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Savant's blog

12:59 PM on 06.26.2008

A simple message from the Internets to Blizzard

Stay awhile, and listen.   read

8:46 AM on 04.30.2008

Get me an ambulance named after an 8-bit console! STAT!

(Photo taken outside The Spectrum in Philadelphia, PA)

I can just imagine the ice Climbers come out the back to bring the stretcher, Dr. Mario is present for on-site care, and the dude from Excitebike is driving.   read

7:41 AM on 04.11.2008

I've recently discovered eBay. No, really!

It's been quite the week. As of late, I have recently spent more time scouring eBay and bidding on things more than I ever thought I would. Within the course of just a few days, I have bought the following (with a bit of patience) dirt cheap;

Dark Cloud (PS2)
Dark Cloud 2 (PS2)
Lunar: Silver Star Story Complete (PS1)
Lunar 2: Eternal Blue Complete (PS1)
Vagrant Story (PS1)
Final Fantasy Anthology (PS1)
Final Fantasy Chronicles (PS1)
Final Fantasy Origins (PS1)

Notice something? Yep, they're all older RPGs. For whatever reason, I'm on such an RPG kick with the old PS1/PS2. All of these games listed above I have found on eBay for a lot less than I ever thought possible. If I would have bought them all retail when they first came out, I'd be paying close to $350+. However, I paid only a third of that price in total.

Now, I'm sure this isn't any new revelation or some well-kept secret of the Innernets, but I will say that my overall shopping experience has been very, very good with eBay. If I were to buy these games used today at a local GameStop or GameCrazy, I'd probably get shafted pretty badly; both on price and condition. All the games I have listed above came complete and in near-mint state.

I think my eBaying is pretty much done with now, as I've much to play. How about the rest of you? What have you bought off of eBay?   read

11:23 AM on 03.12.2008

WANTED: Culdcept SAGA Players of the Communitoid!

(VISIT THE FORUM POST - Click this!)

Yeah, I know. Some of you out there right now are simply groaning at some of us here. "Please, shut up about Culdcept. You're ruining my SMASH." Well, too bad. :) This might've been something better suited for the forums, but I figured I'd begin here first and foremost.

Basically, this is a recruiting blog o' sorts. I am looking to get together a small list of folks here on Destructoid that own, love, and play Culdcept SAGA on Xbox LIVE. As of right now, we know of 6 people that play;

Savant - x MikeZilla x
Dale North - DaleNorth
CronosBlade - CronosBlade
CJPKiller - cjpkiller
Conrad - SenorRoachypops
Hitogoroshi - Hitogoroshi(and some numbers?)

We've got a few matches together already and they've been nothing short of a blast. However, if someone ain't around, I'd like to get more people together or possibly start setting up a small Blind Book tourney if we get enough folks.

So, if you own Culdcept SAGA and have an Xbox Live account, please let us know! We'd be more than happy to get some matches together. Leave your gamertag in the comments and I will update the list accordingly. :)   read

10:43 AM on 03.10.2008

Castle Crashers Toys - A Review

As you folks may or may not know, I recently bought a set of these little guys over at The Behemoth's online store. They used to be exclusive to the lucky few of us who get the chance to go to Cons, but as of the previous holiday, they're available online to the masses -- which is a good thing considering how undeniably awesome the knights are.

But is the full set worth $60 (or $20 per knight?) Read on, my good friends, and I'll explain my personal thoughts about the little guys (and include a few pictures along the way.)

As pictured above, you can see the Castle Crashers all encased in their respective plastic casings and atop their mighty display pedestals/weapon holders. This isn't how they come shipped, mind you. The way you'll actually receive the little knights is inside these plastic cases filled with packing peanuts and a tiny white box which has the knight, the pedestal and their weapons wrapped in plastic. It takes a few moments to get everything sorted out, but that's more a gripe of mine than anything else.

Right out of the gate, you'll notice the construction of the Castle Crashers is solid. These stout little guys are (fairly) poseable and look cool no matter what position you put them in. Now, what I mean by "fairly" is that their arms didn't really raise as far as I thought they would -- because their ginormous heads get in the way of their shoulders. No matter, you're still given enough play to pose them the way you want 'em. For those curious, the articulation points are in the neck, waist, arms, and hands. The hands might seem a bit rigid at first, but they'll become normal after a few movements.

Let's move on to the items the knights with. Each knight comes with their respective colored shield and four equally lethal weapons; a bloody sword, a bloody axe, a spiked mace, and, uh, a frozen fish. The weapons are really well done and look great. I'm not really a fan of the shields, as they don't seem to stay in the pose you want them to stay in, but just as before, that's more a gripe than anything else. All weapons can be placed in the pedestal that the knights come with for easy (and fashionable) storage, so no need to worry about losing 'em.

Speaking about the pedestal, I have one last issue -- there is a little nub in the middle of the stand that holds the knights in place (they have a small hole in their left foot) However, it just seems that this hole and nub don't like to fit together for some reason. It takes a bit of muscling, but you can get it to fit nice and snug. I just get a bit worried when placing the guys on the stand that I'm gonna break 'em. But, as said, they're constructed very well and have a good durable feel.

So, let me sum up all my mildly coherent ramblings into one paragrah. The Castle Crashers toys are by far my new favorite figures. Granted, I don't own that many to begin with, but, they've certainly exceeded my expectations in terms of quality. The pricetag might be a smidge high, but keep in mind that you're buying something that is (supposedly) a limited release and will also help The Behemoth pay their bills in the long run.

I highly recommend these figures to anyone who enjoys this sort of thing, They're a great addition to any collection and $60 for the full set isn't so bad, really.

Now let's just hope The Behemoth can release Castle Crashers sometime soon. :)   read

11:24 AM on 03.03.2008

My newfound addiction: Culdcept SAGA (X360)

Oh, hai Communitoid! Been awhile since I've been around, I know. My apologies for being a shadow in the mist. Rest assured, I'll be back to my old self again once things cool off in my life.

But, lend me your ear (or eye, as it were) for the moment, and let me blather about how insanely awesometastic Culdcept SAGA for the Xbox 360 turned out to be.

And by "turned out to be" I mean that I was rather surprised by it, since it came completely out of left field. Like most of you (some of you?) I downloaded the demo off XBL Marketplace, played it once or twice, and didn't think it was all that great. Then again, I had NO idea what the hell I was doing at that time. A few weeks past, and I randomly picked up the demo again and finally everything clicked once I read a review somewhere that said "Just think of it like Monopoly with a bunch of monsters for houses."

After playing the demo over and over, I was determined to rent the game to see if it would hold water (and be worth the psuedo-bargain pricetag of 40 bones.) Here's where my own plight begins -- I had it #1 in my GameFly GameQ -- but for whatever reason, GameFly flipped me the figurative bird and sent the #5 game in my queue (PGR4 for those curious.)

I called three rental joints around town -- none of them had the damn game to rent. What the hell? This game just came out in February! Disappointed, I realized I would have to wait for GameFly to come through.

But I'm a very impatient person, so I did what any gamer would do -- I bought the damn thing on a whim after seeing it at the mall. I was a bit worried that I might've blown my hard-earned $40, but after diving into the game headfirst for a good 8 hours over the past two days, I can delightfully report that the game is as addictive as[insert something REALLY addictive here]!

The game is rather time consuming, so don't be thinking you'll be blazing through encounters like Puzzle Quest. However, you can suspend your game in the middle, so no worries there. Nonetheless, once you get a handle on all the intricacies and complexities Culdcept SAGA has, you'll be hooked on building your Book (deck) and constantly begin thinking up new and interesting ways to make your opponent cry, curse, and complain.

All in all, the core mechanics of the game are really what drew me in. There's a steep learning curve here, but there is also a lot of rewarding fun to be had once you get over the hump. It's a shame that this game will fall through the cracks with so many gamers, but I figure I'd at least let'cha folks know how I feel.

If you've got a spare $40, I highly suggest giving this one a chance. It really is all its cracked up to be.

(Own this? Why not play me on Xbox Live? My 'tag is x Mikezilla x)   read

9:10 AM on 01.24.2008

I'll take a Rock Band with my Snickers [photo]

The above photo was taken last night using my cell phone at a local Blockbuster Video. I was there to return Clerks and rent Mallrats when I took a look at the candy aisle. Granted, I had done this many times before, but something just didn't seem right...

They're friggin' selling Rock Band in the candy aisle these days? Are you fucking kidding me?

Need I say anymore? Discuss.   read

7:54 AM on 12.06.2007

I think I fixed my Guitar Hero lag issue. Here's how:

As some of you may or may not know, I have been having a hell of a time trying to calibrate the lag with GH3. Constant tweaking, recalibrating, tweaking some more was yielding no consistent result. So, just for the hell of it, I tried playing on Hyperspeed 2 and 3, and believe it or not, I finally hit the sweet spot.

Granted, this won't help me in Online play at all, or anyone else that comes over to the house, but it really made a huge difference in my timing and it actually synced things up rather nicely.

It's strange, I know. It's not 100% perfect, but I'm able to get about 85% on TTFaF on Hard, so I think it is as good as it can be for now. :)

I have my offset set to 25ms and use Hyper 3 for Hard and Hyper 2 for Expert.

For those who don't know, to enable Hypserspeed, do the following
- Go to Options
- Go to Cheats
- Go to Enter Cheat
- Strum the following notes : O, B, O, Y, O, B, O Y   read

8:25 AM on 11.30.2007


In a time of need. In a time of war. In a time of poverty. America needs someone they can turn to to right the wrongs of our current El Presidente. Yes, I am indeed talking about Niero and Ron "Various Nicknames" Workman.

America needs a Cuban wearing a metal helmet made from air-conditioning parts and a backwater genius who sold lemons as a young, black child.

The economy is in the crapper, this we know. But with GONZALES and WORKMAN at the helm, we can rest assured that they will turn this ship around and put it on the right direction for a better tomorrow! (laden with hookers, beer, and also, cocks.)

So I am asking YOU Destructoid community! Vote Destructoid, and you'll vote with your balls for the first time.


(Not paid for by the committee to get Niero and Ron Workman elected to office. They have not approved nor endorsed this message in any way. I just feel that America would be better with them... or maybe a sock puppet, or something. Is anyone even reading this?)   read

9:20 AM on 11.29.2007

WTF?! GH3 "Calibrate Lag" option only calibrates my frustration.

Yep. I'm still screwed when it comes to fixing the lag issues with GH3 on my new set. I own two LG LCDs, and both of them have lag issues with my Elite and GH. I've run the calibrate lag tool a multitude of times, both strumming with the video and with the sound, and I can't get it to a happy median.

Does anyone else in the community have this issue? Does anyone have any honest tips on how to fix the problem?

I'm running a 360 Elite with HDMI into the set I just spoke about, if that helps any. (Though I'm sure it doesn't.)

Any help would be appreciated.

In other news, I can pass TTFaF on Hard everytime now. :) (Horribly.)   read

9:17 AM on 11.27.2007

Oh, hai! Is it can it be HDTV time now, plz?

Yep. I took the plunge and picked up a sweet 32" LCD HDTV by LG for a cool $599 at Boscov's (LINK)

I was a bit worried when we first unpacked and hooked up the badboy, because the sucker's speakers were crackling. Turns out, my 360 Elite defaulted to Dolby 5.1 sound when I used the HDMI input. I switched it to Digital Stereo and it sounds great. :) (I nearly had a heart attack prior to this, though. It was an adventure and a half to actually get the damn thing.)

I highly recommend this HDTV right now. It's a $1,200 set (Boscov's site is incorrect, check others.) going for $599, and the sale ends today!   read

7:22 AM on 11.21.2007

Question: What game isn't repetitive? All games are.

(LOLCats image is not in relation to below text. I just think it is funny.)

I gots me a question for you, folks. We all hear in game reviews "This game is reptitive. It sux0rz." This was touched on slightly by our own Rev. Tony in his recent Assassin's Creed review about how repetitive the game becomes. But I got to thinking -- I honestly love Assassin's Creed. I'm hooked on that shit like a junkie. It's repetitive, yes. But my question is simple; what game isn't repetitive?

In all games there is one specific core gameplay element or elements that the rest of the title is built around. These core elements are used over and over and over, but sometimes we fail to take notice because they are presented to us in fresh and varying fashions throughout the gaming experience.

I am looking for some open discussion on this one. Perhaps this would've been something better suited for the forum, but I'd like to see the community response here first. Thoughts?

(The main reason I'm asking this question is simple. If all games are repetitive in some sense, why even state so in a review if it is common knowledge?)   read

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