Monday, April 30, 2007

Crackdown DLC

Charlie SmellsTeam Xbox has a screenshot of some of the new downloadable content for Crackdown. Looks like a new car. Is this a new game type? Is it more than a new vehicle? Will this content be coming out too soon?

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Sunday, April 29, 2007

What's ZooZen Do?

They make a slick looking Xbox 360 called the Ovo 360. The site does say:
Please Note: Final production of the Ovo 360 may not go ahead. There is still much in terms of development to be done.

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What's COD Without WWII?

The answer is Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare. Check out the new video trailer to see for yourself that what Andy wants Andy gets. Was the Splinter Cell nightvision sound always a part of the Call of Duty franchise?

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Thursday, April 26, 2007

Rock the vote!

Normally I wouldn't want to try to sway someones political viewpoint one way or the other, as it can be a very personal thing for some people. I strongly believe that each person should consider all the issues, read the history of each candidate and watch their performance in the public forums provided to make an informed decision they can feel good about, even if they vote for some pussy liberal democrat. But today I implore you as US citizens to do your civic duty and rally together for one man... no dare I say American Hero: Mike Haggar! If that name is not familiar to you then quit reading this blog and go do whatever it is that posers do. He was the mayor of Metro City, the real life town used in the video game documentary Final Fight. Check out Capcoms' page to get some deets, and then check out Destructoids reasons to vote for this legend of a character. If you don't, please send me your home address so I can punch you in the junk/puss as needed, until you change your feeble little minds. Transmission out....

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Commodore Gaming Webshop Open

Want to buy a Commodore? Now you can. The Commodore Gaming site is open with a selection of PCs to play games on. Get yours with some cool c-skin raindrops or strawberries.

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Halo 3 Zanzibar Video Leak has a 7 minute video of the Halo 3 beta build. The level is a Zanzibar remake that looks great. You can see the bubble shield in action which looks different than the huge ring we've seen in the docuvid from Bungie. Here's the link

Lets just hope that music isn't in the final build.

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Monday, April 23, 2007

MSNBC Calls Jack Thompson Out

For once, mainstream media is actually defending video games! MSNBC has a well-written piece about how people like Jack Thompson jumped the gun and put the blame for the Virginia Tech shootings on video games.

The article even talks about how Thompson blames every school shooting (and some non-school shootings) on video games but the University of Texas shootings took place in 1966.

Even more crazily, MSNBC points out that games like Counter-Strike promote communication and team work.

From my personal opinion, a game like Counter-Strike would not train someone how to massacre innocents. It's been a while since I played it, but it's more like buying gear, planting bombs, defusing bombs, etc. (Or in my case, running around and getting shot in the head.)

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Mass Effect Delay

In Podcast 6, I mentioned that Mass Effect's release was pushed back a week. Now it's being pushed back even further... to September! This will put the space RPG in competition with Microsoft's other big upcoming RPG release Blue Dragon. But more importantly, this means that I won't be able to waste a great many hours playing it this summer. So sad...

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

XYBA Podcast Ep06

With Andy and Josh spitting fire on the mics, the XYBA Podcast episode 6 is off the hook with video game news and our on par gaming opinions. This is mainly a Xbox 360 podcast with 2 Andys and sweet chickens.

  • 0:00 Slammin Intro Music by Grant
  • 0:44 Games We Are Playing - Guitar Hero 2, LOTR, Halo 2, New Super Mario Bros, Splinter Cell 4, and a handful of demos from XBL (Josh doesn't really understand what Andy's talking about with the Command and Conquer videos)
  • 5:29 Video Game News - RvB, Xbox 360 axis controller, Xbox not making money, Halo 2 Vista achievements, Halo 3 beta dates, Guitar Hero 3, Virginia Tech shootings and more
  • 26:25 Xbox 360 made of paper
  • 27:40 Master Chief vs Samus
  • 29:25 Roundtable Discussion about downloadable content and how it's changing games and the longevity of a game
  • 39:56 Games and gaming devices we are looking forward to
  • 48:09 Ranting zone with Josh making the Ranting Zone music - Andy acts the fool about exclusive games and franchises
  • 58:45 Two Andys in the studio
  • 58:58 Shout outs and talks about houses and hoods

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Netflix Watch Now

In the last week or so, Netflix's Watch Now feature I mentioned in Podcast 5 went live. While not really "gaming news," I thought I'd expand on it a little bit. It can only be watched through Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher and you must have at least Windows XP Service Pack 2 installed.

The movies are not the newest releases, but they're not super out of date either. There are movies and TV shows available. The video controls are a little too simplistic in my opinion. There's only volume controls, play and pause. You can jump ahead and back by dragging on the progress bar, but you can't jump too far ahead because all the videos are streaming. You can also make the videos full screen.

Overall, though, I give it a thumbs up. This feature should definitely help Netflix keep the lead in the mailed movie rental business.

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Saturday, April 21, 2007

Halo 2 Ranks Reset

Some old news that I didn't catch, but apparently Bungie will be reseting everyone's ranks in Halo 2 next week. This will come in the form of an update for the new maps. I imagine this will cause a lot of unfun games for a while as the people ranked 50 smash everyone else as they climb back to the top. This week an update was added for new game plays, but it also cleared the networking history, which told Bungie who had a great connection and who didn't. This helps them with choosing the host of matches. With it reset it has been causing a lot of connection problems this week along with a lot of laggy games. Good times.

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Elite Trade-In Prices

Michael Fahey at Kotaku is getting calls today that there will be a trade-in program at most stores. Looks like the Premium 360 will be worth $250 and the Xbox original is $50. Now you just have to come up with $350 once you sell your premium and the Elite is all yours buddy boy. Does anyone know if the trade-in includes giving back the wireless controller that came with it as well as the headsets? Still not worth it.

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New Halo 2 Maps Out Today

Two new Halo 2 maps come out today. For $4 you can play Tombstone and Desolation, which are remakes of Halo:CE maps. Of course the Bungie forums are seeing a lot of post that people can't download the Blasttacular map packs and IGN is reporting that the map packs are only for the 360 only. But user Halo is Ok reported that he was able to download it to his old xbox. Good to know.

I'll download the packs tonight and see how they play. I'm hoping the old clan will do the same and we can play tonight. Yes? No? Eric? Also this is our 100th post. Boo yaka.

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Monday, April 16, 2007

Become XBLA Famous

Any would be video nuts out there get ready, it seems the big MS has figured out they can coax their loyal fan-base into producing profitable video content on the cheap. According to a post I caught on XBoxfanboy, there will be a competition to have folks submit some original shows for a chance at XBLA syndication. If anyone on this blog knows how to work a camera, I just want to say I work cheap, although I haven't got my SAG card yet. P.S. I know who you are Cy-Kill, GoBots FTW!!

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Saturday, April 14, 2007

Transformer Screens for DS

Gobot in DisguiseIGN has some screen shots and news about the upcoming Transformers video game for the DS. Vicarious Visions will be sending out 2 skus for the Transformer game, a Autobots version and a Decepticons version. Each version will go down it's own story path and will include unique levels and different characters. The games will include online play with up to 4 players battling it out in the "AllSpark War". Not sure what that means.

My impressions so far:
  • Graphics look horrible
  • Looks like a mech game
  • Control UI looks like Metroid, hopefully it plays like Metroid
  • The characters look like the new Transformers from the movie
  • I likes the idea of 2 different games
  • Eric works out at the gym now?

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Wii is Take-Two's Top Priority

Take-Two's new management laid out a 5 point plan that they intend to complete in 100 days. Chairman Strauss Zelnick also mentioned that "working with Nintendo is a priority," and that Take-Two is committed to creating "great games for Nintendo."

What does that mean Wii owners will see from Take-Two? Well Manhunt 2 is coming out on the Wii, but will GTAIV or BioShock show up in their line up? Doubtful. It would be cool if they released GTA III, Vice City, and San Andreas. Maybe mash it up like Resident Evil is doing with Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles.

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Bungie Announces Halo 3 Beta Date

You read that right, Eric. Bungie has announced that May 16th is the day to start testing the Halo 3 beta. It will include 3 maps, Valhalla, High Ground and Snowbound in matchmaking only. Other features include:
  • Enhanced Online Functionality
  • New Class of Weapons, Grenades, and Vehicles
  • It Will Include the X-Button Functionality
  • A Lot of Secret Features
There is also a new docuvideo that apparently shows what the x-button does. I'll post an edit to this once I see it. Enjoy.

Edit: I watched the video and it appears that the X-button will either activate the bubble shield, which by the way looks too big for the MC to be carrying, or a new exploding device called the trip mind. Basically you drop a bomb on the ground that if someone walks or drives on it goes boom. They demonstrated it as a way to prevent people from running players over. No Elite skins were used at all in the video.

Oh, by the way, Charlie's birthday is like May 15th or 16th, so keep that in mind when you're thinking of the Halo 3 beta date.

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Monday, April 9, 2007

So Annex Will Go Live Today is showing that the Gears of War Annex update will go live today at 4pm PST. Make up your mind Microsoft. More Gears of War news: 4 new maps will come out that will be pay to play at first, but if you hold out for a couple of months they'll become free to the masses. Boo yaka.

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Get Your Hands Around This Thing

This isn't Photoshopped. This is for real. With the new Xbox Live updates coming in early May, the Xbox team has created an Xbox 360 controller with a keyboard built in. Why? The May dashboard update includes the ability to use Windows Live Messenger. So now while your playing games you can IM your friends who are surfing the web and they can IM you as well.

You could get a USB keyboard to do this as well, but who doesn't like typing with their thumbs. Users with Blackberry experience will have the upper hand on these things. I think I will get one so when Halo 3 comes out and Eric comes over to play I can hear him bitch about how stupid the Xbox controllers are. This time I'll agree with him.

Other features coming to the update:
  • Achievement Descriptions - So no more going to the other screen to view the achievement you just got
  • Marketplace Has its Own Blade
  • Arcade Update - Allows easier viewing and joining of the XLA games your friends are playing
  • Auto Shutdown for Auto Downloads - Great for people who worry about the 360 being on all night
  • Faster Access to Free Downloads

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Sunday, April 8, 2007

XYBA Podcast Ep 05

After a month of working out schedules we have XYBA Podcast Ep 05 with our guest Santana. I've attached his Xbox Gamertag below. We are a little rusty and are not as organized as usual, but it's still a good podcast. We also introduce the new XYBA Podcast theme song written by Grant.

0:00 - Slammin Intro Music
0:10 - Introductions
0:38 - Games We're Currently Playing (Santana thought I said, games we're looking forward to)
1:51 - Turtle Talk
5:18 - Andy Confesses to Listening to Another Podcast
6:15 - Gaming News
17:03 - Children of Men News and We Go Offtopic for a While
24:15 - Roundtable About the 360 Elite
36:10 - Xbox Live Vision Camera (cock and balls)
41:51 - Rock Band and Guitar Hero
50:31 - Games We're Looking Forward To
52:29 - We Go Into Some Wii News
1:01:50 - Shoutouts and Thanks to Santana
1:02:05 - Outro Music While We Talk

It's worth noting that Viva Pinata is on Santana's Profile as of 04.08.07.

powered by ODEO
Download XYBA Podcast Ep05

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SonyStyle Removes PS3 20GB

Those rumors about Sony getting rid of the 2 skus may be true. Sony's online store, is no longer listing the 20GB sku. It's no longer future proof. Lets hope Microsoft follows suit and dumps the Core system.

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Saturday, April 7, 2007

Guitar Hero II Designer Gives Away Cheat

Some fans of Guitar Hero II were pissed off when they bought their new $90 game, popped it in and found out that they actually had to work to unlock songs! (Challenges? In a game? How dare they!)

Anyway, there's been an uproar on the internet because some people feel that all the songs should be available from the start since they paid for the game. (Does this mean other games in the future will have an auto-win option as well?)

Well, designer Chris Canfield has heard their cries. Here are the codes to unlock all songs on the game, if you don't feel like earning them: (There's a US version and a PAL version)


Now you can rock out to whatever song it is crybabies rock out to.

(And as a note of what we talked about in the podcast, on the link I have already posted, you can buy an extra guitar controller, priced at $60, from RedOctane. Or you can start out with the multiplayer bundle(2 guitars) for $150. The price on PS2 is $40 for an extra guitar, $80 for original game with 1 guitar. )

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Play LOTR MMO now

The Lord of the Rings Online: Shadows of Angmar will be released April 24th. However, the beta is now open to everyone.

Simply go here and click on "Join the World Tour!" It is almost a 4 GB download, not to mention the time to install and then update it after installing it so it will take you a little bit to get, but I downloaded it today and it's pretty fun.

I'm playing a Dwarf Champion, almost level 5 now. The open beta is mostly a server stress test since all major bugs have mostly been worked out. Also, it's a bit of marketing because if you like the game and pre-order it before it is released, you can keep your beta character in the official game.

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Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Annex Details Released

Details of the Annex update have been posted. The bug fix plus Annex update is this Monday, April 9th. It's a King of the Hill style game play. New features we will see on Gears:
  • Respawn - Now you can come back from the dead every 15 seconds
  • Private Slots - Now slots can be reserved for friends
Hopefully a lot of the glitches are fixed and new ones aren't introduced. See you in the Gears on Monday Eric.

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Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Guitar Hero II for 360 deal

Some people (Josh) have complained about the Xbox 360's Guitar Hero II price of $90. The price has been advertised for a while, but it is 150% the price of a normal 360 game.

I did find a deal to make the price more palpable, though. Over at Circuit City, they have a Guitar Hero II bundle. It still costs $90, but it comes with 1600 Microsoft Points, which is a $20 value. You can order it online and pick it up at most stores to avoid shipping charges.

Personally, I've never played the game, but I hear it's very fun.

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PSP Price Plunge Predestined

According to several sources, Sony is going to announce tomorrow that the Playstation Portable (PSP as it's called in the hood) will drop in price. Currently the handheld system runs you a cool $199, but will drop to $169.99. Wow $30. That's really gonna blow the dust off of those units and now they should start flying off the shelves.

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Monday, April 2, 2007

April Game Releases

Here are April's game releases according to Gamestop. They are listed in the comments of this post. Overall, April seems pretty light for game releases.


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Dreamcast is Done

Next Gen has an article about Sega Japan announcing that it will stop it's repair services for the Sega Dreamcast consoles on September 28th, 2007.

The Dreamcast originally launched on November 27th, 1998 in Japan and September 9th, 1999 in North America. Console production ended in March of 2001. Third-party games are still being made for the console.

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Guitar Hero Has Competition

Looks like Harmonix, EA, and MTV are teaming up to bring the ultimate band playing experience to the 360 and PS3 (sorry Wii owners). The idea is to take SingStar (Jeff's Favorite) and Guitar Hero and throw in a drum kit to form a band. Some highlights:
  • Real Band - No Covers
  • Online Bands - Each member can be in other countries
  • New Songs - Artists will release new songs on the game
  • EA - Easy Achievement points
The title is Rock Band, which leaves me to believe that you can't have any other band, but one that rocks. Sounds like fun. Should you hold off on getting Guitar Hero then? No because chicks dig a room full of guitars. Just get a guitar stand to hold all your gear now.

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