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Colorado Blues...

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Prinz Eugn


Greetings, cherished readers, how are you?

That's good... Me? Oh, shitty. Pretty shitty, actually.

Not to go into too much detail, but I have an internship in Denver which has outlived it's usefulness. I've gained lots of experience and learned new things for sure, but I haven't done anything new or exciting in quite a while- I'm just coasting at this point on the same old projects.Which, if you want to be cynical about it, is great experience for real life (or so I've heard).

The real irritating thing is that we (my coworker/roommate and I) were originally slated to be here until the end of November. Then, there were funding issues of some sort and they decided to bring us back at the end of this month, which was exciting because it honestly felt about time to go and all of our friends and family are back home. Of course, yesterday, the powers that be decided to have use stay after all- 2.5 weeks before we were going to move, and after we had told everybody and their brother we would be back ready to rock worlds by the beginning of October.

And then my lovably Asian girlfriend is living no less than 6,363 miles (or a holy fuckton of kilometers) away on a student exchange in China.

BUT I am raking in the dough... more on that later.


Sir Sapo's been pretty busy, and as his way, started another mini-project. I don't know if you guys remember Fortress of Terror/Lab 81, but it's essentially a stripped down version of that game (which we still maintain would have been awesome if school and our futures not stood in our way). So you're a soldier of some kind wandering around an underground bunker lab dungeon killing zombies/aliens/timebeasts. Or something. It's in the early planning stages...

My current idea is that the game is placed in the Angels 22 Extended Universe (TM), where the New Soviet Union is doing Bad Things, sort of like Red Alert, but in the future. Anyway, you're an elite Red Army soldier who was caught committing First Degree Unapproved Blog Reading (section 43.56A sub. C4) and assigned to a penal battalion, and given the punishment/honor of being the first and last soldier sent into secret LAB 81 to find out what happened there. They shove you in, and threaten to shoot anything (including you) that comes out the door without the unspecified "documents" (gameplay barrier FTW).

Here's the latest screenshot using Sir Sapo's programmer art:

I think Sir Sapo was trying to portray an anti-consumerist message with the Wal-Mart smiley face.
That, or he found the circle tool in Paint.

I don't actually have a copy of The Engine yet, and I think I lost the screenshot he sent me with redrawn tiles and stuff, so that will have to wait for next time. Until then, enjoy the
>original on YouTube.

The flip side to the emo stuff at the beginning of the journal entry is that I'm actually earning money. I used some of this money to Buy a new 24-inch HDTV, and a new computer, plus a load off accessories for the computer:

Obviously not much of an emphasis on furnishings...

Laptop is a Lenovo IdeaPad 15.6" with:

-Intel? Core? i7-740QM Processor ( 1.73GHz 1333MHz 6MB )
-Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium 64
-ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5730 1GB
-8 GB PC3-8500 DDR3 SDRAM 1333MHz
-15.6" HD LED Glare 1366x768
-500GB 7200rpm HD
-DVD Recordable (Dual Layer)
-Bluetooth Version 2.1 + EDR

Buuuut... 1366 x 768 screen. [depressed]. Looks like I need to get another monitor. Or buy this to use with my old lappy with it's glorious 1920 x 1280 screen.

Speaking of my old laptop, Moore's Law has not been kind. In mid 2006, it was near-top of the line with 2GB RAM, 256 MB video card, and a dual-core processor. And it cost three times as much! I dunno, it's blowing my mind that since the i7 is hyper-threaded, my little processor managing gadget shows 8 cores running at once...

I also bought a very nice Logitech MX1100 mouse.

Um, I also got a Turtle Beach X11 gaming headset for my Xbox, which is also nice to use for Skype on the lappy.

Stalker: Shadow of Chernobyl vs Halo Reach

I bought Stalker because is sounded cool to me, and I needed a new game, and I bought Reach because holy shit REACH!!!!!!1~

For all the millions of dollars poured into Halo, I still liked Stalker's single player better. Heck, Reach's campaign was just not that exciting. I mean, it was enjoyable- all the Halo games have neat campaigns, but it just wasn't my style. I did some thinking, and I've decided it's because I like walking in FPS's. Okay, not really walking, but the kind of extended levels that involve you wandering around not shooting anything (or not pushing for a single objective) constantly. Not shooting means you get to actually explore the levels and really adds to the immersion.

You know what the best single player game was I've played in the past couple years? Unreal. That game is pretty ancient, but holy crap it was neat. No announcements, no sounds cues (like some NPC yelling "Get in the Warthog, Chief!"), just you fucking lost on an alien planet. And it wasn't some abstracted "you" the Cliched Character Archetype, it was you, since you got barely a whiff of a backstory. Which is great, since I really don't care for pretending to be Spartan 117 or 'Soap' and being forced to watch "my" interactions with other characters who knew the your character beforehand.

In Stalker, there was a little bit that broke the first-person perspective, but there wasn't much, and it was all paced to you. Plus, lots of wandering around in really interesting places. What was I talking about again?

Anyway, that's all I've got to say about that...
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STALKER is one of those games (and they're almost exclusively Russian) where there are tons of really great ideas but they're not polished up, so you have to kind of go digging for them. That's most of the appeal for me, at least, finding out the full degree of what the game is capable of.

As an advocate of underground secret lab zombie-shooting games, I approve.

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