Friday, December 22, 2006

Se-XXX-y Zune, Orange Zune, and WiiNet.

I got a Zune today (Thanks going out to work & Microsoft!). It will be replacing my 60GB video ipod, losing some storage (that I wasn't using anyway) but gaining an FM tuner, and larger 'widescreen aspect' screen. I came home tonight and decided to surf some Zune websites to see what was in the news.

It seems a 12 year old in Chicago got a little too much luvin' from her Christmas Zune. Her parents bought a Zune for their daughter at the local Wal-Mart only to find that it was evidently returned with some 'eXXXtra' videos on it. Check out the segment from FOX Chicago's newscast, and feel better knowing Wally World is giving a refund, and a $25 gift card for their trouble.

I also found that Microsoft 'hid' 100 specially colored limited edition Zune's randomly inside the shipping units. I guess a couple of pink ones have turned up, and more recently an orange one. Of course these new Zune owners decided it would be better to eBay their limited edition Zune than holding onto it (the pink one I would have too, but the orange one is kinda snazzy (ahhh. Spice Gamecube flashbacks...))

As was posted a couple days ago, this morning I woke up to find my Wii glowing blue again. The beta version of the Opera browser was up for download today, I've read some forums this evening and it sounds like it works well. I'm still not convinced there is a giant market for surfing the net on your TV set, especially with a wiimote and no keyboard, but it's nice to the have the functionality if you ever want to use it.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Christmas movie cheer, and I met a strange lady, she made me nervous.

I went to see Deck the Halls last night, as the previews and posters I had seen made it look interesting. While the movie was okay it wasn't overly funny :( or emotionally moving (either of which can make an outstanding Christmas movie). It seemed to take quite a while to get going, and if not for redeeming itself at the end I would easily give it a lower review. It did get me to thinking though about the Christmas movies I do like, and in no particular order my top 5 **** Christmas movies (meaning something I watch at least once each holiday season) would be...

Scrooged, 1988, Bill Murray

The Santa Clause, 1994, Tim Allen

The Family Man, 2000, Nicolas Cage

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, 1989, Chevy Chase

Elf, 2003, Will Ferrell

I was in Target the other day checking out clearance items (which is something I do...) in the Men's section. There was a woman (late 20's blond... If it matters) about two racks over that looked over at me when I walked up, then walked around the rack and was standing in front of me "What size pants do you wear"? "Huh"? I replied, kinda perplexed why a woman whom I didn't know would be asking me this. She unfolds a belt she was carrying in her hand and reiterated "I was wondering what size pants you wear"? So now I figure she must be shopping for Christmas presents, but I hesitate and for a split second and think to myself do you suck in the gut, and shave the number down a bit, or just shrug it off and tell the lady the truth. Being married and old I went with the later. She explains that she doesn't understand the belt tag saying 32-34 "Does that mean the furthest hole is 32", and the closest hole would be 34 inch"? Adding "would this fit you"? I giggle (not really but it sounds good), and exclaim "No" thinking (again to myself...) high school was how long ago? I finally said that I usually pick a belt that I can fasten about in the middle of the holes that way it gives you continued use no matter which way need you go. :)

P.S. If you weren't humming Men At Work, Down Under after reading the title, shame on you.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Wii happenings, tunneling into GameStop, and Festive Saints!

I finally got my Wii cables yesterday from Nintendo (just a hint don't use 2 day UPS its about $3 higher than Ground, but I think they would have gotten here the same day). I haven't had a chance to hook them up yet today, hopefully later this afternoon. My Wii was glowing blue this morning (indicating I have a message waiting). I was happy to find the forecast Channel is now up and running! A quick update and I was checking the weather locally and overseas, it's easy to read and has quite a bit of information. I don't know how often the info is updated as my current temp, today's forecast, and tomorrow's was from 6am (about 4-5 hours ago). You also have the option of viewing weather via a globe where you can zoom in/out, and rotate all the way around using the Wiimote. It was way more fun than it should have been, and I know the conditions in Paris, Tokyo, and the South Pole. :)

More good news (hopefully) was found at Nintendo Europe which states that a beta version of the Opera browser will be available on Friday December 22nd. I'm sure hoping this is for Europe, US, and Japan but I guess we will know soon enough. A tidbit about the browser is the final version will be available in March 2007 and will be free until June 2007 after which time it will cost 500 Wiipoints ($5) to download.

I've been playing Elebits and it's pretty cool, I've only made it through the tutorial and first level but I like it. I want to try out Super Swing Golf, and hope to when I move the system downstairs and have more room. I've read some impressions on the net, and they said if you liked Hot Shots or Mario Golf then you would like this too.

If you missed it somehow big N has done a 'replacement' on the wrist straps for the Wiimote, you can go here to order replacements (limit 4 per person).

It seems some cleaver crooks decided to burrow into their local GameStop in hopes of obtaining some PS3's disappointed like everyone else looking they decided that thirteen 360's would have to do (good choice! As long as they were premium systems). I hope they picked up some games too, Hexic gets kinda old quick.

Santa Pimp HO! HO! HO!

I dug out my Saint's Row game last night because those wonderful people at Violation have given Xbox live Gold members a free download, the appropriately titled Ho, Ho, Ho pack. Which as you probably guessed let's my on screen thug dress up like Santa Claus, the pack includes the hat, jacket, pants, shoes, and hair so you can be stylin' as St. Nick! Nothing like seeing Santa run around with a assault shotgun blowing people away, and throwing the occasional grenade. I know there are thunderstorms that randomly happen during the game it would have been cool if they could have had it snow too.

Well if you still don't have your Wii or Playstation 3 sitting under the tree, there is hope according to Toys-R-Us their stores will receive thousands of Wii systems, and 6,000 PS3's this week. It's unknown how many thousands include but guessing at least 2 that's about 3 per store on the Wii's, get camping.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Now that's a Pinata, GameStop tidbits, and 360 coming soon...More Xbox games.

It seems as though the Xbox 360 team in Mexico had too much time on their hands decided to try for a Guinness world record. Gamerscore Blog reports they did this by attempting to build the worlds largest Pinata! Yes, they built a giant (48 feet x 52 feet)Horstachio from Viva Pinata outside Six Flags Mexico (there is a Six Flags in Mexico???), the process took 3 weeks to complete and I guess they are still waiting on official word from Guinness about the record.
That's one big horsey!

Gamespot has a article up about Gamestop carrying import DS titles on their website, Jump Superstars, and Naruto: Saikyo Ninja Daikesshu 4. I don't know if the local stores will be carrying these, but it is interesting as I seen both titles last week available at the Best Buy stores here in town.

In other Gamestop/EB Games related oddities I noticed that Kum & Go (Woodlawn & 21st) had GS/EB branded $25 gift cards available at the checkout register. Not a bad idea, especially for those (like me!) that wait until the very last minute (ie. After 6pm Christmas Eve, or Christmas Day) to pick up a gift.

It seems someone over at got jumpy today and for a brief amount of time put up the December backwards compatibility list. Joystiq did us a favor and posted the list of NEW games before the list vanished. There are some neat additions that I know will make some gamers happy including Scarface, Mortal Kombat : Armageddon, Family Guy, Pyschonauts, and some others that seem strange to me Splinter Cell Double Agent, Open Season, and Farcry Instincts which are already available in 360 form. That is the nature of emulation though making one game run inadvertently opens others (Barbie Horse Adventures anyone?) although I hear that the Splinter Cell on the Xbox actually has content not available on the 360 version. Microsoft of course issued a statement neither denying or confirming the leak, stating that with software development things change all the time so it may or may not be correct.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Japanese lining up for 360's!

In an amazing turn of events Japanese gamers are lining up to get a 360. Yep, you read that right lining up to get the new Blue Dragon 360 bundle. had this news story (translated for your convenience) describing today's festivities. It will be interesting to see the sales figures next week to see how much impact this game will have on system sales with the bundle. 1UP also has article up about the bundle mainly with pictures of all the cool goodies packed inside (the faceplate, and figurines look awesome) the bundle. You may have heard some rumblings about this game a while back because it was too big to fit on a DVD, so here you have the first 360 game that comes on 3 (yep three) DVD's. Makes a pretty good argument about using the HD DVD disc for games too if storage is going to be an issue.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Digging into Lost Planet, Wii touching, and other ramblings...

I'm really liking the Lost Planet multi-player demo, although it never showed up on Xbox Live for me. Luckily EB Games got their pre-order bonus cards which enable you to download a version of the demo with an extra map available so I got it that way. I really enjoyed the single player demo that came out last May, and they polished a lot of the stuff from that release. I've put in quite a few games over the last couple of days, and must say it's a lot of fun. Check it out it you haven't yet the game finally comes out in January.

Well I broke down the other day and picked up a Wii. I had been going over the pros/cons of the system for about a week, and since I had some trade-in credit built up I went ahead and got one. I'm not hooking it up to the big TV until I can get a set of component cables (yes Nintendo people do have HD sets, and they like to use them). I got Excite Truck, and of course Wii-Sports but so far have only played Excite. Excite Truck is cool, graphically it's not going to win any awards but it is fun to play, the room it's in right now doesn't have a lot of extra space so I haven't tried Wii-Sports yet. The built in Wi-Fi access is pretty neat too (now where is my web browser...) and makes it easy to link to your friends. The 'always-on' aspect is cool although I have yet to have any Mii's join my parade. :( Post a reply with your Wiicode if you want me to add you to my friends list 5737 2086 3695 2439. Check out this story at IGN where some of those creative folks have taken a Bluetooth dongle, the Wiimote and are playing some Half-Life 2 on the PC!

I got around to some 'hands on' time with a PS3 and Resistance : Fall of Man, I will say it looks really good (on par with stuff I've seen on the 360) and it seems to have a really cool story line. It's not a system seller (although I don't think anything is @ $600) but would be the only title so far that makes me lean that way.