PlayStation Gear is Finally Here!

PlayStation Gear. Finally!

gear.playstation.com/

Officially licensed PlayStation stuff. With more coming, sooner than later, they say. It’s a dream come true to finally get official PS gear from an online store you can trust. T-shirts are $20, hoodies $60 … any rock band has t-shirts for less/same/more; hoodies for about the same price. Yes, PlayStation is a rockin brand and so many fans can now wear it, use it, choose it.

Hurry over to the US PlayStation forums if you are a PlayStation MVP, look in the private MVP forums for a code you can use through March 16th.

Spotify and PlayStation

Spotify was something I wasn’t interested in. I wanted to explore music by finding artists, groups, albums that I liked, purchase the media, and listen to it from my ripped version put to Google Play Music.

Then PlayStation announced PlayStation Music partnered with Spotify.

www.spotify.com/us/playstation/

That was last week, and now I’m already a Spotify Premium member. You can Follow me on Spotify by clicking the follow button below.

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I was highly interested as I knew Spotify might be a game changer for me if I could listen ANYWHERE. Like computer, phone, tablet, PlayStation 3 or 4…. yes! My full change of heart came when I saw I could get mobile billing via Sprint, 6 months free, then 18 months of 7.99 per month … then 9.99 per month after that.

I didn’t want to do anything like try it for 30 days. I needed to feel the freedom of either paying full price or as I am actually doing it, free for 6 months. With that out of the way I was able to settle in and instantly started to profit from my move.

There is so much music I love. There is so much music I’d love to have explored in the past, but didn’t. There are many artists I’ve loved songs by, but never looked at their other content.

Everything is not on Spotify. I’m fine about the one gargantuan group not being there, I wouldn’t want to hear them. I’m sad that Tool isn’t on there. I’m sad that The Kaiser Chiefs 4th album isn’t on there for US Spotify users.

I’ve found a good amount of music wrongly tagged, so I prefer not to listen to it (I scrobble my listens and like to look at my listening data on Spotify and on last.fm, I want to track my listens and wrongly tagged stuff can wait until it’s tagged right, or never via Spotify.)

One album I was really happy to listen to was T’Pau, as it was marketed in the US. I have the LP, loved it to pieces back then. On Spotify it’s the European version, knows as Bridge of Spies.

That was last week. On Monday morning I turned on my phone to see what time it was when I woke up and had a message from Spotify splat in my face: T’Pau new album available Pleasure and Pain. Sweet! It’s a good album, love it, and what a surprise it was for me, not expecting anything like it.

The saddest part of Spotify is their FB linking. I can’t have a profile picture because I do not and will not use FB. I sure hope they change something about that, like maybe if I link Spotify to PlayStation Music, my PSN Avatar will link to my Spotify Profile. Fingers Crossed. I’d actually prefer to have Gravatars associated with it.

Been there, done that, doing it again

January 2015, say it like this: “January Twenty Fifteen” and it sounds like the future. ;)

Yes, it is. We are there, here, at this writing, at least. Everything that has come before is here with us, except what’s dead or broken and thrown away.

Colds will never go away. Flu, colds, allergies, whatever it is that I have is timeless and will never be a thing of the past. Why? They are all in a constant state of flux.

So even though we don’t fly around in cars or live in bubbled cities, we are in the 21st Century. It’s not such a futuristic place, really. Things come and go, styles, what’s in, what’s out, who’s hip, who’s not, how much is gasoline? Price of … anything, goes up and down.

What did I finally do today? Signed up for the Disney Movie Club. I swore I wouldn’t do a club ever again, I used to do CD’s and book clubs via mail way back.

How easy is it to find Disney movies on Blu-ray? How about for under $28 each, or on sale for less, but finding the titles you want and affording them all.

Disney rather snagged me after looking at a mailing they sent. I could get a total of 7 Blu-rays for around $21. The plan goes like 5 Discs then buy 4 full price (29.99) in the next 2 years. Get an extra for less than that to count towards the 4, then another even less that will also count towards the 4 when signing up. So you get 7 Blu-rays for very little each, then only have to spend those higher$ figures on 2 discs to fulfill membership terms. (Often pay same prices to bring it home from a store anyhow.)

Disney also gives other deals  on their membership site. First off, just to subscribe there you get 4 and different pricing than I got for extras. If you have Disney Movies Anywhere/Rewards there should be a link to an offer from there, whether it’s good or not, I don’t know.

Everything comes around. Even me and clubs. Not a big leap since Disney opened up Disney Movies Anywhere to Google Play and Vudu linking recently. :)

Beauty and the Beast (1991) Disney Movies Anywhere

We had purchased the 3D Blu-ray of Beauty and the Beast (1991, Disney) but hadn’t entered the Magic Code for some reason. I’m not sure when we got it, but the other day I entered the code in Disney Movies Anywhere Rewards and it entered and gave me the movie there. (It does have a disc for Digital Copy Itunes Windows Media Player, not the Digital HD that’s so nice today.)

I have Vudu and Google Play connected to Disney Movies Anywhere, and on Vudu that night, Beauty and the Beast was there, but wasn’t the actual movie, just a trailer. I was not very happy about it, and tweeted about it. Found other information that it was one of the movies taken off/out of Vudu, etc. not sure, exactly what. Anyhow I shut down Vudu and tried again and still, it was just a trailer, I didn’t “own” any version of it there.

Next night, I started up Vudu, and opened the tile for Beauty and the Beast in My Vudu, voila! I own the HDX version. I could watch it! It works!

Not only that, I search for the movie and it’s not in Vudu. :)

Christmas 2015

Christmas 2015 was a good one. We decided to stay home all day, which was nice (we most times go out to see a movie that opens on Dec 25th each year.)\

Early Christmas Morning
Early Christmas Morning

Our morning started early, I was up before sunrise, and each child awoke one after the other, until just my hubby was still asleep. We got down our stockings and just had some fun.

Christmas 2015 Morning
Christmas 2015 Morning

Eventually the whole family and the sun were all up. We finally got to “Open the Presents” time. This is always a grand event, such promise and mystery and surprise, or not, but always a good feeling about “what is to come” and the rest of the day is why we usually go to see a new movie at the theatre.

This year we built LEGO, played Video Games, setup electronics, and just had fun with our new stuff, drank eggnog, kept the fireplace roaring, and had a smorgasbord of what was made for Christmas Eve Dinner the night before: The Christmas holiday is best making the big feast on the day before Christmas, and just re-heating what needs it the next day, informal eating for Christmas Day, free to play and do what one wants, very little kitchen duty. :)

My Presents

LEGO Sets:

#10197 Fire Brigade

#79003 An Unexpected Gathering

#79014 Dol Guldur Battle

#79011 Dol Guldur Ambush

#79012 Mirkwood Elf Army

Other Stuff:

  • Various The Hobbit collectibles.
  • Foreigner Original Album Series (CD)
  • Sony Xperia Z3 Compact Tablet
  • Chromecast device
  • Gel Pens
  • Fringe Complete Blu-ray set <—- on my Amazon wishlist since the day I started watching Fringe on Netflix earlier in 2014.
  • September’s Notebook. <—- on my Amazon wishlist since the day I started watching Fringe on Netflix earlier in 2014.
  • Disney Infinity 2.0 Marvel Starter Set for PS4
  • Captain America Disney Infinity figure
  • 8″ Sackboy Action Figure
  • White DS4
  • PlayStation 4 Camera

Several new movies as well, most able to be added to my Vudu account.

Christmas Night

Later on everything open, everything scattered, everybody’s stuff mixed in … what Christmas is like every year after the presents are all opened. — Until December 2015.

 

Digital Locker Movies

Once upon a time there were things called movies. They were magical and could be seen on a large screen in many towns, for a small price one could have a seat for a viewing.

Then came the television. TV Shows and Movies on a box in one’s own home. Amazing!

Later came other forms of media, thing that came and went, but eventually we got to bigger movie screens, bigger tv’s, boxes that held tape with video on it that could be displayed on one’s tv, then large discs, then smaller and then better.

The future arrived. Blu-ray and Digital HD.

For a long while there was something called Digital Copy and it came with DVD’s one could buy, when new. To Redeem these Digital Copies you had to use either: Windows Media Player or i-Tunes.

I, the writer, opted for WMP redemption twice. Never again. i-Tunes being nearly evil, was better than having no movie available digitally, like happens when WMP decides you don’t own the license because you … “whatevered” your computer.

For years Digital Copy was redeemed via I-Tunes.

Disney had a slot in the digital locker arena. Disney Movie Rewards, then and now, allows one to enter a Magic Code found on DVD’s to get points towards real rewards one could exchange points for.

In this time-frame a new media medium came to life. Blu-ray discs. The best home buying option for media to date. Digital Copy continued on, I dutifully entering redemption codes into my apple id i-tunes account, the only thing I ever did with it … I may have watch a few things, but I didn’t buy actual stuff from them, nor listen to music via i-tunes at all.

Disney had a locker streaming service and many of the movies you entered Magic Codes for would also be Digitally available to you. There was a point when some movies would not be a digital version code with Disney but they let you upgrade to a streaming version of a disc you registered, for a mere $5.

So you could enter a movie into i-Tunes but also have it on Disney’s streaming service.

Something called Ultraviolet started later. Disney also changed things with their Locker service, plus bought Marvel which changed the Digital Copy world for my family.

Ultraviolet was looked at skeptically, I admit. It seemed convoluted. What is convoluted though is the lack of digital copy choice for a Windows Pc/Android handheld person. At that time it was nil.

Things progressed, more and more movie companies partnered with UV (UltraViolet) which made UV more and more prevalent, and very misunderstood by many, though I was gaining in much better comprehension of what I was doing with it.

I got a Vudu account. I had also had account at a few of the movie companies, but it was just too much for me to consider the few times I might get bonus features by doing that … uh, no thank you. Also, like Sony Pictures … your account is deleted if there is no activity in a year. Yeah, easy for that to happen.

Both Vudu and Flixster work well with UV. You can redeem UV at either of the two services, also UV has a direct redeem feature on their site now.

In any case, redeem a UV movie and it’s in your UV Locker. Associate your locker with Vudu, Flixster, as well as other services I won’t go over. Once new content is in your locker it’ll populate in the services your locker is connected with. For the most part that works well, occasionally one service may not have exactly the same version, or title at all. The other might, it’ll be in UV in any case, once it’s redeemed it could and probably will show up at the other service provider eventually.

So there was Vudu. Then also my movies in i-Tunes. (They are lost to me there.) Vudu is where my non-Disney movies go now.

Disney Movies Anywhere started. Their old locker system was converted over, and I didn’t lose anything there, but still all I could do was stream though a browser. One could link ones i-Tunes account … then anything in your digital copy library that Disney owned would be in Disney Movies Anywhere too even if it wasn’t a Disney Streamable movie for you. Cool, but useless.

Then Digital HD came about. Now Disney movies were more than kids movies mostly, it was all this Marvel stuff too. Oh the travesty, but Digital HD saved the day.

I can take a redemption code for something Disney, whether it’s animated or the modern Marvel Universe of movies … I can choose where to redeem it, on Vudu, or … Google Play, or i-Tunes etc. Magic Codes are still a part of it, and the movie will be in Disney Movies Anywhere.  Still not totally useful, but at least I can watch it on my PS3 or PS4 via Vudu.

Then later, very recently, the best partnership so far happened. Disney Movies Anywhere came to Android as an App, and even better than that, one could also link a Google Play account to the service and voila! You own the content in Google Play Movies too!

Now I still have many movies locked in i-Tunes, but some of them don’t suffer that fate, some Blu-rays I’ve gotten into UV via Vudu-to-Go disc to digital conversion. Also I’ve done some DVD’s that we like but haven’t looked for on Blu-ray. In any case, not all of the discs are eligible for UV. Many of them are actually UV titles, but my discs read as ineligible for whatever licensing reason is out there.

So then, I can watch The Avengers (2012) on Disney Movies Anywhere, stream from their site, or from my Android tablet or phone, or even download it for offline viewing on Android. I could even watch it in i-Tunes if I “wanted” to.

Relegated to that fate as well are Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger.

But Iron Man3 and Thor the Dark World and Captain America: The Winter Soldier are available via Vudu and through Disney Movies Anywhere’s site and on Anroid. Win! Win!

One new Disney movie I was able to redeem the same way, The LIttle Mermaid. Now Re-releases on Blu-ray are worth the buy.

About Disc Conversion: The biggest part of it that totally isn’t nice is that ANY disk you have that is owned by Disney now, is not eligible for Disc to Digital, even if it’s an old title held by some other movie house.

What Vudu fails on is not allowing portable devices to download a movie in HD or HDX, they only allow you to stream and/or download in SD, no matter what kind of spectacular device you may have (like a Nexus 10 for example.) So a large portion of my digital library is locked online and viewable only, the best way, in a PC browser or via a console of some variety hooked to your big television screen.

A smaller smattering of my content is locked into the Disney world and at least it’s now watchable on Android in Glorious HD and connected with Google Play, thus also Chromecast-able to the big screen in the livingroom.

I still love discs, but have come to rely on things like Netflix on my gaming consoles, as well as Vudu there. The content I have in i-Tunes wastes away, and I can only hope that someday I can link that stuff to something else too.

I do have Flixster but haven’t tried to watch any of my UV content there. I’ve heard one can HD with them on Android, but I’m just stuck in a Vudu on PS3/PS4 and Android for Disney mode.

I look forward to Guardians of the Galaxy, having it both places, and other Disney movies we may get in the future. It’s the older content though, locked on a disc, not eligible, other digital copy, not transferable to anywhere, only recourse is to find a UV code for sale, or buy it again on disc just for the code to get it into UV or Vudu, at least, and not have to pay 22.99 or higher to buy it digitally for things you already have in multiples, like a DVD, plus a Blu-ray copy, Digital i-Tunes copy, and another DVD that came in that pack. Forget those movies.

So from my perspective, we have it fairly good now. It’s not the best of times, nor the worst of times.

Movies Unlimited is a service from PlayStation. It’d be great, but I don’t only have Sony devices. I have Android, and Google Play is a more useful partner for me, and then using Vudu on PlayStation. Having Google Play Movies on PlayStation would be a dream come true.

Some nice snappy pictures in this post would be great, but it’s not about pictures, it’s about words about moving pictures, and best read, not just looked at.

Additional Note: November 18, 2014, 8:10am EST. >>So with the whole thing written up and posted yesterday I find today that, holy cow, I can actually link Disney Movies Anywhere with my Vudu account now too. OK. Things are looking up,  improving even more than I had hoped.

Crazy-Maisy LittleBigPlanet 1,2,V,3

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Crazy-Maisy wearing the Captain America costume in LBP Pod.

 

LittleBigPlanet – 2008 We didn’t get the game until it was out as the Game of the Year Edition. I didn’t play it much, but was involved with it as a Mother to younger children playing the game. 

I’ve been playing through the Story the last couple of weeks, to get the trophies finally. Took me long enough, hey?

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Crazy-Maisy in Seashore Pointe Treasure Fun, her level on LBP 2.

 

LittleBigPlanet 2  – 2011 We pre-ordered the game. I played the story levels some, and helped my children with the game here and there. Later on I got more interested in it and I played through the story. I lost my Saved Profile on a console move around and it really messed up everything. I had to replay it to get the stuff back to create and … some pins were messed up.  Certain things are dependant on pin progress and well, I never got some of those stats back to where they were to get some things accomplished. 

I did make a level that I published in 2012. Seashore Pointe Treasure Fun just a fun little run through the seashore, using R1 to touch all the discarded items. Nothing complicated, just a nice Summer seashore job for sackfolk to clean up, because one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, sackfolk included.

 

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Crazy-Maisy in LBPV Pod, wearing a mish mosh of costume pieces.

 

LittleBigPlanet Vita – 2012  I was part of the PS Vita LBP Beta. It was a lot of fun and I was anxious for the game to be fully released. September 2012 was the start of the best version of LBP to that date, pretty much.

I’ve made lots of things on my PS Vita LBP game, but haven’t published anything for others to play. I have lots of ideas, just too many distractions, and not being able to create with other players was and has continued to be a downer.

 

LBP 3
Welcoming Oddsock, Toggle, and Swoop to Sackboy’s Family!

 

LittleBigPlanet 3 – 2014  I was in the LBP 3 Beta this year. What a good game it is, and it’ll be out next week finally! I’ve had a ton of ideas through the years. I have worked in LBP 2 on many things, just done nothing to bring them to publish worthiness (I wish more sackfolk were like that. Too many horrid things are published.)

LBP 3 on PS4 is going to be a scream of delight though. It’s going to be superb, the definitive version for sure. I wish to spend less time distracted with other games and just pour my game-time into LBP from now on.

More photos:

  Crazy-Maisy in her Bug Blaster outfit reward for participating in LBP Vita Beta.
Crazy-Maisy in LBPV Pod wearing the iconic Spaceman Suit.
Crazy-Maisy in LBPV Pod (no decorating) wearing the iconic Spaceman Suit.
Crazy-Maisy in LBP 2 Angry Whale Survival 2
Crazy-Maisy in LBP 2 Angry Whale Survival 2

 

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Crazy-Maisy on the right, in a level with a couple of friends

 

A friend took this picture of Crazy-Maisy splat on the floor of an LBP 2 Pod.

 

Friends in a PhotoBooth level, having a blast throwing on Randomized Costumes.
Friends in an LBP 2 PhotoBooth level, having a blast throwing on Randomized Costumes.

 

Playing online with friends in LittleBigPlanet is a blast, it’s the most outrageous fun one can have, all sorts of games to play and hang out levels to goof off in … LBP 3 will just have bigger and better versions of that stuff, plus all the previous LBP content. Everything will be playable.

Pre-order: BestBuy for Hidden Creatures Pack DLC; GameStop for Mythical Creatures Pack DLC; Amazon for PlayStation Favorites Costume Pack on PSN for DLC costume you can use right now in LBP 2 and be able to start playing the digital version at midnight 11/18.

The PS4 version of LBP 3 will be in a Day One Edition and have a Plushie of Sackboy in the box plus Dragon Age Costume Pack and 4 the Players Costume Pack for all the stock out there in the beginning.

Pre-orders at Target will get a special Target Hat for Plushie Sackboy.

Here’s a link to the PlayStation Blog with all the details and store links as well.

PS3 is also getting LBP 3 but there are no pre-order bonuses, well, you’ll get a special theme for your PS3 XMB if you pre-order LBP3 for PS3 on PSN, that’s it, and no special editions, no Plushies. (Hint, get a PS4, it’ll be better there!)

Looking Forward to the Colder Weather

I am glad that on the weather reports I’ve seen it will be getting cooler more for the long run, hopefully, by the end of this week.

I want to start a fire in the fireplace (my method is top down fires, this will be, I think, my fourth season using that method.) I love HAVING to make a fire first thing in the morning. Coffee is my reason every other day of the year. Put the two together, priceless to wake up early, all alone, everyone else asleep still.

The other reason I’m glad it’ll get cooler is the freezing/close to freezing temperatures over the nights will hopefully kill off the worst of the Autumn Allergens that are plants growing sooner than later. It can’t happen too fast, in my very humble opinion.

I’m feeling more in a holiday state of mind, and getting to the holiday baking and crafting when it’s COLD will kickstart it the best.

PlayStation TV

I bought a PlayStation TV system yesterday. I got the bundle actually.

I had pre-ordered just the system to be shipped to me, but it wasn’t going to be shipped until the 24th from BestBuy.com so I canceled it. My hubby was in town that day when he had planned to not be here back when I pre-ordered it.

The BB stores around us had them available to purchase, so that’s what we did.

I like the device, just am not happy that it is a SYSTEM that’s like a console more than a privately owned device like the PS Vita is, but only allows ME, in other words only 1 PSN ID, to use it, just like the PS Vita does.

The other thing is that so many games are not compatible, and so many apps are not either. No streaming … like on PS Vita Netflix works fine, it’s disabled on PS TV. What?

Remote Play from PS4, VUDU works from that, but there is no native PS Vita or PS TV Vudu app, like there should be.

I really like how you can have photos and videos on your PS Vita and throw them to your PS TV nearly instantly.

I don’t buy movies or videos from PlayStation though, so I haven’t very much use for it, but it does seem like that’d be a great feature for someone who does purchase video services from PlayStation.

I connected to my Wi-Fi and it was able to download the PS TV update. I did that before I put my PSN ID in, and before I put my new 8gb PS Vita Memory Card in.

After that I turned the PS TV off and inserted the Memory Card, turned it back on.

The PS TV gave me two options, to use what was on the internal memory -copy it to the card then delete it …. or …. leave the internal alone and just use the new memory card while it’s inserted, allowing you to use the internal memory and what was on it previously if the memory card has been removed.

I chose to leave the internal memory as it was.

After that I got my PSN ID into the device. I tried to download a game from my Download List and the store barked at me that I have too many Activations. Freaking annoying. My PSP and other PSP’s in my family had my Activations on them, and the 5 activations of content before Nov. 2012 do work, but i have to de-activate each handheld, basically, and let the PS Vita and PS TV Activate … later just download some old content on 3 PSP’s and hopefully that will continue to work again as it had before, after the 2012 change to 2 Activations on new content.

I haven’t connected the PS TV to any TV except for my PlayStation Display thus far. I only had Wi-Fi turned on as well. Vudu did stream from PS4 Remote Play, but certain aspects of the video I played didn’t jive right, basically.

I’m going to try the PS TV connected to my bedroom Plasma and connected to the internet via ethernet later on. Hopefully Remote Play will be better that way.

My main reason for wanting PS TV was for Remote Play with PS4, as well as some PS Vita games, like Killzone Mercenary, for instance. Games that I did NOT like playing on PS Vita. I love that game, but it made me motion sick. A console game usually doesn’t affect me as badly, ever, so with the update the game got for PS TV it corrected a major reason I had for not playing, Saves and restarting at checkpoints. On PS Vita it’d be better that way, on PS TV it might just be perfect for me.

I am hoping that Sony PlayStation will update the PS TV frequently, that Apps will be made for Video streaming services, for both PS Vita and PS TV,  but that PS TV will get them at the least. I can see Vudu being on PS TV only. That’s fine for me. Netflix on PS TV would be great. It’d be nice if it worked like it does with my Google Nexus 10 Tablet … Smart TV app versions, or ps3 or ps4, I can control Netflix via the network connection through my tablet’s Netflix app. It’s really nice.

Screenshots on PS TV are like on PS Vita, just feel different because of the DualShock controller differences. It’s a little awkward, but works well, better than the PS Vita way does for me actually, even though it seems more awkward. :)

New things for PS TV sooner than later will be awesome. I’m looking forward to traveling with my PS TV soon too. It’ll be interesting for sure.

Ladyhawke (1985)

I have converted a decent amount of Blu-ray and DVD movies via the Vudu-To-Go application on my PC.

The only one I have a problem with is Ladyhawke (1985)

It’s a movie that I only have on DVD.  (Not available on Blu-ray in the United States.) The problem I have with it is: It’s only available as SD through UV/Vudu and it shows as a tiny widescreen movie on everything I have tried to watch that digital copy through.

The DVD itself will upscale in my PC and PS3 and PS4. It’s absolutely not something I want to watch through any UltraViolet source. UV LadyHawke is only in SD and a terrible version of SD at that. It’s so fuzzy, blowing it up by putting a TV’s mode to ZOOM is sickeningly ugly. I can’t even ZOOM the picture on my PC, for instance, only some devices can change the picture size, at any rate it’s something that doesn’t matter as I don’t want to ZOOM on that movie anyhow, and doing so only makes one have to put the TV mode to another when not viewing that UV SD version of the movie.

I’d love to have an HD version of this movie. I will eventually import a Blu-ray of it if it doesn’t actually get released in the US that way. That just means I can watch it with the Disc only. Possible, not as friendly as I’d like it since I do have a laptop with no optical drive, and a tablet.

Thinking, thinking, thinking …