Why does Half Life Platinum cost $75 at Comp USA and Best Buy, yet only $55 from Sierra?
While I'm on the subject, why does the original Half Life still cost $30 fer Chrissakes? $20, maybe. $30? Never! I boycott.
By Ms. Gorf on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 07:06 am:
And why is "Half Life Generations" $30 (the same price as "Half Life Game of the Year" even though it includes the same stuff as "Half Life Platinum," which costs $20-$40 more?
By Gordon Cameron on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 08:45 am:
I have this image of Sierra executives rolling around in piles of cash lighting cigars with $100 bills. Still, if the market will bear it, who am I to say the price should be dropped?
I just hope the five guys Valve locked into a room to figure out "Half Life 2" come up with something really goddam good.
By Hopey on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 02:08 pm:
Hey, that's a good idea for a MOD/sequel:
"Half Life: Gabesquad"
There's been an accident, and the five guys who were locked in a room to figure out "Half Life 2" have been sucked into an interdimensional rift opened in space by the sheer marketing-dept. pressure on these poor saps to finish something after two years of waiting for a sequel (let alone "Team Fortress 2). You, as Gabe Newell, must enter the rift and fight for the freedom of these brave souls. The end boss is a gigantic, tentacled representation of the long lost year of 1999, which shouts such taunts as "Game of the year... last milennium!" and "What have you done for me lately, Gabe?" These cries of doom, voiced by veteran character actor Miguel Ferrer, will chill gamers to their very bone.
The game will be built on an enhanced version of the Marathon engine, ported from the original Power Mac.
By Sean Tudor on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 07:21 pm:
I have to say Sierra have the most confusing upgrade packs and patch system.
Has anyone seen the SWAT3 upgrade mess lately since V2.0 was released ? I am almost thinking of throwing up my hands and buying the new version.
Almost as bad as trying to keep track of Falcon 4.0 patches and upgrades.
By Jeff Atwood (Wumpus) on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 07:39 pm:
Ms. Gorf? Good one.
I haven't been following SWAT3 since elite was released. Are they still updating it? It's a damn shame they didn't make the server publically available for that one, or we'd have a lot more players. No multiplayer FPS can truly thrive without doing that..
By Ms. Galaga on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 05:11 am:
Did you know there really was a "Ms. Gorf" game in development by the designer of "Gorf?" It was cancelled when the video game industry hit its post-boom slump. Youse can read about it here:
That link reveals that the designer of Gorf himself underwent a sex change, making the "Ms. Gorf" title more than a bit ironic. You will also learn that this same game designer went on to co-found Macromedia.
By Gordon Cameron on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 05:55 am:
Were they trying to ride the "Ms. Pac-Man" wave, I suppose?
Other canceled projects:
Ms. Jungle King (changed to Ms. Jungle Hunt)
Xevious and Son
By Erin Grey on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 02:09 pm:
Don't forget Ms. Buck Rogers and the She-Planet of Zoom.
By Jeff Atwood (Wumpus) on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 11:43 pm:
"That link reveals that the designer of Gorf himself underwent a sex change, making the "Ms. Gorf" title more than a bit ironic. You will also learn that this same game designer went on to co-found Macromedia."
There are almost a half-dozen prominent game developers who had sex change operations. It's like a cottage industry.
And though it's not sex change oriented, one of my favorite images of all time:
Name the game designer in the hot tub! Thanks Erik! Also, notice that waiter guy. Is he hot or WHAT?! That rakish tilt of the head really does it for me. I hope to one day perfect that look. It's my "blue steel".
By The Unfunny Baroness Jane Calamity on Friday, October 19, 2001 - 02:05 am:
"Name the game designer in the hot tub!"
I'd have to go with Old Man Murray's favorite whipping wench, Roberta Williams.
By Gordon Cameron on Friday, October 19, 2001 - 05:46 am:
The late, great Dan/Dani Bunten/Berry was probably the most famous sex-change game designer...
By Jeff Lackey on Friday, October 19, 2001 - 09:58 am:
I've got some Softalk magazines with that ad in them. It's a great nostalgia trip to read those old mags and see the ads for games such as Wizardy 1, the original EA ads ("can a computer game make you cry?"), etc.
By AntiGord on Friday, October 19, 2001 - 03:10 pm:
"the original EA ads ('can a computer game make you cry?')
The original EA games were able to make you cry on purpose, as an outgrowth of subtle design. EA games since Trip left (or whenever that designer-as-superstar philosophy was quietly retired) make you cry because they SUCK SO BAD. The majority of sports games can bite my buttocks. EA used to mean a lot more, once upon a wax tadpole...
So sayeth the AntiGord.
By Jeff Lackey on Friday, October 19, 2001 - 03:36 pm:
Well, for all of their designers in black turtleneck hip photos and ads touting games that "touch you in a new way", the original EA games (remember the album cover packaging?) were actually pretty standard fare. The games were OK, just nothing that connected emotionally as hinted in the ads. The Last Gladiator, Pinball Construction Set, Dr. J vs. Larry Bird, and so on.
By Gordon Cameron on Friday, October 19, 2001 - 04:28 pm:
I agree that the whole "We See Farther" thing was primarily a marketing gimmick, and there was no one thing that set *all* EA games apart during the album-game era. Even so, I still think it was a special time, and any company that could release such masterpieces as Archon, Seven Cities of Gold, and M.U.L.E., as well as such innovative, in some ways truly groundbreaking non-masterpieces as Adventure Construction Set, Racing Destruction Set, Mail Order Monsters, and Murder on the Zinderneuf. I think EA had some damn good developers on their payroll at the time, though it could certainly be said that other companies -- i.e. Broderbund and Sierra On-Line -- were producing as many good games pound for pound.
It may be silly to look at the blips and blops of those old games now, and reconcile that with the turtleneck Andy Warhol stuff. But on the other hand, has there ever been a more elegant piece of pure multiplayer design than M.U.L.E.?
By Gordon Cameron on Friday, October 19, 2001 - 04:29 pm:
Whoops, I didn't finish one of my sentences. "Any company that could release..." didn't have a concluding clause. Add something like " , had something to brag about" or ", must have been doing something right." Whatever.
By Jeff Atwood (Wumpus) on Sunday, October 21, 2001 - 08:29 pm:
"It may be silly to look at the blips and blops of those old games now, and reconcile that with the turtleneck Andy Warhol stuff. But on the other hand, has there ever been a more elegant piece of pure multiplayer design than M.U.L.E.?"
It didn't seem silly at the time-- these were absolutely cutting-edge gaming systems. A rough analogy today would be announcing some primo Xbox game by, say, Peter Molyneux or another "my name is a franchise" designer. It would get the same attention if you frame it in the right technical context.