1. I did a little redesign of the site, mainly because I wanted a top navigation menu. There aren’t many entries there for now, but I have big plans for the future.
2. Guess which game went open-source? More than 20 years after its original release, none other than Prince of Persia. As code doesn’t age very well, I doubt if it would actually be of much use to anyone but historians. But symbolically, it’s a nice move.
3. Lately I’ve been quite fed up with Google’s habit of guessing what I want to search instead of doing what I ask it to. A while ago I heard about DuckDuckGo, which works more like old-school Google, giving the same result no matter who’s doing the search. Also, they claim to better keep your privacy. So if you’re like me, you might want to check it out.
4. Any francophones out there? I wonder if someone can shed some light on this:
How can a phrase mean either “earlier” or “later”? If I hear the someone say “tout à l’heure”, what information am I supposed to deduce from it?
1. One of my favourite things is finding new modes for multiplayer gaming. Today I learned that some recent Assassin’s Creed games have a “Wanted” mode, which seems very nice, at least from the video. If not for my poor opinion of Assassin’s Creed, I’d be looking forward to trying it.
2. I don’t remember where, but recently I heard about Felix the peacful monk – a guy playing Skyrim without killing anyone (but actually playing and completing missions, not just calmly enjoying the world). I loved it – another one to my series of “FPS gaming not based on walking around shooting stuff”.
3. I finished Trine last weekend – great game. I really loved the thief and wizard’s mechanics, they should appear more in platformers. Also, I think this game is a great example of inserting combat for no reason – the combat is just annoying in my opinion. I think they only put it there because too many people see it as unthinkable to have a game without combat these days.
4. Gog.com is having a sale, 50% off all games in the Might & Magic universe. If you’re like me and love the Heroes of Might & Magic series, you might want to check it out – each of the first four games is 4.99$ for this weekend.
 Yes, I know Skyrim isn’t technically an FPS, but it’s close enough for me.
 Am I starting to turn into an anti-gaming-violence crusader? I really don’t object to combat in games, I just think people are doing it so much, they are overlooking other, potentially interesting ideas.
I want to try something new here – I often see things on the web that I think are interesting and relevant for this blog, but don’t actually deserve a post of their own, mostly because I try to keep the posts mostly about what I do, not about what other people do. However, there are some things I really think anyone interested in what I do might also be interested in. So I’ll just make a “cool stuff on the web” post once in a while.
1. A computer science / media research guy from a Danish university created something a little different with an FPS engine. It’s called “First Person Victim“, and it puts you in 1st person view of a person in a city under attack, but instead of taking a gun and fighting the enemies, you’re pretty much helpless. While it’s more an educational tool than a game, I always like people who do things with FPS engines other than “take a gun and shoot everyone”.
2. I recently downloaded the demo version of “Analogue: A Hate Story“, the first Ren’Py game I ever tried. While I’m not a fan of the visual novel genre, it made me realize that Ren’Py does have some interesting potential for gaming mechanics, and even though it’s community seems more interested in visual novels, there’s no reason not to try something else. Another thing I might try sometime.
And by the way, if you do like visual novels – this one seems pretty well written. But it costs more than I would spend on a novel.
3. Last week I filled a major hole in my gaming education, and finally played a Call of Duty game (Modern Warfare 1). My conclusion, a little surprisingly – it’s an awesome game. I agree with the many who say they (and I mean generally the leading, huge budget games, not specifically CoD) put ridiculous amount of resources in graphics, and can’t innovate anything because they need to be accessible to everyone etc. – but still, there are things that huge amount of people with a huge budget can do very well. The gameplay feels perfectly balanced, and it’s an extremely fun game. Makes me realize that I don’t actually dislike FPS games like I thought, I just dislike ultra-fast arena style FPS games.
4. I love hearing game developers talking about how they made their game. I especially love it when they are hilarious people. And do you know who’s hilarious? The guys who made Magicka.
That’s it for now.