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Menelaus's blog

1:55 PM on 02.15.2010

Harmonix and 2K in bed?

I know that Harmonix has generally taken the "make those guitars compatible with everything" stance, but I think this may be a bit too far. Does the whammy bar rev your drill?


3:27 PM on 06.24.2009

Worms 2 XBLA dated and priced!!!

Team17 have just released via facebook that Worms 2 will be available July 1st on the Xbox Live Marketplace for only 800 MS Points.

Read more about the game here:

Read the official updates on their facebook fan page:


1:31 PM on 12.10.2008

You get what you pay for: A cautionary tale

Back in March, I decided that I wanted a Wii and an HDTV to go with it. I'd never owned a TV before, and didn't want to spend every last dime to get one, so I settle on Vizio. They seemed to be a middle of the road sort of brand, with above average reviews for their price bracket.

I purchased their 720p 42'' model at Sams because of the awesome return policy, although I obviously hoped I would never have to use it. Wrong. The backlight started bleeding so bad that you could even notice while bright colors were being displayed. Major issue, especially for gaming. Took it back after 3 months and swapped with another unit of the same model.

The new unit worked beautifully until a month ago, when all of a sudden I would get audio dropouts while playing the XBOX. Not a huge deal in most games, but I had just picked up Rock Band 2, so obviously, this issue wasn't going to fly. I hauled the unit back to Sams, just as the first, and with much hesitation they took it back.

Deciding that it was most like just a lemony model, I told them I'd pay the difference to step up to the 1080p 120Hz model. That was 30 days ago.

I got my first lock up this morning.

Maybe I should have just gotten a Samsung instead.   read

4:46 PM on 12.08.2008

Playtesting at Gearbox next week.

Just got an email inviting me to make the short drive to Plano to join a Gearbox Software playtesting session next week. Of course the sessions are in the middle of the week, in the middle of the day. No problem, I sent in my notice to my boss that I'd be taking a half day the moment I saw the email.

God, I hope we get to play Borderlands. Even if it's something totally crappy, just spending the afternoon at a game development house will be awesome.

Have any of you gotten the chance to do this before with a dev house?


11:41 AM on 10.15.2008

Drums 101 with RB2

I have a bone to pick with Harmonix; namely the fact that the Rock Band 2 controller has an ash neck, where my real Strat has a maple neck. In an already crowded living room, this discord between instrument and "instrument" is unacceptable.

Ok, whatever, I can't stay mad at you for long, guys.

So here's the real issue. I play piano and guitar, and have a solid ear and above average rhythm. That being said, I look like a 3 year old when playing drums on Rock Band. I am really hoping that this is because I don't own a copy of the game/drum set, and can't practice regularly. That's going to change this Sunday, however.

I need tips, guys. I'm tired of looking like a moron when I try to play the drums. My foot looks like it's stomping at invisible bugs, and my arms fly about all akimbo. People get hurt when I play fake drums, and it has to end.

My first plan is to not even play Rock Band songs. I'm just going to fire up the drum trainer and do play-a-longs with songs off the hard drive that I'm very familiar with, just to get the mechanics down. Maybe without a score and possible song failure looming, I'll be able to relax and get some rudimentary muscle memory in place.

Any tips from people that had their first drum experience via Rock Band?


This is me in my natural habitat:

11:09 AM on 09.12.2008

Confessions of a PC gamer

Yes, yes, I admit it. I have...CORRECTION...had a problem. For no explicable reason, I enjoyed the bottomless well of PC gaming and the associated hardware, so much so that I was doing full system upgrades every 4-6 months, just to eek out a few extra frames per second.

At least, I tell myself, this was back in the day; when PC games were GAMES! When console fanboys would admit that, yes, PC gaming was at the top of the gaming food chain (well, maybe I just made that part up). When playing a game on a console was for little boys and playing with WASD was for men. Those were days, idyllic and everlasting.

Until Crysis, for me at least.

That was the first game that showed me the folly of my ways. I wanted so badly to play Crysis maxed out, DX10 ablazin', volumetric clouds and particle physics out the ass, but suddenly, I didn't care anymore. I realized for the first time in a long time that games such as Crysis had become extremely boring, and that chasing specs was a waste of time (and money).

I was having a...crysis...of faith.

So I went to Samsclub and bought a 42'' TV and a Wii as a gift to myself for having this deep and profound revelation. Gaming was about to be fun and simple, no way around it. I bought SSBB and a used copy of Zelda: Twilight Princess. By time E3 '08 rolled around, I had had my Wii for about 4 months. I had about 10 hours put into Zelda. The day after Nintendo's press conference, I sold my Wii and bought an Xbox 360. If there was one thing being a PC gamer had taught me, it was that the focused companies come out of the heap with the spoils. Nintendo was not that company, and their library of shovelware proved it.

So here I am...a lifelong PC gamer, ending his first month with a current-gen console. I have to say, it's been pretty good overall. Of course I'm behind; I'm that guy, bugging my friends to play Halo 3 a year after they beat it. But I'm trying to stay on top of trends here...I have GTA4, although it tends to bore me to tears. It's been interesting transition to say the least.

I would be lying if I said I don't still jump on Steam when I get the withdrawal chills, though. *Say goodbye to your kneecaps, chucklehead! BONK*   read

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