The Haus

Thursday, April 20, 2000

Q3A Mission Pack Info

Quake3World posted some information on the upcoming Q3A mission pack. Redwood posted some more specific information translated from a French gaming website. What does it mean? Three new teamplay modes, three new weapons, and power-ups (read: relics). Pretty cool stuff. They've both got some screenies too.

UPDATE! id's Todd Hollenshead updated his .plan with this link on PlanetQuake with a little more information on the mission pack. Note to id: it'd be REALLY nice if you made this pack nice and cheap for us poor folks. Lord knows that Epic has kept their UT add-ons cheap :)

UT Inoxx Map Pack Shots

Epic's Cedric "Inoxx" Fiorentino updated his own page with more screenshot from his soon-to-be-released map pack for Unreal Tournament. Thanks Blue.

The "Rocket Car" Legend

OMG-I laughed so hard when I read Origins of the "Rocket Car" legend. For those who don't know-this story was posted a while ago on the online Darwin Awards site. It turns out there is some reality behind the story, which is chronicled in the above link. Be prepared, this page is a LONG read-but FUNNY :-)

WARNING! If you try this at home don't blame anyone else (especially anyone at The Haus) for your stupidity. But be sure it's on film so we can put this whole thing to rest once and for all.

History today

So Long, Farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, Goodbye

My beloved Detroit Red Wings just completed a four-game sweep of the Los Angeles Kings to become the first NHL team to advance to the second round. Goalie Chris Osgood pitched his second shutout of the series in the 3-0 victory. Next up . . . to be determined.

Wednesday, April 19, 2000

PySol Update!

Take a break from your first-person shooter and play some cards! A while back I wrote about PySol, a free collection of Solitaire games. It's written in Python, so it'll run on any platform which supports that language. While I wasn't looking, Markus F.X.J. Oberhumer has released a few new versions; now PySol is up to version 4.10 and gives you a whopping 273 different games, including Poker-type solitaire and Mahjongg games. You have to see it to believe it! And it's all free! Only a 3.4 meg download for Windows, less for Unix (assuming you have Python installed). Go to The PySol Home Page and check it out!

RA:UT Update

Brandon "GreenMarine" Reinhart made an update to the Rocket Arena for Unreal Tournament webpage with an update on the suspended mod's status. Here's a taste:
The first interface enhancement is to pop up a list of all arenas when you connect to a server. The list would display each arena's name and the number of players in it. When you click an arena name, it will take you to that arena and then move to the current navigation menu. I would then replace "Next Arena" with "Change Arena." Change Arena would pop up the arena browse window. The second enhancement is to roll the "Create Team" and "Join Team" behavior into one menu option.

Once we get a version we are happy with, we'll put it up for download. Given the massive amount of feedback I've been receiving, I think that RAUT will really kick some ass. The mod is very fun, there are just issues with the high learning curve. Anyway, the team really appriciates the feedback. RAUT is certainly not going away!! When I suspended the mod, I didn't mean we weren't going to work on it anymore. I just realized that the release was too early and the mod needed more time.
No word on when the new version will be released. GreenMarine simply said, "I don't think it will be long, though." Thanks Blue.

New UT Map Pack Coming Soon

sCary got word from Epic's CliffyB that they are going to release a new, free, six-level map pack done by Epic's very own Cedric "Inoxx" Fiorentino. They even have some screenshots of the new maps. Free maps are Good Things (tMS).

3dfx V5500 Preview

HardOCP is one of the first out of the gates with a preview of 3dfx' V5500 video card. They run some benchmarks in Q3A which show one thing very clearly: 4x FSAA kills framerates. 2x FSAA may be an option playing in Q3A because the framerate hit is not as severe (although it is still > 40%). These tests were done on alpha hardware and alpha drivers so it's hard to say how they will compare when the product actually ships. Since the NV15 is right around the corner, you have to wonder what the lifespan of the V5500 will be since it doesn't have hardware T&L. The big question for me is whether or not 3dfx has learned how to write a decent OpenGL driver . . . Thanks Evil Avatar

BTW, I check a couple of sites and you can pre-order V5500 with 64M RAM for $299. Personally, I'd wait until the NV15-based boards start shipping to make a decision on which one to get. Thankfully, I don't have enough money to buy the latest and greatest video cards all the time.

Change to the UT Server

Well, kids, I made another slight change to our Unreal Tournament server. In an email conversation with someone who used to play on our server all the time when we were running 402B, I discovered that the 413 patch changes the way that the server handles some things.

With 402B, you could connect even if you didn't have the skins or mutators that were on the server if those skins or mutators were not in use. It seems now with 413, clients need those files to be able to connect regardless of whether the server is using them or not. Thus, I enabled auto-downloading today with a maximum download size of 100K. That means that people will be able to download the skins and mutators, but not the maps. For more information on setting up your UT client to play on our server, check out our Unreal Tournament Setup page.

I was wondering why J and I were the only ones to play on the server since I patched it . . .

UPDATE! I just received email saying that the server is working fine again. Whew! Thanks to Vigilante for helping me track this problem down. Time to start that UT Server Admin doc I've been talking about.

In a related story, Blue is reporting that the UZ Compression Admin page has hundreds of maps, etc. for Unreal Tournament so server admins can set download redirection to their site instead of eating up their own bandwidth. It looks like a pretty cool service. I'm going to look into it.

Mozilla M15 Available

Just like the headline says: Mozilla M15 is available on their ftp site. Hopefully it'll be snappier on Linux than M14. You can also get it for Mac and Win32, along with OpenVMS/Alpha. Now if they'd just release a VAX version. . .

A.T. Hun comments: Downloading now for Win32. Expect a report later on.

UPDATE! I'm going to play with it for a little while longer, but my initial impression is that the layout engine is actually working worse than it was in M14.

Arrest Made on DOS Case

According to Yahoo! News, Canadian Arrest Made in February Web Attacks. There is to be a news conference at 10:30 EST today on the arrest.

History today :-)

Ya know, I read the Pessimist's Guide to History, and I swear most written history IS written by pessimists!

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