Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Why don't you just "hack" your 360?

So I just got my NTSC-U Xbox 360 and I've been asked multiple times before I got it why I don't just hack my PAL one to play any game. It's legal as long as I'm not using it for piracy other such things, so why don't I just do that? According to them, I can't be banned if I play offline and only come online to update my score. Well that's just it, my score, that is the reason that I don't want to do something like that. It's against Microsoft's terms and conditions to connect to Xbox Live to hack my Xbox 360 and that's the reason I won't do it. I care about playing online on the console and I care about my Gamerscore. I want to be able to get a consistent update of my position on the now not MGC but TA leaderboards. I also want to know how I'm doing in the 360Voice challenges and time stamps on my Achievements. I can't get any of this by hacking my console, so I won't do it.

I want to be able to also project the integrity of Gamerscore in every way I can. Whilst I have no objections to people hacking their console assuming it's for a legitimate reason, I can't condone it in the world of Gamerscore. I know that there are game saving sites out there which to my knowledge you don't need a hacked 360 to use them, but I'm convinced that some of it could potentially come from hacked consoles. I think of the recent PS3 hacking and yeah, it's a lot more serious but I believe that you can unlock Trophies using a hack. The same could be true for the Xbox 360 and I don't want to have any potential reason to be banned. I love the Xbox 360's and I'll get a Japanese one when I have the money, I want to increase my Gamerscore with games from all around the world, legitimately.

Thanks for reading, bye :)

Friday, 25 February 2011

RIP MyGamerCard.net

Why is it that I keep making these "goodbye" blogs? This is the third one of them and as much as I'd like to continue on with other topics, these keep happening. So as you may have heard http://www.mygamercard.net/ is no more. It served the Xbox community for 5 and a bit years and had by far the biggest worldwide Achievement leaderboard. I used to use the stats from that website in my battle against DizzyChaos way back in those days. It's a real shame to see them go, but I'd rather not be sad about this one and hope that there is something coming along for all Achievement Whores out there. Not to say that the demise of the site means that something better can now come, but Morgan was one person managing a massive website. Maybe one day there will be an official GamerScore leaderboard? Maybe TrueAchievements might implement genre leaderboards which I loved to look at on MGC.

I must thank MGC for the greatness over the years. After I started GamerScore in 2007, you were the site that I visited most. From watching myself and my friends go up the leaderboards to watching the game savers be deleted. The impact this website had is incredible and with it gone it has messed up a spreadsheet I had 7 months in the making. I guess I'll have to start again with TA stats.

Of course, there was that website project I haven't talked about at all yet. Whilst my GamerScore project efficiency thread died on X360A, I still have the spreadsheet and still update it. So perhaps it's time I learnt how to make my own leaderboards and website properly. I have a lot of ideas, but getting them done and getting into the community developer program is another thing. That doesn't mean I'm not going to give it my best try, but these things are going to take time. That and I don't really know much about advertising a website aside from adding links into my forum signature.

Thanks for reading, bye.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

5 Games Complete

So there are five games completed this week. Tony Hawk's American Wasteland, Need For Speed Undercover (WP7), Truth or Lies, X-Men Arcade and Bomberman Live Battlefest.

You know, it kind of seems fitting that I complete American Wasteland near the time when the Tony Hawk's franchise is announced as finished. It's a shame too, that skateboard peripheral should never have been made and I believe is what ruined it. American Wasteland however, despite being a launch title for the console is a very good game in my opinion. I'll never understand why Activision shut them down. Indeed it was due to the games not selling well, but didn't this start because of the skateboard peripheral anyway? Well, Skate was outselling it 2-1 but that's a different game and had Tony Hawk's kept going and innovating with those crazy combos then it could have continued to be awesome. I would say that Skate tries to be more realistic, whereas Tony Hawk's tries to be crazy and unrealistic. It's like the difference between Forza and Mario Kart, they are both racing games but they are also completely different. They're also both good at what they do and don't need to change radically to make themselves "better". Anyway, Tony Hawk's American Wasteland is an easy 900 thanks to the in game codes which don't block Achievements. The last 100 takes a really long time though, you must find every Gap in the game. I estimate that there's over 500 of them and even when using a video walkthrough this one is going to take a long time. That's the only part of the game that brings the score down for me. It's somewhat boring and tedious in comparison to the rest of the game which is really fun and enjoyable. RIP Tony Hawk's franchise, I hope someone revives you and makes you good again in the future. I give this game a 7/10.

Need for Speed: Undercover is next for the Windows Phone 7. Generally this game is a good game, a short and somewhat easy 200 GamerScore. It's fun, but can be annoying at times. My friend Da Mitch Man 90 helped me a little bit with this, telling me that the car I was using wasn't very good. So after "upgrading" to a car with lower stats, the end of the game was easy. I'm not a driving game expert, but I thought that upgrading your car would be getting one with better stats. Well, apparently not in Undercover WP7. Oh well, it's a fun somewhat arcade like experience and I enjoyed it a lot more than Fast and Furious because it didn't have those stupid problems with the screen turning off all the time. I'll give this game a 7/10.

Then Truth or Lies was completed which I have to say is one of the oddest 1000's you can possibly do. You need a microphone for the game and the concept of the game just doesn't work whatsoever. The idea is that you are supposed to be able to tell if someone is telling the truth or lying but you could tell it 1+1 is 100 and it may well think you're telling the truth. It's broken and doesn't work, but does only take around 2 hours to 1000. I'll give it a 1/10.

After that was X-Men Arcade which was an easy 200, but a really fun one. I never played the original version of this when it came out but a six player beat 'em up? Wow, I thought that just that fact along was pretty cool. It only takes 1-2 hours to get it all done if you have a multiplayer partner for the 6 player Achievements. You can use 3 controllers each for this, you also get infinite continues and so it's really easy. Perhaps the one disappointing thing was that the complete the game with all six characters achievement is partly glitched. I started the game with whoever was the default character, but I didn't know that you needed to play as Cyclops in order to fix the glitch. Basically, you only have to complete the final level an additional five times to gain the achievement. But when you complete the final level with Cyclops it doesn't save the game. So specifically for Cyclops you will need to go through the whole game again if you didn't do it the first time. I'll give this game a 5.75/10.

Finally, I completed Bomberman Live: Battlefest and to be honest, this game is good but not as good as the original Bomberman Live. It's fun but I think the fact that it has three download packs at 240 points each for a low amount of Gamerscore is just annoying. If you're playing the game to play it then it's probably more fun, almost all of the achievements are boostable with two controllers. I recommend this game for how fun it is and give it an 8/10 based on that. But considering this is a Gamerscore blog, I must bring it down to a 6.5 for how not as fun the achievements are.

Thanks for reading, bye :)

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Goodbye Bizarre Creations, and thanks so much

I'm not sure how I couldn't make a blog about this one. Sure, I only ever played the Geometry Wars games but I did buy Blur, it's just still sealed. But, Geometry Wars is my favourite XBLA series and second favourite Xbox series of all time. It's one of the best games on the Wii and even though I haven't played the DS version I'm sure that's good too. When Bizarre made the first game and I downloaded it, I loved it.

I was a bit skeptical at first, I had just gotten my Xbox 360 back in early 2007 and had some points to download my first XBLA games. I knew I wanted Smash TV, which I kind of regret thanks to that glitched Achievement but I really didn't know what else. My friend Siriku told me about Geometry Wars and it didn't seem too exciting and I wasn't too interested. But I wanted to know more and once shown the game and realising it had little to do with math I decided to download it. It was the first dual stick shooter I had played and the controls were perfect. It might have felt a little weird at first but they made so much sense, this game was amazing. A few years later I finally got all of the Achievements in it and that was awesome, it was my most played Xbox 360 game of all time by this point. It's a really odd one too as usually these days once I've finished a games Achievements then I'm done with it. Geometry Wars manages to be one of the few cases where this isn't true, I still play it today and it's still just as good.

Then came Geometry Wars 2, was it better than the first? Well, with all of the different game types it has, the game certainly tries it's hardest to be better. I don't know if it's just nostalgia for the first game, but I like them just as much as each other and find it really difficult to choose between them. Geometry Wars 2 was really awesome, my favourite mode being Pacifism which involves you going through gates to kill enemies and you're not allowed to shoot. Geometry Wars 2 quickly became my second most played Xbox 360 game and it deserves it greatly.

I want to say thank you to Bizarre Creations and in particular the Geometry Wars team, you created such and amazing series which I still play today and will probably continue to play for many, many years to come. It's sad to know that it's highly unlikely we'll see Geometry Wars 3, it's really sad to know that you won't be bringing us great games any longer. But thank you so much for those great games and I hope you have a great future wherever and whatever it is that you decide to do next.

Thanks for reading, bye :)

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Fast and the Furious: Adrenaline and Forza Motorsport 2

Two games completed this week, Fast and the Furious: Adrenaline and Forza Motorsport 2.

Fast and the Furious for WP7 wasn't a terrible game, in was fun but did have its flaws. For example, I would be racing through a track and then all of a sudden my phone goes to sleep. Yeah, I could probably change this in the settings of the phone but it's a hassle. The game can't tell that you're playing a game and doesn't know not to turn off. To solve this, since the tilt controls seemed to be the problem I decided to choose another option of controls. At that point, the game became unplayable and I had no choice but to go back to tilt controls. The game also has a nitro button, which I could also potentially use to solve the problem, but sometimes the phone just went to sleep anyway. So as a result, I decided I'd pause the game every 30 seconds in a race and despite losing some immersion I finally finished the game like this. So overall, I do not recommend this game unless of course you're looking for an easy 200 because this game is that. I'll give it a 3.5/10.

Next was Forza 2 which I have been doing for a very long time. Finally, thanks to some help from some friends I got the 1,000,000 online credits achievement. I don't know how many times I raced 75 laps on the Nissan Speedway, but I strangely didn't mind it. For some reason I didn't mind the repetitiveness of the game either, racing the same tracks with different cars. Don't get me wrong, this game has a good amount of tracks but given how long it takes to get the achievements it does get repetitive. You'll have to complete every race in the game and there are loads of them. I haven't played this in a while other than for the online achievement so I can't really say how long, but it is long. It's a fun racing game though and if you like racing games, then I recommend this one. I'll give it a 8/10.

Thanks for reading, bye :)

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Guitar Hero 5 Mobile, Fruit Ninja and Madagascar Kartz

Three games completed this week, Guitar Hero 5 Mobile, Fruit Ninja and Madagascar Kartz.

I'd never played a mobile version of Guitar Hero before, but it seemed like the next logical option for GamerScore on the WP7 and so I downloaded it. Unfortunately, this has to be the worst Guitar Hero I've played but also the easiest at the same time. I think it's the fact that the game wants you to perfect a song on expert that annoyed me the most about it. Considering on the mobile version expert is probably the equivalent to medium this should have been no problem for me. The problem with this achievement was that at times I found the game to be unresponsive. I'd press the buttons but it just sometimes wouldn't register what I'd done. At one point, there was a whole 5 seconds where I could do nothing because the game wouldn't register what I was doing. I can probably almost guarantee that if these "buttons" were actually responsive 100% of the time then I would have had little problem completing this achievement. It's unfortunate as it could have been a better game but it really doesn't deserve the £5.49 price when you can get the next game I'm going to write about for £2.49. I'll give this game a 3/10.

The next game that I completed was Fruit Ninja and unlike Guitar Hero it is very responsive. This is the best WP7 game that I have downloaded so far. It's just so fun to keep slashing fruit over and over using your fingers to swipe the screen. The achievements were great and I had no problem gaining any of them really, it was just an overall fun experience which I'd love to do again. I highly recommend this one, I don't have anything to complain about and the price of £2.49 is really great. I'll give it a 8/10.

Finally, we go back to the not so good games with Madagascar Kartz. Now, I would start comparing this game to Mario Kart, but honestly, although there are similarities there this game does not deserve to compared with such a game. To give you an idea, Madagascar Kartz is like if you took Mario Kart, removed most of the characters, removed most of the tracks, made most of the items blue and red shells, made the mushrooms crash you into a wall or off the edge of a tracks and made the karts slower. The level design is poor, you'll find the AI know all of the shortcuts and that one moment you'll be in first place and the next in last. I can't say that the achievements gave me lot of hassle but this isn't really much of a fun game. Still though, at least it responds better than Guitar Hero 5 Mobile and therefore deserves a better score. I'll give this a 3.5/10.

Thanks for reading, bye :)

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Flowerz, Monopoly and Megamind

Wow, three games completed this week. I finished Flowerz and Monopoly on the WP7 and Megamind on the 360.

Flowerz is the game you can download for free if you have a Windows Phone 7. If you want the 200 from it, be prepared to spend a long time playing it. Sure, I was mainly playing it whilst on the train which is quite a short journey for me but I've been consistently playing it since November. There's this one achievement "Clean Slate" which is pretty much a luck achievement. Every morning and afternoon, I'd turn on the game and just go for that achievement, clearing the board of flowers in Standard and Expert difficulty. In Standard this is very easy to do, but once you get to expert it's another thing entirely. Basically, if you haven't played flowers the idea is to make rows of three of a certain flower colour on the board. You can place these flowers anywhere where there is a space. For example you could place three reds next to each other and then they would disappear. Unfortunately, it gets more complicated when you have colours inside colours. For example, the petals could be red and the middle part of the flower could be blue. This time, if you line up three reds, the one with a blue middle will turn blue. So the problem with this achievement was that almost all the time there would be at least a few flowers left on the board. I'd advise anyone going for this achievement to look ahead with their moves using the flower meter at the top which tells you what's coming next. Planning your moves is essential for this achievement and like most guides say, it is best done in the early levels. I'd say specifically the first three as more colours are introduced after that. If you think you're doing well though, don't just stop at level 4 as it's still possible to do. Overall I'd say this was a fun game, though with amount I played it for consistently it did get a little boring and repetitive at times. If you have a Windows Phone 7 or are getting one, this is a must download, even if I only say this because it's free. I'll give it a 6/10.

Monopoly was next for my completions and this was an easy one. There was only one achievement which gave me some trouble and that was "Globe Trotter". The thing with this one is that, like the first 360 retail game you have to land on every property on the board - or as those who say it's glitched will tell you, every space on the board. It's not hard, but it does take a bit of time. You should just set up a game for 2 people and have player 1 buy every property. Well, actually have player 1 bid $1 on the property so that they win it. At the inevitable point where player 2 gets low on money, just trade most of player 1's money to player 2. This way the game keeps going and eventually that achievement will unlock. Overall, I'd say that this game is a good port of Monopoly although I absolutely hate the music, I had the sound off the entire time. It's quick and easy achievements, I'll give it a 5.5/10.

Finally, the last game was Megamind. This game has to be one of the simplest 1000's that I have ever obtained from a game. While it might not quite be as quick as avatar, this game isn't terrible and takes under 5 hours to complete. There isn't much to it other than to make sure you don't die on a boss and to complete a level without dying, it's just so easy. It's definitely a rent though, I feel sorry for anyone who brought it, it's too short for that. Overall, I'll give it a 6.5/10.

Thanks for reading, bye :)

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

2 Rivals 1 Challenge

So it's been over 7 months and I haven't made a blog post.

Well, I know I said I was back twice but this time it's

actually true because I need this blog to track my

progress. I have two rivals right now who have both made

goals to defeat my GamerScore. One is MagicalChaos who

I'll have to stay infront until July 31st 2013, a very

long time. The other is Demon Liar, who set his goal to

defeat me by January 24th 2012. Demon Liar has been

infront of me before, but as TrueAchievement history shows

I did beat him back.

I have some plans which I don't think I'll go into here in

case either one of them reads this blog. But I've got a feeling it will work since I feel it's somewhat unique and involves things which I'm 99% sure that neither of them use. Perhaps I'll one day reveal it since I'm confident it will work. So I guess if I do reveal it, it will be on August 1st 2013? That's quite a long while away, so hopefully I'll remember by then.

Other than that, this is just yet another one of those "I'm back" posts. The current plan is to post a blog every Tuesday and so we'll see how that goes.