Friday, July 6, 2012

8BitBites - Serious News for Serious Gamers

I'm still alive, and I haven't forgotten about this blog. But I have abandoned it for greener pastures. I still write about gaming over at 8BitBites.com, where I am the Senior Female Gaming Corespondent, Editor-in-Chief, Director of Social Media, and CMO. 

Join us at 8BitBites.com for the latest in (not so) serious gaming news and reviews!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Apple Announces New iPad

Apple finally officially announced their long-awaited "iPad" tablet PC yesterday. The wi-fi version of this product will be available in late March, but a 3G model is coming in April. The price starts at $499, which is reasonable for Apple.

The iPad is essentially what would result if an iPhone Touch and a MacBook had a baby. Or simply and overgrown iPod Touch.

The iPad has most of the key apps that ship with the iPhone and iPod Touch, including Safari, YouTube, Mail, and Maps. It also comes with the app iBooks, making the iPad a direct competitor to other ebook readers on the market, such as the Kindle. Apple is already seeking people to develop iPad apps to be ready for its release.

The iPad uses the same multitouch technology as the iPhone and iPod Touch. It also uses a touch screen keyboard, though there will also be a "keyboard dock" available to be used with the iPad.

I kind of want one. I don't really really have any practical use for it, since I already have a MacBook, an iPod Touch, and a netbook, and I don't think there's really anything the iPad can do that at least one of those devices can't, but it still seems cool. Since it's so thin and the entire thing is just a giant screen, I'd be afraid that it would break too easily though. Plus, I don't exactly have an extra $500 to spend on random things like this.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Thoughts on Mario


I've been thinking about Mario lately. Who would think of a game involving a plumber who has to save a princess from a turtle? I think they must have been high or something when they came up with the idea. Especially when you consider the fact that mushrooms are a powerup and the games take place in the Mushroom Kingdom.

(in a reefer-induced surfer voice) "Dude... you know what would be totally rad? If there was like this plumber... and he was Italian... and then there was this princess that he was like totally into, but she kept getting kidnapped by this giant turtle... and the plumber could like run around the Mushroom Kingdom using these green sewer pipes for travel, since he is like a plumber and stuff. And then he could take these 'shrooms and turn giant. That would be a totally awesome game! ... Wait a minute... where am I? My hands are like... enormous!"

Of course, I guess the Japanese don't need drugs to come up with f-ed up stuff. Either way, Mario is still awesome.

That's really all I got for today's post.

Friday, January 15, 2010

The Wizard of Oz: Beyond the Yellow Brick Road review

The Wizard of Oz: Beyond the Yellow Brick RoadA lot of people probably see The Wizard of Oz: Beyond the Yellow Brick Road as a game for younger gamers, but I think that even the most experienced RPG fans could enjoy this game, especially those who are also fans of The Wizard of Oz (obviously).

The game starts out similar to the movie, but with anime-style graphics. Dorothy must travel along the yellow brick road to reach the Wizard's castle. Sadly, there are no munchkins in the game. Along the way, you meet the Scarecrow, the Lion, and the Tin Man. It takes maybe an hour or so to reach the Wizard and you can only save in Oz's Castle, so you shouldn't start the game unless you have time to get to the save point.

The game has gotten some criticism for the plot being different from the movie, but if you actually pay attention to the second half of the title, "Beyond the Yellow Brick Road," you would expect the game to take place mostly AFTER Dorothy and the gang have traveled along the yellow brick road. From my understanding, the game is based more on the books than on the movie, though I've never actually read the books.

After you reach Oz's Castle, he will instruct you to go to different areas of Oz to find magical eggs so that he can take the power away from the "evil" witches. Once you get the egg in one area and clear the stage, you will be able to go on to the next stage. Each area is named after a season (there are three stages per season, with the exception of Winter) and you must fight the corresponding witch at the end of the last stage in each season. I'm not going to spoil the game, but there is still more you have to do after beating the last witch and getting the 10th egg.

The controls in the game are done entirely by using the stylus. You move by moving the stylus on a track ball on the screen and input commands in battle via buttons on the touch screen. This is useful if you don't feel like actually holding the DS while playing.

Each character has it's own affinity, which means that they are each best against certain types of enemies. Ghost-type enemies are weakest against Dorothy, water-type are weakest against Scarecrow, shell-type are weakest against Lion, and plant-type are weakest against Tin Man. Yeah, I'm not sure how the game developers picked these elements or why a certain character is better against each one either. The affinities do seem kinda random. A lot of the monsters can be killed with one attack. For the first few stages, the enemies seem to be interesting, but you quickly realize that new enemies are simply the same monsters you already saw in a different color.

Each character also has a "ratio" number and you can have up to 4 each turn during battle. Dorothy's and Scarecrow have a ratio of 1, Lion 2, and Tin Man 3. So, for example, you can have Dorothy attack 4 times, Lion twice, Tin Man once and Scarecrow once, Lion once Dorothy once and Scarecrow once, or any other combination that adds up to 4.

Aside from saving the game, you can ask to be healed and buy and sell items in Oz's castle. After you complete each Season, there will be new equipment for each character available to purchase with your coins. Each character can have a weapon and armor. You can also find some weapons and armor in treasure chests in various stages, but the purchased ones seem to be better.

The game is insanely easy, but it's still fun and addictive. I would recommend it to gamers of any age or skill level. Well, female gamers anyway. I don't really know a lot of men who are into the Wizard of Oz. It might not be very challenging but you will still have fun playing and will want to continue playing until you beat the game, which shouldn't be hard as it only takes about 20 hours or so to complete.

 The Wizard of Oz: Beyond the Yellow Brick Road

Monday, January 11, 2010

World's First Sex Robot

A company has recently developed what they are calling "the world's first sex robot." No, this company, True Companion LLC, is not Japanese, but rather, is based in New Jersey. The robot, named Roxxxy, is designed to engage the user in conversation, as well as sex, but does not feature life-like movement.

The "robot" is simply a rubber doll with touch sensors and pre-recorded vocal sounds. It must be connected to a laptop (which is included with the doll) to work. I'm not so sure that this can even be described as a robot, as it cannot even move on it's own. Roxxxy cannot even move her head or lips to speak (sound comes from an internal speaker).

The tagline on the True Companion website is "Always turned on and ready to talk or play." According to founder Douglas Hines, "Sex only goes so far — then you want to be able to talk to the person." Obviously he hasn't met most men.

Hines claims he was inspired to create the robot after his friend died in the 9/11 attacks:
That got him thinking about preserving his friend's personality, to give his children a chance to interact with him as they're growing up. Looking around for commercial applications for artificial personalities, he initially thought he might create a home health care aide for the elderly.
source
Wait... What!?! How do you go from robotic version of your dead friend and health care aids to sexbot? I suppose a sex robot could be a form of health care aid, but I don't think it would be approved by most nursing homes [insert bad mental image of your grandparents here].

Apparently there was too much paperwork involved and the creator had to look to other markets. I mean, what sells better than sex?

The sex robot is simple marketing, according to Hines, and his project is really about creating a companion. The broader goal of the company is to make artificial personalities mainstream and expand beyond sex toys.

According to the True Companion website (not going to post a link, since I'm not sure if Blogger allows links to "adult only" websites, but it shouldn't be that hard to find), Roxxxy can even have an orgasm, which I'm guessing is guaranteed to be just as authentic as most real women's orgasms. They are also apparently releasing a male version of the robot soon. No, I'm not going to order one. I'm not that pathetic.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Japanese Man Marries Video Game Character


A man in Japan recently married the woman of his dreams, Nene Anegaski. The only problem is that she doesn't exist, except in the form of some pixels on a screen and lines of code in a video game.

The Japanese man, known only as Sal9000, met the love of his life on the Nintendo DS dating simulation game Love Plus, which is apparently only available in Japan (thank god!). The two of them got married last November in a livecast ceremony on the Japanese video sharing site Nico Nico Douga. The bride, Nene Anegaski, even made a speech.

I wonder how the honeymoon went. I'm not sure that the DS has the appropriate ports to consummate the marriage. Maybe there's a special add-on in Japan that plugs into the GBA slot (if he's using a DS Lite). I'll you visualize that...

I guess Love Plus isn't any worse than games like My Boyfriend for the DS, which I assume is the same basic thing, but for 12 year old girls instead of 30 year old men (sad, lonely, 30 year old men). No one can give me any shit for using a dating site to meet my boyfriend after this. At least he actually exists! (though I guess the people who use dating sites to meet people who live in different states or countries without ever actually meeting them in person before getting serious are just as pathetic as the Japanese guys who date video games. Either way, the person might as well not exist).

Here is a video featuring footage of the wedding:

And here is an interview with the man and photos of the happy couple: Video game wedding: a letter and photos from the bride and groom

This blog post deserves a new tag, Japan. I think I'm going to start covering f-ed up things from Japan in this blog now.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

ATTN: TFSource Buyers; Credit Card Info Could Be Compromised

I got a call from my bank today stating that there was some fraudulent activity on my debit card. The suspicious charges were $1.00 from APL*ITUNES and $1.13 from APL*MOBILEME. That card has been cancelled, obviously.

It was clear that these were bogus charges, since I never buy anything from iTunes, and I honestly wasn't sure what MobileMe was until I Googled it, despite the fact that I use a Mac (it's a thing to sync your iPhone, Mac, and PC apparently). It seems that these hackers have an Apple fetish or that they want to smear Apple in the process of scamming a bunch of people. Perhaps they simply figured that enough people actually use iTunes that enough of them wouldn't notice until larger charges started appearing.

Upon further research I found out that the hackers most likely got my information from my TFSource.com account, which I stupidly used my debit card on instead of PayPal. I haven't purchased anything there since May 2009, but I was dumb enough to leave my debit card number in my TFSource account. A lot of other TFW2005 members, including those who have not used their compromised credit card for any website other than TFSource, have reported the same fraudulent charges, so all signs point to TFSource being the source of the fraudulent activity.

It seems as though the people who stole the credit card numbers are using them to purchase computers and such, so it is very important to cancel your card as soon as possible if you notice anything suspicious, least you end up losing thousands of dollars. Even if you haven't ever purchased anything from TFSource, other websites might have been compromised as well, so you should check your accounts anyway just to be safe.

In the meantime, it is still safe to use TFSource if you are into Transformers, but be sure to use PayPal rather than a credit card. I'm sure it's not their fault (other than having crappy security) and they are one of the best Transformers sites I've found. I definitely would not use a credit card there, or on any other website (other than things like Amazon, half.com, and PayPal) anymore, especially since most sites allow you to pay by PayPal.

I also did a quick Google search of the fraudulent charges, and there have been similar frauds going on for months. If I had to guess, I'd say it's the same hackers getting a hold of different databases. I believe TFSource is just one of many compromised sites in this scam.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

High-Def Motion Sensing Nintendo DS is in the Works

Apparently a high-definition, motion sensing Nintendo DS is in the works. There will be twice as many lines of resolution in the new version, according to an interview with Nintendo president Satoru Iwata, as well as a motion sensor.

Iwata has confirmed that the new DS is currently being developed and will feature high-definition video display and motion-sensing capabilities. 

As someone who gets so close to the screen while playing my DS that I actually get fixated on the lines of resolution while trying to play a game, I can appreciate a future move to HD for the system, despite the fact that I find HD TV entirely unnecessary.

Since DS sales are currently at an all-time high in the United States, the new version of the DS won't be available anytime soon.

Read the article about this on PCWorld.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Xbox Live Mobile?

According to a recent article on PC World, Xbox Live may be heading to mobile devices. This may coincide with the launch of Windows Mobile 7, which is expected for a late 2010 release. We all knew that Microsoft would enter the portable gaming market eventually. The only question was "when?" (and "how?")

Job postings on Microsoft's website show that the company is looking for a program manager and software tester. Both positions would focus on the integration of Xbox Live and Windows Mobile (if you are interested in those jobs, go look on the Microsoft site yourself. I'm not going to track down links to help you with your job hunting!)

In July, Microsoft confirmed that they would, in fact, pursue mobile gaming for the Xbox platform. At the time, Microsoft corporate president, Shane Kim, didn't know yet if they would develop a game-specific device or enable gaming capabilities on mobile phones.

But will Xbox Live actually be integrated into Windows Mobile for use on any Window's Mobile device, or will there be an entirely new handset made specifically for Xbox Live gamers. Either of these options could compete directly with the iPhone.  

Either way, I'm sure the thing would be digital copy only in terms of game software. Add that to the fact that I don't do much online gaming (and by "not much" I mean I've never played an MMO that wasn't free and browser-based) and that it's Microsoft, I'm not interested.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Will 2010 be the "Year of the Mac?" Does it Matter?

Will 2010 be the "Year of the Mac?" Galen Gruman asked this question in an article on InfoWorld. Apparently, every year since the mid '80s has seen predictions that the next year would, in fact, be the year that Macs finally become mainstream computers.
"It's almost a pathetic assertion: This year, the Mac will break out of its ghetto and become a mainstream computer for individuals and businesses alike. That unfulfilled desire is foretold every year and has been since the mid-1980s, when Apple's then-groundbreaking computer was quickly sidelined by the IBM PC and, later, Microsoft Windows."
But I thought Macs were already "mainstream." Maybe PCs still outsell Macs, but they are still far from obscure. Most businesses, schools, and universities already have at least some Macs in use. Macs are hardly "ghetto." Actually, I'm not sure any computer could be described as "ghetto."

I was going to make a point by showing the high percentage of Mac users to visit this blog, but Google Analytics shows that only about 20% of my visitors over the last month have visited using a Macintosh OS. But still. That's 1/5 of the visitors.

Despite the economic recession, MacBook sales have grown in 2009, and we all know those don't come cheap. During 2009, Apple's revenue rose 12%. For the quarter ending September 30th, Apple's net profit was $1.67 billion (source).

Anyway, according to the "2010: Year of the Mac?" article, one reason to suspect that Macs will become the mainstream computer in the coming year is the fact that Apple switched to the Intel chip (like four years ago!), which allows windows applications to more easily run on Macs. If that were the case, I'd guess that 2007 would have been The Year for Mac.

Other reasons include the fact that the MacBook Pro is becoming the first choice of professionals, people are increasingly able to choose their own computers for work, and that Macs are less expensive to support than PCs.

I don't know why Mac users are so obsessed with the idea of their computer of choice becoming #1. I use a Mac, and I would prefer that less people use them. I'm not trying to be elitist, I just don't want more people to start programing viruses for Macs. The fact that there are less Mac viruses out there was one of the main selling points in my decision to get a Mac when I wanted a new laptop a few years ago. I'm switching to Linux as my main OS as soon Macs get popular enough for computer viruses to be a major threat. I'm not going back to Windows unless Microsoft comes out with something truly awesome.

Besides, a lot of Mac users do act like elitist snobs when it comes to their computers. You'd think that they would still want PCs to be the choice of "normal" people. If everyone had a Mac, they wouldn't be able to turn their nose up at the majority of computer users who aren't part of their little Apple cult. Once something becomes common place, you don't get to act as arrogant about it.

I do like to start Mac vs. PC fights, though, just to get reactions (I really don't care what kind of computer you use). It's not as much fun online as in real life though, since you don't get to see the frustration on the other person's face. People get so defensive about their OS. There are a lot more important things to argue about... like which video game console is best.

And now for one of my favorite videos on the subject:

W00t 'n Such Shop

I just created a store for this website via Amazon's aStore. The link is on the link bar at the top of my blog and in an ad on the right sidebar (it may move in the future). I'm still working on adding items and categories, but right now the store contains video games, comic books, computers, iPods and more.

Here's the link: W00t 'n Such Shop

Monday, December 28, 2009

NES Emulation App for iPhone Approved, But Quickly Removed

Imagine the joys of playing NES games on your iPhone or iPod Touch. What could possibly be a better way to kill time while waiting for quitting time at work? Sure you could buy an handheld NES emulator or get a flash cart to run emulators on your Nintendo DS, but using your iPod Touch would open a whole new world of possibilities in which your boss would never know you're playing video games (if you are, in fact, allowed to listen to music at work). This was almost a reality. Almost.

According to an article by Lex Friedman of MacWorld, Apple recently approved an NES emulator app, but then removed it soon after. The app, Nescaline, would have allowed you to play any NES ROM on your iPod Touch or iPhone, including homebrew games. The app even came with five of these homebrew games.
Nescaline’s developer had thought of everything: You could tap on objects to simulate firing upon them with the Light Gun; you could use a multitouch virtual controller; you could enter Game Genie cheat codes…
Apple initially removed the app without explanation, though later they did apparently call the developer, Jonathan Zdziarski, to tell him that the app was removed "because it was an emulator." There are, however, still other video game emulation apps available in the App Store.

It's understandable that Apple wouldn't want something that could allow people to play illegal copies of games in their App Store, but it seems like they are approving an awful lot of apps that they later feel the need to remove. Do they even look at apps and consider any possible legal problems before approving them? Or do they simply approve anything that comes across their desk and let the lawyers and protesters sort them out later? Remember the Shaking Baby app? What about Zombie School?

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Retro Duo - First Impressions

I got a Retro Duofor Christmas. If you don't know, the Retro Duo is basically an NES and SNES put together in the same system. It's perfect if you no longer have a working NES or SNES, or if you simply want to save space. Based on what I've read, it's the best clone system available.

There are plenty of other similar NES/SNES clone systems out there, but after reading reviews online, the Retro Duo seemed like the best choice, which is why I asked for it. I haven't run into any compatibility issues with it so far after testing every game I have (other than the lack of NES Zapper support). The Retro Duo supposedly plays games that other clone systems can't. It is even supposed to play PAL SNES games as well, but I don't have any PAL games to test.

It only supports Super Nintendo controllers (but I read online that they are working on an adapter to be able to use NES controllers on the system as well, which would also work with the Zapper. No idea when or if that will be released). The retro duo does come with SNES clone controllers in colors to match the system (I got red and black. I thought it looked cooler than the white and blue, even though the color scheme is completely different than the original SNES system).

The Retro Duo controllers do feel a bit cheap compared to the original SNES controllers, but they aren't as bad as some reviews I've read make them out to be. The biggest difference is that the X and Y buttons aren't concave like on the original controllers. Once I get into a game, I don't really notice the difference anyway. I haven't decided if I'm going to buy actual SNES controllers for it or not yet. The Retro Duo controllers aren't that much different from the real thing and they match the system.

The NES cartridge slot is a bit tight and it can be a bit difficult to remove NES games, but that's not a big deal. As long as you are gentle with the carts when removing them (rather than violently yanking them out) there shouldn't be a problem. You should be gentle with game systems (and any type of hardware, really) anyway, if you want them to last.

There are apparently some slight sound and color differences between the Retro Duo and the original systems, but I haven't really noticed anything that seems too off to my eyes and ears. Of course, I don't own either original system (hence why I wanted the Retro Duo) and I don't know anyone who still owns an NES (as far as I know. If I do, I've never been to their house...) so you can judge that for yourself if you are thinking about getting one. To me, game play is more important than sounds or graphics anyway (at least until I don't have sound, if you remember my post about my Sega Genesis).

It also has a tiny footprint. I have one of those plastic 7-drawer carts to keep some of my games and consoles in, and the Retro Duois small enough that I have plenty of room left in it's drawer to store some NES games in the same drawer (since the smaller drawer that I allotted to SNES and NES games is apparently too small since I didn't take into consideration that I'd be getting more games for Christmas when I partitioned the available drawers to certain game systems).

Well, I guess I'm going to wrap this up. I have a bunch of SNES and NES games to play, not to mention a new DS game.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Jesus, Drawn to Life, and Blasphemy

I started playing Drawn to Life for Nintendo DS over a year ago. I still haven't finished the game, since I haven't played it in over a year, but I did find a photo I took of the character that I created (I'll give you a hint, his birthday is tomorrow).

Since in the game, I was basically God ("the Creator"), I thought that it was only appropriate that I create my only son, Jesus, as the hero of the game.

Happy Birthday, Jesus... Please tell your daddy not to strike me down with lightning.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Happy Festivus!

Happy Festivus to all of my readers!



The comment section of this post may be used for the airing of grievances (since you'll probably get in some kind of trouble if you try that at your family dinner).

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Mom Calls 911 Because Son was Playing Grand Theft Auto at 2:30 AM

Apparently some woman in Boston had so little control over her son, that the only way she could get him to stop playing Grand Theft Auto was to call 911.
Boston mom calls 911 over son's video game habit
By Associated Press

POSTED: 04:17 p.m. EST, Dec 21, 2009

BOSTON: Police say a frustrated Boston woman called 911 to say she couldn't get her 14-year-old son to stop playing video games and go to sleep.

Police spokesman Officer Joe Zanoli said Monday the mother called for help around 2:30 a.m. Saturday to say that the teenager also walked around the house and turned on all the lights.

Two officers who responded to the house persuaded the child to obey his mother.

Zanoli says the mother's 911 call over video game obsession "was a little unusual, but by no means is it surprising — especially in today's day and age when these kids play video games and computer games."

The Boston Herald first reported the 911 call, saying the boy was playing the popular "Grand Theft Auto" game.
Source

How bad of a parent do you really have to be to have to call 911 just to get your kid to stop playing a video game at 2:30 in the morning? I mean, if you're going to allow a 14 year old to play Grand Theft Auto, that's kind of your first sign that you have no business being a parent. He has no trouble getting his mother to buy him an M or AO rated game. Of course that kid is going to think he can do whatever he wants and walk all over the parent.

Also, what I want to know is how did the kid walk around the house and turn on all the lights if he was so busy playing a video game? Maybe it was the PSP version.

Seriously. How stupid are people these days? I still think that people should have to get a license of some sort before they are allowed to have kids.

I guess it could be worse. He could have been out actually stealing cars and dealing drugs and killing prostitutes at 2:30 in the morning.

Sega Genesis and AV Cables and Such

I recently acquired a Sega Genesis (thank you Richard Kennehan for your generosity to the AtariAge community this holiday season!) Aside from Atari 2600, this is my first non-Nintendo game system (unless you count the computer, but I haven't done much PC gaming since MS DOS).

The only problem was that the RF switch only half worked (no sound), but that was alright since I was planning on getting an AV cable anyway, since AV is better quality and plugs into the front of the TV).

Who knew tracking down an AV cable would be so difficult? I went to the flea market first (that's probably my first problem right there). The first cable I got was for the wrong model (I have a model 2 Genesis, and the cable was for model 1). I should have checked to make sure it was the right one, since I did do some research and I did know what the cables for each were supposed to look like, but I didn't think to actually check it before I left.

After realizing that I got the wrong cable, I took it back and exchanged it. The second cable they gave me fit into the system, it just didn't work. So I had to take that one back and ended up just buying one on eBay, which just arrived yesterday.

I recommend getting an AV cable if you still use an RF switch. Aside from slightly better picture (and possibly sound) quality, you don't have to reach all the way to the back of your TV if your TV has the AV plugs on the front. The picture also doesn't get all fuzzy if you barely touch the cable (that might mostly be due to the fact that my RF switch was almost dead, however).

In the meantime, while I was waiting for a working AV cable, I played the Genesis without sound to a Serj Takian CD. In retrospect, it probably would have made more sense to play to my '90s Time Warp playlist.

I also noticed that games and accessories seem to be cheaper for the Genesis than for SNES. I went to the Exchange (local used music/movie/game store, don't know if they have them outside of Ohio) and got a few games for $1 each and a six button controller for $2.50 I needed the six button controller for Street Fighter II. I thought that would be better than the three button one for that. Plus I thought that a smaller controller would feel more comfortable in my hands since the big three button ones feel awkward.

I don't know why people complain that it's too expensive to buy classic games and prefer the emulators for that reason. I'm a poor college student, and I can still afford these games (hey, it's cheaper entertainment than going out and getting drunk every weekend like "normal" college kids, plus I can still remember what I did the night before the next morning). It costs a fraction of the original price, and those same people still buy new games for about $50 as soon as they come out. Even the more rare old games tend to be less expensive used than they were when they were originally released.

AV cable ....... $5
Games ......... $1 each
Controller ..... $2.50
Acting morally superior to people who use emulators but don't own the actual console ... Priceless

Monday, December 21, 2009

Rumors of a Custer's Revenge Remake Completely Untrue

There have been a lot of rumors going around the internet for the last year or so (at least) regarding a remake of the "pornographic" and racist video game, Custer's Revenge. Do any of these rumors have any merit, however, or are they all simply pranks and wishful thinking on the part of bloggers and forum posters?

For those of you who don't know, Custer's Revenge was a video game for the Atari 2600 that was developed by the company Mystique (which was notable for producing adult video games) in 1982 and was only available at "adult" stores.. It was widely regarded as the worst game ever for it's plot. In Custer's Revenge, you play as General George Custer and your only objective is to get to the Native American woman on the other side of the screen to have sex with her (or rather, to rape her). Both characters are completely naked (except for Custer's hat, boots, and bandanna). The game, not surprisingly, sparked outrage amongst groups such as Women Against Pornography and various Native American activists.

Since it was Atari 2600, the graphics for this game weren't very detailed. Because of this, I would barely consider this game to be "pornographic." Stupid maybe, but not porn. I seriously can't imagine anyone getting aroused from looking at this game. If they do, they probably have a serious sex addiction problem (or just haven't gotten the real thing in about fifteen years). I actually think that the whole concept of this game is hilarious. Sure the premise is horrible, but it's still just a video game. And a poorly designed one at that. The graphics and gameplay are just so horrible it's kind of funny. While I haven't actually played it on the Atari, I did download it and tried it on an emulator. I ended up deleting it right afterward, just in case anyone ever looks in my game folder, as I don't want anything even resembling porn on my computer. No use incriminating myself over a crappy game.

Anyway, there have been a lot of blog and forum posts on various websites, since at least October 2008, claiming that this game is being remade. Most of these claims state that the company developing the remake is none other than Rockstar, the company that brought us the Grand Theft Auto series (makes sense that the company that made a game involving the murder of prostitutes would want to remake a game about raping a Native American).

One notable blog post on the subject appeared on April 1st, 2009. Matt Barton of ArmchairArcade posted the entry Custer's Revenge being remade by Rockstar as an April Fool's Day joke. Angry comments continued to appear on that post even after the blogger revealed that it was, in fact, a prank.

But even so, a quick Google search will reveal that people are still trying to spread the rumor on video game forums everywhere.

If you actually bother to check RockstarGames.com you will find no mention of Custer's Revenge anywhere. Likewise, if you visit GameSpot.com, a search for "Custer's Revenge" will only bring up the original Atari 2600 game. When you really think about it, releasing a remake of this game would most likely be disastrous for the company. I can't see Rockstar, or any other company, willing to make that risk. Killing prostitutes is one thing. But you can't just go around raping minorities (or anyone for that matter).

A recent resurgence of these rumors this month, as well as bidding wars on the game on eBay, can be credited to Sal of the Howard Stern Show, who mentioned Custer's Revenge on the December 3rd show.
According to examiner.com:
In classic Sal Governale style, the Howard Stern Show's asshole-in-residence offered his own unique perspective on American history by educating his co-workers and listeners that he knew there was once a "General Custer" who led troops in a battle against Native Americans. How did he know this? Because of an "adult video game" that he once played entitled "Custer's Revenge" in which the famous General travels around Little Big Horn fornicating with the Natives.
Some games just don't need to be remade.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Follow Me

I just put the "followers" widget back onto my blog. It can be found on the left sidebar. I didn't put it back on here when I changed the layout, but now it's back. So now you can follow this blog via Google Friend Connect if you would like.

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Saturday, December 19, 2009

Do Kids Even Care About Classic Gaming?

I've noticed recently that there is a lot of clothing available for children depicting classic video game systems. Do kids even know what any of these systems are? If they've even heard of them, have they ever actually played them?

I found an awesome Atari joystick shirt at FYE yesterday. But they only had them in youth sizes. I ended up just going ahead and getting the XL, since it fits about the same as an adult small or medium anyway (probably closer to a small).

Here's the shirt:

I also saw hoodies with an NES controller on the front at Toys 'R Us, also only in kids' sizes (obviously, since it was a toy store after all). But it got me thinking, do kids actually know what these controllers are for?

They may have seen the NES controllers in Nintendo Power or on Nintendo websites they might visit, but I doubt most kids know what an Atari 2600 is. I can't see most kids these days showing much interest in the technology that lead up to their current video games, since they don't tend to care about anything that's "before their time," as that stuff if for old people. Even if their parents let them play their retro systems, the kids, with their short ADHD attention spans probably get bored after 10 minutes (if that) and go back to their Wii or Xbox 360 or PS3 with the 3D graphics and whatnot.

Heck, technically I'm even too young for Atari 2600, but it was still my first console since my parents let me play theirs (not surprisingly, that Atari inevitably broke. The one I have set up now was my aunt's). But I think now that those things are starting to be seen as collector's items, less and less parents will want their young children messing around with their 2600s.

Anyway, if you, dear reader, have kids or know any kids (lets say 14 and under), ask them a few questions about retro gaming. First show them a picture of an Atari 2600 controller and ask if they know what it is. Then ask some follow up questions, such as if they've ever played Atari 2600 (or really, anything older than a Game Cube), and how they feel it compares to whatever system they play now (probably a Wii). Or if you are a kid (I hope you got your parents permission to be online!), answer those questions about yourself. The comments section is always open. I'm interested to know if older video games will continue to live on in the hearts and minds of the younger generation, or if anything that's not available on the Virtual Console will die with the people who grew up on those games.

And, if your kids are interested in gaming, teach them about classic gaming. They need to know how current technology came to be. If kids know the history of gaming, they just might be interested enough to work to create even better technology in the future. Not that that would always be a good thing, if you read the end of my post The Future of Gaming.
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