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One Cog Turning available for preorder!

I am absolutely thrilled to announce my debut novel One Cog Turning is now available for preorder! Follow this link to ensure you don’t miss out! 

One Cog Turning Preorder
The book will officially launch on the 15th of July at the Edge-Lit 6 convention in Derby, where yours truly will be signing copies and doing a reading, so if you’re in the neighbourhood drop on by!

Greetings Traveller

Hello World! Been playing a lot of Hearthstone recently and fallen in, equal parts, love and hate with it.

I’m not one to usually play online against opponents but, hell, that’s kinda the point of the game. 

Over the years my friends have told me about toxic game communities but by god they didn’t prepare me for the shower of arseholes you encounter. The fact that some players can make such innocent emotes as, “thank you” and “Well Played” into snarky affronts that induce tablet chucking levels of annoyance is beyond belief!

To all the decent players out there, the ones who greet you at the start of the match and offer a “Well Played” at the end regardless of whether they have won or lost, may I thank you for making playing ranked bearable.  To Blizzard, just take the poxy emotes away, if only to save my now battered iPad from further harm. 

Rant over.

Till next time!

Drake’s Curtain Call

Meant to put this up a lot sooner but…reasons.

I first encountered Nathan Drake six years ago. A colleague at the time had been singing the praises of the PS3 and I decided to grab one. it came with a copy of Uncharted 2 and I was blown away.
The graphics, the gameplay, the music; but most of all the nigh on seamless intergration of big set pieces, action that in lesser game would have been portrayed as cut scenes. From minute one I was hooked.
That first impression meant any subsequent installments had a lot to live up to. Uncharted 3 came and went. I enjoyed it but…that moment of eyes wide, head rocked back amazement never came.
Still I got my copy of Uncharted 4: A Thieves End, heart racing a little. I dashed home fired up the PS4 and held my breath.
Now I think a large amount of negative game reviews on the net are down to game publishers incessant hype machines jacking our expectations up to a million. In my old age I tend to discount all the analysis, the disecting of every seond of a games newest trailer, and approach my purchases with a clean head.
So was Uncharted 4 quite what I hoped it would be? No and yes.
Everything was there. A great score, solid gameplay, an enjoyable—if predictable—story. All of this melding together beautifully. But it wasn’t ground breaking.
For one I felt the graphics hadn’t changed too much from UC2. Admittedly that is an amazingly high standard but it wasn’t the benchmark for PS4 graphics I would have liked. The one exception I found was the incredible attention to detail in regrds to facial expressions and body language, these were excellent.
As I mentioned, the story is ok. The addition of Nathan’s brother, Sam, into the cast was a good one. The sparky banter and one liners flew thorugh the air like bonfire night. But if you can’t see the supposed twist near the end…well…
The game doesn’t offer much in the way of replay vlaue unless (like myself) you are a trophy whore, or really enjoy the multiplayer.
As any player of Uncharted would expect the usual mix of gunning, running, platforming and stealth were all in evidence. Though the stealth elements were a little too long and numerous for my taste.
After I finished the game, in spite of my above bithcing, I had a smile on my face. So what if it wasn’t Earth shattering? It does what it does very well. I suppose it’s the same reason Indiana Jones will always be a perennial hit; both are unabashed, through and through, adventure stories. No existential navel gazing here, thank you very much.
For the ten or so hours it took me to complete the main story I was at peace, wrapped up in a world were swarms of machine gun toting enemies can be brought to heel by a man, a gun and a quick wit.
So long Drake. You made me smile. And in todays world if that isn’e worth the price of admission I don’t know what is.

Up and (kinda) running!

Welcome to anyone who has came here intentionally, or stumbled across me.

I am an author whose first novel has just been chosen for publication by the lovely people at Luna Press Publishing, having previously been published in their anthology ‘Beyond Realities 2015’. Please check out their website to see their wares (and a picture of my mug on the authors page!), they’re fabulous, trust me.

My  original intention was to get this site going to tie in with the official announcement on the 1st of May, but in a typical  creative brain freeze I became obsessed with creating my own banner. But today I thought stuff it and here we are.

Anyways, keep coming back for news, short stories, reviews and so on and so forth. Gonna try my hardest to update regularly.

Till next time.

Ant