Pokemon Go > Ingress

I bet Niantic wished they’d created a Pokemon game four years ago instead of labouring on Ingress all that time. Pokemon Go was released last week in the US and has already spawned many a meme on Facebook. It apparently has more concurrent players than concurrent Twitter users.

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My first, in the wild exposure to it was today when I saw some teenagers talking about it over lunch at a cafe.

Then some twenty-somethings arrived looking at their phone screens and shouting something about the game. In a daze they walked around with heads bent.

A short time later we walked past a group of kids, still in school uniform but with eyes firmly glued to phones.

Anyway, it was months after I started playing Ingress that I saw another person playing the game. Pokemon Go is already much bigger. Hopefully they’ll be able to keep the game interesting. My sone was never interested in Ingress, but he’s already asking about the new game. I don’t know which game will be better once Pokemon Go receives a few updates. It took ages for Ingress to be fleshed out so I expect much more from them.

I haven’t tried it because my phone is broken. Boo. I had the device on a table, swiped up the screen and the display suddenly went almost all flashy green. I rebooted but now the screen won’t respond to any key presses. It better be covered by warranty as I only bought it a few months ago!

F zero on my phone rocks

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I played F Zero to death on the original Gameboy Advance, and even with the awful dark screen it was a great game.

Playing it on my Galaxy S5 in an emulator with a controller is even better as I don’t have to lean the screen into the light to see the action!

I need more practice, I still suck at the game!

Turn your Android phone into a steering wheel

I was looking on Amazon over the weekend for PC steering wheels when I remembered that my phone could do the job! Install JD SimWheel from the Play Store, grab the device driver and server from here for your PC and you’re 90% of the way there.

It might take a few minutes tinkering with the settings in-game but Euro Truck Simulator 2 works fine with it. I still can’t reverse properly but now I can take corners smoothly and two of the buttons on-screen are already configured for left and right indicators!


Here’s a howto video and demonstration using the game GRID created by user MyHD2AndOthers on Youtube.

Next on my todo list is using a WiiMote as a steering wheel as I already have the steering wheel adaptor for it and it should be more comfortable than holding a phone!

“This lvl has been moderated!!i dont kn…

“This lvl has been moderated!!i dont know why,i needed to change the logo and name.”

Little Big Planet allows you free rein with your imagination but sometimes creators take inspiration from existing games. Such was the case with this Mario influenced racer. It’s a fun little level, looks beautiful and it’s simple. Just keep R1 down to drive. I’m the sackboy with the cape, my son Adam was the brown fella.

Ironically, I received an email from Youtube stating the following,

“Dear donncha2001,

Your video, I wonder why it was moderated …., may have content that is owned or licensed by Sony Music Entertainment.

No action is required on your part; however, if you are interested in learning how this affects your video, please visit the Content ID Matches section of your account for more information.

Sincerely,
– The YouTube Team”

I wonder if everyone who uploads Little Big Planet gameplay videos receives such an email? Duck said he got 4 of them!

Babysitting Mama

Wii owners rejoice! News just in that a new title, “Babysitting Mama” will be released this holiday season.

The game promises to bring all the joys and challenges of taking care of a newborn baby to your Nintendo Wii. Wouldn’t that be wonderful? For the most realistic experience of course you have to leave your Wii and TV on all night so it can wake you up from your slumber at 1am, 3am and 5am for feeding. I doubt they’ll have that.

Does this sound fun to anyone? I’m a work-at-home dad; during the day I’m writing and editing stories while parenting our ten-month-old son. On a good day I get to use the bathroom when I need to. On a bad day my eyes glaze over with a thousand-yard stare. I love my kids, but having a baby is a job with no days off, no pause button, and no cheat codes. Turning that experience into a game where the child will never grow up, go to college, and allow you to have a single dinner out with your wife sounds like… fun?

Mario in Little Big Planet

Fire up Little Big Planet and search for Mario. One of the levels is the most amazing homage to the moustached plumber ever. But ssshh, don’t tell Nintendo!

Nintendo 3DS, a 3D version of the Ninten…

Nintendo 3DS, a 3D version of the Nintendo DS will be released sometime in the next year. Cool.

Nintendo Co., Ltd.(Minami-ward of Kyoto-city, President Satoru Iwata) will launch “Nintendo 3DS”(temp) during the fiscal year ending March 2011, on which games can be enjoyed with 3D effects without the need for any special glasses.

Now all they need to do is solve the awful piracy problems on the DS and publishers might actually support the platform. (via Engadget and @conoro)

A super secret mockup of the Nintendo 3DS has just been revealed! (via gamovr and Retroremakes)

Nintendo 3DS mockup

Metal Slug Anthology

Metal SlugThe Metal Slug series of games is over 10 years old now but I only came across them for the first time last year through MAME, the arcade emulator. The games are run and gun shoot em ups with great hand drawn graphics, and frenetic gameplay. You can read about the first game on Wikipedia.

Metal Slug is a series of run and gun video games first released on Neo-Geo arcade machines and game consoles created by SNK. It was also ported to other consoles, such as the Sega Saturn, the PlayStation, the Neo-Geo Pocket Color and more recently, the Game Boy Advance, PlayStation 2, Xbox, Xbox 360 and Nintendo DS. There is also an anthology of the first 7 games in the main series (including Metal Slug X) available for the Wii, PlayStation Portable, and PlayStation 2.

They’re great fun to play, and with an Xbox 360 controller hooked up to my computer the experience in SDLMame was as close to perfect as it could be. When I saw Metal Slug Anthology for the Wii in Gamestop and for only 25 Euro last weekend I had to buy it! All those games in one package, on one CD? How could I resist? Unfortunately I should have checked the reviews first. Metacritic gave it 73%, but the first user review points out the huge flaw that makes all the games totally unplayable.
Metal Slug

Once you’re in a game, the default control has grenades set to motion control. If you’ve ever played a metal slug, you’d know that these games are hard, and require split second reactions. There isn’t time to shake the controller up and down. Fortunately there’s 1 control setup that uses the gamecube controller. But with just 3 buttons, it’s baffling why they couldn’t have used 3 buttons on the wiimote.

There are a number of different control configurations, but all are just as hopelessly bad as each other and I don’t have a Gamecube controller. A shame really because they’re arcade perfect conversions. As they should be. Credits for the game include M68k emulation so I presume the exact same code is running on the Wii. Why oh why did they screw it up with a crap control system?

If you really must play Metal Slug, the first game in the series was also released on the Wii virtual console and supports the classic controller. There’s also SNK Arcade Classics Volume 1 but besides Metal Slug it doesn’t seem to be a good value compilation.

Even though the control system is all messed up in the Wii version of Metal Slug Anthology, I’m glad I could support SNK in some small way. Back to SDLMame for me though.

Update! This morning I played Metal Slug on the Wii using a knock off Gamecube controller and it rocks. Sure, you still have the lengthy loading times at the start but otherwise the controllers are fine. Here’s the controller screen and a shot of my “Gameexpert” Gamecube controller. Bought that in Zavvi at a knock down price!

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