$ 169, op­tus. com. au

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - TECH -

OP­TUS’S 4G wi- fi mo­dem comes in a sim­ple black plas­tic shell with a prom­i­nent power but­ton, but you might strug­gle to work out how to fi re up its menu. It’s the WPS but­ton ( also used for fast pair­ing), which brings the small LCD screen to life. Op­tus is cur­rently the only telco run­ning dif­fer­ent types of 4G net­work in Aus­tralia, but the E5776 should switch be­tween both with­out is­sue. It ran neck and neck with Tel­stra’s Ad­vanced Hotspot for bat­tery life and, given Op­tus’s data rates are cheaper, this is a very good de­vice if you can get good Op­tus sig­nal where you are. cover, and it’s also rather bulky, feel­ing a lit­tle like a mo­bile from 10 years ago. It can con­nect up to fi ve de­vices, but the bat­tery life is not great. On- board menus are eas­ily laid out, al­though to make any real changes you’ll have to con­nect to your web browser. The Pre- Paid Wi- Fi 4G’s sav­ing grace is the in­clu­sion of 5GB of data with a 30- day ex­piry.

$ 169, voda­fone. com. au VODA­FONE’S big claim with its 4G net­work is that the band­width it has ac­cess to should give it a leg- up in the speed stakes. The 4G Wi- fi Hotspot cer­tainly didn’t push that claim all that much in our tests, with solid but un­ex­cep­tional speeds that wouldn’t look out of place on a 3G de­vice. But that can vary widely with any broad­band ser­vice. Confi gu­ra­tion of the Pocket Wi- Fi 4G is easy enough, al­though it uses a sim­ple menu and power but­ton to dis­play SSID setup. Other­wise, the small LCD dis­play sim­ply shows a tiny con­nec­tion sta­tus and a large Voda­fone logo. Bat­tery life was ac­cept­able.

$ 319, net­gear. com. au WHEN it comes to modems, for most con­sumers it’s con­fus­ing in pick­ing one over an­other. The Nighthawk stands out from the crowd for sev­eral rea­sons, in­clud­ing its un­usual de­sign of three an­ten­nas pop­ping out on the top. It uses the most re­cent 802.11ac wi- fi as stan­dard. It has fea­tures aimed at band­width- hun­gry gamers ( in­clud­ing au­to­mat­i­cally giv­ing band­width pri­or­ity to Xbox), but it’s the ease of set up, parental con­trols and wide cov­er­age range that will im­press. Our one com­plaint is that the mo­dem’s bright LED dis­play dou­bles as a night light. Clearly we’re not the only ones to com­plain, be­cause Net­gear plans to re­lease a soft­ware up­date to dis­able the LEDs.

FOR­GET the tower de­fence ac­tion this fran­chise is known for, Gar­den War­fare sees the orig­i­nal for­mula re­placed by a fa­mil­iar third- per­son, on­line mul­ti­player, class- based shooter which for the most part works.

As with other games of this ilk, the op­pos­ing plants and the zom­bies have four classes, each with unique pow­ers and weapons. For ex­am­ple, some char­ac­ters are ag­ile on the bat­tlefi eld but easy to take down, while oth­ers are built like tanks, but also slug­gish. Some have heal­ing abil­i­ties, oth­ers re­pair equip­ment, while some can de­ploy air­borne at­tack drones.

The collection of dif­fer­ent skills for each char­ac­ter of­fer a quirky twist on the fa­mil­iar classes found in the likes of Bat­tlefi eld and Call of Duty.

The main aim of the game is to form teams with friends on­line and then to choose char­ac­ters with skills that suit the team’s strat­egy, depend­ing on which of the game’s three modes you’re play­ing.

Team Van­quish is a take on team death matches, where the fi rst team to reach 50 kills wins. Gar­den Ops is a spin on the horde mode found in other games, which sees your team fac­ing off against in­creas­ing waves of en­e­mies.

My favourite, Gar­dens and Grave­yards, re­minds me of Bat­tlefi eld’s Rush and Con­quest mode. Here the zom­bies are try­ing to build grave­yards where the plants have their gar­dens. Each grave­yard that is suc­cess­fully built pushes the plants back to their last strong­hold.

All your ac­com­plish­ments are re­warded with in- game cur­rency, which you can spend on sticker packs. These con­tain a va­ri­ety of dif­fer­ent re­wards, from char­ac­ter cus­tomi­sa­tion op­tions and health packs to class vari­ants, which are aimed at im­prov­ing your char­ac­ter’s ba­sic abil­i­ties.

Un­for­tu­nately, the con­tents of the sticker packs are com­pletely ran­dom, so there’s no way you can buy that specifi c item you might need. Un­sur­pris­ingly, af­ter a while it proves an­noy­ing earn­ing pack af­ter pack only to fi nd noth­ing that you re­ally needed.

That aside, Gar­den War­fare is re­fresh­ingly car­toony, cheer­ful and charm­ing in a genre that is known for the ex­act op­po­site.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.