April 4, 2014
December 15, 2013
Marvel's Iron Man & Hulk: Heroes United is an animated movie featuring a team up between Tony Stark and Hulk (who never assumes non-Hulk Bruce Banner form in the movie). It's not exactly a buddy movie. Despite the "Heroes United" tag line - these guys don't really get along. In fact, one of the best parts of the movie is a fight between the two Avengers.
Their real opponent, though, is a living energy force known as Zzzax. Zzzax is the product of a Hydra experiment involving a combination of an Arc Reactor and Gamma radiation. (Which, you may note are the sources of Iron Man's and Hulk's powers respectively.) In fact, Hulk is attacked and kidnapped by Abomination who brought him to Hydra for the experiment.
It isn't exactly clear (at least to me) what Hydra was trying to do, exactly, because they were shocked by the results and ran off.
Zzzax's only desire and motivation is the consumption of energy. He says that humans are wasting it, (a tiny bit of policizing there), and he needs to have it all. (Which, sounds like a waste to me.) So in order to stop a global black out, the two bickering powerhouses team up to battle this being of pure electricity.
The movie is pretty good. Some of the jokes are cringe worthy, the art style takes a bit of getting used to, and it seems to me they drug out some of the scenes to get to the "Feature Length Presentation" 72-minute status. But it's a fun ride overall.
It is available on Blu-Ray, DVD, and digital download and various combo packs wherever comic-book movies are sold.
Posted by Chad W Smith at 3:14 PM
November 19, 2013
A man took a Raspberry Pi mini PC, a barcode scanner, a speaker, some LEDs, and suck them all in a Microwave. No, not in the cooking part! The end result is outstanding.
Raspberry Pi Microwave - Made by Nathan:
Posted by Chad W Smith at 10:09 PM
July 15, 2013
* They actually released several home video game systems before the FamiCom - but they did not have interchangable games, and so they weren't really what we think of as a video game console - they were more like a plug-n-play video game system with built-in games. They had also released several hand held LED games before this time, the "Game and Watch" series.
The FamiCom came out at a time that many thought the "Video Game Fad" was over. Atari - who was then the leader of the home console market didn't think anyone wanted an 8-bit system. Who would need that kind of power for a video game machine? But Nintendo saw the future - and knew the 8-bit system was just the beginning.
The FamiCom/NES console revitalized the video game industry, perhaps even saving it altogether. And in honor of this anniversary, I would like to list my top 30 FamiCom/NES games of all time.
[I stress - this is just my opinion - based on my personal library, and my personal play experience through the last 30 or so years - full disclosure, I did not get an NES to at least 1985, so not even 30 years.]Without any further ado... I bring you my Top 30 FamiCom/NES Games of the last 30 years:
- Duck Hunt
- Mario Bros.
- Dr. Mario
- Mega Man
- Dig Dug
- RC Pro Am
- Mega Man 4
- Marble Madness
- Skate or Die
- Dragon Warrior III
- Blaster Master
- Spy Hunter
- Snake Rattle 'n' Roll
- Maniac Mansion
- Dragon Warrior IV
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game
- Super Mario Bros. 2
- Final Fantasy
- Mega Man 6
- Dragon Warrior
- Mega Man 2
- Super Mario Bros.
- Mega Man 3
- Super Mario Bros. 3
Just don't think about dissing Burgertime, or I will end you. 8^)
Posted by Chad W Smith at 10:28 PM
June 19, 2013
After getting smacked in the face by millions of very loud voices of reason in the form of pissed off gamers, (including one Chad W. Smith), Microsoft has gained a small amount of sanity and changed the Xbox One draconian policies to something much less evil.
The main points of their press release were "An internet connection will not be required to play offline Xbox One games" and "Trade-in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc based games just like you do today". They also threw in the fact that "there will be no regional restrictions" on Xbox One games.
You will have to connect to the internet when you get an Xbox One - but only once. "After a one-time system set-up with a new Xbox One, you can play any disc based game without ever connecting online again." Still sucks for anyone who doesn't have the internet, but they probably don't know about the Xbox One yet anyway. In areas where this is a common problem, hopefully some resourceful retailers will offer the use of their internet connection for this initial set up.
Microsoft noted that "these changes will impact some of the scenarios we previously announced for Xbox One," but did not elaborate. I assume that they are referring to the sharing games via the cloud with up to 10 family members and/or friends that have been on your friends list for 30 days or whatever craziness they were planning.* [Edit - more info has been revealed.]
Microsoft's Xbox One chief product officer Marc Whitten has confirmed and clarified "that does mean that features like Family Sharing won’t be there." and moving between Xbox Ones (like logging into Live at a friend's house) will no longer give you access to all of your games - just the ones you bought online. You'll have to bring your discs to play those games. You will also still have to install every game to the hard drive, and Kinect is still required. And to play disc-based games, you will have to have that disc in the drive (even though it will be playing from the hard drive).
Ultimately, I didn't see that plan working anyway. Imagine getting 10 "family members" together and each buying one different game every other month. With the "Family Sharing" plan Microsoft was planning, you could easily rack up dozens of games for $6 each.* It would have killed their game sales. And, trust me, there would have been websites helping you connect with your long-lost "Family Members".
In the end - this move (which is only back to sanity, mind you - it is not some brilliant new thing they are doing - it is the way console games have worked since the stinking Magnavox Odyssey, (which Wikipedia tells me was the first home video game console) will save the company from being last in the next gen console wars. It may still not beat the PS4, but it at least now stands a chance of not coming in 4th behind the Ouya. Just a chance, though. Still has the all-watching, all-hearing Kinect creep-factor camera and the $100 higher price tag.
* (Ten members each buying one game for $60 and sharing it with the rest of the group. So "Family Member A" buys Halo 5, "Family Member B" buys Forza, "Family Member C" buys Watch Dogs, etc.. Each only spending $60 - but because they are all sharing with each other, everyone would have access - from the comfort of their own homes - to all 10 games. Then the next time they all go out, they get another 10 games while only having spent $60 for their one shared game.)
Posted by Chad W Smith at 6:43 PM
June 15, 2013
April 9, 2013
CAUTION! ATTENTION! PLEASE NOTE!
ABADON ALL HOPE OF REMAINING SPOILER FREE YE WHO ENTER!
HERE BE DRAGONS - AND THEY SHOUT SPOILERS - HERE!
THIS IS YOUR LAST CHANCE - TURN BACK NOW - THERE ARE GOING TO BE SPOILERS!
Focus on other characters. In previous titles, we've been given the chance to play as other characters, specifically the "heavy hitters" - Big Daddy and Big Sister. Well, what if we were able to take the role of Songbird and just tore the city to shreds? Or a Handyman? Or maybe take the role of a "normal" person - like master hunter Preston E. Downs, or Captain Cornelius Slate, or the infamous Daisy Fitzroy herself?
Then there is the obvious - be another Booker. Maybe you are the Booker who became the Martyr of the Vox. Or maybe your a Booker who is closer to Comstock - so you take the side of the Founders. Or maybe they actually let you explore that option a little at least. The pre-game game Industrial Revolution left the impression that you would actually get to change choice. It could be like a Fallout New Vegas where you get to back one faction, or the other, or try to take them both out and set yourself up as the new Prophet, or at least the new leader of Columbia.
I'd also like the chance to further explore a pre-uprising Columbia. Like before the False Prophet was revealed even. No shooting, no explosions - just a nice turn-of-the-previous-century city in the sky, with a lot of racism and religious zealotry. The fact is, the team at Irrational put a lot of thought and effort into setting all that backstory up, and I'd like to explore it. I'm not saying I want to be Comstock or anything, I think that would be too easy - who really stands to oppose him? But some scenario where I can explore different time periods. Even getting out into the city of the Future Lamb of Columbia, with the Boys of Silence and the Masked Founders.... More of a stealth mission type thing.
What I hope they don't do is let you play as Elizabeth. I think it would be boring to run around invincible to gun fire, and scrounge for items to throw to an AI Booker, and open tears at his command.
What do you hope to see in the BioShock Infinite DLC? Share your comments below.
Posted by Chad W Smith at 11:55 AM