RPG, Virtual Worlds and Guybrush Returns

July 11, 2009

Too much had happen these last weeks so let’s summarize a little bit. First I’d like to say I went to the ApolloCon here in Houston and being my first Con in the states was a good experience, it’s definitely different from the ones I went to in Argentina but impressive nonetheless and I enjoyed it with my five years old son, who met with a real astronaut for his first time (me too btw) and got an autographed picture, how cool is that!

A couple of weeks ago was published on Gamasutra an article about Role Playing Games for computers, although it was long it was full of data and I got to know some games that I didn’t and it also made me remember about Ishar, the ones I played when I was a kid. Very good article indeed and I’m sure it will make you want to play one of those for sure.

Metaplace is something I still haven’t try in full, I setup an account there but haven’t spend too much time yet, but on a newsletter I received was the announcement that you can embed your virtual world from Metaplace in any webpage, including of course your blog, so if I get a little time to make something productive with it I’m sure I’m going to embed it in here.

And well, I can’t go on without saying a word about the biggest comeback on Graphic Adventure Games, Guybrush Threepwood is on his way again, now from Tell Tale Games and as I have said when I knew about this, let the Second Golden Age of Adventure Games Begin.


Summer reading

June 21, 2009

I’m taking summer-classes this year but in the brief period between those and the end of the last semester I bought three books that I wanted to read and I’m going to review it for you here.

The first one I read was “The Gold Standard” by Mike Krzyzewski, it recounts how the USA Basketball Olympic Team got formed and the process used to build it and meet the goal of winning the Gold Medal on the 2008 Olympic Games. It’s clearly trying to catch the business aspect of forming a team, but for those looking for a sports book I can tell you’re not going to be disappointed, it tells about the behind the scenes of a team formed by great stars like Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, Dwayne Wade, and how to make them work together and build truly a team. Overall a great reading, you can learn from this book, mostly how to be a team player and of course how to create and lead a team.

Next was “T-Minus: Race to the Moon” by Jim Ottaviani, Zander Cannon and Kevin Cannon. This is a graphic novel about the behind the scenes of the Space Race of the ’60 and ’70 between USA and the USSR. Although it would be nice if it was longer it meets the expectations, you get to know the internal fights and stretch time-lines both programs had and much more about how the Soviet program worked, at least I didn’t know that it was so dependent of only one man and who that men was and how brilliant he was. Great reading, fun and informative at the same timed.

The last one was a book I was trying to read since a long time, “A Theory of Fun for Game Design” by Raph Koster. Certainly it’s what everyone is saying about it, an instant classic and a must for those wanting to work on the gaming industry and even for those willing to know why we play games and how to make them in a successful manner. After reading it I truly believe it changed my way of thinking on certain aspects and I was able to identify past behaviors of mine on play situations and the actual reasons of my reactions. A book to read once and consult every time you need it and of course one to recommend to everyone.

Street Fighter: The Later Years

March 7, 2009

I’m having my midterms this coming week, that’s why not too much of my attention is going upon blogging, so again I’m going to do the video posting. This time is about Street Fighter, I just love comedy videos and this is a series of videos all should see about the retirement years of the video game heroes. Enjoy!

AD&D Boardgame for Beginners

January 5, 2009

It’s been a while since my last post and that was due in part to the holidays and in part because I was trying to focus on other things, and one thing that had happen in that time was that I got an Honorable Mention in a Game Design Contest.

Yes is the same site that selected me for Get Out of my Tomb! but the challenge in this case was to come up with a “Race to the end” type of game and as I love boardgames I sent a design that combines an old game I have about programming and the AD&D world.

I think is a good idea and that it could work pretty well so I’ll try to finish it as well as I’m going to try to translate my “Hobbit Style” version of Monopoly (It’s in Spanish).

So here is the link to the result of the challenge and here is my submission:

Game Design Challenge: Race to the End

You must choose the setting and basic rules for the game.
The Setting is the AD&D RPG Games. And the rules consist on three parts and an Epilogue.

All over the game the players will advance rolling 2d6 excepts when selecting the Learning Path (1d6). The players can’t ever go back. The path is like any other “race to the end” board game and as the game is online we can show the spots as true RPG scenarios making the player to see a wood or a road and to see the enemies.

The Preparation. The players rolls a dice and go on one of the six paths of learning, each path has a different set of sources that will equip the player with abilities and weapons. These paths are the Warrior, Ranger, Mage, Thief, Cleric, and Druid. Each path will consist on 10 spots where the player can land and collect items and abilities. After these paths are completed the players will begin The Road of the Hero.

The Road of the Hero. This is the longest path and goes from the exit of the Preparation until the end (The Tavern) connecting the four main adventures. In this path the players can have little fights in the woods or in the roads; every spot on the board could have a fight, a test for the player to pass, a bonus or just a message. Whenever a fight is lost the player will need to rest two turns before resume the journey, whenever a test is not passed it will need to rest one turn to practice. The bonuses could increase the player abilities or could make him lost something.

The Adventures. Along the road the players will have the option to pursue four different adventures that will detour them from the main path, if the player doesn’t want to go for this adventures he can go on the main road and get to the next adventure or the end. Once a player decided to go on for adventure he will follow the Adventure path (a circular path returning back to the main road on the next spot after the entrance for the adventure) where he can gain more experience points, bonuses, treasures and fame. These adventures will increase its difficulty as we approach the end: the first one will be easier than the second one and so fort.

Epilogue: The Tavern
This is the end of the road and here the players will have his stories to tell and treasures to show, here is where the players will recount the points and treasures collected and decide who’s the winner (points + treasures + fame), they will also get points if they arrive early to The Tavern as they will become the local heroes and the rest will be the newcomers.

How do players move?
Rolling 2d6.

How do they interact with each other, if at all?
Only when they are on the same spot, they can choose to help the other, or leave it.

What slows them down?
They can choose to start an adventure (this will detour them from the main path), they can be defeated in a fight so they need to rest for two turns, or they can fail a test so they need to practice for one turn.

Be sure to give your game a catchy title.
AD&D The Beginners Online Game

Why would it be beneficial to use the particular franchise you name?
Because as the game explains and use the RPG games it’s beneficial to use the main brand on RPG games.

How does it fit with the audience?
Young people all over the world know about AD&D thus doing the game more appealing to them.

How will it increase sales?
Not only it will encourage more people to get into the RPG game but it will also increase the sales of the rest of the products as we are forming new players.

Minesweeper: The Movie

November 20, 2008

Yeah, I got lazy today so I’m posting a video, this is a really good and funny video about the game Minesweeper, I watched it a time ago but still remember it so here it goes, enjoy!

Folklore is about Computers too

November 18, 2008

I recently discover this site by a friend who gave me the link to it and as soon as I saw what was about I smiled and thought “boy, this is going to be good and fun reading”.

The site I’m talking about is Folklore.org and is a compendium of real anecdotes about the creation of the Macintosh. But that’s only what it is right now because the site is aiming at a much broader audience, in his own words his goal is:

is a web site devoted to collective historical storytelling. It captures and presents sets of related stories that describe interesting events from multiple perspectives, allowing groups of people to recount their shared history in the form of interlinked anecdotes.

Again, today you can only find the anecdotes of the Macintosh project, but that’s pretty good stuff and I assure you can get hours of interesting reading from it.

I also think is time to have a good compendium of Computer’s History told by his forgers so maybe this could encourage others to told their stories.

Have fun!

CODEAR 2008: Winners

November 17, 2008

It’s time to test the participants of the 2008 competition of Argentina’s Video Games Conference. These were the submissions in the final order positions (some of the links could be in Spanish):

First Place: Angel in Heaven by German Vadell – Play | Info

Second Place: Xee Bee by Juan Ignacio Albanesi – Play | Info

Third Place: The Infiltrator by Game Road – Play | Info

The rest of the participants:

  • Leyendas de la Edad Media (Medieval Legends) by Agustin Perez Fernandez – Play | Info
  • La Vida es muy Dificil (Life is so hard) by de9a18studio – Play | Info
  • Katy-K-Boom by German Vadell – Play | Info
  • Flogger Adventure by Carlos Federico Lopez – Play | Info
  • Los Ledesma 2 (The Ledesmas 2) by Nicolas Masgoret – Play | Info

Enjoy the Argentine independent video games!!