Top of the line

Here we go

Friday, April 21, 2006 | 03:12 PM | by
So I wasn't sure what I was going to talk about for today's newspost. The comic pretty much exists in it's own little world of my twisted parody imagination, and doesn't beg a discussion. The only games I'm playing right now are games that have been out for ages. Can you believe I'm playing God of War right now?

But then Brian linked me to a post explaining that with the release of issue 7, City of Heroes/Villains will be making use of the Aegia PhysX card.

For those of you that don't know (and that may be many, since I only first heard about this card last week), the PhysX card is all about producing real physics in games.

When I heard about it last week, it was seeing this demonstration. While I thought it was pretty cool, I dismissed it because I'm an idiot and I thought the PhysX was a new-fangled graphics card. I wasn't about to replace my dual 7800GTX's just for card that made things explode into tinier bits.

However Brian and some more research has enlightened me, and I now know that it is a card that works in conjunction with your processor and graphics card. It takes the load for processing physics off of your processor. It seems like a pretty neat idea to me.

Now, from what I hear the card will be released pretty soon. It's apparently available in pre-built gaming rigs from Alienware/Dell, but I don't know any PC gamers that buy pre-constructed rigs.

I imagine the card will be fairly expensive to start (around $350 is what I'm hearing), so it's not something everyone is going to be able to go out and buy right away. But it's neat to see a new step in gaming realism this way, and I imagine in a couple of years, physics-specific cards will be common, and games will be making lots of use of the extra processing power, giving us realism in games we haven't had before.

It particularly interests me that NCSoft has announced that CoH/CoV will suddenly make use of this new technology, since I'm just getting back into those games. Right now I just play with the character creator (one of my favorite parts of the game anyway), but once issue 7 hits, I'm really looking forward to the Mayhem Missions for Villains, where the PhysX will really shine. Basically, as a villain, the point of a Mayhem Mission is to enter an instanced portion of Paragon City and destroy the fuck out of as much stuff as possible on the way to your goal (robbing a bank or something). Cars, mailboxes, dumpsters, whatever. It will be interesting to see some comparisons on this between a regular graphics card, and a graphics card working with the PhsyX card, so we can see how much of a difference it really makes.

I'm all for more destruction.

DDO Gameday

Friday, April 21, 2006 | 03:52 PM | by
How convenient. Dungeons and Dragons Online is offering a 7-Day free trial. (also here)

So I'm going to hold a GameDay tomorrow and we'll play DDO. If you already play DDO, that's cool too, you're all set. Otherwise, you need to get all set up for the trial. You have a day to get that done if you want to participate. It's a 1.7GB download, so the sooner you start it, the better.

We'll all make characters that start with 'Cad' (it's the easiest way to identify and find eachother), and goof off for a couple of hours. I'm thinking between 4pm and 6pm EST. I'll most more details later on tonight, after I've gotten my trial installed.

GameDay Forum

Friday, April 21, 2006 | 05:23 PM | by
I made a special board on the CAD Forums just for the GameDays. I thought it would be easier to keep track of everything, past and future GameDays, and also discuss with other people participating in the GameDay.

Speaking of cool computer stuff...

Friday, April 21, 2006 | 08:04 PM | by
This new device from Matrox is pretty spiffy. Unfortunately it's analog only, not DVI, and the picture quality suffers just a little bit. But damn, having that much peripheral vision in video games is gorgeous. World of Warcraft recently patched in support, and Oblivion works with it right out of the box. Crazy!

DDO GameDay Update

Saturday, April 22, 2006 | 01:35 AM | by
I'll be posting the server we're playing on shortly before the event starts at 4pm.

However, I had forgotten that you can choose a surname for your character. So rather than ask everyone to use 'Cad' in their first name (which I realize would get confusing trying to differentiate people), use it to start your last name, which is just for show. And multiple people can use the same surname. The surname I'm going to use is 'Cadronicus', if you want to use that.

DDO GameDay Server

Saturday, April 22, 2006 | 03:53 PM | by
We'll be playing on Fernia. Start your character's surname with 'Cad' so it's easy to identify eachother.

Create your character, and then progress through the newbie island, which is mostly tutorial and solo content that will teach you the game. After you're done, take the boat to Stormreach, and hang out in the harbor where you arrive.

Once a bunch of people start showing up there, we may form an impromptu guild, to make it easier for people to find groups and such.

After the GameDay is over, the guild will remain for anyone that wants to continue playing for the rest of their 7 day trial.

My name in-game is Absath Cadronicus. Let's just assume that if you're coming out to play DDO with us today, that you enjoy the comic. So "thank you very much" in advance, and let's try to refrain from bombarding me with /tells. It will be difficult for me to answer a bunch of different people at once, so please don't get upset if it seems like I'm ignoring you. I'm not. Once we get a guild formed for the day, it should be easier to communicate amongst eachother.

See you in-game!

Update: Ok, making a guild is easier than I thought. Find me in the tavern in the newbie area, and I'll invite you to the guild!

Ok, I recruited for about a half an hour, now I've started playing. If you come late, just send me a whisper and I'll try and invite you.

DDO GameDay Aftermath

Saturday, April 22, 2006 | 06:09 PM | by
As always, today's GameDay was a blast. We created a quick guild, which had nearly 150 members in less than a half an hour. We all ran through the tutorials, and then messed around with the newbie quests, chatting via guildchat the whole time.

At the end, a bunch of us swam out into the harbor for a mass drowning to cap off the evening. Here are a couple of pics!

I probably won't play again during the 7-day free trial, but the guild (called CAD) is left running in case anyone wants to keep going with fellow fans. It was a blast, thanks for coming out everyone!