• "An 11 minute documentary exploring the merits and impact of pixel art, animation and chiptune music." Nice interviews, careful, and thoughtful.
  • "Our original inclination was to put game content under "~/Library/Application Support/Steam", along with the other support files Steam uses. The problem is that uninstalling an application is meant to be as simple as dragging it from the Applications folder into the Trash. However, uninstalling Steam this way will leave all of your game content on the drive, which could easily be quite a few gigabytes of wasted space. Our solution was to put the content in a very visible and often used location so users could easily find and delete the game data if they didn't want it anymore. That's right, we chose the Documents folder specifically because it was visible and often used — the very reasons users don't want it there." Well done, Valve, for explaining this in the short term, and providing a solution in the long term. (And: their thinking wasn't so woolly, really).
  • "The route of the [Metropolitan] line between Paddington and Bayswater (opened in 1868) necessitated the demolition of 23 and 24 Leinster Gardens, situated on a long, upmarket terrace of five story houses, and it was decided to build a 5ft-thick facade which matched the houses either side of the break."
  • Back in 2006, early on a Saturday morning, artist Julien Berthier installed a new door in the city of Paris—but it was a fake door, leading nowhere, on an otherwise empty wall in the 3rd arrondissement… Unbelievably, Berthier adds, "Almost 4 years later, the address still exists. Regularly graffitied it is even cleaned by the city service.”
  • "Outside of the novel setting, the individual multiplayer games have nothing substantial to offer a person other than progression. This is pretty ordinary stuff.<br />
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    There are so many things to do in the actual game that you'd want to do with other people: you'd want to play horsehoes, or Poker, or Blackjack. Even those would be diversions, though. You'd want to drive cattle, or steal them; you want to cut a slice of that country out and see what you could make of it – or get yours riding rough over the smaller towns. As it stands, you're given desperately limited access to a sterile, stricken place without heart or memory." (RDR is great, no question of that, but I think Tycho's right about the missed opportunities of Free Roam. More on this in a proper blog post, coming soon).
  • "Now, the cordial racist shopkeeper and I have a relationship. Every five days I return to Armadillo; he warmly greets me, and I kill him. I've even found ways to avoid tedium. Sometimes a single shot to the head does the trick; other times I lasso and hogtie him before letting him have it. If I've had an especially bad day on the range, I let him tell me about the Jews before plugging him multiple times in the piehole, courtesy of my Dead Eye slo-mo skill. Occasionally I even shoot up the store. I guess you could say I'm a loyal customer." And still the myth of Rockstar's "open-world" is punctured by rendering players impotent against things they – rather than their character – have a problem with.
  • "Do you see this? It's the world's tiniest open-source violin." Yes.
  • "But imagine if the writer came up with a "story" before the rules.  A "pre-rules story."  At that point, you could create the rules around that story, and even if the rules seemed unconventional or unbalanced, you could be confident that they would work as long as the story works." Erm, not really; crap rules are crap rules, even if they make sense within the story. This paragraph directly contradicts his previous (accurate) paragraph, that stories must follow the rules of the game. To then say: "but we can retrofit rules onto the story if the latter was done first" just feels wrong. One more thing on my pile of "stuff about rules".
  • "There are a lot of other problems in the city hidden under the illusion of order and greatness: Suffocating air pollution, high unemployment, no fire stations, schools, or hospitals, a regimented lifestyle – this is the price that these sims pay for living in the city with the highest population. It’s a sick and twisted goal to strive towards. The ironic thing about it is the sims in Magnasanti tolerate it. They don’t rebel, or cause revolutions and social chaos. No one considers challenging the system by physical means since a hyper-efficient police state keeps them in line. They have all been successfully dumbed down, sickened with poor health, enslaved and mind-controlled just enough to keep this system going for thousands of years. 50,000 years to be exact. They are all imprisoned in space and time." Interview with the creator of Magnasanti. (If you've not seen the video, check it out; it is a SimCity obsession beyond belief).
  • "When people talk about serendipity, they’re not always talking about discovering something that’s totally brand-new. In fact, I’d haz ard that they’re USUALLY talk ing about randomly unearthing some thing that’s comforting and familiar. This is ten times more true with television."
  • "There are a lot of ways to approach burning discs. Burn keeps it simple, but still offers a lot of advanced options." I hate burning CDs in the Finder, and this looks great.
    (tags: burning cd dvd osx mac )

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