Crappy electronics and crappy parts. It's good to be a DIYer.
First off I need to admit an addiction of mine. I'm a Guitar Hero (and now a Rock Band) junkie. It's just clean fun to play around on these games but I've blown countless evenings horsing around on GH3 along with my buddy Donald. So we decide to take things to the next level and get Rock Band. Great game but lousy guitar controllers. Plain and simple, some of the parts are junk.
For instance, take the tilt sensor (please! take it!) and it's function. Or rather it's lack of function because right out of the box the thing just doesn't work. After messing around with the thing for the past two nights I came to the conclusion the tilting sensors just don't work. I did some digging around on the 'net and found out that this far from being an isolated incident and that it is downright futile to RMA the thing because the replacements are also not working properly. So warranty, shmarranty is the marching order.
I ordered up two nice and toxic mercury switches to replace the massively bad ball switches that the controller was originally equipped with. I figure it's going to be used in a house with no small kids and we're pretty easy on our toys so there is small chance that we will cause a hazmat occurrence or give somebody brain damage (as if that's really a risk considering who's using these toys ). Once I have the switches installed I'm going to goop them up with hot melt glue or silicon to mount 'em up which will I hope give the little glass tubes some degree of added protection.
I can't get over how poorly selected the parts are in these controllers. It looks like while I have the thing apart to replace the tilt switches I'm going to go ahead and replace the other weak links I've seen. It's asinine to pay $60 for something that needs more money and time to make work properly the way it should of from the factory.
Donald isn't the handiest guy in the world so he's leaving it up to me to make things good here. I'm just glad I'm a DIY kind of guy and I have a large amount of trepidation in my genes. It's not like everyone who plays GH3 or RB is like this and is willing to mod the snot out of a piece of equipment. Think of how many parents bought this game and ancillary stuff for their kids and the damn things don't work. It boggles my mind to believe that this is a good reflection on the Rock Band name and EA in a larger effect. They should be embarrassed to put such crap on the market when the game itself is pretty darn cool. It all adds up to a lot of frustrated customers and casts the game maker, EA in this instance, in a bad light. Talk about a black eye, I'm really disappointed that EA isn't cracking the whip a lot more with their controller factory in China and putting them on notice.
But then again, this is China I'm talking about and I'm still holding a grudge against their attitude towards the consumer. Between melamine in pet food and lead paint on toys I'm more than a bit ****** about our country doing business with them but it seems to be totally unavoidable at this point. The labor is too cheap and unfortunately I think it's so cheap that the factories and their workers just don't care if something is right or not. I might be totally wrong on that point, and I hope I am, but there is just so much junk being imported from China that even I am starting to raise an eyebrow at Chinese-sourced goods. I'm usually pretty easy going about such things but this is really a burr in my britches after this weekend. Dead pets are bad and totally inexcusable due to the cause but it was just the tip of the iceberg in my opinion. Now there's problems with pharmaceuticals from there. What's next? I'm almost too afraid to find out the answer to that.
Well that's all the rant I have in me for the night. Just needed to get it off my chest. Later on y'all.