All posts by ahotiK

ASUS Strix DSP Gaming Headset Review

As I have mention in a previous post while at Dreamhack, ASUS ROG offered me a Strix DSP gaming headset to try and review.

If you prefer watching a video review instead I made one here: Strix DSP video review.
I also made an unboxing video while at Dreamhack here: Strix DSP unboxing video.

So let’s get started:

Look and feel

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Well this is an easy and obvious one. The Strix DSP looks incredibly cool with a neat design and well picked colors.

I like the foldable cups design making it easier to store and transport the head set.
The mic is detachable too and despite the fact that it looks stiff, it is made of flexible rubber so you can position it as you wish.
The first impression when seeing the Strix DSP for the first time is that it appears kind of big and it is true it is a large headset. The cups cover the whole year entirely. Despite the size, the Strix DSP is not heavy and the suspension head band make the headset easier to wear and auto-adjustable on your head.

After wearing the headset for several hours continuously I couldn’t feel any disconfort at all.

Sound and audio station

Strix_DSP_sound_tech

I’ll start by saying that the Strix DSP sounds as awesome as it looks.
Since it’s a gaming headset it works best with games. I’ve tried racing games, MOBAs, RPGs, FPS and simulators and they all sound incredibly good and this is in part thanks to the audio station that comes with the Strix DSP.

Before getting into details about the audio station I just want to mention that the 3D audio 7.1 Surround actually works. I was a bit doubtful about this since a headset only has 2 sides, it better than expected.

The audio station is connected to the computer by USB, and is truly plug and play. I’ve tested it with Windows / and 10 and it worked directly. The headset is then connected to the audio station via the audio cable. You can also connect your speakers to the audio station for easier switch between headset and speakers (no more right-click on the speaker icon, Playback devices, set as default ūüôā ).

Strix DSP audio station
Strix DSP audio station

The big knob on the audio station is used to control the volume for the headset (or speakers) and mic (yes the mic volume is hardware controlled unlike many other headsets that only offer an on-off switch for the mic).  The volume level is indicated by LEDs.
The small knob is a 3-way switch used to select what you want to control with the big knob. Main (volume for the headset or speakers depending on what is active), Microphone or Spectrum. In Spectrum mode you can choose between 4 different gaming profiles. Racing, RPG, Shooter footsteps and Shooter whole experience.

There are 4 other buttons on the audio station: Surround on/off, Mic on/off, Amp on/off (used to switch sound amplification on of off) and Speakers on/off (used to switch to between Headset and speakers).

There is also a mic on the audio station used for noise cancellation.

On the bottom there are 2 “hidden” switches, on for switching between 2 or 8 channels and the other for switching Environmental Noise Cancellation on or off.

Besides gaming I’ve also tried the headset for other sorts of entertainment like movies and series. The sound is still clear and the surround gives a nice feeling while¬†watching movies with surround support.

The headset is great for music also, it is of course not for music professionals, but casual music listening works really well. The bass is deep and feels powerful while the treble is nice and clear.

The Microphone¬†sound incredible. As you know I use the headset mic while streaming and recording youtube videos. Well the mic quality on my former headset was not the best and I thought it was because it was a headset and I couldn’t get any better quality unless I buy a professional mic. I have to tell you that the Mic on the Strix DSP delivers¬†incredibly crisp and clear sound so I’ll be streaming and recording using this mic now. Yay! :).

Compatibility with other devices

Strix_Dsp_Accessoires
Strix DSP Accessoires

So what if I play Vainglory on my tablet, you say?
The Strix DSP works best when used with the Audio station, but it can be used on it’s own with other devices, like smartphones, tablets, gaming consoles, TVs etc. A pair of adaptor cables make the headset easy to connect to you phone or tablet. The good news is that even though the audio station is not used, the sound quality is still incredibly good. I played some Vainglory using the headset and it felt like a whole new game being able to hear every detail. If you’re going to be audio chatting or maybe even streaming directly from you android phone or tablet, the good news is that the mic works with those devices as well so no need for any external mic.

TL;DR

Strix DSP

  • The Strix DSP looks awesome and it sounds as awesome as it looks.
  • Big headset although not heavy or uncomfortable.
  • Sound quality is very good especially for games.
  • 4 profile EQ for different types of games.
  • The Mic delivers really good quality with crisp and clear sound.¬†Good enough for hobby streaming.
  • The plug and play audio station makes it easy to control the headset and adds to the quality of the sound and the total sound experience with 3D Surround and Game Profiles.
  • Compatible with phones, tablets and consoles etc, via cable adapters included in the package.
  • Mic works with phones and tablets.

If you are not convinced yet about the Strix DSP, you will after trying it ;).

Hope my review was helpful!

See you on Twitch and Youtube!

/ahotiK

Long time no see

I have been bad at posting here

lately and I’m sorry. I have had a lot of stuff going on, work, family and of course I always chose to play a game or two instead of writing here.

I’ll try to get back at posting new, fun and interesting stuff here.

Vainglory Recap

Kestrel Active
Kestrel

Let’s see… It has happened a lot since last post. Last time I was breaking the news about a Taka skin being released in 1.7. Well Vainglory is now at 1.12 and we have a Taka skin tier 2 and a lot more others including the long awaited Celeste skin.

We’ve got new heroes: Rona, Skye, Phinn, Blackfeather and the latest one Kestrel the archer.

We’ve got a hole lot more skins, seasonal skins, seasonal map, guilds and teams.

Vainglory had its one year anniversary with a week of double glory, one day with scheduled card drops and more.

We have also been through some rough times with unstable update 1.11 and some other periods with high lags and server instability.

Now we have better game UI, we are able to interact with friends while they are in game, we have guild rewards and better game stability.

For me, I have focused more and more on playing support, mainly Ardan. I also like Fortress and still learning Cath. I am not any good with Ringo anymore and I instead move towards Skaarf and Celeste when it comes to damage dealers. I have also decided to learn at least one jungler so I kind of am able to play Glaive.

I’ve also left my old guild OaK which also disbanded for a moment and now it’s not very active anymore and created [CMY] Chaotic Myth together with some friends I met online, FridgeMan and GabrielK.

Streaming break

After the summer break I went back to playing Vainglory and streaming, this time with a fixed schedule. I used to stream Tuesdays and Thursdays from around 20:00 CET to around 23:00 or even 24:00 depending on the activity on the stream.
After some months I noted lower and lower interest in my stream from the viewers and also I didn’t find streaming to be as much fun anymore since it had became more of a chore than a fun time. I just wanted to play with my guild and team so I decided to only stream on special occasions or other events.

Dreamhack

I went to Dreamhack Winter 2015 in Jönköping, Sweden. Dreamhack is the larges LAN party and computer (games) festival in the world. You can go there with your computer and have a table spot with power and network connection that you use for 3 days or you can just visit it as a festival with a daily pass and no computer.
I went of course with my computer and wanted to play a lot of games including Vainglory and  of course to stream. I wanted of course to check out the latest in gaming and eports events as well :-).
The wired network connection was very good with high speed, low ping and stable, the wifi was unfortunately very poor and I could only check main, facebook and such on my phone and tablet. This meant I couldn’t play and stream so much Vainglory with the poor Wifi. So I played and streamed other games instead. I went back to try Heroes of the Storm, a moba game developed by Blizzard with heroes from the Blizzard universe (Diablo, Warcraft, Starcraft) (get it.. heroes of the storm, Blizzard, storm ūüôā I see what you did there Blizzard). At the beginning I was really willing to play VG instead but after a while I started to get into it and it was pretty fun. Here is a video of the gameplay:

I also tried Rocket League, a football game with cars. Yes that’s right you play football (soccer) but instead of players you “kick” the ball with a car ¬†(the ball is larger than the car). I found the game very fun but a bit hard in the beginning. Here is a video of a Rocket League match:

I tried some other games too, like a match of Dota2 some Hearthstone, but the ones I mentioned above are the ones I played the most.

I have to admit, after Dreamhack I’ve got the taste for computer games back so now I’ve bought an Xbox controller for PC and I’ll start playing some more computer games. One game I think is really cool and addicting is Spintires. The game is about driving trucks through very rough roads and terrain. It might not look like much, driving logs around, but it’s really fun to play especially if you like simulators of this kind. Here is a part of a game I played (with some quick introduction that you can skip if you want):

Asus Strix DSP

Asus Strix DSP

Asus Strix DSP

Also at Dreamhack I’ve got a really awesome headset that was given to me by ASUS, an Asus Strix DSP. I will write a full description/review of it soon. Meanwhile you can watch a video review and unboxing on my youtube channel, youtube.com/ahotiK.

 

Youtube

As you noticed, after the summer I haven’t really posted a lot of new videos on Youtube, but now when I’m not streaming so much anymore I’ve decided to make some more videos for youtube instead. It’s easier to work with a youtube video as I can do it whenever I like so I can more easily combine it with the other stuff I have going on (mostly family and work :)).

I will soon post some Vainglory videos as well and

I intend to do something more fun and not just full matches.

My intentions are to post some more gameplay form other games than Vainglory as well, like Rocket League, Spintires, Heroes of the Storm, Hotline Miami and more.

I might also start streaming on youtube gaming as well (gaming.youtube.com/ahotiK) . The streaming youtube channel is the same as the regular youtube channel so make sure you subscribe to keep in touch.

I also am active on Facebook and Twitter(@ahotiKGames).

See ya!

Taka skin revealed. Coming in next update (1.7)

I know the Taka skin is the one many players are waiting for so I’m going to dedicate ¬†a post to it.

The skin hasn’t really been revealed, we only got a glimpse of the concept art (not final splash art) at the end of the 1.6 update stream.

On the stream (click to open the VoD), Zekent only revealed the concept art in segments, not showing the full Taka at once, so I had to take several screenshots and puzzle them together and voilá the full size concept art for the new Taka skin:

 

Taka skin concept art
Taka skin concept art

Now a bit about what Chainsaw, the art director at SEMC, said about Taka and the new skin. Taka was, according to Chainsaw, a community hero. He has been created because the community has been asking for a ninja so badly and so the idea of a half fox ninja came to mind and Taka was born.
The idea behind this new white Taka skin is to make him a good ninja, with his white outfit and the switch blade katanas.
The fox cub backpack adds a bit of cuteness to the new Taka compared to the original cocky Taka in my opinion.

I’m not the Taka player myself, but I have played him a bit lately on my smurf account (yaaayy! now I can try him in Casual mode) and at first I was just a big noob with him, but after a while I started to get better and enjoy him. I’m not sure if I’ll be any good in Hotness tier, but with a good Fortress alongside, I might do well. I’m definitely curios about how he will look like in game.

Enjoy and see you on facebook and forums and after the vacation on the stream.

/ahotiK

New Vainglory update 1.6 preview today 29th of June

It has been announced by the devs that the 1.6 will be available will all the features already today. The official forum post can be found here: forums.vainglorygame.com

New in this update will be:

New Hero Rona

The new melee warrior hero Rona. More here¬†Rona. I’m excited about the new hero. I havent had time to grow tired of Fortress (since I haven’t had time to play / stream a lot lately), and here comes a new cool hero.

The hero will be as with the last 2 heros available with ICE the first week and with Glory or ICE after the first week.

Casual and Ranked game modes

I’m warmly welcoming this new feature. I wanted many times to have the ability to just play some matches without worrying about the Skill tier. ¬†On the other hand I wanted to be sure that when I am ready to play in order to improve my skill tier, ¬†the rest of my team also has the same goal.

With 1.6 the skill tier system will became more transparent telling you exactly how far you are from next tier or if you are near to fall to the previous tier.

Get cards

The “Get cards” section in the market will now be made available and it is supposed that cards will be purchasable with glory. I believe no one has been able to unlock a tier 2 skin so far mostly because¬†the cards’ drop rate is too low compared to how many are necessary to unlock a skin.

Apart from these changes there will surely be a lot of balance changes on heroes and items too that will be announced on the official downtime stream.

The 1.6 update also brings Vainglory officially on Android. You can even preregister for the Android version to get a free Hero. More here http://www.superevilmegacorp.com/blog/2015/6/24/vainglory-commercial-launch-set-for-july-2-android-pre-registration-open

I can’t wait for the new update!

/ahotiK

Surprize 1.5 update roll-out including Fortress the new wolf hero

This post has been updated in real time as the Vainglory official stream was revealing the news in 1.5

Note! Some things may be wrong or misinterpreted as I was writing while watching the stream.

Wolf hero Р Fortress

Fortress gameplay
Fortress gameplay

Perk – Runs faster when near allies.

Truth of the Tooth – Mark the target. Attacks became short-range lunge. Team mates can run towards the target.

Fortress' Truth of the Tooth
Fortress’ Truth of the Tooth (click to enlarge)

Law of the Claw РDamages with crystal power and makes the enemy bleed. Bleeding heroes will take  extra crystal damage over time and will give life steal to the attacker.
It is also possible to apply stacks of bleeding with basic attacks from any allied hero, minions, wolfs from the pack or Fortress. After 5 number of stacks the target will get extra damage, will be slowed and will be inflicted with a mortal wound meaning that the target will get less healing and less hp barrier.

Fortress' Law of the Claw
Fortress’ Law of the Claw (click to enlarge)

Attack of the Pack – Fortress gets extra health and attack speed and also summons pack wolfs that will chase and attack the enemy heroes. Each wolf will chase a different hero, even though they are not visible and apply bleeding upon attacking. The wolfs will die after 3 hits, regardless the damage.
The pack wolf will track Taka but will not be able to attack Taka until he becomes visible.

Fortress' Attack of the Pack
Fortress’ Attack of the Pack (click to enlarge)

Bots

Bots are added in 1.5. The bots are very basic and don’t have a high AI and are meant mainly for really new players, the ones that have never played a moba before.
Also the new players will have to level up before playing in solo q.

Minion mines changes

The minion mines can now genuinely be used to push the turrets. Minions buffed by minion mines now deal way increased damage to Turrets and Turrets alone, no change to damage to other minions or heroes. The buffed minions will still be worth more gold.
The minions are upgraded instantly when the minion mines are taken and not over time like before.

Hero balances

Skaarf

  • Removed piercing and reduced damage of Skaarf’s perk Fan the flames. It now has crystal ratio instead.
  • Spitfire got nerfed and is more of a skill shot and riskier.
  • Goup got buffed with increased crystal ratio.
  • Ulti got nerfed a bit with reduce damage

As Captain Neato said: “The goal wasn’t to make tank Skaarf not viable, the goal was to make sure tank Skaarf wasn’t the carry.”

Vox

  • Crystal ratio for the bounce reduced.
  • The bounce distance decreased.
  • Resonance doesn’t bounce off Kraken.
  • Attack speed increased.

Joule

  • Reduced piercing of Thunder strike
  • Cool down will be reduced with levels

SAW

  • Crystal rate increased for Roadie Run
  • Ulti will be considered a basic attack so it will be able to crit.
  • The crystal rates have increased for the¬†Mad Cannon

Celeste

  • Does less damage¬†to minions.

Koska

Base armor reduce. Too tanky in early game.

Item changes

Brokenmyth –¬†No more shield piercing but amplifies the crystal power.

Scout traps –¬†Timer changed from 1.2 to 1.3 seconds

Boots –Tier 1 less movement speed
Tier 2 increased movement speed and health

2 new items

Minion’s foot¬†– will start the crits build instead of the Swift Shooter

Contraption – Combination of flares and scout traps. Gives you cool down acceleration and charges over time with flares / scout traps.

Warhorn changed РIt builds from Oak and Dragon heart instead of the Hourglass and Chronograph. The utility has also changed but it is not revealed yet.

Ironguard Contract – grants 50% gold bonus for the jungle minions instead of the 30% now. It still grants 30% bonus for the lane minions.

Skins and Cards

Tier 2 skins and Epic cards are out.

Shogun Ringo Skin Tier 2
Shogun Ringo Skin Tier 2

The Tier 2 Shogun Ringo and Kandi Twirl Koshka have been revealed in game.

A new Skaarf skin has been announced (leaked) but it will not make it into the 1.5 update.

Infinity Skaarf skin reveal
Infinity Skaarf skin reveal

Bug fixes

Crit on SAW
Fan the flames. Extra tick of damage removed.
Spitfire was applying 2 stacks cosmetically. Removed.
Gold times fixed.

New app for iPhone

Last but not least. The iPhone users will be downloading a new app instead of updating the old one. This is because before there were different apps for the iPhone and the iPad. There is only one app to rule them all now. So the old iPhone app should be deleted and a new app will be installed.

A new setting for iOS. You can turn it on to hide the non activable items anymore and instead make the other item icons bigger.

I’m going to go and give the new update a test run!

See u guys on the stream at twitch.tv/ahotiklive

Thanks Vanglorigame for the awesome update!