What to Do When an Xbox 360 Stops Reading Game Discs

The Xbox 360 has a history of technical issues, not the least of which are the problems with its disc drive. Recently, my own beleaguered Xbox began to read game discs poorly, sometimes giving an open tray error or simply calling the disc bad, while it read music CDs completely fine.
If your Xbox 360 won’t read game discs, but seems to read other types of discs, here’s what you’ll need to do to get it working again.

1. First, clean the disc drive. Often, an Xbox 360 will read other types of discs because, well, they’re easier to read than the game discs. A bit of dirt on the lens can certainly disrupt the console’s ability to play games, so you’ll want to clean the lens. It would void your warranty to open up the Xbox 360 and clean the lens manually with a bit of isopropyl alcohol (though you’re welcome to do so if you’re a fairly technical person and your warranty’s already void, just be very careful), but you can often clean the lens the lazy way by opening the disc drive and spraying compressed air towards the general area of the lens. Use short, controlled bursts, and be sure to hold the can of compressed air properly–there’s instructions on the side of the can. Don’t spray too much. After a minute or so, try the drive and see if it works. Note that you’ll have to restart the system to see if it’s working.

2. Clean the vents. If the Xbox 360 is overheating, it may need to have better ventilation–overheating causes a lot of disc errors, though it’s less of a common cause than a dirty lens when other types of discs are reading. Still, worth a shot. Clean the back vents with compressed air and be sure to place the Xbox 360 somewhere where it’s less likely to overheat–keep it away from walls and out of cabinets that can cause the problem.

3. Use a disc cleaner. You can also use commercial disc cleaners, which are discs with brushes that you touch with isopropyl alcohol, then play like a CD. This is good if there’s a bit of grime you can’t get, though usually they don’t do any more than the compressed air will do, and they certainly cost a bit more. If you’ve got one laying around though, it’s worth a shot.

Do you have any other tips for fixing an Xbox 360 that won’t read game discs? Post in our comments section below.t

Game Review – the Adventures of Dr. Franken (SNES)

The Adventures of Dr. Franken is a game initially released for the Game Boy by Elite Systems and published by Kemco. It was later ported over to the Super Nintendo Entertainment System in 1993 after having experienced great success on the Game Boy platform.
In The Adventures of Dr. Franken, the plot isn’t really presented to you. Like many other games of this type, the goal here is to go around and defeat or avoid enemies while surving the individual levels. While this lacks depth in terms of actual storyline viability, it doesn’t detract from the amount of fun you can have from the game. Since The Adventures of Dr. Franken is a standardized platformer, it retains its edge despite having no plot (which isn’t really necessary; after all, some of the Mario games don’t have much of a plot).

The graphics in The Adventures of Dr. Franken are decent; I’d say they’re average. The developers certainly could’ve invested a lot more time into the sprites and environment backgrounds, but given the budget and timeframe they were working with I would say they did a pretty fair job. The character sprite himself is rather pixelated and looks completely silly, but it’s quite an upgrade from the GB version. Environments are also pixelated and pay no attention to details.

The audio in The Adventures of Dr. Franken is pretty average, too; the developers didn’t attempt to make this anything noteworthy. Since this game is a sort-of generic platformer, there’s simply nothing to speak of in terms of advantage in making a good sound track for it. That said, the music doesn’t even take advantage of the stereo sound capabilities of the SNES! The main theme here is Moonlight Sonata, which isn’t really ever altered significantly.

The Adventures of Dr. Franken is a rather easy game, with the control scheme being that of a standard platformer. While it’s not overly simplistic by any means, there’s no added depth or complexity of gameplay. Despite this, I rather enjoy Mario-style platformers, so I didn’t dislike it.

In closing, I’d give The Adventures of Dr. Franken a reasonable 2.5 out of 5. While it’s lackluster in terms of audio and graphics, it has decent game play and is reminiscent of many popular games like Mario. Seemingly, The Adventures of Dr. Franken is a stylized version of a classic game we’ve all played for years.

Review: Monster Hunter Freedom 2 for PSP

Monster Hunter Freedom 2: For the PSP – Big Review! – Most of us PSP users should know about the awesome game that is Monster Hunter Freedom by Capcom. Well today, the Sequel has just released, action packed, and funner than ever. Even if you aren’t into RPGs or action games, if you own a PSP, definitely give this game a chance.
The Setting is in the Pokke Village, a snowy mountainous area of monstrous creatures and fantasy. You, play as a Monster Hunter that is in charge of keeping your Village safe from all creatures that give a threat to the people. In this game, expect many, many dinosaur and reptile related monsters. This is basically a hack-and-slash game, but has much detail and declines mindless button-mashing most of the game play. During the game you will have many quests that you must accomplish in order to help out your village. Most Villagers will ask for your help, to either defend them against a certain creature, whish is usually a big boss for you, or fight against a group of monsters attacking the village.

Other villagers will ask your assistance in finding herbs and ingredients for them. If villagers seem pretty fine on their own and have no needs of your work, you can always go to the Gathering Hall where quests are posted there. Customization is very complex and simple, allowing you to choose your basic looks (hair, face, etc.) and even your voice sound. You also have your own home where cooking cats create food for you on the spot. There are over 700 weapons in the game in which you can slay your targeted enemies, 250 quests, and 1,400 armor pieces! With all this, Monster Hunter Freedom 2 should keep you occupied just arranging what to bring to battle. This game uses real life physics, and realistic life rules such as, energy and damage.

If you go into a cold area with light clothing, you will experience cold bite, or freezing setbacks lowering your energy to attack and run as fast. Same rules apply with hot temperature, wearing too much clothing to a boiling area will be too hot and heavy to attack with your best of your abilities. If this does happen, there are always items to help you out, such as warm food, and cool drinks to gain energy and power back. Another helpful item is the paintball, which you splatter on your enemy when it is low on health, just in case it runs away you can always track it down. After a monster dies, you can gather other items from its corpse such as bones to create weapons with, or use the meat for food or armor.

The camera in the game is kind of funky, frequently not giving you a focused camera to move around, focusing on other monster besides the main target, and no lock-on, which can add difficulty when attacking a certain monster in a crowd. It isn’t a huge problem though, as the game play is smooth and usually not a big thing to worry about, only a minor downside in the game. Along with one downside, another one is that monsters are much bigger and smarter now. They seem to have their own mind, not just following AI. You might think, what is so bad about that? Well sometimes they are too difficult, too big, and much more clever than you are. If you slash a dinosaur over and over again it will change tactics and quickly out wit you.

It is especially harder when tracking down a specific flying monster, once low on health, it can either fly away, or find reinforcements turning your hills into mountains, and although this is a good challenge, the game has many good hard levels, and bad hard levels. You will usually end up dying, reloading and starting your search again, hopefully more prepared than previously. Now if you feel that the game is way too hard, you can always find some backup of your own. Using the Ad-Hoc feature on your PSP you can play together with your friends and team up creating more of ease the next time. As we always hear, two monster hunters are better than one. Finding your monster hunter is very simple. Go into the Gathering Hall, and wait till one of you accepts the request, and then presto! While in the Hall together, you can sit, chat, drink, and exchange your stats. Overall, this game is very deep and action packed. Every PSP user should give this game a try, because it is just simple fun. Not complicated, just a fun run fight hack-and-slash adventure game that many people can enjoy.