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Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive

PlayStation (Games)

The Quest To Build Xbox One and PS4 Emulators 227

Posted by samzenpus
from the if-you-build-it-they-will-play dept.
Nerval's Lobster writes "Will Xbox One and PS4 emulators hit your favorite download Websites within the next few years? Emulators have long been popular among gamers looking to relive the classic titles they enjoyed in their youth. Instead of playing Super Mario Bros. on a Nintendo console, one can go through the legally questionable yet widespread route of downloading a copy of the game and loading it with PC software that emulates the Nintendo Entertainment System. Emulation is typically limited to older games, as developing an emulator is hard work and must usually be run on hardware that's more powerful than the original console. Consoles from the NES and Super NES era have working emulators, as do newer systems such as Nintendo 64, GameCube and Wii, and the first two PlayStations. While emulator development hit a dead end with the Xbox 360 and PS3, that may change with the Xbox One and PS4, which developers are already exploring as fertile ground for emulation. The Xbox 360 and PS4 feature x86 chips, for starters, and hardware-assisted virtualization can help solve some acceleration issues. But several significant obstacles stand in the way of developers already taking a crack at it, including console builders' absolute refusal to see emulation as even remotely legal."
Japan

Visionary Nintendo President Yamauchi Dies 201

Posted by timothy
from the value-added dept.
First time accepted submitter trickstyhobbit writes "Former Nintendo president and majority stockholder Hiroshi Yamauchi has died. He was president of the company for over 50 years and saw the development of the NES, SNES, Nintendo 64, and GameCube among other devices." His career at Nintendo is worth reading about.
Nintendo

Hackers Discover Wii U's Processor Design and Clock Speed 173

Posted by Soulskill
from the fodder-for-fanboy-flame-fest dept.
MojoKid writes "Early, off-the-record comments from game developers indicated that the Nintendo's Wii U console horsepower was on par with, or a bit behind the Xbox 360 and PS3, which raised questions about just how 'next-generation' the Wii U would be. Now, Wii and PS3 hacker Hector Martin (aka Marcan) has answered some of these questions and raised a few others. According to his findings, the Wii U's CPU is a triple-core design clocked at 1.24GHz. Marcan identifies the base design as a PowerPC 750, which makes sense. Nintendo used PowerPC 750-derived processors in both the GameCube and the Wii. Retaining that architecture for the Wii U would simplify backwards compatibility and game development. Now factor in the GPU, which is reportedly clocked at 550MHz. Some have favored the Radeon HD 4000 series as a basis for the part; I still think a low-end Radeon 5000, like Redwood Pro, makes more sense. That GPU was built on 40nm, measured 104mm sq, clocked in at 649MHz, and had a 39W TDP. The die size discrepancy between the Wii U and Redwood Pro would account for the 32MB of EDRAM cache we know the Wii U offers. Nintendo may have propped up a relatively weak CPU with considerably more GPU horsepower."
Classic Games (Games)

ScummVM 1.5.0 'Picnic Basket' Released 65

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the old-games-were-better dept.
YokimaSun writes "Fans of classic graphical point-and-click adventure games, will be happy to learn that a new version of ScummVM has been released with support for new games such as 'Once Upon A Time: Little Red Riding Hood,' 'Backyard Baseball 2003,' 'Blue Force,' 'Darby the Dragon,' 'Dreamweb,' 'Geisha,' 'Gregory and the Hot Air Balloon,' 'Magic Tales: Liam Finds a Story,' and more. ScummVM not only supports Windows, Linux and new platforms such as iPhone and Android but also consoles such as Dreamcast, Gamecube and Nintendo 64 and rarer handhelds such as Openpandora and Dingoo."
Idle

$1.2 Million Ultimate Games Collection 149

Posted by samzenpus
from the lots-of-free-time dept.
An anonymous reader writes "If you're a collector of video games, counting the complete back catalog of titles for one system as part of your collection is a commendable achievement, but what about having full gaming sets for 22 different systems? I doubt anyone has ever done that through game purchases alone, but one eBay seller is offering such a set. The price? A cool $1.2 million. That's a crazy amount of cash to spend on games, but when you find out what's included in this auction, and the condition the games are in, it might actually sound like a good deal. Here's the list of systems the auction is offering full game sets for along with the number of games for each one:

Nintendo Famicon – 1,050 games
Nintendo Famicon Disk – 200 games
Nintendo Virtual Boy – 19 games
Nintendo Super Famicon – 1,500 games
Nintendo 64 – 200 games
Nintendo DD64 – 10 games
Nintendo Gamecube – 320 games
Sega Master System (Europe) – 300 games
Sega Mark 3 & Master System (Japan) – 80 games
Sega Game Gear – 200 games
Sega Megadrive – 450 games
Sega 32 X – 19 games
Sega Mega CD – 115 games
Sega Saturn – 1,150 games
Sega Dreamcast – 550 games
PC Engine Hucard – 300 games
PC Engine Supergrafx – 6 games
PC Engine CD – 120 games
PC Engine Super CD – 300 games
PC Engine Arcade CD – 12 games
PC-FX – total games not stated
Pioneer Laseractive – total games not listed."
Nintendo

Nintendo Announces New Console: Wii U 330

Posted by timothy
from the touched-I'm-sure dept.
_xeno_ writes "Nintendo has announced the official name for what had been known as 'Project Cafe:' the Wii U. It is an HD console, it retains backwards compatibility with the Wii (it's unclear if this includes GameCube software), and the controller does, in fact, have a touch screen on it. Nintendo demoed moving a game off the TV and playing it solely on the Wii U controller." Also in E3 news, cylonlover writes "At its E3 press conference Sony finally revealed that its next generation handheld — previously codenamed the NGP — will carry the official moniker of the 'PlayStation Vita.' The PS Vita — which is Latin for 'life' — will come in two flavors: a Wi-Fi only version priced at $249 in the US, JPY24,980 in Japan, and EUR249 in Europe, and a 3G/Wi-Fi version going for US$299, JPY29,980 and EUR299."
Nintendo

Dearth of New Nintendo Games Could Indicate Wii 2 118

Posted by Soulskill
from the could-also-indicate-laziness dept.
A speculative piece at Kotaku looks at the release cycle of Nintendo games over the past 10 years, pointing out a current lull that's quite similar to the one near the launch of the Gamecube. They suggest this could be because first-party developers are busily working on games for the Wii 2. Quoting: "The spring of 2002 was the longest Nintendo game drought on record, and has a number of characteristics in common with the season we're entering now. Nintendo has launched a major piece of technology (the 3DS) and is initiating the gradual retirement of a console with a large and reliable installed base. While we entered into this data mining project with the presumption that we could recognize a pattern that presaged a new console release—the Wii 2, obviously—the last time there was a Nintendo game drought this pronounced was after the release of the Gamecube. Still, you can neatly overlay the release history of the Gamecube overtop the current release history of the Wii—they match that closely."
PlayStation (Games)

The 5-Year Console Cycle Is Dead 422

Posted by Soulskill
from the trading-increments-for-subscriptions dept.
Pickens writes "The Xbox 360 recently turned five years old, and with no known successor on the horizon for the 360, PlayStation 3 or Wii, Cnet reports on the death of the 5-year console cycle — one of the video game industry's most longstanding truisms. For example, the Nintendo Entertainment System came out in 1985, followed by the Super NES in 1991, the Nintendo 64 in 1996, the GameCube in 2001, and the Wii in 2006. But now, why should console makers upgrade their offerings? Consumers are still buying their machines by the hundreds of thousands each month, and ramped-up online initiatives are breathing new life into the systems. A lot of it has to do with the fact that with the current generation of consoles, each company found a way to maximize either the technology behind the devices, or the utility to a wide range of new gamers."
PlayStation (Games)

Valve's Newell Thinks PS3 Needs To Be "Open Like a Mac" 348

Posted by Soulskill
from the open-like-something dept.
Eraesr writes "Apparently Valve boss Gabe Newell thinks the PS3 needs to be more of an open platform, drawing a comparison to Apple's Mac platform. In an interview with 5BY5.TV, he said he would like to see the PS3 be 'open like a Mac' instead of being 'more closed like a Gamecube.' 'Platform investments, like the Mac, are difficult because you have to be aware of what direction that platform is moving,' Newell said, referring to the firm's recent move onto Macs with its titles and distribution service Steam. 'We need to target platforms that do a better job of looking like where we want to be in a few years.'"
Operating Systems

Linux 2.6.33 Released 17

Posted by samzenpus
from the new-stuff dept.
diegocg writes "Version 2.6.33 of the Linux kernel has been released. This version includes the Nouveau driver, Nintendo Wii and Gamecube support, DRDB, TCP 'cookie transactions,' a syscall for batching recvmsg() calls, several new perf subcommands (perf probe, perf bench, perf kmem, perf diff), experimental support for cache compression through swap, Xen PV-on-HVM support, drivers for virtual network and graphic cards from VMWare and other improvements. See the full changelog here."
Classic Games (Games)

Xbox 360 Homebrew Finally Arrives 39

Posted by Soulskill
from the mario's-not-in-kansas-anymore dept.
Busshy writes "Tmbinc has posted a video showing Snes 9X as the first homebrew for the Xbox 360. This coincides with the upcoming release of the Free60 project, which will turn the 360 into the most powerful console for homebrew to date, hopefully with emulators for the Dreamcast, Gamecube, PS2, Xbox and possibly even the Wii."
Wii

Metroid Prime Trilogy Being Updated For the Wii, Due In August 50

Posted by Soulskill
from the three-for-one dept.
On Friday, Nintendo revealed that the three Metroid Prime games will be re-released on a single disc this August for the Wii. The first two, originally developed for the Gamecube, will be updated so players can "use their Wii Remote to aim with precision." 1Up had this to say of their hands-on preview: "... The heads-up display and on-screen interface elements have been completely overhauled to work more effectively with the standard Wii control setup of remote and nunchuck; swapping visors is a quick point-and-click command, and toggling weapons is similarly easy. Although the control interface isn't perfect — pressing down on the D-pad to fire missiles still grates — it makes the GameCube titles feel much faster and more fluid overall."
Input Devices

Nintendo Reveals New Wii Controller 89

Posted by Soulskill
from the not-so-different-after-all dept.
IGN reports that Nintendo has unveiled the Classic Controller Pro, a new input device for the Wii of a more typical design than the Wii Remote. "From the info we've already got on the PRO, we know it's a larger controller, not only in thickness, height, and width, but it also makes use of one of the more well-received concepts out there, which is the extension grips, which gives it a GameCube, Xbox Controller S/360 look. As you can see, the Z buttons (Z/L and Z/R) are larger now, and placed like the R1/R2, L1/L2 setup found with Sony controllers. The PRO even borrows from the Nyko Classic Controller and Click Grip."
PlayStation (Games)

PS2 the Most Played Console In 2008 172

Posted by Soulskill
from the helps-that-they-sold-140-million-of-them dept.
An anonymous reader writes "In terms of console usage, the aging PS2 still leads the competition, according to data from US research firm Nielsen. Data the company compiled between January and October 2008 shows that the PS2 commanded 31.7 percent of the total number of minutes spent playing consoles. Only 37.9 percent of play time took place on current-gen systems, with the Xbox 360 (17.2 percent) leading the Wii (13.4 percent) and the PS3 (7.3 percent). Users even spent more time playing on the original Xbox (9.7 percent) than the PS3, while Nintendo's GameCube (4.6 percent) wasn't far behind Sony's new console either." World of Warcraft once again topped the most-played PC game list by a large margin. Tetris was the top mobile game, followed by Bejeweled and Guitar Hero III.
Wii

Nintendo's Wii Storage Solution — SD Cards 79

Posted by Soulskill
from the 2gb-ought-to-be-enough-for-anybody dept.
Lucas123 writes "After gamers complained for the better part of a year, Nintendo finally came out with a solution to the Wii's lack of storage capacity — a 2GB SD card from which users can execute games, adding to the console's measly 512MB of onboard storage. The card is expected out in the Spring. With the ability to download, the card should allow users to store up to 60 games." This news came out of the same press conference that announced the Nintendo DSi we discussed earlier today. They made a number of other announcements as well, including Gamecube remakes for the Wii, updated to make use of the Wiimote, Club Nintendo coming to North America this year, and the Wii Speak Channel, an online voice chat utility.
Role Playing (Games)

New Final Fantasy Game Coming To Wii and DS 61

Posted by Soulskill
from the sharing-fantasies dept.
Eurogamer reports on some good news for fans of the Final Fantasy series: a new game is in development for the Nintendo Wii and DS systems. "It's said to be titled Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Echoes of Time. ... the game will apparently be playable on both machines at once, thanks to the spiffing new Pollux engine. So, while whoever is the best negotiator/fighter/Wii owner is playing on the big screen, another lucky adventurer can wade in on the DS, presumably following around and summoning Ifrit on their elder siblings. This harks back to the series' origins on DS, with the first CC game enjoying the relative splendour of Gamecube/GBA link-up play."
Classic Games (Games)

ScummVM 0.12.0 Released — Support For New Games, Wiimote 76

Posted by Soulskill
from the old-but-new dept.
Croakyvoice writes "The ScummVM Team has released a new version of their program that allows owners of many systems to play the old point and click adventure games of yesteryear. This release sees support for 5 new games — The Legend of Kyrandia: Book Two: Hand of Fate, The Legend of Kyrandia: Book Three: Malcolm's Revenge, Lost in Time, The Bizarre Adventures of Woodruff and the Schnibble and Drascula: The Vampire Strikes Back. The new version officially supports, for the first time, the Gamecube and the Wii, and also the ability to use the Wiimote as a controller. The binaries and the source code are both available."
Nintendo

Nintendo Loses Controller Patent Lawsuit 324

Posted by kdawson
from the break-out-the-brain-computer-interface dept.
kryogen1x alerts us to coverage at 1up indicating that Nintendo controller may soon become scarce — Nintendo lost in court to Anascape over analog sticks in their Wii and GameCube controllers.This isn't the first time the big manufacturers have been targeted in lawsuits involving features in their controllers. From the article: "The lawsuit concerns the analog sticks in the Classic Controller and GameCube controllers, which Texas-based Anascape Ltd. claims to hold a patent on that Nintendo violated. The court has ruled in favor of Anascape, and US District Judge Ron Clark has rejected Nintendo's request for a new trial. As a result, Clark said he will put a ban on the sale of the controllers (which includes sales of GameCube systems) starting tomorrow, July 23, unless Nintendo posts a bond or puts royalties into an escrow account."
Nintendo

Nintendo Suffers $21M Patent Infringement Award 70

Posted by timothy
from the patent-rolling-your-eyes-derisively dept.
CowTipperGore writes "The AP reports (via Yahoo!) that Nintendo of America Inc. has been ordered to pay a small East Texas gaming company $21 million for infringing on a patent while designing controllers for its popular Wii and GameCube systems. No stranger to lawsuits over controller designs, a Nintendo spokesman said the company will seek an appeal. The suit was originally filed in 2006 and included Microsoft. Microsoft's aggressive legal push back apparently helped as they reached a (confidential) settlement agreement before the case went to trial."
Wii

Wii Homebrew Takes Several Leaps Forward 275

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the make-it-and-let-your-fans-make-it-better dept.
Croakyvoice writes "Fans of Homebrew on the Nintendo Wii can celebrate with an explosion of releases today, in just a few hours there has been a release of a proof of concept version of Linux for the Wii, an MP3 Player, the Super Nintendo emulator Snes9X has been ported and a converter that converts Gamecube Dol files into Elf for usage on the Wii (Which opens up a multitude of emulators and homebrew games and applications). A tutorial on how to get homebrew working with the Twilight Hack will help those interested."

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