Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Aargh

It's that time of year again, end of term is upon me and it just makes me want to say argh!

ok /whine off :P

I'll be scarce for a few days

Don't flush the fish

Saturday, May 07, 2005

HAPPY MOTHERS DAY

Ah mothers day. A time to be thankful to that woman who gave us into the world and the woman who raised us, which is possibly not the same woman but both mother's all the same.

My mother-in-law sent me a beautiful card and twenty bucks so I did what any mom would do, I took the kids to the discount movie theatre. Hey that's the only way twenty bucks is going to get all of us in! We picked up an extra kid on the way (my sons friend now know as X)and off we went. It was the movie "Robots"; classic good/kind/helpful robot vs evil/greedy/cold hearted robot. Kids movies are always such a happy occasion. Good always wins.

Speaking of good guys, my kids are something else. One son was going to spend the night at friend X's house so while I ran those two over there hubby took the other two home. After a nice chat with the X's mom I headed home and found that my oldest son had been keeping busy.

He baked me banana nut muffins from a mix.. topped them with cream cheese frosting ... and christmas sprinkles.

Happy mothers day mom!

I think they will taste wonderful no matter what.

Friday, May 06, 2005

My First Time

My very first article!!
  • Here!
  • EQ2-Sony & Me- a LOVE -HATE relationship

    Maybe you want a little background about me, maybe you couldn't care less, whatever the case I felt the need to pour a bit of me out on a page and so here it is.

    I quit playing eq 4 or 5 months before eq2 launched. EQ had taken so many wrong turns along the way (which I won't get into) it just wasn't fun for me anymore and it was time to go. I retired my druid of almost 4 years. Even though I felt like I was done it was hard to say goodbye to her. I had enjoyed playing her for so long it was like putting up your stuffed animals when you're growing up, you know you've out grown them but it's still really sad.

    I started following EQ2 hoping that here was my next game .. my next 4 years!! Yay! I posted on the forums, I joined a pre-release guild, I was enthused about the whole thing! I even got in on the tail end of the beta process! Weeeee!

    Once I got in game my guild went through growing pains, some folks found it wasn't the game they thought it would be, we had some level differences as people found their niche (crafting, questing, adventuring). People left and people joined but we ended up with a super bunch of folks.

    The game itself had some growing pains. They tinkered with crafting, they changed some quests, some things were broken, they added the /pizza command amid much snickering from the gaming community. Don't get me wrong, I like pizza and it's really a neat idea. It just seems so commercial and out of place in game though. Anyway, not one of those things would have made me quit. I was loving my guild, I was loving my niche in the game (crafting) and there were many more good things for me there than bad.

    Then they announced the exchange. Buying and selling game items for real life cash. Many of us protested until they finally said they would only put it on new servers. I started reading more about it, there were some folks who wholeheartedly supported it, there were some who just didn't care and then there were the rest of us who were totally opposed.

    After reading the "for" arguements
    this was what I felt I had to do.

    It's been pointed out that ebay type gaming is already around and for folks that want to play that way it works.

    But that's not the way I want to play and it WASN'T the kind of game I bought when I pre-ordered EQ2.

    humph

    Thursday, May 05, 2005

    Random Thoughts - Girls and the Gaming Industry

    I have recently begun to ask myself “self, what do you really know about women and computer games”. Well of course the obvious answer is that I’m a woman and I know what I like. But after digging around a bit I’ve discovered there are some interesting facts, figures and questions out there concerning women and interactive entertainment.

    First off how many women actually play video games?

    Well the Entertainment Software Association says it’s about 39 percent.

    How many companies have female designers, programmers or developers?

    I couldn’t find any hard data on that but by all accounts the percentage of females in those roles is tiny. Women have not made much progress into that particular industry.

    Why? Is it a lack of interest? If you look around the opportunities are there. Companies are actively courting women gamers. There are even consulting firms to help them understand what women want. What better way to find out what women want than to hire a few of them? Makes sense to me.

    Some companies seem to have come to that conclusion too. There are even
    scholarships just for intelligent females that require an essay, a decent gpa and the desire. At least they don’t have to parade around in a bathing suit. It’s refreshing and encouraging when brains matter more than a pretty face.

    Hopefully, as time goes on we will see the percentage of females in the gaming industry
    grow.

    Monday, May 02, 2005

    Into the Light-E3 is more than just a display of games

    Many gamers think of the E3 as a huge showcase of new games and artwork but it's more than that. The 2005 E3 Expo will be a meeting of the minds with much information passed; maybe some questions thought of and probably some questions answered for those lucky enough to be able to attend. They will at the very least come away with a lot of food for thought.

    On the menu are workshops like "From original IP to powerhouse franchise: How publishers judge a game's potential". I know a few people who would like that answer. There's an in game advertising workshop. I wonder how many of those seats are reserved for the Sony folks. Also on the list is a workshop strictly for addressing the influence the Chinese government is having on the gaming industry; there are others on wireless gaming and value priced game production.

    Personally I'd really love to hear "The path to creating AAA games: How successful designers learn from experience, or decide to break from it". Lot's of breaking going on lately it seems and maybe they could shed some light on the whys for me. Overall though there's a very interesting list of topics. Unfortunately, since I am not a member of the industry, I will not be able to attend the conference myself which leaves me with a lot of questions that maybe no one will ever answer.

    I do have a few questions though that are pretty easy. Like how do you game industry folks decide what workshops to go to, do you take notes, do they have free doughnuts & coffee and how much of what you learn will be passed on to the gamers? How many gamers actually want to know what makes you folks tick? I know I'd love to find out.

    For those interested in the more aesthetic side there will be an art exhibition showcasing 16 original works of art submitted by artists and judged by "the public and by their peers". You can find the 2004 works
    Here.

    What a wonderful program to address the issues faced by digital artists and give them some much deserved publicity. I only wonder if they accept stick figure pictures.. hmmm.

    Sunday, May 01, 2005

    The Beauty Within


    Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

    I figured this would be a good place to put a mention or three in about the game I'm waiting for Vanguard: Saga of Heroes. With Brad McQuaid at the helm Sigil has the courage to take the high road when it comes to second market sales. Choosing to fight the console attitude of easy come easy go Mr McQuaid makes it clear how the dev's at Sigil feel about the second market in an interview with Woody from GUcomics.