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NBA Playoffs Prediction - East

Orlando Magic vs. Detroit Pistons 

The Pistons are the strongest team on the East and they will face a really weak team on the first round, Detroit will easily beat Orlando. Detroit lineup is much solid than Magic's, Detroit also has much playoff experience, after all, that's the same team that won a title some years ago. 

Pick to Win: Detroit in four 

Washington Wizards vs. Cleveland Cavaliers 

By moving to the Number 2 seed on the east during the final week, the Cavs will face the injury-ridden Wizards. Last year we had the same series on round one, and most of the games were pretty close. This time there is no way the Wizards will beat the Cavs, especially when their best player won't play. 

Pick to Win: Cleveland in four 

New Jersey Nets vs. Toronto Raptors 

Canada is finally back to the playoffs and this time they even have home-court advantage. Will it help? Sure, but I still think New Jersey is a better team, with Jason Kidd, Vince Carter and Richard Jefferson the Nets look more solid to me. Chris Bosh is in for a great series and the Raptors will fight a lot, it will probably be the closest first-round series. 

Pick to Win: New Jersey in seven 

Miami Heat vs. Chicago Bulls 

Will the defending champions beat the young Bulls? I don't think so. Wade has a bad shoulder and that won't help his game. The Bulls have finally matured and with the addition of Ben Wallace to their roster they have improved a lot. At first I didn't believe they would be better with Wallace, since their problem has never been defense, but I was wrong. They've made it to the playoffs and they have home court, the champs will fall.

Pick to Win: Chicago in six 

Discussing Super Smash Bros. Brawl

The third installment of Nintendo's crazy fighting series is bound to be one of the greatest games of all time.

In 1999 Super Smash Bros was the first game to feature 4-player battles during which you could use an amazing array of items such as Pokéballs, stars, hammers and Bob-ombs. Besides the game also had famous Nintendo characters and stages based on different franchises. Although it was a huge success it had some flaws like the serious frame-rate problems when 4 human players where battling and the not so beautiful characters.

Three years later Nintendo launched Melee, because of the Gamecube powerful hardware the game was smooth and battles happened at high speeds. With many unlockable fighters, 300 trophies and nearly 30 stages, Melee surpassed its predecessor on every aspect.

As soon as Nintendo announced its new system, gamers started to wonder how would all great franchises look on the Nintendo Wii. Our pleas were soon answered when footage of the game was shown on last year's E3.

Since then, all over the forums you can read people discussing which characters will join Mario, Link, Fox, Zero Suit Samus, Pit, Kirby, Pikachu, Wario, Snake and Meta Knight on Brawl. Nintendo has already stated that there are three spots for third-party characters, so I guess everyone is expecting to see Sonic taking one of these spots.

Honestly I don't expect this game to come out before December, I hope I'm wrong though. One of the game producers had already said that he would improve the single-player modes and make more slow-paced battles, so I guess it will take them a while to make so many changes to the gameplay. The game will probably use Gamecube's controllers, and I like it because I don't think we would be comfortable playing Smash Bros on the Wiimote. I'm sure more information is yet to be released.

My only concern is that this game is being too much hyped by many people, I'm one of them, and I'm afraid such an expectation may spoil it, just like what happened to Twilight Princess.

Finally I played the Nintendo Wii

I was on the mall today when I saw a huge group of people around a TV set, I got close to see what was going on when I noticed that there was a Wii there, and people were allowed to play it! I was a little bit ashamed at first because there were only 8-year old kids on the line to enjoy such a marvelous experience, but I decided to enter the line anyway.

It wasn't too long before they called me and my sister to play it. I had no option but to play Wii sports tennis, but it didn't matter at all because I just wanted to play it and feel how the controls work. Me and my sister played a 1 set match, it was a pretty close game but she still managed to beat me, and believe me, it doesn't happen often.

When I got the Wiimote I fumbled with it for a while before I could get used to it, but after 5 minutes playing it I just didn't want to stop, too bad we couldn't play for much time since there was a bunch of people waiting to do it.

It was an amazing experience and thank God Nintendo exists!! I can't wait to get my Wii!

Systems re-releases

Today was a bad day at work, damn you Friday the 13th, I had to get there at 9 am and I was expecting to leave by 2 pm as usual, but they kept me there up to 7 pm. And it wasn't the worst part, during all this time I had to do something really dull, I felt like a robot doing the same thing for around 10 hours, but finally I'm home!

But I'm not here to whine about my day. Yesterday I was looking on the Internet for some web sites that would help me fix my NES, I got some really good pieces of advice on how to make games work properly, while I was on this site I ran into an interesting comment about systems being re-released.

I started to wonder how nice would it be if Nintendo did it with the NES and the SNES, because I guess all of us wish we could play all those marvelous systems until we turn 80, but what is quite sad is that we all know that this won't happen. Every single day our systems are getting older and dying. Not only are the systems breaking but the cartridges are not saving anymore, all the batteries are wearing out.

I can't stop thinking on how much profit would Nintendo have if they re-released their past systems, sure there is the VC, but I've got to tell you that although I have never played it, it won't be as thrilling as playing the system itself. But this idea gets really utopical when I consider the third-parties, because I don't think they would be willing to produce old games again as they won't have as many profit as the system makers.

Unfortunately I think that something like this is really far from happening but I hope one day they do it, it would be awesome!

7th Gen Analisys

Nearly five months have passed sice the beginning of this generation, at least for me as I think it only actually started after the release of both the PS3 and the Nintendo Wii, although the XBOX 360 has been out for quite a while.

I know many people say it is way too early to jump to conclusions, but I guess we can already say that this gen will be a battle between Microsoft and Nintendo if the PS3 keeps struggling.

The XBOX 360 and the Playstation 3 are easier to compare because both have powerful hardware, however the latter manages to have the best graphics, but for someone who is not a game freak the difference is almost null.

The XBOX 360 has solid games and the best online features. It has been a successful so far, specially because it is cheaper then the PS3 and it has the same prowess, another fact that has added a lot to the sales is that it was the first one to be launched.

The Playstation 3 has had serious problems since its launch day, being outsold by the Nintendo Wii wasn't something Sony was expecting to see. Although they were warned that their system was overpriced they kept stating that gamers would rather have astonishing graphics than a revolutionay gameplay, I guess they were wrong. There is still time for them to recover though.

Without a powerful hardware but with an inventive gameplay and a bundle of fun games, the Nintendo Wii was harshly critcized by many gamers before its release, some of them said Nintendo was forgetting about the hardcore gamers while others complained about the powerless hardware, but Nintendo's choice was right, the system is selling a lot and it will match the XBOX360's sales in some months.

Many great games are yet to be released and improvements will sure be made on all those systems. The good thing is that we gamers will gain a lot because of this war.

Virtual Console Games

I was playing some classics some days ago and I started to wonder which games would Nintendo possibly release for the Virtual Console which, aside from the revolutionay controls, I think it's the greatest feature on this system.

First of all because not only Nintendo has a huge array of new games to make for the Wii but they also have their whole collection of games, from 1985 to 2001 avaible for the system, and when it comes to games, we have got to agree that Nintendo is the strongest company.

And one can also play older games from other companies, I'm sure it is quite attractive for both the hardcore and non-gamer. Although many people complain about the price we have to consider the fact that by buying games on the VC we can get rid of cartridges and their batteries that will eventually worn out making all of us mad that we lost so many precious data.

The VC is by far one of the best ideas Nintendo has had, I only hope they will improve their library so while waiting for new games to come out we can have lots fun.

Finally, Which games would you like to be released for the VC? I have a huge list, Donkey Kong Country 2, Super Metroid and Earthbound are the games I'm looking forward the most.

Happy Easter!

Super Paper Mario Review

For everybody who likes to read reviews and was curious to know what other people think about Super Paper Mario, IGN has finally published a review for it.

Super Paper Mario IGN Review

Their main complaints were about the excessive amount of text to be read and some uninspired 3-D environments. In spite of these problems the game still managed to get a good score, I just thought it deserved more points for its revolutionary gameplay.

I know this review probably won't change our minds, because all Wii owners are going to get it for their collections, but it is interesting to read that anyway.

Nintendo Wii games

Today I went downtown to search for a Tampa Bay Buccaneers' shirt but I couldn't find one. As I still had lots of time until I had to go to work I decided to stay there and look for some games.

I eventually found some interesting classic games but I wasn't compelled to buy then because I'll probably pay less for them on the VC, I also found many Wii games being sold for $70 ,I know it sounds expensive but it is a great price around here, I wanted to buy some of them but I didn't have enough money to do it. I decided to go there tomorrow and buy both Rayman Raving Rabbids and SSX Blur, unfortunately I couldn't find Wario Ware which is the game I'm looking forward the most.

By the way, the Masters started today! Did any of you guys watch it? I like golf a lot but I never got the chance to play it. Who do you think will win it this year? Tiger has been winning tournaments everywhere he seems unbeatable right now. My favorite players have always been Ernie Els and Retief Goosen, I like to watch the way they play always taking it easy and without showing their emotions.

Discussing Super Paper Mario

Just two days left until Wii owners can start one more Mario adventure, the first on Nintendo Wii. Expectations are high, and we all hope that Super Paper Mario will deliver the best gaming experience on the Nintendo Wii so far.

Many months ago I've got to tell you guys I was kind of disappointed that the Mario RPG series would turn into a platform game, but as ususal Nintendo has managed to prove that they were absolutely right when they decided on creating a new kind of adventure.

From what I've seen of this game it looks like it features a real fun storyline, colorful backgrounds and inventive Gameplay. Gamespot made a huge preview on this game by showing us the first four chapters, actually I didn't read it because I thought it would probably spoil the game, but they seem to be delighted by the game.

Now I can't wait to get my hands on a Wii so I can play this game which is the first major release for the Wii this year, hopefully we will always have many great titles until christmas.

Baseball and Games

As you guys may already know the Pan-American Games are going to be here in Brazil so intend to watch some Baseball games specially the ones featuring Cuba, Brazil and USA. If I manage to get more money I'll also attend a basketball game.

I've been doing great on the Wind Waker, I played it for around 4 hours and I'm already heading to the Tower of Gods, I want to do the main quest very quickly so I can spend lots of time doing the sidequests, I gave up on completing the Nintendo Galery because I forgot to take a picture of the first boss! I am so stupid!

Baseball season is starting tomorrow and I will watch St. Louis Cardinals vs New York Mets, unfortunately I won't be able to see both Red Sox vs Royals and Devil Rays vs Yankees games on Monday because I'll be working. I wish I could see those games.