Monday, December 23, 2013

Merry Christmas!! We've been busy!

Teens have been singing at the Cookie Exchange, watching and discussing a Christmas Carol, here are David, James, and Hayden doing some improv on the story!  We've had pizza and are making plans for Teen book Jeopardy!! 

We mostly want to wish everyone a very wonderful and Merry Christmas!  More pictures coming soon!!!

Game Console Finale!!


Sorry it took so long, guys, but it's finally here! the thrilling conclusion! Enjoy!
Games:
Oh, there's no point of getting a console if there aren't any good games on it! Otherwise, what would be the point of buying them in the first place?
Each console has it's own selection of First-party developed titles. A first-party title is a game developed by the same company that created the console it's being released on.(That includes Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft, etc.)because of this, it would be illegal to release a Super Mario game on an Xbox.
A third-party developer is a company that makes games on any console they please, this includes developers such as Sega, Namco, Konami, and, of course, Capcom.
The Nintendo DS has many first-party titles. Some of them would include New Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass, Pokemon Black and White (and their sequels), Kirby Squeak Squad, Brain Age, Picross DS, Nintendogs, Mario Kart DS, Animal Crossing: Wild World, and the list goes on and on.
The PSP has quite a number of first-party developed titles as well, such as LittleBigPlanet, Invisimals, The Buzz Quiz series, Hot Shots Golf: Open Tee, Daxter, Ape Escape: On the Loose, WipEout Pure(Not a typo, it's spelt like that,), Patapon, LocoRoco, Twisted Metal: Head On, and others. It's hard to really say which has the better first-party titles, but both Nintendo and Sony put much effort into these games, that's for sure!
Both Systems also have heavy third-party support. Some games come to both Consoles, such as the Lego games, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, the Madden NFL games, Golden Compass (which is actually as very poorly made game, so let's forget that one.), Chrono Trigger, Frogger Helmet Chaos, and others. It's hard to search for games that are on DS AND PSP, so I've only mentioned games that I know of. If you know others, write in the comments below. It would be very nice for me to know.
Of course, sometimes third-party companies will release exclusive to one console, and then release games in the same series on a different console! One of the best examples I can use to describe this is none other than my all-time-no-holds-barred-no-stinkin'-doubt's-about-it video game franchise EVER...(Drum roll)...
The Mega Man games!!!
The DS and PSP both have their own titles in the series. The DS has ZX, ZX Advent, The Mega Man Star Force Trilogy, Zero Collection, and Battle Network 5(DS edition). That's a lot of Mega Man games! Unfortunately, the PSP only has 2 games. Mega Man: Powered Up, and Mega Man Maverick Hunter X. Both of these games are remakes of Mega Man 1 and Mega Man X, respectively.
Honestly, while the DS has more titles in the series, you can tell that Capcom, the developers of the Mega Man games, put more effort into the PSP titles. The ZX and Star Force games just feel like re-hashes of the Zero and Battle Network games, and aren't as memorable. Zero collection is fun, but it's just a compilation, so it isn't a brand new game. Neither is Battle Network 5, it's just a re-release of the original GBA game, which, regrettably, isn't all that good.
The PSP titles, on the other hand, are a much more enjoyable experience. Powered Up takes the original Mega Man, fixes every problem in the game, adds more playable characters, a challenge mode, a level creator, and much and more. Maybe it's just me, but I feel the PSP remakes were made as a thank-you to all the hardcore fans of Mega Man(Me, for example.). That's not to say the DS titles are bad, they just don't feel as good.
Mega Man isn't the only company that's culprit to the "Sequels On DS:Remakes On PSP" formula. The same applies to Castlevania. Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow, Order of Ecclesia, and Portrait Of Ruin are on DS, while the only Castlevania game on PSP is Castlevania: The Dracula X Chronicles, which is a remake of Castlevania: Dracula X, which was originally Japan exclusive(aside from it's inferior port to the SNES in the late '90s.). All four of these games are outstanding, but you should definitely give Dracula X Chronicles a try.
But we're getting a bit sidetracked now. There are tons of other 3rd-party games exclusive to each console. The DS has Sonic Colors, Lego Battles(It's a DS exclusive.), The Professor Layton games, Dragon Quest IX, Drawn to Life, Scribblenauts, The Mega Man Star Force Trilogy(as mentioned earlier), and Adventure Time: Hey Ice King! Why'd You Steal Our Garbage?(Yes, that's the name of the game. don't believe me? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adventure_Time:_Hey_Ice_King!_Why%27d_You_Steal_Our_Garbage%3F! there you go.)
The PSP has Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep, Capcom Classics Collection Reloaded, Final Fantasy IV, Gradius Collection, Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops, Lumines, Monster Hunter Freedom Unite, Persona 2, and others.
Despite me leaning on the side of the PSP, both systems have incredible games. It's impossible to say which one has the overall better pick of the crop, so I'm leaving this question in the air.
Winner: Both!
Conclusion:
So, after a month of typing this article on my too-cool-fo'-school Windows 8, which one do I think is better?
It just depends on who you are.
If you're a casual gamer and you just want some pick-up-and-play AAA titles and you care about *cough* *cough* internet, then you should go for the DS. If you're a multi tasker and you want a full gaming experience at the cost of fragility, you're top choice is PlayStation's very own PSP.
Me? I prefer the PSP, but these two systems are overall fairly matched. We may still be arguing about this 20 years from now, but who cares? Gaming is about having fun, and that's all it should be.
This is GadgetJax, signing out. *click*
 

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Why you should care about A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens


What's your favorite version of A Christmas Carol?  Some have such beautiful illustrations!

Yesterday's teen book discussion was on this book and we talked about everything from life in the mid 1800's to dreams!!  The story really lends itself to many topics of discussion!  Thanks to all the teens who attended!

On Thursday, December 19 we're going to watch the movie followed by some improv....always a fun activity!!! 

If you want to join in the fun give us a call @ 838-2394, or register on the library calendar http://www.libraryinsight.com/calendar.asp?jx=ra



Part 4 - Nintendo vs. PSP


Both consoles have gorgeous looking graphics. Done. However, the PSP trumps the DS in two ways:
1: The PSP, as stated, has quadruple the amount of bits in it's graphics card.
2: The PSP has a 16:9 screen ratio, and is larger and smoother than the DS, meaning graphics can be seen at a higher quality that the of the DS. So, even if the PSP and DS could output the same quality graphics, it would still look better on a PSP. Here's a photo example of the differences between the DS and PSP versions of Lego Batman:

Winner: PSP

Game Suspension:
Ohhhh, boy. I bet you loyal readers don't even KNOW what this means! Game Suspension is a method of pausing a game via the system itself.
I'm going to explain this in the easiest way possible. Once you turn a DS off, it's off. Turn it on again, and you'll be taken to the DS Start-Up menu. However, if you close the system by folding it, the game will pause itself. When you open your DS again, you'll be right back where you left off.
The PSP's method of Game Suspension is a bit different. when you turn the PSP of, it goes into Suspension mode. When you turn it on again, it takes you right back to your game automatically. To shut off the PSP permanently, you have to to Power Switch for about 10 seconds.
The PSP method is a bit better than the DS. You see, in order to keep the system in standby mode, the system has to use a bit of battery life. But, overall, it really is a close call.
Winner: Tie

Online Compatibility:
Both systems have a variety of game that are internet-compatible, but, I'm afraid there's no contest here. First of all, in addition to being able to play games online, the PSP has several applications built-in that make use of internet compatibility, such as a Google search engine, a radio, and more. The DS doesn't have a search engine, so you can't check your e-mail to see if Strong Bad wrote you back yet about your poor spelling.
But the one thing that makes me give this round to the PSP, THE ONE THING...
Is actually getting the DS and the PSP to connect to the internet in the first place.
You see, the DS can't run all internet providers, and sometimes refuses to connect, just because of the smallest changes in the connection encoding. In 2008, my DS was able to connect online perfectly. In (sometime around)2009, my DS couldn't connect to my homes hotspot anymore. It wasn't just my DS. my brothers, Luke and Scott, couldn't connect, either.(It works now, fortunately.) Also, some hotspots require you to go on a special website in order to connect. What's the problem with that? THE DS HAS NO INTERNET BROWSER FUNCTION!!!
*whew*
I know I shouldn't be so mean to Nintendo, but this is just lazy! Fortunately, they have fixed this problem- well, sort of.
You can purchase a special adapter for your computer(it plugs in via USB) that provides a simple-to-access hotspot for your DS. I don't own one, so I cannot give any sort of recommendation. Victor of this round is obvious.
Winner: PSP
Concluded in part 5