gaming http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/4168/all en-US How Retro Gamers Can Game on the Cheap http://www.wisebread.com/how-retro-gamers-can-game-on-the-cheap <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-retro-gamers-can-game-on-the-cheap" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/2726582621_ec7c1db38b.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>That slick widescreen high-definition television that's the centerpiece of your living room is an abomination, and not just for the price. Sure, it makes a fine addition to your multimedia center, but if you&rsquo;re a retro gaming fan looking to hook up your NES, Super NES, Genesis, Turbo Grafx-16, or other pre-PlayStation era video game consoles for a few hours of old school entertainment, prepare for plenty of blotchy colors, fuzzy pixels, and perhaps a bit of sobbing. Here is why HDTVs are the bane to the retrogamer and how one purchase can save you lots of money.</p> <h3>You don&rsquo;t need an HDTV</h3> <p>The natural evolution of display technology has made retrogaming a no-no on HDTVs. A 720p (1,280 x 720-pixel resolution) or 1080p (1,920 x 1,080-pixel resolution) television wrecks, for example, the 8-bit beauty of the NES' visuals (256 x 240-pixel resolution) as it has to stretch those meager amount of pixels over a much greater area. I learned this digital lesson the hard way. Two years ago, I made the mistake of attempting to play the classic <em>Tecmo Super Bowl</em> on my mom's 42-incher, and my New York Giants squad looked very much like blue cotton balls dashing across the massive screen.</p> <h3>Don&rsquo;t let modern consoles tempt you with nostalgia</h3> <p>The Microsoft Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii, and Sony PlayStation 3 have online marketplaces (Xbox Live Arcade, Virtual Console, and PlayStation Network, respectively) where you can purchase updated, tweaked versions of classic games that have been filtered and upscaled to look as you remember, but on a HDTV. Unfortunately, these reworked games can't be played in full screen mode (there's typically letterboxing), and a number have yet become available for download.</p> <p>The Big Three gaming companies aren't offering these games for altruistic purposes; they're hoping that nostalgia for long past days will encourage you to re-purchase these games, typically at $5 to $10 a pop. Dropping a Lincoln on a favorite game may seem like meager money, but if you try to rebuild entire libraries of your favorites, you can easily spend a hundred dollars or more. It doesn't have to be this way.</p> <p>One low-cost purchase (and a little desk space) is all that's needed to play your favorite retro titles in their native low-resolution without fear of visual blight. It comes, oddly enough, from a home computer that's nearly 30 years old.</p> <h3>The Solution: The Commodore 1084 Monitor</h3> <p>The Commodore 1084S monitor is tailor-made for your 8- and 16-bit titles with its old school-friendly 14-inch display and 640 x 256-pixel resolution resolution. As you've probably sussed out, the 1084D was originally designed for use with the classic Commodore 64 home computer, the machine that introduced many families to the wonders of personal computing.</p> <p>I picked one up from eBay about five years ago, and it has proven to be one of the most cherished additions to my retro gaming setup. I&rsquo;ve played everything from <em>Super Mario Bros</em>. to <em>Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater</em> on it, and the visuals have always been nothing short of crisp. Even better, the 1084S has built in stereo speakers (hence the &quot;S&quot; in its name) that eliminates the need to purchase or attach external speakers. Be careful, however; a 1084 monitor (without the &quot;S&quot;) is also floating about that lacks speakers. Composite and RGB inputs are housed in the back of the machine for attaching your consoles for the best picture possible.</p> <h3>Where to find the Commodore 1084S Monitor (for cheap!)</h3> <p>The Commodore 1084S typically sells cheap ($15 to $25), but you may have to pay a pretty penny in shipping as the monitor weighs over 20 pounds. I found mine on eBay for a total of $40, $15 of which was spent on shipping. Although eBay and other auction sites are the fastest, easiest ways to obtain the display, they aren't the most frugal; you can save money by combing the computers/electronics sections of your city or town's <a href="http://www.craigslist.com/">Craigslist</a>, as you can pick the monitor up yourself without being nailed with shipping and handling fees.</p> <p>Happy hunting, circle of the joystick. Game on.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>This is a guest post by Jeffrey L. Wilson, editor-in-chief of <a href="http://www.2d-x.com/">2D-X</a>, a site devoted to 2D and 2.5D video games. Read more from him at 2D-X.</p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.2d-x.com/sonic-hates-me-or-how-ive-learned-to-let-go-of-the-hedgehog-and-find-peace-of-mind/">Sonic Hates Me (Or How I&rsquo;ve Learned To Let Go Of The Hedgehog and Find Peace of Mind)</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.2d-x.com/review-king-of-fighters-xii-xbox-360/">Review: King of Fighters XII (Xbox 360)</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.2d-x.com/beat-em-ups-how-to-properly-resurrect-the-genre/">Beat Em Ups: How to Properly Resurrect the Genre</a></li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jeffrey-l-wilson">Jeffrey L. Wilson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-retro-gamers-can-game-on-the-cheap">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/could-you-save-money-by-subscribing-to-an-addictive-game">Could you save money by subscribing to an addictive game?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/want-free-hbo-or-showtime-just-ask">Want Free HBO or Showtime? Just Ask.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-ways-to-display-your-art">How to Cheaply Display Your Art</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-travel-with-postcard-fun">Free Travel With Postcard Fun</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-five-economy-based-board-games-that-make-you-think">Top 5 Economy Based Board Games that Make You Think</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> 2D games Art and Leisure gaming Fri, 25 Dec 2009 18:00:06 +0000 Jeffrey L. Wilson 4228 at http://www.wisebread.com Could you save money by subscribing to an addictive game? http://www.wisebread.com/could-you-save-money-by-subscribing-to-an-addictive-game <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/could-you-save-money-by-subscribing-to-an-addictive-game" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/Wow.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="250" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><hints id="hah_hints">During the Christmas break my husband and I went to dinner with some of his friends from high school.&nbsp; One couple we spoke with told us that they are trying to save money for a down payment on a home and one thing they did was that&nbsp; they canceled their subscription to a massively multiplayer online role playing game called&nbsp; <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/search?ie=UTF8&amp;keywords=world%20of%20warcraft&amp;tag=stuffies-20&amp;index=videogames&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325">World of Warcraft</a><img width="1" height="1" border="0" src="http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=stuffies-20&amp;l=ur2&amp;o=1" alt="" style="border: medium none ! important; margin: 0px ! important;" />. My husband then&nbsp; responded that he actually saved money when he was playing World of Warcraft, and here are the reasons why.</hints></p> <p><b>1.&nbsp; He did not buy other games</b> - Since World of Warcraft was so addictive, that was the only game he played.&nbsp;&nbsp; Each month he spent less than $15 on gaming and that was the end of it.&nbsp; Considering that each new game costs $50 to $60 and he could finish a game in a week or two, World of Warcraft was a lot cheaper.&nbsp;</p> <p><b>2. He did not need any other forms of entertainment </b>-&nbsp; This means no DVDs, books, or anything else.&nbsp; He was focused on one game only.&nbsp;</p> <p><b>3. He did not go outside often </b>- World of Warcraft and other games like it&nbsp; has a good amount of&nbsp; social play within the game where groups of people get together to fight monsters and other players.&nbsp; So for some people their entire social circle is in the game.&nbsp; This means there is no need to spend money on social gatherings.</p> <p><b>4. The subscription fee made him play more</b> -&nbsp; Since he was paying a monthly fee whether he played or not, he felt compelled to put in more hours to get more value out of his money.&nbsp; This simply created a feedback loop of addiction that made him play the game more and do less of other things. </p> <p>It is no wonder that in some circles World of Warcraft is known as Warcrack.&nbsp; Anyway, my husband quit the game shortly before we started dating so I&nbsp; do not know how he was like in the height of his addiction.&nbsp; He says that he quit because he wanted to play all the other games out there, and I am thankful for that.&nbsp; I definitely do not recommend acquiring an addiction or obsession to save money, but I am wondering if anyone else have had a similar experience.&nbsp; Could a subscription based entertainment service be so attractive and sticky that you save money on everything else?</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/xin-lu">Xin Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/could-you-save-money-by-subscribing-to-an-addictive-game">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/wisdom-from-my-favorite-frugal-tv-character-julius-rock">Wisdom from My Favorite Frugal TV Character - Julius Rock</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-is-keeping-you-from-a-life-of-financial-independence">What is keeping you from a life of financial independence?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-big">How to save BIG</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chinese-money-habits-how-my-culture-influences-my-attitudes-toward-money">Chinese Money Habits - How My Culture Influences My Attitudes Toward Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/five-reasons-why-i-love-public-transportation">Five Reasons Why I Love Public Transportation</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Frugal Living Lifestyle addiction Art and Leisure games gaming saving Fri, 16 Jan 2009 07:00:56 +0000 Xin Lu 2748 at http://www.wisebread.com XBox 360 - Don't buy one until 2008. http://www.wisebread.com/xbox-360-dont-buy-one-until-2008 <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/xbox-360-dont-buy-one-until-2008" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/doom3redrings.jpg" alt="xbox on button" title="turning on xbox" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I know several people with an XBox 360. Six in fact. Three of those six have had no end of problems, and to me a 50% chance of buying a crappy product is just not good enough. But that&#39;s just my experience, surely the overall market would be a little better, right?</p> <p>Well, after looking around the forums and reading the big news sites, I&#39;ve come to the conclusion that the current XBox 360 is plagued with too many problems to be a reliable purchase anytime soon. XBox 360 users are recounting stories of the &quot;red lights of death&quot; which basically happens when the entire machine goes bye-bye. It&#39;s a hardware meltdown. Geeks have even written <a href="http://www.threeredlightsfix.com/?hop=geolt&amp;tid=xrepa224&amp;gclid=CNnxhL2byY0CFRT2YAod6F3KHg">books </a> about it. </p> <p>The recent Microsoft announcement extending 360 owners&#39; 1-year warranty to a 3-year warranty is proof enough that things are not exactly looking rosey for current XBox 360 customers. In fact, a tech-guru from the <a href="http://loot-ninja.com/2007/07/27/today-show-warns-consumers-to-stay-away-from-xbox-360/">Today Show</a> said that this extended warranty is simply a cheaper and more media-friendly way of issuing a complete recall. The story is also in <a href="http://blog.wired.com/games/2007/07/the-today-show-.html">Wired</a> . Ouch. With Apple already taking a bite out of Microsoft&#39;s profit margin, a recall of that magnitude would be a disaster.</p> <p>With some people predicting that Sony&#39;s PS3 would lose the console war, this news may be a much-needed boost to the flagging new Playstation model. What&#39;s more, the $100 price-drop of the console will further help bolster its sales in light of the XBox 360&#39;s rotten press. </p> <p>After speaking to some hardcore gamers and chatting in the forums, I&#39;ve decided that the XBox 360 is off my shopping list until 2008. And unless something significant happens to the design, I&#39;ll probably never buy one. Sorry 360 fans.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/Wii.jpg" alt="Wii" title="Wii" width="160" height="130" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0009VXBAQ?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=wisebread07-20&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B0009VXBAQ">Nintendo Wii</a><img src="http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=wisebread07-20&amp;l=as2&amp;o=1&amp;a=B0009VXBAQ" width="1" height="1" /> <p>I&#39;m seriously looking into the Wii, which at first seemed like a dumb idea but now looks more and more appetizing. Perhaps it&#39;s the blend of fun and quirkiness.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/ps3.jpg" alt="PS3" title="PS3" width="114" height="160" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0009VXAM0?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=wisebread07-20&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B0009VXAM0">PlayStation 3 (60GB)</a><img src="http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=wisebread07-20&amp;l=as2&amp;o=1&amp;a=B0009VXAM0" width="1" height="1" /></p> <p>But with the PS3 becoming way more affordable and offering the highly delectable Blu-Ray technology, it&#39;s a tough call.</p> <p>One thing&#39;s for certain though. Microsoft has a lot of work to do before I even think of going near an XBox 360. And if you haven&#39;t bought one yet, but are thinking of adding one to your home entertainment collection, please think twice. You could very well end up with an expensive bookend. </p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/xbox-360-dont-buy-one-until-2008">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/could-you-save-money-by-subscribing-to-an-addictive-game">Could you save money by subscribing to an addictive game?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cracking-the-infamous-mcdonalds-monopoly-game">Cracking the Infamous McDonalds Monopoly Game</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unauthorized-video-game-hack-may-net-consumers-up-to-35-0">Unauthorized Video Game Hack May Net Consumers Up to $35</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-stocks-every-recent-grad-should-own">10 Stocks Every Recent Grad Should Own</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/netspend-the-story-of-the-visa-debit-card-we-did-not-apply-for">netSpend: The Story of the Visa Debit Card We Did Not Apply For</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs games gaming Microsoft Playstation PS3 video consoles video games XBox Sat, 28 Jul 2007 02:48:54 +0000 Paul Michael 914 at http://www.wisebread.com Hacking your way to a better life http://www.wisebread.com/hacking-your-way-to-a-better-life <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/hacking.jpg" alt=" " width="214" height="167" /></p> <p>I love how the concept of hacking has changed so much over the past few years. I&#39;m particularly taken with <a href="http://www.hackszine.com/">Hack Zine</a>, a site the collects some of the best hacks on the web. Like <a href="http://lifehacker.com/software/google-calendar/geek-to-live--sync-google-calendar-and-gmail-contacts-to-your-desktop-251279.php">Lifehacker</a>, Hack Zine seeks out ways to make life easier, cheaper, and generally more fun.</p> <p>Here are some hacks that I particularly like.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><a href="http://www.oreillynet.com/pub/a/network/2006/12/21/using-google-to-view-myspace-or-any-restricted-sites.html">Using Google to view any page, anywhere</a></p> <p class="blockquote">Most companies and schools employ proxy servers to filter unwanted sites so employees won&#39;t waste precious company resources surfing sites that the companies deem unproductive. While the use of proxy servers to block unwanted sites may be understandable in commercial cases, there are also companies that are overdoing it, banning almost all websites and creating a lot of inconvenience to their employees.</p> <p>We DO NOT RECOMMEND that you use this method to surf porn at work. Via Consumerist.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><a href="http://www.hackszine.com/blog/archive/2007/04/windows_gaming_in_linux.html">Play Windows games on a Linux box</a></p> <p class="blockquote">For a lot of of Linux devotees, gaming has always been the reason for keeping an extra Windows machine, so it&#39;s pretty interesting to see this barrier crumbling. </p> <p class="sub-heading"><a href="http://www.satellitesweeper.com/hacking-tivo-and-dvr.htm">Tivo Hacks</a></p> <p class="blockquote">If you&#39;re a hardcore DVR user you&#39;ve probably spent some time collecting missed episodes of your favorite shows. But pretty soon that hard drive fills up and you have to make a decision between missing new shows and dumping old ones. With a little hacking, however, you never have to dump shows again. Just convert those old shows to MPEG format and either store them on your computer or burn them onto DVD&#39;s. (TiVo Series 2 Only) </p> <p class="sub-heading"><a href="http://www.wildwoodsurvival.com/survival/fire/cokeandchocolatebar/">Fire! Fire!</a></p> <p class="blockquote">To make fire from a can of coke and a chocolate bar is actually quite easy, and you don&#39;t need any tools. </p> <p>(Picture by Greg of <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/myhobosoul/">My Hobo Soul)</a></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-karim">Andrea Karim</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/hacking-your-way-to-a-better-life">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/quick-vista-hack-to-get-you-browsing-at-high-speed-again">Quick Vista Hack to Get You Browsing at High-Speed Again</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-stocks-every-recent-grad-should-own">10 Stocks Every Recent Grad Should Own</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/51-uses-for-coca-cola-the-ultimate-list">51 Uses for Coca-Cola – the Ultimate List</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/could-the-chromebook-crush-windows">Could the Chromebook Crush Windows?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/blingo-get-free-stuff-for-using-google">Blingo: Get Free Stuff For Using Google</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks apple chocolate Coke fire gaming Google hack life hacking Linux Windows Wed, 18 Apr 2007 18:42:26 +0000 Andrea Karim 526 at http://www.wisebread.com