Oh Noes More Snows!

Blizzard Hello. It's been an interesting week. Floods, thunderstorm, blizzards,and C-4 here in North Dakota. What's awesome is how many volunteers there were to help with sandbagging. Here's a picture of Sandbag Central [link removed], at the Bismarck Civic Center. In 1997, the Red River flooded, but I don't know the last time the Missouri River flooded. Ice jams caused the Missouri River to flood, and they decided to stop all flow from Garrison Dam, which has never been done before since its creation. Then the Blizzards. Bismarck got hit by that too, but Dickenson and the surrounding area got the most snow from that. Over 15 inches. Today Bismarck is getting even more snow. No school for me that means. That's how bad it is again. They don't just cancel school because of weather very often. We're not wimps up here :). In fact last Tuesday we had a Blizzard, and Bismarck was pretty much the only ones to not cancel school right away. At 1:00, my college let out and so did my mom's school (she's a teacher at a Christian school). They should have canceled school. I was suprised at how many people showed up for classes though. Over half of my class was there, which is almost more than how many usually show up.

Anyways, that's the weather business. I'm tinkering with a new website again. I won't get a chance to really work on it until summer, but yeah. I know the layout, but I need to find a design. I kinda have a theme, but it has a lot of possibilities. That looks spelt wrong. Possibilities. Hmm. It's right though. Oh well. Anyways, the design. As a website developer, I go through a different process almost every time. This website is different again. I had an idea for a website. I did some general research. I thought I could do it. Then I had an idea for the layout already brewing. The design though. The banner, and look and feel of the website. I just didn't know what to do. So I thought, "What is my website going to be about?" and I of course knew that. But I wasn't thinking what the design should be in relation to that. A theme of the website came up. Which brought to mind some colors that related to the theme. So I have a theme. Which differs from the design, in my mind. Design is the actual colors you'll use. The actual look. Theme is mainly the feel of the site I guess in my mind. I'm just letting you know how I do things.

This website is being a particular pain though. I don't know. I have a few ideas, and they are so different I almost need to create several test webpages with these designs implimented so I can see them. I can't even draw them out. My main problem is that I kinda know what I want to do with one part of the design, but don't know what to do for another. For example, I think I know what I want to do for boxes around news posts, but I have no idea what to do for background images/colors. I can't really test out the box design, before I know the background images/colors, but I can't decided what to do for background images/ colors because I don't know how they'll look with the other parts of the site. So it's the chicken and the egg. But after talking this out, I think I need to settle on some background images/colors. At least background colors. That's usually the first part of my design that I have in mind. I'll have to show you the conecepts for my Hellgate London website. I like them a lot. I'll upload it some time. I need to tinker with it so that it's in a showcase design, and not my incoherrent testing phases. That's the website I was working on last year, but then Hellgate London died, so I thought there was no point is getting information for it. The design was pretty much done though. You see how my process is different. I had a theme and design in mind, but I didn't have information. I guess that's not entirely true. I knew I wanted a wiki. But that's pretty much all.

Enough of design talking. Video games time. I've been playing Starcraft again. I finished the original game, again. Whenever I want to replay Starcraft, I usually get through the Terran campaign, and half way through the Zerg campaign, but never finish. So it's a big deal that I'm on the expansion. I'm half way through the Protoss campaign in Brood War. More than half way. I think I have three mission left on the Protoss. Anyways, what spurred me to play through again is because I read the book "Starcraft: I, Mengsk." It's a must read for any Starcraft fan. Has a lot crammed into it's 450 pages, but easy to follow still. Usually if an author crams a lot into book, it's hard to follow, but Graham McNeill did a great job. Basically covers a span of over 20 years of Arcturus's life, including his father, Agnus, and his son, Valerian. You get inside his head, and you understand why he did the things that he did in the game. You also meet some people. Duran is in there. So is Duke. It's a good read. Maybe not if you aren't a Starcraft fan, but for a Starcraft fan it's fantastic.

I bought a PSP 3000. I had to. My old PSP 1000 is too old. There's screen blur because it has a low response time, and a darker screen. I like the PSP 3000 a lot. First it has a better response time. Then it has a brighter screen. I can also hook it up to my TV. It has Skype. And it's lighter. It was worth the 180 bucks I spent. I was going to buy the core pack for 170 bucks, but the Ratchet and Clank bundle was on sale for $180. Comes with a 1 GB card, Ratchet and Clank size matters, and Nation Treasure book of secrets. Didn't really care about the UMD movie, but I figured I would play Ratchet and Clank and the 1 GB card is nice to have. Ratchet and Clank isn't my favorite series. I played the demo for the PS3 game, and just shrugged it off as Okay. Size Matters passes the time when I'm bored, but I wouldn't have paid 20 bucks for it.

Anyways, I wanted a new PSP 3000 to play Resistance Retribution. I played a little bit of it, but not too much. About a stage worth. It's fun. The story is really good so far. The controls are Okay. They are good considering the system it's on, but they aren't the best. I can manage for the story's sake. I'm not playing it right now, becuase I'm waiting for a guide to pop up on GameFAQs for it. So yeah.

That's all. I'm going to let you go. I'm gonna probably tinker with that Hellgate London website and upload it later. Byes.

Happiness is a Warm Chainsaw

madworld This'll be long post probably. Lot's to talk about. Burnout Paradise, MadWorld, and Watchmen. I think that's all, but there's a lot to talk about. I'm kinda happy because I finally got a Linux assignment working. It was assigned two weeks ago. Everyone in my class was having trouble with it except one person. We had to set up an email server. This includes installing Bind for DNS server, Postfix for a SMTP server, and Dovecot for an IMAP server. Anyways I put a lot of hours into this project and couldn't get it to work. I even had the guy who got it done to look over my settings and he didn't know what I was doing wrong. Yesterday I finally just said, "Screw it I'm gonna configure it without Webmin (which is a gui interface to configure lots of admin programs)." I still configured Bind and Dovecot with Webmin because they were working, I just couldn't send email with Thunderbird, which meant SMTP wasn't working, which meant postfix wasn't working. So I played around with the configurartion file yesterday, and I got nothing. I basically knew what everything was because of trying to get it to work for two weeks. Finally I just tried a new install, and configured everything except postfix. Then I changed some settings in CentOS (just the hostname actually). Went into the postfic main.cf file and changed four lines in that file. I wasn't very optimistic at this point, but I tried it... AND IT WORKED! I couldn't believe. I even replicated it just now. I'm so happy. I wrote an in depth how to so I could remember it. I'll help out my other classmates at some point in time I'm sure.

Anyways I just wanted to share my joy. On to Burnout Paradise. I've been playing this game off and on ever since it came out (January 2008... same time I got my PS3!). Well I was at about 45% a few weeks ago, and the Legendary Cars pack was released to the PSN store, so I bought them. Cool cars. You got cars that look like the Back to the Future car, the General Lee from Dukes of Hazzard, the mustang from Night Rider, and the Ghost Buster car. This got me interested to play it again. I'm at 99% now. I have all the cars, beat all the events, and Rule the Road on all road. I have some achievements that I need to beat to get 100% I think. I have to say Burnout Paradise is my Game of the Year for 2008. Great graphics, great gameplay, great online community, great downloadable content, great fun, and just great everything. A 10/10. The developers, Criterion Games, has supported the game with free updates, listening to the community (like adding a restart last event), and releasing new paid DLC like cars. This year they are going to release a whole island! The paid attention to what players were doing online, and they basically created a giant island for doing stunts. Their philosophy for the island is "If you can see it, you can drive it." So that'll be fun. If you do not own the game, and own a PS3, a PC, or 360, buy this game! It's cheaper now, but was defintely worth the original 60 bucks.

Back to some of the DLC for the game. You can buy the "Time Savers Pack" which unlocks all the cars for five bucks. Controveral. It's your money, yoiu can do whatever you want. But it would take away from the fun of Burnout I think. I loved unlocking cars in that game, so I recommend you do it the old fashion way. I didn't buy it by the way. Now the Legendary pack includes a car that has been called the "God Car" which is a super car. It's fast, and very strong. It's also very controversal. I didn't use it too much in single player, but I did test it out when I first bought it. In Multiplayer though, apparently everyone is using it. Which can kinda suck. It'd be cool if you could create a game and disable Legendary cars or something to combat this, because I know people are complaining about on Gamefaqs boards. Criterion also released the toy car back. I didn't waste money on that yet. 13 bucks for 9 cars. You can buy them individually for a higher price. I don't know though. Would it be worth it to have toy car verisons of the cars? What advantages are there? I guess there is the lower gravity so higher jumps. I guess they are more nimble and harder to wreck too. So I don't know yet. Maybe if it were cheaper. The Legendary pack was worth it because the Jensen 88 (back to the future car) hovers! And turns the tire tracks to flames when you boost!

Alright let's check out some MadWorld action. I love the game so far! One of the first things the game asks you to do is pick up a tire, shove it over someones head, rip out a signpost, ram it into same person's head (the guy is still alive), now I pick up him, and headbutt him to make sure he doesn't squirm his way out, and carry him to a spike wall, then I rammed him against a spike... he wasn't dead yet, so just keep ramming him until he's dead. Good times. Yes it's very violent, but there's a reason that the ESRB gave it an M for mature. There's also a reason why it wasn't given an AO rating. It's because it's over the top violence. Kinda like Tom and Jerry the cartoon. Yeah it's violent, but it's unrealistic. The game is in Black and White and red and some yellow because it's comic book style, and unrealistic. Speaking of which, the Black and White works very well. Don't ignore this game because of the graphics, because the graphics actually add to it.

The premise of MadWorld is that a reality show called "DeathWatch" took over an island, and released glorified murders onto the island to compete for fame and fortune. You play as Jack (the guy that makes Marcus Pheonix from Gears of War look like a pussy... yeah he's that awesome... I liked Marcus Pheonic a lot so that says a lot... I though I needed to explain that and make this side note really really really really really really really really long). Jack shows up onto the island three days late, but gets a sponsor (who is XIII) because XIII's contestant was killed two days earlier. Jack is mysterious, but he's a killing machine and is bringing up ratings so no body cares. Oh and Jack has a Chainsaw for his right arm! Awesome!

You earn points for killing other contestants with fashion. Like the example I mentioned realier gave me 60,000 points. You can pick up weapons like a spiked baseball bat, and send people flying. It's a good time. Speaking of the controls, they are good on the Wii. They use the Wii controls very well. Takes a little time to get used to them, especially if you are used to other games, but they work well. Chainsaw is fun too. The Chainsaw has to recharge if you use all of it's juice, to prevent you from over using it. I actually use the enviromnet more than my chainsaw though. Except on bosses which the chainsaw works well. Each stage is timed, but it's 30 minutes so it's fine. You have to score a certain amount of points before you can fight the boss. I have fun though. Discovering the layout of the stage is probably the hardest part because you are worried about the time limit, but once you figure out the lay of the land, it's just using the environment to racking up points. Then the mini games. Oh the mini games. The Black Baron introduces these, and he usually says some pimp stuff, and gets thrown in the death machine for the mini game by a lady in a spiked outfit. Speaking of funny moments, the announcers are funny. Greg Prups (from Whose Line is it Anyways) is one of the announcers which made me happy.

Next up I wanted to talk about Watchmen. I have not read the graphic novel yet, but plan to. I watched the movie last night. Wasn't a horrible movie... but it needed a few things to make it a good movie. It seemed like they shoved a bunch of stuff into a 165 minute movie. Maybe splitting it into two movies would be better. Everything seemed to go by really fast. Especially at the beginning. The thing that bugs me though is that they thought it was a good idea to put a pointless 5 minute sex scene. I can understand if the sex scene would make sense to the plot. There was a couple moments that seemed extended and were pointless, and they could have replaced those pointless scenes with the extended relevent scenes. You know what I'm saying?

I thought the acting was good. One thing I think director did well is, yes, everything was flying by fast, but I was able to pick out the charcters to care about, without reading the graphic novel. But the director seemed to be showing off some things that I didn't need to see. Seeing Dr. Manhatten's (i spelt that one wrong) junk, a lot, was the director trying to be different. Yes, he's naked. We get it. Yes you CGI'd a penis. Good job. Also the director slow mo'd pretty much every fight scene. Now the ones with the guy that can fight twice as fast as anyone, makes since (I dont want to look up his name and it's something that I would boch up the spelling of), but your just showing off if you slow mo an average fight scene. Also the director seemed to go for the shock factor even more with the injuries. Showing the bone snapping out of the skin when someone broke another person's elbow, looked painful and made me cringe and is something I didn't want to see! Niether a saw going into a skull, or sawing off someone's arms! You using shock facotrs! The point I'm trying to make is the director was just showing off.

But like I said, it's not a horrible movie. I hear the graphic novel is very psychological, and they captured that in the movie. Again, the actors are great. The guy that played the Comedian, Jeffery Dean Morgran, plays the Dad from Supernatural, and was awesome as the comedian. I mentioned him specifically, because I was going to say something, but it's kinda a spoiler. David Hayter apparently cowrote the screenplay. I didn't know he was a writer. If you don't know who David Hayter is, he is the voice actor of Snake from the Metal Gear Solid series. Speaking of writing, the writing was good. But Rorschach's lines seemed very cliche. Like a 1950's private detective narration. I think in the graphic novel it was suppose to be like that though. But it seemed like every time he spoke, I wanted to make fun of his line. But then he kills a lot of people in violent ways in the movie, so I keep my mouth shut.

In the end, I'd say watch it once. I'm glad I watched the movie, but I probably won't go and see it again or buy it on DVD. Make your own opinion of it. Anyways, I'm gonna end this long post. Bye.

Zombie tuX

CentOS Tux It's my brother's Birthday! So happy Birthday bro! I hope you had a great B-day and I'll have your present when you come up next ;)

Oh my gosh. I feel like a huge burden has been lifted from me. I just finished my assignment for this week for an online class called Project Management. I had a presentation due, a test, and thing made using Microsoft Project 2007. I had been working on my presentation for a couple weeks, but I needed to do some cleaning up today. I also have a speech to give tomorrow (also online) but that's already on notecards and ready to go. I just need to practice a few more times. If you are wondering, I have to record myself in front of at least 8 people for my speeches. No big deal. That's how it works online. I'm taking a third class online, but it's pretty easy so far. On a side note, I will never take three classes online again... I'm also taking three classes on campus, while working. Let's just say my social and relaxation life is pretty much gone. I have Fridays, that I hang out with friends. I'm redesigning my schedule now though. I used to wait until three days before the end of the week for the online classes to do the assignment for the week, but that needs to change I realize. I think I'll do speech assignments on Sunday, Project management on Wednesday/Thursday, and Windows might be moved to Monday/Tuesdays, or stay on Saturdays. I'm not sure. I dont know why I'm telling you this, but it helps me think.

Anyways, you don't want to hear about that crap. You want to hear about my experiments. I re-resurrected Zombie X. It was lying in my room sitting with just Ubuntu 7.10 installed on it. No monitor kinda makes a computer a little less useful. I got bored (yeah right... more like tired of doing homework) and took Zombie X, installed CentOS 5.2 on it, and renamed it Zombie tuX. Clever huh? He's a personal server for me for the time being. He's doing a good job too. I heart Samba. He's kinda an experiment for my real server. I'm gonna finish my real server this spring. In my last post I said I was toying around with operating systems for a server, and CentOS won. However it dropped that ball when it came to a uPnP server. There's one more program that I'll experiment with. I tried MediaTomb, and PS3MediaServer, and they just failed on CentOS. CentOS doesn't like media. I can overlook that though. But I'll still try my third option, MythTV. It's more then I need, so it'll probably be a little bloated for my liking, but if it actually streams all sorts of media to my PS3, I'll be tickled pink.

Zombie tuX doesn't have monitor, as i said. I hooked it up to my TV for the install process and was suprised the the ATI Raidion 9600 video card could handle 1080p, and in Lunux to boot. It flickered like heck when I had the resolution at 1024x768, but at 1080p, it worked smoothly. Anyways, installed it, and installed this cool little program called NoMachine NX, which allows me to remote into my server from any operating system. The best part is how lightweight it is, and how smoothly everything runs. A lot better than remote desktop. So basically I did updates, and installed that and disconnected it from my TV and and now I just remote in using NoMachine to do everything. I installed Samba, and other things through that way. I've also been experimented with the afformentioned uPnP programs. I have to say, that NoMachine is a must have for any Linux server owner. Well I suppose not, because technically you should have no GUI installed, and you can just use SSH to do that business. NoMachine uses SSH, so it's cool that way too. I might have just spoke over a lot of people's heads and for that I am sorry. I'm just too cool for you.

How about some video game action. I've had a lot more time with House of the Dead. I love that game. It's a great game. Funny, over-the-top railgun action. You can buy new guns, and upgrade guns. Co-op is a very good time. The last cutscene is one of the best cutscenes i have ever seen. The game definitely earns its M rating. Loads of swears. But it just gets hilarious, because the game is suppose to be over the top Grindhouse. It doesn't try to be something else. Maybe 50 bucks is a little high for it. 40 bucks is a good price though. You'll probably play through the game at least 3 times. First time through regular mode, second time through Director's Cut, and a third time for achievements/Co-op. You'll want to share the game with your friends. Quoting "He'll rip your balls off!" is just a good time with friends. So many quotable lines.

I also got Onechanbara for the Wii and played a level. It's a 30 dollar game. I wouldn't pay 50 bucks for it, so it's a good thing it's 30 bucks. I like it though. I love hack and slash games. And that's what it is. Not much of a story, and pretty much no cut scenes. Not a difficult game. But the controls are very nice. Except for the fact that you can't play the game for extended periods of time because of carpal tunnel might set in. Actually my forarm got a pretty good exercise from playing the game for 45 minutes. Anyways, if you play the game in moderation the controls are great. you swing with the Wiimote. One of the characters can dual wield swoards, and you get some nunchuck action going too with her. You have to wipe off your blade periodically, and that's kinda fun to do. Lots of blood and zombies. Good times. You have to know what you are getting into if you are consider buying it. It's a hack and slash game, and doesn't have much of a story, so don't have high expectations is what I'm saying. I like it, and think it's worth the 30 dollar price tag. That's my two cents.

Some God of War III trailer hit XPlay and I was over joyed. Can't wait for it. Sometime in the Fiscal year of 2009 (so through March 31 2010). killzone 2 hits store on the 28th. Halo Wars was released. Looks like Damnation was pushed back to April 21. MadWorld will only support 480i. Sadface. Dante's Inferno looks interesting... probably based very loosly on the book. Mass Effect 2 trailer. Lost Planet 2 trailer. Street Fighter IV released. PS3 price cut? Watchmen gets released on March 6. The movie. I don't know much about the game. I don't know what else to tell you. I was just summing up things that I saw in the pass few hours. I've gotta pee so I'll bid you a pleasent tomorrow.

Evol

Updside Down 3D heart Merry belated Valentine's Day everyone. I'm really just procrastinating, but I'll update the old website. I found some cool things. First off, the Nvidia 3D Glasses. I heard some commotion from CES, but didn't pay much attention to it. Then XPlay was demoing them on the show. You have to go on what you here because you can't see them through the television, without magic glasses. Anyways, NVidia's 3D Vision sounds cool. It turn your existing PC games, into a 3D experience. Over 350 games have been tested and supported. Here's a complete list of all the games. HalfLife 2, WoW, Mass Effect, Unreal Tournament Mirror's Edge are some games that made the excelent list. Warcraft III, Crysis, Oblivion and Hellgate are some games that made the good. That's just a few. Check out that complete list if you have some games.

This has been tried before apparently. But NVidia is different because they make it so easy. They have it configured perfectly to suit the individual games with profiles. So you don't have to adjust before you start the game. NVidia makes it sound cheap. $200 for the glasses and they work with any GeForce 8 series and up (they recommend a GeForec 9 series or higher though). The 9 series is pretty cheap. You can usuallyg a 9 series card for around $100. No software updates, or game updates needed, it just works. But here's where it does get expensive. You need a 120 htz monitor. Those are expensive (i think the cheapest one is around 400 bucks, for a 22 in). So i guess that's not too bad, but add in a new card, glasses and monitor, you get a pretty steep price. You can buy a bundle of Glasses and Monitor for $600. 22in Samsung monitor isn't bad. But yeah, that's the new technology that I want.

Another thing from NVidia, that just sounds cool, is the NVidia Tesla Personal Supercomputer. Yes, "Personal" is the key word there. More specifically, The Tesla C1060. It looks like a video card, in fact uses the same slot as a video card, but it's not. It's what seperates your workstation from a supercomputer. Basically, this bad boy can be strung together with 3 other of these things, and be put into a system with at least 4 GB of RAM, and a quadcore processor, and a 64 bit OS (with the exclusion of Vista apparently) and it'll be better then a rack of supercomputers. Yeah. Here's a youtube video explaining it if you're interested. You can buy a computer with 4 of these cards in it for around $10,000. Not so bad for a supercomputer. Gotta remember it's not geared toward the average computer user, but more towards scientists. I thought it was interesting so I thought i would share.

I think I'll actually get my home server up and running soon. I'm looking into operating systems for it. The server is just going to be a file server and my PS3 needs to be able to access the server too. So I've been working with some Linux distributions in VirtualBox. On a side note, don't use VMWare, use VirtualBox. It's free and easy to use, and uses less system resources so the guest OS runs better. End side note. I decided to try out OpenSolaris because Sun develops it, and Sun makes good produces like OpenOffice.org and VirtualBox. So I installed it. Oh my. Well that was a mistake. First off, all their packages to install programs are named wierd. I was trying to install Samba, the main program to share files with Windows, and it took me a long time to find the right package. On most OS's, you type "yum install samba" or yum's equivalent. So I did the equivalent of yum in OpenSolaris, (I can't remember what it was. It was like pkg-get or something like that) and it didn't work. I went to "Add/Remove" programs and typed "Samba" in the search. Nothing. I finally just browsed for it, and found it. It was name SunOSsmba. What the heck Sun? So I installed it, and it doesn't create a config file for you. I just gave up at this point because it was too much work.

Next I tried Slackware. Oh boy... it didn't work out. It was fun installing though. To install, you don't get a nice GUI, so I had to use cfdisk to partition the harddrive. It was fun. I liked refiguring out how to do that. I figured it out. Create Swap partition, create bootable partition. Fun times. I got it. It took like an hour to install after that though. Yuck. Then when it restarted I got a nice text based "Login:" line. So I logged in as root, because it was the only user created. Well now i'm logged in as root in the command line. So i typed "startx" which starts the gui. It did and brought be to the KDE based desktop. Yuck. I hate KDE. I looked for the Terminal. Took awhile. Looked for Network settings. Took awhile. Looked for things that should be easily accessible, and it took a long time to find. I don't like KDE. I didn't even try to instsall Samba. I just couldn't. So I trashed Slackware. The only fun part of Slackware was partitioning the harddrive.

CentOS is next on my list. I learned how to use Samba and NFS using Fedora Core 10 for my Linux Networking class. So I tried CentOS, which is RedHat based, like Fedora, except better. Oh boy. I loved the install options. After the timezone and creating a root password, I was greeted with the install packages menu. Categories included: Desktop GNOME, Desktop KDE, Sever, Server (no GUI), and some other options. I quickly selected Desktop GNOME, and Server, and hit Customize now. I selected the things for GNOME Desktop like office apps, webbrowsers, and the like. Then for Servers I picked FTP, Samba, NFS. I could have installed Apache and so much more for servers. So it was awesome. After installing, I had some network problems. I don't know why. After restarting like 5 times, and then hitting "Deactivate" then "Activate" for eth0, it worked. Whatever. As long as it worked. I wanted to update the system, but "yum install update" said there were no new packages, and I couldn't find the GUI "Update System." I like the GUI for some things. Anyways, after like 15 minutes, I was finally prompted to update the system. So i did. Afterwards, I configured Samba, and it worked! YAY. Now for the PS3 part. I tried Fuppes. I couldn't install it from Source for some odd reason. It said I didn't have a package installed, even though I checked for that package and it was indeed installed. Anyways, I found a some custom instructions for CentOS 5.2 and used his/her RPM and other commands. I got it installed, but it didn't work. So yeah. I'll try another program though. Looks like ushare is a good one for CentOS.

I bought House of the Dead Overkill. It's pretty good. It's hilarious. They went over-the-top. I didn't think I'd here that much swearing from a Wii game. Plus a bad guy slapped a cripple! It's a good time though. The only thing I don't like, is the gun they give you at the beginning sucks too much. It has a slow reload time, and not very many bullets. Although I only died twice in the first stage. So yeah.

I also ordered Onechanbara for the Wii. Apparently I bought two copies. I really should read the confirmation emails they send you. Oh well. My friend wanted a copy, and he said he'd buy one of them off me.

I'm going to leave on that note. I need to do homework. Later.

Games to the Video! High Five!

High Five for Games of the Video 5! Alright. Welcome to the first half of 2009 Games to the Video. If you are new to this nonsense, well let me explain. Games to the Video is my biannual (of late anyways) post of all the games I am looking forward to in that half of the year. If you would like to check out my previous installments, here are: 1, 2, 3, and 4 [links removed]. So yeah. If you still don't get it, this post includes all of the video games that I am excited for that are stated to be released some time in the first half of 2009.

I got my release dates from four sources: www.gamespot.com, www.ign.com, www.gamestop.com, and en.wikipedia.org. Gamestop gave me "exact" release dates, while the rest gave me Q1 and Q2 or TBA. Everyone knows that Gamestop just wants preorders so they lie. I put them anyways. The first four games are the only ones that the four sources could agree on a single date, so I went with that. The rest, only one source (usually gamestop) could agree upon, so I put that in italics and parenthesis.

Some games are appearing on this list that were on Games to the Video 4, but that's because release dates were pushed back. Not too many though. After this business, I'll also post some honorable mentions, which are games that look kinda fun, but I'll defintely wait for reviews for. Stuff like that. After that, I'll give you my impressions of the games from Games to the Video 4 list. Got it? I'm continuing on with the post with or without you. On a side note, Dragon Age Origins was originally on this list, but had to be removed because someone decided it would be a good idea to release the PC version alongside the console versions in November (I'm going to blame EA, even though they started to get some of my respect).

Bikini Zombie Slayers Onechanbara: Bikini Zombie Slayers : Oh gosh. I talked about this game from E3. Nothing has changed really, except it's getting closer to release. You got Bikini's and Zombies. Can't complain too much. Lots of blood too. I think I mentioned I like over-the-top blood in video games. Does that make me violent? No, but it does make me happy. Again, the premise is two sisters fighting zombies, God of War style. Says February 10 for the relase date. Wii only, but this is the second game in the series, and the first one is going to be re-released for the 360 around the same time. In fact February 10 for that one too. They updated the date on me at gamespot.

Damnation Damnation : It was in my previous games to the video, but it was pushed back obviously. This game is infuenced by Steampunk. Steampunk is basically saying "What if modern electricity wasn't invented." Everything would run with gears, and steam. It looks to me like Gears of War meets Prince of Persia. I'm feeling it. Story originally caught by eye. It takes place in an alternate history of the United States, where the Civil War has gone on into the 20th Century. You are a rebel and have to fight against an arms dealer's army. It will be released for the Playstation 3, PC, and XBox 360. The release date says March 3, but for some reason Gamespot has it listed for the PS3 for April 21. I'm thinking March 3 because of the other sources.

Madworld Madworld : Ohmygosh! A Wii title with over-the-top violence. You caught me! I so happy! What first got me interested in the game is the fact that it is made by Platinum games, which has the creative genious of Clover Studios, who is the awesomeness behind Okami, Viewtiful Joe, and God Hand. The blood and Violence and Wiiness are just iceing on the cake. I'm sure there's a story, something about Dark Watch. Different art direction on this one. Completely Black (no greyscale) and white, with red blood. Kinda sceptical, because I've seen a crappy movie that I could follow that took the same approach... not Sin City. I can't remember the movie, it was so bad. Anyways, that's not what the game is about. I saw the art style, and it looks good for the game. I'm pumped for it. Expect it March 10, and only for the Wii.

Resistance Retribution Resistance Retribution : I love the Resistance series. So a PSP version makes me glad I own a PSP. I'll need to dust it off and charge it, but I have one. Resistance Retribution fills in the gap between the first and second game. I've heard that the controls are similar to Syphon Filter, which did well on the PSP. Actually I just read that the controls are better than Syphon Filter. Some people got an early demo. I didn't, but one will be released soon and I'll scoop that up. March 17, and for the PSP only.

inFamous inFamous : Open world, super powers, and karma. We have ourselves a game. You get super powers in the game. The power to control electicity. You can do a lot of stuff with that power. Throw cars, kill people who are standing in water, and oh so much more. inFamous is also open world. Also has the karma system, in which if you kill inicent civilians, they will hate you, but if you help them, they will help you and love you. Ah. There's a story. Like he got his powers from an explosion, and the city is littered with gangs and there are no cops. So it's up to you. Anyways, inFamous is suppose to be released Q2 (May 1?) of 2009 for Playstation 3 only.

Batman: Arkham Asylum Batman: Arkham Asylum : Hey it's Batman! Maybe he'll be in a good game. This one is actually looking good. It looks dark, and takes place in Arkham Asylum, hence the subname. Batman is taking Joker to the chair, and the Joker escapes, letting loose all the other inmates in the process. Oh Joker. You're such a joker... anyways. Batman and Joker are voiced by the same guys that voiced them respectively in the cartoon series that we all grew up on. So it should at least sound like Batman. Looks fun. Expect this Q2 (May 5?) for the PS3, 360, and PC.

The Coduit The Conduit : You guys might not have heard of this one. One of the few Wii exclusives for the hardcore gamer that are suddenly popping up. It's a first person shooter. I'm hearing good things about the controls, and the graphics so far from previews. The story involves and alien race called the Drudge (for some reason I picture an Asian person saying "the Drudge"... not saying that I'm proud of it). Anyways you need to kill these aliens. There's more of a story, but it's pretty in depth on wikipedia. Says Spring (May 19?) and is a Wii exclusive.

Dark Void Dark Void : I'm starting to loose interest in this game. But then I relook it up, and it makes me smile with delight. The lack of updates, though is making me sceptical. In fact nothing new to add from the last Games to the Video so copy and paste time! It's a third person shooter. It's kinda like Gears of War: it has the same cover machanic as Gears. The interesting thing is that you have a jet pack. It's more of a vertical shooter. You go up instead of forward. Like I said, interesting. There's other cool things, like free falling and killing cybernotic Watcher's. It just looks cool. I'm keeping an eye on it anyways. Oh, and Unreal 3 Engine. There I added something new. And the new release date is Q1 (May 1?) of 2009 for the PC, 360, and PS3.

I Am Alive I Am Alive : The trailer made me curious, you see. Not much is known about the game, except that it will make the player make life changing descisions. I think it's just the mystery of the game trailer that keeps me interested in this game. Oh well. It works. Now here's the kicker. Release date is To Be Announced, or Q1 of 2009 and Gamestop doesn't even list it. For some reason I put down Q2 2009. Must have been a reason i did that. The game comes out for 360 and PS3 sometime in the future.

Alright, some honorable mentionables. I think I'll mention House of the Dead Overkill. I like the House of the Dead series, but this one doesn't sound as good. I hear rumors of Wii minigames, and that never ends well in my opinion. We'll see though. February 10, is the release date.
I have to mention Killzone 2, since I'm a PS3 owner. Plus it got a 5/5 on XPlay. It's not out yet though. I might peer into a little more when it's released. It's like if Gears of War and Halo had a child. I don't know if I want another shooter though. We'll see again. February 27 for the release date.
Speaking of Halo, I'm going to mention Halo Wars. I don't own a 360 or care too much for the Halo games, but Halo Wars kinda intrigues me. First off, it's a Real Time Strategy game. But it's for the 360. I don't know. I'll keep an eye on it for sure. It looks nice. March 3, 2009 for release date.
Prototype is here also. Found this when I found inFamous. It looks interesting. Kinda similar to inFamous in some ways too. So that's why that's here. Still Q2, 2009.
Street Fighter 4 makes an appearance here. I grew up with Street Fighter 2. Reason why it's not on the big list though, is because I'm not a big fighting game fan. It's looking good though. February 17 for this one.
I just stumbled on X-Blades recently. So I really don't know much about it, but I'll keep an eye on it. I like to say that a lot. Anyways, yeah. Sometime soon for the release of this one. I think that's all I have for Honorable Mentions.

Alright. I'll let you know what was up with some of the games from Games to the Video 4. I'll give you a general idea of what I thought about the game, or what happened. If I got it or decided not to. Stuff like that.

Crysis Warhead came out back in September. I never did get it. Too many games. I plan on getting it though. It's gotten good reviews, and my PC does want to be pushed to the limits all over again. I need finish the first Crysis game though. That's the main reason I haven't gotten it yet.
Starwars: The Force Unleashed was a bad game. I don't know how. I played the demo, and loved the demo so much. I bought it on the first day it came out. After about an hour of playing it though, the game just stunk. I did not like the lightsaber fighting system. The force powers were fun though. I didn't make it past the 3rd world. I just couldn't take it anymore. So much hope for it though. I got it for the PS3, and I heard that the Wii version was worse then the PS3 version.
Legendary looked fun. I didn't get it though because of reviews. Not much more to say about it.
Fracture was another game I didn't buy. Looked interesting, but the demo was only alright, and the reviews weren't great for it either. So I passed on it.
Golden Axe: Beast Rider is yet another game I passed on. I want to rent it, but haven't found it at my local video store yet. Someday I might rent it. Bad reviews are what is stopping me from buying this one.
Fallout 3 I actually played. It's fun. I like it. I haven't gotten around to downloading the Anchorage downloadable content, because i haven't reinstalled Fallout 3 yet. I formatted my harddrive. Anyways, I enjoyed playing through the game, but the ending was very weak.
Resistance 2. Buy it if you own a Playstation 3. Enough said. Alright maybe not. It's very fun game. The story was good, graphics amazing, and the weapons are awesome. I really should jump online someday, but I'm being bombarded by homework and other games.
Left 4 Dead is a fun game. It's fun if you have people to play with you. Personally, I love coop games, and Left 4 Dead is a dream come true. It needs more scenerios though. Four isn't very many. Good times though.
Mirror's Edge is a game that I passed on. The reviews tell me it isn't worth the full 60 dollar price tag. So I'll probably wait for the price to go down to like 30 bucks or something. We'll see though.
Personally, I loved Prince of Persia. It was a very fun game. Yeah it was kinda easy, but it was fun. And isn't that what games should be about? Which reminds me, I should play through it again and try to get some trophys.
Velvet Assassin, Dark Void, and Damnation were all move back to this year, and are actually on this list. So yeah.

That's it. Now you know what I'm looking forward to in 2009... at least the first half. I have a list of the second half too, so that's something to look forward to :). Anyways, check out the links. Maybe you'll feel that you are exicted for these guys too. Thank you for reading this long post. I made it so you could easily skim over the games. Bye.

Good Morning!

Good Morning Dude It's morning for me anyways. I'm typing this at 9:15. I had to be up at 6:40 on a Sunday. I needed to be at church before 8:00. I ran sound for church today. I like doing sound at the 8:00 service. It's nice and relaxing actually. Anyways, I don't take naps, so I'm up for the day. Then I have U2's "Beautiful Day" going in the background as I type this. It's a good day. I kinda have a lot to do today.... not really. Just stuff I'd rather not do today.

I have a speech due this week, so I need to put my outline on notecards. It's all written, just have to convert it to notecard form. Then I need to capture a captive audience of eight people some time before Friday to deliver my speech to. So you may want to avoid my calls. Doesn't matter. I will find you and tie you up and put you in the trunk of my car... just kidding... or am I? I also need to read a chapter in Project Management. Yuck. The chapters are so long and boring. I like my speech book, but the Project Mangement book is poorly written I think.

Enough of this school business. My cat just sneezed three times in a row. I bought a sweet new computer chair yesterday, and I'm loving it... I'm a corporate whore! Ah McDonald's. I'm too cheerful for my own good. Also A.D.D. Anyways, my sweet new chair. It's a sweet leather chair. I can actually sit with my back straight in it. My old chair kinda sucked, but I got it for like 5 bucks at a garage sale. I paid a little more for my new chair... about 110 bucks. Yeah, it was expensive, but it's a 300 dollar chair. Can't complain too much. Plus it's awesome. Wow. I just devoted a whole paragraph to my new chair... I really do need to change the name of this page from "News" to "Blog." I will someday.

I beat Metal Gear Solid 2 the other day. Yes! It was awesome! I liked the first one's story better, but the second one was still good. Raiden isn't such a big panzy afterall. Now I need to play the third game. I don't look forward to eating snakes though. I bought Mass Effect off of Steam for 20 bucks. I figured a highly rated Action RPG for $20 wasn't a bad deal. I really like it. It starts out a little slow, but after you get the hang of everything, it's good. I like the combat, but I don't like the squad management. In fact, I think I'd like it better if I didn't have a squad. I just don't care about them in combat. The steal my experience, and I never manual tell them to do anything. I just let them do whatever they want. Then I have to heal them too. I like the combat though. I went with the Pistol and Shotgun skills... yeah kinda regretting that. Sniper/Assualt rifle would have been better. Of course I could just change my skills up. That's the nice thing.

I don't really like the inventory system at all. It's so unorganized. It seems slapped together at the last minute. Especially when you want to sell stuff. It's just "Here's a list of all your crap!" I have to go into my inventory, write down a list of things I can sell from there, and then I go to the sales person and look at my list, and sell stuff. It's a hassle. I'm running out of sticky notes.

I'll get my Games to the Video post up... first I need to start on it. I'll start on it this morning maybe. That was a short blurb about that.

I need a new mouse. My wireless optical mouse is finally going out. It's been about seven years I think. All logos showing that is a Logitech are rubbed off from use. It's twitching on me randomly and I have fresh batteries in it. I just bought a new one now. It's hard to find a wireless lazer mouse for a desktop. There's a lot of mini notebook ones, but not a lot of decent sized ones. I don't care about having 8 buttons. I don't even like 5 buttons. I disable the side buttons on a mouse. I just need the three button mouse with scroll wheel. I want one that's wireless. I don't care about the weight. I kinda like the weight. Plus I don't like the chord. They usually bug me.

I'm going to stop now. I'm just rambling. My juice ran out. Have a great day!

Repo!

Repo! The Gentic Opera 2009 is an interesting year for video games for me. Wii will probably continue being the top selling console, and it probably won't get a price cut this year. The 360 will probably be in a far second place, and we could see another price cut from them, and maybe they'll stop selling the Arcade version. The Playstation will follow a close third (vs a far third) and we will see a price cut from Sony. I think Sony will actually make a profit this year. I hope anyways. I think the Playstation 3 is an awesome entertainment system. Not to mention it has more exclusives this year over Microsoft. 2009 game lineup makes me look at Microsoft and laugh, because their exclusive list is weak. It consists of Halo, and Halo, and another game. If you really want to see a list of upcoming games for the 360 and PS3, Edge has a great feature for the Playstation 3 here, and for the 360 here [links removed]. Now the lists do not contain just exclusives.

Anyways, so Sony shows some promise this year. That doesn't make this year interesting though. What makes it interesting for me is the games I'm interested in this year. Lots of Wii titles actually. Games that have not had a lot of spotlight so far. Games that I don't know if they still exist. Games like Sadness, Project H.A.M.M.E.R., MAG, Heavy Rain, Section 8, I Am Alive, and Edge of Twilight. I also have some that I know are alive and going to be release like Damnation, Resistance Retribution, Dragon Age Orgins, Madworld, and God of War III. There's more, but that's for another time.

I'll have another Games to the Video at the beginning of February. So I'll tell you about the games that will be released the first half of this year that I am looking forward to. It's about 10 games that will make the first of this year. I'll have another one around Julyish it looks like. But for the one for the first half of the year it looks like I only have 3 games with solid release dates. The rest are Q1 and Q2 stuffs. I have some release dates from Gamestop, but they can't be trusted to be accurate. So yeah. Get ready for that. I'll start typing stuff on the games today.

Still enjoying the Metal Gear Solid series. I'm almost done with the second game. It's an awesome series. I don't know why I never got into it before. Kinda glad i didn't. Four games are out right now, so I don't have to wait to get questions answered. Yay!

I took a long break, so let's move on to a totally unrelated topic. I picked up Repo! The Gentic Opera [link removed, possible virus] on Blueray. Watched it with some friends. It's very good. I enjoyed it. If you don't remember, it's a rock opera from the producers of Saw. You can tell from the guts and gore in the movie, but that's about the only thing related. The movie is a musical, so be warned. So there are no spoken parts, just sang lyrics, and it has that musical vibe to it. But it is a rock opera, which means most of the songs are very heavy rock.

But I liked it a lot. The voices were wonderful. Alexa Vega, Paul Sorvino, and Anthony Head all had great voices for their parts, especially Sarah Brightman who played Blind Mag, a singer who is a slave to Genco. Even Paris Hilton played her part well ( although it wasn't much a stretch... the daughter of the owner of Genco who is $loaded$). The music was stunning. I liked the heavy rock style. If you are wondering what kind of music is in this show, visit the website and check out Zydrate Anatomy. You have mostly rock, but you also have opera, and jazz styles in there too. I'd say it is atleast a renter if you are still skeptical.

It has a comic book style for some flash backs. Works very well. They were done by the writer of the film, Terrance Zdunich, who also plays Graverobber, a kinda narrater to the movie. Graverobber is the guy singing in Zydrate Anatomy. He steals and sells Zydrate illegally.

Anyways, I'm tired so I'm going to bed. Nights all.

Curious Radio

Benjamin Button Alright. Let's give this a shot. I'm in Ubuntu and using Bluefish. Happy New Year! Yay! 2008 is over with! I don't know. Anyways I planned on doing a Games to the Video this month, but it doesn't look like it will happen. I have nine games that could go on the list, but only two of them have dates attached to them. The rest have like Quarter 1 2009 or Quarter 2 2009. I'm not counting any Q3 or Q4 yet, and I also have 8 games with To Be Announced on the list here. Acutally, I'm just going to paste my list in. I'm not going to put in links, just something that you can have a look at.

  • Damnation: March 2, 2009
  • Madworld March 10 2009
  • Dark Void: Q1 2009
  • Onechanbara: Bikini Zombie Slayers Q1 2009
  • Resistance Retribution: Q1 2009
  • Velvet Assassin Q1 (or Q2) 2009
  • The Conduit Q2 2009
  • inFamous: Q2 2009
  • I Am Alive: Q2 2009
  • Section 8: Q3 2009
  • Darksiders: Wrath of War: Q3 2009
  • Borderlands: Q3 2009
  • Edge of Twilight: Q3 2009
  • Brutal Legend: 2009
  • Bayonetta 2009
  • MAG: TBA
  • God of War 3: TBA
  • Starcraft II: TBA
  • Diablo III: TBA
  • Project Hammer: TBA
  • Distaster Day of Crisis: TBA
  • Heavy Rain TBA 2009
  • Sadness: TBA

There's my entire list that I keep updated. Maybe February will bring some solid release dates. I'm thinking beginning of March now, because I noticed "D.I.C.E." is Feb 18. There's also the Consumer Electronics Show this month. But I don't think game developers announce release dates around that. Anyways, I'll touch on that later.

A few years ago, I found something called Pandora Radio. I played around with it a little bit back then, but not too much. It was cool. I put in an artist that you like, and it plays a song randomly by that artist, and then plays two songs from artists that sound like the artist you picked, and the patern repeats. It's internet radio, except it plays music that you like based on the artist you choose. It's pretty accurate. Although I typed "Linkin Park" and it gave me Puddle of Mudd "Blurry". I like Puddle of Mudd but I would not have compared the two to sound similar. Although it was right about me liking Puddle of Mudd. Maybe it's too smart...

Today I started using it because I found out they had an app for the IPod Touch. I was using Flycast for my internet radio needs, but it looks like I'm switching to Pandora again. The cool thing is that my account that I created... hmmm... about 4 or 5 years ago, still works. Sweet deal. I went A.D.D. on what I was going to say. So I'm going to move on.

I saw the movie The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, yesterday. It was an OK movie. It was about three hours long. And it was slow. Basically they told the story of the life of a man who ages backwards, being born old and dying as a baby. Brad Pitt was a very good choice for the actor. Not that anyone else could not have done it, but just because he's an awesome actor. Anyways, the movie was too slow for my taste, and it follows the life a person... which is boring when you think about it. He doesn't live an oh-so-exciting life. It's just an interesting movie with several motifs, and themes. So many motifs that I probably didn't catch all. Later I was thinking back on how they could have made the movie shorter, and therefore better, by shaving off the slow parts, but i soon realized most of them were actually motifs supporting the overall theme of the movie. Which they didn't really need because they had another motif ready to take that burden that people could have caught. Do I recommend seeing it? I don't know. If you want to see an interesting movie it's worth a watch. Maybe a renter. I wouldn't buy it, or spend another 7 to 10 bucks to watch it again, but it was interesting. So there you go.

I think that's all, so I'm going to stop rambling. Let's have a good 2009, K?