Steam, Valves own digital game distribution social network sharing card game fleamarket service, has a big week. On Monday they announced their very own gaming operating system, called SteamOS. Today they´ll have the second announcement, another one following in all likelihood on Friday. I was pretty excited already from the first. Continue reading “O! [O]? [O+O]?”
Two remarkable iOS games have been released within the last weeks. Take Two Interactive ported their round based tactical “Game of the Year 2012” winner “XCOM: Enemy Unknown” to iOS and Square Enix brought the Deus Ex series with the standalone title “Deus Ex: The Fall” to mobile. Both IPs are well regarded in the gaming community and have been successful on other platforms as well. And both of them approach mobile gaming wildly different.
I´d like to describe both of them briefly and then speculate on their meaning for iOS as a gaming platform. For ease of reading and to force myself to update that thing here more frequently I´ll split this up in three pieces.
Lets start with the similarities: Both titles are definitely AAA titles, at least for the iOS platform. The production value seems high. Both have very nice graphics, both offer cutscenes, have deep and engaging gameplay compared to your everyday iOS game, both run sufficiently fluent on my devices (iPhone 5 iOS7beta3 and iPad3 iOS6).
Now to some more details about “Deus Ex: The Fall“:
After years of dedication and five minutes of editing here’s the result of my self shot mania starting March 2011. Totally only made possible by the mobile revolution; I’d have never have had the discipline to do that with a real camera without an automatic daily reminder. On iOS I used Everyday and on Android Photochron. Minor editing was done with iMovie. And somewhere in between the phones and YouTube the quality changed to potato.
Yeah, I´m a bit narcissistic sometimes… so what?
Roughly six weeks ago I switched my iPhone5 with iOS6 on it for a spanking brand-new Nexus4. I was getting way too bored with the iOS of yesterday and neither Blackberry10 nor Windows Phone have proven themselves to be realistic alternatives. After doing some research for a low end price, high end specs Android device I found only praise for the Nexus4. What finally got me was the promise of not having to deal with any bloatware at all due to getting the “Vanilla Android” as Google has envisioned it. I also thought that getting intimate user knowledge of Android would help me professionally. Finally my company recently switched to Google Apps, so I had lots of my stuff already within Googles services anyway.
First days were a blast: Customizing home screens, fiddling with launchers, being awed by the share dialog, unzipping zips, playing Pokemon with a Game Boy emulator, surfing .onion sites, having my Bitcoin wallet with me and last, but not least, playing Ingress.
Now, why am I considering switching back?
So, we had Apples WWDC keynote yesterday. I´ll not comment on iOS7, given my move to an Android Nexus 4 device lately. But Apple not only showed the new mobile OS, but also brought new versions of the MacBook Airs to the stores. Which brings me directly to my current problem: Should I get one of these?
My current 15″ mid 2010 non-retina non-SSD MacBook Pro keeps randomly crashing and rebooting. Over the last weeks it got so bad that it´ll restart at least twice a day. I was unable to figure any trigger yet, sometimes it just happens while I´m reading something. I already installed the OS all new, to no avail. Luckily all that cloud-stuff and related autosaving and autosyncing made me not lose any work yet, but nevertheless the behavior is annoying. One likes to trust its work machine and not flinch at every keystroke. So at some point in the not-so-far future it´ll be replaced. But are the new Airs the right machines for my needs?
I was in London again. And I still think it’s a gorgeous city. The first thing I saw when jumping out of the tube was a horse chariot, nicely done in red and gold. The last thing was that cavalry troop:
History is just everywhere around you. I learned that nowadays the lodges at the Kensington Garden gates are rented by Russian oligarchs for 1k £ a week. Now I have a new goal in life: live in one of these lodges for at least half a year.
I spent yesterdays evening at the residence of the finnish ambassador in UK, joining a Futurice event. We had the first Royal AfterWork and it was good. Interesting speakers, interesting audience and the traditionally great finnish food. Unfortunately I haven’t had any time to do something else besides that stroll through Kensington Gardens.
And btw the weather is great in London, warm and sunny. I’m not looking forward to flying back to Berlin.
Yay, have severely sore feet and met in one week a handful of new people. All of them geekish like me, all of them addicted to the same thing: Ingress, Google’s augmented reality game. If you have an Android device, test it out. Its really fun!