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2005 Hardware Review Xbox 360

Next Generation published an article earlier today that does a good job summarizing what the big three have been up to this year regarding hardware. The article mentions everything from PS2’s $149 fixed price to the Xbox 360’s launch shortages. And naturally, the article also includes talk of Nintendo’s Revolution controller.

While the article doesn’t feature any new content, it’s certainly interesting to look back and see what Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft were up to this year. Reading about what unfolded at this year’s E3 does bring back some fond memories but in all honesty, it just makes us anticipate E3 ‘06 that much more.

Read More | Next Generation


We just got done messing around with the GameDr. Motorized UMD Cartridge Cleaner, and we must say that it is impressive. For $20 USD, this ultra-portable device cleans dust, dirt, and fingerprints from your UMD discs in a very ingenious way. The UMD hooks on to the cleaner using a magnet, and a piece of cloth aligns perfectly into the notch on the underside of any UMD game or movie. We put up a video, which you can see above, so you can see how it looks in motion. We have a couple of other products we will be putting up in video form as well.

By the way, if you like the above format with the video preview, go ahead and digg this story. I would love to see how popular this feature might be.

Read More | UMD Cleaner Product Page

PlayFeed PSP i-Volution

Okay, let’s be serious for just a moment. We know that the Sony PlayStation Portable is one heck of a portable gaming beast. However, it isn’t all fun and games when your $250 gaming device takes a tumble, leaving with with a shiny, black brick. Protection of the PSP is important, and some of us want something just a bit more elegant than that black sheath that the PSP ships with. Today, the question we pose is: Just how much are you willing to spend on protecting your investment? For example, the Vaja i-Volution case for the Sony PSP. Just looking at it you can tell that it will not only protect your PSP, but it will keep you stylish as well. Oh, and it had better - the thing sells for $180 USD, roughly $70 less than the cost of the PSP itself.

Is it worth it? We do know that Vaja makes some very high quality iPod cases, and wondered how they would do with the PSP. Journey with us as we take a visual tour of the Vaja i-Volution.

Click to continue reading Vaja i-Volution PSP Leather Case

PSP Giga Pack

Sony is looking to have a few heads turn their direction - and off of the Xbox 360 - this holiday season with the PSP Giga Pack. For a suggested retail price of $299 USD/$349 CND, the limited bundle will be available in November with a bunch of accessories. Included are the Sony PSP system, a 1GB Memory Stick PRO Duo, battery pack, AC Adapter, USB cable, and a PSP stand. The Giga Pack PSP ships with the 2.0 version firmware, so it is ready to surf the web on a WiFi signal out of the box. The PSP Value Pack will remain on store shelves at a price of $249 USD.

Read More | Yahoo!

Sony PSP 2.50Attention all PSP owners: there’s a new firmware update available from Sony, that being version 2.50. There’s a few updated features, including network security, but we all know this is just a way for Sony to patch the “downgrading” ability of the earlier firmware. So go ahead and update your PSP through the usual method, unless you care about all that homebrew stuff.

Read More | Sony PSP Software Update Page

Trojan Bricks PSP Nintendo DSThis is never good - be on the lookout for trojans that, once installed on your portable gaming device, will render it completely and utterly useless. On the PSP front, it appears to be a hack to allow one to play homebrew games on the unit, but take note:

Today Symantec Security Response experts identified the first Trojan that targets Sony Playstation Portable systems, Trojan.PSPBrick, as a Category 1 threat (Category 5 being the worst). As of today, there are no confirmed infections.

Sad - but Nintendo DS owners must also beware:

Try to avoid anything by the likes of r0mloader (supposedly named that way to combat piracy) or taihen (which was said to be a hentai-filled ROM). This little Trojan homebrew will reportedly wreck your DS (unless you preemptively ran FlashMe) and “affect your GBAMP firmware and/or your SuperCard Firmware,” too.

So the question remains - who is doing this? Hackers with too much time on their hands? Or are representatives at Nintendo and Sony putting these out in the wild to hinder the homebrew community?

Read More | 1Up
Read More | Joystiq

SanDisk EA Game SaveIt looks like EA and SanDisk are getting into the business of selling PSP game saves and add-ons as a value-add with Memory Stick PRO Duo cards, and they are starting this venture with Madden 2006. Contained in a feature called Game Save, the bonus content will be available on SanDisk Memory Stick PRO Duo Game cards that are distributed in North America. There is no additional cost for the Game Saves on SanDisk cards, which is a nice plus. The companies have gone out of their way to make sure that buyers know that, despite the Game Save, there is still plenty of room left over for videos, music, images, and the like. With the Game Save content on SanDisk cards, players can unlock features that would normally take much time and high scoring to initiate. The bonus material grants users 100 points toward a new mode called “Assistant Coach Franchise,” a game goal system that is exclusive to the PSP version of Madden NFL 06.

A Fix For Stuck PSP Pixels?

Posted by Devin Categories: PSP,

PSP Stuck Pixel FixGot a stuck pixel on your PSP?  If so, this program just might be the solution to your woes. According to a thread at PSP-Vault, running a video that flashes red, green, and blue over and over again can fix the stuck pixels by causing them to make rapid changes repeatedly.  It has worked for about 60% of the people that have tried it, so if you’re willing, give it a shot…what do you have to lose?

Read More | PSP Vault
Download Video | PSP Pixel Fixer

GTA Liberty City Stories

The website for Rockstar’s new installment in the GTA series, Liberty City Stories, along with a new trailer for the game, has finally hit the internet. The story of Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories takes place 3 years before the events of Grand Theft Auto 3, where we find that our main character Toni Cipriani has returned from laying low for the past 4 years after taking out a rival mob boss for the Leone crime family. Having welcomed him back with open arms, the Don Salvatore Leone is putting Toni to back work under the watchful eye of Vincenzo Cilli, one of his most trusted capo’s. Portland is the first of the three major Liberty City islands. As rich in industry as it is in underworld dealings, Portland is home to Don Salvatore Leone himself and where Toni gets re-acclimated to his previous life of crime. Portland is the seedier downtown area of Liberty City that has everything an aspiring thug could ask for from the temptations of the Red Light district to the dimly lit docks of Trenton, both perfect for taking care of bodies in various fashion. Fans of Grand Theft Auto 3 will instantly be familiar with such neighborhoods as St. Marks, Chinatown, Atlantic Quays and Hepburn Heights but as it’s 3 years earlier, some things may not be as you remember. Whether you need a good time or a place to hide out from the feds, Portland has what you are looking for.

Jump down to check out some screen shots.

Click to continue reading GTA: Liberty City Stories Site and Trailer


Well, it appears that the first official PSP Beta Test has begun. This time it’s for SOCOM Fireteam Bravo.  There isn’t much detail to give yet because the emails were just sent out tonight.  People who were part of the SOCOM II beta test seem to have gotten the emails first, than it was sent to other members of Sony’s G.A.P. (Gamer Advisory Panel). Once I get my beta disc, I’ll post some screenshots and impressions. Until then, read more for information about the game.

Read More | IGN