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Entries Tagged ‘Gadgets’:

New Wii Controller!

Via Engadget, heres a look at the controller for an upcoming game for Nintendo Wii called “Streetcar GO!” which of course puts you in the shoes of a shinkansen driver.

The above photo is of course a mock-up, but that doesn’t make the premise any less ridiculous. I thought the proprietary controllers for games like Steel Battalion and DK Bongos were whacked!

Those who wish to virtually manipulate a bullet train can do so in February. Read all about it in broken english.

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Where Is Mighty Sony?

ps3.jpgThe impassioned call rang out above all others in a recent Sony investors meeting:

With the company in the red yet again in its most recent quarter, Japanese investors were in an unhappy mood. “I bought shares in mighty Sony,” cried a woman whose holdings had lost nearly two-thirds of their value. “What are you going to do about this?”

Wired Magazine investiages the company’s future with Can the PS3 Save Sony? and comes to the ultimate conclusion that Sony’s various teams and departments are in such dire straights the fate of the entire company rests on whether or not the PlayStation 3 can be a profitable success.

Sadly, the future is not looking any brighter this day. Joystiq reports: European launch of PlayStation 3 delayed until March 2007, and this heartbreaking blow to the fastest growing game market is quicky followed up with North American, Japanese PS3 launch limited to 500,000 units.

Add on the fact that the unit itself still costs $600, and trendsetters like Penny-Arcade have sworn off the launch as “bullshit” and even the editor of Official PlayStation Magazine will be opting for an Xbox 360.

Maybe I’m not seeing the glow of Sony fans right now. Entire sites like This is Waiting mock the future of the PS3, and literally hundreds of posts on digg, youtube, and blogs all across the net collectively laugh at every single mis-step. The detractors aren’t watching Sony fail, they’re actually cheering it on.

There is little doubt Sony will sell through the initial stock quickly. I’m sure they’ll also meet their trimmed goal of 2 million by Spring 2007.
But with Xbox360 poised for its second year and reporting rapid success, and the Wii celebrated at the most talked about console since console wars began 20 years ago… Does Sony even have a shot now? I mean, could this be the end of the road for the biggest company in gaming? A year ago I’d say this was impossible, but now I wonder if a Playstation 4 will even see the light of day.

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Microsoft’s Argo, what is it?

argo.jpgThe Seattle Times is blowing the lid of Microsoft’s new portable, positioned to compete not only against the PSP and DS, but also the iPod. This is what happens when you have this many competitors.
Endgaget provided the picture of the supposed device. While the design certainly looks like it could do the media player functions of iPod and PSP very easily, its hard to think of it as a games machine.
But, oh yes, a games machine is coming, whether this is it or not. Millions in R&D are already spent, and J Allard, Microsoft’s Xbox 360 Launch poster boy is leading the charge. We’re hearing its compatible with XNA, and with WiFi standard on the unit, its a good bet Xbox Live Anywhere will play a part as well.
Major movie and music publishers are lining up to offer content to loosen Apple’s grip on the download market.
A big annual meeting is scheduled for July 27th, where the Xboy or xPod or whatever ridiculous name kids want to call it may be revealed and dated for a fall/Winter launch.
Does MS have what it takes? They’re years behind in the portable market, and the portable market is pretty well satisfied right now, even if it does lack a good all-in-one device. And will the buying public be able to stand new DRM standards that may render Apple, Sony, etc downloads incompatible with the new unit?
I don’t know, but it’ll be fun to watch, pass or fail.

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Gaming Archaeology: R.O.B.

He’s become an increasingly popular cameo in first-party Nintendo games, but what the Hell is R.O.B.? How does it work? Have you ever played Gyromite without cheating?

Questions? Refer to the Wikipedia page for which I claim total responsibility.

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Sony and Pioneer off to a humiliating start with Blu-Ray

Hitch on Blu-Ray DVDToday we saw the first Blu-Ray discs hit store shelves. On a trip to Best Buy I saw a number of them for sale at prices that weren’t totally unreasonable. The boxes looked cool which is pretty much all anyone would be able to tell you right now. Poked around looking for the players… which were nowhere to be found. I don’t think there are any in Canada. Why are we selling unplayable discs again?

Sony and Pioneer, the major supporters of Blu-Ray technology, have decided to postpone releasing their players. Sony’s Blu-Ray player is currently slated to be sold on October 25th 2006 according to their BDP-S1 product page. I wouldn’t be surprised if that date was pushed back again by the way things are going for them. Pioneer has also delayed the release of their BDP-HD1 player until September according to this article though no date could be uncovered on Pioneer’s website by this reporter. Having the 2 major supporters delay their own players within weeks of the pending release is not the best way to support a format consumers are already apprehensive to get on board with.

Samsung’s BD-P1000 is now available and retails for a shocking 1000$ US. With Pioneer’s player currently slated to sell for an astronomical price of 1500$ US and coming out only a month before the already expensive 600$ PlayStation 3 not to mention 2 months after Samsung’s 1000$ player the logic in this move is not obvious. Sony’s player will be selling at 1000$ and will be released, assuming all products follow their current release schedule, at the same time as the 600$ Blu-Ray compatible PlayStation 3. Why would anyone with an ounce of sense invest in their bare bones player? If we are to believe that this player will be in any way superior to a game system by the same company wouldn’t that just give people another reason not to invest in what is already considered by most to be a far too expensive game system?

I guess these guys just won’t be happy unless Blu-Ray really does go the way of Beta as everyone seems to be worried about.

U571 on HD-DVDAfter all this is said and done HD-DVD players have been available for over 2 months now and are selling at half the price of the competition at a mere 500$. This can be considered cheap only in the same way that the X-Box 360 is considered cheap when it’s price is compared to the price of the PlayStation 3. Of course people aren’t buying either player. I know I for one would get on board with this kind of technology if there were only one available but I just can’t afford to take a risk at such a price point and I think most HDTV owners share this sentiment. I’m fearfull that with everyone waiting there will be no clear winner in the format wars and that both will die leaving us with sub par 480p DVDs. It already happened with laser disc and there wasn’t even any competition for them.

Is there something these guys aren’t telling us? Is this all an elaborate ploy to avoid selling players at a loss while making fat cash off disc sales? Don’t they realise this makes everyone uncertain about the future of this technology? That when they can’t even put 100% behind their product no right minded consumer is going to be able to?

Maybe they’re just not trying anymore or maybe Sony’s trying to make sure the PS3 isn’t their worst mistake of 2006. That will be a tough one to top.

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Pre E3 wrapup: Monday May 8

ps3e3.JPGLets get the biggest news out of the way: PlayStation 3 launches Nov 17th in the US for $499 with a 20 GB hard drive and for $599 with a 60 GB hard drive. They’ve also ditched the boomerang controller for… a controller identical to the PS2. But wait! Its got motion sensors too! Its an obvious last minute addition, as they’ve got no games to support the feature.ps3.jpg
Wow. Just wow. Kotaku and Jostiq have excellent minute by minute coverage of the Sony Event.

Glossed over by Sony is what else will be missing from the $499 PS3 bundle: Wireless, HDMI, and Memory stick support.

The show doesn’t even start until Wednesday officially and theres already so much to talk about!

Other big news announced today: [Read the rest of this entry…]

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GameHeadz from Discovery Channel

In the days before I had TechTV and G4 hadn’t even risen, let alone fell, video game programming on television was rare.
Some kind soul has uploaded a Discovery Channel special on the history of video games, one I really liked the first time I saw it. Starts with Atari and Pong and goes up until the success of Tetris, touching on the lesser known struggles of the early days of the electronic game world.

This link also provides a download option
if you want to watch on your computer or iPod.


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PSP vs DS – Literally!

nds-psp.JPGAn inventive homebrew app writer has created the first online cross platform portable game.
Ok, so the game in question ain’t exactly that exciting, but the implications of common code and compatibility for future homebrew applications are grand!
Thanks Caliongeo!


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