Video Games

Do Game Developers Need to Know Multithreading?

AA Game
In a word, “yes.” But — there is always a “but!” — it depends on the type of game. AAA games (or as my wife puts it, the games that make the fans blow loudest) are highly demanding of resources and computing power. Browser games may not need quite so much grunt work to be playable. But let’s have some background first. What exactly is multithreading? Multithreading 101 It’s easier if we start with an old fashioned PC where the… continue…

Developers Mull New Tech Strategies After E3

Posted In Working in Tech
E3-Thumbnail
Through new consoles and new games to run on them, E3 saw the introduction of a range of technologies and capabilities that left developers, engineers and other game professionals with greater insight into the skills they need to develop if they’re going to continue their success in the field. “The things that I saw at E3 that inspired me were a lot of new technologies that are multi-core or multi-thread,” said Shawn Halwes, a programmer at Ragtag Studio. In a… continue…

Game Developer Gives Pirates a Taste of Their Own Medicine

Posted In Living in Tech
Game Dev
By Scott Bowers Piracy is an issue that software developers big and small have to contend with. Some companies push tyrannical copy protection that can frustrate legitimate gamers, while others ship with no protection at all. Indie startup studio Greenheart Games took an unconventional approach to fighting off pirates with its maiden game, Game Dev Tycoon. The developer used pirate-favorite BitTorrent to seed its own “cracked” version of the game to the world, albeit with a slight modification in code.… continue…

Can Nintendo Win E3 Without A Press Conference?

Posted In Living in Tech
Nintendo/E3
By Scott Bowers Last month, Nintendo surprised everyone with the news that they would not hold one of the traditional giant press conferences at E3. For many years the game industry’s major players have staged their own events, usually just before the show opens, to gloat about sales figures and to hype their upcoming products. While Sony unwraps more details about Playstation 4 and Microsoft showcases the new Xbox, Nintendo is struggling against difficult and evolving market conditions. More and… continue…

Oculus Rift: Virtual Reality Gaming Makes a Comeback

Posted In Living in Tech
Oculus Rift
By Rob Pakus Nowadays it seems the gaming and gadget hype is all about 3-D TVs and next-generation consoles. I’m more interested in the evolutionary reincarnation of virtual reality gaming, specifically in the form of Oculus VR’s virtual reality headset, aptly named the Oculus Rift.  In case you missed the excitement, here’s a quick summary of its rise to fame. Kickstarter Launches a Virtual Reality Brand Oculus Rift founder Palmer Lucky is an avid VR headset collector, as well as… continue…

From the Buzz, Piecing Together the Xbox 720

Posted In Living in Tech
Dice's Guest Appearance
By Scott Bowers Microsoft has announced that the date of the “Xbox Reveal” will be at a special event on May 21.  This is the first official announcement from them regarding their new upcoming console.  But just because Microsoft’s not saying a lot about the upcoming Xbox 720 – code-named “Durango” — doesn’t mean gamers are in a wait-and-see mood.  After all, if nature fills vacuums, then the gaming community argues rumors.  And so many rumors have been floating around… continue…

Why Sony’s PlayStation 4 Could Change the Game

Posted In Living in Tech
Sony PS4
With Sony’s PlayStation 4 set to launch some time around “Holiday 2013,” let’s take a look at what to expect from the long-awaited console. The PS4 is one of two, possibly three, next-generation consoles that are set to hit the market before the end of the year. By piecing together information from Sony’s various announcements, we can gain a reasonably good understanding of what Kaz Hirai and company have in store for us. Specifications For Sony fans, the updated specifications… continue…

Final Chapter: LucasArts Employees Hold Wake

LucasArts Logo
The bar’s name says it all: The Final Final. That’s where LucasArts employees gathered Friday night to hold a wake, following the death of their game studio earlier in the week. At Final Final in San Francisco, a large gathering of LucasArts employees and former LucasArts workers shared drinks and tears, from recalling memories of creating such notable cult games like Monkey Island to mourning the loss of games whose lives were cut short, like Star Wars 1313 and Star Wars: First… continue…

RetroN 5 Plays Cartridges from Five Classic Consoles

Posted In Cloud
In addition to NES, SNES, and Genesis, the RetroN 5 will play cartridges from Famicom (the Japanese version of NES) and Game Boy Advance. continue…

Cool Skin: Life’s Outlook in Japanese Ink

Posted In Living in Tech
Erica Langworthy Tattoo
Erica Langworthy is an early-30-something animator for a video game company in New York. She uses a wide variety of programs, techniques and technology to execute her work, moving from 3D to compositing and FX, to character design and animation. She loves her job, but today we’re talking tattoos, dramatic and beautiful body art. Why did you decide to decorate yourself? I’ve wanted a tattoo since I was a teenager, though I was smart enough to know I wanted to… continue…