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Dear Microsoft, I am buying a Playstation 3.

To Whom It May Concern,

This letter is to inform you that I have made the decision to purchase a Playstation 3 video game console. It should be known that your company drove me to do so, and let me explain why.

First of all, I should probably explain my video gaming history as a whole. I have never been a "casual" gaming enthusiast. For as long as I can remember, I have always had at least one video game console at a time, and this neglects the idea of any handheld systems I ever had in my possession. It began, like many, with the Nintendo Entertainment System, so long ago. A few years after, I received a Super Nintendo Entertainment System, and my life was forever changed. Around the same time, I received a Sega Genesis and a Sega CD, yet I played my Super Nintendo daily, as I was never impressed with anything that my Sega products provided. My SNES was my favorite toy for so many years, until it became obsolete and the Nintendo 64 was released.

A few years after the Nintendo 64 was released, I had finally saved up enough money from my part-time job and purchased one with my own money. I played the N64 daily, but it never held my heart like my SNES had. Shortly after, the Sony Playstation was released, and yet again I bought myself a new system. It was at this point my bonds with Nintendo were broken, and I discovered a new love.

This new system provided games that were geared more towards my demographic at the time, and I think that had a lot to do with my broken ties with Nintendo as a whole. Not to mention all of my friends had Playstations, so bringing games back and forth to each other's houses was easy to do. We would trade games for a week or so at a time, and would master them all before returning them. It was the end all system. So we thought.

Sony introduced the Playstation 2 a few years later, and the response, as I'm sure you know, was outrageous. Third-party games flooded the market, and a Playstation 2 owner had the world at their fingertips. I probably owned close to 40+ games throughout the time I owned my PS2, and I never regretted playing the next. I was a slave to Sony, and I knew it. And I didn't care.

I'm told you, Microsoft, released a console around this time, too. The XBOX, the "giant black brick with a stupid name," was unnecessary to me or my friends. We had no need for it. We had a PS2.

You may be beginning to wonder how your company drove me away. Let me explain..

I held onto my PS2 for many years, until the current generation of consoles was introduced. I watched the battle between you and Sony and Nintendo wage on for years before I finally settled on which next-gen console to buy. Nintendo's Wii was out of the question. If I had wanted to sit around playing a majority of children's games, I would have picked up one of my niece's educational V-Tech toys. It was down to Microsoft v. Sony, XBOX360 v. PS3.

Ironically, I separated myself from the legacy Sony had created and bought an XBOX360.

I couldn't tell you why I bought it at the time. Maybe it was the store clerk who nudged me in that direction. Maybe it was a couple of the 360-exclusive games that caught my attention. Either way, I forked out my hard-earned cash and bought it.

And for a while, I was happy. There were many things that I was impressed with, and so over time, I was convinced that I had made the right decision. The fact that your games were pretty abysmal as far as content was concerned, and the notion that I was forced to pump out countless dollars to play online with my friends was kind of upsetting, and I eventually got to the point where I couldn't afford to play online at all, but I was sure I had made the right decision. Soon, however, things began to change.

About 11 months after owning my 360, a strange thing occured. One night I was playing with my friends, and the game began to make strange sounds and then froze. We reset the 360, and upon reboot, a single blinking red light appeared at the bottom of the console, followed by a strange error message on the screen. We let the 360 sit for a bit, and turned it back on an hour or so later, only to find things were back to normal, and we resumed playing. No more than 3 days later, I received the "Red Ring of Death," a phrase I'm sure your company is all too familiar with.

As I had only a month left on my warranty, I called customer service immediately, spent far too long on the phone with a gentleman that could barely speak English (who clearly read off of a cue card, I might add) and filed a repair order. Two days later, I sent off my console with utmost anxiety, knowing that for a while, we would all be without our beloved video gaming entertainment. THREE WEEKS LATER, I finally received my 360, and as I was quite eager to play it, I plugged it in right away. No more than 30 minutes later, a familiar blinking red light appeared, followed by an equally familiar error message. 30 MINUTES LATER.

I immediately packed up all of my 360 equipment, games, and accessories, and sold them all the next day.

This was about 8 months ago, and I haven't looked back since. There are too many upcoming titles that I have a strong desire to play, but based on my experiences, it certainly won't be on any Microsoft products. I never should have betrayed my loyalty to Sony, a company that has never once given me a reason to complain. So, as it stands, I will GLADLY hand over my hard-earned money to your rival counterpart.

Thanks for all you've done for me, Microsoft.

With Love,

wagepeace





I love getting new old systems.

My fiancee and I just moved into a new townhouse, and as we were unpacking, she pulled out a mint-freaking-gamecube.. memory card, connections, controller...the works, in the box.

NO WAY. I didn't even know she had it.

Since then, I've gotten a few games... Animal Crossing, Metroid Prime, and Super Smash Bros. Melee. I figured it was high time for me to catch up on some gems that I never played. I always had a PS2 during the last-gen hype, so the GC was completely foreign to me. I'm hooked.

Now I've just got to play the Resident Evil remakes and I can die a happy man. (RE is my favorite series of all time, and yet I never played the updated RE1 remake OR Zero.) That and Zelda: OoT MQ, and maybe Wind Waker, if someone can convince me it's not a kiddy version of Zelda.

It's like Christmas around here.

Gamespot has... DRINKABILITY?

Ok, I know big, expensive websites need/thrive on advertisements to keep themselves up and running, but one ad I've been noticing lately has really started to bother me. And maybe it's just me, but I think it would be better suited on another site.

Along the top of various pages, there is a banner sporting the new Bud Light advertisement, complete with it's catchy new "DRINKABILITY" campaign logo. Now let me say this... it's not the ad itself that really bothers me so much as a couple other things.

First of all, there are a LOT of underage kids that frequent this site. I'm pretty sure that Budweiser isn't directly trying to sway these kids into drinking beer a la "Joe Camel" with cigarettes, but it still seems a little funny that someone approved that ad to be run on this site. I know some of you might say, "..well, they show the same ad on TV!"... and you'd be right. The difference I guess, is that TV ads are more often and more easily ignored. We have become desensitized to a lot of the crap that we see between shows..kind of a "goes in one ear and out the other" type of deal. In my opinion, a big flashing banner above a page is a lot more noticable (and distracting) than what you catch on television. Not to mention you can change the channel, but not the banner.

Look.. I'm not a die-hard old jerk who thinks kids shouldn't be drinking.. that would kind of make me a hypocrite. I mean I'm only 27.. and it's not like I never drank underage... but still. I know it seems kind of twisted and backwards, but I have a point...somewhere. Maybe I'm just trying to say that, well...shouldn't Gamespot be advertising...I don't know...games?

The second point is that Bud Light DOESN'T EVEN HAVE "drinkability." (Not only is "drinkability" a pretend-word, but Bud Light it is a horrible beer that tastes like watered down doo-doo.) It's cheap and unrefreshing, and the only reason people drink it is because they are morons who have never had anything better. To that end, if you want a "light" beer, you might as well drink Miller Lite. At least it tastes good. As for me? I'm a Newcastle man. Straight up.