Once of my quests in life is to introduce my significant other to the delights and wonders of being a Gamer. Not in the D&D type sense, but in the Quake, Doom, Unreal, Warcraft, Tropico, Monkey Island, GTA, The Sims, Command and Conquer type sense. In this, I appear to have succeeded, because she’s been playing Planescape:Torment all day.

Planescape is one of the best RPGs out there, and certainly the one with the best plot line. Baldur’s Gate may be huge (And we are talking about hundreds of hours for the series here) but the plot-line does involve an awful amount of “Okay, can’t rescue person who’s being tortured yet, must level-up some more”. Baldur’s Gate 1 in particular suffers from this, the four hour gap close to the beginning between the “I don’t know what I’m doing, all these things are happening to me” and the first bit of actual exposition. In Planescape there is no tedious back story, no “You grew up in a town called Candlekeep on the edge of the sword coast” lengthy monologue. You wake up, in a mortuary, with a talking skull beside you. With amnesia. It’s now your job to find out who you are, and why you are in a mortuary.

You are in a mortuary because you died.

The plot thickens.

Note, it isn’t the player’s job to get this information out of the game, it is the game, or at least a major part of the first three-quarters say. The plot changes, too. Certain people won’t join you if you follow certain principles. Nothing major, just different side quests, different PCs, the main Nameless One’s quest is still there, always.

Meanwhile, I’m getting back into games mode. This week was spent brushing up on my C++ and learning the absolute basics of Windows Programming and DirectX interfaces. Now I have to take three steps backwards, and learn all the bits that my University course didn’t cover, like Classes. Course, the best thing for me to be doing would be Java, since that’s what I appear to be mixed up in most, but my bad experiences at Uni with the language (including a teacher who gave us code written out longhand that didn’t either compile nor match up with what the course-standard-IDE thought the process calls were). Python has been put on hold whilst I go back to basic principles of Real Programming.

(I’m not a coder, I’m a scripter. The main difference involves main event loops, I belive. I learnt to code in BBC, then Q, then Visual Basic 4 & 6. None of which require any kind of constant state loop. I’m having to unlearn a lot of stuff, which is probably going to help the rest of my programming too. Yay)

I’ve tidied my room.

I have one room in the house in which I sleep, work and play. It hasn’t been cleared up since roughly September, when I moved the stuff from the floor to the bed and back again to look for a book. In this clear-out, I found 20 CDs, 5 books,