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GOG’s unfunny joke

Features, Games and Gaming

Ever see a comedian that was so bad it made you angry? Say a guy in Vegas, off the strip, who’s only there because he’s the owner’s brother-in-law? He’s on stage, huffing and puffing away, smelling of cheap laundromats and thrice cut cocaine telling jokes told by a ten-year old if he was a 45-year-old executive in the 50’s.

If you follow.

GOG’s ‘joke’ of closing down is exactly like that. Maybe even with a bit of Rob Schneider from “I Now Pronounce You Chuck And Larry” thrown in.

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Space Plus Minecraft Equals Spacecraft — A Modest Proposal

Games and Gaming

We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.

Let’s face it: I’m addicted, you’re addicted, we’re all sucking on the sweet smoky crackpipe that is Minecraft. In every single web community or forum I’m a part of, non-gamers are either getting sick of hearing about Minecraft, or the scales have dropped from their non-gamer eyes and they are nipples deep in it, nodding out in a pile of block, a diamond pick deep in their main vein.

The game’s far from perfect, and far from finished, but Mefight Club at least has taken to it like nothing since TF2, back in the misty days of our founding, and the creativity on our multiplayer server is truly, literally astounding. It makes me proud to be a part of it.

But I want more. I want…. SPAAAAAACE.

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I love this game so much.
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WARRRRRRBAAAAAANNND!

Games and Gaming

There I am, riding high on my recent separation from the Sarranid Sultanate, finally a free man. Under my command are an elite army of about 35 Swadian Knights and 40 Sarranid Mamlukes. My men are happy, morale is high, and lo and behold, we stumble upon a castle with only 120 relatively weak soldiers guarding it! And better yet, it is a filthy Vaegir stronghold. After suffering under the orders of Sultan Hakim for too many months, I think it is high time I strike out on my own, and stake a claim in this land of Calradia. The castle in question also borders the lands of the Sarranid, with whom I still have fairly high esteem, so chances are good I can make peace with them, and have only the Vaegir swine to contend with on my other border if I manage to storm this castle.
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Thanks to darkf666 for the Old One. (http://darkf666.deviantart.com/)
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Lovecraft Wallows In A Starcraft II Loss

Features, Games and Gaming

It is harrowing to have the veil ripped away from ones eyes, the infinite horror of that nameless alien weakness.  I go to the study, go to my office, throw dinner parties, with never the glimmer of suspicion as to what eldritch terror will grab me from the dark, pull me into an mute stupour as your sixteen carriers run ragged over my full complement of siege tanks and level 3 upgraded marines (weapons and armour!).

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Decoding John Carmack’s twitter feed.

Games and Gaming

A few months ago, John Carmack got a twitter account. Typically twitter is used to express the mundane details of one’s day, sometimes to chat with others on subjects, and gives one’s followers an update on what’s going on at work.

John Carmack uses his twitter account to talk about his job. Most of the advances in 3D gaming, First Person Shooters, and game engines can be attributed to some form of the Quake engine. He works on graphics programming all day, pushing the envelope. As a result, his tweets are a jumble of jargon. Hard to understand, until now. With the magic of the internet we can look up the meaning of these words and maybe piece together what’s going on.
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My Vote For the Best EVAR: the early 90s

Features, Games and Gaming

As others have noted, there is a challenge going on right now among MeFightClub members to name the best game.  EVAR.   MeFightClub is a group of grown-ups (in both the sense of age but more importantly in maturity) who play games (and who sometimes say EVAR).  The community was started around Valve’s multi-player shooters so there is a real love for those.  But more generally the community reflects my gaming interests: PC-centered, mature (not in the R-rated sense but in the sense that rejects the 13-yo boy’s aesthetic common to much gaming), and most of all fun.

But this challenge has been… well … challenging to me. Try as I might I just can’t bring myself to name one best game EVAR.  Part of the problem is that I am just not that decisive and just not that attached to a single game.  I am also hung up on the criteria I should use and it is made all the more difficult because one must compare games across three decades when the underlying technology has changed so much.  So should you reward Doom for revolutionizing a new genre of games or do you favor a more modern FPS because it looks and sounds better?  Do you give a nod to a game that was technically innovative and ahead of its time, like Command HQ was for the Real-Time Strategy genre, or favor the game that introduced those ideas to the masses like Dune II, Warcraft, or Age of Empires?  Do you go with a game that made you smile for days after you finished it, like I did with Portal, or award the game that sucked up the most time?  For me that might be Ultima IV, one of the Civilizations, Railroad Tycoon II, or most recently Team Fortress II.  Like I said, I can’t commit to just one game when I can’t even commit to just one criteria.

But in thinking about this problem I keep coming back to one central seed of a thought that has been growing until I realized it is the only answer I can provide.  The most important thing isn’t a single game or a genre or a company or a designer.  To me the most important period was when computer gaming grew up to embrace all of the things I currently love about gaming: PC-centered, mature, and fun.  That era I would argue is the early-1990s.

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The Most Important (Gaming Company). Evar. Of All Time.

Features, Games and Gaming
[There’s a competition going on at MeFight Club for a blog post about “The Most Important Game Ever”. You’ve got about a day to get your entry in. The prize is pretty sweet too.]

Wow, all time. That’s something. It’s a bit like trying to pick the single best meal you’ve ever had, or the biggest poop you’ve ever taken, or maybe “Which politician had the single biggest effect on democracy, like, EVER?”

(Sorry, it’s been a long week at school and all I really want to do is bash a few academics in their noggins and tell them, “Life is for partying, not for semantics!” But I digress.)

But the hard part isn’t that bit – it’s the bit which reads, “Most Important”. That suggests a title of such singular importance that, in a list of merely rather important videogames, it would be numero uno. El Capitan. The Big Cheese. God, if you would. The God of all videogames. Or, if you’re not religious, but instead like movies and/or the Mafia, the Godfather of all videogames.
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News

According to the Vancouver Province, Relic developer and Vancouver native Brian Wood, who worked as lead designer for the Company of Heroes series, swerved to take the brunt of an oncoming car on the driver side. The accident occurred Friday night in Washington State. Police report that had he not taken this last-second action, both he and his wife would have been killed.

A brave final act for a talented man.

.

Link
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The Most Important Video Game… Ever. IMHO, Of course…

Features, Games and Gaming

There’s been a bit of discussion of late on the MeFightClub board about the Most Important Video Game Ever (thankfully no one insisted on going all meme-ish and spelling it Evar).

Easy, I think, it’s got to be the first video game ever made, right? So off I pop to Wikipedia and start looking around. I was surprised by what I found. Did you know that the first video game was made in 1947? Neither did I…
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For realsies, this time. Maybe.

Games and Gaming, News

Seriously. Every joke has been made. All the snark has been used up. Every dead horse has been revived and then beaten to death again.

Yet, it seems we’re on it again:  Gearbox Software, makers of Borderlands, has officially confirmed picking up the development of Duke Nukem Forever where 3DRealms left it, and release is planned sometimes in 2010.

Given the history (we don’t believe in curses, OR DO WE?) for this particular  title, LevelsOfDetail advises its readership not to hold their breath.  This might in fact result in dizzyness, a bluish discoloration and death, or worse, an headache.

[WSJ, via Kotaku]

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StarCraft II : The Eldritch Mystery of Custom Maps Part II

Features, Games and Gaming

Part I to this aimless ramble is here.

By not allowing users to distribute their custom maps and requiring  authentication to get a map hosted on their servers, Blizzard make themselves the middleman. They want to control the types of games you can play. Censoring out ones they don’t like so much, you know, with the iron-not-quite-gentle-fist-of-oh-watch-out-almost-Godwinned-this-post of corporate control.

But it’s really, I suspect, a way to monetize content. To take advantage of novel games that might get far more popular than one could reasonably expect; and even more harrowing, free.

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