[Spoiler Alert!] Fallout Shelter – Tips and Tricks

image taken from http://bethsoft.com/en-gb/games/fallout_shelter

Bethesda’s Fallout Shelter is a brilliant mobile game to keep you occupied when you’re waiting in line somewhere, at lunch alone or even as a game you can leave open next to you as you work.
If you are, like me, an Android user, you’ll be waiting impatiently for the launch of the games in August. Well, at least, I WAS, until I hijacked my boyfriend’s iPad.

I’m not going to go through the basics of the game, like the game play, or explaining what SPECIAL is, there’s plenty of those guides out there. What I’m going to do, is share VERY PRACTICAL ADVISE, and if you’re the kind that enjoys wiping out your population a few times while testing limits (like I do), then I suggest that you don’t read this article any further. This is more for those who have played the game and want to just… play it better?

So, here are my tips and tricks from a few days of playing the game.

1) impregnate your women.
Keeping many women pregnant is a great way to ensure you build your population. This is highly abusable once you realise that they don’t give birth if there are insufficient living quarters available. So, regulating the number of living quarters you build in relation to how much resources you’re producing gives you immense control over the game. For example, if I have insufficient resources, I can not let them give birth yet by not building any living quarters, and concentrate first on upgrading my resource producing structures and making sure I have a steady stream coming in before I build living quarters. Then the women will all magically, suddenly give birth at once.
Children remain children for pretty long. So remember to take this into consideration too.
Oh, and pregnant women are totally useless in incidents. So you might want to mix up your rooms with non-pregnant women, and men, especially if you want to rush that room often.

2) building similar rooms next to each other saves on the upgrade fee, but compromises on the efficiency
You’ll just have to figure out which one is more important to you, and whether you have enough high stat people to make it worthwhile. The discount in the upgrade fee is pretty substantial though. I put all my highest stat people into the larger rooms because that makes it more efficient eventually.

3) assign rooms function
If you cannot find the right dweller you’re looking for, click on a room, and there will be a little clipboard on the bottom left that pops up. It’s arranged by alphabetical order and you can scroll through looking at their stats there. I don’t really use this much, but I figured it might be worth highlighting because there are a few occasions when I’ve needed to use it.
I do prefer tapping on the top left number of dwellers and sorting them – you can click on the headers to sort accordingly. The selected header (LVL, SPECIAL, :), STATUS, JOB) will be highlighted.

4) choose the lowest happiness level to mate with each other
You can sort the dwellers according to happiness. They are happier when you assign them to a room that requires their highest level SPECIAL stat. But should your people get unhappy, no matter how low the happiness level is, just let them procreate and it will bounce right back up to 100% after they’re done with the deed.

5) unequip your items immediately after use
This is the most useful thing I’ve realised. Once you get more and more dwellers and you’re running them from room to room to fight incidents, or just to change their jobs, you’ll lose track of them. So I recommend ensuring all items are unequipped from the start, and only equip them when needed. Immediately after they are done with the incident, unequip the weapon so that you can equip it on the next person during the following incident. Nothing sucks more than having a room full of radroaches and being unable to find your weapons to kill them.
Similarly, for costumes and such, I unequip my dweller’s night wear as soon as they start running to the back of the room. This is because it won’t affect whether they complete the deed, and also, pregnant women all change to a yellow top and blue pants, so you can’t see that they are wearing a costume unless you click on them.

6) zoom out all the way to locate skivers
It’s nice to double tab and view each room close up, but now and then, its good to zoom out totally so that the whole map becomes 2D. When children grow into adults, there is a notification which is pretty easy to miss, and sometimes they’ll sneak into becoming slacker adults that just wander the halls doing nothing. If you want to ensure that all your people are earning their keep all the time, try zooming out totally. You’ll realise that the only people who still move around in 2D mode are the slackers and children. From there, it’s easy to identify them and drag them into a room to work.

Other useful tips

– you can see the dweller’s contribution to a room when you drag them over and hover. If it’s a + number I generally release the hover and the lowest stat person will run out and make way for the new guy to come in. If you change your mind about letting the dweller go into the room but cannot remember where you plucked him out from, just pull him out into the rocks (not out the vault door!) and release the hover and he will remain in the room he was in.

– If you’re sending people out into the wastelands, try to equip them with more stimpaks and radaways. Better weapons and outfits will help too. But most importantly, the higher the level, the longer they last out there. And the longer they last outside, the better the items they manage to find.

– as you’re loading the game, read the tips that pop up on the screen. Some are pretty useful.

– There will be objectives to fulfill, but not all of them are suitable to be fulfilled immediately. For example, sending 5 dwellers out into the wastelands early on when they are low level is just wasting your man power and resources.

– Raiders will break into your vault room, try to locate more men in the rooms near the vault door, or non-pregnant women. This makes it easier to activate your defenses as the people who are able to defend the vault are located nearer the door.


Well, that’s all the wisdom I’m imparting tonight… so… GL HF, and share in the comments if you’ve got a super tip!

Xbox Elite #XboxE3



One of the most exciting announcements that Xbox made, in my opinion (read this for my top 7 announcements from #XboxE3) was the launch of their XBOX Elite Controller.

The controller features removable and interchangeable parts, which allows users to customise it according to their own preference and feel, to maximise accuracy and responsiveness.
Here is a picture showing you the controller with the parts taken out.



All the buttons are from the front of the controller, except for the 4 longish metal paddles on the top right side of the picture. Those are situated behind the grips, 2 on each side.

The next few pictures are taken by me as I hold the controller, so you can estimate the size and positioning.


This is roughly where the back paddles will sit in relation to your grip


The Xbox Elite with the back paddles taken out and also showing the 2 levers/trigger locks behind


The hardware underneath the replaceable Dpad and thumbstick


The faceted Dpad attached to the controller

This is going to be a modders dream, I can forsee them creating custom paddles, Dpads, thumbsticks and buttons, and embellishing the controller.

There will be an app for Xbox One and Windows 10 which will allow you to customise features, and will allow you to save profiles that are stored on cloud, 2 of which can be uploaded to the controller and can be switched between using a mechanical profile switch.

It’s a good weight (roughly 350g), it feels solid, without being too heavy, and heavy enough so that it doesn’t feel cheap.
It will set you back 149 USD, and it is set to be available in October 2015.
[For SEA users though, the controller will not be available as a standalone in the region. It will only be purchasable together with the Xbox Elite console.]
And these are the official product shots, for your viewing pleasure.



For more information on the Xbox Elite, including a product video, please visit this link http://www.xbox.com/en-US/xbox-one/accessories/controllers/elite-wireless-controller

[Travel] 29 April – 3 May 2015 : Bali – Seminyak, Ketewel

Bali has a ton of cafes springing up everywhere, and they all serve quality food for very affordable prices. Other than eating, there’s shopping, beach activities, spas and massages…
At night, there are pubs and bars to chill out at, with live bands to listen to, and new friends to make.
Travel and accommodation is really affordable too.
[Magic mushrooms have been banned after some incidents late last year, for the more adventurous ones, this should be a disappointment.]

All in all, Bali is becoming one of my new favourite beach destinations… And I think I’ll be planning more short trips there!


Sunrise from my Jetstar flight to Denpasar.

We took the 3am flight to Bali, and we landed around 7am. Managed to get this shot as we were descending, the rainbow effect is from my ND filter. No idea why it turned out this way, but it looks nice!
All flights to DPS now include the 180,000Rp terminal fee in the ticket charge, so you don’t need to keep your cash to pay at the airport upon departure. Yay!
I’m always short of cash at the end of a trip, so I was relieved to find out that it was already settled in the initial transaction when I purchased the ticket online.

We stayed at an airbnb apartment that cost under SGD30 a night. https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/4664417
The room was a little sandy, and there wasn’t an in room dustbin. We didn’t swim in the pool, and in general didn’t spend much time there. The room lighting is a little too dim for night reading.
Wifi is good, there’s hot water and a large changing room/balcony/back area.
No frills place, that’s a good price for budget travellers. Spacious and walking distance to the local market where you can get your sim cards, local food and provisions.

First food stop of the day – Naughty Nuri’s.
You might like to know that it’s now called Hog Wild, apparently cos of franchising issues etc. Whatever. The food is still fantastic.
This trip, we had the ribs, pork chop, sup buntut and for dessert we had an egg custard.




The famous ribs


Pork chop


Sup buntut


Egg custard!

I was in my devourer of worlds mood where I eat and eat non stop.
So, we stopped by a satay joint and had 10 chicken satays. The peanut sauce is very thick and nutty, with hardly any chilli in it.
And further along, near the local market near our hotel, we decided to buy back a nasi goreng (fried rice) and a maggi goreng (fried instant noodles). Both of which were simply DELISH.


The next day, we visited a friend’s restaurant called “Biku”. http://bikubali.com/

It’s a yummy, affordable place, which serves local and fusion cuisine.
I especially liked the lamb, it was flavourful and cooked perfectly to bring out the flavour.
For dessert, I enjoyed the affogato which was served with a chocolate coated spoon. Yum.





Lamb with Wedges


Barramundi fillet


Goat cheese pie with salad


Sup buntut


Nasi Goreng

Random Picture :


Petrol sold by the roadside… in Absolut Vodka bottles

Over in Seminyak, there’s a place called The Library that has the most yummy food ever.
I’m really not kidding, I usually hate pastas with capsicums in them, but I ate up every last bit of this one. It doesn’t look very tasty, but trust me, the flavours will explode in your mouth.
The garlic prawns were so good too. Juicy and fragrant… every single bite is heaven…
Receipts and change are presented to you in a little shopping basket. So adorable.



Prawns with Butter Garlic


Aglio Olio


he’s actually really happy


The cheerful barristers and the bar

We happened to be in town during the famous Mayweather vs Pacquiao match too. All the bars were advertising it and offering special deals to patrons who reserved/walked to watch it.


The Bayu Gita Villa


View from the living room. The waves crash on the breakwater below, sending sprays 3-4m high, and rocking the villa with a sound like booming thunder. Apparently this is the low season, and in the high season, the waves (not just the spray) reach the swimming pool.


Beef Rendang cooked by the house chef!


Happy us in the pool. There are tons of floats left over by previous guests, but we brought our own as well, including the swan float that’s photo bombing. It’s an “infinity” pool, overlooking the wide, dark ocean. There are surfers too, but only experienced ones, since there’s lots of corals on this coast.


Sausages and bacon, with freshly squeezed orange juice for breakfast. Cooked by the house chef.


Early morning, standing on


after the foot shot, I decided to look up and shoot what I saw. And that is the living room, beyond the pool, in the early morning.


the sunrise! I’m more intrigued by the beautiful cloud formations than the sunrise itself.


welcome dance by the butler



adventuring out into the sea. The waves are strong, and there’s some debris in the water. So getting hit by the waves isn’t too fun. Cyn got hit by a floating durian shell and she ended up getting a cut on her ankle.


beautiful black sand…


another view of the villa, with all our floats!!


the afternoons were cloudy, I guess it’s the time of the year. but we still had fun in the pool!


My bedroom


The attached living room, complete with media player, TV sofa…


My personal dipping pool


the 10 seater movie theatre, with leg rests, cushions, and a wide selection of movies.

Back to Seminyak.
Asked a taxi driver to bring me to a nasi padang restaurant, and he brought me here.


I’m not really sure what I ordered, but I can tell you it was really good.
there was some dried beef with chilli, a hard boiled sambal egg, some fried prawn thing. It was really really nice and spicy. I’m dreaming of the prawn fritter daily…. It’s a must eat.




Most surfing schools will offer you free drinks in the package too.
If you don’t need an instructor, then you can get the board for about 10SGD an hour.
We decided on an instructor, and I think we paid about SGD40 total for an hour of instruction plus as long as we wanted to practise on the board. (which was roughly 1 more hour)
They provide a long sleeved top for you to use so you don’t get abrasions.


A terrible warung that we went to… this was one of the dishes. It was a tourist trap, so I don’t intend to tell you where it was. This is the garlic butter swimmer crab, and it was tiny, hardly any meat, overcooked so that the meat stuck to the shell… yeah… no. Not worth it at all.




A sunset on the beach at seminyak.


Potato Head.
It’s a slightly more expensive area, but the sunsets here are the best.
It’s always pretty crowded, there’s outdoor seating and inpool seating. lol.



Sisterfields. One of the nice cafes to go to. We didn’t manage to drop by, but our friends said the coffee was soso only.
A nice place to hang I guess!

You should play Heroes of the Storm

If you haven’t actually played the game because you hate it already, I have a whole half a page at the bottom reserved especially for you.

For those of you who have already played Heroes of the Storm (henceforth referred to as HOTS), you’ll be pleased to know that this entire article is about HOTS, without actually being about HOTS. You see, this article is actually about Doom.[1] This is the story of what would have happened if everyone played nothing but Doom for years on end.[2]


Scene: Everyone is playing Doom.

Quake gets released. Everyone touts it as a skill-less game, ditching the tried and tested “keyboard only” interface. Doom fans ridicule Quake players as “noobs who need to use a mouse to aim”.[3]

Team Fortress is released. Doom fans wonder why anyone would play a game that is so limiting and without depth. They moan the loss of being able to pick up any weapon. Of being stuck with only the weapons you spawn with. For letting players spawn with all the weapons and full armor. Where’s the skill in gathering power-ups and weapons if you start out with everything?[4]

Halo is released. Doom fans bemoan the loss of a persistent health-bar. “Noobs need to be punished for taking damage” they say, “instead of just regenerating all their shields.”

Unreal Tournament is released. Doom fans refuse to see the point of modes like “Assault” or “Domination”. They know what the first person shooter is about – the deathmatch!


I lied at the start. Now I’m going to talk about HOTS.

The point is this. HOTS takes a lot of things that were completely unnecessary in the genre, things that made playing a game less fun, and removed it. And perhaps if less people played DotA, and less people made the argument “this thing must be fun because it’s currently implemented”, it wouldn’t have taken 10 years for someone to come up with a game in the genre that was actually well designed. People just seem to be unable to separate “what makes a game good” and “what just happens to be in a good game”.[5]

And with peer reinforcement, stagnation occurs! Hoorah! Thank goodness for Blizzard. They don’t do anything ground-breaking, but in a genre that has been actually making worse games every year, their presence is welcome.

So here are some things that HOTS decided to remove. Thank goodness.

– Last hitting. Do you really want to spend 80% of your game trying to time your right-click so as to get minuscule rewards, then do the same thing OVER AND OVER AGAIN?

– Shopping. Because amassing gold isn’t bad enough, you need to spend time travelling across the map in order to waste your time spending your gold on something.

– Ridiculous scaling (and items). So why would you have heroes that are “weak early game” and “scale up”, and vice versa? So that players only can have fun for… half the game?

– Individual rewards. Because it’s really no fun to spend half the game zoning someone out (and staying at lvl 1) while your friend spends half the game farming (wooh! Now, HE’S having fun). Yet he gets all the rewards.

– A single point of healing. Because wasting 2 minutes to walk back and heal MAKES THE GAME SO MUCH MORE FUN.


So what do you spend the game doing?


And, ummm… that’s pretty much it. You spend the entire game fighting each other.

You can argue art. You can argue noob-friendliness. But as far as pace goes, this is a game that forces player-to-player interaction and confrontation.

Other advantages include:

– Less thrash talk. Because you’re almost always busy, you don’t have time to curse your teammates. Moreover, the game usually ends before any arguing can be done.

– Easy to learn. But without sacrificing depth. It’s easy to learn because it’s consistent and not needlessly complicated. You don’t need to do weird armor calculations. There are very few weird specific interactions (and those are bugs to be phased out) to memorize. You don’t have to wonder about which of the 100 items are actually viable to buy.

– Fast. But it doesn’t feel so. Because you spend 20 minutes in combat, the game feels extremely engaging. A much better usage of time.


That section for people who hate the game without trying it


I’m tempted to say a lot of mean things here. Including things like “people like you are why Hitler got away with the holocaust”. But without generic character blasting, let me address a few specific concerns.

1. It’s too much of a skill-less game.

There are a few people who can make this statement. You most likely aren’t one of them. Einstein can go “I did physics instead of chemistry because chemistry was too easy”.[6] But the 12 year-old kid studying algebra doesn’t go “I did math instead of computer science because computer science was too easy”,[7] because HE’S PROBABLY NOT GOOD ENOUGH AT EITHER FIELD.[8] If some 12 year-old kid comes up to me and says “why are you so dumb, studying computer science, instead of being like me? I’m so smart, that’s why I study maths!”, it’s not like I’d go “why, yes! Blimey, you’re too skillful for me to compare to!” [9]

2. It doesn’t have last-hitting/denying/items/farming. It’s stupid.

But wait, WHICH OF THE ABOVE ACTUALLY MAKES THE GAME BETTER? See entire passage about Doom.

3. I can’t carry by myself.

This is actually valid. You can’t Rambo around.



[1] – If you don’t know what Doom is, google it. It’s the first result. It’s also a commonly used word, and yet the entire first page of google is dedicated to a 12 year old game.

[2] – Most of what is said here is also said in this article. But that’s long as hell, and makes a lot of horrible points that dilute the greatness.

[3] – Another point to note is that about 1 in 1000 people can come close to being “good” at Quake. This has non-obvious parallels to the analogy being made.

[4] – In case you haven’t realized, the point is so as not to waste time gathering power-ups, and spend time on the fun part, ACTUALLY KILLING PEOPLE.

[5] – Not suggesting that DotA is or is not a good game (it isn’t).

[6] – Though they are different yet intertwined disciplines, but you get the analogy, I hope.

[7] – Math is really, really, really, hard. And if you don’t think so, you probably don’t know enough math.

[8] – Unless he’s Korean. They somehow produce teenagers that can be good at everything.

[9] – Though, true story: I studied computer science because math was too hard.

[GAMING/REVIEW] Battlefield Hardline (PS4) – 5 Reasons why you should play it.

bf hd

[Read my first post on Battlefield Hardline (BFH) here http://wp.me/p3ID2Y-z1]
Battlefield is long known for their huge maps, big teams and a multitude of vehicles to pilot.BFH keeps true to these features, and then adds more.

Here’s 5 reasons why you should play BFH

1) It plays like a Drama Series
The game was designed to be more than just a game. The single player mode will keep players riveted as each level continues like a different episode in a TV Drama. What Visceral contributed to BFH was the storyline and a character driven plot based around the protagonist, Nick Mendoza.
There’s plenty of dialogue and cut scenes, and really, sometimes you forget that you have to something other than just watching the plot unfold.
It was especially absorbing for me playing the single player on the PS4, but I’m pretty sure you’ll be just as enthralled on any other platform.

2) New Content
I don’t know about you, but I like games that don’t just stay static. Patches and DLCs are a very welcome feature for me, because sometimes they are game changing, and they breathe new life into it.
Whilst the Visceral staff were not able to comment on whether any DLCs were planned, they did say that there will be added features coming out for the BFH Premium members.
These include maps, Gun Bench (Which can track kills!), Challenge modes, tournaments and ladders, and Legendary status (which allows replayability).
There are a bunch of other perks for premium members, but I think that the above it are well worth the upgrade already!
Check out the whole list of premium features and perks here http://www.battlefield.com/hardline/news/battlefield-hardline-premium

3) New Game Modes
The new urban warefare setting has allowed the team to create a whole lot of new modes for BFH.
For example, “Hotwire” where teams capture objective vehicles, “BloodMoney” where teams have to pick up or steal cash and deposit it into their own vault, “Crosshair” where the cops have to escort a VIP and fend off attacks from the criminals within a timelimit of 3 minutes.

4) Competitive Modes!!
I’m one of the gamers who will never be satisfied with just playing a game for enjoyment, and BFH satisfies my need to take gaming to the next level – Competitions! It’s just rewarding for me to be able to match my progress and skill level against others. So for those of you who share my thirst for blood, do try out the competitive modes “Rescue” and “Crosshair”. You get 1 life per round (ie, you don’t respawn until the round is over); at halftime, you switch sides and teams play a BO7 (best of 7).

5) Cool stuff
If you haven’t seen this video of the in game motorized couch, watch it here

The American Dream, a motorized sofa, is the fastest land vehicle in BFH, and it’s only available on one map, provided you can find it!
It’s location is hidden, and it spawns once per match. It seats a total of 4pax (including the driver) and can be repaired.
It’s a tribute to Paul Mathus, the Director of Product Development, who in his younger days submitted a video of  himself on a motorized couch in his entry for “Battlebots”.
It appears from 28 seconds in, it’s awesome.

I can’t wait to see if there are any more hidden gems in the game, or whether any will sneakily be added!
Even if none are, I love the personal touch and cute story behind this one.


Here are some pictures from the event in HongKong which EA so kindly sent me up for!

Here’s how we were welcomed into the gang of criminals, mugshot!

Some pretty BFH branded gear provided for our use at the game testing areaDSC_9176

Yep, that’s me in the reflection!DSC_9178

Travis Hoffstetter, who gave the press interview together with Forrest Tarleton.DSC_9185


Free Stuff! a Duffel bag, BFH PS4 review set, a cops money clip and a brochure. Not pictured here is a BFH poster .

The various journalists and media trying out the game on PS4. Some just kept going at it in Blood Money, while others went for the single player storyline (ie, ME!).DSC_9196

Post-interview with Travis

Picking lucky winners of various products sponsored by Sony – including a grand prize of 1 PS4!DSC_9200

One of my fellow Singapore journalists won a 1 month subscription.
Sadly… I have no luck… 🙁DSC_9198

Just a parting shot of the BFH headset.DSC_9199

[A big thank you to EA for sending me up for this event. It was really interesting and I got to meet media from around asia, as well as the development team who created this awesome game!]