I’m a VGA output convert

A couple of weeks ago I was reading through a thread on GAF where someone replaced gaming with their Xbox 360 from the normal TV with gaming on their PC monitor via the VGA cables. The thought the picture looked a lot better even though they had to go to a smaller screen.

Then a few posts down, some other people started talking about how they hooked up their Xbox 360 to the PC input on their TV. And a decent number of people thought the picture was significantly better, even the ones that had some complaints (e.g. too dark, washed out, bad contrast, etc.) thought that in general the picture looked much sharper and more detailed.

Now that got me thinking something I hadn’t even thought about before… I’ve already hooked up my laptop to my TV so I could watch TV shows I downloaded from iTunes, but I had never, ever considered to do the same with my Xbox 360. I always thought that component is the way to go for that. So the next day I went out to get myself a VGA cable to try this out.

After making sure I got the right resolution through the Dashboard menu, I was really impressed with the results. I guess I lucked out because my TV has its VGA settings calibrated fairly well, so the image looked visibly different to me — some of the text in the menus looked sharper, some of the textures looked more detailed, things like that. I suggest that if you can try the VGA cables with your display, definitely try it out because I was totally missing something good because I didn’t think about it.

Katamari Damacy flash

Since the Katamari Damacy website went down on March 17, this no longer exists. Very, very sad.

Thanks to GAF, yet again, is my enjoyment of the Katamari Damacy mini-game (Flash based).

Slightly more addicting than is safe for a day at work I’m sure. I’m sure I would have done better if I stopped accidentally clicking the mouse every 30 seconds and shaking off all my collected objects to have to start from scratch.

Screenshot courtesy of Xrenity.

Achievements

You like them or you dislike them or you certainly have way too much time on your hands.

When I first heard about them as part of my job here, I thought it was a pretty cool idea but I still didn’t have a clue what it would be like. I even thought that people would be looking each other up and comparing each others achievements and getting a handle at how good (or bad) other folks on Xbox Live were.

I must have been really short-sighted to not realize that people would be competing for comparing Gamerscores and of course, a leaderboard has popped up too.

I’m not quite that competitive with Gamerscores at least, but I really like checking out what people have accomplished in their games. This is especially true since, at the moment, I’m really not good at getting secret achievements that aren’t specifically part of the game or story (like Kameo) or some downer achievement like the losses in DOA4. I also avoid reading the walk-throughs for games just to get achievements. Although I’m now eternally frustrated that I think I missed a mining point in Gun and I’m one away from getting the “Professional Prospector” achievement.

Anyway, what’s my point? Oh, even though I do my best to avoid spoilers, I like the fact that there are sites, like Xbox360Achievements and Achieve360Points out there to catalog them. That’s a pretty nice thing to have as reference.

Tons of shoes and half-yearly sales

Over on GAF, Incognito posed a question for the ages: “Are the MS consoles the “Nordstroms” [sic] of gaming?

Many people far more qualified at making these opinions offered up their thoughts. Sadly, I had only one thought, which of course I posted on the thread:

Would it be really ironic that I’m currently typing this out of the old Nordstrom’s corporate headquarters building?

And so all goes full circle.

Valentione’s Day

Charm Wand +1 in Final Fantasy XI FFXI

I keep forgetting about those special themed holiday events in games. I forgot about the Christmas/Winter event in FFXI even. But it didn’t seem to be that much of a big deal, it’s usually fun to participate and sometimes (like for Halloween) there are some rewards that are totally worth it.

This time in FFXI, Valentione’s Day, creeped up on me. Although I frankly have little motivation to do anything that requires a time investment, I will do it. I won’t hate it, I just don’t think I can easily find that kind of time in my life before the event runs out.

I definitely want one of the items though.