Minecraft, the indie exploration/building title that took the gaming world by storm this fall, has left its experimental phase and entered beta. The price goes up to 15 Euros and the developers' focus moves to polish and content — and the development of a modding interface to let others add their own features to the game.
With its low-fi, ultra-hip 3D lego set look, Minecraft can seem a faddish thing. John Brownlee, referencing Shelley's Ozymandias, explains the egomaniacal hook that lies beneath the surface, making people stick with it:
It's a solipsist's god sim, with all of the loneliness and pathos that implies. ...There's more to Minecraft than just a 3D set of building blocks to play with. Minecraft's setting itself is haunting, in that it forces players into a situation where the entire game is to answer this question: ... Are the massive castles or statues I built in any of my inevitably discarded Minecraft worlds really much different? Colossal works of deific arrogance conducted for the benefit of the author's own ego, then swiftly forgotten.
It's true: I constantly think that I'm going to take the places I've built in Minecraft (like my awesome floating island town, above) and share them with other players as a multiplayer instance. But really, who cares? Once you've seen one pixelated starship, European Cathedral or epic hollow tree, you've seen them all. Without the potential for storytelling, a Minecraft world is a poor man's Myst "book" with no puzzles.
And when played from the outset with a group of friends, Minecraft is a very different experience.
I Have No Mouth and I Must Build [Gearfuse]
Denuvo bills itself as the best-of-breed in games DRM, the most uncrackable, tamper-proof wrapper for games companies; but its reputation tells a different story: the company's products are infamous for falling quickly to DRM crackers and for interfering with game-play until you crack the DRM off the products you buy.
Outrun, the classic racer that blew players’ minds with its huge colorful sprites, is getting an ususual port: to the monochrome vectorbeam world of the vintage Vectrex console. Creator Chris Parsons: A little “demo” I put together today to warm up my coding skills as I get back to developing my second full Vectrex game. […]
InvaderZ is a Space Invaders variant that incorporates a genetic algorithm that mutates the invaders as you shoot at them, with survival for a fitness function: the longer an invader lasts before being blasted out of the sky, the more its behaviors are carried over into the next wave (here's a playable live version). (via […]
In photography as in film, all the real artistry is in post-production – increasingly so, with the new possibilities cropping up in digital imaging. If you’re ready to get serious about your photography, may we suggest HDR Projects 2018 Pro. As working photographers can tell you, this imaging software can help you re-imagine even the […]
A picture can be worth a heck of a lot more than just a thousand words. If you’ve squinted for ages trying to get just the right photo, you might have the right passion for a career behind the camera. You might even have the right equipment, but do you have the know-how? The Beginner-To-Expert […]
In case you hadn’t noticed from the sleigh bell-heavy music and the hues on your Starbucks cup, the holiday season hasn’t shown any more patience this year. But that doesn’t need to be a bad thing, especially if you’re hoping to get a jump on your shopping. Retailers aren’t waiting til Black Friday to dish […]