Friday, 7 June 2013

Random Ramblings #2

That's right folks, its time for another Random Ramblings! To start off today, we have something to do with Eve.

Eve's New Gatejump Animation

Eve Online's latest expansion Odyssey was released this week and one of the changes included was a very slick new gatejump animation. It completely removed the black screen and loading bar that we have had for the last ten years, replacing it with something that looks like the animation used in Stargate. Well as with any changes to Eve, some people got mad about it and a forum thread was made. Actually several forum threads, with complaints ranging from the obvious motion sickness, to the ridiculous lagging when multiboxing complaint. I can only feel for the devs at CCP for this one, as I was one of the people cheering in my room watching the fanfest stream when they announced it. Actually it reminds me of this:

xkcd Comic. Written and illustrated Randall Monroe
Yep no matter the change, there is always going to be someone demanding that you turn back on a redundant option.


I had seen a couple of videos about this little game by Wolfire Games, so I picked it up on Steam. As someone who has always liked firearms in real life and constantly had arguments with less informed people who think games teach you how to operate them, I might have to eat my words after this game has come out. There are 3 guns at this point: the Glock 17, Colt M1911, and a revolver of some sort, all well designed and pretty close to their real life counterparts. 

As far as gameplay goes, the actual operation of the guns is almost perfect. Simple things like manipulating the slide to see how many bullets are inside, or to empty the clip without firing, feel just like the real thing. If you have any interest in firearms, I'd recommend picking it up to see what operating a handgun is really like. If you play Call of Duty or Battlefield, definitely give it a go to see what you would actually have to do to get those pistol kills in game. Plus for $5, you can experience some storytelling that I found very unique.

X-Box One

So I am going to break my normal focus on PC games to talk a little about the X-Box One. As I have mentioned in the past, I do play games from time to time on my 360, usually just single player games that I don't need to really focus on. Part of this means that I don't have it hooked up to the internet. Microsoft recently released this article to highlight the online features of the XB1. In particular something that we kind of already knew was highlighted.

With Xbox One you can game offline for up to 24 hours on your primary console, or one hour if you are logged on to a separate console accessing your library. Offline gaming is not possible after these prescribed times until you re-establish a connection, but you can still watch live TV and enjoy Blu-ray and DVD movies. 

So there it is... We now need to "phone home" every 24 hours to keep gaming, otherwise the console becomes a very expensive Blue-Ray player or TV decoder. Now I realise that this is all part of Microsofts new online media hub vision for the One, but is this really necessary? Why couldn't it be once a week, or even once a month?

Part of the reason that I don't want to be always online with this device is the way they handle the Skype integration. If I am at the PC then I am more than willing to be social, but when I am playing on my console, I don't want to be interrupted by friends or family. I want to play a game on my own, or with the friend who is sitting next to me.

Another worrying thing is an article where Microsoft clearly state they won't be focusing on "traditional desktop PC games." So does this mean that we might not be seeing anything actually new from the Age of Empires, Flight Simulator, Halo (for PC) and Gears of Wars (also for PC) franchises anytime soon? At this point things aren't looking good, but only time will tell.

And that concludes the second Random Ramblings. As always:


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