Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Enjoying my new TV

My parents gift-wrapped me an Insignia 25” LCD TV and I can use that for gaming. The TV can do picture within picture like a virtual thing, has a monitor output, S-video inputs, and is a really thin TV. I got it hooked up by myself, and was playing Dead or Alive 2 on it on Christmas. Star Wars – A New Hope looks a little pixilated, it’s not the TVs fault, it’s the quality of the MPEG2 compression, and I am anxiously waiting for Blu-ray (the next generation) to come out.

Specs of Insignia 25" Widescreen HD-Ready Flat-Panel LCD TV Speculations:

Screen size - 25”

Aspect Ratio 16.9

Display Type LCD

Digitally Compatible Yes, HDTV ready

Pixels 1280x760 (1.15 Gigapixels)

Contrast Ratio 600:1

Brightness 450 cd/m²

All supported Picture in Picture, S-Video input, composite video input, RGB input, 5 Watt speakers, 2 speakers, V-Chip

My old TV was decent in 1996. The older Sanyo was an analog only 19” TV that served countless usage on N64 and Dreamcast or watching movies. I almost passionately attached too it, but I’ll have two TVs when I move out in a couple years. Perhaps, I can use one in my bedroom, and the other in the living room?

My parents gave me a DVD player too which is able to play NTSC & PAL DVDs, MPEG, JPEG, GIF, PNG, MP3 CDR or DVDRs. Other stuff my parents gave me for Christmas was a 50 pack of CDRs, 50 pack of DVDRs, Spiderman 2, Star Wars Trilogy, Lady Killers, Bourne Supremacy, Dead or Alive Ultimate for Xbox, and a Samsung cellular phone. My parents also bought a professional scanner for themselves which does excellent picture or document scans. It’s possible to scan b/w text with crystal clear results. The software allows the picture to be compressed in PNG, JPEG, GIF, BMP or storage, or MS PowerPoint formats.

The Samsung SCH-a650 has AOL Instant Messenger, E-mail with pictures, caller ID, color LCD. It’s a basic cell phone I know. The SCH-a650 can broadcast digital signals, lasts 24 hours on standby, 1.5 hours of talk time, and can fully charge in 3 hours time. I don’t know what I shall use it for?

I had nothing better to do so I drove to Toyriffic in Hudson, WI to buy some games yesterday including Crimson Skies which was on my list. It’s like a 1930s film. Return to Castle Wolfenstine, a World War II first person shooter originally developed at ID Software, and I got Star Wars - Star Fighter for only – get this – $5.

Monday, December 27, 2004

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas once again. I said this once before exactly 1 year ago too. I am hoping I’m getting some sort of fancy flat-screen TV for consoles. I don’t know yet – that’s what’s so exciting about today. Here is the entry that was never published due to Modblog’s server change. I didn’t have the patience and made a new blog at my Blogspot site. That site is basically a replica of this site. I was worried that Modblog wouldn’t be online so I went to plan B. Now, that Modblog is back online, there is no need to update it.

I found out that the only Windows NT clone is 100% functional! Yes, you can copy Windows NT 4.0 CDs, but this is different – this is an operating system able to read Windows applications and games without Windows running it. Some people call “ReactOS” a Windows clone because it does or will do everything that Windows 98 does, though completely programmed under the GNU Project. This eliminates any possible stolen Windows code. The programmers shown they already got Quake 2 to be playable on React 0.2.8 proven by screen shots off ReactOS official page. This is not an emulator – it is either a partition-based or LiveCD-based OS for your computer. ReactOS has a great DOS emulator from what I read off the net. GPU also constructed an open source emulator compatible with MS-DOS software. There are other 3rd party DOS emulators - the most popular is DOSemu for Linux. Another was FreeDOS which is programmed by a University of Wisconsin, River Falls graduate, Jim Hall and works on Windows and Linux. The name doesn’t sound familiar, but I’ve worked at the UofW as a part-time tech intern through high school. I had to explain how to convert Quicktime to MPEG2 and burn it to a “NTSC compatible DVD” in a “do-it-yourself” booklet complete with pictures.

On the official page, ReactOS was the successor of the failed FREEWin95. Something happened to FreeWin95, and it could not see its first release. Two years later, ReactOS was released publicly. Nothing ran right, and it was basically a dysfunctional build for the curious I believe and testing stages of the program. ReactOS got some of its source code from OS2, Sun’s JAVA, and open source DOS emulators - all legal.

I suspect since it’s a Windows clone – you can install Direct X 9.0a onto the system directory, and it’ll run PC games. Direct X is the Microsoft software accelerator for and all PC games out are compatible with it. It’s 3 times better than OpenGL. While OpenGL runs decent on Windows, I have had a hard time running games on OpenGL through Linux.

A Windows Explorer clone called GNU Midnight Commander is used in it. Midnight Commander looks exactly like Windows 2000’s Explorer and functions similar I am guessing. Since I use Windows as part as daily life – it is safe to say I know how it functions.

ReactOS has first got used on the Xbox. With ReactOS on Xbox, gamers can probably surf the Internet now, use the world processor or play some older PC games. I read the NewsForge review on ReactOS, and the author said while it came with minimal software, IBM-DOS/MS-DOS is fully emulated in ReactOS, and all the commands work as well as Window’s Command Prompt from what I’ve read. I thought this was an interesting point he made. A Windows clone wouldn’t be complete without a terminal and that’s the truth.

Anyways, I have yet to download it – the best chance I’ll have of downloading the huge file is at school when next semester starts on January 14th. I’m going to try either the hard drive version or the Live CD version. The partition version will load faster and I could try to run older games on it. The Live CD is good because it can run itself on any computer without changing the existing file system on the hard drive. Just think about it for a minute…..in the near future, Microsoft’s main competition could be an OS compatible with it’s own software. If you can’t beat them – join them and the metaphor certainly applies to operating systems.

On December 22nd, I came up with different concept for my page, “Ian’s Quintessential Blog 3.0.0” The new template went online later that day. The site is fully redesigned for better or for worst. As soon as I get all the monthly entries on each page – that annoying mini window will disappear. I have the gallery, design, and all the blog entries working although it’s frustrated to see that some browsers don’t know how to word-wrap! It took me four hours yesterday and two hours today to complete the first fully functional template. Sorry, the waterfall background with Cloud Strife from Final Fantasy VII is the best I can come up with. Ian's Quintessential Blog 3.0

Yesterday, I wanted to buy some more games to play. I got a deal on Metroid Fusion and bought Prince of Persia - Warrior Within new (a darker sequel to Prince of Persia Sands of Time). So I was playing Metroid Fusion from 1AM to 5AM this morning. It was more fun than I thought. It improves on Super Metroid game play. I know because I played the ROM. On the Gameboy Player, it gives Metroid a better look than Super Metroid. With the screen stretching on TV, I thought it would look awful, but surprisingly it’s similar to any 2D shooter on Playstation. After I write this entry – I’ll go back to completing it. The other game I’m playing is Phantasy Star IV on Gens with a controller. Gens smoothed the graphics out a lot so any game emulates better on a computer screen. Phantasy Star IV is getting interesting, and I am planning to play it to the end. The game takes place 1000s year after an advanced culture was completely destroyed by war. All left behind was a “Mother-Brain” life support system on the planet. The advantage of playing this game on an emulator is the quick-saves. In the action-time battle sequences, I can save the game when it’s my turn to attack the enemy in the battle and prevent any deaths. It basically keeps my party immortal and saves a lot of time. Currently the planet’s progress is creeping around 1450 - 1500 AD. Lately, the life support system has been acting up since it’s 1000s of years old, therefore, the primary plot is to rescue an android from a madman to shut down all the dysfunctional life support systems before they completely destroy the planet by producing harmful genetically engineered life forms. The graphics are worst than most SNES role playing games, but above average in terms of Genesis RPGs. Strangely, this story line is similar to Final Fantasy X….

New games to add to my list:

Phantasy Star II

Phantasy Star III

Prince of Persia - The Warrior Within

Metroid Fusion

This is Ian Signing off.

Monday, December 13, 2004

PS2 NTSC Collection


Correction: I have 59 PS2 games instead of 58. I am missing Grand Theft Auto San Andreas. However, it is photographed in my last PS2 picture

This is pic high resolution enough? If not click on this link...

Really High Resolution Version - for the high bandwidth bloggers! JPEG size - 220K

Very high resolution Xbox collection



Collection List

Playstation 2

1.) Star Ocean 3 - Till the End of Time (Director's Cut Version) (RPG)
2a.) Mega Man (Mega Man Anniversary Collection) (A)
2b.) Mega Man 2 (MMAC) (A)
2c.) Mega Man 3 (MMAC) (A)
2d.) Mega Man 4 (MMAC) (A)
2e.) Mega Man 5 (MMAC) (A)
2f.) Mega Man 6 (MMAC) (A)
2g.) Mega Man 7 (MMAC) (A)
2i.) Mega Man 8. (MMAC) (A)
2j.) Mega Man Battle (MMAC) (A)
2k.) Mega Man Battle 2 (MMAC) (A)
3.) Jak and Dexter (APL, A)
4.) Castlevania - Lament of Innocence (S, A)
5.) Jak 2 (APL, A)
6.) Rachet and Clank (APL, A)
7.) Rachet and Clank 2 - Going Commando (APL, A)
8.) Gran Turismo 3 A-Spec (RA)
9.) Final Fantasy 10 (RPG)
10.) Final FAntasy 10-2 (RPG)
11.) Rayman 3 - Hoodlum Havoc (PL)
12.) Tekken 4 (F)
13.) SSX 3 (SP)(RA)
14.) Breath of Fire 5 - Dragon Quarter (RPG)
15.) Xenosaga Episode 1 (RPG)
16.) Soul Caliber 2 (F)
17.) ESPN Football 2K5 (SP)
18.) Grand Theft Auto 3 (RA)
19.) Grand Theft Auto Vice City (RA)
20.) Summoner 2 (RPG)
21a.) Virua Fighter 4 Evolution (F)
21b.) Virua Fighter (F)
22.) Ridge Racer V (RA)
23.) Devil May Cry (S, A)
24.) Toyko Extreme Racer Zero (RA)
25.) Toyko Extreme Racer 3 (RA)
26.) Twisted Metal Black (RA)(S)
27.) Suikoden III (RPG)
28.) Ace Combat 04 (MJS)
29.) Winning Eleven Soccer 6 (SP)
30.) Winning Eleven Soccer 7 (SP)
31.) Madden Football 2002 (SP)
32.) Disgaea Hour of Darkness (RPG)
33.) Kingdom Hearts (RPG)
34.) Metal Gear Solid 2 Sons of Liberty (S, A)
35.) Ico (PUZ)
36.) MidNight Club (RA)
37.) MidNight Club 2 (RA)
38.) Thunderstrike (S, A )
39.) Onimusha 2 Samurai's Destiny (AF, A)
40.) Onimusha 3 - Demon Siege (AF, A)
41.) Soul Reaver 2 (AF)
42.) Dark Cloud (RPG)
43.) Dark Cloud 2 (RPG)
44.) Grandia Xtreme (RPG)
45.) Arc the Lad 4 - Twlight of the Spirits (RPG)
46.) La Pucelle - Tactics (RPG)
47.) Phantom Brave (RPG)
48.) Wipeout Fusion (RA)
49.) Shadow Hearts 2 - Covenant (RPG)
50.) Sly Cooper and The Thievius Raccoonus (APL, A)
51.) Gradius V (S. A )
52.) Grand Theft Auto - San Andreas (RA) (S)
53.) Guilty Gear X (F)
54.) Fatal Frame 2 Crimison Butterfly (Director's Cut version) (SH, A)
55.) Metal Gear Solid 3 Snake Eater (S, A)
56.) Guilty Gear Isuka (also Guilty Gear X3) (F)
57.) Jak 3 (APL)
58.) Ratchet and Clank Up your Arsenal (APL)
59a.) Growlancer II (Growlancer Generations) (RPG)
59b.) Growlancer III (Growlancer Generations) (RPG)


1.) Halo Combat Evolved (FPS)
2.) Silent Hill 2 (SH, A)
3.) Colin McRae Rally 04 (RA)
4.) Prince of Persia: Sands of Time (A, PL)
5.) Genma Onimusha (F, A)
6.) Elder Scrolls 3 - Morrowind Game of the Year Edition (RPG)
7.) Crimsin Sea (RPG)
8.) Moto GP (RA)
9.) Rallisport Challenge (RA)
10.) Rallisport Challenge 2 (RA)
11.) Dead or Alive 3 (F)
12.) Project Gotham (RA)
13.) Project Gotham 2 (RA)
14.) Jet Set Radio / Sega GT 2002 Combo DVD (RA)
15.) Shunmue 2 (RPG)
16.) Nascar Thunder 2003(RA)
17.) Balder's Gate Deadly Alliance (RPG)
18.) Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3 (SP)
19.) Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4 (SP)
20.) Unreal Champtionship (FPS)
21.) Dead or Alive Extreme Beach Volleyball (SP)
22.) Panzer Dragoon Orta (S, A)
23.) Fable (RPG)
24.) Ninja Gaiden (A, F)
25.) Tony Hawk's Pro Skater - Underground (SP)
26.) Halo 2 (FPS, A)
27.) Guilty Gear X2 Reloaded (F)
28.) Splinter Cell (S, A)

Tomorrow is the last day of school before Christmas Vacation. In Human Relations I have gotten a 95% on my success journal – my highest grade in the whole class. Tomorrow is my conversation with the school which will determine where I’ll be next year in terms of classes. Pretty basic I think. Anyways, it will be interesting what the teachers will say about me. I am in fact a registered student of the school and shall be there very day even if this means I will have to do Cisco over again. The problem is there will be new students in the next semester thus I will not be able to befriend any body I met in this class. For example, I was invited to a PC LAN party at school this Thursday, where all the Cisco class will get together and play Halo (PC version) or UT2004, or Diablo 2 and have a good time. Well these good times will not last. Problem is I do not know these students well, and while I haven’t got mad at them for knowing more than I do in networking, they do know I am not very talented when it comes to networking. I am one of those people who aren’t in love with old games. With the exception of Halo 2 for Xbox, the LAN party may be playing old games, which is not my preference. My point is I hope I have a good time fragging everyone hopefully without too much profanity.

My newest game is Growlancer Generations for PS2. It is a RPG from Japan and the anime on the over is a dead giveaway that unless you're into Anime in general - most people will not buy this particular game. If you look past the anime aspect, you get a well made RPG made by Game Arts who also makes Grandia. Growlancer is one of those games that keeps the oldschool look of games - and only uses 3D for effect. I haven't opened it yet.

Saturday, December 11, 2004

Had Daytona USA emulation working on my Pentium 4

Final Fantasy fanatics are silly on the forums of the Unofficial Final Fantasy Site! I mean talking about those silly above average Final Fantasy fan-made art in the signature boxes. I can make one like those, but it’d be too silly to do so! It has everything to do with that silly Square-soft art direction! So I went to this site to read about the old Final Fantasies, and I go in the message board and like many other fan sites of this particular franchise – you’ll be loading 200K worth of fan-made graphics. All I need is the correct font, desktop wallpaper, and use of the magic wand in Paint Shop Pro 9.

My profession is going down the toilet. Yes, you have heard right – school is an utter disaster. I may switch to programming in January. Programming has those fields where all that matters is the code. If your program is buggy than the source code is always the problem, but always the solution to the problem. I also over-heard programmers are more likely to have an interesting in videogames or PC games in general than network specialists. The programming class was the one that set up the Xbox LAN party at the school I go too. The most popular computer language is Visual Basic, which is basically a Win32 graphical user interface that let’s me, the programmer, click on the object in question and insert source code. C++ is 10 years old, and C source code is over 25 yrs old so most people prefer Perl code because it’s newer and less complicated. Programming today is very similar to a webpage developed in Macromedia Dreamweaver or Namo Webeditor by making the program as big as I like by resizing the default perimeters of it, and placing the buttons and text boxes where I like them before I insert code. I believe there is a VB compiler, and an open source alternative compiler called GTK 2x which runs on Glib runtime libraries. These programs compiled in GTK require you to download the Glib executable onto your computer. A great example is the Windows version of The GIMP 2.0.5. I wonder if ‘G’ stands for Gnome? Perhaps the developers of Gnome made this free runtime library for Windows? It’s funny too realize that anyone can make open source VB source code, and it’s legal! Visual Basic is made by Microsoft so this should mean that source code created by it is closed source which is not the case. It must be one of those Microsoft loop-holes.

Screenshots of the SSF emulating Daytona USA on my PC

I tried out the latest version of SSF - SSF 0.07 RC11, and this version improved – it now runs Daytona USA on my Dell Dimension XPS Pentium 4 machine partially emulated. In its day, Saturn was a complex console to develop for, and now somebody in Japan successfully emulated it on PC. This isn’t new news at all – I own about this emulator for 6 months. In fact, I have a post on my last attempt to emulate Daytona USA! Unfortunately, my other Saturn games give me errors messages when I try to boot them. There is an available link on the side of this site to test on your computer. Maybe future releases will emulate sound. Some reasons why Saturn isn’t emulated as well as Playstation is the fact that nobody likes it. Still, it’s pretty amazing when this Japanese programmer had zero source code to start with and he’s emulating it for FREE! That means in his spare time he has been able to software emulate the most complex console ever made up until 1998. Yes, Saturn is harder than the Nintendo 64 to develop software for. Daytona isn’t playable, but it proves that some day it might be. There are a lot of textures missing in the game though. One day when I feel I have too – I’ll resurface all my Saturn games and make them brand spanking new. It’s about $3.50 per disc. It’s steep for a resurfacing job, but it’s worth it if the CD doesn’t work. They all do so it’s not a top priority of mine.

Yesterday, I bought two more PS2 games, Jak 3 and Ratchet and Clank Up Your Arsenal. I was reading the reviews at IGN.com and the reviewers where ecstatic about both games. They gave both games 9.6 of 10 as high as Metal Gear Solid 2 or even Final Fantasy X. Obviously, no body gives a game 9.6 for a game unless it’s the top 2% on the system. So since the score was unbelievably high – being smart, I looked around at other reviews including Game Rankings (a site that takes all final scores of 10 different well known gaming sites, adds them together, and divides by 2). The winner of this was Ratchet and Clank 3 and ahead by a full 6 points! Yes, that’s right – Jak 3, instead of having very high score of 9.6….now has an averaged score of 9.0. So I was going to buy 1 game, but since I liked Jak 2, I bought both of them for $85. The graphics are one of the high points of both games since both use the same graphics engine and are some of the best graphics PS2 can muster. The only ones ranked above Jak 3 and Ratchet and Clank in texture work are the Grand Theft Autos and the Metal Gear Solids. Jak 3 and R&C3 have succeeded in better texturing than Jak 2 or R&C2 Going Commando. In the end, I personally thought that this was enough reason to buy each game at 40 dollars. Some people may disagree with me, but I heavily rely on well-known cyber-review sites before I buy. I never rent games. Not to mention Jak 3 is the final installment in the Jak series and Ratchet and Clank 3 is the final installment in the Ratchet and Clank series. Naughty Dog Software and Insomniac Software plan to develop future action platform games on the Playstation 3 that are just as good as the their current offerings.

Remember it was Naughty Dog who brought Playstation its first mascot in 1996 – Crash Bandicoot, and sold millions of copies here in the USA. This was until 2000 when Naughty Dog had to give it up to Traveler’s Tales, a UK developer which also developed Sonic 3D Blast for the Genesis, Saturn, and PC! Sonic 3D Blast was not very good at all. Where do you think that put the well-known mascot? Two words…. Multi-platform. Yes, the dreaded two words that will make any developer want to sue Sony Computer Entertainment America! But anyways, Naughty Dog platformers are the best platformers out for the console unlike its ex-mascot’s newest installments. I read that Crash Twinsanity is a bit above average for a videogame and also the first Crash Bandicoot videogame to rotate 360º, but stands no where near the quality of Jak and Dexter which you’ve guessed it – already rotates 360º and are on their 3rd game of the Jak franchise. I am pretty sure this is true having myself played the first two installments. I played the first game to the end.

[Jak 3 Update] I open the game and put the DVD into my PS2 and it starts with a 5 minute long intro that connects Jak 2 with Jak 3. The game looks like a damn Gamecube title which does this game a whole not of justice. When I start out I am thrown into a wasteland (I didn’t complete Jak 2 so I don’t know how it came too this). I was left out too die in the desert when I was rescued by some drifters (also having pointy ears like Jak) when I wake up in the new city. I have to go through this tutorial part where it teaches all the basic moves that jak does (Dexter doesn’t play a commanding role in this game). Dexter was transformed into a muskrat when he fell into a pool of dark ego. The control is very tight – what you would expect from Jak 2. In fact, Naughty Dog most likely imported the gameplay code from the first Jak and Dexter into Jak 3. I am in the part where I completed the first mini-game of the game. The first mini-game of Jak 3 is a timing game which requires the player too hit the four dual shock controller buttons at the precise moment when the Xs, squares, triangles and circles pass over 4 little squares. The whole point of it is to destroy 100 of them moving shapes without allowing them to pass the squares. It took me three times to get it right.

One day I dream I’ll be a great videogame reviewer! One with the skills and have many supporters. You know how it is – buy games, play games, review games, buy more games, play more games, review more games. Does this sound interesting to you? I used to be a big-time videogame reviewer, now I am an ex-videogame reviewer. It gives me a perfect sense of what’s good and what’s bad in terms of videogames. A good game is when you don’t die too much and the game’s controls are easy to control. A bad is simply way too easy or way too hard. It’s way too hard because most of the time – the game is poorly funded and the developers didn’t tweak the control enough and the graphics are horrible because it runs on a middle-ware graphics engine like that popular Render-ware or the designers who made the game spent 6 months with limited knowledge about the hardware so the graphics within the game stunk. Did you know that Gamespot has an award system that awards “The Worst game of the Year!” for every platform? Gamespot had one which is so bad it got all 1.0s and that accomplishment goes to “Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing” for PC.

Other horrible games for console and PC research by Gamerankings.com

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Image Compression

Hi. I am back and this blog topic I’ve been working on for some time. You don’t know how many blog that I’ve come across with bad graphic compression. For one it’s none of my business what they do, but it is my business if I come to their site or not! See, if the compression is better – I might be happier with their site. Now, the easiest way too do this is Jasc’s professional suite off it’s trial page JASC, and try JPEG and PNG. I ruled out GIF because PNG is more compressed than GIF anyways. There is no reason too use GIF anymore. Screenshots can be tricky if it has few colors defiantly use PNG to compress them. If the graphic uses a lot of colors than I always use JPEG.

Done in Irfanview 3.95

PNG compressed in Irfanview (20K)

PNG compressed in Paint Shop Pro 9 giving example of it's JPEG dialog box (13K)

JPEG compressed in Irfanview (27K)

PNG compressed in Paint Shop Pro 9 giving example of it's PNG dialog box (13K)

1.) Keep the files at a low resolution. By low I mean nothing bigger than 600x600. I can not force you to go that small – but it’s considered too be web safe under that amount. For pictures I advise nobody to go above 400x600 or 600x400. There is really no need for it. My cousin David doesn’t understand the difference between GIF and JPEG and his graphics can get up between 800KB to 2 MB for a stupid graphic! So you see why it’s important to know a little bit about compression…..

2.) Find a program that lets you reduce the Lossyness (quality) of your graphic. This is needed. The program I use is Irfanview because it has a fair JPEG codec with it. It’s not bad, but it’s probably not the best ever made either. Anyways, that’s what I use, and I wish there were more people who use it like me but don’t for whatever reason.

3.) A compress all my JPEG graphics at 50% in Irfanview, (YCbCr 4x2 1x1 1x1 at 25% - 30%) with Paint Shop Pro 8.0 or 9.0. All my graphics are under 600x600!

4.) PNG compression is much trickier than JPEG because depending on the person – it’s whether you want a lot of color or only 10 – 60 colors. For desktop screenshots I do about 30 colors. This graphic I did with PSP 9.0. It can be smaller depending on the resolution and also the number of colors. For monochrome I always do 3 or 4 colors. Monochrome does not look good with only 2 colors used! I found that out. The text is not readable when the color is set too 2.

Heated discussion on Gameboy Advance 2 (the head of the site thinks Nintendo will not release another Gameboy)
Admin Here's been a lot of talk about whether the Nintendo DS is the true heir to the Game Boy Advance, or whether Nintendo might bring out a completely new Game Boy within the next couple of years.

What's your view? Let us know by voting and posting some reasons in this thread.

My personal position is that Nintendo would be crazy to release yet another handheld when they've only just launched the DS. It would be especially crazy as the DS has sold quite well and it would be silly to risk everything just because they wanted another console with the words "game boy" written on it.

RenegadeViking What's so crazy about it?

Just have a "Super Gameboy Advance" with two screens and make it 256-bit. Just because Dual Screen is called Dual Screen because it's two screens doesn't mean jack if the next Gameboy will have two screens or not. Maybe "Super Gameboy Advance will use Nintendo DS flash media and also have the Gameboy Advance slot like the DS for GBA games.

My point is maybe "Super Gameboy Advance" and DS Advance/ DS II are the exact same handheld.....

Admin how about we make jokes and call the Dual Screen "Gameboy DS" from now on. It'll make people a lot less confused.

Admin It'll confuse people! They'll think the DS is on the way out when it's only just been launched.

Renegade Viking Admin - aren't you are over reacting just a tad - Nintendo DS just came out 2 weeks ago here. I believe that Nintendo will support Nintendo DS for a good 4 years. That's 2004 - 2008. I bet you that the next handheld from Nintendo will play DS games. I don't think we need anything smaller than the DS flash media cartridges (they are easy enough to loose). If anything - Nintendo will probably release a successor to DS, not GBA. It's interesting that Nintendo will soon retire a popular brandname they've used since 1989. Who knows? Maybe we'll have a Gameboy Advance 2

I am pretty sure Nintendo's new handheld will skip 32 MB of video memory and go straight to 128 MB of video memory and 256 MB of EDRAM or maybe it'll have 128 MB of EDRAM and 64 MB (like Gamecube) of video memory just to reduce the price - this is a handheld, not a console. Either way - it's "over kill" for an handheld. So I suspect Nintendo is going to hook their Gameboy Advance 2 up to the TV and it'll look a lot like Gamecube games.

Admin“ Admin - aren't you are over reacting just a tad - Nintendo DS just came out 2 weeks ago here.”

Well, that was the reason why I thought it was crazy talk to suggest they're about to bring out another Game Boy Nothing serious...

“I believe that Nintendo will support Nintendo DS for a good 4 years. That's 2004 - 2008. I bet you that the next handheld from Nintendo will play DS games. I don't think we need anything smaller than the DS flash media cartridges (they are easy enough to loose). If anything - Nintendo will probably release a successor to DS, not GBA.”

That's what I think, and a new handheld in 4 years time is fine.

I actually doubt the Game Boy brand will ever surface as a mainstream product again because Game = childish and Boy = childish so Game Boy = very very childish, which is exactly the image Nintendo is fighting at the moment.

“It's interesting that Nintendo will soon retire a popular brandname they've used since 1989. Who knows? Maybe we'll have a Gameboy Advance 2”

If it does come back, and it is one of the most popular and famous brands ever in the games world, it might be in the form of a product aimed specifically at kids the way the original Game Boys were. That's 100% speculation by me though. It could also just be a DS in a "special Game Boy edition", like there was a GBA that was a "special NES / Famicom edition".

“Either way - it's "over kill" for an handheld.”

Now that they've gone 3D, I think there's going to be a lot of overdeveloped games with special effects you can barely appreciate on the portable format. Gameplay has to be more flexible on a portable because you sometimes only get short bursts of time to play it in.

“So I suspect Nintendo is going to hook their Gameboy Advance 2 up to the TV and it'll look a lot like Gamecube games.”

Sony makes TVs, what do you think the betting is that they'll do one that you can link PSPs to wirelessly?

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Getting Satellite TV in my home office Friday!

Today, I found out that my early Christmas present will be an extra DirecTV receiver in my room and I am happy. Even though I plan to move out in 2 years, it gives me a lot of ideas about recording – I can record the video at 680x480 MPEG1 in real time onto my hard drive and compress the video I want in DivX for storage on my hard drive. It would require a TV tuner card – but having digital TV on my computer would be really great. My dad’s getting a two new receivers and one is for my room. We already have all the regular channels plus HBO, Cinimax, Showtime, or The Movie Channel. I’m getting satellite channels in my room, and it’s in ultra-high resolution so it’s a big deal too me. It’s better than streaming video! I am so excited. I get to record all Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes in medium resolution. Problem is it has to be MPEG1 or AVI because my computer can’t encode video in MPEG2 or DIVx in real time. I can watch Modern Marvels on the History Channel, or Fox New Channel. I could end up recording 4 hours of video per day in AVI, and compressing them too smaller files at night when I am sleeping. This is going kick some serious butt!

I found some interesting pictures of next generation renders for consoles. One shows the best image of a Madden football game I’ve ever seen. This could be one that is using the Xenon power.

Anyways, at school - I had no class today. Joyce was gone so I was wondering it had anything with the fact that we’re on the last chapter in the book and the test is due at the during Christmas Vacation. Cisco is damn difficult. Subnetting gives me the willies.

I found out what Jon Bon Jovi sounds like. I heard of him at school on Tuesday so I downloaded MP3 versions of his songs. Wow! He’s pretty good. I downloaded his song “It’s my Life” off Kazaa, and it’s worth the download! His music is epic. I have 5 of them now. Before this I just know that his Winamp skin was really cool. It’s like a big speaker moving with the sound waves. It’s one of the top skins at Winamp.com. I read his BIO on MTV.com, and it says he dropped out of school to play in bands until he got a job as a janitor for his cousin’s recording studio, and became popular in the 80s. Now, he is known through out the world and only does singles.

I am probably going to have to study for two tests tomorrow since Joyce wasn’t in today. I was going to fail the class like a man. The truth is I am not doing very well.

I installed Suse 9.0 on my custom PC just for the heck of it. I have Linux, but I don’t use it as often as Bill’s OS. It’s a fair OS and has less security holes than WinXP. I like that Bubble Trouble game on their. GIMP is nice too, but I leave the graphic effects to Paint Shop Pro 9. I have played around with the paint brush tool, and I sometimes use it for drawing with my mouse. That’s pretty fun. I use the Windows version of The Gimp 2.0.4 – one of the latest versions. It’s a great program understanding that it is free!

Sunday, December 05, 2004

Randy Came Over!!!

Yesterday and today I posted a couple posts in Ian's Smashing Good Software Blog. I also updated my videogame post to version 1.18 SP1. Added those games I bought in the past 2 weeks. Yes, I added a few games too it including Splinter Cell and I have no idea why I missed that one. My friend Randy came over with his girlfriend. I wanted to show him my MP3 collection than Halo 2. He refused the play “Cooperation Mode” in single player so we played slayer. I think he got me twice, but I killed him a lot more. We didn’t play soccer this time around. I showed him Guilty Gear X2 Reloaded and Dead or Alive Extreme Beach Volleyball. He thought that the Japanese chicks in Guilty Gear X were too dumb. It’s kind of like an animated cartoon, and one character had a big thing with teeth come out of her butt – yeah, just too prove to you how strange this game is. Then he thought that Dead of Alive Extreme Beach Volleyball was all graphics. In his opinion, the graphics were really good, but the game played average. The first thing too do is hit the A button a lot than I hit the A button again to serve the ball only pressing the Y button to spike the ball. I kept winning. Afterwards, I played Metal Gear Solid 3, and I do play as Naked Snake (same guy who plays Solid Snake) at the beginning of the game. One time I fell of the ledge, the other time I was shooting an alligator and drowned in the quick sand. I spent most of my time looking for the damn backpack of Snakes so I went to the ledge to backtrack which is why I fell off! At the beginning, the game has live video of the code war and Cuban Missile Crisis. Then I opened Tony Hawk Pro Skater Underground. It played good I kept beating Randy in tricks and, no – I wasn’t very good at getting them. The best way was staying around the ramps and pressing the X button a lot of times, and landing properly. I landed most of the time. I wasn’t trying too pull off huge stunts all the time. Getting to 100,000 points took 25 minutes. I think Tony Hawk Pro Skater Underground had improved graphics over Tony Hawk Pro Skater 4. The game looked great for an Xbox game.

Today, I was looking at the message boards (mostly on a site I call Catharton Electrica) because that’s what I like to do on Sundays plus drinking Mountain Dew. I found out that PS3’s “Cell” chip might be over 4 GHz. It’ll do multi-threading….what is that? We do not have any processors on the market over 3.4 GHz right now. Certainly PS3 will do the job that will last Sony for 5 or 6 years.PS2 certainly isn’t going away very fast, and people still buy them regularly. It is interesting that people still buy technically outdated hardware which explains people do not care if they have extremely high resolution graphics like what high-end PCs can do. Games are the most important aspect of buying a console. I am sure if you type in “Playstation 3” into this blog’s search bar that you’ll get some entries on it.

Later - around 2PM - I went too Toyriffic to try to resurface Guilty Gear X because by PS2 wouldn’t take it. I was waiting for the disc to be resurfaced for 20 minutes there. There was only one guy operating the whole store, and there was a line of people wanting to pay for their games. What’s with Dungeon and Dragon cards these days? I am not into that sort of thing. Is it somehow cool? Well, anyway, the store operator said that I shall get a refund if the disc still didn’t work due to a laser burning the disc all the way through. I got home to play it, and the disc didn’t want to play. Sacrilege! How can it come too this? So I felt bad so I played Guilty Gear X3: Isuka when I got home. Isuka plays a lot like X2: Reloaded on Xbox. You can’t really tell a difference in graphics. The PS2 controller has more buttons than the Xbox controller S therefore the set up gives you more options. I’ll keep this short in saying this is really weird. An IGN reviewer said there was crazy cheese rock in this game. I know what Cheese rock sounds like. I look at Gamestop.com to see if there are any copies at the store, and I would have to travel 42 miles just to get a new used copy in West St. Paul, Minnesota. I thought well I could get lost in West St. Paul. It’s funny though, that Game Stop in the city has 4 copies of this particular game, but the other Game Stops have none!

I found some great updates audio codec I use:

LAME 3.97 beta 4

We all know that MP3 has taken over the web and is by far the most popular Audio codec..... Damn iPods! It's not the best loosyness audio codec too use in terms of quality, but the more recent LAMEs have taken commercial quality audio to new levels. A 128 kbps MP3 encoded in LAME 3.96 or LAME 3.97 sounds as good as a newer WMA codec and OGG codec. LAME doesn't sound that great at low bit rates (16, 24, 32 kbps) . I leave that up too OGG and WMA. Still it's one of the best MP3 codec.

For use with CDEX
CDEX 3.51 Front End
Other LAME libraries (RAREWARE.ORG)

OGG Vorbis 1.1

Personally, I am using this codec for my personal audio files. It's not half bad and it is as compressed as any MP3. Yes, that's 990KB per Minute at 128 kbps. Only 460KB at 64kbps. It's a great codec, don't get me wrong. It's fastest with CDex. Surprisingly a voice conversation sounds as good at 32kbps as at 128 kbps. I shall not find any difference. That's progress for yeah. No worries about this codec being illegal - it's free and legal. Too bad hardware based MP3 players do not support OGG. If you had a audio test between this and LAME, Vorbis would win only by a small margin. With the soundcards in PCs today - you can hardly tell the difference anymore because the digital enhancement is so good.

For use with CDEX
CDEX 3.51 Front End
Other OGG Vorbis libraries (RAREWARE.ORG)

Hear my files at Ian's Videogame audio reviews

MPEG 4 AAC Audio

I've tested this codec and MPEG 4 files actually end with ACC instead of MP4 like I thought. It's compression is better than MP3 by a small margin. Your probably getting 100KB better with every minute of 128 kbps compressed audio. It is better. Okay how does it sound? It sounds okay - same as MP3. AAC audio isn't updated by Psytel any longer so MP3 surpassed ACC in quality a bit. Yes, the compression is better....only a little bit though.

Psytel AAC encoder 2.15 and Fast AAC encoder
CDEX 3.51 Front End
Other MPEG 4 AAC libraries (RAREWARE.ORG)


Muse pack is another LOSSYNESS (perfect sound) codec. This one is open source. In short a 140 kbps audio file compressed in MPC is as compressed as a 128 kbps MP3.
Winamp and Quintessential Player support both. This is an open source answer to MPEG 4 ACC audio. I don't suppose it's an issue with broadband users. Another thing is the file must be a WAV to for this too work, but that's okay since CDEX can make wav files for you.

MPC plugin for Winamp, QCD Add to Winamp plugin directory
jDownload CDEX Front End

New Gaming Monster specs I want:

• Windows XP PRO
• Asus A8V Deluxe Via Socket 939 ATX Motherboard and AMD Athlon 64 3400+ Processor
• Plaster Plextor PX-712 / 12x4x16x DVD+RW / 8x4x16x DVD-RW / 48x24x48x CD-RW /
• Ultra 512MB PC3200 DDR 400MHz Memory
• Trendware 56k (V.92) Internal PC
• Hitachi / 160GB / 7200 / 2MB / ATA-100 / EIDE Hard Drive
• I Data/Fax/voice Modem
• Connect3D Radeon 9200se / 128MB DDR / AGP / VGA / TV Out / Video Card
• Diablo ATX Mid-Tower Case with 450Watt Power Supply, Front Neon Lights, Front USB and Audio Ports

Final Price 950 Dollars with rebates

Low cost Gaming Machine version 2:

• Plaster Plextor PX-712 / 12x4x16x DVD+RW / 8x4x16x DVD-RW / 48x24x48x CD-RW /
• Ultra 512MB PC3200 DDR 400MHz Memory
• Trendware 56k (V.92) Internal PC
• Asus K8V Deluxe Socket 754 ATX Motherboard and AMD Athlon 64 2800+ Processor
• Chaintech GeForce FX 5200 / 256MB DDR / AGP 8X / VGA / DVI / TV Out / Video Card
• Hitachi / 120GB / 7200 / 2MB / ATA-100 / EIDE Hard Drive

Final Price 650 dollars with rebates (if it goes any cheaper the hardware will be really cheap)

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Snake Eater Owned!!! | Tried Pitch Black 7/10

The long awaited Metal Gear Solid 3 - Snake Eater is out at last. Earlier today I walked into the River Falls ShopKo, and was looking for this game and I could not find it at first. I thoually searched for Metal Gear Solid 3. I found Ratchet and Clank Up Your Arsenal, and Jak 3, but no MGS3. I almost bought R&C Up Your Arsenal until I realized that ShopKo had it. I swear to God that somebody placed it there when I left the isle. So I drove 4 miles to Toyriffic which just opened because it was 11AM. I like to go there and see what games I HAVEN’T THOUGHT OF BUYING. I saw a Magnavox Odyssey at this store. I have seen pictures via surfing gaming sites, but not a real one up close, this is my first time. It was in fair condition, and I have an idea why no body bought it. It’s really old, there probably isn’t any selection of games along with it, and the graphics are monochrome. Gamecube’s dropped down to $69.99 US, and as always the store has no PS2s available used. I hear the units keep breaking, and the DVD ROM drive is the first to fail. Mine has never failed on me.

The story is about the Cuban Missile Crisis! It starts when on October 08, 1962 a U2 Spy Plane unravels a MRBM missile silo in Cuba. A few days later there are US Spys in that location of Cuba and tell President Kennedy that is an advanced operation there. The US goes DEFCOM 1, and the President announces a speech to the world saying that any attack from Cuba is an attack of the Western Hemisphere, therefore, an attack from the Soviet Union. We immediately create a blockade surrounding Cuba. The U.N. tells the Premier Khrushchev too keep his ships out of Cuba, and supports the blockade of ships. On October 26, 1962, Soviet Ambassador Anatoly Dobrynin knocks some sense into the US Defense department, and turns to ABC to have a live interview saying that war is going to break out between us and them. He acknowledges that if the US won’t invade Cuba and declare Peace again, the Soviets will retreat. This must be where Metal Gear Solid 3 Snake Eater starts. Cuban Missile Crisis – Complicated. This makes no sense because the document said there was no commando force in Cuba during the “Cuban Missile Crisis” only undercover CIA agents. Why does this game’s storyline exist? The main character isn’t Solid Snake, but instead his fellow regiment commando, Big Boss. This is the 2nd most anticipated PS2 game of 2004. The first was San Andreas. The 3rd was Ratchet and Clank - Up Your Arsenal. Metal Gear Solid 3 is not as good as MGS 2 Sons of Liberty, but who cares - it's Metal Gear Solid, and that alone is enough too decide if it's worth it or not.

I guess I am cool now that I have the new Metal Gear Solid....because anything Metal Gear is cool. Did you know that Metal Gear was the name of the NES game published by Ultra Games in 1987? It starred Solid Snake.... Ultra Games came out with Metal Gear 2 in 1990. I have the ROM, and its game play is really out of date. Imagine a time when there was a D-pad and 2 buttons! That's not the point. The point is there was a Solid Snake 10 years prior to 1998 when Metal Gear Solid came out on PlayStation. It must be as old as Contra – because Contra is started on NES the same year I think. See, I only started playing games when I was 13, and that was 1997. I haven't played or owned a NES or SNES since I was invited over to David's house prior to 2003 when I bought a NES for myself. Still - I find nothing wrong playing the ROM version of Metal Gear.

New Games I am going to add to my VG list:

• MGS 3 Snake Eater
• Super Mario 64 DS
• Golden Sun

I tried out the new Mountain Dew called Mountain Dew Pitch Black. On a taste test I give it a 7/10 for good, but not as good as Mountain Dew Classic. It tastes like a grape jolly rancher! It tastes a bit mellower than Mountain Dew Classic. When you first taste it your taste buds get confused because it’s a new taste, but if you drank 2 or 3 cans, your mouth gets use to the new taste, and I am starting to like it (that’s the strange part). Pepsi get’s rich off me! I spend roughly 384 dollars on soda per year. It comes down to white ratios leading to one twelve pack, and one six 24 ounce bottle pack every week. I don’t like Mountain Dew Code Red, but I do like Mountain Dew Limewire a lot better. Surprisingly, Coca-Cola’s main competitor not Pepsi directly, but Pepsi owned Mountain Dew. My advise is too pick up a bottle of Pitch Black for a buck, and try it out before the Limited Edition is not at covenant stores any longer!!!

Here’s how I would rate it from best to least:

1. Mountain Dew Classic (Lime, Citrus) - 10/10
2. Coca-Cola Classic – 9.6/10
3. Mountain Dew Limewire (Orange Soda) - 9.0/10
4. A&W Rootbeer – 8.0/10
5. Mountain Dew Pitch Black (Grape Soda) – 7/10
6. Mountain Dew Code Red - 5/10

This is Ian Signing out!

Saturday, November 27, 2004

Bought Nintendo Dual Screen today

Bought Nintendo Dual Screen today
Date: 11/27/04 at 12:44PM

Firstly, I like to announce that I bought a silver Nintendo Dual Screen today with Super Mario 64 DS costing me a total of 195 dollars. The NDS package comes with a stylist (pen), AC adapter, thumb strap, handheld manual, free Metriod Prime Hunters demo, and a fully charged Nintendo DS out of the box. The NDS (official abbreviation) has a cool echo effect with its speakers. The size of the cartridge is roughly the size of the sticker of any Gameboy Advance game. As you can tell Super Mario 64 is no match for Super Mario 64 DS. You can fit 8 NDS flash cards to equal 1 N64 cartridge and the NDS shown that it holds as much if not more data as N64 games. I started up NDS and I started playing Yoshi. This came to no surprise since I read the reviews, and the writers all wrote that I start with Yoshi. I find it easier to use my thumb than the stylist. I drag my though across the screen as I would an analog stick – and it gives it the “analog stick effect”. I still can’t believe that Nintendo made NDS games this small and the maximum Nintendo is developing can carry 1 GB of data! Yes, developers can put FMV on the DS if they want too. The developers will use MPEG4 or something like that. A 3 minute FMV can be less than 40 MB! I made a dumb decision….. I ripped the box open. I was much more careful with my GBA boxes – but no, I had to rip the end open to get to the handheld! The box is not completely destroyed - just the edge of it is.

Super Mario 64 DS is confusing to me when I read many of the reviews. I knew that Super Mario 64 was going to be re-released but I thought it was on a bonus disc for Super Mario Sunshine not for Nintendo’s 64-bit handheld. The truth is it’s also the best launch title for the NDS just like it was for N64 percentage wise. I thought their 64-bit handheld would be another Gameboy Advance. Okay, it’s Mario, so therefore, it has to be above 9.0! IGN gave the game a 8.9 out of 10. That’s not a 9.0. They said that SM64DS could have better game play than it already has. The Nintendo 64 was designed for Super Mario 64. The SM64 development team and Nintendo 64 R&D3 team worked side by side. The result is one of the most famous Nintendo 64 games. Nintendo thought, “Maybe we can show SM64 on the DS since it is 64-bit.” It was truly an easy decision for Nintendo because the game was already made – the game just had to be ported and expansion. Super Mario 64 DS is really an expansion pack that allows wireless multi-player experience, and 30 more stars to add to the original 120 stars. Apparently if you find a Mario cap – Yoshi can change into Mario. If he finds a Luigi cap – he can change into Luigi and so on. Gaming sites are giving it above a 9.0, and as much as a 9.6 in some cases. We have never had a videogame that was a technical marvel 8 years before and still hold that in present day. SM64DS is definitely the first to do this.

DS cartridge is no bigger than a quarter!

Top games according to Gamerankings.com. I have 5 of the 10.

DS Features:

• One color – sliver
• Wireless chat (4 chat rooms)
• Backwards compatible with Gameboy Advance featuring slot in front
• Wireless LAN games
• 64-bit power
• Echoing sound effect
• 6 buttons including Start and Select
• Thumb strap – nice to keep the thumb prints off the screen with this thing.
• Don’t know if it can emulate Gameboy Color games or not – the handheld has a AMG 7 and a AMG 9.
• Very compact. Handheld – a well designed handheld.
• Keeps time and date with alarm!
• Comes with head phone jack
• Comes with that jack for GBA link cable? Maybe GBA games can now be ran wireless if all people have a Dual Screen.

Have you ever noticed?

8-bit Gameboy 1989 - 2000
32-bit Gameboy 2001 - 2004
64-bit DS 2004 - future
128-bit Gameboy 2008?

Now I am going to get into November 25th. I usually write big events the day they happen, but I was tired and went to bed at 11PM. Yesterday began when I woke up around 9AM and than went to my aunts for Thanksgiving dinner. I threw the gird iron football (just football in America) to Jim (who is Michael’s boyfriend) and we tossed the football back and forth before dinner. I can make good spirals believe it or not, but I keep dropping the ball once I catch it. Some of the throws Jim makes go over my head, I don’t go for those. I’m not usually the athletic type, but I drove for one football. Yes! It slips out my hands. I had the usual turkey and stuffing. The stuffing by the way was terrible. I didn’t say nothing – that would be mean if I have had done so. I have this Cousin Danny who I haven’t meet for a long time (since May), and I tried talking about computers with him, but he ignored me at the table. I ate more than said anything. I went down in the basement to hook up my Xbox which I brought over in hopes of multiplayer. I also brought a hub and straight-through cable in hopes that Brian brought his Xbox over. I’m the only computer person there. Everyone doesn’t find it fascinating. Ah…too bad. I fired up Guilty Gear X2 Reloaded on the old TV my Aunt and Uncle had. I love this game!!! I played this guy in red and won 12 duels in a role (there is two duels for each character unless the other character wins than there is three). It is one of those 2D fighters which there are no combos and you have to alternate and button mash your way through the levels. The opponent doesn’t hit you as much when you’re jumping and hitting X button three times and than the Y button. Y button does a forward slash. X button is a karate kick. A button does punches and B blocks. Brian was watching me who I wanted to play Halo 2, but he played upstairs.

I was actually the oldest gamer in the house. I was accompanied by three younger kids. I was playing slayer Halo 2 with them. I opened Halo 2 there with a nail. Halo 2 is awesome. I beat the little kids 4 – 1. Uli (Ulrike is his full name and it’s a common girl’s name in Germany….oops… it’s all good…who would know?), and Lars (nickname for Lawrence) don’t know how to throw plasma grenades. Hey, my name is popular in UK and Australia and my nickname is one letter, E. I asked Brian (who seemed to not pay any attention to the game) to play co-op with me. Co-op in Halo 2 is really fun. I died more times them him and this was on normal difficulty. We got to the part were the flood were attacking, and the aliens where using human weapons and vehicles for the first time. It’s a very interesting story. There is a Halo on Earth (which is a doomsday weapon), and first we’re sent to Australia oddly enough to do some fighting. I could tell because Master Chief flew down there from space after he disarmed a bomb just so he could arm it….rode it like a cowboy, and watch the mothership explode as he re-entered Earth’s atmosphere, and landed in Australia. I’m surprised he didn’t burn up in the process of re-entry. I know, I know it’s a videogame and there are few rules. The grunts called me names as I killed him. The covenant is having problems with the flood like we Marines are. Brian is having fun with his dual SCGs! He’s tearing up the place. I wonder if the humans are going to team up against the flood? The flood are those organisms that resurrect the dead after you kill them again and again. Halo 2 is heavily cut scene driven though which is cool – we watched all the cut-scenes. I must admit they have good graphics but the voice work needs a little work. Halo 2 has B movie rating in terms of acting. I’m not impressed with it at all. One problem with Halo 2 is the marines die too quickly, but not as nearly as quickly as the first game. The player gets reinforcements often in Halo 2. It makes me wonder exactly why there was a long line at Wal-mart the first day. Everyone wanted this game for some reason? Was it graphics or game play or both? Or is it because the Internet told them. Get this game – it’s awesome without telling them why. Since it is a better game than most videogames this year, and it’s coming to PC soon too that’s enough reason to buy the Xbox version so the PC version will be that much more exciting when Bungie announces it. Once you find the secrets in Halo 2, than you play it online for free via PC, and it’ll have better graphics than Halo 2 on the aging Xbox.

I brought Brian to my house so we could finish the game. I sold him Half-life 2, and he got me through the difficult part in the first level. I got shot by a helicopter gunner. He already saw me so I had no chance at escaping and died on the spot. Half-life is known for the famous red death screen. Brian was there so for long so we played Halo 2 once again. I offered him a Mountain Dew, but he rejected. We played for a good 3 hours when he left at 10:15. It was like when his brother came over a lot about a year ago. I’m seeing him this Christmas when he comes back from Japan. David isn’t much of a gamer. His brother, Brian however, is… It’s a lot of fun playing with someone who plays games on a regular bases like he does.

Last night I had a chance to play Halo 2 on the flat screen in the living room. It was really good. I was afraid of burn in, but I didn’t happen. I realized that I could play Playstation and N64 on it with no problems long time ago. My brain kept telling me, “Must play Halo 2 on high resolution display” I have an older TV model in my room which I play my games on. I think I will again tonight. My week off is almost over – I can not believe it! Only 3 more days including today! Then I have to take a CCNA Cisco test on Tuesday. I dread it. I need to pass it the first time which is going take some time aside from just normal reading IGN game reviews regularly or playing videogames No longer can I be read the fascinating message boards at PS3insider. Lots of information on it. I could look at it for a day and not read everything on it.

I just want to say how PCs are better. They are more useful than any other platform and not just games – everything. It is the only console where online play is free. That’s right – no paying 120 dollars a year for Xbox Live or Play Online! Plus, publishers always come out with good games for it. You won’t see as many PC games as PS2 games, but at the same time – everything will work on it dating back to 1994. That’s perfect! Although I’m starting to believe that discussing which platform is better is pointless. The PC can emulate consoles eventually. The PS2 emulator, PCSX2, seems to be showing great process. Soon we’ll have the PC act as a common platform for many old consoles.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

All Consoles

That's 14!


December - Nintendo 64 $200


September - Sega Dreamcast $200


November - Sega Saturn version 1 $40


March - Nintendo Gameboy Advance $100
September - Nintendo Gamecube $200
Ocober- Sega Dreamcast #2 $100


February - Sony Playstation $30


June - Microsoft Xbox $120
November - Sony Playstation 2 $120
December - Gameboy Advance SP $100


January - Nintendo Entertainment System $40
January - Super Nintendo $30
January - Sega Saturn v2 #2 $30
June - Sega Dreamcast #3 $30
September - Sega Genesis $30
November - Nintendo 64 Black w/o expansion pack $20
November - Nintendo DS - $150

Total: $1540
+ $35.71 sales tax (5.5%)

Monday, November 22, 2004

Oldschool games + controllers

NES (4 Game Cartridges, 6 playable games)

History of Ownership:

I bought the NES and SNES at the same time in January 2004. Since then I’ve collected 6 NES games and 12 SNES games. I wanted a NES so I could play the original authentic Super Mario Bros on an authentic NES. The game was free with the console along with the 2 controllers. I believe I bought both Super Mario 2 and 3 and Mega Man for 12 dollars each. I played the NES a lot for about a month, and than stopped playing it. I am a graphics enthusiast. I won’t put 100 dollars into a system that has been died for 12 years! I realize that some people do – but it’s my money and I rather spend it on current generation videogame consoles. I hardly have any money to spend on anything.

SNES is a slightly different story. I bought a SNES in January along with Super Mario World. When I got home, I remember Super Mario World did not work. I thought it was the console, but I found out that it was because the cartridge has never been cleaned with a swab and pure alcohol. When I cleaned the cartridge a lot of dark stuff came off of the cartridge feed! I clean all my cartridges now. All of them should play like new. The most expensive game I bought for SNES has to be Super Mario RPG for 50 dollars. When the game was new in 1996 -- I hear it was 70 dollars. That is way too much for a game. It is that much because it’s pretty rare used like it is. Not as rare as Mega Man X2 or Mega Man X3, but just as rare as Final Fantasy 2 and Final Fantasy 3. I am happy I had a chance of owning Super Mario RPG. It’s considered to be one of the best games and a 10 in the graphics department. SMRPG uses a decompression chip inside the cartridge called the SG-1 which decompresses data inside the cartridge amongst other things. It is said to be a cut-down version of the SNES main CPU which explains why it was more than average SNES games at the time. I knew exactly how it played because I collect Super NES ROMs and that game happened to be one I tested out with an emulator. I must have spent 200 dollars on SNES games. I don’t believe I’ll add any more. It’s a fine system, but I want games for other consoles too. Plus, wouldn’t you agree that 12 games is a healthy amount?

Sega Genesis I got 2 months ago for 40 dollars and I got Sonic 2 for free. Toyriffic had so many copies of Sonic and Sonic 2 that they just give them to new owners. It’s rarer for someone to buy a used old school console like Genesis at their store so they have a hard time selling them. Ironically, Game Stop had clear its inventory of Genesis games because they couldn’t make them sell. I bought a Genesis so I could play Contra Hard Corps on an authentic Genesis. It was fun but now it’s in a box. One thing that Toyriffic have done which didn’t cost me anything is they’ve cleaned the console feed and the console itself. When I got a Nintendo, Super Nintendo and Genesis – the console feeds were really clean from the start. Luckily, I got mine in good condition.

Total money spent on SNES : $250
Total money spent on SNES $70
Total money spent on Genesis $100

I almost thought twice about owning a Sega Genesis. The reason is I would have to buy games for it. I only spent 100 dollars total both on Genesis hardware and software. And if you’re thinking why don’t I spend money on a Sega Master’s System. My answer to you would be “No way Man!”

Nintendo Entertainment System

platform 3
shooting 1
action 1
sports 1
retro 6

1a.) Super Mario Bros.
1b.) Duck Hunt
1c.) Track and Field
2.) Super Mario Bros. 2
3.) Super Mario Bros. 3
4.) Mega Man 2

SNES (12 game cartridges /w 14 Playable games)

platform 8
shooters 3
racing 1
retro 15

1.) Super Mario World
2a.) Super Mario Bros. (Super Mario All Stars)
2b.) Super Mario Bros 2 (SMAS)
2c.) Super Mario Bros 3 (SMAS)
2d.) Super Mario Bros The Lost Worlds (SMAS exclusive)
3.) Super Mario Kart
4.) Legend of Zelda - Link to the Past
5.) Secret of Mana
6.) Donkey Kong Country
7.) Super Mario World 2 : Yoshi's Island
8.) Star Fox
9.) Super Metroid
10.) Donkey Kong Country 3
11.) Contra III - Alien Wars
12.) Super Mario RPG - Legend of the Seven Stars

Sega Genesis (2 cartridges)

platform 1
shooter 1

1.) Sonic the Hedgehog 2
2.) Contra Hard Corps

PSone/N64/Dreamcast Collections

Playstation (30 Game Cases, 38 playable Games total)

History of Ownership:


I believe the reason I waited until 2002 to get a Sony PSone is that I was a loyal Nintendo fan. I bought a Nintendo 64, Dreamcast and Gamecube, and GBA before the PSone. I wanted the RPGs! I wanted to own all the Final Fantasys out for it! When I got 3/4s of the Final Fantasy games, I bought some other RPGs like Chrono Cross and Vagrant Story. Then I collected Castlevania Symphony of the Night because I hear that game was very well designed.

I finished Legend of Dragoon, Chrono Cross and Final Fantasy 8 before I really didn’t play it any longer. Now there are so many RPGs out for PS2 including Final Fantasy X (the reason why I bought a PS2). You can see my history of owning PS2 in that post. PSone was actually I rush to get as many good games for it at 11 to 30 dollars each. The most I ever paid for a PSone game was Final Fantasy Chronicles which was 50 dollars in 2002.

RPG 21
shooter 7
racing 3
platform 2
fighters 2
retro 6

1.) Colony Wars
2.) Colony Wars : Vengence
3.) Crash Bandicoot 2
4.) Crash Bandicoot - Warped
5.) Mega Man X6
6.) Mega Man X4
7.) Mega Man Legends II
8.) Metal Slug X
9.) Dino Crisis
10.) Dino Crisis 2
11a.) Final Fantasy V (Final Fantasy Chronicles)
11b.) Final Fantasy VI (Final Fantasy Chronicles)
12a.) Final Fantasy (Final Fantasy Origins)
12b.) Final Fantasy II (Final Fantasy Origins)
13a.) Chrono Trigger (Final Fantasy Athology)
13b.) Final Fantasy IV (Final Fantasy Athology)
14.) Final Fantasy 7
15.) Final Fantasy 8
16.) Final Fantasy 9
17.) Star Ocean - The Second Story
18.) Vagrent Story
19.) Tekken 2
20a.) R4: Ridge Racer Type 4
20b.) Ridge Racer
21.) Tale of Destiny
22.) Chrono Cross
23.) Xenogears
24.) Grand Theft Auto 2
25.) Gran Turismo 2
26.) Castlevania Sythphony of the Night
27.) Legend of Dragoon
28.) Legend of Mana
29a.) Arc the Lad (Arc the Lad Collection)
29b.) Arc the Lad II (AtLC)
29c.) Arc the Lad III (AtLC)
29d.) Arc the Lad Tournament (ATLC)
30.) The King of Fighters '99 Evolution

Nintendo 64: First console of the videogame legacy

Nintendo 64 was what started my interest in 3D games or Nintendo games for that matter. When I got a N64 Super Mario 64 was still wanted. A year after it’s release – N64 games were 70 dollars! I bought Super Mario 64 for that amount. I also had Mario Kart 64 which soon to be the most played N64 game I had. Around the 6 or 7th game I got my first first person shooter and that game was Goldeneye. I must have had heard rumors in elementary school that Goldeneye was a great title to own. I heard right! It’s one of RAREWARE’s most famous games. My cousin and I played a lot of this game. Through out 1998 and 1999 I was a fan of the two Extreme G games. The fast paced action along with the techno in the game made the game cool. Remember, 64-bit graphics was really awesome in 1998. In 2000, my cousin and I played a Perfect Dark along with multiplayer Dreamcast games.

 photo n64collection.jpg Nintendo 64 (22 Games)

platform 5
shooter 7
racing 7
first person shooters 4

1.) Super Mario 64
2.) Mario Kart 64
3.) Donkey Kong 64
4.) Banjo and Kazooie
5.) Banjo and Tooie
6.) Conker's Bad Fur Day
7.) Wave Race 64
8.) Goldeneye 007
9.) Perfect Dark
10.) Duke Nukem 64
11.) Copper Attack
12.) Crusin USA
13.) Legend of Zelda Orcania of Time
14.) Legend of Zelda Majora's Mask
15.) Extreme G
16.) Extreme G 2
17.) Turok 2 - Seeds of Evil
18.) Star Wars - Shadows of the Empire
19.) Star Wars - Rogue Squadron
20.) Star Wars Episode 1 Racer
21.) Nascar '99
22.) Star Fox 64
23.) Castlevania 64


The first console capable of high resolution graphics. I remember that Dreamcast on 9.9.99 was the only console capable of high resolution 3D in my house. I made a website on Gamecube and Dreamcast called NDX Productions. NDX stands for Nintendo Dolphin Xtreme News Page. I was about 14 years old at the time. I was pretty amazed at the Sonic Adventure game which I downloaded in Quicktime. I played Sonic Adventure and completed all the character’s story. My second game was Air Force Delta – a flight simulator that was very good. My 3rd game for Dreamcast was Speed Devils. My cousin and I played this game a lot. I was very fun. Then sometime last year Speed Devils stopped working because it has a big scratch in it. GDs are strange because you can’t bring in the game and remove the scratch. Dreamcast was a big leap forward because for once I had CD quality sound in my TV. PS gamers have already gone through this stage, but it took me until 1999 to hear what digital game CD quality audio sounds like. I was just amazed in 1999 at the quality of music. Again I went from the midi sounding N64 to the CD quality audio Dreamcast. I will never hear something that amazing again. Sound will not improve – to the human ear – Dreamcast sounds exactly like an Gamecube or Xbox sound wise.

I got into RPGs with Grandia 2. I completed Grandia 2 in 2000. It was an amazing experience. I have played RPGs before on PC like Diablo 2, but this was much higher resolution than Diablo 2. Dreamcast had a web browser and I downloaded game saves off Planetweb.com. With Action Replays allowing you to download updates via broadband connection – there is no need for a web browser. Although I wouldn’t be surprised if the British game code cracker Dattel (makers of Action Replay) won’t add it into Action Replay Evo Edition 2.0. I also enjoyed Soul Caliber in 1999 and was my first 3D fighting game and certainly wasn’t my last. That was very highly detailed game. It wowed me in 1999. I stopped supporting Dreamcast early this year. My last game is Record of Lacross War. RoLW is a Diablo clone.

Today I don’t play Dreamcast as much – but now I have 3 Dreamcasts. It is fun to know I supported Sega in it’s final years. Sega still exists – but it’s not the same. We were all confused why Sega wouldn’t speak after E3 2001. Little did I know – they became a 3rd party developer. I mean I heard the rumors, but I was shocked at first when I had red Sega’s statement at IGN. I was hoping for a Dreamcast 2. I underestimated the big hit at Sega due to piratcy. Now Sega is now "Sega Sammy Corperation".

Sega Dreamcast (3x consoles) (40 Games)

Platform 5
driving 13
shooters 5
military jet simulations 2
athletic sports 1
puzzle 1
fighters 5

1.) Sonic Adventure (2x)
2.) Sonic Adventure 2
3.) Daytona USA (Dreamcast Verison of Daytona USA 2)
4.) NFL 2K
5.) Grandia 2
6.) Skies of Arcadia
7.) Resident Evil 2
8.) Resident Evil 3
9.) Resident Evil Code Veronica
x.) Dreamcast Web Browser 2.0
10.) Crazy Taxi
11.) Crazy Taxi 2
12.) Marvel Vs Capcom
13.) The Next Tetris Online
14.) Record of Lacross War
15.) Marvel Vs Capcom 2
16.) Ecco the Dolphin Defender of the Future
17.) Rush 2049
18.) Soul Caliber
19.) F1 World Grand PRix
x.) Dreamcast Demo Disk
20.) Rayman 2
21.) Typing of the Dead
22.) F355 Challenge
23.) Tony Hawk Pro Skater
24.) SEga Rally 2
25.) Test Drive V-Rally
26.) Test Drive Le Mans
27.) Dead or Alive 2
28.) Fatal Fury Mark of the Wolves
29.) Speed Devils
30.) Vanishing Point
31.) Phantasy Star Online Episode 1
32.) Street Fighter 3 Alpha
33.) Hydro Thunder
34.) Shenmue
35.) Tomb Raider The Last Revelation
36.) Legency of Kain Soul Reaver
37.) AeroWings 2
38.) Toyko Extreme Racer
39.) Air Force Delta

PC Collection/GBA collection


PC (66 games plus expansion packs)

RPG (without expansions) 14
first person shooters (without expansions) 24
Atheletic Sports 3
action (without expansions) 46

1.) Doom 3
2a.) Battlefield 1942
2b.) Battlefield 1942 - Road to Rome
2c.) Battlefield 1942 - Secret Weapons of World War II
3.) GTA Vice City
4.) Freelancer
5.) Sexy Beach II
6.) Yu-gi-sa card game
7.) No One Lives Forever 2
8.) Oni
9.) Giants - Citizen Kabuto
10.) Final Fantasy VII
11.) Star Trek - Elite Force II
12.) 007: Everything or Nothing
13a.) Neverwinter Nights
13b.) Neverwinter Nights Hordes of the Underdark
13c.) Neverwinter Nights Shadows of Idrenule
14.) Star Wars - Knights of the Old Republic
15.) Baldur's Gate
16.) Baldur's Gate 2
17.) Unreal 2
18.) Dungeon Siege
19a.) Diablo
19b.) Diablo Hellfire
20a.) Diablo 2
20b.) Diablo 2 - Lord of Destruction
21.) Warcraft 2 Battle Set Special Edition
22.) Warcraft 3: Reign of Chaos
23a.) Anarchy Online
23b.) Anarchy Online Notum Wars
23c.) Anarchy ONline Shadowlands
24a.) Final Fantasy XI
24b.) Final Fantasy XI Rise of Zilart
25a.) Elder Scrolls 3 Morrowind
25b.) Elder Scrolls 3 Morrowind Expansion - Tribunal
25c.) Elder Scrolls 3 Morrowind Expansion - Bloodmoon
26.) Halo Combat Evolved
27.) Call of Duty
28a.) Metal of Honor Allied Assault
28b.) Metal of Honor Allied Assault Spearhead
29.) Return to Castle Wolfenstine
30.) Unreal Tournament Game of the Year Edition
31a.) The Sims Delux
31b.) The Sims Unleased
32.) Iceland Dale
33.) Iceland Dale 2
34.) Vampire Masquerade
35.) Max Payne
36.) America's Army v1.5, 2.0a
37.) Unreal Gold Edition
38.) Black and White
39.) Oregon Trail 2
40.) Microsoft's Combat Sim
41.) Falcon 4.0
42.) Unreal Tournament 2003
43.) Unreal Tournament 2004
44.) Simcity 2000
45.) Simcity 3000
46.) Simcity 4
47.) Hexen
48.) Duke Nukem 3D
49.) Dungeon Keeper
50.) Dungeon Keeper 2
51.) Quake 3
52.) American Mcgee's Alice
53.) Undying
54.) Need for Speed
55.) Need for Speed III
56.) Need for Speed Porshe Unleashed
57.) Need for Speed Underground
58.) Madden 2001
59.) Tiger Woods PGA Golf Tour 2001
60.) Triple Play 2001
61.) Spellforce: Order of the Dawn
62.) Sid Myers Alpha Centauri
63.) Soldier of Fortune Platinum Edition
64.) Deus Ex
65.) Theif
66.) The Sims 2 DVD Special Edition
67.) Half-Life 2 DVD edition

Gameboy Advance (5 playable games)

action 1
racing 1
platform 1
retro 1

1.) Super Mario Advance
2.) Mario Kart Super Circuit
3.) Fire Emblem Advance
4.) Golden Sun 2: The Lost Age
5.) Castlevania - Circle of the Moon

Sunday, November 21, 2004

I.Q.B. ver. 2.0.8 update | More VG Pictures!

My latest compiled html of Ian's Quintessential Blog is online. In this version, I made a new logo featuring Link and that girl from Final Fantasy 12 which I also had in Renegade Viking's Webpage 7.0. I fixed some color links. In 2.0.9 I will make small pings and force the fonts to get bigger. I can make them small enough where each png linking to a hyperlink is only 0.5 KB. That should be small enough for fast loading.

Ian's Quintessential Blog 2.0.8

Full list of features History.txt

- new logo (featuring Dark Link and that hot chick from Final Fantasy 12)
- better quality information graphics
- changed text on right side to blue instead of green

Updated Videogame collection post to 1.16!

Click Here

To see some updated pictures of my personal collection copy and Paste these URLs into your browser's address bar! I have added all my PC boxes and Gameboy Advance games.


The past week I’ve been scanning Catharton boards for a good conversation. There are others like me who just want to talk about videogames and videogame systems. It’s great because they don’t exclude anyone. The Administrator talks to me a lot and I wonder if this is his primary hobby. I have 80 posts on there and he has 18,500 posts. There is a slight difference there. He’s very educated about videogame culture. I learned he lives in Britain. He told me I had a brilliant avatar. He really is determined to promote his message board to other gamers around the world.

Few Internet updates are as follows.

1. I did update my videogame post. The number has now reached 340 games.
2. I.Q.B has now reached version 2.0.8. I changed the logo again. Updated some links. I took snap shots of my PC and GBA videogames. Plus after I come back from the game store – take a picture of some PS2/Xbox games as well. It’s been a month already.
3. added a few more “Gaming Links” to this blog, the newest is Catharton

I’ve been playing Star Ocean 3: Till the End of Time on Friday night into Saturday morning. I think I’m into chapter 2. There are about 6 chapters in the game. It’s fun to cheat via Action Replay, but cheating takes the fun out of spending 1 minute on every battle. With the level enhancing cheat – I can whoop ass in 25 seconds. I repeatedly hit the X button and the circle button to attack. The bonuses I get from the game add to my character’s damage.

Metriod Prime 2 Echoesis out and I plan to get it. My point is from owners prospective – Metriod Prime 2 Echoes reached the same score as Legend of Zelda the Wind Waker. Games just can not buy friends. Friends do not show up at my doorstep. My friend went deer hunting today. Humph. No fun at-tal. The story is about continues exactly after the first one finished. Samus is put into a planet with two alternate dimensions. The world is caught into a struggle between good and evil. At this point – the evil side is winning. The alternate dimension is where you get obtain weapons that do damage to evil characters in the good dimension. It looks great – I am going to get it.

I read Metal Gear Solid 3 Snake Eater for the first time and realized that it beat Metroid Prime 2 by one stinking point! However, MGS3 uses the PS2’s hardware to the limit while Metroid Prime 2 only got 9/10 in the visual department. I am hoping that the 9.0 of Metroid Prime two years ago isn’t the same quality as Metroid Prime 2. The site did say that Metriod Prime 2 has better texturing than Metroid Prime which is a big deal because no game can match the prequel’s quality of textures. It sounds cool because it has multiplayer in it. Maybe if Nintendo asks real nice – Konami will port Metal Gear Solid 3 to Gamecube. They’ve got Konami to port MGS and MGS2 to Gamecube didn’t they? That would be beeping awesome if they had. I already know Konami is in the works of a PC version. MGS2 was strange because it came too all platforms including PC and MAC.

Though I am more a Samus fan than a Solid Snake fan so it’d be easy for me to spend my dollars on a Samus game. I swear – why do all the highly anticipated games come out within 1 week of each other? I don’t know – it beats the hell outta me. I only got done with half way through Half-life 2. I haven’t opened Halo 2 yet.

Here is how IGN.com scores the games from greatest to least:

GTA San Andreas – 9.9 out of 10 [status: bought]
Half-life 2 - 9.7 out of 10 [status: bought]
Halo 2 - 9.7 out of 10 [status: bought]
Metal Gear Solid 3 - 9.6 out of 10 [status: anticipation high]
Metroid Prime 2 - 9.5 out of 10 [status: anticipation high]

This is Ian signing out.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Rayging Blue & Idinaloq: Excellent freeware games

Today is the first full day of Thanksgiving Break. I went to WITC around 2PM so that I could get some extra credit. Anyways I wanted to download some interesting shooting games that I found about at Gamehippo.com. I have been interested in Radiant Silvergun and Radiant Slivergun 2: Ikaruga that I wanted more of it. I played a freeware game long time ago called Dieslave. It is very similar to Ikaruga. You can see Radiant Silvergun 2 under Gamecube at my game collection entry. It is a 2D shooter

I found some pretty cool Japanese freeware games that do this as well The most awesome is a hard to find zip file – I found it though. It took me 40 minutes.

First I like to mention Rayging Blue. It supports as good of graphics as Radiant Silvergun. There is no option to raise to resolution. It supports loads of intense action . It comes with more than 3 levels. A midi soundtrack that is above average and control is simple. You use the arrows to control the ship and the Z and X button to use the primary and secondary weapon you obtain by collecting power ups that you get by shooting enemies.

I think the graphics are very good for a freeware game of this type. Easily a 32-bit game. Not a 16-bit game. The techno in the game takes some getting use too.

Graphics 9 (as good as it gets with a freeware game these days)
Sound 8
Gameplay 9.5
Replay Value 7

One last thing....Rayging Blue II is confirmed to be released in January 2005 and this address will have it when it is. Find this game at http://www.nifty.com/download/win/game/shoot/

The second is Idinaloq. It's developer is much like Treasure and it's name is Namikaze Project. The game was released in 2000 as shareware, however, now the game is free. It comes with an optional MPEG intro video and ending video (credits) I could not get the game to work if the movie was placed in the Mov folder in the game folder. The game is low-res 3D. The game has more detail than other freeware titles that do the same thing. This game looks 32-bit too. played it – it plays good. It looks slightly better than Rayging Blue Download address:

I do not think this is shall be compared to a retail game. This game doesn’t have the level of quality of graphics or the game play. The sound is a little tricky. It averages about the same as a typical SNES RPG.

Graphics 8.5
Sound 8
Gameplay 9.5
Replay Value 7

Find this game at http://www.gamehippo.com/download1/download1_707.shtml

I also have even stranger Japanese games. One is called Embodiment of Scarlet Devil. The other is Perfect Cherry Blossom. Both are so damn weird, that I won’t play them. Both games are translated into English from Japanese. Game play is at the level of Rayging Blue in terms of fun. It is made by Shanghai Alice, a shareware independent developer. If you're absolutely obsessed with shooting games – download these two.

To download these games:
1.) Go to Google.com
2.) Type in Shanghai Alice
3.) hit the top link but translate it with the translate option.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

NASA breaks the world speed record - again

NASA builds an aircraft that brakes world speed record. One aircraft that is famous for being 10 years ahead of it’s time is the SR-71 Blackbird which broke the last speed record of 3 MACH. The X43 is an unmanned rocket plane. Once the jet fuel was depleted, the aircraft crashed in the Pacific Ocean like it was suppose to. The future of this would be one that could land and be reusable. The SR-71 was great because it could be used as a reconnaissance plane. It is the successor of the U2 space craft which flown in the 60s for reconnaissance pictures over Russia in the cold war. It could fly so high that Russian SAMS could not shoot it down, but effectually the SAMS did. It must have scared the heck out of the Soviets. The U2 spy plane is still in service for NASA. It is the 2nd longest airplane in service except for the B52 Bomber. The SR-71 Blackhawk was in service for a long time too. Anyways, that super sonic aircraft that broke the world speed record was the X-43 (rocket plane) at Mach 7. NASA is also building the X-43A which is supposed to go MACH 10.

More information

Above Top Secret

Here are some other strange American Aircraft and a paragraph about each

U2 Spy Plane

Famous for taking pictures of military zones in Russia. It had the ability to fly high and around the world. It’s interesting that it’s the 2nd longest commissioned plane in the world. Most facts about the plane is top secret. It does have the longest wings I’ve ever seen. It first went into service in 1951 (at the beginning of the cold war) when presently I survives to still be commissioned to this day. Upgraded of course with latest safety features and ejection seat. . It top seed is 478 miles per hour or MACH 0.58. Maximum altitude is 70,000 feet. That is the main purpose of the aircraft. Great for use in hurricane surveys. It can fly well above the hurricane to take pictures of wind speed which way it’s going. I wouldn’t doubt the United States Weather Service used this plane for this purpose. The wing span is very long 105 feet. You must have long wings to keep the plane from stalling at high altitude.

The U2 Spy Plane has one the highest mission completion rates in the U.S. Air Force despite the fact that the aircraft is the most difficult to fly due to its unusually challenging takeoff and landing characteristics. Due to its high-altitude mission, the pilot must wear a full pressure suit.

U2 II – SR71 Blackbird

Used in the 70s and 80s for the same exact purposes as U2. One interesting thing about this aircraft is it broke the world speed record in the 1980s. It could also go Mach 3 and used early stealth. The blackbird wasn’t used for any military purposes except in Operation Desert Storm in 1993. The US Government only unclassified that Stealth bombers were used in Operation Desert Storm, however, didn’t say if there was a reconnaissance plane involved or not. To some people – it remains the greatest aircraft ever made. The plane was very expensive (mostly because it had older technology that newer technology could do at a fraction of the cost.)

U2 III – Project: Aurora

A government project that is supposed to be in service presently in place of the SR71 Blackbird. There is no information that it does exist. Rumors are that it can go Mach 3 – Mach 7 or twice as fast as the Blackbird. Rest is classified. There was an article in Space and Technology Magazine which discussed Aurora in depth, but no one believed it apparently.

he name "Aurora" came about from a 1986 Pentagon Budget document and was slotted to receive a large sum of money. The project is suspected to contain two aircraft: a large SST that is the first stage of a two-stage aircraft/satellite launcher possibly developed following the Challenger explosion in 1986, and a smaller triangular HST that has been even more reported and speculated about. It is said to be the most remarkable flying machine ever built and is seen as the epitome of a century of aerospace development! I originally did this project for FS5 when I noticed an article in Popular Science in 1993 and later on bought the XR-7 Thunderdart plastic model kit (based on Aurora) by Testers Corp. Testers also made the SR-75 Penetrator model kit which is what my version is somewhat based upon. Since the true designations and confirmed existence are unknown, I used the same numbers as the kits since they make some sense, however those silly names will NOT be used. Since this is the largest project I have ever done, and all previous sims couldn't allow for the planes to be done properly it has taken several years of spare time to get to this point, therefore I have broken it down into several parts. The two main sections will deal with each aircraft: