The Haus

Thursday, June 29, 2000

More MOO3 news

There's a couple more articles on Master of Orion 3 online. First is an The Atrium interview with Scott Godfrey, 3D artist at Quicksilver, and second is an The Orion Senate interview with Alan Emrich, designer at Quicksilver. Not much in these either, but it's good to know the team that has taken on MOO3 really cares about the game.

New Games at CompUSA

During my lunch hour I ran down to CompUSA. Just inside the front door I saw a display containing two long-awaited games: Diablo II and Icewind Dale. Both look good, but require a minimum 233 MHz machine--not a big deal for most of you, I suppose, but my fastest machine is 200. Too bad. . .

Warren Spector Interview

The Mushroom's Legit section has an interview with ION Storm's Warren Spector, the man behind Deus Ex. I played a bit of the demo and it seems like an incredible game. I really can't argue with people starting to make "Game of the Year" rumblings about it. One thing I liked is that the voice acting was very well done. The German android guy in the training mission actually has a decent German accent--what a concept! My only gripe is that I can hear my poor TNT scream in pain every time I play it. Deus Ex really requires a lot more horsepower than I can afford to throw at it right now. But once I get that GeForce2 MX . . . Thanks Blue.

A Smidge of Downtime

There was a couple minutes of downtime just now while I made some database adjustments. Sorry about that :-(

No History Today. . .

I'm not posting a history today section, since I finally got off my butt last night and started work on my history database. I'm through my May 7 entries, and hopefully tonight I can pound through the rest. Maybe. They've gotten rather large the last few weeks.

In addition, since we're working on a Avantgo version of the site right now, I'm working on automating articles so we can Avantgo them readily for users of mobile devices. Hopefully these and other improvements will be online shortly.

So You Want to Make a FPS

Lowtax has slapped up a list of rules for making a successful first-person shooter. These rules must be strictly followed, under penalty of impalement. This list includes "contributions from big-name FPS site directors (Hellchick), experienced game programmers (Greenmarine), and disco pirates (Cliffy B.)."

Sharky Extreme GeForce2 MX Preview

The wacky kids at Sharky Extreme have posted their hands-on preview of NVIDIA's new GeForce2 MX. One thing that makes Sharky's review noteworthy is that they leave sound on in the Quake III Arena benchmarks. Why anyone would benchmark with the sound off is beyond me, other than to artificially inflate the scores. Somewhat surprisingly, their test showed the MX to be slightly slower than the old GeForce 256 SDR, while Anand's yesterday showed it to be slightly faster. Take it for what it's worth, I guess.

One thing that NO preview I have read so far has mentioned is the fact that this should be a good card for people whose motherboards (most notably, ones that power AMD chips) have some problems with the AGP slot providing enough power. The GeForce2 MX uses 1/4 of the power that an original GeForce requires. Mind you, this is speculation without running actual test, but it would certainly stand to reason.

Wednesday, June 28, 2000

Episode II Shooting Begins

Yahoo News is reporting that shooting for Star Wars: Episode II begins today. Lucas is shooting the entire film digitally--the first film to be shot this way. So, is it in theaters yet? :) And, no matter what anyone else might say, I liked Episode I so *thhhpppt*. Thanks Slashdot.

Welcome to AO-helL

Yikes. I checked my bank statement online and found a charge of $21.95 from AOL Online Service. I've never used and never will use AOL. Called the bank. They had no more info. Called AOL. They said that the account was set up a month ago in my wife's name with her address and credit card. Ha ha--she has less time to waste online than I do! After an hour of runaround and waiting on hold, we finally got the account canceled, and the bank card too.

Our guess is that someone stole the info from an online purchase, either an employee or a cracker. My guess is that it was a spammer. Be careful out there, Haus Guests. Just because someone will take your credit card number online doesn't mean that you should give it.

And curse you too, A.T., for telling me that Void only takes 49K on the Visor! That made me try it. If you've ever played Elite, you know that trying it means addiction. It's eating into my Ackeron time!

AnandTech on the GeForce MX

Not that long ago, rumors started floating around about NVIDIA announcing a new, cheaper version of the GeForce called the GeForce MX (formerly known as NV11). NVIDIA is supposed to announce this chip today. AnandTech has a hands-on preview. Basically it is a GeForce2 GTS with only two rendering pipelines instead of four. The original GeForce had four pipelines but could only do one texture per pipeline per clock. The GTS and MX can do two textures per pipeline per clock. (this page in the article has a good comparison of the three GeForces plus the V5500).

The most amazing thing about the chip, IMO, is that it only consumes 4W of power (as opposed to the GTS' 8W or the GeForce's 16W). It won't have a fan! The problem is that it uses SDRAM which gives it the same memory bandwidth as a GeForce SDRAM even though it has a theoretically higher fillrate. Check the copious benchmarks for a comparison.

Could this be A.T. Hun's next video card? With an estimated price of $119, it very well may be! Thanks Voodoo Extreme.

The Master comments: I'm thinking this may be my next winner too. Kinda sad that TNT2s still sell for more than that. My wife is gonna kill me. . .

Half-Life Patch Out

According to Blue, the Half-Life patches are already on the Sierra FTP server even though they weren't supposed to be released for about another 2.5 hours. You can get the full patch here, and the patch from here. I'll post some mirrors as they spring up.

UPDATE! The files seem to have been yanked. I assume they will appear again at the pre-announced time.

UPDATE #2! The files are back on Sierra's FTP server. Here are some other mirror sites. The Blue's News pages also contain links to mirrors on the Shugashack, 3D Files, 3D Gamer's, Stomped, and others. Thanks to Jeh for the Xtreme Network links:

History today

Past Two Days' News

Recent Headlines

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