Saturday, August 2, 2008

There are ways to copy PS2 video games, but keep it legal!

How many PS2 users have had their video games damaged by wear and tear? Everyone who owns a video game console that takes CD and DVDs knows the feeling of not being able to use a game due to scratches. However, copying your PS2 video games is an excellent way to protect your collection and enjoy your games for years to come.

If you’re looking to play copied PS2 video games, there is a lot of technology that can allow your console to read a DVD or even CD copy. The key is to put in a mod chip to play these video games. This mod chip works to allow copied CDs that were not originally coded to work on a PS2 console to boot without problems. Without these mod chips, the system would automatically reject any copied CD.

Installing and using a mod chip can put a lot of pressure on your PS2 game system. Many mod chips can even eventually wear down your laser and result in the need to buy a new one. Mod chips should only be installed by trained professionals, as it is never advisable to open up your own PS2 console without special training. Make sure to use only the best technology, as a cheap mod chip can ruin your PS2 console.

Creating the right copy of your PS2 video games also requires a special program for your computer. HD Loader is one of the most popular systems for copying and storing your PS2 games on your hard drive. This allows you to create a back up disc or keep the information there for safe-keeping. HD Loader allows you to boot and load your games faster, and reduce the wear and tear on your PS2’s laser especially with games like Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas that read from the disc most of the time during play with games that you legally own. With HD Loader you don’t need a mod chip or special equipment, but you’ll need the PS2 Network Adapter, a Playstation 1 game, and an IDE hard drive (Maxtor ones work the best, usually) for continued use, as well
as an Action Replay Max to get the hard drive software on the memory card the first time.

Many PS2 users who want to protect their original video game use this technology to back up a disc, or use HD Loader to boot their games faster and keep their laser from being overused. However, users should be careful to not break copyright laws, since buying or downloading a pirated PS2 video game is against the law. It is also against the law in many countries to bypass any copyright technology that is installed in a PS2 video game, so make sure you check into local laws before going ahead with this kind of project.

This technology helps users restore video games that have been damaged by wear and tear and continue enjoying their PS2 experience. Protect your games and continue to enjoy the best video games in the world for years to come. Back up your collection of PS2 games today using a mod chip and special software on your PC.

Be a Video Game Tester

Becoming a video game tester sounds fun, doesn't it? Those that play and test games know that it's an excellent job or a great career choice. It's unfortunate that a lot of gamers think or somehow believe being paid to do this simply cannot happen. Just the opposite, there are many people that play games, just like us, doing this type of work as a full blown career with benefits.

Having a career as a video game tester can be really fun, but it's important to note that this is also a real job, with real money making opportunities. It may not be for everyone, but that's obviously up to each individual. At first glance, being a tester may sound like it's "all fun and games", which it can be, but it also requires more than just playing a game.

Some examples might be having to play the same levels many times over just to identify all the different bugs that are presented within the game. So there is "work" involved. That being said, the majority of people that are in this business do tend to be very happy with their jobs. Of course, they do get to play the hottest games on the market in addition to see what the future holds for the industry - in some cases, days, months, or even years before the general public does.

Many known designers, programmers, etc, in the industry actually started as a video game tester before getting the position that they have today. So it's an excellent way for people to get their foot in the door. Contacts are everything, so meeting the right people is very important, thus becoming a video game tester being a great way to do that.

How much do game testers get paid? It really depends on the position your interested in, and it can vary from place to place. It would require some research on the participant interested. Generally speaking, you can get paid from $10/hr, all the way up $100+/hr or more.

If you love playing video games, chances are you will love having a job that requires you to test them. The growth of this incredible interactive medium has given birth to opportunities like this. Becoming a video game tester is a real job, that pays real money, and in many ways, it goes much beyond that.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Online Hunting Games - Early Age Video Game History

Even though personal computers have been around for a very long time, they really became popular in the 1980’s and have evolved into almost a necessity of life for many people. However, video games really began with the invention of the Atari video game system which would eventually evolve into more in-depth and more powerful game systems. One of the earliest hunting games developed was Duck Hunt which was made for the Nintendo game system.

Duck Hunt required the use of a special Nintendo Zapper light gun that plugged directly into the system. Players would then wait for ducks to show up on the screen which looked like a field. When the ducks came along, they would point and shoot. They were accompanied by a faithful hunting dog who would laugh if the duck was missed and congratulate on a successful shooting. The game also allowed players to shoot clay pigeons if they chose.

There was really no ending in the Duck Hunt game, however there were playing levels. Depending on how good the player got, he or she would advance up to 99 levels at which point, the game would go to level 00. At that level, no ducks would appear, but you would hear wings flapping. After three times of no ducks appearing, the game would be “over”.

After Duck Hunt, there were many other hunting video games that would begin to emerge on the market including Deer Hunter, Big Game Hunter, and Dangerous Hunts. Most of these games began for video game consoles like Nintendo, but the computer industry would soon become more and more involved as these games began to rise in popularity. While opinions vary as to which hunting video game was the first one developed for the home computer, many think that it was called “The Hunting Game” and was made by Oquirrh Productions. The Hunting Game allowed players to hunt for mule, deer, elk, and white tail deer from 48 separate locations. You were allowed to use a rifle, a bow, or a muzzle loader to hunt your prey. You also could hunt for turkey or water fowl from 18 separate locations.

When The Hunting Game first came onto the market, it caused quite a stir among hunting enthusiasts as well as animal rights activists. In fact, in many circles, the emergence of hunting video games brought about much debate and controversy.

Those who enjoyed hunting in the “real world” found these new games exciting and a great way to get some entertainment without leaving the comfort of their own home. They saw the games as a great way to be able to hunt animals they might never be able to do in real life such as bears and moose.

After all, the average Midwestern hunter sees plenty of deer on hunting expeditions, but their chances of hunting bear or elk is limited without a trip someplace.

On the other hand, animal rights activists threw a fit over these games because they perceived them as just another way to harm the animal population and promote violence against our furry friends. Even though the animals were just a bunch of coding made up by a software programmer somewhere, they still felt that video games promoting hunting only added to the real hunting of animals which they perceived as wrong.

At any rate, the fact remained that hunting video games took the market by storm and soon became some of the most popular selling games and software around. Software developers began to make these games much more challenging offering up different options for players that would make the games more enjoyable.

Today, there are hundreds of hunting video games for enthusiasts to choose from that have evolved into truly challenging games. Some may think that a point and click game where you can “down” a virtual deer might be a bit boring, but those who love these games disagree wholeheartedly.

They provide not only entertainment, but also a way to hone their hunting skills at any time of the day or night. When you spend a certain amount of time honing your tracking skills on the computer, chances are pretty good that you’ll be able to use those skills while hunting for real.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Video Games A Leading Entertainment Market After Bumpy History

The first video game that most people remember was a basic computerized version of table tennis, called "Pong". This is not because it was the first video game - there were many others floating around university campuses long before Pong debuted - but because it was the first video game to gain massive popular appeal. Today, video games are a lucrative entertainment industry, rivaling films for popularity and even intertwining with Hollywood - movies are made from popular games (such as Doom and Resident Evil) and games are created based on popular movies (such as Transformers and Star Wars). In fact, the first movie tie-in video game ever created was based on Star Wars in the 1980's, when video games were first emerging as a competitive force in popular culture.

It's tempting to be dismissive of video games as a toy for kids or a hobby for nerds, but they are really much more pervasive and widely popular than that. Their history is filled with ups and downs. Video games did not achieve world wide success overnight, but rather over a long period of time and in fits and starts.

After the sudden popularity of Pong in 1972, the industry enjoyed a brief period of commercial success, where a few of the best-known early games emerged, such as "Tank" and "Blockade", but it didn't last. In 1977 the public lost interest in video games and the bottom fell out of the market. This, too, was short-lived, however, as the video game began to reemerge in 1978 with the release of a game that is still popular with video game fanatics to this day: "Space Invaders". Space Invaders was the first game to give players the incentive of besting other players' "high score" and was an enormous success. Space Invaders was followed in 1980 by a little game known as "Pac-Man", an unprecedented success by any standards that put video games firmly back into the public imagination. For the first time, a video game character was so popular that merchandise tie-ins such as keychains and bedsheets were sold bearing its image. After Pac-Man, the public was clamouring for new games, and the companies that designed them were falling over themselves to come up with the next big thing. The next big thing ended up being released by a small Japanese company called Nintendo and featured an ape called "Donkey Kong" throwing barrels at a little jumping man who was trying to save his girlfriend. The little jumping man didn't get a name until Donkey Kong's sequel, "Donkey Kong Jr.", was released and they decided to call him Mario. He would go on to become the single most popular video game character in the world.

The first few years of the 1980's also saw the emergence of the home game console. The Atari 2600, the Intellivision console by Mattel and ColecoVision consoles all improved upon previous graphics and gameplay, but in the rush to cash-in on video game popularity, the market found itself overcrowded and the public once again lost interest. In 1983, the bottom fell out of the industry for the second time. However, this was also a short-lived setback. Home computers brought back the video game as a popular form of entertainment, and consoles made a major come-back in the 1990's. Though there were popular consoles during the latter part of the 1980's - the Nintendo Entertainment System comes to mind - the console really took off when they developed to the point that sophisticated, realistic graphics began to be possible with the innovation of 64-bit technology. At that point, Sony created its famous first console, known as the PlayStation. The PlayStation went head-to-head against Nintendo's acclaimed 64-bit console, the Nintendo 64, without a clear winner.

The popularity of PlayStation and the Nintendo 64 led to the next generation of consoles from both of those manufacturers, but also saw computer software giant Microsoft enter the fray. In 2000 and 2001, the PlayStation2, the Nintendo GameCube and Microsoft's Xbox were all released in quick succession, and despite the presence of three major consoles on the market, they all enjoyed a high level of success. Video gaming had reached a level of popularity that, unlike in 1983, allowed it, as an industry, to support them. It had truly become entertainment for the masses.

Currently, the three major console manufacturers each have new consoles on the market: the PlayStation3, the Nintendo Wii and the Xbox360. Each company has tried to come up with new gimmicks and innovations to beat out the others for the affections of gamers.

What's best for hardcore gamers, however, isn't necessarily what's best for everyone. While the PlayStation3 is competing for the same market as the Xbox360, the Nintendo Wii has taken a different approach, appealing to a broader, more family-friendly audience. With its innovative new controller that works by waving it around in the air, rather than pressing buttons, and its family-friendly games - many featuring the famous Mario from their Donkey Kong days - they have managed to create the sold-out, must-have console for the second Christmas season running.

The competition between Playstation3 and Xbox360 is more heated, however. Though they have only been out for about a year, it looks like the Xbox360 is just barely ahead of the Playstation3 in appeal to gamers. Its stunning graphics and capacity for massive online multiplayer games - developed through Microsoft's extensive experience in home computer technology - has a lot of gamers convinced it is the best console available for serious video game fanatics.

Many people think that the next big innovation in video game technology will be in the field of virtual reality, a medium that has been in development for some time and never quite seems to get off the ground in a commercially viable way. This may change, however, as processors get faster and smaller and the components needed to build sophisticated electronic equipment become cheaper and easier to make.

Regardless of where video game technology goes next or who will win the console war, it seems pretty clear that video games are here to stay. Who knows - one day, they may even usurp movies in popularity.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

History of Real-Time Strategy Games

Real-time strategy (RTS) games are arguebly the most popular genre on PC and rightly so, as they are highly competitive and long-lasting due to the many different ways an RTS can be played. Today I want to provide you with a hisory of RTS that will give you an idea of where it all started.

RTS games are still a fairly new genre compared to others because early computer strategy game revolved around turn-based strategy, which whilst fun does not offer the frenetic thrills you can expect from an RTS. The following is a discussion of the most influential RTS games:

Herzog Zwei- Surprisingly enough what is now considered the first RTS game was in fact released on the Sega Megadrive back in 1989 instead of the PC. The game focused mainly on split screen multiplayer action, (Yes that's right a split screen RTS) where each player had a main base with several support bases, the maps also consisted of neutral bases that any player could capure and use to their advantage. What made Herzog Zwei work on the console is the control of a single unit only, with all other units acting as support,a rather ingenious move that could be implemented in future console RTS games.

Dune II- After Dune II was released the RTS front suddenly became quiet until late 1994, when Warcraft: Orcs and Humans was released by Blizzard Entertainment. This game moved away from the sci-fi aspects oof Dune II and into a magical fantasy world that was thoroughly entertaining. There are two resources to be harvested in this game; lumber and gold. The two would have to be managed successfully inn order to build a mighty war machine. The units on both sides were essentially mirror images of each other, however they still looked distinctive from each other.

Warcraft: Orcs and Humans- After Dune II was released the RTS front suddenly became quiet until late 1994, when Warcraft: Orcs and Humans was released by Blizzard Entertainment. This game moved away from the sci-fi aspects oof Dune II and into a magical fantasy world that was thoroughly entertaining. There are two resources to be harvested in this game; lumber and gold. The two would have to be managed successfully inn order to build a mighty war machine. The units on both sides were essentially mirror images of each other, however they still looked distinctive from each other.

Command & Conquer- Westwood responded to the release of Warcraft in 1995 with the release of Command & Conquer, which was a spectacular evolution of the Dune II formula. Command & Conquer could have been released under a different name but Westwood decided it was time to make a fresh game without a license attached. Command & Conquer follows the story of a charismatic batle between GDI (Global Defence Inititive) and the Brotherhood of Nod, led by the ruthless Kane. The game made use of cut-scenes, which were rather cheesy but proved a hit with gamers.

Conclusion- There you have it these are the most influential games in RTS gaming history and all except Herzog Zwei have spawned various sequels and clones. In this day and age developers often merge RTS elements into other genres and it is not difficult to predict that this trend will continue as more advanced technologies are released allowing for more creative expressions from software developers. The genre may start to re-emerge on consoles, as attempts made recently have been more successful, Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars being a good example.