Thursday, June 29, 2006

Transformers Teaser

Before you watch the teaser, have a quick glance at This Page.

Ok now Here is the link to the teaser.

My Criticism:
Beagle 2 was not a rover and if it was, it certainly would not have looked like any American design.

40 Years of X-Men In PDF

Yep Amazon.Com is selling a 40 Years of the X-Men DVD. That's:
  • Over 485 complete printable comics, cover to cover, that’s over 17,500 pages.

  • All X-MEN comic books from September 1963 through August 2005, including debut issue.
So certainly one to keep an eye out for. And if you read one comic a day in sixteen months your knowledge of X-Men would be almost completely unravelled.

Chromehounds Demo (XBoxLive Marketplace)

It's not available in the US or Canada with a properly regioned account, but the demo is kind of good. I only say kind of because it doesn't include multiplayer or hound customisation which is the two things the game is being sold on.

Gameplay wise it is ok basic Mech combat, but something annoyed me a little. In Mechwarrior your commanding officer is on the battlefield in the most powerful Mech and he directs the squad from the front. This is logically correct because he is the most experienced pilot, but in Chromehounds, he is sitting in a C&C hound at the back. It just feels wrong because that isn't a job for someone with combat experience.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Extreme Colarge

This is very nice.

I actually found a bug where the image that is clicked is not the one which is subsequently loaded, but very nice anyway.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Leaked Transformer

Half-transformed Bumblebee leaked onto the next.

Spiderman 3 Trailer

Get it Here.

Blu-ray Vs HD-DVD - A Draw!

Apparently there are a few Hybrid Blue and HD players in the works. This means that the winner of the war won't be determined by which format most of the film-buying public buys, but by which format the studios themselves prefer. And because of contracts and stuff, that means we could be seeing films on both formats right up until digital distribution kills films distributed on physical mediums.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Adverts Sometimes

Normally I hate adverts because I have to wait for them to finish, but I love watching adverts that I haven't seen before and occasionally I see an advert that delights the hell out of me and This new Tango ad did just that.

If you don't get the reference then Here is a link to the original two and a half minuet version of the Sony Bravia ad.

Random Thought

All the graphics engines moment Doom 3, Unreal 3 and what not. Are all designed for single threaded CPUs. Having a dual core CPU does increase performance in these engines, but I wonder wither we will be seeing 'dual core' written in the minimum system requirements on game boxes eventually because I think that if you moved the stuff in the rendering pipeline out into other threads and had the other threads update the render pipeline (essentially make it passive) then you could have the render pipeline be very lightweight, but this isn't possible on a single core chip.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Prey Demo

Just wanted to spend a moment to mention the Prey Demo. Which is awesome. If you have a fairly new graphics card you should give it a go. The 360 demo should be out soon and depending on how that plays I might forgo the jittery mess which is playing it on my PC and get it for the 360.

I remember playing a multiplayer map of Unreal that had portals like Prey does and Serious Sam allowed you to run up walls, but for a game to take both of those fairly old concepts, realise their potential and take it as far as Prey does is amazing. You do have to play it to see what I mean. And as far as I can tell the only people not liking the demo are the ones who can't run it, but that's understandable.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Half Life 2 Episode 1 Playing Stats

Valve has been collecting data of how people have been playing the game. You can see the results Here.

The results are as you would probably expect. More deaths on higher difficulty levels further into the game. And there is a gradual decline of how far people played into the game, but this includes all games not just the first time through. And it seems that the average length of time to complete the game is five hours. The only slightly interesting thing is that most of the people that stopped playing their games, stopped playing them when they hit the carpark section with the antlions.


Just got my marks through and I got an average mark of 53%. I failed my Security module (of all things) and that seems to be because I waffled on the test and didn't talk about the case study as much as I should have. The case studies we got this year where light on details so I did ignore them. Still I have been told that this doesn't mean I will need to resit it or that I have failed the year. I was expecting to do a lot better this year than I have, but looking at my marks overall on the course they have slowly been dropping. Don't know wither that is because more had been expected of us each year or because I have become worn down by the university's various procedures.

New Clerks II Trailer

I killed a spider today and there is a new Clerks II Trailer.

Silly White House

Apparently The White House told the Swedish government the shutdown The Pirate Bay or suffer trade sanctions for not respecting US copyright.

Now all this is going to do is promote awareness of torrent portals so more people pirate copyrighted material. The big corporations had their chance to do something about piracy when it was all confined to Napster, but they made a mistake and now they are competing against illegal distribution for consumers.

I hope America sees sense to not declare another war. To go with The War on Drugs, The War on Terror and The War on Iraq etc. I actually find Americas use of language on these occasions to be quite interesting because they all use the same phrases.

Anyway if the US government really wants to help the movie and record industry they need to tell them to suck it up and be innovative with their distribution model. There will always be piracy and at the moment I believe it is the convenience factor that wins a lot of people over and not the fact that it is free. If for example when Madonna's new album is released consumers could go to a website pay a fee and then just download the album in whatever format or bitrate they wanted. That would be one up on the torrent portals for convenience, availability and giving customers what they want, how they want it. There is also Open Source DRM as a possibility, but I don't want to make this post any bigger and that is a big question-mark as it doesn't currently exist.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

The Humor Archives

Just found This site and it's got some gems on there.

Firstly The Magic Roundabout which looks ridicules, the picture is a little old and clearly in Britain so I had a look for it. And Here it is at Swindon.

Then the guy trying to Cancel His AOL Account. Now you get put through to grumpy Indians who don't help and just want to get you off the line as fast as possible.

Random YouTube Vdeo

Where the Hell is Matt?

He did a shorter video before, but then Some Company sponsored him to do another and he did.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Random Fact

During World War 2 every German concentration camp kept records on all their victims by use of an IBM punch-card system.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006


University said this year's marks would be available today where possible online and I thought this meant that maybe two or three of my modules wouldn't have marks attached to them yet. As it is none of my modules have marks attached to them. It might actually be days or weeks before I actually know how I did.

I seem to be experiencing blind confidence in my performance this year. Not sure if that is a good thing or not.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Geometry Wars - 8 Achievements in 1 Game

I currently have eight Achievements on Geometry Wars and have been trying for weeks now to get the last two, but just now I had a game where I got all my current achievements in just one game.

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And this is my problem. I seem to have peaked it doesn't look like I will ever get those last two. Maybe if I had a widescreen TV I would be able to see more of the screen.

Pop Up HG

Ok so I found this funny, but first a bit of background. In Japan there is a comedian names Razor Ramon who's real name is Masaki Sumitani, but who plays a character called Hard Gay who appears in a slot on a Japanese Saturday variety show. He runs around Tokyo terrifying poor unsuspecting public, but also helping them and enforcing good moral values (see Fathers Day Episode).

So anyway a few months ago I seen the TOMY episode (Part 1, Part 2) where Hard Gay gets TOMY to make a Hard Gay version of Pop Up Pirate. From the episode TOMY makes a limited edition version, but it seems now that demand has been so high for the HG version that they have caved in. And this-morning I seen This (yes they export internationally) which is a little pricey, but is the first version of Pop Up Pirate with Sound Effects.

Open Day Invite

I got an Open Day invite to a Blitz Games open day. Which I didn't think I would get in because the cutoff day for being confirmed was today and I hadn't hared anything. So that's good news.

It's not for a while and I am not sure what kind of NDA they might want me to agree to or wither they will simply ask for me not to talk about some stuff, but I will let you know how it goes.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Hot Day

Today has indeed been a hot day. I have been threatening for years to get air conditioning, but this heat only lasts for about three weeks of the year so it isn't worth it right now. Once global warming has taken more of an effect, then I might reconsider.

Just been reading about how Japan's high speed internet is being Attacked by Crows, of all things. Turns out that fibber optic cables make for good nests.

And according to Peer Schneider at IGN It's Pickling Time for Mario64 which made me laugh.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Preorder the PS3 Today is taking PS3 Preorders for the bargain* price of £549.99 including delivery. How the hell they are going to make a profit selling it a such a low price* and including delivery is beyond me.

Games are selling for £49.99 each which isn't so much of a bargain, but at least the console is so cheap*.

*I am being very, very sarcastic.

Sony Podcasts

Download it Here. To say it is bad is an understatement. Sony's podcast is just press releases read to background music. If I had to describe it in one word, that would be wooden.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Bill Gates Stepping Down

You can watched the announcement Here and honestly I think this is a good move for Bill and a good move for Microsoft because it allows Bill to concentrate on the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. And Microsoft will stop being Bill Gate's company, which it isn't now anyway.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

GTA IV's Graphics Engine

Don't feel like blogging about much right now and to be honest there isn't much to blog, but I just read that GTA IV will use the same graphics engine as Rockstar's Table Tennis.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

First Rejection Email

I just got my first job application rejection email through today YAY!

First Rejection Email

I just got my first job application rejection email through today YAY!

Monday, June 12, 2006

Free Virgin Mobile SIM

Virgin are doing this thing where Virgin to Virgin texts are free until the 30th of September, but I know there are always people out there looking to move phone operator so here is a link to Virgin's Free SIM Card Offer. Just fillout the form and they will send you one for free.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

More PS3 Rumours and 360 Lineup

The mighty Cell processor in the PS3 might drop from 3.2GHz to 2.2GHz and the power supply might have to be external like the 360's all because of a supposed overheating issue.

In other news sales of the 360 seem to be levelling off much sooner than expected and to my mind that is because of the lackluster lineup. I bought it for Oblivion, but that is also available for PC, I bought Rockstar's Table Tennis, but that was because I wanted to celibate finishing uni a little and that was the only game under £30. And Arcade has only had one new arcade in the past month despite Microsoft saying they wanted five to six titles a month.

Coming out for the 360 next week is nothing.
The week after Dynasty Warriors 5 Empires which doesn't interest me.
The week after that Call of Duty 2 (GOTY Edition) which I would buy if it wasn't so expensive.
And the week after that Chromehounds is released, which I want, but it is going to have to get a good report for me to shedout that kind of cash. Over G Fighters is also released that week, but that just looks a bit pants.

Still we got Gear of War, Dead Rising and Mass Effect to look forward to this year, and they have all of which have received positive press from those that have played them.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Submitted Level Design

So I ended up submitting a level design to Blitz Games. Not sure if it will get me in to an open day placement, but my design is of sound conceptual design. Apparently I should hear something by the 19th. Will keep you posted.

Transformers Site

The Official Transformers 2007 Movie site has been Launched and judging by the website this doesn't look like a kiddie film.

Ratatouille Trailer

Ratatouille is Pixar's next film after Cars and the Trailer looks great.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

360 Dashboard Update

It's 3.11MB and available now.
A complete list of all 125 changes and additions can be found Here.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Land of The Fragrantly Violating

The San Fransisco Chronicle Writes that the US government has written a new set of polices for supposed Terrorist detainees. One of the things that has been written out of this new policy over the old one is the prevention of "humiliating and degrading treatment". It is believed that by allowing this kind of treatment better information will be gained from detainees.

There is much agreement that information gained from torture victims is unreliable. Many of the people in Guantanamo Bay are there because their names came up during torture sessions. This has to stop.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Halo 3 Beyond The Trailer

IGN has a very good Mini-Documentory about all the suttle clues and hints that Bungie has putout over the years for the final instalment of the game. And I had no idea fans where this analytical. Especially not for fans such an run and gun action game.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Half Life 2 Episode One (Completed)

I loved this game. It brings Half Life back to the slow-paced exploration and puzzle solving of the original. The story doesn't progress much, has few ok bosses, no new weapons, no new bad-guys and no new environments, but the dialogue from Alex is great. The character of Alyx feels so much more human this-time around and her personality as an NPC really shines through, which although done well in many RPGs is a first for an FPS.

I am now going through the commentary just now and I spotted this:

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It is an omission by the developers saying that during development they realised players didn't like Alex telling them to hurry up all the time. Which is exactly why I hated Half Life 2 so much. If it wasn't Alex or another NPC telling you to hurry up all the time. The buggy in a way even felt as if it was doing the same because that just raced you through load screen after load screen. It destroyed the wonderful slow pacing of the original.

I did think that after completing the game I was going think it was too short, but it is much longer that Blue Shift and possibly longer than (although it has been a while since I last played it) Opposing Forces so ye it's worth a purchase certainly. And so far the commentary has been good, although it doesn't pause the gameplay at all.


EDIT: There are two new types of enemies. A flying thing which you are introduced to, but won't be able to fight until episode two, a new type of Zombie called a Zombine, which isn't anything to get excited about and additionally you actually get to fight the Stalkers, which technically aren't new.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Blitz Games Open Day

I just got an email from Blitz Games telling me that I am being considered for a chance to look around their offices (and from then on maybe the chance of a job), but first they want to see some evidence of work by the 9th. With that is an email address to send work to and details of what they want to see from the different professions they are interested in.

I certainly cannot for-fill the 2D Art, 3D Art, Audio or Animation requirements, but under the Programmer requirement they want to see a simple arcade game with a special effect. Although I could probably produce something brilliant by the end of the month after conducting some serious study, I do not believe this is doable by the 9th. No, not even with the power of .Net as 3D is completely new to me, although I will be looking at 3D now that uni is over, I just want expecting this to be on the cards so soon.
Under the Designer requirement they want level designs. I have designed many games in my little black design books and a few games that run on my final year project. My lecturers where even visibly impressed when I told them of the improvements I had made in my games as I had progressed from one to another, but I haven't ever produced such a document before. Although considering the sheer number of games that I have played over the years and my knowledge and ideas of gametheory I could probably bang something out by then.

So tomorrow I am either going to be designing a level for Barbie's Horse Adventure or going to crack-open the 3D programming stuff again and give it a fair old go. It doesn't however seem like Blitz they are interested in hiring a diversity of people and this makes me question if they are the kind of company I want to work for as their hiring strategy seems more about fitting pegs into wholes. They have probably ended up highering like this both because of the number of applications they recieve and the fact that most people are only in the industry for five years. Still this identifies two cultural issues with the company. They struggle to keep people and don't look to higher people with other skills that they could use.

Need texture, you draw? Draw now. Hmmm good texture.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Random Calculation

I was just wondering how many XBox 360s Microsoft could put inside a standard cargo container. After doing the maths and if they use one of the big 40f ones I think they could get just over 3800 units in one.