As you likely already noticed, Google has confirmed Brainstorm Warning is no longer infected by malware and safe to browse again. Huzzah!
My wife and I recently switched from a basic phone plan with AT&T to Straight Talk’s unlimited talk, text, and “web browsing” plan. Almost from day one, we’ve repeatedly encountered an “access forbidden” error message when trying to pull up a web page in Chrome or the default Android web browser. Other apps that require Internet access also fail to connect (e.g. Amazon AppStore, Google Play Store, Facebook, etc.). The issue is not constant, but I encounter it approximately half to two-thirds of the times I move out of wi-fi range and into an area with HSPA+.
And it seems I’m not the only one with this problem. The following threads were posted to the Straight Talk Wireless Forums starting Sept. 22 and on:
There are similar threads on other sections of the ST Wireless Forums and all posts are met with the same response: A user claiming to represent ST asking the customer to contact them via private message.
Customers on other forums have reported the same issue:
It’s apparent this is a widespread issue and I’ve yet to find one fix that works consistently (or at all). Straight Talk has not provided a public explanation or solution, suggesting they either are unwilling or, more likely, unable to resolve the problem.
It’s possible that this issue is not specific to Straight Talk, but also affects other AT&T MVNOs. It’s not unreasonable to suspect that AT&T is purposely crippling their MVNO users’ data to push them back toward a post-paid plan with a subsidized phone, higher cost for the consumer, and greater profit margin for AT&T.
I’m strongly recommending that all Straight Talk customers that encounter this issue file a complaint against ST with the Florida Office of the Attorney General. Until customers put pressure on Straight Talk to resolve this issue, they likely won’t put any pressure on AT&T and we likely won’t see a solution.
Want to play one of the greatest action RPGs ever but can’t read Japanese and don’t want to break the law? Then read on for instructions on how to play Soma Bringer for the Nintendo DS–legitimately.
Step 2: Buy a copy of Soma Bringer. You can purchase a new copy from Play-Asia.com (recommended) or a used copy on eBay.
Step 3: Back up your Soma Bringer cartridge. This step is a tad complicated, but there’s an excellent step-by-step guide over at Monroeworld.
Step 5: Apply the patch to your Soma Bringer backup file. Instructions are included with the patch download linked above.
Step 6: Copy the patched Soma Bringer backup file to your flashcart.
Step 7: Insert the flashcart into your DS and play!
I hope to post similar tutorials for American gamers after Xenoblade and The Last Story are released in Europe and after the Pandora’s Tower fan translation patch makes further progress.
Merry Christmas, everyone!
I wanted to thank everyone for their wonderful gifts this year. I heard at least one family member express a desire to know how my wife and I spent our gift money, which reminded me to post how I spent the gift money I received last Christmas (2009) and on my birthday earlier this year.
Click past the break for a list of items I purchased with gift money this last year.
While Gamestop may not be my favorite company, I have to give credit where credit is due: Today’s Dragon Quest IX event was much more fun than anticipated. More people attended than I expected, most of the attendees were adults, and the children that attended were all very well-behaved. I didn’t attend all 4 hours of the events, but the time I did spend there was very enjoyable.
I had wondered how Dragon Quest IX’s Tag Mode would see any use in America. Now I know. While most Americans are highly unlikely to come across any other DS owners with DQIX in Tag Mode during their travels, “magnet” events such as this can be surprisingly successful, even in smaller metropolitan areas.
If you missed today’s event, don’t worry: There will be another DQIX event at Best Buy locations next Saturday (August 7) from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. And if you don’t already own a copy, you can purchase Dragon Quest IX from Amazon.com for $34.99 with free Super Saver shipping.
While hosting public Borderlands games, a few people have told me they’ve had trouble hosting games that other players could join.
I opened the following ports on my router and was able to host public games:
- 7777 (TCP, UDP)
- 27900 (UDP)
- 28900 (TCP)
- 28902 (TCP, UDP)
- 28910 (UDP)
Consult your router’s documentation for instructions on opening ports as methods will differ according to router manufacturer and interface.
Bummed that Nintendo has no plans to localize Fatal Frame 4 (Japanese title: Zero: Gesshoku no Kamen) for a US or Europe release? Be bummed no longer.
A team of translators and developers have released a fan translation patch that allows English-speaking Wii owners to play Tecmo‘s and Grasshopper Manufacture‘s critically acclaimed horror game in their own language.
What’s particularly impressive about this fan translation is that it can patch a retail copy of the game on the fly, meaning that Wii owners will not need to “softmod” their systems or venture into legal “gray areas” to play the game with English language text.
To play Fatal Frame 4 in English, you’ll need to purchase Zero: Gesshoku no Kamen from Play-Asia or another retailer, download the fan translation patch, and install the patch according to instructions available on the translation developers’ site.
Aside from being great news for English-speaking fans of the Fatal Frame series, this patch opens a host of new possibilities for fan translations. With a 100% legal method of translating in-game Japanese text to English, other popular Japan-only Wii releases could receive their own fan translations.
I just got the Logitech V450 Nano Cordless Laser Mouse for Notebooks (Black) and the Western Digital WDML5000TN My Passport Elite Portable 500 GB USB 2.0 Hard Disk Drive (Titanium) I ordered during Black Friday sales today.
I bought the Logitech V450 Nano to use when I travel with my notebook. I still prefer my corded Logitech MX518 for playing games (especially first-person shooters), but the V450 Nano will be much more convenient for browsing, e-mail, and other “every day” use when not at home.
While reading about Capcom’s upcoming Amaterasu phone strap, it struck me that most DS Lite and DSi owners in the US and Europe are probably unaware that the two small holes in the back of the DS near the cartridge slot can be used to attach cell phone charms or phone straps.
Click the thumbnail below for a full-sized photo of the back of an Onyx DS Lite with the two holes used for attaching cell phone charms and phone straps circled in red.
Click below for a full-sized photo of my an Onyx DS Lite with maneki neko (fortune cat) cell phone charm attached:
Very few brick and mortar stores in America sell cell phone charms or phone straps. I recommend the following stores for purchasing cell phone accessories online:
Strapya World specializes in cell phone accessories and has an extensive selection of cell phone charms and phone straps, including items based on popular anime and video game franchises like Hello Kitty, Final Fantasy, Death Note, My Neighbor Totoro, Dragon Ball, One Piece, and Sgt. Keroro.
Here are five example cell phone straps from Play-Asia:
- Gurren Lagann Mini Gurren Team Strap Figure: Simon with drill
- Gurren Lagann Mini Gurren Team Strap Figure: Simon on Gurren
- Gurren Lagann Mini Gurren Team Strap Figure: Little Gurren Brigade
- Gurren Lagann Mini Gurren Team Strap Figure: Kamina
- Gurren Lagann Mini Gurren Team Strap Figure: Yoko
For instructions on attaching a cell phone charm or strap to your DS Lite or DSi, click past the break.
Valve recently updated Left 4 Dead third-party support, providing players with more user-friendly methods of playing custom campaigns. Most people will be satisfied with hosting or joining local servers (i.e. games hosted on players’ home computers), but some players will be interested in playing custom campaigns on dedicated servers.
This tutorial is designed for server admins with remote access to their servers. Server admins with local access will need to make slight adjustments to the instructions.
- Download the campaign. For this tutorial, I’ll use Detour Ahead.
- Extract the downloaded archive file to any directory on your hard drive. In the case of Detour Ahead, the archive file name is 230609-bbls-detour.zip.
- Open a FTP client. I use and recommend FileZilla.
- Log in to your game server via FTP.
- Upload the custom campaign .VPK file from your computer to your dedicated server’s left4dead/addons directory. Click here for a screenshot of the FileZilla user interface for this step.
- Upload your addonlist.txt from your local Left 4 Dead install (default directory is C:Program FilesSteamsteamappscommonleft 4 deadleft4dead) to your dedicated server.
- Restart your server.