The XBox 360 3.0 Legal Experience

This is a short video of the very fun time I had playing the new game that comes with every XBox 360 upgrade, “Legal Agreement”.

Its a pretty basic down-scroller, build old-school text-only style.   I liked a lot of games like Zork and Hithchikers Guide to the Galaxy back in the day, but I figured with the upgrade you would get some cool new stuff.

Anyway, here’s a video of the gameplay.

The Xbox 360 and Media Center: A Series of HUGE Disappointments

You may have heard that your Xbox 360 can connect to your Media Center 2005 PC to experience a world of DVR-like goodness: pause live TV, listen to your music remotely, use cool programs, and much more. Windows Media Center coupled with your Xbox 360 presents a vista of potential that sparks the imagination.

Once you face the reality of Media Center though, it’s a god-awful mess, and no one seems to be talking about it. The problems that I’ve had with Media Center really boggle my mind. So, I wanted to talk about it – to open an Internet discussion. If you’re looking at putting your Xbox 360 in the mix with a Media Center PC, you should be aware of just how fickle the Media Center software is, especially when streaming TV or other video.

The Xbox 360 and Media Center: A Series of Disappointments.

I’m using the title and subject of this post almost verbatim from the link.

In addition, I’m going to add that so far I’ve had to….

add a completely new registry key

add and remove the software any number of times

…got way too close to uninstalling a service pack (death to installs)…

…and now I’m manually changing the size of RDP packets in a hope to make two *CORE* Microsoft products work together…

And now I need to restart…again…to hope the change takes hold. And yes, I’m still halfway through the software install that can’t finish when the XBOX crashes…which it has about 10 consecutive times now.

So I had to post this (and keep the links) without knowing if it will *finally* work. This seems to be on the right track, as it’s the kind of bad input that could cause a hard crash (networking hardware is usually very sensitive to crap data…for good reason), but we’ll only know for sure after I kill it all again.

It also makes sense this is an issue caused by .Net 3.0. After working with 1.0, 1.1 and 2.0 and the core problems (changes) they created, I can certainly believe this is the problem here.

Wish me luck.

UPDATE: No luck so far. Now I’m going to try rolling back some drivers.

For some reason, I can almost assume as this point the *real* fix for this *problem* is to upgrade to Vista. Let’s see if I can’t get this shit fixed without *that* horrid step (which I’m not taking).

UPDATE2: Looks like it was the RDP problem, as detailed here.

This is the registry key you need to add. Start -> Run -> “Regedit”.  Then find [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management] and add the D-Word value and then modify it.

Registry Edit to Fix XBox 360 Media Center freeze

Registry Edit to Fix XBox 360 Media Center freeze

So, that’s ultimately what it took to get working. I had recently added a new hard drive (300gb) to my main machine (XP MCE ’05 SP3) and decided to use about 100gb of the new drive as DVR space. Since my TV has 15″ more diagonal screen space that my PC monitor, it would make sense to route the signal through that viewing device.

After much trial and tribulation, it now works great…again…like it used to…until the next round of Service Pack Madness.
BTW
UPDATE 1/6/09: I’m guessing that the new XBOX patch screwed this whole solution up.   Just guessing because I haven’t tried it yet and stuff started to crash on my WinBox after the new xBox software came out.  I’ll check mine tomorrow and see how broken it is.  And then see if I can’t fix it again.  Some of you might slightly recall Windows 95.  I’m old enough to have lived it, so I have no illusions about the “quality” of the code Microsoft will publish….

Wii First and Pulling Away, PS3 Third and Closing, 360 Second and Lagging

DailyTech – Nintendo Wii Tops for Console Sales in June

Bloomberg reports that the Nintendo Wii outsold the Sony PS3 and Microsoft Xbox 360 in the U.S. last month. Nintendo sold 666,000 of its Wii consoles in June compared to the 405,500 PS3’s sold and 219,800 Xbox 360’s. It’s interesting to note that the PS3 sold nearly 200,000 more units for the month than the Xbox 360.

Both Sony and Microsoft recently increased the size of the hard drive inside their respective consoles to lure new buyers. The minimum hard drive on the PS3 will now increase to 80GB with the Xbox 360 growing to 60GB. NPD Group says 10.9 million Wii consoles have been sold since it launched in November of 2006 – that tally pushes the Wii past the Xbox 360 in total U.S. sales despite the Microsoft’s consoles one-year head start.

Just a quick update on the console wars.  This has been an interesting generation, as it looks like the Wii is expanding the market so much all three can be winners.  With online markets and downloadable old-school content, all three platforms have IMMENSE libraries.  It might even be hard, at this point, to know how many games, exactly, are playable on each system.  I’ve been seeing torrents with 5000+ roms for various boxes.

Regardless, interesting times in the gaming world.  Transformative, even (Boom Blox, FTW).

Penny Arcade Episode One :: Game Review :: XBOX 360

This is a short (5-minute) review I put together of Penny Arcade’s “One the Rain-Slick Precipice of Doom : Episode One” which is a short RPG for the XBOX 360 available through their download service. There’s probably a couple other ways to get at it, but that’s the one I used.

Peep the video and let me know what you think.

Meet Me At the Social Club

GigaOM

Here’s a small sign of larger changes in the game industry: I got word today from Rockstar Games that April’s Grand Theft Auto 4, the latest installment in their huge (if controversial) thugs-in-the-sandbox franchise, will launch with a “Social Club” (open April 15), a site where gamers can track their game scores and achievements against other players.

Anyone with an Xbox Gamertag or PlayStation Network ID can sign up, which means the site will incorporate data from both Xbox 360 and Sony PS3 players; most interestingly, it’ll come with an “LCPD Police Blotter,” which will dynamically display “aggregated data of millions of connected players — showing the most dangerous areas of town, most commonly used weapons and more.”

You know I’m going to be all over that shizzit. The L1V3 channel will be an import form of communication in the near future.

My 2000+ Point Are Safe

Microsoft gets Tough on Xbox Gamerscore Cheating

Today Microsoft got out the mini-ban hammer and showed off their new anti-Gamerscore cheating tools and procedures on Xbox Live. Now they have the ability to reset the Gamerscore on an Xbox Gold account to zero and display a message explaining that they have been caught cheating.This is a digital equivalent of tacking of a big red “C” for Cheater on the Gamertag Profile on Xbox.com. They can still win future achievements or start a new account but once they have been found to have been cheating at an Xbox achievement for that game they will not be able to get that achievement again until they renounce their ways and start a new account. They did not do a mass banning but they did mark a handful of egregious cheaters to make a good example.

Cheating at games is not something endorsed by RPN, especially since all my points are well earned.

/RobotPiratNinja (no ‘e’) on XBoxLive