Allegro looks pretty good for 2D games, and right now i'm not really sure what its limitations are, but i'm sure I won't run into them for a while.
I tend to drift in and out of game development, and I had been out of it for quite some time, but being around a couple of people i've met at school has been pretty cool. They're both wanting to do game development, and being around them has caused me to want to get back into it. I suppose it'll be easier to do when you have someone else nearby that can motivate you, we'll see. It seems like a good thing though.
On a completely different topic, I saw one of the coolest things i've seen on the OGRE forums today. One of the guys there, monster, is making a wrapper that includes about 4 physics engines (Novodex, Newton, ODE, and True Axis I believe) that can be plugged into pretty much anything, but he's using OGRE for testing.
The cool thing about it is, the physics engines are used transparently (with a lot of work on his part) so if you want to try out a different physics engine to maybe get a better result, you simply change the engine that you call, all without having to change the code from one engine to the next. Seems like it's pretty cool, but he hasn't released it yet. Here's the thread over at the OGRE forum.