The Good, The Bad, and The Boring

Like many other gamers around the world, I watched the Microsoft and Sony E3 presentations (the only two that really interest me at the moment, though if Nintendo show a new Zelda then I’ll probably get a Wii U ASAP). So first up, I’ll talk about the bad; there was no announcement of Shenmue HD or Shenmue 3. But that’s okay, I wasn’t expecting it anyway. Some fans immediately vented their disappointment via Twitter, but Adam Boyes himself responded with something that fills me with hope: So… yeah. Cool. That’s actually an acknowledgement as far as I am concerned. It’s akin to saying “We’re working on it”. Which is far better than Phil Spencer’s attitude: And next, the boring. Guns. Guns. Guns. Guns. Guns. Cars. Guns. Guns. Guns. Yawn. That’s pretty much how the Microsoft presentation went for me. And while Sony’s was better, there was still little in the way of exclusives to get me excited. But there were some good moments for me. I’ll start with Microsoft. Oh my. Sunset Overdrive looks… well, just so fun!

And I was pleased to see the return of an old favourite of mine:

Unfortunately for Microsoft, they were the only exclusives that interested me. But Sony didn’t perform much better…

On the PS4, I’m looking forward to the next instalment in my favourite franchise of the last generation:

As well as last year’s Game of the Year making it’s way over with shiny new graphics:

And Sackboy is bringing his new friends:

And as for multi-plats, Sony showed off the one I’m most anticipating:

Whereas Microsoft revealed a sequel to Miss Croft’s reboot:

All nice. But Sony also revealed the return of a game I absolutely fell in love with when I first played it. A game from a now-defunct studio (thanks Disney!). A game from one of the greatest adventure game writers ever (sorry Jane Jenson, I still love you). Ladies and gentlemen… Manny is back!

Grim Fandango on PS4 and Vita? I can't even...

Grim Fandango on PS4 and Vita? I can’t even…

So, that’s all I have to say right now about that. If Nintendo announce anything that gets me excited, I’ll add it later. And that’s HOW, for NOW!

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