Monday, 26 November 2007

Electronic Mayhem

Well, in a rare occassion I'm blogging again in the same month!

Now, those of you who know me and read this will know im an avid (some might say obsessed) console gamer, others who dont will no doubt be wondering "what's a console gamer?"

Well to those who have only just arrived into the 21st century, allow me to give you a very brief(ish) history of gaming from a fan's perspective.

I was born in the 1980's during which time the only computers available were from either BBC or a company know as Acorn computers (nothing to do with a certain Ms.Wood and Ms.Walters) the rest were know simply as `mickey` mouse computers that plugged into your tv via the areial box and used either cassettes or big floppy disks that were square and (unlike todays obsolete models) floppy, these used a language called BASIC and a slighlty more advanced language called ASCII.

then a japanese company arrived called nintendo, they originally developed games for another minor games firm called Atari, the most famous model from Atrai was a console called the 2600 and was one of my first console machines, it played pac-man and donkey kong, two characters that now remain in our hearts and (to some) our memories.

Now, A rival company sprang up called Sega; they developed a machine which like nintendo used a cartridge based system, theyre also famous for giving us a rather unsual sight back then....a blue hedgehog that ran on two legs and wore a ridiculous pair of red sneakers (trainers to those unfamiliar to americano) called Sonic, rival to nintendo's main star....A plumber with a penchant for rescuing princesses from monkeys and overgrown dinosaurs going by the name of Mario.

As the years rolled by the two companies battled it out for control of the teenage market by introducing new and more advanced systems, as this progressed other companies rose to try to unseat these two powerhouses from their thrones as the top console producers but only one managed to cause a furore.....Sony

Yes! Sony, the company that first introduced the CD to our world now decided to try and enter into the fray after an unsuccessful attempt with nintendo to develop a CD based console nown then as the PSX.......

They developed a major selling product that caused consternation to Sega and Nintendo, namely the Playstation.

This little machine is still selling despite the fact that its two younger brothers have pretty much taken over the mantle of financing Sony Computer Entertainment, although that being said its selling relativley cheap (£20 will buy you a brand new one).

Sony decided to try and bring more to the forefold by introducing a variety of characters to its world and allowing the market to bring in the adults with a range of more......`grown up` titles to the world and so sega and nintendo retailiated by designing abd releasing their own CD based machines, although nintendo did not release their version till much later.

Sadly Sega was forced to give up its console development after a while as sony and nintendo were out-selling them in temrs of the hardware, and reluctantly they became sofware developers and publishers toi the other concoles, including a new rival to challenge the rest.

while the main war had been between Sony,Sega and Nintendo and fourth rival had been biding its time and now struck into the struggle for dominance......Microsoft released its first games console....namely the Xbox.

The xbox was released roughly about the same time as the successor to the original Playstation...the unoriginally named Playstation 2 and Nintendo's first widely known CD machine....the Gamecube and boasted a unrivalled amount of detail and performance by utilizing actually PC technology as part of its circuitry.

Only one thing hindered the Xbox; its size, for while the xbox was powerful it was also the size of an old VCR and weighed something similar too!

now the battle continues with the Playstation 3, the interestingly named Nintendo wii and the sequel to the xbox....the Xbox 360!

who will win? it's upto the buyers!

Sunday, 18 November 2007

The Christmas Countdown!

Well! The dreaded christmas is creeping up on us and with it is coming the annual round of madness that comes with it; namely, the mad rush around the shops, the terrible christmas songs both past and present and the demands for toys, gifts and presents from all and sundry!

From reading that you'd think i hated christmas........Not so!
I do love chirstmas its just getting harder to think of it as anything but an excuse fopr kids to demand all sorts of things that they'll play with for approximatley 2 hours (if youre lucky) and then declare "I'm bored!"

Although i'm not exactly know for religion or my beliefs I would like to think that we should try to remember what christmas is actually about......You'de be surprised to realise most small children these days think only of it as a chance to get great pressies! Plus with all the political nonsense around, most people are afraid to remember the correct meaning of christmas for fear of offending muslims, jews, buddhists and all the other major and minor religions out there.

May I point out that these faiths share their own versions of celebrations for the coming season, in fact if my memory serves me correctly, the muslims religion has just completed or is celebrating divali (apologies if the spelling is incorrect; i dont not mean to offend anyone but my memory on these things is a little rusty) which I believe translates as `festival of lights` and around the same time of year as christmas the jewish community celebrates hanukkah, they have no problem with celebrating these and not offending christians, agnostics and goodness knows who else! so top the PC brigade I say.......Put up or shut up!

Ok tirade over, next thing on the agenda.

So christmas is coming, which means absoulte chaos to anyone thinking of venturing out there to shop for their loved advice: Plan about three weeks in advance and have everything written down in a special christmas diary or notebook, that way when the event gets closer you can do it all in one fell swoop and save agonising over whether aunt Ethel would really like that mauve jumper or if cousin Mark wants the nintendo Wii or the remote controlled interstellar death blaster that you saw in toys r us.

Of course this would be hypocritical of me if i didnt admit ive had christmas in my head since the end of October and given thought to what i would like; problem is theres loads id like but like most people i have to try and stick to a budget! so right this point id like the new harry potter film (Harry Potter and the order of the phoenix) so santa if youre reading this from lapland or wherever you happen to be, please note ive been a REALLY good boy this year!