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willpak Blog

Local vs Online

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This generation of gaminghas really stretched our knowledge of technology and the power of the internet to the brink. Games are now not only expected to have some sort of online play, but also to accomodate the thousands (maybe even millions) of players just itching and expecting some kind of brilliant system. Online Multipayer has taken the entire gaming industry by storm and has forever changed the face of gaming. Your TV, which used to show you fake enemies with progammed maneuvers, is now projecting many people, real people, all striving for the exact same goal as you.

You can meet alot of people in this new generation. I've found alot of great people out there that are just looking to have a good time like me. I've had alot of fun with those people and some of the stuff we've done has been more fun than anything I could've done on any single player game.

But this generation is lacking in one area, and that's local play. It seems that most developers grew up single children, because alot of games, great games, have been leaving siblings in the dark.

I'm an example. I have two other brothers are as avid about gaming as I am. We grew up on the old SNES and PS1. The PS1 generation was a great time for us, especially when we got a multi-tap and played such great multiplayer games like Madden and Twisted Metal.

Don't get me wrong, our PS3 is impressive, I never thought 10 years ago that we could play with and against 256 other REAL people through the internet, I just thought we'd be able to do it together. I've missed out on alot of great games. Assassin's Creed, Demon's Souls, God of War.... You could make the case that we could share but none of us like the idea of spending money on a game we'd eachonly be playing a third of the time.

As much as I enjoy playing games with the friends I've made online, nothing really compares playing the same game at the same time with my brothers. We all the same thing happening at the same time. We've played so many games together for so long we're always on the same page. We know what each of us are capable of and so we each compliment each other's strengths and weaknesses. After many games and many hours, we are a true team.

It seems whenever I blog, at one point or another, I talk about Warhawk, my all time favorite game, and I'm about to do it again. Warhawk combines online with local play. We often finish these Warhawk matches as the top 3 players. We work as a team. It's really second nature for us now.

However, Warhawk is old now. It's coming up on what, 3 years old now? Thats like 150 in gaming years. Warhawk's days are numbered. Sure, we've found a few games that have local play, but we're usually pitted against each other or it simply lacks the depth that experienced gamers crave for a game to last.

So the three of us may soon be out of luck. There is some ray of sunshine, though. Call of Duty, possibly the most influential game in the industry, has introduced game modes in Black Opsthat allow local mixed with online play, albeit only 2 of us. But with Black Ops' huge success thus far, it seems only natural that future games should follow its example and include options for life friends and siblings like us.

The Escape: The Benefit of Gaming

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Society, for the most part, looks at gaming with indifference. For the most part, gaming is neither looked up to nor looked down upon. For the most part, no one cares.

However, there are a few people who view gaming as a backwards, unhealthy lifestyle. They say that it contributes nothing to anyone, that it makes users idle and lazy, and weakens the mind. If you ask me, if this is true, then they are already weak minded to begin with.

Gaming offers an escape of reality into a visual world that only technology can provide us. Everything we can imagine has been condensed into our living room TVs. It helps people with imaginations actually see what they have already thought of, directly or indirectly. There are challenges, victories and defeats, friends and foes, and, most importantly but also the most elusive, happiness, however quick and fleeting it may be. Gaming provides an objective that, at least in your own mind, you can be proud that you accomplished.

There is a reason it is called "virtual" reality, however. Gaming is not life, it only gives a temporary escape from the toils and frustrating challenges of life. In life, there are no extra lives, no respawn times, no save files. But why use the excuse of life to step on gaming? Why do some people play sports? "To stay in shape" some may say, but I laugh at that. I play football to escape, and I stay in shape to fuel that escape. Football will not advance me in life, quite the opposite, it could one day be very detrimental. But will I stop playing? No. Because I love it. The same reason I wont stop gaming, because I love it. For at least a couple hours, I can escape the depressing frustrations of life and feel like I accomplished something. Whether that accomplishment was important or not makes no difference, because in that moment, in that fleeting moment of victorious success or utter defeat, I am happy.

The Yellow Light of Death - Part 2

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Recently, our PS3 was struck with the Yellow Light of Death (ylod) yet again. We had been playing it for less than an hour before it shut down. It isone of the first 60GB models, the most susceptible PS3 to the ylod.

It is a terrible thing, ylod..... You wonder what went wrong, if your virtual and alternate life is okay. Well.... I hope to spread some light here.

I am almost 100% sure now that the cause of ylod is over heating.

"well that doesnt make sense," you say "You just said you were pnly playing for an hour. I've played much longer than that."

That is true, and I have played longer than thatmyself with no incident. But I had my PS3 on a compressed shelf; there was poor ventilation. After it YLODed, I immediately checked the vents. There was hot air coming from it like one wouldnt believe.

So I sent it in for repair, to PSR. And somehow they saved all of my data. Not just once, but twice. Twice my system YLODed and twice they saved my data. I HIGHLY recommend this repair company should you experiance any problems. www.psr1.com

So, I am here to try and offer the best advice that I can to PS3 owners.

Firstly,I recommend that you place your PS3 on its side so the venting is pointed upwards. Since heat rises, this method will be more efficient. Secondly, have you PS3 COMPLETELY open on all sides. No obstructions should the natural heat flow. Thirdly, and most optionally, set up a regular fan next to the PS3 to blow the hot air from the vents. This doesnt NEED to be done; I only mention it as a precaution.

I hope this advice helped any gamers out there who is worried about their system. Feel free to message me on this site so I can offer any help that I can.

PS3 owner's nightmare: The Yellow Light of Death.

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The Yellow Light of Death (YLOD) is a sword through the heart of PS3 owners. Our system recently fell victim to this problem. Hence why I am here writing this right now. It happens probably while your playing a game. It simply shuts down. When restarted, the familiar red light comes on. You hit the power button, and your favorite light, the green one, comes on. You let a sigh of relief.

Suddenly, a yellow light flashes, the system beeps, and it turns off, leaving the red light to blink repeatedly. Try and try as you might, the process repeats itself. The truth is, your done. You need to get a new one or have yours repaired.

YLOD most commonly occurs in the older 60G models. No one knows for certain what this problem is. But it IS an overheating problem. The truth is, its actually fried something. Whether it burned itself to death, or cooked some dust, I don't know. But I am inclined to believe the latter.

YLOD will wipe out EVERYTHING that you had saved on your console. Music, pictures, and yes, even your saved games. Also, if you have it repaired, ALL game and system updates must be re-downloaded.

There is a tiny, miniscule bit of good news: Your online buddies won't be deleted, and neither will your trophies or your bought downloaded content (you'll still have to re-download that, however).

It @#$%! bombs, man. But, what else are you going to do? Buy an Xbox360? XD Please, I'm not that desperate.

I am sorry for anyone else who has recieved YLOD. And good luck to those you haven't.

I'm BACK!!

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OK, so a few people read my previous blog. Cool. I guess I have few fans. :oops: Well... Got back from Virginia last week, had a blast except for one thing. NO INTERNET CONNECTION!!! Was going through Warhawk withdrawal!! Thats fine, because now I'm back and blowing things up again. My book is beginning to go smoothly again, I hope to be done it soon. Have fun everyone!!

Who Really Reads These Things?

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Well, If someone actually reads this, I am surprised. I didn't think you cared :P

Anyway, I decided to give this blog thing a shot, mainly because I am bored out of my mind right now.

First of all, what exactly do you do in a blog? Write about yourself? OK. I'll give it a shot. I am an author in progress, I just finished a six week course for Science Fiction and Fantasy Writing. No credits for it; it was only a workshop. I am nearing the end of my first novel, but I hit a bump, and havent been writing. This will be hampered further by the fact I am going on vacation to VA for a week.

Favorite games? Warhawk and Guitar Hero World Tour, but I love free-roaming RPGs, so Oblivion is one of the best games ever made. Also cant wait for Dragon Age: Origins.

If someone actually read this, give me a shout (somehow). That way I know that I didnt just waste my time.