Sony Bolstering It’s Defenses Against “Hacktivist” Groups

After being hammered by over 20 hacking attacks from hacktivist groups Lulzsec and Anonymous in 2011, Sony is beefing up security like never before.  The leader of Sony’s new security department is Brett Wahlin, former employee of McAfee with years of experience as a counter intelligence officer in the US military.  Wahlin’s security strategy is focused on defending against newer “socially-motivated” hackers.

Wahlin is hoping to look at the overall pattern of how many of these online attacks begin in order to react to breaches in security faster and prevent them from happening, along with working to monitor PlayStation Network for suspicious transactions that can pose a threat.  Another part of this strategy is educating staff to promote better security practices in the workplace.  Much of Sony’s overall security goals are to automate the detection of abnormal activities on the network so security staff can devote more time to stopping attacks as they are discovered.


Burglar Steals Xbox 360 and Wii, Leaves behind his Playstation 3

Recently a man in Bay City, Michigan, was arrested for the theft of an Xbox 360 Elite, a Nintendo Wii, a GPS unit, and $250, yet strangely leaving behind his own PlayStation 3. What could be the motivation behind such a crime? Could this be the most insane statement ever made by a system fanboy? The answer is pills.

It turns out the suspect, Joshua Beck, just can’t get enough of the anti-anxiety drug Xanax, and stole these items in order to pay for his habit. Even worse it turns out this junkie is friends with the victim, and even attempted to convince his friend to sell off the game consoles for money earlier that day. Beck has been arraigned with 2nd degree home invasion and larceny in a building, and has a bond of $50,000 over his head.


Spoony Bard Podcast: Episode 23: It Looks Like He is Taking a Dump When You Press Up

Taking another suggestion from the fans to talk about we played Tomba this week; saying that we had mixed results would be kind. It doesn’t take long before we start talking about pretty much anything else that we are doing. Ar tonelico, Pokemon, and even articles that we have thrown up on the site all end up being fair game. Sorry about the pod going up late, again, at least it still weekly.


You Missed it for Good Reason: Mister Mosquito

What should come as no surprise to anyone that reads this site, or listens to the podcast, is that I go out of my way to find and purchase the worst video games that I can possibly acquire at any given time.  Most people don’t actively do this, as they are either not insane or are actively looking for was to stave off insanities’ effects.  Mister Mosquito is probably the only game ever that places the user in control of a blood sucking insect and repeated tries to find a way to have it work its way into our hearts, even though I think that bugs in your heart is a rare disease found in third world countries. So yeah, my kind of game.

The game starts off with possibly the slowest and least emotional narration not done by William Shatner.  Over the course of several minutes it explains that you need to go into this house and suck as much blood as possible to live through the winter. Ignoring the fact that Mosquitoes only live for about two weeks at a time, and that the women are the ones that suck the blood, it took me all of 30 seconds to write that explanation of the plot—the narrator finds an amazing way to make it last and last and last in the drollest way possible.  The best part is that the near robotic lady-narrator does intros to every single level in the game, which means that the total amount of time played on this game can range from under two hours if all dialogs are skipped to over ten if there is something wrong with you and you need to listen to it.

Well, it would seem that Mister Mosquito got into the worst possible as everyone here is both immune to the effects of eating bug poison and are practicing ninja.  I wouldn’t call them any good at the entire “ninja” thing, as I recall that Mr. Miyagi had Daniel-san catching flies with chopsticks like 20 minutes into that movie, and no one in this house seems to be able to do anything besides mild damage to it.  Although they do excel at that entire “eating DDT” thing.

Besides having some of the worst controls in a flight ever, the game also expects players to both anger the family to the point that they actively try to kill the bug, as well as hit –what I am assumer are– pressure points used to relax people.  It sort of creeps me out that all of the women, even the older mother, have a point in their no-no place –a place that my 5th grade gym teacher would be very disappointed in me repeatedly hitting.  This game is sending me all kinds of mixed messages, and is useless as sexual instructions.

Although even after watching some videos online on how to beat sections it sort of became clear that people who posted videos of how awesome they were at this game still managed to screw up constantly due to the controls.  There are several times that a point that is needed, either for sucking blood or making the women feel all fuzzy inside, is in an impossible to see angle unless the player is in exactly the right spot inside of the room.  Add into this that there are times that it is simply faster to have the bug smash into a person at full force and bounce off to land in the correct “attack position” then it is to line it up in a conventional way. It kind of feels like even the programmers where getting so annoyed with the trash they were making they decided to skip all stages after, “it no longer crashes” and went directly to, “screw it. Ship it!”

Between stages the family gathers in what I believe to be the living room, although the Mosquito probably thinks of it more as their evil layer, and starts to discuss how they are going to take the SINGLE BUG out.  I might not know everything about Japanese culture, and I am sure that years of anime and video games have probably made me less aware of normal Japanese people than anything, but I think that it is a little odd that when the entire family talks at once they all lean their heads in for a circle formation. I am sure that there is an easy programming work around that is the reasoning behind this, but it looks more like they are all mentally challenged when it happens– probably from the insane amounts of bug spray that they constantly use as salad dressing and air conditioning.  There is probably a hole in the ozone directly above their house.

I am guessing that the people of Japan suffer from the same disease that I do, where I need to experience terrible entertainment on a fairly regular basis, as there is also a sequel to this game that came out over there– meaning this game sold well enough to warrant a second experience.  It also seems that they know exactly when to stop encouraging people as the internet tells me the second game sold roughly 8 total units, and most of them where probably to stores that thought I was going to buy it.

Spoony Bard Podcast: Episode 21: Ninja Vision

We are back on Skype, but this time with a special new recording software.  Tell your ears to be ready to hear us in STEREO! I talk about some of the games that I am reviewing for another site, and we go off for some time about how not excited we are about Onlive.  Stark talks more about Neptunia, and I try to talk about how awesome I thought Vagrant Story was until I stopped playing it.  We talk about fan suggestions, and what you guys can do to help the site grow.

It is the Spoony Bard Podcast 21: Ninja Vision!