Stick that in your “cloud” and smoke it II

Now that the cloud services are hitting the market more and more, the more bullshit things that the corporate droids are saying what it can do.  Honestly, the state of the cloud is something closer to smog.  You don’t see the problems with the cloud till you are totally engulfed in the cloud of smog, and through the “information superhighway” your creamed by some asshole in a mack truck and get your car stolen with your wallet and by the time you come out of the cloud you’re naked and asking your self “WTF JUST HAPPENED?!”

Matt Honan learned this the hard way. He got hit in by the mack truck of social engineering when someone retrieved his password than went on a rampage of deleting his accounts and spamming with other accounts.  One of the biggest problems with the cloud is there is only a single point of access, Once that’s broken it becomes fuck all and pretty much if you don’t have it backed up to solid media such as a DVD or a backup drive , you might as well just light your computer on fire in the end.  Even if you do have your media backed up on the computer that you’ve connected to the stink cloud, in all chances you may end up with your device wiped due to that single point of access and accounts attached to it.

Also with the perceived “Security” that the cloud has its really just unicorn farts and rainbows due to in part the end user.  How many people will just log into there cloud putting in the password every time or will they hit save password and screw themselves in the fact that its just “easier”, Not to mention a lost device could doom all of your information  since there is interconnectability in the toxic waste cloud.

It just makes me wonder about the security of the cloud thing.  If someone can call and pretend to be you, how many other ways is your account on the exhaust cloud vulnerable. If media is able to execute in the cloud is there any stops to malware infecting your account and possibly everyone else with an account on the server or node your clouded information is on .  Likely your information is stored like a cesspool everyone else’s shit is in the tank with yours.  If someone finds a way to gain root access, Than pretty much rather than one account being hit thousands or more could be affected in the process.  Since the security in the cloud is based on black magic , someone named tom and  a cookie with m&m’s next to the keyboard to hopefully distract the person or persons trying to gain access to the information.

Websites, portals, and social media platforms have been dealing with these problems and can be directly relatable to the possibilities of problems that are ahead. Blizzard being the most recent, Linkedin , Amazon all being hacked  With the biggest problem of you’re taking someones word for if your information is safe or not.  Sony being hacked last year left customers in the dark for days with the hacking of their servers .  So it only leaves you guessing if the “cloud” goes down for an extended time.

Also, some people are taking a liking to the cloud for other reasons security aside.  At kotaku Patricia Hernandez likens the point of the portability of the “cloud” and how her information is accessible everywhere.  Try saying that when the internet goes down , or the authentication server shit itself and you have lost complete access to the game since you cant grab an internet connection. She goes on to say…

But overall? The benefits of the cloud outweigh the drawbacks for me. Everything feels more convenient with the cloud. I can buy the games from my home, without having to go anywhere. I don’t have to worry about space, which tends to be sparse for me. And even if it wasn’t, if you’ve played games as long as I have, then you’ve accrued a sizable collection.

Having something being easy is not worth it when it comes with eroded customer rights, lack of ownership , Security issues, Likely needing to be bound to an internet connection. sure the cloud has some good things with it but, over all its just like a cloud left from a stinkbomb, It can be fun, have long lasting implication and at the same time can be your worse nightmare as Matt Honan learned. On another end is since all your information is bound to one point, if you get banned from said cloud, Your information and possibly your money with it due to any expenditures you have bought and is bound to said cloud.  Sure you don’t have to worry about scratched disks , or loosing the books with the game . but, in all its not worth loosing everything because someone decided to make a stupid decision and leave your whole account open due to a hole somewhere and everything is gone.  Also worth mentioning is if a company goes out of business with your cloud, than your cloud becomes a fart in the wind and is gone. Since you have no control of how stupid a company can be or have any control when some company decides to end its science project with a cloud saying its too expensive to maintain.  you could loose everything in a moments notice including material stuff that matters such as credit cards, memories of events due to you only having your pictures in one place or other important work when your device suddenly clears itself due to someone hacking into your cloud and hitting wipe devices.

If the cloud is to succeed, there has to be allowed user changes and changes in the accessibility of the cloud, the future of cloud gaming may kill off any user modding and free creativity.

Don’t get me wrong, the cloud has its uses. but, what is trying to be done with the cloud is building a bank with a glass vault. One rock and its all over.


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Call of deluded Elite premium ? wtf.

With the advent of DLC’s game publishers are getting more and more ridiculous with content and how its presented to its user base.  I hate microtransactions with games and they are becoming mainstream to the point they are worthless to what they add to the game and making the games themselves worthless.

As publishers tap this as a primary income source games loose alot of there content because the game release often is hobbled to the point of being a few hours long and content running out in the first 5 hours.  Often now you see unfinished games released with Day 1 DLC’s that fill in holes in the game that were made by short cutting the game and putting these pieces of a game behind a pay wall.

My friend picked up call of duty MW3 and i noticed that right on the box they were pushing for picking up something called Call of Duty elite premium  and I wondered. What is it? its basically a $50 dollar limited license to the future content and a bunch of crap that was either free or was in games in the past.

Looking quickly over what you get with this “service”

3. Analyze & Improve Your Performance

Access Guides to Maps, Weapons, Killstreaks, Perks, and Equipment

Most games before COD ussaully have some sort of stats tracking , Hell Unreal tournament had this kind of stat tracking back in December 1999 . That 11 years before COD, Sure this is still on the free end of the elite but, what the hell, I know they are going to say but this costs money to track on a server etc etc etc. Not really since it takes all of ten miliseconds and a few lines of code to say l33tk4lla killed soandso.

4. Customize your load outs & sync DIRECTLY to the game

WHY? if you at work trying to think about how to kill someone in a game and you’re bored shitless likely its not going to work.

onwards to ..

7. THEATER

Free Premium

  • Upload & Share 30 Second HD Videos Online
There’s this thing.. I forget what its called. Yewtub yooboob. younoob? OH YOUTUBE, yeah thats it.
Needless function.
Than you hit the paywall

10. MW3 DOWNLOADABLE CONTENT*, INCLUDING ALL THE MW3 MAPS

Premium

  • More Content than Ever, with 20 Pieces of New MW3 DLC Premium
  • New monthly DLC released over 9 months, so you Always have Something New to Play Premium
  • More Variety than Ever, with New MP Maps, Spec Ops, Missions, Game Modes & More Premium
  • You get to keep all the DLC even if your membership expires. Premium

This is what is annoying. Likely all this material was fleshed out waaaay before the release of the game so they will keep dropping it on players to keep the “interest of players” up, there’s a tell tale sign that this content is either done or was near done when Call of Duty was released.

Read it carefully ….. 20 pieces of …. New monthly DLC over 9 months… new game  modes.  basically they announced they have this DONE and set to be dripped out to the user base as slow as possible to keep interest in the game rather than have a finished product.  Since the announcement is in finite numbers rather than speculative, which means they either cut this from the game or made a decision to leave this from the game.

DLC type content is an excuse to release a half finished game and get 3x the money for it. If you look at the cost of MW3 its pretty much over a 100$ for a complete game since the shelf life for these games are limited to about 12 months at most.

In the past games were given free content to keep interest or letting people mod the games to their hearts content . Now if you mod a game to have more fun its pretty much going to get you banned from the game. These games now come with FREE planned obsolescence .

What happened with games we could play to our hearts content and Not worry if EA or someone will shut down an aspect of the game or software that therefor makes the product unusable , They Should be forced to put some sort of patch into games that have to connect to servers that multiplayer still works on a connection without the need for servers in the middle. Direct connect games used to be common but they are hard to find these days without some sort of hoops to jump through.

Basically if this gets ground… game will continue down this bad path and players will suffer at the hands of the producers of this crap.

My guess is when COD 10 is release and you want to play COD MW3 for old time sake you will try to play and get “CONNECTION REFUSED” and be stuck with the Disc that now serves as your coffee cup coaster.

 


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PSN – Its dead jim.

The other night I decided to play some game on the PlayStation 3, Little did i know it would turn into something much worse.

After spending about 3weeks without the ps3 after sending the thing for a repair for a disk issue, basically my ps3 either turned into HAL as a 3 year old with disks, Every few times when ejecting the disc it would start to eject than take the disc back in as if playing a game of keep away.  When it started to happen I had called sony and was surprised by the tech support figuring that they would tell me that the drive has to blow up in an epic explosion – or you need mr scott to beam the disc out. Instead they offered to service the system. Thankfully the disc was not stuck in the system, anyways fast forward a few weeks after impatiently waiting to have the system back….

Around april 20th I figured i’d play the PS3,  I was greeted by the PlayStation Network giving an obscure error code. “error 80710a06” while trying to log into the Playstation Network

(more…)


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Of the PS3 Jailbreak and sonys reaction.

As you know I do talk about games… alot. Anyways, When i bought my PS3 i had intended to make use of the OtherOS feature. The only thing was when i bought my PS3 a week later They removed OtherOS.  If you have followed this little adventure, Sony originally dropped otherOS from the PS3slim and people got worried that  they would drop it from the ps3.

OtherOS on the PS3 was used to install Linux and use the system as a computer in some ways, From the Normal user perspective it would be a mostly useless thing, The only reason I say mostly useless is, that most people have a home PC and would rather use something they are more familiar with. People interaction with linux is pretty funny, even the word they cringe thinking its some sort of alien software.  The state of linux Is just a different iteration of “windows” really .. between win7/OSX/linux the interface is nearly the same now .

Before the removal of OtherOS hacking the internals for the playstation3 was minimal, when sony decided that removing otherOS was a good idea, they Officially opened Pandora’s box.  After that door was opened and removing the option hobbyist and players alike were pissed because of the loss of otherOS, but the segment of the market they did piss off was not the one they should of pissed off. Basically everyone that had this on there system looked for a way to return there system back to having the otherOS option. Geohot was the first person i payed attention to when it came to poking around in the PS3 hardware.  People originally blamed Geohot when it came to exploiting the hypervisor and the removal of OtherOS on the ps3.  The most recent development was the release of the private system key for the system pretty much fully opening Pandora’s box. With the final kick to the door with the key exploiting the system is actually a null point now. With the Key in hand people can now sign there code with the key and run software as if it was from Sony with little to no exploitation to the system. The question comes to mind.. would this key have been found without the removal of OtherOS , yes eventually , but Not as fast as it was found since the removal of it. If you follow the timeline of hacks for the PS3 virtually all hacks came AFTER the removal of OtherOS .  Now, sony is suing the two groups involved with finding the private system key, at this point Sony I think is making the wrong move.

Why, because look what happened with the bluray/HD-DVD AACS Encryption keys. the attempted DMCA take down started an explosion of attention towards the keys in question. Will this happen with the PS3? Maybe, the main problem is this Key will be harder to fix. there are a ton of problems with fixing the key or revoking said key.  If the key is revoked millions of PS3’s will have issues playing games, basically making your entire game library a minefield of if you can play it or not. Reading from Sony’s “motion for Temporary restraining order”

Knowing that the “Metldr Keys” can defeat TPMs in the PS3 System, Hotz began
using these proprietary Keys as a component of a Circumvention Device that applies SCEA
signatures to any file, effectively “tricking” the PS3 System into running unauthorized
programs.

by Using the key your not “tricking” the system, as far as the system cares its a signed file and will run it as so. Since the key is there you can run whatever you want, with that key exposed basically the keys to the castle are open and its open season on whatever someone wants to run.

Again if sony revokes said key there will be a nightmare of problems with games, there is no good way to revoke a key at this point since you would have to adapt EVERY piece of software out there to the newer key and changes to the system may create a hardware failure rate that would cost billions to the company. With Failoverflow and geohot were there intentions piracy… No, it was not , most software hardware and other devices tend to have homebrew scenes to which to run there own code on systems and find out interesting things with the hardware or make your own games. Unfortunately homebrew is often associated with piracy and homebrew is not piracy .

From here since Sony’s suing people the next step will be very interesting, Questionably – if the slashdot effect happens sony will have truly released Pandora’s box and created themselves an even bigger problem as millions of users go rogue. If they ban consoles, same effect, at this point they have backed themselves into a corner. Sony could have stayed silent about the issue and tried to fix it in the background, Either way its a long road ahead and an uncertain future with the PS3 since one of the main keys has been released. Looking at the possibilities…

The worst case scenario? Sony throws up there hands at the ps3 and shoehorns the PS4 into service with little to no upgrades and completely alienates there user base.
Another possibility, Sony finds an amicable fix that doesn’t break too many consoles but leaves older unsupported software unplayable.

Hopefully Sony finds a way to not completely screw up everyone’s game library.

well.. in the next few weeks, we will see..


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Mini review: Racing games (agravations in racing games)

As a Semi fan of racing games I tend to pick up a racing game or a kart game now and than.  I used to pick up every need for speed game in the past but as the quality of the programming slipped into oblivion I stopped picking up those games. Need for speed was fun in the terms of you could Race your cars around Smash things and generally just play the way you wanted .. After hot pursuit 1 they tended to close alot of doors with the game.  Gone was Car editing and adding your own cars. Things really went downhill with Porsche unleashed.  Signs of bad programing and shoddy programing were starting to appear than in hot pursuit 2 it seems EA just gave up the ship and decided that shit was good enough to send out, Sure it looked like a Need for speed game but it stunk badly in ways that just piss people off to no end.

My thing with racing games is if the AI is good the game is good, with poor AI the game severely takes a hit. the AI in Hot Pursuit 2 was an abortion.  The developers seemed to never thought through the whole process and shortcutted the AI massively in some areas.  Since the game had stats at the end of each race it showed how poorly the AI was done. If you raced as an Enzo Ferrari you’d thing you’d leave a ford Fiesta in the next area code, not so much, there was a chance that fiesta would win against you – since the game once the opponent got off the mini-map would engage nothing short of the enterprises transporter and rubber band to just outside of the mini-map.  At the end of the race it would create some pretty funny statistics such as.

Enzo: top speed 202MPH – Average speed 168 MPH
Fiesta: top speed 72MPH – Average speed 142MPH

WTF? Not only has that car just broken laws of physics but it manages to do something impossible unless the car managed to actually teleport to another dimension and have Time/space/speed laws revoked, If you did not run the perfect race it would also give the computer opponent A chance to win since the AI was magically rubberbanded to behind you.  Using that kind of trick in programming a racing sim should be a HUGE NO NO. Even though that the need for speed series borders on not being a racing sim these days, More over it plays like a quarter eater you find at an arcade.

You don’t need a game that has shortcomings that affect the outcome of the game due to poor programming versus the outcome based on your driving. with the advent of consoles I know programmers are under pressure to port games to each system as fast as they can but the quality takes a tremendous hit.  The console specific games tend not to suffer as much as games that are whored around.   Most Mario karts always have a sound racing game, Gran Turismo has a sound racing game. Even Test Drive unlimited had a sound racing game since it was based around the PC than ported down to the console level, there is one exception that should be noted- burnout paradise was a “racing” game that was on every system just about without much problems but they thought round some of the issues and made the game based on fun.

As more companies take to the “Open World” concept of racing it comes to mind that the open world needs to be open. With burn-out paradise the openness just was not there, Test drive unlimited had a extremely open world but a poorly implemented system where aggravation would set in trying to find your friends in the game even though you were actually on top of there car but due to the server running multiple sessions you’d spend 20minutes trying to get into the same play area.

Originally I was going to say something about one racing game but i changed my mind to a critique rather than a one game review.


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Gamestop – the new Moviestop of deceptive advertising.

Gamestop is really pissing me off lately. It seems that gamestop is actually not run by humans. Seriously.

I went into gamestop about a week ago and I ended up getting aggravated to the point of asking if they have secret binary rituals to which this went right over the workers head.

on July 3rd I went into gamestop figuring I’d try out dragon age, the price was right.  so I went down and and attempted to pick it up, boy did that turn out to be a lesson in how not to do customer service. Now if you do a quick scan of the price of Dragon age you will see that its 37.98 or so, When I went to game stop it was 39.99 or so i thought.

When I am on the gamestop site and I look for a game I’ve always used a simple method. Search it and find my system. So looking up Dragon age at first look you see.

You’d think “oh cool its $40 . Not so fast there.

I went down the gamestop picked the game up and brought it to the desk.  Figuring I had the edge card it would run me about $36 Dollars or so . Again not so fast. the Borg at the register goes “41.23 “. Me not thinking started to hand my card over and it struck me . I Said 41.23?  with the edge card that doesn’t sound right.  Than it came.. Well what the computer says is what the price is  we have no control over that and if you have found a price otherwise I can compare it.  I open My phone and show him the listing for dragon age and apparently I must be tuned into the incorrect universe because the guy goes , well you see  we don’t use the prices from the gamestop site, that’s a different company. At this point i Just wanted to get away from this great example of a Android, I ask him if that’s even legal at the point of that question he answers a condescending tone, I just work here I don’t set the prices the computer does. What the hell. is gamestop short for judgement day, every time you ask a question you are refered to the computer.

I pay the higher price for the purchase and my friend goes “hey lets stop across the street” .  The Gamestop across the street tends to be more caring in its customers rather than treat them like biological anomalies that need digital input.  I must of looked pissed because the person working asked if I needed help with something. I explained everything above and he took his time and gave me the price difference without speaking of the grand and mighty computer.  So I went home and decided to see what was going on. I Searched the game and it was only when i clicked game to the second page of the game itself.

It floored me. the website was right in one respect but totally misleading in another. “online only” 2nd page in , How deceptive. This is reminding me of movie stop with there pricematching pre-orders , How ever the hell you do that. I am sure a lot of people may go to gamestop and go “oh ill buy it anyways.” but…… there’s an issue, That first page. Advertises the fact of “this used product is …” and not the First more important issue. “Online price only” In order to be non-deceptive . ONLINE ONLY should be followed though EACH and EVERY page. You can’t just put a price out and slap on the last page “Online only” .

Also is the fact of  How can you have an “Online Only price” when the product has been not Available the whole time. On No place in the page does it list the “store price’ nor does it tell you the store price may cost more money, Even walmarts site tells you

Walmart Stores
Pick Up in Your Store

Prices in Store May Vary
That’s all you need.  A simple disclaimer “Prices in store may vary”
having the store slave tell you that his computer will not take my insolence for thinking I was getting some sort of deal.  Gamestopus of Borg Does not want you to pay that price.
I’ve taken some time to cool off before writing about this because of 3 to 4 incidents with the same gamestop can really make the chances of sanity go away.

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Gamestop/Moviestop the Next Chapter.

Now, I’ve written about moviestop in the past and there parent company is Gamestop . Thinking I’d heard the last of advertising problems with them, I’ve not posted about them till my last few stops at Gamestop.

The Gamestops near me are bunched together , there’s 3 in less than a 1000feet of each other it makes you wonder at night if they play tag or something. The One I had been frequenting was the one Gamestop near the Moviestop I had a problem with.  In this particular gamestop it has a pretty good selection, and the help is generally helpful until recently.

It seems that maybe these people were too helpful and were sent to india to be trained in how to be vaguely helpful without being helpful, I don’t know.  I’ve traded in a few games lately and waited till gamestop has one of the deals of “TRADE YOUR SHIT IN WE NEED X GAME AND WE ARE GIVING MORE THAN A PITTANCE FOR IT”. Looking through my game collection I eye’d a few things and brought down 3 games. which using gamestops Trade in deal sheet plus Prices from CAG . Figuring i had 3 games and a rough price of $52 of trade-ins I figured i’d get Red Dead Redemption and have a little leftover.  So I make my way down to the mall figuring I’d not have to put out cash and go to proceed with the trading process. Now If you’ve done this “trade” process its not really trading its more like pawning off your games for a lump of shit for your gold. Handing the guy the games He spits back “Ok, you have $23 in trades. What the fuck?

He goes yeah these 2 games are worth 10 each and that one is worth 3$. I look at the guy and say , You guys have a deal going on these 2 should be $25 EACH!  This guy just looked at me like I just split a higgs boson particle in front of him and told him to explain it at gunpoint. There was an awkward silence followed by this gem of a comment “well If you have any proof of this You can show me , but our computers give us the prices and Whatever the computer says we Price at”  At this point I’m getting livid, I open my phone up to the exact page on the gamestop site with the listings for “GAMES FOR $25”

At this point the worker looks at me and says , Oh well yeah that must be an Online Only thing.  I look at the GS employee and say “REALLY?! Why the heck would gamestop do an online only, No one would trade stuff in” I Ask for my games back and walkout pissed.

I go across the street to the Gamestop there on the first floor of the mall and talk to the person who i’ve known for a couple years and explain everything that went down. He goes “Uhh wellllllll Was he new?”, now not being sure other than having the rage to kill at that point. I say I have no clue.  Game stop employee puts my trades in the system and proceeds to tell me “You have $53 in credit, and I Have NO clue whats going on over at the other gamestop because I didn’t have to do anything to bring this up. ” The employee than told me he was sorry for the treatment over there and gave me a small discount.

but what the hell gamestop? I really don’t feel like playing deceptive advertisement again from your company .


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The state of gaming.

Ever had one of those days where you look at something and say hmm.  Well, I’ve been doing that for about a few months.  For awhile Now I’ve been wanting to spread out my gaming more than just between the WII and the PC.  Both platforms in my opinion are suffering from bad development and bad companies.   Well, After long thought and wondering if I’d be better off with a Bluray Drive for my PC or Some other upgrade I finally decided against both and went with the black sheep of the decisions.

(more…)


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EA … Its not in the game anymore and the PC and the $$$$$ (for .99 cents you can buy the letter z in this post)

EA for years has been known for abysmal games of poor quality, although they have improved in some matters but, its really false positive in my mind.

Sure there are a handful of good games from EA as of recently – Crysis, burnout paradise,the sims 3(I guess) *orange box doesn’t count because its a repackage from steam

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Mind over matters, E3’s motions controllers. (project natal)

After following the news for E3 for awhile I knew MS and Sony would announce there motion controllers.  The funny thing that comes to mind is that for 2 years most people complained that the wii motion controls were a gimmick .. alrighty than.

Interesting yes but, As far as the Microsoft motion controller is concerned it has many faults that are not pointed out.  I could point out that this system is the eye toy but thats been beaten to death with a dead horse. From the demos I have seen there are seemingly a lot of lag time in motion to screen reaction, at one point in on of the demos you could clearly see that the person and on screen avatar were completely out of sync, The wii’s controls seemed more in sync than this and I’m curious that the people playing around with natal were just in a state of ZOMG NEW TOY mode rather than objectively using the device.

The second thought of this is natal with more than one player it just doesn’t seem like it will even work,  If it does it maybe more a space issue since your stuck in the field of view of the lens. Just imagine trying to play rabbids in the point of view of a camera with two or even 4 people, Hospital visits would rise to the point of Armageddon and Bruce Willis would have to be sent in to nuke your console.  From another site

Natal is so smart, in fact, that, if your room is narrowed by a pair of couches, it can signal to a game to narrow the level. It can see about 15′ x 20′ of a room, according to project leader Kudo Tsunoda’s informal estimation.

(this was part of a post I made on june 5th but I decided to hold off to see if this held water or not.  I left this part of the post originally to show where my thinking was at the time. Anyways)

2 weeks later and finding out where the motion controller is now, and many articles later.

gamemediasites

Sony’s motion controller seems to be playing the same Houdini game where its a announced and disappears. I think its because its closer to the wii controls and everyone’s uppity about the project Nu-toy, As i had Started to point out the Microsoft Motion controller seems to have more faults than positives.  Even further It seems that the technology in this “controller” (to which i lightly say) implemented is going to confusing as fuck compared to the normal – In a video of them playing burnout paradise it looked closes to step dancing for dummies playing that game. Car Racing games is not really the best format to show responsiveness.  Microsoft here has put up the unicorns farting rainbows approach to marketing this device, Hyping the living hell out of it.  It almost feels like a Fail in motion.

the second thing about the microsofts control setup is that all gaming sites have jumped on this like its the best advance since pong(again eye-toy).  As far as I’ve seen with the pre-natal, It just seems more of a “gimmick” than the wii-mote, I mean since “you” are the controller do you really think people are going to play Halo with this? also the lack of a device will make the experience more confusing, it will basically come back to the hell people went through of getting the powerglove to work  right.

Everyone’s gone bullshit over this to the point of gollum and the one ring.  but as far as the experience is concerned microsoft is expecting you to fill in too many blanks, There has to be some device in between to work and feel correct.


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