Marc "Half-Life" Laidlaw's gonzo cyberpunk is back in DRM-free ebooks


Marc Laidlaw, the cyberpunk pioneer who went on to serve as writer on some of Valve's greatest video-game titles -- the Half-Life series, Portal -- has just posted his entire backlist to Amazon as $3, DRM-free ebooks, including his debut novel Dad's Nuke (think Fallout, but with religious extremist militants who subsist on "Host on a shingle," this being the cultured recovered foreskin tissue of Jesus Christ on fortified crackers) and Kalifornia, a brilliant and prescient novel about media, cultural disintegration, and celebrity. Read the rest

Humanitarian organization warns Pokemon Go players to stay out of Bosnian minefields


Posavina bez mina, a humanitarian organization that works to defuse landmines in the former Yugoslavia, has posted a warning to its Facebook page saying that they've been told that Pokemon Go players are venturing into active minefields to catch virtual critters, and warning people not to go into minefields to catch Pokemon, which is very good advice. Read the rest

Pokemon Go players: you have 30 days from signup to opt out of binding arbitration

Like most other online services, Pokemon Go's terms of service are a reboot of the Book of Revelations, full of bizarre horrors, each more grotesque than the last. Read the rest

"This Male-Designed Female Character Just Loves To Flaunt Her Sexuality"


Point and Clickbait posted an amusing take on the adolescent fantasy that if you give a crudely-objectified female character a sword and sexuality she becomes proof that feminists just hate sex.

Critics of the game have suggested that Sexblade is “astoundingly sexist” and “terrible in every way”, but Farmer argues it’s wrong to suggest that Sexblade is sexist.

“Isn’t it shaming female sexuality to attack Sexblade like this?” he asked. “Sexblade is a fully-fleshed out and real character with strong, believable motivations which drive her to do things like moan orgasmically when she takes damage.”

“It’s the people who want to put a stop to that — they are the real sexists.”

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NES Classic Edition looks like great fun—but will it hack?


Nintendo's miniature re-release of the NES is, it seems, another one of those several-games-in-one nostalgia toys. But it's a good one, with 30 classic titles, the same great design in miniature, and compatibility with modern wireless controllers. It'll be out November 11 for $60. Read the rest

A General 'Pokemon Go' Guide: How to master and have fun with the Nintendo game craze

"Pidgey" Pokemon in the Pokemon Go mobile app. Toronto, Ontario, Canada July 11, 2016. REUTERS

“I made a guide with some general tips for PoGo,” says redditor Lastminuteguy. “This guide doesn't state the basics, but rather gives information on elements of the game that aren't immediately obvious.”

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'I renamed all my Pokemon whatever my 2 year old called them'


“For your mild amusement, I renamed all my Pokemon whatever my 2 year old called them,” says IMGUR user June1920. Sort of jealous they caught a Claws Parrot.

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Augmented Reality is a Massively Multiplayer Online world

I’ve said this before, but in the wake of the viral success of Pokémon GO, it needs to be said again. Augmented reality is just a virtual world, an MMO, a MUD even, with all of the same design issues, plus a few new ones.

Pokemon Go privacy rules are terrible (just like all your other apps)


Pokemon Go wants access to your Google account (and thus your email and Google Docs) and its privacy policy is a Kafka-esque nightmare document that lets them collect every single imaginable piece of private information about your life and share it with pretty much anyone they want to, forever. Read the rest

The week in Pokemon: home invasions, armed robbery, police militarization


Pokemon Go is the game of the summer: the first really successful alternate reality game that mashes up crowdsourced maps, in-phone cameras, seriously addictive game mechanics, and (of course) a free-to-play/cash-to-accelerate slot machine mechanic that children wouldn't be allowed to stand near if it were in a casino -- in less than a week, it's lifted Nintendo's stock price by 10% and been implicated in any number of bizarre news stories: Read the rest

Tiffin: a boardgame based on Mumbai's miraculous lunch-delivery network


More than 250,000 of Mumbai's workers enjoy a home-cooked lunch every day thanks to the dabbawallas, who bring tiffins -- stacking lunchpails -- filled at each worker's family kitchen directly to their workplace, in a miracle of coordinated logistics that consistently beats Mumbai's legendary traffic jams and attains unheard-of accuracy despite the low levels of literacy among dabbawallas. Read the rest

Ubisoft's gamer survey first asks if you're female, and terminates if you say "yes" -- UPDATED


The first question in this Ubisoft customer survey is "What is your gender" with "Male" and "Female" as permitted responses; if you choose "Female," you're dumped into a screen that informs you that "your profile doesn't suit the survey." Read the rest

Video about a cool gravity-fed marble "computer" game that beats human players

Screen Shot 2016-06-30 at 11.59.25 AM

Matt Parker is a "standup mathematician." In this entertaining video, he demonstrates a 1960s plastic toy that plays the game of Nim against a human opponent. Interestingly, Dr. Nim is an ingenious mechanism that uses plastic levers to control the number of marbles it chooses to drop. If you go first, Dr. Nim will always win. In the video, Matt shows you how to play and win Nim every time, including a cheat that lets you win even if you go first. Read the rest

Watch a brief history of video game controllers

"A Brief History of Video Game Controllers," starting with Tennis for Two (1958). My favorite is the pioneering Nintendo Power Glove (1989). (Super Deluxe)

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After Dinner Games – 40 ice-breaking games to rev up your next dinner party


See sample pages from this book at Wink.

After Dinner Games: 40 of the Greatest After Dinner Games by Jenny Lynch (editor) Lagoon Books 1998, 96 pages, 4.8 x 6 x 0.5 inches $1-$8 Buy a copy on Amazon

This pocket-sized book is for that time when things get awkward. That time when conversation has dried up. When you have new friends over for dinner and you’re stuck sitting there, clearing your throat, having used up all of your conversation starters. That’s when you need a book like this.

As the tagline explains, After Dinner Games offers 40 of the best games for these post-dinner situations. It’s great to either break the ice or to break out with old friends! For example, if you really want to get personal with your guests, try the game Head To Head, which is when two players carry an orange placed between their foreheads. But if acquaintances are involved, you could start with the game Botticelli. Essentially, one player thinks of a famous person (dead or alive), announces the first letter of their name, and everyone else tries to guess who it is. Safe, fun, and no moving involved.

This book is packed with old-fashioned graphics that make you want to drink an Old Fashioned while playing the games. And the simple explanations of the rules allow a smooth transition from dinner to fun. To avoid a dinner party drought, keep this book handy. Not only will the ideas in this book keep your party alive, they will make it thrive. Read the rest

Dieselgate for GPUs: review-units ship at higher clockspeeds than retail ones


Techpowerup caught hardware giants MSI and Asus shipping them graphics cards that were preset for a software-based overlock mode, meaning that the cards performed better out of the box for reviewers than they would for customers. Read the rest

Jerry Seinfeld's apartment in Doom


"After over 100 hours of work, I present to you Seinfeld.wad," writes Doug Keener. "A replica of Jerry Seinfeld's Apartment from his hit sitcom, Seinfeld!"

Join Jerry, George, Kramer, and Elaine in this neat Doom/Seinfeld crossover! There are many custom textures and sprites to bring you the full experience of being inside Jerry's Apartment, inside Doom 2! Each sprite has audio clips and death animations! Have fun slaughtering the gang relentlessly in this wad about nothing! ...

Special Thanks to GIMP 2.0, GZDoomBuilder, Slade3, applekwisp, Seinfeld cast and crew, and the lovely people over at ZDoom forums and wiki.

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