And so, the challenge I set myself on April 7 has now been completed.
Racing through all those Grand Prix's, mixing up drivers and tracks, trying to hold onto as many coins as possible while keeping first place was hard. But I had a lot of Streetpass GP's to get through, and that was what mianly helped. For some reason, Streetpass GP's are harder than the normal ones - and I don't just mean you never know what track will come next. The AI seem more active at trying to race fully to beat you, rather than just their little group at the back. It's as though every racer has suddenly become a rival, and not just the jumped-up rubber-banded second place behind you.
But that's not what this post is about, even though that did help me not give up on the challenge.
I'd essentially worked out an averge for both GP's needed each week, as well as coins per week, so I could average myself out over each week while still doing other things I needed to do. Remember, this challenge was set during the ending month of my first year of university. Work before games is what I go by. I managed to get the average GP's for the first two weeks, but was lower on the third week. The fourth week I hit the GP average again, and almost hit it on the fifth week. Fact of the matter was though, only the second week was close to the average coin count.
From 26,433 coins, I only had earned 1969 in those five weeks. Three weeks, and 1598 coins left to get in three weeks. Seems impossible, but a turning point came. My course was now finished for the year. Meaning I had more time for gaming.
So, in the sixth week, I had 19 GP's under my belt and near enough 700 coins banked. This week, despite it not even being finished yet, I racked up the remaining 900 coins to hit that magic number of 30,000.



And there is the final proof. A great achievement, but I probably won't do another on Mario Kart 7. This challenge was leading up to Mario Kart 8's release, so if there is another challenge regarding coins, MK8 is where it'll be at.

mario_kart_7, coin_challenge

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Thanks for the memories.
Been a good time for the last few days, racing on worldwide. Would have loved to have been active more in Neoseeker's Wi-Fi Last Farewell event, but three disconnects within an hour meant the most I got was one whole GP, one race, one half race and one half battle with the group.
But that doesn't tarnish the memories any way at all.
It just made it more fun.

There is know just under a month until E3, and numerous game announcements waiting.
We all have our own preferences for what we want, and so I'm reeling off mine here, covering all [mostly] aspects of the big three, as well as EA and Ubisoft, and other areas of games.

Nintendo is where most of my loyalty franchises lie, and I expect I won't be dissapointed here. With Super Smash Bros 4 lining up what looks to be an already great line up, the rest I can give or take. But I will be paying attention to certain aspects. One of those is Pokemon. One of my highlighted franchises, Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire are already high on my list, but I suspect there might be another surprise in there somewhere. And whether for WiiU or 3DS, it will most likely be a spin off [two main games at the same times is a no] and will bring a certain innovation to the franchise and sub-series it represents. What I expect is another entry to the Shadow Pokemon games, but I can't fully see it happening. A battle simulator of some kind, while great, is looking less likely now the main games are evolving into a format that resembles them.
Then we have the Nintendo Figurine Platform - something that looks to change the way we see the NFC platform as a whole. And I expect a range of games to be announced with the figures coming in at roughly the same price [or half price] as the Fantasy Flight Games Star Wars figures. They're only around £10 on Chaos Cards, so it can't be that much to ask. As part of this I'm expecting a game announcement in sync with this, some kind of game or WiiU app like the Toy Box mode of Disney Infinity. Or maybe I expect too much from it.
I'm not particularly interested in any other games, although I was fairly interested in Monolith's X when it was announced, so if I see some more of that and it makes me like it more, I'll definitely keep my eye on it. Bayonetta 2 isn't something I'd go for, and neither is Shin Megami Tensei x Fire Emblem. I still expect both to get some showing though.
Other Nintendo specific franchises, like Metroid and Star Fox, could make an appearance. I expect at least one to anyway. Yarn Yoshi could also do with some footage since it's last reveal, and Animal Crossing for WiiU could get a reveal, if only to reassure Wii owners that the experience will still be available fully on a console [after all, communication is key with AC, and Wi-Fi Connection is getting shut down].
Then of course, the unexpected stuff, always a certainty with Nintendo. And I expect that here too.

In terms of Sony, I'm not much of a fan, though I do play quite a few games occasionally. Chief among them is Uncharted and Gran Turismo. I'm always up for third person shooters, and the Uncharted series has some of the best gameplay that I have actually played. I don't get shooters much, so if I can really get into them, then that game has scored high with me. Racing games, on the other hand, I have plenty to choose from. So if Sony do plan on showing Gran Turismo 7 [or GT6 PS4 edition], then it has to prove to me that it is essential. It seems unlikely though, what with DriveClub on the horizon, and I expect DriveClub to be the only racer shown by Sony.
While not too familiar with other Sony franchises, I do know that I want to see the return of the 3D platforming scene for the PS4. A proper revival of one of the old platforming series on PS4 would make me notice. Other than that, I can't really see anything that'll get me fully interested. If something unexpected comes out of this, I expect it to be a proper unveiling of Project Morpheus and out-of-beta-phase Playstation Now.

Microsoft... Microsoft... The least favoured by me out of the big three. I've got nothing against them. I love the Forza series, as well as Hydro Thunder, but that is the problem. It is only the Microsoft published racers that I like, and the sort of PC exclusive Midtown Madness was one of my favourites. I've been saying it for years, but I want a revival. Racing games have moved on though, and we will possibly never see such a range of modes as was presented in Midtown Madness again.
While none of the other Microsoft exclusives bother me too much, I have dabbled with the Crackdown and Fable series [from the Games with Gold promo] to know that if either did end up on the XB1, I'd look into getting one on a deal or something. Well, not really. By the time I do get one, the next generation of consoles will probably be starting, but then that just means I'll be able to catch up on them easier.
Many expect Microsoft to get back into the PC gaming space, and I am too. It seems likely that DirectX 12's capability will be shown off by Microsoft, and who better to show off that capability than Microsoft themselves?

Now then. EA. An interesting one to say the least. Star Wars Battlefront will be a big expectation of mine, and EA had better deliver. And they should also deliver the goods about Visceral's new Star Wars game. In fact, is it too much to expect an entire part of EA's conference just dedicated to Star Wars? Outlining both Battlefront and Star Wars Visceral, as well as other future plans for the franchise? One can't expect too much of them.
Sims 4 I'm expecting to get a lot more shown off for it. If they really want people to believe this is the biggest upgrade from Sims 3, they need to show it. Also, is it too soon for another Maxis game? I'm not expecting anything, but it's possible.
Need For Speed I'm expecting to get shown, even if it isn't releasing this year. Even an outline of what the plan is would be good enough.
Expectation of the sports games isn't needed, it's a given. All sports games with the '15 tag on them. After most of them got big overhauls last year though, I'm not expecting much of an improvement this time.

This'll be the shortest of the lot, as all I really expect from Ubisoft is for them to really impress me with The Crew. It's probably one of the biggest open world racers currently waiting for release. Apart from that - I'm not expecting anything else from them, but I know a lot of the usual will be there. Assassin's Creed and the like. Tom Clancy too.

And now, the rest. Sonic Boom is now getting pretty low on my list of expectations. I was all excited for it, but unless E3 re-establishes that hype, I'll probably end up paying more attention to the TV series than the game.
The only other thing I can say I really, really want is LEGO Star Wars 4. It's got to have been in development for a number of years now, developing on what LSW3 did and expanding on it. Even if it's a Clone Wars II, giving us seasons 3 to 6 in game form, I wouldn't mind. After a number of games in franchises I have no love for [although LEGO City Undercover was a brilliant game, and if I can get my hands on it I'm sure The LEGO Movie game is as well], Star Wars is really the only license that LEGO hold that hasn't has a game for a while. Unless TT Games have a new license to play around with, LEGO Star Wars is more likely, and is what I am expecting the most.

So, that's all I have to say on the matter, apart from - bring on E3.

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With just under two months to go until Mario Kart 8, I thought I'd revisit a little something I did two years ago with Mario Kart 7.
In that first challenge, starting 5th of July at 14,205 coins, I had until the end of the month to reach 20,000 coins - the last unlock milestone on the game. I had to race properly though. That was what I'd said to myself. Race properly or the challenge is void. After all, a challenge is no fun if your just staying in last and quickly collecting the coins half a lap behind everyone else. And so I raced through many GPs, earning podiums almost every time, getting over 30 coins almost every time.
And so, since that time I had played the game for less time. In fact, for the whole of 2013, I hadn't even reached 25,000. At the beginning of March though, I did. With Mario Kart 8's release coming up within two months, I started playing MK7 more again throughout that month. That's when, beginning of April, I reached the point where I thought to myself "Why not make another coin challenge out of this?"
There is one major difference though. At that point in 2012, I had just finished my first year of college. This year, I'm on my first year of university, and with an end of year show coming up, I've got work to be doing. So I've got less time for gaming. Hence the two months instead of one.
Anyway, this challenge. Starting today, with a coin total of 26,433, I have to reach 30,000 coins by the release date of Mario Kart 8. If that gets reached easily though, an extension to 32,000 should make things harder.
And so, here I go.

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Well.., this is something interesting.
The close release of Mario Kart 8, and the tracks announced for it, got me thinking about when we might start hearing info about the next title.
Yeah, I know. Already thinking about the next game when the current one hasn't been released yet.
But then, upon looking at the release dates of previous Mario Kart's, a slight picture starts to reveal itself for more than just the release of the next Kart. [All info is for European releases]
It starts with the release of the GBA Mario Kart in 2001. What released a year later? The Gamecube.
The Gamecube Mario Kart gets released in 2003. Two years after the last release. Which then brings us to two years later.
In 2005, the DS is released, and in the same year, so is Mario Kart DS. What gets released the next year? The Wii. It also gives us two years between GCN and DS releases of Mario Kart.
Mario Kart Wii gets released on 2008, boosting the difference of releases to three years and not two. Three years pass, and both the 3DS and Mario Kart 7 are released.
The next year, the WiiU releases. Which brings us to current day. 2014. Three years after Mario Kart 7's release, Mario Kart 8 will soon be releasing.
Seen the pattern yet? Well, let me explain. Providing Nintendo stick with the current handheld-home console releases, three to four years will bring us both the release of the next handheld and Mario Kart 9. The next year will see the release of the next home console. Two to three years after the release of the new home console, Mario Kart 10 will release.
So, that's my future predictions of Nintendo console and Mario Kart releases. Remind me of this post in 2022 and we'll see how accurate it was.

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All of the recent footage of this game has got me wanting a WiiU more than ever.
People say either two things in regards to this game.
1] It's like the Adventure era games. It's naff. / It's not the modern controls. I don't like it.
2] This game is excellent and I want it.
The people who say number one are those who haven't even played it. Granted, I haven't played it yet, but at least I can judge it for what it is, not what came before it. Even SEGA themselves say that this is possibly the best Sonic game they have created [alothough they say that about all Sonic games they make] but this time, critics are actually liking it as well. There are numerous previews for this game, and most of them are very positve. The only ones that aren't, well... you can tell they're just shoving the game because they didn't take the time to get to know it and its controls, as that's what those preivews will mainly focus on.
I believe SEGA when they say best Sonic game in years, and you only have to look at the footage to know it most likely will be. Not everyone will agree, as it goes. Oh well, I've had my say, and within the next month I'll hopefully have a WiiU. Or at least the chance to finally play this game. SonicLostWorld Wii U

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Again, E3 is coming around again. Again, it will be spectacular. Again, the hype is already surrounding it, what with information and rumour planted everywhere. So here is what I would like and my views on what has been said to be unveiled.

Successor of the Wii.
-Nintendo have already had news that this will be unveiled at this years' E3. You already know lots of rumours and technical specifications. But I don't think these are right. You should know that I want a second edition of the Gameecube, with HD and backwards compatability with the Gamecube and Wii. Just follow this from the Official Nintendo Magazine forum to get everyone's ideas from it. My username is exactly the same as this forum, CDS.

Star Wars Battlefront 3
-Rumour has been surrounding this since Star Wars Battlefront 2's release in 2005.Now rumour has it Crytek UK is developing it after taking over Free Radical Design, and have revealed they will be announcing something at this years' E3. Whether this is Star Wars Battlefront 3, or Timesplitters 4, perhaps both. No-one knows. All I can say is this, I just hope there is a release of this near Christmas and that it is WAY better than the previous two, featuring ideas from both.

NGP/PSP2
-My old PSP 1000 needs replacing, but first I want to see if this is any good to get. What with the 3DS and the two anologue sticks of this console, I'd love to see some better games on it. We all know that it will feature a back touch pad, and better graphics matching the PS3, but will the games be as good as the PS3's? And also, how will this new menu interface - the LiveArea - work and will it be any good?

3DS Games of the future
-Mario Kart, Animal Crossing, Legend of Zelda, Star Fox 64, Robot Wars. A lot of great games coming for this new technical wonder, and little information unveiled about them. At this years' E3, I'd like a lot of new information revealed about them. What new features will make Animal Crossing a big buy? Will Legend of Zelda: Ocarnia of Time and Star Fox 64 be better than the N64 versions they first were? Will Mario Kart be fresh enough to buy? SO many questions about these revealed games as so little information has been revealed about them.

Pikmin 3
-Nintendo revealed working on this. But little else. As a complimentary gift for 3DS owners having to wait so long, Nintendo are giving a free download of Excitebike. But hang on a minute. Wasn't there an Excitebike visualiser for 3DS Sound? And isn't one the AR Cards that came with the 3DS of the Pikmin? This makes me also think that Pikmin 3 will be unveiled at E3, the 3DS eShop will have an information overload about it, and Pikmin 3 will be on the 3DS.

The best of the rest
-Secret unveils and massive blowouts are at the core of E3. So, as well as the ones mentioned above, I'd also like to see more Star Wars input. Apart from The Old Republic [which is coming soon] and The Force Unleashed 2, as well as Lego Star Wars III: The Clone Wars [not technically LucasArts' doing though] there haven't been that many great Star Wars games. So a lot more of these unveiled this year, please. I'd also like something origanal to be unveiled. Something combining a lot of gaming genres together. A racing RPG, perhaps. Or maybe and adventure sandbox game? How about an action/simulation/sandbox game set in a school? The possibilities for original ideas are endless. You just have to implement them well enough to get good results.

Commodore 64 2?
-CVG, the home of all rumours, gave away a news snippet that this was in the works. Although, it is said to be even more powerfull graphically than the latest updated computer! It can also have Microsoft Office and Windows 7 installed on it. Of course, all this could just be rumour, but you never know.

All will be revealedd at this years' E3.
7/6/11-9/6/11

musingsthoughts technology gaming related e3 consoles games

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When the news was officially confirmed yesterday, I was really excited about this latest news. Finally, I thought, but just let it be another Gamecube. Let Nintendo give it that second chance it needs. Now forget whatever leaked information is out there, this is my expectations and I'm sure any Gamecube fans still out there will support me on this.

Called the Nintendo Cube+, this new console is twice as large as the original Gamecube. And it should be as well, as it contains the all of the Wii's CPU systems and its own. The controller stays the same as the Gamecube's original, but all the console and controllers are in sleek, triple red shades [three shades of red]. Games also support the Wii remote and Nunchuk. Better graphics means better games. But the original Gamecube isn't left out, as the Cube+ has the ability to playback Gamecube titles as well.

Coming included with this console is the streamer, an SNES style storage unit, which plugs into the computer and accesses the internet through the computer. This gives access to the Plus shop, where you can buy the Cube+ titles. And it's with good reason they are available only through this shop, as they can all host downloadable content. Wondering how the Cube+ will store all this data. The Wii save data, plus anything Wii related [except the Mii's] are saved onto the console itself. Any Cube+ data is stored on the streamer, which hosts 400GB of data.

The menu's included within the Cube+ are as follows:
Game Accesser - Accessesany games on the streamer
Wii Changer - Changes to the Wii's menu
Mii Designer - Create your own Mii Characters
Town Designer - An Animal Crossing-esque town, in which you design
Mii Village - The town you've designed, and the Mii's you've designed, come together and allow you to play an Animal Crossing-esque game.
System Settings - Access all settings for the console

So I've said a lot here. Let's hope it comes true.

technology gaming related nintendo gamecube wii

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As soon as the 3DS came out the box, I was impressed. Sleek and stylish, I opened it up and turned it on. Part of the set-up procedure requires you to see the 3D in proper to set your preference. Impressed again. Then I started on the Mii Maker. More options there are this time around and more things to do. Once I had two Mii’s up and running, I headed for the AR games. After spending quite a long time on there, I then picked up Super Monkey Ball 3D and started to play. After a bit, the battery was low. Turns out it was only a quarter charged when I picked it up from Toys R Us, but I had still managed to get roughly 2 hours of play. A few guides here to maximise play and also the stuff to do.

Maximise Battery Power.
First off, I would like to say about this is to switch the 3D effect off when on menus, or when the 3D effect isn’t really needed [like on Lego Star Wars III: The Clone Wars]. The 3D effect, depending on how high you have it, drains power. Also, turn the wireless off unless playing multiplayer, or if the console is in sleep mode. The wireless effects the battery power as the console is always trying to connect to other 3DS’. Factory standard for brightness setting is 5. A 2 or 3 should be adequate enough to be able to see the screens, and conserve battery power. The option of power saving is also there.

AR Games
First off, only Star Pics and shooting are available. Complete Shooting and Mii Pics and AR Shot become available. Complete AR Shot and Graffiti and Fishing become available. From that short description, you probably don’t know what I am on about. So here is a basic outline of each game.
Star Pics – Using the six AR Cards available, you can summon Mario, Kirby, Samus, Toon Link, three Pikmin, and the Living Box, pose them how you want, even move them around, and then [so long as the respective AR Card is still in sight] take a photo.
Shooting – Targets appear around a square and you have to move around that square to target them. After shooting a wave, more will appear. The boss is a dragon and once defeated, you will have a time of completion.
Mii Pics – Just like Star Pics, except you are using the Mii’s you have created. Choose however many Mii’s you want, then, just like Star Pics, change the size, position and pose of each character, and a Mii Pics exclusive, the expression.
AR Shot – The immediate area your 3DS can see morphs into golf stages. Aiming by moving your 3DS, the tactical side comes in the fact you can only get a hole in one to complete a stage. Just as with Shooting, the boss is a Dragon, and you get a time at the end.
Graffiti – Draw what you want and take a photo, with a selection of other things to do, including placing stamps, tracing templates and adding special effects. Just like Mii and Star Pics, you can move what you draw around and also make it jump.

All AR Games interact with the environment around you. Once you complete fishing, you can buy more AR Games and applications by using the Play Coins you collect through walking.

Games and Face Raiders
Face Raiders is a pre-installed software game that incorporates your face and turns it into a flying creature. Your environment then becomes the battlefield as you twist and turn to shoot down your own face and those of your friends when you take their pictures. This takes full 3D on a crash course as the faces come out at you. The games on offer now have a range of fun activities and also show the 3D effects off quite nicely.

3DS Camera and 3DS Sound
3DS Camera allows you to take photos using a range of tools including making the photo look like a 20’s photograph and also over expose the photo. The 3DS Sound app means you can record sound and also listen to your music. You can also change speed and tempo of the music playing. There are also music styles to use, like making the tune sound like an 18-bit game music, and echoing the song.

Although I haven’t tried any online capabilities [no wireless hook-up] what is on offer without the online modes is quite an achievement. I haven’t even tried the Streetpass mode. Everything I have tried is perfect and is impressive. The only flaws I can really find are the 3D effects not always lining up properly and the low battery consumption, although as I mentioned near the top, there are ways around that.

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I have a very strong point on this.
Everyone has their own opinion about everything.

Now on to the main topic, the so called 'Console Wars'.
There isn't really one. This, as anything, is just speculation. Each console may be different, and each person may have their own console preference, but trying to figure out which one is best was obviously going to create arguments.

The PS3 for example, allows for blue-ray disk input, but the Wii, on the other hand doesn't have much of the realistic graphics the PS3 does. But that doesn't mean to say that the PS3 is the better console. In actual fact, there is no way to determine which is the better console. Where one fails at something, another fails at something else, but both could have the strong points that the other one fails at.

Giving an opinion is just that. Giving an opinion. If someone else doesn't like that opinion, there is nothing you can do. For example, if a teacher at school said that your latest coursework was rubbish, argueing with the teacher won't help to resolve that. Argueing over which console is better is just going to go on forever, unless consoles were standardised, meaning only one portable and one home console on sale, with all games being released for either or both.

So just one last point, if you don't like having your opinions challenged,
keep them to yourself.

If you feel the need to argue over pointless wars (like the console one), then don't try. You fill a book or two with every single opinion traded over this matter, with each one coming out over 1000 pages long with opinions from the government [Yes. I do say that], businesses, celebrities and any individuals.

playstation 3 xbox 360 wii pc playstation 2 ds playstation portable musingsthoughts gaming related consoles opinions

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Now I've been reading a lot lately about this game and, having played and completed the Wii version myself, I can't see what people are complaining about. [This blog is from the Wii version's point of veiw]
This game is good. So what if the storylines short. When has a Star Wars game got to have a storyline to be any fun. Just look at Star Wars Battlefront. So some things I like about Force Unleashed 2 are:-

1] Force Powers
There may not be Force Choke, but there are some good force powers here. Also Force Repulse has been fixed.

2]Combat
All Star Wars games need combat. Good combat. The Battlefront titles have got it, and so does this game I find. Force powers are well executed and lightsaber combat is also good.

3]Multiplayer
Even though I haven't played this much, I still think this is a winner as it is well executed.

4]Graphics
Now I know the PS3/PC/Xbox 360 versions are realistic but the Wii version features equally realistic, if more animated, graphics. Except for a few minor mistakes, the graphics are great.

Now stop complaining people. Every game has lots of ups and downs, so stop focusing on the negative.

gaming related

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Chris Searle

  • West Midlands England UK
  • Joined Dec 19, 2006
  • Male
  • 19 years young
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