Python as a platform for games

Status

I got thinking after my last post of why I chose Unity, and could Python be an option as a language to build games?

I have much more need for Python on a daily basis… although I’m currently limited to ver 2.7 at work, I do use it for the current Feed2Twitter Raspberry Pi setup.

So for the past few days I’ve been digging around searching for material and tutorials to play with.

One impressive example comes from a post on the Ubuntu Forums from over 7 years ago:

I was experimenting with Python over the last week, and I made this example app for various 3D stuff. I titled it PolarisGP, and I was making it with lax intentions of making a flight racing game. However, in case I lose interest, I’d like to put it out there for posterity.

It includes some examples of pretty cool techniques:

  • Basic linear algebra
  • Quaternion rotation
  • Axis/magnitude angular velocity
  • Display lists
  • .obj file loading
  • Efficiently extracting “up,left,forward” vectors from a matrix
  • Using an inverse matrix (in this case, from a quaternion) to create a camera system

Thanks CurvedInfinity wherever you are now 🙂

I’ve uploaded the code to GitHub as it’s easier to share… & I wanted to get more familiar with the hosting code: https://github.com/gamer-geek/PolarisGP

Game Building with Unity – Space Shooter tutorial

Unity

I’ve a couple of ideas for simple games, and after doing a little research decided on giving Unity a try as a platform, and C# as a language.

I was reluctant at first as I found I could only get it to work on Windows… in hindsight I could have probably used a Virtual Box, or even Wine, but there’s still time to change.

Python was my first choice, although Unity won me over with the user friendly GUI and heaps of free content, tutorials, assets, and community discussion to reference.

Not saying that I’m no longer playing with Python, just not for this project.

Unity Personal is a great place for beginners and hobbyists to get started. It includes access to all core game engine features, continuous updates, beta releases, and all publishing platforms.

Unity Personal

Here’s the Wiki Unity extract:

Unity is a cross-platform game engine developed by Unity Technologies, which is primarily used to develop video games and simulations for computers, consoles and mobile devices. First announced only for OS X, at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in 2005, it has since been extended to target 27 platforms.

Six major versions of Unity have been released. At the 2006 WWDC show, Apple named Unity as the runner up for its Best Use of Mac OS X Graphics category.

Unity is marketed to be an all purpose engine, and as a result supports both 2D and 3D graphics, drag and drop functionality and scripting through its 3 custom languages. The engine targets the following APIs: Direct3D and Vulkan on Windows and Xbox 360; OpenGL on Mac, Linux, and Windows; OpenGL ES on Android and iOS; and proprietary APIs on video game consoles. Within 2D games, Unity allows importation of sprites and an advanced 2D world renderer. For 3D games, Unity allows specification of texture compression and resolution settings for each platform that the game engine supports,[7] and provides support for bump mapping, reflection mapping, parallax mapping, screen space ambient occlusion (SSAO), dynamic shadows using shadow maps, render-to-texture and full-screen post-processing effects. Unity also offers services to developers, these are: Unity Ads, Unity Analytics, Unity Certification, Unity Cloud Build, Unity Everyplay, Unity IAP, Unity Multiplayer, Unity Performance Reporting and Unity Collaborate which is in beta.

Unity is notable for its ability to target games to multiple platforms. Currently supported platforms are Android, Android TV, Facebook Gameroom, Fire OS, Gear VR, Google Cardboard, Google Daydream, HTC Vive, iOS, Linux, macOS, Microsoft Hololens, Nintendo 3DS line, Nintendo Switch,[14]Oculus Rift, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, PlayStation VR, Samsung Smart TV, Tizen, tvOS, Wii, Wii U, Windows, Windows Phone, Windows Store, WebGL, Xbox 360, and Xbox One. Unity formerly supported 5 other platforms including its own Unity Web Player. Unity Web Player was a browser plugin that was supported in Windows and OS X only, which has been deprecated in favor of WebGL.

Unity is the default software development kit (SDK) for Nintendo’s Wii U video game console platform, with a free copy included by Nintendo with each Wii U developer license. Unity Technologies calls this bundling of a third-party SDK an “industry first”

Wiki Unity


Unity – Space Shooter tutorial

I’ve been working through this awesome tutorial for the last few days, completing all but the final section.

Bug checking and seeing a working final product has been satisfying, Adam Buckner is a great teacher who I owe several pints to for his great guidance.

I now feel confident enough to try a couple of my own ideas, and will hopefully finish this last part of the tutorial and publish the finished product to Android.

In the mean time here’s a link to a Mega repository containing a working Linux version of the Space Shooter game I built from the tutorial, have fun 🙂
Mega: Linux Space Shooter

Here’s a summary of the course contents, I went in as a n00b and found it understandable and achievable.
Continue reading

July 17 tech projects and games

I downloaded Sleeping Dogs for the PS4, 10 bucks for an awesome GotY title.
Think I actually prefer the shooting / combat mechanics to GTAV

Still haven’t given The Z a test drive

I’ve been playing with one of my Raspberry Pi’s; have an headless installation of Raspian running: Jessie Lite.
Currently setup a twitter feed (GamerGeekNews) from some of my favourite sites and am looking for other ideas.

Here’re a few useful sites I’ve been referencing and have found useful:
Continue reading

DS3 Progress through the Profaned Capital

Status

My Dark Souls 3 journey continued over a few sessions

  • failed fighting Yhorm many times… as with any From boss, decided to have a look around
  • worked through the Profaned Capital, and managed to collect Elonora and the Court Sorcerer’s Staff
  • was killed while freeing Karla, so no dark sorcery for me on this play through, so I spent a pale tongue focusing on Str over Int
  • only fighting Yhorm after I chanced upon a Twitch feed, quite easy when you master Storm Ruler special.
  • currently lost looking for Anor Londo and Aldrich

 

Swiftpoint The Z

Today I received an awesome long awaited new toy that I backed from Kickstarter, a shiny special launch edition Swiftpoint Award Winning mouse The Z

Features:

–Full RGB lighting and a small customizable OLED screen (see image)
–Gyroscope/accelerometer provides for joystick-like use
–Force-sensitive clicking that can be customized in the software
–Button variations to suite your preference
–Feet for “joystick” and “tilting” functions

Extras:

–Large mouse mat
–Machined aluminum cable holder

After more than three years of development, we are ready to launch The Swiftpoint Z.

It’s the world’s first mouse to pivot, tilt and roll, with a brand new way of clicking buttons – meaning you can access dozens of different button actions while barely moving your fingers.

The Swiftpoint Z also senses how hard you click, giving variable speed/force control, and provides tactile feedback, so you know when you’ve made a ‘deeper click’. We built in an Accelerometer, Gyroscope, Force Sensor & Tactile Feedback to unleash a faster, more precise and highly intuitive mouse.

  • Series: SM700
  • Sensor resolution: 200 – 12,000 DPI, 5G Pixart PMW3360
  • Polling: 1000hz
  • Braided cord: cable length 6 feet (1.8 meters)
  • Scroll-wheel
  • Number of buttons: 16 including deep click with tactile feedback
  • Fast Access Fingertip Buttons: 12 buttons under finger tips with two thumb
  • Button Actions: 60 combine clicks with tilt left/right and pivot left/right
  • Wired: No Lag, No Drag
  • Pivot and Tilt
  • 6 Axis In-Air Control of Pitch / Yaw / Roll
  • Analogue Force Buttons to Control speed / throttle / power: 4 Buttons (Left/right click, & left/right fingertip)
  • Deep Click Buttons Multiple Threshold Levels with Tactile Feedback: 4 Buttons (Left/right click, & left/right fingertip)
  • OLED Screen
  • Automatic Configuration: Config mode is entered by tilting the mouse, see OLED screen.
  • Replaceable Hand Grips
  • Dimensions: 5.12″ x 3.54” x 1.57” (13 x 9 x 4 cm (L x W x H))
  • Weight: 4 ? ounces (117 grams) – without cable
  • Supported OS: Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7, Mac OS X Mountain Lion 10.8.x or later
  • Optimized for right-hand use
  • 3 year limited hardware warranty

Looking forward to seeing how the drivers develop, eager to try it on Linux, off to see how it performs piloting a ship around the Milky way in Elite Dangerous

June 17 games to eat up my time

I’m not finding much time to game or write about it, my new hobby is parenthood :), still 3 new PS4 games to occupy my scarce gaming time

Tekken 7 [81% Metacritic], and found it pretty much same same, nothing novel excpet for Akuma.
Crazy that I get to play more Shoryuken with Tekken loaded than Street Fighter V’s shit net code.

Wipeout Omega Collection [85% Metacritic] to get nostalgic about, great to pick up when I have a quick minute.

FIFA 17 [85% Metacritic] to take Barnsley to the Premiership & EUAFA Champions… and get some practice in to build my skillset to beat my teenage neighbours

Although the launch of Dark Souls 3: The Ringed City DLC I’ve been tempted back to the Firelink Shrine.
This weekend I managed to finally get through the Irithyll Dungeon, I was stuck on the Gargoyle before the bonfire, and didn’t have the knack to speed run down to it.

While exploring the Profaned Capital I made it to Yhorm the Giant. I embered up but no-one would join me for the fight, so I attempted it solo.
As usual with facing Dark Souls bosses for the first time, I go my arse handed to me, but I did manage to pick up the Storm Ruler for the next time I face him 🙂

May 17 Gaming

This past week I’ve picked up Just Cause 3 again, and I can’t remember why I stopped playing… although I guess it was due to other games turning up.
I’m enjoying the mindless destruction and playable controls, not involved in the story or plot, just liberating an Italian coastal zone.

I’ve been playing with TuxGuitar: Sourceforge

free, open source tablature editor, which includes features such as tablature editing, score editing, and import and export of Guitar Pro gp3, gp4, and gp5 files.[2] In addition, TuxGuitar’s tablature and staff interfaces function as basic MIDI editors.

Been saving my favourite licks as tabs, and am planning on converting a Beatles book of sheet music I have to tabs, to allow me to play them more easily.

Current tunes I’m playing are the Godfather and Star Wars Themes, and Binary Sunset 🙂


(I’m no where near this talented!)

Also been picking up Overwatch off and on, the levelling is effective so games are a challenge, although still not getting many kills as maining Mercy

PaRappa and Gitaroo Man creators Kickstarter

The creators of PaRappa The Rapper and Gitaroo Man combine forces to mastermind an all-new, story-led, rhythm-action adventure.

PaRappa The Rapper is one of my favourite all time games, I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve purchased it 🙂
I so hope this kickstarter gets off the ground, please support: project rap rabbit working title

& check this link for my philosophy on how to live life by PaRappa The Rapper 🙂

About this project

*UPDATE – ALL WHITE-LABEL EDITION (DIGITAL) TIERS AND HIGHER WILL NOW ALSO RECEIVE A DIGITAL COPY OF THE PROJECT RAP RABBIT SOUNDTRACK*


For the first time ever, two of the genre’s biggest icons collaborate on an innovative new musical adventure coming to PlayStation 4 and PC.

An explosive mix of Japanese folklore and traditional artwork, hip hop and humorous battle rap face-offs inspired by the Epic Rap Battles Of History YouTube series, Project Rap Rabbit (working title) is the next major game from the creators of PaRappa The Rapper, Vib-Ribbon, Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan, Elite Beat Agents and Gitaroo Man.


 


Our grand hip hop saga takes place in an alternate history, circa 16th Century Japan. All is not well. The world is becoming a hostile place as people object to the growing diversification of their homelands. Citizens and neighbours are becoming increasingly suspicious of, and isolated from, one another.  

A toxic atmosphere of protectionism is taking hold.

At the height of this culture of fear, an Earth-shattering calamity befalls the world. As the universe trembles from the aftershocks and the survivors try to rebuild what’s left of their lives, one rabbit embarks on a journey for truth, justice and liberty – and steps forward to do battle with the land’s most powerful overlords.

Meet the hero of our story: Toto-Maru
Meet the hero of our story: Toto-Maru

The hero in question is Toto-Maru, a simple farm boy who’s able to harness the special power of force through rap. (Wait, where have we heard this before…?) Only by embracing the strength of music and by using the magic of rhythm and rhyme to counter corruption and small-mindedness can our reluctant hero and his trusty sidekick, Otama-Maru, finally heal the destructive rifts, bring about global unification and restore peace! 

This handsome fella is Toto-Maru's sidekick: Otama-Maru
This handsome fella is Toto-Maru’s sidekick: Otama-Maru

 


With a combined 54 years of development shared between studios NanaOn-Sha and iNiS J, we’ve had plenty of time to master the art of rhythm-action. And it’s all been building to this: Project Rap Rabbit’s unique rapping gameplay represents the culmination of our experience across the genre’s biggest and best hits, and a true evolution of rhythm-action mechanics. 

The key to battle rap is the ability to defeat your opponent with lyrical jabs and rhyming uppercuts, which is why Project Rap Rabbit ensures YOU are in control of the raps. Songs aren’t just a series of linear lines to tap through, but full dialogue trees of variable verses filled with creative put-downs, bragging and clever rhymes.

Project Rap Rabbit's visuals are shaped by Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan and Elite Beat Agents lead artist Atsushi Saito
Project Rap Rabbit’s visuals are shaped by Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan and Elite Beat Agents lead artist Atsushi Saito

Here at both NanaOn-Sha and iNiS J, we have a long-held belief that rhythm-action should be about so much more than simply attaining perfection and mastering button presses to reach an S Rank climax. We want to encourage experimentation, not punish deviations from a critical path. To that end, we have designed a flexible and dynamic bonus system to reward self-expression.


Rap battles pit Toto-Maru up against leaders of rival factions. Both Toto-Maru and his opponent possess Swag Gauges, and the victor of a rap battle is determined by these bars.

How does a rhythm-action game featuring branching songs work exactly? Well, each song in Project Rap Rabbit is made up of multiple Call and Response gameplay segments, which can all be broken down into three simple steps.


1) Listen
When your opponent is attacking you, you shouldn’t just stand there and take it! Important phrases in your foe’s lyrics will be highlighted in the Word Pick Up phase: Now’s your chance to pick out certain keywords you want to try and focus on when it’s time to strike back.


2) Respond
How do you want to respond to your opponent’s insults? It’s up to you! Project Rap Rabbit features an emotion wheel inspired by the likes of Mass Effect and Fallout 4. Do you want to hit back with a boast, with a joke, by dismissing the attack or by coercing your opponent?  

Select the emotion you wish to unleash to preview the upcoming rhythm and your foe’s reaction: There’s no wrong choice, but different emotions will inflict different levels of damage to your adversary’s Swag Gauge.


3) Rap
Now it’s time to unleash those lines! Depending on your chosen emotion you’ll spit different lyrics and unique rhythms. Press the specified face buttons at the correct time to enunciate every word perfectly, boosting your own Swag Gauge in the process.


If your Swag Gauge hits zero it’s the end of the battle and your failure will go down in legend. Keeping your bar topped up is the key to successfully besting each level, while depleting your foe’s meter will increase your overall level score. 

Running low on Swag?
Don’t panic! The status of your opponent, determined by the level of his or her Swag Gauge, can help you out. Every foe reacts to each emotion differently, and while it’s possible to beat each song using every single permutation of lyrics, picking the more powerful emotional response to any given state will result in better boosts to your own Swag Gauge during the Rap section.


 


Beyond the music itself, rhythm-action games are also about happiness, experience and love. These are the foundations on which we built our earliest titles. We want to bring strong narratives and a tangible sense of adventure back to rhythm-action gaming, and to deliver a title with unrivaled feeling and soul.

However, we also know that many fast-fingered gamers love to be challenged, which is why we’ve designed gameplay systems far deeper than those of any other rhythm-action title in our history.

Though the basic objective of every stage is to emerge from the rap battle victorious, competitive leaderboards challenge you to discover the most creative paths through each branching song and deliver the best rap you possibly can. Perfect beat-matching will net you good scores, of course, but that’s just the start if you want to mount a serious assault on your friends’ performances… 

To ensure that all gamers with all kinds of setups can enjoy Project Rap Rabbit to its fullest, there will be a calibration mode
To ensure that all gamers with all kinds of setups can enjoy Project Rap Rabbit to its fullest, there will be a calibration mode

Bonuses
Simple bonuses involve zeroing in on the most powerful keywords during the Listen phase and successfully hitting those syllables (denoted with special symbols on the lyrics bar, as shown above for ‘To Rhyme’) with full force during the Rap segments. But bonuses come in all shapes, sizes and complexities.

Some involve rapid selections during the Respond phase to get a jump-start on your lines, while others demand high-level players successfully and seamlessly knit together lyrics from different responses by tweaking the emotion during the Rap phase itself – an expert feat that isn’t for the faint-hearted!

Toto-Maru’s status
Mirroring his opponent’s behaviour, Toto-Maru’s own status is dictated by his Swag Gauge. When the Swag Gauge drops below 50% health Toto-Maru falls into the Back Against The Wall state, during which certain lyrics will deal even more damage to his opponent’s Swag.  

With large damage multipliers at their fingertips, along with some additional Back Against The Wall bonuses up for grabs depending on the length of time spent in that state, truly brave rappers will be able to carefully shape their responses to spend entire battles on the cusp of failure in order to deal huge levels of damage and gain the most points.


For Project Rap Rabbit, we wanted to draw on the culture and traditional artwork of Japan while infusing it with some of the biggest influences which have touched our lives. The result? A mesmerizing collision of Japanese history, rap and hip hop culture

These two things couldn’t be geographically further apart in origin, but together they demonstrate that bringing together diverse cultures from two different times can not only work, but create something remarkable. The result is a truly memorable and singularly stylish experience that everyone can enjoy.


The famous 16th century Japanese picture scroll ‘Scrolls of Frolicking Animals‘, Uesugi Bon’s Rakuchu Rakugai Zu, the works of Akira Yamaguchi and Ikeda Manabu, and films such as Spirited Away, Tekkonkinkreet and Kung Fu Panda were all major influences in our early concepts.


20 years after masterminding the music behind PlayStation classic PaRappa The Rapper, Masaya Matsuura will also be serving as the music director for Project Rap Rabbit in addition to creative lead duties. As one of the core composers for the rap battles, Matsuura-san is looking to create a synthesis of Japanese and Western styles that’s elevated above and beyond anything you’ve heard before.  

While some of our past titles have focused on rap and hip hop, we haven’t yet tackled the back-and-forth dueling of rap battles. One of our major drawing points in our early days of development has been Epic Rap Battles Of History – the blend of beat, crazy encounters and comedy put-downs is a great example of the different musical encounters you’ll be playing in Project Rap Rabbit.

Project Rap Rabbit's battles are epic clashes filled with action and humour
Project Rap Rabbit’s battles are epic clashes filled with action and humour

 


How did two of the biggest names in the business come to form the ultimate rhythm-action dream team? Masaya Matsuura and Keiichi Yano have known each other for almost 20 years, and formed a friendship based around their shared love of story-based music and rhythm game creation – an area many game developers have never experienced.

This is the first time long-term friends Matsuura-san and Yano-san have collaborated on a project
This is the first time long-term friends Matsuura-san and Yano-san have collaborated on a project

At various game events over the years, Matsuura-san and Yano-san have come together to discuss what shape the next generation of music games would form. More recently, they began exploring the concept of a ‘rhythm-action 2.0‘ project, capable of pushing the genre into areas never before conceived. Rather than revisiting an existing series and either re-appropriating known and loved game systems or breaking them to retrofit more progressive gameplay ideas, a new IP felt like the natural opportunity to explore innovative input mechanics while simultaneously celebrating and paying homage to the past.


 


 


 


Deeper into the campaign we’ll be asking our community to tell us what Stretch Goals are most important to them. All future Stretch Goals will be ordered according to community surveys.

Until then, be sure to comment or reach out to us via the social media links below to tell us what you want to see next from Project Rap Rabbit, whether it’s an Xbox One version, more levels, multiplayer modes or extra difficulty settings.


Elite Dangerous PS4 June 27 Launch

Elite Dangerous PS4

Elite Dangerous PS4 June 27 Launch

Deets curtesy of Destructoid:

As you were probably expecting, on PS4, the base game ($30) and the Horizons season pass ($30) will be separate purchases (unless you want to buy them bundled together, which will be an option).

On the same day, Frontier is also putting out a physical Elite Dangerous: Legendary Edition for Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Considering that package contains the game, the pass, and 1,000 Frontier Points for cosmetics — things like alternate paint jobs and bobbleheads — that’s probably the way to go.

Two final notes: content and saves can’t be transferred across platforms, and if you’re curious about potential PlayStation VR support, Frontier has said it’s “definitely something we’re looking into, but we have nothing to announce for launch.” For any other lingering questions, there’s an FAQ.


I’d love to give the PS4 version a try, although I’m too many hours in on the PC version to commit to money, and more the grind.

Maybe I’ll be motivated when I finally pick up the PS VR headset

Elite Dangerous community trolled by Harry Potter

Details here from Arstechnica of what went down

By the time I’d logged on in my timezone everything had already happened, but this event was a big motivation for me to get my ship up to some sort of standard, or at least begin the journey.

By grinding a few lucrative trade loops, a couple of rare circuits, and building up a relationship with the engineer Felicity Farseer, I’ve accumulated over 100 MM credits, and lifted my Trade rank to Entrepreneur, Explorer to Ranger.

Still far from Elite, but on my way… plus I got to finish watching Breaking Bad while space trucking 🙂

April 17 updates

Both Android and Ubuntu received official updates today 🙂

Made a clean install of Ubuntu 17.04, everything works well out of the box.
Then there’s the compulsory: 17 Things To Do After Installing Ubuntu 17.04

Was surprised at the size of the Android security patch at over 300 MB to version 7.1.2!
All was well until a week later my phone bricked; I pulled it out of my pocket and it wouldn’t respond to my thumb print.

Thought nothing more of it, charged it overnight thinking the battery was drained, but it wouldn’t start the morning after 🙁

Tried booting into bootloader with zero success. So returned it to the store I picked it up from, stoked there’s a 2 year warranty… hope to get it back in the next few days.

In the mean time I’ve been using a fresh unboxed iPhone 6 we had sat around the house (don’t ask) and I’m shocled to say that I’m warming to it… or not as opposed as I thought I would be.

pros

  • all the google apps I use are installed; mainly Gmail, Google Drive & Play Music
  • podcasts easy to subscibe, although the default player isn’t as intuitive as I’d like
  • think the sound and quality is better from Play Music
  • quicker to take photos, great quality… although not sure how the quality compares to Nexus 5x
  • photos upload to Google Drive
  • battery lasts longer than 5X, charges fast, but not close to the speed of USB-C

cons

  • no NFC – can’t use Yubi Key
  • can’t set Firefox as default browser, but do get Firefox Focus

My biggest gripe though is the fingerprint unlock button.
I’m used to the 5X opening first time, with fingers and thumbs able to open up the screen.

The iPhone unlock seemed to work first time for the first week but now only works periodically, frustrating.


Also been playing with OpenSUSE in VirtualBox.

It does everything I need and looks great.
I miss apt-get, but maybe not enough to be a barrier to try it as my main distro for a while… then again I have my graphics card working perfectly in Ubuntu so not keen on rocking the boat.

Horizon Zero Dawn

horizon zero dawn

Horizon Zero Dawn is a PS4-exclusive action role playing game developed by Guerrilla Games, creators of the Killzone franchise. As Horizon Zero Dawn’s main protagonist Aloy, a skilled hunter, explore a vibrant and lush world inhabited by mysterious mechanized creatures. Embark on an emotional journey to unravel mysteries of tribal societies, ancient artifacts and advanced technologies that will determine the fate of this planet, and of life itself

Metacritic: Horizon Zero Dawn

I’m in love with this blend of Skyrim, Assassin’s Creed, and Last of Us, maybe Dishonoured, with a little bit of Far Cry 3 and a Lara Croft like protagonist; it is worthy of the hype, and a GotY contender.

The story telling is compelling, the characters deep and interesting, the voice acting credible, and the visuals stunning… then there’s the awesome game play!

The sub missions are interesting, fitting the feel of the story, game, and location. They don’t feel forced, and I want to complete them to rank up and unlock more skills and equipment. Ranking up feels natural as you’re playing a girl coming off age and exploring the World for the first time.

I’m just past the intro; the theme is set, the journey has begun, I expect the difficulty level to increase but I’m eager to see more of the stunning locations and vistas as I ride across the land, until I find Zoids to disassemble with my spear and bow.

This is where the game feels like The Last of Us. Using ‘focus’, what seems to be a web enabled device that scans and layers an augmented reality layer over the surroundings, you identify any animals, humans, or mechanical beasts, then work on taking them down.

Wildlife is easy; tag it then chase, whack it with your spear when near. For the more dangerous enemies you can snipe with your bow, aiming for vulnerable spots shown when in focus, or my favourite current method is to stalk and take them out silently.

Larger mettle beasts require different tactics with alternative weapons, and there seems to be enough of those to keep things mixed up.

Climbing around the terrain is reminiscent of Assassin’s Creed with defined routes up vertical paths, towers replaced by several story high Tallneck’s which once have been summited defog the surrounding map, highlighting locations of interest.

The signature Altair swan dive is replaced with an impressive rappelling descent.

I’m reminded of Skyrim by the detailed scenery, snowy tundra, the changing weather and day night cycle. But the biggest flash back to the Bethesda classic is the bow, Alloy’s primary ranged weapon. What’s really cool is that various arrows can be created on the fly, and the parts are found everywhere, so ammo conservation hasn’t been an issue… yet

Early days but this is a fun challenging title I’d recommend to anyone
Rating: ★★★★★

Rocksmith 2014

Rocksmith-2014

The fastest way to learn guitar is now better than ever. Join over three million people who have learned to play guitar with the award-winning Rocksmith® method. Plug any real guitar or bass with a 1/4 inch jack directly into your PC or Mac and you’ll learn to play in just 60 days.

With Rocksmith you can learn everything from single notes to chords and advanced techniques, all at your own pace. You’ll learn fast because it adapts to your skill level as you play, whether you’re a beginner or an experienced player.

Borrowed an electric guitar from a friend, picked up a tone cable, and downloaded Rocksmith 2014 from Steam… 4 days before an half price offer ??Doh!

Loving the tunes and learning curve, and am trying to commit to playing each day, thinking I put so much time into games I might as well learn real skills 🙂

The first song i played was by The Ramone’s, and I put this down to destiny due to the modded switch on the borrowed guitar shows “Ramones and Treble” settings

Out of the next few songs were 2 bands from Sheffield; I was hooked!

  • Video tutorials are effective, with applied tests of what has just been taught afterwards
  • Arcade style games are a great way to become familiar with strings, frets, and chords

My playing is improving daily, and I’ve promised myself a nice guitar if I keep up the practice.
Let’s see how long it will last… with 1,000 songs now available it could be quite a while \m/

Rating: ★★★★☆

null

Ghost Recon?: ? Wildlands

Ghost Recon?: ? Wildlands

Summary: Taking place a few years into the future, Ghost Recon Wildlands empowers players to lead a team of Ghosts, a four-player U.S. Elite Special Operations unit, on a covert mission to destroy the Santa Blanca drug cartel, an underworld force and growing global threat within Ubisoft’s imagining of a beautiful, yet dangerous Bolivia. With hundreds of villages and well-known landmarks, local legends and various factions and regions, players venture into a vast world with which to interact and explore. The Ghosts’ upgradable skills, along with a vast arsenal of weapons, vehicles and drones, help them defeat their almighty enemy. Gamers can play the entire game solo or they join up with as many as three friends in co-op to roam freely in this vast playground.

Metacritic

I picked up Ghost Recon?: Wildlands on the PS4, as I was a big fan of the early releases on the original XBOX, certainly the multiplayer battles.

I ws impressed by the awesome graphics and FMV, usual control system, but there’s just something about the game that doesn’t compel me to put in more hours; and in this day and age where there is a plethora of quality titles to gobble up my limited play time like pacman on a pill binge I’ve returned this game to the retailer.

  • open world like MGS5 stealth, without the firepower and finesse to approach each objective in your preferred way
  • aspects of GTA, without the plot or humour
  • similar to Far Cry objectives, with a mix of Mordor; taking out ranked area bosses, without the vindication and dynamic characters
  • Just Cause 3, without the arcade feel
  • Watch Dogs like drones, moved away from the previous satellite top down surveillance, that had a much more military feel
  • same safe Ghost Recon tactic in single player; tag the enemies and use AI teammates to take them out
  • no online multiplayer? 🙁

Great opportunity for this to work well with real life teams, although I couldn’t find a team mates who would cooperate; everyone seemed to run off and do their own thing. This is cool in vs games but not when you have a shared objective.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

So long and thanks for all the fish

Status

Been busy with games (Nioh) and Raspberyy Pi projects, and post deets when I have the opportunity, but currently my mission is moving 🙂

I’ve been with this host for sometime, with no issues, actully awesome customer service, but feel it’s time to play elsewhere.

Currently testing DigitalOcean, although have also contemplated Google Cloud and Amazon.

I’ve created a droplet on a LAMP stack with WordPress installed, I may look to a different CMS platform, but that’s another day.

All of this was motivated by the idea of creating an RSS aggregate to post to a Twitter feed again; I’ll share the details of that journey in the near future.

Off to migrate files, hope I don’t lose anything

The Thargoids have arrived

Thargoids
No posts lately as I heard that the Thargoids have arrived in Elite:Dangerous last Friday 🙂

How has this caused my hiatus?

I rushed out and picked up a new graphics card (Radeon RX 480) and a 256 Gig Samsung SSD so I could play the game with ease.

That’s when the trouble began! I found I couldn’t migrate Win7 easily off a partition on a 2TB HD to the SSD; or rather I could, but Windows wouldn’t open.

I also had issues installing the Radeon drivers on Debian. I tried and failed to rebuild a kernel (first attempt), and I didn’t know there were new Linux kernels available, still not sure if they would work.

So I re-installed Ubuntu, as I knew there were Radeon drivers available. So after installing Ubuntu on my original SSD I found after many attempts that I couldn’t install Win 7 on my new SSD… but I could install Ubuntu on it, and Win7 was happy to install on my original SSD.

Best part of 3 days it took me to remove my old graphics card, slot in the new one, plug the new SSD into a SATA port on the motherboard, install 2 new operating systems, and setup Steam and Elite:Dangerous, including the Horizons DLC!

Thank the Linux gods that I have a weekly backup of my Home directory that’s easy to bring back with Deja Dup.

For the rest of the 2 weeks I’ve been flying around space 🙂

Elite:Dangerous Vulture

I didn’t jump straight back into my Clipper; after accidents when coming back to E:D after a break in the past. So I mapped my keys to a wired xbox controller (I still find the ergonomics suit my large hands better than the PS4 pads) and took my Vulture out for a ride.

I didn’t take many risks, practiced takeoff’s and docking, all was going well, so thought I’d try comabat.

Now I remember this ship could hold its own so I was quite confident approaching a Conflict Zone, even after time away.

I was destroyed within 5 mins, WTF! It felt like the ship had been nerfed, or it could have been my new lack of skills.

So I cashed in the insurance and bought one of my favourite ships in the game, an Asp. I moved over what hardware I could, and sold the rest.

For the next few days I flew my Asp around Imperial space, running data, fetch, and delivery missions, not wasting weight on weapons. I didn’t realise immediately that I had purchased an Asp Scout, and not the model I’d had fun exploring and trading with in the past, the Asp Explorer… or am I just confused and was there only the Asp available on launch? Shit it was over 2 years ago!

Elite:Dangerous Clipper

Anyway I was then confident enough to have my Clipper delivered to me and things have been going well, except for one failed planetary landing that cost me another insurance claim.

The game seems to have improved in many little ways, and now it’s easier on the eyes with my new graphics card, and stutter free.

I’ve even done something that I once though pedestrian, and have installed a docking computer on the Clipper, loving the sylish landings and how Frontier have kept the classical music that kicks in with the computer as on the original.

So I’m cruising around Harm with some nice one jump return 3.2k/tonne loops, working on saving credits to afford maybe a Python next so I’m not limited to large landing pads.

Loving picking Elite up again, and I haven’t set out yet to find the Engineers, Alien Ruins, or the Thargoids 🙂