Moving Slowly Towards Wirelessness

Wireless controllers have been around already for a long time. I have been a bit slow in utilizing them. I first encountered this issue back when PS3 was the most powerful PlayStation console. The battery life wasn’t so great back then. I went and bought two three meter long cables for my two Dual Shock 3 controllers so I wouldn’t have to charge them all the  time. If there were some practical charging stations I am sure that I didn’t have one back then.

Back in 2014 I removed PS3 from my setup completely and replaced it with PS4. As you can probably imagine I didn’t have any retro consoles or at least I didn’t include them to my setup. I have talked about this earlier in some other posts in this blog so I am not going to go through this again.

So I got a PS4 that had a wireless controller. I wanted also this new Dual Shock 4 controller to transform into a wired type of device. I used the cable that I already had and bought an adapter. I had to do this since Dual Shock 3 had a different connector than this new Dual Shock 4 controller. This however wasn’t enough and I went and bought another three meters long cable. The point here is that I didn’t like wireless controllers.

I got many retro consoles. But I didn’t get a new latest console until I bought Xbox Series S. This was in 2021. It had a very good wireless controller. I was still a bit unconfortable with it being wireless. For a long time I had a cable for this controller. It was only when I got a good charging station that also had modified lids for battery slot and also two batteries with it that I got really into using wireless controllers.

If you read my last blog post you already know I got a Pro Controller for my Nintendo Switch yesterday. It is wireless. It came with a short charging cable. The first thing I did was that I charged it. It takes six hours for it to charge fully. I am trying to use it mainly as a wireless controller.

The controller feels nice. As mentioned earlier it doesn’t have those annoying trigger buttons at the back of the controller. I played some NBA 2K with it. If there would be some good quality charging station for this controller I would have a use for it. I haven’t found one at least not yet.

Many retro consoles do have wired controllers. For a younger gamer it might seem odd that I am so used to playing video games with a wired controller. There is also a one difference in Pro Controller of Switch and the one that is for Series S and X. That is that Xbox’s controller has a removable battery which makes it more modifiable compared to the Pro Controller. Also PS4 and PS3 controllers don’t have a removable battery in them. I haven’t opened a controller like this so I don’t actually know if the battery can be somehow be replaced.

This was once again such an interesting topic and I wanted to write about it. So, thanks for reading and have a very merry Christmas my Dear Reader!

Some Thoughts About PS3

What PS3 means to me as a gamer? It was originally released as early as 2006. It’s toughest competitor was Xbox 360. It was released in 2005. PS3 isn’t the newest gaming console today but you can only admire how long it has been a proper gaming system for many gamers around the world. It has been here for so long time. And it seems it has still something to give.

I first got introduced to PS3 in 2008. I remember that one of the first games I got for it was Final Fantasy XIII. I was already a big fan of this RPG series. It was only natural to get the latest Final Fantasy game. I soon got to play many different games. I really enjoyed all the racing games on PS3. I remember the summer of 2011. I played every day. I had a long holiday as I was studying in School of Applied Sciences. I definitely enjoyed Need For Speed Shift one and two.

Controllers of PS3 were wireless but I had to get a cable for them that was three meters long. I didn’t like using gamepads wireless since they ran out of current too fast. PS3 was my only gaming console back then. I mean I had still somewhere in storage my Sega Mega Drive but I wasn’t going to play it for a long period of time. It was years later, maybe in 2017, that I started to sketch my plans for my current corner in our house that would be dedicated for gaming.

I got a PS4 in 2014. Back the I was excited about the new system. I had to realize a bit later that I wanted also to play older consoles. First I got an original Xbox and after some time I got a PS2 also. That was also when I decided to connect also my Mega Drive to my television again. When we moved to our current home I bought a small bookshelf for all the gaming systems I then had. I have to write about that also someday. But PS3 was there for me for a long time. And it’s lifetime inside my small gaming corner isn’t about to end any time soon.

So PS3 had some awesome driving games. Colin McRae Dirt and its sequels and all of the Need For Speed games were among those games. You could enjoy NBA 2K. This posts featured picture captured some of my games from my collection for PS3. You can check almost any of these games and you wouldn’t be disappointed. I do have also some more games. It’s not hard to find a good game to play on a PS3.

PS3 today doesn’t cost a much. The price depends a bit of the model you are going to buy. Some PS3s are even backwards compatible with PS2. I think all PS3s are compatible with PS1 games. Technology althought has advanced. You won’t get the latest graphics out of this system. But you have to think that it has been 16 years since this console was released.

The meaning of PS3 is significant. I encourage you to get into some PS3 games. Also, today it is possible to run a PS3 emulator if you have a powerful enough computer that you can use for this. Okay. Maybe I’ll end this post by listing some of more of my favorite games for PS3. Here they are. Max Payne 3, Hitman Absolution, Alice – Madness Returns, Splatterhouse, Call of Duty – Modern Warfare 3 and F3AR, NBA 2K14, just to name a few.

What to Think About Game Collections?

I have mixed thoughts and feelings about game collections released on modern gaming systems. These collections try as hard as they can to bring some retro consoles most impressive games to consoles like PS3 or PC or even some newer ones like PS5. I own many game collections. In the featured image of this blog post there is a Dreamcast collection for PC and Mega Drive collection for PS3. Dreamcast collection has four games which are Sega Bass Fishing, Sonic Adventure DX, Crazy Taxi and Space Channel 5 Part 2. The list of games in Mega Drive collection has over 40 titles. Some of the games included are Sonic The Hedgehog 1, 2 and 3, Streets of Rage 1, 2 and 3, Ecco The Dolphin, Golden Axe series and Phantasy Star I to IV just to mention some of them.

How much would you pay for this kind of a collection of games that have been released on some earlier retro gaming system? Is it fair to sell them for the price of a completely new and unreleased game? Are these collections a good way to get deeper into a gaming system? I have to say that I didn’t pay the full price of these two collections. I bought both of them from sale. I remember getting my Dreamcast Collection for PC for about 10 euros and this Mega Drive Collection for PS3 was about 20 euros. I wouldn’t have paid 60 euros to have one of these even if it were some years ago.

Why would I make my decisions the way I do in this matter? I think there is a point in getting to know your gaming consoles games may they be retro or new. I like to think that every system has its own strengths and weaknesses. Mega Drive is great for 2D platform and shooting games and Dreamcast is capable of bringing you the experience of early 3D games of the end of the 90s. I think you have to get into the system you play these games on. That’s what makes it interesting for me and this is true for especially retro games.

There are limitations in gaming systems that were released in the 1980s but you might still have the motivation to play some Commodore 64 games to have some nostalgic feelings. Of course it has its limitations. After all it is an old system. But that same limitation becomes an advantage when thinking about what game designers had to face and how where they able to get around these technical limitations. The design process and the ways and skills in how to design games has progressed. It is also not so odd to find a new game, released last year or something like that, released for older gaming system.

It is not also common that all of your games in your full gaming library can be actually even played at all. As a game hobbyist you have to think about what games you have, or what games you are going to acquire, and how can you play them. Do you use emulators? Do you buy all the games as physical copies? What systems you have and what systems do you want to have in the future?

So, as a conclusion to this blog post, I think there is some sense in re-releasing old retro games as a collection to a newer system. They might be even quite playable. This is not, in my opinion, a proper way to sell games although and the price would have to be a bit lower than for a new game. There are many ways you can play your retro games. Original systems is just a one way. There are also consoles like Evercade and we have definitely seen mini consoles of Mega Drive, NES and SNES and there might be some new releases in the future also.

My Personal Relationship with PS4

I hadn’t thought about PlayStation 4 yet when a friend asked me a question – Do you know when is the new console actually getting released? That was probably back in 2013. Before that comment entered my mind I had been steadily working through titles available for PS3. I had played almost endless series of driving games like Need For Speed series and Dirt 1 and 3.

I had time and energy to play video games. Back then I wasn’t so interested, as you can figure, about retro games. They were only a slight curiosity I casually worked with using emulators on a PC. So I thought it would be nice to finally buy the latest PlayStation.

I actually made the purchase after I had just turned 30 years old in 2014. My budget was, back then, low, but I managed to save money to buy the device. I bought also my first PS4 game at the same time. It was Tomb Raider that was released back in 2013.

At first I had an ambitious idea of completing every game I got for PS4. It worked out only until I got like my fifth game or so. I managed to get through Tomb Raider and Call of Duty Ghosts. Games for PS4 were pricey at that time and there was only small selection. Many games were releases of old games released as HD remakes. So I had a new gaming console but there were only a handful of games.

Was it really worth it? I started to think about this. When I am writing this I think that this device had some really nice games. Some of my favorite games are NBA 2K14 and Dirt Rally. These two really stand out in the list of my favorite games for PS4. I just think there were many titles that I didn’t really get into so much. I guess it has also something to do about that I was back then already a bit over 30 years old.

It is said that when you are young you get more inspired by the music of that time. I think this goes also for video games. One year can be very significant for a nineteen-year-old but one year for a forty-year-old is not so big deal. So I was a bit older and had already got through experiences of the first PlayStation. I just think that PS4 never conquered my hearth like PS1 once did. This personal relationship made me think that it would be not a good idea to buy a new gaming console. So tot this day I haven’t found a reason to get a new console. I have a fresh PC that I can play also some new games.

After all there is an infinite amount of games that you can play. I think the games I am going to play don’t necessarily have to be the newest anymore and PS4 kind of ended my habit of playing the newest games released. PS4 is now not the newest gaming console anymore. It isn’t retro either. It is somewhere in between of retro and new. I think it’s time now for me to take some distance to this console and try to find some other games that I can enjoy. If you did enjoy PS4 or are still enjoying it that’s fine. I just think it lacked a personality and that’s why I have not played it or enjoyed playing it as much as I did PS3 and some older devices.

Comparison of Two NBA Jam games

The latest post I wrote some days ago was about basketball games and how they have evolved. While we’re at the subject I am going to continue to write about basketball games. So todays subject is to compare older NBA Jam game, actually it’s NBA Jam Tournament Edition for Sega Mega Drive, and a newer one that is NBA Jam for PS3.

It’s amazing to think that while graphics and controls have evolved a lot the game called NBA Jam has really changed just a bit in all this time that is between the first Mega Drive release and the PS3 release. You still play with two basketball players against two other players. There are some details that have been added. If you haven’t played the original Mega Drive version you can still most likely enjoy the newer version.

The newer version has challenges for one and two players. I think it’s more fun to play with a human player be it against each other or as teammates. I have to mention that this game wasn’t first developed for Mega Drive. To be exact it was  developed first as a game that would be  played in an arcade. This was also where my first experiences of this game started back in the 90s. We put some coins inside the machine and played against each other. This is probably where the game aimed and this is where it becomes attractive to us players.

I have to tell more about NBA Jam since it is one of my favorite games of all time – at least I think that way right now. Maybe it’s just my favorite basketball or sports game. The players heads seem to be a bit big. This is because they originally wanted to bring more details to the players heads. I think NBA Jam was released also for PC. If a player scores points three times in a row, with no other player scoring, he becomes “on fire”. So about any shot will go in. If some other player scores the “on fire” wears off. I can tell you that when this player is hot you must shoot three pointers or at least this makes sense if you are trying to beat your opponent.

I enjoyed both of these games. Mega Drive version has more nostalgia but PS3 version has better and updated graphics and it also brings some details and features that wouldn’t have been possible to create in a Mega Drive version of NBA Jam. I didn’t pay a lot for any of these two games. Actually I think I bought them for exactly the same price and that was about 15 euros. I bought Mega Drive version from a flee market and PS3 version was found from a store and it was on discount. So, I liked both versions and I still play them casually. This is also a fun game to be played in a house party but maybe it is too nerdy for that…I don’t know…It might depend…

Burnout 3: Takedown – An Action Packed Racing Game For PS2 (and original Xbox)

I fell in love with this game. Well, maybe not in love but it had me spend hours playing. I have to tell you that I first bought this game for my original Xbox. Then I was many years away from Xbox and my gaming centered more around newer PC games and PS3. I got back to it some years ago as I found it from a local flee market. The price was maybe three or four euros.

So, what is this game about? Racing is the first thing that comes to mind. But that isn’t all. There is this “boost” feature that forces you to gather sort of fuel. You get more fuel for boost from taking risks when driving. For example you can drive almost hitting another vehicles. You can also sort of drift with your car. The most fuel you get from slamming your opponents to the wall, another car or a train. It also makes your opponents to lose important time and you can have a huge advantage by taking out your opponent or opponents. That’s what “Takedown” stands for in this games title.

“Why do you love this game?”, you might ask. It’s like having a break from these very realistic racing games. It is more approachable than some more realistic driving games like Richard Burns Rally for example. There is a nice mixture of skill and randomness needed to play Burnout 3: Takedown successfully. So it’s good entertainment. But like with almost all video or computer games you have to understand that this content is purely fictional. One day I was thinking about this as I was playing this game. You really have to take down your opponents. I mean you have to make a push to eliminate your competition. Driving like this in real life would be disastrous. Would someone be so influenced by this game that he or she would actually try these tricks while actually driving? I mean you have to have a reason to understand that this not real. You have to separate this game from reality.

Getting your old PS3 racing wheel and pedals to work with PS4

I had an issue with my old Logitech G27 racing wheel and pedals. I couldn’t get them to work on my PS4. Originally G27 works with PS3 and PC. I was a bit sad as I thought I’d have to spend hundreds of euros to buy a new product. It didn’t make any sense to me. I was glad to find a solution to my problem.

And the solution was simple. I found a company called Brook. It had a “Super Converter”. It actually had many kinds of converters, but I was interested in this PS3-to-PS4 functionality. It was hard to find, but finally I managed to succeed in my search. I found the piece needed and made my order.

This product is actually called, or named or whatever, Brook Game Controller Super Converter. Its main function is to transform any PS3 controllers, joysticks or steering wheels output to match PS4s. Don’t ask me so much about the technological side of this issue. Though I can tell you that I had to update this devices firmware to the latest. You can find this software from Brooks website. Basically you just plug the converter to a PC and run the update process. Once that is trough you can just plug the thing to your PS4 and plug your PS3 device to the USB block. So it’s easy to use and even more eaasier if you have some tecnical experience with PC and embedded software installations.

This product works nice. And it wasn’t so badly priced if the other option would be to buy a new steering wheel. Since my G27 is in great conditon, working nice and I’m very satisfied with it, I’m not going to buy a new one. There seems to be some problems with consoles not being compatible with each other. This is understandable when considering Xbox and PlayStation but I can’t understand why it isn’t possible to play PS4 with my PS3 controller or steering wheel. As we have seen USB devices being compatible I don’t understand the reason why Sony would want its users to not be able to do this. That would make gamers happier and maybe make their life a little easier. Money might be the reason. I had to pay about 80 € for this converter. But now I’m happy and able to play Dirt Rally 1 and 2.0 and maybe even pursue a career as eSports driver. Everything seems to be possible!

All in all this situation is not nice. You have a device that’s not working right. You do have a solution for this. You just have to pay some very clever electronics and/or software engineer working at Brook some money-money to clear this issue. It would be nice to have some standards, but you’ll find your way to solve this issue. And I’m glad to bring this answer to you and write a post to this blog.

Best PS3 games that I have played

In this post I bring to your attention best PS3 games that I have played. So this is my personal list. It doesn’t have anything to do with reviews that you find inside some blogs or websites. Also it doesn’t necessarily include your favourites so remember to comment your thoughts after reading this post.

Gran Turismo 5

There was also GT6 released on PS3 but that game I haven’t to this day played. What we have here is very good driving game. Though if you consider this game compared to other Gran Turismo games it might be a slight dissappontment. I enjoyed this game and played the career mode.

Dirt 3

If you think about best rally game for PS3 you can’t deny that this is one of the best or maybe even the best. While not exactly being simulation of real driving this was slightly easier to get into and you could play it with a gamepad instead of driving wheel.

Call Of Duty Modern Warfare 3

There was many CoD games released on PS3 but this comes up as best of them. If you are familiar with Call Of Duty series this won’t be a disappointment. The game sets on modern times when in first games, at least CoD one to three, action takes place in second world war. I found playing was satisfying and I wasn’t disgusted with soldiers tehcnology. I’m bringing this up as I was actually a bit disgusted while playing Call Of Duty Advanced Warfare later on my PS4.

FFXIII

This was one of the first games I bought for PS3 back in the days. Didn’t so much in to this, but certainly a quality role playing game. If you have time to play it as is common in Final Fantasy games that it takes more than 40 hours to complete and this is one of the longest FF games ever released.

F3AR

Nice first person shooter with some horror included. Different than CoD and might be a little bit harder to complete. Great game althought.

GTA IV

Best GTA for PS3 in my opinion. GTA V was also good one but I think it’s best played on a system that is more powerful than PS3.

Elder Scrolls Oblivion

Nice RPG for PS3 with first person camera angle.

My gaming consoles

PlayStation Classic

I bought my PS Classic for 40 €. The price was so low that I figured I should buy it. This device flopped very sadly. It had only 20 games. Gamepad included has too short cable and it doesn’t have analog sticks. Games included were not so special though it had FFVII and Metal Gear Solid. If you consider buying this think seriously about modding it and don’t pay too much. The price was originally 120 euros.

Retro Trio HD+

This is cool gaming console. It combines NES, SNES and Mega Drive. What that means is that you can play all cartridges that you buy from gaming stores or you might have kept them for a long time. Retro Trios price was 110 € so I think it’s cheap. It also gives HDMI output so the graphics aren’t too messy. If you want play with older retro type television I don’t recommend this. In this case you should get original systems.

PS3

I didn’t really buy this one. It was a gift to my then-girl-friend-now-my-wife. It was expensive as new but now you can pick one, I think, for under 100 euros depending on games or controllers that are included. It has a hard drive. Depended on model the size of hard drive varies. There was also some kind of backward compatibility with PS2 and PS1 games which depends a lot about the spesific model of PS3. So yep, there were multiple models, for example Slim Model and so on.

PSOne

My first true console that brought us the experience of 3D graphics. I bought this one from flea market for as low as 15 euros. It didn’t have controller with it so that effects to the price of course. PS2 controllers are compatible with it so I just played with my PS2 gamepads. It requires memory card so I had to buy one for about 10 euros. Memory cards work with PS2 but PS2 memory cards don’t work with PS1. This is a smaller version of PS1. Very cool product I would say and definitely retro.

Xbox 360

I bought this one from a friend who sold it to me as she didn’t play so much and also her gaming console was becoming old. She hasn’t bought a new console. Not yet at least. I have maybe 30 games for this and I have mainly picked them up from flea markets and gaming shops. I invested 70 euros in this one. I first thought I would play and get all Xbox 360 only games so first games I played and also completed were Alan Wake and Halo 3. I also have Gears Of War, Mass Effect, Fable, Halo, Halo wars and so on. This system has backwards compatibility on some original Xbox games but not all. The list can be found Googling.

PS4

I bought my PS4 as my birthday present in 2014. That was also a moment I turned 30 years old. It cost me about 500 euros and I had Tomb Raider with it. So the game and console summed to this amount of euros. I didn’t really like this one so much. It had no backwards compatibiltity, I didn’t like so many of games that were released to it. It was a bit of a disapponitment. It had some good games. Games I played most were NBA2K14, Dirt Rally and Diablo 3. When companies like Sony keep coming up with new devices every six years or so I am currently thinking not buying fifth PlayStation but don’t you just follow me. Make that decision yourself.

PC

Personal computer was my first gaming device. It will always be there. I might play old retro games or the most new one. Provides large collection of controllers so you can pick your favourite USB gamepad. Easiest one to modify also if you want to upgrade your hardware or software. Much love to PC.

broken

– original Xbox

Yeah, so I broke my Xbox. I’m not going to buy a new used one to replace it. I now just have a large collection of games that aren’t supported on Xbox 360. So they lay now inside my dungeon and in my closet buried there. I’m not planing to sell them. Maybe some day we see Xbox Classic?

– PS2

This is sad one. It started to malfuction so I opened it up carefully. I tried to clean it. Finally I decided to try to fix it by replacing its optical drive. That didn’t go well as I had a wrong replacement part. So I just screwed back some screws and now it’s in condition that it starts up but you cannot boot a disc. So it’s useless. Maybe I buy a new used one or wait for PS2 Classsics release if there is one coming to us ever.

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