On Tuesday, May 21, we'll have the next Xbox announcement. Nintendo has obviously already played their hand with the Wii U, an intriguing, but possibly failed gamble on a mix of current gen technology with tablet paradigms, and Sony has shown much of what they'll be offering with the PS4, a "social" next gen console that emphasizes its access speed for everything from updates to getting to play games/demos without much, if any, delay. Interestingly, Microsoft was first out of the gate this current generation, but will be last to make their announcement thanks to positive momentum in the past few years (everywhere except Japan, of course).
In any case, the rumor mill has been quite active, obviously, with the usual mix of thoughtful and not-so-thoughtful claims. You can read all about those elsewhere, but here are my thoughts on what is and isn't likely:
This week's Matt Chat features the first slice of an interview with fantasy author and game designer Neal Hallford, best known for his work on Betrayal at Krondor, Dungeon Siege, and Planet's Edge. He talks here about his roots and inspirations, which include Cinematronic's Space Wars arcade game. We also chat about his time at New World Computing, where he worked with Might and Magic creator JVC. There's lots of great stuff here for retro fans to enjoy.
Download the MP4.
You can support Neal's new Kickstarter project for his fantasy novel here.
Written by the now gone Bizarre Creations, Geometry Wars originally could be found on the original Xbox was a mini game within the Project Gotham Racing 2. This game is the sequel to it and it was the most downloaded game on Xbox Live on the 360. For me this game was the must have game for the Xbox 360. Check it out.
The Sequel Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2 was released on the 360 but also on the Wii and the DS. There's also a version out on iOS.
MIND YOU: This clip has some loud noises so you'd better not use headphones while watching this. Sound quality is not the best as the microphone had some issues that couldn't be fixed in post.
Back in the day one often didn't have access to all current platforms that were out there, especially in the 80s en 90s. Often we were limited to a single specific system in the home or we dreamt about owning a system/console/platform that seemed beyond our reach. A lot of people made up for that by creating a collection of things we did and didn't have access to back in the day just to fulfill those dreams and hopes of days gone past. A games-room or home-computer collection is the net result of that.
Still it is interesting to see what were the systems you longed for/ wanted to own but didn't back in the day or even today? This video is my answer to this question.
An open TAG by Rhydermike which can be found here.
I received a notification today that Google is about to shutter Reader, so in my quest for finding a replacement (I ended up with Feedly), a blog post from Rampant Coyote caught my eye. He features the new trailer for Broken Age, which I must say just doesn't impress me as much as I hoped it would. Then Jay talks about how he has plenty of unfinished adventure games on his shelf now, just as he did back in 92. Like Jay, I also tended to give up on many adventure games, only finishing LucasArts classics like Monkey Island and a few other series such as Myst, Broken Sword, Gabriel Knight, etc.
For all the Tandy/Radio Shack Color Computer (CoCo) fans out there, don't forget that this coming weekend is The 22nd Annual "Last" Chicago CoCoFEST! You can get more info on the festivities here. It's been a good year for the CoCo and it's only going to get better, so this event will definitely be worth attending for those who can.
Paul, aka @prode81 on Twitter, has made available one of the first Pebble watch apps, a nifty Web browser-based watch face generator. The link is here, and it's a simple, but great way to experiment with your own Pebble watch without knowing a lick of programming. Check the image below to see how the Armchair Arcade watch face turned out, plus you can scan the QR code with your phone to put it on your own Pebble. If you like Paul's work, don't forget to donate!
Our friends over at Cloanto have just released Amiga Forever Essentials for Android. It's a tremendous package on the PC and we'll definitely be checking out this interesting new Android version. The press release:
I'm back this week with a retrospective of Larian Studio's Divine Divinity, a 2002 release. It's a brilliant take on the Diablo genre, with immaculate artwork and one of the best soundtracks ever.
Download the mp4.
Support the Divinity: Original Sin kickstarter--3 days left!
Buy Divine Divinity from GOG.com using this link. No extra cost to you, but the show gets a kickback!