Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Recent gaming

It sounds like a lot, but all this game playing was spread out over the last month and a half or more:

Castlevania Dawn of Sorrow/Order of Ecclesia – I finished this last week in anticipation of Order of Ecclesia. Dawn’s reputation as a top of the line Castlevania is very well deserved. I decided to skip over Portrait of Ruin because I was so excited to get to Ecclesia and the verdict so far is…I need a break from this type of game. I’ll come back to it later, maybe even start over too.

Fallout 3/Little Big Planet – If all goes well with shipping, I should have Fallout 3 and LBP in my hands tomorrow. Even with the great reviews, I’m very worried if Fallout 3 will do it for me because Oblivion bored me. It does sound like the story is much better and game is more focused so fingers are crossed. I was really in the mood for LBP last week, this week not so much. I’ll pop it in for a quick taste when I can.

Wii Music – Amazon was handing out $20 back for buying Wii Music, so at $30, I took a chance. My mom seemed to like it ok, but the wife was not digging it. The mode everyone did love was Hand bell Harmony, but you can only unlock five songs for it. I gave the game a shot, but it has since been resold.

Rock Band 2 – I didn’t play much of Guitar Hero III (difficulty balance was way off for me) and completely skipped the original Rock Band. I guess that made me really want to get back into something and Rock Band 2 is fantastic. I’m playing with the wireless guitar from GHIII right now and want some drums badly. Guitar Hero World Tour Band Kit is on my Christmas list so hopefully Santa will let me get my drum on over the break.

Valkyria Chronicles – Downloaded the demo the other day and liked it a lot. The free movement and manual aiming are interesting mechanics for a tactical RPG. The game was already high on my wanted list and this demo pretty much sealed the deal.

Future prospects
There are way too many games to check out, but it would be great if I magically had the time (and money) to play the new Prince of Persia, FarCry 2, Gears of War 2, Quantum of Solace, Tomb Raider Underworld (demo is out today!), Dead Space, and Mirror’s Edge. As a super dark horse candidate, the PS3 Naruto game looks damn good. I know nothing of the anime or manga. All I know is the PS3 Naruto looks exactly like a controllable cartoon. It's not just the graphic quality, it's how the characters move and react to your input. And it’s mostly a fighting game and I like me some fighting.

Monday, October 13, 2008

GBA surgery

I’ve always wanted to use the classic NES GBA SP more, but the screen was just so much darker than the newer SP model. I still have a good number of GBA games and prefer to play them on a proper GBA instead of the DS.

After a quick bit of internet research, I found it was possible to transplant the innards of the newer SPs with the NES GBA. Although the focus of this article I found is about removing the guts in order to paint the shell, it was still invaluable since it included photos and very good instructions.

All told it took me a good hour to delicately replace the screens and circuit board (you can’t just replace the screens or it won’t work). I also switched the batteries to be on the safe side. If you plan on doing this yourself, definitely refer to that link in the paragraph above. You’ll also need to order a Y-screwdriver (don’t pay more than $6 shipped). Other bits of info I can share from my experience is that re-connecting the screen to the circuit board is very delicate work.

I’m super happy with how everything turned out. Highly recommended!