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About
I play really old video games and enjoy them.

My parents bought an NES and MM6 and Metroid and that is how i got into gaming.

you could say I am a Nintendo fan boy, but I am starting to get off of that train as of recent.

anyway hope you enjoy my blogs, feel free to comment.
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After hearing that there was a new update in NS2 I decided it was worth my time to reinstal the game and play it online.

I was greeted with an interesting server of people with very different backgrounds than my own on the voice chat. Some how the converstation about what kind of cheese to put in a taco that was going to be eaten in the cleavage of one of the female players.


Quality Internet culture right there... But I have heard worse

So joined in and I said that Montry Jack was the best kind of cheese to put in a taco and suddenly I recived two friend invites in my Steam account. One was the lady who will remain nameless and the other was A Gay Raccoon. Soon after that I lost the third wheel and the adventures of Retrofraction and A Gay Raccoon begin.

Less to say if you play NS2 you better hope that you have A Gay Raccoon on your team because I never have met a person that plays quite as good as he does.

Imideatly I knew this was going to be a great relationship as he stared showing up on all of my servers and constantly voice chated with many jokes and brought up the team spirt.

Before I met him I mainly played alone, never really knowing anyone else ont he servers. Which after most of the community was lost in the difficult transition from NS1 to NS2 it was nice to make a new friend. Exspecially a high calliber one that was going to push my play style from that of a noob and into a power house.

I do not know what it is about it but it is always great to have people on your team that know more about the game than you do, let alone willing to educate/walk through commanding to first time commanders... and winning.

To be truthful I did at first decline friendship because I was afriad what other people might think about it if they looked at my firend list and saw that I was friends with A Gay Raccoon. But I figure that anyone that is friendly enough to invite me as a friend I should give them more than one chance and I am soooooooooooooo glad I did as I have been able to enjoy NS2 so much better :D


Suddenly there was a person that would magically show up on the servers I am playing and talk with me in the voice chat. (and was quite hallarious :D)

Like about any game having a few players work together and getting other people to jump out of the woodworks of quiet microphones and join in our banter as we worked together to accomplish goals. Soon I cared less about my K/D ration and about winning the game as a team

Anyway to end this off I wanted to tie in the monthly theme of thankfulness. For A Gay Racoon that befriended me and goes way out of his way to be a nice friend online.

Thanks! :D









Ever since my introduction of the FPS genre I had always been very intrested in how to make such games.



I literally played TimeSplitters 2 and 3 for days upon days using the level editor to remake all the maps from 007 or Perfect Dark I liked

So when I heard that there was a new Arena based FPS game that had an easy to use map editor, I went all in.



For me it is a no brainer that would would want easy level editing in any video game. But the UT3 map editor pretty much killed and hope that PC editors could be more than a devloper's kit. Complicated controls, GUI that makes no senses, bugs that instantly crash the system, and bugs that currupt your files pretty much kept me the hell away from any PC level editor.



Portal 2 was a very interesting thing, because before then most editors forced users to launch a completly different engine in another program and did not allow in-depth level editing within the game. Suddenly I am making tons and tons of puzzels. (a vending machince game in a video game)

But reflexs editor is like a hybred mix between the two

the editor is in game and responds fast as the game would normaly... probably better cause they still have not worked out all the partical effects for optimaization.

I did have to watch a 30-50 minute video on how to use the editor, but unlike the UT3 dev kit... There was no coding envolved or at least it did not feel like coding.


But you really can tell the game is completly devloped around the level editor, for good and bad.

Good: Is that a lot more people are going to be connected with the community, and the community is going to push new better and greater content quickly instead of smallbursts.

Bad: Everything is really basic, how can I make sexy curves without a cruve tool?

I know I am writting this late, but I was looking up triangles and I found this XD

Triangles can get really close to curves... but I find myself resorting to tricks that were used in the 1990s...

So I played 5 hours today and I mainly played the level editor, cause my PC is old and by all means there is no way a net code could be optimized in alpha. Which most of the few online matches were unplayable due to lag, so I went back to the level editor and never looked back.



Building a simple map could take abotu 10-30 minutes. (Something like Warlock from Halo 2)



But I thought it would be a good time to reamake my favorite map from Nexiuz 2012: Strength. Which is a rip from a community map and I still have no clue who orginally made it, but it is an incredible use of 3D space as it is like a giant cube with multiple intertwining paths with windows to jump though.



I probbably could have just made an original map and would have been done, but I kept going between the games to make sure I had the scale accurate and the same feel.

But the level editor makes Track Mania Forever editor look lame (I have yet to pay for that series but I probably should)

So it really filled all the neat little tweaking that I wanted that TimeSplitters 2&3 could not give but without the overly complicated controls of the UT3 map editor.

As for the current state of the game... not too good.

It has all the stuff that makes an Arena shooter. All the guns you would thing there should be, modfiers, transporters, and jumping pads.

But where most games have been trying to inovate from the Quake 3 Unreal Tournoment health styles, squads, guns and controls. This one plays pretty safe, and that is good n many ways.

- Movement is more momentum baised so jumping tricks make you move at insane speeds.
- All of the guns act like you would expect them to.

But since it is in such early alpha it does lack the polish to be expected from a full release title...

But then again it seems only one company is even bothering to do a traditional release in this Quarter. (and its not Epic or ID)

So I am not very afraid of this game being an early access title, because the new UT is going to basically be in alpha for quite some time after it is released. Quake 3 is great and all but Zenimax is never going to pay to make a new multi-player based Quake in fear of it never meeting their standards ( like Prey 2... what am I saying they will try Quake... lets just hope they do not screw it up)

So as of now Reflex and Toxikk are the only two arena shooters I will be playing and enjoing.

Though I do think Reflex will go for more of a minmalistic style of game more geared to competitive play... eventually.

But yeah I would highly recomend this to people that always wanted to build maps and share them. The software is not very demanding and I still can run it higher than 720P on my i3... so almost any computer tower could run it as long as they do not have celleron prossesors.


Go! baby Go! Untill I buy a new one!

Photo Photo







Retrofraction
11:59 PM on 10.20.2014

Three weeks ago a truck with tubs of my stuff that I have not seen in four years came, and I have been sorting through it and finding a whole lot of wonderful, nostalgic, and amazing things.

Like more than 50 issues of Sonic the Hedgehog I have been saving for the last 7 years.

Well I had always sort of thought when I told my mother that when I was collecting rare video games it meant that I would be collecting them and never selling them. I just let her think I was going to sell them so she would feel better about all the stuff I had in our storage unit.

Then the economy crashed right before I was able to graduate, and it still is in the worst recession that has ever happened in the USA.

Things are slowly picking up I guess, but between forced health care and mandates for full-time employees make it much harder for employers to justify hearing people on whims.

Less to say my collection has to go if I want to fund myself into a future carrer so I am selling and sold some of the best NES games.

Yep, this was mine

Yep I actually bought a copy of Metal Storm from a Dillon's Grocery Store when their video department. It was in a nice plastic box they made when they proceeded it and was in decent shape. As the sticker says I bought it for $5.95 in 1998.

Fast forward to 2008 and HVGN or Happy Video Game Nerd does a special about this game, frankly I was really excited that someone else knew about this gem of a game. All of the sudden Ebay prices start rising to $30.

And last week I sold my copy for $63.00 on Ebay, which even though it is much lower than full price it is a heck of a lot more than $5.95 and the $30 some local video game stores were trying to buy it for.

Its just really hard at time because I see wonderful articles like Jordan's and it really reminds me that in many ways these games that I have stored away for more than five years are some of the best memories I have had. And dang, it is super hard not getting emotional over certain titles... Like I still find myself trying to justify keeping certain games I have not played in 5-6 years.

but they got to go... if I am going to keep going.

But then there is guilt, guilt that there still are great times to be had with these games.

Like NES Play Action Football.

I am not a sports guy, but my father bought this game for me and we played it almost every Sunday when I grew up. Literally this game even for its age is awesome, you got the play book, injury, and tournament mode. But I guess my favorite part about it was spending time with my father, and it would be all too easy to take this game and my system and plug it in and see if he would like to play another game.

Then there are the game I never beat... Right now I am sitting on copies of some of the best NES games: Double Dragon 2, Metal Gear, Snakes Revenge, and the TMNT trilogy. But I have never beaten them, which bother me and I have no clue why.

But then I get into the selling mind frame, and soon my boxed and complete GBA games start looking like large bills that can help fund my future... but I have to think a boxed copy of Zero Mission is going to go for a lot more later on so I should keep on to it for a while.

Guess the largest problem is even if I amass all the funds I need for the item I want to buy there still is not sure shot that I will be getting a job.

Only a very slight chance...

But I guess that is better than nothing :)

So I guess I will leave you with two questions:

1) What games have you sold and got a ton of money from? (figurative tonnage here pls :))

2) What were the hardest games to let go?









 

GOG is giving away Aliens VS Preditor to anyone that signs up for the GOG Galaxy beta in the next 42 hours.

SO GO CLAIM A FREE

GAME!!!

*edit its Aliens vs Preditor 2000*

Photo







Retrofraction
6:10 PM on 09.26.2014

THE Future

 Mid way though the generation I like to think about what is going to happen in this next generation.

Becuase technology is changing, and belive it or not improving graphics is not going to start another golden age of gaming.

I think the future of video games and mobile devices are completly intertwined. Or at least in the seanse that in the next two generations we will have the most mobile video game consoles to ever be realeased.

Can we talk about all the teathering going on? Pretty much every company has some form of wi-fi or wired teathering with mobile devices. Being the Wii U pad, the PSP Vita, or even your Windows Phone or Tablet.



Simply to say I have to think that it is not going away any time soon. Nintendo did something crazy this generation, delivering a system with a portable device that has to be teathered for games. They have taken a lot of heat as it is not dramatically different than the 3DS and even the fact that the "New" 3DS as a Wii U controler pretty much proves that their hardware was mre than compatible than they let on and that in the future they were planing to do what Sony has already sort of pushed... Sort of.

Before I go off and say that Sony's remote play is perfect... it is not. Because you are spending about $200 more for a vita and a PS4 to get marginal functionality. As the vita hardware is sort of ignored to a simple data signal from the PS4 and back. So it is like a $200 portable screen... bit pricy (though streaming games via internet is cool)

I would mention Microsoft but they have not dabbeled enough in mobile hardware to put anything comparible, except basic functions most smart TVs do, besides some web baised apps.

The Future is in how our new devices

will use wi-fi to change the perceptions

of how we game right now, but instead

of having huge cluncky home systems

it will be all portable.

 Because there really is about two factors that really is holding this generation back:

1) Portablilty
2) Capacity


3D graphics are about on the edge of what they can push polygonally, obvoisly there is alway time to push more and more but that cuts into devlopment costs, devlopment time, and content avaliblity. Which is why most games have started putting in tons and tons of different textures as of recent.

Which is why a lot of the newer games need more space for all the polygons and textures, which sometimes take up all the space in the hard drive. Which none of the consoles are terribly easy to upgrade hard disks because it is in a mess of plastic and wires that protect your valuble hardware from dust and scraches. (and worst of all, piracy)

So why not work to your advantage and put the hardware in a portible device that syncs with a base unit that has next to unlimited capasity?

 Well at least with how everything is going to be digital after this generation, it jsut makes too much sense to me to have a home unit with 2tb hard drives loading and saving media that you wanted to load on your portable device while you are sleeping.

With the gbps wi-fi tech we have right now streaming/swaping content off the hard drive is simply faster and much more convenient than boggling all the local bandwidth down every time you have to manage your disk space :)

Basically the home unit would be a mini-private server to store your content in when you are not using it. So if you do not have the internet or there is a DDOS attack, you would never have to worry about it distrupting your installing of games. When the internet is up it will automatically download and patch when you are gone. (same for your movies and music you bought)

But with all that alone time with your TV... things might get freaky and start recording your favorite TV shows and movies for some extra curricular activites ;D

Pre-order a game and have the home unit pre-load it while you are not gaming at work... lol.

But the posiblities are pretty wide open in terms what this might allow for the next generation. But I am pretty sure that this next group will be close to the end of home consoles as we know it. Thanks for reading!!!








Retrofraction
9:12 PM on 09.21.2014

1987 was a huge year in gaming, quite possibly the year that released games that have set up game standards for design. Ten years after the video game crash of 1977, and four years after the second crash in 1983 Nintendo was still riding off the success of their two most popular titles of the time.
 
 
  • Donkey Kong
  • Super Mario Brothers
 
 To be honest, that time and era pretty much every company wanted to kill Nintendo. The jerks that seamlessly rejuvenated the video game market to unbelievable scales during a market recession.
 
Pretty much what the studios wanted to do to Orlsion Wells after he did Citizen Kane, and pretty much showed Hollywood that independent Directors were a threat to the status quo that more movie goer were use to.
 
By all means there were companies putting their money into raw graphic power to completely blow the looks of Nintendo games, and it was looking really grim. As the company that remade the video game world was losing steam and rapidly getting out done by market competitors.
 
What the rest of the world did not know in 1986, in Japan two of the most revolutionary games to be made. What would be their flipping of the treble response to all the trash talk that was coming from the western world, as there was a lot more powerful hardware out at the time.
 
The Legend of Zelda is the more popular of the two, and personally I love an underdog story. So this blog is dedicated to my love of the Nintendo Entertainment System version of:
 
 
 
Metroid
 
 
 
Year after year I simply come back to this gem of a game. There is simply something endearing about this title.
 
I guess it would be the absolute brutal nature of the game. Or at least the brutality that is assumed from our culture today.
 
 
It was one of the first games to really allow gamers to take the game at their own pace. There are no levels, there is no specific order needed, just exploration. While I do know and feel this game borrowed a lot from the Legend of Zelda they took the over world design and made an entire game built around it.
 
Some could say that Metroid was the birth of the open world genre.
 
 
 
Whenever I get stuck in modern games that have too many tutorials, in a game that has too much UI, with a ton of loading screens, and games that seem very uni-directional I can just play this game and just really enjoy the restraint that developers had to have in the 80s to save space on their tiny cartridges :D
 
It's a shame that many developers have their sense to be inconspicuous in about not letting mindless information destroy any sense of immersion.
 
 
Heck they do not even explain the power-ups in the game, which is the way it should be :) I really hate how developers assume that people will not experiment with games that include puzzles and other forms of trial and error.
 
It takes 5 minutes.

 

 I know that most people take one second and look at the graphics of this game and simply write it off as old. Because it does not follow the rest of the first party Nintendo games being colorful and it repeats tiles like nothing else.
 
But to do what they did on the 59kb they had is a technical feat in itself.( text based my resume is 55kb)
 
They managed to make a massive world on one of the most basic NES cartridges, technically even smaller than most of their arcade counterparts at the time. So it makes complete sense that they are going to have to cut tile counts and stick to re-coloring to provide the differentiation between areas.
 
But it was those muted colors that gave Metroid an alien feel to it. It was just so different, and it still feels different today.
 
 
I cannot lie and say that I came from a basic age where web 1.0 ruled. That people simply had to create what they wanted.

But it seems everyone's #1 complaint is that this games does not have a map. Which in this day and age of GPS and the internet people have less and less of a reason to store location data in their minds.

Which I find to be a true shame as many people have lost their sense of direction, or simply do not care enough to pay attention  to their surroundings.
 
 But I guess the biggest draw to this game, the draw I get every time I play this game. Is the growth of Samus thought the game.
 
 
When the game starts they give you 30hp and boot you off into a large and deadly world. Which I think brings a nice horror element as Samus without her power-ups is a very easy target.
 
Soon you have to parse out what items will you use:

"Will I make it to the next side or should I farm up for more HP and Misses?"

But for some people, like me, they love to blow caution out of the water and go in with their arm cannon hot and usually get owned.

"Will I have enough missiles to open doors?"
 
 
Which this game is great about very subtle clues to help players to identify hidden or out of reach content. Overall I think there was a lot of intentional game design which helps guide the player passively into reaching the overall goal:

Killing the Mother Brain.
 
 
Which is one of the most iconic bosses in video games.Because as a boss it never really attacks you 1:1.

Instead Samus has to get to the brain and dodge all the turret fire and simply shoot into the brain.
 
 
I know for some people this is a pain, but I love bombing and looking for hidden areas. Did I mention I once did a 5 bomb jump into a hole to get into a hole in a wall to go the alternate route to get the ice beam? It took hours but it was worth it :)
 
This game has all the right places for hidden loot, which could drive a person that enjoys completion mad. But again I just love finding hidden stuff.
 
 
So Metroid is my favorite game right now, and I really cannot find much wrong with it that is not directly tied to the restraints that they had to deal with the time.
 
Its so good, even if you hate 2D 8bit games I really think everyone needs to experince this game.