3D Classics Kid Icarus at Gamestop

So you didn't pre-order Kid Icarus: Uprising from Best Buy, Amazon or Gamestop and get the free download code for the 3D Classics: Kid Icarus game, but you really want it? Well, you're in luck -- Gamestop is now offering download codes for the game in their stores and via the GameStop.com Download Center (DLC) for only $5.99.

This is just one of several Nintendo eShop games that Gamestop is going to be offering for download; nice to know that you don't always HAVE to pre-order to get the goods!

Zelda GameCube Controller Prototype Sold on eBay

A few years back when The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess for the Nintendo GameCube was being introduced, Nintendo had initially planned on also releasing a custom-made, limited edition controller to go along with the game. Nintendo eventually decided not to release the controller, but a prototype or two still existed, and one of them was recently sold on eBay.

Legend of Zelda GameCube Controller Prototype
Storage Case Prototype for Zelda GameCube Controller

The controller was initially going to be released in what looks like an antique book-styled packaging, and you have to love the removable leather sheath that
fits over the bottom-right section of the controller. The eBay Completed Listings showed the controller sold for $6,000, but when you clicked on the actual product page for the listing, it showed it sold for $2,500. Since the item was being sold worldwide, I guess it's possible the difference in the pricing was due to regional monetary conversions, and the two amounts are equivalent.

The pix shown are screenshots from the original listing by eBay seller GameTimeVault. Even though the controller is non-functional, it's rarity would still make it one heck of a enviable Zelda collector's item, don't you think?

Nintendo Week Update - March 29, 2012 - Farewell

Sadly, this week's Nintendo Week episode ended with a screen saying pretty much "Thanks for watching, hope you keep playing our games".

I guess we should have seen the writing on the wall -- first, episodes starting getting shorter and shorter, then co-host Alison Whitney left. 
Although sometimes the commentary was goofy, we still enjoyed watching it.

In this final episode, Gary and Dark Gary discuss how to perfect techniques in Kid Icarus 3D, the role and importance of Palutena, and strategies on beating certain enemies.  The StreetPass and SpotPass features of Kid Icarus 3D are also discussed.  Dark Gary gives an overview of Xenoblade Chronicles for Wii, and Gary overviews CRUSH 3D for the Nintendo 3DS.  Then, the crushing news of the end of Nintendo Week.

The final episode aired March 29, 2012 can be watched below:

I guess our feelings about this can be summed up by this emotion-filled character picture from one of our Animal Crossing towns -- we're so sad!

Nintendo Wii Disc Cannot Be Read Error Fix

Yikes! In the middle of our beloved Animal Crossing game we were playing on our Wii, we got the dreaded "The Disc Cannot Be Read" error. "OK", we said, "before we completely freak out, we'll remove the disc, reset the Wii, clean the disc, then put the disc back in". Well, we didn't get the disc cannot be read error again, but we did get the generic (but equally frustrating), "An error has occurred" message. Now we were concerned. We tried over and over again to get our Wii to work, but no dice.

Well, we decided we'd call Nintendo and see what it would cost to have our Wii repaired. We were quoted a price of about $80 since we were outside of the warranty period, and although they said (and I'm sure meant) that they would do all they could to retain our game save data, they couldn't guarantee it would be preserved. They also said that it would take I think about 4 weeks or so to get the Wii back to us, and although we had four other Wiis in the house
(yes, I said four, we ARE Nintendo fanatics after all!), we would still be without all of the stages, levels and characters we unlocked on Super Smash Brothers Brawl, Mario Kart, and Mario Sports Mix for a long period of time since you can't transfer the save data, and that just doesn't work in a house of fanatics.

I got on the net and starting searching for ways to resolve the problem, and found that some people were just replacing the laser lens in their Wiis to solve the problem.  Well, after researching that process further, I decided that was a little too cumbersome of a process for me, so I kept searching and found that replacing the entire disc drive in the Wii would resolve the problem as well, without having to deal with the intricacies of laser lens replacement.  Now, I'm kind of apprehensive about performing my own hardware fixes (if you couldn't tell already), but it sounded and looked so easy, I decided I would buy a drive and give it a try. Well, one new drive and about an hour later - voila! - my Wii was back in business!

In a nutshell, this is what I did to fix the drive:

First, I ordered a replacement Wii Disc Drive and a tri-wing screwdriver (you'll need this to open the Wii in addition to a small Philips screwdriver (like the size to open a computer), as there are a bazillion screws to remove from the Wii, and a regular screwdriver won't work with the tri-wing screws. I also recommend that the tri-wing screwdriver you get is magnetized to lessen the chances of the screws getting dropped and lost during the surgery process. I ordered both of these items from Amazon.com (the drive was about $50, and the screwdriver about $4), but you can order them from wherever you choose if Amazon's not your thing.

Once the drive arrived, I watched (and followed with a hawk's eye) a video on YouTube that shows you how to disassemble a Wii and install the new disc drive. It was so helpful being able to watch how to do this step-by-step and be able to pause as needed.  There are several videos on YouTube showing disassembly and installation, but the one I watched is below (I recommend having the sound off though, as the narration is kind of in a weird voice-disguise type of tone):

Once the drive was installed and the legion of screws were back in place, I hooked up the Wii, popped in the Animal Crossing disc and was good to go, with all of my game save data intact (phew)!   Hope you're able to fix your disc cannot be read error just as easily as I did -- good luck!

Happy Birthday Nintendo 3DS!

Today marks the one year anniversary of the release of the Nintendo 3DS and to commemorate the event, as a special gift, if you go to your StreetPass Mii Plaza, you'll get a special Mii of Reggie Fils-Aime, President and COO of

Nintendo of America in golden pants! When doing Puzzle Swap, Reggie will have dozens of different puzzle pieces you can choose from, and on Find Mii, Reggie will automatically be at Level 5.

We didn't get our 3DS until around September last year, but have definitely enjoyed it! We have met several people over StreetPass and SpotPass, and love making videos and listening to music on it. Playing games like Zelda Ocarina of Time, Mario Kart 7, Kid Icarus Uprising and Super Mario 3D Land is so cool in 3D and really adds to an already enjoyable game-playing experience. We also have definitely enjoyed playing the trivia games, watching product demos and Pokemon episodes while accessing the Nintendo Zone at McDonalds, Marriott hotels, Ruby Tuesday's and Starbucks.

We are really looking forward to seeing what the 3DS holds for us in the future -- hope you are enjoying it as much as we are!

Wanna Work at Nintendo?

So you're the ultimate Nintendo fan and would LOVE to test and try out the latest games for the Wii, 3DS or other ultra-cool system that Nintendo is developing before it is released to the general public -- what to do?  Well, if you're lucky, you just might be able to get a gig at Nintendo.

Not that I'm saying that all it takes to work at Nintendo is luck -- you definitely have to have the appropriate "chops" to do the work -- but, c'mon, I'm sure you'd consider anyone that got to work at Nintendo testing their latest and greatest products to be lucky!  Ahhh, imagine the smell of Nintendo wafting in the breeze as you work, lol!

Nintendo tends to have permanent positions in the business development, business intelligence and software engineering areas, but also often has contract opportunities for technical writers, software testers, and developers.  There are a few places you can look for jobs with Nintendo -- on the Nintendo of America website's Job Opportunities page (where there are also job descriptions and requirements to become a game tester, customer service rep, and game developer), the Thingamajob.com website (type in the search word "nintendo" in the Job Search keyword box), or on the Parker Staffing Services website or Facebook page (they list seasonal opportunities for game testers and customer service reps here).

Most of the jobs available with Nintendo are located in the Redmond, WA area, or on the west coast (darn, the laments of being an Eastie and not a Westie!), with a few jobs available at the Nintendo retail store in New York (yay, us Easties got a little somethin' somethin'!).  They unfortunately do not offer off-site or remote positions.

At any rate, if you're interested in a job with Nintendo, check out the links above -- good luck!

Scored Legend of Zelda Concert Tickets Today

I was able to purchase tickets to the Legend of Zelda 25th Anniversary Symphony of the Goddesses concert today and am so excited!!!  This will be our first Nintendo sponsored event that we will be attending, and are really looking forward to it -- too bad we have to wait until July for the concert to get to our area (and even then it is still 4 hours away)!

Usually the Nintendo events that we want to attend are on the West Coast and since we are on the East Coast, they are an (expensive) no-go, but this time we lucked out and can't wait to see the performance.  From reviews I have read, the concert is a wonderful experience -- I'm looking forward to the orchestra playing (I used to be in one myself long time ago),

and my son is of course looking forward to hearing the music and seeing the Zelda footage on the giant screens that will be on display during the concert.  The venue where they are having it has good reviews too, and we opted for lawn seats, as you can bring your own food and drink and have a nice picnic while you enjoy the concert.

Here is some footage that someone posted on YouTube who attended one of the concerts earlier this year:

Below is short description of the concert from one of the venues:
 “The Legend of Zelda™: Symphony of the Goddesses” is the first ever video game themed concert to feature a complete 4 movement symphony, showcasing the work of Nintendo composer and sound director Koji Kondo.

Witness  25 years of video game history unfolding  complete with gorgeous and cinematic video presentation, synced to picture with the game’s sensational, thematic and action-packed music played live by a full symphony orchestra.

If you haven't attended one of these concerts yet and want to see what venues and dates are available, you can view the Zelda Concert Schedule here.

Kid Icarus Uprising Released Today - Hooray!

So, anyone else super-excited about the Kid Icarus Uprising release today?  My son sure was -- we pre-ordered it on Amazon.com so we could get the free download code for the special 3D Classics version of the original Kid Icarus (which we got by email this morning -- thanks, Amazon!), and he was stalking the UPS man today waiting for the package to arrive.  Well, it FINALLY came (why was UPS a little late today, arghhh!), and of course, wild excitement ensued.

The game came with a special stand for you to use during game play (optional usage), which my son showed me how cool it looked on his 3DS, then quickly put off to the side in favor of regular handheld play.   The game also came with six AR cards which give info on the characters/weapons on the cards.  Another neat feature of the cards is that they are interactive, and you can actually have the characters on the cards battle with each other!

Kid Icarus Uprising 3DS Game & Stand Unboxed

One of the things that I appreciated was the reversible cover art included with the game case.  When you open the case, you can see pictures of Pit with various expressions on his face, and when you remove the instruction booklet and other paperwork included with the game, you can see various pictures of other characters in the game like Palutena and Medusa.    Even nicer, when you remove the artwork from the game case, you see other visuals related to the game.  Nice!

Inside of game case

Reverse side of Kid Icarus case artwork
We haven't played the game that much yet to be able to dish on all of it's great features, but from what we have seen, it is action-filled and user-friendly, even having a feature that will recommend an appropriate intensity (level)

of gameplay according to its observations.  Of course, you can choose the intensity you want to play at, and you will definitely want to try some of the higher intensities to obtain some of the most powerful weapons available in the game.

Nintendo has dedicated a site to the Kid Icarus game where you can view screenshots, how-to videos, learn about the different modes of gameplay (multi-player local play or via the internet), and explore different stages of the game among other things.  You can visit the Kid Icarus site here.

Nintendo Week Update - March 22, 2012

This week's episode gives a brief overview of Kid Icarus: Uprising for the 3DS, including descriptions of multi-player modes, stages and intensities.  Gary describes some of the features of the free Nintendo Zone, and Dark Gary reviews the WiiWare game 2 Fast 4 Gnomz.  Watch Episode below.

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