July 29, 2005

To Brew or Not to Brew

Sony released a new BIOS update for the PSP, which among other things adds a web browser. Since I have a wireless hub, I had to try that out. The browser is pretty nice, and pages look great compared to my Pocket PC, mostly because of the wider screen. Another great addition is the ability to set a custom wallpaper, replacing the wavy colors that usually appear on the main menu. The speed isn't that great, but on pages specifically designed for PDAs, it works well.

What this ultimately does for me is prohibit me from using any of the homebrew apps and emulators on my PSP, at least until the hackers crack this latest version. I figured I wasn't playing any of that stuff anyway, and would rather have a nice browser to use on the couch. Time will tell.

The new project is coming along, although I'm a little behind in my self-imposed schedule. I have a design I really like, and the ideas for the site and the future are sprouting. For instance, we've decided to support game mods as well, considering most sites of this nature ignore them, but they ad real value to existing games. I predict good things.

Posted by mix at 10:31 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 25, 2005

Don't Much Care for Coffee Anyway

If you're a gamer, you are probably sick already of the whole 'Hot Coffee' controversy. However, allow me to give my two cents.

First of all, Rockstar, as Greg Costikyan put it, needs to be slapped. I don't care if the mini-game in question was part of the original design, (if it was, what possible value did it add?) the content should have been removed. This is a the fault of the producer.

Anyway, the real villian here isn't the producer, or even the artists/programmers that created the mini-game (note: those who would think it was one guy who did this on his own in secret know nothing about game development). It's Rockstar upper management. They keep blaming everyone else for their mistake. The arrow I take most offense with is the accusation that it's the users fault. "How dare they modify our game!" It would be one thing if that mini-game did not exist in the orignal game, but it was merely 'unlocked'. Shame on you, Rockstar, for making your customers out to be saboteurs.

What I hope doesn't happen (and I don't think it will), is that publishers will tighten up EULAs and disallow mods completely. Modding is practically an industry unto itself, and there's a lot of talent out there that wouldn't have as easy an outlet if that were to happen. But as I said, I believe it's unlikely.

The other big gripe I have about this whole thing is it gives Mr. 'I hate games and gamers' Jack Thompson more ammo. This guy's motivation is two-fold: 1. Fame/Publicity, 2. He's just a jerk. Anyway, he's now after the Sims 2, and he's spewing more uninformed and blatantly false bile to the media. Of course the gaming press is all too familiar with his diatribes, but the mainstream press has taken up the stories and is casting a very negative light on the gaming industry. Ugh.

What this really boils down to is the public at large has to realize that games aren't just for kids. Games (like movies) have ratings for a reason. Censorship and legislation is not the answer. Knowledge and personal responsibility are.

Posted by mix at 10:54 AM | Comments (0)

July 12, 2005

GameHarvest

Had a good holiday, celebrated the wife's birthday, got through a mountain of freelance work... Time to start new projects! ;)

I am actually starting a new website project that will hopefully get a decent amount of traffic and generate some ad revenue. It won't be one of those empty 'just put content up and get a good search engine placement' deals; this site will actually be useful, and of course it's related to games. I'm pretty excited about it, and the goal is sometime down the road for it and other ventures to offer me the flexibility to pursue game development full-time. That's the dream at least.

If you have a meaty systems, do yourself a favor and check out the Battlefield 2 demo. It's a hoot, especially with a joystick, flying helicopters. I'm personally fond of taking the Hind out and laying down some rocket justice. But that's just me.

Posted by mix at 10:02 AM | Comments (0)