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Yub Yub

Wednesday, November 30, 2005 | 01:57 PM | by
Tomorrow is December 1st. That means the HUGE announcement here at CAD is right around the corner. You'll want to make sure you check this page tomorrow. People will be talking about this, and you don't want to be the last to know.

Registration for Digital Overload 2006 is now open. Space is limited, and we will not be selling tickets at the door, so you may want to move quickly. You can check out the forum to arrange carpools and room-shares with fellow fans at Digital Overload.

While it is predominantly a BYOC LAN event, we will also have consoles hooked up to projectors for people to play on, and a section set aside for some classic table-top board gaming. So there will be a little sum'n sum'n for everyone.

And if the gaming multitude wasn't enough for you, word on the street is that my two favorite people in webcomics will be in attendance. Brian "My Sports Car Can Drive Over Anything" Clevinger and Scott "What's A Car?" Ramsoomair will be on hand to deliver some good old-fashioned sexiness. So you get to play video games all weekend, and hang out with the three coolest people in webcomics. What more could you ask for?

Speaking of Mr. Clevinger, he is solely to blame for my new addiction to NFS: Most Wanted.

Back on the original Playstation, I picked up the very first Need for Speed game. And it was horrid. I returned it 15 minutes after I bought it (I had ridden my bike there, in the rain, and turned right around to ride back out. To give you an idea how badly I wanted my money back). Since then, I never once picked up another NFS title. The franchise held no interest for me. Not when there was Ridge Racer, PGR, Gran Turismo, Burnout, etc.

And I hadn't planned to buy Most Wanted either. Aside from the NFS title, the subject matter of stree racing always makes me wary. Import tuning experienced a surge in popularity after the Fast and Furious movies. Not entirely for the better, either. You see a lot of Hondas and Acuras out there now with a fart can on the back, and maybe some rims, and the rest of the car is rusted to shit.

Some of you who follow my journal know that I'm into tuning myself, and how much I love my MX-3. But there are fine lines between race and rice, which too many people can't distinguish. And most movies/games glamorize the unrealistic side of the hobby.

So it wasn't until Brian told me that he had not only purchased the game, but was thoroughly hooked on it, that I even gave the game a second glance. And I trust Brian's judgement in most things (except for the nipple rings. That was a bad call, Brian), so I went out and picked it up.

And now I'm hooked too.

Now there is a lot of rice in this game. In fact, the only spoilers you can purchase are those ridiculous bolt-on-top-of-the-trunk, don't-match-the-car, bought-it-off-eBay pieces of shit.

However it is still very possibly to craft a stylish street racer in the game, so you won't be forced to drive around bling bling if you want more go than show.

The first thing that caught me about Most Wanted was that they brought back FMV. What? Who does that anymore? But they do it well. The acting is a bit over the top, and cheesy, but it fits with the atmosphere of the game. Visually the game is stunning. It may not be quite up to par with PGR, but it's damned close.

But once you get underneath the eye-candy, you'll find an arcade racer with some serious meat. This is a very well-fleshed-out game we're talking about here. The racing is pretty standard, but they really make it interesting, with a bunch of different modes. You have your lap races, your sprint races, your time trial races, but also a mode where you have to achieve a certain speed as you pass under a police traffic camera. Or the drag race mode, where you aren't focusing on steering so much as you focus on perfecting your shift timing. Or the mode where you win based on your accumulative MPH throughout the whole race, regardless of whether you finish first or last.

The racing is great, but the Pursuit is what really sets this game apart. The car chases are so amazing, they'll just suck you into the game. As you dog the cops around the city streets and highways, you can listen to their radio chatter, and they'll actually describe your vehicle (a silver Mazda, a purple Mitsubishi, whatever) and the direction/road you were last seen heading. If you ram a cop car, you'll hear someone shout over the CB that they were just struck and need backup, etc. It's wonderful.

The physics engine is alright. A bit unrealistic. Damage taken to your car is limited to nasty scrapes and broken windows. No real body damage. If you're in a head on-collision, it slows you down, but mostly you just plow right through the other car. I haven't seen a game other than Burnout do car crashes really well. I suppose it has to be the way it is, for the application, but still. I'd like to see a little bit more damage to the car. Bumpers cracking and flying off, etc.

If you're looking for an arcade-style racer (over the top speed, big drifts around corners) and lots of multi-player and car customization options, check out NFS: Most Wanted. And if you see me on XBL, drop me a game invite. I'll race you for pinks.


Wednesday, November 30, 2005 | 10:36 PM | by
Looks like I'll be able to make the announcement right around midnight-ish. Eastern time.

Big News, clicky clicky

Thursday, December 1, 2005 | 12:02 AM | by

And I'll be back later to give you the details.

Ok, here's the dirt

Thursday, December 1, 2005 | 02:02 AM | by
You heard correctly. Ctrl+Alt+Del is going animated.

The Animated Series will debut in February of 2006, consisting of a brand new 4-5 minute animated short every month. All new material, fully animated, featuring professional voice actors hand chosen from over 1400 auditions. The episodes are written by me, directed/produced by Ryan Sohmer and Randy Waxman, the great guys over at Blind Ferret Entertainment, and brought to life by a professional animation studio.

The animation will be a part of the CAD Premium membership site, which will also give you access to exclusive wallpapers, art, sketches, scripts, contests and prizes. The animation will be sold separately for $2.99 an episode, but if you sign up before December 31st, you can get a year membership (12 episodes) for just $1.66 per episode. While the episodes won't begin airing until February, you can lock in your discount rate by signing up this month.

Why are we charging for the animation, you ask? Well, the comic strip is a one-man endeavor. I create this comic four times a week because I absolutely love to do so. I am fortunate enough to make a living at it, and I do well enough, so it's ok if not everyone that reads the comic supports the website.

However, fully animated shorts take a whole team of people, from animators, to directors/producers, to voice actors, all of whom need to be paid. So as much as we'd love to give it away, the bean-counters won't let us.

If you can't afford, or aren't interested in CAD Premium, don't worry. Ctrl+Alt+Del as you've come to know it will remain free. You'll still get everything you've become accustomed to getting (comics, news, reviews, forums, etc).

CAD Premium is just extra stuff for those fans who want to pay for a little more CAD in their lives.

Another announcement

Thursday, December 1, 2005 | 02:09 AM | by
Perhaps not as colossal as the one above, but I still think it's really damned cool.

I had been considering doing faceplates for the Xbox 360, but then I figured "why do a measely faceplate when we could skin the whole machine in sexiness?!".

And so I proudly present to you, the upcoming Ctrl+Alt+Del Xbox 360 skins from GameConsoleSkins.com.

You can click on the images for a larger view. These will be available for sale shortly.

Don't worry, I'll let you know the instant these badboys are available.

Closed Captions

Thursday, December 1, 2005 | 04:34 PM | by
Because I've gotten a few emails about this:

Yes, we fully intend to offer subtitled versions of the Animated Series for the hearing impaired.