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Comment Re:End the corruption of copyrights (Score 1) 361

When was this?

The SNES had Super Mario Bros. All Stars on it.

The N64 didn't have it as far as I know, but the Gameboy Color did (As Super Mario Bros. Deluxe in 1999). As did the Gameboy Advance after that.

It was an unlockable game on the GCN version of Animal Crossing in 2002, but you had to have the e-Reader accessory and a trading card, and nobody did because they weren't that popular.

In 2004 they released another GBA game, this one a compilation that included other Mario games as well.

In 2006 they released it on Virtual Console for the Wii for $5.

It was released on the 3DS and the Wii U as soon as those consoles were released as well.

When, exactly was it unavailable?

The last new NES game was released in late 1994.

The SNES versions came out in 1993 in all regions.

It looks like SNES game production continued until 1998.

The Gameboy Color edition didn't come out until 1999, this is true. Even if Nintendo stopped selling SNES games the same year they published the last new title, this is still a gap of less than a year. Comparable to the gap that used to exist between a movie coming out in the theater and being released on VHS.

It looks like they were releasing new GBA games until 2007. So that covers the gap where the Animal Crossing unlockable was the most recent version, because the first Virtual Console version on the Wii came out in 2006.

I don't think we've seen a full calendar year where you couldn't walk into a store and purchase Nintendo-made hardware and software to play Super Mario Bros. since it was released in 1985.

There *might* have been a gap in the end of 1998 into early 1999. Not sure. But it's damn close to continuous.

Comment Re:Enough sequels (Score 1) 135

Nintendo has always had a slow trickle of fresh blood. Emphasis on the slow. They still do new IP, but increasingly those new IPs don't go anywhere.

So far, this year they've got no new IP at all. Ditto last year. Though they did publish Xenoblade Saga (developed by Monolith, but Nintendo owns controlling interest in them).

In 2011:

  • Fortune Street (looks like a more they took Mario Party and tried to make it more like Monopoly, I wouldn't really call this original, even if it's an original title.)
  • Steel Diver - Doesn't look like the most creative idea ever, but I haven't played it and it is new.
  • Pushmo - Developed by Intelligent Systems, also a Nintendo subsidiary. Uninspiring looking puzzle game...


  • Spotto! Hardly a runaway hit
  • Photo Dojo I'm not sure I'd call this IP at all. it's all avatar based, though I suppose it does have it's own style and look and feel...
  • Grill-Off with Ultra Hand! is a thing that exists, apparently.
  • Fluidity I've played this briefly. It's fun, but not something you're going to build a franchise out of.
  • FlingSmash - Another waggle demo pack-in.
  • Aura-Aura Climber - I had never heard of this one. It looks neat, but again, I'm not sure you can build a franchise around it...


2008: No new IP. I thought Endless Ocean was, but upon closer inspection, it is neither a Nintendo IP, nor is it original, it's a sequel. Maybe you could count Wii Fit?


Hotel Dusk: Room 215 - I'm not sure who owns the IP for this one. But Nintendo has the publishing rights and I really enjoyed it. They did a follow-up too. Reminds me of the old games like Shadowgate and Deja Vu.


  • Electroplankton - Kind of a art concept thing more than a game.
  • Excite Truck I own this. It's fun. But I likely wouldn't have picked it up if it wasn't the "spiritual successor to Excite Bike". It's hard to see any similarities though.
  • Odama Quirky medieval Japanese warfare pinball thing.


  • Geist - Not sure if Nintendo owns this or not. They co-developed it with n-Space and Miyamoto himself was involved. I own it and the concept is great, but the execution is often silly. This is the kind of title they could revisit, polish more and turn into something special.
  • Nintendogs
  • Custom Robo - Older series, but 2004 marks the year Nintendo finally released it outside of Japan.


I skipped a lot of fun games that are spinoff IPs. For instance, Super Princess Peach, Warioware, Luigi's Mansion, and Mario Kart can all be considered spinoffs of the Mario series. Even if the game play is new and unique.

I'm totally with you on Spirit Tracks, by the way. That should not have been a Zelda game.


Today Is International Day Against DRM 256

jrepin writes "Digital restrictions management (DRM) creates damaged goods that users cannot control or use freely. It requires users to give-up control of their computers and restricts access to digital data and media. Device manufacturers and corporate copyrights holders have already been massively infecting their products with user-hostile DRM. Tablets, mobile phones and other minicomputers are sold with numerous restrictions embedded that cripple users freedom. The proposal at table in W3C to put DRM into HTML goes even further. Fight it: use today's today is international Day Against DRM, so spread the word and make yourself heard!" The EFF suggests making every day a day against DRM.

Comment Re:astounding that defaults are not tougher (Score 1) 210

This is 2013. Some people are stupid, yes. But information often gets out there even to stupid people. We live in a world where people think all kinds of things about "hackers" and identity theft, etc. They may not have a deep understanding, but they know that 20/20 did a story on it, so they should be afraid of... whatever. "Hackers".

Anecdotaly, excluding my own network, there are 14 networks within range of me as I type this from my home. All of them are secured with (mostly WPA, 1 WEP) and there is one Open "guest" network (with an identical name to one of the secure networks), which presumably is open by design, but has restrictions when connected.

Granted, only 5 of these networks have names that were obviously user-selected. So perhaps some of these networks were set up by the ISP, or the devices shipped with security on by default. But regardless, I see more secure networks than I do open ones today.

Who cares if the user selected it or not? As long as the password is unique and it works for them. They don't need to know unless they have a reason to. If the ISP or the device manufacturer has figured out a scheme to get them secured without a major hassle, it's a win-win. Those who care to know more will go out and learn more.

For what it's worth, I live in central New Jersey. Maybe things are radically different in Scranton, PA or Las Vegas or the suburbs of Atlanta, but I kind of have my doubts.


Israeli Firm Makes Kilomile Claims For Electric Car Battery Tech 247

cylonlover writes with this tantalizing excerpt from GizMag "Israel-based company Phinergy claims to have developed metal-air battery technology that promises to end the range anxiety associated with electric vehicles. The company's battery currently consists of 50 aluminum plates, each providing energy for around 20 miles (32 km) of driving. This adds up to a total potential range of 1,000 miles (1,609 km), with stops required only every couple of hundred miles to refill the system with water."

Comment Re:Android (Score 4, Interesting) 184

While I agree with you in principal (the ability to run whatever I wish is one of the reasons I use Android and avoid iOS myself), in practice, what you describe is the same on both platforms.

If I'm selling a commercial app, even on Android, the built-in store is more or less the only avenue to making money. Google's store has rules just like Apple's does.

Sure I can sell through Amazon or some of the other third parties instead. But this obviously greatly diminishes my potential market (and they will likely have similar rules too). What percent of Android users ever install a third party store? What percent are even aware they can do so?

If you're talking about commercially selling software to sideload, the problem is even worse. Most users have no idea this is possible. So in effect, if you're investing a lot of money into a project and Google says "no", the results aren't much different from Apple saying "no".

Comment Re:"Unauthorized Access" is a Felony. (Score 4, Insightful) 884

Leaving aside the fact questionable legality of your little nerd-vigilante justice fantasies and granting for a moment that the fact that what the guy is doing is technically a felony...

Ignoring the possibility that the poor sap that opens the door might have nothing to do with the attempt - could be his 15 year old kid... worse yet, it could be a zombie machine trying to connect...

Leaving all that aside and assuming that everything is as it appears on it's face. You go over and knock, assault the guy and get the right person...

This all falls under a category I like to call "things I don't want to have to explain to a judge".

TL;DR: You're being criminally stupid.

Submission Meteor breaks up over Russia, brightness of fireball rivals the sun (with video)

PyroMosh writes: Around 9:30 AM local time, a meteor burned up over the Chelyabinsk region of Russia, east of the Ural mountains. Reports are streaming in of widespread minor damage (mostly broken windows), some reports of injuries.

The videos are amazing, thanks the the widespread practice in Russia of using dashboard cameras, and of course the widespread prevalence of smart phones and security cameras. "Bad Astronomer" Phil Plait thinks that the timing is just coincidental to the near-pass of asteroid 2012 DA14 today, but of course many are speculating on a possible connection.

Comment Re:App? (Score 1) 253

Regarding the accessory socket: Depends on the car. And some cars give you the option of behaving in either way.

My CTS actually has a fuse in the fuse box that serves as a jumper between two positions. In the first position, the socket is as you describe that you expect it: On only when the key is in the "run" position. In the other position, the socket is on continuously, only switching off when the key moves to the "start" position (to protect against surges).

The car also has battery rundown protection, but I don't know the details of this. All I know is that it occasionally turns to dome light off when I leave it on the "on" position overnight, presumably when the battery reached a certain threshold. I don't see any reason it couldn't govern the accessory socket in the same way, but I do not know if it does.


Child Gets Nintendo 3DS Full of Porn For Christmas 370

dotarray writes "One Colorado family received more than they'd bargained for this Christmas when they gave five-year-old Braydon Giles a pre-owned Nintendo 3DS that apparently still contained 'graphic images' from a previous owner. From the article: 'Refurbishing is an art, as well as a craft. The whole point is to make a gadget feel pristine, even when it used to be owned by a cult leader, a scout leader or an exhibitionist. Sadly, someone in a Colorado GameStop stopped refurbishing before the job was complete. So much so that 5-year-old Braydon Giles opened his Xmas gift — a Nintendo 3DS — and discovered images of naked people doing less than pristine things. As Channel 9 News tells it, Braydon showed the 3DS to his brother Bryton. He wanted his help to remove these weird pictures. '"

Brain Disease Found In NFL Players 271

SternisheFan sends this excerpt from ABC: "On the heels of the latest NFL suicide, researchers announced today that 34 NFL players whose brains were studied suffered from CTE, a degenerative brain disease brought on by repeated hits to the head that results in confusion, depression and, eventually, dementia. The study was released just days after the murder-suicide of Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher. It's not yet known what triggered Belcher's action, but they mirror other NFL players who have committed suicide. Researchers at Boston University's Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy published the largest case series study of CTE to date (abstract), according to the center. Of the 85 brains donated by the families of deceased veterans and athletes with histories of repeated head trauma, they found CTE in 68 of them. Of those, 34 were professional football players, nine others played college football and six played only high school football. Of the 35 professional football players' brains donated, only one had no evidence of the disease, according to the study." It's a good thing we protect our youth from conditions like this.

Comment Procedurally generated cliches... (Score 1) 181

This drives me crazy.

First, everyone tells me this about being a game dev. Everyone. Oh, and how it's not glamorous and some companies (read: most of them) treat you poorly.
But once a week, we get a "what nobody tells you" about game devs article here or on Extra Credits or the Escapist or wherever.

Stop it.

Second, there is nothing interesting about procedurally generated anything any more. Diablo did this. The first one. In 1996. It can be a nice feature, but it's not noteworthy any more. The move from sprites to polygons was noteworthy for early titles like StarFox. But nobody is putting "polygon-based graphics" stickers on their game boxes today.

The Wright Bothers weren't the first to fly. They were just the first not to crash.