Thursday, 8 October 2015

Can Overdog Make Online Gaming Social Again?

Gamers around the world have been connecting to the internet since its inception. It started out expensive (it was so costly to play online games that barely anyone did) and the graphics and gameplay were limited to text driven games. 

Now, gamers can fight each other in first person shooters with outstanding graphics, or they can explore lush vicious worlds in massively online role playing games like World of Warcraft, Guild Wars 2, Wildstar--or many other alternatives. Then, there are other the life-like survival games like Rust, or DayZ, where spontaneous voice-chat and interaction through communication can bring hilarious results. These experiences can also prove to be a frustrating affair that makes gamers lose faith in humanity. In the same vein, insanely popular games like League of Legends have been branded as “toxic” while being saturated with idiots. Even famous supporters of the game like YouTuber Dunkey have seemingly abandoned the game.

Now, in 2015, there are many differences in various gaming communities. With so many games, players often find their friendships drifting apartment due to game preferences, or systems within platforms might force them to play online where they would have preferred to play local (I’m looking at you Halo 5). 

The landscape is changing, and the online gaming experience is constantly shifting, evolving, devolving, and the experience isn’t always as ideal as we want it. Some think gaming is becoming too toxic, or that it’s “not the same” as it was in the glory days where smaller tightly-knit communities thrived. However, it’s not all lost. There are several sites attempting to bring back social interaction in its purest form--sites that want to help forge friendships, support competitive play, and create communities. And then there is an application, Overdog.

Overdog is very different from its competition. For one, it’s an integrated application that you can download on the Xbox one that takes a lot of work out of the equation. Secondly, you don’t have to spend much time browsing other users. Instead, you’re given matches based on your profile of preferred games. You pick the games you want, and some other things you’re interested in, and it matches you up with others with similar profiles. In a sense, it’s very much a gaming matchmaker. Overdog can only get better with more users since it takes such a hands-on approach. 

The VP product of development spoke out on Reddit how the application works. It uses a matchmaking system utilizing Jaccard that provides a stronger experience with the more input a gamer puts in. That way, if a gamer invests time into the application he has to get results. 

I posted a topic on a Xbox forum asking users if they thought Xbox live was as social as it used to be in the days of Halo 3. To my surprise, a majority of the users all agreed that Xbox live social chat and interaction is a pale shadow of what it use to be, whether because the novelty has worn off, or because party chat integration has made voice chat less spontaneous and random and more selective. Why speak with random people when you have friends to talk to already?

In that way, I think Overdog has found a huge target market and attacked it. If Halo 5 is any indicator, many gamers might find themselves gaming on Xbox live alone without split screen options available. Consoles are still a pricey investment, and games too, stretching must higher than $60 retail with DLC expansions becoming relevant if one wants to stay competitive or active in a particular game's progression. 

Speaking of pricing, Overdog also plans on generating revenue by leverage affiliate advertising on the Xbox marketplace by providing users with links to download apps that give discounts, but also provide a kickback to game publishers. Very neat! A win-win situation.

So what do you think? Will Xbox Live become social again? Or has it always been that way? I’ve always loved the social atmosphere of Xbox live. While I’ve spent a lot of time with the PC gaming community in MMORPGS, I’ve always enjoyed the friend system, achievements, and voice chat on Xbox live. The free games with gold aren’t hurting anyone either.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Why You Should Use a VPN


Thursday, 1 October 2015

Nighthawk X8 Best Router On the Market?

The Nighthawk X6 was and still is, a beast of a router. It was the perfect device for large families with multiple devices who needed speed and efficiency. Netgear even did some research conducted by Marketlab, which found that most families have over 12 Wi-Fi devices connected to a network. Now, the Nighthawk X8 AC5300 is the next step up in delivering performance. Let's talk about what kind of power this bad boy can put out.

It's good to hear that the Nighthawk X8 AC5300 still leads the charge with its new tech, as this time around it uses the new second generation XStream platform technology to deliver three tri-band wave channels with two 4x4 5 GHz radios (2.1 Gbps) each and one 4x4 2.4 GHz radio (1 Gbps). The Nighthawk X8 AC5300 is capable of 5.3 Gbps over a wireless signal and powered by a 1.4 GHz dual-core processor.

The X8 is a bit different than the X6, as far as the design. Instead of utilizing eight antennas on the outside (goodbye spaceship) it now uses four antennas on the outside and four in the inside. The four external antennae are active with Wi-Fi amplifiers located in the tips of the antennae. The location of these antennae is very efficient, and unique in reducing signal loss and cross-talk on the board to deliver a new quality of Wi-Fi signal.

There aren't any other routers with this external use of Wi-Fi amplifiers. Netgear's senior director Sandeep thinks this feature and others make the router “outpace any router in the market today.”   He very well might be right, as another notable feature included on the X8 is the six Gigabit Ethernet ports that are great for multi-ethernet cable use.

The Nighthawk X8 also comes with many standard features in common with its predecessors like beamforming, dynamic QoS, VPN, two onboard USB 3.0 ports, and DLNA support. It also utilizes smart connect features.

Harpalani believes that the "Nighthawk Nighthawk X8 AC5300 is the next big wave in Wi-Fi, and it is for people who crave the best networking experience possible."

The Nighthawk X8 AC5300 is made even stronger with pre-flashed VPN software, like Torguard VPN. VPN-enabled routers ensure your entire Wi-Fi network will be encrypted through a VPN server.


Best VPN for India

Censorship on the internet is no joke. It's happening in a lot of countries now with anti-internet freedom legislation popping up like stubborn weeds. India is one such country where sporadic censorship is becoming more common. When it hits, it's often without warning.

By accessing user IP addresses, government officials or anyone monitoring your information can use your information to restrict your access to the internet. Think of VPN enabled internet access, not like a weed killer, but as an entirely new garden without any weeds in it.

VPN technology uses an encrypted tunnel to bypass internet blocks by accessing a VPN server in a remote location where censorship isn't happening. So if you're in India, you can access servers in the United States.

The VPN will hide your traffic, your IP address, and any data you have come in, or out.

While there are many VPN offerings, we think the best choice is Torguard. Other offerings don’t have as strong packages, reasonable pricing, or as many features. Torguard is also super fast since it has over 1200+ servers around the globe.

It also has  multi-platform support on Browsers and any mobile device. We’ve also noted Torguard’s strong privacy policy--they purge logs daily. Torguard also had a recent 24 hour support day where not one request went unanswered. Very cool.

Torguard is perfect for users in India or any users with specific needs stuck behind censorship walls. With Torguard, you can access Stealth VPN technology to hide packet transfers and appear like normal HTTP traffic.

Torguard is the full package. Proxy? Check. OpenVPN? Check. SOCKS5 and Bittorrent Optimized? Sure! Private email? Check.

So what are you waiting for? Don't waste your time, speed, or money on censored content. Bypass restrictions with a VPN!