Posts Tagged ‘gaming made me’

Gaming Made Me: Frankie Goes To Hollywood

A true one-of-a-kind in the latest in our series of highly subjective retrospectives on landmark computer games. This week, writer Paul Dean looks at bizarre, ambitious Spectrum game/band spin-off Frankie Goes To Hollywood – a game of pop music, terraced houses, sperm, Nazi bombers, Reagan spitting at Gorbachev and murder most foul. Confused? Relax, don’t do it, when you want to comment angrily.

I had a lot of tapes for my Spectrum. Some had come with it, some were inherited, and some came from the covers of the flimsy and often monochrome computer magazines of the day. More than a few were borrowed or copied from friends at school and we quickly realised that you could fit an awful lot of pirated Spectrum software onto a 90 minute tape, turning a single cassette into a veritable treasure trove, a pocketful of possibilities that felt heavy at your hip and which you couldn’t wait to run home with.
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Gaming Made Me: EverQuest

This week in our series of highly personal retrospectives on landmark computer games, videogames PhD researcher and independent games developer Mitu Khandaker looks back to the wonder, exploration and lofty world-building of what might well be the most defining entry in the history of MMOs: EverQuest.

Everquest was like magic.

I feel like I’m cheating a bit writing this; after all, this isn’t about one of the games that I played when I was the tiniest, my perception of the world at its most plastic. The games I played then – illicitly, on a Commodore 64 that wasn’t mine; and later, on a series of hand-me-down consoles – certainly defined a lot about the person I would become. However, not all of our most formative experiences happen when we are tiny, young, and impressionable. Instead, many happen when we’re at our most vulnerable, our most confused, our most lost: during our mid-teen years. When I was 16 years old, EverQuest made me.
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Gaming Made Me: Colossal Cave Adventure

Young Leigh herself, and an Apple IIe

This week in Gaming Made Me, our series of highly subjective game retrospectives, Leigh Alexander documents the profound escapism and giddy cartography offered by Colossal Cave Adventure, aka Adventure, aka ADVENT – aka the first-ever adventure game.

I’ve lived in New York City for nearly nine years now, and yet I still can become so easily disoriented in the grids of Manhattan. Nearly every time the subway stairs eject me blinking into the aboveground sun, I don’t know which way is north; I stagger for landmarks, and I am shaking my iPhone to dislodge the compass interference that will tell me which way to turn. My map reading skills are horrific.

It wasn’t always this way. As a child I was a cartographer of imaginary worlds, drawing maps by hand for my best friend Charlotte and I to play with.
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Gaming Made Me: Sim City 2000

This week in Gaming Made Me, Wired UK’s Duncan Geere recalls how Sim City 2000 (and its incredible manual) taught him utopian values, gave him a life-long fascination with impossible habitats and brought about a new sense of just what manner of strange beast is a city.

I still have the manual for SimCity 2000. The game CD, or perhaps even floppy disks — I can’t remember — have long disappeared, but I still own the manual. About once a year, I leaf through it – not for nostalgia, but because it’s such a beautiful creation.
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Gaming Made Me: Counter-Strike

This week in our ongoing retrospective series on games journalists’ most formative games, we very proudly welcome Eurogamer‘s god-king and operations director Tom Bramwell to the word-stage. He’s here to tell you about his long years spent with arguably one of the most definitive PC games of all time, and what for one generation of gamers was a global obsession that today’s shooters, no matter how much bigger they might be, just can’t seem to match…

I also wanted to write this about Grand Theft Auto, and I might still do that another time if RPS will have me back. There were probably other factors, but no one game is so singularly responsible for my being a games journalist (or at least having been one) as DMA Design’s original PC game. But I’m really here today to bang on about Counter-Strike, and I owe that game a massive debt too, because it’s thanks to Counter-Strike that I don’t play Call of Duty or Battlefield or Medal of Honor or any of that stuff on the internet nowadays for a moment longer than my job requires.
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Gaming Made Me: The Hitchhiker’s Guide

10 years ago this week, the great British author and dramatist Douglas Adams passed away suddenly at the age of just 49 – leaving behind a wealth of fiction, scripts, essays, humour and remarkable insight into the role of technology and the internet. Of course, it was the Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, a revered sci-fi comedy series which spanned radio, novels and video games, for which he will always be most renowned.

Here, Victoria Regan looks back to Adams’ seminal 1984 Hitchhiker’s text adventure game – a monochrome tale of the everyman, intergalactic absurdity and the bewildering cruelty of life.
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Gaming Made Me: Games Workshop Made Me


I’m ten. I’m sitting in the solvent-soaked school art room doodling, when my friends sneak in. They’ve got something amazing to show me. It’s a little dwarf made out of lead, and Fat Winnie has just bought it off Big-Nosed Will, who actually painted it. It’s like got an AXE! Will’d mainly used red paint on it (“For the blood” he says. He now works in advertising) but it’s soooo cool. This is the start.
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Gaming Made Me: Battlefield 1942

Oh for Heaven’s sakes – Battlefield 3’s not even out yet, and already we’re previewing Battlefield 1942. There are 1938 more Battlefields to come first! Oh, wait. Yes, that’s right. The start of the series. Got it. So: Brendan Caldwell takes us back to where DICE’s war began, and reminisces about being a disgusting coward.

There was a time in first-person-shooter history, believe it or not, when World War II was not The Boring War. Oh, admit it. We all remember it well. “Dubya-dubya-two?” we asked excitedly. “Can’t get enough of it! Gimme some. I said give it to me. I want it.” Then the fatigue set in. Pineapple grenades lost their novelty. German uniforms didn’t give us a rude-on anymore. So we discarded World War II, like a soggy Metro full of old nibs.

Oh, but remember the good times. The French hedgerows, the crumbling grey bunkers. The beaches. The endless, endless beaches. Nothing like a trail of unsaved Private Ryans to soak up the salt, the sea and the atmosphere of intense brutality. Catching some rays by the seaside there, Private? Ah! You cannot be. For it is overcast. Also, you are dead.
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Gaming Made Me: Descent

Our Gaming Made Me series has always focused on the writer’s personal association with a vital game from their childhood, but this week that emphasis is even stronger. Here, James Murff talks of how Parallax Software’s 1995 sci-fi FPS Descent became one of the keystones in mending his troubled relationship with a father – as well as why the flight-based shooter still has much to teach today’s game designers.
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Gaming Made Me: Crimson Skies

hello, sweetheart

In this week’s Gaming Made Me, Brendan Caldwell revisits a time when flight sims could have had it all – and a time when zeppelins still ruled the Earth. This is Zipper Interactive’s 2000 alterna-history aerial shooter Crimson Skies, and this is why it matters.

There are clouds above Hawaii. And there are monuments above the clouds. Who could have foreseen either of these things? In the hot wind of a Pacific sky a colossal white Zeppelin lumbers toward the site of a shipwreck, seeking the treasure once held by Sir Francis Drake. They call her the Pandora. Nestled in her belly is a squadron of fighter pilots. These are her citizens. Someone has painted four tarot cards across her sides. Justice. Wealth. Lovers. Death. This is her code.
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Gaming Made Me: Quest for Glory IV

Quest for Glory tried several combat interfaces. They had this in common: they all sucked toad.
In this week’s Gaming Made Me, Richard Cobbett reminisces about an old crush. No, not on the sexy vampire villainess of this classic adventure/RPG hybrid, but on one of the first games that taught him to demand better of story in these silly little computer game things.

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Gaming Made Me: Age Of Empires II


Hello! Gaming Made Me is a new weekendly series that continues the theme of our previous Gaming Made Me excursions, which is a theme about the games that made people who they are today. In this new and fresh series various RPS chums will be invited to talk about their formative gaming experiences. This is the first one, with an Ages Of Empires II retrospective from Brendan Caldwell. Take it away, Mr C!
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Emergent Gameplay: Deus Ex Made Me Part 4

And just one last one here, unless Obama suddenly mails us to tell us how Deus Ex inspired his political career or something. It’s the lovely Ed Stern, Writer at Splash Damage who finds himself thinking about what actually writing these articles says about games…
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Emergent Gameplay: Deus Ex Made Me Part 3

Following on from the first two parts, here’s the influence of Deus Ex on two developers in very different places. EA’s RTS Lead Designer Saul Bass was in the industry for five years… and then left. Meanwhile, Aubrey Hesselgren was in Tiverton. There’s a dark future for you…
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Emergent Gameplay: Deus Ex Made Me Part 2

Following on from yesterday’s first part, here’s another couple of developers who were just entering the industry when Deus Ex hit, and the influence it had on them. Both 2k-Mariners of Bioshock 2 fame, Lead Level Designer Jean-Paul LeBreton was starting his career at Human Head when Deus Ex hit while Senior System Designer Kent Hudson was at college making game maps on any SDK he could find…
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Emergent Gameplay: Deus Ex Made Me Part 1

My inspiration for an image totally failed me here.

It’s been a decade since Deus Ex. A realisation struck me: the industry will now be peppered with people whose formative experiences were with Deus Ex. For them it was, in one way or another, inspirational. I decided to hunt down a few and talk to them, about what Deus Ex said to them, how it shaped them, what it taught them and how they bring it into what they make today. By which I mean, drop ’em a line and say “Deus Ex, eh? Thoughts?”. First up are 2k Marin Designer Steve Gaynor (Bioshock 2) and Ninja Theory Senior Technical Designer Rob Hale (Enslaved: Odyssey To The West)…
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Gaming Made Me: The Return Of The Panel

It’s been emotional. Now, over a week of frenzied nostalgia later, Gaming Made Me draws to a close with a final round-up of Developers and Journalists. From the former, Ed Stern, Brian Mitsoda, Annie Carlson, Dan Marshall and Simon Parkin. From the latter, LewieP and Simon Parkin. Oh no! Simon’s dual-classed, the powergaming twink. Recollections… go!

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