you're waiting for the bug-free demo of King Kong for the 360, you
will probably be waiting for a good long time. There's been no news,
no updates, and no word about anything regarding the demo since it
was stealthily pulled from the Marketplace a couple days after it
went up. While it doesn't matter much, this demo did at least
represent something; the promises from Microsoft prior to the 360
launch that said they would offer this demo AT launch.
if you want a demo of a already released title that has the highest
attach rate of any 360 game so far, there's good
news. The Call of Duty 2 demo is up on Live. What does this
mean? It means that (as stated in the link) that Activision and
Microsoft would rather get out a demo of such a popular and old game
than release some patches for the buggy game play. It also means
that Activision would rather put out a demo of a much owned game
than pump out some demos for the less played and owned 360
titles...including both future releases and the obviously unplayed
titles, like THAW and Gun.
suppose, with no news of a real PS3 launch, and the Revolution
playing on it's own unique playfield, there's no pressure from
Microsoft to do anything truly worthwhile with the Live Marketplace.
Too bad that this type of action, along with a poorly met demand,
will probably be remembered quite well when the competitors launch
within the next year (or so...PS3 could, in theory, be AWOL until
long after a year from now).
since it's been a month or so now of stupid news (I could seriously
use something that doesn't feel like an insult to my geekish ways
about now), let's continue. Rumors are flying, I guess, that EA will
try to make sequel
games to The Godfather. All I can say is one simply thing...if
given the choice of dropping money on either a Godfather game or
buying the DVD box set (which you can find the trilogy of for about
the same price as a game), I suggest to all of you to just buy the
part of this movie ever even said it should be a game? A game based
on a movie is usually bad enough (with few exceptions...like The
Warriors), but when it's based on something like The Godfather,
which is more about plot than action, it needs to stop. It makes me
think of the current state of movies. Why make something original
and good when you can just rehash the same good movies over and over
Kong? Remake. The Hills Have Eyes? Remake. 50% or more of all recent
attempted (and successful) blockbusters have been based on remakes
for the last couple of years. The same seems to apply to games.
Everything is becoming a sequel, a prequel, or an adaptation of a
movie (that is usually either bad enough on it's own, like the
Fantastic Four movie and game, or is just a remake of a classic
film)...there is simply no originality out there. However, the sad
part is that we gamers seem to endorse crappy games.
THAW came along, many people bought it based on what Tony Hawk once
stood for in the game landscape. Movie games? We gobble them up,
even when the movie is bad. Why do we do this to ourselves? It's out
purchases that drive the market, yet we would rather buy something
familiar and bad than take a chance with a highly regarded unknown (Psychonauts,
Beyond Good and Evil, and even Prince of Persia: Sands of Time). We
are fickle enough to only take in something "new" when
it's a sequel that should never have existed because we ignored the
first game in the franchise. Prince of Persia: Sand of Time was
brilliant, yet we ignored it. When the sequel arrived, in all it's
emo-glory, we ate it up...despite how the original was so much
better...and even that "original" was a long overdue
time for us gamers to actually make intelligent purchases. Just
because a game is based on a movie, especially on classic films that
many of us never even saw but have only heard of, don't give in to
the temptation to feed the industry's expectations that we want more
of this shit. The simple fact is out there; developers and
publishers are in this for the money and if we want good games, we
have to put our money where our mouths are.
of it like those poorly conceived post-9/11 commercials that said
"if you buy
you fund the terrorists". However, instead, this is more of
"if you buy The Godfather game, you fund unoriginal
If you've been
following the lack of news about it, then you may be interested in some
actual words from Sony about the status of the PS3. It's looking
like a delay could be in the works. If this is a surprise to you,
then you have not paid attention to the simple fact that without any
word on the system from the developer up until now, it usually would
imply that a delay is coming anyway. Until Sony is able to show off
the PS3, it's safe to say that it's at least several months out.
Also, considering the way Sony rolls, a delay from the spring launch
means a delay from a probably fall launch for the US.
On the note of
greatly rumored systems, Microsoft may, or may not, be unveiling
a new portable system on the 2nd that supposedly can handle
media and games. Yes! I knew, as soon as I unloaded on gameless
wonder (the PSP) that I'd need another gameless wonder to fill it's
hole in my life. That's called sarcasm. If Microsoft does unveil a
new portable game system, all I can say is that I still see Nintendo
staying on top. Nintendo offers exactly what portable gamers want in
a handheld; cheap, games a plenty, and easy to obtain. A Microsoft
portable would probably go the same way the PSP has...it will be the
best damned portable game system that is overpriced and game free.
I could go off
about news that involves strong companies doing weak things all
day...so instead, I'll change things up a little from my usual talk.
In particular, let's talk about gamers being ignorant.
If you've hit up
any XBox 360 forums in the last 4 months, you've probably have seen
two main topics. One of them, which is good and common, is in
regards to finding release dates for games, Marketplace content, and
when new batches of 360s will hit shelves. The other type of topic
is just ignorant and pointless; "Will this TV work for my
I've seen it,
you've probably seen it, and it's time for these topics to end. I
can understand that HD-TV technology and terms are fairly new to
most people and that the 360 is responsible for helping many people
look beyond SD and ED televisions. However, the constant asking
about certain TVs is just pointless. The odds of you getting a
proper amount of feedback on a TV's quality from a video game
message board is about as likely as me getting good 360 feedback
from a TV web forum. In other words, these people are simply looking
at the wrong place.
So, I decided to
offer something a little new; Malik's Newb Guide
to HD-TV. Basically, if you know what 540p actually means, then
you don't need this. However, if you're left with questions on
"will this TV work with the 360?" or "Is 540p
good?", then you may want to give this a look.
It's not short,
and it's not going to tell you the "best" TV out there.
It's all personal preference, and that's what the guide gets at.
That, and how there's a different need for all gamers, and all TV
viewers. So, if you have a question, check it out and see the right
way to buy your first HD-TV. Also, if you want a summary, here you
go; "HD-TVs are expensive and come in a lot of flavors...so,
the only way to properly justify the spending of so much money, in
an intelligent way, is to do the research yourself."
By the way, I'm
now a good deal in disk 2 of Grandia 3, and I have to say that I'm
not seeing the deterioration of the plot that everyone claims. I
wouldn't call this plot great to begin with, but I know it's not
horrible either. Best of all, at least Grandia 3 is relatively emo-free.
Well, I'm back. I
had to take a day off yesterday. It was just too busy and insanely
hectic of a day to think about doing anything beyond getting some
R&R after I finished my day job for the evening. It doesn't
happen all that often, but when these types of days hit, I may
vanish for a day or two at a time.
Origami project is still teasing
the public. If you haven't been following things recently, you
may be in the dark. Basically, this device from Microsoft was first
hinted at last week. Ok, it's been hinted at for a longer time, but
the first images popped up last week, showing some pictures that
were about a year old. It's one of THOSE things, where a company
would rather tease for a little too long than to just spit out the
info we all are wanting.
images first showed up, the device was shown playing Halo. It was
naturally, for some, assumed that this would be Microsoft's answer
to the PSP. In other words, a portable gaming device that would be
able to handle some further abilities of a standard PC (multimedia,
maybe an organizer, blah, blah).
While we are still
a week away from when Microsoft is now promising to unveil the
project to the public, with the 9th being the magic day, some info
is coming to light. Mainly, this device is actually looking like a
new step in making a PC more portable while offering a limited set
of gaming abilities. In other words, it's sounding a lot like a PSP,
since we all know how well the PSP does with gaming...and the
completely limited and non-existent gaming lineup.
While the sources
from the article linked above claim that the device will not be able
to take on the iPod or PSP, it also says that the Origami will be
able to let users watch movies, which obviously means it could
handle sound files. Anyway, in the end, this will not mean much to
the gaming world, since this thing will mainly be what Microsoft
will probably show it off as; a $500-$1000 portable PC running
Windows XP. That's it.
I'm still getting
time with Grandia 3. I really want to finish this thing before the
7th (the street or ship date...who ever really knows these dates
anymore) for Shadow Hearts 3 and Burnout Revenge for the 360. So, I
want to finish up what has been dubbed a short RPG, but has already
taken about 25 hours of my life with no ending in sight. I just find
it annoying how many gamers view a 30+ hour RPG as short, when they
were once heralded as epic experiences back in the glory days of
I also have yet to
see this supposed claim that the plot (which is not solid, by any
means) goes completely to crap near the second half of the game. I'm
over half done, I assume by being about 5 hours onto the second disk
of two, and have seen no sign of the plot going into the
unforgivable realm. But then again...if the other primary complaint
is that the game is too short, then maybe this argument is full of
bullshit as well.
Speaking of games
coming next week, I'm not sure how the first two were, but the third
Naruto GCN game was freakin' awesome. So, if you like the anime, you
may want to check out Naruto:
Clash of Ninja for the GCN, which also hits shelves next week.
Just don't expect anything too good, if you did import any of the
GCN Naruto titles. This one is an old game ported very late to the
US so it doesn't reveal any of the plot of the series before the
Cartoon Network reveals it to us. At least we'll have English on
First off, and
most important to us 360 owners who were sad to see no good games at
launch and a constant delay to the game that so many of us
wanted...yes, it's now official. Oblivion
comes out on the 20th.
This is not just some lame ass rumors from the game stores to try to
boost pre-orders. This is the real deal, from the mouths of
Bethesda. So, when put together with some other games I want, and
some I don't want, the 360 line up is forming finally. As of the end
of this month, there will be Ghost Recon, Burnout Revenge, Oblivion,
Fight Night 3 (possibly the prettiest game I've ever seen), and
Battlefield 2. All I can say is this; about time.
fair. After all, didn't the PS2 look like shit, in terms of it's
line up, for about 6-10 months after it's launch? Now if the 360 is
going to look so good in it's fourth month, then I'll take that and
directions, I can't believe how bitchy Grandia 3 gets. It's not a
bad "don't want to play anymore" type of bitchiness.
Instead it's a "I'd throw the controller if I faced this for
one more minute, but instead I will feel like I really accomplished
something" type of bitchiness. I'm talking about the Jungle
Most dungeons in
this game begin with you landing your airplane on the outskirts of a
dungeon. Then you travel through a swarm of monsters in order to
reach the dungeon. Once you reach the place, you are treated to a
golden save spot (which refills HP/MP instead of JUST letting you
save like a green save spot does). Well, the monsters in the jungle
are not only really strong, but some will devour your MP. This
leaves you with most of your MP drained to heal the party while the
rest is wasted on monsters eating it. However, instead of getting a reprieve
from the hell once you reach the actual dungeon, you find a lowly
green save, and a shit ton of strong monsters.
Half way through
this dungeon, you encounter one hell of a bitchy room that has you
fighting four groups of two golems. The last time the game made you
face this type of room, only magic would work on these enemies. So,
as you struggle to keep your party alive (with a soon to be
discovered revelation that these golems are hurt by physical
attacks), and use the last drops of MP to heal between golem
battles, you feel like the end is in sight. Not the end of the
dungeon, but rather the end of your characters. Just when you nearly
throw your controller in a fit of rage, the dungeon ends, without
the tradition boss fight.
It's, as I like to
call it, more like the dungeon was just one big boss fight. I have
never seen such a stealthy change to game play style in an RPG
before, and I can't believe how awesome it was. It's like facing one
of those special "survival" modes, but as a regular
dungeon in the normal game. This was the first time, in a long time,
that I felt like I actually accomplished something by strategizing
my way through the level. Leave it to Game Arts to do something so
I'm still further
from the end of Grandia 3 than I'd like. I feel like, with Shadow
Hearts 3 and Oblivion both on the horizon, that I just don't have
time to play through everything. At least this is a better sense of
stress than the usual "I spent $400 on this console and there's
nothing to play on it".
Also, before I log
for the weekend, I have a sin to confess. When my MP3 player decided
life was not worth living, I had to break down and buy a new player.
I figured that, while it was affordable, the cheap option would not
be reliable enough anymore. So, I got an HP iPod. I had
Then, I tried to
install all of the required installation crap. My computer knew I
sinned. My computer fought a brilliant battle with me over this
Apple stuff touching it. In the end, after 3 hours of fighting, the
iPod and iTunes were both up and running on my PC. Then I copied
over my music and sinned a greater sin...I enjoyed the iPod. I don't
know what happened to me, but I feel a lot like I did when I first
got my XBox...like I sinned, and like it was ok to do so. What has
happened to me...?
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