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  • core_pfield_7
    Gaming, motorsport, cycling, films and web design/development (it's my job)

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  1. Southgate should go and win the World Cup in Qatar to finish the project, and then pass a confident blossoming England team over to Eddie Howe to go win the next Euros in 2024. Simples.
  2. Funnily enough this is on the agenda for the chat today! The head coach is trying to move the old club philosophy of "put all the best players in one team" to make it the best it can be as a team to a more holistic approach about player development and keeping kids in groups/social circles they enjoy playing with to keep them having fun and wanting to play the game each week. The aim is to have a sort of higher/middle/low tier ability wise, but not be so strict about it that a great player couldn't chose to play in the middle team with his mates. Then when they get older and into proper leagues the we'd see where things are at and maybe move things around a bit. He also has a plan to offer an open training group which is totally casual and none team focused for any kids that still want to play on a Thursday at training but don't want to commit to the Saturday match side of things. Sounds quote ambitious and I'm not sure about the detail yet, I'm sure I'll find out later.
  3. I'll find out more tomorrow as I'm meeting up with the head coach for lunch and a chat but I think it'll be fine. As far as I know we're basically going to pool all the same aged kids (and coaches) together rather than our usual separate sub-groups and run a hour of football themed fun and games each week just as a way to keep them active, socialising and interested in the game rather than lots of formal drills or pressure to attend each week. I personally will be off for at least half the summer anyway. Thanks. The girls coach did the final intake of the face-to-face one just before lockdown and I'm the first to do the online one so we said we'd compare notes. I've basically got 3 hour long webinars over a three week period which then unlock a range of online learning resources for each topic, and then some follow on bits on first aid and safeguarding so the FA recommend doing it over a month. We'll see how it goes.
  4. At the risk of posting something too positive... After the pill of bitter disappointment of last night's final (I did really believe we might sneak it home) I woke up feeling pretty deflated/hungover (delete as appropriate) and knowing that I would have to tell my 5yo boy that we hadn't won after he totally crashed out on the sofa at half time. I did and as expected he was disappointed too (in that young child way of sounding sad but not actually acting sad so you never quite know how they feel) and off he went to have his breakfast as usual. About 2 minutes later he then came back into our bedroom dribbling his football and said "Daddy... I'm sad that England didn't win so I'm going to practice extra hard at training so I can help them with a trophy next time". If nothing else this Euros - and Southgate's England - has opened him up to more of the game as he has taken way more interest in matches than ever before with league football, and he seems just more "into football" because of it all which is lovely, especially as at his club he will soon be going from open training to actual teams (one of which I'm managing). We didn't win, but if a few kids get some inspiration from it we didn't lose completely either.
  5. Bit of an update from me... I've posted on the Euros thread about my son coming into me this morning with his football saying he was going to practice extra hard to help England win next time. This tournament has definitely got him more "into football" which is great. He also got his first trophy at the end of season presentation day which he was chuffed with. Truth be told he still isn't very good at it compared to a lot of the others but he's having fun which is all that matters. He, and all the others I have trained with, have come on noticeably over the last few months which is great to see though. At my club we are backing off the training a bit over summer to be a bit more casual due to lots of kids/coaches being unavailable, however I have agreed with the head coach that I will take one of the boys teams on to manage as we split the 57 reception kids into 3 boys teams and girls team to start weekend U6 friendlies against other clubs from September. I've no idea how that will go but we'll see. I'm also booked on to start my FA Level 1 badge online on August 6th so that should all be in place for the start of the season. Fingers crossed.
  6. 17. The Last Campfire (iOS) - Although technically created and released by No Man's Sky developer Hello Games, The Last Campfire was actually a side project by just three members of their team and it is really quite wonderful. Channelling little bits of inspiration and vibe from fantastic titles like Journey, Ori and the Blind Forest and Spiritfarer, this indie puzzle game has bags of character and somber charm. It delivers a narrative about fragility, hope, resilience and kindness via some evocative writing and a beautifully delivered narrator performance by British-Scandinavian voice artist Rachel August. Backed up by fantastic sound design art direction the game is a really polished and tight production. It's not long - I finished it in 5:45 hours - and gameplay wise the puzzles challenge nicely but never frustrate. It was just an exquisite, chilled out experience all round. - 9/10
  7. Been a bit late to the season 5 party but just finished episode 5 and I am absolutely loving it. What a programme this is
  8. I picked this up ages ago but have yet to play it (and was considering it as my next game), but I'll definitely hold on until September now. It can go on the same pile as Cyberpunk in that regard.
  9. 16. Control: Ultimate Edition (PS5) - I'd seen/heard lots of hype around this one before going in which worried me as the same happened with Quantum Break and I was hugely disappointed with it. Thankfully though - while suffering problems of its own - Control is a much better game. I like the story concepts, and the realisation of that X-Files/Twin Peaks vibe, however this is undermined by the actual writing which is pretty abysmal. Plot points often feel rushed with massive unrealistic leaps to get to the next set piece which undermines pretty much all emersion. The characters are on the whole flat and/or dislikable (with the lead Jesse being the worst unfortunately) and the dialogue is often film school level cheesy, by the end I was skipping pretty much all the dialogue where possible. I also completed the Foundation DLC and think on balance I enjoyed it more, partly because it is essentially more gameplay with very little in the way of dialogue/cut scenes or ropey plot. Now while that all sounds - and is - pretty damning, it's not all bad. For its problems in the writing department the gameplay loop is really slick and satisfying, and the production values are great. Linking up the variety of powers and weapons can sometimes make you feel like a proper superhero, and the environment/platforming bits lean into the physics bending stuff enough to keep them interesting. Visually it's impressive. I started on graphics mode on the PS5 with all the ray tracing shinies on and it looks genuinely glorious. The frame rate did suffer though so I played 99% of the game in performance mode enjoying silky smooth 60fps and it felt brilliant. The mission save point/structure give it a really accessible pace, and I found myself often jumping in just for 15-30 minutes sometimes for a blast and still felt like I was achieving something and making progress. Ultimately after a year containing lots of long open world games, this felt like an action packed Remedy sorbet I needed, and I bagged the platinum in about 22 hours ish. As it is I think it's pretty much the definition of a 7/10 game. I just wish they were better at turning their interesting ideas into a decent story. - 7/10
  10. 15. Little Orpheus (iOS) - I'm a bit of a The Chinese Room fanboy, and after seeing this Apple Arcade exclusive come out it was on my radar immediately as something to try when the time was right, and having just bagged 9 months of the service free, that time was now. At its core it is a platform adventure game, focused on a quirky Russian cosmonaut retelling a far-fetched Jules Verne style adventure into the centre of the earth to his skeptical socialist General. The writing (as you would expect from The Chinese Room) is very good and the performances really match the quality and lean into the B-movie vibe. Visually it is also really tight, with some stunning environments, lighting and character/creature animations coming together in a really polished way. Unfortunately however as a game experience I came out of it a little disappointed. The platforming is as basic as it comes really with the main challenge stemming from some dodgy control issues (both touch and PS4 pad suffered the same challenges) and ultimately it just ended up being a little bit dull which is a shame. - 6/10
  11. 14. Tint (Book I) (iOS) - I'm going to mark this off as "completed" as I finished the initial book thinking that was it, and then found out there are at least 3 more to do that have been added so it'll probably be something I drop in and out of over the next year or so on trains, etc... rather than rushing through. This chilled out little game on Apple Arcade focuses on using watercolours to solve puzzles to bring cute origami things to life. The mechanics are all based on colour and mixing, for example working out how you might get your yellow paint to the red to mix the orange you need for a flower. It runs smoothly and is all nicely packaged too. Although very different gameplay wise it has a hint of Gorogoa about it. If you have Apple Arcade why not give it a try. - 7/10
  12. 13. Far: Lone Sails (PS5) - The art style and direction of this little indie puzzler is simply phenomenal and was one of the early draws for me (alongside hearing part of the equally excellent score as part of Jessica Curry’s radio show). It’s a beautiful and charming game. Gameplay wise you play an almost Journey-like cloaked character who sets about navigating their land yacht across a post apocalyptic landscape, picking up resources, sorting issues with your vehicle and clearing the path ahead. It’s a fun, if never particularly taxing, game and only hangs around for a little over two hours in total. With elements of things like Limbo, Inside and Journey in there (although it never reaches those highs) it does deliver a lovely little experience, and at under £5 in the current PS sale it is hard to complain. - 7/10 (image taken from the web)
  13. Got a few months to go on mine but that is about as cheap as I've seen it recently so I'm in for another year. Thanks for the link. EDIT: In fact looking at my orders it was ShopTo I used last time and £39 so really can't complain!
  14. Might have to try Project Cars 3. I’ve never bothered with any of the series previously and didn’t think it was comparable to DC. Will have to give it a whirl.
  15. And that's me done... and with the Platinum Trophy to boot. I clocked in at 67 hours and while I didn't wish it away at the end, I'm kind of glad it didn't ask more of my time as I felt sort of done. Overall I really really enjoyed it. I found the character stories varied and decent enough, and the performances felt very much part of the setting (I know some people have criticised them but I can't see much wrong there). The combat and stealth mechanics were varied, easy to use but fun to master and always pretty satisfying throughout. I also can't overstate how flipping amazing parts of this game look, I'm not sure I've seen anything consistently beautiful over such a large game world previously and Sucker Punch really should give themselves a pat on the back for that if nothing else. On the more negative side I understand - but don't totally agree with - the Ubisoft comparisons, and I think an 'AC: Shogun' would definitely overlap a lot with this game. However I found the entire experience more satisfying than most, if not all, the games from the Ubi stable and even the 'busywork' elements usually just allowed me to seek out more of the gorgeous world to explore (and provide new photo mode opportunities to exploit). However I do wish they gave you a more generous 'fog of war' uncovering radius as the few times I had to ride backwards and forwards in zig zags to uncover areas did grind me in places. Overall very very happy though. It perhaps didn't capture me quite as much as Horizon which I finished earlier in the year, but still a solid placement in my PS4 gen game recommendations list.
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