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10/31/2005

Sulu? Gay?

Filed under: — COJones @ 4:53 pm

Oh well. George Takei, Mr. Sulu from the original Star Trek series, has beamed himself out of the closet. It’s really his business what his preference is, but it does explain a few things about the TV series. For one, it explains why everytime the Enterprise visited Earth, they went by way of Uranus.

OK. A little obvious, but someone had to say it.

The only thing that bothers me a little about the announcement is the timing. I notice that it is suspiciously coincident with the only engagement he has listed on his homepage. I realize that he didn’t just decide to become gay, since he has been living with a partner for 18 years, but it looks like the decision to announce may be a publicity stunt for his current play.

Civilization IV is out… see you next spring.

Filed under: — COJones @ 1:12 am

Well, I was afraid of this. Civilization IV is out, and I got hooked again. It’s unlikely that I’ll be able to do anything constructive until I get sick of the game. That should be sometime in the spring. Pity me.

Just to be clear, I realize I’m somewhat susceptible to the lure of Civilization games. I got hooked by both Civ 1 and Civ 2, and had one hell of a time getting clean. Somehow, I managed to completely miss Civ 3, but I suspect I would have been hooked by it too.

If you are looking for a slam-bam action game, or something with stunning graphics, or even something that is up-to-date, you will be disappointed. The graphics are a throwback to the nineties, the entire game is turn-based, and the game engine is mind-numbingly slow. In fact, by most of the usual standards for judging games, Civ IV would get extremely low ratings.

There is, however, an overriding factor that always makes a Civ game worth playing. The gameplay is probably one of the most seductive things you can do to a geek who leans toward megalomania… as all geeks do. This version is no different.

I’ve barely scratched the surface on how this game is played, and I’m already getting addicted. I’ve wasted 10 hours of my life on two games played at the simplest level, and won by the simplest means. I shudder when I think about what is in store for me.

If anyone knows the name of a good video game rehab clinic, please drop me a line.

10/30/2005

Games of the Week for Oct 30-Nov5,2005

Filed under: — leakenova @ 9:40 pm

Another week and for what I assumed would be the heaviest weak of releases turns out to be a fairly light Christmas week. Onto to a rather small list of the games coming out this week:

Animaniacs: Lights, Camera, Action! for the Gameboy Advance
Call of Duty 2: Big Red One for the Playstation 2, Gamecube and XBox
Castlevania: Curse of Darkness for the Playstation 2 and XBox
Chicken Little for the PC
City of Villains for the PC (missed from last week)
Ed, Edd n Eddy: The Mis-Edventures for the Playstation 2, PC, Gamecube, Gameboy Advance and XBox
Guitar Hero for the Playstation 2
The Incredibles: Rise of the Underminer for the Nintendo DS, Playstation 2, Gamecube, Gameboy Advance and XBox
James Bond: From Russia With Love for the Playstation 2 and XBox
Mega Man Battle Network 5: Double Team for the Nintendo DS
NBA 06 for the Playstation 2
Sea World: Shamu’s Big Adventure for the Playstation 2 and XBox
Star Wars: Battlefront II for the PSP, PC, Playstation 2 and XBox
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3: Mutant Nightmare for the Nintendo DS, Playstation 2, Gamecube and XBox
Texas Hold ‘Em Poker for the Nintendo DS
Trapt for the Playstation 2
Without Warning for the Playstation 2 and XBox

Not much to talk about this week not much is being released. Still are is a few so to start with:

Star Wars: Battlefront II: We loved Battlefront last year and it became a staple of the Shamelessgeeks LAN parties. Added to this version is the ability to fight battles in Space and more battles and new locations from Episode III. Also look out this week for the DVD of Episode III.

Call of Duty 2: Big Red One: The PC got its version of Call Duty 2 last week and this week the consoles get their version. It focuses on US Army’s First Infantry Division better know as the Big Red One. Personally I am going hold out two weeks and buy the XBox 360 version. I saw it this weekend at EB Games and I was blown away by how good it looked. Looks like I may be lining up for an XBox 360.

The Incredibles: Rise of the Underminer: The sequel to Incredibles which starts where the first Incredibles left off when the Underminer pops out of the earth. Right now the sequel is a game but could a new Incredibles movie be far off?

James Bond: From Russia With Love: It appears EA is making it a goal to release a new James Bond each Christmas. This one is set back during the early years of Bond and stars the first Bond, Sean Connery. Well… actually his voice, but it is still a Bond game with Sean Connery as Bond.

For one I missed last week, City of Villains: The follow up to the Superhero MMORPG City of Heroes. This time around you are bad guy instead of good guy and you can play both for the same fee.

Like I said not much to talk about this week but there is a lot of good game already out. My pick for this week is: Star Wars Battlefront II.

10/28/2005

Target to sell arcade machines

Filed under: — leakenova @ 5:09 pm

I do not know if this real or not, but according to this article Target plans to sell an arcade machine that plays a nice selection of 80’s Midways games, for less than $500. At that price this machine is a steal and is cheaper than most do it yourself Arcade kits out there. Hopefully it will support JAMMA so I can change out the game.

The dirty secerts of EB Games

Filed under: — leakenova @ 3:35 pm

The Mad Gamer has posted an article that exposes the dirty underbelly of EB Games. Most of his claims are the norm for the game industry. The thing Mad Gamer fails to realize is the profit margins for most video game stores is slim hence all the profit making tactics. If video game companies offered a better margin rate then 10% a lot of the bad things Mad Gamer claims EB Games does in the spirt of profit may vanish. Including offering a better trade in value. Still selling roach infested and pee covered machines is fairly low. In defense of EB Games in the DC area, most of the store employees are fairly honest and the few EB Game bathrooms I have been in, I have yet to see a stack of game consoles in them. I even heard an EB Game Empoylee tell me that Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects sucked.

COD2 review

Filed under: — COJones @ 1:02 pm

I ran across this COD2 review at firingsquad.com. The reviewer seems to have a pretty lukewarm opinion of the sequel. I’ll let you know when I try it out this weekend.

New Yorkers complain about pleasant smell

Filed under: — COJones @ 12:19 pm

It seems that there was a pleasant smell wafting through New York yesterday. The odor was compared to maple syrup or freshly baked cake. Nobody was able to prove that the odor was hamful, and nobody could could identify the source. About the only thing certain about the incident is that New Yorkers will complain about anything… even something that smells pleasant.

10/27/2005

Could that alien abduction be an illusion?

Filed under: — COJones @ 9:03 am

I ran across this Reuters article that says alien abductions may be “false memories”. The fact that there is very little information about the professor who came up with the idea is a little disturbing. It make me wonder if the whole thing came to him in a dream.

I don’t buy any of it. I still have vivid memories of the aliens who came and stole all of my athletic abilities when I was young. You won’t make me believe any other explanation.

10/25/2005

King Kong good

Filed under: — leakenova @ 6:06 pm

The NY Times has posted an article talking about how the upcoming King Kong game based on the upcoming Peter Jackson movie King Kong blurs the line between movie and game. To which most gamers would say DUH it’s a game based on a movie.
In reality the article is more a fluff piece written for the purpose of hyping the game. This leaves me wondering how brown the New York Times author’s lips were after writing it. No matter how much of a gamer Peter Jackson is or who he gets to make the game it’s still a game based on a movie. Shame on you New York Times, you should know better.

Civ IV, COD2 released today.

Filed under: — COJones @ 1:49 pm

Another banner day for PC gamers. It looks like I’ll have to go a little further in debt, because I consider both of these games to be “must buy".

I’m looking forward to COD2 to breathe new life into my LAN parties. COD and COD:UO were both great, and they kept us entertained for quite a while, but it is time for something new. I’m guessing that COD2 and Battlefront2 (released next week), will become standard fare for our get-togethers.

Civ IV is kinda scary. If I get cught up in this one the way I got caught up in the first two, I’ll be lost to the world for weeks. Wish me luck.

Stubbs the Zombie First Impressions

Filed under: — leakenova @ 3:57 am

I finally got my hands on the game Stubbs the Zombie today and my first impression is mixed. I am still on the fence about whether this a must buy game, or just a fun game with a neat concept that is worth giving a try.
Stubbs plays fairly well with tight control and an easy to understand interface and concept. Simply put, you are a zombie and your main objective is to eat. So like any good zombie, you moan around and eat every human in sight. Again, nothing complex. Moan, stumble around, see human eat human. Rinse repeat do a hundred times. The gameplay is very simple but it does not get boring or shallow. The humans get better weapons and use different tactics each level, requiring me to change tactics. Also, the game allows you to occasionally drive vehicles, but so far I have only done this once. While fun at first, it got boring after a while.
Adding to your quest are several abilities: the super fart which stuns humans, an organ bomb which acts like a grenade, and the ability to detach your hand This allows you to posses humans and use your head like a bowling ball to mow down humans.
So far my favorite part of the game is the Zombie Army. After you eat a human, he or she turns into a zombie that follows you around the level joining you in your merriment as you go around eating humans. I loved creating a huge army of zombies and then unleashing them on a pack of humans. The humans fire off their guns in vain as they are swarmed and turned into more members of the zombie army.
The graphics were on par with Halo. Nothing hugely impressive like Oddworld, but they where fine. I never saw any real clip issue and the frame rate held up throughout the game. So far my favorite part graphics-wise is that they give the feeling that you are in a cheesy 50’s movie. In fact the game reeks of bad 50’s movie from the cheesy art, to the robots and cars of the future.
The animation and sound effects on the other hand were top notch. I loved the variety of ways you could eat a human, each with a unique graphic. So far I am not bored watching Stubbs chomp away on a human and I love hearing the jokes the humans make as you eat them.
My major complaint so far is I often got lost in the game. The main reason is it often felt like the level designer simply cut and pasted the same areas over and over again . I wish Wideload had cut down on the amount of area and instead focused on creating tighter levels. The guys from Wideload are ex-Bungie guys, and I had the same complaint about Halo. The other thing I disliked was the music… actually the lack of it. Whenever there was music I really got into the game, and some of the slower parts really could have benefited from some background music.
Overall, I’ll save my final decision about this game and the story until after I finish the game and write my review. The story so far is alright but I have only scratched the surface as to why Stubbs is terrorizing the citizens of Punchbowl.

10/24/2005

DUUM: The Movie Review

Filed under: — COJones @ 10:12 am

Well, the Doom movie was finally released to a flood of hype. Having played every version of the game on, or soon after it’s release date, There was no doubt about whether I would see the movie. I went in realizing that a movie about a lone marine rampaging through a space station would not have enough content to hold anyone’s interest, so I expected that the writers would have to find a way to add additional marines. What I didn’t expect was that they would rip out the original story, which was just a thin excuse to set up the carnage, and replace it with something far, far worse.

I’m not sure who they were aiming this movie at. Those who never played the game will find little to no redeeming value in the movie. The thought of scientists transforming themselves into demons as part of a science experiment is so over-used that it is pathetic. Non-gamers will be perfectly justfied calling this “Night of the Living Dorks” (apologies to George Romero). Fans of the game will dislike the stupid way they changed the plot. The ‘demons from hell’ plotline has been replaced by ‘dorks with an extra chromosome’. Game fans will have no problem calling this movie DUUM. Jeez.

The action promised by the game was almost absent from the movie. As far as I could see, the marines pumped more ammo into piles of dead bodies than they shot at demons. They wasted so much time in a lame attempt to explain the existence of the vile creatures that they didn’t bother to show more than a few of them in action.

In some ways, the movie was better than I expected. I went in thinking that the FPS sequence would be extremely stupid. I thought it would be annoying to gamers and incomprehensible to non-gamers. It was was actually the best part… I especially liked the scene where the zombie planted an axe in his own head. Unfortunately, it was also brief. It fell short of giving the true feel of the game, but at least it was entertaining.

In most ways, this movie was just plain bad. The special effects were pretty good, but not at the caliber of a good sci-fi movie. The horror scenes didn’t spare the sensibilities of the audience… just like the game. However… dialog, acting and plot were far more likely to make you retch that the buckets of blood sloshed around the set.

10/23/2005

Games for the week of Oct. 23- Oct. 29,2005

Filed under: — leakenova @ 10:04 pm

As Christmas get closer and closer the list of the games of week keeps growing. That is until after Halloween when the list slow downs a little. Onto the list of what is coming out this week:

80 Days for the PC
Agatha Christie: And Then There Were None for the PC
Atomic Betty for the Gameboy Advance
Battlefield 2: Modern Combat for the XBox and Playstation 2
The Bible Game for the Playstation 2, XBox, and Gameboy Advance (delayed from last week)
Brothers in Arms: Earned in Blood for the Playstation 2 (delayed from 2 weeks ago)
Call of Duty 2 for the PC
Civilization IV for the PC
Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth for the XBox
Dance Dance Revolution: Mario Mix for the Gamecube
Ford vs. Chevy for the Playstation 2 and XBox
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex for the PSP
Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories for the PSP
Gunstar Super Heroes for the Gameboy Advance
Heroes of the Pacific for the PC
The Hustle: Detroit Streets for the PSP
Lego Star Wars for the Gamecube
Metroid Prime Pinball for the Nintendo DS
Midway Arcade Treasures 3 for the Gamecube and PC
Nicktoons Unite! for the Playstation 2, Gamecube and Gameboy Advance
Ratchet: Deadlocked for the Playstation 2
Real Time Conflict: Shogun Empires for the Nintendo DS
Resident Evil 4 for the Playstation 2
RollerCoaster Tycoon 3: Wild! for the PC
Shrek SuperSlam for the Playstation 2, Nintendo DS, Gameboy Advance, Gamecube and XBox
The Sims 2 for the Playstation 2, Gamecube, Nintendo DS and XBox
Sky Dancers for the Gameboy Advance
Sniper Elite for the PC
Soul Calibur III for the Playstation 2
Spartan: Total Warrior for the Playstation 2, Gamecube and XBox
Taito Legends for the Playstation 2 and XBox
Vietcong 2 for the PC
World Championship Poker 2: Featuring Howard Lederer for the Playstation 2 and XBox
X3: Reunion for the PC
Zathura for the Playstation 2 and XBox

Again another long list of games coming out this week. This week there should be something for every type of gamer out there the list is very diverse unlink some previous long list. Without further ado here is my comments for the week.

The Bible Game for the Gameboy Advance - last week I talked about the console version of the Bible Game and how bad it was. The funny thing is that the Gameboy Advance game is not that bad particularly for children the target market. The reason why, is that the Gameboy version and console version where made by two different studios. One which makes really good Christian/Mormon games in Utah and one well after talking to the lead tester I am still not sure if they are even Christians. Luckily the Gameboy Advance one was made in Utah. The thing that makes the Gameboy Advance game so good is the unique design. It combines trivia with RPG in a collection quest to collect several scared objects that was a blast to play. I think this type of gameplay is a first in the RPG genre. Hopefully the Gameboy Advance version will succeed and the developer will create a Mormon version of where you play Joesph Smith on his quest for the Tablets and the Book of Mormon.

Battlefield 2: Modern Combat the version I have been waiting and waiting for finally hits stores shelves. My E3 preview is somewhere on this site and to say I loved it is mild. I had a blast with this game at E3 and the demo left me wanting more. This game will most likely be the game that gets me to return to XBox Live. Oh yhea if you have an XBox and a Playstation 2 buy the XBox version. Since using XBox Live to play multiplayer games is a lot easier then on the Playstation 2 which this game is all about.

Call of Duty 2 - Shameless talked about in earlier point and I think he best summed up this game. A must buy for WWII FPS shooter fans and FPS fans for the matter.

Civilization IV - The next installment in the classic Sid Meir game that suck up so much of my college free time. What I am looking forward to the most is the fact the engine is programmed in Python and the game can be modded using Python. I am a professional Python programmer so I will be buying this one and modding it like crazy.

Dance Dance Revolution: Mario Mix - my E3 review for this game is float around somewhere on the Net. I am not sure which site it ended up since I wrote E3 previews for three sites. The game is DDR using the music for Mario and Nintendo’s games instead of the normal dance music associated with DDR and a few Mario themed mini games tossed in for good measure. I can not say if I really liked the game or not but the guy who played it for me did. I am way too out of shape to even think about playing any DDR game. Actual it would make for a funny video if Shameless , Crew and I played DDR.

Ford vs. Chevy a question a game should not answer since it is always Chevy.

Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories the next installment in the GTA series which returns to where GTA all started that is Liberty City. Not much to say other then it is GTA people, where do the lines start for this one?

Gunstar Super Heroes a true sequel to the classic Genesis shooter from Treasure. I loved playing Gunstar back in the day and I am really looking forward to play it when I get it for my Gameboy Advance.

Lego Star Wars - Talk about being late to the dance, all the other version came out six months ago when Star Wars Episode Three came out.

Metroid Prime Pinball - For some odd reason the guys at Kotaku went nuts over this game. I guess they liked the new rumble toy that comes with the game.

Ratchet: Deadlocked - Is this becoming a Christmas tradition of releasing a new Ratchet ever year? If so please, please make one for the PS3 I love Ratchet games. That is after they become greatest hits.

Resident Evil 4 - The Gamecube version was huge hit early this year. From what I have heard this one looks and plays better then the Gamecube version.

The Sims 2 only a year late to the dance but now you can play Sims 2 on the consoles.

Taito Legends - I wet my pants when I saw the list of games in this collection. All of them where quarter eaters back in my arcade playing days in the late 80’s and 90’s. I also think this is the first Arcade perfect port for the consoles of Elevator Action, one of my favorite arcade games ever, since the Nes version came out in 1987. Other ones that had me wetting my pants where Bubble Bobble, Rainbow Island, New Zealand Story and Super Qix again none of which have not seen an arcade perfect port since the Nes days. This is a steal at $20 much better then my previous favorite collection the Capcom Collection.

My pick for this week is: Battlefield 2: Modern Combat.

10/21/2005

CNN slams Gizmondo

Filed under: — leakenova @ 6:07 pm

CNN columnist Chris Money in his Game Over column today slamed the Gizmondo over its: upcoming launch this weekend, the Gizmondo price points and the Gizmondo in general. The Gizmondo is Tiger Telematics newest handheld which they will us to attempt to capture its fair share of the growing handheld market from competitors Sony, Nintendo and Nokia. The major issue that Chris Money brings up in his column is how clueless Tiger Telmatics is when it comes to video games.
First the price point of $399 makes the Gizmondo the most expensive handheld ever, even beating the Turbo Graphix handheld. As Chris Money points out for the same price a consumer can a fully tricked out XBox 360.
Second the alternative price point main requirement of having to download and watch commercials to turn off the Gizmondo is well…asine comes to mind. Did Jack Thompson come up with this idea?
Third not launching with retail but only at fourteen mall kiosks across the country and on the web. That one has me scratching my head as to how that is a good idea. With no retail support how do you plan to build brand awayness or for that matter actual sell games and systems. Think about this I live in Washington DC, a major metro area, right now for me to actual buy the Gizmondo or any games after I buy a Gizmondo I need to travel to 10 hours to Georgia or Massachusetts.
Fourth what the heck is the Gizmondo is it a GPS, Camera, MP3 player, movie player, cell phone, Web browser, an ad deliver system or some Frankenstiening monster of all of the above. If I want a device that does all the above and plays a few games I would have bought a Palm Handheld. At least with a Palm I can also store my friends phone numbers. Heck if I really wanted to I could also add a camera to my Gameboy with Gameboy Camera. Then again did anyone actual play with their Gameboy Camera for more then ten minutes?
I have to agree with Chris Money this Gizmondo is deferentially going down in history as the worst gaming system and launch ever. The only nice thing I can say about the Gizmondo is all the entertainment it will give Video Game Journalist making fun of it because we have the new Taco Phone. Who knows maybe Tiger is secretly owned by Nokia so that everyone can forget about the first Taco Phone also know as the N-Gage.

10/20/2005

Jack Thompson update

Filed under: — leakenova @ 7:39 pm

According to Kotaku and PC Enthusiast site Ars Technica, Jack Thompson may be under investigation by the Florida Bar Association (FBA) for ethics violations over the recent Penny Arcade incident. Gamespot is claiming that Jack is not under investigation. According to Brian over at Kotaku it depends on which branch of the FBA you call. Both Tor, the author of the Gamespot article, and Brian have sent a request into the head honcho of FBA and until then Jack Thompson may or may not be under investigation for ethics violations.
One side note in the bottom of the Gamespot article Tor posted a letter from Jack Thompson to the FBA and the media in general about how gamers are harassing him. Quite an interesting read defiantly shows how out of touch with reality Jack is. I liken it to writings of the Unibomber. Also according to Jack I am now guily of being a ‘pixelante’ or “to generate the sort of Internet-based gamers harassment of me (Jack Thompson)". I want what ever Jack is smoking, on my best day I could not make this stuff up.

Random thought of the day

Filed under: — leakenova @ 3:32 pm

Just a random thought, but why is Id Software giving more hype to Doom the Movie than to Quake 4 the game?

More on the video game movie topic

Filed under: — leakenova @ 3:32 pm

Just in time for the Doom movie, Slate has posted an article discussing the ins and outs of video game movies. The author also takes some shame in having seen all of the video game movies that have been made. Sadly, I have not seen every video game movie since I have yet to see House of Dead, Alone in the Dark, and Final Fantasy: Spirits Within. The author of the article also agrees with Shameless that Resident Evil was the best video game movie ever, but I am still holding out for the authors number two pick Mortal Kombat. If the author of the article reads this post by some random chance, Alone in the Dark came out for the PC and the 3DO console, not for the Atari Jaguar.

Turning your PSP into a brick

Filed under: — leakenova @ 2:07 pm

Computer security website F-Security has posted a video demo of how to turn your PSP into a brick. I have been very bad about not posting this warning, but yes… there is a program floating around on the net that will destroy your PSP. Before you get scared and never again buy or download a thing for the PSP, the program in question takes a lot of effort to find. That is because it only effects people when they try to downgrade their PSP’s firmware from 2.0 to 1.5 so they can play homebrewed (pirated) games. When the user runs the downgrader in question it wipes the PSP flash memory of critical files, turning your PSP into a brick. There is no known way to restore the files. This warning is only for people who are involved in the PSP homebrew community. Be careful, you may just end up with a brick.

Also for all you involved in Nintendo DS homebrew community, be careful too. In the past few days a program has appeared on the Net that will turn your Nintendo DS into a brick also. Again it is fairly hard to find and only effects DS owners that are involved in the homebrew community.

Big Poop Drops Out of Election

Filed under: — COJones @ 9:14 am

Now don’t that beat all! A politician who is honest enough to call himself “a big piece of poop” has been removed from the mayoral ballot in Victoria, BC. I thought that being a giant turd was a requirement for entering politics.

Legalization of Cheeseburgers

Filed under: — COJones @ 8:57 am

The so-called Cheeseburger Bill easily passed the House yesterday. This is just the next step in the process to make it legal for people to sell and distribute junk food. I can’t wait for the day when I can munch my Whopper or unwrap my Ding Dong in public without fear of arrest.

Ok… Not really… But you have to admit that the truth is just as stupid. The fact that we need to pass a law to protect people who sell food is pretty bad. Go ahead tubby, blame the cheeseburger for your enormous bulk. While you’re at it, blame the video game for your bad behavior and blame the Internet for your lack of friends. Blame everyone but yourself.

This is all an offshoot of the big tobacco lawsuits from a few years ago. You can expect it to continue for as long as the world has lawyers.

10/19/2005

AP reviews We Love Katamari

Filed under: — leakenova @ 3:37 pm

This is not something I expected to see but the AP has posted a review for the cult Playstation 2 game “We Love Katamari". The game is the sequel to last years sleeper hit “Katamari Damacy” and outside the hardcore gaming and anime circles the game is unknown. It is nice to see the AP post a review to a game that normally would not get this level of attention. Still, why did the reviewer not mention that playing Katamari Darcy is just like being high on mushrooms?

Walmart has playable XBox 360

Filed under: — leakenova @ 3:28 pm

According to this post on Joystiq, Walmart has playable XBox 360’s on display. Joystiq has confirmed this by calling the first store it was reported at. XBox 360 sightings have also been confirmed at other Walmarts by Joystiq readers. When I tried to verify if the XBox 360 is on display in any Walmarts I came up blank.

Firefox crosses 100,000,000 download mark

Filed under: — COJones @ 2:27 pm

It’s official! Firefox has been downloaded over 100,000,000 times! I’m sure you couldn’t tell by the “Get Firefox” button at the top of the page that it’s my favorite browser. Congrats to the Firefox team for hitting this milestone!

Wilma Sets Records

Filed under: — COJones @ 2:02 pm

It looks like hurricane Wilma is one for the record books. It just keeps on setting records for intensity and pressure drop over time. Let’s all hope that this one dies back a little bit before landfall.

10/18/2005

Doom reviews are starting to appear

Filed under: — leakenova @ 4:26 pm

IGN has posted what appears to be one of the first reviews of the upcoming DOOM movie on Film review tracking site Rotten Tomatoes. The review was kinda of luke warm on the film with lots comments that made it appear the reviewer was talking through the side of his mouth. I will hold all judgment about Doom until I see it in theaters this weekend. I am glad to see the movie is set on Mars and a lot of creatures are from the game, but lets be honest here… the movie is based on Doom. It was a great game mostly famous for sending horde after horde of bad guys to kill, but not for its plot. However Doom will be called the greatest video game movie ever until Halo hits theaters. Being called the greatest video game movie ever is not that great, seeing as the greatest so far has been Mortal Kombat.

Jack Thompson refuses to keep a promise.

Filed under: — COJones @ 1:19 pm

According to gameindustry.biz, everybody’s favorite game banning hypocrite Jack Thompson won’t put his money where his mouth is.

So… Lets’s get this straight… You promise to donate money to charity simply because you think that your rivals will not stand up to your challenge… Then, when you are proven wrong, you hold out on the charity and claim that your challenge was “satire". Could this be the “morals” that you seem to speak of so freely?

I, for one, find it very appropriate for the world to consider everything else you have said and written to be the same brand of “satire". If you want anyone to take you seriously from now on, you will pay up and apologize for your stupidity.

UPDATE:
And it keeps getting better… Jack’s response is to have Penny Arcade’s donation declared as harassment. That’s really nice. It wasn’t enough to stiff a charity by failing to keep a promise… lets get someone else in trouble for covering the failure. I really hope the Christian right and Hillary Clinton, Thompson’s only friends so far, renounce his antics quickly.

Just for those who missed it, here is a link to a posting of Jack Thompson’s Modest Proposal. Technically, there was a little bit more to it than just creating a GTA mod. However, anyone who reads it will have to admit that it doesn’t look much like satire. It looks more like “stupidity used to expose irony” than the opposite.

Big week for PC gamers.

Filed under: — COJones @ 12:49 pm

This week’s list of new PC game releases includes some of the best names in PC gaming history. There are new versions of the Age of Empires series, the Call of Duty series, and yes… There is even a new version of Quake. Add the fact that the Doom movie gets released on Friday, and you have quite a week for us old time PC gamers.

Just for starters, you have Quake 4, which is the latest version of the game that got me addicted to multi player FPS for several years. I can remember staying late at work to take advantage of the company T1 connection during off-hours. I’m probably too old and slow to play it, but I will have to get a copy anyway.

Next up… Call of Duty 2. I was really glad to see Call of Duty when it first came out. It was one of the first FPS games I played that didn’t rely on super-twitch teenage reflexes. Having left my teens a few years ago, ;-) I was glad to see a FPS I could play. I have no doubt that this one will be at the top of the LAN party list this winter. I also have no doubt that I will be getting a copy.

Finally, there is Age of Empires III. I must confess that I have never played the AE series. I have, however, gotten very interested in the micro-managed, RTS games like Empire Earth and Rise of Nations, so I’m looking forward to trying AE III.

Here’s a funny thing: I’m actually looking forward to the Doom movie. It’s not that I think it will be any good, but that I really want to see how they turn the story into something that will put butts in the seats. My biggest fear is that the movie will be way too full of itself, and completely miss the fact that people are expecting the same type of technology advance that the games brought. Not much longer to wait…

10/17/2005

Rare interview with Rockstar VP

Filed under: — leakenova @ 4:51 pm

The VP of Rockstar games rarely grants interviews to the gaming media or the media in general. The New York Times has managed to snag one of those rare interviews with Dan Houser. During the interview Houser mostly talked about Rockstar upcoming game “The Warriors” and refused to answer questions about certain previous Rockstar games like GTA: San Andreas.

The interview did explain why Rockstar choose to make a game out of the movie “The Warriors". Turns out it was a favorite of the owners from when they where kids. So this begs the question: when is Rockstar games going to make a game out Neighbors?
(Neighbors for those of you who do not know was a hugely popular Soap opera series in Britain when the Rockstar owners where kids living in London. It was also the TV series that pop star Kylie Minogue got her start at for all you Trivia geeks.)

10/16/2005

Games of the week for Oct 16 - Oct 22,2005

Filed under: — leakenova @ 10:21 pm

We are now deep into the Christmas season and the list of games coming out for the week are going get longer and longer until the first or second week of November, then we will see a small slow down. So onto a long list of games of the weeks. Since they have asked nicely, we’ll be featuring Stubbs the Zombie in Rebel Without a Pulse for the XBox coming to stores this week.

A Boy and His Blob for the Nintendo DS
Age of Empires III for the PC
The Bible Game for the XBox
Big Mutha Truckers for the Nintendo DS (delayed from last week)
Blitz: The League for the Playstation 2, XBox
Chicken Little for the Playstation 2, PC, Gameboy Advance, and Gamecube
Chicken Shoot 1 for the Gameboy Advance
Codename: Kids Next Door: Operation V.I.D.E.O.G.A.M.E. for the Gamecube
The Con for the PSP
Crash Tag Team Racing for the Playstation 2, XBox and Gamecube
Dig Dug: Digging Strike for the Nintendo DS
Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi for the Playstation 2
Fairly Oddparents: Clash with the Anti-World for the Gameboy Advance
F.E.A.R. for the PC
Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance for the Gamecube
Greg Hastings’ Tournament Paintball Max’d for the XBox
Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life Special Edition for the Playstation 2
IHRA Drag Racing: Sportsman Edition for the Playstation 2
Jak X: Combat Racing for the Playstation 2
Madagascar: Operation Penguin for the Gameboy Advance (Delayed from last week)
Major League Baseball 2K5: World Series Edition for the Playstation 2 and XBox
Namco Museum 50th Anniversary for the PC
Quake 4 for the PC
Scooby-Doo! Unmasked for the Nintendo DS
Shadow of the Colossus for the Playstation 2
Shattered Union for the PC and XBox
Shining Force NEO for the Playstation 2
Sniper Elite for the Playstation 2, XBox and PC
SpongeBob SquarePants: Lights, Camera, Pants! for the Gamecube and PC
Spyro Shadow Legacy for the Nintendo DS
Stubbs the Zombie in Rebel Without a Pulse for the XBox
Teen Titans for the Gameboy Advance (delayed from last week)
Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland for the Playstation 2, XBox, Gamecube and Gameboy Advance
The Warriors for the Playstation 2, and XBox
World Poker Tour 2K6 for the Playstation 2, XBox and Gameboy Advance
World War II Combat: Road to Berlin for the XBox and PC
X-Men Legends II: Rise of Apocalypse for the PSP

Wow that is a lot of games coming out this week. 35+ titles and a good week for Shameless with not one but two games (Quake 4 and Ages of Empires III). For me, I finally get the game I have been waiting for since playing it at E3. Actually, it is two games… the Bible game and Chicken Little. With all this goodness where do I begin with my comments, how about:

Stubbs the Zombie: Okay I have a confession the grassroots rep for this game contacted us and asked us to talk about this game. Since I am such a nice guy and if I play nice I may just get a free review copy (*hint*) I decideded I have to talk about it. She most likely did not have to ask me to talk about it. I was already interested in it when I saw it a few weeks ago. I almost gave it game of the week honors when I saw it. Why? Stubbs took the traditional Zombie game and turned it on it’s head by having you play the Zombie. So now instead of running around with a shotgun killing Zombies. You are running around dodging manics with shotguns while trying to eat those maniacs brains. Oh yea; the PR person also wanted us to mention that the developer Ignited Minds is holding a contest for the fans of the game where they can win a Apple Nano, the game and soundtrack. To enter the contest click on the below link, which will take you to the Stubbs the Zombie website.
http://links.fanitorium.com/?L2085

Quake 4: Wow it has been about 10 years since the first Quake and now we are getting a shiny new version that has Shameless all jumping up and down. Not sure why? I was a bigger Doom fan but for so odd reason Shameless thinks the story in Quake was better. The big question I have is where is the hype for this game like there was last year for Doom III?

Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life Special Edition: Okay I was not going mention this game since Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life has already come out. However since Farming is a huge part of several of a readers life (okay one and it is not Shameless) I figured I have to mention it. Not so sure what so special about it, the EB Game page for it did not say, but it is Harvest Moon a great franchise. If you have not played a version of Harvest Moon yet treat yourself and give this one a try. You never know you too may become addicted to Farming.

Shining Force NEO: does Sega know when to give up on bad RPGs? Guess not since we have another sequel to the very aging Shining Force. Save your money and buy Shining Force III for the Saturn which sells for the same price. Which if you know anything about collecting video games is a very rare thing.

Shadow of the Colossus: Excuse me as wipe the tears out of my eyes, I only played this game for 30 seconds at E3 and I already love it. If you play one console game this year this is one you should. This game is most of the beautiful games I have ever seen for the Playstation 2. In fact ICQ the only one the compares with it was made by the same people. It is a shame this game is most likely going flop like ICQ did but you can hope sometimes that people may stop playing Halo and give this one a try. Not matter what this will be one of the games the hardcore console gamers will be talking about years from now as one the greatest games they ever played just like they do with ICQ right now.

Blitz: The League: I never thought I say this but I am kinda glad that EA locked down the NFL license. Blitz proves that developers instead of rolling over and playing dead like everyone said (including me) would took the lock down as challenge and have come up with neat ideas for what to me is a boring game concept. I am really digging the idea of an edgy football game that allows you to play the rumored bad boy lifestyle of a football player.

Crash Tag Team Racing: I can not believe I played this game and not Stubbs at E3 but I did and I enjoyed it a little. CTR was a fun little kart racing game and Crash Tag Team appears to be more of the same game with a few new twist. Granted it is no Mario Kart but if you are looking for a little fun kart racing game Crash Tag Team is good one.

Chicken Little: Okay another game I played at E3 (actual I played it a lot) and fell in love with. I think it mostly had to do with the pole graphics and the fact that they replicate an act that males do in the bedroom. Then again it was plan out fun without the normal hardness that most platformers try for. The only platformer that I can think is easier then Chicken Little was Jak and Daxter which I also loved. If you if a Jak fan the latest game in franchise Jak X: Combat Racing is also coming out this week. It is not a platformer but a racing game that most are calling a Road Blaster like game. I did not like it when I played it at E3 but a lot of other journalist did.

Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland: I guess it is now a tradition but get ready for the gaming media to declare this the greatest Tony Hawk game ever to only watch them say next year the next round in the Tony Hawk game is the greatest when it comes out in 2006.

Shattered Union: a game based on the Civil War for the consoles granted it set in the year is 2060 but hey it is a console game based on the Civil War.

The Bible Game: Another game I played at E3 and well this one I did not fall in love with. Actually I do like the Gameboy Advance version of it which was neat game that blended a traditional RPG game with bible trivia but that one is not out yet. The console version on the other hand is a train wreck. Still if you are looking for a fun game to play when you are drunk this is one. The mini games like kill the Romans and Climb Jerichos Ladder are a blast when you drunk. When you are sober on the other hand you may just, never mind I can not write about it here. Skip it if you are sober, but play it when you are drunk. And yes I am going to hell for this.

A Boy and His Blob: Talk about a very old school game coming back but hey it is time someone released a new A Boy and His Blob. This game was a classic on the NES and hopefully the DS version will live up to the greatness that was A Boy and His Blob.

Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance: Wow another old school classic 2-D Japanese RPG appears on the Gamecube. What did happen to all the great 2-D Japanese RPGs for the Playstation? Guess they are slowly moving back on a Nintendo Platform where they belong. Hopefully they will not be forgotten next generation but I have an odd feeling they will in favor of junk like Final Fantasy XIII.

Ages of Empires III: I have a confession to make I have never played any of the Ages of Empire games but the RTS fanboys love them and I guess they will love this one to.

F.E.A.R: This is suppose to be a big FPS for this year but they would not show it to me at E3 so I have no idea. A little hint but we do go to E3 and if you want us to say stuff about your games you are going to have to let us play them and not just a select few. You never know we might just get a few people wanting to buy your game. It does not cost much to send us an invite to preview your game at E3.

The Warriors: See my above and add the following when I finally got to see the game the Japanese journalist showing it to me at E3 could not stop laughing at the screenshots from the game. He also said it was fairly lame. Personally I hate Rockstar after the way they treated me at E3 and I am hoping this game flops like it should if it came out from any developer other then Rockstar. Just because Rockstar makes it does not mean it is a good game, if anything that should tell you it is a bad game. Other then GTA what have Rockstar made that was any good?

There was a lot to pick from this week but there can only be one. One game of the week that is and for this week I choose Shadow of the Colossus with Stubbs, Quake 4 and Chicken Little coming in close second.

10/13/2005

Huge vintage collection on EBay

Filed under: — leakenova @ 7:59 pm

Computer collector David Freeman, owner of the ACP Computer Superstore and Freeman PC Museum, is offering up his compelete collect of vintage computers. Some of the gems in his collection include: an Apple Lisa, a version of every Commodore ever made, an Apple IIgs Woz, and lots of super rare vintage computers. In addition to that Freeman is also offering up a huge collection of video game consoles and Pong machines in a separate auction. Highlights in that auction include: the first electronic game from WACO, a Magnavox Odyssey, Coleco Telestar, Intelvision III and a stack of the Coleco mini arcade machines. Right now the Computer auction is over 11K and the console is only $1100. The console one is steal at 2000K. I have most of the consoles he lists and I have personally spent 10,000+ collecting them. On a sad note I may also have to sell my collection of console games soon due to some unplanned finacial difficulties. Anyone interested in a video game collection with over 30+ consoles, 3,000+ games, and lots of video game artifacts for only 20K?

The Crisis is here

Filed under: — leakenova @ 6:42 pm

Yesterday DC comics finally kicked off the mini series Infinite Crisis. Infinite Crisis is DC’s latest attempt to reboot itself and return it back into an easy to understand continuity. For the non comic book readers out there, DC comics has a long history of doing this with series like “Crisis on Infinite Earths” and “Zero Hour".
Newsarama.com sat down with DC Vice President Dan DiDio and shed some light on what “Infinite Crisis” is about and its ramifications. Personally I think Infinite Crisis is just another mess that will force another reboot in 10-15 years.

10/12/2005

Smurfs get bombed!

Filed under: — COJones @ 6:37 pm

There’s quite a flap about UNICEF’s new ad campaign that features a bombed Smurf village. The images are meant to shock people into awareness about ex-child soldiers in Africa. I don’t know much about the cause, but I assume it is a worthy one.

I really have no idea why they decided not to release the ad in the USA. I’m sure that the ad would be TIVO’ed by every parent who had to sit through hours of watching the little blue wimps in order to please a child. I honestly believe that the ad would become the greatest guilty pleasure in the country, and that it would do wonders for awareness in the cause.

Heh… here’s an addition to the Video Games You Will Never See list:
Smurfageddon: Tra la la la la Ba-BOOM! Ooooohh! The smell of little blue bugs roasting! Every parent’s dream!

Apple adds video to the IPod

Filed under: — leakenova @ 2:36 pm

Apple has announced today a new IPod that will be video enabled. The video IPod will be approximately the same size as the current IPod, except a little thinner. It will come in two models: A 30GB model for $299 and a 60GB model for $399. Both will have a screen size of 320 x 240 pixels that support up to 260,000 colors, 20 hours of battery life, playback of H.264 and MPEG4 at 30 fps and TV output.

Apple plans to team up with ABC and DISNEY to provide TV broadcasts for the Video IPod. They have also announced that the device should be in stores by next week.

Personally I will stick to the PSP as my MPEG player of choice since I can get UMDs of most major movies, a higher resolution and everything in wide screen. If Apple somehow creates a way for me to connect DVDs or TIVO to the Video IPod then I may switch. Still… I hope this announcement will spur Sony into improving the PSP’s battery life and memory storage.

China launches another rocket.

Filed under: — COJones @ 2:11 pm

It looks like China has launched their second manned space flight. The fact that much of the equipment was purchased in Moscow means that this wasn’t much of a scientific feat. The extreme paranoia that surrounds Chinese technical advancement tends to take a lot away from any political points that the government may want to gain from it. Even so, it was a major event.

The main thing that the Chinese government showed here was that they have the willpower to undertake a large challenge. The people of the US and Russia should see this as a serious indictment of their own ability to advance in the current world order. They should, but they won’t, and of the 2 countries, Russia has the far better excuse.

We all know why Russia has trouble sending out Cosmonauts. They have fallen on hard times in recent years, and they simply don’t have the cash. It is really hard to maintain any kind of cash flow or scientific program when your economy and government are going through frequent upheavals. The fact that so much of the Chinese technology was purchased from Russia should be your first clue about the scientific programs of both countries.

The US, on the other hand, has absolutely no excuse. We have the finances, we have the talent, and we have the capability. Our problem is a complete lack of will in all levels of government. Our congressmen would rather spend their time trying to justify the fact that their local college should get a multi-billion dollar grant to study the sex life of rodents as part of an urban development bill. Instead of actually trying to get things done, our government officials spend their time soliciting donations for libraries that they can draw a salary from when they “retire” from government “service".

Something for those of you who don’t care: Do you really believe the extremely aggressive and hyper-paranoid Chines government when they say that they don’t believe in space-based weapons? When they drop the pretense and decide to launch their orbiting nuke platform, will we be able to stop them?

For the next few years, we are OK… However… It will take us 5 to 10 years to accelerate our program back up to speed. Where will the Chinese be then? It took us less than 10 years to go from first manned flight to moon landing. How long do you think it will take the Chinese when they can buy most of that technology from Russia?

So there you have it folks. Paranoid and misguided though they are, the Chinese government has the will to safely launch men into space. The US, on the other hand, spends it’s time making sure that the thermal foam sprayed on the Space Shuttle is good for the environment.

10/10/2005

Games of the Week for Oct 10-Oct 15,2005

Filed under: — leakenova @ 10:51 pm

Another week another late list of games of the week. Again I miss my deadline of Sunday but as my mom says: “better late then sorry” so onto the games of the week list:

Codename: Kids Next Door: Operation VIDEOGAME for the Playstation 2, Gamecube and XBox
everGirl for the Gameboy Advance (delayed from last week)
Devil Kings for the Playstation 2
Evil Dead: Regeneration for the PC
Fifa 06 for the Gameboy Advance
Hello Kitty: Happy Party Pals for the Gameboy Advance
Madagascar: Operation Penguin for the Gameboy Advance
Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects for the Nintendo DS
NCAA March Madness 06 for the Playstation 2 and XBox
Pac-Man World 2 for the Gameboy Advance (delayed for the past month)
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney for the Nintendo DS
Romancing SaGa for the Playstation 2
Serious Sam II for the XBox and PC
Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga 2 (delayed from two weeks ago. Plan on a long delay with this one. The last two versions where delayed for months)
SOCOM 3: U.S. Navy Seals for the Playstation 2
Splat Renegade Paintball for the XBox and PC
SSX On Tour Playstation2, Gamecube, PSP and XBox
Teen Titans for the Gameboy Advance
Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas: Oogie’s Revenge for the Gameboy Advance, Playstation 2 and XBox
Ty the Tasmanian Tiger 3: Night of the Quinkan for the Playstation 2 and XBox
Ultimate Arcade Games for the Gameboy Advance
Zatch Bell! Mamodo Battles for the Playstation 2 and Gamecube
Zoo Tycoon DS for the Nintendo DS

Now onto the Pick and comment section for this week:
Hello Kitty: Happy Party Pals - See they do also make sucky games for girls. Yes that is sexist but I Hello Kitty games are about as bad as sucky games for boys like Digamon and YuGiHo.

Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects - This fighting game for all the other platforms has been getting the hell bashed out by the fighting fan boys, sadly I agree with them.

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - This is the first lawyer simulation game. Yes thats right the main game play action is to slash your DS and shout in the microphone I object. Actual from I what I saw at E3 this game is a fun mystery adventure game that is a must buy for any fan or quirky cool games.

Serious Sam II - Just in time for the Doom Movie comes the game that gives your everything that you love in Doom with even more monsters and bad guys. Yup Serious Sam is an old school hardcore 90s FPS, that is waves after waves of monster with bosses that take up full screens and are hard as hell to defeat. Perfect game to get you psyched up for the Doom Movie.

SOCOM 3: U.S. Navy Seals - In this popular Playstation 2 multiplayer game they added cool vehicles and a few new maps and called it a new version.

SSX On Tour - When will this franchise die, I getting tried of these eXtreme Snowboarding games. If you love eXtreme games the SSX franchise has been the cream of the crop.

Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas - Just in time for Corpse Bride comes the game for the previous Tim Burton’s clay animation movie, The Nightmare Before Christmas. So does this mean we are going to have to wait 10 years for Corpse Bride the game?

My pick for this week: Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney for the Nintendo DS. This game was plan fun at E3 and I so looking forward to filing briefs and shouting object into my Nintendo DS microphone.

Robo-Winner!

Filed under: — COJones @ 12:54 pm

We have a winner in the DARPA Grand challenge! A VW Touareg finished the course in just under 7 hours yesterday, which is well within the 10 hours allowed. The fact that 5 vehicles finished the 132 mile race this year was a HUGE improvement over last year, when nobody got more than a few miles from the starting gate.

Congrats to the geeks of Stanford University, who have earned immortality in the minds of all Geekdom.

10/8/2005

It’s Apparent Jack Thompson’s not A Parent

Filed under: — shinnite @ 12:16 am

In a few years it’ll be all over the news - Psychologists Prove Violent Games Cause Violence.

And psychologists all over the world will laugh as the media once again demonstrates their inability to read between the lines (or even read, for that matter). (more…)

10/7/2005

Unmanned vehicles to race for prize again.

Filed under: — COJones @ 4:41 pm

Tomorrow is the sequel to DARPA’s unmanned vehicle race. In last year’s contest, nobody won the $1M prize because nobody was able to cover more than 10 miles of the 150 mile course. That sounds like a cool contest to enter. Now if only I could get someone to pony up the $3M it would take me to win the $2M prize…

Japanese Geeks recognized as an economic force.

Filed under: — COJones @ 4:27 pm

Japan seems to be waking up to the fact that geeks are a powerful force. Of course, everyone reading this site already knows this.

One thing that they failed to recognize is that many of us fit into several of their “geek” categories. How many geeks do you know who are comic book lovers as well as tireless gamers? How many Anime geeks are into video games? I was also a little annoyed with their liberal use of the disparaging term “obsession". Where I come from, that term should be replaced by “enthusiasm".

Oh well… At least they were clever enough to recognize that geeks can be a formidable force, even if they are still tainted by bigotry.

10/6/2005

Slow down or the start of a crash?

Filed under: — leakenova @ 6:03 pm

According to an article from Gamespot, Analyast are reporting that retailers are holding off placing big orders of video games for fear of being stuck with excess inventory. Analysts are also predicting that this year’s sales will not be as strong as last year’s. There are no monster titles scheduled like last year’s monsters Halo 2, GTA: San Andreas and Half Life 2 to spur sales. Personally I think the Analyst does not know what he is talking about. The first and second quarters of this year had very strong sales without any monster titles during those quarters. What those quarters and this year’s Christmas season have are a lot of very good games that are worth buying. The analyst also forgot to factor in the XBox 360 which is a monster and could easily equal the sales of Halo 2 and GTA: San Andreas combined (1 million XBox 360 by years end with each owner buying 2-3 games = about the same number of Halo 2 and GTA copies that sold). I think what is really going on with retailers is that they are predicting a slow down in sales of current generation games. This is due to the rising cost of games, the impending next generation which will drop sales of current generation games, the lack of a price drop in current generation games, and the rise in the price of gasoline. Retailers may also be scared that a crash in the video game industry may soon occur and are quietly hedging their bets.

EA settle claims

Filed under: — leakenova @ 1:44 pm

Chalk this up as a victory for workers in the Video Game industry. EA has settled claims with the EA California Employees over the issue of overtime to the amount of 15.6 million dollars. This ends the lawsuit brought forward by several employees and brought to light by the now infamous EA Spouse blog. This victory may have been a hollow one with EA quietly moving all the animation work to EA Canada. The only proof I have of this is when I talked to someone on the HR staff in EA Canada she said EA is spending a lot of money building a huge motion capture studio and hiring a ton of animators for the EA Canada studio. After hearing that EA closed its California Animation studio this makes me wonder.

10/5/2005

Announcing: The Grand Opening of the ShamelessGeeks Online Store!… Again

Filed under: — COJones @ 11:02 pm

Well… After a brief but animated exchange with CafePress, I managed to get them to start carrying my tee shirt design again. I have to admit it. My design was a little edgy. I guess I can see why they were a little reluctant to risk taking on the legal army of the largest company in the world.

If you want to see what all of the fuss was about, or if you are just curious to see what Tux looks like in a diaper, check out the ShamelessGeeks store at CafePress.

New Radeon X1000 series released today

Filed under: — COJones @ 1:56 pm

The much awaited ATI X1000 release is here. It looks like the jury is still out on whether ATI has regained the high performance graphics crown. The X1800XT certainly looks to outperform the 7800GTX in most cases, but it won’t be available for another month. That gives Nvidia about 30 days to come up with a suitable answer.

If you are looking for a pretty comprehensive article about the new cards and their architecture, check out ExtremeTech’s X1800 review. For those of you into hardware designs, you might find the ring-buffer memory architecture interesting. You might also be able to identify with the fact that an elusive hardware bug caused the whole delay. Everyone else will appreciate the comparison of the high end ATI and Nvidia cards.

10/4/2005

Nick Cage picks a name from comic books

Filed under: — leakenova @ 10:24 pm

Huge comic book fan and actor Nicholas Cage has named his child Kal-El. Kal-El, for those of you of who do not know, it is the birth name of Superman. Clark Kent, the name you may know Superman better as, is the name his adoptive parents Ma and Pa Kent gave him after he crashed on Earth. I love these posts. You get a little neat news and a factoid at the same time.

Video games go Hollywood

Filed under: — COJones @ 6:35 pm

It looks like Hollywood has embraced video games. Again. If you look at the recent news that Peter Jackson (of LOTR fame) will be producing Microsoft’s Halo movie and combine it with the upcoming release of the Doom Movie and you get the impression that gamers are becoming respectable.

Being an antique geek who has played all of the Doom games as they were released, I really don’t expect much from the movie. I did, however, notice that the TV commercial looks like the scenery was stolen directly from the game. I’m a little confused about the plot changes though… When I read the synopsis on Yahoo, it looked like they used the teleported-demons-from-another-dimension scenario, which would be a good thing. However… When I watched the trailer, the first thing mentioned was the genetic-engineered-monsters scenario that everyone told them to dump. I’d be VERY disappointed with a movie that turned out to be just Resident-Evil-on-Mars.

The Halo movie is still a long way out. It will give me time to try the video game before I see the movie.

Duke Nukem Forever appears on Amazon

Filed under: — leakenova @ 11:40 am

Amazon UK has started to take pre-orders on Duke Nukem Forever. According to Amazon pre-order page, Take 2 plans to release the PC version of Duke Nukem Forever Dec 2, 2005. If this happens Hell is going to be one cold place this Christmas.

10/3/2005

Xena’s Moon

Filed under: — COJones @ 4:59 pm

Have you seen Xena’s moon? According to the scientists who discovered it, Xena has a dim little moon named Gabrielle hanging around. For those of you who forget: Xena is the heavenly body that was recently discovered, and has caused scientists to re-think the definition of a planet. For those who forget the TV series, Gabrielle was the name of Xena’s dim little sidekick.

Whether or not Xena is eventually deemed a planet, it is pretty evident that some scientists have time to watch really bad TV.

Office 12 to support PDF

Filed under: — COJones @ 4:52 pm

I guess the 120,000 letters a month will get the attention of anyone, including the Beast of Redmond. According to senior Microsoft executives, Adobe’s PDF (Portable Document Format) will be supported in the next version of Office. It is unknown whether this feature will be included for free, or come as an add-on premium service. It’s great news to anyone who has to ship product documentation in electronic form. It’s nice to see Microsoft catching up to the Open Source community on this issue.

10/2/2005

Games for the week for Oct 2-Oct 8, 2005

Filed under: — leakenova @ 10:20 pm

Another week and another list of games. Since we are entering Christmas season and the amount of games coming each week hits on average of 30-40 games a week I have deiced to change the format of Game of The Weeks. Instead of my normal witty dialog about each game, I am just going list them. I still have my pick of the week but I will also discuss something other highlight for the week. Enjoy and on to the new format:

Backyard Football for the Playstation 2 (Delayed from last week)
Big Mutha Truckers for the Gameboy Advance and Nintendo DS (Delayed from last week)
Black & White 2 for the PC
Blitzkrieg 2 for the PC (Delayed from last week)
Bratz: Rock Angelz for the Gameboy Advance, Gamecube and Playstation 2
Brothers in Arms: Earned in Blood for PC and XBox
Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow for Nintendo DS
Conflict: Global Terror for PC, Playstation 2, and XBox
Cross Racing Championship 2005 for PC
Diplomacy for the PC
Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil for XBox
Dragonshard for the PC (Delayed from last week)
everGirl for the Gameboy Advance
FIFA 06 for XBox, Playstation 2, Gamecube, PC, and Nintendo DS
Ford Racing 3 for the Gameboy Advance
Gretzky NHL ‘06
Halo Triple Pack for the XBox (collection of Halo, Halo 2 and Multiplayer pack)
Indigo Prophecy for PC (Delayed from last week)
Juka and the Monophonic Menace for the Gameboy Advance (Delayed from last week)
Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects for the PSP
NBA Live 06 for the PSP
Neverwinter Nights: Kingmaker for the PC (Delayed from last week)
Pac-Man World 2 for the Gameboy Advance (Delayed from last week)
Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga 2 for the Playstation 2
Street Racing Syndicate for the Gameboy Advance
Stubbs the Zombie in Rebel Without a Pulse for the PC (Delayed from last week)
The Suffering: Ties That Bind (Delayed from last week)
Trauma Center: Under the Knife for the Nintendo DS
Virtua Tennis: World Tour (Delayed from last week)
Worms 4: Mayhem for the PC and XBox (Delayed from last week)

The highlights for this week are:
Black and White 2: The newest god game from the mind of British developer Peter Molyneux. Love or hate his games they are always hype to the n-th degree and never deliver, but you never know and Black and White 2 stands to be the first Molyneux game that does meet and exceed expectations.

Brothers in Arms: Earned in Blood: The next volume of Brothers In Arms and continues the heroic 101st Airborne stories as they battle their way to victory in Normandy and on during World War II. For all you guys waiting for Call of Duty 2 you may want to give the PC version of this game a try.

Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow: Hands down the greatest Castlevania had be the Playstation version Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. After Symphony of the Night Castlevania moved from 2D to 3D, expect for a few Gameboy Advance games, and lost a lot of the charm and fun that made the earlier Castlevania games so great. Dawn Of Sorrow returns Castlevania to its 2D roots and from all looks that it will be a worthy sequel to Symphony of the Night.

Diplomacy: Developer Europa Universalis has pain staking recreate the excitement and fun of the greatest board games on earth. The thing that got this game mentioned is the AI. The AI needed successfully recreate the action that makes up Diplomacy is fairly complex and almost impossible to model. Some how Europa has supposedly successfully modeled an AI that can play Diplomacy as well as the worlds best Diplomacy players.

Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil: It is good to see that some developers are going to put out extension for console. The nice thing about Resurrection of Evil is that is stand alone, meaning you do not need a copy of Doom 3 unlike the PC version.

Fifa 2006: Soccer fans rejoice your Madden is now on store shelves. I wonder however which sells more worldwide, Madden or Fifa?

Indigo Prophecy: This has been getting a lot of buzz amongst the hard core gamers. Particular from the Penny Arcade guys (while they are not busy making fun of Harlen Ellison)

Trauma Center: Under the Knife: Another game that is getting a lot of buzz amongst the hard core gamers. Trauma Center is a surgical puzzle game. That right you play a doctor who must you scalpel and other doctor tools to solve medical puzzles.

My pick for this week is: Trauma Center: Under the Knife. This game was a blast to play at E3 and is one of the greatest puzzle games I have ever seen since Tetris.

10/1/2005

Announcing: The Grand Opening of the ShamelessGeeks Online Store!

Filed under: — COJones @ 8:20 pm

In order to recoup some of the expense of running this server, I decided to look into the concept of an online store. You know the kind of thing… a little place to sell tee shirts and stuff at a small profit.

I decided to send an original geek humor design in to a site that specializes in tee shirts, coffee mugs, etc. and let them handle all of the other details for me. If you would like to check out what Tux looks like in a diaper, go to the ShamelessGeeks online Store and see for yourself.

I expect to be adding new items every few weeks, so check back often to see what I’m up to.

Update:
CafePress has apparently deemed my little picture to be to scary for them. I’ve appealed to them, but they have nothing to say so far. Until they come to their senses, I’ve removed the link to them. Meanwhile, I’ll look for someone who doesn’t mind a little bit of parody on their shirts.

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