How To


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A Simple Guide to Hosting a Game Event

By Jorge Figueiredo - November 27th, 2008

Brawl!

Shaun hosts a regular small gathering of gamers at his place most Fridays. It’s a show-up-if-you-want event. These are great because if you’re looking for some competition from like-minded gamers, you can just head on over and hang out with him and whoever to do some quality gaming (although this shouldn’t be taken as an open invitation for everyone to show up – Ed.). Since the crowd is never too big, everyone gets a turn, and two-player matches are the order of the day.

I tend to host larger gatherings far less frequently. I invite people that don’t normally come out to Shaun’s gatherings, resulting in a much larger turnout. While changing the dynamics in terms of games enjoyed, the increased diversity really allows for some interesting gaming experiences.

Since moving into my new place, and what with having a new baby last year, I didn’t have time to host anything until fairly recently. Also, I was concerned about waking the baby, as the baby’s room is right above the TV.

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HOW TO: Know You Have a True Gaming Friend

By Shaun Hatton - March 13th, 2008

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Real-life friends would let you shoot the zombies you called for. True gaming friends will kill your zombies after killing theirs.

Ever wonder if you’ve got a True Gaming Friend (aka TGF) or not? Well, wonder no more. Here’s how you can tell you’ve got a true gaming friend who will always be there for you no matter what.

Game:
Resident Evil: Umbrella Chronicles

How to tell you’ve got a TGF:

When playing in multiplayer mode, and you and your friend* decide it’s best to divide the screen into left and right halves to determine what side of the screen each other is responsible for taking care of, your TGF will often cross over onto your side of the screen to kill the zombies you call out for and also steal your weapons and ammo upgrades.

You’ll know you really have TGF if this person shoots a zombie’s knees out, causing him to fall just before your well-aimed and timed headshot could connect. Thanks, TGF! Now it’s going to take eight more bullets to kill this zombie when he could have already been dead.

Sometimes your TGF will tell you he had to shoot the zombie because it was getting “too close” or “was about to hit us.”

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Rock Band Drums go Mod

By Shaun Hatton - March 5th, 2008

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If your neighbours are complaining about the sheer force of your household’s output of rock with Rock Band, you may want to consider muffling the drum kit’s pads with real drum pad silencers.

In the photo above, I’ve cut smaller circles out of larger drum pad silencers (from when I had a Ludwig jazz kit of my own) and affixed them to the Rock Band drum pads with one of rock’s most important pieces of equipment: Duct tape.

While this totally destroys the otherwise somewhat sleek look of the drum kit, it does make it look a lot more rock ‘n’ roll. In addition, the added bounce that this easy mod gives the drum pads makes them feel a little more like a real drum kit. The only downside to doing this in terms of gameplay is that you’ll probably have to hit the skins a little harder to register all notes. Another alternative would be to use cheap mousepads to do the trick. They’re thinner, so you won’t have to hit as hard.

So why bother with this mod? Apart from cutting down on the noise, this will definitely prolong the life of the drum pads. It’s a whole lot cheaper to change out these silencers than it is to buy a new drum kit.


HOW TO: Know You Have a True Gaming Friend

By Jorge Figueiredo - February 13th, 2008

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A real-life friend would never dress like a ninja to jump you in a parking garage. But a True Gaming Friend totally would.

Ever wonder if you’ve got a True Gaming Friend (aka TGF) or not? Well, wonder no more. In this first instalment of the series, we’ll discuss one of the many ways you can tell you’ve got a TGF.

Game:
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare

How to tell you’ve got a TGF:
When your “friend” sneaks around an entire map, avoiding countless enemies and friendly grenade explosions, just to shoot you in the side of the head from your sniping position. Your friend then complains about recoil on the weapon despite having recently being quoted online as saying the game weapons have no recoil*.

While this may seem like your “friend” is in fact a huge “jerkface,” be assured that this is not the case. For you see, a TGF is quite different from a real-life friend. If you have a friend that shoots you in the side of the head in real life, please call our toll-free hotline at 911 before you die.

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HOW TO
Program the Famicom TV Remote

By Shaun Hatton - December 9th, 2007

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The Famicom Universal TV Remote doesn’t do much but is still pretty cool.

If you happen to have the Famicom Universal TV Remote but can’t read the Japanese instructions it comes with, you may not be able to figure out how to set it to actually operate your TV. In fact, it can be downright frustrating trying to figure this out. As much of a great conversation piece the remote is, it’s somewhat useless if you can’t get it to work.

Here are instructions, in English, for programming the remote. It’s a lot easier than you might have thought!

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