Xbox One won’t read game discs

Wow, it’s certainly been a while since I have done a games related post. In fact it’s been an eternity since I have had the time to post about anything!

If like me you have had issues with your Xbox One reading game discs then I have a little tip that could help you help when you just need that game to load!

A lot of people will tell you it is your drive, or to reinstall your and they might be right. However this has worked for me time and time again. Let’s face it we just want to play and there is nothing worse than having this happen right before a big session.

It is quite simple….

When you put the game in the slot just keep hold of it until you here the Xbox trying to pull it in. After a few 5 – 7 seconds let it go. Hey presto your game should read.

Like I say you may have a duff drive, but if this does help you out there is only one thing left to say… Happy gaming!

The great Xbox one reveal

Did Microsoft forget what industry the Xbox is in as they seem to have focused on Media. One hopes that E3 will be where they let the gamers know what’s in store for us. So in the view of this blogger and gamer the big reveal was a bit of a let down.

The highlights for me were…

Built-in PVR
Expansion of the XBL server to something like 300k (does this mean we may get dedicated servers, or maybe more regional gaming!?)
The Call of Duty visual comparison showed what kind of visuals we can expect
Good specs on the hardware except the 500gb hdd could be a tad small.

I think that’s about it for the good points.

So, do I care that Kinect has all this cool new tech to make it awesome, not really. Shoot me down Microsoft but I just want a joy pad that I can sit down and relax with and the only shouting at the TV I want to do is when a game annoys me!

Do I care about the NFL partnership, no. Do I care about the EA partnership, no not really as it will just be all about making their micro purchases even easier and more accessible.

I can see that all the TV and media stuff is the way things are going and Microsoft clearly want the One to be the hub of all living rooms but is this what I would have put in the reveal, over showing more games. Hell no!

Media bits aside and I know I am hardly touching upon them all as this is just a few first thoughts, but they were saying that we were about to see gameplay..really! My excitement quickly dropped as it was mostly video sequences which was not really what I had in mind, how about a couple of five minute walk throughs to really showcase the hardware.

Did anyone actually feel that the entire briefing felt so false and commercial, I know it’s a press launch but what about some authenticity and passion, it kinda summed up the looks of the console too. Which just didn’t inspire me. However at least MS got that right and had the hardware on display.

The crowning moment for me was when they talked about the release date “later this year” oh come on really, way to commit to us.

The price point is what I was expecting, yes it’s high, around £400 but I don’t think that will help Microsoft hit huge sales as that’s going to be out of reach for most people.

There you have it, there were highs and lows for me and I don’t think that they got the reveal quite right. I may not be as pumped as I thought I would be but I still plan on getting one. The only caveat that could change my mind is a lack of games announcements at E3.

I will put some other posts up when I get five with some detail on certain subjects as I will admit a lot of this post is a bit of a rant as it just didn’t pump me up like I was expecting!!

Shoot first – Die first – Its the Black Ops 2 way

I like to think I am a pretty good pub player in most 1st person shooters, I always have a positive KD and a good wins:loss, but all that aside I always have fun and enjoy my games. My usual haunts are Halo and Call of Duty.

There are alway players who are clearly skilled and I never get annoyed losing a gun fight to them. In fact I always keep playing the people who are better than me, so I can raise my game.

Putting that to one side I should get to the real point of this post, Black Ops 2. This is not me whining , I am just sick of losing out to players based on bad game mechanics and maybe a bit lag. I say a bit of lag as being a IT guy I know that this will always be there but why in Black Ops 2 can I land the first shots which should ensure the kill but, no, the game decides that the other player who shoots last should kill me. I also see that hip fire is clearly better than ADS (which is how I play) as it appears that spray and pray beats the accurate player at any range.

I just love seeing kill cam after kill cam where according to the game I have not even fired a shot! These are serious WTF moments that just spoil the game for me. I know that there were some major gripes around MW 3 and how its match making could place you in a sub optimal game, or final stand but for the most part it always played well for me. But Black Ops 2 just seems to rub my face in the dirt and laugh at my attempts to enjoy the game and do well.

Then come the score streaks which if you play in a good team can be abused to the max as you just keep on going. I have seen people with 200+ kills for 1 or two deaths. Yes they may be good players but I bet they have a team behind them spamming UAV, Counter UAV, and a VSAT helping them get to these higher echelons of stats.

All games share a common theme in that they have their niggles but I can put my hand on my heart and say that none of them spoil my fun as much as BLOPS 2 does. It just feels so inconstant it just frustrates me.

In fact I have pretty much given up on the game and slipped back into Modern Warfare 3, yes its an easier game to play and Final Stand, noob cannons and camping is rife, but at least when I lose a gun fight its normally for good reason. And at the end of the day I enjoy it. Except maybe for the hate message see my blog here for more on that one.

With the recent announcement of Call of Duty Ghost from Infinity Ward at least I have something to look forward to, but I have a feeling that it wont be ground breaking and little will change in the world of COD. However all I ask is for a fun, fair game to emerge.

Open letter to Xbox live community

More thoughts than an open letter, but you get the idea.

After BlackOps had annoyed me for the last time I decided to jump on MW3 for a few games. I have become accustomed to the fact that most people just don’t have a mic plugged in and if they do they just play loud music, or make stupid noises or trash talk. The other thing I tend to see is a lot of parties, and do you know what I don’t blame them as that is what I do.

I always have my mic in, but I tend to mute my voice unless there is some good game or banter that is worth getting involved in. Yet I even find that saying something to some people just sends them into a directed attack at you, as if you have intruded on their conversation that they are having in an open lobby.

When I first started on Live playing games like Crimson Skies or Rainbow 6 3 there was always good banter and you had gracious winners and losers. Again, this is something that you don’t see any more. If you win you get abuse for being the better team or player, if you lose you get abuse for being a NooB… So I ask where is the fun? What has happened to the community?

So, back to my MW3 games, I think I played 5. I played well , racking up 20+ kills for 1 or 2 deaths. Out of 5 games in different lobbies with different people I got 3 hate messages. One was voice and two were text. None of these guys had a mic in during the game and clearly none were happy that I was playing better than they were.

I tend not to reply to any of these messages, as I just don’t want to waste my time. I remember one guy who was a blatant camper, always in the same spot, so I killed him a lot. In the next game we happened to meet in the same place twice, where I killed him again 🙂 I then get a message after the game saying I am the worst camper in the world.

So I reply pointing out to him that camping doesn’t work and I work the map, and that in the previous game all he did was camp.  To which he continued to send me messages for nearly 30 minutes with further abuse, so I blocked him and filed a complaint.

I should also add that I didn’t send him messages for camping, if thats how he wants to play then thats fine with me.

That leads nicely on to the Live complaint and Rep system. I just don’t think it works, lets just say that someone amasses a few complaints and they get a 15 minute ban… Big wow, is that really teaching them a lesson and what feed back to I get to say that something happened. I just have to go on blind faith that some kind of lame justice may have happened. Whilst it may be hard to police I think MS have to do more.

Then there is the REP system. Have you ever seen anyone with less than the 3 stars that you start with? It’s a waste of time as if I look at the breakdown of my feedback the largest slice of the pie is given to the very thing I hate, trash talking. Something I just don’t do, and yet I still have 5 stars. I would also say that the zone you choose is pointless, I thought the idea was to place you with like-minded gamers, clearly that doesn’t happen.

Something has to change with the 720, I have a 6 month old daughter now and I hope that she gets into games. I am not saying she wont be exposed to all sorts, but I at least want to know that good measures are in place to make the gaming experience a good one and those that wish to be malicious have harsher consequences and there is a better feedback and rep system in place.

My last point is that I find I rarely meet players who are like-minded and I feel I could game with them or want to game with them, hence my friends list just never seems to grow like it used to and that is an indicator that the community just is not as good as it used to be.

Am I alone in this thought?

My reservations on the Ouya console

This will be the final post in my mini series on the Ouya console, well final post before I get my hands on one. Then you can expect some first thoughts, un boxing ect.

I don’t have a great deal to say here as I am actually quite excited but here goes.

From what I have read a number of big gaming companies have signed up to produce games, such as Square Enix for example. At first I thought that’s good, we should see some quality games. However I thought one of the major goals of the console was to give the home dev or small companies a platform to get them noticed, but instead they may just end up drowning in a sea of big name franchises that offer silly spin-off games. I guess my point here is that we need a good balance 🙂

I think part of me wants to relive that nostalgia that I have of my Amstrad CPC 64 days. Where I could go to the local paper shop, and with my £1.50 pocket money I could buy a new game. Back then my local shop had a little stand full of cassette based games and I would base my choice on the cover art and the name alone. Sometimes you would wait 10 minutes for a game to load, crash or be utter garbage. Strange but it was fun and maybe these little home-grown games will offer up some fond memories!

In my opinion I think the console looks great, especially when you compare it to the GameStick, however with a low cost I just hope it doesn’t feel too cheap, especially the pad.

I know I stated that I am not a big mobile gamer, but I do hope that we see a lot of new IP and not just ports of other games. Whilst these easy wins help the console get established I am just say that new is the way to keep people coming back.

Anyway, I think that’s it. Less than two months to go so let’s see what happens.

27days – Xbox 720 reveal

After a day with no web access I check my mails and find one from Microsoft saying 27 days…

My mind is racing and I open it. It’s clear that MS mean business a few simple words that say we will finally hear what the next Xbox console story will look like.

Hopefully the will quash a few of the early speculations such as if it will have blu ray or built-in Kinect. I am also hoping to see the console itself and the pad. Take heed Sony.. We like to see the hardware!

I have read about the possibility of no second-hand games and the console having to always be online, but what I am really excited to hear about is how Xbox Live will change. I doubt they will give a lot away at this early stage but one can hope!

For me Live is the biggest selling point for 360 over PS3, oh, and maybe the pad. Please MS don’t mess the new pad up!! Anyway, I would love to see more interaction with sites like twitch, more support for game recording, more clan and community bits on the dashboard. But I must stress I don’t mean Facebook!!! Bigger parties would also be good. How about live avatars that show you whilst you talk.

Another biggie is the feed back system, I have filed various complaints over my time as people are sending hate message etc, yet they have a 5 star rep, the same goes for the zones, it all just feels like it’s a bit false.

This is a massive ask but dedicated servers for games would also be ace.

I wouldn’t be sad if achievements went, as I just find that a lot of the time they dictate how you play a game as you can’t help but want 15G for playing a certain way, like not using a certain gun for example.

All things said and done I am excited to see what’s next, so long as the hardware is stable (no RROD please) I don’t think that they can go to wrong!

I could go on but I think I will call time on this and just wait for the announcement.

What are you guys hoping to see?

My clan – EnemyZero

Some of you may have noticed a link on my blog to http://www.enemyzero.co.uk which is the current (mostly dormant) home of a clan I founded some years ago.

If memory serves me just over 8 years ago, when a few of us were into Rainbow 6 on the 360. That’s by the by. Over the years we have had a pretty good bunch of casual gamers come and go and for the most part we have always had a hoot, but have never really played seriously.

I guess we were/are more of a community than a clan. A good few of the original members still game and we all game as EZ, but we don’t use the site.

To me that’s a bit sad. Especially as its getting tougher to find decent and friendly gamers in the Xbox live community. There are few gracious winners and losers and most people don’t chat like they used to, unless it’s to talk trash. In fac I mostly see solo players with no mic plugged in or just groups in parties.

My plan is to relaunch the site and hopefully meet some new gamers outside of the game lobbies and not only build a community of like minded people but maybe take the clan to a few tournaments.

Watch this space for more on my progress – maybe I will meet some of you reading this 🙂

First steps are to find a new host. Build a logo and some visuals, plan the site layout, setup the SEO bits, and get some plug-ins. Along side this I have some other plans, so it’s all go!

The only thing I do know is that I will move from e107 to WordPress!