Saturday, March 29, 2008

Crown Royal, Cherry Coke Zero, and The Little Mermaid

Saturday again, finally, and what's this mean? Well, a wine making class of course. Fun, yes, yes. However, after hearing tales and experiences about one vice (wine) for near on five hours a guy wants to just go ahead and jump into another. Ahoy! we have a found game. The Little Mermaid for the Sega Genesis. This one's not for me however, it is for my guest game reviewer: Amy, as she picked it out. After a hour of playing I got "This game makes me annngggrrry!", "I must be missing something", "It's not so bad because you can go up and down, unlike Mario", and "You can't follow me in here you stupid clam!" That last one could be related to the title of this blog.

She is still playing quietly at the moment so I will jump in with what my thoughts are. First off, playing any Genesis game on a tube TV is a treat. The Little Mermaid is no exception. It's colorful and bright. The characters are larger and for the most part creatively designed. The level layout is put together well. Seems to be a fair amount of having to go 'here' to 'get to that' kind of game play, but it isn't annoying, but I'm not the one playing. Amy scored it a 6.0 out of 10.0 on gamespot, where i keep my catalog straight.

From what I remember about the movie I've got to say the game really has nothing to do with it. Nor does the illustration below, but both are alright with me.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Red Rings of Death

It happened. After setting up what is only the beginning of a video game shrine, I fire up the 360. Then, out of nowhere my heart drops to the floor and a feeling of fear and disbelief rushes through my soul. The red rings of death. Determined not to let it beat me I start searching for answers. No way was I going to let this beat me, not this day... not any other day. A few days later after tip toeing around the issue I go in for the trouble shoot. Unplug this, disconnect that, wrap towels around this, use soldering iron on that. Clear out this file, delete your profile, empty the cache, take down your firewall on your router.

What the hay man? Is this a console or a PC? It's funny about the towel trick, I mean you'll do anything to get it running again. I think this trick represents the IQ of most console gamers. That's a dig, but I'm one of them. Anyway, don't do that. Think. Is it overheating? Yes? Well, it sucks it does that, but take the necessary measures to make sure she can breathe and stay cool, and for goodness sake, don't leave it on for 48 hours straight, give it a break.

It's funny, I just got finishing reading an article about customer service in Consumer Digest and it mentions how a couple cell companies disconnect (cancel) the heavy users and repeat callers to their technical support and customer service teams. It's cold, I know, but hard to say I blame them. I know first hand that a very small percentage of customers disproportionately cost you. In Microsoft's case I believe they are throwing their hands in the air and just saying, send it back, please, stop being a jackass and just send it back. It probably costs them more in tech support and customer service labor then it does to just give you a brand new machine (It'd be an interesting cost analysis to look over). Personally, I think the problems the Xbox is having is mostly due to the user not caring for there console and therefore the effect is not understanding it... like me I guess.

The fix; stay calm, reconnect your brick making sure the brick and console can stay cool and can breathe in and out. And most importantly, make sure she is hooked up directly to power source that gives her plenty of consistent juice. i.e. one of your wall outlets. Worked for me.

Of course you may have to do all the other things I mentioned above too.

I do have a final quick question for Microsoft "Am I going to have to plan to drop a 220 three phase next to my washer and dryer to play your next console?" sheesh.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Bad Dudes vs. Dragon Ninja

It's Sunday, which means it's time for games, Dudes, Ninjas, laundry and Dragons. Ninja Dragons. Damnit, Dragon Ninjas (I'm still searching for dragons that have ninja abilities, that'd be pretty 'bad'). When I get the chance I peruse the net for game titles that spark an interest. Usually, it is a game that I don't recognize. Like "Liberty or Death" on the Genesis or "Kings Bounty". Not today however. I'm in for Bad Dudes verses the Dragon Ninja on the NES. I remember the game in the arcade simply as Bad Dudes, however, you do fight ninjas so the official title makes it all the more fun. This game as reached a sort of following because of the basic story; the president has been kidnapped by ninjas (I think we can all agree that there was a ninja problem in the '80s). The arcade version states that president "Ronnie" has been kidnapped, btw.

The NES port is barely playable. The flickering is atrocious, but I play on anyway to get to the famous ending. Bad Dudes the arcade game was a satisfying game because, even as a kid pumping quarters in to the cabinet, you can beat it. On the NES port the hit detection is poor and you can't play it two player (which is what made the arcade version fun). I miss the days when this kind of game was acceptable. I credit that to Rambo and Predator movies.

Anyway, find it, play it and have burgers with the president.

Saturday, March 15, 2008


Welp, a week has passed since I documented the weather predictions of our local stations... the results are in.

Not pretty, I wonder what an exceptible range is according to industry standards.

ABC6 was 4.8 degrees off every day
NBC4 was 4.75 off
10TV was 5 off

One thing to note is that NBC bumps the heat happiness. They call it too warm. ABC and 10TV call it colder then normal.

Now calling for precipitation is where they hacks are wrong. NBC4?! what? Just don't call for any thing to happen, you'd get it right more.

% of times right:

10TV - 50% right
ABC6 - 33%
NBC4 - 25% (are you kidding me

Conclusion: Yeah, I'm shutting this down. I have lots more data and different ways to look at the data. I mean, it's weather, the one thing I learned from all this is that with so many ways to look at the weather there may be a reason to justify the amount of time it gets on local news. I work in an industry where mountains of data has to be analysed, but it pales in comparison to weather.

What I've confirmed is that they don't get it right on a day to day basis. Even with their daily updates (which puts them off even more). Being off 5 degrees everyday is poor and looking at it again, none of them ever actually called it right any day during the week. ABC was 1 degree off on Wed... almost!!! but you were 9 degrees too warm the day before, too bad. Whatever! Christ! I'm done. May I never think of this again, and now may you always know that there is a 10 degree range when you get the weather.

NBC calling for 45 today? Well, hell that means somewhere between 40 and 50! WEATHER!!!

Monday, March 10, 2008


So after a long day at work, what better to do then to wash the day away with a little Alien on the 2600. I heard that it was rare and I'd never played it or read anything about it so I gave it a whirl. I played level one (pac-man)... then level two (frogger)... then back to 1 then back to 2 ... 1 then 2. repeat faster... 1,2. First 20th Century Fox licensed game... 1,2. Set the precedent for movie based games to come... 1,2,1,2,1,2,1,2,1,2
Level one

Level 2

that's it. and it is glorious.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Evening News Weather

Well, as expected the news was dominated by the weather... I was able to catch 10tv and NBC4. Both changed there predictions on this week and seriously, I'm loosing my mind trying to keep up with this bull. I've got work tomorrow to get me away from this, thank goodness. Anyway, so far neither has updated there websites. Speaking of which... NBC4, drop the 'storm team' BS, it is all over your site and broadcast. It's alarmist behavior and the graphic is terrible. ABC 6... shame on you. Your site is terrible, video ads for Ohio State off site campus is annoying as hell.

10tv Weather off to the races (already)

Right out of the gates we have 10tv. What happened to that snow today? no? I understand correcting the weather to get it accurate, but come on.

Columbus Weather Team!

So what's going to happen here is I am going to keep track of the jokers that call themselves weather men and women. Seriously, we had a lot of snow yesterday so the news was on all morning... I think it is normal to take a look at the screen when they say something like ' ok, welp we can expect a big melt over the next few days!!!' Well, after doing that a few times I noticed the figgin' forecast changing just about every time. Not just later down the week, but the next day? Is that a snowflake I see on sunday? That's today. I'll keep an eye out for it. I'm looking forward to the 50's later this week as well. 

NBC 4 here in Columbus has what they call Live Titan Radar (WSI) which is used by CNN, FOX, NBC and Bloomberg TV. It seems as though Jym Ganahl is running the show.

10tv has Chris Bradley the old standby Doppler Radar.

ABC 6 has Jerry Martz and Accu on his side. 

You know looking at these things they don't really vary all that much for the most part, but in a few spots they do. There also is another reason for posting this stuff up... among all the ridiculous things that come with predicting the weather on local news I know that these tv news people are incredibly vain. Let's see if/when they google their names and get this.

Hopefully, I'll have the time to put data coherently into a way that is trackable and fair. We'll see.

Let the games begin.