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MuRRaY's blog

9:10 PM on 08.30.2008

It's Been A While...

So maybe I haven't been very active on Dtoid lately, however that may chance as the summer draws to an end. Finishing the MLG season off within the next couple of months, I have more time for school and gaming (work is overrated!).

A few friend's of mine are running a 72 hour gaming marathon which is currently in progress, looking to make some money for the kids with the Child's Play charity. Be a lad and watch them as they get drunk, play video games and just enjoy whatever you throw at them.

The glory that is Gamefly has taken over my life as I have never enjoyed gaming so much. Being able to enjoy some time with Rainbow Six Vegas 2, Battlefield Bad Company, and soon Mercenaries 2 is awesome. Expect many more reviews soon as I step back into the general console gaming area to throw my two cents into everything gaming.

For now, I'm gonna go steal some gold from the mercenaries and hit up some achievements while I'm at it ;-)

F.Y.I. If you would like to add me on XBL then go ahead and add my GT on the right side of the page. Just be sure to send a message as to where you found my GT (a.k.a. MLG, GotFrag, GameSpot, Dtoid, etc.)

Toodles!   read

12:44 PM on 04.26.2008

Zero Frequency In Brooklyn

Finding things to do in my wait for GTAIV, this is the perfect opportunity to chill and listen to some great music from an awesome band.

FOR ALL OF MY BROOKLYN-ITES THAT WANT TO HEAR SOME GOOD MUSIC, come on down to the Wicked Monk in Bay Ridge for a hell of a show by Zero Frequency and The Primal Divide.

The Wicked Monk - 21+
8415 5th Avenue
Brooklyn, New York
$5 Admission (If you can't afford this stop smoking crack ;-D)

Now excuse me while I continue to wait for GTAIV and get ready for one hell of a night.   read

10:53 AM on 04.23.2008

GTAIV Couldn't Hold Out For Long...

With only a week until the release of GTAIV, many people thought that Rockstar had done a fantastic job keeping the insider information at bay, not even showing the public any game play footage at all to further build the hype.

As of today, there are videos circulating everywhere with game play footage by a certain individual who received the game early. Now many are wondering "So we can see how the game looks, why care?"

Well, that's not all that has been done. Aside from all of the hype being exposed to the fans, the game has reportedly been uploaded to torrent sites. Yup, that's right! Those with modded systems will be able to play the game for free before any of us paying fans even see the game on store shelves!

That's a total pain in the arse, considering many of us have held out so long by only eating what Rockstar has fed us. I would understand a couple of people getting a copy from work (hey, I worked at GameStop before so I know about that) yet this is overkill.

If you want to release torrents, at least be fair to us fans and release them on the day of release @ 12am.

Anyway, it's about 5 days until the morning of April 29 and the hype is now larger than ever. After seeing quite a bit of the soundtrack (and being a classic rock fan) I have begun to fall in love with this game even more. Joe Walsh (of Eagles fame), Elton John, Queen, Pink Floyd... what more can I ask for in a game soundtrack.

I know exactly where I will be one week from Tuesday, in front of my TV gettin my GTA on.   read

9:53 AM on 04.19.2008

GTAIV Release & XBox Live Update

Within 9 days the release of Take-Two's new blockbuster game GTAIV will be hitting Grand Theft Auto fans throughout the world. Being the first new Grand Theft Auto game in over three years time, there is plenty expected out of it given the amount of time developers have had. According to recent reviews, the game is turning out to be what everybody was hoping and then some, a total hit.

This sounds great, but we will not know totally until a copy is in our hands and we are able to jump into this so-called revolutionary sandbox crime simulator. I, for one, am an enormous fan of the Grand Theft Auto series with my love being established by GTAIII. With it's truly revolutionary open-ended gameplay and amazing detail to date, it grabbed me and had me playing as much as I could until my heart was content.

To make this release even more interesting, I am planning on teaming up with fellow D-toid member dronkmunk to bring one hell of a feature that will combine the essence of each Grand Theft Auto to date. Not only that, but I will be doing my own review of the game, much in the same style that I have been reviewing video games for GotFrag DPAD.

For now, check out this pretty nifty piece I found involving one of my favorite radio shows Opie & Anthony as they speak with Lazlow of GTA about the game.

To break away from GTAIV release information, there was an interesting little update this afternoon when I booted up my XBox 360. After updating, I began to look online for information behind this update. NADA. Nothing at all so far about WHAT this update is covering. Perhaps preparing for GTAIV in some way (one would only figure before a major release)?

Not too long after my update, I received a message from XBox stating:

"Xbox LIVE will be unavailable for approximately 8 hours on April 21st 2008 to upgrade the service starting: 02:00 PDT, 09:00 GMT and 18:00 GMT+9."

Again, what exactly are they updating? Not too sure. By the looks of it, it can be a rather helpful download as they are going to be changing service for over 8 hours, so let's hope for the best!

In the meantime, if anyone has any information regarding these updates then please just let me know as I am curious, and don't forget to keep an eye out for the collaborated work of dronkmunk and myself within the next week.

Good Day D-toiders!   read

5:49 PM on 04.16.2008

GHIII And Rock Band: MuRRaY's Perspective

Original Story - GotFrag DPAD

The world of video games and entertainment was changed forever on November 7, 2005. Seeming like just another release to some, others saw the future of rhythm-based games in Guitar Hero for the Playstation 2. Within weeks, this new game was in a large number of households and was accepted by the public as perhaps one of the most innovative game's since 'PaRappa The Rappa' (see old-school PS1). This is something nobody has seen on a console before. It was so different that people went crazy for it. The developers had one goal -- to reach everyone who likes music. Obviously, this is a very large demographic, and new company RedOctane had figured out a winning recipe.

By the following year, everyone was waiting for the release of Guitar Hero II. Who didn't want to be a rocker? Pick up a fictional guitar, pick from a large number of popular, known songs, and rock out! Strictly being there for entertainment purposes, people picked up on this factor and behold... Guitar Hero parties were born.

Becoming one of the quickest selling games in the history of video games, everyone and their sibling wanted Guitar Hero this past holiday season. Some call it hype, others call it pure genius. Myself, I call it quality. Where else can you get a game with the challenge of Guitar Hero while keeping to the roots of American culture? Music, video games, and superstars.

Before long, Guitar Hero was taken into competition by tournaments such as WSVG and WCG. After watching one performance at the WSVG, it was purely entertaining to watch the player, who clearly knew the game very well, dance around much like a rock star and perform for the crowd. Hell, rock legend Vince Neil from Motley Crue was on hand in WSVG Dallas to help choose a winner. Overrated some may say, however competitors would show you how truly complicated the game would be as they perform the hardest songs with style.

From what I've heard, some may consider this game a rehash of Simon. Okay, understandable. Colors matching colors, "simon says," I get it. Problem is, Simon never lasted as long as 10 minutes for one game, and it has never held the complexity of the combinations like in a quick run on "Through the Fire and Flames" by Dragonforce on Expert. Surely, Simon was rather popular back in it's time with it's simple formula that would redefine memory. However, one cannot honestly sit down, watch someone playing a song like "Pride and Joy" on Expert, then straight out memorize it. This game relies on total hand-eye coordination and penalizes greatly on slow reaction times. Don't believe me? Try to play Raining Blood with your eyes closed on Expert.

Following the immense success of Guitar Hero III, we were presented with... ROCK BAND.

Following the classic formula of Guitar Hero, new elements were added in the form of drums and singing mechanics. With the amount of fun had in this game alone, people would bring Rock Band to fraternity parties, New Year's Eve parties, bachelor parties, and anywhere that had a number of people together. When combining the number of people performing, you can be sure that there will be plenty of fun to be had as people laughed and cried during performances of their favorite songs as well as some all time classics (insert Bon Jovi song).

Looking for guitar/drumming lessons for these games? No need to get em, luckily for all players these games are pick-up-and-play. Anyone can start on Easy and work their way up to Expert if they get to know the game enough. I'm sure not many boast themselves as true guitarists after beating Guitar Hero III on Expert, however playing the game has definitely given many the determination to perhaps learn an instrument. After tearing up the Rock Band career on drums, I myself have decided to get myself on a drum set and just enjoy the finer points of creating your own music. Much like my Guitar Hero start, I am an amateur for now but not for very long. If anything, these games have given the average gamer a reason to get up and go learn something new in their lives -- something that they can truly enjoy.

Overrated? Over-hyped? I'll let the millions of copies sold tell the story here, along with the millions of happy fans enjoying perhaps one of their favorite games of all-time. And if anyone has anything to say against that, you can count myself along with those fans.

(If you're looking for the cause of this piece, check out my colleague, Iran White's GHIII and Rock Band: No bite, all hype below).

/end rant   read

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