Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Passion for Pixels: Ep 9 - Shareware Games and John Carmack

For this episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels we finally turn to PC gaming and talk about late 80's and early 90's shareware gaming.

The shareware gaming era started with bedroom programmers making their own games and shipping them out to their customers. It grew from there into a profitable business, and one of the main innovators of the time was John Carmack. Carmack was one of the founders of id Software, the company behind shareware titles such as Commander Keen and Doom.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

A Well Balanced Weapon - Why Haven't Two-Handers Been Fixed in Diablo 3?

Diablo 3 has just received its fourth major update since the launch of the Reaper of Souls expansion earlier this year and each of these patches has made significant efforts to balance the game. That’s to say that work as been done to ensure that all classes are as effective as each other and various builds for each class are equally competitive. It’s a tough job and no one expects perfect balance from an incongruous system where each class uses dramatically different play styles, but I have been puzzled by the developers routinely overlooking one obvious area for improvement in their balance passes – two-handed weapons. Why?

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Passion for Pixels: Ep 8 - Hideo Kojima and Metal Gear Solid

Is it a game, or is it a movie?

This episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels starts off with us talking about Japanese game director, producer, writer and designer Konami's Hideo Kojima. We talk about the games that inspired Kojima to become a game developer, his earliest work (ever heard of Penguin Adventure?) and how his most well known series of games, Metal Gear, came about. Once again it's a story of how the limitations of the console's hardware forced the developers to think outside of the box.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Still Alive

I just wanted to pop in and say that 'YES!' I am still maintaining this blog despite the nearly two months since my last written post - hopefully the podcast posts in between have kept everyone going. Unfortunately it's been a crazy time in my professional (ie. non-blogging) life as well as personally. Suffice it to say that I'm in the process of moving to a new country and time has been at a premium. I am intending on being more active in the coming weeks but if posts are a bit scarce it's because, quite simply, I'm embroiled with personal matters that require attention. In any case, the Passion for Pixels podcast should continue at its twice monthly clip and you can catch me periodically posting stuff on Geek Binge (as well as streaming every Wednesday and Sunday). Thanks for understanding!