Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Blog Update

Sorry about the lack of posts recently. Just moved house and have a lot on my plate. I have just got the expansion pack to Civilization 4. I have experienced some of the new features and I am much enjoying playing the barbarian mod. It has, however, inspired me once again to review Civilization 4. I will hopefully get round to it this half term.

Console News
Xbox 360
The new camera for the Xbox 360 is now out. It is effectively a eye toy. It allows video conversations over Xbox live, custom display pictures, and a couple of completely useless cool features. Its RRP is £35 and so is quite expensive considering it is just a gimmick. It fits in with the style of the 360 though. The pack includes 1 month Xbox live gold, a microphone and the camera.

Halo 3 is due out this March and a RTS is also coming out, Halo Wars. This game is not going to come out on PC so that they can make a intuitive controller for a console based RTS. However, I believe this is a mistake, not only because a lot of the Microsoft market are PC gamers, but because they are spending time on a intuitive controller, rather than a innovative game.

The PS3, although coming out this November as planned in the rest of the world. In deepest darkest Europe it is coming out this March. However, this is not all bad. In the USA, it is reported that when Sony were asked how many units had been allocated to each shop in America, the answer was 6. This means, that there will be global shortage, however, when it comes out in Europe the problem should be much less. Having said this, my dads friend went in to Game, the man behind the counter asked him if he would like to reserve a PS3. The deposit was £50, when asked if this equaled a guaranteed PS3 on launch day, the reply was : "No, your name will be put in a hat and you stand a chance of getting one on launch day"

The expected price is going to be, as predicted, a two tier launch price. This, although predictable, is slightly hypocritical of Sony as they criticized Microsoft for doing this with their launch. The two price plans are:
£335 - CHEAP
Will contain a 20gb hard drive
Will contain a 60gb hard drive

If this expense wasn't enough, remember the games are going to be £75. That is a lot of money to justify spending on a game. The reported reason for the delayed launch was caused by a "diode creation error" and if I was to read between the lines :"and you are our least important market and we have to miss someone out."

Another interesting feature of the PS3 is the controller named thraxis. Cool name, not so cool idea. They wanted to be innovative so they have built in a motion sensing tilt. At first I thought this was just a attempt to be innovative like Nintendo whilst still doing Microsoft on the stats front, it didn't look like the best or worst idea, I didn't think it added much, but it hardly took much away. However. after some thinking, I realized the idea was made up by a board of directors. The tilt function is used a a accelerator on some racing games, which means you are going to be holding the controller at a very difficult angle. Simulate that with your hands and try holding that for a couple of minutes. It starts to ache after a couple of seconds. Hopefully, it will be possible to disable this feature for games that do not lend themselves to it.


In comparison, the Wii is going to cost £179 and is coming out on the second of December. Some videos were released on the Nintendo website showing new players experience the controller for the first time. It looks like Nintendo have done it. At first I was skeptical because I didn't think it could work. I haven't quite forgiven them for the Micro, but I am coming close. The thing that Nintendo has done well this time well is external developers and the introduction of games aimed at a higher age audience than 4.

The graphics do not look significantly better than the NGCs, it still doesn't play DVDs, it doesn't have a hard drive, but you know what, I don't care. Providing they throw in Wii sports with it I am happy. I look forward to buying my Wii this Christmas with Red Steel as my game.

Not much news here. Vista is still quite a while away . The new flight simulator from Microsoft has come out. Gamespot gave it a 8.4 so if you are looking for a good flight simulator or know someone who does, it may be a good Christmas present. I have discovered that wired Xbox 360 controllers, although not guaranteed to work, should so. However, if you do not want to take the risk there is a special version. The same goes for the web cam and external HD DVD player available for the 360.

No comments:

Post a Comment

"All your base are belong to us"