Hello everyone. The last part of my article on "Randomness and Zero-Sum" is forthcoming shortly. However I wanted to jump topics for a moment, and bring to your attention a subject that, I believe, will become problematic in the next year or so. Specifically, I want to direct your focus to what I predict as another soon-to-ensue debacle, courtesy of the (not really) friendly folks at Microsoft. Yes, I'm talking about Windows 8. No, I'm not picking on it for the reasons everyone else is.
Not quite a Humble Bundle, but still pretty neat for PC gaming fans, the 5 for $5 Bundle has no DRM and all of the proceeds go directly to the developers. Each of the five games is a very nifty looking genre mashup of some sort and includes Delve Deeper, Spring Up Harmony, Mactabilis, Steel Storm: Burning Retribution, and Digitanks. Check out the video below, and be sure to visit the Website to purchase:
I just looked down and thought about my mousepad for a moment. It's got a cow-print design and it says "GATEWAY 2000". I realized, wow, this must be from before the year 2000, then, and looked it up. Sure enough, Gateway Computers dropped the 2000 in 1998, which means that I bought this, my most recent mouse pad, in or before 1998.
Diablo II. It just doesn't quite go away.
My first experience with Diablo was via a demo I played in 1996. I remember playing it and thinking, "I have GOT to buy this game." I have to say that as soon as it was out, it was in my hands. Seems like I even paid more money for it than I had to since I bought it at a mom & pop shop rather than a large chain. No big deal - It was game time.
To the average Armchair Arcader, it's a self-evident truth that classic old games like Joust, Galaga, and Frogger are just as fun to play (if not more so) as the latest "AAA Title." The popularity of retrogaming as a whole has recently surged in both the PC and console markets, and more and more people are discovering (or re-discovering) the joys of classic games. However, as any child of the 80s knows, a big part of the thrill associated with retrogaming isn't just the games, but rather the competitive atmosphere of the arcade. In these dimly lit dens of digital delinquency, a generation honed their hand-eye coordination in exhilerating coin-op competition. These deftly-wristed heroes fought for personal glory--specifically, the glory of entering their initials into the high score tables kept by the arcade machines. It's certainly no coincidence that the arcade machines one still finds alongside pool tables and dartboards in smoky taverns are classics like Ms. Pac-Man and Galaga: These games are designed to be played in social environments.
Someone calling himself "DeadDrPhibes" has a great post up at The Older Gamers Paradise called The Birth of PC Gaming. The author takes us on a little tour of the earliest days of home PCs and gaming, starting with furniture-sized monstrosities and ending up with the Apple Mac and the Windows PC. He strikes me as a died-in-the-wall TRS-80 man, and spends good time discussing Radio Shack and Texas Instruments' entries in the home computing market (the CoCo, and so on). It's a fun read, even if it seems to be drafted mostly from the author's own experiences and memories. At any rate, it's nice to see a history like this from this perspective, since most "history-lite" like this I've read has focused mostly on the Apple, Commodore, or IBM. Now all I'm waiting for is a great feature on the Atari line of home computers.