23 December, 2006
Now, The GC/Wii discs use a different data frame structure than a standard DVD so that is why they don't read correctly and the disc's files are normally inaccessible. However, There is a utility that essentially decrypts raw image dumps (via brute-forcing the encryption keys)- meaning you can then access the files within the image. Therefore it is possible (but very difficult) to dump Wii images properly in Linux, this image has been dumped via PC with modified drive Firmware and custom code to obtain the Wii image. And so, PARADOX released thier first dump of Red Steel on 45 splitfiles.
Paradox is a well known group that pirates games and distributes them online. the NFO file for red steel read:
___ _ _ ___ \__\\\ \ . R E L E A S E N O T E S . / ///__/ Here
we are again bringing you another world first, a full DVD image of one of the
best Wii games to date, RedSteel. Thanks to all our friends who helped make
this release possible Let the hacking and exploration of the Nintendo Wii
begin! As is often the case with these scene firsts, it could be a while
still until this image is playable. So in the meantime be the envy of your
friends by loading this image into your usual dvd recording software and
burn it as a data dvd. This game is worth buying, and you currently have
no choice, so go out and support the company that brought you this great
game! LEGENDS MAY SLEEP, BUT THEY NEVER DIE!!
This boot loader is supposed to be released 1/1/07, here is it's video:
I strongly urge all readers to treat this as RUMOR only. Basis of my skepticism is that 1) the boot loader was loaded from within the image viewer? For all I know it could be an image that says boot loader.
And most importantly 2) We can see that after the boot loader was added, the words [AV1] springs up on the TV. Which means he switched AV input to another Wii running a legitimate game or to a video playback device that played a recording of a normal Wii game booting up.
On a personal note I do not wish for the Wii to be hacked. Its their best advantage, good games will come out on the Wii if no one can play it for free (meaning the company releasing games will make sure to earn money). Piracy hurts consumers more than they are aware of.
16 December, 2006
14 December, 2006
You know what? I may be picky but I'm tiered of people who cannot differentiate between a Koala bear, a Polar bear & a Panda. I'm tiered of people who will run a story on an elderly home and attache a picture of the YMCA. I'm tiered of people who refer to AAAALLLL foreign language music as "rock music موسيقى الروك". Things that are supposedly common knowledge should'nt go through this!
From now on, I shall point out stupidity and ignorance. I accept your contributions with pleasure.
12 December, 2006
11 December, 2006
Ruqaya Alghasra won today the gold medal for running women's 200m event in the Doha 2006 Asian games.
She was the slowest out of the blocks, but she gains alot of speed in a scary way. She finished the 200m in 23.19 seconds. She also won Bronze for 100m.
What makes this woman so special, is that she runs fully clothed, adhering to her Islamic belief.
She has very strong mindset, to go against everyone just because you believe in what you do needs it. So what if the wind will tug at her clothes and slow her down? She'll just run faster! And that she does!
She is impressive when she runs, I am proud to stand next to her and say I am a Muslim and a Bahraini.
Ruqaya, you are tough. Kudos to you and congratulations! You make all of Bahrain proud.
This thing is on sale on ebay for less than $1500.
I must now go shoot my self, excuse me.
Mistwalker (the game developer started by RPG Master Hironobu Sakaguchi) have released "Blue Dragon" on the Xbox 360, and its causing a riot.
Microsoft needed a strong RPG in order to get into the Japanese Market, without that market, the Xbox will lack the 3rd Party support of Japanese developers which will repeat the first Xbox scenario.
So Microsoft made an agreement with Mistwalker, and released Blue Dragon.
Do you know who is the team behind it?
- Hironobu Sakaguchi: God father of the Final Fantasy Series.
- Akira Toriyama: Character Designer for Dragon Ball Z & Dragon Quest series.
- Noubu Umatsu: Is the music composer who worked on all Final Fantasy titles.
So you see ladies and Gentle gamers, Mistwalker is the new Square.
Apparently, Microsoft's plan... worked, as famitsu Magazine reports:
"over 180 people were lined up in front of the Yodobashi
Camera store in Akihabara, Japan, waiting to purchase Mistwalker's Xbox 360 RPG
Blue Dragon. 40 TV stations and newspaper reporters were present before the game
went on sale at 9AM. Microsoft has shipped 200,000 copies of the game."
So, I see the Japanese are eating it up. Famitsu also gave this game a 37/40 score (four reviewers scoring out of ten: 9/9/9/10), and if you know Famitsu magazine, they have a very hard quality standard.
I predicted that the X360 will not succeed unless they succeed with Mistwalker in a previous post. and it looks like my predictions will come true.
10 December, 2006
09 December, 2006
"According to the Anholt Nation Brands Index report, Israel's international image
is in the pits — i.e., the world's perception of Israel is in keeping with its
unvarnished ugliness as an occupier and oppressor, as a military machine gone
REALLY?? Israel has an image as an oppressor? Wow.. God, I mean I never saw that coming!
Anyway, here is the nice bit of news:
Israel is using FREE services from Saatchi & Saatchi to "enhance" the country's "brand".
Saatchi & Saatchi has a significant presence in the gulf and the Kingdom of Bahrain. It is owned by the french Publicis Groupe, which also is present in Bahrain. How much will they use this presence to "enhance" Israel's image is unknown.
The full MENAFN article can be found HERE.
The same story is also run on the Israeli website Israel Today.
07 December, 2006
The person who lit the Cauldron was non other than the Amir's son, who by the way, trained in secret. No one knew that he will be the one to light the cauldron, as he trained veiled lat at night.
More dancing ensued, everyone was happy, the torch was finally lit and everyone left Khalifa's stadium jolted, on edge, hyper and unable to bear the wait until the start of the games of our life.
04 December, 2006
I just came from a brief visit to Qatar, I attended the Opening ceremony for Doha 2006 Asian Games, and let me tell you, it really looks like Its going to be the Games of MY life!
Never did I imagine Qatar being able to host such an event. Turns out that I'm wrong, way wrong.
Qatar is not only hosting the event, Qatar is undergoing a huge metamorphosis. It is rapidly evolving into a modern age country in a very systematic style.
I know Dubai had a growth spurt, but look at it, its devoid of locals, where as Qatar is working hard to include locals in this changing process.
A sense of pride enveloped all of Qatar. You can easily see Qatari flags on cars, on a mast or tied to a side mirror or bearing stickers of Doha 2006 on the car bonnets, not to mention these giant buildings tall adverts stuck on hotels and banks.
Qatar revamped the cities, with new buildings, new roads and new everything.
To a poor Bahraini like me, I was shocked. The sidewalk they had, was as big as a 3 lane highway here in Bahrain. And you know what it was made of?
No, not bricks, no, not sand... no not that ugly fat plant that we try to pass off as grass in here.
It actually had GRASS!
Honest to god, real living GRASS! I know! I was shocked too, I though grass growing up in the gulf was a myth! if you recall, 11 Mumtaz (premier) league football (soccer if your a yank) games in Bahrain were postponed due to the rain which created puddles on the pitch. For shame...tsk tsk..
Qatar had the opening ceremony IN the rain. Heck, if you see the picture of the beautiful grassy sidewalk, you'll notice it was raining at the time. Poor us Bahrainis.
Not only that, they had roses on the street too! The kind that we see poor labourers planting hastily on the 14th or 15th of December., only to be removed two weeks later (are they on loan or something?).
anyway, back to the astonishing public involvement, everyone chipped in. Individuals, big businesses & small ones.
The inside of the hotel lobby of the Marriot.
A small restaurant advertising one of the Cultural events in Doha 2006
Big franchises got in on the act.
Qtel, one of the main sponsors had ads that state "We are all Qatar كلنا قطر", this slogan was widely seen on T-shirts, the Internet and on cars.
Behind it you can see Tissot's Asian Games Ad.
30 November, 2006
Sources say that the average rain fall for November is around 6.2 ml. What actually rained was between 35-45 ml. ! My sources expect more rain to be coming in soon.
Knowing that, scenes like these make sense.
When promoting Bahrain to foriegn investors, I think we should work to not let images like this happen in the first place, if not out of courtsy to our citizens, at least to project a developed nation look.
Wanna see something funny? look at this third image (you may wanna click on it to get a bigger image)Look, you can see on the right a sign for one of the candidates in the recent Muncipial elections. It says "Our sons and daughters deserve gardens أبناؤنا وبناتنا يستحقون الحدائق"!
29 November, 2006
I have alot of American friends.
I have business relations with Americans.
I like Americans... usually as individuals. But when they become governments and Armies, Planet Earth hates their guts.
Now, some Americans will go "Well, the world hates us because we have FREEDOM!"
No you blithering fool! Who would hate anyone for that?
Earth hates you for you arrogant attitude. Things like:
Iraqi Kids running after an American water bottle
Crushing a taxi drivers CAR
oh, and they taught the British a thing or two also!
British Soldiers beating children, and ENJOYING IT!
Disgusted? I'm sure you would be.
Good luck fellas expecting the war to end like that.
I know some decent Americans are really furious about this now, just like I always am when Alqaeda does something as arrogant. and for those furious ones, sorry, the world will still hate you. Better work on sending people who can represent you better.
Kudos go to boing boing for these.
28 November, 2006
27 November, 2006
According to Mahmood's Den (mahmood.tv) this was taken in Muharraq "Nov 26, '06 at 08:45AM".
Well whuddya know? I didn't think it was that bad. Heck, my father is a Senior metrologist here and he said that rain fall this month was very average.
God help us when it reaches "above average"!
A hot topic is "who's gonna win?" which is a question I heared numerous of times in my life!
I really think that Nintendo has an upper hand this time. Why?
I'll cut that to phases so you can piece it together later and understand:
On the Super Nintendo days, Nintendo OWNED the market. It was just them Vs. Sega, and Nintendo killed them in there.
So what happens is, Nintendo calls Sony and asks them to make a CD add on to their SNES console. But discontinues the project when they see Sega's CD add on failing. leaving Sony with an investment they do not want to lose. Nintendo here were King, and cocky.
Nintendo releases the Nintendo 64, Sony release the PlayStation. Nintendo forces the cartridge system down the industry's throat. AND charges an arm and a leg to publish games. On the other hand, Sony gave them freedom & charged next to nothing.
So this is what publishers were thinking: Hmmm. Pay alot, work with a limited memory & limited freedom, or pay little; have alot more memory & have all the creative freedom I want?
Naturally, everyone moved to Sony, even Square! Nintendo failed to understand that the market grew up, and they are not children anymore. In the end of this phase, Nintendo realized it could not go head to head with Sony, so they picked a niche market (smart move, they went with kiddie stuff) and remained dormant.
PlayStation 2 & Game cube. here it gets interesting; Nintendo is cautious and Sony Ambitious. We all know Sony won eventually, but what Nintendo gained here is that they re-introduced popular franchises, and showed people that they are not a kiddie system anymore. I am quite convinced that they did this on purpose, I don't think they really were trying to dominate this round, they simply wanted to re-establish trust.
Very interesting phase. It is the exact opposite situation of PHASE 2!
Sony is very cocky, system is overpriced, games are overpriced, and they think "We are the PlayStation, people will come".
They maybe right, but look what Nintendo did, they are doing the exact same thing that the first PS1 did: Give great incentives to both publishers & customers.
The Nintendo Wii is :
- Introducing the consoles to a new market
- Is more than 50% cheaper than the PS3
- Has Mature games at launch, to solidify the "non-kiddie" image
- Has an advanced image sensoring system (a product from a wholly owned subsidiary) which Sony clearly imitated
- is entering the market with 4 Million units as opposed to Sony's 400K
the Wii is cheaper but it's neither a BD player or HD compatible. That's fine. BD has alot to prove, that's one, and as for HD? Nintendo can easily re-release an HD version of the console after a year or so. by then they would have owned the market!
Also the availability of PS3s are really dismal. I mean Sony shipped 500K with the PS2 and still got a shortage, and now they are shipping 400K PS3s? Stupid. real stupid.
So in essence, this is what happened with Nintendo:
Phase 1, Nintendo Cocky
Phase 2, Nintendo gets PWNED!Phase 3, Nintendo lurks in a corner to study and prepare
Phase 4, all guns ablazing!
Nintendo is the lucky number. Want proof? In the new Smash Brothers game for the Wii, Solid Snake (from Konami's Metal Gear Solid series) is making a guest appearance. Konami is usually an avid supporter of PS3, so whats this?
In the business world that means: Konami senses the danger lurking around Sony, so its strengthening its ties with Nintendo, just in case.
I didn't mention the Xbox did I?
Never mind. I hate the thing, and its only saving points are XBOX live service, and the fact that the defected RPG famous producer (Sakaguchi I think) has formed his own studio & will release to Xbox.
Interesting, but I think the major battle is Nintendo Vs. Sony, and I think Nintendo is winning.
What do you think?
Do I have nothing better to do? Or Do I think that I am so intelligent that the world must share my unrivaled wisdom? ... you know.. don't answer that.
I'll probably be uploading a couple of new videos every once in a while. Then vent.
Will repeat as necessary. :)