Categories
Computer Games Imported From Epistula

On Simon the Sorcerer 4

Some soothsayers said of a second sequel to the second “Simon the Sorcerer” software CD.

The Simon the Sorcerer series suffered somewhat from as series of sinking scores, The source software showed solid stories, screwing successfully with standard story standbys, substituting selected symbols for some supplementary salacious succour. Simon spoke splendidly, sourced superlatively by Chris Barrie (Who’s starting syllables subvert this selected style). Sadly successive sequels solicited sub-standard scripts and suddenly stopped sourcing said scutter-supporting speaker. Simon the Sorcerer ceased sequeling subsequent to Simon’s second sequel, saving sympathetic shoppers supporting superfluous slipshod stuff.

Sadly, Simon’s skippers sort spare salary, sanctioning “Silver Style”’s saga sustenance. Somehow Simon the Sorcerer IV’s sour semblance seems sured.

Sanguineness seems sub-suited.

Categories
Computer Games Imported From Epistula

Hellgate London Demo

FYI, The demo of Hellgate London (Diablo-style thing set in something that’s occasionally recognisably London, apparently) has been released. It can be found at: Fileplanet®, Filefront, Fileshack®, 4players, Gamedaily

([R]: Registration Required)

Hellgate is by ex-Blizzard people (as Guild Wars is), and is said to be kind of the flip side of “Like Diablo” to that. Not entirely sure how that works, but I’ll let you know when it finishes downloading. 1.5 gb later.

Categories
aqcom epistula Imported From Epistula

Hey look, new stuff

Look, photoset:

(Aquarionics Gallery System 2.0 coming soon. Photoset icons being one of the things already working.)

As I am updating Twitter more often than anything else right now, I’ve put a feed of Twitter onto the front page. Front page is now notably a different data-set to the generic feed, as the latter doesn’t contain twitters. I’m moving slowly to turning the frontpage into a lifestream, but currently adding modules to Epistula is not quite as easy as it should be (I made two shortcuts when building the architecture which are now biting me in the arse five years later (Yeah, Bits of Epistula are five. Not sure if I have more than two readers left from when I did that)).

As far as actual content goes, though. Look to the stars.

Categories
Apple Imported From Epistula

Native Apps on the iPhone & iPod Touch

We have always been at war with Eurasia

Categories
2007 food Imported From Epistula social

A new location has been unlocked!

It is a truth universally acknowledged that any man of drinking age who has
recently moved to London will be looking for a local pub.

In this city “Local” isn’t very much a function of geography, as a pub that is
half an hour’s walk away is equal to a pub half an hour’s bus-ride away which is
nevertheless miles out. So far in my London Life the pubs counting as “The place
I usually go to” would be
Chads
which is just outside work and something of a Default Option at 18:00;
Caminos
– Which is also in Kings Cross, sells beer by the pitcher with iced glasses and
has decent lager and good food;
Celsius
– which sells variable beer, but is close to home and cheap; or
De
Hems
– Very, Very nice beer, good food, but not cheap and something of an
arse to get to (or at least home from).

Then:

I went back to see my parents & brethen before one of them sods off to
Thailand for a while, and their new copy of the Good Beer Guide had arrived, so
I looked though it for places near me, registered one as being potentially
interesting, and promptly forgot about it.

I’m vaguely looking for a new flat, and looking at different areas. In one of
the flats I was looking at, I put the postcode into a search for pubs to see
what was nearby. One of them looked interesting, and rang a bell, but I didn’t
end up visiting the flat (The agent never rang me back) so I forgot about it.

A little while later, a somewhat long-lost friend of mine posted to his
Livejournal about how he was in this particular pub, not far from where I was,
and would anyone on his friends list like to join him? I had almost completed
Peggle, and I did that instead. This was a mistake.

Yesterday. Mr Cooke – who I work with, lived with in Cambridge, was best man
for, and am friends with – mentioned a pub in Hackney that he and his wife were
going to most weekends, it had lots of decent beer and games and even did games
evening. Also, it had free wifi. I should, he said, go with them one Sunday.

Slightly later yesterday, Long Lost Friend – who is also connected via people I
now know though the Maelstrom LARP community, he’s that kind of Nexus – posted
in his LJ that he now had a job at a pub in Hackney, working Sundays and…

…So I brought this up on the LARP channel, because nexi of coincidences like
this really, really start to scare me…

…and it turns out that this used to be a favourite pub of several people on
channel, when they used to live in London.

The same pub. Which was named after the village my grandparents live in.

Where the hospital in which I was born resides.

There is a moment, to paraphrase someone, in RPG games where the unnamed masses
stop responding to you with
*sigh*,
Times are Tough
“, or “Mustn’t Grumble”, or “I wonder if the crops are
okay?”, and instead will mention uncles on a continent you’ve not seen before,
or how they’re saving to sail there, or how they hope their brother (who sailed
to this continent) is okay. You look at your world map, and you discover there
is now a third continent where once there were potential dragons. At this point
you know, without yet being told, that the next place you’ll be going involves a
long boat ride.

I need a bigger universe.

Categories
Imported From Epistula Movies

Crank

Last night I watched a movie called Crank

The concept is this: Bloke poisoned. Adrenaline slows the poison. Get the bastards before he dies.

That’s it. It’s “Speed”, but without the bus. It doesn’t stop. It’s shot in a meta-movie kind of way, something like the style of Snatch taken up a couple of notches. In fact, generally its point is to take every action/heist movie stereotype, boost it to 13 and put it on film.

It’s fun to watch, its not going to set the world on fire, but it’s an explosive action movie, if that’s what you’re looking for.

Categories
food Imported From Epistula

A post not about Valve software, that is instead about water.

So, in my willingness to try new things, Tescos managed to sell me a bottle of Carpe Diem Botanic Water. It is water with herbs in it. I bought the “revitalising” version, which contains Galangal, Ginger, Cardamom, Elderflower, Quince, Rose Hip, Birch Leaves & Lemongrass. The important one in that is the second one, as after that it doesn’t really feature. This is ginger flavoured water, only not as nice as it sounds.

Learn from my mistakes: Avoid it.

Categories
Computer Games Imported From Epistula

Biowarn

EA Buy Bioware & Pandemic Studios owners

Bullfrog, Maxis, Westwood, So many others. I’m hoping EA don’t fuck this up, but I’m afraid they’re going to anyway.

Categories
Computer Games Imported From Epistula

The Orange Box: Portal

Simultaneously, the best and worst thing about Portal is the ending.

You know the drill if you’ve seen the video. You have a portal gun which will shoot two doors into the scenery. You are being put though a series of tests. This is the game.

It is a puzzle game, created and built with the care and attention to detail that the Valve games all shimmer with gently. In the manner of an RTS game it continues to introduce new elements right up until the final element, you don’t get the full stack until you’re nearly finished.

This is unlike any other puzzle game, to a large extent. Plus, the ‘lab rat’ setting does give the entire game the feel of an extended tutorial, and the central mechanic doesn’t seem to be enough to base an entire game around. What makes the game is the environment.

You are… encouraged, I think is the word, though the levels by GLaDOS – a somewhat questionably rational AI, the knowledge you don’t have much choice but continue, and the continued promise of delicious moist cake. The lab itself is clean and polished, but the further you go though the game the more the facade starts to crack at the edges…

…and I’ll stop. The best and worst thing about Portal is the ending, it’s good because the actual arc and ending is one of the single most satisfying and well executed ending of a game for a long time (And proof that, despite appearances, Valve can write them) (You may have heard the rumour that The Orange Box contains a Jonathon Coulton song. It’s in Portal. If you ever intend to finish portal, do not seek out the song, yet). The worst bit about the ending is that it happens too soon. That’s it. For a game that’s $20 on its own, or free if you buy TF2 & HL:Ep2, four or so hours of this level of innovation is well worth it, and that’s without any of the bonus maps, challenges or the fact you will be promising cake to your friends for months.

As part of a new training protocol, this review will dissolve into internal references in three, two, o*fzzt*

Categories
Computer Games Imported From Epistula

This week, I have mostly

…been playing Team Fortress 2

I am Aquarion on Steam, if you want a game.