Review: Western Digital 2TB Gaming Drive

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Okay, I paid good money for some fanfare music, but it hasn’t arrived yet. Eh, just read the article and have your wallet handy.

One of the more easily solved gamer issues is also something that still seems to stymie some gamers who should already know that a mere 1 terabyte of dedicated storage (which is actually less than 1TB thanks to mandatory system clutter) is far too small once one starts purchasing more content. Demos, DLC, system themes, video footage, screenshots and more all require precious space and yes, that 1TB is very rapidly filled (usually sooner than one thinks). Sure, you can delete content left and right when a new game drops, but this becomes problematic for a few reasons.

Western Digital’s Gaming Drive (available in 2TB ($79.99) and 4TB ($119.99) versions) is a solid, solidly built, supremely easy to use affordable solution to this problem and yes, makes for an excellent purchase for yourself and/or any PS4 gamer on your list.

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Review: MyCharge PowerGame (Nintendo Switch)

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Yep. it does exactly what it needs to do and does a really excellent job in the process.

 

As a recent Switch owner, a few things bug me about the system, one of them being the battery life is somewhat anemic if one tends to play for extended periods of time in undocked mode. I had been poking around looking for affordable solutions and based on some review scanning, there were a few interesting candidates but almost all had some flaws from dangling wires to not enough power for my tastes. Granted, my Switch has generally stayed docked or has only traveled to a few rooms inside the apartment. However, some recent invites from friends to pop by with my Switch to either see it in action or just to play with fellow Switch owners had my eye peeled for something that I could also show off as a solid charger that wouldn’t break the bank and be worthy of a hearty recommend. Well, “Say hello to my little friend (BOOM!)”

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Out of the box and ready for some mating.

 

The MyCharge PowerGame ($49.99) is an absolute must for Switch owners who want a decent price point, portability and most of all, a battery pack that’s packing plenty of power where it counts. Simple to set up and sporting its own kickstand, it’s an accessory that has pretty much no caveats.The 7000mAh battery inside that PowerGame comes holding a charge, so once attached (which took all of ten seconds, but parents will want to show younger kids or attach the battery for them), you’re ready to play. That said, I plugged the included USB-C charger cable unto the nearest USB out (your Switch dock will work nicely) just to top it up for some heavy testing. I really liked the kickstand on the unit because it’s placed in a better spot than the one on the Switch. The only minor (very minor) issue is if you need to add, remove or swap out the micro SD card, you’ll need to remove the PowerGame or do that card change thing before it’s attached.

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Mild Update, Painterly and PC Version

(deftly swiped from threestooges.com)

Argh. Well, let’s see now. The painter who was supposed to arrive early this morning didn’t pop up until this afternoon and proceeded to only paint three out of four walls. In the bathroom. Which is the size of a bathroom. While I was processing that nonsense, the refurnished laptop I’d ordered showed up and yes, that’s what this post is being typed on. I actually SHOULD be downtown at a media event checking out some cool tech, but I actually need to blaze through some work that’s due tomorrow that I want to get done before the day is over. I have to completely rewrite one article thanks to the crappier PC I was using temporarily restarted and wiped the work I’d done. Well, at least I can finally get to my Steam and gog.com accounts thanks to this nice laptop being able to play just about anything I toss at it. Alrighty then. Off to put on a pot of coffee and get back to work.

-GW

Switching Things Up a Bit…

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In case you didn’t realize, Amazon does do Sunday delivery.  I got an email yesterday morning saying my Switch has shipped and in less than 24 hours, I hear the doorbell ring and almost ran into a door running to see who it was so early in the morning. Yep, it arrived and BONUS, so did the wired PS4 controller I ordered (in a separate package), which was SUPER important because the right stick on my Dual Shock 4 had finally given up the ghost as of much earlier this morning. Why a wired controller, some of you may ask? Well, you may need to wait for a review for that story, but it’s a good one (and so far, the new controller works like a charm after the firmware update).

Meanwhile, in new Switch owner world news, I haven’t set up the console yet for three reasons.

1. I have some articles to complete for a few people and I know they’ll never get done if I crack that box open.

2. I need to find somewhere to put the new baby and plug it in, so I guess that means the modded original Xbox gets stuck somewhere out of sight temporarily)

3. I could set up the console and create a profile (I gather my current one for the Wii U won’t do?), let it update and get it over with, but that will loop back to number 1 and that’s something that I don’t want to happen.

Well, let me shut up and get back to work here. I’m thrilled on one hand, but anxious on the other. Hell, I’m anxious about a lot of things (like quite a lot of folks these days), but I kind of like the more happy anxiety over the more crummy stuff that pollutes the online and real world atmosphere these days.

-GW

That Does Not Compute (Again!)

(thanks, castleleafb!) 
 

The mostly good to so-so news of my first post-discharge checkup was kicked in the head hard by some not so good medical news (can we get an order of that CKD on stage 3, please? Thanks!) and my stupid laptop actually being deader than I thought with me not having the money to have it repaired. Great. Anyone want to hire an old coot who knows too much about games and movies but hates the current payola screamer setup (because it’s unethical among other reasons) to go near YouTube or Twitch? Yeah, I thought not.

As for the laptop, ASUS estimates it’ll cost $520 (minus shipping!). Bleh, but I want the job done right. Sure, I could go the cheapskate neighborhood route for the repair job, but my luck with that stuff is lousy. I sent my PlayStation 3 to Phill Katz at The Repair Kings over a year ago, but never got it back. Ten years of game saves and my idea for book about that era of games? Gone and nope, long story short… the cops were not much help.

Anyway, for the time being, it’s the chuggy XP setup I’m typing this on that can’t even run Steam or any other download service thanks to low memory and not enough hard drive space. I guess it’s time to break into the collection to sell off more stuff, as I’m gathering by poking around that my poor kidneys aren’t going to get any better and I guess it’s time to pare down the game library to a more manageable size. I’m taking the rest of the day off, but reviews for Valkyria Revolution, The Caligula Effect, the excellent Hakuoki: Kyoto Winds and a couple of blu-ray posts are all on the way.

(thanks, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZDjRj_pjO-G5AT90q0aCaw!) 

-GW

Solo Rival Backpack: It’s In The Bag

Choosing a good laptop bag or backpack can be a tricky bit of business what with so many brands to choose from, assorted useful to not so useful features and price points that in some cases seem as if you’re paying for branding over quality. Having recently purchased a larger laptop, I’d initially automatically grabbed an relatively inexpensive bag off a certain popular online shopping site (almost) everyone uses worldwide. That turned out to be a good buy in terms of price, but a not so good of a purchase. While the bag looked good and was functional, it wasn’t as well-padded as I preferred and the shoulder strap wasn’t very well constructed. So, back it went and just as I resumed my hunt (upping what I wanted to spend to under $100), I got a nice note from Solo asking if I was interested in trying out one of their laptop backpacks.

Funny how that timing stuff works, isn’t it? Continue reading

KontrolFreek Makes My Day (And Yours, Too)

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If you own any current gen game console with a wireless controller (or a PS4 or Xbox One, to be precise) or play PC games on a big screen TV while planted on the couch across the room, you very likely despise the way too short charging cables packed inside the box. Well, KontrolFreek has you more than covered with its magnificent, essential 12 foot USB Gaming Cable ($12.99 MSRP). This inexpensively perfect no-brainer gift idea makes that charging time smarter and faster, getting you back into your gaming session while still camped out and comfy.

Designed for PlayStation and Xbox controllers, PC, and micro USB-compatible mobile devices, you can plug it into your phone, tablet or anything else it supports once your game controller of choice is all juiced up. As that silly stock PS4 cable has already caused me to knock my console off its perch once, that KF cable came in really handy when it arrived this afternoon. My PS4 is sightly bruised on the lower front right but working fine, thanks.

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Speaking of Service: Civic Duty, No Complaints Division, Part II

whovotedWhat the? I go out to exercise my civic duty AGAIN after doing so for a week on jury duty (bleah!, but we did set an innocent guy free after 2 years of crap) and all I get is a sticker? Boo! I got gypped. Whomever wins better realize they work for ME now (and you, if you live here and cast a ballot), even if I did or didn’t help put them in office. I want my popsicle pony as promised or whatever else I have coming to me, is all I’m saying!

Still a bit rocky on the comeback trail as far as this icky court-related cold goes, but I do feel a bit better having done that polling place purge. I’m not planning to stress myself watching coverage, though. Just recuperate and revenge on the burgeoning inbox tomorrow. Good and Night, people.

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The Jury’s (Not) Out: Out of Service, Down For The Count

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Rather appropriate for my current situation, I’d say. Go click that pic and buy a shirt. Hell, buy ME a shirt while you’re at it!

Ugh. So, thanks to running back and forth to serve on a jury in a modern but not cleaned too regularly court packed with common folk and their assorted germs, I’m sick as a dog. Well, a sick dog with a raw throat and assorted aches. While I have no issues with serving at all other than the long waiting times, uncomfortable seating and yeah, people coughing, sneezing and sniffling like mad, feeling as if I’ve been trapped in the most boring convention meets Groundhog Day is both annoying and amusing.

Okay, I’m going back to bed now, tonic in hand. My inbox is BURSTING with nice, busy news and such,but I’m in no shape to get to it. Ooof. We’ll see how I feel in a few hours/tomorrow, as I hate being this sick for no reason other than I was pressed into service in a public place that should be a great deal better maintained.

-GW

2016: A Package Odyssey (Days 3-4*): Spin Cycle, For The Moment

Well, I figured this would happen at some point, but yep, it happened. Step back from your viewing screen and hold onto your butts, folks… this post is going to suck. Up to a point.

(Thanks, virgilio72!) 

I didn’t post yesterday because I decided to try and work a bit and I was in a crappy mood because I decided chronicling this ongoing nonsense wasn’t all that therapeutic after all. I was just getting more annoyed at every person involved in this mess I’m (still) a victim of not being very helpful. USPS was giving me a slow runaround, the seller is kind of lost and asking me what to do (I’ve been passing along as much help as I can), and despite being a longtime fan, I’m about to go postal and recommend anyone I know just NOT use their local post office for anything but whatever passport services they offer. But let’s not pull that rabbit out of the hat just yet, folks.

Anyway, after a suggestion from a message board that I call the number on the USPS web site and another user comment that

The postal service is very serious about employee mail theft. They will get to the bottom of it.

Well, I would hope the hell so. I decided to pick up the phone this morning and try my luck. That turned out to be both a terrifically terrible and (very) good thing to do. Well, maybe on the “(very) good” part.

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