This may sound like a minute detail, but it is just so elegant. The Xbox 360 can be powered on with either the bonus media remote (included in the first 1 million premium packages) or any controller. With the controller, you simple hold down the Xbox 360 logo button in the center, and both the controller and system turn on. The Xbox 360 Ring of Light begins rotating around the power symbol until it syncs with the controller(s), at which point the sections of the ring stay lit depending on the number of controllers connected. It’s so cool that it makes us smile.
Nintendo and McDonald’s have announced a deal to offer DS gamers free Internet access for gaming in restaurants across the United States. The service will allow users of the Nintendo DS console to play their games against other people the world over, all while stuffing their faces with Happy Meal goodness. About 6,000 McDonald’s chains currently offer wireless access for laptops, but there is a fee involved. Wayport will be providing the access points. Look for the service to go live on November 14th here in the states, and on the 25th in Europe as they try to capitalize on the Mario Kart DS and Tony Hawk SK8Land releases.
Read More | IGN
With more and more cell phones featuring location awareness GPS, more games utilizing the technology are coming into the forefront of mobile gaming. Several games have been released that take advantage of GPS for control. Imagine a Pac-Man styled game where each part of the maze (containing 3-5 of the 100+ pellets) was a city block, and the game board itself was a crowded downtown corridor. The interesting interaction here is how the physical world is suddenly drawn into the virtual by requiring the user to go running about in order to accomplish their goal. The two released games so far seem to be more focused on a battleship-style navel combat game where users can interact with other players and try to “torpedo” them down by guessing their current location on street maps. Gaming evolved, or revolutionized - you make the call!
Nintendo is looking to gather data on the types of internet connections people use by asking MyNintendo account members to download a small program that compiles network information off of the users PC and sends it back to Nintendo. In return, the small download becomes an Animal Crossing desktop clock once the information has been sent. The program retrieves and sends the following information:
- Your Modem and Router manufacturer and type
- The type of internet connection you have (DSL or Cable)
- How your PC connects to your router (if applicable)
- The model number of your router
- Time you start the connection
- Your IP Address
- Cookie information
- Total connecting time
- UPnP Information (Model name)
- UPnP Information (Model number)
- Connection origin code
- Destination server host name
- Destination server global IP Address
- Sending data CRC
If you’re a big Nintendo fan, this might be right up your alley, as the information will help Nintendo plan a good Wi-Fi service. However, as is the case with anything that gathers information and sends it to companies, download at your own risk.
Read More | Nintendo
Intec has finally released something a lot of hardcore gamers have been asking for since the dawn of wireless controllers: rechargeable wireless controllers for Xbox, PS2, and GameCube. The chargers are powered by the game console and you can recharge them while using the controllers as wired controllers - a nice feature for those all night LAN parties. The controllers charge in 4 hours, and get 60 hours of game-play per charge. Halo 2 Deathmatch anyone?
Gaming isn’t all about Nintendo, Microsoft, and Sony. Take the Megatouch Gametime for instance. This all-in-one touchscreen gaming machine seems that it would have everything going for it, aiming for the extremely casual gamer who might want a cool piece of technology in their game room. It has over 80 games built in to its frame, ranging from Strategy, Quiz & Word, Sports, Puzzles and Kid’s Club genres. It connects to the Internet either through an ethernet connection, or a wireless adapter. You can participate in online tournaments, or just have your scores put up on the network leaderboard. You can even play games in 11 different languages, and surf the net on the unit as well. Where is its downside? Aside from the casual appeal of its games, this retails at almost $3,800 USD. Ouch.
Read More | Megatouch Gametime
Sony has announced that the United States-specific upgrade to the PSP Firmware will become available August 12th. The upgrade can either be directly installed using the PSP Network Update feature (which requires a 802.11b hotspot connection) or downloaded from http://us.playstation.com/psp and installed via USB. Everything that was part of the Japanese release will be included in the American version, from the minor tweaks to the major features such as the web browser and photo sharing program. Additionally, those early-adopters who couldn’t wait and have already installed the Japanese version can install the American version directly over the top of their previous upgrade, thus un-voiding the warranty on their PSP, which isn’t technically allowed to run “unauthorized software.”
Read More | Sony’s PSP
Nintendo has chosen to begin the mainstream hype of its upcoming Wi-Fi service with a 1 minute trailer that will be run before copies of The Fantastic Four, The Dukes of Hazzard, Bad News Bears, Stealth, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and The Island. The trailer, titled “The Sad, Agonizing Tale of Bhunvan Ganguly,” will run between July 29th and August 25th. Rather than a detail-laden explosion, Nintendo has decided to employ some cinematic subtlety to generate interest. However, the ad does feature footage of the online Mario Kart DS and stresses world-wide connectivity. Be sure to catch the trailer on the big screen, or at online at the link below.
Read More | IGN
The white PSP has moved from rumor to official according to Sonys announcement at the Playstation Meeting 2005 today. The Ceramic White unit, which should now blend in perfectly with your iPod, will ship in Japan in mid-September. Additionally, Sony announced PSP firmware v2.0. This update, due in Japan this week, will include a web browser, a photo-swapping program, and an opportunity for hackers to make a fresh start, as many previous hacks will probably be addressed and rendered useless.
Rockstar’s latest offering is finally available for the PSP after being pushed back. The game is much like its bigger brothers with slight modifications such as a new quick race mode and wireless multiplayer. Overall the game seems to be just like the original version – slow load time and all. Racing fans of all ages will definitely not be disappointed when on the go with this game. Tackle on the career mode and trick out your ride or do a quickie whenever you want – no need to coax it either. The game is out now and can be yours in exchange for $49.99.
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