nullstream weblog - December 2006

Heads or Tails?

Home Theater

December 8, 2006 01:44 PM PST

The web is full of buzz lately about how HD-DVD is pulling ahead of Blu-ray. They point to Amazon stats on disc sales or the availability of cheap HD drives like the Xbox 360 add-on or HP's cheap HD-DVD drive upgrade for it's computers. The nets are blaming Blu-ray issues on the lack of PS3 availability and Sony's heavy handedness in general. Some are even going so far as to call the format war over. I think that is a bit premature. The Battle has just begun in a long drawn out war.

I did see something nice from the HD-DVD camp however. I just played my first dual format disc last night. Heads it's HD-DVD, tails it's DVD. Pretty cool. If more studios jump on this strategy, and price it aggressively, it seems like a win for both consumers and retailers. Consumers could buy 1 disc and have backward compatibility with all their existing DVD players (think, car players and portables), and retailers could stock just one version of the title instead of two (or three if you include a blu-ray version). Currently I believe only Universal and Warner Bros are doing this so far.


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Game Cover Systems

Gaming

December 5, 2006 07:15 AM PST

FPS games typically evolve very slowly. There is a pretty recent trend lately, however, to add some sort of a 'cover' system to this games. Being able to take cover from fire adds more realism and fun to the game. It's nice to be able to peak around corners without exposing yourself to danger. With some games you can even 'blind fire' around corners with your gun alone. This is not the way to achieve any accuracy, but it is handy in laying down some suppression.  In most older FPS games the best you could do for cover was to crouch down behind something and hope for the best.

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