'Breaking Bad' goes 8-bit

If the names Walter White, Jesse Pinkman, Heisenberg, and "The Blue" mean anything to you, you're going to love this.

There are many stories that seem like obvious candidates for getting the 8-bit role-playing game treatment, but "Breaking Bad" wouldn't have been at the top of my list. But the good folks at College Humor have taken that hit AMC show and boiled its four seasons down into a fantastic video, old-school RPG style.

It's hard to summarize. Let's just say that in the first scene, we see our troubled main character, … Read more

Games that make you rage on iOS

Old-school gamers will remember an age when there were no continues, no checkpoints, and no respawns. If you died during a level, that was it--you went back to the beginning of the level to do it all again. The craziest thing about it? You liked it even though it drove you crazy.

These days, a gaming purist might say games have gotten too easy and gamers have gotten too soft. When dying in a game doesn't mean anything, how can you truly enjoy the game? I'm not sure it matters, but I can see both sides. Maybe after checking out this collection--if you don't throw your iPhone through your computer screen from frustration--you can tell me what you think in the comments.… Read more

Old-school 8-button Nintendo game pad is back

Long for a world without terrorism alerts, credit default swaps, and game controllers more complicated than Facebook's user agreement? Thanks to Elecom's Retro USB Game Pad, a replica of the old-school 8-button rig from the original Nintendo Entertainment System, it's possible to go back to a simpler time.

I came across the game pad while browsing the Japanese treasure trove that is JBox.com and found myself transported back to those sweet days of youth--Crystal Pepsi in my hand, Martika's "Toy Soldiers" in the background, Mario with Tanooki Suit on the screen. Yes, I actually remembered that word without Wikipedia.

Unless you have some luck on eBay, the only way to get ahold of one of these replicas is to wait for them to ship from Japan. The $19.50 game pad fits in a USB slot and comes with 6 feet of cord, 4 configurable fire buttons, and 2 buttons on the top set to autofire.

I'll keep checking back and let you know as soon as it becomes possible to play Call of Duty with that original gun controller we all used for Duck Hunt on NES.… Read more

The Incident: Ridiculous, 8-bit fun for iPhone, iPad

Do you love 8-bit style graphics and simple, addictive gameplay? Me too. And that's why The Incident is sure to be one of the go-to time-wasting apps on your iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad.

You play as Frank Solway--your everyday suit-wearing dude just trying to catch a cab. Except today, everything (and I do mean every thing) is falling from the sky trying to squash you.

It's up to you, iPhone/iPad user, to maneuver Frank from side to side, dodging everything from traffic signs to statues to cars, climbing over the rubble to untold heights, attempting to … Read more

Tetris coming to a T-shirt and waterbed near you

Tetris has a very special place in my heart. As a child, my parents wouldn't buy my brothers and sister and I a Nintendo. They wanted us do "play outside" and "enjoy our youth" and "build character." We, of course, wanted to play Punch-Out!!!, Duck Hunt, and Metroid.

Then my cousin introduced my grandmother to Tetris. She was hooked. When we asked our grandparents for an NES they basically told my mom and dad that if they didn't get us one they were bad parents. Thanks Grandma, and thanks Tetris.

And now … Read more

Dark Side of the Moon goes 8-bit

Adding to all the cover versions of Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" that are out there--the recent one by the Flaming Lips and guests, the dub version by The Easy Star All-Stars, the brilliant parody by The Squirrels--comes this.

Video game programmer Brad Smith has taken the Pink Floyd classic and reworked it as a bunch of sound files for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), Nintendo's classic 8-bit video console. And he has posted the whole album as a YouTube playlist. (YouTube seems to be having some technical issues as I write this, … Read more

8-Bit NYC is the coolest map--ever

I'm not one to fawn over online maps, but 8-Bit NYC appeals to my two loves: usefulness and 1980s adventure video games.

The 8-Bit NYC map is simply fantastic. The service displays New York City in a depiction that's modeled after maps in adventure video games from the 1980s. Even better, all the content in 8-Bit NYC is accurate, making it a viable mapping tool, as well.

"I hope to evoke the same urge for exploration, abstract sense of scale, and perhaps most importantly unbounded excitement that many of us remember experiencing on the Nintendo Entertainment System, … Read more

Gadgettes Podcast 164: The Kill Me - Holiday Gift Episode

We spend most of today's show covering holiday gifts you won't want to stuff in the stocking of someone you care about... and a few that you might.

Subscribe with iTunes (audio) Subscribe with iTunes (video) Subscribe with RSS (audio) Subscribe with RSS (video) EPISODE 164

ThinkGeek 8-bit tie

Necktie for music-loving commuters

Blacksocks — the Sockscription ™

The Cushy Tushy

Passive aggressive gifts for tardy geeks

The H1N1 Destroying UV Wand

My DNA Fragrance lets you smell like a celebrityRead more

Jay-Z's latest track hit: 8-bit NES-style hip-hop

Well, other than the fact that both Mega Man and Jay-Z were pop-culture icons of their respective eras (yes, people, Jay-Z is that popular), they now each have 8-bit, NES-style music associated with them.

Video game music from the 8-bit Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) era had a very distinct style. Even music on other 8-bit consoles like the Sega Master System could not match it.

Anyone who at least played an NES back in those days (pretty much every kid, at least in the U.S.) will immediately recognize the style of that sound after just a few bars.

It'… Read more

Shirt lights up when love is near

With Valentine's Day just two weeks away, ThinkGeek is stepping to the aid of the gift-challenged with a proximity-based T-shirt that lights up when your paramour is near.

Suffering the aching emptiness and despair of being apart from your loved one? The 8-Bit Dynamic Life Shirt will register a meager two and a half pixelated hearts. But snuggle up to the object of your affection (who, incidentally, must be wearing a matching black and red T-shirt for this display of devotion to work), and all five hearts on both garments light up in a blaze of cheeky romance and … Read more