You know how you realise one day that you’re not part of the ‘young generation’ anymore? If you don’t know this, you’re either still in your 20s, or you’re kidding yourself; akin to 45 year olds thinking they can still legitimately be part of the clubbing scene. Well, it manifests itself in a number of ways, some positive - you’re in theory more financially & emotionally stable, and you generally give a lot less of a toss what people think anymore - and some negative - suddenly you can no longer treat your body like dirt and expect it to gleefully rebound.
RockBandContent.com is being shut down because the maintainer hasn’t got time to do it anymore, which is a shame because it’s a really nice site for browsing the increasingly crushing number of Rock Band tracks available and finding videos of people playing the charts before you buy. However, I found over time that the best videos came from corporalgregg2, who always posts full-band videos which saves a lot of time over the individual instrument videos, as well as being very good so you can actually hear the song with everyone playing on Expert 😀So I’m just subscribed to him from now on for reviewing the new songs as they come out.
Finally. After months of speculation and general acknowledgement by all except Sony that the PS3 is too expensive for the market, and that no amount of brand loyalty, Blu-ray cross-marketing or theoretical performance advantages were going to outbalance that inconvenient fact, the inevitable has happened and the PS3 is now £50 cheaper in the UK. That’s actually pretty good; we usually get stiffed on prices in Europe so despite not quite being on par - a $100 cut in the US should mean about a £60 cut at current exchange rates, but they do have to hedge their bets there - it’s a healthy amount and I’m sure will help sales.
Dead Space teaches you many things. Firstly, that large abandoned space ships are not the place to be if you have frayed nerves. They creak and make random clanks. Lights don’t work properly. Automated systems kick in and scare the bejesus out of you. When things are quiet, think Alien. I’ve heard that it gets less creepy and more combative later on, but I’m 4 hours in and it’s still very much in suspense mode, barring one ‘boss fight’ with a ‘Brute’.
It was my birthday last week (and my wife’s), and while I’ve been far too busy to have any time off (cue world’s smallest violin), I have managed to find a little time to play a few new games. I’m still deeply mired in Fallout 3 too, having invested 60 hours in it over the last 4 months with still loads to do - see, this is why I can’t handle more than one ‘big’ game a year anymore - and Gears and Rock Band are still regular staples, but there’s always room for variety.
When Harmonix responded to GHWT’s user-created content feature by saying they wanted to hold off until they could do it properly, they definitely weren’t kidding. Today they announced the Rock Band Network, which will be online later this year (on 360 only for the moment, because it seems they’re piggy-backing on the XNA Creator’s Club to handle the submission and billing). Rather than provide an in-game sequencer using samples like GHWT does, with RBN bands use their original master tracks, recorded using their usual software but presumably still split into the appropriate tracks, and gives them a set of tools (for PC I assume) to add the MIDI notes which will be translated into the instrument charts.
Ahem. Yeah, that means my 360 came back today, fixed and happy. MS tech support have put a smiley-faced band-aid over its owwies, and now it’s all better. I took a long coffee break to hook it up and test that it works, and whether my DLC still works or needs re-downloading (answer, it does, and it doesn’t, respectively). Muchos gracias, señor Microsoft. Total turnaround time: 33 days, although it would have been 10 days less had it not been for the first support request disappearing down a virtual plughole while I was away for a week (and 2 bank holidays didn’t help).
I’m glad that E3 is back - it adds a little excitement and pizzazz to the gaming calendar, and luckily this year it seemed to be pitched at about the right level - not the crazy-bonkers E3 of old, but big enough to be interesting. Whilst I think there’s a lot of other interesting stuff going, inevitably the ‘big 3’ console manufacturers are the shows that people pay most attention to, at least initially.
Oh hell yes. My favourite co-op zombie apocalypse sim is getting a sequel! " Video Games | Left 4 Dead 2 | E3 09: Debut Teaser <div style="padding-top: 3px;"> <a style="color:#FFFFFF;" title="XBox 360" href="http://www.gametrailers.com/platformlist/xb360/index.html">XBox 360</a> | <a style="color:#FFFFFF;" title="PS3" href="http://www.gametrailers.com/platformlist/ps3/index.html">Playstation 3</a> | <a style="color:#FFFFFF;" title="Wii" href="http://www.gametrailers.com/platformlist/wii/index.html">Nintendo Wii</a> </div> <div style="padding-top: 3px;"> I'll </div> <p> I'll miss playing Francis though, with his vans/hospitals/small towns hates. </p> <p> Inevitably some people are whining that Valve should have done some new campaigns as DLC for the original instead, but given the choice between new DLC levels, and a sequel with new levels plus new special infected, new features (dynamic weather & level structure, comedy melee weapons) and other refinements, I'll take the sequel any day of the week.