R4 Gold Pro Revolution for 3DS

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Well, I’m thinking that I might have lucked out by being able to purchase this item from Amazon. I was actually surprised that it was available to order as it is usually difficult to purchase mod chips and related hardware from commercial retailers in the U.S. Yet, I did actually receive an R4 Gold Pro Revolution.

The cartridge enables a 3DS (and other systems such as the DSi) to run homebrew software. It’s easy to use, though it requires a micro SD card in order to function and some software that must be downloaded from the manufacturer’s website. The cartridge gets around the typical mod restrictions by simply presenting itself as a valid game to the system.

On the DSi I was able to run some Nintendo Entertainment Emulators (NES). The 3DS is capable of running several others including a Super NES emulator.

Overall, I think this is a very cool upgrade for the 3DS.

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Enhancing Replay Value In Console Games (And How To Kill It)

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In this post I’m focusing on console gaming. PC games have provided extras, add-ons, mods, etc for nearly as long as they’ve been around (at the least it was often possible to hack game RAM). Typically, it’s been much easier to modify a game on a PC regardless of whether it was what the developer intended (or expected).

I’ve played countless games over the years. There were times when I may have averaged 20+ hours/week playing. For the past couple of years I’ve probably averaged only about 15 minutes/week. Most of my reasons for playing less just have to do more with an increase in “adult” responsibilities, though a lack of interest in available titles and the replay value of many games are also factors.

A simple definition of replay value is the amount of interest and time a gamer will dedicate to a game after it’s been completed. That’s overly simplified – the characteristics of a game that determine replay value can vary from game to game and genre to genre.

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CM15A (ActiveHome Pro) Antenna Boost

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Earlier I was using a CM15A connected to a Windows computer located in the far corner of the house in conjunction with an RR501 Transceiver. The CM15A stock antenna is very weak – it can’t pickup a signal half-way across the house, which is why I had the RR501 setup about mid-way in the house. It did a good job of picking up the remotes (and I never seemed to experience conflicts between the CM15A and the RR501 so it appears that only the RR501 picked up the majority of RF signals).

However, I didn’t care to have a transceiver sitting in a hallway when it shouldn’t have been needed anyway. I decided to look into boosting the CM15A antenna. I tried several suggestions such as placing heavy gauge wire on the antenna or a coat hanger. Several experiments didn’t provide much improvement – the reception may have been boosted from about 10 feet to twenty feet but that wasn’t anywhere near enough to pickup signals on the other side of the house.

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