Mother’s Day 2017

Thank you DH for the new tablet on the way to me! It should arrive on Wednesday.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 Tablet, Silver, with the magnetic cover, Best Buy has the cover at $24.99, from it’s regular $59.99 price.

I also previously bought a TPU cover via Amazon. Between the two I’ll have my options as I need them.

Lightning Knight – Galaxy Tab S3 9.7 Case, LK Ultra [Slim Thin] Scratch Resistant TPU Rubber Soft Skin Silicone Protective Case Cover for Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 9.7 (Frost Clear) [link]
I’d also like to get a neoprene sleeve for the tablet.

With my phone now fixed (glass had to be replaced) I’ll have Silver and Gold, a nice combination of (Android Samsung) devices.

I’m retiring my Sony Z3 Compact Tablet. Still in perfect condition, I’m just ready to move on to something else. Both my tablet and phone are Android 7, so that will feel good. (My Sony is stuck on Android 6.)

Original Xperia Z3 Compact Tablet power adapter EP880 Dead

I have had a Sony Xperia Z3 Compact Tablet since December 2014.

I’d been using a charging base with original tablet cord and power adapter since the beginning. This past weekend we went on a trip (via self road travel) — I unplugged my charging devices and brought them with me.

Unpacking in the hotel, I plugged my things in and my tablet … nothing. My Nexus 5 worked fine and my Xperia charged just fine with it’s own cable and my nexus power adapter put into USB on tablet, and the charging base worked like that too. Just nothing would charge with the Sony EP880 power adapter part. I tried everything plugged in with it at that point. (It was purely hooked up to Sony parts and not dirty at all.)

So basically it just up and died, and still won’t pass any (electrical) current.

I ordered EP881 Quick Charger from Sony earlier this week. It arrived today. Guess what? The Power Adapter part is an EP880, just like the stock power adapter in the box for the Xperia Z3 Compact Tablet. The only difference is the cable, it’s a charge only cable … pricey, but I could find any other way to get something to charge with that was worthwhile.

Now I’m stuck with leaving that Quick Charger setup in my bedroom, and I won’t move it if I can help it.

I looked all over the web, the only thing I could find was to buy a replacement power adapter and cord via Amazon for $9.99. I didn’t want to buy anything but the power adapter, just have the thing that was supposed to be used with the device. I mean I could use an old HTC one, but I hate the look of it. I like the blocky Sony plugs.

Warranty replacement? I can’t find any such animal.

I’ve never had a device plug die like that. Never. I still can’t believe it. Like it must just magically start working again. Then I’d have my roving plug. I wish it would work, but it probably won’t. It has no parts to replace, it’s as solid as the night in winter is long.

At any rate, I could get it from amazon … but that’s not the point. I have a solution but not the original dead piece actually replaced.

Thinking on it I’d like to get another dock so I can have it by my bed and on my desk. I don’t know if I want to get a DK48, my current dock is a DK36 and it works fine. Sigh, decisions.

 

edit: 4:57pm: My stupid EP880 original adaptor took my blog post as a threat and voila! It’s currently charging my Nexus 5 whereas it wouldn’t do that on Monday, nor my Xperia Z3 Compact Tablet. The thing is crazy. Is it the way of EP880 or is there something wrong with my EP880 … Don’t know.

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.

Doki Doki Universe 12-10-2013 on PSN

Doki Doki Universe is a quirky, cute, game from HumaNature Studios for PlayStation. It’s to be released on December 10, 2013, for PS4, PS3 and PS Vita.

Doki Doki Universe on PSN by HumaNature Studios
Doki Doki Universe on PSN by HumaNature Studios

It was said to be a free to play game, with a small price point once you reach a certain planet, a small fee, stated over and again since revealed at E3 in June 2013.

Today the game was finally announced as coming out on December 10, 2013 in North America, via the PlayStation US Blog. The article  says that the Starter Pack is free, which gets you “16 personality quizzes, Doki-Doki Mail, QT3’s home planet, and a tutorial planet.” The FULL game will give you  “story mode, 31 personality quizzes, and the Doki-Doki Mail messaging system.”

It was a little shocking to read how that was put, and the next part even more so. $14.99.

I don’t deny HumaNature Studios their due. It’s only that all year they’ve adhered to the it’ll be a small price to upgrade, or small anything for anything kind of idea.

So, I can buy the game for $14.99, download it on PS4, as well as my PS Vita and PS3. That’s great. The family can play the PS4 and PS3 versions, not just me. Only I can have the full game on my PS Vita though.

If anyone else in the family wants to play on their PS Vita, they can download the game for their PS Vita, but that’d be the Starter Pack, the free one. To play the whole thing on PS VIta, they’d have to pay $14.99 each.

From many perspectives this is OK, but they won’t pay for it. Only I will. They can at least do the messaging on their PS Vita’s, but this is precisely counter intuitive for our family. I’d have to pay over $50 to outfit our family with this game.

We liked the idea of the game, but now they can only play it on the consoles and on their PS Vita’s they won’t really play it much.

$14.99 is a lot when you are only playing it on the PS Vita only.

For the console gaming family it’s always great when you buy anything digital, the whole family can play it. But bringing the PS Vita to the mix for cross-buy games … only one PS Vita benefits, the owner of the content.

I was hearing them talk about the game all year and figured that at some point in the game it’d be 3.99 or 4.99 or something to do more. Maybe another add-on pack down the road. Now that is a nice idea on how to monetize a game. I do think that Sony putting the price at $14.99 is going to cause a lot of people to not buy it.

So how do the trophies work then, for the Starter Pack only people? Don’t know. But I do know that PS3 and PS Vita share the Trophy List, and PS4 has it’s own Trophy List, and the game Cross-Save across the platforms, saving automatically to the cloud every 5-minutes, so you can earn Double-Trophies for this game if you have a PS4 and PS3; or PS4 and PS Vita; or PS4 and PS3 and PS Vita.

Dreamed about PS4

💡  Before I awoke early this morning I was dreaming about my PS4. I had it hooked up and was logged in, holding the DS4 and was trying to figure out what to do, like in, which thing do I do first, download the free PS+ launch titles, download F2P games, put in this or that disc …. then I woke up. It was 5:26 a.m. Wednesday, November 13, 2013. A tad disappointing.

Just one more morning to go, and then I’ll be up all day and maybe night, maybe I’ll go to sleep after getting the PS4 going, maybe I won’t.  🙂

Thinking About PS4 Situations

Alone

There’s a big thing I often think about: In the upcoming months the PS4 in our house will be alone. It’s going to be a nice machine, have awesome ability to have us game wonderfully into the next generation of games.

Alone is a big thing. Some games are single games, but so many are multiplayer online and if more than one person in the house likes the same games, that poses the question of: Can I Co-op locally?

Local Co-op

Killzone: Shadowfall is one game we want Co-op locally on. It’s not going to happen unless they release DLC or an update to allow it, and I’m not holding my breathe.

We have 3 PS3’s. Only 1 PS4 is scheduled to be purchased this year. I don’t know if we’ll buy another next year. I know I’ll be happy enough to buy games on disc and only have to buy 1 copy of said game. Multiple devices needing or wanting a game can become quite pricey.

In my house two of us wanted The Last of Us in June. That’s $100 in discs. I mostly don’t buy digital games that. I want the case(s) for one thing, and just love how putting discs in feels, and frankly disc games have more value than that since I can sell it to someone else if I don’t want it anymore.

Digital Content

I have a lot of digital content for my PS3. Older stuff I can put on all three of our PS3’s, but most stuff we’d prefer to do that for, we can’t. The rules changed in November 2012 to allow most digital content to be put on 2 devices. That’s one reason to buy digital vs. disc, when the software is able to be used by two different consoles and PSN ID’s at the same time. (That’s not always the case, so when one buys digital games they should ALWAYS read everything in the description, to be sure.)

PS + is about Digital all the way. Game saves are digital whether or not it’s a digital game. Cloud Storage for Game Data is awesome. On the PS3 it’s something I’ve enjoyed, allowing me to go anywhere on any PS3 easily. On the PS4 that will work, and it’ll be more than that. I’ll be able to log onto another PS4 anywhere and download ANY of my PS4 Digital content.

That’s where it’s sticky though. I know how the PS3 licence for digital stuff goes. I can only use PS+ on one PS3 to auto-update and all the benefits of PS+, so it’s similar to the idea of PRIMARY PS4 for PS Plus being one machine. But how it is on PS3 right now is I can put my content on TWO PS3’s permanently. On PS4 it sounds like there is no second permanent, but that’s not entirely a sure thing. Maybe we can do that, maybe not.

Multiple PS4 Consoles

If we had 2 PS4’s I would have PS+ and another family member would have PS+ –both machines would be covered. If I bought a game (not a PS Plus free game) could I put it on both machines or only on 1 and temporarily put it on another. But how that works seems silly … if we wanted to both play that game at the same time, like an online co-op or multiplayer … then we’d have to flip-flop which machine we’d play on. My content couldn’t sit on the second PS4 permanently. It’d just be a temporary situation, and I’d HAVE to play on that machine for that game session. Seems too unfriendly to families.

Easiest thing would be to buy the games digitally twice. Me and them. Sigh. Back to the discs we’d go.

PlayStation 4 in Two Weeks!

It’s officially November now, only 15 or so (whichever way you count days) to go until PS4 is released!

PS4 Package
PS4 Package

We have three PS3’s and won’t be getting rid of them. They have a high use place in our house. We’ll have one new PS4 at first, and maybe we’ll move a PS3 to another spot to make room in the living room, since our TV only has two HDMI slots.

The games available on launch aren’t the ones I most looking forward to play on PS4. inFamous Second Son, The Order: 1886 are the ones I most look forward to, oh, and WatchDogs.

I am looking forward also to playing LEGO Marvel Superheroes on PS4. I don’t have the game for PS3 nor PS Vita yet either.

Gaming isn’t the cheapest hobby. It is fulfilling, like buying and listening to music, or movies. These are entertainment things, but that is exactly what’s important for us to do, play, have fun. Enriched lives.

PlayStation Plus

PlayStation has a great program for $49.99 a year. PS+ (PlayStation Plus) gives you many games free to play every year on PS3 and also PS Vita, and the PS4 will also be included. The IGC (Instant Game Collection) is the current offerenings. Buy the subscription and you have access to all those games free. You must stay subscribed to keep using the games, but once you have PS+ maybe you’ll be like me, keep it going.

PS+ subscriptions can be stacked, so if you are currently subscribed and want to add-on to that time period, just buy another subscription with the same PSN ID and it automatically is added-on.

If you do let PS+ lapse, you have an ability to re-subscribe and access those games again.

Every month new games are added, some are taken out to make room. If you have the games in your Download List you can keep downloading and using them on up to 2 PS3’s and 2 PS Vita’s (but on PS Vita you have to have your devices all associated with the buying account, the PS+ enabled PSN ID, in other words. The same goes for PS3, but on the PS3 the console shares content with anyone else on that machine. PS Vita is one PSN ID specific user only.)

If you’ve been a PS+ member for awhile, your Download List maybe quite long. Mine is. I mostly “buy” whatever is offered, not absolutely, but for the most part. Even if I’m not interested in it, I or someone else in my family might be one day. So it’s there in my Download List just in case.

PS4 will get two new games a month in IGC. Pretty good since it’s a totally new platform, all new games! It’s not clear how many PS4’s we can use in one house with our content. There is something about making one PS4 your Active device, and then logging in anywhere on anyone’s PS4 and being able to download and play your games from your Download List. This doesn’t speak to whether or not we can actually have the 2-device download thing, like on PS3. I keep two PS3’s with my digital content. It might get a bit squirrely for a family if they have more than one PS4 … I do know that PS+ will only cover 1 PS4 statically, the one set as Primary.

Online Play

Online Multiplayer for PS4 will require a PS4 with a PS Plus Primary user on it. Anyone on the console can play online then.

Some Free-To-Play games will have free multiplayer online play. Most games are not even online play, so it’s only going to affect users who aren’t PS+ but want to play a purchased multiplayer online game.

In the past we had Online Passes associated with one’s PSN ID. This limited so much. Thankfully Sony recently ditched Online Passes for new games.

Examples:

For PS Vita, we have Resistance Burning Skies on PS Vita Game Card. My son played it first, he got it for his birthday. He put in the Online Pass.

I can play that game, but I can't play Online since I don't have an Online Pass for that game. I could buy one for $9.99, but it's not that I want to play online, just would HAVE to to get all the trophies and platinum it. So I don't play it.
Killzone Mercenary for PS Vita came out in September 2013. No Online Pass. Yippeee! So if my daughter wants to use my copy of the game, she can. We have 2 copies.

 

Killzone Mercenary Game Stats are online

I know my previous post is a giant us.playstation.com forums complaint, connected to PS Vita and Killzone Mercenary. I’m very bothered by it still, but because of that I stumbled onto the best of the best.

Killzone Mercenary game stats.

Killzone
Mercenary

Phantom Talon Corporation
Mercenaries Business Directory
Mercenary Sign up / Sign in (PSN ID sign in)

mercenary.killzone.com
mercenary.killzone.com

It’s a really cool stats site. You can check out all your own stats, and from your PSN Friends list you can easily find the stats for your friends that play the game too.

You can see all the weapons, which ones you have, how much Vechtan cash you have, have earned, spent, all that.

Valor, campaign, multiplayer, all the different modes, maps, heat maps, REPLAY of the last mph games you were in, or a friend was in.

Leaderboard stats.

It is deep and beautiful. Guerrilla Cambridge went all out for us on this site.

 

Assassin’s Creed

I was interested in Assassin’s Creed back when it was first out or early on. Not HIGHLY interested, just knew about it and wanted to pursue it, but didn’t and here we are.

E3 is something I follow, more-so PlayStation than anyone, and this year I streamed all the stuff via my PC —> HDMI —> HDTV  –the USTREAM Playstation live feed. Monday night for the Press Conference, and then Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday early afternoon to evening, and each day a tad earlier than the one before.

In the Press Conference Assassin’s Creed III was awesome. I don’t know exactly when I really jumped on it, it just is the thing that’s coming out sooner than most of the stuff out there, something that REALLY I WANT TO PLAY! Game Informer had wonderful cover and coverage of it in their April 2012 issue. It’s just beautiful and because of this I am finally going to get into the franchise with Assassin’s Creed for PS3 … the first one. I’m totally hoping I like it, and really have to FORCE myself to get through it and get to Assassin’s Creed II and be ready for October 30th.

Thursday they interviewed the developer of Assassin’s Creed III (PS3) as well as the developer for Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation (PS Vita). That last game interview was supposed to be on Tuesday, but technical difficulties of some sort kept it out of Tues. and Wed. and finally on Thursday it was inserted into the schedule! Hurray!

Both games look great, totally stoking great. I can say how hungry I am for them. And I’ve never played Assassin’s Creed before. I should have, but haven’t. Now I will. I have AC on my desk.

E3 at home

I can watch E3 coverages via Playstation’s lens via their blog,  Playstation HOME,  PS3 XMB, & PS Vita NicoNico app.

Tonight they start with a Press Conference. It’ll be interesting to see what they unveil, and also to see how each of those formats works or doesn’t. I’ve spend other times before in PS Home. Not so great, not really.

On the PC … better, kindof.

Hope this years is good though. Definitely had a good time in January 2011 watching the Press Conference of the PS Vita announcement on the PC. So I guess this tonight thing will workout ok, as it has before I guess. I suppose the PS HOME thing was about the Virtual booth and how “limiting” it was and how the other theatres weren’t showing stuff well, and it wasn’t as good as it could have been at all.

I don’t spend much time in PS HOME, I usually only go there when something big is happening, like E3. Sometimes I think I would go more, but why when I can play Starhawk or Pixel Junk Monsters, or Bejeweled 3?

I find the people in HOME to be just plain rude or annoying or scary. I act like I really do in public, I keep to myself. If you sit by me I get up and go somewhere else. Follow me and I’ll go home, but lose you on the way there.

What else is there about E3? Sony is my main focus, there could be other things, undoubtedly there are. I’l have multiple tabs in my Chrome browser going. (I still use Pale Moon and Firefox but more and more my important sites are in Chrome only)

It’s an exciting day … tonight it starts and all week things to watch and learn and get excited about or disappointed about.