Thursday, March 31, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Second Round Day 6

Match 43: Barney Rubble vs. Doc Holliday
Barney Rubble: Defeated Samus Aran in the first round.


Doc Holliday: Defeated Count Dracula in the first round.

Match 44: Butters Stotch vs. Indiana Jones

Butters Stotch: Defeated The Gossamer in the first round.


Indiana Jones: Defeated George Washington in the first round.
The Bracket
First up we have Barney Rubble vs. Doc Holliday and in the second match there is Butters vs. Indiana Jones.  Happy Voting folks!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Second Round Day 5

Match 41: Rocky Balboa vs. Mike Tyson
Rocky Balboa: Defeated Hulk Hogan in the first round.


Mike Tyson: Defeated Rogue in the first round.

Match 42: Bret Hart vs. Professor Xavier

Bret Hart: Defeated Larry Fine in the first round.


Professor Xavier: Defeated Superman in the first round.
The Bracket
It's apparent that Svengoolie's influence has become a force with record numbers.  Once again thanks to him for the exposure.  Moving on is a dream boxing match: Rocky vs. Tyson.  The second match is Bret Hart vs. Professor X, it should be an interesting matchup.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Second Round Day 4

Match 39: Captain Crunch vs. Paul Newman
Captain Crunch: Defeated Jaws the Shark in the first round.


Paul Newman: Defeated Spongebob Squarepants in the first round.

Match 40: Leia Organa vs. Svengoolie

Leia Organa: Defeated Brian Peppers in the first round.


Svengoolie: Defeated Mickey Mouse in the first round.
The Bracket
The Deadman and Kermit join the Sweet 16.  Up next is Captain Crunch vs. Paul Newman.  Svengoolie finally gets the long awaited showdown with Princess Leia.  Let's see if the Horror Host can continue his drive for the championship.

Skalbamania IV: Second Round Day 3

Match 37: Barret Wallace vs. The Undertaker
Barret Wallace: Defeated The Easter Bunny in the first round.
The Undertaker: Defeated Jay Leno in the first round.
Match 38: Kermit the Frog vs. Garfield
Kermit the Frog: Defeated Peregrin Took in the first round.
Garfield: Defeated Lando Calrissian in the first round.
The Bracket
Barret was able to pull off a win over the Easter Bunny, but this road gets tougher as he goes head on with The Undertaker.  Garfield also pulled off a big first round upset, but Kermit the Frog is going to be a tough task for him too.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Second Round Day 2

Match 35: Wolfgang A. Mozart vs. Tony Soprano
Wolfgang A. Mozart: Defeated The Penguin in the first round.
Tony Soprano: Defeated Ryu in the first round.
Match 36: Luigi vs. Revolver Ocelot
Luigi: Defeated Zombies in the first round.
Revolver Ocelot: Defeated Uncle Scar in the first round.

I had a pretty packed weekend, so I was unable to get the matches up on any of the days.  Chewbacca continues to plow through his opponents, but on the other side Chilly Willy makes it to the Sweet 16 in yet another upset. Today we have Mozart vs Soprano and Luigi vs Ocelot.  Incase you didn't see before the match times will not be moved an hour back and will be from 11-11PM CT.

Nintendo 3DS Impressions

Well, Nintendo's next gen handheld is officially released and really the first important new gaming platform in a couple years.  I have my hands on one and I will give my first impressions of it, since I know what I'm talking about. 

First, the appearance isn't much different from the predecessor, the DS.  A couple extra lights and and metallic look are what really makes it look different in it's exterior.  The inside isn't too different either, but one addition is a very important one and that's the addition of the analog nub.  Having an analog joystick has been very important for about 15 years now.  If you are concerned about your DS games, the 3DS is backwards compatible, and to make things sweeter some games have adapted the use of the analog nub, such as Super Mario DS.

Let's move on to the selling point and that's the 3D visuals.  It's been quite some time since Nintendo's only real disaster in the gaming industry, the Virtual Boy.  Nintendo decided to give 3D another shot since going 3D is the trend right now.  They were able to develop the technology to see 3D visuals without glasses, it's legit.  Yes, it's a small screen and you won't be dodging missiles and fireballs, but still there are some effects that will makes you say "Oh Wow".  It's certainly not perfect however, first of all it takes some time to get adjusted, you'll find your eyes feeling worked if you use it too long.  This was a concern by Nintendo and they do warn you about over using it, but unless it's overkilled, it shouldn't be too problematic.  Also, you have to look at the screen in the right angle, it's meant to be seen by one person at a time and is treated as such.  It's not too horrible, but it can get annoying when try to adjust in a comfortable position.  Luckily, the Big N added a slider that allows you to adjust the 3D intensity and turn it off all together.  That's nice, considering the graphics are improved from it's predecessor and rest assured there will be some great titles coming out in the future.  

Before I move on to the software, I want to address the battery.  The 3D effect really works the battery so you'll get about 3 hours from a full charge.  There isn't much that can be done about that, but if you travel then buying an adaptor and carrying your charger would be advised.

The 3D is the main course, but there is several good appetizers that Nintendo added to their new toy.  These are some ambitious additions, but for what it's worth they can be really fun. The menu is sorted by boxed icons and I'll go over some of the standout features.  The Mii characters are now involved with the 3DS.  They are still very basic, like they were on the Mii.  This time you can use the built in camera to take your pictures and the 3DS will do it's best to create a Mii in your likeness.  If you aren't flattered by it's representation, you can always edit yourself to your liking.  Much like the current gen consoles, you can add your friends and it will let you know when they are online and show what they are playing.  Nintendo is encouraging for the owner to carry around the 3DS with them. If you shut it while on, it will enter a sleep mode, which will not use up battery.  This is where street pass comes in.  Say you are walking on campus or at the mall and you cross a stranger that is also carrying their DS in their pocket or bag, they will discreetly communicate.  If you see a green light lit, that means it found another person via Street Pass during your travels.  When you enter the Mii Plaza you will see the Mii of the person you passed and will be given some gifts.  It's a lot to hold onto, but it's a pretty cool concept, but I'm not sure if people will constantly carry their 3DS.  There is also a built in pedometer and you will be rewarded with coins the more you walk, which can be used to buy new rewards and features.

Two built in games are Face Raiders and AR Games, but use the built in camera.  Face Raiders takes a picture of your face and uses your head as enemies you have to attack as they fly around the environment you are at.  AR Games uses six cards that are packaged in.  One main card (the one with the question box) activates the game when you focus on it with your camera, afterwards you can play a target game and a golf type game.  There is several other small features too. One in particular uses the other AR Cards that have famous Nintendo characters, for example if you use the Mario card, then Mario is going to appear on the surface you are shooting on and you can create pictures.  Allegedly new cards will be packaged in future releases.  A Nintendo Shop will be available in a future update, which will work like the Wii's virtual console, but instead will use the titles from previous handhelds.

I think I should bring up the camera too, it's not much and the resolution isn't up to par with today's camera and phones, but it can take 3D photographs.  But there was one really fun feature where it uses both the exterior and interior camera.  If you have two people, using both cameras you scan the heads of whoever is holding the 3DS and whoever is on the other side.  When both people are in view you take the picture and it will create a mashup of both people, usually resulting with hilarious pictures.

Overall, it's a step up from the original DS.  If you don't like the 3D you can always turn it off.  But the graphics are improved, it's got a better online connect, and the new features are fun.  Like I said, your original DS games can be played on it too.  Currently the Nintendo Shop isn't available and the launch lineup was something left to be desired.  Unless you have an intense passion for one of the launch games, there is no harm in being patient.  In about a month or so, the big names titles should be hitting the shelves and like the first DS, I would imagine the developers will be creating some real gems with the improved technology.  

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Skalbamania Update

If you noticed or are checking in to see a new match, I took a day off.  Like I said, you can expect days off on weekends.  I hope to have the next match tonight, but if not, definitely Sunday night.  Also I'm switching the time of the matches to 11PM - 11PM CT.  It's easier for me that way.  Looking at the Sweet 16 filling in, Chewbacca winning was no shock, but Chilly Willy still continues to be a major upset player.  Thanks everyone again for you participation.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Second Round Day 1

Match 33: Chewbacca vs. Buzz Lightyear
Chewbacca: Defeated Alf in the first round.


Buzz Lightyear: Defeated Santa Claus in the first round.
Match 34: Chilly Willy vs. Marge Simpson
Chilly Willy: Defeated Grover Monster in the first round.


Marge Simpson: Defeated Elmer Fudd in the first round.
The Bracket

The survival of the most popular continues.  We are finally finished with the first round.  After the second round, the weak will be weeded out from the legit.  Chewbacca returns to take on Buzz Lightyear.  First round upsetter, Chilly Willy, will try to continue the good vibes against Marge Simpson.

Skalbamania IV: Day 16

Match 31: Link vs. Freddy Krueger
Link: The Hero of Time.
Freddy Krueger: He'll see you in your dreams.
Match 32: Master Shredder vs. Charlie Brown
Master Shredder: Looking for the Turtle Stew still.
Charlie Brown: Good Grief!
The Bracket
Here we are the last day of the first round and then we start to fill out the Sweet 16.  Up first, is Link from the Legend of Zelda series and recent 25th birthday boy. His opponent is horror movie icon from Nightmare on Elm Street, Freddy Krueger.  The last match is TMNT villain Master Shredder and Peanuts comic strip icon Charlie Brown.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Day 15

Match 29: KK Slider vs. Skelator
KK Slider: Guitar playing dog from Animal Crossing.


Skeletor: He-Man's nemesis.

Match 30: Leonardo da Vinci vs. Dr. Dre

Leonardo da Vince: Famed artist, Mona Lisa among some of his work.


Dr. Dre: West Coast legend.
The Bracket
A big thanks to Svengoolie for mentioning Skalbamania in his blog, it's really cool for him to do that.  It sounds like he enjoys this contest too, which is awesome. Super Mario easily takes out Tina Fey.  Mega Man edges out Scrooge in what I expected to be a close match. The second round will see a Capcom vs. Nintendo match up. KK Slider comes in as an unknown, especially if you never played Animal Crossing, but his songs has earned him a spot.  YouTube him.  His opponent is a blast from the past, Skeletor, who has been in his fair share of tournaments.  Leonardo da Vinci goes up against Dr. Dre, an interesting match up there.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Day 14

Match 27: Super Mario vs. Tina Fey
Super Mario: It's a Me!
Tina Fey: Star of 30 Rock among things.
Match 28: Scrooge McDuck vs. Mega Man
Scrooge McDuck: All in his 8-bit glory.
Mega Man: The Blue Bomber in his 8-bit glory.
The Bracket
Winston wins in a blow out and Bald Bull takes over and grabs the victory.  Today this NES star filled bracket continues.  Super Mario, a global icon, goes against SNL alum Tina Fey.  Two characters that Capcom worked with go at each other.  Disney creation Scrooge goes against Capcom creation Mega Man.  Should be some good ones today.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Day 13

Match 25: Winston Zeddemore vs. Bozo the Clown
Winston Zeddemore: He seen things that will turn your shit white.


Bozo the Clown: Icon of his own show on WGN.
Match 26: Quint vs. Bald Bull
Quint: You have city hands Mr. Hooper.  You've been counting money your whole life.
Bald Bull: My barber didn't know when to quit... Do you?

Indy and Butters move on.  We start the final portion of the first round.  First off we got Winston from the Ghostbusters going head on with TV icon Bozo the Clown.  Also we got a match up of tough guys.  Quint, the captain of the Orca from Jaws goes against Punch Out!! favorite Bald Bull.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Day 12

Match 23: The Gossamer vs. Butters Stotch
The Gossamer: Defeated the Tetris L-Block for entry into the tournament.
Butters Stotch: Sometimes known as Professor Chaos
Match 24: Indiana Jones vs. George Washington
Indiana Jones: No snakes are between him and a championship.
George Washington: The first president of the United States.

After a two day layoff due to me going out of town to spend some time at my Alma Mater, Purdue, matches will resume. I hope you were patient.  First match is the play in winner, Gossamer, against South Park's Butters.  The second match is movie hero, Indiana Jones, going head to head with George Washington.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Day 11

Match 21: Barney Rubble vs. Samus Aran
Barney Rubble: Fred's next door neighbor and best friend.
Samus Aran: The Galactic Bounty Hunter
Match 22: Doc Holliday vs. Count Dracula
Doc Holliday: I'm your Huckleberry.
Count Dracula: What is a human? A miserable pile of secrets. 
The Bracket
The Hitman and Larry traded votes back and forth in the last couple hours, but Bret squeezed away with one vote.  Closest match yet.  Xavier takes care of the Man of Steel.  Today we got Barney Rubble from Flintsone's fame going head on with the first lady of gaming, Samus Aran, of the Metroid series.  The ill gunslinger of the old west goes against the guy who made vampires cool before they sparkled.  Doc Holliday and Count Dracula is an interesting match considering they both have different representations via film, although Holliday is an actual person from history.  I would also like to announce that Friday will likely have a day off of the match due to me being out and will be unable to have access to a computer in time.   If that's the case, matches will either resume Saturday or Sunday, just keep updated with the website.  But expect from time to time, likely around weekends for these breaks to occur.  Thanks for everyone's participation.  

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Skalbamania IV: Day 10

Match 19: Larry Fine vs. Bret Hart
Larry Fine: One of the legendary Stooges
Bret Hart: The best there is, best there was, and the best there ever will be.
Match 20: Superman vs. Professor Xavier
Superman: The Man of Steel
Professor Xavier: Perhaps the most powerful of all mutants.
The way these matches are drawn rarely comes up with interesting matches, but in the second round we are going to have Rocky vs. Tyson.  That's certainly a match that would draw a lot of revenue.  Today, we have Larry from the 3 Stooges against the Excellence of Execution, Bret "The Hitman" Hart.  The other is a classic DC vs. Marvel match  between two of the comic brands most powerful representatives.  Superman goes head on with Professor X, another dream match of sorts.