Welcome to the first installment of Ask X3F in the year 2009. We'd like to tell you it's extra special because its the first one of the year, but it's totally not! Nope, It's completely ordinary and mundane. All we do in answer some questions as best as we can. Nothing special about that. Still, if you insist on reading it, you should know that we discuss VGA backwards compatibility problems, Saints Row 2 issues, Faith and a .45, and an assortment of other random topics. Click forth and read like it's 2009. Because, well, it is.
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On my previous 360 I was having an issue where if I played a game for more than about 20 minutes, my console would overheat and get a disk read error. I've since replaced the console, but recently, playing Saints Row 2, the game will freeze after about a half hour of play, and when I feel the back of the console, it is rather hot. This leads me to several questions:
1) Is this a problem with Saints Row 2 specifically that others have been having? If so, is there a patch on the way? 2) Is there a good way to keep my 360 cool? I know there were some 3rd party cooling devices early on, but I hear they can actually make the problem worse and void your warranty.
Thanks a lot,
To be honest, we're not terribly familiar with Saints Row 2 but, after a little researched, we discovered that yours is apparently a common problem. More importantly, you're Xbox doesn't sound like it's part of the problem. Also, according to the Saints Row 2 community site, there is indeed a patch on the way. No specific date is given for the patch, but it sounds like it's already been submitted to Microsoft for certification. The patch includes a number of tweaks, including multiplayer changes, Achievement bug fixes and more. We imagine the fix you (and many others) will be most interested to see is this one:
"Implemented protection against disc read errors. May reduce or eliminate crashes experienced by some users."
So there you go, hopefully your Saints Row 2 problems will be alleviated in the near future. Hopefully.
As for keeping your Xbox 360 cool, the best advice we can give is to make sure it has plenty of ventilation. Make sure there is open space on all sides of your Xbox if possible. Yes, there are various cooling devices available, but we have no idea how effective they really are. We've heard some readers swear by cooling products (Nyko's Intercooler, for example) and we've reported other sources saying that such products can actually damage your console. We're not sure if using a cooling product will actually void your warranty, unless you have to crack open your Xbox to install it, in which case it definitely voids your warranty. One thing we can tell you: If your console breaks down and you do use a cooling device, you might not want to mention it to Microsoft.
Any word on if this game is still going to be coming out, or has it been quietly canned? We haven't heard much about it since April, last I remember.
We have heard anything regarding Faith and a .45, but we're going to guess that it was put on the backburner while developer Deadline Games focuses on Watchmen: The End is Nigh for Xbox Live Arcade. We've inquired about the status of Faith and a .45 with Deadline -- we were actually very intrigued when it was revealed in 2007 -- and we'll be sure to keep you up to date when we know more.
here's a bunch of questions, I hope I don't ask for too much stuff.
-I am using a VGA cable (playing on my computer monitor), which means Halo CE can not run for some unknown reason to me ... so my question is, how many games are unable to run just like HCE? is there a list (or could you make one?) of Xbox games that don't work with the VGA cable?
-Is Doom 2 planned to be released one day or the other as an XBLA game?
-Also ... is there a release date for the next Wolfenstein game? if not ... any estimation? do we know if there will be split screen coop?
-Could you please say whether the next Star Ocean game is a 360 exclusive or not? I have seen some other sites saying it's for both the PS3 and 360, and some other sites saying it's an Xbox exclusive, which makes me confused...
-And also ... I have heard things about the next Final Fantasy game being a 360 exclusive only in some part of the world (USA and Europe) while it is a PS3 exclusive only in Japan ... what gives?
-Lastly ... did any of you play the Ninja Blade demo? if yes ... what do you think? good/bad/could be better but needs work?
1) Frankly, we've never heard of this problem. We did some quick research and, apparently, the PAL version of Halo is incompatible with the VGA cable (along with the PAL versions of a few other games). It seems that some PAL games output in 50Hz, while the VGA cable runs in 60Hz. Thus, if a PAL game supports 60Hz output, it should work with the VGA cable. You can find a complete list of backwards compatible games on Wikipedia here. All games with "Yes" under the 60Hz column should be compatible. Also, you might consider picking up a Component-to-VGA adapter, which should get rid of the problem entirely. Not the cheapest solution, but it might be your only option.
2) Ratings were spotted for both Final Doom and Ultimate Doom on the ESRB website about two years ago, so it's probably safe to say we'll see more Doom. Final Doom is an expansion of Doom II, so it would be a bit strange for it to arrive on XBLA by itself.
3) Expect Wolfenstein to hit sometime this year. It had better have co-op but, no, we haven't heard whether or not it will. It does have Nazis though, so that's a start.
4) Star Ocean's exclusivity has been a tricky subject for a while now. The best we can say is that Square Enix said in June 2008 that there are "no plans" for a PS3 version of the game. Anyone familiar with PR speak knows that "no plans" is not a definite no, so anything could happen.
5) Final Fantasy XIII is not being released on the Xbox 360 in most Asian territories, including Japan (but not Taiwan). That might eventually change, but for now it's exclusive to PS3 in Japan. The Xbox 360 isn't exactly the most popular console in Japan, so it's not all that surprising that Square Enix is more interested in bringing the game to western territories where it stands a better chance at success.
That's it for this week, folks. Keep sending your questions to: ask [att] xbox360fanboy [dawt] com.