I managed to get a flash plugin for showcasing music here in my blog. Remember the track for the music challenge? Well, this isn't the track (and I doubt I'll ever ever publish it), I just needed to do something that's not halloween-themed.

Something completely repetitive and machinary. It's a simple percussion with acid and bassline plus some filter modulation over time. Hooray, I even reached the max-100-pattern-in-a-track limit! Lovely.

No more card

Well, my fast and loud new graphics card caused a lot of strange bluescreens with no help in sight and it might be better to buy a new PC. You know, AGP-only, slow memory, damaged microphone-in and so on... Time for getting a new rig! Well, I can atleast use my old graphics card to play Borderlands (which is a completely different but similarly stupid story). Or let's say I hope that it will work. If this is not enough, some days ago I lost my TIGS music challenge entry (plan A) due to FL Studio (...). So, plan B was different but it will probably not work. I finished the instrumental work but I need , erm... vocals. The voice is not the problem, I will use a synthesized voice for it. The problem is I need some kind of rap lyrics, halloween-themed. I hate hiphop and I hate rappers, but this concept needs to be done.


Ambient on DI.fm

I really recommend DI.fm's ambient channel. It's a real pleasure to play Fallout 3 with only Ambient and no soundtrack in the background. It becomes a Zen-like experience of killing people and collecting items. Very recommandable.

Beside this, I can play Fallout 3 on maximum settings with my new card. I'm glad I can play the game how it was supposed to look.



Some days ago I updated FL Studio. It's a Producer Edition now, but I doubt I will have fun using it. It's not that I will never use it/want to use it. It's just that I noticed a significant trend I followed since I got my DS-10. FL Studio is so fucking techno/trance/drum oriented, I miss a more intuitive interface for just placing some notes freely and without having to think about why and where. There are so many knobs, so many settings, so many different parts and sometimes extremely useless functionalities... No. Not today. I know why I love simple GUIs and simple synthesizers. FL Studio isn't even close to beeing as good as my DS-10. Back in the days when it was a desired christmas present, I thought FL Studio is awesome. But today... I don't think making things more complicated is a good thing. The Producer Edition has some new features I always wanted to have, but I will never use it for the music I want to make: soundscapes, atmosphere, soundtracks. I can't do this in FL Studio, it's just good for pumping stuff. Image Line's commercial plugins are even more complicated! I enjoy listening to music people created this way, but I hate doing it by myself. No, that's nothing for me. I know how I can make limited music with FL Studio that sounds OK, but nothing more. I don't want to say I hate FL Studio, but so much money for so much mostly useless shit... As I said before, some parts are useful and I will always be a noise nut within the context of FL. Ok, ok - buying a DS and a DS-10 is probably much more expensive. But I already owned a DS, so it was the price of a normal game. So "cheap" compared to FL Studio. I don't have to worry about hardware, I don't have to worry about sound quality... I just have to worry about the and two, three knobs, that's all. I'm so in love with it! Nothing can the beat the power of lofi pocket synths. And with FL Studio? Damn, I had buy so much stuff if I want to make it sound good or enjoyable. I don't know why. I don't know why... Will I ever know? Probably not. You can do much more than just techno with the DS-10. It's as manifold as you are, FL Studio is not. Oh, how depressing this is. So much money for nothing...


Time goes by

Today, after showing my game to some students, I realized that I've already 4,5 years of software rendering experience. I mean 2D and fake 3D, which are both some kind of rendering (I don't like the term "blitting" or simply "graphics", these would suck).

4,5 years.

Using C++.


And it's getting more and more, every day!
That really surprised me. When I learned Blitzbasic, there was a german online help... Blitzbase was it called. It's introduction implied a cruel and awful game programming world: 3 years coding experience in C++ for making a simple Tetris clone. In the end it might look like this, but I have to say, it's not completely true. There are so many libraries out, nowadays - I wouldn't be surprised seeing a young programmer (even younger than me) coding super realistic 3D games using one or two of these toolkits. Now I know that making games in whatever language isn't hard, it's experience. Time goes by and you know how programming works, how you and your computer can get an awesome team.

And after 4,5 years C++ experience I still think I'm close to beeing a newbie. But that's not true. Practizing programming is always useful, in whatever language. And I haven't wasted my 4,5 years! A student even asked me why I'm studying informatics although I can code games and multimedia stuff. Of course, this question isn't really -erm- "intelligent", since no company here in germany will take you without having successfully finished studies! There are so many young and talented programmers out there... I'm just one with some years of deeper experience and a giant, ever-thinking pulse brainwasher coming right out of my head. Studying informatics it's still better than starting directly without much knowledge about everything else. There is so much to know and so much to do! Studying is a MUST for me! I wish I could skip some semesters to see what content will come next! Yep, it's pretty boring at the moment. Complaining doesn't make it better, K.

Oh fuck, one of the many cool Blitzbasic sites is still online: Robsite. Ok, ok... it never was just a Blitzbasic site and now it's more close to a generic web development blog. But hey - this dude took a 44/12=3,666.. years break and he's still interested in showing off his small, crippled news to the world. That's cool. No, seriously. Someone who knows that posting in a blog shouldn't depend on click counts or page views. That's like me. I don't even know if there's really someone/something reading my blog. There are some spam comments from time to time, but that's another story...



Well, I have to say a lot gaming equipment went broken the last month (like my old graphics card, the new still needs a fan control). Including my Nintendo DS lite. Well, Nintendo usually produces high quality handhelds. This is right and I will never say something against it. But I dropped my DS lite often enough to say that it isn't as tough as the Gameboy, GBA or GB SP was (the last one is my favorite, btw). So... the left shoulder doesnt work anymore, the case is broken here and there, a wry touchscren (to be honest, I'm sure if "wry" is the right for it, english-wise). I can't play Metroid Prime Hunters this way (which I sometimes do, even if it's not a good Metroid) and a lot of other games, too. But now... I can. Yep, I bought a new NDS lite to ensure my Nintendo gamer's beeing. And I -erm- also bought two games I discovered on the german Nintendo website: Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story and Moon. I haven't played the first listed game, yet, but Moon is pretty awesome so far (technically). What Crysis was for PC is Moon for the DS. Ok, it's not the best comparison, but the graphics are stunning. Very detailed textures, a good animation system and even rendered videos with voice! Wooo! Yay, that's awesome technology I can play here. I haven't gotton that far at the moment, but gameplay-wise the Crysis comparison does also fit here. It seems to be a simple and entertainung Singleplayer shooter. Judging from the manual, there are 8 weapons/items, a moon vehicle (!) and some other things which sound like a good standard shooter. I mean, it's not enough for a decent PC shooter, but enough for a pocket shooter! Reading about it on Wikipedia and the developer's previous game, Dementium, I noticed that I actually never ever thought about consuming videos of Nintendo DS games. This way I'm a typical Nintendo gamer, focusing on Nintendo's games and nothing else. When it comes to non-Nintendo games, I'm usually pretty suspicious of them. But Moon is... different. It really feels and plays like a modern shooter in pocket format! There is a button for jumping, it's made for shooting things, I guess.

I haven't met anything in this game except some unfriendly security robots and squad members, but it also plays a bit like a shmup in shooter perspective. Different shooting patterns, colors and behaviours for enemies - very polished. I like it. You should, too!


My name is 3850, HD 3850

Well, my new graphics card arrived! Hooray! Or.. not? There are some... things, I forget to motice. Like that the new card needed a 450W power supply, mine had only 250W. Now I have an external 400W power supply, should work atm. Also, the card was a bit... big. I had to manage some physical space bottlenecks... Fortunately I solved all the physical problems, solved some driver problems and -well- it works. And how it works! I can play Bioshock at 1680x1050 and maximal settings! Wooo! OK, that's fine. But it was also pretty... loud. Not to say EXTREMELY loud. I'm used to have much noise while playing games (barebone on desk), but this card drives my crazy. I doesn't have a fan control of temperature sensor - awesome! An extremely noisy, modern graphics card ON MY DESK. Shit. I had to know that. Unfortunately, nobody mentioned it. Hm. The only solution is to add a resistor between the fan's power cable. It's fan is completely over-sized, I think; it can cool my hands even while playing games! Hm. I like the power of this card, but I definitely have to make some changes. And I hope it'll works well, after all.

Oh, haven't I mentioned how crappy Stalker: Clear Sky's DX9 mode is? Seriously, it sucks. I was barely able to play it on Dynamic Light settings, like it was the same with my old card. Strange. Everything else works fine, except Stalker... grrr. But hey, playing it DX8-like makes it look much better now. You know, super high anti-alias and filtering creates a more than quality output... Even if the new Stalker is as buggy (graphics-wise) as the previous part, I can still play a very good-looking and atmospheric game! Like I did it before, didn't I?

And I don't think about reclaiming a crad just because it's too loud, there are ways to avoid this noise.



Red Shit: User Torture

The new Red Faction game is shit. Seriously. Avoid this game. If the fact itself is convincing, it installs enough Windows LIVE shit to infected a million sane computers. Fallout 3 installed Windows LIVE, too, but it wasn't that shitty - it worked without problems and the game player very well! However, WHO THE FUCK NEEDS WINDOWS LIVE? I don't even know what it is and I don't want to know WHAT it is. I don't want these shitty .NET craps. I seriously doubt the sanity of Red Faction's developers. I can't even uninstall this pile of stupidity - two (no wait - three) crashing uninstall tries and no hope in sight.

Shitty, shitty, shitty software. Seems I really have to wait for S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and other not-so-big studios. Maybe I should just start playing the goold old Age of Empires! The first two Red Faction games were shit (technically and gameplay-wise) and the last part of the series is even worse. Just not worth a mention, it's a gamer-pulling, boring "I WANNA BUY FAT NEXTGEN CONSOLE FOR FAT NEXTGEN GRAPHICS " game. It consumes a lot of performance, nerves and time and doesn't even look or play good.

Gahh, I'm somewhat pissed off. A crappy game using crappy technology infects my beautiful system with crappy software. I bet Fable 2 and Bioshock 2 will have shitty Microsoft software, too. That will be the darkest day, dudes, the darkest day, I swear!



New graphics card

Well, my current AGP graphics card is dying. Red pixels instead of black ones is definitely nothing healthy. So, I studied my online hardware store of choice and decided to buy an ATI Radion HD3850. A lot of people say my Pentium IV 3.0 Ghz is too underpowered to serve this graphics card. But you know what? These people suck. Exactly. I can play every game available in the stores and I don't have ANY problem with them. Who cares about slightly longer loading times? Who cares about non-extreme graphics? I want to play with games, you suckers, not with technology whores. Of course, new technology is great, but updated technology is just the same except slightly higher performance. Seriously, I don't care about some ultra-tiny extra bits of graphics quality. So far, only a few uber-mainstream games (yes, this was over-the-top pretentious) are optimized for dual core processors. Like Crysis (which sucks ass) or other shitty, interactive "B-movies". And I'm also not a friend of buying new PC stuff just 'cause the old isn't brandnew anymore. My system works fine. I bought it over 4 years ago and there's nothing wrong with it! It's a quality, reliable Shuttle XPC system. The problem is the graphics card. Why? One or two years of life time - they die pretty fast. Not my trusty XPC. So... I don't even think about buying a new mainboard, processor or RAM. I'll try this new card, I'll use it and I'll play my games with it. There are so many single-core gaming PCs 'round in the world, no sane developer is so stupid to optimize for dual cores only. And I don't think it's necessary. Most games require processor power for their graphics, and that's the problem - why over-powered processors if the game doesn't need 'em? Games need better card/processor communication systems. The typical technology problem: sell old shit as new shit and say old shit isn't better than new shit. Redundancy? Of course! There is nothing new or better, there's just marketing. Shitty, stupid marketing. I wish the days back where software was more important and advanced than hardware. Hardware is a joke nowadays. Like it always was. And no, that's not nostalgia. That's a fact.
So, I'm excited about testing out the limits of my new graphics card! I don't want to play high-end, I just want to play with quality visuals. I'm sure there will be a limit, but where's no limit, then? Buying a new system won't make it better. I can't wait playing the Stalker with a brandnew card! Too bad: I will have to wait a month until it's release... Oh, boy. But I'm sure Red Faction: Guerilla will do a good job of entertaining my destructive needs! And I was probably a bit offensive in the first part of this post. Well, that's my opinion. I only buy new hardware when I really need it or when the old doesn't work well anymore. I see no reason for just buying something new. There has to be a reason for it, like for everything in life. I think we should improve software nowadays, not just hardware. 3D isn't what makes a good game. A game is so much more - or less. But well, technologie sells. New stuff sells. People think new is better without thinking about necessity... I don't say old stuff is better. I think new stuff isn't always necessary and useful. But that's a typical evergreen problem of humanity.

Well... maybe developers should also start making better presets for minimum/maximum graphics quality. Looking at Stalker's or Fallout 3's preset graphics options, developers tend to ignore what makes a game look better having better performance. But I understand how hard it can be to make a game with a giant variety of graphics hardware if the developers has access to high-end ones. Yeah, that may be a problem, too. I prefer developing on low-end machines. "Bandwidth reduction" at it's finest.