Sunday, 16 November 2008

Weeks 1 to 6 (from old Blog)

Well here are my old posts from my previous Blog, from Week 1 to Week 6:

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Week 6 - Gameplay and game design

It annoys me no end when someone says to me, “I refuse to play that game because the graphics is so old!” A good game isn’t just about graphics! For me, it’s mainly the gameplay and storyline, how the game was designed, including the rules and the action of the character you are controlling. It is how the player interacts with the game. A game with a good gameplay will attract my attention far more than a mediocre game with pretty graphics.

Back in the old days, the job of the Level Designer was to, well, design the different levels of a game. These different levels were obvious to the player, with each one being harder than the last. An entire game could be created by just one person. However, in modern games the levels of difficulties are much more subtle. They are usually intertwined within the story. Games became more complex, requiring more people with a wider range of skills to work together and produce a game.

When playing a role-play-game, I like the feeling of being involved with the storyline, allowing me to take control by choosing my own destiny (an example is Knights of the Old Republic where the player can choose to be on the “light“ or “dark“ side). Letting the player choose different tactics and options makes the game and its storyline a lot more engaging, as though I am part of it. Instead of progressing through the game linearly, different endings depending on your steps and choices throughout the game is another feature which I enjoy.

Saturday, 1 November 2008

I think I'm getting addicted to this program...

I think I'm getting addicted to this program...

Thursday, 30 October 2008

I hope your eyes won't bleed so much this time...

I remembered what Heather taught us about the 3D church so I thought I'd give it a go:

Went on and made a house:

Wednesday, 29 October 2008

My first low-poly character... beware of ugliness

I did this back in August during the summer holidays, before university began.

It looks so, so HIDEOUS, but it was actually really fun...

I take no responsibility if your eyes start bleeding from looking at it.

And here's a random hourglass I made:

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Week 4 - Game reviews

I’ve never really been much of a review reader. I have occasionally picked up game magazines every time I walk into WHSmiths, flicking through the glossy pages and pausing every few minutes to skim-read one or two reviews that are accompanied by a pretty promotional art from the game. But most of the time, if I really need to find out what a game is about before buying it I’d go on a website (such as and look them up, but to be honest they were not so helpful. So when I discovered New Game Journalism a few days ago I was surprised to see new this style of game writing. After reading some NGJ reviews, such as “Shoot Club“, I liked the way that it was all opinion-based, told in a very casual, story-like way, with the language more colloquial, rather than the previous reviews I’ve read where the writer almost forces his own “facts” into the reader’s mind. I can read the reviews and keep in mind that these are all people’s personal tastes, so reading a wider range of reviews may be able to help me come to a better conclusion.

So while reading NGJ it’s good to know about people’s own comments on the pros and cons of the game, rather give readers something like “large variation of mission types and side quests”, because that is just so generic and dull.

Sunday, 19 October 2008

Week 3 - The History of Games - 2000s

So… now we look at the modern games of the 21st century. It’s amazing how much games have changed and developed since they were first created back in the 50s! Back in primary school only a few people in my class played games, but now gaming has become almost a part of our lives, with many different types of consoles and games for us to choose from. Games are no longer just for young people’s entertainment but families are enjoying it too, especially after the Wii was released (I’ve been told by a lot of Wii owners that their families are more interested in the Wii games than they are). Online games are extremely popular too now; the addictive World of Warcraft and another I’ve heard of is Eve Online. It goes without saying that games now take up far more money and time to make than back in the old days.

One of the things I love about the games we’re all familiar with today is that there is such an enormous variety for everyone to enjoy. Role-play games, first-person shooters, strategy games, fighting games, intellectual/puzzle games that make you think (Portal!!!), and the list goes on. There is so much competition; the more games produced, the more the industry is coming up with novel and innovative ideas of gaming.

What I’ve noticed during the past several years is a huge increase in sequel games from movies, TV series and comics. It appears that publishers prefer these sequels rather than new game ideas, and roughly 13% of the games being sold are not related to movies and TV series. Personally, I never touch these games - I just don’t see the fun in them! I prefer playing something I’ve not heard of before, like… Spore.

As many of you have propbably heard, I am currently obsessed with Romance of the Three Kingdoms, and am enjoying playing the RotK XI turn-based strategy game which is based on that story. It's *so* good. I was expecting it to be like Age of Empires but it's a lot more complicated and you have SO MUCH to handle. Here's a screenshot of my current game... I'm currently stuck in a sea battle, argh!

Friday, 17 October 2008

Bradgate Park, Archway, Canal

My paintings of Bradgate Park, the Archway (which I still need to do a lot of work on) and the canal. I've never painted a proper scenery before so this was something new to me. It was enjoyable and I want to be able to add backgrounds to my character illustrations from now on :).

This one needs moar work!!

Friday, 17 October 2008

Paper Project

Here are photos of my Paper Project. I wanted to do something feathery, so I chose to do a peacock :D. The tail was quite hellish to make. I think this project was fun as it allowed our imagination to take over. I saw so many amazing paper projects by other people on the course! It really is a good way of getting inspired and learning from people around me.

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Week 2 - The History of Games - 80s-90s

In my last post I wrote about the very early history of games. This week, my main focus is to review the middle ages of gaming history.

It was not until the 80s that people were able to buy game arcades and play them at home. As technology advanced, it was during these years that the games industry bloomed, providing opportunities for leading companies to be formed and allowing them to produce some well-known games.

The games that were produced were for single players only. People had not thought about creating multiple-player games, simply because this was the time where computers were then able to be brought home, and each person habitually used them on their own.

During the mid 80s, games began to have interaction activities between itself and the user. At first it was text-based, but soon graphical fiction followed after the introduction of the mouse. Arcades began to decline in the 90s as there was a rise in the use of computers. 3D graphics became more and more popular.

And now, onto my own history of gaming, continued from the last post. I consider myself to be a “late gamer”. Apart from that nameless game I mentioned last time, the only other games I played were Tomb Raider, Virtual Fighter and Warcraft II. I only played them because my Dad introduced them to me, and he was very fond of games as well (now he just has no time to play!).

I didn’t own any consoles or PC games, so my own gaming time was when I was a friend’s house. From the age of 12 to 16 I hardly touched games, only occasionally playing Age of Empires II and the Sims.

Oh no wait, I remember my parents bought me a Game Boy Colour. I only played Pokemon Blue Version on that for about a year... and now I can't find it ¬_¬.

Anyway, when I was about 16 I met an online friend who was completely OBSESSED with the Final Fantasy seriesj, and this gradually made me interested in video games. He made me watch Advent Children, which confused me to much as I hadn't played Final Fantasy VII yet, so I went and bought FF7 (PC version because I didn't even have a PS2!), and LOVED IT SO MUUUUCH.

Since then I've been trying to find some older games to play (such as Chrono Trigger and FF6, which I really enjoyed (ha, it's like I'm trying to fill in the "childhood gaming" which I lacked)). Last year I bought a PS2 (so... late...) just for Final Fantasy 12, which I loved. I'm a bit annoyed that FF13 is going to be on the PS3 just after I got a PS2.... ah well.... maybe I can do what I did 9 years ago and raid a friend's house to play it at theirs.... >_> <_< style="text-align: center;">

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Week 1 - The History of Games - 50s-70s

This is a topic I’ve wondered about quite a lot for awhile in the past. There is a lot of confusion on this as there is no real answer to the what was the “very first video game invented” . I think it depends on people’s own views of what defined “the first game” during the 50s and 60s. Take Tic Tac Toe for example, that was a game that was played on an EDSAC vacuum-tube and was known as the first graphical computer game. However, as a game, the two players could easily play it on a piece of paper, taking away the “computer game” element. Although the very first video game was created by William Higinbotham in 1958 called “Tennis for Two”, many claim that Space War! (1962) was the first official game.

It is widely considered that Nolan Bushnell was the father of gaming. He was inspired by the game Space War!, and during the early 1970s and created the very first arcade game called Computer Space with Ted Dabney. The famous Pong was created by him a year later with Al Alcorn, and during the same year Atari Computers was established by Bushnell and Ted Dabney, which released the Pong game to be taken home to play.

During the next few years, more commercial games that could be played at home were created, including the Odyssey that had 12 mini games.

As you can see, the early history of game flows according to the type of technology that was being developed.

I can remember the very first game I played as though it was yesterday. Two players stood on top of skyscrapers, facing each other, and you had to type in two digits that determined the position of your opponent, so that upon entering, your character would throw a disc at them, hoping to chop off their limbs. Or their head. Or anywhere else that would be painful. If only I could remember the name of that game…

For those of you who know me well, you won’t be surprised to hear that the most recent game I’ve played is… Romance of the Three Kingdoms XI. *SQUEE* And what happened between? Well… just the usual Final Fantasy stuff XD… until my Ro3K obsession began ^_^.

Thursday, 2 October 2008

First *BLOG* Post

Well, hello there. I am writing my first Blog entry. This isn't new to me as I already have 2 LiveJournal accounts, so hopefully my writing will be alright here... and I say "hopefully", because one of my LJ accounts is an arty one where I spam my Friends' Pages with my art, while the other is my... hyper one, in which I spam my Friends' Pages with a lot of crazy CAPSLOCK. Ahem, I am drifting off-topic... so anyway...

I shall be writing mostly about game-related topics in here (perhaps I will add a little of my own squeefullness with it, if I can't control myself), so if anyone's reading my blog, I hope you enjoy your stay :).

PS. Squee!

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