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The latest Zombie Army Dispatch says that Stubbs the Zombie is now playable on the Xbox 360. Stubbs is included on the compatibility list; but if it is a recent addition, it doesn't have a "new" tag next to the name. In any case, as Stubbs uses a modified Halo engine, it's hardly surprising that it would work on the 360.

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About five years ago, I wondered that the introduction of a PC-like console, plus a network service like Xbox Live, might lead to consoles and console games that were just as buggy as their PC counterparts, and that would require constant post-purchase updating to fix the many glitches.

That day is now here.

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As of today I've been reinstalled in Rampancy's core after a short business trip to London and environs last week, the culmination (or at least the high point) of which was some Halo 2 play on XBL with Stuntmutt and c0ld vengeance. In the meantime, here are the most important items in the Halo/Xbox 360verse in that time:

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Two major categories of news in this roundup: Stubbs and Xbox 360.

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Microsoft has listed all 200 or so games they say that the Xbox 360 will be backwards compatible with, as well as revealing that all such games, not just Halo and Halo 2, will be automatically upscaled to 720p. Microsoft's VP for the Xbox Product Group, Todd Holmdahl, also did a Q&A about the 360's backwards compatibility.

As mentioned earlier, the hard drive accessory is necessary for backwards compatibility, in order to store the "emulation profile" for the game you're trying to play. The hard drive comes preloaded with early versions of the profiles for Halo and Halo 2.

NOTE: Marty "the Elder" O'Donnell warns that this early version of the emulation profile for Halo and Halo 2 has serious problems with audio, and urges everyone to get the new version via XBL or Xbox.com before playing:

Without the update the audio will suck. Without the update you will think that your new Xbox 360 is broken.

Other profiles can be downloaded from XBL or installed from a CD, either one you burn yourself after downloading profiles from Xbox.com on your computer, or on a CD ordered from Microsoft.

Saved games will not be transferred from old Xboxes.

This week's Bungie Update mentions that texture pop-in on Halo 2 should be "slightly improved" due to the new box's DVD drive. Copies of Halo and/or Halo 2 running in emulation on Xbox 360s are compatible in network games with players running those games on original Xboxes. Halo 1 still doesn't support Xbox Live, and won't. The

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A year ago, on November 9, Halo 2 was released. And there was much rejoicing. And not a little bitching about mostly insignificant stuff. But nevermind that now.

To celebrate Halo 2's first anniversary, Bungie is revealing a neat little tidbit. If you play your existing copy of Halo 2 in an Xbox 360 when it comes out later this week, this is what you'll see:

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On the eve of Halo 2's first anniversary, most of the hype isn't about what Bungie is doing, but what Microsoft is doing to get ready the vehicle for whatever Bungie does next: the Xbox 360. We've got:

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All Xbox 360 games that use Xbox Live for online play are going to share a single method for doing matchmaking: a system called TrueSkill and based on methods similar to those used for ranking chess players. IGN has an in-depth look at the TrueSkill system with its creators.

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Bit by bit, the new features of the revised Xbox.com website are coming online. The My Xbox and new forums appear to be working now. One of the more interesting features in My Xbox is the much-touted Gamercard feature, that shows a personal avatar, your Zone, your Rep, and your Gamertag.

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Xbox.com is carrying an official notice of a 24-hour outage of Xbox.com and Xbox Live on October 24, 2005, in preparation for a new look for both the service and the site, including the launch of My Xbox in early November and the Xbox 360 launch in late november.

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Xbox 360 users will have their "gamer card" showing their XBL gamertag, picture, last five games and "gamerscore" tightly integrated into a new version of Xbox.com, including the new forumsm says Major Nelson in his latest blog entry.

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Aspyr has announced the system requirements for the Mac version of Stubbs the Zombie, due out next month. Apparently the game is shipping on DVD, unlike Halo for the Mac, which shipped on CD.

The requirements are:

  • Mac OS X v10.3.9 or later
  • 1.2GHz G4 processor or better
  • 256MB RAM
  • 4GB hard disk drive space
  • 64MB RAM video card, ATI Radeon 9600 / Nvidia GeForce FX5200 or better
  • DVD drive
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The Dominion Post points out the sweet irony in the deal that brings Peter Jackson's WETA Digital studio's talents to bear on the Halo film. Namely, a render farm made of IBM blade servers running Linux, not Windows.

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GameSpot is reporting that the same company that has made mobile versions of Microsoft games such as Midtown Madness 3, Zoo Tycoon 2, and Age of Empires 2, has acquired the rights to make mobile Halo properties and is working with Bungie to figure out what kind of applications to make:

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BetaNews has put up twelve screenshots of the Xbox 360's user interface, showing various features such as the Games blade (Zorro the Games Blade?), the Xbox Live blade, the Xbox Live Marketplace, video messages (there's a bad id

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