Monday, December 27, 2010

War on Christmas

So I picked up a Battlefield Hero Santa suit. EA will give a portion of the proceeds from the sale of Santa suits to support the Child's Play charity. It is too bad that they did not opt for some of the other outfits to improve the amount of donations.

In any event, I created a new Hero specifically for the purpose of purchasing the outfit. I chose a gunner class because gunners are the only ones that can afford to be loud on the Battlefield.

Here is my new hero.



I hope everyone had a great holiday!

Update: I created a new video to showcase the Santa outfit.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

BFBC2 Vets status.

I had to contact EA customer support in order to get my M1 unlock for being a Battlefield Veteran. The good news is Corey from customer support quickly fixed the problem and my M1 showed up. I promptly tested it and it works (no surprise).

In any event, I'm moving onto the multiplayer aspects. My system is definitely at the low end. With the settings at low, I can play. The frame rate drops considerably if I'm in a very fast vehicle. On foot, its okay. I've started getting some unlocks and I am spending a lot of time spotting people with the "Q" feature.

"Q" was the commo rose command from 2142. They have created a hidden form of it. You point to someone and hit Q and it supposedly gives them the right message. If you need health, "Q" target a medic and it will ask for a health kit. It's a bit imperfect as someone can occasionally get in your line of sight. For example, I was trying to spot an enemy and a gunship flew in front of me resulting in a pickup request.

So far I am enjoying my time playing.

In other news, the 2142 1.51 beta is up and running again. The public download is capped at 100kpbs. Last time, I couldn't download the file before the beta expired.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Bad Company 2

I just finished playing my first run through of BFBC2 in single player mode. The campaign is fairly linear and not too long. It took me about 8 hours to complete it in normal mode. Overall, I enjoyed the experience. There were some glitches, but nothing game breaking. I have a rather low end system, so I am forced to play with the settings on low. Still, I thought the game looked great on low. I also feel the single player campaign did a great job of providing me with an opportunity to test many of the games weapons to determine which ones I really liked. Obviously, different weapons serve many different purposes in the game and the single player mode did a great job of allowing players to explore these weapons.

I was gifted the game, so woot!

I am also trying to accomodate the console layout of the game. I've already noticed a few minor changes- the absence of a prone position and the commo rose. You have to use E for entering vehicles. It will be interesting to see how the multiplayer stacks up to BF2142.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Saw Tron Legacy.



I saw Tron Legacy. It raised some very important issues and provides considerable brain candy for anyone who cares enough to try to think.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Holiday Contests at BF:H



I'm entering a holiday contest on the Battlefield Forums site. It is designed to feature the Santa outfits. As I failed to participate in the Cos-play opportunities or Halloween this year, I made up for it by creating a Battlefield Heroes costume. I'm wearing the brown bag of shame. I added a few things: a purple squirt gun and a Chrome bag.

Update: I did not win. Oh well. Maybe I should have gone with a more professional version. There were some very good entries though.



No big deal. Just a note on what I did to create the image. Obviously, the first part is just a webcam shot from my netbook spliced with a Heroes Santa. I created a model version, not included, which used proprietary fonts. Since I was entering a contest, I opted to go for more generic fonts. The image was assembled in OpenOffice Draw. As some people may know, OpenOffice is now owned by Oracle with a fork by the Document Foundation. I use Oracle OpenOffice for now. I hope OpenOffice stays free, but it looks like it may not. That would be disappointing. After assembling the image, I usually complete my editing with Irfan. I like to keep things simple.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Looking ahead

I will be very interested in seeing how the new Battlefield “Play for Free” is received. Gamers are already experienced in Battlefield Heroes and the microtransaction model and they also have access to relatively affordable alternatives like Battlefield 2. A lot of players left Battlefield Heroes in anger and I do not expect them to come back.

As people know, I have been encouraging players not to purchase weapons which provide play advantages until the playing field is leveled between non-microtransaction based players and microtransaction based players. The VP alternative is not a very viable alternative to BF's because of the enormous upkeep costs.

It appears that microtransactions are now creeping into weapons in Battlefield Bad Company 2. So far, it appears to be only one kit. If it expands into multiple kits, it will be increasingly problematic for players. I do not see how gamers will be encouraged to shell out a lot of money for titles if they end up on the microtransaction treadmill anyway. At that point, they might as well play BF:H.

All of this appears rather short sighted.

As a gamer, I have no need to step into an expensive and protracted arms race.

I see this as playing out in a multitude of possible ways.

First, players themselves reject the regime by not purchasing weapons that give advantages. It does not appear that this will happen, although it has been encouraged.

Second, players will burnout of the weapons regime. Companies will tire the players out by releasing new weapons that the player will either have to upgrade to or accept the fate of the free to play players. Die hard players with free cash will continue to opt in, while other players will feel jaded about their last purchases and die out. The difference between microtransaction players and free players will continue to grow less balanced creating rounds that are not rewarding further decimating the player population.

Third, players will stop buying new games. Players that invest heavily in microtransaction models have no incentive to play new games and start from scratch. They have already invested in the old games. Free to play players, like myself, will similiarly see no advantage to necessarily playing a new game where we will be at a similar disadvantage. If I want the free to play experience, I already have enough offerings, plus my old titles which offer play parity.

Fourth, players will simply carelessly consume from one title to the next. This would be the most beneficial model to companies like EA, but it seems to be the least likely.

Fifth, the companies will realize play parity is essential to the game and sell cosmetic items only or offer comparable free alternatives. So far, this also seems a bit unlikely.

In any event, I feel that I can honestly say that Battlfield 1942 is a better game than Battlfield Heroes since it provides players with parity. I probably play more BF:H than BF1942, but I certainly have begun playing BF1942 more and BF:H less. In addition to that, were it not for high pings, I would probably be playing other titles more.

I think a lot of players are beginning to look at older titles in a new light now that the age of microtransactions is looming.

Hopefully companies will be very careful in their implementation of these models.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Battlefield Heroes Wakileaks!



So here are the wakileaks for Battlefield Heroes.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

What is it like to design levels?

You can find out by checking out Everybody Edits on Kongregate.

It's a very interesting experience for people interested in learning about the challenges of developing engaging online content for other people and their reactions to it.

The environment is an online real-time multiplayer level editor.

Here is a small example of something I created. (Well, not entirely. The circle of gold coins was not my idea and some of the arrows were not mine.) The idea for the floating space room came from someone else, but I implemented it in a way which was effective for my purposes.



It is interesting to see what other people will contribute to your idea. I would never have come up with the gold ring under the LOVE lock, but it makes sense. It is also interesting to see how players will interact with the environment. Some players get frustrated and simply edit their way through the environment if they get stuck, other players will try to figure out what you are doing.

I found the blue heart to be very attractive to players.

There are also a lot of griefers who will simply destroy whatever is created in the public servers or otherwise try to deface creations offering another window into the online community.

The game is definitely worth a look.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Monday, November 29, 2010

Dollhouse Deck FG Hunter for Elements

As some people know, I used to play elements a lot more in the past. Now, I play maybe a game or two a day. I used to play in the tournaments, but grew tired of the controversies.

I still find it is a very well made free game which you can play at Kongregate or on the Elements the game site. Elements is a card dueling system played through your web browser. Your deck is saved remotely and can be accessed by any computer. It is a simplified combat system. Since the game is flash based it requires very low hardware requirements and can be played on netbooks, in coffee shops, and at the library. If you have not checked out elements, it is worth a look.

My current deck was built around 1 creature card: the purple nymph.



I created a deck for purposes of false god hunting. It is a concept deck and therefore probably not the cheapest or most effective deck you can build. I am not recommending this deck. It seems to work fairly well against L5, although there are decks with better win/loss ratios. Nevertheless, this is the deck I am currently using.

The deck code is:

500 6qq 6qq 6qq 6qq 6qq 6qq 6rn 6rn 6rn 6rn 6rn 6rn 6rq 6ts 6ts 6ts 6u8 7q0 7q5 7q8 7ri 808 808 808 808 808 80d 80d 80d 80d 80d 80d 80e 80e 80h 80h 80j 80j 80j

The mark is aether.

Here is an example of the deck in action against Dreamcatcher.



Here is the deck against Firequeen:



Here is the deck against Incarnate:



Here is the deck against ChaosLord:



Here is the deck against Paradox:



Here is the deck against Obliterator:



Here is the deck against Destiny:



For players who are just starting out, I recommend checking out the official forums for deck building tips and strategies.

Friday, November 26, 2010

The ping is too d@mn high!

I went back and tried playing a couple of my "older" games, but I could not because of my pings.

Battlefield 2142 in my area is pretty much not possible. There used to be about 2 servers I could connect to with players which had a low ping. Here is my screenshot of the pings today. (I tried to connect to to the Leet servers, but it would not.)



I will say these pings seemed unusually high, even for BF2142. Hopefully, it is a temporary thing.

I also tried Battlefield 2. I was able to connect to a server, but my ping was not competitive.



I connected to a "zero" rated server. Here is the in-game reading.



Finally, I looked at BF1942- and guess what! There is a server with a low ping and enough players to play.



So you might be thinking the game is a bit old. Well, first of all, people are still eagerly waiting for BF1943 for the PC. Second of all, there are a lot fewer aimbotters and hackers. Many of those players have moved on to games with leaderboards, global rankings, achievement awards, and unlocks. This makes the playing environment nice. This is not to say there aren't problems or any aimbotters or hackers. Just fewer. There are also no microtransactions to disrupt the parity.

Anyway, I've enjoyed some BF1942 recently and am glad that I have the opportunity to play it.

Hopefully, game companies will start to understand the importance of maintaining server support for their games, even vintage ones, across regions. It's very hard to recommend their games when you do not know what the ping/player count in a given area is.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Archon Classic!

So, I just found out about this!!! Sadly, it is not getting good reviews....

However, you can download the DEMO for free. It's limited to 20 minutes of play per day. I downloaded the demo and it seemed cool to me. Guess you can try before you buy.

Update: So my friend gifted me the game. This will give me an excellent chance to test out the game in much greater detail.

In any event, I'm checking it out. I really like the board music and the load screen artwork. On normal mode, I've won two in a row. I'm thinking that I should up the difficulty. I've also started to look at the conquest mode.

I will say that remaking Archon is an ambitious project. A lot of times, developers face gamers who expect the game to be identical to the original. Purists probably won't be completely satisfied with anything. Nevertheless, some latitude should be afforded. This will make my look at Archon even more interesting!

Here's what the developer said:

"We made the game conform and play just like the 1983 classic, thus the name, “Classic.” You have 8 directions to fire, we used sprites and all the rules from that era. With that said, we also added new things to the game, which would appeal to the modern gamer and bring the game up to speed. The things we’ve added were meant to add depth to the already fantastic game, not change it or take away from the core of what makes the game fun."

One thing the game DOES NOT currently have is online multiplayer support.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

G4TV News & Misc. RGN ?

Apparently, G4TV is facing some problems on DirectTv. In addition to that, Olivia Munn is on an extended break from AOTS. I cannot fault Olivia for seeking out new opportunities. Her presence in other formats may help raise awareness of G4TV outside of the gaming community. Of course, she is excellent on G4TV and many of her fans are expressing their sadness at her absence.

As people recall, I met Kevin Pereira at Comic-con 2010. Here is a picture of his autograph card that he gave me.



Looking at the card, he lists a sort of alias. The card made me wonder if gamers should all have Gamer id's. So far, players seem to be rejecting companies attempts to impose real game name requirements in games. Could a voluntary system work? What would it look like?

Friday, November 12, 2010

The latest Comic Book Creation of my Battlefield Heroes.

As many people know, I do not believe that DICE should sell weapons that provide a game advantage over VP players. However, I did recently take advantage of the Dr. Pepper promotion to outfit my character. I mailed away for codes as well as purchasing Dr. Pepper to get the unlock codes. I also used the free BF promotion at EA Gun Club to purchase items like Mel the Monkey, a stock anti-tank gun, and an extra hero slot.

Hopefully, someday when the Dr. Pepper promotion expires, the outfits might be available to people outside the US/CANADA.

In any case, I used an old program called Marvel Heroes Comic Book creator to throw this together. It sold for new for $4.99 at a Gamestop. The new version is probably much better and more expensive, but I find this version is very suitable for use in creating Video Game comic books. It usually saves the files in PDF format but unfortunately it skews the fonts. I was able to create a jpg version, which is here.

Hope you like it.



The Maldorar is a reference to Maldoror.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

New COD launches; Taking aim at aimbotters.

Everyone is talking about the new COD.

I find the different editions quite interesting. According to PC Magazine:

"The Prestige Edition, which retails for $149.99, includes the RC-XD Surveillance Vehicle, delivering a remote camera that transmits both TFT color video and audio to its operator with a range of up to 200 feet."

That will set players back a bit.

With very little fanfare, 1541 released an anti-aimbot video.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Before and After

Before



After



I have used only 2 Dr. Pepper codes on one Hero, ToreLovesEliza. I think you can see the difference. I have no problem with DICE selling or promoting these outfits. One thing, I have maintained is that my drab presence actually harms the paying players with dullness. Now, I'm doing a bit more of my part to alleviate this. If the paying players would now do their part and not buy weapons which provide an advantage, we would all be better off.

I will keep trying to collect Dr. Pepper codes for my other Heroes. I have mailed away for more codes so I will keep trying.

I found a place in Elko which sells Dr. Pepper under the cap codes- the Sinclair on 5th Street. If I find anymore locations, I will let you know. I will say these bottles are a bit expensive. I'm paying $1.99 for a 1 liter. The mail in code costs two stamps, so it is a much better deal- but you can only do one a week. ** I just discovered that Winner's Corner in Elko has them for $1.65 for 20 oz. I have now used 3 codes on ToreLovesEliza, 2 on Mntoothpick, and 1 on MaskedMakrel.

November 8 Update: I got my mailed away Dr. Pepper codes.



I am considering spending some of my free EA gunclub battlefunds on unlocking a national for purposes of play parity. Currently, I can only play Royals which can cause problems if there are not enough nats on a server.

So, I went ahead and purchased a slot only to find out that I had 4 slots already. The other news I discovered is that Smiths is now selling the EA Game Dr. Peppers for $1.49. Albertson's has the 20 oz for $1.39.

New Play for Free Battlefield being offered.

IGN has the story here.

It's good news and bad news.

The positive thing is that EA/DICE is getting more mileage out of its BF2 core engine. Hopefully, they will have fixed a few things.

It is a bit worrisome that DICE may discontinue support for its older games, in favor of promoting the newer free to play offering.

I have been a longstanding critic of the use of microtransactions that offer play advantages. I continue to see this as contrary to real gaming.

I am a huge fan of the avatar customization and feel that it benefits players.

Since EA/DICE has no incentive to apparently rebalance its microtransaction offerings, it is up to the players themselves to opt out of the pay for weapons advantage system.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Love's Dr. Pepper Code.



I took a roadtrip to Salt Lake City. On my way there, I stopped at a Love's. They carried the Dr. Pepper Every Cap Wins bottle, so I bought one. It was pretty expensive at $1.99 for a 1 liter. I entered the code and got a new outfit for my Gunner. Check it out.



Anyway, I'm still waiting for the mail in codes which are much more affordable.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Dumb political stunts part 2.

Some people may recall my earlier post on dumb political stunts.

Apparently, the case is continuing to work its way up through the court system.

I grew up playing Mortal Kombat and I see no reason to regulate the sales of these games to minors. There is no such a thing as a violent video game. There are only video games that depict violence.



UPDATE: So I posted to Gamespot Forums today. I started a thread about video game censorship at the Supreme Court and asked how long it would be before the thread was closed banned. The answer is not long.



They called it spam because I linked to this post. o.o

UPDATE 2: So Gamespot has BANNED my account.



That's sending a strong anti-censorship message at a critical time in gaming.

Meanwhile, over at Total Gaming Network the thread has been closed in a move described as "ironic".



Yes the irony of having the thread closed with a sig file that says buy a BC2 server. I wonder if irony will be the word they use if this censorship thing comes to pass.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Mailed away for Dr. Pepper EA Codes

UPDATE: WARNING: You are only allowed to mail a request for 1 free code per week!!! I wasted some postage on this. Do not make the same mistake!



I broke down and mailed away for some Dr. Pepper codes so I can get some better outfits for Battlefield Heroes. The mailing requires separate requests and self-addressed stamped return envelopes for each code. I had to mail 3 letters because I have 3 Heroes. I also hand wrote the three notes as mechanical reproductions will not be accepted.

This will enable me to get one outfit for each Hero. I am not sure how long it will take to arrive in the mail. The promotion runs until the end of December. I should get my codes before then.

It is not possible for me to get the Dr. Pepper codes in stores here as either Elko is not a participatory market or the bottles are not sold here for some other reason. (I eventually found some bottles in convenience stores/gas stations in Elko).

At least my Heroes will look a little bit nicer when/if I get my codes. Given the fact that you have to send a self-addressed stamped return envelope, it cost roughly 88 cents per code.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Is it time to Return to Castle Wolfenstein?

Is it time to return to Castle Wolfenstein?

I will speak frankly out of respect. At the outset, I want to say that gaming is a very important part of my life and that my time gaming has been a source of renewal, delight, and fun. I have enjoyed, and continue to enjoy playing games, including the games which present issues that I am about to critique.

There are two disturbing trends in gaming right now: a decline in video game sales and a move towards microtransaction based first person shooters.

What concerns me most is the possibility that players can pay for weapons (items) that provide them with a competitive in game advantage. I will make some personal observations about three games. I tried to pick games which are somewhat similar for focus, but obviously there are many games and models I haven't explored. I want to look at Battlefield Heroes, Team Fortress 2, and RTCW:ET.

Battlefield Heroes.



"Yeah, but the beauty of it is you'll have the opportunity to play the game; if you don't like it, you don't play it; if you do like it, you continue to play it. So, for the consumer, you've got all this choice, and all you need to do is just spend a few moments trying each one out."- Ben Cousins

I could focus on a lot of the problems I encounter in BF:H such as the occasionally imbalanced rounds created by having a dedicated faction or the highly questionable matchmaking function, but I want to focus on the sale of weapons for advantage. There is something about this idea which I have not been able to get over. I think its because it goes to the core of gaming itself. I'm also not going to re-hash the community input thread, but you can check it out here.

I also like to point out when DICE or EA goes out of there way to do something great, which they may not have to do.


Let's begin with a little BF:H history.

Battlefield Heroes began as a free to play game. It made headlines because it was not going to sell weapons for advantage.

In an interview, Ben Cousin's outlined the areas that players were supposed to make microtransactions: 1. character customization of looks and 2. convienence items which offer xp boost. According to the article, Ben Cousins said, "We think the community will define what they want to buy, and what they don't want to buy. So we're really open to selling things, and also them telling us, "Look, we don't want to buy this."

BF:H was supposed to provide no real "weapons" advantage to players playing with Battlefunds over those playing with VP. Weapons were not supposed to be sold. Apparently, many players were angered by the changes. I for one, use VP exclusively (although I recently got 700 free battllefunds from the Gun Club), and would be disheartened if that puts me at a competitive disadvantage.

Video games have always had an inherent time for money equation going back to the quarter operated arcade games. However, this new idea of paying extra for a potentially competitive advantage in PvP goes beyond a grinding adjustment and could potentially tip the outcomes of matches and games.

People have said the difference is only marginal.

HelloAndy noted, "Also keep in mind that there is not a big difference between the so called “Super” weapons and regular weapons (slightly bigger clip size, slightly higher crit chance, minor things)."

Okay, but there wasn't supposed to be a difference at all.

I keep thinking about a poker game in which everyone sits at a table but one player slips the dealer a few dollars to get to play with ace up their sleeves. It's only 1 card in 52 right? Small difference. Or a game of Monopoly in which the house rule is the person who bought the game can land on free parking and collect money, but no one else can. (1 space in 40, not a big difference right?)

How about Dungeon's and Dragons? If the Dungeon Master sold for cash magic items to some players and the others had to actually go through the Dungeon to earn them, would the game have been popular or had any meaning?

I want to be clear, that as a personal matter, I hope DICE and its team can be financially successful in making games- but not in a way that might corrupt the idea of gaming itself.

Is it fair, however, to blame DICE alone? Not entirely. After all, the players themselves do not have to purchase these items if they want to protect their gaming experience. Some gamers have left the game and that is there personal choice. I feel it would be much simpler if players simply did not purchase or use items like the uber knife unless and until the inequalities in gaming are resolved. Unfortunately, it is unlikely that all players will do so given the competitive pressures that exist.

Finally, we know that times are tough for everyone, including the video game market. I hear your fears DICE. Do not go bankrupt, and do not bankrupt the game.

Here is a short video of me having FUN playing Battlefield Heroes!


DICE- do something to restore your promise to sell cosmetic and time saving items and not weapons that provide advantages.

Team Fortress 2



Team Fortress 2 is not free to play, but it is very affordable. It was recently on sale for about $9.99. Valve does not want to go completely free to play because they want to punish people who cheat by closing their accounts. (I could go on about the prison industrial complex of gaming here, but I'm going to try to stay focused.)

Team Fortress 2 launched its most recent update in which players can now buy, sell, and trade items.

Someone posted a rather detailed account of how they think the TF2 system operates- I'm not entirely sure.

What I do know is this:

First of all, artists receive a portion of the sale of goods they contribute. This is probably a good thing. In general, however, I am skeptical of sales which might provide players with advantages in seeing what happened with BF:H. Although the differences are small, these factors are not consistent with basic gaming notions.

Laughably, the TF2 pricing system probably needs more than a little work. I found a hat selling for over $17. Is this a microtransaction?

It is too early to tell what the overall impact will be.

It was not that long ago that Robin Walker said this:

"To us, the incremental money we can make off lots of things is worth way less than a bunch of people really, really liking being our customers, and that has way more long term value to us than anything else. I think as companies become bigger, that becomes harder. The problem of being a company that people like becomes harder and harder the bigger you get, and so it’s something we need to be vigilant about. And I think caring about our customers is really the thing that’s going to make or break us at the end of the day."

Currently, Robin Walker is saying the new system is about allowing for greater community contributions.

"We view the Mann-conomy as the next, crucial step in the evolution of how communities interact with products. Now they’ll not only be able to contribute to the product, they will be directly compensated for their work."


For me, the question will be how does this impact the gaming environment. If a bunch of people end up buying items that provide them with an advantage which unbalances the game, then more will be lost than gained.

One easy rule for gamers is that gamers should not purchase items which provide a gaming advantage. Given the fact that some gamers are too young to exercise such judgment, it may not be possible to hope for that. On the other hand, given the costs, it may be that only older rich players actually have the kind of cash to buy these things. I mean how many fourteen year olds can sustain $17 digital hat purchases? Are teens simply going to be priced out of these games?

Some gamers have opted to leave games which utilize systems which have pay for advantage systems. Many BF:H players moved to TF2. It may be that gamers will have to retreat to older games or smaller independent games which are less well known. There are plenty of gaming alternatives- even in free to play markets.


Anyway, I have had fun playing TF2. Here is a video of me playing TF2.


Steam: sell cosmetic and time saving items and not weapons or items that provide in game advantages. Keep gaming affordable.



Return To Castle Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory.

Like most people, I used to play this game a lot more in the past. The game is free! It has multiple classes. The game is a bit older so the graphics are not state of the art, but the game was good by my standards and is still good for several reasons. Like Battlefield Heroes, it is free. It can run on very old machines since most machines are way more powerful than machines from the era in which it served. It is a bit quirky at times to connect to servers and the game, like all games is not flawless.

The biggest single problem with the game are the presence of bots rather than live players. I hate bots. I have always hated bots. The AI is never that great. This could of course change if live players began playing the game again.

(Small detour: I am not a huge fan of the "reality" FPS genre mostly because I find that some players say things which are actually fascist, whereas in TF2 you get mostly annoying sex cross talk and BF:H it's just predictable angry hackusations and noob-bating wars. I'm drifting here a bit, so let me focus.)

The more you play in the server, the more XP you accumulate and the better your character becomes. Some servers have xp save so your character keeps the ups more persistently.

There is obviously not the level of dress up you get in BF:H or the cartoony fun of TF2. However, the game also does not have microtransactions. It's dated enough that if you can find a low ping server, a modern high speed connection will probably not have problems.

The game appears to suggest that a game can be sustained for years even without microtransactions. I found it had all the basic elements of gameplay which you would expect.

It's certainly not my first choice of games to play, but in light of the wierd microtransaction disturbances, I feel it was worth downloading and installing again.

The gameplay may seem a bit simple, but as BF:H suggests, simple can be fun.

I played it mostly to examine the possibility of a online gaming without microtransactions, in-game ads, that had low hardware requirements and was free.

Here is a short video of me playing RTCW:ET.

Players: give RTCW a second look- if only to see that free to play games do not need to rely on microtransactions. (If you are running it under Vista, give yourself UAC priveleges BTW).

Summary

All the Punkbusters and VAC's in the world will never make up for a basic lack of ethics.

Just thought I'd throw that in as another off-topic aside.

Getting back to it, I've spent a lot of great time playing games. I like the work that gaming companies do, even if I don't always like what they do. I feel it is important to talk about these things in a respectful and responsible manner. Hopefully, game companies will not make such poor decisions that I can no longer play the games they make.

You may have noticed in all three videos, I attempted to use the "flamethrowing" style class. That was intentional to show that despite their differences, there are also a lot of similarities in opportunities for gamers. Gamers still have options and choices.

Now I should probably dust off some Roleplaying books, just, uh, in case a per pixel fee is imposed. After all, a good set of D20 dice are pretty cheap. I even got one D20 for free at Dave Arneson's visitation in St. Paul in 2009. He wanted people to have fun playing games. A great idea then, and a great idea now. Let's not forget that.