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Note from the management

As at least one dedicated fan has remarked, I have not updated my site in a while. My pathetic excuses are: a friend who came to visit me, a hay fever attack, my current project which is nearing an important deadline (I am writing this from the office).

I will try to write some more entries in the coming week.

Cut out the middleman

From Kokoro, via BoingBoing: a video game (a Square Enix Dragon Quest title no less) that consists of a sword - the input device - and a small gadget you plug into your TV. No console involved.

Weird input devices are cool. I wonder if this device will be repurposed like the Nintendo PowerGlove.

I also wonder if potentially there's a viable business model in console-less video games on a larger scale. Hardware would have to get cheaper, and you wouldn't be able to make cutting edge titles, technically. You'd have to deal with the input device. It'd be more like a toy than a video game, and you couldn't piggyback on the console's brand, but that's just marketing. Oh well, this might be interesting for a gimmick here or there.

Jesper Juul's blog

I haven't mentioned any of the more academic gaming blogs here much, mainly because I'm still in two minds of what I think of gaming academia, but perhaps you're interested in knowing that Jesper Juul, a quite active game academician (and, true to type, from Scandinavia - why is that?), has started a blog.

More on Sony's PSP and PSX has two articles on Sony's upcoming products: one on Chris Deering's speech on the PSP at the ELSPA summit in London, and one on Ken Kutaragi's recent revelations in Japan.

(Boy, am I glad that "parallel processing is a fairly well understood branch of computer science, so while developers may struggle to get to grips with the system initially, it is unlikely to continue the PS2's reputation for being an incredibly tricky machine to develop on.")

Tinkering behind the scenes

Blogger has introduced a new blogging system - well, mainly a new interface. So if you see something odd here, that's probably me fiddling around with various buttons and levers. Probably.

The price of sex

Edward Castronova, the economics professor who estimated that the GNP of Norrath, the setting of Everquest, is higher than that of many developing countries, has now determined that male Everquest avatars are worth more real money than female avatars:

"[...] ability seems more important than sex in determining the value of a body. Nonetheless, among comparable avatars, females do sell at a significant price discount."

(From BoingBoing.)

What pre-1985 videogame character are you?

sigh It was only a matter of time I suppose. Go on, take the test. Kudos to the makers for including Jetpac Man, aka Lunar Jetman.

I'm a light cycle from Tron, by the way.

(From Power Pill.)

Once, a looong time ago, I was asked for a magazine interview what video game character I would like to be or some such question. I replied I most identified with the lowly Tetris brick: you fall down, you frantically try to fit in, only to be crushed.

So I guess being a light cycle is kind of an improvement.

SARS Kung Fu

Someone hacked the Kung Fu NES ROM to make a SARS-themed version.

There are many clever things I could say here, using big words even. But I'm sure you get the point.