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Everything posted by DanJW

  1. Life

    Life is awesome post: I'm in a play, Arthur Miller's A View From The Bridge. I'm only Illegal Immigrant Number 1 (who we named Luigi ) but everyone involved is really great to work with and it's a lot of fun. There's a lot of laughter in the dressing room. We've sold out for the entire run, we're getting fantastic reviews and letters of thanks and we've had a second curtain call every night so far - something apparently unheard of in our theatre, even though we generally have very nice audiences. I've also taken over management of a comedy night in one of my local pubs. Organization is going nicely for our 4th July relaunch. The theatre above has given me a second comedy night to organise there in October too, following the success of my first one back in March. Things are going well with my lovely French girl. She and her friend came to see the play tonight and completely charmed the Director.
  2. I love reading these. Once my PC is fixed up I will start playing. I'm not so sure about a podcast though. Written reports I can skip through or come back to later. A podcast... it would need excellent presentation and maybe a gimmick or too (Interview With a Dwarven Fortress Foreman?) to keep me listening.
  3. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/8585477.stm Fuckin finally! (err, was the new AvP really that big of a deal? Seems to have dropped off the radar immediately)
  4. Tax Breaks for UK Games Industry

    Well that fucking sucks.
  5. Life

    Europe are getting panned. South America are pwning. England match tonight. I will be watching a stage production of A Clockwork Orange instead. All the Droogs are female.
  6. Oh fuck off Ebert. This really is just flamebait. Here I can do it too: Show me a man who will only accept media invented before his birth and I'll show you a smelly stupidhead. I give you permission to tweet that if you like.
  7. XCOM returns

    Here's the manual notes from the first game It's cute that it's set in 1999. Made now it would probably be 2012. Although a scenario like the one you described does happen at the start of the second game, Terror from the Deep. X-COM is almost totally decommissioned and forgotten about except for one base running on auto and funded by a wealthy philanthropist, when the first aquatic aliens turn up... Man I need to finish TftD eventually. So hard. So scary.
  8. Obligatory comical YouTube thread

    Heheh real lols here. I've heard Bob Ducca before but I never knew his name, cheers.
  9. XCOM returns

    Those articles raised my optimism overall. then I read this in the interview: Damn. Need to readjust expectations again. I can see where 2K are coming from, but I will miss the Sectoids. They were so iconic; they've become a cliché yes, but being in firefights with them felt good.
  10. Anyone want a Pipboy badge?

    Heh, I still have my pipboy badge from the the first Eurogamer Expo. It's pinned to an Endwar beret.
  11. Beyond Better & Evil!

    I started boycotting Kotaku after Brian Crecente wrote an abusive email and banned the IP of a member who politely asked to have his account closed. Of course the generally poor/nonexistant level of research in their articles and many minor scandals also contributed.
  12. XCOM returns

    There were lots of alien species in X-COM. the 'Sectoid' greys were just the first ones encountered. The black goo is posibly a Silacoid. Nappi: there's not much humour in the originals. They are some of the scariest strategy games ever made though. I like the 50's aesthetic in this new game and the Space Odyessy reality bending UFO. But I have a suspicion: the last scene shows some kind of abduction scene; who wants to bet that the protagonist is returned to Earth with 50 years of missing time, á la Flight of the Navigator?
  13. Life

    Congratulations Miffy! That's a major achievement you can hold on to for the rest of your life. Good work.
  14. Back to the Future

    It's your shareholders Marty! Something's got to be done about your shareholders!
  15. The Engineer has arrived!

    Sweet. Are there any more "meet the..." videos left to come?
  16. Obligatory comical YouTube thread

    Glowing praise. "It is really a surprisingly good game considering how bad it is" might be my new sig quote...
  17. Emergent Gameplay

    I agree. The emergent gameplay in that example comes from the interaction of two separate game systems: 1: interactions between cars and wildlife and 2: mission objectives, completion of, tracking of etc At no point was a designer expecting you to use wildlife in this way to complete a mission. But it so happens that you can. The emergent narrative is the linear sequence of minor unplanned-for (by the player) events, that in retrospect make a logical pattern (that was unplanned for by the developer).
  18. Telltale Jurassic Park

    The first Jurassic Park film and the source novel had glimpses of a really nice, I dunno, theme I guess. More than a theme though; an atmosphere. It was the wonder of dinosaurs as felt when we are small children, but spiced with the strange behaviours they exhibit when people confront them for real. We know nothing about them so they are surprising and as exotic as alien lifeforms are likely to be. Learning about each species as a living creature was just as important as - and crucial to - surviving the island. Ah yes, the Island. The whole Lost World thing was an major part - like King Kong the island needs personality and secrets of its own. Obviously Crichton subverted it slightly by creating a theme park made in the image of a lost civilization, rather than the thing itself - but it still had the same thrill. Add in the child's-eye glamour of safari and Indiana Jonesian field science. All this needs to be in place before you even begin with the survival horror and peril stuff and must remain present throughout. So yes I see potential here. But if they follow the path carved by the sequels then it could fall pretty flat.
  19. Obligatory comical YouTube thread

    AHAHAHAHAHAHAH brilliant
  20. Deus Ex 3

    The whole point of Deus Ex was that you could approach it any way you wanted - gung-ho, sneaky, tactical, technical or whatever else you could think of. If they have lost that from the new game, than it isn't really Deus Ex.
  21. Wizaaaaaards!!

    Being Human series 3 is Being Written. I suggested to the writer/creator that he add a new housemate who is a wizard. I think he's thinking about it.
  22. Injuries That Prevented Gaming.

    I had a really nasty blister when I tried to get good enough to compete with my friends at Super Turbo Street Fighter 2 on SNES. The damn thing engulfed my entire thumb. I gave up. I've thankfully avoided too many injuries in my life. I do occasionally get migraine with aura, more in the past than now. Being effectively blind in one eye and seeing swirly colours makes it difficult to play anything, watch anything or read anything. It's annoying, since those would be nice ways to relax while not being able to do much else like work.
  23. Emergent Gameplay

    Ah yes, examples. EVE might well be the epitome of emergent gameplay. So much if that has been created by the players. Spaff and I used to play Lemmings 2 as a kind of RTS: we would play 2 player co-op, divide the lemmings between us using blockers, then each build a base using the various builder types. Then we would use the diggers, bazookers and exploders to try and destroy each others lemmings, usually undermind the base and sending them into the water below. It played quite similar to Worms or Scorched Tanks, which came along a bit later. I guess that's a possible definition of emergent gameplay: mechanics that can be re-purposed to play a game of the player's own devising.
  24. Emergent Gameplay

    Science writers Ian Stewart and Jack Cohen have talked about the difference between complication and complexity (for instance in the excellent Science of Discworld books - hint: they're actually about real science). Lots of rules acting together can create complication. It takes a while to work out but is ultimately predictable. Complexity however is what life runs on. While the components of a complex system can be analysed and modelled and predicted in general terms, the system as a whole cannot be predicted with 100% accuracy. Not without building an exact copy, and even then the copy will run at the same speed, so there is no real point. A complex system modifies itself and its own rules even as it runs. The rules at any one time are never broken though. Emergent gameplay, as I see it, comes out of games that manage to produce (small) complex systems, not just complicated ones. Their mechanics tend to have a number of analogue or scaling measures, rather than simple binary states.