So somehow...

in #technologylast year (edited)

I've managed to lose almost a week without noticing; for instance, the #Splinterlands stream I planned to do never happened, so I'm thinking that doing a stream the last Sunday of each month (the upcoming one "this month" being the 1st of December - going to take a slight liberty here) may be better, especially as it also means that I'll avoid the issue where I won't be away from home! Additionally, I now have 10 cards from the #Untamed set, although it looks like they'll have to be opened in December. I do want to get 10 or 20 more cards from that set before the pre-sale ends, but all I can do for now is guarantee that I can open the 10 cards I have from the previous set for this month's stream; the cards do seem to be selling modestly though at least, and I think next time they have a new set (and onwards), I'm going to pay money for the #Kickstarter because it's clear that I can get more for the money I spend on that! For example, the $45 tier nets you: "GOBLIN CHEF - SPLINTERLANDS STARTER PACK & 20× UNTAMED BOOSTER PACKS". Now admittedly, for $40, I do get 20 cards, but the starter pack for $5 is a nice draw (pun not intended), plus I can also be eligible for stuff I may not otherwise be eligible for through purchasing the cards on the site.

In any case, December's opening (on the 29th of December) will mean that I'll have 20-30 booster packs to open, so it'll be interesting to see what I get with them... I'm definitely not expecting to get a (at the time) $200ish L1 Legendary card as I did before! Either way, I'm going to have to learn how to play games from January next year because I have as of yet, not been able to do so! But that's pretty much all I have to say for Splinterlands for now.

In other news, on the rare console front, I have picked up a working #Gamepark #GP32 BLU, in addition to a #Tapwave #Zodiac2 (#Z2) with 5 games, those being Doom II, Duke Nukem 3D, Spy Hunter, Z Pak: Adventure (containing Galactic Realms & Legacy), and Z Pak: Fun (containing Kickoo's Breakout, MegaBowling, and PaintBall). In terms of the games, Doom II is pretty much like the PC (and similar) version(s), except the music sounds different (due to the way the sound chip is). Duke Nukem 3D is an exclusive version of the game, more similar to the Mega Drive and Game Boy Advance versions of the game, as it's all on a 2D plane, though it doesn't seem to stand out all that much, as it seems to be pretty basic. Spy Hunter is virtually the same as the versions on consoles of the time, so it is likely nothing remarkable, beyond having a portable version of the game that looks to be console quality. Galactic Realms is some sort of third-person space sim with multiplayer and custom campaigns though could be interesting, whereas Legacy (arguably the game that most intrigued me of the two in the compilation) is a classic first-person RPG in the vein of Eye of The Beholder, Dungeon Hack, and the like, so uses grid-based movement, and apparently the puzzles are "among the best ever", which is quite a bold claim to make!

As for the remaining games that constitute the "Z Pak: Fun", you have a Breakout clone in Kickoo's Breakout, a first-person (albeit pretty basic looking) bowing game with Megabowling, and a "Match 3" game in PaintBall, which has what could be considered standard gameplay for the genre; admittedly, I haven't played any of the games from this "pak", so I can't really say much about how the games are, but I guess they should at the very least be in the average range, but I will do a video on each of the games at some point, as well as the console itself with the homebrew stuff, but I first need to get myself a WiFi SD card with a Micro SD slot, seeing as the Z2 doesn't have any WiFi capability! Other than that, the GP32 works pretty well; I picked it up for what is pretty much an outstanding price, especially as it came with a 128MB Smart Media Card (SMC), which is the largest capacity card you can get, and of course, it's also an outdated format nowadays, so I have to also get a reader which actually has a slot for them, except I need at least 3 (2 being for my retro laptops) of them, so I have a way of reading and writing to them!

There should be some #photos of these consoles relatively soon, although in the video, the Z2 will have a dedicated screen protector on top of the WiFi SD card, one of which I want to get for the #Gizmondo as well possibly, though I amn't sure if there would be a point in having one right now, so I'll likely need a few weeks to research if it's worthwhile, although I definitely see them as worth getting for the Z2, and also my Dell Axim X50, although I want to get an X51v, which is a much better gaming #PDA than the X50! Also, I hope to also get some stuff done with the #Cybiko, especially now I have everything I need to do a video about cleaning out the battery compartment and replacing the batteries, although I will probably have to revisit the #soldering thing later on, as I will with the broken GP32 I have. I at least can do a video using the 'BLU' version that I have, and use it to see what is on the cards; I do also want to make sure I have the latest firmware on all of them to facilitate homebrew installation, as well as ROMs, and also allowing higher capacity media, although all the devices that use SD cards will be able to use 4GB SD (not SDHC) at most, seeing as the SDHC format is not supported on these devices, and no amount of "coaxing" is likely to change that. On that note, getting a Cybiko Xtreme is still pretty tricky, as is getting games for the GP32, partly because I want to get boxed versions of the games - which are bloody expensive - but also because they're rare, and even the games with just the media and a protective cover aren't cheap!

This is the issue with rare consoles though, in a lot of cases, the consoles are going to be either very expensive or the games are, if not both. I've been very lucky to be in the right place at the right time in order to get the consoles that I have in my possession, and have picked them up either at a lower price than they go for typically in most places, or the bundles end up making the console cheaper than if I got it alone (especially in the case of the Z2!). In any case, these consoles/systems have very little information online about them overall, especially in terms of what they look like inside, or how to repair some faults with them, which I hope to address over time. I am very mindful of the fact that these consoles are quite rare, and in some cases, they can be fragile in a certain way, which is why I have kept them in their boxes or otherwise in a safe place, and will likely handle them with gloves where the situation calls for it!

Ultimately though, I am open to seeing what sort of videos people want to see on these rare, and/or obscure consoles, seeing as there's not a lot of content about them in that regard. Technically, I could do something similar with the #WonderSwan stuff too, seeing as that was a regional exclusive, and it also had some unusual accessories, plus there's also the PC version of the #WonderBorg that can be covered in a combined video about the accessory, the first of which I managed to stumble upon ages ago mostly complete for a fiver! There are also the #Psion systems too that I could cover, but I need to think about the angle I can take with them, as there are a fair few videos out there on the systems. I also want to get some better #retro #laptops, so I'm able to do some multiplayer with some more demanding games; I'm currently looking at using the Toshiba 3440 CTs for some lightish Windows 98 gaming (as well as handling legacy hardware), though I also need to get 2 DOS laptops as well, due to lack of drivers for the 3110CTs and the 3440CTs. The better laptops will be rocking a Windows XP install, and will have 32MB GPUs. I'm trying to get 2 laptops that are matched (makes drivers, etc easier), but that's proving tricky, so I'll have to be on the lookout!

Either way, I do have a lot of stuff to look out for, as well as sort, though I haven't talked about everything, as I either can't communicate the stuff yet, or I have yet to think about what I could cover, but this is already going on by quite a bit, so it's time to leave it here. Again, if you have any thoughts or suggestions on what I could cover, either based upon the above, with stuff I have in my possession, stuff I plan to get, or anything I haven't considered, I'd welcome them, though depending on what it is, it may be a while before I can get it done!

In any case, that's it for now... take care, and I'll catch you all later on!

#technology #stormkeepergu #gaming #computers #gameconsoles #handhelds #handheldconsoles #handheldcomputers #retrocomputers #retrocomputing #retrogaming #retroconsoles #laptopgaming #blog