Friday, June 01, 2007

The Elite, HD-DVD, and C&C 3

There are times when I think I absolutely hate Command & Conquer 3, but then I go right back and play it obsessively. The game has to be doing something right I guess.

I polished off the GDI campaign on medium over the Memorial Day weekend getting both the campaign achievement and the one for finishing on medium with all the bonus objectives. I quickly started into the Nod campaign and I’m about 5 missions in. I was really hoping the Nod forces would be more fun, but so far there are only a few units I like. The commando is cooler than the GDI one, the fanatics are fun, and I like the dudes who can hang glide into areas.

After spending way too many hours getting all the bonus objectives for GDI (which only amounted to 25 more points) I decided to just beat the Nod campaign sans bonuses. The way the game is structured, you can always return to earlier missions so I can always go back and get them if I felt the need.

I did take a break from C&C since I got Ouendan 2 in the mail. I finished everything in the normal mode and started into hard. Great stuff, but so far some of the songs aren’t really sticking.

I finally got a chance to try out the 360 Elite and HD-DVD attachment on my home 1080p TV. Right away I could see a difference in appearance of the menu blades. Game and movie trailers also looked sharper although it depended greatly on the material. The only game I tried for a bit was C&C 3 and it did look a touch sharper. I’ll have to play more to know for sure. King Kong looks really good. I’m not sure if a new firmware improves this, but the menus and load times are much slower than watching Blu-ray movies on the PS3.

I’ve been mildly tempted to go out and pick up one or two HD-DVD discs, but that would be silly. I’m not sure I would ever own a HD-DVD player of my own. There’s been buzz recently with Toshiba lowering the price on their entry level player to $299. Combine that with offers of 2-7 free discs or other discounts like Amazon’s recent sale at $243 and you have lots of people on the fence jumping in. The only problem for me is that the entry level players are only 1080i. Ha, I can hear the chorus of 1080p is overrated already. Shut it. It matters to me and that’s all that counts in this vote.

What would have to happen for me to commit to TWO formats? Well:

1. HD-DVD would still have to be going strong holiday 2008
2. A good, stand alone HD-DVD players with 1080p drop below $200, $149 is the magic number
3. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy HD-DVD box set is released well before the Blu-ray. This would also have to be the brand new HD extras packed version Peter Jackson has been talking about and not another “milk the early adopter” release
4. The library of available Blu-ray titles is not satisfying enough by holiday 2008

Even so, I really hope one format is close to dead by early 2008. I thought HD-DVD was near dead, but these price cuts have really done a number on that perception. Even so, this news just came out regarding how much better the two Pirate movies on Blu-ray outsold the two Matrix collections.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

But the Matrix trilogy was 2-3 times more expensive than the Pirates movies, so the amount spent on each were about equal.

I'm still waiting for a format winner, though.