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New Super Mario Bros Wii Review

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With New Super Mario Bros on the DS, Nintendo brought back the cIassic 2D platforming of the 8 and 16-bit eras. 2D Mario got a face lift into 3D and gained new abilities from the 3D games like ground pounding and wall jumping. While the game wasn't perfect, it did spark the old school gamer in us; we craved for more and our hopes were answered by Nintendo's announcement of NSMB Wii. NSMBW brings the experience of NSMB to the console to make a decent Mario game, but it fails to learn from some of the mistakes of NSMB and doesn't bring any innovation to the 2D Mario platform.

NSBMW is as cIassic Mario as you can get, you know the story: The princess gets kidnapped; you, apparently the only person who cares, have to navigate the worlds of the Mushroom Kingdom; beat some baddies along the way; and rescue the princess. Everything you'd expect from a 2D Mario game is here: running, jumping, goombas, koopas, different themed worlds, you name it. NSMBW is exactly what you expect from a 2D Mario game.

You control Mario by holding the Wiimtoe sideways like a NES controller. As you might guess, 1 is to run, 2 is to jump, and of course you move with the d-pad; it's like you're playing with a NES controller again! The core mechanics of the game work airtight, the Mario formula is true and tested. There are some control issues though, namely the times you have to use the motion sensing. In the game you have can pick up things, you do so by holding 1 and shaking the Wiimote. At first this didn't feel very intuitive, it felt clunky even, but after a while you get used to the control and it becomes second nature. The game also makes use of the motion sensing capabilities of the Wiimote by controlling certain platforms. In some levels there are platforms the move left or right when you tilt the Wiimote, or the platforms tilt how you are tilting the Wiimote. I found this control to be a bit clunky and I could never get fully use to it; it isn't a game changer though and the mechanic is used sparingly. And disappointingly you can't play with a cIassic controller, this is an unfortunate oversight.



Each Mario game has the same core mechanics, what separates the games are the levels. Every Mario game has it's own take on level design that makes it truly unique. Unfortunately NSMBW lacks some of the uniqueness, it feels and plays very similar to NSMB. The game feels like NSMB 2.0, there isn't anything truly special about the game. How you might expect them to be the same, they do have almost the same name; but the first three Super Mario Bros games only had a different number after them and were all unique. All Mario games are the same but they each have their own subtle variants on the core mechanics and level design that make each a worthwhile game. While NSMBW isn't an exact copy of the mechanics in NSMB, they are strikingly similar and you leave NSMBW with a sense of been there, done that.

Not only does NSMBW take the gameplay of NSMB, it also takes NSMB's Achilles' heel: its difficulty, or should I say its lack of difficulty. Any seasoned Mario gamer will find this game it be very easy, even the later levels are a walk in the park. Lately Nintendo has dumbed down the Mario games to apply to more casual gamers, this is very evident in NSMB and Super Mario Galaxy. While NSMBW is an improvement in the right direction, it still fails in comparison to the games of old. Luckily Nintendo did add some difficulty to NSMBW. Each level has three star coins you can collect, getting them isn't allows easy. If you get all the star coins in a world, you unlock a special level that is harder then the rest of the game. The star coin challenge adds some longevity to the game and offers some challenge from time to time but even with that the game is far too easy. And it doesn't help that both new items, the Propeller and the Penguin suit, seem to only exist to make the game easier. The Propeller suit makes platforming trivial, you just shake the Wiimote you fly up aways then gently float down to the next platform; at least with the Cape in Super Mario World and the Raccoon Tail in Super Mario Bros 3 you had to have a running start to fly anywhere. And the Penguin suit makes it so you don't slip on ice anymore, what is the point of ice levels if you don't slip on them?

Even though NSMBW isn't very hard and plays similar to NSMB, that isn't to say the game isn't fun. I enjoyed NSMB regardless of it's lack of difficulty, I also enjoyed NSMBW even though it doesn't offer anything truly new. Mario games have always been the pinnacle of platforming games, and NSMBW doesn't stride away from that; it's still a good Mario game. NMSBW has all the fun and addictiveness that you get from any Mario game; the problem is, it isn't a superb Mario game. It just misses the mark by being too easy and not bringing anything new and wonderful to the table.



Let's go onto the graphics of the game. NSMBW has the same styIe of NSMB, it has a very streamlined appearance to it. There isn't anything truly spectacular about the visuals. It doesn't push the graphics of the Wii, it just sits comfortably where it is. There isn't anything wrong with the graphics, it has the Mario feel it needs; but it almost just feels boring. After the visual power house that was Super Mario Galaxy, NSMBW feels flat and conservative in comparison. It would have been nice if they had added a few new visual styIes instead of copying NSMB and updating it for the Wii.

Sound is in a similar place as the graphics. The music and sound effects are a mixture of sounds from cIassic Mario games. This isn't bad, but again compared to SMG, it loses it's effect. When NSMB come around it had the same cIassic music score and it worked great because the game was a throw back to the old games. With a Mario console game though, I expect a bit more; especially with the precedent set by SMG.

Up until this point I have talked only of the single player experience of the game. As the cover of the game prominently displays, there is a new multiplayer option. Now you and three other people can play through a level together, at the same time. Multiplayer can be fun and chaotic but I would hardly call it a defining feature of the game. It's more of an extra bonus thrown in, the real game is still the single player experience. One thing I really hate about the new multiplayer is that you can't play with the cIassic multiplayer styIe, each person taking turns. Come on Nintendo, I know you have a new multiplayer styIe that doesn't mean you have to take away the old styIe

Overall NSMBW isn't a bad platformer, it isn't a bad Mario game; but it's not a spectacular one. The game is fairly easy and doesn't add much to the Mario universe, it's really more of the same. If you want a good 2D Mario game, or just a good 2D platformer, this game is for you. If on the other hand you are expecting the game to bring back the glory of 2D Mario console games of old, you will be disappointed. And if you are expecting the new multiplayer to revolutionize the Mario experience, think again. It's fun but it doesn't add much to the game and isn't the main attraction.

A new blog post, HOLY !@#$

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This isn't really much of a blog post though! I've just decided I'm finally going to make another review, damn it's been forever since I made one! You might have noticed I lost my Top 500 emblem and in its place I have a Top 1,000 emblem. They give you that when you are to inactive to have a Top 500/100 emblem.

So anyway, I'm going to do a review of New Super Mario Bros Wii. I'm not sure when I'll have the review done, probably some time over next week. I haven't yet finished the game, at least I haven't collected all the Star Coins to unlock the extra levels. I really don't know what I feel about the game yet or how I'll score it. When I first started playing the game it really didn't click with me. I mean I liked the game, it's Mario after all, but it just didn't compare to the past Mario games. As I've played it more, it has grown on me, yet I still have some misgivings about the game. So who knows what the final score will end up being. And I'm also level 47 now, a Jaquio, whatever that is.

Tips for avoiding HTML errors

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For anyone that uses the forums on this site you'll know why this place is called Glitchspot. One of the most horrid and annoying glitches this site has is the HTML error message. So I'm going to give you some tips on how to avoid getting this message. The first, and most effective, way of avoiding the HTML errors is to turn off the WYSIWYG editor. What the WYSIWYG editor does is add HTML to your posts for formatting. Normally this would be a good thing, since you don't have to add the HTML yourself. But the WYSIWYG editor that GS uses is horrible coded and doesn't work. It produces crap HTML that leads to the HTML errors you get. Turning it off will greatly improve your chances of avoiding HTML errors. You can turn the WYSIWYG editor off by clicking the Options link(top right of page). In the popup window click the forum tab and uncheck the "Use WYSIWYG editor" option, then click Apply Changes. Now some of you might want to keep using the WYSIWYG editor, there are still some things you can do to avoid the HTML errors. Most of the HTML errors you will get is because you have unclosed tags. Since the introduction of the wide forums, GS has switched to XHTML strict. What this means is that all tags must be closed, or the HTML isn't valid, this includes one sided tags. For the most part, the WYSIWYG editor closes double sided tags just fine, but it doesn't close one sided tags. So what you need to do is close the one sided tags. Here is what a two sided tag looks like: As you can see, there is an opening tag and a closing tag. Here is what a one sided tag looks like: As you can see there is only one tag. In non-strict HTML the code I just showed you would be a okay, but not in XHTML. The problem with the code is that the tag isn't closed. This is how a closed tag would look like: That one little " / " is the biggest producer of HTML errors you are going to get when using the WYSIWYG editor. So you have to go in and change this manually. To edit this, you need to get access to the HTML of the post. In the WYSIWYG editor click the HTML icon, this will bring up a popup with the HTML of the post. Go through the post and add the necessary closing " / " You should make sure all one sided tags are closed, the most common tags used are: Hopefully this tips will help you avoid the HTML errors. These are just tips that I've found to work, there is no guaranteed that they will work for you.

More Opacity Stuff ^_^

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Instead of bumping the GS theme thread once again I'm just going to do this blog post. =P

I've been working on improving the Opacity theme here and there. One major area I needed to improve was unions. I finally got around to fixing the union pages! =P I've made the union pages the same width as the wide forums. I've also changed the header and footer of union pages to better match the rest of the site. Here is the preview:

[spoiler] [/spoiler]

Here are some other things I changed:

  • Quote image(see Soapbox side column)
  • More things are rounded
  • Page navigation links no longer have border
  • Thread list no longer has border
  • Other things I'm too lazy to type =P

If you have anything you want changed or improved in the theme feel free to PM me(I can't test everything on the site -.-;;)

Also, I should update the other themes to match the opacity theme better sometime. I don't use any of the other themes anymore and I haven't bothered to update them for a while. =P


In other news, I like how flexible the Opacity theme is. I've been switching images from time to time, here are couple of my favorite ones:

Mario [spoiler] [/spoiler] Shiori [spoiler] [/spoiler] Mio [spoiler] [/spoiler] Samus [spoiler] [/spoiler]

Nintendo Conference

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So what do you think about Nintendo's conference?I think it went okay. Nintendo had some good games to show, although more would have been nice. New Super Mario Bros Wii This game has potential but it isn't happening just yet. The demo looked below average. The graphics look like they are taken directly from the DS and the level design wasn't impressive. The idea of having a cop-op Mario game might work, but I'm skeptical about it at this point.

Super Mario Galaxy 2 I'm looking forward to this one. I loved the first game and I'm hoping this one is just as good. But they are going to need to bring in some new elements, the demo looked very similar to the first Galaxy, which isn't bad but we don't want straight up repeats. Although I am loving that Yoshi is back! ^_^ Golden Sun DS I've never played a Golden Sun game so I can't comment on it much. The trailer got me interested though, I should probably check out the Golden Sun games sometime.

Metroid: The Other M This one is interesting. I'm excited for this one; it will be fun to see what they come up with. It does seem it's going to be different then past 3d Metroid games, which isn't bad. I was expecting a new Metroid game, especially since Nintendo is making the remake of the first Metroid Prime games. I have high hopes for this game! =3

Customizing Gamespot Opacity!(Updated!)

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Note: This guide is assuming you are using the latest Opacity theme and Stylish 1.0 If you remember, I did a blog post about customizing Gamespot Ice. Now it's time I did the Opacity theme since it's a bit different. I'll also be updating the Gamespot Ice blog later since it's a bit out of date now. =P The big thing about the Opacity theme is that the background of the site is transparent thus letting you see a nifty background image. So it is important to choose a good image! The only advice I can give you about choosing a good image is to choose one with one main color scheme. Trying to transparent objects above an image that has tons of colors doesn't work that well(although you might be able to pull it off). Feel free to experiment with many images, it took a while before I found the image for the Opacity theme. Now that you have an image how do you add it to the theme? It's quite simple, you only have to edit one line. To edit a GS theme in Firefox go to Tools > Addons > User Styles. Just click on the Gamespot Opacity Theme and click the edit button. Now the Opacity css file will show up in a popup window for you to edit. To insert your own image you need to edit this line(it's at the beginning of the code):
background-image: url('http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f60/bededog/kiss2.jpg') !important;HTML
You have two options, use an image from the internet like the theme already does, or use an image from your hard drive. To use an image from the internet just replace the url with your desired image's url. If you want to use an image from your hard drive you need to do this:
background-image: url(file:///) !important; HTML
After the file:/// insert the location of your image(EXAMPLE: C:/Users/bededog/Pictures/picture.jpg NOTE: Make sure you use forwardslashes '/' NOT backslashes '\'). Once you have the image location entered you can press the preview button(bottom left) to see it in action. If no image shows up you did something wrong. Okay so now that we have an image chosen we need to change the background colors of the site! With the newly update Opacity theme it now uses a CSS attribute called rgba to make the transparent backgrounds. Rgba stands for Red, Green, Blue, Alpha. The syntax looks like this:
background: rgba(1, 1, 1, .4) !important;HTML
The first three numbers are the rgb colors. You can get the rgb values for various colors by opening paint or some other image editor(IE: GIMP, Photoshop) and mess around with the color panels. The last number is the alpha channel; the alpha channel effects how transparent the color is. A 1 is no transparency at all, a 0 is full transparency, and any decimal(up to two places IE: .02) is semi-transparent. The Opacity theme is separated into three different color areas. Each one has a comment block above it to let you know when you have gotten to a new section. They are at the beginning of the code right under were you put the image. The first color block is meant to be the image background color. It is recommended you choose something darker for this color. The second color block is for lighter color objects, such as headers, choose a light color for this one. And the last color block is for another dark color. My main advice for choosing colors is just to experiment. It takes a while to find just the right color, don't give up! Also, make sure you test the colors on multiple different pages so it looks all right on all pages(I usually test on the topic pages, in threads, profiles). To test out the colors just press the preview button. Now all we have left are the link colors. For this one I suggest testing on the news page. As you can see on this page the link colors are separated into two colors, a light and darker color. To change the color of links scroll down the code until you find a block comment that says: "This changes the color of various text found around the site." The first and second color attributes are the ones you want to edit. To change the color of a link you can use various methods. The Opacity theme by default uses HTML notation to change the color. I don't want to get into HTML notation, so we'll just use rgb. Replace the following:
color: #a172ff !important;HTML
with:
color: rgb(0, 0, 0) !important;HTML
Just replace the numbers with the rgb values of choice, there is no alpha channel here since the links aren't transparent. Once again experiment with colors until you find the right ones. And that's all folks! It isn't that hard to customize it. =3 Also, if you want to keep your theme and still have the Opacity theme you can write a new theme. In the User Style window(Tools > Addons > User Styles) there is a button on the bottom right to write a new style. Click the button then copy and paste the entire edited Opacity style into the new window. Then just type in a name and save it!
Here is an example of a custom opacity theme I made. I'll go step-by-step and show you everything I changed to get the final product. The final product looks like this: [spoiler] [/spoiler] Step 1; Inserting an Image: [spoiler] First off I found this image, and downloaded it to my computer. I then changed this: into this: [/spoiler] Step 2; Choose the first color: [spoiler] After messing around with a lot of different colors I came up with the color 46, 66, 107 with an alpha channel of .7 To add it in I changed this: into this: [/spoiler] Step 3; Choose the second color: [spoiler] I choose a second color 106, 147, 235 with an alpha of .3 I changed this: into this: [/spoiler] Step 4; Choose another color: [spoiler] For this one I didn't change the color, I like the color Opacity had be default. But if I was going to change the color this is the code I would change: [/spoiler] Step 5; Choose link colors [spoiler] This is the last step! I choose some colors for the links. For this one I didn't use rgb, I used HTML notation to change the colors(you'll use rgb though). I changed this: into this: [/spoiler] (Optional)Step 6; Center background: [spoiler] This is an optional step. I added some code that centers the background image so Konata(the girl in the image) will remain in the background and not go off the screen. I changed this: into this: [/spoiler] And that is all I changed! =3
Other helpful tips Okay here are a few other tips I forgot to mention in the first post. When you are adding an image from your computer you might have a space in the file location(IE: C:/Users/bededog/My Pictures/picture.jpg). You can't leave the space in there or the image won't show up. In programming terms you just need to insert an escape sequence. All that means is adding a ' ' backslash before the space. IE: C:/Users/bededog/My Pictures/picture.jpg Another thing you will want to change is the search icon and arrow colors seen here: Now both of these are images. So there is not easy way to change the colors. You have to upload your own image and replace the image url in the code with your own file. But I have made it a bit easier for you. For the search icon I already have a couple different colored ones uploaded for the various GS themes. You just need to edit the url a bit to get the other colored icons. This is the section of code you want to change: [QUOTE="HTML"]#content form.mini_search span.submit button, #site_footer .search button.submit { background-image: url('http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f60/bededog/search_icon_purple.jpg') !important; }

Right now I have four search icons you can choose from. The purple one is the url already in the code. To get a red icon just replace the search_icon_puprple.jpg at the end of the url with search_icon_red.jpg To get a green change it to search_icon_green.jpg And for a blue one just change it to search_icon.jpg Now let's change the arrow color. Right now I only have two arrow colors up, the purple one and a blue one. To change the arrow color just change this: [QUOTE="HTML"].page_flipper a, #video_promo_side ul.actions li.play a span { background-image: url('http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f60/bededog/arrows-1.gif') !important; }

The default image is the purple arrows. Change the end of the url from arrows-1.gif to just arrows.gif for a set of blue arrows. The finished product will look like this:
If you have any questions you can PM me or leave a comment! Also, a cookie to whomever knows what show Konata is referencing in the image. ^_^

Last day of school! Back to reviewing games.

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Well today was the last day of school! I have now official finished my junior year of high school, only one more to go! ^_^

I think I did pretty good grade wise. All As and Bs, maybe one C if a certain back grade I got lowers it enough... But besides that it's all good and dandy! =3

In other news I'm been away from the videogame scene a while now. I haven't kept up with the games coming out and I haven't played too many videogames for a while now. Since it's the summer and I'm going to have a lot of free time I'm going to beat the games I've neglected for far too long.

The first game I want to beat is The World Ends With You. I got this game a while ago but stopped playing only a couple hours into the game. It's not that I didn't like the game, it's just I didn't have time and I never got around to playing it. So I just started a new profile on the game and will definitely beat the game this time. =3

I also plan to make a review of the game! Man, it has been a while since I did a review. I'm surprised I still have my Top 500 emblem, lol. I don't know when I'll have the review, it might be a week or two still, but I definitely want to get back into it.

To the temporary classrooms! And protesters are here too!

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Well my school is going through as much needed renovation. Just this year we built a new gym and now they are renovation the English hallway. To do this they had to move all the classes in the English hallway to temporary classrooms set up in the new gym. Basically they put up some walls in the gym and move some carpet and desks down there. Funny thing is, there is no ceiling to the walls. So people can, and have, thrown stuff over the walls at other classes. =P Of course they are getting in trouble for doing this, lol. It isn't too bad in the temporary classrooms, although it does get pretty loud in there and the stuff they used to set up the walls smells like crap! And in other news there were protesters at my school today. If you haven't heard gay marriage has once again been okayed by the Iowa court. Back in 2005 a lawsuit was filed saying that denying gay couples the right to marry violates the equal protection and liberty clauses of the state constitution. The court found in favor of gay couples thus making gay marriage in Iowa legal. This of course was appealed to the Iowa Supreme Court. The court once again, unanimously, found in favor of gay couples and upheld the district ruling. So of course those crazy religious folks can't have that can they! So it was pretty funny to see these idiots protesting on the sidewalk. They handed out fliers, I got one. All I have to say is that was the funniest flier I have ever seen, such bull**** and ignorance is just swell to start a morning off! Anyway I think the court ruling got it exactly right and I'm happy gay marriage is allowed in my state finally.

Venting my frustration

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Well I going to be talking a bit about my personal life, I don't do this much but I'm kind of frustrated and I want to vent some of it off. So enjoy my misery.

You see I'm in the advanced English class for my school. Generally this is a great class that has good kids in it that actually do their work and make it an enjoyable class. But not this time...

Right now we are reading Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. We have split the book into five sections and groups of three must present their assigned section to the class in a two day presentation, this accounts to a 1 hour and 40 minute presentation. So this is a lot to do and it's a lot to read and analyse.

My group had to do the third section of the book last Thursday and Friday. We made a plan to get the section read and analysed by Monday so we can work on the presentation. I did exactly this and was ready on Monday, my partners were not. They had not even finished reading the section let alone analyse and understand it. So I tell them they need to get it done that night and we can begin tomorrow. The next day comes and they still aren't done...

So the day before the presentation begins they finally finish reading the section. Too bad they don't know anything about the section. They only read a superfluous reading of it and didn't analyse the text at all. So I'm stuck making the first day of the presentation, which is basically just telling the class all I can about the section(this is the important part), all by myself.

Obviously I was fairly made at this and I was worked to the bone to get this done in time without any help. So the first day of presentation goes by with me and only me talking the entire time. This went fairly well but I didn't have anything for the next day and I needed them to help and actually do something.

So after school that day I told them what I want them to do for the next day of the presentation. Part of the presentation was to get vocab words for the section so I told them to do that since you don't have to understand the text to find vocab. And I told them to find an outside example of Satire(this is a requirement for the presentation). And last but not least I told them to think of discussion questions they could ask the class about the book(also a requirement of presentation). I thought this would be fairly easy to do and wouldn't be something they could mess up, I was wrong, very, very wrong...

So the next day comes around and we start the second day of the presentation. We started with discussion questions. I came prepared with as many as I could think of, my partners came with none. So I was once again doing all the talking. So then we presented the vocab words, this they actually did okay. They had vocab words, but they didn't write down where the vocab was located in the text. This was a requirement of the vocab, so they couldn't even do the vocab right!

So after that we were suppose to show our example of Satire and have a discussion with the class about it. The example of Satire was suppose to be related to the book. So what did they get for Satire? Something good and related to the book? Nope, they got some story from the New York Times. Not only did it not relate to the book, it wasn't even Satire! At this point I was ready to explode and strangle those two idiots. I can't imagine the look on my face when I saw their example of 'Satire.'

So yeah, 'our' presentation was pretty much me talking the entire time and doing all the work and the couple of times I think they could handle some simple things they mess it up spectacularly. I can't even begin to imagine the thought processes that lead them to spill out the pile of crap that they did. It was just horrible and embarrassing.

But thankfully I think there is a silver lining in this story. The way the presentation went down pretty much showed my partners to be absolute fools and that they didn't understand the text. And that I was the only one that actually did the assignment. So this leads me to believe that I'll still get a good grade because I did most of the work that three people should have been doing. And after the presentation my teacher make a comment that said pretty much that, so I have fair hopes that I won't be punished for the ineptitude of my partners.

All I can say is I hope those two get zeros because that is what they deserve. Last week was living hell for me trying to get the presentation done without any help. Even though I will get a good grade it would have been nice if I didn't have to walk through all the muck I had too. All I can say to my two partners is this, **** you.

Just realized I'm level 42 now!

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Alright I'm now level 42! =3

And in other news I also made a new Gamespot theme. You can check it out here if you are using Firefox, and here if you are using Opera. Here is a screenshot:

[spoiler] [/spoiler]