PlayStation Network information in the hands of hackers.

April 27th, 2011 at 12:16 am (Uncategorized)


It is easy to criticize Sony left and right over how they handled this issue. However it is hard to understand the circumstances involved in a massive international security breach. The legal ramifications alone must mean they have to tread with caution.

That said, they did know about the breach on Wednesday. Even though they brought in a security firm to investigate the breadth of the damage done, they still had an idea what the breach entitled. They were purposefully vague while the personal information (and possibly credit card numbers and billing addresses) of millions of users were in the hands of the hackers. A little bit of transparency would have been nice.

If you saved your information into your PSN or Qriocity account I would notify your bank about possible credit card fraud. Also be vigilant to email, phone and snail mail phishing attempts.

PlayStation Blog: Update on PlayStation Network and Qriocity.


Finally it will work on my HDTV.

April 26th, 2011 at 4:22 pm (Uncategorized)

Shopped Image

Yesterday the whole gaming world was abuzz with the announcement of an announcement from Nintendo. They will have a new console playable at E3 in 6 weeks. Something that we expected for months and have been talking about since 2009. Maybe the more exciting aspect of this announcement is that the console will be playable on the floor.

So far all we know for sure is that it will not be a 3D system and it will not be released before April 2012. Considering that the console will be playable to media at E3 I would guess a summer release. The rumour mill is undoubtedly on fire, if not already burnt down. Mock ups and shopped “leaked” photos are plastered everywhere (including above). Let us get away from that for a moment and talk about expectations.

Full disclosure: I wasn’t sold on the Nintendo Wii until last summer. I still feel it is incredibly gimmicky and under powered. That the only reason it sold so well was the motion control gimmick, the price point and recognizable and nostalgic 1st party games. Do not get me wrong though, I hear a lot of people really enjoy Wii fit. But I digress, I took the plunge last summer because I finally felt that there was enough backlog that I wanted to play and it’s a great casual party system.

So what do we expect from Project Café? A HD console built in 2012?

Better online support and market. I do not know if Wii supports online multiplayer. If it does I haven’t come across it. As for the market, it is slow, clunky and unintuitive. Definitely not a pleasurable experience. If the Wii 2 will be marketed as another casual gaming platform it just makes sense that it should enable a indie market to flourish for casual 15 dollar games. It sure would beat the hell out of the 30 dollar shovelware littering store shelves. I honestly think this is an area that is lacking from the Wii right now and it’s a must in 2012.

Graphics above the current standard. I am not someone who thinks graphics make or break a game, nor do rank consoles based on specs. However, if Nintendo is serious about being a contender they need to be prepared for the next Sony and Microsoft iteration. Otherwise they will be left in the dust five years from now. While Nintendo will decry that innovation is more important, I think the motion control gimmick will not be enough to carry them. How about the rumours of a 3DS-esque touch screen framed by the controller? I don’t think it’s possible if they want to keep the cost of the system low or maintain a profitable margin on hardware sales (which they like to do). The graphics need to be better unless the Wii 2 is only meant to last until the next generation of the Xbox or Playstation. As an aside, I think the hardware is available for Nintendo to create a powerful system at a decent price. Right now the Xbox and Playstation are seriously under performing on what should be possible from the hardware available today.

Better 3rd party support. Take a quick look at your Wii library. Most of those games are probably Nintendo made. Better hardware might bridge the gap and convince publishers to go back. Perhaps a more user friendly market will create a excellent casual gaming ecosystem. Honestly, I think the effort needs to come from Nintendo itself. Better support for 3rd parties and maybe less emphasis on it being just a “casual” system to try and penetrate the “hardcore” market.

Vitality sensor. No, just joking.

Those are just a few things that I would expect. In the end I will probably be dead wrong. Nintendo certainly knows a lot more than me when it comes to building a profitable, fun and successful console. However, will it be something that I will want to pick up on day one or wait 5 years like I did with their last system?

I recorded a 20 minute podcast over at Madness Brewing that discusses the above. Check if out if you want to hear more discussion on the new Wii between Jamie and myself.


hello world

April 22nd, 2011 at 6:04 pm (Uncategorized)

I have had an introduction message in the can for quite some time now. It’s been almost a month and I just never clicked the publish button. This is the same old thing that has happened to all my blogs in the past. I create a blog that is too narrowly focused and I lose interest trying to write with any regularity. Mostly, however, I aim for this unobtainable perfection. That is why the last post has sat in my dropbox folder for a month.

I first opted for a Tumblr account. Tumblr is easy and quick. A perfect simplicity, exactly what I am trying to aim for here. Get in and out and not sit and think about a post for a month. Unfortunately it is too simple and restrictive and so which much hesitation I fired up WordPress yet again.

So I wrote up my post. Check. I installed WordPress on my host. Check. Now all I have to do is publish and away we go. Back in the world of personal blogging! Wrong. I had to find the right template and install some cool widgets. I got lost in the minutia of getting everything perfect. It’s bad enough I’ve already re-written this very post again.

It’s easy to lose interest and faith in a project if you reach for perfection right away. I am not aiming for this here. This is a personal hub for everything I want to share and talk about. Programming, beer, video games, there are no predefined rules here. Right now there is a tacky layout and not much else… and I’m ok with that. I will add those pesky widgets next time.

I make no promises except one to myself: To press that damn publish button.