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1:33 PM on 02.21.2009

Star Ocean: The Last Hope Preview [Gametrailers]


By my 360 I have a copy of Infinite Undiscovery collecting dust, and while that really bugs me I just can't get myself to play it again. So when I watched this preview of the new Star Ocean game and loved every second, I had to question myself.

"Hey me! Let's think about this a little bit! This game is being developed by tri-Ace, published by Square-Enix, and it's even been made on the Infinite Undiscovery Engine! Since I haven't been enjoying that game, isn't it a bit early to fall in love with this game?"

To which I reply, "STAR OCEAN!" And then I promptly shut myself up. Anyone out there as excited as I am about this game?   read

3:29 PM on 02.02.2009

10 things you didn't know about bluexy...

10. I am the founder and President (now retired) of the Oregon State University Dodgeball Club. What started out as a weekend outing with some friends quickly grew into a great program. Though I had to leave that all behind the club now boasts a good sized budget from fundraisers and school funds and multiple large tourney trips throughout the year. The last year I played we went to the NDA national championships in Las Vegas and placed fourth. Our team name? The Dodgepocalypse.

9. I broke my arm twice playing Dodgeball, expediting my retirement. After finishing our budget for the year and entering the planning stage for our next championship trip, I picked up a soft foam ball and threw it so hard my arm broke. Or that's what the doctors told me anyways. Six months later, after going through physical therapy and countless medical appointments I get the green light and head back to dodgeball practice. My arm breaks again on the second throw. Opting out of surgery I decided instead to retire and never throw a dodgeball again.

8.I took six years to get my bachelor's degree in computer science. My sophomore year of college is a blur in my head. I was an electrical engineering major at the start of the year, and after a number of failed real-life quicktime events regarding family, relationships, and school I woke up in my third year as a CS major. After that it all went pretty smoothly.

7.I am a video game perfectionist. This is reflected in most aspects of my life, but my perfectionism is often mistaken for procrastination. I have a hard time doing things if I can't finish them completely, with a high standard of quality. In games, this translates to reaching level 94 and quitting an RPG since I just can't complete the game without getting to level 99, but grinding one more level will drive me insane.

6.I used to play bass clarinet and sing in a choir. You know, I suppose I was pretty musically inclined until I decided I was too cool or something and took a study hall and a programming class instead.

5.I used to have a lip piercing. I want to say, "When I was a kid," or, "When I was much younger," but it was only four years ago... anyways, I got my lip pierced. It was during all that sophomore year fun times and a bunch of girls told me lip piercings were sexy. I took it out two years ago, still have the scar, but I don't think my Grandma will ever look at me in the same way again.

4.My favorite game ever is Chrono Cross. I vaguely remember most of the plot, and the character names all escape me except for a small few, but I love this game beyond all reasoning. A boy living in a small fishing village, who could care less about the world around him, who has a growing relationship will another girl in the town, who is happy... and everything changes. The entire time I played this game, I felt like if Serge has the choice he would never have started this whole damn quest. He was robbed of a simple life filled with smiles. I've never felt so much sympathy as I did with Serge in Chrono Cross.

3.I miss Nex on Destructoid. It may just be that he's from Oregon, I'm from Oregon, or it may be my infatuation with his little star icon that he had. It may just be a simple man-crush. All I know is that I miss Nex on Destructoid.

2.I want to be a bigger part of Destructoid. It's true, I do. Whether I can find a niche that hasn't been filled or not, I still want to do something more for this site than I have in the past.

1.I love you all. It's true, I do. Though I've been around on Dtoid for a while now, I don't get to say this as much as I want to... I love Destructoid and I love you all. :D   read

2:40 PM on 01.19.2009

Darkfall Delayed - Delayfall, Darkflop

For all of the glorious MMO nerds out there, who are my kin, 2009 appears to be a desolate wasteland for great new games. All we can do is cross our fingers and hope one there's a diamond hidden somewhere among our sparse release list. Of course, these are MMOs we're talking about here and it should come as no surprise that our hopes will only be met with disappointment and mocking laughter.

So, naturally, Darkfall's launch has been given a one month delay to February 25th.

The high-fantasy based MMO in which players choose from one of six races (humans, elves, dark elves, dwarves, orks and wolf-furries) to explore and pillage and other usual MMO stuff. Doing away with a level based system, Darkfall instead implements one based on skills. You first acquire a skill, say basket weaving, and then level that up by making said baskets. You may then realize your folly and take up skills that will be more effective in combat. Where Darkfall supposedly shines though, is it's PvP system. Players may kill other players at any time, much like Age of Conan, but include fully lootable corpses and armor decay.

A supposedly "open"-like beta is scheduled to take place this coming week. Check here for the official announcement.   read

3:35 PM on 01.06.2009

Playing With Others: Beat 'Em Ups

Leonardo, who was an average character, but felt stronger because he was the leader. Billy Lee, since blue has always been my favorite color, and Billy always seemed like the perfect name for an ass-kicker. Rash, who was player one's character in the original. Blade; brown undead beast; Mayor Haggar; Michael Jackson; Collossus; Gilius Thunderhead; Axel; and Homer Simpson.

These are the names I will be known as to countless children, grown now like myself.

The punks from the arcade by the beach in Seaside, where Final Fight always had a long line and Moonwalker was more popular with the older kids. There would still be sand between my toes and I'd itch like craze from the salt water I'd recently swam in. All forgotten when I'd find Bubbles, tranform in robo-Michael and fill the screen with lazer blasts.

I can still recall the orange haired kid: dimples, freckles and glasses. I saw him from the corner of my eye watching the game and thought nothing of it. I loved watching the games when I was out of quarters myself. When the game ended and I reached for the quarter I had placed near the joystick I knew what had happened. I found him again playing Final Fight, he had chosen Guy (they always do), but all I did was watch. It was only when he quickly died, ignoring the pipes and food on the ground, that I became angry. What a waste of a quarter.

Wunderland, the nickel game arcade, required you to pay admission to get in. So it was only for birthday parties or other special occasions that you got to go there. Back then it was always my favorite arcade, since it was always packed with kids. Sometimes you could jump into a beat 'em up right near the end of the game. I always had to beat the games before moving on. The more nickels I saved, the more games I could beat. Once, I kept a record of how many games I was able to beat, and with how many nickels. I couldn't tell you now though.

The Simpson's, X-Men, Golden Axe, they were all at Wunderland. They were always there when my friends and I went back in the 90's. So a few years ago, during summer break, and after a few beers, we had to go back. Gamer nostalgia is the worst and the best. We shouldn't have gone back though. My friends, who I could call Rash, Michaelangelo, Cody, and countless other names, would tell you the same. Gone were the games we all remembered, in their place were DDR machines and other odd contraptions. They all required five nickels to even start, and often stood so tall a child could never reach the controls. We played the games and smiled, but it wasn't the same. It smelled like dirt and mold. It wasn't until we were leaving that a friend noticed Altered Beast, pushed back into a dark corner.

"Rise from your grave!" he whispered. None of us have gone back; I've heard it has closed down.

I can't remember their faces, Striker and Raphael, but two girls used to live across the street. They often traveled the distance and we would play Bad Dudes and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, arcade of course, on my Nintendo. I remember the areas I would have to beat on my own specifically. They never could get the timing right for the little mouser robots bursting from the sewer walls. We moved when I was in the second grade, but I hope they've grown into proud gamers.

Double Dragons though, I only played with my Dad. He was always Jimmy, just as I was always Billy. It might have been the only video game he was better than me at. It might have been the only video game I didin't have to persuade him to play with me.

"She's not going to rescue herself!" he would say. There was always someone to rescue in a beat 'em up. And we did rescue her, and we would rescue April as well, him as Donatello and me as the leader in blue. He helped me rescue everyone in the other games too, after all it was his quarters and nickels that kept me playing.

Striker and Raphael, who were the girls across the street. Red Archer, Bart Simpson, Cyclops, and the Castle Crashers, who are my oldest and best of friends. Guy, who was a jerk and a crappy gamer. Moui, Albedo and Takako, who in a world empty of beat 'em ups, make me remember the best of times. Jimmy and Donatello, who are my Father.

These are the names I will remember, grown as I am, for the rest of my life.   read

12:55 PM on 12.23.2008

Tabula Rasa - Free to Play

Everyone's least favorite space MMO is now free to play, which is probably a price most of you vagrants can afford to pay. One can only assume that NCSoft's previous announcement created an expected mass exodus, and charging five people for one extra month seemed like kind of a dick move. So they made a smart call and set their dying game loose.

The dev team also appears to have released one of their last content patches. Probably just dumping the work they've already completed out for everyone to enjoy.

Here's the official release:


We've released all new content - Earth, PvP Wargames, Epic Caves of Donn and more, and we want to remind you that Tabula Rasa is free to play, right now!

If you're a former player looking to return and check out the new content, just log into your PlayNC master account at and visit Account Management to reactivate your account. It's as easy as clicking a button!

If you're a new player who has never tried Tabula Rasa, you can get a Tabula Rasa Serial Code by visiting our Support site and submitting a request for a new code. Use that code at to create a new account!
You'll need to activate your new account with a credit card number, but don't worry - that's just so we know who you are. We will not charge your card for Tabula Rasa gameplay before game service ends on Feb 28, 2009.

Once your account is activated (or re-activated!), visit to download the game client. Install and you're ready to go.

It's easy, it's free, and it's a great game! We look forward to seeing you in the game!


If you haven't tried it, and you're looking for a holiday time waster, Tabula Rasa does have some entertaining features (shooting monsters with laser guns). I Might even reinstall and give it a spin just to see what Earth looks like, even though I despised the game. Then again, I paid for the game so I guess they've won this round.

Sources: Kotaku, NCSoft   read

1:59 PM on 11.21.2008

Tabula Rasa - Another MMO Dies

Sad day after sad day for Tabula Rasa fans these past months. If it's any solace, today was the last bad news they'll be receiving. Yes, Tabula Rasa is officially calling it quits. As evidenced from the recent layoffs, as well as Richard Garriott's abandonment, everyone saw this coming from a mile away.

Servers will be closing at the end of next February, but if you're still interested in giving the Sci Fi adventure a try the service will be free to play after January 10.

Here's the official release:


To the Tabula Rasa Community,

Last November we launched what we hoped would be a ground breaking sci-fi MMO. In many ways, we think we've achieved that goal. Tabula Rasa has some unique features that make it fun and very different from every other MMO out there. Unfortunately, the fact is that the game hasn't performed as expected. The development team has worked hard to improve the game since launch, but the game never achieved the player population we hoped for.

So it is with regret that we must announce that Tabula Rasa will end live service on February 28, 2009.

Before we end the service, we'll make Tabula Rasa servers free to play starting on January 10, 2009.

We can assure you that through the next couple of months we'll be doing some really fun things in Tabula Rasa, and we plan to make staying on a little longer worth your while. For more details about what we are doing for Tabula Rasa players, please click here.

Stay tuned for more information. We thank you for your loyal support of the game and encourage you to take us up on the benefits we're offering Tabula Rasa players.

The Tabula Rasa Team


One has to ask, did Garriott leave with the knowledge that his game was shutting down? Or was he leaving aware it would be the straw to break the game's back? What I'm trying to say is that either way Garriott comes out looking like a prick. Whatever happened to a captain and his sinking ship? Hope your future business prospects are worth more than the respect of your remaining gamer faithful Rich. Maybe it's best you're leaving the industry.

Source:   read

6:48 PM on 11.11.2008

NCsoft + Richard Garriot = No More

In a thoughtful three paragraph news post hidden deep within the Tabula Rasa home page, Richard Garriott says goodbye to the community whom he loves, despite dooming their already frail game. Richard Garriott is currently the CEO of NCsoft Austin which recently had a bout of developer layoffs, he was recently shot into space, and is still adored by many for his role is creating the original Ultima.

Here's what he had to say:

Fellow Soldiers of the AFS,

I am happy to finally be able to write the players and community of Tabula Rasa. We've been on quite a journey together. First in creating a game unlike any other on the MMO market, then growing a loyal community and finally launching the game and its players into space with Operation Immortality. It has been quite an unforgettable journey, one that I will treasure for the rest of my life.

I am very grateful to you loyal players for sticking around through what I think we can all honestly say was a rough launch. I thank the development team for pushing hard to get polish, updates and new content out every month since launch...a feat that I think is unusual in MMO development. They have a lot to be proud of.

Many of you probably wonder what my plans are, now that I have achieved the lifelong dream of going to space. Well, that unforgettable experience has sparked some new interests that I would like to devote my time and resources to. As such, I am leaving NCsoft to pursue those interests.

This news is difficult for me to deliver. I am honored to have worked with the team I've had and I'm grateful to the community who makes this game so unique and fun.

Thank you and farewell.

Richard "General British" Garriott


While not surprising to those who have played, and been disappointed by, Garriott's space MMO Tabula Rasa, it's sad to see the man begin the fade into gaming obscurity. There are currently no indications that Garriott has plans for any other games, or if he'll stay in the industry at all.

Meanwhile I continue to blame Garriott for all those MMO playing bastards who bitch and moan that the only true form of Player vs. Players involves lootable corpses and pickpocketing.

Edit: Fuck it, I know it's on the frontpage now. I'm still posting it.   read

7:58 PM on 04.06.2008

Not my Turning Point gaming Rig

Better late than never! Here's my submission for the Turning Point contest. To look at a CS major's desk is to look into his soul. As you can see, it's pretty messy, unorganized, but super comfortable and streamlined for life on the internet.

The PC itself is compromised of the following important bits:

Intel Core2 CPU 6400 @ 2.13GHz
GeForce 7900 GS

Various items spread throughout the picture:

Empty bag of Chili Cheese Fritos
Diablo 2: Expansion disc
Go Board
Coffe Cup
Red Bull, Shasta Black Cherry, JIF Peanut Butter (All empty)
Srirachi HOT Chili Sauce
Deck of Cards
"Issola" by Stephen Brust
Guitar Hero 3 Skull Sticker
Emery Sticker

Can you find them all? What else did you find!? Eh, fuck I'd give you credit for even reading this far. These damn Turning Point things are never worth the time they take to look at. In the end some fat naked guy always wins anyway.

PS: My PC is named Frankenstein because every time it starts up it's a fuckin' miracle. Also because it's afraid of fire and likes flowers, but that's another story.   read

9:38 PM on 12.22.2007

Velocity Micro Giveaway Contest, etc.

Here's my submission for the Velocity Micro Giveaway Contest! Entwining the holiday spirit with Destructoid lust, and a penchant for building forts since I was little produced this image of which I am so proud.

The first is a photo without flash which, I believe, captures the true spirit of the structure and effort. The second is with the lights on so as to show my ugly mug and the finer points of the work.



The structure was made out of the following items:

14 Christmas presents wrapped in assorted Christmas wrap.
8ft long 1x6 plank of cedar, cut, nailed and tin foiled into a robot accessory.
1 green sheet.
1 Nintentdo, Super Nintendo, Gamecube, Xbox 360, & PS2
1 Santa Claus doll (The other is a present for our puppy)
1 100 light strand of blue lights.
1 strand of 5 "light balls" (They were in the closet!).
2 tall bar chairs.
1 broken window shade.

I just want to say how much fun this contest was for me and my parents. I'm home for the holidays and told them about this idea and was surprised when they offered to help! We spent the day making sketches and building our Presentstoid robot face and were extremely happy with our end product.

I hope the effort and spirit of this photo rivals the true power of nude men that others have submitted in the contest.

Thanks to Niero & crew for the great contest! Happy holidays everybody!   read

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