"Games and Gaming Gear"
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Games and Gaming Gear
[ Music ]
>> Welcome back. It is time, once again, for Editor's Office Hours NYC edition. I'm Dan Ackerman, and joining me, CNET editor, Jeff Bakalar. I've often said to my self, "What does Jeff actually do here?"
>> I've never been quite sure but then I said, "What are we talking about today?" And they said video games and stuff. So tell me a little bit about what we're talking about today, Jeff.
>> Well, today we're gonna talk about all the latest and greatest in the world of video games. Holiday season is coming up. Everyone wants a new console--
>> Or games for their console.
>> --or games for their console, accessories, what have you, and we're gonna talk about what's hot.
>> We'd go over some of the best and the worst.
>> Yes, mostly worst.
>> Now of course Office Hours, it's an audience participation program, so it's up to you to ask the questions that we are gonna answer. There's a big white box right next to Jeff's head if you're watching this live. You type your question in there. We're gonna get it. We're gonna answer it. You do need to be a CNET member to do that. Easy to do, just sign up right from the box right there, or there's a chat box right below us right there if you're watching this live and you can chat with other people also watching the show. If you're watching this on tape later, just ignore all of that and just enjoy.
>> Let's jump right in and, Jeff, you're a live broadcasting vet--
>> --doing live shows all the time--
>> --here on CNET, so you will be used to the rapid pace here. We're gonna jump right into our first question which is kind of a biggie.
>> Bring it on.
>> What's the best video game system to own this holiday season, as if they could give us a bigger softball than that?
>> Yeah, that's pretty--Alright, well, I don't wanna choose sides really.
>> If you pick one, there will be 2 very unhappy major multinational corporations out there.
>> Exactly. I think the best way to approach this sort of question is to maybe talk about the pros and cons--
>> The pros and cons of each one.
>> --of each system.
>> Okay, alright. Let's be honest.
>> Who do you wanna start with?
>> Let's start with the Wii.
>> The Wii
>> Okay. The Wii, in my opinion, if you're serious about game--
>> You can't really own the Wii by itself.
>> It's gonna be the Wii and something else.
>> Wii plus insert other console here.
>> Sure, or all 3?
>> Or all 3 which is what I love to do. I know you like to do that. That's how we roll. So for Wii, you're not really gonna get those hardcore games, games that really involve a lot of--you know, obviously we can't do the graphics of the PS3 and the Xbox.
>> They don't have a big blockbuster titles like Zelda 3 or Grand Theft Auto.
>> But they're still selling them as fast as they can make it.
>> They are because, well, a lot of people like to bowl, you know with the real sports. That's popular.
>> I have the tennis myself.
>> The tennis, you know.
>> That's how the game that comes with the Wii. It's so great, Wii Sports that you really almost don't need anything else.
>> You're kinda paying 250 for Wii Sports.
>> For a sports simulator, yeah.
>> Yeah. So you're stuck with the Wii. There's a--Don't get me wrong, there are good titles out there, third party titles are there and the first party, your Mario, your Zelda.
>> But when all said and done, you know--
>> You always go back to playing tennis.
>> Or bowling.
>> Or the bowling. I love the bowling.
>> One of the Wii Sports the--
>> The boxing?
>> The boxing.
>> This seem kind of weak.
>> Golf is okay.
>> It's okay. I'm not a huge fan of it. And baseball, that's kind of fun, Homerun Derby, big fan of that. So if you want a Wii, don't expect to be playing a huge wide variety of games.
>> It's a little--I'm starting to think it a little--
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> The Wii is something you play when other people come over.
>> It's not something--
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> It's a party console.
>> --and play by yourself.
>> For sure, like playing Guitar Hero by yourself.
>> Exactly said.
>> Yes it is sir.
>> Okay, so that's the Wii.
>> So that's the Wii, Xbox 360.
>> A lot of things come into Xbox 360, the New Xbox Experience is coming in a couple of weeks. You're gonna be able to stream Netflix directly to your Xbox.
>> Brand new user interface with the blades, the dashboard.
>> That's cool.
>> I've seen the videos. I'm a fan so far.
>> Games, not so many exclusive games as we used to have like last year. This year we got Gears.
>> Okay, Gears of War.
>> And I mean, there's anything else off the top of your head.
>> Super Xbox exclusive.
>> Super Xbox exclusive. I could think of Sony ones now.
>> Right now Sony has some more.
>> So this season, this holiday season, Sony does have that sort of exclusive title list.
>> On a couple of things, yeah.
>> And, you know, in terms of Xbox they kinda, you know, they have them [inaudible].
>> But you know Xbox Live.
>> Xbox Live is great.
>> [Inaudible] premiere online service there.
>> Huge, if you're playing--if you're serious about online gaming, Xbox 360.
>> Nobody ever asked you what your Sony network name is.
>> They all wanna know what your Xbox Live data is.
>> I have one friend on that and it's you.
>> I have few. I have you and I have Joey from the lab, and that's it and I'm never playing online.
>> Okay, and cost--
>> --for the Xbox.
>> Now it's cheaper to own than ever. It's only 200 dollars for the core.
>> It's cheaper than the Wii for the basic one.
>> Exactly, which is amazing. The core arcade model is 199.99.
>> And no hard drive.
>> No hard drive.
>> So, if you wanna [inaudible].
>> I think it comes with like a 512 or something--
>> --a 256, but if you want to play online, you do need the memory card.
>> You gotta get the--
>> And if you want the new Xbox Live experience--
>> You're getting the hardware.
>> --that requires 128 megs memory. So, we recommend the midlevel, the pro model, the 60 gigabyte that goes for 300 dollars.
>> Yeah. PS3, the minimum is 400 dollars.
>> And now that comes with an 80 gigabyte hard drive, no backwards compatibility.
>> Yes, they took that out.
>> Kind of a bummer. There's gonna be a bundle version coming out this month, comes with Drake's Fortune. I'm sorry, that's a big fortune.
>> Okay, that's was a good game.
>> That's gonna be 500 dollars.
>> With 160 gigabyte drive.
>> And of course they're Blu-ray players.
>> They are Blu-ray players and they have [inaudible] games.
>> I've really gotten into the Blu-ray lately.
>> I have too. I've joined in on the bandwagon and now all my Netflix are [inaudible].
>> I got my Netflix on Blu-ray, it's crazy.
>> Yeah, I'm [inaudible] Netflix, I broke down, I got like Indiana Jones, The Hulk.
>> The Hulk.
>> I know. All these movies that I would--never paid 12 months to see.
>> Never. Oh, you do?
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> Now in the theater, now I'm paying 25 to get on Blu-ray.
>> And it looks good, it's--and we recommend the CNET Home Video, we recommend the PlayStation 3. It's the best Blu-ray player.
>> As the best all around the Blu-ray, Blu-ray player. Of course I get to throw one more knocking against the Xbox and for the PS3 and even the game.
>> Sure, yeah.
>> The PS3 that we both have WiFi built in.
>> They do.
>> The Xbox has got it in a jack and the WiFi attachment is like a hundred bucks.
>> It's a hundred bucks. There's ways to hook it up to your laptop. You know it's gonna.
>> I'm not a scientist.
>> I don't expect that. I don't expect anyone to do it. A hundred dollars is a lot to pay to turn the thing into a wireless.
>> It's like a little WiFi receiver?
>> Yeah. It's a hundred dollars, but a lot of people I talk about the--everyone's got their cable modem around the area of their 360, so it's not that big of a deal. Plus, you know, gaming you want to be connected at hard line. You do.
>> Okay. I've managed to do pretty good on the WiFi, but I invested in like an end router and everything so I take my--
>> There you go.
>> I take my WiFi seriously.
>> Alright, tell us more about the New Xbox Experience. That's our next question, as we mentioned briefly.
>> Well this is cool. I guess the coolest thing which I kind of thought was lame when I first heard about it, the avatars.
>> Yeah. Kind of like the little Wii guy.
>> Yeah, and Microsoft has answered to the Nintendo Mii characters. You can, the customization is so extravagant compared to the Mii characters. You got like, you know, 4 shapes and you know.
>> Oh, it's Jack Black.
>> Everyone has the same one nose.
>> So, the customization is much more in detail and, you know, that's--they're trying to market that as 1 of the biggest draws of the new Xbox Live Experience.
>> How well that goes over, I don't know. You also can dress them up anyway you want. So, obviously you'll have like a ponytail on your guy and you know looking all slick, whenever you pause. And kind of maybe a little Dan Ackerman hat.
>> Maybe a little hat--
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> [Inaudible] I didn't wash my hair. Yeah, that's it.
>> Oh, alright. I didn't think you're gonna share that, but that's fun. So yeah, you're gonna be able to make that guy look exactly like yourself, which is alright.
>> In like a super deformed cartoony kind of way.
>> Exactly, exactly.
>> I like the Netflix stuff. I think--I think it's exciting.
>> Netflix is a very big deal.
>> Now the ability to rip the entire game on to your hard drive.
>> Oh, onto the hard drive.
>> What do you think about that? What do you think about that?
>> Ah, you know what? It would probably take more time to rip it than you would actually spend on the [inaudible].
>> Supposedly you can take up to 20 minutes to do something like that, that's--
>> Probably even that much.
>> Well, it's not that much but you know what I'm really more upset about is the fact that--and I know there's no way to get around this. You still have to have the disk in the drive when you play.
>> Oh, I see. Okay, okay.
>> Why not release some sort of product key code unique to your copy. That will--
>> Into your Xbox Live.
>> Yeah. I would love to be able to just sit there and play any [inaudible]. I don't know, be amazed.
>> It's all too complicated.
>> Xbox Live Experience, that is coming out what? November 19th--
>> November 19th.
>> All the servers will crash--
>> Right around the corner.
>> --about 3 or 4 days.
>> Oh, yeah. There is no--
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> --I download it. I feel some people have beta versions of it. I do not.
>> No, I don't either. I guess we're not that important.
>> I guess we're not that important. [Inaudible] we're on Xbox Live and it says, you know, what you're doing playing the game, on the dashboard it said Netflix so--
>> That is cool.
>> --obviously they're, they're streaming the Netflix stuff.
>> But did it say what movie they're watching?
>> It did not say. If it was me, it would be--
>> The Lion King.
>> --Jericho Season 1.
>> Oh, really?
>> I don't know. I heard about this show and I figured, "Oh, it's on Netflix I might as well see if it's really good.
>> How do you wake up every morning?
>> So far it's not really about that.
>> I gave the quick free spin in Netflix.
>> Okay, fair enough.
>> Okay, let's see. Do I need--This is a good question actually. Do I need an HDMI cable for HD gaming?
>> Oh, absolutely not.
>> Even though the PlayStation 3 and the new 360 both have HDMI connections.
>> They both support it, and if you're playing game system on a TV and you don't have a separate sound system like a receiver, HDMI is a good way to go because--
>> It's as easy as playing sound in video 1 cable.
>> With one shot.
>> You plug it right in.
>> There you go. If you're using a receiver and you want to get, you know, not all of receiver support 5.1 over HDMI, you might have to use the optical.
>> Unless you don't have receivers that have HDMI either.
>> Right, that's a bid deal. But no, you don't need HDMI for HD. Component wires can vary an HD signal. So, I think it's kind of a misconception in the world of not only gaming but--
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> And honestly, if you line them up next to each other, they're really [inaudible] huge difference. Maybe if you're a foot in front of the TV, you'll notice something. But, you know, 6 feet and more, you're really not gonna see a big difference.
>> So yes, HD gaming is possible without an HDMI.
>> It's kind of a loaded question right here. Why does the Wii suck?
>> I know, a little Wii anger around that.
>> It says the word suck.
>> It does, it does.
>> Well, I won't say the Wii sucks.
>> I don't think the Wii sucks. I own one. I play it once a month. You know I like it.
>> But, to answer the question in that context. The Wii sucks because I guess people are kind of disappointed with the games that are coming out.
>> Finish your quality control, isn't it?
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> They say that you can't really slap you're approved seal on every piece of junk that comes down the pipeline.
>> A quality doesn't really stand for much.
>> Yeah, the [inaudible] seal. If you're paying your licensing fee, you can put out a Wii game--
>> You get one.
>> --while other companies perhaps may send the game back for further revisions, what they know--We're not gonna let you publish it.
>> Because they have to sign off in every game that runs out with their systems.
>> So it's part of the problem. The game is really aren't there. The first part of the games that do come out from Nintendo, 9 times out of 10 are fantastic, but I guess the Wii sucks as our reader put it because, yes, the vast majority of the games out for the Wii are kind of gimmicky and the production value isn't quite that.
>> I actually have a small visual problem for you.
>> Oh, this is amazing.
>> We were talking about it the week before so I brought in--
>> These are the Wii games I received in the last couple of weeks. They illustrate what's going on in Wii land.
>> Sad but true.
>> There's carnival games, mini golf, there is Ben 10: Alien Force. I don't even now what the hell that is.
>> This is really--this is not--This is real, huh? Okay.
>> It's not a process. I didn't think that there's a sleeve and putting the case here.
>> Wii Game Party 2.
>> Wii Game Party.
>> Which seems to have darts and bean bags, like a bean bag throwing game.
>> Okay, alright.
>> Oh here, Puck Bowling, Lawn Darts, Quarterback Challenge, Horseshoes, Bean Bags, Trivia, Darts, Skill Ball, I don't know if that's even the speed ball.
>> This console will go down as the --
>> Hoop Shoot, Ping Cup, Shuffle Board, Wii Shuffle Board.
>> Hey, now we finally made it. This console will go down as the mini game console.
>> The mini game console and Naruto: Clash of the Ninja Revolution 2.
>> At least Naruto is like a recognizable franchise.
>> I guess the thing is heard of, but I have no idea what it is.
>> I suppose he is a ninja but he wears like orange. I thought ninjas got like--
>> He's got like snowboarding goggles on.
>> Yes. He's like a snowboarding ninja.
>> Anyway, that's the latest Wii games that come across my desk at least.
>> So that's why I would perhaps--
>> I would never say it 'cause I don't think the Wii sucks.
>> No I don't either.
>> I'm indifferent. I'm an indifferent gamer.
>> But maybe a couple more AAA titles.
>> Would be nice.
>> Would be good.
>> Right. Let's get like a kid [inaudible] is going on or something.
>> Okay, some good, some good retro--
>> [Inaudible] bring it back. I like that. Oh, here we go. Pack gamer, who is a--I guess a frequent CNET reader or listener--
>> Yeah. Oh, I think [inaudible] 404 list.
>> --wants to know--He's always listening. He wants to know, why is Jeff so bad ass?
>> Why am I so bad ass?
>> That's his question. He needs to know.
>> Well, I think it goes back to my days growing up.
>> I say I'm greedy.
>> Yeah, really.
>> Gives you the extra edge.
>> I'm glad you know so much about my family history. Why am I so bad ass? I don't know but I appreciate the compliment.
>> But I appreciate that our listeners care, really, our watchers, viewers care.
>> A question from another friend of ours, Randall Bennett [phonetic].
>> Randall Bennett.
>> [Inaudible] wants to know, what's your game of the holiday season?
>> Wow, great question.
>> Yeah, that's a good question. What's the must buy?
>> Well, right now, I am knee deep in Dead Space.
>> I love Dead Space.
>> And Dead Space is a lot of fun.
>> It is.
>> If you are scared easily, if you have any history of heart conditions, I seriously advise against playing the game especially with the lights off.
>> At least not at night with the lights off.
>> Like I did the first time.
>> Exactly. I've been playing a lot of the Call of Duty, World at War.
>> Really, okay.
>> And what do you think?
>> It's the same thing as Call of Duty 4 with a few tweaks. It's the same engine.
>> So, you're gonna be very familiar with the game if you are a huge Call of Duty 4 fan.
>> It's multiplayer. Good so far.
>> I'm liking it so far.
>> Single player.
>> You got Kiefer Sutherland in it.
>> Gary Oldman.
>> Gary Oldman.
>> All star cast.
[ Inaudible remark ]
>> Yes, it's not that professional, right?
>> Okay, okay.
>> What else, Gears of War.
>> Gears of War 2 launches tonight at midnight.
>> Launches today, yeah.
>> So, that's definitely on the list. Resistance 2.
>> Resistance 2.
>> Got to play some of that.
>> Yes, yes.
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> Huge jump in. Huge jump over the first.
>> Yeah, I'd agree.
>> So the games are there. What else?
>> I got Resistance 2. I took it home. I said, "Okay, I'm gonna play this like Monday and Tuesday." I think it around. It is still in plastic because every time I sit down and go, "I'm gonna play Resistance," I got [inaudible] at 3 first and like 2 hours later, I'm still going, "The super mutants! Oh, I can't handle it."
>> Fallout 3.
>> Fallout--I mean, look, I'm not a huge RPG guy.
>> Neither am I.
>> Either you've been--you are totally--
>> Unpersuading me.
>> --the open world concept.
>> And I love the theme.
>> The theme.
>> I love the post-apocalyptic--
>> I love being with the talkative people.
>> I'm gonna play it.
>> The ground, the explore.
>> I'm gonna play, I'm gonna play it.
>> I'm 42 hours in right now.
>> Wow, that's truly sad.
>> In such a slow. The first 4, 5 hours is a kind of a slug. I'm not gonna kid you.
>> You need to invest the time to get over that home.
>> I would have like to see a better early game experience.
>> My push that you get--
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> --to the winter break.
>> When you have a lot of time to just sit there.
>> Also I've been playing, this is kind--it might be a slipper hit, Mirror's Edge.
>> I've played Mirror's Edge.
>> I enjoy it.
>> I'm playing, I'm about 5 hours into it. I enjoy it a lot.
>> It's unique. It took me awhile to get into it to be like okay. I'm not nauseous anymore. I understand what the concept of the game is.
>> Upper level, down level.
>> I like how it's designed. It's just design.
>> I played some code for it--
>> --a couple of months ago and it's based on--if you don't know what we're talking about, it's based on the French sort of pseudo sport of [inaudible].
>> Of free running, which is those guys who--
>> Free style walking.
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> Different is then--in Olympic sports film.
>> It will be.
>> Run walking?
>> Where you jump around in like roof tops and--
>> They have like something like the James Bond movie and a bunch of other movies [inaudible].
>> And you're constantly on the run from this people. You're delivering the sense of--
>> Your like a messenger.
>> Yeah. You are called a runner.
>> Yeah, you're like a package messenger. But my problem was, I like the environment, I have the concept of figuring out how to get from point A to point B.
>> Which is fun!
>> But there's always 50 cops shooting at you everywhere you go.
>> In helicopters.
>> You're a bike messenger from the future, come on.
>> It's true.
>> You're not that important.
>> And why choose rooftops. Everyone's got helicopters.
>> Take a cab.
>> Why choose rooftops, I don't know.
>> That brings you a close contact with the helicopter.
>> It does.
>> That's a good point.
>> It does. It puts you right there.
>> So I feel like you're creating an artificial sense of kinetic energy by forcing you to run from the cops all the time so you don't have time to actually explore the environment and figure out the best way--
>> Exactly. Right.
>> --to get from here 2 levels up.
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> But I think it's a little cheap in that sense.
>> I do like to hold momentum generator, you feel like you're gaining [inaudible].
>> Right, you feel like you're running and you're jumping--
>> That's fun.
>> --and you're constantly moving. I could do without the constant barrage of a bullet.
>> We played Left 4 Dead.
>> Oh yes, we did.
>> That's one huge campaign this game is having. I've seen billboards all over the place, on the sides of buses, everywhere.
>> Yeah. They switch it. They had a--they had a hand. It was like this, you know.
>> With four fingers and [inaudible] up. And they realize, "Wait a minute, that's a right hand in the ad. The game was called Left 4 Dead, would it be much more cleaver if you flip the photo and made it a left hand?" So that's what they--
>> There you go.
>> That's the art change a couple of months ago on the right hand, the left hand.
>> We get to play it for like an hour--
>> We did, we did.
>> --at the EA events.
>> That was crazy.
>> Man, that is intense. It's like playing 28 Days Later.
>> It is, it is.
>> For--you know.
>> So it's up to 4, you know, call off players and you have to start in like a safe room, fight your way through streets full of zombies and get to another safe room like over and over again.
>> Very campy, zombies.
>> Pretty depressing really.
>> Okay let's--Oh, let's see, what else we got for the holiday season. We said Fallout, we said Gears War 2, Resistance 2, what about Little Big Planet, and that brings us to another question.
>> From Pete Gaas [phonetic] who wants to know, is Little Big Planet really enough, good enough, to justify getting a PlayStation 3 if you don't have one?
>> That's a great question.
>> That is a good question.
>> I'm gonna--well, it really depends. I mean it depends on how desperate you are to own a PlayStation 3. This game can technically keep you occupied forever.
>> I like that, it's basically fulfilled with a promise of user generated content.
>> The way that no other game has.
>> When I was playing the beta, there were always new levels available that people are making, and you can sit there and play these levels all day long. You can just ignore the regular package there.
>> And the single--not to say the single player doesn't have enough substance, it does. It's a good single player experience.
>> A lot of levels in there.
>> There's a lot of replay value just in the single player [inaudible] alone.
>> Sure. And you could build your own stuff, but I just think having fresh new levels from [inaudible] people, every single day available to you like that seamlessly.
>> And the fact that those levels will always be voted to the top.
>> That's right. You go for the ones that people like. You say I like it, I don't like it, and then you find the most popular ones.
>> So, does it warrant a PS3 purchase by itself? I don't know. I bought a--
>> Maybe you want to get into Blu-ray.
>> Yeah, well, you know, that's the thing. You know, it's a Blu-ray player that plays games.
>> It's one of the most unique compelling exclusive games.
>> For sure.
>> And it's definitely a huge--
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> I bought my PS3 to play Metal Gear. And I'm still not sure that was a good idea.
>> But I'm sure glad I own one now to play the Little Big Planet.
>> Yeah, that Little Bit Planet is coming out. Here's a good industry question. Why do you think the gaming industry is doing so well during our current financial crisis? They say that--
>> It's another fantastic question.
>> That is.
>> They say that video games are always kind of recession proof and they are to a degree, but we're already seeing a URV or slowdown in some areas.
>> Well, I think what it is is that, you know, there's no other cost associated with gaming. You have it, a game, and you can have one game and play it and be good for weeks on it. It's kind of this evergreen experience that you don't constantly have to dip money, you know, into this gaming fun. If you want to keep seeing movies, you got to go out now and then get it. So, I think that has a lot to do with it. I think people want to stay indoors. I think people want, you know, for--people who aren't so [simultaneous talking]
>> So if we look back to 1929 and the Great Depression.
>> All games back then.
>> Games back then were great though.
>> One bit.
>> One bit game is half a bit game. It was half a white blood.
>> A guy had to come to your house and drive every time you [inaudible].
>> Wait, wait, wait [inaudible]. During the great depression, the movie industry still did quite well because people, one of the escapes was at the movie.
>> Exactly, you lose yourself.
>> It was small--it was a small reasonable expense. It was a small - I think people could do for themselves--
>> Even if it wasn't a necessary kind of food and shelter sort of item.
>> For sure.
>> So to the game even though they are 50 or 60 bucks are still a small indulgence.
>> They do. They offer that little bit of--
>> The people who maybe having economic tough times.
>> Yeah, that little bit of escape to get your mind off the crap that's going on with the economy.
>> Now that being said.
>> September 2008, sales are down over September 2007.
>> Some say that's because of the recession or economic problems or downturn. I say that certainly plays a factor but also last September, biggest month ever in gaming.
>> Halo 3.
>> Yes. Don't forget September what came, you know, not too many games, it can happen.
>> Right. This year, there's no Halo 3.
>> It's the October, November this year that--
>> Yeah, it's not gonna be as big as last year though. Last year where we have Halo 3, the original--
[ Simultaneous Talking ]
>> Call of Duty 4.
>> Call of Duty 4, mild shots.
>> It was madness.
>> Yes. New Rainbow Six was a big multiplayer game as well.
>> So this year, you know, a bunch of new games with nothing with that kind of [inaudible].
>> Gears of War will be big.
>> Yeah, it will be good but it is a sequel, you know, and it's a one console exclusive.
>> So you can't sell as many copies.
>> As some other games--oh, here's a great question right here.
>> And we're not even gonna go. We're gonna watch a video like Gears of War and we have so many questions to get to.
>> Let's keep it going.
>> No breaks for us.
>> No breaks.
>> We're gonna keep going.
>> Okay, are you ready?
>> What is the status of the Xbox 360 in regards to the Red Ring of Death? Another great question. These are fantastic questions.
>> We have a very antiquated audience.
>> Thank you everyone. Very good.
>> They're really obsessed with video games.
>> Or they just know me and I told them to come out. That's fine either way.
>> Yes, Red Ring of Death. What--whichever Xbox are you on?
>> I am--I've only had to return one Xbox.
>> Of the several I have owned in various combinations for the Red Ring of Death. It was one of the--I believe one of the oldest Xboxes on the market because it was a test unit I got before the actual commercial release.
>> Actually before, alright.
>> And that lasted until about a year ago when it died.
>> And I sent it back and I got--
>> That's a pretty good run though considering the built quality of these machines.
>> Considering, what did they say the percentage of original?
>> It was first, the rumor was it was like 60, right?
>> And then that story came out that said it as more like 50, literally half of all these machines or something like that.
>> I'm on my fifth Xbox.
>> Okay. So I know what's going on.
>> And you got your early, original [inaudible].
>> I had the launch one and then I went through every other after that right?
>> And they all had the Red Ring of Death?
>> All Red Ring.
>> All Red Ring.
>> That was very frustrating?
>> I guess. I believe that I was there.
>> Let me do a--give you a copy of carnival games [simultaneous talking].
>> Oh it's consolation. Oh thank you very much, great.
>> So what I did, you know, you gotta relax and these things break. They do, okay? What I've noticed and what we have noticed from people expressing their opinions on the hardware, after the HDMI 360 started to come up, it looked like they had fixed the cooling issue which was causing the three Rings of Death, the three red lights of death. So I think now we're definitely on the better side of things. We're still hearing about, you know, these errors happening.
>> These are usually older consoles that are still in the market.
>> These are older consoles. The ones built probably before 2006.
>> Before they--if they didn't have an HDMI jack on it.
>> It's eventually gonna die.
>> You basically have no chance.
>> But what do they say for all the things, on a long enough scale, the survival rate for everyone--
>> Is zero.
>> Drops to zero.
>> Yes [inaudible].
>> For original Xboxes, that is true and--
>> It is definitely true.
>> And within about 18 to 24 months.
>> Obviously, the 60 gigabyte, the newest HDMI 360
>> That probably has the most promising shelf life but look, you know, for everyone does know, I don't know anyone [inaudible].
>> The problems have been well documented.
>> They figured out exactly where the production process.
>> It is a cooling issue.
>> Microsoft ignored the concerns of their engineers.
>> Heat dissipation.
>> And they said, "We gotta get this thing out the door. We gotta go back and reengineer it."
>> All right. Yeah, it's fine
>> Put in the box.
>> A billion dollar write-down later.
>> That's fun. We can afford it.
>> That's true.
>> They do. So yeah, if you buy 360 now, you should be okay. Council before 2006 maybe, even some of 2007.
>> Yeah, you got an HDMI connection. You basically have the new [inaudible].
>> Right. They should be in good shape.
>> Yes, yes. It should be good. Alright, excellent, excellent.
>> But don't call me on that.
>> Yeah. You don't call Jeff with your Xbox dies and then demand that he come to your house and fix it.
>> I don't do that anymore of this. There is a question, do you think the iPhone or the iPod Touch have the potential to be true handheld gaming devices. Have you played a lot of games on the--
>> I tried a bunch of games out. In the beginning, my answer no.
>> Yeah, definitely not.
>> Now, it's maybe.
>> It's definitely getting better.
>> It's definitely getting better. Super Monkey Ball is probably--
>> It is pretty good.
>> The best example but let's be honest, that game lends itself so well to the sort of till technology that in roughly ton of knock off they are kind of the same thing now with the--
>> Exactly. I think myself I think a lot of gamers need a sort of button. They need a tactile feedback sort of thing. I don't know how comfortable I am with, you know, using my thumb on the glass and it's like a deep head. I know, I'm sure, you're really not excited with that.
>> I tried one of them, I tried that with the crash [inaudible] racing.
>> Yeah how did that, I haven't played that, how was that.
>> But in order to like, you know, turbo or slide, you basically press an invisible button on one side of the screen and that was a little weird.
>> I don't know how I feel about that.
>> You know, they're making accessories now. Marware just came out with the grip.
>> No I didn't see that.
>> It's a grip for your iPhone. It's like a wheel grip and, you know, like this will be the iPhone it is.
>> Oh, no it looks like a regular controller group.
>> Okay. Not like a wheel.
>> Oh, I see and.
>> Same sort of thing.
>> You know there's a market for that. The games are cheap, they are affordable. You know, the graphical qualities on par with sort of like a PSP.
>> Some of them aren't dead.
>> I want the poker. The newest Apple poker with the video clips where the people are actually playing.
>> This is an AI, good poker engine there.
>> I think what developers have to focus with the iPhone make the games that the iPhone will really shine. Make the Super Monkey Balls. Make the games where you top. Make games what, you know, don't make a Tomb Raider for the iPhone. You know I don't want to--
>> [Inaudible] Lara goes forward to shake it once she jumps.
>> It sounds, this is great.
>> Let's make a game where there's a lot of shaking involve. You know not the, you know, like an adventure.
>> Right, the latest iPod Touch game has been the Jewel Quest 2.
>> Yeah exactly. A perfect game where you can top, you know, exactly.
>> Gonna get these jewels. Oh, my God.
>> If the developers stick to that philosophy with the iPhone, I think, it will be a great plan.
>> For Jewel Twist, they just spent a million dollars developing the latest version of the Bejeweled game.
>> Million dollars on the Bejeweled game.
>> That's what I hear.
>> Well, it's such a huge seller. I mean, so hopefully that will come to the iPod Touch and iPhone.
>> Hopefully. [Inaudible].
>> Speaking of handheld games.
>> And we are running low on time.
>> Alright, Francis has more questions here. What do you think of the Nintendo DSi? It's the one with the camera, the new version the Nintendo DSS, kind of a low different but hardly different at all.
>> Yeah. The only main difference, obviously, it has two cameras on the thing.
>> It's got--the screens are a little bigger--
>> But in the same resolution.
>> No, I don't think so. I think they are just blowing them up a little.
>> Okay, so they are the same resolution in just a bigger scale.
>> Right. So, you know, there--from what I've heard, what I've seen, you know, there really isn't that much of a benefit for--to upgrade. The store sounds pretty promising though. I think that is definitely the biggest selling point for the DSi. Be able to download games directly to a little mini SD card. That's pretty cool.
>> That is pretty cool.
>> Other than that, if you own a DS Lite, in my opinion, there is absolutely no reason to upgrade.
>> Okay, I completely agree with you there but let's try to squeeze it one more. What is up with the PS3 trophy system?
>> You know, Xbox has achievements.
>> And now you--
>> That's where people get really into the achievements.
>> People it's something about the sound byte maybe.
>> I try to stay out of it but.
>> I know.
>> Whenever I get something, I'm like yes.
>> Every time I check your status, admiring Xbox's achievement.
>> That's right. That's right. That's like Facebook status even itself. That's how crazy I get over it.
>> The trophy, let's be honest, it's not working.
>> And so far it's not. I got a trophy the other day. I have forgiven that [inaudible]
>> I don't think you've ever done the trophy.
>> And it didn't even--I was like, alright.
>> There's something about, you know, keeping a score maybe that the Xbox has a numerical value.
>> There's no score. You get a like a little trophy.
>> You have five trophies, I have 7.
>> Exactly big for you.
>> Instead of 2000 Xbox.
>> It's not as involved and in depth as the Xbox.
>> It's also coming to the game very late.
>> It's coming very late and what's really annoying is that if you finished the game prior to the--
>> You can, you don't retroact because it's trophy.
>> How was that?
>> That is kind of messed up.
>> That's kind of messed up. I really don't think that, I think, they should have just ripped it off completely.
>> And keep the games.
>> Yeah, just do a point.
>> What is actually the point.
>> That's what people want. People want a way to look back, oh, what did I do in these game? It doesn't land itself to that sort of experience.
>> Whenever you see any one's Xbox Live tag, the number--the scores is right next to it all the time. And you can go. Wow! You really got the games right or you're a complete loser. Losing [inaudible].
>> It's obvious.
>> If you're in the middle your kind of like--
>> Then you're okay. You want to be in the middle, you don't want to go high.
>> You don't want too low.
>> Better keep yourself authorized.
>> You cannot believe exactly it burns you half an hour without even taking a break to watch your video.
>> Not bad.
>> An Editor's Office Hour's history.
>> Thank you.
>> Thank you.
>> Do I get my name on the wall or something like that?
>> I know really, you get to try one of those stickers like you have before our program.
>> Oh, sweet.
>> Speaking of which. I feel the plug action.
>> Jeff, you're on some crazy Podcast, you get to tell like every freaking day, I think.
>> What is it?
>> It's called the 404 Podcast. We do it live every morning 11 AM Eastern Time, the 404.cnet.com. Check it out. We're not conventional CNET Podcast but we do talk a lot about games.
>> It's fun.
>> [Inaudible] games, pop culture staff.
>> You know, interesting guests.
>> Speaking of interesting guests, one week from tomorrow, professional snow boarders Shawn White.
>> Oh, okay, actually very nice, very nice.
>> Live on the show, he's gonna talk about his new online game.
>> Snow boarding. Well under which I think it's speaks for the week or you use the weak it bounce for it.
>> Okay. Are we over and of course you can catch me every Monday on the Digital City.
>> Yes, I'm a big fan.
>> Digitalcity.cnet.com. That is our show where we're talking about technology and urban living, urban environments, big city topics and we, of course, see you here either in New York or San Francisco every single day on Editor's Office Hours. That's it. See you next time.
>> See you.
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