These Colors Don’t Run

by on January 10, 2008 @ 3:20 pm

Colors! for the DSI’m so very happy that I picked up an R4 for my Nintendo DS. Not only do I get to test out all of the potentially shitty games before I waste any money on them, I also get to enjoy the fruits of the homebrew community’s massive labors. For instance, the latest innovation to hit the dual screen, Colors! (their exclamation point, not mine.)

Colors! is a painting app for the DS, but with the amazingly fantastic addition of pressure sensitivity, which affects the opacity and brush size as you sketch along. Bongweasel gave it a shot this morning and informed me that it is a must-have for anyone with the ability to play it. You get the basic Photoshop-style tools, and the awesome ability to repeat the actual drawing process as a short movie. The images are 512×384, which isn’t huge but definitely big enough to keep me sketching. They’re even working on adding DS-to-DS cooperative painting capability, which would be kind of neat if I knew anybody who could draw with a DS. Maybe if you set it up over wifi (which I’ve always been too lazy to do) it could be a nifty feature.

I’m going to load this up as soon as I get home, as I’ll need something to distract myself on the flight to Portland for my friend’s wedding. Have a look-see at the gallery, there are some fairly impressive sketches in there considering the medium. And if you’re interested in how they accomplished the pressure sensetivity, head on over to this thread and try to wrap your brain around what they have to say.

I’m currently looking forward to loading a bunch of homebrew apps onto my DS, as I was profoundly oblivious towards the subject prior to today. I mean I knew that they’d successfully ported the SCUMM engine and a lot of other emulators onto it, but how about Warcraft Tower Defense, DSQuake, and a whole slew of other possibilities? I’m particularly interested in seeing how reading comics and books works on the DS, as that could really make my bathroom breaks at work a lot more entertaining.

If any of you have suggestions, comment away. I’ll be posting a full rundown of my thoughts on anything I try out this weekend.

Goldeneye, Perfect Dark Coming To 360?

by on January 9, 2008 @ 3:23 pm

Sweet Jesus in a birch bark canoe, is the Rare team bringing Goldeneye and Perfect Dark to Xbox Live Arcade?

Talking with very reliable sources, and seeing evidence ourselves, Xbox Evolved believes that Microsoft, Rareware, MGM Studios (studio that makes the James Bond 007 movies) and Activision (holds the license for James Bond 007 titles right now) have come to an agreement to bring the Rareware developed Goldeneye 007 out to Xbox Live Arcade shortly before the new game developed by Activision is released.

The title will feature updated graphics, and of course an all-new Xbox Live multiplayer. Not only that, but we have found evidence that Rareware is planning on releasing even more of their back catalog onto Xbox Live Arcade, specifically, Perfect Dark and the original Banjo-Kazooie. Expect more on at least Goldeneye 007 later this year.

I don’t think my wang is going to soften all day. It’s just going to sit there like a bad Viagra statistic, thinking about sweet online multiplayer, Perfect Dark bots and that kickass heat-sensor gun that lets you shoot through walls. God how I’ve missed square-faced multiplayer excellence, and I pray that the Rare team does an excellent (and swift) job of bringing it to XBLA.

Free XBLA Game, Starcraft DS, And Other Gaming Hardons

by on January 3, 2008 @ 10:08 pm

starcraft ds homebrewI’m told that Microsoft’s Xbox Live service has been particular shitty since Christmas. I wouldn’t know, since my 360 decided to rip my heart out and shit a red ring of death all over it, but once it comes back from it’s magical journey to Redmond I’ll be sure to enjoy Microsoft’s apology for the sluggish service that I didn’t experience. Apparently they’re going to give us all a free XBLA game, to be announced at a later date.

At the same time we would like to offer a token of our appreciation to all of you in celebration of record success for the service. And as a thank you for your loyalty during this holiday period, we will be offering all of our Xbox LIVE members around the world access to a full Xbox LIVE Arcade game that will be available to download free of charge. In the coming weeks we will be sharing the specific details of this offer with you.

I still have at least a week before the Xbox comes back, so I’ll definitely be enjoying the newly released demo of the Starcraft DS homebrew. True, the French did make it, but the French published the original too so it sort of cancels out. Here’s a direct link to the ROM, ready to be loaded up into the Flashcart of your choosing.

And finally, for the Portal enthusiast in all of us, Valve has released some new shirts and hoodies that are downright sexy. Maybe once they sell a few bajillion of these they can get back to making some more fucking Weighted Companion Cube toys.

The Last Gaming Update Of 2007

by on December 31, 2007 @ 1:49 pm

Well, the return box for my bricked 360 hasn’t arrived yet, which led to a fun 1-hour phone call to India Microsoft tech support. That means that I have even more time to snuggle up to my Wii while my cousin catches up on achievement points. Though I’ve got one up on him, in that I’m not getting married any decade soon, whereas he’ll be tying the noose knot in a couple of months. Then her “nice” mask is going to come off and he’ll effectively be dead to the gaming world, so I win by glorious default. Not that I needed it, but hey, I’ll take it.

  • Watch This. – The trivia bit is fantastic.
  • Weighted Weighted Companion Cubes – Fuck the plushies, I want one of these. If it were really my companion, it’d want to hurt people in the eyeballs with its dull edges.

    …and I want a plushie too, so hurry up and restock, Valve.

  • It’s Virtual Console Monday for the Wii, so that means some new shit on which to spend your virtual dollars. This week brings us Top Hunter, Light Crusader, and a little-known title called Bubble Bobble. Spend and acquire, fellow consumer whores.

I was going to complain about still being at work on New Years Eve, but the bossman just poked his head in and told me to get the fuck out… in a good way.

And In Other Gaming News

by on December 28, 2007 @ 11:00 am

Metal Slug 3 Comes To XBLASince I’ve loaned my Wii to my nephew while he’s in town visiting, and my 360 is still waiting for that Goddamned box from Microsoft that is arriving via a sled driven by a pack of snails along a salt covered highway, I’m a little more starved for gaming news than usual. Here are a few headlines that make my pants tingle in that Heather Graham in License To Drive sort of way.

  • Metal Slug 3 On XBLA This WednesdayFinally. I don’t understand why SEGA, SNK, Namco, and some of the other arcade greats aren’t spending more of their time converting more late 90’s arcade hits to the Live Arcade format. At least we’ll have Metal Slug now, and in glorious 720p hi-def glory. Nothing about online multiplayer or co-op though, but it’ll be awesome to actually finish a Metal Slug title without bringing a roll of quarters. You know… once I get my fucking 360 back.
  • Super Smash Brothers Goes Gold? – My nephew has a weird Sonic the Hedgehog fetish, so this game has him crapping his underoos in anticipation. The release date for the next “it prints money” title for Nintendo has been leaping around forever, so it’s nice to know that they might actually release it sometime around the early February US release date. I think there will be some therapeutic value to stripping Samus of her Metroid armor and slapping her around with impunity.
  • Lego Portal – Not much else I can say, other than awesome.
  • Atari Is In Trouble – Maybe they should just start reporting when Atari isn’t in trouble to save us all some time.

By the way, for anyone who was excited for NiGHTS on the Wii… don’t bother. Sometimes cult classics should just be left the Hell alone.


by on @ 10:24 am

Zelda GashaponI don’t really try to hide my incredible reserves of nerd lust from anyone. In fact, usually when I meet a woman that I’d like to let ruin my life for a year or two (girlfriend, in laymens terms) I try to wear whatever geek apparel I can piece together from my wardrobe, just to prepare them for whatever they’re going to nag me about in the future. That being said, I think I’m going to annoy my current gf with some of these Zelda: Phantom Hourglass Gashapon figures. For those of you who aren’t up on all things otaku, here’s a short breakdown from the Gashapon entry over at Wikipedia:

Gashapon (ガシャポン, Gashapon?) or gachapon (ガチャポン, gachapon?), also referred to as “capsule toy”, is a Japanese onomatopoeia, made up of two sounds: “gacha” for the turning of a crank on a toy vending machine, and “pon” for the sound of the toy capsule dropping into the receptacle. It is used to describe both the machines themselves, and any toy obtained from them.

Gashapon machines are similar to the coin-operated toy vending machines seen outside of grocery stores and other retailers in other countries. While American coin-operated vending toys are usually cheap, low-quality products, sold for a quarter or 50 cents, Japanese Gashapon can cost anywhere from 100 – 500 yen (Equal to $1–$5 US) and are normally a much higher quality product.

And for anyone with a tenuous grip on the English language, here’s the definition of onomatopoeia.

Back on subject, the only reason that these cute little bastards are going to annoy my object of affection is due to the sheer volume that I’m going to have to order, considering the randomness of delivery, quantity of available figures, and excellently low price. On the plus side, I know a lot of people who like Zelda for whom I purchased jack and shit for Christmas, so I’ll be able to pick through whatever I’d like and then pass along the 8 duplicate Linebeck figures.

When You’re Dying Merchandising Will Be Still Alive

by on December 17, 2007 @ 12:42 pm

Weighted Companion Cube PlushieWell, the Valve Store finally went live with their promised Portal Merchandise, namely the Weighted Companion Cube. Tragically, they are already sold out. The fuzzy dice are still available, which I’m seriously considering purchasing for my office.

And speaking of games, I downloaded the Burnout Paradise demo this weekend. I must say, I’m a tad scared for the franchise. They seem to have replaced the standard “unlock/choose a level” system with an open-world environment, where you must drive to a specific intersection to start a challenge. Considering the massive size of the map (most of which is locked in the demo) we could be up for some ridiculously long drives to different challenges, especially if they don’t give you a “Retry Event” button, which is inexplicably the case in the demo. Did we learn nothing from San Andreas, people? Also, no crash junctions confirmed and no crash events (yet) in the demo whatsoever. They will be unlocking other events in the demo shortly, so keep your fingers crossed.

There are a few good things in the demo, such as the elimination (mostly) of traffic checking, which makes the game physics far less ridiculous. Unfortunately as Bongweasel pointed out, this is negated by the near complete lack of any traffic. The multiplayer is also fairly sweet, especially if you’re playing with someone who has an Xbox Vision camera, as it takes a photo of their face at the exact moment that you perform a takedown against them. Hopefully more games take a cue on that one.

Also, here’s the Resident Evil: Degeneration trailer for good measure. I’m excited for anything that helps me achieve my impending new years resolution to murder more of the undead in 2008. Plus they’re all black, so if you’re a racist zombie-hater then its a double bonus.

It’s Like WoW, With More Urine

by on December 13, 2007 @ 9:33 am

WolfquestI was turned on to WolfQuest by Bongweasel yesterday, and I found myself compelled to share the preview video with you. For those of you who are woefully uninformed, allow me to enlighten you on the world of Wolfquest. And by me, I mean the Wolfquest website by way of the mighty copy/paste functions.

WolfQuest is 3D wildlife simulation game. Players join a wolf pack made up of friends or computer-controlled wolves and, through trial and error, instinct, and experience, learn to maximize both individual and pack survival. Each player discovers how to compete or cooperate, challenge or submit, and defend or attack during complex interactions within the pack. Players find they must balance individual and pack needs in order to increase their collective ability to hunt, defend territory, avoid danger, and protect their young.

OK, now that I’ve bored you with that, go watch the fucking video. I especially love how ambiguous the ending is, with the kid either staring at his beloved dachshund as a pack brother or as his next meal. Either way, I think pee is going to be involved.

Buy Wolfquest for a child you hate this Christmas!

Tastes A Little Gamey

by on October 10, 2007 @ 9:48 am

A few things that you all should be aware of:

  1. The Orange Box comes out today. Don’t go to any stores near me to pick it up for the 360 though, as I neglected to pre-order it and I don’t want to have to kill you to get it.
  2. The next Super Smash Bros. title was confirmed earlier to have Sonic as a playable character (my nephew will shit a brick) and online co-op. Here’s some video. This might actually be the first smash bros game that I buy, or play.

  3. Some new XBLA games are coming out today, including a free game called “Yaris.” Now don’t get too excited, it’s only free because it is literally a giant advertisement for the Toyota Yaris. I’ve heard that it is a miserable piece of shit game that is barely worth your time, but it does come with 200 available gamerpoints. Yes, achievement points are pointless and a waste of time, bla bla bla. But recently my cousin decided to turn the whole gamerscore thing into a competition, and I have to stay ahead of the bastard.

That’s about it. At least I pushed Bonaduce’s face a little further down.

Wii Opera Update

by on August 13, 2007 @ 9:48 pm

Mario Kart Nintendo WiiWhile we’re on the subject of gaming, you Nintendo Wii owners may have noticed that blue light humming along for the last day or so. It has nothing to do with the Metroid videos or that video preview channel update. Seems that the Opera browser had some serious issues and they did a big update to the software, so you should see less crashes.

BTW, one of the first things I did with the Opera browser when it was introduced was to play Bowman 2 until the ground was stacked with a thick field of arrows. I got that fucking browser to slow to about 1 arrow fire per minute, but the system itself managed to keep itself up and running. Kudos.

Also, here are some Mario Kart Wii screenshots. Most of the shots are downright awful, and C&VG should be ashamed to show most of them, but still…. I want this fucking game.