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Crafty Croft Is Soon To Rise



Crofty’s back, back again. Yes, our world renowned Tomb Raider, Lara Croft is back this year to ease the unbearable cravings of many sequel hungry fans in Rise Of The Tomb Raider. Square Enix (publisher of the reboot in 2013) has partnered up with new co-publisher Microsoft Studios for the next installment, with Crystal Dynamics still leading development for the game that is to be released in the Holiday of this year (2015).

With a new partnership driving this game to try and utilize it’s potential, the real question is what can we expect from this follow-up to the biggest UK launch of 2013? Will standards be maintained or will it diminish the face of action-adventure titles?

Here we go again..

Picking Up From Where We Left Off..

The last time we saw Lara was in the chilling reboot of the series in which she undertook a transformation like no other. After being completely consumed and exploited by the evil of Yamatai (the games blood-curdling setting), Lara had completely altered from a young girl with a fossil brush who ‘hates tombs’, to a tough, extremely resilient survivor, leaping closer to the more profound image she possesses to date.

Our defiant Tomb Raider (screenshot by me)

Our defiant Tomb Raider (screenshot by me)

Throughout the duration of the game the island presented our widely loved protagonist with many obstacles and difficulties. The shear extent of Lara’s struggle, which is portrayed so well thanks to Crystal Dynamics really made players feel like they too were in her rugged brown boots, undergoing every little bit of it with her.

From the Rise Of The Tomb Raider trailer (here) we can see that the ordeal on Yamatai has had repercussions on Lara who has now sought out counseling. Don’t judge the girl, a second or two with one of those power-hungry, deranged inhabitants of Yamatai would be enough to send any poor soul loopy.

Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition

‘gut-wrenching’ – too right! (screenshot by me)

As seen in the trailer Lara is still emotionally scarred by prior events and is constantly fidgeting in her chair, a fine display of anxiety. This in turn still leaves an immense stretch between her more well, human persona to her famously invulnerable one. Game Informers coverage trailer (here) enlighten us that what Crystal Dynamics are trying to achieve is what made the last game so successful and take it further. They don’t want Lara to be more or less a ‘super hero’ but instead portray that there will be times that she will become overwhelmed by the harshness of the environment in which she is adventuring. With this in mind it is becoming more apparent that this sequel has the potential to utterly engage us as it’s predecessor did before, right from the gut-wrenching beginning to the sigh of relief as we reached it’s end. Also, according to Game Informer we should be prepared to be presented with more puzzles in this game in both greater quantity and complexity, another great step up from the less-challenging tomb puzzles in Tomb Raider (2013).


Cheekily leaked screenshots

Some intriguingly insightful screenshots of Rise Of The Tomb Raider were released and almost simultaneously snapped up by All Games Beta, you hungry crocs, you. From these Hi-Res images it is quite evident that Lara’s struggle is yet to cease and that we can expect her to be facing an overwhelming array of hostilities in her upcoming appearance. The poor lass, will you ever be cut any slack Lara?

Here are just a few of the screenshots that were leaked (the rest of which can be found here):

Lara’s new threads (screenshot 1) An appropriate setting (screenshot 2)








Bear-ly hanging in there Lara? (screenshot 3) Next-gen graphics at their finest (screenshot 4)








With these fine screenshots that are psyching up fans even further, I think it is fair to assume that this next installment is full of divinely dangerous content that is going to completely enthrall us once again. With the developers clearly using next-gen capabilities to push the games visuals, it would be unreasonable to doubt that they have applied such wisdom and creativity in it’s other aspects. Now, attention must be drawn to the bear that is (have mercy on the pun) bearing it’s teeth, ready to slaughter our protagonist (screenshot 3). Could this mean a more diverse span of wildlife for Rise Of The Tomb Raider? Are we able to hunt these bad boys like before? Thanks to these screenshots we have a lot more exciting questions to dominate our ever so eager minds as we wait for Tomb Raider’s latest adventure to indulge in.

The New Partnership

“Yes, Microsoft will be publishing ‘Rise of the Tomb Raider’ on Xbox…”

(Square Enix Representative)

Now lets bring into light the new partnership between Square Enix and Microsoft Studios in the publishing of Rise of The Tomb Raider. Initially there was uproar concerning the games exclusivity. What with Microsoft planning to publish first on Xbox consoles (360 and one) there was plenty of question as to the fate of the poor Playstationers. However, Square Enix has confirmed since that it’s ”…partnership with Microsoft on ‘Rise Of The Tomb Raider’ does have a duration”, reassuring the many Playstation players  that they would be entitled to the ‘timed-exclusive’, just at a later date of release to the other console. Not a total victory but considering the latter, PS could have been worse off.

Square Enix wanted to shed some light on their decision to partner with Microsoft in the latest installment to the Tomb Raider series. In accordance to a representative ”Microsoft has always seen huge potential in ‘Tomb Raider’…”.

A game with high potential (screenshot by me)

A game with high potential (screenshot by me)

This statement can give us reassurance that Microsoft’s decision to try to partner with Square Enix is in the best interest of the game, as opposed to a subtle dig or ‘in your face’ aimed at Playstation. Silly Xbox Vs PS nonsense. The same representative also states that Microsoft Studios ”…will get behind this game with more support across development, marketing and retail than ever before, which we believe will be a step in continuing to build the ‘Tomb Raider’ franchise as one of the biggest in gaming”. This not only reinforces our hopes and desires to have this turn out to be one downright awesome game, but that despite the delay in release for Playstation players, it will be a game worth waiting that bit longer for. Let’s just put our anxiously sweaty palms together and pray they are utilizing the games potential as opposed to exploiting it.

Here’s to hoping this game will be a treasure

Ultimately, with all aspects considered it seems that Rise Of The Tomb Raider is going to be a must-have game. It appears to be harnessing all the sweetness of the slice of Tomb Raider before it and quite proudly placing that cherry on top to make it that much more enjoyable (yes, I did just compare an action-adventure game to confectionery).

We'll see you again soon, Lara! (screenshot by me)

We’ll see you again soon, Lara! (screenshot by me)

With enough to taunt our tingling, gaming taste-buds but not enough to give us the full flavour, it is fair to say the release of this sequel will be not only complete bliss for fans of the series, but also a marvel that will widen Lara’s fan base.

All in all this will be a sequel to remember.

Gaming News

Best Usenet Newsgroups for Gaming




Best Usenet Newsgroups for Gaming

Usenet newsgroups may seem old-fashioned to many. In reality, they are the perfect place for players who love the classics but are always open to new games and strategies. These internet communities are also ideal for those searching for gaming material, solutions to issues, or a conversation related to their favorite video games. Whether you are an experienced player or entering this domain for the first time, Usenet holds a ton of resources that could change how you interact with the gaming world.

Understanding Usenet Newsgroups

Usenet newsgroups, which include gaming groups, are like message boards. People can post messages and articles in different categories. Each group is a special place for certain topics – this makes it simple to find the subjects you want to read about most. The unique characteristic of Usenet lies in its decentralized structure. This permits a much more open interchange of details and information than what is seen on regular social media platforms or forums.

Initially, Usenet was utilized only for academic and professional exchanges. However, it soon turned into a prevalent method for communicating among hobbyists and gaming groups. Presently, even though Usenet has been surpassed by newer platforms in terms of popularity, it continues to be an important tool for knowledgeable users who value its special mix of staying anonymous with fast communication. Knowledgeable users also love access to vast archives containing historical information and software applications that are no longer available elsewhere on the Internet.

Top Usenet Newsgroups for Mobile Games

This is a fresh group dedicated to discussions about mobile games and related technology matters within the industry. Here, you can find conversations about the coding aspects of creating games for mobile devices, like new updates in platforms or fresh game engines being used for development purposes.

The perfect place for people who play games on their mobile devices as a hobby. Here, users talk about strategies, tricks and discuss game evaluations. This group is also suitable for those who are not serious gamers but like to connect with others and discuss playing strategies.

In this newsgroup, users often discuss gaming fixes and give each other suggestions. It is also the go-to place for gamers and die-hard fans that wish to find each and every detail of the game they love to play.

Best Newsgroups for Video Game Discussions

Newsgroups such as and have lively communities where gamers often engage in exchanges and conversations. These forums are not only for resolving gaming issues or writing reviews; they are centers of enthusiastic discussion regarding gaming culture, strategy, and creation process. Be it the latest RPGs, energetic shooters or old-school arcade games – there is always a thread bustling with discussion.

In these threads, not only will you encounter a variety of views from across the globe, but you may also land on gaming tricks and shortcuts that are lesser known. For those who are new, remember that every group has its own tone and rules. Lurking for a while should help you understand community norms and ensure your contributions are accepted.

Specialized Gaming Newsgroups

Specialized newsgroups are designed for particular gaming communities. They provide a discussion environment that is more centered and focused. These groups are ideal for users who really love a particular game and want to explore it in great depth.

The benefit of these specific groups is their collection of very particular details. Gamers who are part of such a group often exchange unique things like custom mods or skins, and offer advice on how to make gameplay more efficient and fun.

Tips for Using Usenet Newsgroups for Gaming

To enter Usenet, you will first need to pick a provider that is well-known for security, high retention rates and fast speed. To make the right pick, it is a good idea to get the rankings for the best Usenet providers. Next, get advanced newsreader software, as this will allow you to browse through newsgroups easily and manage your activities effectively.

Focus on newsgroups related to gaming and participate in discussions matching your interests to find gaming buddies. Also, make sure that you follow the netiquette of each group while doing so. Utilize newsreader software functions like filters and automation to keep things simple.


Usenet, at first sight, can appear as a choice for oldies or people that have not yet  acclimated to social media platforms and forums. However, its distinct characteristics make it very useful for all kinds of gamers. If you are searching for uncommon information, looking for detailed conversations or wish to join a community that matches with your specific interests; Usenet is surely the place for you. Jump in to see how Usenet can add another element of fun to your gaming experiences!

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Encouraging Growth and Motivation: Resources for Child Development




Encouraging Growth and Motivation: Resources for Child Development

Child development is a complex journey marked by critical milestones where each stride forward builds upon the foundation of the previous one. Acknowledging children’s individual needs, pediatric therapy services tailor strategies to foster physical, emotional, and cognitive growth. To support this transformative process, environments that prompt curiosity and engagement, coupled with advanced educational tools, play an instrumental role in shaping young minds. These resources, carefully selected and applied, can significantly amplify a child’s developmental trajectory. Keep reading to learn about the effective ways these tools and techniques can aid in advancing childhood milestones.

Pediatric Therapy Services: Enhancing Developmental Milestones


Pediatric therapy services support children as they reach and surpass developmental milestones. These services, often provided by skilled therapists, address various growth challenges, ensuring each child has the best possible start in life. From speech and occupational therapy to physical and behavioral interventions, these professionals tailor their approach to meet the unique needs of every young patient.

Therapists work relentlessly to motivate children, fostering an environment where milestones are not merely achieved but celebrated. Through personalized, one-on-one sessions, children gain the confidence and skills necessary to navigate their developmental journeys more easily. The trust between therapist and child is a solid foundation for consistent progress and paves the path for lifelong learning and adaptation.

Resource provision is a key component of pediatric therapy, equipping parents with the tools to continue therapy practices at home. Effective communication between therapists and families ensures a cohesive strategy that envelops the child’s daily routine, enhancing the therapy’s impact. It also allows parents to identify subtle progress, reinforcing their pivotal role in the child’s developmental success.

If you’re looking for pediatric therapy in your area, a simple Google search like “pediatric therapy Arizona” will help you find local providers and services tailored to your child’s needs, ensuring they receive the specialized care necessary for their development.

Optimizing Play Spaces: Creating Environments for Learning and Exploration


Optimized play spaces are vital platforms where children engage with their world, build skills, and unleash their creativity. Designers of such areas pay astute attention to elements that promote safe exploration and intellectual stimulation. A thoughtfully arranged play environment serves as a place of entertainment and a crucible for burgeoning development.

Professionals incorporate a variety of tactile and visual stimuli within play areas to cater to diverse developmental needs and interests. Stimulating sensory experiences is central to cognitive and motor skill refinement among younger populations. The intentional selection of colors, textures, and interactive features sparks curiosity and encourages physical activity, which is fundamental to healthy growth.

Accessibility remains paramount in creating play spaces, ensuring they cater to children across all abilities. Including adaptive resources within these environments demonstrates a commitment to inclusive development, allowing every child to participate and benefit from the joy and learning play offers. Such inclusiveness fosters a sense of community and belonging, which is essential for emotional and social development.

Affording children autonomy in their play advances self-directed learning and problem-solving capabilities. When children feel empowered to make choices within their play, they better understand their preferences and abilities, setting the stage for confidence and self-awareness — qualities that are instrumental as children grow and transition through life’s stages.

Additionally, incorporating elements like fake plants or outdoor plants from retailers like Nearly Natural outdoor plants into play spaces can enhance children’s sensory and aesthetic experience.

Interactive Learning Tools: Technology and Resources for Cognitive Development

Interactive learning tools harness technology’s power to solidify children’s cognitive development. These digital resources provide an array of engaging, educational content that aligns with critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

Software and applications designed for children’s learning capitalize on the allure of multimedia to capture young minds. Effective education solutions provide children with stimulating challenges that are age-appropriate and aligned with developmental targets.

The discerning use of educational technology in classrooms and homes can reinforce concepts and skills taught through traditional methods. It creates a harmonious blend of instruction and interactive play, thereby cementing a child’s understanding and retention of information.

Providers of such educational platforms are ever vigilant, updating content to reflect new educational strategies and the latest academic research. Thus, children equipped with these technological tools remain at the vanguard of current learning methodologies, all while engrossed in fun and dynamic ways.
Overall, caregivers and educators can provide comprehensive support for children’s developmental journeys by integrating pediatric therapy services, optimized play spaces, and interactive learning tools. These resources nurture their physical, emotional, and cognitive growth and cultivate a lifelong love for learning and exploration.

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Why Investing in Academics Is Investing in Yourself




Why Investing in Academics Is Investing in Yourself

The quest for knowledge and self-improvement through academic pursuits is more than just a milestone in life; it is a cornerstone of personal development and success. Committing resources to further education is not merely an expense; it is an investment with considerable returns that extend far beyond the classroom. Education equips us with the tools required to navigate an increasingly complex world, opening doors to opportunities and fostering personal growth. Keep reading to discover why allocating time and resources to your academics is a decision that pays dividends for a lifetime.

The Lifelong Returns of Investing in Your Education

Investing in education is akin to planting seeds that blossom into numerous opportunities. Beyond financial gains, education forms the bedrock for career success and personal fulfillment. It empowers individuals to pursue their passions, enhances job satisfaction, and boosts self-esteem through academic achievements. Education serves as a catalyst for social mobility, breaking cycles of poverty by equipping people with the skills needed to improve their lives and contribute positively to society.

This ripple effect extends to lower crime rates and increased civic engagement, benefiting communities at large. Beginning with scholarships for high school sophomores can provide the initial support needed to embark on this transformative journey. These opportunities signify a commitment to nurturing future leaders and fostering a culture of lifelong learning and achievement.

Personal Growth and Lifelong Learning Through Education

Education is a vital aspect of personal development, providing opportunities for growth, character building, and discovering passions and capabilities. It fosters resilience and adaptability, which are essential in all aspects of life. A strong educational foundation encourages lifelong learning, ensuring individuals remain relevant and proactive in their professional and personal lives.

Education also broadens perspectives, exposing individuals to diverse ideas, cultures, and worldviews, fostering empathy, cross-cultural understanding, and appreciation for the human experience. It also allows for critical assessment and engagement with the world from an informed standpoint. The journey through academia often involves self-discovery, helping students uncover their strengths, weaknesses, interests, and values, leading to a more fulfilled life with aligned choices and goals.

Expanding Your Horizons: The Social Benefits of Academics

Academic investment in education is about building social capital through interactions with peers, faculty, and industry professionals. These interactions foster communication skills and relationships, which are crucial for life stages. Extracurricular activities in academic settings provide platforms for students to express themselves, learn new skills, and take on leadership roles.

Collaborative projects and team-based assignments teach students the importance of teamwork, compromise, and collective pursuit of goals. Higher education institutions also serve as a microcosm of society, requiring social awareness and finesse to navigate the diverse cultural, economic, and ideological perspectives.

How Academic Achievement Propels Professional Success

Professional success often hinges on a blend of experiences and achievements, with academic accomplishments playing a crucial role. Excelling in academia fosters a strong work ethic and sharp time-management skills, highly valued in today’s job market. Employers frequently use academic credentials to gauge candidates, especially for specialized roles like those requiring an aa in paralegal studies, where in-depth knowledge is pivotal.

Moreover, higher education equips individuals with specialized knowledge and technical skills that are indispensable in complex roles. Critical thinking and problem-solving abilities, nurtured during academic pursuits, further enhance one’s capacity to tackle challenges creatively. The networks formed during academic years often open doors to valuable career opportunities through mentorships and connections.

Leveraging Educational Investments for Career Advancement Opportunities

Investing in education can significantly impact career advancement, as academic qualifications often lead to promotions, leadership roles, and exclusive professional circles. Continuous education can lead to specialized career paths with higher salaries and statuses, especially in evolving fields. Higher education institutions offer career services like resume-building workshops and job placement programs to help students transition from academia to the workforce effectively.

For those already in the workforce, further education can be a strategic move for career change or progression, with flexible online programs and part-time options allowing working professionals to pursue additional qualifications while maintaining their current positions.

Altogether, the investment in academics is a far-reaching decision that impacts not just your immediate circumstances, but your future potential. As you prioritize your academic pursuits, you build a stronger foundation for success in every aspect of life—professionally, personally, and socially.

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