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» 2008 » October

  • To those that find it weird to have zombies in Call o...
    By on October 26th, 2008 | No Comments Comments

    I’ve seen a few people questioning and even talking negatively about the newest installment of Call of Duty of having zombies in the game. One said “I don’t think there were zombies in ww2″ and the other would ask “why zombies?”, not the exact words but you get my point. And my question to these people is, “why not?”. The zombie stage is not part of the story, it is only available AFTER you finish the game, like an unlockable. The developers were nice enough to throw in some neat bonus in there and you guys are bashing the idea? Give me a break!

    As mentioned in my post a while ago, I was and still am debating whether I should get this game or not, now that I know there is an unlockable zombie level PLUS you can play co-op with this, the chance of me buying it is greater than ever.

    For those open minded, check out the zombie killing trailer.




  • Garnet Chronicle (Japanese version) – PSP revie...
    By on October 25th, 2008 | 2 Comments2 Comments Comments

      

    Today I had a chance to spend some time on Garnet Chronicle, an anime style RPG game but unfortunately its the Japanese version and as far as I know there is no release date for the English version.

    Story and controls

      

    Since its in Japanese, I vaguely know what is going on, so far! Your hero character is a knight student from a Knight academy. Your first quest is to bring a recommendation letter from the principle of the academy to the commander somewhere near the village. All of a sudden the entire battalion is being attacked by an evil looking character and his werewolf like companion, to no surprise, the entire battalion is wiped out and of course our main hero survives but barely and saves by a sexy female elf thief/treasure hunter. From then on, she joins you in the quest for the “Stone of the Evil Mind” (sorry that’s a direct translation from Japanese to English). Then once inside the “Tower of Lost” you meet up with another character, this time he’s a wizard class and he joins you afterwords. That’s how far I am in the game.

      

    The controls are typical walk with your analog stick, R will bring up the map but so far there is no map when venturing inside dungeons, circle is confirm while cross is cancel, typical Japanese style, the American version might have these two buttons reversed. Unfortunately there’s no run button so walking around might feel slow at times. You can also save the game anytime and thankfully the menus are in English as well as the Japanese explanation, only the menus though.

    Game play and graphics
    Game play is pretty much the same old turn based RPG similar to Final Fantasy (up to Final Fantasy X-2 since the battle system has changed starting FF11). You and your enemies will take turns to attack/defend/cast magic on each other. Which is fine except it feels really slow and rather boring, it would make a huge difference if the attack was smoother and faster such that attacks are executed as soon as the one before finished its move. But as you gather more people on your team, the fight gets more interesting and faster so its not too bad after all. Level grinding is also part of the game but not necessary. It is surprisingly fast to level up though, at least for the first 20 or so levels which can really speed up the grinding. As you finish each battle you are rewarded with money, experience, random items and skill points. Skill points can be spent on each character’s skill tree to unlock more powerful attack and support skills. Skill points are shared among all your characters unfortunately! And last but not least money you earned from each battle obviously will be for buying weapons, armors and support items. There are also cards and stones that can enhance your weapons such as turning your sword to have ice element and upgrade your special abilities. Treasure chests are scattered all over the map, inside buildings, out in the woods or anywhere in the villages. Some are less obvious as I have found one hidden one so far.

      

    One interesting feature that I have never seen before, at least in an RPG, is the “sneak” feature. When you approach your enemies from behind without being spotted, you can deal damage to them before the battle starts. Same applies to the enemies, if they spotted you, they would run to you and if your back is facing them then you will get attacked first. You will know when your enemies have spotted you when an exclamation mark appears on top of their heads. This feature is independent of who attacks first when the battle begins, so that means there’s a chance you can attack twice before an enemies can attack you, same applies to the enemies. If you can utilize this feature you can really gain an upper hand when fighting and makes battles a lot easier.

    Graphics are nothing fancy but well drawn anime style. Everything is 2D based but don’t let that get you because even though the characters are simple 2D sprites, their expressions and body gestures can be seen clearly depend on the situations. There are also nice flashy special effects when your characters use their speical abilities.
    One thing I don’t like is the fact that, all enemies look the same on the map, so you don’t know what kind of enemies you will face until the battle screen comes up. I don’t see why the developers cannot make the enemies show up on the map as well. But then again, what if there are more than one type of enemies, which one would they show? Maybe that’s the reason why.

      

    Sound

    Your typical anime music, your characters and enemies will say something before they attack which makes battle less dull. Sometimes your characters will even voice over during conversations. I can imagine the English translation will be bad and takes away the Japanese “atmosphere” just like any other games that went through the Jap to English translation. In general the music is great most of the time, but sometimes they can get a bit too repetitive and get annoying afterwords.

    Final Verdict
    Overall I think this game is worth a try, this type of game is nothing new but the game is still enjoyable. I had problems turning off my PSP until it went out of batteries while playing it. That should give you an idea of how addictive and enjoyable this game is, specially for level grinders like myself. Hopefully the American version will be released soon so you English speaking people can enjoy this game as much as I am now. And for those that can read Chinese, Japanese or don’t care about the story, you should be able to get a copy from ebay or YESASIA.

    8/10




  • All your application error needs @ Application-Error....
    By on October 25th, 2008 | 2 Comments2 Comments Comments

    Microsoft Windows operating system, or OS in short, isn’t the most stable system among other ones like Linux or OS X (Apple’s own OS). We all know that! But a lot of people, including me are still using Windows. Errors and crashes can happen when you are least expected when using Windows. For the less tech savvy users, they will be clueless as to what may be causing the issues. One way to know what programs your system are running will give you a better idea of what is going on and what maybe rendering your system unstable. application-error.net is a blog that talks about all kinds of exe (executable) files that run on your system, whether they are legit or harmful ones. Each article talks about a different executable file and contains very detailed information regarding each one. Information such as what the file does and how to identify/spot the file and getting rid of it (if its a harmful one) to restore stability of your system.

    The executable files are categorized alphabetically which allows you to quickly navigate to the page that contains all the files that start with that particular letter, therefore finding the file name of your choice faster than having to click through them from A to Z.

    application-error.net provides useful, educational and detailed information of what are and aren’t suppose to be running in your system. It gives advices for each listed executable file on what it does, how to identify it and again get rid of it if its deemed harmful.

  • Midnight Club Los Angeles Remix: PSP review
    By on October 24th, 2008 | 1 Comment1 Comment Comments

     

    I had a chance to play a bit of Midnight Club LA Remix that’s released recently. The game really reminds me of GTA and Burnout Paradise, well go figure. After playing it for about an hour and a half, I called it a quit because I was getting bored and annoyed.

     

    The game play, as I have mentioned reminds me of GTA and Burnout Paradise because back in the previous Midnight Club games, you would simply go through the story by beating your component(s). Midnight Club Los Angeles Remix allows you to roam freely in a city just like in the other two games, on the map there will be markers showing you where you can race opponents with green being the easiest, yellow is harder and red being the hardest. You flash your lights to initiate the race when you reach the parked area. Even the yellow level isn’t too much of a challenge, haven’t seen any reds though. Conversation between characters is done through a mobile device (T-mobile branded). I have also come across the garage where you can customize just about anything from styling your ride with fancy spoilers, rims, body kits to performance upgrade like intake and turbo etc. I would say the level of customization is quite impressive with so many things you can choose to mod your car.

     

    The controls are a bit different and takes a bit of time to get used to, strangely the triangle button is now your brake/reverse, L is gear shift, R is your “drift” button while cross is your gas, square is nitro and circle is special ability which I had not had a chance to experience. I find the controls odd and inconvenient even though you can change them. You can also change the music by holding L and choose by pressing up or down key.

     

    The graphics are in most cases acceptable and nothing eye catching but they look rather nice when at night with all the lighting effects. There is no damage to your car unlike Burnout, you will only see pieces of glass fly out from no where and your car will never be totaled, at least I wasn’t able to. If you manage to hit another car head on at full speed, the worst that will happen is slowing your car down which is really unrealistic. Unlike Burnout, Midnight Club LA does not have sense of speed at all, maybe because I started out with a somewhat slow ’98 240SX?

     

    As you can tell, I am kind of disappointed at this new Midnight Club, at least for the PSP version, maybe because I was never a fan of this type of racing games and Midnight Club. But the game play and the graphics both contribute to why I managed to bored and annoyed of this game in less than two hours. Maybe its just me but I suggest you rent this one before you actually buy it for your PSP. Otherwise you might as well play GTA or Burnout Paradise instead.

    6.0/10

     




  • Mobilize your blog with blog4mobile!
    By on October 23rd, 2008 | No Comments Comments

    So you are a blogger and have been blogging for a while, have you ever think of more ways for people to access your blog anywhere anytime? One solution is to mobilize your blog using blog4mobile. With blog4mobile you can improve the accessibility of your blog through cellphone, PDA or any other wireless or mobile devices by storing the content of your blog through the URL of your blog plus your RSS feed URL into their database. One interesting difference between conventional RSS feeder for mobile devices and blog4mobile’s service is that blog4mobile displays not an extract of the content but the actual complete contents from the blog so therefore the readers are reading the contents in full instead of just bits and pieces of them. With this mobility, people can read their favorite blogs anywhere and anytime or when they don’t have access to computers with internet connections.

    I also like the fact that instead of just pointing out the “goods” of its services, it honestly and openly lists potential issues and corresponding solutions that may arise such as reading some of the RSS files submitted and issues reading some special characters from some contents. The contents will also be promoted and blog users will receive up to 70% of the advertising revenue!

    Another great feature of using blog4mobile is once your blog URL and feed URL are submitted, you don’t have to update them manually as the system will check for updates automatically everyday.

    blog4mobile is definitely an innovative web service for bloggers looking to improve the level of accessibility for their readers and potential readers. And it cannot get any better than the fact that the service is free. Finally it also has its own blog for those interesting in news regarding the service.

  • Patch for PixelJunk Monsters and PixelJunk Monsters: ...
    By on October 22nd, 2008 | No Comments Comments

    Great news! I am so happy to hear that Q-Games will be releasing a patch for both PixelJunk Monsters and its expansion PJ Monsters: Encore after reading the PlayStation Blog.

    I think the best feature of the patch has to be the option to choose one of three difficulty levels. I seriesly couldn’t beat some of the stages in the Encore expansion, with this new patch, I can choose “casual” style and HOPEFULLY, this time I can finish the stages. You will get a rainbow no matter which level you choose, as long as you get a perfect score. Second feature addresses a common problem of accidentally deleting/selling your towers when you meant to upgrade them or vice versa. Previously only in Encore contains the cheaper cost Ice Tower and the rebalanced Tesla Tower, the patch applies the changes to the original PixelJunk Monsters as well.

    Another great new feature added is the XMB Custom Soundtrack Support where you can load your own soundtrack and play Monsters if you ever get bored of the original sound tracks. While the original sound tracks are very pleasant to the ears, this is definitely huge plus because this gives the option for players to choose whatever music they want to hear, perhaps based on your mood at the time? Last but not least Monsters also supports up to 10 minutes of video recording and YouTube support. So that you can upload them directly to YouTube or if just store them in your PS3 video folder.

    Finally, a Trophy Collection has also been added. Instead of forcing players to play the entire game all over again. There are trophy specific maps that will, when completed, reward you with the trophies.

    I think Q-Games will make everyone happy with yet another release, although not a game, but in my opinion this is one of the greatest/smartest patch ever applied to a game. Keep your eyes out for the patch on October 23 if you are in Japan and assumingly Asia. If all goes well, it will be October 30 for America and Europe.

    Looks like I will be playing this game again pretty soon!

  • Get an xbox360 Elite, Apple iPhone or a $500 VISA Gif...
    By on October 22nd, 2008 | No Comments Comments

    Get an xbox360 Elite, Apple iPhone or a $500 VISA Gift Card FREE after completion of program requirements. Perfect gifts for the holiday season!

  • Very talented food artist
    By on October 22nd, 2008 | 1 Comment1 Comment Comments

    Another non techy post. I just want to share with you guys these pictures. I’m not sure what I should call this talented person who carved all these amazing display of carved food so I will call him or her the food artist. All of them are artistically carved but I specially like the “toe bread” and the “orange lady”.

    Note: I’m merely just sharing these pictures with you guys and am NOT taking credits for these creations.