Archive for December, 2014

PostHeaderIcon Mining for Mods: Grand Theft Auto IV




GTA IV CarICEnhancer is easy to install, and somewhat easy on the eyes

While Rockstar Games is taking its time with the PC version of Grand Theft Auto V, PC gamers still have Grand Theft Auto IV to fall back on. Although the game is almost six years old, released back in 2008, modders have updated the visuals in various ways to help it keep up with the times. In particular, ICEnhancer mod mod has continued to impress with its upgrades to the game’s visuals.

Curious to see what our copy of GTA IV would look like with this mod, we decided to test it out using a PC equipped with an AMD Phenom II X4 965 processer, Nvidia GeForce GTX 780, and 8GB of RAM.

In order to compare both versions, we made sure that the game’s settings were ramped up to the maximum and presented in 1080p, so that the original game could look as good as possible. But despite adjusting all the settings to their highest, GTA IV’s age shows. 

GTA IV Comparison 001

Click image for an animated GIF

We then proceeded to download the ICEnhancer mod, created by Hayssam Keilany, and installed it. For those wishing to install it, you will need a program like WinRAR to extract the files. As a precaution, we recommend you back up the original game before installing ICEnhancer just in case something goes wrong. Once the files had been unzipped, we copied them into our Steam version of GTA IV,  located in C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Grand Theft Auto IV\GTAIV and made sure to replace the original files. 

There are two versions of ICEnhancer: 1.0.4.0 and 1.0.7.0. If you do not know which version you have, then locate the GTAIV.exe file, right-click it, and go to “Details” to see what version of the game you’re running.

 

GTA IV Comparison 002

Click image for an animated GIF

Installing the mod was very simple but the results of the ICEnhancer mod was not what we expected. There is an improvement to GTA IV’s look, but it is not as overwhelming as we thought or have seen before. 

While testing, we made sure to compare the original and modded versions under similar light conditions when possible. By doing this, we noticed a big difference when it came to lighting. With ICEnhancer installed, the modded game was much brighter when compared to the original.

GTA IV Comparison 003

Click image for an animated GIF

As a result, the sky’s color was a bright blue, clouds looked more realistic, and it was easier to see everything around us in the immediate vicinity; in the distance, though, there was a slight blur or haze. Then we noticed smaller things such as the sidewalk’s pavement having a bit more detail in the modded version. The same for the roads, ICEnhancer gives it a bit more definition with a gravelly look. We also saw that the vegetaion looks sharper and more defined in some cases.

GTA IV Comparison 004

Click image for an animated GIF

The cars, though, really shine thanks to the mod. They look better and smoother, and are more detailed compared to the original game. Car windows are more reflective and transparent as well, and there’s a nice sheen to the car paint compared to the original version’s, which looks dull in comparison.  

GTA IV Car

Click image for an animated GIF

Unfortunately, the mod, like the game itself, is a resource hog. While trying to capture footage with FRAPs, our framerates dropped to around 15fps (as you’ll see that in the final segment of the video we recorded, below). These drastic drops occurred in areas with a lot of traffic or large bodies of water. We also experienced flickering from objects in the distance. 

So, we would advise you, obviously, to have a PC that can hold its own when running the ICEnhancer mod.

What do you think of the changes? Have you tried out the ICEnhancer mod? Let us know in the comments.

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PostHeaderIcon Happy Holidays from Moz



Posted by FeliciaCrawford

Ah, the holidays! This is the time of year when we give our thanks and make our wishes, when new and old meld happily together like hot buttered rum and Grandma’s pistachio fudge.

There’s been a lot of newness this year for Moz. As the smilin’ face behind live chat, I’ve had the good fortune to meet many of you as you embark upon your Mozzy journey for the first time. And throughout 2014 alone, we welcomed more than two dozen new Mozlings into our family!

With all this wonderful change, we’ve added a few things to our list of office holiday traditions. Party with us as we celebrate the old and the new, the weird White Elephant gifts and the lumpy sweaters from your aunt, and all the good intentions and warm, fuzzy feelings of the season!

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PostHeaderIcon Forget the Picture Frame, Use Lian Li’s O Series Chassis to Hang a PC on Your Wall




Lian Li PC-O7SAn open air wall-mountable chassis

Have you ever thought about hanging your PC components on a wall? Admittedly I have a time or three, though I’ve never attempted it because, quite frankly, it’d be a lot of work to secure each and every component on a bare wall, and then make it all look nice to boot. It looks like Lian Li read my mind — the company’s new O Series open-air cases are wall-mountable (and also a work in progress).

There are four different models: the mini-ITX PC-O5, mini-ITX PC-O5S, micro-ATX PC-O6S, and the ATX PC-O7S. All of them are in the prototype stage, as Lian Li looks for user feedback from the DIY community as it fleshes out and tweaks a final design.

Though they’re built for different form factors, each case is similar in overall design. They all feature an oversized tempered glass window so that visitors can spy the entire build. And to keep it slim, graphics cards are installed parallel to the motherboard through a PCI riser card and extension.

Cases with an “S” suffix denote water cooling compatibility, with the PC-O5S supporting radiators up to 240mm; the PC-O6S and PC-O7S support radiators up to 360mm.

Wall mounting any of the O Series cases is optional (you’ll probably want a wireless mouse and keyboard if going that route), as they can also be placed on a desk in the vertical position using an included aluminum stand with rubber grip, or horizontally on four attachable feet with rubber padding.

No word on when Lian Li might bring these case to market or what the MSRPs will be.

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Article Source: The Only Yard For The Internet Junkie
If you like all this stuff here then you can buy me a pack of cigarettes.

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