Hook Champ Preview

Rocketcat Games has been running a pre-release adhoc beta of Hook Champ. It is an 8-bit style side-scroller with very simple touch controls.

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You’re an infamous adventurer that starts each mission by swapping out a fancy idol for a fake one, of course it never works and you’re left to run away with your treasure.

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Not from a boulder, but from something that seems like a more extreme version of chain chomp from Mario’s games.

The gameplay is more like Sonic. You’ve gotta hook onto the ceiling and various other objects that stick out from the background without stopping or that fellow will eat you.

Make it through a level picking up lesser trophies along the way and you can buy some awesome new hats before heading out on your next adventure.

I’ve enjoyed it so far, but you don’t have to take my word for it. Check out the video:

When it is released Hook Champ will have a 99¢ sale, down from the normal $3 price.

Hulu Desktop

Hulu Desktop

Hulu Desktop (available for Mac and Windows) seemed like a great idea when I heard about it earlier, so I’ve taken it for a test drive with some original Battlestar Galactica and found it to be better than the experience of watching through the browser.

How so? Firefox on Mac at least is riddled with issues involving Flash, seemingly randomly it slows down and locks up. With Hulu Desktop, the Flash instance is outside of Firefox and runs smoothly. On my Vista 64 desktop as depicted above, Hulu Desktop runs smoothly as well.

On both platforms there are various handy features missing, like an “always on top” option. As this is a beta product I’m not surprised that various features aren’t here, and Hulu says they will listen to customer feedback for fixing them.

There are a lot of people who would rather just download their television shows using Bit Torrent, I think Hulu Desktop is making it much easier to stay legal. You can hook this up with an HDTV and your mac mini or PC for a very good TV watching experience with software that is a billion times more responsive than the software on a Tivo.

Are you ‘app-noxious’?

“My husband and I bought Google (T-Mobile) G1 phones in December and there are tons of free apps you can download,” says Jessica Singleton, a 29-year-old freelance writer from Seattle. “He downloaded this one app, “DeskBell,” which makes noises, including a gong, a cowbell and a ‘ding’ like a service bell.”

Unfortunately, her husband began using the app whenever she said something he didn’t like.

“There have been a few times when I’ll say ‘Can you take out the trash?’ and I get gonged,” says Singleton, who recently got revenge by downloading “That’s Not Funny,” another noise-making app.

“He got home and I asked him how his day was. When he mentioned he’d lost a bet with a friend, I played the ‘Wa-wa-wa-waaaah’ noise, the one you hear on old sitcoms sometimes.”

via Are you ‘app-noxious’? – Tech and gadgets- msnbc.com.

MLB At Bat 2009 Review (iPhone)

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I’ve been listening to MLB.app since the start of the season and as rocky as it has been for the fighting phils, the app has been great.

It streams audio from the Phillies home radio station, even though I’m in San Francisco.

It plays highlight videos from mlb.tv.

It costs $10 per season, whereas the streaming audio feature from mlb.com costs $15.

Most importantly, it gives you a box score and play-by-play text.

Overall, I’ve had few issues with At Bat. Mainly, I’d appreciate it if there were full streaming video of the game, but I suspect they’ll do that for next season and charge $10-$20 more for the app.

The lesser issue is with my connectivity. I live in SF and AT&T’s network stinks, but the inability (on the part of the app or the iPhone) to switch between edge/3G while streaming the in-game audio is terrible. I have to wake my phone up just to get it to realize it should keep trying to get signal.

If you are usually in a wifi-zone like I am, though, you’ll be fine. We’re lucky to have At Bat on the iPhone and it is a steal at $9.99. As far as I know there are no blackouts for the radio stream.

Check out the gallery after the break for all the screens. Then go buy it from the app store.

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