Sakamoto Kazuma

Views on Technology and Insanity

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July 2014
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General News (4)
Reviews (1)
Uncategorized (2)

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Upcoming Changes

IF you’ve been following my blog for some time, you’ll probably know that I talk about changing things a lot, but usually never do. I have a busy lifestyle, and unfortunately, have not been spending as much time as I would like to on maintaining and further development of this site.

Now, however, my career has been changing and forcing me into a precarious position. I’m able to make changes to my schedules and whatnot. This allows me to attempt to get some work done here.

As discussed in my previous post, I wasn’t too happy with the wordpress theme that I have in place. Hopefully, once I get some things straightened out, I’ll be able to change that, as well as offer some for download. I have been playing around with Artisteer a little bit, and the consensus is that I’m not horrible at it. Keep an eye out for those in the downloads page whenever that auto-magically appears.

Until then, enjoy your holiday season!!

Theme

By the way… I really hate this theme. It has got to go. I must remind myself to change this sometime soon…..

Wii U: Mario and ZombiiU First Impressions

Ever since they announced the gamepad and how it would work with the games for the Wii U, I’ve been intrigued. Nintendo always has an interesting approach to changing the way we game. When the Wii came out, it was a new concept and re-introduced technologies that we had been playing around with in the SNES days. Of course back then, the calibration for the super scope was a little more annoying than the wii-motes. While the process is not entirely gone, it has been made significantly less painful in the latest two systems.

Then there was Zelda. Platformer RPG, brilliantly done, with one major flaw in every single iteration past ocarina of time. The camera. Since there was only one joystick on the N64 controller (yet 5 different ways of holding it), the camera wasn’t controlled by a joystick like it is in many games today. Ocarina of time first showed us how important it is to have a 360 degree viewing angle to see the entire room, and have enough information to solve all of the puzzles and survive all of the attacks.

The solution?

The solution was to use the trigger button on the bottom side of the controller to force the camera to line up with where Link was looking. This solved the problem, but in a lot of cases, was clunky, slow, and really annoying.

Thankfully, the dual analog joysticks on the gamepad seems to fix this. While I have not had a chance to play Zelda with this new controller yet, I’ve seen it’s use in the famed ZombiiU game. My reaction?

As with most first person shooters on consoles, the first thing I did was something that most people hate. Inverted Y-Axis on looking, but kept Y-Axis the same on everything else. ¬†Then turned the sensitivity to the midpoint of the scale. Of course after this, the sensitivity needed about 20 minutes of tinkering with until I was happy with it, but overall, I’m generally pleased. It is a step in the right direction.

The use of the gamepad’s speakers for the radio, and the gamepad’s display as your radar and scanning device really adds another immersion factor into the experience. Overall, I’d say the use of the gamepad is top notch here. I’d give it a 9/10 taking 1 point off just due to the frustrating process of tinkering with sensitivity settings.

Next up, Super Mario Brothers Wii U. The heart of what I wanted to talk about.

Wow. 10/10. No questions asked. The use of the joysticks is irrelevant for me, since it’s a platformer, and I’m used to playing Mario with the D-Pad anyways. Gamepad allows you to play Mario while keeping the TV free to watch Clemson get creamed by South Carolina again. The graphics are as crisp and clear as they are from the TV, and the audio is just as entertaining.

When we put this to the test in multiplayer, well it became sort of evil. Multiplayer with the gamepad allows the gamepad player to place blocks to help the other players reach secret areas or get past certain hard spots in the game. That or place blocks in the level that made it impossible to progress. Say a player is jumping across a gap. Place a block while he’s in mid-air and watch them fall to their doom. Reverse cogs in castles so that it keeps pushing you backwards. Evil incarnate, but so much fun.

While these are the only two games that I saw worth getting out of the tiny set of games available release day, I can see that the WiiU has the potential to be very successful. Moreso than the Wii, and moreso than even the SNES. HOWEVER, this is up to Nintendo, and game publishers to make sure that games for this system are released soon. While Nintendo has a good track record of making games great for general audiences, there is a “fad factor” to this system, and not having the list of games that people want for this system could very well kill it. As we’ve seen with the sega dreamcast, it could mean the end of the line for the company as well if they fail to deliver. Nintendo has been playing catchup ever since the PS3 and Xbox360. Now they’re ahead, but need to prove it.

An Update on My Life

Been busy. I guess that’s to be expected from my readers by now.

You’ve probably noticed that the website is now the default Atahualpa theme. I’ll be changing that within the next few weeks (for real this time). Also, will be posting more as things are finally starting to calm down.

So what’s been happening over the past few months you ask?

As noted in my last post, I went through a major career change. I went from system testing (both hardware and software), to simulation software development. I felt that I had a great opportunity for getting into software development, so I took it. Sometimes I regret making that decision, but overall I think it was the right thing for me to do. I’m at the beginning of my career, and it just feels like I have a better career path already.

Don’t get me wrong, however. I’m not in any way saying that software or hardware testing is a bad career path. I’m just saying that the way my company treats it, it’s more of a job to retire on when you’re old and tired of learning new things.

So now I’m writing simulation software within the same company, and really being challenged from day to day. I’m no longer spending hours at my desk surfing the internet, because I’m actually expected to get work done now.

I’ll have another article about somethings that have REALLY started to annoy me sometime soon.

I’ve also been looking more and more towards the web and where it’s going. I know people were just raving about Web 2.0, and all of its glory, but I think we should be preparing ourselves for Web 3.0 and whatever that may bring us. A lot of people might say that it’s entirely too soon to be thinking about that, but with HTML5 and tablets, my opinion is that we should have been thinking about this already. We should be looking at the framework and implementation by now. Guess we’ll see what happens within the next year or so.

Anyways, I just wanted to pop in here real quick and make some comments about things to come. If you’re looking for my World of Warcraft page, it’s on wow.sakamotokazuma.com now.

Blech….

I was kind of hoping that the new server upgrades and wordpress upgrades weren’t going to mess anything up. Guess I was wrong about that. If you’re looking for the old posts I had here from last year, well they’re not on the site anymore. I have a backup, and will be trying to recover them back into the database, but not sure how that’s going to go.

It seems as if every time I post, I keep promising changes. If you don’t know me personally, then you probably don’t know that I’ve been through some tough times, and am currently going through a major career change. Keep checking back, though. I’ll eventually get everything settled. :)

Oh btw… I know the theme got changed, but I lost all of my original banners during the upgrade. I spent a lot of time on those too. I’ll post more when I have the time to generate some more, or when I finally pick someone to redo my entire theme for me.

 

Update: Found the old banners. Will still be getting new ones put in along with a new theme probably, but the old headers are back for now.

Busy Busy Busy

Seems like once I start a major project of my own, life turns around and reminds me that I have so much other things to do. Check back soon though, for I will be making the testing and gaming portions of my site available within the next week.

If you are looking for some of the posts that I had on this site from before, I will have them available for download as an archive sometime Saturday.

Welcome To The New Site

Hey! Welcome to sakamotokazuma.com. If you’re looking for my blog about software testing and whatnot, it’s moved to testing.sakamotokazuma.com!

The reason for this move was because of some mishaps that took place a few months ago. You have probably noticed that the site seemed to die out for a few months, but now that things are back in swing, I have decided to organize everything in a different strategy. This will allow me to provide more visibility to my readers about posts and media that you might not have been aware of. Things like my gaming blog, and my photography blog. The transition has already taken a few weeks of planning, and I am moving forward with the plan now. I hope that things will go smoothly, unlike last time, and that most of my content will be back online within a week or so.

Oh! And if anyone wants to design a new theme for me, I’m open to suggestions!