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Showing posts from August, 2008

My name is mbp and I am a flash game player

Thanks to Melmoth from Kiasa or giving me the courage to come out of the closet and write this post. After our holiday (a very enjoyable sojourn in a beautiful cottage overlooking the Fal estuary) I was ready to indulge in some PC gaming again. Before the break I had been playing a lot of EVE but I found that I am not quite ready to jump back in. With the new perspective formed during my 10 day abstinence I had to admit that while EVE is a really really good game it sure has a lot of boring things to do in it. I needed some quick fix instant gratification gaming. I am a veteran gamer with a hefty collection of PC games so you might imagine that this would be a relatively easy need to satisfy. Not so. Out of the hundreds of PC games that are in my collection the number that I can sit down and play straight away is ..... 5. There are several reasons for this. I have installed many games to make room for new titles. Other games remain installed but require hefty patching to get them to

"MMOs are History" revisited: Syncaines View

I got bored of fantasy MMOs and went through a whole MMOs are History thing. Then I got bored of "MMOs are History" and dropped the subject. The feeling hasn't enirely gone away though. I have been enjoying EVE for the last few months but much of my enjoyment of EVE stems from how different it is to the WOW like mmos I had dabbled in before. With tongue in cheek I extrapolated my ennui onto the entire MMO population predicting that the each new game would hold its audience for less time than the previous one leading quickly to the demise of the genre. The two month wonder that was Age of Conan certainly proved me right and it will be interesting to see if WAR can do better. In a recent post Syncaine makes a very sensible counter argument to MMOS are History(tm). He points out that it is entirely possible for people to be bored with the game they are playing but not be bored of the entire mmo genre. I quote: 'I believe most of the people burned out on WoW are stil

Holiday Time

I am off on holidays for 10 days, yippee. I have docked my internet spaceships and my continuing fumbling efforts to make sense of EVE's lawless 0.0 zone must wait till I return. Looking for some suitable reading material for the holiday I spotted that the 7th episode of Kevin Anderson's awesome Seven Suns saga has hit paperback. Large size paperback unfortunately but for Seven Sun's I am prepared to make an exception to my usual " wait until I can fit in in my pocket " rule.

A Carebear in 0.0: Titan Ahoy

There was an Amarr Titan waiting at the gate. A frigging Titan. I had never seen a real life Titan before but I wasn't going to wait around to get a better look. I hit the Auto pilot button and prayed. This was supposed to be a straightforward supply trip. In order to continue missioning in 0.0 I need to fit out a combat ship. I had already picked up an Executioner frigate from a Mordus Legion outpost deep in the heart of Pure Blind. It's about the only combat frigate this trader alt has the skills to fly but sadly the local 0.0 market could not provide the stuff needed to kit it out. I was returning from the safety of Empire space with the modules needed in my hold when I ran into the Behemoth camped at the gate. The reason I hit autopilot is because I have read it is the quickest way to get into warp in an emergency. Sure enough my little frigate alligned and zoomed away. The Titan vanished behind me. I was safe. Safe that is until the autopilot deposited me 15 km from my e

EVE: The Contnuing Adventures of a Noob Carebear in 0.0

Again I felt the call of 0.0. Again poor Marb Pelico my high sec mission running main was sent to the library with his skill books while I took an 800k skillpoint trading alt back into 0.0 This trip was some what more eventful than my first foray into Pure Blind . The unusual amount of lag in Torrinos should have given me a clue that something was up but I had not yet learned to read the signs. As I materialised out of hyperspace into EC-P8R I found myself surrounded by ships. Comparisons of a 0.0 gatecamp with a low sec gate camp: 1. In low sec everything flashes a violent criminal red. In 0.0 your assailants do not bear the criminal red marking to pre-warn you of their murderous intent. 2. In low sec a fast frigate has some chance of escaping a gatecamp. I didn't even try to save my pod. I had earlier taken the precaution of moving my clone to X-70MU deep in the heart of Pure Blind. In a way the Red Alliance gate camp I had stumbled into did me a favour. I immediately woke at m

EVE: A Carebear in 0.0

I imagine every high sec care bear eventually gets the urge to leave behind the security of Empire and savour the raw experience of 0.0. I am no exception and on Saturday, finding myself in Torrinos, just one jump away from the lawless Pure Blind region, I decided to throw caution to the wind and become a 0.0 tourist. There was no bravery involved in my expedition. I was using a clean alt flying a free noob frigate. Being shot and podded would cost me nothing. In any case the humble noobship wasn't an entirely bad choice. At this stage I am a dab hand at running low sec pirate gate camps and I have found that a noobship can be very hard to pin down if flown by someone who is awake. Of course 0.0 has terrors unknown to low sec. Any encounter with a warp stopping interdiction bubble would herald an abrupt end to my jaunt. First stop EC-P8R. Note how friendly sounding names like "Olo" and "Pator" have been dispensed with for bleak serial numbers in 0.0 space. Ther

EVE: Watch out I bite

So I took the EVE personality test. Apparently I am am an: Industrialist with teeth You enjoy Eve's economic model and you find that the greatest challenge of the game lies in mastering the market. System security status is a matter of profit/no profit for you, and you always factor in the possibility/probability of PvP in your estimates. To you, Eve isn't a PvP or a PvE game. It's a simulation of capitalizm in its purest form, and a place where the savvy wins the day. Take The EvE Personality Test today! Created with Rum and Monkey 's Personality Test Generator . All in all its a reasonable assessment. I am a care bear who doesn't get kicks out of causing pain to others but I like the fact that EVE is a dangerous universe. I am not really an industrialist I guess but as far as I am concerned industry/ missions /trading even piracy if I ever get around to it are all just ways to play the game and earn a crust in the EVE universe. I have no time for: Care bears who

EVE without Suicide GAnking would not be EVE: A Noobs View of the Proposed Suicide Ganking Changes

If ever I was to go to the dark side in EVE I think it would be as a high sec suicide ganker . Its not for he "Lulz" of killing someone when they think they are safe - I genuinely don't believe I could take pleasure in that. It is because I see a certain beauty in the careful weighing of risk versus reward.I imagine that suicide ganking for profit is a masterwork of intelligence, planning and careful calculation. You know you are going to lose your ship. You know you are going to incur a security penalty which will take time to work off. If you pick the wrong target, if you bring too little force, if you bring too much force, if your timing is off or if screw up in any other way then you are likely to lose more than you gain. I also believe that suicide gankers fulfil one of the most important roles in EVE's mythos. Suicide gankers are the boogie men. They are the nightmares that haunt the dreams of high sec carebears. Without suicide gankers there would be no reaso

EVE Online: The Problem of Renewal

About a week ago Syncaine made a blog post countering the often heard complaint that Newbies can never catch up with older players in EVE: "Stop Bitching about Skill Points Newbtards" I might lack Syncaine's colourful turn of phrase but I can empathise with a lot of what he says. EVE's skill based system is more generous to new players than level level based regimes such as used in World of Warcraft. I myself have just spent a very enjoyable week playing a brand new out of the box 800k skill point character. I didn't invest any time in training because no training was required for what I wanted to do. BUT ... Syncaine's post got me thinking and on reflection I think that there really is a problem here. EVE is a game that has proven itself to have longevity. It has held on to older players and it is still attracting new players 5 years after launch. Couple that to the single server model and you have a problem of top heaviness in the game. If the game is cont

EVE Update: Trading is hard work. I need a break.

Seduced by tales from experienced players of easy billions to be made on the markets I thought I could use my alts to do some low involvement trading , logging on once a day or so to check on the status of buy and sell orders. Instead I found that I could neither sell or buy anything unless I was actively trading. By actively trading I mean watching my orders and adjusting prices up or down by 0.01 ISK in order to be at the top of the relevant pile. Although this doesn't sound like a time consuming process I found that it ate up all of my EVE playtime for the last few days. I guess a player with multiple accounts could do this in the background on a second account but I found the hassle of logging in and out of alts to be tedious so I left my combat oriented main safely docked in station while I indulged my capitalist urges. After a week of intensive trading I came to a fairly sudden realisation that I want to do something else again. I woke Marb Pelico from the attic where he has

Introducing the MBP Instant Book Review

Lately I have been lax at updating the "Recent Reading" sidebar partly out of laziness but also because I feel I should really try and do some kind of review of the books I read. To try and reconcile these conflicting feelings I am going to try something different. For the next while I am going to try and do an ultra mini book review (one or two sentences) on every book I read. These will typically include a single sentence description of what the book is about and also a very quick statement of whether I liked the book or not. These will purely be my own opinions and I make no claim to any expertise in literary criticism. Nevertheless some folk might find them useful. Feel free to let me know if you agree or disagree with my view.

Catharsis: Today I gave away some of my books.

Today I threw out some books for the first time in my life. In the early years of our marriage my wife couldn't understand my reluctance to part with any book that I have ever read. It is not that I am a fastidious collector who keeps volumes lovingly indexed on pristine bookshelves. I have books on shelves, books in drawers, books in boxes, books everywhere in fact with no obvious organisation. Some of my clinginess stems from my early realisation of the unreliable nature of human memory. I have a terrible memory. Many times I have launched into a new title from a serial novel only to realise that I cannot recall what happened before or who the main characters are. As long as I had the original book on the shelf somewhere of course this never mattered. Books became an extension of my memory and parting with one of my books became as unthinkable as parting with a piece of my head. I am also old enough to remember an age when books were more potent totems than they are in the inform

Spore Creature Creator: Can I have my computer back now please.

Spore is going to be huge. How do I know? Well for one thing I know because my computer game phobic wife actually went into a game shop and bought the creature creator. For another I know that I haven't been let near my gaming computer since she installed it. I would like to give you my own first impressions of the creator but I can't. I haven't got near the game while my wife and two daughters create an endless succession of cute creatures. What I can say is that the user interface is a stunning triumph. My wife is someone who normally refuses to play any computer game without me at her side to tell her what buttons to press buut within 1 minute of sitting in front of spore she was already creating her first creature. I really think this game may hit that niche that made the Sims such a phenomenon. I have one fear though. From what I understand the full game will throw your beloved creations into a survival of the fittest fight for existence. Judging from the specifation