Play Classic Sierra Games Online!

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming, Internet

Remember good old Police Quest or Space Quest? Well, now you can play those classics online for free AND with added bonus of multiplayer support! Head over to Sarien.Net to view the complete list of games, as more and more games are being added. By the word multiplayer support, I mean you can chat to people who are in the same area as you, so not co-op support. Who's knows, maybe in the future ;) . Anyway, have fun playing some games.

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Xbox 360 Project Natal

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming


Remember the post about the Rumored Microsoft 3d Wii Killer? Well Microsoft unveiled it at the E3 2009 convention. If the videos are anything to go by, we're all in for a treat. Unlike the Wii, Project Natal uses an infrared 3D depth map camera for full body motion capture so you don't need any controllers what so ever.

One of the most interesting videos though was the demo codenamed "Milo". I'm not sure really how to describe it, but Milo computer character that can detect your emotions/voice and communicate with you. Amazing. However, assuming the video wasn't scripted it, there will be so many possibilities. For example, A.I. for co-op would be dramatically improved since the character could understand your commands.

Anyway, check out the videos, its good stuff and something to look forward to.

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Rumored Microsoft 3D Wii killer

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming

 Xbox 360 Wii Killer

The rumors, leaked images, and speculation are only going to get worse as we move closer to E3, and now it's Microsoft's turn to bear the scrutiny of the gaming press. A report making the rounds, along with a "leaked" photo from Engadget, seems to show a type of sensor bar that will allow gamers to control their games using only their body. You don't have to hold any hardware, there is interaction with both video and sound, and the system is able to focus on the player and ignore the rest of the movement in the room. How likely is this rumor? Very. In fact, we think we already saw and demoed the technology… last year.

Microsoft is making it clear that the company will have big things in store for E3. “Microsoft is gearing up for a big presence at E3 which will completely transform how people think about home entertainment," Don Mattrick, senior vice president for the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft, said in a statement at the beginning of the month. European executive David Gosen also hinted that E3 this year would be "gaming changing." It seems that people are comfortable with big promises, on the record.

So what fits the description of the technology according to the leak? At CES last year we met with a company called 3DV that showed off a small Web-camera-like device that was able to detect movement and interaction in 3D space. We even played a boxing game that worked very, very well. Even more impressive was the ability to control media functions with gestures. You could swipe your way through your movies, interact with pictures, change channels, all with a small camera and your arms. Imagine a Microsoft Surface—without the Surface.

In my years of covering games I've sat through literally hundreds of briefings and tech demos at trade shows, and what impressed me about 3DV was how real the technology was. Most companies are all show and no go at trade shows, but 3DV had a camera I could pick up and look at. They had a game I could play, as well as demos of the user interface functions. It was all there, and it was all working. "We're going to be launching comfortably in the sub-$100 area," Tomer Barel, VP of Marketing and Product Management for 3DV, told us.

The 3DV camera does everything the new Microsoft rumor suggests. So is there a connection? Of course there is. In February, Reuters started talking about reports that Microsoft was buying the company, and chief among the uses for the company's ZCam were gaming and teleconferencing applications. Sound familiar?

Every feature discussed in the Engadget report—every single one—we saw in action in January 2008, by a company that Microsoft was reported to be in talks to buy, using sub-$100 technology that was mature more than 15 months ago.

If Microsoft is going to be showing its own version of the ZCam hardware, it could be bringing motion control that, in our time spent with it, felt even better than Nintendo's. The difference is that this technology works without having to hold any peripherals, with the power of the 360 bringing high-resolution graphics and surround sound, and at a good price. You could use the hardware to pause your streaming Netflix movies, or browse the music on your 360's hard drive. The features of the ZCam brought to the 360 simply makes sense.

Or the original leak and rumor were just that, and we may be spinning our wheels. After contacting Microsoft we received the expected lack of comment. Still, the possibilities here are more than enough to get excited by.


As they say: "If you can't beat them, join em." Can't say I wouldn't mind it.

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Webcam As A Game Controller

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming, Top Software

Where there is inspiration, there is innovation. Cam-Trax have come up with a unique technology that allows you to use your webcam as a game controller. It work’s similar to the Wii remote, only this isn’t infa-red. Their software CamSpace can detect colored objects and track their movement. That then translates to movement on the screen, depending on the configuration of the emulation. Best way to explain it is to watch how it works:

I myself decided to dig up my webcam and give this a go. Armed with a frisbee with a green strip of paper across the front, I was set to drive -- hardcore style. Whilst the reaction time could be better (however I think my computer was to blame for the lag), I spent a couple of hours playing Need For Speed: Most Wanted. It was good fun and i suggest you try it out because it costs nothing! Download it from CamSpace.Oh, incase you were woundering what my controller looked like, here you are:


My Elite Steering Wheel!


If you give it a go, post your controller picture in your comment!

(P.S. You know, if someone was skilled enough, it’d be possible to create virtual drumkit with velocity sensitve data. Draw up a drum kit and each image reprsenting a part of drum with midi information trigged by the motion of drum sticks colliding with the cymbal/highhat/tomtom, send it to your favorite sequencer and volia. Air drumming- could be the next best thing to sliced bread ;) )

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Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows Issues

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming, Troubleshooting


It seems that the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows is giving major problems to the majority of PC users. Users are complaining that the device interferes with other USB devices such as the keyboard and mouse. After further investigation, it has been said that the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows draws a lot of power, so much so that it kills (temporarily) other devices that are attached via USB.

As it stands, there is no official solution by creator Microsoft (hence are stopping production of this device) at the moment, but you can do the following:

  1. Make sure the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows is plugged into a USB 2.0 socket. This will ensure correct power and data transfer rates are obtained.
  2. Wireless inference can be an issue too, so if your wireless mouse or keyboard is conflicting, try moving both the receiver for the mouse and keyboard to a different location and/or the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows as well.
  3. Users have reported a greater success rate by plugging the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows in the back of the PC USB motherboard ports.
  4. If all the above fails, buying a separate USB 2.0 hub will most defiantly solve this issue as power is drawn from the wall, not the USB socket.

If you’ve discovered a simple fix or having further issues with the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows, post a comment here. Thanks Magnus for bringing up the issue.

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Guitar Hero World Tour Replacement Cymbals

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming

Have your Guitar Hero World Tour drum cymbals cracked? Or maybe they are not registering notes properly? Simple fix would be to send them into RedOctane for warranty replacement, but what if your warranty has ran out? Or perhaps you can’t wait 2 weeks for the replacement cymbals?

Thankfully, Matt from has come up with the holy-grail of do-it-yourself Guitar Hero World Tour cymbals.

Basically, the cymbals are composed of plastic dinner plates with a piezo element mounted underneath each to sense the drum hits. Add a bit of rubber to dampened the noise and some black spray paint to keep everything looking like nice and hey your set. Ingenious.

For $25, it makes it a cheap mod to do and with the guide Matt has provided, you shouldn’t have too much trouble making these cymbals up, especially if your DIY savvy.

I haven’t attempted to make these cymbals yet, but surely will in the near future as yes you guessed it, mine have cracked… again! Head on over to check out Matt’s fully pictured guide to Making your own GH:WT cymbals for under $25.


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Double Kick Pedal In Guitar Hero World Tour

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming

Since I have two kick pedals for my Guitar Hero World Tour drumkit because RedOctane sent me a new one with the replacement drum kit, I thought I’d try splitting the signal and attaching two kick pedals. To my surprise it works! All you need is a 3.5mm headphone splitter and a extra kick pedal. I will admit however, I’m not the first to discover this idea, it seems others have had the same idea as me.

There’s a couple of Youtube videos floating around showing their dual drum pedal setup. It does help when your playing complex drum tracks (such as System of a Down -B.Y.O.B !) on expert, even though I’m still a long way of getting 100% ;) .

If your drums have died and are still under warranty, send in the main drum unit to RedOctane, and if your lucky, they’ll send you a whole new drumkit, including the extra kick pedal. Else, you may be able to find an extra drum pedal off Ebay as others do not see the need for an extra drum pedal.

It’s also said that the next Guitar Hero: Metalica is going to have an extra hard difficulty, and will be including a extra kick drum pedal! Perhaps I could use three at once… :P .

P.S. The review on 360mididrummer will have to wait unfortuantly because I could not secure a Xbox 360 wireless receiver for Windows. I will get one though, so stay tuned!

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Cracked Cymbals Guitar Hero World Tour

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming

You’re probably sick of hearing about Guitar Hero World Tour but I’ve just discovered a major flaw. Take a look at this picture:

World Tour Cymbals Cracked

See those fine lines on the cymbals? They’re hairline cracks and will probably get worse after more drum playing. I know this drum kit is inexpensive to most of those on the market, but I would expect something better from Activision. Looks like I’m in need of new drum kit as these cymbals are cracked and my red drum pad is still not working correctly even after tuning it.

To all those of you who own World Tour drum kits, i suggest you unscrew your cymbals and check them for cracks. I’ve heard other people have their cymbals completely split in half! If you’ve got the Guitar Hero World Tour drum kit, I’d like to know what condition it’s in and whether or not cracks have developed under the cymbals.

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