This post originally ran on Treehugger.
If you play video games, you probably know the feeling: You’re all geared up to race against Bowser or show off your lightsaber skills or start thinking with portals, when something goes wrong. The disc jams, the friendly green lights turn red, the screen goes suddenly and disconcertingly dark.
Optical drives are delicate creatures. Slot-loading drives, like the Wii’s, are particularly susceptible to problems. Luckily, swapping out a Wii’s optical drive is not terribly difficult. Guide here.
In 2005, eager gamers found that the highly-anticipated Xbox 360 had a fatal flaw—after prolonged use, the console has a tendency to overheat, which melts the solder that tethers the GPU to the motherboard. When the Xbox 360’s hardware fails, the console stops working and its circular logo flashes a soul-wrenching red. These lights have been ominously nicknamed the “red ring of death.” We have a kit to fix the problem, with better thermal paste, additional heat sinks, and all the necessary tools. Guide here, video below.