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pedrovay2003's blog

Ralph Baer passes away at 92
4:34 PM on 12.07.2014
Dark Souls II for PS4, XOne and PC DirectX 11 Announced [REPOST: IT SUCKS NOW]
7:51 PM on 11.25.2014
Super Smash Bros. Wii U: One Day In
2:48 PM on 11.22.2014
console commands, but that shouldn't have to be something we have to mess with through text, and the lack of actual visual customization is kind of a twist of the proverbial knife. Not only that, but some of the scene transitions look really weird without that super-widescreen aspect ratio. Still, the game is graphically beautiful, and I'm sure it'll be updated to be a bit more user friendly in the future (Bethesda has already confirmed that patches are coming).

The thing that gets me is the framerate: Initially, it's locked to 30fps. It can be unlocked with one of the console commands I mentioned earlier, but I don't recommend changing it, since the framerate is really janky in The Evil Within. I have a pretty capable desktop now, and after trying both locked and unlocked, I swear, there are parts that won't go above about 25fps even if I set the resolution to 800x600; yes, I'm serious.  This is probably my biggest problem with the game so far, and I wish I had a PS4 or Xbox One to compare it to, just for curiosity's sake.

The Evil Within: Quick PC Thoughts
6:03 AM on 10.15.2014
Modding the DualShock 4
2:32 PM on 06.02.2014
Five more things about pedrovay2003
9:09 AM on 05.06.2014





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Game database:   #ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ         ALL     Xbox One     PS4     360     PS3     WiiU     Wii     PC     3DS     DS     PS Vita     PSP     iOS     Android




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About


Name: Peter
Home State: New York
Currently Residing In: Utah
Birthday: October 13th, 1985 (I'll always secretly consider the NES to have been a five-day late birthday present to me from Nintendo.)
Degree: Communication (with a writing emphasis)

I'm a Mass Communication/Journalism graduate from the University of Utah, which I'm starting to question, since it was a tough field to get into even before the economy went down the toilet. I love writing; Not only do I consider it my passion, but I also believe it's an invaluable skill for this socially-connected age in which we live. Writing about video games brings me more joy than I can even describe in words, which is saying a lot, considering.

As far as video games go, I've been a gamer since I was two-and-a-half. I try to play whatever interests me, despite what other people think of those games. I suppose I consider myself to be "obsessed" with gaming, but not in the sense that all I want to do is beat games. I'm fascinated with the industry as a whole, and in some way, shape or form, I'd love to be a part of it professionally someday.


CURRENT FAVORITES:

Fatal Frame Series (PS2, Xbox, Wii, 3DS)
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3 FES (PS2)
Metroid Prime Trilogy (Wii)
Dead Space (PS3, Xbox 360, PC)
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves (PS3)
Zelda Series (Various Nintendo Platforms)
Journey (PS3)
Dishonored (PS3, Xbox 360, PC)




My most prized gaming-related possession: A factory-sealed copy of the original Famicom Disk System Zeruda no Densetsu (The Legend of Zelda).




Mario and I were tight back in the day, yo.


I've had a few articles promoted on the front page... Check them out if you want. (Thanks, Hamza! :D)

Good Idea, Bad Idea
The Start of the Affair
Expanded Universes
Other Worlds Than These
I Suck At Games
Love/Hate
Digital Distribution


Xbox LIVE Gamertag and PSN ID: FireCrow1013
Steam: drm_free
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The father of video games, Ralph Baer, has passed away at 92 years old.

This guy, for those who may not have heard of him, started EVERYTHING. He's the reason we discuss everything on this website and hundreds of others, he's the reason we have the hobby that we do, and he's the reason that we've become the tightly-knit community that we are. It's incredible that the niche thing that he invented exploded into what it is today.

I'm not really all that good at eulogies and the like, so I'll just leave you with this video of Baer appearing at Video Games Live: Level 2.

 









Wow, it looks like FROM is REALLY screwing people with this upgrade. I guess the servers will be split for the console versions, too, but on the PC, they're essentially charging for an engine upgrade. What the hell.

 

ORIGINAL BLOG:

OH SNAP, SON.

It looks like everyone is getting their wish, as Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin is coming to current-gen consoles. The PC isn't being left out, either, as a new, DirectX 11-based version is launching alongside the console versions. The improvements will come in the form of a free update for everyone who already owns the original version on the PS3, 360 and PC (except for the original three DLC packs, obviously, which you'll have to buy if you haven't already); since the game hasn't made it to the PS4 or Xbox One before now, those versions will be brand-new releases with everything included.

New NPCs, better online, improved graphics and more are coming. As a huge fan of the Souls series and an owner of the giant collector's package of the second game on Steam, I couldn't be happier right now. Dark Souls II is one of my favorite games of all time (yes, even more than the first one, even though I think I'm in the minority there), so I'm absolutely ecstatic about this.









I've been a huge fan of Super Smash Bros. since the very beginning. I took a chance and picked up the original on the N64 the day it came out, and I've been in love with the series ever since. When the new games were announced, it was a given that I'd get at least the Wii U version, which I played all last night on my girlfriend's console. (I still won't buy a Wii U for myself, and this game highlights the reason pretty well; there will most likely be another blog dedicated solely to that.)

I'm well aware that I'm in the minority when I say that I truly thought Brawl was the best game in the series. I thought that other than the tripping mechanic, which was sloppy and unnecessary, every single aspect of Brawl was better than Melee. I went into this new game knowing that it had a lot to live up to in my mind, and while I'm still every so slightly more partial to Brawl, I'm extremely happy with how this one turned out.


COOL: GRAPHICS

We've had HD for years, yet Nintendo HD tends to look better than anything else I've ever seen, and this game is no exception. The colors pop, the environments look like they were taken right out of their original games, and everything runs flawlessly at a never-dropping 60fps. It's a huge improvement over Brawl, which was obviously only in standard definition on the original Wii. Ironically, though, when I ran Brawl on my desktop through the Dolphin emulator just to compare the two, I was actually able to make Brawl look pretty much graphically identical to the brand-new Wii U game. Comparing them on the original hardware, though, is no contest. The level of detail in the new Super Smash Bros. is staggering, whether you're looking at the playable fighters, things far away in the background, or the entire battlefield as a whole.

MEH: TITLE

Have you noticed that I have yet to refer to the Wii U title as anything other than "the new one?" There are a million different fighting-related words Nintendo could have chosen, but they chose "for 3DS" and "for Wii U" instead, which is idiotic to me; it makes it sound like the new games are remakes of the original N64 game for the 3DS and Wii U. I don't know what possessed them; did they think if they didn't put the platform in the title that we'd forget which version we're playing?

EDIT: It has been brought to my attention that the "for" in the titles ("for Wii U" and "for 3DS") is supposed to be a play on the number four, since it's the fourth title in the series. What the hell.

 

COOL: 8-PLAYER MODE

So, you can have eight people play the new Super Smash Bros. On one screen. With up to seven Wii Remotes.

When I heard about this, I didn't know what to think, but it's just so hectic and fun that I can't help but love it. I've only played with CPU fighters in this mode so far, so I can't attest to having seven friends sitting next to me just yet, but it's pretty easy to figure out how it'd go. It's the ultimate party game, which is what Super Smash Bros. has always been from the start. I only wish you could do 8-player Luigi's Mansion, all Ice Climbers with infinite curry on; that'd be a fun way to see if the console would explode or not.

 

MEH: SINGLE CHARACTERS

Speaking of the missing Ice Climbers, I just can't help but feel that the roster this time around is a little eh. Don't get me wrong, I like having characters like Mega Man, Little Mac, and Shulk in there, and other characters, like Pit, are completely different than they were before; I'm not hating on the actual character choice, since there are actually a bunch more this time around (althought a lot of them are just clones; Dark Pit? Was he really necessary in the slightest?). But I really miss the ability to change characters mid-battle. It's cool that they kept Zero Suit Samus and Shiek, but I liked being able to switch between them while I was fighting an opponent; it put my own skills of mastering multiple characters to the test while also forcing my opponent to change tactics to fight someone completely new.

The one that really stands out to me is Charizard, who was introduced as part of the Pokemon Trainer's original three starters in Brawl. I thought the Pokemon Trainer was one of the most unique characters I had ever seen in a fighting game, and it sucks that two-thirds of that team was eliminated. I feel like this new title has much less strategy involved, and much more outright button mashing; it seems a lot more straight forward, and I don't know how into that I am. Changing characters on a whim was a fantastic way of keeping your opponent on his/her toes, and building up your own more varied skill set, as well.

 

COOL: CUSTOM CHARACTERS

I think it's really cool that you can not only fight as your personal Mii characters, but also transfer them between the Wii U and 3DS versions of the game. Miis have always kind of fascinated me, and I think they tend to fit in well with every Nintendo-made game, despite the fact that they look even more cartoony than Mario himself. I'm a really big fan of character creation, and despite Miis being really simple and easy to make, seeing them in action is always welcome; I even remember playing as no one but my own Mii in Mario Kart Wii. That probably won't happen quite as much in this game, but it's awesome that the option is still there.

I also like the ability to customize the built-in Nintendo characters. The Super Smash Bros. series has always been so varied the second you start a match, and being able to take what's already there and tweak it adds a completely new dynamic to the game and increases it's already huge lifespan.

MEH: LOADING SCREENS

The amount of loading screens in the new Super Smash Bros. is actually kind of amazing. Going to select a character? Loading screen. Finishing up a match? Loading screen. Changing modes? Loading screen, and they're not always short, either. I feel like I'm playing Sonic '06 half the time.

In Brawl, you had one single loading screen in the beginning of the game, and then you never saw it again. I have no idea why that same thing wasn't kept for this iteration, but it really does take me out of the mood when I feel like I actually have enough time in between matches that I can put the controller down. After a game that had instant transitions, shouldn't the newer game on the more powerful hardware be able to do the same thing? It's a little staggering that loading screens even exist in this game, let alone how many of them there are.

EDIT: After getting the Wii U online and downloading an update for the game, it seems like the loading screens have at least been shortened. They're much more bearable now, but it still kind of sucks that they exist. Brawl majorly spoiled me in that regard.

Anyway, there are my two cents. I love this series so much, and I'm super excited that we're finally able to enjoy a new one. While Brawl will always hold a special place in my heart, it's nice to start from square one again, rehoning my skills that have no doubt gotten rusty over the years. And hey, maybe online play will work well enough this time that I'll actually want to utilize it more than once!











I was able to get The Evil Within at launch for a pretty good price, so I decided to jump on it. I've only played a little bit of the game, but I wanted to say a few things about the PC version.

First, unfortunately, the PC version reeks of being a console port. Now, console ports aren't necessarily bad by default, but this one has barely anything that actually takes advantage of the fact that it's on the PC, so it's kind of hard to overlook. First of all, there are barely any graphics settings outside of shadow quality and anti-aliasing; you're not going to be doing a lot of tweaking here. Second, there are HUGE black bars on the top and bottom of the screen. This can be modified with console commands, but that shouldn't have to be something we have to mess with through text, and the lack of actual visual customization is kind of a twist of the proverbial knife. Not only that, but some of the scene transitions look really weird without that super-widescreen aspect ratio. Still, the game is graphically beautiful, and I'm sure it'll be updated to be a bit more user friendly in the future (Bethesda has already confirmed that patches are coming).

The thing that gets me is the framerate: Initially, it's locked to 30fps. It can be unlocked with one of the console commands I mentioned earlier, but I don't recommend changing it, since the framerate is really janky in The Evil Within. I have a pretty capable desktop now, and after trying both locked and unlocked, I swear, there are parts that won't go above about 25fps even if I set the resolution to 800x600; yes, I'm serious.  This is probably my biggest problem with the game so far, and I wish I had a PS4 or Xbox One to compare it to, just for curiosity's sake.



As far as the actual game goes, I'm really enjoying it so far. It's sufficiently creepy, and it has that early Resident Evil cheesiness that I can't help but love; it's absolutely a Mikami game, and I wouldn't have had it any other way. I'm looking forward to diving into it head-first later today with my girlfriend, and if it goes the way I think it will, we're in for an enjoyable ride.

Overall, The Evil Within on the PC is definitely playable, but it needs a hell of a lot of work before it's optimized enough to be considered a proper PC "version." While I'm fine with the experience because I didn't BUY IT AT A HIGH PRICE!, I'm a little sick of the way developers and publishers keep releasing obviously unfinished games; I really do wish sometimes that our gaming machines weren't capable of going online so companies would be forced to actually finish their games before releasing them, just like in the good old days.

Photo Photo








I love the DualShock 4. Seriously, it's my favorite controller that I've ever used, and I've used pretty much anything you could name to me, plus a countless number of third-party offerings. In my 26 years of gaming, I've never used a controller more comfortable.

Except for the joysticks.

The DualShock 4's joysticks really bother me. They just... I don't know, feel like they're going to start wearing out at any moment. Not only that, but they're the only joysticks I've ever used that actually hurt my thumbs after using them for a while. So I figured I'd replace them.

First, I checked to see if the DualShock 3's sticks would fit, but that turned out to be a bust; the bottoms are too big, and the hole that the pegs go into aren't the right shape, so a lot more -- and messier -- modding would be required than I was willing to do. While doing some research, I came upon an interesting discovery: The Xbox One controller's joysticks fit the DualShock 4 flawlessly, and I love the Xbox One controller's joysticks.



As it turns out, the holes on the bottoms of the Xbox One sticks are literally the exact same sizes and shapes as the holes on the bottoms of the stock DualShock 4 sticks. It wasn't hard to find some extra sticks on Amazon, and with the help of my lovely girlfriend, I got to work.

The first thing I did was look up a tutorial on YouTube of how to pull the DualShock 4 apart. It's not too hard, but after unscrewing the back of the controller, there were a couple clips on the sides that gave me a lot of problems. I didn't have one of those plastic separator tools, so I used my fingernails, which didn't exactly feel nice. But whatever, I got it open.



The battery fell out almost immediately, since it's only held in the controller by a ribbon. It's worth pointing out that the battery in the DualShock 4 is the same size as the much superior DualShock 3 battery, and they can be swapped if you want longer battery life for your PS4.

As I opened the controller casing, the triggers flew out onto the floor, but they were easily put back in. There were two small L-shaped springs that were connected to the sides of the triggers, and they're absolute pains to get back into place. The only purpose they serve is to add some extra tension to the feel of the triggers, though, and reassembling the controller without them doesn't make much of a difference; the triggers are fully functional without the springs, but they feel ever so slightly more spongy. On the plus side, removing them actually fixed my sticky L2 trigger.

After disconnecting the battery, lightbar, and motherboard ribbons, I was able to just lift the motherboard out of the casing. This was the goal, since the sticks are connected to the board on the opposite side.



The sticks themselves were easily removed by simply pulling them off the pegs, which my girlfriend did as I held the board (I get nervous putting delicate stuff like circuit boards down, and I try to hang onto them near the edges until I need to put them back). The Xbox One joysticks were then lined up and pushed into the pegs, and the motherboard was put back into the casing.

After everything was back in place, it was just a matter of reconnecting the three ribbons and screwing the back of the controller back on. Everything went back together without a hitch, and as you can see, it looks absolutely gorgeous:



I can't even begin to tell you how much better the Xbox One sticks feel over the stock DualShock 4 sticks. Everything is just as smooth as when I took the controller out of the package, and I couldn't be happier; the Xbox One sticks are a bit taller than the stock DualShock 4 sticks, but the difference is barely noticeable. This controller is perfect now, as far as I'm concerned, and combined with the XInput wrapper for Windows, there's no better controller for PC gaming.

How about everyone else? Anyone dabble in controller modding in the past?

EDIT: It turns out that there are microscopic slots in the controller where the trigger springs are actually supposed to go. Once I figured that out and got the springs to go in, everything felt great when it was put back together. Even with the springs, my L2 trigger doesn't stick anymore, so I suspect that the spring wasn't fit correctly out of the box. (More than one person has reported sticky triggers on these controllers.)










Ooh, it's been a while since we've done one of these, hasn't it? Well, we've all had life updates, I'm sure, so let's get to it! (I'm only doing five, since I've done one or two of these in the past.)

1. I've been published in an actual gaming magazine

Remember when you could actually pick up a magazine made of paper, instead of reading it online? Well, I've recently been doing some writing for Pure Nintendo Magazine, and one of my articles got printed in the actual, physical publication. As a mass communication major and writer, this is still the coolest thing that's happened to me in a while. I'm pissed that the editor used an old copy of the story, though, with some grammatical errors; you can't exactly fix something like that after it's been printed.

2. While I constantly talk about how I hate DRM, I love Steam

Want to know a secret about Steam? It's not actually DRM. Steam's CEG component is its consumer-locking DRM system, and it's completely optional when publishing a game to the platform.

The key word there is "platform." As a platform, I love Steam, and I only WISH consoles could do all the things it does. There are plenty of games that use Steam only as a delivery service, and I'll gladly take those PC versions over console versions any day of the week. I just wish developers/publishers, Valve included, respected their customers enough to know how to use Steam and how to not use it; it's not like Steam's DRM actually slows piracy down or anything, anyway.

3. I can't stand touchscreens



See that picture? That's a picture of my phone, and I love it.

I'm typing this blog on my girlfriend's Kindle Fire right now, and my God. I don't care what the future of gaming has in store, physical buttons will ALWAYS be better than anything that has to do with touch sensitivity. The feedback you get from actually feeling the movement of buttons, a joystick, or a mouse under your finders/hand will never, ever be accurately emulated by merely touching a flat surface. The occasional touch feature in 3DS games and the like are fine, but as a main method of control, no thanks; I generally won't even play an Android game without a controller.

4. I'm very interested in the future of the Xbox One

So, here's a fact-within-a-fact: I think the Xbox 360 is close to being the most perfect gaming machine we've ever gotten. While the later exclusives weren't all that impressive, the system-level features were astounding, and every day, I wish the PS3 (and PS4, for that matter) can do what the 360 can.

With the promotion of Phil Spencer as the head of the Xbox brand, I think we can expect the amazing OS features of the 360 plus a healthy list of exclusives down the line. Yes, I think the price needs an adjustment, and I think we'll get one soon. But for now, I'm hopeful. I just sometimes miss the old-timey Destructoid community that was more tolerant of differing opinions; it seems like every time an Xbox-related story or comment comes up, the bashing ensues without ado.

5. I think the keyboard is one of the worst game controllers ever



A keyboard is good for three video game genres: MMO, RTS, and Surgeon Simulator. For everything else, WASD is a horrendous d-pad that requires three fingers to operate and is used to navigate a 3D space. My PC controller of choice? Mouse+PS Move navigation controller. Yes, I'm dead serious.

The nav controller replaces the separate keyboard keys for movement, giving me a complete 360-degree movement system using just the joystick with only one thumb, while maintaining the precision aiming/cursor movement of the mouse. I've actually tried to go back to the keyboard for games like Half-Life 2 and Metro 2033, and I just can't. And don't even get me started on the original Thief games, which are carpal tunnel sources if you use the keyboard with their three million movement keys.

So, there we have it. I hope I made these interesting enough!
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