Gamer’s Hangover News Report – 05.10.04


The Console (?) That Walks
The Phantom revealed! Apparently the guys at GD got a sneak peak at the much-maligned Phantom game system (check the pics at the bottom of the page here) and I have three words for them: Commodore. Sixty. Four. Although that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

The more I read about this, the more (in infinitesimal steps, of course) I think that they may not just be trying to pull a “Producers” with the investment money. Hell, I already think it’ll be a better game system than the N-Gage, but since an Algebra book is a better game system than the N-Gage, that isn’t saying much.

The interesting bit of the interview GD had with Infinium Labs President (and ex-Xbox head) Kevin Bachus is the revelation that the console itself will be essentially free. Free, that is, when you subscribe to the Phantom Gaming Service. The “buyer” will be able to rent and purchase games through the service, as well as receive demos. Yes, the games will be PC games, and yes, the online versions will be able to be played online.

They’ll be at booth #746 of the South Hall at E3 this week, for those of you going. I’d appreciate some news as to how it looks and how the organization looks.

Because I’m An Engineer, I Think This Is Cool
I usually don’t like to give game release news, because most everybody who reads 411 knows what games are coming out any given week, but since I hadn’t heard of this game yet, and I AM an engineer, I’ll make an exception here.

Nintendo is releasing Custom Robo, a game where you can build your own robot from “almost 200 unique parts.” Then you can battle your robots in a virtual arena. Sweet.

Hey, I loved “Battlebots.” Leave me alone.

That’s It, I’m Getting A GBA
This is so short, I have to mail it, but it’ll only cost me postcard postage.
A company known as Red Sky Mobile will be revealing a device this week at E3 that will turn your Game Boy Advance into a GPS tracking system, complete with the ability to connect to GPS satellites so you can take full advantage of location features.

There’s also notes in there indicating that Red Sky also wants to take advantage of some sort of GPS gameplay features with the device.

Awwww, yeeeeeaaah.

PS2 Finally Unseated By Xbox
According to Reuters, the Xbox sold more units than the PS2 in April. This is a first since the release of the Xbox.

The fact that both companies will be unveiling successors to their respective consoles this week at E3 kind of makes the victory hollow, but I’m sure the folks in Redmond will take it. Congrats. Now, get back to work and tell me why my Windows ME hates my broadband software so much.

THQ’s EA Lineup
I usually hate doing the same lists that everyone else does, but hey, E3 is the talk this week. This is a list of games that THQ (makers of fine wrestling video games among other things) will be showing:

– Destroy All Humans (think Vincent D’Onofrio’s character from “MIB” in GTA3)
– Full Spectrum Warrior (*yawn* Squad-based RTS)
– STALKER: Shadow of Chernobyl (As cool as the premise is, it’s still a FPS)
– Assorted Nicktoons games (Spongebob, et al)
– Tak 2: The Staff of Dreams (adventurey thing)
– The Incredibles (superhero game)
– The Polar Express (survival?)
– The Punisher (obviously a turn-based RPG. Yeah. Right.)
– The Spongebob SquarePants Movie (self-explanatory)
– WWE Day of Reckoning (soon to be dissected by Wids and Panky)

So there ya go.

E3 Juicy Rumor #1

Shigeru Miyamoto will commit hari kari in public on Thursday.

Okay, I’m exaggerating. The actual rumor (actual rumor?) is that the brains behind games like “¦ oh “¦ I don’t know “¦ anything with the names “Mario”, “Donkey”, and “Zelda” in the title, will be tendering his resignation this week.

To borrow from Bebs, I give this rumor a 5. Consider yourself warned.


I’m doing free-association pimps this week, and you can’t stop me.

Misha – Goal kicks “¦ rhubarb “¦ eyeliner “¦ and the overbearing mom from “Bend it Like Beckham.”

Yeager – Touques “¦ eyeliner “¦ lost months playing “Fallout” over and over again, with and without cheat codes.

Lucard – Van Helsing “¦ eyeliner (How many @$#$ Goths do we HAVE on the staff, anyway?) “¦ zombies “¦ and a copy of FFVII tucked under his bed where no one will ever find it.

Berg – Overtime hockey (almost spelled hickey, and wouldn’t THAT have been uncomfortable) “¦ “The Apprentice” “¦ Evolution (the stable, not the biological principle) “¦ a Black Flag/Circle Jerks double bill.

Chuck – Barbecue “¦ Double-Down Trent from “Swingers” “¦ The Cheesecake Factory on the Country Club Plaza in K.C. (good times).

Eric S. – “Clockwork Orange” “¦ some of Terry Gilliam’s better cartoons “¦ The “Tainted Meat” episode of Beavis and Butthead (Eric, forgive me. It’s Monday).

Quasi-Random Thoughts

Okay, this is where I tell you exactly why I didn’t come up with the MST3K like I promised. First of all, ESPN has apparently moved Matt Wong to their Siberian office after his first few cracks at columns. Second of all, my weekend involved the destruction of my skylight in a self-inflicted idiot accident. (This is what happens why you try to trim your own trees, folks. Homeowners out there, do yourselves a favor and hire professionals to do that for you, okay?) Third “¦ ah, screw it. There is no third. I broke the skylight yesterday morning and was so pissed off about it that I was a mess for the rest of the day. There. I said it. Now, it’s really not that big a deal. A little money out of my pocket, a little inconvenience, but no big loss. In fact, as I write this, the roofing people are heading over to the house to check out the skylight so they can get the right part and get things repaired.

Truth is, I’ve had a lot of little, but crucial, things like this happen to me recently. We’ve just enrolled The Boy in day-care, and that’s a bit of an adjustment for everybody involved. Veronica just changed her days off, so now she actually has Saturday AND Sunday off like a normal person, which is fantastic but still something to adjust to. And I will finally be receiving my Master’s degree on Friday, with the biggest hootenanny (chock full of hoot, just a little bit of nanny) I’ve ever had the guts to throw on Saturday. It’s all piling up a bit, and I’m finding it hard to make time to get my reviews done or scout for bad game writing to make fun of.

Hey, it’s May. A lot of you know what’s going on. School’s getting out, people are having to make living/working arrangements for the summer, kids are rampaging through the neighborhoods instead of being corralled in the schools, there’s suddenly yard work to be done, morons like me are on their roofs, not only threatening to damage themselves but everything around them, there are year-end concerts, parties, recitals, play days, vacations are being planned, air conditioners are going out, cars are overheating, and everybody’s just trying to squeeze a little golf in amongst the chaos.

So, I hope you’ll continue to bear with me. After a flurry of activity this week, things should start to settle down as we slide into June and the temperatures start to slide into the 90’s and everybody heads inside for a long summer of gaming.

Next week, you may call me Master.

Until then, get some sleep.