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RIP Douglas E. Smith

Douglas E. Smith, creator of the classic 8-bit computer game Lode Runner, which got a second life as one of HudsonSoft's most iconic Famicom titles in Japan, has died at the age of 57. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Sep 14, 2014 - 45 comments

“the machinery that was built up for computer chess is pretty useless"

The Mystery of Go, the Ancient Game That Computers Still Can’t Win
The challenge is daunting. In 1994, machines took the checkers crown, when a program called Chinook beat the top human. Then, three years later, they topped the chess world, IBM’s Deep Blue supercomputer besting world champion Garry Kasparov. Now, computers match or surpass top humans in a wide variety of games: Othello, Scrabble, backgammon, poker, even Jeopardy. But not Go. It’s the one classic game where wetware still dominates hardware.
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on May 26, 2014 - 72 comments

One procedural universe, coming right up

Space Engine is a free (but not open source) program that allows you to fly through vast reaches of the universe. Along the way, you'll see some pretty amazing vistas and probably want to take screenshots of them. It incorporates a good amount of real-world data about the solar system, exoplanets and the universe in general with procedural generation of everything we don't know. [more inside]
posted by jiawen on Jan 6, 2014 - 28 comments

JAWS: The Text Adventure

In 1975, the blockbuster movie Jaws was released. The series culminated in 1987 with a fourth movie, Jaws: The Revenge. The NES game Jaws (online) was released that same year, incorporating elements of both the original and fourth movie. But you probably don't know about the game that Mirrorsoft commissioned in 1984 from the husband-and-wife coding team, Dave & Sara Crud. They made a ZX Spectrum movie tie-in for the original film, only for rights holders to back out and leave it unreleased for nearly three decades ... UNTIL NOW! Or at least that's the backstory MeFite malevolent wrote. [via mefi projects] [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Sep 21, 2013 - 16 comments

Simon and the rat both feel it's best to just ignore each other

"The very first single-player dungeoncrawl game was not a video game. It was a series of charts printed in the first edition of Dungeons & Dragons, back in 1979. By rolling dice according to the instructions, you could generate a dungeon which was illogical, arbitrary, super-lethal, and which often didn't even produce useable results.
THIS GAME USES THOSE CHARTS."

Dungeon Robber is a flash text game that simulates playing AD&D by the AD&D Appendix A dungeon generation rules. You'll probably die a lot, but the game saves every time you head to town. Blog of the creator.
Dungeon Robber comics![more inside]
posted by JHarris on Aug 6, 2013 - 127 comments

Minecraft creator interview

Markus "Notch" Persson, the modest Swedish creator of smash hit indie game Minecraft, talks about his life to The New Yorker. The game, Minecraft, a blocks-based worldbuilding sandbox for all ages, has sold 16 million+ copies so far and has been achieved extraordinary popular success as well as huge educational and critical acclaim. [more inside]
posted by Bwithh on Apr 6, 2013 - 100 comments

27.5 years of gameplay

A study-based analysis of UK gaming magazines in the 1980s and 90s argues that the analysis of computer games, independent of attributes such as the platform or narrative, becomes more evident after March 1985 when the term 'gameplay' begins to be used in this media.
posted by Wordshore on Oct 3, 2012 - 10 comments

The "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream" game

How do you make a computer game out of "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream"?
posted by Egg Shen on Sep 20, 2012 - 45 comments

Agricola Lite

Flash Friday: Written for Ludlum Dare 23, Super Strict Farmer is a flash game that plays like a light version of the popular Eurogame Agricola. If you have trouble figuring out how to play, the rules are in the comment thread. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Jun 1, 2012 - 27 comments

The feat list hurts my brain

Here is Incursion: Halls of the Goblin King, a computer game that adapts the 3rd Edition rules of the Dungeons & Dragons game to roguelikes.
posted by JHarris on Dec 22, 2011 - 25 comments

Nethack over the Net

Here is the Nethack server at alt.org, Telnet link,  Java client, Flash client.  Here is a list of most of the ways to die in the game (dates back to 3.1.3).  And here are a lot of Nethack spoilers.
posted by JHarris on Dec 20, 2011 - 38 comments

The New York Times Discovers The Brilliance of Dwarf Fortress

This Sunday's New York Times Magazine interviews the creators of epic ASCII megagame Dwarf Fortress......and Metafilter credited as the "popular blog" which fueled public awareness of DF! [more inside]
posted by Bwithh on Jul 21, 2011 - 71 comments

Computer RTFM, Conquers Civilization.

Computer Gets 33% Better at Playing Civilization, By Reading the Manual: An MIT experiment has apparently succeeded in getting a computer to learn from human-readable, English-language text, the computer extrapolating useful strategies and tactics from an instruction manual so effectively as to dramatically increase its victory ratio in the Sid Meier universe. Via io9.
posted by darth_tedious on Jul 12, 2011 - 66 comments

Hey, you taffers!

The Dark Mod, a total conversion for Doom 3 in the spirit of Looking Glass Technology's Thief series, has finally been released after years (and more years) of development and is now available to download.
posted by dunkadunc on Oct 17, 2009 - 20 comments

I Wish I were the Moon

I Wish I were the Moon by Daniel Benmergui - a small, simple puzzle game. Find the 5 endings. About. Redux (with more endings). Via gamasutra's top 5 indie games of 2008.
posted by nthdegx on Dec 28, 2008 - 15 comments

BioShock, 2nd best game ever?

BioShock was released today for the PC and XBox 360. Why should you care? Well, it's the 2nd best reviewed game of the last 10 years, it's an interactive commentary on Objectivism, it features a great Art-Deco style and atmospheric sound design, and is the spiritual sequel to one of the best games of all time. If you still don't care, make sure to stay away from Big Daddy.
posted by JZig on Aug 21, 2007 - 153 comments

Bounce me up, Scotty!

Do you want to fly? Really fly? Not at the controls of a cockpit simulation, but just you ... flying ... your motion through space controlled by the gentlest of nudges of your mouse. Tranquility. Not a game; but an environment in which to 'travel'. View a short QT video clip of a typical Tranquility level. Download the 'game browser' (versions for all common computers) in which the game operates, work through the short training levels, and prepare to lose yourself in flight. (Don't be put off by the 'Buy the Game' links on the website; Tranquility is perfectly functional in demo mode, with the demo landscape changing daily. I've been playing it that way for more than five years.)
posted by woodblock100 on Jun 15, 2007 - 29 comments

Dove of Brutality!

Bible Fight [Flash game]
posted by thirteenkiller on May 7, 2007 - 24 comments

Look into my Lies

Everybody loves Zombies. Everybody loves killing Zombies. Nobody wants to suddenly wake up surrounded by Zombies. Not when you thought you were just playing a video game.
posted by Elmore on Feb 18, 2007 - 40 comments

Hardest. Game. Ever.

Peacmaker - a new Israeli/Palestinian RPG: "The goal of the player as the leader is to establish a stable resolution to the conflict and win the Nobel Prize before his or her term in office ends."

Oh. Is that all?
posted by ericbop on Feb 2, 2007 - 37 comments

From Mainframe to WoW

Play history: Noughts and Crosses (EDSAC, 1952) begat Tennis for Two (Donner & oscilliscope, 1958) begat Spacewars (PDP, 1962) begat Star Trek (SDS Sigma, 1971) begat Hunt the Wumpus (Mainframe, 1972) begat Maze War (Xerox Atlos, 1974) begat DECWAR [warning:telnet(!)] (DEC-10, 1978) begat Zork (PDP-10, 1979) begat World of Warcraft... with a few steps in between. All names (but Maze Wars) go to playable versions. Dates have information on the game itself
posted by blahblahblah on Dec 8, 2006 - 13 comments

Sonic Invaders

Sonic Invaders - videogaming without the video. [Windows]
posted by Arcaz Ino on Nov 17, 2006 - 6 comments

Concerned (Half-Life 2 comic)

Concerned (Half-Life 2 comic)
posted by Protocols of the Elders of Awesome on Feb 27, 2006 - 38 comments

EDSAC/USER FIRST (DIAL 0/1)

EDSAC - home of the first videogame, OXO.
posted by Pretty_Generic on Jun 19, 2005 - 5 comments

The Elder Scrolls - The Imperial Library

Ever play Morrowind? Did you realise how obscenely gargantuan the backstory and associated literature is? I'm not much of a roleplay geek, but the sheer amount of work to produce this fictious world is kinda hypnotic. And as for this...
posted by Pretty_Generic on Feb 15, 2005 - 32 comments

Rekkaturvat

Rekkaturvat: You've already pushed a hapless dummy down the stairs. Now you can see what happens when that same guy gets behind the wheel - or at least inside the cab - of a truck speeding toward a wall. Scant on documentation, but not hard to figure out (the 1 and 2 sliders control the position of two ramps). Anyone find a good technique for a high score? (2 MB Windows .exe)
posted by wanderingmind on Aug 3, 2003 - 51 comments

Go : The future of computing

Go : The future of computing "In recent years, computer experts, particularly those specializing in artificial intelligence, have felt fascination - and frustration - with an ancient Asian game called Go. To date, no computer has been able to achieve a skill level beyond that of the casual player."
posted by jragon on Aug 2, 2002 - 29 comments

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