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Another New Gaming System

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Back in July of 2007 I was searching for a hand-held gaming system so I would have something to do at work (got to love working for State Government). After extensive research and much debate, I went with the Nintendo DS based mostly on the fact that I wanted to play Nintendo games again, like I stated in my blog post. Sometimes I just hate myself for being this way, but it just wasn't good enough for me to have only the DS. So, I purchased the PSP with the Daxter game and 1 Gig memory card. I know, I know - believe me, I've read my blog post. I know what I said and was convinced at the time that I had made the right decision. Do I regret buying the DS? Heck no. I love it!

The PSP offers something else, though. It's hard to describe, really. I guess I would say that the games for the PSP are more "grown-up" (and I hate to say it like that, but I don't know how else to describe it). Don't get me wrong, I love the fact that the DS and Nintendo in general has stuck to being a gaming system for kids. I love it because I cut my teeth on the Atari system and Nintendo came out at the perfect age for me (I was 10 when the NES hit the market). I missed playing those games, even with the onset of the PS, PS2, and XBox I remained faithful to my NES through college (all I did for the first 2 years was play Final Fantasy for endless hours) until it died in 2001 (I had no idea that I could have just bought the parts to fix it, I'm shooting myself now for that one).

I like the PS2 and PSP because the games associated with them are more like the computer games I really enjoy - RPGs. Though the selection of RPG games for both hand-helds are limited, I know more will be developed and I wanted my cake and eat it too. I just didn't want to limit myself to just DS games. The more I read about the PSP system and read reviews by gamers on some of the games, I just wanted it and I couldn't talk myself out of it.

Even more pathetic is the fact that I have considered the PS3 and Wii. I rejected the PS3 as soon as I read some information regarding the compatibility with PS games. However, the Wii is like a bug in my brain that I can't get rid of. It just looks like so much fun to play games on that system - more interaction rather then sitting and pressing buttons for hours on end (which I really don't mind, BTW). I'm sure in less then a year I will be posting that I purchased a Wii.

Computer Upgrades

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Ah, the wonderfull world of Vista. For the first time in my life I have purchased an OS within the first year. I raged against XP for years before, finally, giving in in order to play more recent games at the time. I like XP, I have no problems with it. What got me for Vista was DirectX 10. I fell victim to the classic media ploy. I got Vista Home Premium (64-bit) OEM really cheap from Newegg.com, which also fueled the fire. A new OS so cheap? How could it be?

Since I have a dual core AMD 64, I thought Vista Home 64-bit would really bring out the speed, basically, let the computer do what I built it for: Games!! Installation was much easier then I could imagine, everything worked, nothing like the horror story reviews I read about hardware incombatibilities, etc. All drivers were updated without a hitch. Computer is running faster and better since I installed the software, hard to believe.

Of course, with any one upgrade, several must follow. It is the natural order of all things gaming. So, I have--currently on the way from Newegg--an upgraded video card from EVGA. I went with the GeForce 8600 GTS superclocked instead of the 8800 models based mostly on the fact that I'm not a die-hard gamer. I just wanted DirectX 10 and an upgrade from my old video card. From what I read the 8800 run a little hot and are monster sized cards. The 8600 is still 9 inches long (as is the 8800) however, it is not nearly as wide. I did not want to have to buy a new, larger tower for a video card. The 8800 were a little too pricey for me, and-like I mentioned earlier-I'm not a gamer that needs all that extra stuff on a video card. The only thing I really don't like about the 8600 is the 128-bit memory interface. It is a step down from my 7900 which was 256-bit. Not sure why Nvidia has done this, considering that the 8600 is supposed to be an upgrade from a 7900. The really weird thing is that the 8600 is cheaper then my 7900 when I purchased it last year-another reason to buy a new card!

I know the whole debate between ATI and Nvidia, I looked at ATI cards as well--then I remembered something. I purchased an ATI last year, when I was looking for an upgrade, to replace a Nvidia 6200. It was supposed to be better then the Nvidia at the time, however, I noticed a clear difference in the graphics. That was when I went back to Nvidia and the 7900 model. I know people swear by ATI, and I don't disbute them in the least. However, in my opinion the Nvidia is just plane better. I have seen it, it is better. I guess the same could be made about ADM vs Intel. I had a computer with an Intel Celeron (back in the day) and then purchased an HP with an AMD, back when AMD was not the name it is now and it made the computer much cheaper. Needless to say, AMD sold me. Same as ATI, I realize some people swear by Intel. That is fine with me, neither of us is right or wrong, only opinion.

Anyway, back to the subject at hand of upgrading. I am also adding another gig of memory. I have read reviews where 2gigs wasn't enough for Vista. Mine works just fine with no problems. I am adding another gig because it was on sale and I couldn't pass it up. Besides, I figure if I'm going to spend $200 for a video card, what's another $40 for memory?

New Gaming System

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I recently purchased a new Nintendo DS. I was torn between getting a PSP or the DS. For a while I was leaning heavily towards the PSP due to the fact that I have a PS2, however, the more research I did into the games the more I saw that the DS had more games that I wanted. It seemed the PSP had games that were just like the PS2, so I opted for a platform that was different then the one I already had.

The PSP seemed to have problems with scratches on the screen from thereviews I read. It did have abigger screen size, but that was not so important to me in the end, though I did think it would be at first.It also had the better resolution, color, etc. and had all these advantages that the DS did not have. However, the PSPwasvery expensive, especially since I was notgoing to be using it for the other funtions that it provided. Since I was not, it seemed to me awaste ofmoney to pay extra for things I was not going to use. It also required memorycards ifyou wanted to save games and the battery life was not as long as theDS, and the cheapest system did not even come with a battery charger!

I was slated to buy the PSP, however, I was in Sears one day picking up some vacuum bags when I happened to see a DS on display for demonstration. I found myself playing Mario Kart DS for serveral minutes before an employee came over to help me pay for my item. That made me rethink my plans on buying the PSP to the DS.

My choice for the DS was two-fold. One, the DS had more games that I wanted to purchase then the PSP. Two, I had a Nintendo growing up as a kid and I really wanted to get back to some of the old games I was so fond of and see what else Nintendo has to offer since then. So far I am very pleased with the DS Lite and the games are much better then I could have hoped for. I also like the feature of the system closing on itself to protect the screens. The dual-screen feature is really amazing, and to be honest, I did not think this would be a good thing when I began my research into the system.

Older Computer Games

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Recently I have been picking up some really old computer games.  However, much to my displeasure, I could not play them on modern computers due to Windows XP (thank you, bill).  So, with that I am stuck.  Since the new computer will not partition the hard drive to a FAT or FAT32 without spending a mad amount of money for partitioning software (waste) because of XP being a totatally different partition type I decided to set my sights on ebay for a cheap, old computer.  I still wanted a large enough HD, but also be able to load Windows 95 to play the old DOS games and others that can run on the older versions of Windows (whether it be 98 or 95).  The true problem lied in finding a video card that was great (for it's time) but compatible with Windows 95.  That took a little longer then expected, but it's done.

I look forward to booting up my new (old) Dell computer with Windows 95 (which I have never used, I started at the end of college with Windows 98--seems a little weird considering it took me so long to finally get "into" computers and the internet) and start playing those old DOS games from '91 or '93 or whenever in the early nineties.  Cheese ball, you say :roll: ?  I couldn't agree more ;) !

New Computer

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I guess building just one wasn't enough for me so I went ahead and did some major upgrades to my previous built computer. Here are my new specs:

ASUS A8N5X Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce AMD Motherboard

AMD Athlon 64 X2 4800+ Toledo Socket 939 Dual Core CPU

eVGA GeForce 7900GT KO 256MB video card

2GB RAM

120GB Seagate Barracuda harddrive

250GB Seagate Barracuda harddrive

Soundblaster ZS 2

ASUS 16x DVD+-R DVD Burner

ASUS Atlas 550W Power Supply

Building another computer

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After building the first one only a few months ago, my mind is screaming for bigger, badder, and faster.  So, I've started building a new computer.  I have the motherboard, finally wanted to switch to PCI-E from AGP.  AGP cards are way too expensive and slow.  Right now I'm in debate over the processor.  I'm still going with AMD and will be getting a dual-core, I just can't make up my mind. 

Last computer I build I orginally had a nVida card (6600GT) then upgraded to ATI X800XT, what a mistake that was!  Won't go with ATI again, I really don't like their cards.  I've had all kinds of problems with it.  So, for the new one I have a 7900GTO going in there.

Anyway, it's still in the way early stages, I'll update more as I build.

New computer up and running

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As of yesterday, I have completed my new computer which I built from the ground up and actually got it to work!  I am so happy I was able to do it without any major problems.  I just loaded windows XP last night and tonight I plan on loading all updates for motherboard, processor, video card, and sound card.  Here are the specs:

ASUS A7N8X

AMD Athlon XP 2800

120 gig Seagate Barracuda hard drive

1 gig RAM

Lite-On DVD/CD RW ROM

Soundblaster ZS 2

ATI Radeon X800XT Platnium Edition

I know it's not "top of the line" when it comes to gaming computers, but I couldn't spend too much money and since it's my first "built" computer I tried not to buy things too expensive just in case I couldn't get it to work.  However, I'm still proud of it and thought I'd share it here.  I can't wait to load some games and play them with a video card that's 10x better then my old one in my HP (GeForce Ti 4200).

Computer Hardware

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By nature, I enjoy computer games a lot more then console games. I grew up on NES but when I bought my first computer and my first game in graduate school, I was hooked.

Recently, I have moved onto installing new hardware and upgrading my computer. I can't seem to read enough about computer hardware and I'm really interested in building my own computer sometime in the future.

My first project included upgrading my power supply. I installed the new one without a hitch and it has made me interested in upgrading more things on my computer.

I spent days on newegg.com and zipzoomfly.com deciding on upgrades for my computer, I hadn't had so much fun in a long time. The more stuff I saw and then read about, the more I wanted to just buy and build my own. However, funds are short and right now I'm looking to upgrade my video card and install a sound card (I don't have one at this time, sound is off the motherboard).

I have also spent days reading about computers, it is amazing. I never really tried to understand how it all worked, but now that I'm learning I want to know it all. Yeah, so I'm a geek (and enjoying every minute of it!).

Real Time Strategy Games

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Next to RPGs RTS games are my second favorite type of games to play. In fact, the first PC game I ever purchased was Age of Empires, but that's not where my passion for RTS games began. An uncle of mine loaned me Genghis Khan for NES and I was enthralled. I played it for hours on end. I enjoyed Age of Empires alot and continued to seek similar games. My RTS game collection is not extensive, however it continues to grow when funds are available. I tend to enjoy the civilization type games as opposed to space or other. My collection reflects this "theme" with Age of Empires 1 and 2, Sim City 3000, Empire Earth, and Civilization 3. I really haven't tried to get into other "themes" for RTS games, but I'm sure in the future I will try.

The longer and more complicated the game, the more I enjoy it. I love to micromanage civilations from ancient times all the way up to modern times or beyond (Civilization 3 is the perfect example of this). Some RTS games do not go back to ancient times or project forward in time as much as I would like, but this does not make them any less enjoyable (such as Sim City 3000). I'm sure there is a huge breakdown in different types of RTS games, I'm sure Sim City and Civilization are divided into two hugely different catagories. But, I tend to group them together under a broad catagory, that's just me.

Any RTS game that makes 3 hours go by in 15 minutes is worth it's weight in gold to me.

Role Playing Games

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RPGs are, by far, the most enjoyable games for me to play. I guess it comes from my childhood, where I would spend countless hours at summer camp playing D&D with my brother and some friends. It wasn't until recently, about 4 years ago, when I started searching for a PC RPG. I picked up Ultima IX at Wal-Mart only because I had played Ultima on Nintendo and really enjoyed the game and figured I would like this game. It was limited in it's role-play ability, however I spent hours and hours playing it.

That game got me wondering if there was a RPG closer to the old D&D game I played as a child. And with that, the hunt ensued for the best RPG. I have a good collection of games now, games that I have enjoyed tremendously. These are the games I prefer to play, the harder and longer the campaign the better the game is. Each game does have it's limitations, but also has something different or better then another RPG.

As advanced and complicated some of the RPGs are today, I still find myself playing the older games such as Ultima and Final Fantasy on Nintendo or Adventure on Atari.

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