(RSS 2.0 feed) Topic: Go Go Gadget

Mirror’s Edge: First Impressions

First impression: ZOMG, it’s MIRROR’S EDGE!!!! I’ve been waiting for this game for such a long time (my most anticipated title since Halo 3), so when I heard today that the street date (originally meant to be Thursday) had been broken… :D :lol:

Anyway, here are some quick first thoughts/ramblings:

I’ve just played through the tutorial, prologue and chapter 1. If the length of chapter 1 is anything to go by, it does seem like it’ll be a short game!

Having said that, I like what I’ve seen so far. Sometimes I feel like stopping and looking around, but of course you never get the opportunity to do that given there are ‘blues’ on your tail all the time! I really, really like the art direction, and the game really looks great! So yeah, I just hope the game keeps going for long enough…

The time trial modes are great though! They’re very in depth and give you precise breakdowns of how you performed in each section of the course. You can always compare this against your best run, your friends’ best run or the world’s best. Not to mention ghosts you can follow and specific ratings based on skill as well as time. I can see the time trial modes adding a lot of replayability… at least, for people like me who are obsessed with beating high scores, times, getting achievements, etc. ;)

The achievements seem pretty easy to get… I’ve got 100 GS so far and I’ve only played it for a tiny bit! Also, keep in mind there’s a “Test of Faith” achievement which is “Complete the game without shooting an enemy”. So decide whether you want to try and get it before you pick up a gun. :D

A final heads-up… don’t be tempted to open a blade and check on your achievements when you acquire them. The game does not pause during cut scenes between missions and you’ll miss them if you have the Xbox interface open. As far as I can tell, you can also not watch them again without restarting the whole game because when you load into a chapter, you start immediately after that cut scene.

Alright, back to it… another report later.

Add comment 10 years, 11 months ago

Do We Need an Alternative to BillMonk?

It looks like BillMonk, which I rely heavily on, is slowly dying of neglect.

BillMonk’s Facebook application hasn’t worked for months now (check out the complaints!) and adding things to your Library by searching Amazon now never returns any results. The developers are nowhere to be seen.

BillMonk is full-featured, yet simple to use and was (as far as I know) the original ’social money’ application. Back then the developers were great, responding to feedback and fixing bugs. What a shame it all seems to have downhill since they were bought out by Obopay!

So what’s plan B?

Continue Reading 9 comments 11 years ago

Microsoft Marketing: Some of it Rocks!

You know, not all the marketing out there for Microsoft products sucks. Take a look at these awesome little animated interstitial pieces for the Zune produced by the studio Nervo!

Zune Liquid (Flickr photo by Nervo.tv)

Watch the Zune animations at the Nervo.tv site (seriously, have a look!)
View the full Zune Package photo set on Flickr

How amazingly cool are they?! Now where are Microsoft actually going to use them?

And what about this one by the Wexley School for Girls agency to promote the web slices feature of Internet Explorer 8? (I’m not sure about web slices, but you have to admit, it’s a brilliant viral piece to send around!)

Precautionary End-User Irresponsible Internet Slicing Emergency Accident Kit

Precautionary End-User Irresponsible Internet Slicing Emergency Accident Kit (Flickr photo by Long Zheng)

So why is it so hard for Microsoft to get some decent ads made about Windows Vista?! :cry:

1 comment 11 years, 1 month ago

Woolworths Everyday Dumb Error Messages

I tried to register my Woolworths Everyday Rewards card today and encountered this error…

Screenshot of Everyday Rewards website showing the error message text "Password must contain alphabets."

What?! But I only know of the English A-Z alphabet… how am I supposed to include multiple alphabets in my password?

Oh wait… did you mean letters of the alphabet? ;)

Hilarity: 1
Thoughtful Design: 0

The observant among you will also note that the explanatory text originally on the form informs you that passwords must contain at least one digit, but makes no reference to any requirement for letters — poorly thought out indeed. Not to mention, since the password can only be 6-8 characters long, I don’t know how I’d fit 26+ characters even if I wanted to!

(Besides, all this thing protects is the ability to check how many fuel discount vouchers I have… why the need for such a strong password anyway?)

Add comment 11 years, 3 months ago

The New Apple Store in Sydney Sure is Crowded

That Apple logo is bright!

So I’m sitting in the Maccas next door on Goerge St to the new Apple Store here in Sydney that’s just opened… isn’t it ironic? I’ve been here way before the likes of Adam, Johnny and Houmer… and I’m the one missing the Maclot gene. ;)

Notice the Apple umbrellas that were handed out

Anyway, the line when I last saw it started around the block, halfway down Clarence St (the street behind Georget St). But at least Apple umbrellas were being given out to the faithful waiting in the rain!

And I think those white rectangular boxes they’re giving out contain a T-shirt and some propaganda… now I just have to wait till the others get here to head over and see if there are any left!

Add comment 11 years, 4 months ago

Oh Woe is Me! My 360 Cheats Death No More

Red Ring of Death
Red Ring of Death on my Xbox 360 (enlarge)

My Beloved Xbox 360
Launch Day to 20 Dec 2007
Rest in Peace

What a terrible time to have an Xbox to develop the Red Ring of Death. Not only is it Christmas and holidays (who knows how long it’ll take to repair), but it happened on the day I came home with Orange Box, Tomb Raider Anniversary and a new HD DVD drive too!

Yeah, pity me. :cry:

Add comment 11 years, 10 months ago

Definitive: GIF is Pronounced “jif”

I’ve been trying to convince everyone for years that GIF, as in the Graphics Interchange Format file format for images, is pronounced “jif” like in “jiffy”, not like in “gift”. But noooo, some people just don’t believe me.

Well Steve Olsen has kindly put together collected evidence on why it’s meant to be pronounced “jif”. Thanks Steve, for the great service to humanity you’ve done!

It’s pronounced like “jif”. Period. The end. That’s final. End of story.

See The GIF Pronunciation Page.

2 comments 12 years, 2 months ago

Microsoft Acknowledges Xbox 360 Failures

It’s about time. Microsoft has finally acknowledged that there are some serious issues with the reliability of the Xbox 360, with an unusually large number of defects and returns of consoles that display the dreaded red ring of death.

Gamerscore Blog is reporting that Xbox.com has posted an open letter from Peter Moore announcing that effective immediately, all Xbox 360s worldwide are covered by a warranty extension to three years for any red ring of death issue. They are also going to do the right thing by existing console owners who have already paid for out-of-warranty repairs by offering them a refund.

You’ve spoken, and we’ve heard you. Good service and a good customer experience are areas of the business that we care deeply about. And frankly, we’ve not been doing a good enough job.

If we have let any of you down in the experience you have had with your Xbox 360, we sincerely apologize. We are taking responsibility and are making these changes to ensure that every Xbox 360 owner continues to have a great experience.

Continue Reading Add comment 12 years, 3 months ago

Desktop Tower Defense: Jumping the Shark?

Version 1.5 of Desktop Tower Defense, the great productivity-destroying Flash game, has finally been released! :D I love the game and have lost way too much time to it recently. (My high scores are 7024 on Normal and 4269 on Hard.) Unfortunately, the new version isn’t that great.

In-game screenshot from Desktop Tower Defense 1.5, showing the new sponsor logo-bearing creep
Note the new sponsored creep enemies in the new version (enlarge)

There’s a new Ink Tower that you can build and a new form of enemy: the dark creep. Since DTD is a game where good players have well-tested, carefully-planned strategies and every second counts, players will have to learn to play to game all over again. This isn’t necessarily a problem, except that the new changes to the game seem rather superficial and not a great deal of fun, so it doesn’t seem worthwhile to relearn it again.

Oh and guess what? There’s a lot more in-game advertising. A lot more. In fact, some of the creep bear the sponsor’s letter ‘K’ logo, which is really annoying and I think just goes too far. The slightly improved graphics certainly don’t make up for it, and the new sounds seem rather too cheesy.

I’m worried Desktop Tower Defense may have just jumped the shark. :|

1 comment 12 years, 4 months ago

Google Buys One FB: Is Another One Next?

TechCrunch is reporting that FeedBurner has been acquired by Google for $100 million or so. Bugger.

Listen, I understand that this is great news for FeedBurner and congratulations to them. But as a FeedBurner user, I’m somewhat worried. (The main blog and comments feeds here at Digital Kaleidoscope are run through FeedBurner.)

Will unwanted Google AdSense start appearing in feeds? What will change in the FeedBurner service as it gets Google-fied? What will happen to FeedBurner’s sense of humour? My feed is currently imported into my Facebook notes. Will that have to change depending on the situation with ads?

Speaking of Facebook, there’s always speculation about whether they will be acquired. Again, that’s another one I worry about. I currently trust a good amount of private information to Facebook and I’d hate to see them bought out by Google — I just don’t trust them with any of my data. Even Microsoft would be a better buyer, if Facebook was to sell at all. (Either way, I’d still worry about losing the crisp, clean interface that Facebook currently sports.)

Oh the things that keep me up at night… everything being swallowed up by Google. What has the world come to? ;)

4 comments 12 years, 5 months ago

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