Thursday, September 8, 2011

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning - 20 Minute Look!

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is probably one of the most ambitious games in years. It is developed by Big Huge Games & 38 Studios, a company founded by Major League Baseball pitcher Curt Schilling and named for his jersey number, and   Ken Rolston, the lead designer of The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind and The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, acts as the game's executive designer. Additionally, noted fantasy author R.A. Salvatore created the game universe and lore, with Todd McFarlane, creator of Spawn, working on the artwork.

That's a lot of high profile, very well respected, talented, and veteran names attached to this game. The idea behind the game is to create one of the most involving stories and immersive worlds ever created in an RPG but with real time combat. To the average joe that might not mean much but to us geeks who have played many RPGs in our lifetime we know that is a huge undertaking, especially for a company as young as 38 Studios. But they have the talent to back it put, and I think they are doing quite nicely. Take a look at the 20 minute preview of the game and you'll see what I mean.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

HTC sues Apple with help from formerly Google-owned patents

I'm not a huge fan of Apple as a company. I don't have much beef with Apple's products, they are great and I give Apple all the credit in the world for "doing it first" in many areas. But I've always thought of Apple as sort of a bully when it came to their image. Elitist jerks that were to good to use anything but Apple products. Some of the main factors of my attitude towards the computer are the thousands of patent infringement lawsuits that are filed by them not only against competitors, but even partners. Some of these patents are ridiculous... like multitasking. It's as if they suck all the air out of the room, not to breath, but to make sure everyone else suffocates.

Well HTC is fighting back. The Taiwanese handset manufacturer is using newly obtained firepower: nine patents picked up from Google last week. The patents, which began life under Palm, Motorola and Openwave Systems, were transferred to HTC on September 1st. Looks like the shoe is on the other foot now and the playground bully is getting ganged up on by all the little kids he picked on.

Freddie Wong & Insomniac are Motion Control Geniuses

Freddie Wong is a genius and extremely talented youtuber. He as created original and spectacular video after video for a little over two years now on Youtube, and they just keep getting better. This latest jewel of his is a collaboration with the fine folks over at Insomniac Games, the great minds behind Resistance: Fall of Man and the Ratchet & Clank franchises. Insomiac actually halted production for an entire day on their upcoming Resistance 3 to create custom animated Chimera for Wong's video.

Wong claims that the majority of the technology required to build a motion gaming rig like this already exists, albeit in not-quite-so-advanced forms. He does superb job of explaining just could be possible with motion control gaming in the future, and after watching the video you begin to wonder why it isn't already available.

Check out Feddie Wong's Youtube channel, freddiew for more of his great videos.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

RAGE: System Requirements... Holy Balls!

    • OS: Win XP SP3, Vista, Win 7
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo or Equivalent AMD
    • Memory: 2GB
    • Hard Disk Space: 25GB
    • Video Card: GeForce 8800, Radeon HD 4200
    • OS: Win XP SP3, Vista, Win 7
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Quad or Equivalent AMD
    • Memory: 4GB
    • Hard Disk Space: 25GB
    • Video Card: GeForce 9800 GTX, ATI Radeon HD 5550
RAGE will use Steamworks and features Steam Achievements, VOIP, and Friends support.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Mysterious Star Unlike Any Other In the Universe Discovered So Far

The Human race has admired and stared at the night sky since before we could even be considered Humans. It is easy to forget that most of what we know about the stars that we've enjoyed for ages we only learned in the past century. Keep that in mind while thinking about this new discovery.

Astronomers have discovered a star that, according to what we know so far, shouldn't exist. There are many ways that we determine the age of a star in the sky. The more hydrogen, helium and lithium stars have in them, the older they are, and newer stars contain more metals produced by older suns, blasted throughout space from novas. Using this info we can determine the age of every star we can see with our telescopes, except in the case of  SDSS J102915+172927. It has a mass less than our sun, extremely low quantities of metals, and is probably more than 13 billion years old. According to our current models, it shouldn't be able form with that composition.

What's even weirder is that a star this old should contain mostly lithium. But its lithium levels are 50 times less than what they should be... and it contains an enormous amount of calcium instead. With a proportion of metals this low, it should be an extremely ancient star. And yet its composition doesn't match the theorized composition of the universe at its creation. So what happened to the lithium? That's the big question right now. Either something odd has happened to this star, or we need to revise our understanding of what the early universe was like. Researchers have identified some other stars which might also have metal deposits this low, and they plan to investigate further, to unravel what made these "stars that should not exist" do exactly that.

My personal opinion? Aliens have harvested all the lithium from the star for energy resources.